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Last updated 26 Jun, 02:10 AM

BBC News - Home

Boris Johnson 'actively thinking about' third term as PM - The PM says he will lead his party into the next election and beyond, despite criticism of his leadership.

Severodonetsk: Russia has full control of eastern city, Ukraine says - The mayor of the eastern city says Russian troops are in control after Ukrainian forces withdrew.

Boris Johnson to say now not time to give up on Ukraine - Boris Johnson will urge G7 and Nato allies to continue backing Kyiv as the war with Russia drags on.

G7 face battle for unity as cost of Ukraine war mounts - The Russian war against Ukraine will inevitably dominate the summit of G7 nations in Bavaria.

Oslo shooting: Norway attack being treated as Islamist terrorism, police say - Witnesses hid in a gay bar's basement as a gunman fired on a crowd, killing two and injuring 21.

The Register

We're now truly in the era of ransomware as pure extortion without the encryption - Why screw around with cryptography and keys when just stealing the info is good enough Feature US and European cops, prosecutors, and NGOs recently convened a two-day workshop in the Hague to discuss how to respond to the growing scourge of ransomware.…

Trouble hiring? Consider loosening your remote work policy - We're going hybrid or off-prem to retain and lure staff, say polled managers For bosses suffering the effects of the Great Resignation, IT decision makers taking part in this survey have a suggestion: go remote and you won't have any trouble hiring people.…

Whatever hit the Moon in March, it left this weird double crater - NASA probe reveals strange hole created by suspected Chinese junk Pic When space junk crashed into the Moon earlier this year, it made not one but two craters on the lunar surface, judging from images revealed by NASA on Friday.…

US senators seek input on their cryptocurrency law via GitHub – and get some - Those town hall meetings that go off the rails? That's the internet all day, every day The two US senators behind a proposed law to bring order to cryptocurrency finance have published their legislation to Microsoft's GitHub to obtain input from the unruly public.…

Big Tech silent on data privacy in post-Roe America - We asked what they will do to prevent cases being built against women. So far: Nothing Period- and fertility-tracking apps have become weapons in Friday's post-Roe America.…

New Scientist - News

Glycaemic index is a poor predictor of how foods raise blood sugar - A study of people with prediabetes shows that the same foods affect blood sugar levels very differently. The findings add to a growing body of evidence undermining the idea of a standard glycaemic index

Chimpanzees hunt for fruit in video game to test navigation skills - Testing how chimpanzees navigate in virtual environments could help researchers understand why they prefer certain routes in the wild over others

Was warfare responsible for the origin of complex civilisation? - An effort to track global changes in human society over the past 10,000 years concludes that warfare drove an increase in social complexity – but others are unconvinced by the work

You're more likely to become friends with someone who smells like you - We subconsciously sniff people when we first meet them and are more likely to become friends with those who have similar body odours to our own

AI-powered robot learned to make letters out of Play-Doh on its own - A robot that learned to manipulate clay to make letters of the alphabet without any training could one day make dumplings for you

Hacker News

Enclave: An Unpickable Lock - Comments

AT&T lawyer stopped Plan 9 release CD with songs by Lou Reed, Debbie Harry - Comments

VirtualBuddy: Virtualize macOS 12 and later on Apple Silicon - Comments

Switzerland’s underground freight project gets start date - Comments

Revisiting the principles of data-oriented programming - Comments


New Linux Foundation Podcast: 'Untold Stories of Open Source' - The nonprofit Linux Foundation pays Linus Torvalds' salary and supports many other open source projects. But they also launched a new podcast series this week covering "The Untold Stories of Open Source." "Each week we explore the people who are supporting Open Source projects, how they became involved with it, and the problems they faced along the way," explains the podcast's GitHub page (where you can put in a pull request to suggest future episodes or track the project's progress.) The podcast is available on its official web page, as well as on Spotify, Apple, Google, or "wherever you listen to your podcasts," according to an announcement from the Linux Foundation. An introductory page says the podcast will be "used to inform the Linux and Open Source communities as to the current state in development of open source initiatives and Linux Foundation Projects. It is vendor neutral, with no interviews of commercial product vendors or sales teams." Here's the first four episodes: Balancing Priorities at the Cloud Native Computing Foundation, with Priyanka Sharma, general manager A Life in Open Source, with Brian Behlendorf, general manager at Open Source Security Foundation A New Model for Technical Training, with Clyde Seepersad, senior vice president of the Linux Foundation's training/certification project The Business Side of Open Source, with Patrick Debois, "godfather of DevOps" Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Meme-Stock Probe Finds Robinhood Woes Were Worse Than It Let On - Bloomberg writes that the makers of the Robinhood app "faced a more dire situation during the height of last year's meme-stock frenzy than executives at the online brokerage let on publicly, according to a report from top Democrats on a key congressional committee." A more-than-yearlong investigation by staff on the House Financial Services Committee concluded Friday that the frenzied trading in GameStop Corp. and AMC Entertainment Holdings Inc. posed a significant threat to the online brokerage. Robinhood avoided defaulting on its regulatory collateral obligations in late January 2021 only because it received a waiver from its clearinghouse, according to the findings... "The company was only saved from defaulting on its daily collateral deposit requirement by a discretionary and unexplained waiver," according to the report. "Robinhood's risk-management processes did not work well to predict and avert the risk of default that materialized...." The 138-page document released on Friday provides the most detailed look yet at how alarmed Robinhood executives grew over the situation in late January 2021. According to the findings, those actions didn't match the firm's public assertions. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

US Proposes New Rules to Curb 'Meme Stock' Rallies - America's Securities and Exchange Commission "is considering broad changes to curb the frenetic trading of stocks based on social media activity," reports Reuters: The proposed overhaul would be the biggest change to Wall Street's rules since 2005 and would affect nearly every corner of the market, from commission-free brokerages to market makers and exchanges. The U.S. House Committee on Financial Services on Friday called for the SEC, along with other regulators, to do more to protect the markets from similar events.... The U.S. House Financial Services Committee on Friday urged Congress to adopt legislation mandating the SEC study how its rules need to change to address new technological developments, such as digital engagement practices and social media-driven market activity. Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Is Dyslexia an Evolutionary Advantage Rather Than a 'Disorder'? - LinkedIn recently added 'dyslexic thinking' as an official skill. And now the U.K. national newspaper the Telegraph reports on scientists arguing that dyslexia is not a "disorder" — but an evolutionarily beneficial willingness to explore: The experts suggested that dyslexia, which causes difficulty reading, writing and spelling, is a useful specialisation and not a "neurocognitive condition".... About one in five people have dyslexia, and their tendency to push the envelope would have been balanced out by other members of a prehistoric society, leading to a well-rounded group with equally useful skill sets. However, Dr Helen Taylor, from the University of Strathclyde, and Dr Martin Vestergaard, from the University of Cambridge, said that dyslexia was now seen as a problem because modern education systems focused on the things sufferers struggled with and neglected what they excelled at. They reassessed past studies on dyslexic individuals and disagreed with the prevailing theory that it was a cognitive deficit.... [S]ince the invention of written language, dyslexia has been seen as a problem, not a talent. "Schools, academic institutes and workplaces are not designed to make the most of explorative learning," said Dr Taylor. "We urgently need to start nurturing this way of thinking to allow humanity to continue to adapt and solve key challenges." They posit that dyslexic people are naturally more skilled "in realms like discovery, invention and creativity" and that this specialisation stems from millennia of human evolution.... Without the streak of curiosity and willingness to investigate that is commonplace in dyslexic brains, groups of people would likely struggle to survive, they said. "The deficit-centred view of dyslexia isn't telling the whole story," said Dr Taylor. "We believe that the areas of difficulty experienced by people with dyslexia result from a cognitive trade-off between exploration of new information and exploitation of existing knowledge, with the upside being an explorative bias that could explain enhanced abilities observed in certain realms like discovery, invention and creativity. The researchers argue this "explorative specialization in people with dyslexia could help explain why they have difficulties with tasks related to exploitation, such as reading and writing. "It could also explain why people with dyslexia appear to gravitate towards certain professions that require exploration-related abilities, such as arts, architecture, engineering and entrepreneurship." Thanks to Slashdot reader Bruce66423 for sharing the story Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Russia's Cyberattacks Thwarted by Ukraine, Microsoft, Google, and Western Intelligence - Russia's invasion of Ukraine is "the first full-scale battle in which traditional and cyberweapons have been used side by side," reports the New York Times. But the biggest surprise is that "many of the attacks were thwarted, or there was enough redundancy built into the Ukrainian networks that the efforts did little damage... more than two-thirds of them failed, echoing its poor performance on the physical battlefield." Microsoft president Brad Smith says the ultimate result is Russia's attempted cyberatacks get underreported, according to the Times: [A study published by Microsoft Wednesday] indicated that Ukraine was well prepared to fend off cyberattacks, after having endured them for many years. That was at least in part because of a well-established system of warnings from private-sector companies, including Microsoft and Google, and preparations that included moving much of Ukraine's most important systems to the cloud, onto servers outside Ukraine.... In many instances, Russia coordinated its use of cyberweapons with conventional attacks, including taking down the computer network of a nuclear power plant before moving in its troops to take it over, Mr. Smith said. Microsoft officials declined to identify which plant Mr. Smith was referring to. While much of Russia's cyberactivity has focused on Ukraine, Microsoft has detected 128 network intrusions in 42 countries. Of the 29 percent of Russian attacks that have successfully penetrated a network, Microsoft concluded, only a quarter of those resulted in data being stolen. Outside Ukraine, Russia has concentrated its attacks on the United States, Poland and two aspiring members of NATO, Sweden and Finland... But Microsoft, other technology companies and government officials have said that Russia has paired those infiltration attempts with a broad effort to deliver propaganda around the world. Microsoft tracked the growth in consumption of Russian propaganda in the United States in the first weeks of the year. It peaked at 82 percent right before the Feb. 24 invasion of Ukraine, with 60 million to 80 million monthly page views. That figure, Microsoft said, rivaled page views on the biggest traditional media sites in the United States. One example Mr. Smith cited was that of Russian propaganda inside Russia pushing its citizens to get vaccinated, while its English-language messaging spread anti-vaccine content. Microsoft also tracked the rise in Russian propaganda in Canada in the weeks before a trucker convoy protesting vaccine mandates tried to shut down Ottawa, and that in New Zealand before protests there against public health measures meant to fight the pandemic. Russians successfully "sabotaged a satellite communications network called Viasat in the opening days of the war," notes the Washington Post, "with the damage spilling over into other European countries. But Ukraine, working with private tech companies, Western intelligence and its own expert software engineers, has quickly fixed most of the damage..." "The close partnerships that have emerged between U.S. technology companies and Western cybersecurity agencies is one of the unheralded stories of the war...." "Cyber responses must rely on greater public and private collaboration," argues Brad Smith, Microsoft's president, in a new study... published Wednesday on Microsoft's "lessons learned" from cyber conflict in Ukraine. A White House cyber official explains the new cooperative approach this way: "Where companies see destructive attacks, that has driven partnerships with the intelligence community and other government agencies to see how best we can share information to protect infrastructure around the world." The tech world's sympathies lie with the underdog, Ukraine. That applies to giant firms such as Microsoft and Google.... Ukraine's cybersecurity defense benefited from an early start. U.S. Cyber Command experts went to Ukraine months before the war started, according to its commander, Gen. Paul Nakasone. Microsoft and Google became involved even earlier. Microsoft began monitoring Russian phishing attacks against Ukrainian military networks in early 2021, and through the rest of last year observed increasingly aggressive hacks by six different attackers linked to Russia's three intelligence services, the GRU, SVR and FSB, according to a Microsoft report released in April. Microsoft has spent a total of $239 million on financial and technical assistance to Ukraine, a company official said.... Google, a part of Alphabet, has also helped Ukraine fend off threats. Back in 2014, prompted by Russia's use of DDOS ("distributed denial-of-service") malware in its seizure of Crimea and eastern Ukraine, Google began what it called "Project Shield." Software protected news sites, human rights groups and election sites against crippling DDOS floods of junk internet messages. Today, Project Shield is used by 200 sites in Ukraine and 2,300 others in 140 countries around the world, according to Jared Cohen, the chief executive of Google's Jigsaw unit. Read more of this story at Slashdot.