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Showing posts from May, 2015

Julian Assange On TPP: Only 5 Of 29 Sections Are About "Traditional Trade," Covers "Essentially Every Aspect Of A Modern Economy"

Posted on May 28, 2015
Julian Assange On TPP: Only 5 Of 29 Sections Are About "Traditional Trade," Covers "Essentially Every Aspect Of A Modern Economy"
JULIAN ASSANGE, WIKILEAKS: First of all, it is the largest ever international economic treaty that has ever been negotiated, very considerably larger than NAFTA. It is mostly not about trade, only 5 of the 29 Chapters are about traditional trade.
The others are about regulating the internet, and what information internet service providers have to collect, they have to hand it over to companies under certain circumstances, the regulation of labor conditions, regulating the way you can favor local industry, regulating the hospital, health care system, privatization of hospitals, so essentially every aspect of a modern economy, even banking services are in the TPP.
So that is erecting and embedding new ultramodern neoliberal structure over U.S. law and the laws of other countries. And putting it in treaty form.
B…

Google Wants to Turn Your Clothes Into a Computer

Google Wants to Turn Your Clothes Into a Computer
By Conor Dougherty   May 29, 2015 5:56 pm
Google’s Project Jacquard is aimed at weaving computing capabilities into clothing.
SAN FRANCISCO — If you thought it was only a matter of time before Google tried to turn your pants into a computer, well, guess what, you were right.
On Friday, the second day of its annual developer conference, Google I/O, one of the search giant’s semi-secretive research divisions announced a project that aims to make conductive fabrics that can be weaved into everyday clothes. The effort, called Project Jacquard, is named for the French inventor of the Jacquard Loom, which revolutionized textile manufacturing and helped pave the way for modern computing.
Much like the screens on mobile phones, these fabrics could register the user’s touch and transmit information elsewhere, like to a smartphone or tablet computer. They are made from conductive yarns that come in a rainbow of colors and can withstand the clo…

Mysterious low-flying plane over Twin Cities...Similar flights in other cities; FBI declines comment...

Mysterious low-flying plane over Twin Cities raises questions of surveillance
Small aircraft circled downtown Minneapolis, 2 malls for hours.
By Matt McKinney  and John Reinan  Star Tribune staff writers
May 29, 2015 — 10:18am
Aviation buff John Zimmerman was at a weekly gathering of neighbors Friday night when he noticed something peculiar: a small plane circling a route overhead that didn’t make sense to him.
It was dark, so a sightseeing flight didn’t make sense, and when Zimmerman pulled up more information on an aviation phone app he routinely checks, he had immediate concerns.
The plane’s flight path, recorded by the website flightradar24.com, would eventually show that it circled downtown Minneapolis, the Mall of America and Southdale Center at low altitude for hours starting at 10:30 p.m., slipping off radar just after 3 a.m.
“I thought, ‘Holy crap,’ ” said Zimmerman.
Bearing the call sign N361DB, the plane is one of three Cessna 182T Skylanes registered to LCB Leasing of B…

3 white collar jobs that robots are already mastering

3 white collar jobs that robots are already mastering
By Joanne Elgart Jennings   May 22, 2015 at 11:35 AM EDT
Martin Ford bookOver the past 20 years, we’ve seen plenty of blue collar jobs outsourced to machines — from auto assembly to customer service. Now, as computers, equipped with artificial intelligence, increasingly take over “information jobs,” tasks that were once reserved for skilled, college-educated white collar professionals are vulnerable. That’s the argument made by Silicon Valley entrepreneur Martin Ford in a new book, “Rise of the Robots: Technology and the Threat of a Jobless Future.”
He spoke with us for a story that aired on Wednesday on the PBS NewsHour about the economic impact of artificial intelligence. It’s part of a series about the rapid advance of AI and how it’s affecting society.
We asked Ford to give us three examples of white collar jobs that are ripe for automation. Pharmacists, attorneys and one close to our hearts — journalists. All three of these p…

Amazon is Looking for the Perfect Warehouse Worker

Amazon is Looking for the Perfect Warehouse Worker
Robot with a human grasp is Web challenge to students
by Spencer Soper
9:05 AM PDT  May 28, 2015
Amazon.com Inc.’s inaugural “Amazon Picking Challenge” inspired mechanical engineering and computer science students from around the world to design robots that can grab boxes of Oreo cookies and pencils from warehouse shelves and place them in bins, tasks ordinarily done by people.
The Seattle retailer hopes to make its challenge a regular event that encourages innovation in robotics and steers academic research toward e-commerce automation.
Participants, however, said Amazon will have to be more generous with prize money and travel vouchers in the future for that to happen.
Amazon Seeks Robots With Human Grasp From Students
The world’s largest e-tailer, which had 2014 revenue of $89 billion, budgeted a total of $26,000 for prizes and $60,000 for travel grants for more than 30 teams participating in the competition this week at the Int…

Google Intensifies Focus on Its Cardboard Virtual Reality Device

Google Intensifies Focus on Its Cardboard Virtual Reality Device
By CONOR DOUGHERTY MAY 28, 2015
SAN FRANCISCO — Google has seen the future, and it is littered with cardboard boxes.
At its Google I/O developer conference here on Thursday, the search giant announced several programs that aim to put its virtual reality viewer, called Cardboard, at the center of a growing online world in which people can use their smartphone and YouTube to watch videos rendered in 3-D.
Google introduced its virtual reality viewer — a cardboard box, with some lenses and a magnet, that looks a lot like a plastic View-Master toy — as a gift at last year’s I/O conference.
The idea was to create an inexpensive virtual reality device that allowed anyone with a smartphone to do things like fly through a Google Earth map of Chicago or view personal pictures in three dimensions.
It is a comically simple contraption: A smartphone slips into the front so it sits just inches from a user’s eyes. Peering through a p…

Scientists successfully retrieve lost memories... using light

Hopes raised for treatment of severe amnesia after scientists retrieve lost memory using light
A study on laboratory mice has found that a lost memory is still stored within brain cells even though the animals had apparently lost ability to retrieve it
By Steve Connor Science Editor
Thursday 28 May 2015
Lost memories have been retrieved with the help of light in a study that could further the understanding and treatment of patients with severe amnesia following injury or disease.
A study on laboratory mice has found that a lost memory is still stored within the brain cells even though the animals had apparently lost their ability to retrieve it, scientists said.
Scientists have long debated the nature of amnesia, with many researchers suggesting that the problem is due to the storage of memory rather than the inability to retrieve it from long-term memory banks of the brain.
In a series of experiments on mice involving a technique called optogenetics – when light is used to activa…

Feds Help Finance Creation of Implantable Body Antenna for ‘Long-term Patient Monitoring’

Feds Help Finance Creation of Implantable Body Antenna for ‘Long-term Patient Monitoring’
NSF provided $5,070 to test devices
BY:  Elizabeth Harrington May 27, 2015 2:35 pm
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is helping fund the creation of an implantable antenna for health care, which could be used for “long-term patient monitoring.”
The government has so far given $5,070 for a graduate fellowship to work on the project, which begins June 1.
The project is being financed in collaboration with the National Research Foundation of Korea to create a high frequency antenna that can be permanently implanted under a person’s skin.
“Antennas operating near or inside the human body are important for a number of applications, including healthcare,” a grant for the project said. “Implantable medical devices such as cardiac pacemakers and retinal implants are a growing feature of modern healthcare, and implantable antennas for these devices are necessary to monitor battery level and device he…
World first as scientists use cold sore virus to attack cancer cellsUsing genetically modified viruses to attack tumour cells could open a 'wave' of potential new treatments
By Charlie Cooper Wednesday, 27 May 2015
Scientists have the first proof that a “brand new” way of combating cancer, using genetically modified viruses to attack tumour cells, can benefit patients, paving the way for a “wave” of new potential treatments over the next decade.
Specialists at the NHS Royal Marsden Hospital and the Institute of Cancer Research (ICR) confirmed that melanoma skin cancer patients treated with a modified herpes virus (the virus that causes cold sores) had improved survival – a world first.
In some patients, the improvements were striking. Although all had aggressive, inoperable malignant melanoma, those treated with the virus therapy – known as T-VEC – at an earlier stage survived on average 20 months longer than patients given an alternative.
In other patients results were more modes…

Internet used by 3.2 billion people in 2015

Internet used by 3.2 billion people in 2015
26 May 2015
Nearly half of the global population will be using the internet by the end of this year, according to a new report.
The International Telecommunication Union (ITU), a United Nations body, predicts that 3.2 billion people will be online. The population currently stands at 7.2 billion.
About 2 billion of those will be in the developing world, the report added.
But just 89 million will be in countries such as Somalia and Nepal.
These are part of a group of nations described as "least developed countries" by the United Nations, with a combined population of 940 million. Mobile
There will also be more than 7 billion mobile device subscriptions, the ITU said.
It found that 78 out of 100 people in the US and Europe already use mobile broadband, and 69% of the world has 3G coverage - but only 29% of rural areas are served.
Africa lags behind with just 17.4% mobile broadband penetration.
By the end of the year 80% of househol…

IRS Says Thieves Stole Info From 100,000 Taxpayers

APNewsBreak: IRS Says Thieves Stole Tax Info From 100,000
WASHINGTON — May 26, 2015, 4:11 PM ET
By STEPHEN OHLEMACHER Associated Press
Thieves used an online service provided by the IRS to gain access to information from more than 100,000 taxpayers, the agency said Tuesday.
The information included tax returns and other tax information on file with the IRS.
The IRS said the thieves accessed a system called "Get Transcript." In order to access the information, the thieves cleared a security screen that required knowledge about the taxpayer, including Social Security number, date of birth, tax filing status and street address.
"The IRS notes this issue does not involve its main computer system that handles tax filing submission; that system remains secure," the agency said in a statement.
The IRS said thieves targeted the system from February to mid-May. The service has been temporarily shut down.
"In all, about 200,000 attempts were made from questionable ema…

Countries pick sides in global fight for the Internet

Countries pick sides in global fight for the Internet By Cory Bennett - 05/24/15 06:00 AM EDT
The world is choosing sides in a fight over what the Internet will look like in the years to come.
In recent months, countries have rushed to sign cybersecurity pacts that not only secure cyberspace allies, but also promote their vision of the global Internet.
“It’s kind of indicating how the battle lines are being drawn,” said Richard Stiennon, chief research analyst for security consulting firm IT-Harvest.
While a coalition of nations, including the U.S., is pushing to turn the Internet into a borderless global entity, others such as Russia and China are pressing to give local governments more control over the flow of data.
How the competing visions play out is “a huge question,” Chris Finan, a former military intelligence officer and adviser to the Obama administration on cybersecurity policy. “We don’t know the answer to that yet.”
Over the past four weeks, the U.S. has inked cyber d…

Pew: Companies dumping newspapers, 50% ad decline, circulation plummeting

Pew: Companies dumping newspapers, 50% ad decline, circulation plummeting
By Paul Bedard  | May 24, 2015 | 12:50 pm
The demise of big city print media, displayed in full by the painfully slow sale of the mammoth New York Daily News, is going nationwide as ad sales decline 50 percent and circulation plummets, according to a new Pew Research Center analysis
According to their report, "The Declining Value Of U.S. Newspapers," just three different media companies in 2014 alone decided to dump more than 100 newspaper properties. Pew said the companies spun off the money-losing properties "in large part to protect their still-robust broadcast or digital divisions."
The Daily News, on the block since February, has yet to be sold and is now being eyed by Captiol Hill's newspaper The Hill, which may turn it into a digital operation like the Washington Examiner, Huffington Post, Brietbart and the Daily Caller.
The Pew report is short and very unsweet:
Over the past two…

As EU antitrust case looms, 'Peak Google' debated

As antitrust case looms, 'Peak Google' debated
AFP By Rob Lever 12 hours ago
Washington (AFP) - As Google faces an antitrust probe from European regulators, some analysts are questioning whether the California tech giant's dominance has already peaked.
While Google remains one of the world's biggest companies with overwhelming dominance of Internet search, its prospects are less rosy in a tech landscape rapidly shifting to mobile devices and social media, say some industry watchers.
Debate heated up last year after a blog post titled "Peak Google" from technology analyst and consultant Ben Thompson, who argued that Google is losing momentum.
Thompson said Google may in the same boat as IBM in the 1980s and Microsoft around 2000 -- "a hugely profitable company bestride the tech industry that at the moment seems infallible, but that history will show to have peaked in dominance and relevancy."
Google has for years been the leader in Internet search a…

Time's up for putting off IPv6 decisions

Time's up for putting off IPv6 decisions
With the Internet of Things, we're going to be needing a lot more IP addresses. That's exactly what IPv6 has in mind.
Computerworld | May 15, 2015 8:56 AM PT
As companies become used to the Internet of Things, they are assigning IP addresses to everything from printers and watches to refrigerators and garbage cans. If we're all going to be moving that much closer to recreating a Jetsons episode, we're going to be needing a lot more IP addresses. That's exactly what IPv6 has in mind.
IPv4 is expected to run out of new available addresses in a matter of months, forcing a truly near-term move to IPv6. How bad is the shortage? The Wall Street Journal offered some sobering stats. Back in 1981, IPv4 launched with 4.3 billion addresses. Today, barely 3.4 million are left. IPv6 is launching with 340 undecillion addresses. Yes, that's a real number. It's equivalent to one trillion times one trillion, which is roughly th…