Stories
Slash Boxes
Comments

SoylentNews is people

Log In

Log In

Create Account  |  Retrieve Password


Site News

Join our Folding@Home team:
Main F@H site
Our team page


Funding Goal
For 6-month period:
2022-07-01 to 2022-12-31
(All amounts are estimated)
Base Goal:
$3500.00

Currently:
$438.92

12.5%

Covers transactions:
2022-07-02 10:17:28 ..
2022-10-05 12:33:58 UTC
(SPIDs: [1838..1866])
Last Update:
2022-10-05 14:04:11 UTC --fnord666

Support us: Subscribe Here
and buy SoylentNews Swag


We always have a place for talented people, visit the Get Involved section on the wiki to see how you can make SoylentNews better.

What was highest label on your first car speedometer?

  • 80 mph
  • 88 mph
  • 100 mph
  • 120 mph
  • 150 mph
  • it was in kph like civilized countries use you insensitive clod
  • Other (please specify in comments)

[ Results | Polls ]
Comments:68 | Votes:280

posted by janrinok on Tuesday April 02, @08:38PM   Printer-friendly

Arthur T Knackerbracket has processed the following story:

Neutrinos and antineutrinos are nearly massless particles produced in many nuclear reactions, including the fission of uranium in nuclear power plants on Earth and the fusion reactions at the core of the sun.

But they are devilishly hard to detect—most pass through Earth without stopping—making it difficult to study the nuclear reactions taking place at the core of stars or in stellar explosions or to monitor nuclear power plants for illicit production of bomb material.

A new type of neutrino detector now being tested in a vast underground lab at the University of California, Berkeley, is designed to leverage the latest technologies to enhance the sensitivity and capabilities of antineutrino detectors. Such improved detectors would not only help detect, localize and characterize undeclared special nuclear material being used contrary to federal or international regulations, but also help scientists explore the fundamental physics of particles and their interactions deep in the nucleus of the atom.

Called Eos, for the Titan goddess of dawn, the apparatus signals "the dawn of a new era of neutrino detection technology," according to Gabriel Orebi Gann, a UC Berkeley associate professor of physics and the leader of the Eos collaboration.

The prototype detector may detect and characterize nuclear activities and materials remotely, that is, at distances greater than about 100 meters. While radioactivity from nuclear material can be shielded from detection, antineutrinos produced in fission reactions cannot. Because billions are produced in a reactor each nanosecond, Eos should be able to detect enough antineutrinos to identify clandestine production of bomb-grade material.

"The idea of neutrino detection is you can't spoof it, you can't shield it, you can't fake it. Neutrinos travel at almost the speed of light, so they provide near-instantaneous detection, even at distance. They offer a unique signature of nuclear activity," said Orebi Gann, who is also a faculty scientist at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory (Berkeley Lab).

"If you're either a long way away or you've got a very weak signature, then you need a big detector. And for a big detector, you need liquid."

Eos is a 10-meter-tall, 5-meter-wide cylinder filled with water and an organic scintillator and surrounded by light detectors three times more sensitive than those used in physics experiments today. Eos's improved sensitivity and higher resolution come from combining two of today's best techniques for detecting neutrinos: scintillation and Cherenkov emission.

The improvements could be a game-changer for future neutrino physics projects, such as the Deep Underground Neutrino Experiment (DUNE) now being constructed in an abandoned gold mine in Lead, South Dakota, to detect neutrinos emitted by a particle accelerator at Fermi National Laboratory, 500 miles away in Illinois. UC Berkeley and Berkeley Lab are members of the DUNE collaboration.

"What we would ultimately like to build is a much bigger detector called Theia," she said. "Theia is the Titan goddess of light and Eos's mother in the pantheon of gods. The ideal location for Theia is in that mine in South Dakota, seeing those neutrinos from Fermilab."

It remains to be seen whether Theia—which would employ a tank large enough to nearly swallow the Statue of Liberty—will replace one of DUNE's four planned liquid argon "far" detectors.


Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Tuesday April 02, @03:51PM   Printer-friendly
from the we-just-want-to-keep-everyone-safe,-honest dept.

The FBI spends "every day, all day long" interrogating people over their Facebook posts. At least, that's what agents told Stillwater, Oklahoma, resident Rolla Abdeljawad when they showed up at her house to ask her about her social media activity:

Three FBI agents came to Abdeljawad's house and said that they had been given "screenshots" of her posts by Facebook. Her lawyer Hassan Shibly posted a video of the incident online on Wednesday.

Abdeljawad told agents that she didn't want to talk and asked them to show their badges on camera, which the agents refused to do. She wrote on Facebook that she later confirmed with local police that the FBI agents really were FBI agents.

"Facebook gave us a couple of screenshots of your account," one agent in a gray shirt said in the video.

[...] Shibly says that he doesn't know which Facebook post caught the agents' attention, and that it was the first time he had heard of Facebook's parent company, Meta, preemptively reporting posts to law enforcement. Andy Stone, a spokesman for Meta, and Kayla McCleery, a spokeswoman for the FBI's Oklahoma City office, declined to comment.*

Meta's official policy is to hand over Facebook data to U.S. law enforcement in response to a court order, a subpoena, a search warrant, or an emergency situation involving "imminent harm to a child or risk of death or serious physical injury to any person." The company received 73,956 requests from U.S. law enforcement and handed over data 87.84 percent of the time in the first half of 2023, according to the Meta website.

[...] *UPDATE: After publication, McCleery provided the following statement; "Every day, the FBI engages with members of the public in furtherance of our mission, which is to protect the American people and uphold the Constitution of the United States. We can never open an investigation based solely on First Amendment protected activity. The FBI is committed to ensuring our activities are conducted with a valid law enforcement or national security purpose, while upholding the constitutional rights of all Americans."

Related:


Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Tuesday April 02, @11:12AM   Printer-friendly

NetBSD:

The NetBSD project is pleased to announce the eighteenth major release of the NetBSD operating system NetBSD 10.0!

See the release announcement for details.

The netbsd-10 release branch is more than a year old now, so it is high time the 10.0 release makes it to the front stage. This matches the long time it took for the development branch to get ready for branching, a lot of development went into this new release.

This also caused the release announcement to be one of the longest we ever did.

If you want to try NetBSD 10.0 please check the installation notes for your architecture and download the preferred install image from the CDN or if you are using an ARM based device from the netbsd-10 builds from the bootable ARM images page.

If you have any issues with installation or run into issues with the system during use, please contact us on one of the mailing lists or file a problem report.

Are any of our community NetBSD users? What are the brickbats or bouquets for the OS?


Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Tuesday April 02, @06:33AM   Printer-friendly
from the please-reset-my-social-security-number dept.

AT&T Says Data From 73 Million Current, Former Account Holders Leaked

AT&T says data from 73 million current, former account holders leaked:

AT&T notifies users of data breach and resets millions of passcodes:

Inside the Massive Alleged AT&T Data Breach:

AT&T said it has begun notifying millions of customers about the theft of personal data recently discovered online.

The telecommunications giant said Saturday that a dataset found on the "dark web" contains information such as Social Security numbers for about 7.6 million current AT&T account holders and 65.4 million former account holders.

The company said it has already reset the passcodes of current users and will be communicating with account holders whose sensitive personal information was compromised.

It is not known if the data "originated from AT&T or one of its vendors," the company said in a statement. The compromised data is from 2019 or earlier and does not appear to include financial information or call history, it said. In addition to passcodes and Social Security numbers, it may include email and mailing addresses, phone numbers and birth dates.

While the data surfaced on a hacking forum nearly two weeks ago, it closely resembles a similar data breach that surfaced in 2021 but which AT&T never acknowledged, said cybersecurity researcher Troy Hunt.

"If they assess this and they made the wrong call on it, and we've had a course of years pass without them being able to notify impacted customers," then it's likely the company will soon face class action lawsuits, said Hunt, founder of an Australia-based website for warning people when their personal information has been exposed.


Original Submission #1Original Submission #2

posted by hubie on Tuesday April 02, @01:48AM   Printer-friendly

https://www.theguardian.com/science/2024/mar/29/birds-create-barcode-like-memories-to-locate-stored-food-scientists-find

While adults might be spending the weekend trying to remember where they have hidden a hoard of Easter eggs, the black-capped chickadee has no trouble recalling where its treats are stashed. Now researchers have discovered why: the diminutive birds create a barcode-like memory each time they stash food.

Black-capped chickadees are known for tucking food away during the warmer months – with some estimates suggesting a single bird can hide up to 500,000 food items a year. But more remarkable still is their reliability in finding the morsels again.

Now researchers say they have unpicked the mechanism behind the feat. Writing in the journal Cell scientists in the US report how they gave chickadees sporadic access to sunflower seeds within an arena featuring more than 120 locations where food could be stashed.

The behaviour of the birds and the activity at each cache site – be it the storage of food, retrieval of food or checks on a stash – were recorded on video.

The team used an implanted probe in the brain of each bird to record the activity of neurons in its hippocampus – a brain structure crucial for memory formation.

The results show that each time a bird stashed seeds, even if it was in the same location, a different combination of neurons fired in its hippocampus, resulting in a barcode-like pattern of activity.

The same "barcode" was observed when the morsel was retrieved as for when it was cached.

The barcodes were distinct from place cells – neurons in the hippocampus known to be involved in the formation of memories involving specific locations. "The two overlapped randomly so that neurons could be neither, either, or both," said Dr Selmaan Chettih of Columbia University's Zuckerman Institute, first author of the study.

[...] "These results suggest that the barcode represents a specific episodic experience, unique in place and time in the chickadee's life," the researchers report.

Journal Reference:
Selmaan N. Chettih et al., Barcoding of episodic memories in the hippocampus of a food-caching bird, Cell, Published:March 29, 2024 DOI: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.cell.2024.02.032


Original Submission

posted by hubie on Monday April 01, @09:03PM   Printer-friendly
from the you-can-go-your-own-way-and-call-it-another-lonely-day dept.

China blocks use of Intel and AMD chips in government computers, FT reports By Reuters:

(Reuters) -China has introduced guidelines to phase out U.S. microprocessors from Intel (NASDAQ:INTC) and AMD (NASDAQ:AMD) from government personal computers and servers, the Financial Times reported on Sunday.

The procurement guidance also seeks to sideline Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT)'s Windows operating system and foreign-made database software in favour of domestic options, the report said.

Government agencies above the township level have been told to include criteria requiring "safe and reliable" processors and operating systems when making purchases, the newspaper said.

China's industry ministry in late December issued a statement with three separate lists of CPUs, operating systems and centralised database deemed "safe and reliable" for three years after the publication date, all from Chinese companies, Reuters checks showed.

[...] The U.S. has been aiming to boost domestic semiconductor output and reduce reliance on China and Taiwan with the Biden administration's 2022 CHIPS and Science Act.

It is designed to bolster U.S. semiconductors and contains financial aid for domestic production with subsidies for production of advanced chips.


Original Submission

posted by hubie on Monday April 01, @04:18PM   Printer-friendly
from the embrace-the-suck dept.

https://arstechnica.com/gaming/2024/03/embracer-group-lets-go-of-borderlands-maker-for-460m-after-three-years/

Embracer Group has been backing away from its all-encompassing position in the games industry lately. The latest divestment is Gearbox Entertainment, the studio behind the Borderlands series it bought in early 2021 for a deal that could have been worth up to $1.37 billion to Gearbox had it stayed inside the Swedish conglomerate's grasp.

The buyer is Take-Two Interactive Software, which had previously partnered with Gearbox on publishing Borderlands and other titles. Take-Two will issue new shares of its common stock to pay $460 million for Gearbox, to be completed before the end of June this year. Embracer paid $363 million in cash and stock for Gearbox in 2021 but promised up to $1 billion more should the developer hit earnings goals over six years.

[...] Gearbox has studios in Texas, Montreal, and Quebec City, Canada. The firm had 550 employees at the time of its acquisition, but divisions of the company had seen layoffs in January.

[...] Embracer had been acquiring properties in 2021 and 2022 with an understanding that a planned $2 billion investment from the Saudi-government-backed Savvy Games Group would give the new mega-conglomerate some runway.

[...] Once the Saudi deal fell through in May 2023, however, the firm announced that it would undergo a major restructuring through March 2024. That included the shutdown of Volition in August 2023 and deep cuts at Eidos that took an unannounced Deus Ex title with them.

Gearbox and its Borderlands franchise were the biggest get, however. The looter-shooter series, struck through with (often exhausting) "edge-y" humor, has reportedly sold more than 77 million copies and earned more than $1 billion in revenue throughout its run, according to Bloomberg. Take-Two noted that a Borderlands game was "in active development" at Gearbox in its acquisition announcement.

Related SoylentNews stories:
Duke Nukem Forever 2001 Build Suddenly Appears With Source Code - 20220513
Take-Two Interactive Acquires Zynga for $12.7 Billion - 20220111
Steam Battles Off-Topic Reviews — Flaming Old Games Because of Borderlands 3 Exclusive Deal - 20190410
Red Dead Redemption 2 Has Sold Over 17 Million Copies Worldwide - 20181111
Indie Developers Pitch How They'd Revive Duke Nukem - 20150718
Grand Theft Auto Parent Company Sues BBC - 20150522


Original Submission

posted by hubie on Monday April 01, @11:33AM   Printer-friendly

Shared YouTube data prompts civil liberty worries:

If you've ever jokingly wondered if your search or viewing history is going to "put you on some kind of list," your concern may be more than warranted.

In now unsealed court documents reviewed by Forbes, Google was ordered to hand over the names, addresses, telephone numbers, and user activity of Youtube accounts and IP addresses that watched select YouTube videos, part of a larger criminal investigation by federal investigators.

The videos were sent by undercover police to a suspected cryptocurrency launderer under the username "elonmuskwhm." In conversations with the bitcoin trader, investigators sent links to public YouTube tutorials on mapping via drones and augmented reality software, Forbes details. The videos were watched more than 30,000 times, presumably by thousands of users unrelated to the case.

YouTube's parent company Google was ordered by federal investigators to quietly hand over all such viewer data for the period of Jan. 1 to Jan. 8, 2023, but Forbes couldn't confirm if Google had complied.

SEE ALSO: Users get a taste of Google's AI search results, unprompted

The mandated data retrieval is worrisome in itself, according to privacy experts. Federal investigators argued the request was legally justified as the data "would be relevant and material to an ongoing criminal investigation, including by providing identification information about the perpetrators," citing justification used by other police forces around the country. In a case out of New Hampshire, police requested similar data during the investigation of bomb threats that were being streamed live to YouTube — the order specifically requested viewership information at select time stamps during the live streams.

"With all law enforcement demands, we have a rigorous process designed to protect the privacy and constitutional rights of our users while supporting the important work of law enforcement," Google spokesperson Matt Bryant told Forbes. "We examine each demand for legal validity, consistent with developing case law, and we routinely push back against over broad or otherwise inappropriate demands for user data, including objecting to some demands entirely."

Privacy experts, however, are worried about the kind of precedent the court's order creates, citing concerns over the protections of the first and fourth amendments. "This is the latest chapter in a disturbing trend where we see government agencies increasingly transforming search warrants into digital dragnets," executive director of the Surveillance Technology Oversight Project Albert Fox-Cahn told the publication. "It's unconstitutional, it's terrifying, and it's happening every day."


Original Submission

posted by hubie on Monday April 01, @06:50AM   Printer-friendly
from the how-to-ham-it-up dept.

https://lcamtuf.substack.com/p/radios-how-do-they-work

Radio communications play a key role in modern electronics, but to a hobbyist, the underlying theory is hard to parse. We get the general idea, of course: we know about frequencies and can probably explain the difference between amplitude modulation and frequency modulation. Yet, most of us find it difficult to articulate what makes a good antenna, or how a receiver can tune in to a specific frequency and ignore everything else.


Original Submission

posted by mrpg on Monday April 01, @02:02AM   Printer-friendly
from the sounds-like-a-lot-of-work dept.

Arthur T Knackerbracket has processed the following story:

An international team of astronomers has discovered 49 new gas-rich galaxies using the MeerKAT radio telescope in South Africa. Their research is published in Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society.

Dr. Marcin Glowacki, from the Curtin University node of the International Center for Radio Astronomy Research (ICRAR) in Western Australia, led the research, which aimed to study the star-forming gas in a single radio galaxy. Although the team didn't find any star-forming gas in the galaxy they were studying, Dr. Glowacki instead discovered other galaxies while inspecting the data.

[...] Three galaxies are directly connected by their gas.

Dr. Glowacki said, "These three are particularly interesting, as by studying the galaxies at other wavelengths of light, we discovered the central galaxy is forming many stars. It is likely stealing the gas from its companion galaxies to fuel its star formation, which may lead the other two to become inactive."

More information: Marcin Glowacki et al, A serendipitous discovery of HI-rich galaxy groups with MeerKAT, Monthly Notices of the Royal Astronomical Society (2024). DOI: 10.1093/mnras/stae684
                                                                                               


Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Sunday March 31, @09:16PM   Printer-friendly

https://www.corvallisadvocate.com/2024/oregon-becomes-fourth-state-with-a-right-to-repair-law-for-technology/

Oregon is now the fourth state in the country to enact a "right to repair" law to make it easier for consumers and independent shops to fix electronic gear. With Gov. Tina Kotek's signing of Senate Bill 1596 on Thursday, manufacturers will be required to offer any necessary documentation, parts, tools or any device needed to repair electronic equipment at a "fair cost" and on "reasonable" terms.

The bill takes effect in January. It was championed by state Sen. Janeen Sollman, D-Hillsboro, who first started pushing for the legislation in 2021. The minority of lawmakers who opposed the bill were Republican. The bill had wide support from small businesses and consumer advocates, including OSPIRG, a statewide public interest group. Only one major manufacturer opposed the bill – Apple. An Apple representative who testified against the bill said it would undermine the company's security efforts, a claim lawmakers questioned.

[...] Besides Oregon, Minnesota, New York and California have right to repair laws on technology. Massachusetts has approved a right to repair law on vehicles and Colorado has adopted one for wheelchairs and another for farmers.


Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Sunday March 31, @06:13PM   Printer-friendly

By Lester Black / March 27, 2024

https://www.sfgate.com/cannabis/article/calif-cops-forced-to-return-800k-in-cannabis-19370034.php

Michael Moussalli, the owner of Se7enLeaf, said that the cannabis raid has nearly destroyed his business.

American police have been seizing cannabis for decades, but the tables were turned last week, when law enforcement in a California city was forced to return hundreds of pounds of cannabis to a pot distributor.

Costa Mesa police officers returned the massive shipment of cannabis last week to Se7enLeaf, a cannabis distributor in the city, according to the Los Angeles Times. The authorities had accused the company of illegally operating and seized the cannabis in September of last year.

Michael Moussalli, the owner of Se7enLeaf, told SFGATE that he was happy to get his cannabis back after his attorneys explained he was operating legally, but he still blamed the city for taking it in the first place and delaying its return.

"The sad thing is once all this info was shared, there was no apologies. There was only more aggression," Moussalli said, referencing the city's attempt to further delay the return of the products. "The police were not happy that no charges were filed. The police were not happy that the product was being returned."


Original Submission

posted by janrinok on Sunday March 31, @04:29PM   Printer-friendly
from the this-time-with-an-actual-working-link-to-the-article dept.

Vlogger Jeff Geerling wanted to clear up just what might happen if he touched a 6kW AM transmitter's antenna.

IMPORTANT: Do not attempt to replicate our experiment. It is meant to demonstrate the dangers of RF, and there are a number of radio engineers, landscaping professionals, and other personnel who have written RF safety rules with their blood (or, in most cases, a permanent and painful RF burn that goes through the inside of their body). Don't touch radio towers—AM or otherwise.

[...] You really should watch the video for the full effect, though. Pictures can't convey what happens.

I predicted the hot dog would either explode, or do pretty much nothing. My Dad imagined there would be some arcing.

Well, he was right—the hot dog wound up being a very effective loudspeaker, transmitting the audible sound with pretty high fidelity, at a volume around that of a yelling human, maybe 80-100 dBa. (Next time we attempt such an experiment, we may bring a dB meter and spectrum analyzer to judge the sound reproduction capabilities of different meats1).

The bottom line is that experts recommend not messing with live towers. The fence is there for a reason.


Original Submission

posted by hubie on Sunday March 31, @11:45AM   Printer-friendly
from the cloud-is-just-someone-else-rummaging-through-your-data dept.

The hosting provider Vultr had tried to quietly change its Terms of Service (TOS) to try to pull the same trick which Microsoft has pulled with its GitHub project and hope that no one would notice. That is to say they are trying to grab "perpetual, irrevocable" license to use content hosted there in any way, including modifying it and commercializing it "for purposes of providing the Services to you." They've since backpedaled — but only a little. Most the reaction from Vultr regarding the negative push back has been spin.

I suppose the hip kids would say this is enshittification, but it’s certainly a betrayal.

According to their new Terms of Service:

You hereby grant to Vultr a non-exclusive, perpetual, irrevocable, royalty-free, fully paid-up, worldwide license (including the right to sublicense through multiple tiers) to use, reproduce, process, adapt, publicly perform, publicly display, modify, prepare derivative works, publish, transmit and distribute each of your User Content, or any portion thereof, in any form, medium or distribution method now known or hereafter existing, known or developed, and otherwise use and commercialize the User Content in any way that Vultr deems appropriate, without any further consent, notice and/or compensation to you or to any third parties, for purposes of providing the Services to you.

This is unacceptable. No other hosting company does this.

Vultr Just Betrayed Us, Michael W Lucas' blog.

And

This is very similar to changes that Github made to their TOS in 2017. Since then, Github has been rebranded as "The world's leading AI-powered developer platform". The language in their TOS now clearly lets them use content stored in Github for training AI. (Probably this is their second line of defense if the current attempt to legitimise copyright laundering via generative AI fails.)

Vultr is currently in damage control mode, accusing their concerned customers of spreading "conspiracy theories" (-- founder David Aninowsky) and updating the TOS to remove some of the problem language. Although it still allows them to "make derivative works", so could still allow their AI division to scrape VPS images for training data.

the vulture in the coal mine, Joey Hess' blog.

Hosting providers seem to be adding a new disaster to deal with.

Previously:
(2022) Give Up GitHub: The Time Has Come!


Original Submission

posted by hubie on Sunday March 31, @07:03AM   Printer-friendly
from the when-Radio-Shack-was-useful dept.

https://medium.com/@rxseger/electronic-project-kits-hands-on-with-a-vintage-160-in-1-eea39e6193f4

It is a Medium post, so here's an archive link in case the original goes missing: https://archive.is/QV7cr

In this day and age with the bewildering availability of electronics readily available, deciding on a project to embark on can be paralyzing. This sentiment was best summed up recently in this Hacker News comment on an article announcing the CHIP Pro:

I have the chip, esp8266, rpi, teensies, trinkets, arduinos... I studied electronics principles and built various circuits.. yet I have no idea what I can practically use these devices for in my life. They all sit in a box and I have a hard time justifying buying more of them.

See also: the paradox of choice, analysis paralysis, etc. Decades ago, all-in-one electronic project kits were popular. Shown above is the Science Fair 160-in-1 Electronic Project Kit, #28–258 (image source: eBay), © 1982.

With a modest number of components, 160 projects could easily be built by inserting wires into the spring terminals connected to each component. An included manual guided you through each of the projects, introducing new concepts and providing structure, while still offering some latitude of freedom to tinker — but, crucially, not the nearly-infinite amount of latitude available on modern electronic marketplaces today. You are constrained by the components in the kit (unless you add your own), and the included project documentation (unless you invent your own), a finite possibility.


Original Submission