Saturday, July 19, 2014

Boot up: ice cream, Imgur, DDoS, climate change and the EU

A giant plastic ice cream cone glints in the sun on the South Beach on July 17, 2014 in Lowestoft, England. A giant plastic ice cream cone glints in the sun on the South Beach on July 17, 2014 in Lowestoft, England. Photograph: Peter Macdiarmid/Getty Images

A quick burst of 8 links for you to chew over, as picked by the Technology team

The largest reported attack in the second quarter was an NTP reflection attack at 154.69Gbps, launched against a Spanish target. NTP reflection attacks use address spoofing to overwhelm a target with requests. Such attacks while still significant were more prevalent in the first quarter than the second, according to Arbor. Average NTP traffic volumes are also falling back globally.

That's a heck of a lot of bandwidth.

One flash point is Google's refusal to remove name-search results from its main search engine. It prefers to make a narrower removal of name searches in the European versions of its search engine, such as or That position has already raised hackles with regulators in Germany and elsewhere, privacy officials have said.

The "right to be forgotten" certainly has some way to go before it's crystal clear what it really means, and what search engines have to do about it.

For £20 you get 5 Mr Whippy ice creams and branded Uber goodies - you can request higher multiples of ice cream if you wish, all you need to do is ask!

So you can pay £4 for a Mr Whippy, but at least Uber will bring it to your door.

"We know that Imgur is huge in terms of scale, but don't recognize Imgur as a community that's come so far in the last few years," Tim Hwang, Imgur's Head of Special Initiatives, told Betabeat. "The meetups show that they appreciate us, but they're also a sign of what's to come." So what's to come? The Imgur team wants to ramp up to a major convention, but won't have the details ready until as late as December, though they claim it will be "something no Internet community has ever done before."

By some measures, Imgur is bigger than Reddit, yet the company has few employees, little attention, is run on a shoestring and only took external investment for the first time this year. Could that be about to change?

Using the 43-degree angled satellite imagery, Google has crafted a 3D model of London for both Google Maps and Google Earth. The centre of the city at least looks spectacular and you can fly past or stare longingly at many well-known landmarks as well as streets off the beaten path.

Something to do if you're bored Friday lunchtime.

Although none of those cases have yet come to court, and the results of the searches are not directly admissible as evidence, officers believe that the system will dramatically speed up investigations. The system can even find family members of the suspect, narrowing down the search even if the person is not themselves in the police database.

Narrowing down by family members? Criminals can run, but they can't hide.

The latest Killzone add-on pack doesn't add traditional fodder such as guns, items, maps or abilities, but instead lets players pay money to pass gas.

Truly, this is the end of days.

Lang specifically checked how often, when and where citizens in 205 cities in the US used the search terms "global warming," "climate change" and "weather." The terms "drought" and "flood" were also included because increases in these natural phenomena are important predicted impacts of climate change... Lang found that search activity increased when extreme heat was felt in summer, when no rain fell over extended periods, and when there were fewer extreme cold snaps in winter. Such weather fluctuations are consistent with projected climate change.

Google Trends basically lets researchers see what it would be like to be psychic.

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