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Engineering News

Open Sourcing Jaqen, A Tool For Developing DNS Rebinding PoCs

Editor’s note: Members of the information security team at LinkedIn have an opportunity to work on research topics under a well-defined framework that allows them to evaluate new products and technologies, as well as explore the related threat surface. The team strives to find new and innovative ways to help simplify and strengthen security and contribute back to the community where possible to do so. In early 2017, Luke Young had the opportunity to make use of this framework and…

Crops that kill pests by shutting off their genes — ScienceDaily

Plants are among many eukaryotes that can “turn off” one or more of their genes by using a process called RNA interference to block protein translation. Researchers are now weaponizing this by engineering crops to produce specific RNA fragments that, upon ingestion by insects, initiate RNA interference to shut down a target gene essential for life or reproduction, killing or sterilizing the insects. The potential of this method is reviewed in Trends in Biotechnology‘s upcoming special issue on environmental biotechnology.…

No one knew just how many Ubers and Lyfts were out there—until now

Northeastern researchers Alan Mislove and Christo Wilson created a program that works to determine the volume of drivers for these ride-hailing services in San Francisco, collecting data that are typically held closely by both companies. Credit: Northeastern University In urban areas—and in not so urban areas—around the globe, Uber and Lyft are ubiquitous. But knowing just how many are out there at a given time is a problem that’s eluded municipal transportation officials since the ride-hailing services burst onto the…

Using magnetic resonance to evaluate food quality

The applications and benefits of nuclear magnetic resonance (NMR) in medicine are well known, but the technology is also used in other areas such as agribusiness, where its applications include quality analysis of seeds and other products of animal and plant origin. NMR has recently reached the retail commerce sector, where it expedites the assessment of meat and fruit quality in supermarkets. Fine Instrument Technology (FIT), a Brazilian company based in São Carlos (São Paulo State, Brazil), has developed a…

Pressure sensor can identify early stages of flat feet

It records the data from mobile sensors placed on an insole of a shoe. Later, it is being sent via Bluetooth connection to a computer for visualization. Credit: KTU A team of researchers at Kaunas University of Technology (KTU) have designed a device for measuring pressure on human feet. Its applications include pediatric illnesses and monitoring the physical condition of professional athletes. The most mechanical pressure is endured by the feet, which bear all of a person’s weight while walking.…

Somersaulting simulation for jumping bots

A simulation (top row) and real-world experiment (bottom row) match for the same jumping mechanism designed to flip over a wall and land right side up on the other side. This simulation was generated by a new method that accurately predicts the real-world behavior of such mechanisms undergoing large-deformations, high-speed dynamics, frictional contact and impact. It does so at speeds fast enough to now be used in automated design algorithms that must rapidly, yet accurately, predict whether a design will…

Screaming Circuits: Eclipse-o-pocalypse 2017

Save the date: August 21, 2017. I don’t need to tell you what’s happening that day, but I will anyway. It’s total eclipse day here in the USA. I wouldn’t care too much, except a) I think total eclipses are cool, b) the last one I experienced involved watching the rain clouds get dark and then get light again, and c) most important – we, at Screaming Circuits, are sitting right on the edge of totality. Canby, Oregon, where we…

Is it Alzheimer’s disease or another dementia? New, noninvasive method may help with diagnosis — ScienceDaily

A new method may help determine whether a person has Alzheimer’s disease or frontotemporal dementia, two different types of dementia that often have similar symptoms, according to a preliminary study published in the July 26, 2017, online issue of Neurology®, the medical journal of the American Academy of Neurology. “Making the correct diagnosis can be difficult,” said study author Barbara Borroni, MD, of the University of Brescia in Brescia, Italy. “Current methods can be expensive brain scans or invasive lumbar…

Incorporating AI into a computer-based rendering system — ScienceDaily

Modern films and TV shows are filled with spectacular computer-generated sequences computed by rendering systems that simulate the flow of light in a three-dimensional scene and convert the information into a two-dimensional image. But computing the thousands of light rays (per frame) to achieve accurate color, shadows, reflectivity and other light-based characteristics is a labor-intensive, time-consuming and expensive undertaking. An alternative is to render the images using only a few light rays. That saves time and labor but results in…

Powering Helix’s Auto Rebalancer with Topology-Aware Partition Placement

Partition assignments are critical to a typical distributed data system. A partition’s replicas could be in different states. For example, in the above graph, each partition has three replicas; one of them is the Primary replica, while the other two are Backup replicas.   Apache Helix is a generic cluster management framework used for the automatic management of partitioned and replicated distributed systems hosted on a cluster of nodes. Helix automates the reassignment of partitions in the face of node…