Cyberattacks on Oil and Gas Firms Launched with no Malware at all

http://securityaffairs.co/wordpress/36843/cyber-crime/cyberattacks-on-oil-and-gas-firms.html

The attacks are ongoing for about two years.

A unique targeted attack being underway for about two consecutive years exploits Windows file functions that look legitimate and a couple of homemade scripts – but not malware – in order to infiltrate firm in the gas & oil maritime transportation sector.

Toilet waste to energy system

Toilet

Toilet (Photo credit: http://www.homespothq.com)

It may not be an appetizing thought when you’re putting the dinner on – but a new loo turns human waste into fuel. The ‘No Mix Vacuum Toilet’ is an airplane-style vacuum toilet which splits waste into solids and liquids. Liquid waste is processed for chemicals such as phosphorous for fertilizers. Solid waste is processed in a bioreactor to create ‘biogas’ – a methane-rich gas which is, the scientists promise, odorless and safe for cooking.

Canny scientists have invented a new toilet system that can turn human waste into electricity and fertilizers, and reduce water for flushing by up to 90 per cent. Coined the No-Mix Vacuum Toilet, the loo has two chambers that separate the liquid and solid wastes – and uses vacuum suction technology like airplane toilets. Solid waste will be sent to a bioreactor where it will be digested to release bio-gas which contains methane – an odorless gas used to replace natural gas used in stoves for cooking. Flushing liquids in the new toilet would only take only 0.2 liters of water and flushing solids requires one liter, compared to four to six liters in a conventional loo.

According to the inventors, if it is installed in a public restroom and flushed 100 times a day, it will save 160,000 liters in a year – enough to fill a small swimming pool. The No-Mix Vacuum Toilet will divert the liquid waste to a processing facility where components used for fertilizers such as nitrogen, phosphorous and potassium can be recovered.

http://m.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-24651214?utm_content=buffer86f10&utm_source=buffer&utm_medium=twitter&utm_campaign=Buffer

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The ‘smartest’ city = Santander, Spain

El Sardinero beach, in Santander (Cantabria, S...

An old port city on Spain’s Atlantic coast has emerged as a prototype for high-tech smart cities worldwide. Blanketed with sensors, it’s changing the way of life for its residents. Santander is a picturesque coastal city – the sound of waves, crashing on the seawall, provides a gentle backdrop to daily life. Aside from the occasional ferry from England, the town in the northeast of Spain doesn’t get too many foreign visitors. It turned quite a few heads, then, when delegations from Google, Microsoft and the Japanese government all landed here recently, to literally walk the city streets. What they’ve been coming to see though is mostly invisible: 12,000 sensors buried under the asphalt, affixed to street lamps and atop city buses. They silently survey parking availability, and whether surf’s up at local beaches. They can even tell garbage collectors which dumpsters are full, and automatically dim street lights when no one’s around.

Santander’s old port city is being revolutionized with sensors The sensors were paid for by a 9-million-euro ($11.8 million) EU grant, and are supervised by Luis Munoz at the University of Cantabria.

http://m.csmonitor.com/World/Europe/2013/1005/The-smartest-city-in-the-world-Santander-Spain

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Interactive world map of temperature, solar incidence, terrain, population and others.

English: Solar Radiation Map of Europe: Global...

Users of the SolarGIS global database will already be familiar with the solar planning database which GeoModel Solar says has been described by the University of Geneva as „the most accurate solar resource database available on the market“. In addition to featuring the SolarGIS global database at Intersolar Europe 2013, GeoModel Solar will also be unveiling two updated online tools to complement it: iMaps with global coverage and pvPlanner with global coverage. The SolarGIS global database supplies historical and near-real time information on solar resources souch as global horizontal irradiance, direct normal irradiance and DLR by delivering data from several meteorological and satellite data centers worldwide, providing radiation and PV yield information for developing, monitoring and forecasting pv yields from „almost any location worldwide“.

http://solargis.info/imaps/#c=-9.449062,-148.535156

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Power surges cripple the NSA data center

National Security Agency Seal

The National Security Agency’s $2 billion mega data center is going up in flames. Technical glitches have sparked fiery explosions within the NSA’s newest and largest data storage facility in Utah, destroying hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of equipment, and delaying the facility’s opening by one year.

And no one seems to know how to fix it.

For a country that prides itself on being a technology leader, not knowing the electrical capacity requirements for a system as large as this is inexcusable. Within the last 13 months, at least 10 electric surges have each cost about $100,000 in damages, according to documents obtained by the Wall Street Journal. Experts agree that the system, which requires about 64 megawatts of electricity—that’s about a $1 million a month energy bill–isn’t able to run all of its computers and servers while keeping them cool, which is likely triggering the meltdowns.

http://mobile.bbc.co.uk/news/technology-24443266

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Color-coded map of buildings in Reykjavík by decade of construction.

English: Reykjavik, Iceland. View from the top...

This is a great massing map of Reykjavik, Iceland that is color coded based on the time the building was constructed. It is very neat to see how few buildings are left that were built prior to 1900. It also gives a good representation of the building booms of the 1960s and the 1990s.

http://flother.is/2013/reykjavik-age/

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Tesla way ahead on the Auto-Pilot car

Image representing Tesla Motors as depicted in...

Tesla Motors (NASDAQTSLA  ) and its brash CEO, Elon Musk, love nothing more than to name an outrageous-sounding technological goal — and then meet it. The latest: Musk said this week that Tesla will be able to offer cars that are (mostly) self-driving in three years.

That’s way ahead of giants General Motors (NYSE: GM  ) and Toyota (NYSE: TM  ) , which have been saying that 2020 is a more likely date for the arrival of autonomous cars. In this video, Fool contributor John Rosevear looks at what Musk really said and argues that Tesla’s goal this time isn’t revolutionary — instead, it’s more likely to be the basic price of admission to the luxury-car market in a few years’ time.

http://mobile.reuters.com/article/idUSBRE98H01720130918?irpc=932

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