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Funding Goal
For 6-month period:
2020-07-01 to 2020-12-31
(All amounts are estimated)
Base Goal:
$3500.00

Currently:
$575.34
16.4%

Covers transactions:
2020-07-01 00:00:00 ..
2020-07-06 14:30:24 UTC
(SPIDs: [1408..1415])
Last Update:
2020-07-07 03:15:40 UTC
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Which of the following "Dilbert" characters would your co-workers say best resembles you?

  • Dilbert
  • Dogbert
  • Wally
  • Alice
  • Catbert
  • Intern
  • PHB
  • Other (please specify)

[ Results | Polls ]
Comments:74 | Votes:176

posted by Fnord666 on Saturday June 27, @10:20PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]

Sex addict claims hot female gamers caused him to injure his penis:

A California sex addict is suing the video streaming platform Twitch for $25 million after claiming the site's overabundance of "scantily clad gamers" have caused him to injure his penis, according to the lawsuit.

In the legal document filed at a Santa Clara County court on June 15, San Francisco's Erik Estavillo claimed the Amazon subsidiary had "subjected him to overly suggestive and sexual content from various female streamers."

To cure the "Twitch" in his pants, the self-proclaimed sex addict reportedly resorted to using a Fleshlight to masturbate while watching the salacious gamers, which resulted in him "chaffing" his penis every day.

The plaintiff's randy pastime was "extremely painful" and caused him redness and mild infections that forced him to use "Neosporin on his tip to prevent necrosis," per the 56-page document.

Estavillo alleges in the transcript he even once ejaculated on his PC monitor, which caused his gaming system to short-circuit and resulted in a fire that temporarily caused his apartment to black out.

In response to The Post's request for comment on the allegations, a Twitch spokesman simply stated, "These claims are frivolous and have absolutely no merit".


Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Saturday June 27, @07:59PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the all-your-base-are-belong-to-us dept.

https://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2020/06/chinese-bank-requires-foreign-firm-to-install-app-with-covert-backdoor/

A large, multinational technology company got a nasty surprise recently as it was expanding its operations to China. The software a local bank required the company to install so it could pay local taxes contained an advanced backdoor.

The cautionary tale, detailed in a report published Thursday, said the software package, called Intelligent Tax and produced by Beijing-based Aisino Corporation, worked as advertised. Behind the scenes, it also installed a separate program that covertly allowed its creators to remotely execute commands or software of their choice on the infected computer. It was also digitally signed by a Windows trusted certificate.
[...]
Trustwave didn't identify the two companies that encountered GoldenSpy or the local Chinese bank that required that Intelligent Tax be installed. Representatives of Aisino Corporation didn't immediately respond to an email seeking comment for this post.


Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Saturday June 27, @05:38PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the biggest-loser-competition dept.

https://arstechnica.com/tech-policy/2020/06/facebook-faces-advertiser-backlash-over-its-handling-of-racism-hate-speech/

"Amid this global movement to end anti-Blackness, we credit these companies for answering our call swiftly and taking a clear stand for what's right so we can hold Facebook accountable for its racist policies," said Rashad Robinson, president of Color of Change, which is one of the groups organizing the boycott.

Almost 100 firms have joined the boycott so far, Robinson said, adding: "Facebook has a decision to make: adopt a civil rights infrastructure or continue to see key advertisers dropping from its platform."

[...] Most recently, the tension between Facebook and the content its users share has come to a head due to messages posted by President Donald Trump and his re-election campaign in the past month, amid nationwide protests in support of Black communities and against police violence. Twitter in late May took action against a Trump tweet by appending a warning that it glorified violence against protesters, in contravention of the site's rules. Facebook, however, took no action against the same content, and the company took heat from both civil rights advocates and employees over that choice.


Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Saturday June 27, @01:17PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the you-say-that-like-it's-a-bad-thing dept.

Apple's New ARM-Based Macs Won't Support Windows Through Boot Camp:

Apple will start switching its Macs to its own ARM-based processors later this year, but you won't be able to run Windows in Boot Camp mode on them. Microsoft only licenses Windows 10 on ARM to PC makers to preinstall on new hardware, and the company hasn't made copies of the operating system available for anyone to license or freely install.

"Microsoft only licenses Windows 10 on ARM to OEMs," says a Microsoft spokesperson in a statement to The Verge. We asked Microsoft if it plans to change this policy to allow Windows 10 on ARM-based Macs, and the company says "we have nothing further to share at this time."

[...] Apple later confirmed it's not planning to support Boot Camp on ARM-based Macs in a Daring Fireball podcast. "We're not direct booting an alternate operating system," says Craig Federighi, Apple's senior vice president of software engineering. "Purely virtualization is the route. These hypervisors can be very efficient, so the need to direct boot shouldn't really be the concern."

Previously: Apple Announces 2-Year Transition to ARM SoCs in Mac Desktops and Laptops


Original Submission

posted by martyb on Saturday June 27, @10:56AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the what's-the-matter? dept.

Case for axion origin of dark matter gains traction:

The existence of dark matter has been confirmed by several independent observations, but its true identity remains a mystery. According to this study, axion velocity provides a key insight into the dark matter puzzle. Previous research efforts have successfully accounted for the abundance of dark matter in the universe; however certain factors, such as the underproduction of axions with stronger ordinary matter interactions, remained unexplored.

By assigning a nonzero initial velocity to the axion field, the team discovered a mechanism—termed kinetic misalignment—producing far more axions in the early universe than conventional mechanisms. The motion, generated by breaking of the axion shift symmetry, significantly modifies the conventional computation of the axion dark matter abundance. Additionally, these dynamics allow axion dark matter to react more strongly with ordinary matter, exceeding the prediction of the conventional misalignment mechanism.

"The extensive literature on the axion was built upon the assumption that the axion field is initially static in the early universe," stated Keisuke Harigaya of the Institute for Advanced Study. "Instead, we discovered that the axion field may be initially dynamic as a consequence of theories of quantum gravity with axions."

Journal Reference:
Raymond T. Co, Lawrence J. Hall, Keisuke Harigaya. Axion Kinetic Misalignment Mechanism [open], Physical Review Letters (DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.124.251802)


Original Submission

posted by martyb on Saturday June 27, @08:31AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the really-takes-the-piss?-or-a-load-of-crap? dept.

NASA wants you to design a space toilet for missions to the moon:

NASA issued a call on Thursday asking for ideas for the ultimate space toilet with its Lunar Loo Challenge. The winner of the space toilet challenge could win $35,000 (approximately £28,000, A$51,000) for the top concept.

Although space toilets are already in use (the International Space Station is scheduled to get an upgrade soon), they are designed for microgravity only. Microgravity is when there's weightlessness in space, and NASA's toilet tech has taken care of that problem already. But the new toilets need to be able to work in lunar gravity as well. Lunar gravity is approximately one-sixth of Earth's gravity, so our waste moves a little differently on the moon.

In addition to having the new toilet function in both microgravity and lunar gravity, it has to adhere to a set of strict specifications. It must have a mass of less than 15 kilograms in Earth's gravity, occupy a volume no greater than 0.12 meter cubed, consume less than 70 watts of power, operate with a noise level less than 60 decibels (no louder than an average bathroom fan) and accommodate both female and male users of different shapes and sizes.

[...] "We are looking forward to seeing what the crowdsourcing community can come up with that is out-of-the-box and bring different perspectives for what is needed for a toilet."

[...] "Think about the needs for the toilet and don't worry about it being for a spacecraft," Interbartolo added. "Break it down to the base functions needed in terms of handling male/female urine, fecal, menses, and how you could do it in a compact and low mass way for an easy-to-use system. These concepts are similar for campers, boats, remote and undeveloped locations."

This challenge has two categories: Technical and Junior. Submissions to both categories are due no later than 5 p.m. ET/2 p.m. PT on Aug. 17.


Original Submission

posted by martyb on Saturday June 27, @06:06AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the wheels-of-'justice'-grinding-away dept.

https://caitlinjohnstone.com/2020/06/26/free-speech-in-the-us-empire-is-as-illusory-as-free-range-eggs/

In what Shadowproof‘s Kevin Gosztola calls “a not-so-subtle effort to criminalize the journalism of an adversarial media organization that the United States has spent the last decade working to destroy,” WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has been hit with another superseding indictment [PDF] by the US Department of Justice.

https://www.justice.gov/opa/pr/wikileaks-founder-charged-superseding-indictment

The new indictment does not add additional counts to the prior 18-count superseding indictment returned against Assange in May 2019. It does, however, broaden the scope of the conspiracy surrounding alleged computer intrusions with which Assange was previously charged. According to the charging document, Assange and others at WikiLeaks recruited and agreed with hackers to commit computer intrusions to benefit WikiLeaks.

https://www.wsws.org/en/articles/2020/06/25/assa-j25.html

Significantly, none of the events was held in the United States, but are cited as evidence of intent, or conspiracy, to violate American laws. This is in line with the unprecedented assertion of extraterritorial jurisdiction on which the entire indictment is based. The Justice Department is essentially arguing that domestic US laws apply to all individuals and gatherings in every part of the world.

Unlike the previous indictment, the latest US charge sheet condemns Assange over WikiLeaks’ role in assisting Edward Snowden to travel from Hong Kong to Russia in 2013, where he successfully obtained political asylum. Snowden is a multi-award winning whistleblower, who exposed illegal global surveillance operations by the US National Security Agency.

The document complains that WikiLeaks publicised its role in defending Snowden to display its commitment to whistleblower protection. This alone brands the new indictment as a further assault on fundamental journalistic practices.

A substantial part of the new material in the indictment appears to be based on testimony and information provided by two acknowledged informants of the US Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI): Sigurdur “Siggi” Thordarson, named in the document as “Teenager,” and Hector Monsegur, known by the online pseudonym “Sabu.”


Original Submission

posted by martyb on Saturday June 27, @03:45AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the what-did-you-say? dept.

Quantum Entanglement Demonstrated Aboard Orbiting CubeSat:

In a critical step toward creating a global quantum communications network, researchers have generated and detected quantum entanglement onboard a CubeSat nanosatellite weighing less than 2.6 kilograms and orbiting the Earth.

[...] The researchers incorporated their new instrument into SpooQy-1, a CubeSat that was deployed into orbit from the International Space Station on 17 June 2019. The instrument successfully generated entangled photon-pairs over temperatures from 16 °C to 21.5 °C.

"This demonstration showed that miniaturized entanglement technology can work well while consuming little power," said Villar. "This is an important step toward a cost-effective approach to the deployment of satellite constellations that can serve global quantum networks." The project was funded by Singapore's National Research Foundation.

Journal Reference:
Aitor Villar, Alexander Lohrmann, Xueliang Bai, et al. Entanglement demonstration on board a nano-satellite [open], Optica (DOI: 10.1364/OPTICA.387306)

Secure, as long as you trust the man in the middle...


Original Submission

posted by martyb on Saturday June 27, @01:27AM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the taking-care-of-employees dept.

https://arstechnica.com/cars/2020/06/tesla-factory-workers-who-stayed-home-due-to-covid-fears-face-termination:

Two workers, Carlos Gabriel and Jessica Naro, say that they received termination notices from Tesla last week after taking unpaid time off in an effort to avoid the coronavirus. The San Jose Mercury News first reported Gabriel's termination notice last week.

Both workers say that they were contacted this week by Tesla's HR department. Naro was given the opportunity to come back to work if she committed to a return date. She declined because her 6-year-old son has a health condition that puts him at heightened risk.

Gabriel ended his call after the Tesla rep refused to allow him to record it. He hasn't heard back since and believes he is no longer on Tesla's payroll

[...] "If you feel uncomfortable coming back to work at this time, please do not feel obligated to do so," Musk told employees in a May email prior to Tesla re-opening its factory.

[...] In its termination email, which Gabriel shared with the Mercury News, Tesla cited Gabriel's failure to respond to emails and voicemails inquiring when Gabriel would return to work. Gabriel said he didn't feel a need to respond because he had been told he could stay home if he felt unsafe. Gabriel and Naro told The Washington Post that they had both been in regular contact with their managers prior to the termination notices.

Tesla didn't respond to a Thursday email seeking comment for this story.


Original Submission

posted by martyb on Friday June 26, @11:07PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the defeating-the-purpose-(DoH!) dept.

Talk about the fox guarding the hen house. Comcast to handle DNS-over-HTTPS for Firefox-using subscribers

Comcast has agreed to be the first home broadband internet provider to handle secure DNS-over-HTTPS queries for Firefox browser users in the US, Mozilla has announced.

This means the ISP, which has joined Moz's Trusted Recursive Resolver (TRR) Program, will perform domain-name-to-IP-address lookups for subscribers using Firefox via encrypted HTTPS channels. That prevents network eavesdroppers from snooping on DNS queries or meddling with them to redirect connections to malicious webpages.

[...] At some point in the near future, Firefox users subscribed to Comcast will use the ISP's DNS-over-HTTPS resolvers by default, though they can opt to switch to other secure DNS providers or opt-out completely.

[...] Incredibly, DNS-over-HTTPS was heralded as a way to prevent, among others, ISPs from snooping on and analyzing their subscribers' web activities to target them with adverts tailored to their interests, or sell the information as a package to advertisers and industry analysts. And yet, here's Comcast providing a DNS-over-HTTPS service for Firefox fans, allowing it to inspect and exploit their incoming queries if it so wishes. Talk about a fox guarding the hen house.

ISPs "have access to a stream of a user’s browsing history," Marshall Erwin, senior director of trust and security at, er, Mozilla, warned in November. "This is particularly concerning in light of the rollback of the broadband privacy rules, which removed guardrails for how ISPs can use your data. The same ISPs are now fighting to prevent the deployment of DNS-over-HTTPS."

Mozilla today insisted its new best buddy Comcast is going to play nice and follow the DNS privacy program's rules.


Original Submission

posted by martyb on Friday June 26, @09:00PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the gather-and-linger dept.

Maryland offshore wind farm could become stop-over region for migrating striped bass and Atlantic sturgeon:

For the endangered Atlantic sturgeon and the commercially and recreationally important striped bass, the Delaware-Maryland-Virginia coastal shelf serves as an important spring and fall "flyway." Typically thought of as an established aerial route used by migratory birds to travel between feeding and breeding grounds, a recent study by scientists at the University of Maryland Center for Environmental Science applies the term to fish species of concern. Authors suggest that the development of wind farms on the Delmarva coastal shelf, 17-26 miles from Ocean City's shoreline, may alter the migratory behavior of these fish as new wind turbines in this otherwise featureless region could create habitat around which fish linger.

[...] Scientists also deployed 20 acoustic receivers in the Maryland Wind Energy Area. When a tagged fish swims past a receiver, a listening device about the size of a liter soda bottle, the receiver records the "ping" sent out by the tag. Each "ping" transmits its unique ID and the depth at which the fish was swimming to the receiver, which also records the time and date. The array of receivers allows scientists to monitor the movements of tagged fish. During the study, "pings" from 352 individual Atlantic sturgeon and 315 individual striped bass were recorded by receivers.

Scientists believe that Maryland's future offshore wind farm could become a stop-over region where striped bass and sturgeon might linger longer. The DelMarVa coastal shelf is a fairly barren area. The development of high relief wind turbines would provide structure around which fish may gather and linger during migrations.

Journal Reference:
Ella R. Rothermel, Matthew T. Balazik, Jessica E. Best, et al. Comparative migration ecology of striped bass and Atlantic sturgeon in the US Southern mid-Atlantic bight flyway, PLOS ONE (DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0234442)

If the data pans out, the offshore wind farms can do double duty as a power source and wildlife refuge.


Original Submission

posted by martyb on Friday June 26, @06:51PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the you-should-see-what-you're-missing! dept.

Guardzilla Shuts Down, Leaving Security Camera Customers Stranded:

Guardzilla, a small home security camera company, has quietly gone out of business, leaving behind unpatched security flaws, barely or nonworking cameras in lots of consumers' homes, and piles of essentially useless cameras that are still being sold at Bed Bath & Beyond, QVC, and other retailers.

Consumer Reports learned earlier this month that Guardzilla had closed its doors when our test engineers tried to follow up about security problems they found with the Guardzilla 360. We disclosed the issues to Guardzilla last fall. The company fixed one problem, but never addressed a second one.

The company has stopped responding to emails and its phone number is no longer working. A message posted on its website at the beginning of June reads: “We deeply regret that these troubling times have caused us to close our doors. We are sorry for any inconvenience this has caused, as we will be unable to continue support for the Guardzilla product line.”

Like other internet-connected security cameras, Guardzilla cameras stored users' video clips on corporate servers. The servers continued working intermittently until mid-June but now appear to be completely shut down.

[...] In addition to Bed Bath & Beyond and QVC, these cameras can still be purchased at Amazon Marketplace, Buy Buy Baby, eBay, and Newegg Marketplace. Consumer Reports reached out to these companies to find out why they continue to sell Guardzilla cameras. Only eBay had replied by the time of publication, and says it will continue to sell the cameras for now.


Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Friday June 26, @04:44PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]

White House ordered NIH to cancel coronavirus research funding, Fauci says:

The National Institutes of Health abruptly cut off funding to a long-standing, well-regarded research project on bat coronaviruses only after the White House specifically told it to do so, according to Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the NIH's National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases.

Fauci made the revelation Tuesday at a Congressional hearing on the federal response to the COVID-19 pandemic, which is caused by a coronavirus that is genetically linked to those found in bats. Rep. Marc Veasey (D-Texas) asked Fauci why the NIH abruptly canceled funding for the project, which specifically worked to understand the risk of bat coronaviruses jumping to humans and causing devastating disease.

Fauci responded to Veasey saying: "It was cancelled because the NIH was told to cancel it."

"And why were they told to cancel it?" Veasey pressed.

"I don't know the reason, but we were told to cancel it," Fauci said.

After the hearing, Fauci clarified to Politico that it was the White House that told the NIH to cancel the funding. An unnamed White House official told Politico that the White House did encourage the funding cut, but ultimately it was the Department of Health and Human Services—of which the NIH is a part—that made the final decision. An HHS spokesperson said only that the funding was cut because "the grantee was not in compliance with NIH's grant policy."

In an emailed statement to Ars Wednesday, the NIH did not respond to questions about the cancellation, saying only that "NIH does not discuss internal deliberations on grant terminations."


Original Submission

posted by Fnord666 on Friday June 26, @02:33PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]
from the rocket-man dept.

[20200626_175532 UTC Update 2]:
According to a story on Ars Technica: "1:45pm ET Friday Update: SpaceX has scrubbed its Starlink launch attempt for Friday. No details of why were immediately available."

[20200626_154830 UTC Update 1]:
The launch is to be live-streamed on YouTube; launch coverage usually begins 15 minutes before launch.


According to the launch schedule at Spaceflight Now, SpaceX is scheduled to launch another batch of Starlink satellites today along with two rideshare satellites for BlackSky Global:

Launch time: 2018 GMT (4:18 p.m. EDT)
Launch site: LC-39A, Kennedy Space Center, Florida

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket is expected to launch the tenth batch of approximately 60 satellites for SpaceX's Starlink broadband network, a mission designated Starlink 9. Two Earth observation microsatellites for BlackSky Global, a Seattle-based company, will launch as rideshare payloads on this mission.

This Starlink launch has been twice-postponed because of weather.

Planning ahead, SpaceX is scheduled to launch the third U.S. Air Force third-generation GPS satellite on Tuesday, June 30th. That launch window is 1955-2010 GMT (3:55-4:10 p.m. EDT).


Original Submission

posted by martyb on Friday June 26, @01:30PM   Printer-friendly [Skip to comment(s)]

At approximately 1200 UTC we experience a problem and the site was unavailable for about an hour. As I understand it, we had some connectivity issues. We are now in the process of investigating. Kudos to TheMightyBuzzard for his way-too-early-in-the-morning work to get us back up!

Registered users will probably have to log back in again.

Here's hoping this is the worst problem you have today!


Original Submission