Linux fréttir

One Search To (Almost) Rule Them All: Hundreds of Hidden Planets Found in Kepler Data

Slashdot - Tue, 2019-08-06 18:04
Jonathan O'Callaghan, writing for Scientific American: Most of the more than 4,000 exoplanets astronomers have found across the past few decades come from NASA's pioneering Kepler mission, which launched in 2009 and ended in late October 2018. But among Kepler's cavalcade of data, more planets are still waiting to be found -- and a new method just turned up the biggest haul yet from the mission's second, concluding phase, called K2. The K2 run from 2014 to 2018 was notable for its unique use of the functionality, or lack thereof, of the Kepler space telescope. Essentially a large tube with a single camera, Kepler relied on four reaction wheels (spinning wheels to orient the spacecraft) to point at specific patches of the sky for days or even weeks on end. Such long stares were beneficial for its primary planet-finding technique, known as the transit method, which detects worlds by watching for dips in a star's light caused by an orbiting planet's passage in front of it. But when two of Kepler's reaction wheels failed, one in 2012 and another in 2013, mission planners came up with an ingenious method of using the pressure of the solar wind to act as a makeshift third wheel, allowing observations to continue, albeit with some limitations. "We had this issue because the K2 mission was working off of two reaction wheels; it rolled a little bit every six hours," says Susan Mullally of the Space Telescope Science Institute. "And as a result, the light curves have these little arcs that run through them that you have to first remove." Various efforts were subsequently made to extract planets from the K2 data. But none have been more successful than one reported in a new paper by Ethan Kruse of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center and his colleagues, which was posted on the preprint server arXiv.org last week and accepted for publication in the Astrophysical Journal Supplement Series. Kruse employed an algorithm known as as QATS (for Quasiperiodic Automated Transit Search) and a light-curve-analysis program called EVEREST (for EPIC Variability Extraction and Removal for Exoplanet Science Targets) to better account for the spacecraft's rolling and other sources of instrumental and astrophysical "noise" in the K2 data. The result was a whopping total of 818 planet candidates -- 374 of which had never been spotted before -- from the first nine of K2's 20 observation campaigns.

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Millions of Books Are Secretly in the Public Domain. You Can Download Them Free

Slashdot - Tue, 2019-08-06 17:25
One secret of the publishing industry is that most American books published before 1964 never extended their copyright, meaning they're in the public domain today. From a report: Prior to 1964, books had a 28-year copyright term. Extending it required authors or publishers to send in a separate form, and lots of people didn't end up doing that. Thanks to the efforts of the New York Public Library, many of those public domain books are now free online. Through the 1970s, the Library of Congress published the Catalog of Copyright Entries, all the registration and renewals of America's books. The Internet Archive has digital copies of these, but computers couldn't read all the information and figuring out which books were public domain, and thus could be uploaded legally, was tedious. The actual, extremely convoluted specifics of why these books are in the public domain are detailed in a post by the New York Public Library, which recently paid to parse the information in the Catalog of Copyright Entries. In a massive undertaking, the NYPL converted the registration and copyright information into an XML format. Now, the old copyrights are searchable and we know when, and if, they were renewed. Around 80 percent of all the books published from 1923 to 1964 are in the public domain, and lots of people had no idea until now. It amounts to an explosion of new books once lost to the mire of potential copyright claims. And they're all free. The Hathi Trust, a digital library similar to Project Gutenberg, has already uploaded some of the newly freed books.

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Add passwords to list of stuff CafePress made hash of storing, says infoseccer. 11m+ who used Facebook 'n' pals to sign in were lucky

TheRegister - Tue, 2019-08-06 17:09
11m other leaked users' p-words hashed with SHA-1

Passwords were among the 23 million customer records siphoned from CafePress by hackers – and the site was using the less secure SHA-1 hashing algorithm to store half of its users' credentials.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

Why Canonical Views the Snap Ecosystem as a Compelling Distribution-Agnostic Solution

Slashdot - Tue, 2019-08-06 16:45
Canonical's Martin Wimpress addresses Snaps, Flatpak, and other competing standards, and community unease around Canonical's control of the Snap store. intensivevocoder writes: With these advances in hardware support, the last significant challenge users face when switching from Windows or Mac to a Linux distribution is app distribution and installation. While distribution-provided repositories are useful for most open source software, the release model of distributions such as Ubuntu or Fedora lock in users to a major version for programs for the duration of a particular release. Because of differences in how they interact with the underlying system, certain configuration tasks are different between Snaps or Flatpaks than for directly-installed applications. Likewise, initial commits for the Snap and Flatpak formats were days apart -- while the formats were developed essentially in parallel, the existence of two 'universal' package formats has led to disagreement about competing standards. TechRepublic interviewed Martin Wimpress, engineering manager for Snapcraft at Canonical, about Ubuntu's long term plans for Snaps, its adoption and support in other Linux distributions, Canonical's position as the operator of the Snap Store, and the benefits Snaps provide over Flatpak. An excerpt from the interview: TechRepublic: Practically speaking, there are two competing standards for cross-platform application packaging -- three, if you count AppImage. What's the practical benefit that Canonical's Snap format offers over Flatpak or AppImage? Martin Wimpress: If you look at the initial commits of both of those projects, Snaps have a lineage back to Click packages, which were developed for [Ubuntu Phone] originally. The Snap project developed out of what had been learned from doing the phones, with a view to solving problems in IoT. So, although technically snapd and xdg-apps -- and consequently Flatpak -- look like they emerged around the same time, Snaps can trace their lineage back to the Click project from several years previous. If we're looking at Flatpak specifically, we can probably include AppImage in most of these comparisons as well. Some of the similarities are that Snaps are self-contained software packages, which is something that Flatpak and AppImage strive to be as well. I think that Flatpak achieves that better than AppImage. I think AppImage still makes some assumptions on what's installed on the host operating system. It doesn't bundle everything inside the AppImage. Similarly, Snaps, Flatpak, and AppImage work across all the major Linux distributions without modification. We haven't all arrived at this solution by accident. We've clearly, independently, all realized that this is a problem that we need to solve in order to encourage software vendors to publish their applications on Linux, because Linux is a very broad platform to target. If you can lower the hurdles... to getting your software in front of users on Linux, then that's a good thing. And we're all aiming to do the same thing there.

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Yelp is Screwing Over Restaurants By Quietly Replacing Their Phone Numbers

Slashdot - Tue, 2019-08-06 16:10
A new report by Vice reveals yet another marketing tactic by Grubhub that attempts to maximize the commission fees it can charge to restaurants when customers order through the service. Yelp, a Grubhub partner, quietly hides a Grubhub-affiliated phone number when you choose to call a business from the Yelp app. An anonymous reader writes: According to Vice, a Yelp listing for a restaurant shows the correct phone number for the business. If users click to "order delivery or takeout," they are presented with the option to order through a deep-linked Grubhub app. However, if they click the actual phone number listed to call the business directly, the phone number that appears on the dialer is not the official one that is shown on the listing. Instead, a different number is used so that Grubhub could track it as a "marketing" call, giving the company the ability to bill restaurants upwards of 30 percent commission instead of fees as low as 3 percent. Further reading: Meal-Delivery Company GrubHub is Buying Thousands of Restaurant Web Addresses, Preventing Mom and Pop From Owning Their Slice of Internet.

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Cloud computing's no PICNIC*: Yep, biggest security risks down to customer, not provider

TheRegister - Tue, 2019-08-06 16:05
*Problem In Chair Not In Computer, says report

Industry nonprofit the Cloud Security Alliance has published a report on the top threats to cloud computing, concluding that the biggest issues are caused by customers, not by the cloud "solution" providers (CSPs).…

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AT&T Employees Took Bribes To Plant Malware on the Company's Network

Slashdot - Tue, 2019-08-06 15:28
AT&T employees took bribes to unlock millions of smartphones, and to install malware and unauthorized hardware on the company's network, the Department of Justice said yesterday. From a report: These details come from a DOJ case opened against Muhammad Fahd, a 34-year-old man from Pakistan, and his co-conspirator, Ghulam Jiwani, believed to be deceased. The DOJ charged the two with paying more than $1 million in bribes to several AT&T employees at the company's Mobility Customer Care call center in Bothell, Washington. The bribery scheme lasted from at least April 2012 until September 2017. Initially, the two Pakistani men bribed AT&T employees to unlock expensive iPhones so they could be used outside AT&T's network. The two recruited AT&T employees by approaching them in private via telephone or Facebook messages. Employees who agreed, received lists of IMEI phone codes which they had to unlock for sums of money. Employees would then receive bribes in their bank accounts, in shell companies they created, or as cash, from the two Pakistani men.

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Democratic Senate Campaign Group Exposed 6.2 Million Americans' Emails

Slashdot - Tue, 2019-08-06 14:43
A political campaign group working to elect Democratic senators left a spreadsheet containing the email addresses of 6.2 million Americans' on an exposed server. From a report: Data breach researchers at security firm UpGuard found the data in late July, and traced the storage bucket back to a former staffer at the Democratic Senatorial Campaign Committee, an organization that seeks grassroots donations and contributions to help elect Democratic candidates to the U.S. Senate. Following the discovery, UpGuard researchers reached out to the DSCC and the storage bucket was secured within a few hours. The researchers published shared their findings exclusively with TechCrunch and published their findings. The spreadsheet was titled "EmailExcludeClinton.csv" and was found in a similarly named unprotected Amazon S3 bucket without a password. The file was uploaded in 2010 -- a year after former Democratic senator and presidential candidate Hillary Clinton, whom the data is believed to be named after, became secretary of state. UpGuard said the data may be of people "who had opted out or should otherwise be excludedâ from the committee's marketing.

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Microsoft cofounder Paul Allen's personal MiG-29 fighter jet goes under the hammer

TheRegister - Tue, 2019-08-06 14:25
Now you too can have a Soviet plaything as estate wound up

As late Microsoftie Paul Allen's estate is gradually wound down, the gems from his collection of rare and historic aircraft are coming up for auction – including his personal two-seat MiG-29 Russian fighter jet.…

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Backblaze Hard Drive Stats Q2 2019

Slashdot - Tue, 2019-08-06 14:05
Backblaze: As of June 30, 2019, Backblaze had 110,640 spinning hard drives in our ever-expanding cloud storage ecosystem. Of that number, there were 1,980 boot drives and 108,660 data drives. This review looks at the Q2 2019 and lifetime hard drive failure rates of the data drive models currently in operation in our data centers.

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Rival rocketeers SpaceX and ULA make oblations to weather gods ahead of double-launch action

TheRegister - Tue, 2019-08-06 13:37
A busy week for Cape Canaveral Air Force Station

The 45th Space Wing has a busy few days ahead of it as the team prepares for launches from SpaceX and ULA less than 48 hours apart from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station.…

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Microsoft Catches Russian State Hackers Using IoT Devices To Breach Networks

Slashdot - Tue, 2019-08-06 13:00
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Ars Technica: Hackers working for the Russian government have been using printers, video decoders, and other so-called Internet-of-things devices as a beachhead to penetrate targeted computer networks, Microsoft officials warned on Monday. "These devices became points of ingress from which the actor established a presence on the network and continued looking for further access," officials with the Microsoft Threat Intelligence Center wrote in a post. "Once the actor had successfully established access to the network, a simple network scan to look for other insecure devices allowed them to discover and move across the network in search of higher-privileged accounts that would grant access to higher-value data." Microsoft researchers discovered the attacks in April, when a voice-over-IP phone, an office printer, and a video decoder in multiple customer locations were communicating with servers belonging to "Strontium," a Russian government hacking group better known as Fancy Bear or APT28. In two cases, the passwords for the devices were the easily guessable default ones they shipped with. In the third instance, the device was running an old firmware version with a known vulnerability. While Microsoft officials concluded that Strontium was behind the attacks, they said they weren't able to determine what the group's ultimate objectives were. Microsoft says they have notified the makers of the targeted IoT devices so they can add new protections. "Monday's report also provided IP addresses and scripts organizations can use to detect if they have also been targeted or infected," adds Ars Technica. "Beyond that, Monday's report reminded people that, despite Strontium's above-average hacking abilities, an IoT device is often all it needs to gain access to a targeted network."

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Microsoft follows up those licensing hikes by snipping away costs for Azure Archive Storage

TheRegister - Tue, 2019-08-06 12:33
Amazon CTO not happy. Isn't it ironic... don't you think?

While Amazon fumed over Microsoft's licensing changes, the gang in Redmond attempted to soften the blow a little by slicing the pricing of Azure Archive Storage.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

Even tech giants find themselves telling folk not to use default passwords on Internet of S**t kit

TheRegister - Tue, 2019-08-06 11:19
Top tips to defend against nation-state network intrusion

Microsoft's Security Response Center has issued a bunch of recommendations for orgs to protect against nation-state network intrusion via insecure IoT devices.…

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Judge rules Oracle didn't have to listen to its Euro Works Council over support biz layoffs

TheRegister - Tue, 2019-08-06 10:11
EU-mandated worker rep group took Big Red to court, lost, appealed, lost again

Oracle's EU-area employee rep council has lost its legal battle to force the American company to pay attention to it after Big Red sacked several hundred people and offshored their jobs to Romania.…

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Best Milky Way Map Yet Confirms Our Galaxy Is Warped and Twisted

Slashdot - Tue, 2019-08-06 10:00
Astronomers from the U.S. and Europe have put together a new 3D model of the galaxy based on the distance between stars and found that our galaxy is warped and twisted. "I'd say that it is shaped like a Pringle," said study co-author Radek Poleski, an astronomer at Ohio State University in Columbus. CNET reports: The research, published Thursday in the journal Science, draws on a population of stars known as the Cepheids, which are pulsing, massive, young stars that shine brighter than the sun. Using data from the Optical Gravitational Lensing Experiment (OGLE), a sky survey run by the University of Warsaw out of Las Campanas Observatory in Chile, astronomers were able to pick out 2,431 of the Cepheids through the thick gas and dust of the Milky Way and use them to make a map of the galaxy. Dorota Skowron, lead author on the study and astronomer with Wroclaw University of Science and Technology, says the OGLE project observed the galactic disk of the Milky Way for six years, taking 206,726 images of the sky containing 1,055,030,021 stars. Within, they found the population of Cepheids, which are particularly useful for plotting a map because their brightness fluctuates over time. Using that fluctuation, the team produced a 3D model of the galaxy, confirming work that previously demonstrated the galaxy was flared at its edges. They were also able to determine the age of the Cepheid population, with younger stars located closer to the center of the galactic disk and older stars positioned farther away, near the edge. By simulating star formation in the early Milky Way, the team showed how the galaxy might have evolved over the last 175 million years, with bursts of star formation in the spiral arms resulting in the current distribution of Cepheids ranging from 20 million to 260 million years old.

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Cloud vendors can't resist the lucrative smell of gaming dollars – and they're all in it to win it

TheRegister - Tue, 2019-08-06 09:02
It makes sense to provide infrastructure for the biggest biz in entertainment

Feature For better or worse, it looks like cloud computing is here to stay. Among other things, "someone else's computer" is changing how people buy and consume entertainment, and after murdering television, the cloud is now messing with the very nature of video games.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

Amazon Web Services doubled its footprint in the UK and will only get bigger, reckon analysts

TheRegister - Tue, 2019-08-06 08:05
Capita retains software and IT services top spot... for now

Amazon Web Services has nearly doubled its footprint in the UK market, turning over £850m last year, according to an analysis by TechMarketView.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

Need to automatically and securely verify a download is legit? You bet rget this new tool

TheRegister - Tue, 2019-08-06 07:04
Wget's? I've had a few.... but then again, it's better to cryptographically check the contents of that executable

Brandon Philips, a member of the technical staff at Red Hat, has created a software tool called rget for Linux, macOS, and Windows, to make it easier to determine whether downloaded files can be trusted.…

Categories: Linux fréttir

Scientists Are Using the Cold of Outer Space To Rethink Air Conditioning

Slashdot - Tue, 2019-08-06 07:00
A California-based company called SkyCool Systems is in the early stages of manufacturing a cooling system that's more energy efficient than anything humans have used for a century. It's doing it using radiative cooling, a concept that was used in the Middle East and India hundreds of years ago. Quartz reports: To understand how radiative cooling works, forget for a moment the sun. Think instead about the night sky. Once the sun has set and the cooler evening begins, just about everything on Earth -- the soil, the grass, the roofs of homes, even people -- give off heat. A lot of that heat rises up into the atmosphere where it effectively transmits out into space, never returning to Earth. The night sky is very chilly, and objects sending heat upward at night send up more heat than the whole sky is sending back down. Hundreds of years ago, long before refrigeration existed, people in India and Iran used this basic concept to make ice in climates with temperatures above freezing. Water was filled into large and shallow ceramic pools that were surrounded and insulated by hay, and then the pools were left out on clear nights. It sounds counterintuitive, but if the air wasn't too far above freezing, the heat emitted by the water made it lower in temperature than the surrounding air, allowing it to freeze. It's the same principle at play when you wake up on a summer morning to find a layer of frost or dew. Now the people at SkyCool are taking that principle and applying it to the modern era, employing it to reimagine how we cool our homes, data centers, and refrigerators. SkyCool's three co-founders created a material that helps facilitate the radiative cooling process. "Their invention looks a lot like a solar panel," reports Quartz. "A flat metal panel is covered in a sheet of the material -- a high-tech film -- the trio invented. The material reflects the light and heat of the sun so effectively that the temperature beneath the film can drop 5 to 10-degrees Celsius (41 to 50-degrees Fahrenheit) lower than the air around it. A system of small pipes circulating through the metal panel beneath the film are exposed to that colder temperature, cooling the fluid inside before it's sent out to current-day refrigeration systems." A new study published today in the journal Nature Sustainability says radiative cooling could one day be its own, electricity-free system.

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