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Elon Musk Proposes Spaceship That Can Send 100 People To Mars In 80 Days
An anonymous reader quotes a report from The Verge: Today, SpaceX CEO Elon Musk unveiled the Mars vehicle -- the spaceship his company plans to build to transport the first colonists to Mars. It will have a diameter of 17 meters. The plan is to send about 100 people per trip, though Musk wants to ultimately take 200 or more per flight to make the cost cheaper per person. The trip can take as little as 80 days or as many as 150 depending on the year. The hope is that the transport time will be only 30 days "in the more distant future." The rocket booster will have a diameter of 12 meters and the stack height will be 122 meters. The spaceship should hold a cargo of up to 450 tons depending on how many refills can be done with the tanker. As rumored, the Mars vehicle will be reusable and the spaceship will refuel in orbit. The trip will work like this: First, the spaceship will launch out of Pad 39A, which is under development right now at the Kennedy Space Center at Cape Canaveral, Florida. At liftoff, the booster will have 127,800 kilonewtons of thrust, or 28,730,000 pounds of thrust. Then, the spaceship and booster separate. The spaceship heads to orbit, while the booster heads back to Earth, coming back within about 20 minutes. Back on Earth, the booster lands on a launch mount and a propellant tanker is loaded onto the booster. The entire unit -- now filled with fuel -- lifts off again. It joins with the spaceship, which is then refueled in orbit. The propellant tankers will go up anywhere from three to five times to fill the tanks of the spaceship. The spaceship finally departs for Mars. To make the trip more attractive for its crew members, Musk promises that it'll be "really fun" with zero-G games, movies, cabins, games, a restaurant. Once it reaches Mars, the vehicle will land on the surface, using its rocket engines to lower itself gently down to the ground. The spaceship's passengers will use the vehicle, as well as cargo and hardware that's already been shipped over to Mars, to set up a long-term colony. At the rate of 20 to 50 total Mars trips, it will take anywhere from 40 to 100 years to achieve a fully self-sustaining civilization with one million people on Mars, says Musk.


No return trips?

By wvmarle • Score: 3 • Thread

No word in the article about return trips to Earth. For a small pioneer colony that makes total sense to me, but when you talk about setting up a 1-million strong kind of colony, or even just the minimum of 4,000 (40 flights with 100 folk on board) you'll have to consider return trips as well. Cannibalizing your own space ships doesn't sound like too good an idea for that (though staying in orbit at both Earth and Mars, does).



By Alomex • Score: 3 • Thread

I think he's being a bit optimistic. Living conditions in Mars are closest to Antarctica on earth, and if you read about life in McMurdo Station it isn't pleasant. Additionally you can read about the large amount of supplies that are required every year to keep the base going.

We will get to Mars eventually, maybe even sooner than some people think, but a permanent colony is more than 30 years away.

OVH Hosting Suffers From Record 1Tbps DDoS Attack Driven By 150K Devices
MojoKid writes: If you thought that the massive DDoS attack earlier this month on Brian Krebs' security blog was record-breaking, take a look at what just happened to France-based hosting provider OVH. OVH was the victim of a wide-scale DDoS attack that was carried via a network of over 152,000 IoT devices. According to OVH founder and CTO Octave Klaba, the DDoS attack reached nearly 1 Tbps at its peak. Of those IoT devices participating in the DDoS attack, they were primarily comprised of CCTV cameras and DVRs. Many of these devices have improperly configured network settings, which leaves them ripe for the picking for hackers that would love to use them to carry out destructive attacks.The DDoS peaked at 990 Gbps on September 20th thanks to two concurrent attacks, and according to Klaba, the original botnet was capable of a 1.5 Tbps DDoS attack if each IP topped out at 30 Mbps. This massive DDoS campaign was directed at Minecraft servers that OHV was hosting. Octave Klaba / Oles tweeted: "Last days, we got lot of huge DDoS. Here, the list of 'bigger that 100Gbps' only. You can the simultaneous DDoS are close to 1Tbps!"


IoT is an unnecessary security risk.

By bjwest • Score: 3 • Thread
</header> The IoT is, by design, a security risk. Who the hell needs their oven, thermostat, refrigerator and each individual light-bulb connected to the Internet? I have no pity for anyone who gets their speaker-included light-bulb hacked, and I truly believe the companies whose products are involved in this DOS should be held completely responsible. CEOs and CTOs should be fired and charged with computer crimes.


that should slow down the amount of spam they send

By Indy1 • Score: 3, Insightful • Thread

I always find it richly ironic when spam hosting isp's get cratered by a DDOS. Lie down with dogs, get up with fleas.



Re:How do IoT manufacturers...

By JustAnotherOldGuy • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

...stem this madness?

The sad fact is that it's already too late. The problem is that there are loads of these insecure devices out there now, and they will likely be online for years to come.

Even if every new IoT device that was sold starting tomorrow was actually secure, we have a huge pool of susceptible devices that are already in place just waiting to be exploited.

Our best hope is that these craptastic devices fail quickly and are replaced, but I'm not going to hold my breath hoping that their replacements will be any more secure. Frankly, I have no reason to believe that IoT device makers will ever do anything to make their devices secure. We'll be seeing this shit 10 years from now, only worse.


Re:How do IoT manufacturers...

By PurpleAlien • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Frankly, I have no reason to believe that IoT device makers will ever do anything to make their devices secure. We'll be seeing this shit 10 years from now, only worse.

As someone who owns a company that makes IoT devices and properly secures them, there are companies that do take security serious. The problem is that security is all too often seen as just a cost, not a feature you can charge money for. You need dedicated security people, incorporate security form the start, etc. and lots of companies just don't want or have the money. It makes the cost of the device go up, you get longer time to market, etc. and that's a hard sell to investors.

We actively try to educate on security, but it is going to take several more of these and some big losses before the majority will take security serious.


Re:How do IoT manufacturers...

By JustAnotherOldGuy • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

It is time to blacklist these devices and prevent insecure devices that participate in DDoS permanently. This may mean things like MAC-based blocking on ISP-level.

But all your ISP sees is your router...so they'd have to start cutting people off from the internet left and right. And many, many people won't know what to do when that happens because all the ISP can tell them is that "some device" is sending traffic out.

Is it their thermostat? One or more light bulbs? The washer or refrigerator or the furnace? Maybe it's little Johnny's Speak-N-Spell or Sally's Barbie Dream Castle. Maybe it's the TV or the DVR or the the remote-viewing doorbell.

They'll have to unplug their whole house, bit by bit, checking with the ISP each step of the way. How is Joe Sixpack or Grandpa going to know what to do? And what if two or more devices are the culprit?

Shit, the more I think about it, the more I realize that this shit is going to be way worse than I imagined, and I'm pretty pessimistic to start with.

FCC Official Asks Agency To Investigate Ban On Journalists' Wi-Fi Personal Hotspots At Debate
Yesterday, it was reported that journalists attending the presidential debate at Hofstra University were banned from using personal hotspots and were told they had to pay $200 to access the event's Wi-Fi. The journalists were reportedly offered the option to either turn off their personal hotspots or leave the debate. Cyrus Farivar via Ars Technica is now reporting that "one of the members of the Federal Communications Commission, Jessica Rosenworcel, has asked the agency to investigate the Monday evening ban." Ars Technica reports: Earlier, Commissioner Jessica Rosenworcel tweeted, saying that something was "not right" with what Hofstra did. She cited an August 2015 order from the FCC, forcing a company called SmartCity to no longer engage in Wi-Fi blocking and to pay $750,000. Ars has since updated their report with a statement from Karla Schuster, a spokeswoman for Hofstra University: The Commission on Presidential Debates sets the criteria for services and requires that a completely separate network from the University's network be built to support the media and journalists. This is necessary due to the volume of Wi-Fi activity and the need to avoid interference. The Rate Card fee of $200 for Wi-Fi access is to help defray the costs and the charge for the service does not cover the cost of the buildout. For Wi-Fi to perform optimally the system must be tuned with each access point and antenna. When other Wi-Fi access points are placed within the environment the result is poorer service for all. To avoid unauthorized access points that could interfere, anyone who has a device that emits RF frequency must register the device. Whenever a RF-emitting device was located, the technician notified the individual to visit the RF desk located in the Hall. The CPD RF engineer would determine if the device could broadcast without interference.



By bobbied • Score: 4, Informative • Thread


You cannot emit RF to jam signals on your property, but finding an RF emitter and ejecting it (along with the owner) from the premises is permitted. You get bonus points for spelling out these terms in a signed contract too...


Re:So They think they have a license for that band

By Chmarr • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

Unfortunately, putting any kind of restriction on a part-15 device is exactly "sub-licensing", which you're not allowed to do.

That it was private property is... going to be an interesting argument :)


Re:i.e. I think I can ignore the law if I want to

By MightyMartian • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Um, the French and Indian War was between 1756 and 1763. There was no "Canada", save as a bit of a colloquial expression for the New France, which became British after the defeat of French forces in 1759.

You might note that the American War of Independence didn't begin until 1775, and "Canada" didn't become a formal name until 1791 when the former territories of New France were carved into Upper Canada, where many Empire Loyalists were settling, and Lower Canada, where the Quebecois were dominant, and these two colonies later became Ontario and Quebec.

So what you wrote is factually wrong. The French and Indian Wars was a war between France and Britain, an arena of the larger Seven Years War, and most certainly involved the defense of the British colonies (including but not limited to the Thirteen "American" colonies) in North America.


Why the heck can't they just use a cable?

By ZorinLynx • Score: 3 • Thread

I can totally understand banning Wifi hotspot access points at big crowded events like this. Just a few dozen in the same area is enough to completely use all available bandwidth in the form of beacons. Performance will suck for EVERYONE, including the venue WiFi.

Why not just use a cable? Most phones support tethering over USB, and it'll even perform better than WiFi hotspot mode because it's a direct cable connection so the only RF you're doing is cellular. I always try to do USB tethering when possible to avoid polluting the airwaves with my needless access point.


Re:There's plenty of space

By BenFranske • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

This. The FCC is important, RF regulation is important as spectrum is a shared resource and is not contained by walls, geographic boundaries, etc. Someone needs to be in charge of preventing interference and encouraging research of effective use of a limited resource.

Side rant, I think it was a poor choice to raise a bunch of money by starting the sell spectrum to cell providers in the 90s instead of licensing it to them as had been done before and is still done for most frequencies. The FCC has effectively ceded regulatory control of huge chunks of spectrum so now a lot of power is concentrated into a few companies that own spectrum and it's not necessarily in their interest to pursue certain RF research or new RF technology and we have no societal via governmental way to force transitions to new technology. Imagine if TV stations owned their spectrum, we might never have been able to force a HD digital transition.

Revealed: How One Amazon Kindle Scam Made Millions of Dollars
An anonymous Slashdot reader shares an excerpt with us from a report via ZDNet that summarizes a catfishing scheme designed to deceive Amazon users into buy low-quality ebooks: Emma Moore is just one of hundreds of pseudonyms employed in a sophisticated "catfishing" scheme run by Valeriy Shershnyov, whose Vancouver-based business hoodwinks Amazon customers into buying low-quality ebooks, which have been boosted on the online marketplace by an unscrupulous system of bots, scripts, and virtual servers. Catfishing isn't new -- it's been well documented. Some scammers buy fake reviews, while others will try other ways to game the system. Until now, nobody has been able to look inside at how one of these scams work -- especially one that's been so prolific, generating millions of dollars in royalties by cashing in on unwitting buyers who are tricked into thinking these ebooks have some substance. Shershnyov was able to stay in Amazon's shadows for two years by using his scam server conservatively so as to not raise any red flags. What eventually gave him away weren't customer complaints or even getting caught. It was good old-fashioned carelessness. He forgot to put a password on his server.


Other Book Scammers

By Nova Express • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Other book scammers offering books tht look like low-cost omnibus editions, but which are actually compilations of Wikipedia articles and other content-scraped public-domain material, are:

Let the buyer beware...

Aetna To Provide Apple Watch To 50,000 Employees, Subsidize Cost For Customers
An anonymous reader quotes a report from Mac Rumors: Insurance company Aetna today announced a major health initiative centered on the iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch, which will see Aetna subsidizing the cost of the Apple Watch for both large employers and individual customers. Starting this fall during open enrollment season, Aetna will subsidize "a significant portion" of the Apple Watch cost and will offer monthly payroll deductions to cover the remaining cost. Aetna also plans to provide Apple Watches at no cost to all of its nearly 50,000 employees as part of a wellness reimbursement program to encourage them to live healthier lives. Aetna plans to develop several iOS health initiatives with "support" from Apple, debuting "deeply integrated" health apps for the iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch that will be available to all Aetna customers. According to Aetna, these apps will "simplify the healthcare process" with features like care management to guide customers through a new diagnosis or a medication, medication reminders and tools for easy refills, quick contact with doctors, integration with Apple Wallet for paying bills and checking deductibles, and tools to help Aetna members get the most out of their insurance benefits. Aetna's health-related apps will be available starting in early 2017, but the Apple Watch initiative will begin in 2016. Aetna has not detailed how much of the cost will be subsidized or which Apple Watch models will be available to subscribers.


Summary Needs Correction

By maliqua • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

Insurance company Aetna today announced a major MARKETTING initiative centered on the iPhone, iPad, and Apple Watch, which will see Aetna subsidizing the cost of the Apple Watch for both large employers and individual customers.

The summary mistakenly said this was a health initiative.



By Dan East • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

This sounds like a data capture initiative. Aetna has access to full medical records of those they insure. The Apple Watch captures enough health data continuously for them to be able to correlate a person's behavior with the amount of money it costs to cover their healthcare needs. This could be used to filter out who NOT to insure or how much more to charge a customer based on their lifestyle. It also could potentially decrease costs by helping people live healthier lives as well, but knowing insurance companies, data is more important to them than anything, and this is a tremendous source of it.


Re:Who cares if they actually help

By MrKaos • Score: 5, Interesting • Thread

You should probably hope that those studies are correct as there's a lot of conflicting evidence, because if health trackers are at all beneficial other companies are going to start pushing them as well. You won't *have* to use one, but if you want the lower rates you will.

I train brazillian Jui Jitsu. I wanted to wear a fitness tracker to figure out how much work I do in a session because they are very intense, the warm-ups are what most fitness places call a 'work-out'. You can wear them in the warm up however the trouble with them is they get torn off when you fight and they *can't* track the amount of work I am doing. They also injure training partners. I've considered wearing them around my shoulder or ankle however I'm not sure you can do that with them. It also give opponents a grip point that you can't release yourself from, so they are a tactical disadvantage.

That's why insurance companies getting involved with fitness seems stupid, they can never really capture my choices for fitness or understand how fit I am (from 6 days a week of 2 hr sessions) or what I have to do to maintain my fitness. Inevitabley, if insurance companies get involved, they will conglomerate the choices into something that works for the masses, be ineffective for people who really need to get fit and crate a hassle for many people for who exercise is lifestyle.

Fitness trackers don't work for everyone.


Re:Sales Rep doing the dance

By whoever57 • Score: 4 • Thread
</header> I doubt it. Shat this says to me is that Apple is getting desperate to sell the watch and is offering a heavy subsidy to Aetna to make this deal happen.


Re:Who cares if they actually help

By PopeRatzo • Score: 5, Insightful • Thread

I train brazillian Jui Jitsu. I wanted to wear a fitness tracker to figure out how much work I do in a session because they are very intense, the warm-ups are what most fitness places call a 'work-out'. You can wear them in the warm up however the trouble with them is they get torn off when you fight and they *can't* track the amount of work I am doing.

If you train Jui Jitsu, why do you feel the need to quantify the amount of work you're doing? It's like needing a special device to tell you how much fun you're having at a party.

If you need to quantify your martial arts workouts, you're missing the point of martial arts, no? Maybe I'm wrong and am just not hip with the kids these days, who seem to seek numerical validation for everything they do in the form of "likes" and "favs" and "retweets".

In thirty years of martial arts training, study and instruction, it has never occurred to me that knowing the number of calories I'm burning will be in any way enlightening. But then, I'm not really part of Apple's target demographic.

Anti-Defamation League Declares Pepe the Frog a Hate Symbol
An anonymous reader quotes a report from TIME: The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has declared a popular internet meme depicting a cartoon frog to be a hate symbol. Pepe the Frog's beginnings were unoffensive: he is the creation of comic book creator Matt Furie, who featured the frog as a character in the series Boy's Club beginning in 2005. The character subsequently became a beloved meme, often called the "sad frog meme" and shared with a speech bubble reading "Feels good man" or "Feels bad man." But recently, as the Daily Beast reported in May, the character has been co-opted by a faction of Internet denizens who decided to reclaim it from the mainstream, and began sharing it in anti-Semitic contexts. "Images of the frog, variously portrayed with a Hitler-like mustache, wearing a yarmulke or a Klan hood, have proliferated in recent weeks in hateful messages aimed at Jewish and other users on Twitter," the ADL wrote in a statement. "Once again, racists and haters have taken a popular Internet meme and twisted it for their own purposes of spreading bigotry and harassing users," wrote ADL CEO Jonathan A. Greenblatt.


Re:We live in that environment now.

By K. S. Kyosuke • Score: 4, Funny • Thread
</header> What's worse, PC Nazis or Mac Communists?


Welp, now we know for sure.

By jafiwam • Score: 3, Informative • Thread

Now we know the level of dumb the new Slashdot management is.

Or just another chink in the chain of media bullshit controlled by garbage in control.


Re:Who said what?

By Anonymous Coward • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread
</header> The ADL is a bunch of butthurt SJW's that want to make peoples lives miserable because they have no life and will never lead a happy life.


Star of David used by Neo Nazis...

By hsthompson69 • Score: 4, Interesting • Thread

...and then we can declare that a hate symbol too?

What about the rainbow flag? If sharia enforcing islamists start using rainbow colors, can we declare that a hate symbol?

What about the word "HATE"? Can we declare that a hate symbol, and ban it?

WTF, guys, seriously?


This Is How They Raise Money

By alternative_right • Score: 3 • Thread

If you have a non-profit group whose goal is to save the whales, you raise money by writing about a new threat to whales every week and asking for donations afterwards.

The SPLC/ADL do the same thing, but with Nazis or anything that could possibly be argued to have one spoken to someone with a Nazi-like thought, because this is how they scare their readers into making more donations.

At this point, Nationalism -- the idea that a nation is defined by its founding ethnic group, and that it has the right to self-determination and to exclude all others -- is taboo only for European-descended people. Every other group can do it.

Now European-descended groups want the same thing because they do not want to abolish themselves and be replaced by mixed-race groups like we find in much of the world. They want Western Civilization back, and this is an important first step.

The SPLC/ADL would be smarter if they recognized that much as Zionism is Nationalism for Jews (read Theodor Herzl if you can) European-descended people have something similar for themselves. Everyone benefits if each group can have Nationalism, and preserve itself.

However, that threatens the globalist idea and its parent ideology, and so there are clumsy, ham-handed and laughably shrill attempts like demonizing Pepe which are just going to backfire on these watchdog groups.

FBI Investigating Possible Hack of Democratic Party Staffer Cell Phones
In what may be part of the original Democratic National Committee hack, the FBI is currently investigating a possible hack involving the cell phones of a small number of Democratic Party staffers. CNN reports: The development comes on the same day Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson told lawmakers that 18 states have asked for help in warding off cyberattacks on their electronic voting systems. Law enforcement officials have reached out to the staffers individually about "imaging" their phones to search for evidence of hacking, such as malware. Investigators are still probing whether this attempted hack is part of the original breach of Democratic National Committee emails -- which is widely thought to be the work of the Russian government -- or a new hacking attempt. "Our struggle with the Russian hackers that we announced in June is ongoing -- as we knew it would be -- and we are choosing not to provide general updates unless personal data or other sensitive information has been accessed or stolen," interim DNC Chairwoman Donna Brazile told CNN. Cybersecurity was a major theme at the debate last night between Republican nominee Donald Trump and Democratic nominee Hillary Clinton. While Clinton blamed the Russians for the "election-related cyberintrusions," Trump said "It could be Russia, but it could also be China. It could also be lots of other people. It could also be somebody sitting on their bed that weighs 400 pounds." We will update this story as it develops.


Electronic Voting Systems

By Shane_Optima • Score: 3 • Thread

The development comes on the same day Homeland Security Secretary Jeh Johnson told lawmakers that 18 states have asked for help in warding off cyberattacks on their electronic voting systems.

This is one of those phrases that should result in people instantly being fired but, for some reason, never does.

How long ago did the first Diebold issues come out? And this is still a thing?

I'm almost terrified to ask but these "cyber" attacks they're worried... that wouldn't be a reference to internet based attacks, would it? Did some psychopath finally decide that that best way to fix electronic voting machines was to connect them to the internet in any setup that didn't involve an air gap?

IEEE Sets New Ethernet Standard That Brings 5X the Speed Without Cable Ripping
Reader coondoggie writes: As expected the IEEE has ratified a new Ethernet specification -- IEEE P802.3bz -- that defines 2.5GBASE-T and 5GBASE-T, boosting the current top speed of traditional Ethernet five-times without requiring the tearing out of current cabling. The Ethernet Alliance wrote that the IEEE 802.3bz Standard for Ethernet Amendment sets Media Access Control Parameters, Physical Layers and Management Parameters for 2.5G and 5Gbps Operation lets access layer bandwidth evolve incrementally beyond 1Gbps, it will help address emerging needs in a variety of settings and applications, including enterprise, wireless networks. Indeed, the wireless component may be the most significant implication of the standard as 2.5G and 5G Ethernet will allow connectivity to 802.11ac Wave 2 Access Points, considered by many to be the real driving force behind bringing up the speed of traditional NBase-T products.


Re:Will this need Cat 6?

By Shimbo • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

Wasn't clear from TFA if this would work on Cat 5e, or if Cat 6 is required.

For 2.5Gbps, it's just fancier encoding, so 5e should be fine for the full 100m. Cat 6 gets you 5Gbps. You might get 5Gbps over a shorter length of cat 5E but there are no promises as far as I know.


Re:What about 10Gbps ethernet?

By David_Hart • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

Wasn't 10Gbps a thing already?

Yes, it's a thing already; so if you have cat 6A installed everywhere, you can forget about it. However, there is a lot of installed 5E and 6 where it makes sense.

10 Gbps on copper has a limited range of about 15m, which is why its primary use is for servers in a data center.

The 2.5/5 Gbps copper standard will work up the 100m. It was developed largely for WiFi Access Points. 802.11ac Wave-2 with MIMO can go up to around 7 Gbps.


I've been working with this for a while

By AaronW • Score: 5, Informative • Thread

I have been working with 2.5G for around a year now using a 2.5G physical interface chip from Aquantia that seamlessly handles everything from 100Mbps to 10Gbps including 1G, 2.5G and 5G. If the cable isn't too long I've run 10G over cat 5. Hopefully the prices will drop quickly once more companies support this standard since I just bought the cheapest 2.5G switch I could find, 8 ports for around $1200 for development purposes. It also interoperates fine with standard 1G equipment.

Aquantia is also nice is that unlike many phy chip vendors their phy SDK is free as in beer and is fully GPL and BSD compatible, though it will need to be re-written for the Linux kernel to follow the guidelines. I re-wrote it for U-Boot though I won't be able to push it upstream for a while yet. The chip I'm using even supports MACsec in hardware. There were two different 2.5G proposals, one from Broadcom and one from Aquantia. The Aquantia is the one that ultimately got accepted as the standard.


Re:What about 10Gbps ethernet?

By bobbied • Score: 4, Informative • Thread

10GIGE needs CAT 6A cabling.

Actually, you only need CAT6 if you want to go the full 180 foot distance. Cat5e, depending on the cable's specifics will work just fine, though usually at a reduced maximum distance. That means my home's cat 5 will likely work up to 10Gig as all the runs are considerably shorter than 100 feet.


Re:Wifi everywhere yet?

By epyT-R • Score: 4, Insightful • Thread

Yes they do. Very rarely will they get even close to the theoretical max rate of whatever standard is in use in your area, never mind the advertised rate. This is true for any wireless standard because use of radio is subject to congestion and interference. Sorry, but there will always be wiring closets and hardwired connections for the applications and people that need/want performance and consistency.

Microsoft Partners With Bank of America On Blockchain Trade Finance
wiredmikey quotes a report from SecurityWeek: Microsoft and Bank of America Merrill Lynch said they are working together to make financial transactions more efficient with blockchain technology -- the foundation of bitcoin digital currency. Blockchains are considered tamper-proof registers in which entries are time-stamped and linked to previous "blocks" in a data chain. As expected, the technology that drives the shadowy bitcoin cryptocurrency is drawing interest from the established banking industry, which sees a potential to revolutionize the sector. The companies said they will build and test frameworks for blockchain-powered exchanges between businesses and their customers and banks. Microsoft plans to use its Azure cloud service platform to enable blockchain transactions between a major corporate treasury and a financial institution. "Blockchains serve as public ledgers considered easy to audit and verify. They are also automated, speeding up transactions and limiting potential for error or revision," the report adds. The companies said that by using blockchain technology, they can digitalize and automate trade finance processes, which are traditionally highly manual, time-consuming and costly.


Ah yes...

By CaptSlaq • Score: 3 • Thread
</header> Because speed and automation didn't have any part in the previous fiscal downturn.


This may explain ...

By PPH • Score: 3 • Thread

... why Microsoft is building FPGAs into their Azure cloud servers. Get the jump on blockchain mining.

Google's New Translation Software Powered By Brainlike Artificial Intelligence
sciencehabit quotes a report from Science Magazine: Today, Google rolled out a new translation system that uses massive amounts of data and increased processing power to build more accurate translations. The new system, a deep learning model known as neural machine translation, effectively trains itself -- and reduces translation errors by up to 87%. When compared with Google's previous system, the neural machine translation system scores well with human reviewers. It was 58% more accurate at translating English into Chinese, and 87% more accurate at translating English into Spanish. As a result, the company is planning to slowly replace the system underlying all of its translation work -- one language at a time. The report adds: "The new method, reported today on the preprint server arXiv, uses a total of 16 processors to first transform words into a value known as a vector. What is a vector? 'We don't know exactly,' [Quoc Le, a Google research scientist in Mountain View, California, says.] But it represents how related one word is to every other word in the vast dictionary of training materials (2.5 billion sentence pairs for English and French; 500 million for English and Chinese). For example, 'dog' is more closely related to 'cat' than 'car,' and the name 'Barack Obama' is more closely related to 'Hillary Clinton' than the name for the country 'Vietnam.' The system uses vectors from the input language to come up with a list of possible translations that are ranked based on their probability of occurrence. Other features include a system of cross-checks that further increases accuracy and a special set of computations that speeds up processing time."


Don't know what the "vector" is?

By deathcloset • Score: 5, Informative • Thread
</header> Sounds an awful lot like the WordNet similarity vector which is commonly used in semantic analysis and is a measure of the 'relatedness' of words - http://search.cpan.org/dist/Wo...


"rolled out" - to translate.google.com?

By ffkom • Score: 3 • Thread
</header> Neither the Slashdot summary nor TFA contains a URL to where we can try this now rolled out new translator. Does this imply it's already used by translate.google.com? If so, I didn't notice any improvements, yet.

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