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Daimler sells its stake in Tesla as its EV partner grows up

Engadget - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 17:33
They grow up so fast, don't they? It seems like just yesterday (well, 2009) that Daimler bought a stake in Tesla to give it a boost and secure a partner for electric car development, and the German automaker is now selling that stake a mere five...

Offended by the 'Hatred' trailer? You're a hypocrite (and that's a good thing)

Engadget - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 17:00
This week, a game about a genocidal maniac was announced. There's a video trailer for the game that depicts ultraviolent bedlam: a murder spree of innocent victims, many begging for their lives. So it's basically another week in video games, then?...

Shooting At Canadian Parliament

Slashdot - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 16:55
CBC reports that a man pulled up to the War Memorial in downtown Ottawa, got out of his car, and shot a soldier with a rifle. The Memorial is right next to the Canadian Parliament buildings. A shooter (reportedly the same one, but unconfirmed) also approached Parliament and got inside before he was shot and killed. "Scott Walsh, who was working on Parliament Hill, said ... the man hopped over the stone fence that surrounds Parliament Hill, with his gun forcing someone out of their car. He then drove to the front doors of Parliament and fired at least two shots, Walsh said." Canadian government officials were quickly evacuated from the building, while the search continues for further suspects. This comes a day after Canada raised its domestic terrorism threat level. Most details of the situation are still unconfirmed -- CBC has live video coverage here. They have confirmed that there was a second shooting at the Rideau Center, a shopping mall nearby.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Shooting At Canadian Parliament

Slashdot - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 16:55
CBC reports that a man pulled up to the War Memorial in downtown Ottawa, got out of his car, and shot a soldier with a rifle. The Memorial is right next to the Canadian Parliament buildings. A shooter (reportedly the same one, but unconfirmed) also approached Parliament and got inside before he was shot and killed. "Scott Walsh, who was working on Parliament Hill, said ... the man hopped over the stone fence that surrounds Parliament Hill, with his gun forcing someone out of their car. He then drove to the front doors of Parliament and fired at least two shots, Walsh said." Canadian government officials were quickly evacuated from the building, while the search continues for further suspects. This comes a day after Canada raised its domestic terrorism threat level. Most details of the situation are still unconfirmed -- CBC has live video coverage here. They have confirmed that there was a second shooting at the Rideau Center, a shopping mall nearby.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.


What It Took For SpaceX To Become a Serious Space Company

Slashdot - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 16:47
An anonymous reader writes: The Atlantic has a nice profile of SpaceX's rise to prominence — how a private startup managed to successfully compete with industry giants like Boeing in just a decade of existence. "Regardless of its inspirations, the company was forced to adopt a prosaic initial goal: Make a rocket at least 10 times cheaper than is possible today. Until it can do that, neither flowers nor people can go to Mars with any economy. With rocket technology, Musk has said, "you're really left with one key parameter against which technology improvements must be judged, and that's cost." SpaceX currently charges $61.2 million per launch. Its cost-per-kilogram of cargo to low-earth orbit, $4,653, is far less than the $14,000 to $39,000 offered by its chief American competitor, the United Launch Alliance. Other providers often charge $250 to $400 million per launch; NASA pays Russia $70 million per astronaut to hitch a ride on its three-person Soyuz spacecraft. SpaceX's costs are still nowhere near low enough to change the economics of space as Musk and his investors envision, but they have a plan to do so (of which more later)."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








'Dorothy' lets you click your heels to hail a cab

Engadget - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 16:41
What if you could click your red heels to get home, like Dorothy from The Wizard of Oz? A new wearable concept -- aptly dubbed "Dorothy" -- might let you do just that. It consists of a small clip called "Ruby" that attaches to your shoe and...

Congress won't pass a law letting the FBI access your encrypted data

Engadget - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 16:16
Just because FBI director James Comey believes his agency has a right to see your phone's encrypted data doesn't mean he'll get his way. Members of Congress from both major parties, including House Representatives Darrell Issa and Zoe Lofgren as well...

Software Glitch Caused 911 Outage For 11 Million People

Slashdot - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 16:05
HughPickens.com writes: Brian Fung reports at the Washington Post that earlier this year emergency services went dark for over six hours for more than 11 million people across seven states. "The outage may have gone unnoticed by some, but for the more than 6,000 people trying to reach help, April 9 may well have been the scariest time of their lives." In a 40-page report (PDF), the FCC found that an entirely preventable software error was responsible for causing 911 service to drop. "It could have been prevented. But it was not," the FCC's report reads. "The causes of this outage highlight vulnerabilities of networks as they transition from the long-familiar methods of reaching 911 to [Internet Protocol]-supported technologies." On April 9, the software responsible for assigning the identifying code to each incoming 911 call maxed out at a pre-set limit; the counter literally stopped counting at 40 million calls. As a result, the routing system stopped accepting new calls, leading to a bottleneck and a series of cascading failures elsewhere in the 911 infrastructure. Adm. David Simpson, the FCC's chief of public safety and homeland security, says having a single backup does not provide the kind of reliability that is ideal for 911. "Miami is kind of prone to hurricanes. Had a hurricane come at the same time [as the multi-state outage], we would not have had that failover, perhaps. So I think there needs to be more [distribution of 911 capabilities]."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Samsung's big Galaxy Tab 4 gets the Barnes & Noble treatment

Engadget - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 15:46
We weren't terribly fond of Samsung and Barnes & Noble's first tablet mashup, but it seems at least a few people were. If you happen to fall into that category, congratulations -- that odd couple has something else that might be up your alley. The...

Windows 0-Day Exploited In Ongoing Attacks

Slashdot - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 15:23
An anonymous reader writes: Microsoft is warning users about a new Windows zero-day vulnerability that is being actively exploited in the wild and is primarily a risk to users on servers and workstations that open documents with embedded OLE objects. The vulnerability is currently being exploited via PowerPoint files. These specially crafted files contain a malicious OLE (Object Linking and Embedding) object. This is not the first time a vulnerability in OLE has been exploited by cybercriminals, however most previous OLE vulnerabilities have been limited to specific older versions of the Windows operating system. What makes this vulnerability dangerous is that it affects the latest fully patched versions of Windows.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3 now available in certain UK stores

Engadget - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 15:20
Apple began accepting online orders for the iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3 shortly after the new tablets were announced last week, but if you'd rather not wait for a delivery, you can pick one up in-store as of today. Apple's own retail outlets now have...

iMac with Retina display review: A best-in-class screen makes it worth the high price

Engadget - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 15:00
When Apple held one of its big keynotes last week, it was easy to think of it as "iPad day." Sure enough, the company announced some upgraded tablets, but it was a desktop, of all things, that stole the show. Though the new 27-inch iMac with Retina...

DHS Investigates 24 Potentially Lethal IoT Medical Devices

Slashdot - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 14:39
An anonymous reader writes: In the wake of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's recent recommendations to strengthen security on net-connected medical devices, the Department of Homeland Security is launching an investigation into 24 cases of potential cybersecurity vulnerabilities in hospital equipment and personal medical devices. Independent security researcher Billy Rios submitted proof-of-concept evidence to the FDA indicating that it would be possible for a hacker to force infusion pumps to fatally overdose a patient. Though the complete range of devices under investigation has not been disclosed, it is reported that one of them is an "implantable heart device." William Maisel, chief scientist at the FDA's Center for Devices and Radiological Health, said, "The conventional wisdom in the past was that products only had to be protected from unintentional threats. Now they also have to be protected from intentional threats too."

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Smart earpiece with biometric sensors wants you to ditch your fitness bands

Engadget - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 14:28
Yes, there are a lot of wearable devices that can monitor your activities and health, but an earpiece called SensoTRACK claims to be able to do it all. By "all," we mean it can measure respiration and heart rates, detect oxygen saturation in your...

Hungary To Tax Internet Traffic

Slashdot - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 13:57
An anonymous reader writes: The Hungarian government has announced a new tax on internet traffic: 150 HUF ($0.62 USD) per gigabyte. In Hungary, a monthly internet subscription costs around 4,000-10,000 HUF ($17-$41), so it could really put a constraint on different service providers, especially for streaming media. This kind of tax could set back the country's technological development by some 20 years — to the pre-internet age. As a side note, the Hungarian government's budget is running at a serious deficit. The internet tax is officially expected to bring in about 20 billion HUF in income, though a quick look at the BIX (Budapest Internet Exchange) and a bit of math suggests a better estimate of the income would probably be an order of magnitude higher.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.








Nielsen and Adobe are teaming up to apply TV-style ratings to the internet

Engadget - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 13:44
You've probably heard of the Nielsen Ratings, which are the figures relating to the number of people who watch a particular TV series. It's these statistics that Hollywood uses to decide if your favorite show gets a second season or if it'll only...

Uber brings its larger-car option to London and Manchester

Engadget - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 13:15
We haven't heard much out of Uber since it reduced the price of trips across London in its standard vehicles a few months ago. Today, the disruptive taxi service is back on our radar with the announcement of a new fleet of vehicles intended to serve...

Xerox Alto Source Code Released To Public

Slashdot - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 13:15
zonker writes: In 1970, the Xerox Corporation established the Palo Alto Research Center (PARC) with the goal to develop an "architecture of information" and lay the groundwork for future electronic office products. The pioneering Alto project that began in 1972 invented or refined many of the fundamental hardware and software ideas upon which our modern devices are based, including raster displays, mouse pointing devices, direct-manipulation user interfaces, windows and menus, the first WYSIWYG word processor, and Ethernet. The first Altos were built as research prototypes. By the fall of 1976 PARC's research was far enough along that a Xerox product group started to design products based on their prototypes. Ultimately, ~1,500 were built and deployed throughout the Xerox Corporation, as well as at universities and other sites. The Alto was never sold as a product but its legacy served as inspiration for the future. With the permission of the Palo Alto Research Center, the Computer History Museum is pleased to make available, for non-commercial use only, snapshots of Alto source code, executables, documentation, font files, and other files from 1975 to 1987. The files are organized by the original server on which they resided at PARC that correspond to files that were restored from archive tapes. An interesting look at retro-future.

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Hands-on with the Xbox One's TV tuner

Engadget - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 13:00
The Xbox One's €29.99/£24.99 TV Tuner is now available, but it's far from just a glorified channel changer for Microsoft's console. As we mentioned, it came out only in Europe because many of us across the pond get our TV fix from over-the-air...

Avegant Glyph personal theater headset gets closer to market

Engadget - Wed, 22/10/2014 - 13:00
When we first saw the Avegant Glyph earlier this year, it was still in its alpha stage. The home theater headset that literally looks like a pair of chunky headphones for your eyes did impress us with its stunning visuals, but the overall thing was...

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