The modern day wizards of weather know exactly why the climate conspired to unleash February rain and floods on Alaska, once mocked across the nation as “Seward’s Icebox” only to be newly proclaimed by the New York Times as the climate-friendy “place to be” in the 21st century.
“The Arctic has warmed at approximately twice the rate of the Northern mid-latitudes since the 1990s owing to a variety of positive feedbacks that amplify greenhouse-gas-induced global warming,”Blame an aberrant jet stream that has taken to swirling south from Asia into the Pacific Ocean tropics, where it grabs a load of warm, moist air and then heads north to deliver it to Alaska, with predictable results.
On Tuesday, the high temperature in Anchorage, the state’s largest city, hit 40 degrees — 11 degrees above the norm. The low was 30 — 15 degrees above the norm.
The Anchorage Fur Rendezvous World Championship Sled Dog Race, a big deal in the 49th state, has been canceled for lack of snow. So, too, the Tour of Anchorage cross-country ski marathon. The 2,000-mile Iron Dog snowmachine race was roaring north to Nome through flooded forests and dirt-covered lowlands where the speeding sleds kicked up roostertails of dust.
Well, I dunno about “nobody,” but these topics do need to be discussed more. A helluvalot more. Its not just ourselves we hurt with our failure to reign in our plutocrats.
Imagine a future in which automated drones have mini hangars atop telephone poles and fly the lines …
I am a droneman for the county and I fly the main road
Searchin’ in the sun for another overload
I hear you singin’ in the wire, I can hear you through the whine
And the Wichita droneman is still on the line
New rules proposed by the Obama Administration could open unmanned flight to a variety of commercial uses, ultimately embracing a future where the small aircrafts help maintain power distribution lines, tend to crops or deliver packages.
But the potential to use drones - technically, “unmanned aircraft systems” (UAS) - has been a subject of interest in the utility industry for years. It’s a natural fit when utilities spend millions of dollars inspecting power lines which are elevated and often run in hard-to-reach places.
“Every time we fly [in a helicopter], it’s about $1,200 to fly a mile,” said Jamie Exon. The utility inspects more than 26,000 miles of transmission and distribution lines, but can purchase a drone for less than $20,000.
The Federal Communications Commission today voted to preempt state laws in North Carolina and Tennessee that prevent municipal broadband providers from expanding outside their territories.
The action is a year in the making. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler announced in February 2014 his intention to override state laws designed to protect private cable companies and telcos from public sector competition. Wheeler took his cue from the federal appeals court ruling that overturned net neutrality rules; tucked away in that decision was one judge’s opinion that the FCC has the authority to preempt “state laws that prohibit municipalities from creating their own broadband infrastructure to compete against private companies.”
Nineteen states have such laws, often passed at the behest of private Internet service providers that didn’t want to face competition. Communities in two of the states asked the FCC to take action. The City of Wilson, North Carolina and the Electric Power Board (EPB) of Chattanooga, Tennessee filed the petitions that led to today’s FCC action. Each offers broadband service to residents and received requests for service from people in nearby towns, but they alleged that state laws made it difficult or impossible for them to expand.
Adobe has released security updates for Adobe Flash Player for Windows, Macintosh and Linux. These updates address a vulnerability that could be used to circumvent memory randomization mitigations on the Windows platform.
Adobe is aware of reports that an exploit for CVE-2015-0310 exists in the wild, which is being used in attacks against older versions of Flash Player. Additionally, we are investigating reports that a separate exploit for Flash Player 18.104.22.1687 and earlier also exists in the wild.
More: Adobe Security Bulletin
Superfish certificate password cracked.
I extracted the certificate from the SuperFish adware and cracked the password (“komodia”) that encrypted it. I discuss how down below. The consequence is that I can intercept the encrypted communications of SuperFish’s victims (people with Lenovo laptops) while hanging out near them at a cafe wifi hotspot. Note: this is probably trafficking in illegal access devices under the proposed revisions to the CFAA, so get it now before they change the law.
I used simple reversing to find the certificate. As reported by others, program is packed and self-encrypted (like typical adware/malware). The proper way to reverse engineer this is to run the software in a debugger (or IDApro), setting break point right after it decrypts itself. The goal is to set the right break point before it actually infects your machine — reversers have been known to infect themselves this way.
The EFF’s “every bit the same as every other bit” definition really doesn’t work for some specialized transports. If you need clear voice transmission, then you need to prioritize voice packets for Quality of Service (QOS) to work. The rest of that story is that if you use IVR’s, CTI, Automatic Call Distributors, those all rely on voice circuit signalling conventions that require less than sub second responses to common signalling, like the “Hook Flash”. Since that signalling now travels via UDP packets embedded in IP in many cases once past the Public Telephone Network Service (PTSN), UDP packets need to be prioritized in networks reliant on large scale telephony infrastructure and VOIP transport.
Despite its name, few people are neutral about Net Neutrality. This contretemps won’t end when the U.S. Federal Communications Commission convenes tomorrow (26 February) to publicly declare where the U.S. government stands on the matter. Part of what has inspired the disagreement over how bits of data should traverse the networks that together form the Internet is the lack of consensus about whether all information should be treated equally and what “equal treatment” really means. Should it really mean equal treatment for all bits? All information providers? Or should carriers be able to charge extra for premium services, but be barred from blocking or throttling access?
Earlier this month, we published an article that spelled out the arguments and counterarguments in the hope of making sense of it all. Now, Clyde C. McElroy, a former member of the general assembly under ICANN and a participant in domain name system operations (DNSO) working groups on new top-level domains, has further illuminated those points with this infographic:
Google is releasing a set of tools designed for businesses and employees who want to get work done on Android-powered smartphones, setting up a skirmish on another key front of mobile computing.
The technology unveiled Wednesday launches Google’s attempt to turn Android phones into the digital hub of people’s personal and professional lives. The expansion will pit Google Inc. against Microsoft Corp. and BlackBerry Inc., which have been focusing on the corporate market for years. Google will also be dueling its biggest rival in mobile computing, Apple Inc., which forged a partnership with IBM Corp. last year to build more iPhone and iPad applications tailored for businesses and government agencies.
Google and Apple have become so dominant that 96 percent of the smartphones sold last year run on the companies’ software, according to the research firm IDC. But most people use those phones to take pictures, message their friends, check Facebook and Twitter and engage in other personal endeavors. In many cases, people also may check their work email on their phones.
After years of cronyism, corruption and cowardice, Thursday’s vote for strong Net Neutrality rules at the FCC is unexpected if not unprecedented.
The FCC is reversing a decade of failed policies, rejecting a massive misinformation campaign from the cable and phone industries, and restoring the agency’s authority to protect Internet users.
This is the biggest win for the public interest in the agency’s history.
Yet even five months ago, this kind of victory looked impossible.