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NASA Launches Satellite To Observe Soil Moisture

Slashdot - Sun, 2015-02-01 09:27
An anonymous reader sends word that NASA has launched an Earth-observing satellite, which will measure the amount of moisture in soil. "In one of the space agency's bolder projects, a newly launched NASA satellite will monitor western drought and study the moisture, frozen and liquid in Earth's soil. It's true that a satellite can't possibly fix the devastating drought that has been plaguing the American West for the last years. It is also true that it can't possibly change the fact that California has just gone through the driest month in recorded history. But what NASA plans to do is to provide the possibility of understanding the patterns of this extreme weather and, perhaps, foresee how much worse it could actually become. Called the SMAP (Soil Moisture Active Passive Satellite), this new, unmanned project was successfully launched on Saturday atop the United Launch Alliance Delta II Rocket. The launch took place at the California Vandenberg Air Force base at exactly 9:22 AM EST. With the successful launch, NASA just kick started a three year, $916 million mission focused on measuring and forecasting droughts, floods and other possible natural disasters that might come our way in the future."

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The Pirate Bay clambers back online after cop raid sunk site for 7 weeks

The Register - Sun, 2015-02-01 09:04
Copyright owners: Arrr-gh!

Torrent search engine The Pirate Bay is back online weeks after a police raid on a Swedish data centre sunk the copyright-infringing clearinghouse site.…

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Kurdish forces free oil workers at Kirkuk crude station: officials

Reuters: Technology - Sun, 2015-02-01 08:25
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Iraqi Kurdish forces on Sunday found and freed workers who had gone missing a day earlier when Islamic State insurgents seized a small crude oil station near the northern city of Kirkuk, the provincial governor and a provincial councilman said.
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The NFL Wants You To Think These Things Are Illegal

Slashdot - Sun, 2015-02-01 08:25
An anonymous reader writes: Professional sports have become a minefield of copyright and trademark issues, and no event moreso than the Super Bowl. Sherwin Siy of Public Knowledge has an article debunking some of the things the NFL has convinced people they can't do, even through they're perfectly legal. For example, you've probably heard the warning about how "descriptions" and "accounts" of the game are prohibited without the NFL's consent. That's all hogwash: "The NFL would be laughed out of court for trying to prevent them from doing so—just because you have a copyright in a work doesn't mean you can prevent people from talking about it. Copyright simply doesn't extend that far." Recording the game and watching it later is just fine, too. So, will you be paying attention to the game today? Ignoring it? Practicing your cultivated disinterest?

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Carmakers DEFLATED by AIRBAG FLAW as US watchdog recalls TWO MEELLION vehicles

The Register - Sun, 2015-02-01 08:11
Early Noughties models affected after fix FAILS

More than 2 million SUVs and cars have been recalled by a US regulator, after manufacturers including Honda and Toyota failed to fix defects found in the airbags of some of their early Noughties' models.…

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Hardboiled, fast-paced, mind-bending fun – <i>Dark Intelligence</i> IS sci-fi

The Register - Sun, 2015-02-01 07:00
Neal Asher’s latest Polity universe novel doesn’t disappoint

Page File It’s not easy to come in cold on something like Neal Asher’s Polity universe, a hard sci-fi world spanning 12 books and counting that I’ve never quite got around to starting. Instead, it was a dive into the deep end with the twelfth novel, Dark Intelligence, the beginning of a trilogy about the black AI Penny Royal, who’s popped up in Asher books before.…

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East Ukraine death toll mounts after peace talks fail

Reuters: Technology - Sun, 2015-02-01 06:54
KIEV (Reuters) - Thirteen Ukrainian soldiers and at least seven civilians have been killed in fighting in the past 24 hours, Kiev authorities said on Sunday, reporting widespread clashes with Russian-backed separatists a day after peace talks collapsed.

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Boko Haram attacks northeast Nigeria's main city: witnesses

Reuters: Technology - Sun, 2015-02-01 06:37
MAIDUGURI, Nigeria (Reuters) - Islamist insurgents attacked the outskirts of northeast Nigeria's main city Maiduguri on Sunday, engaging in a gun battle with soldiers that killed at least eight people, witnesses and a security source said.
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Islamic State says it has beheaded second Japanese hostage Goto

Reuters: Technology - Sun, 2015-02-01 06:09
TOKYO (Reuters) - Islamic State militants said they had beheaded a second Japanese hostage, journalist Kenji Goto, prompting Prime Minister Shinzo Abe to vow to step up humanitarian aid to the group's opponents in the Middle East and help bring his killers to justice.

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#VultureTRENDING: YESS! It's Pantsr, the Sharing Economy super app that delivers on the BOTTOM line

The Register - Sun, 2015-02-01 06:00
Get ready to sweat your assets

Get ready for the latest sharing-economy sensation! We here at #VultureTRENDING have exclusive details of the newest business firestorm set to hit the headlines - and the BOTTOM lines!…

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Pro-democracy protesters back in Hong Kong, no violence

Reuters: Technology - Sun, 2015-02-01 05:59
HONG KONG (Reuters) - Thousands of pro-democracy protesters returned to the streets of Hong Kong on Sunday in the first large-scale rally since demonstrations rocked the global financial hub late last year.

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Police Stations Increasingly Offer Safe Haven For Craigslist Transactions

Slashdot - Sun, 2015-02-01 05:14 writes: Lily Hay Newman reports at Future Tense that the police department in Columbia, Missouri recently announced its lobby will be open 24/7 for people making Craigslist transactions or any type of exchange facilitated by Internet services. This follows a trend begun by police stations in Virginia Beach, East Chicago and Boca Raton. Internet listings like Craigslist are, of course, a quick and convenient way to buy, sell, barter, and generally deal with junk. But tales of Craigslist-related assaults, robberies, and murders where victims are lured to locations with the promise of a sale, aren't uncommon. Also, an item being sold could be broken or fake, and the money being used to buy it could be counterfeit. "Transactions should not be conducted in secluded parking lots, behind a building, in a dark location especially when you're dealing with strangers. Someone you've never met before – you have no idea what their intentions are – whether they have evil intent or the best of intentions," says Officer James Cason Jr. With surveillance cameras running 24 hours a day, plus the obvious bonus of a constant police presence, meeting in the lobby of the police department can help weed out people trying to rip others off. "People with stolen items may not want to meet at the police department," says Bryana Maupin.

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Sudan rebels free Bulgarian aid workers: ministry

Reuters: Technology - Sun, 2015-02-01 05:02
SOFIA (Reuters) - Six Bulgarian U.N. aid workers who were detained by rebels in Sudan's strife-torn South Kordofan region have been released, the Bulgarian foreign ministry said on Sunday.
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Rule-breakers thrive in strait-laced Singapore

The Register - Sun, 2015-02-01 05:00
Weather, food, car prices sizzle in Lion City

The eXpat Files Douglas Baigrie is an ethical hacker, a role he says it's hard to recruit for in Singapore because the local culture encourages following rules, not thinking around them as he's required to do.…

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At least 1,375 Iraqis killed in January, most of them civilians: U.N.

Reuters: Technology - Sun, 2015-02-01 04:18
BAGHDAD (Reuters) - Fighting and other violence in Iraq killed at least 1,375 people including 790 civilians in January, the United Nations said on Sunday.
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Post-pub nosh neckfiller: Sizzling sag aloo

The Register - Sun, 2015-02-01 04:00
Classic Indian spicy spuds and spinach for your wobbly dining pleasure

We're disappointed to report that despite our attempts last week to raise the tone of our post-pub neckfiller nosh recipes by the classy use of a soupçon of français, we have not yet attracted a sponsor willing to back our efforts to push the culinary envelope.…

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Chipotle insider trading: Disproving the efficient markets hypothesis

The Register - Sun, 2015-02-01 03:00
You want that economic theory strong, so-so or WEAK?

Worstall @ the Weekend We had a distressing little incident here recently among the commentards over the meaning of the efficient markets hypothesis. So I'll explain what it is, using a current little story to prove that one version of it must be wrong as well.…

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North Korea says U.S. rejects invitation to Pyongyang

Reuters: Technology - Sun, 2015-02-01 02:56
SEOUL (Reuters) - North Korea said on Sunday the United States had rejected an invitation to send one of its top diplomats to Pyongyang, accusing Washington of trying to shift the blame for the deadlock in denuclearisation talks on the North.

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OpenSSH Will Feature Key Discovery and Rotation For Easier Switching To Ed25519

Slashdot - Sun, 2015-02-01 02:10
ConstantineM writes: OpenSSH developer Damien Miller has posted about a new feature he implemented and committed for the next upcoming 6.8 release of OpenSSH — — an OpenSSH extension to the SSH protocol for sshd to automatically send all of its public keys to the client, and for the client to automatically replace all keys of such server within ~/.ssh/known_hosts with the fresh copies as supplied (provided the server is trusted in the first place, of course). The protocol extension is simple enough, and is aimed to make it easier to switch over from DSA to the OpenSSL-free Ed25519 public keys. It is also designed in such a way as to support the concept of spare host keys being stored offline, which could then seamlessly replace main active keys should they ever become compromised.

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Oh, lordy! 'I do not begin to understand the dark cloud. LEGISLATE NOW'

The Register - Sun, 2015-02-01 02:00
Plus: Big Blue says mass layoff rumour is 'TOTALLY LUDICROUS'

QuoTW This was the week Google's Youtube got caught out at its own game, when a classical musician had the temerity to record the company's bullying tactics and post the evidence online.…

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