Zombie network mastermind pleads guilty

20 year old Jeanson James Ancheta, of Downey, California., pleaded guilty in US District Court in Los Angeles to four felony charges for crimes, including infecting machines at two U.S. military sites, that earned him more than $US61,000, Assistant US Attorney James Aquilina said. Jeanson James Ancheta seized control of hundreds of thousands of internet-connected computers and rented the zombie network to people who mounted attacks on websites, served up pop-up ads and sent out spam.

Under a plea agreement, which still must be approved by a judge, Ancheta will receive from 4 years to 6 years in prison, forfeit a 1993 BMW and more than $US58,000 in profit and pay $US19,000 in restitution to the federal government to compensate for infecting the military computers, according to documents filed in the case.

He is scheduled to be sentenced May 1.

Bush Administration Subpoenas Google in Porn Probe

Bush Administration Subpoenas Google in Porn Probe

The Bush administration, seeking to revive an online pornography law struck down by the U.S. Supreme Court, has issued a subpoenaed for details of Googles records of what its users have been looking for through its popular search engine.

Google has refused to comply with the subpoena, issued last year, for a broad range of material from its databases, including a request for 1 million random Web addresses and records of all Google searches from any one-week period, lawyers for the U.S. Justice Department said in papers filed Wednesday in federal court in San Jose.

I believe this a lame attempt by the current Administration to raise it’s falling poll numbers and make it’s christian voter base happy. But this suit will not play out in court before this Bush is outta office so it does nothing but grab a headline in the media that looks positive to some. I wonder if Yahoo or MSN have already gave up there records?

WSG Announcements

When the Web Standards Group mail list was created in early 2003, Russ began sending posts to the list with web standards-based links for people to read. For some reason the subject of these posts became “Some links for light reading”. Over the years quite a few people have requested that these posts be placed online somewhere for easier searching.

Now, all 80-odd “links for light reading” [1] posts are available online.

Future “links for light reading” will still be posted to the WSG mail
but also archived on the Max Design site [2].

[1] http://www.maxdesign.com.au/category/light-reading/
[2] http://www.maxdesign.com.au /

A big thanks to Russ for all the great links!

Researchers Develop Quantum Processor

Researchers Develop Quantum Processor

A computer chip based on the esoteric science of quantum mechanics has been created by researchers at the University of Michigan. The chip might well pave the way for a new generation of supercomputers.

Employing the same semiconductor-fabrication techniques used to create common computer chips, the Michigan team was able to trap a single atom within an integrated chip and control it using electrical signals.

Electrically charged atoms (ions) for such quantum computers are stored in traps in order to isolate the qubits, a process that is essential for the system to work.

The challenge is that current ion traps can hold only a few atoms, or qubits, and are not easily scaled, making it difficult to create a quantum chip that can store thousands or more atomic ions. A string of such atoms, in theory, could store thousands of bits of information.

In the chip created at Michigan, which is the size of a postage stamp, the ion is confined in a trap while electric fields are applied. Laser light puts a spin on the ion’s free electron, enabling it to flip it between the one or zero quantum states.

The spin of the electron dictates the value of the qubit. For example, an up-spin can represent a one, or a down-spin can represent a zero — or the qubit can occupy both states simultaneously.

Bill Gates quoted

Bill Gates was qouted saying the following at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas January 4, 2006

People tend to get over focused on one of our competitors. We’ve always seen that.

The biggest company in the computer industry by far is IBM. They have the four times the employees that I have, way more revenues than I have. IBM has always been our biggest competitor. The press just doesn’t like to write about IBM.

The stuff in the labs today, with speech recognition, visual recognition, ink recognition, reading everything online and new devices that enable that — in five years, that will just be common sense.