government

NHTSA’s proposed rating system update will favor crash avoidance tech

NHTSA’s proposed rating system update will favor crash avoidance tech

Automotive technology is changing, and it is time for rating systems to change with it. In a proposal announced today, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is seeking an update to its own five-star rating system for new cars. The updated version will take into consideration measurements gathered by more advanced human-like crash dummies as well as crash-avoidance technology.

Continue Reading

North Korea is searching tourists’ laptops, web history

North Korea is searching tourists’ laptops, web history

North Korea is, of course, an awful place to be, and not the first idea most have for an international vacation. The nation has been trying to increase its tourist numbers over the last couple years, however, going so far as to offer mobile Internet access (revoked) and Internet ‘cafes’ lacking in peripherals. If neither of those things deter you from visiting, though, there’s the latest warning from the State Department stating, among other things, that North Korean customs will search through your Internet browser history.

Continue Reading

CDC report shows more Americans are ditching landlines

CDC report shows more Americans are ditching landlines

Back in late 2012, a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention report found that 35.9-percent of American households were wireless-only, meaning they’d entirely ditched their landline service in favor of mobile phones. Yesterday, the CDC issued a new report that touches on that topic, only with refreshed numbers, and it shows largely what you’d expect: the number of Americans dropping landlines entirely is continuing to grow.

Continue Reading

Tech industry reaffirms stance against weakening encryption

Tech industry reaffirms stance against weakening encryption

The violent events that befell Beirut, Paris, and most recently Nigeria, has once again given rise to the US government's favorite debate topic with the technology sector: encryption. On the one hand, you have the government calling for a backdoor into all encrypted devices and services. On the other corner, you have tech companies insisting on how dangerous that would be for the very people the government claims to protect. The irony of the matter is that both sides are claiming to fight on the side of security, both personal and national.

Continue Reading

Reddit banned in Turkey under internet censorship law

Reddit banned in Turkey under internet censorship law

The Turkish government seems to be continuing it crusade against internet platforms that enable the public to freely communicate, with the latest victim being Reddit. The entire site has been blocked in the country, with officials saying it violates Internet Law 5651, and users losing access sometime late Friday night. The law allows the government to ban websites found hosting "scandalous" content, including piracy, drugs, adult material, or criticism of Mustafa Ataturk, the nation's first president. However, it's not hard to imagine the law being used to censor criticism and free speech.

Continue Reading

Facebook’s latest report shows jump in government requests

Facebook’s latest report shows jump in government requests

On Wednesday, Facebook released its newest government requests report, revealing an increase in government requests of both the blocking and snitching sort. This latest report spans the first half of 2015, and covers data on both the number of content that governments wanted restricted and how much data requests governments submitted. As well, this report also details any info that can be revealed about National Security Requests received from the US government during that period.

Continue Reading

Prisons have a drone problem: anti-UAV system sought

Prisons have a drone problem: anti-UAV system sought

Drones aren't only used for getting in the way of important things and taking pretty aerial pictures -- they're also increasingly being used to smuggle items into prisons. Many reports have surfaced over the last couple years detailing efforts to smuggle everything from adult materials to drugs into prison grounds, and as a result, the Federal Bureau of Prisons is seeking an anti-drone system that will take them down.

Continue Reading

VW dieselgate worsens as EPA adds Porsche and Audi 3.0L

VW dieselgate worsens as EPA adds Porsche and Audi 3.0L

The EPA has issued a new notice of violation of the Clean Air Act for Volkswagen and Audi. Included in this NOV is Volkswagen AG, Audi AG and Volkswagen Group of America, Inc as well as Porsche AG and Porsche Cars North America. The notice once again refers to a defeat device installed in vehicles, this device aimed at bypassing emissions tests for vehicles that would otherwise give off a whole lot more nitrogen oxide (NOx) than they appeared to. Today's notice includes a number of vehicles from the past couple of years.

Continue Reading

FCC to turn the tables, publish telemarketers’ numbers

FCC to turn the tables, publish telemarketers’ numbers

Telemarketers and robocallers aren't as big of a problem as they used to be, but they're still around, and they're still managing to call just as you sit down for dinner. The FCC has served on the front lines in the battle against them, and now it is planning to turn the tables, so to speak, and put telemarketers on the defense. The Commission has revealed plans to publish such spammers' phone numbers, making it easy to blacklist them.

Continue Reading

FAA will soon require drones to be registered

FAA will soon require drones to be registered

Following rumors of such, the Federal Aviation Administration has announced that it will require most drones to be registered. If sources are correct, the registration system and requirement will be in place by the end of the year, just in time for all the drones bought over the holiday season to be properly tagged. This follows several instances of drones being operated in an unsafe manner, crashes, and dangerous behavior, including flying too closely to planes and helicopters.

Continue Reading

Chicago mayor calls for national coding graduation requirement

Chicago mayor calls for national coding graduation requirement

Recently, New York City announced plans to add computer science classes to all of its public schools over the next decade. Chicago's mayor is taking that a step further, calling for coding classes to be a national graduation requirement -- under such a mandate, all students would have to take such classes to get their high school diploma. Of course, such a mandate would likely end up being very burdensome for school districts.

Continue Reading

DARPA’s looking toward disappearing delivery drones

DARPA’s looking toward disappearing delivery drones

The problem with making deliveries to remotely located military troops is that anyone can see the delivery take place — at least those nearby — and will know, as a result, approximately where the team is located. In other situations, the delivery vehicle could be at risk by being visible. Parachutes are the most common form of military delivery operations, but they’re burdensome in addition to being visible, requiring personnel to bring the parachute back out with them. As a potential way to solve these problems, DARPA has turned its sights toward invisible delivery drones.

Continue Reading