We Need To Get The Internet Of Things Right

TechCrunch - Sun, 04/19/2015 - 10:00am
 Nowadays, it seems that everything is connected to the Internet. There are connected socks, shoes, shirts, hats, glasses, appliances, beds, homes, drones, cars, and even diapers. Yet, for the Internet of Things (IoT) to play a key role in shaping our future, we need to get a few thingsright. The statement, “Those who fail to learn from history are doomed to repeat it.” has never… Read More

Inhabitat's Week in Green: cheaper EVs, synthetic leaves and clay-pot speakers

Engadget - Sun, 04/19/2015 - 10:00am
Each week our friends at Inhabitat recap the week's most interesting green developments and clean tech news for us -- it's the Week in Green. For more than three years, the Western United States -- especially California -- has been gripped by the ...

Does Lack of FM Support On Phones Increase Your Chances of Dying In a Disaster?

Slashdot - Sun, 04/19/2015 - 8:27am
theodp writes You may not know it," reports NPR's Emma Bowman, "but most of today's smartphones have FM radios inside of them. But the FM chip is not activated on two-thirds of devices. That's because mobile makers have the FM capability switched off. The National Association of Broadcasters has been asking mobile makers to change this. But the mobile industry, which profits from selling data to smartphone users, says that with the consumer's move toward mobile streaming apps, the demand for radio simply isn't there." But FEMA Administrator Craig Fugate says radio-enabled smartphones could sure come in handy during times of emergency. So, is it irresponsible not to activate the FM chips? And should it's-the-app-way-or-the-highway Apple follow Microsoft's lead and make no-static-at-all FM available on iPhones?

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Wink smart home hubs knocked out by security certificate (update)

Engadget - Sun, 04/19/2015 - 6:22am
Now for the downside of a house loaded up with "smart" devices to allow remote control and monitoring: turning your home into a computer means computer-like problems. Today's example comes from the Wink Hub, a $50 device sold at Home Depot that's sup...

US Military To Recruit Civilian Cybersecurity Experts

Slashdot - Sun, 04/19/2015 - 5:22am
An anonymous reader writes The U.S. Army is to create a new cybersecurity division, Cyber Branch 17, and is also considering launching a cyber career track for civilians, according to an announcement made this week by Lt. Gen. Edward C. Cardon. Cardon, who currently heads the U.S. Army's cyber command, ARCYBER, spoke to the Senate Armed Services subcommittee on Tuesday about the growing threats and capabilities used in cyber warfare. He argued that creating a cyber career management field for civilians would result in an easier recruitment process, as opposed to recruiting internally and trying to retain the talent, he said. Cardon maintains that recruiting and retaining talent in the field is often challenging, given internal employment constraints surrounding compensation and slow hiring processes.

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The Year Of Mobile Payments

TechCrunch - Sun, 04/19/2015 - 3:30am
 Ask most people what the state of mobile payments is today, and they’ll tell you it’s just kicking off. With Facebook announcing the option to ‘send money to friends’ via messenger and the release of Apple Pay last year, 2015 has excitedly been dubbed “The Year of Mobile Payments.” Yet what most people don’t realise is that these services are… Read More

Hitchbot's poetry-writing sibling will also make its way across Canada

Engadget - Sun, 04/19/2015 - 3:05am
While Hitchbot was bumming rides across Canada and Germany, its sibling kulturBot remained at home to keep their "parents" company. Now kulturBot is going on an adventure of its own, traveling with musicians, poets and other artistic types aboard the...

FBI Overstated Forensic Hair Matches In Nearly All Trials Before 2000

Slashdot - Sun, 04/19/2015 - 2:29am
schwit1 writes The Justice Department and FBI have formally acknowledged that nearly every examiner in an elite FBI forensic unit gave flawed testimony in almost all trials in which they offered evidence against criminal defendants over more than a two-decade period before 2000. Of 28 examiners with the FBI Laboratory's microscopic hair comparison unit, 26 overstated forensic matches in ways that favored prosecutors in more than 95 percent of the 268 trials reviewed so far, according to the National Association of Criminal Defense Lawyers (NACDL) and the Innocence Project, which are assisting the government with the country's largest post-conviction review of questioned forensic evidence. The cases include those of 32 defendants sentenced to death. Of those, 14 have been executed or died in prison, the groups said under an agreement with the government to release results after the review of the first 200 convictions.

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Google To Propose QUIC As IETF Standard

Slashdot - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 11:33pm
As reported by TechCrunch, "Google says it plans to propose HTTP2-over-QUIC to the IETF as a new Internet standard in the future," having disclosed a few days ago that about half of the traffic from Chrome browsers is using QUIC already. From the article: The name "QUIC" stands for Quick UDP Internet Connection. UDP's (and QUIC's) counterpart in the protocol world is basically TCP (which in combination with the Internet Protocol (IP) makes up the core communication language of the Internet). UDP is significantly more lightweight than TCP, but in return, it features far fewer error correction services than TCP. ... That's why UDP is great for gaming services. For these services, you want low overhead to reduce latency and if the server didn't receive your latest mouse movement, there's no need to spend a second or two to fix that because the action has already moved on. You wouldn't want to use it to request a website, though, because you couldn't guarantee that all the data would make it. With QUIC, Google aims to combine some of the best features of UDP and TCP with modern security tools.

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Russians are using undiscovered exploits to hack governments

Engadget - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 11:11pm
If you've been wondering how Russian cyberattackers could compromise the White House and other high-profile political targets, the security researchers at FireEye have an answer. They've determined that APT28, a politically-motivated Russian hacking ...

The Unbundling Of Everything

TechCrunch - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 10:00pm
 We’ve been living in a bundled world. ESPN packaged with Nickelodeon, healthcare tied to employers, learning wrapped up in colleges and degree programs. We’ve grown up surrounded by so many bundled products and services that it’s easy to become blind to the flexibility and value presented by unbundling. Read More

ESPN objects to Verizon's flexible FiOS TV plans

Engadget - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 9:07pm
You may like Verizon's more flexible FiOS TV packages, but ESPN sure doesn't. The Disney-owned sports network claims that these offerings break contracts which prevent carriers from putting ESPN and ESPN2 into a separate sports package -- typically, ...

Joseph Goebbels' Estate Sues Publisher Over Diary Excerpt Royalties

Slashdot - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 8:23pm
wabrandsma writes with this from The Guardian: The estate of Joseph Goebbels, Adolf Hitler's minister of propaganda, is taking legal action against the publisher Random House over a new biography, claiming payment for the use of extracts from his diaries. Peter Longerich's biography of Goebbels is to be published in May (Random House/ Siedler). Longerich, who is the professor at Royal Holloway's Holocaust Research Centre, maintains this case has important censorship implications. 'If you accept that a private person controls the rights to Goebbels' diaries, then – theoretically – you give this person the right to control research,' he said.

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Comcast's gigabit internet hits northern California in June

Engadget - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 7:01pm
Comcast is bringing its twice-as-fast-as-Google-Fiber internet service to northern California. Potential customers will need installation of professional-grade equipment to access it and, you'll have to be near its fiber network -- Fresno, Monterey, ...

We Need Algorithmic Angels

TechCrunch - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 7:00pm
 A lot has been written on how algorithms are manipulating this and that in today’s Internet. However, there hasn’t been so many concrete proposals on how could we create more human-centered algorithmic solutions. For example, do we need algorithms that are on our side? Read More

DOJ Could Nix Comcast-Time Warner Merger

Slashdot - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 6:42pm
jriding (1076733) writes The Comcast-Time Warner Cable merger has been in the works for so long, it's starting to feel like the impending monopolistic telecom Frankenbaby was inevitable. But the Justice Department may kibosh the deal for violating antitrust laws, according to a report from Bloomberg.

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Norway Will Switch Off FM Radio In 2017

Slashdot - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 5:25pm
New submitter titten writes The Norwegian Ministry of Culture has announced that the transition to DAB will be completed in 2017. This means that Norway, as the first country in the world to do so, has decided to switch off the FM network. Norway began the transition to DAB in 1995. In recent years two national and several local DAB-networks has been established. 56 per cent of radio listeners use digital radio every day. 55 per cent of households have at least one DAB radio, according to Digitalradio survey by TNS Gallup, continuously measuring the Norwegian`s digital radio habits.

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Windows 10's phone maps help you find things to do

Engadget - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 5:04pm
To put it mildly, Windows Phone's official mapping options are... basic. However, Microsoft is promising a better experience with the mobile Maps app in Windows 10. Get a recent preview version of Windows 10 and you'll see a map interface that is not...

What The Apple Watch Could Be

TechCrunch - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 5:00pm
 What is the Apple Watch? The simple answer is Apple’s first smartwatch. In fact Apple calls it its “most personal device ever”. But early reviewers have wrestled with the raison d’être of the Apple Watch. Read More

Ask Slashdot: What Features Would You Like In a Search Engine?

Slashdot - Sat, 04/18/2015 - 4:32pm
New submitter nicolas.slusarenko writes Nowadays, there is one dominant search engine in the world among few alternatives. I have the impression that the majority of users think that it is the best possible service that could be made. I am sure that we could have a better search engine. During my spare time I been developing Trokam, an online search engine. I am building this service with the features that I would like to find in a service: respectful of user rights, ad-free, built upon open source software, and with auditable results. Well, those are mine. What features would you like in a search engine?

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