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Tommy Tuberville, Texas Tech Reach Head Coaching Agreement

January 10th, 2010 admin No comments

LUBBOCK, Texas — Tommy Tuberville will inherit a proven spread offense when he returns to the sidelines next season as Texas Tech’s new coach.

After a year away, Tuberville is taking over the reins of the Red Raiders. He replaces Mike Leach, who was fired last month amid allegations he mistreated a player who suffered a concussion.

The school announced the hiring in a release on Saturday and said that Tuberville would be introduced on Sunday.

Tuberville, who abandoned his attempt at implementing the spread offense halfway through his final season at Auburn in 2008, will lead an offense that routinely sends numerous receivers downfield and consistently put up gaudy numbers in the past 10 seasons.

Tuberville stepped down at Auburn in December 2008, ending a 10-year tenure that included a perfect season and a string of teams that contended for Southeastern Conference championships.

The 55-year-old Tuberville was 85-40 at Auburn, including a 13-0 season in 2004 when the Tigers finished No. 2, won the SEC title for the first time in 15 years and Tuberville was named AP Coach of the Year.

Tuberville and his family were flying to Lubbock later Saturday, a person close to the decision to hire Tuberville told The Associated Press. The person was not authorized to discuss the decision and spoke on condition of anonymity.

No contract has been signed, the person said, but Tuberville and the university have “an agreement in principle in place.”

Voice messages left on the cell phones of athletic director Gerald Myers and Kent Hance, the university system’s chancellor, were not immediately returned Saturday. Tuberville also didn’t immediately return messages left on his cell phone.

Tuberville will be officially introduced as the new coach at 2 p.m. CST Sunday at the school’s basketball arena by Myers and Guy Bailey, Texas Tech’s president.

In 2000 Leach brought a pass-happy offense to Texas Tech that put up gaudy numbers in his spread offense. Every quarterback but two led the nation in passing in his 10 seasons.

Last week, Myers told the Lubbock Avalanche-Journal that Tuberville told him he would keep the Red Raiders’ aerial offense in place and wanted to maintain continuity in the program, which hasn’t had a losing season since 1992.

Tuberville told the newspaper he would change some things defensively, drawing on success he had at Auburn.

Before going to Auburn, Tuberville coached at Mississippi and compiled a 25-20 record in four years after inheriting a program under NCAA scholarship sanctions. He also spent a year as defensive coordinator at Texas A&M when the Aggies finished 10-0-1 and were among the nation’s defensive leaders.

The only other candidate for the post was defensive coordinator Ruffin McNeill, who was named interim head coach after Leach was fired and led the Red Raiders to a 41-31 win over Michigan State in the Alamo Bowl.

The university fired Leach, the school’s winningest coach with 84 wins, with cause on Dec. 30, two days after it suspended him while the school investigated claims of mistreatment of Adam James – son of former NFL player and ESPN analyst Craig James.

Leach has denied he mistreated the sophomore receiver and his attorneys have filed claims in state district court, alleging university officials libeled and slandered him to intentionally harm his reputation.

More on College Football


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Miley Cyrus Bags Her Boyfriend

January 6th, 2010 admin No comments

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Miley Cyrus, 17, and her boyfriend Liam Hemsworth, 19, like to share everything … even her purse.The shady couple held hands in Sydney on Monday, while Miley chatted on her cell phone and Liam elegantly held her pocketbook.What a gentle man.

See …

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Categories: Gossip Tags: ,

John Turnpaugh Obama Death Threat: New Orleans Man Arrested And Charged

January 5th, 2010 admin No comments

NEW ORLEANS — A New Orleans man has been arrested and charged with threatening to kill President Barack Obama.

In a court filing Monday, a Secret Service agent said 47-year-old John Turnpaugh dialed 911 early last Friday and told a police dispatcher that he planned to kill the president and first lady Michelle Obama.

The agent said he used telephone records to trace the call to Turnpaugh’s cell phone. Police arrested him Saturday and he was booked into jail on state charges that included illegal possession of a firearm and drug possession.

Turnpaugh remained in custody Monday. He’s scheduled to make his initial appearance in federal court Friday.

Kathy English, a spokeswoman for U.S. Attorney Jim Letten, said it wasn’t known if Turnpaugh has an attorney.

More on Barack Obama


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Guide To Breaking Cell Phone Security REVEALED

December 31st, 2009 admin No comments

FRANKFURT — A German security expert has raised the ire of the cell phone industry after he and a group of researchers posted online a how-to guide for cracking the encryption that keeps the calls of billions of cell phone users secret.

Karsten Nohl, 28, told The Associated Press this week that he, working with others online and around the world, created a codebook containing how to get past the GSM standard encryption used to keep conversations on more than 3 billion mobile phones safe from prying ears.

Nohl said the purpose was to push companies to improve security. The collaborative effort put the information online through file-sharing sites.

“The message is to have better security, not we want to break you,” he said of the move. “The goal is better security. If we created more demand for more security, if any of the network operators could use this as a marketing feature … that would be the best possible outcome.”

GSM, the leading cell phone technology around the world, is used by several wireless carriers in the U.S., with the largest being AT&T Inc. and T-Mobile USA. Verizon Wireless and Sprint Nextel Corp. use a different standard.

The GSM Association, a trade group that represents nearly 800 wireless operators, said it was mystified by Nohl’s rationale.

Claire Cranton, a spokeswoman for the London-based group, said that “this activity is highly illegal in the UK and would be a serious RIPA offense as it probably is in most countries.” RIPA, or the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act, is a British law governing the interception of user logs and e-mails of suspected criminals by security and intelligence agencies.

It has already been possible to intercept GSM calls, but the equipment is generally only available to law enforcement. Regular wiretapping of cellular calls is also possible, since they travel unencrypted over standard wiring after being picked up by a cell tower. As a result, terrorists or criminals may talk in code and use prepaid phones they then discard.

Even with Nohl’s exploit, expensive and sophisticated radio equipment placed close to the target is required to pull the calls off the air.

Sujeet Shenoi, a professor of computer science at the University of Tulsa in Oklahoma, said that while the code-breaking guide raises privacy issues, his main concern is that organized crime will take advantage of it to make money, perhaps by eavesdropping on transactions between consumers and merchants.

“It’s a shot across the bow” of the wireless industry, he said.

Nohl’s effort undermines the 21-year-old algorithm used to ensure the privacy of phone calls made on GSM (global system for mobile communication) cell phone networks.

That algorithm, dubbed A5/1, is a 64-bit encryption function and was adopted in 1988. Since then 128-bit codes have been implemented to ensure caller privacy on newer, third-generation networks. The GSM Association has developed the A5/3 algorithm, which it says is gradually being phased in to replace A5/1.

“The GSMA heads up a security working group which looks at all issues re: security and this isn’t something that we take lightly at all,” Cranton wrote in an e-mail to the AP. “We have a new security algorithm that is being phased (in), as the protection and privacy of customer communications is at the forefront of operators’ concerns.”

Nohl, who holds a doctorate in computer engineering from the University of Virginia, said that going from a 64-bit code to 128-bit code “makes it some quintillion times more difficult” to crack.

He said the codebook was compiled and posted online not for malicious intent but as a call to the cell phone industry to improve the level of security for those who use GSM phones that are found worldwide and offered through numerous network providers.

“Being security researchers, one thing we can do, and what we choose to do in this case, is to show how it can be done,” he told the AP on Tuesday by telephone.

“We have created a tool, a codebook, that’s used to decrypt GSM packets, or the GSM encryptions,” he added, noting that with the codes phone calls could be recorded using a high-end PC, a radio and some software.

“In GSM this flaw was pointed out 15 years ago, and 15 years seems long enough for the cypher to be replaced with something else. No one uses a phone that is 15 years old,” Nohl said. “If they had taken steps, they could have replaced everything three time times over.”

Nohl made the announcement Sunday at the Chaos Communication Congress in Berlin, a four-day event that ends Wednesday.

While there has been criticism, there is also some faint praise and admiration for the effort.

“We’re familiar with his work. It’s proper stuff,” said Simon Bransfield-Garth, chief executive of London-based Cellcrypt, which sells software to keep mobile phones secure.

“People have been trying to crack GSM for a long time,” Bransfield-Garth told AP. “I think the science behind it is pretty sound,” he added. “Whether putting it in the public domain was wise, is an entirely different debate.”

___

Associated Press Technology Writer Peter Svensson in New York contributed to this story.

___

On the Net:

A5/1 Cracking Project: http://reflextor.com/trac/a51

GSMA: http://www.gsmworld.com

Cellcrypt: http://www.cellcrypt.com

More on Hackers


There’s An App For That: Phone Points Illegal Border Crossers To Water

December 30th, 2009 admin No comments

SAN DIEGO — A group of California artists wants Mexicans and Central Americans to have more than just a few cans of tuna and a jug of water for their illegal trek through the harsh desert into the U.S.

Faculty at University of California, San Diego are developing a GPS-enabled cell phone that tells dehydrated migrants where to find water. It also pipes in poetry from phone speakers, regaling them on their journey much like Emma Lazarus’ words did a century ago to the “huddled masses yearning to breathe free” on Ellis Island.

The Transborder Immigrant Tool is part technology endeavor, part art project. It introduces a high-tech twist to an old debate about how far activists can go to prevent migrants from dying on the border without breaking the law.

Immigration hardliners argue the activists are aiding illegal entry to the United States, a felony. Even migrants and their sympathizers question whether the device will make the treacherous journeys easier.

The designers – three visual artists on UCSD’s faculty and an English professor at the University of Michigan – are undeterred as they criticize a U.S. policy they say embraces illegal immigrants for cheap labor while letting them die crossing the border.

“It’s about giving water to somebody who’s dying in the desert of dehydration,” said Micha Cardenas, 32, a UCSD lecturer.

The effort is being done on the government’s dime – an irony not lost on the designers whose salaries are paid by the state of California.

“There are many, many areas in which every American would say I don’t like the way my tax dollars are being spent. Our answer to that is an in-your-face, so what?” says UCSD lecturer Brett Stalbaum, 33, a self-described news junkie who likens his role to chief technology officer.

Migrants walk for days in extreme heat, often eating tuna and crackers handed out at migrant shelters in Mexico. On Arizona ranches, they sip desperately from bins used by cows when their water runs out.

Hundreds have perished each year since heightened U.S. border enforcement pushed migrants out of large cities like San Diego and El Paso, Texas, in the 1990s. In response, migrant sympathizers put jugs or even barrels of water in the desert.

The designers want to load inexpensive phones with GPS software that takes signals from satellite, independent of phone networks. Pressing a menu button displays water stations, with the distance to each. A user selects one and follows an arrow on the screen.

Some worry the software could lead migrants to damaged or abandoned water stations. Others wonder if it would lull them into a false sense of security or alert the Border Patrol and anti-illegal immigration activists to their whereabouts.

John Hunter, who has planted water barrels in California’s scorching Imperial Valley since the late 1990s, says vandals destroy about 40 of his 150 stations every year.

“My concern is for people who arrive and find (the water) doesn’t exist,” he says.

Luis Jimenez, 47, was abandoned by smugglers and rescued by the Border Patrol twice this year – once after hitting his head on a rock and again after being bit by a snake. The Salvadoran migrant, who hopes to reach family in Los Angeles, would try the GPS device but can’t afford one.

“If it tells you where to find water, it’s good,” he said at a Tijuana, Mexico, migrant shelter.

The phone designers say they are addressing the concerns, with an eye toward having the phone ready by midsummer.

“We don’t want to create a safety tool that actually puts people in more danger,” Stalbaum says.

The water locations beamed to the phones will be updated constantly to ensure accuracy. If the distance is too far, they won’t appear on the screen.

The designers, who have raised $15,000 from a UCSD grant and an art festival award, hope to hand out phones for free in Mexico. The phones sell used for about $30 apiece. It costs nothing to add the GPS software.

Distribution would be tightly controlled by migrant shelters and advocacy groups to keep them away from anti-illegal immigration activists. The migrants would need passwords to use them.

U.S. authorities are unfazed. The Border Patrol has begun a $6.7-billion plan to drape the border with whiz-bang cameras, sensors and other technology.

“It’s nothing new,” said Border Patrol spokesman Mark Endicott. “We’ve seen handheld GPS devices used by smugglers. … We’re just going to have to learn to adapt to any challenges.”

Critics of illegal immigration say the device is misguided, at best.

“If it’s not a crime, it’s very close to committing a crime,” said Peter Nunez, a former U.S. attorney in San Diego. “Whether this constitutes aiding and abetting would depend on the details, but it certainly puts you in the discussion.”

The software is being designed to direct migrants to water stations but Cardenas said they may add other “safety markers,” like roads, towns and Border Patrol lookouts.

The group has published verses to be played on the phone’s “Global Poetic System.”

One poem reads, “May your tracks cut the shortest distance between points A and B.”

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On the Net: Transborder Immigrant Tool, http://bang.calit2.net/xborder/

More on Immigration


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Society Of Professional Journalists Slams NBC For Practicing ‘Checkbook Journalism’

December 30th, 2009 admin No comments

NEW YORK — The Society of Professional Journalists condemned NBC News for practicing “checkbook journalism” by chartering a jet that carried a New Jersey man involved in a bitter custody battle and his son home from Brazil.

David Goldman, who successfully fought the Brazilian family of his now-deceased ex-wife for custody of 9-year-old Sean, granted an interview to Meredith Vieira of NBC’s “Today” show that aired Monday.

NBC said Goldman was booked for “Today” before the network invited him on the plane. The network had already arranged for the plane to bring its own employees home for Christmas, NBC News spokeswoman Lauren Kapp said. If NBC hadn’t brought the Goldmans’ home, one of its rivals would have, she said.

“We’ve covered this story exceptionally well,” she said. “Their going on the plane did not affect our coverage of the story or getting them booked at all.”

NBC News told viewers that it had paid for the Goldmans’ trip home, she said. The network showed pictures of the Goldmans on the plane and on “Nightly News” featured a brief interview by correspondent Jeff Rossen with David Goldman while both were on the plane.

The journalists’ group said NBC News jeopardized its integrity with the arrangement.

“Paying for access taints the credibility and neutrality of what you are doing,” said Andy Schotz, chairman of the SPJ ethics committee. “There is now a motive for people to be helping you, to be telling you what you want to hear.”

Most news organizations say they don’t pay for interviews. But critics say the commonly used practice of paying to license photos or video from a subject matter or paying for someone’s travel is a way of getting around the restriction.

At the same time SPJ criticized NBC News for its conduct with the Goldmans, CNN and ABC paid for cell phone pictures taken by Jasper Schuringa, the man who helped subdue an alleged terrorist who tried to take down a Detroit-bound plane. Both also interviewed Schuringa but denied any connection between the payments and interview.

Kapp said she believed NBC News did nothing wrong by chartering the plane.

The Goldmans “were invited on as guests,” she said. “This was not a booking strategy.”

Goldman’s lawyer, Patricia Apy, said Tuesday that Goldman never had a contract with NBC. She said the Goldman camp was loyal to the network because it did a thorough report on his situation a year ago before the story became major news.

Some media outlets offered favors in return for access, Apy said, but Goldman turned them down. She declined to say which media outlets were involved.

She said Goldman accepted the flight in part because of fears that multiple camera crews might be onboard if they flew back to the U.S. on a commercial flight.

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Associated Press Writer Geoff Mulvihill contributed to this report.


Categories: World Tags: , , ,

Snowflake-shaped photovoltaic cells bring the holiday cheer

December 24th, 2009 admin No comments
Sandia National Laboratories have unveiled their newest photovoltaic cells — glitter-sized particles made of crystalline silicon. The cells are made using common microelectronic and microelectromechanical systems techniques, and the results are pretty spectacular to behold. More interestingly, however, is the fact that they use 100 times less material in generating the same amount of energy as a regular solar cell.

Because of their size and shape, the cells are well-suited to unusual applications, and researchers envision mass-production of the cells for use on building-integrated tents or clothing, so campers (or military personnel) could recharge their cell phones on the go. Researchers also think that these particles will be inexpensive to produce, but there’s no word on when they’ll be ready for consumer application. We’ll keep you posted — but hit the source link for more a more detailed description.

Snowflake-shaped photovoltaic cells bring the holiday cheer originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 24 Dec 2009 14:02:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink Inhabitat  |  sourceSandia National Laboratories  | Email this | Comments

Categories: Electronics, Technology Tags: , ,

Snowflake-shaped photovoltaic cells bring the holiday cheer

December 24th, 2009 admin No comments
Sandia National Laboratories have unveiled their newest photovoltaic cells — glitter-sized particles made of crystalline silicon. The cells are made using common microelectronic and microelectromechanical systems techniques, and the results are pretty spectacular to behold. More interestingly, however, is the fact that they use 100 times less material in generating the same amount of energy as a regular solar cell.

Because of their size and shape, the cells are well-suited to unusual applications, and researchers envision mass-production of the cells for use on building-integrated tents or clothing, so campers (or military personnel) could recharge their cell phones on the go. Researchers also think that these particles will be inexpensive to produce, but there’s no word on when they’ll be ready for consumer application. We’ll keep you posted — but hit the source link for more a more detailed description.

Snowflake-shaped photovoltaic cells bring the holiday cheer originally appeared on Engadget on Thu, 24 Dec 2009 14:02:00 EST. Please see our terms for use of feeds.

Permalink Inhabitat  |  sourceSandia National Laboratories  | Email this | Comments

Categories: Electronics, Technology Tags: , ,

Eric Gertler: Yes, We Can … Learn From Tiger’s Digital Dalliances

December 24th, 2009 admin No comments

As 2009 comes to a close and the stories about his “infidelities” fade, Tiger Woods is learning the hard way that extramarital affairs may be fleeting but the digital fingerprints they leave are indelible.

Tiger may be the world’s greatest golfer and the decade’s best athlete, but the digital landscape handicaps the great and the ordinary alike. Had Tiger not provided a plethora of digital clues about his relationships, the damage to his reputation would have been much less severe.

Perhaps Tiger did not fully comprehend the lasting effects of his digital footprints. His recorded voicemail asking one of his mistresses to delete her voicemail greeting to avoid detection from his wife in the event she called seemed hopelessly naïve. His various text messages that were reprinted were ripe for tabloid sensationalism.

Indeed, in this new technology-driven era of digital voicemail, text messages, emails, and all of the social networking sites, one’s effort to conceal embarrassing, illicit or even criminal acts becomes somewhat futile.

Tiger may have been guided by a common misconception that text messages, unlike email, leave no digital history. Of course, email communications may be indefinitely stored on both the sender’s and recipient’s servers in addition to both party’s personal email boxes.

Text messages, too, have a digital afterlife. Text messages can, in some cases, reside indefinitely on one’s cell phone. Wireless companies also maintain an actual record of the text message from a few days to several weeks, depending on the company, and there have been situations where an actual text has been obtained many months later.

Even if the actual text message is not recovered, an individual billing record lists the phone number of the text message’s recipient or sender. In legal cases, a capable attorney can weave a damaging case – even without the actual messages – based on the preponderance of texts to a particular individual.

Yet, inexplicably, in today’s digital era, it seems that the text message provides the all too revealing clue to one’s dalliances. For example, former Detroit Mayor Kwame Kilpatrick’s affair with a staffer was exposed as a result of the hundreds of text messages he sent on his government issued phone.

As a previous victim of digital crimes, Woods should have known better. Tiger, whose real name is Eldrick T. Woods, had his identity stolen several years ago. (Identity theft has plagued millions of Americans in the last decade.) This crime only became apparent after the thief attempted to buy a used car, and it was too far fetched to fathom that a person with a multimillion-dollar car endorsement was seeking such a purchase.

Of course, Tiger’s actions beg more basic questions that go beyond digital savvy. Why risk his immaculate image? Why no restraint? And why not rely on “handlers” and alternative cell phones like certain other high profile athletes and personalities?

Nonetheless, the digital lessons from Tiger’s incident seem clear. Like the instant gratification of the affair that ultimately leads to a disintegration of one’s long-term relationship or marriage, the ease and convenience of digital communications (such as email and text messaging) in the short term can haunt you in the long term when certain information is revealed or taken out of context.

No doubt, incidents where one’s personal privacy is violated are bound to increase and push the legal frontiers. Coincidentally, the United States Supreme Court recently agreed to hear its first case in this area, involving a police officer’s right to privacy stemming from text messages sent and received on a government issued pager. Whether the Supreme Court provides any clear legal guidance for us, we must all be mindful of the consequences that our communications have upon our personal privacy.

Many golfers joked after Tiger’s accident that you always get into trouble when you have a short drive and then hit a tree. The same can often be said of text messages.

Categories: World Tags: , , , , ,

Gibbs mocks Steele’s speaking fees

December 23rd, 2009 admin No comments

Hahaha:

The White House quickly pounced after news broke that Michael Steele was charging up to $20,000 in speaking fees in addition to his official gig, mocking the RNC chairman for delivering criticisms of the health care bill for profit and calling his reasoning ‘”delusional.”

Pressed about a remark Steele made Monday, in which he insisted Democrats were “flipping the bird” to the public in the form of health care legislation, White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs asked how much money Steele was paid for “that interview.” Later when a cell phone ring interrupted the briefing, and someone cried out that Steele was on the line, Gibbs insisted it would cost $30,000 to answer that call.

Leave it to Michael Steele to bring us some good holiday cheer.


Categories: Politics Tags: , , , ,