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These days, much of the news about search engines covers new content types such as blogs, user-generated videos, wikis, and other Web 2.0 tools. More quietly, progress is still being made in conventional search engines, the kinds that actually provide useful information. Web 2.0 searching is trendier, but which is more important: some blog-mediated blowhard rant, or researchon a promising new medical treatment? This is why we have to keep up on advances in information-based content searching, including news about Science.gov,World- WideScience.org, Scitopia.org, and ScienceResearch.com. These four search engines have two things in common: They cover a wide swath of STM subjects, and they use the same search technology. Beyond that, each occupies a distinctive niche:
Science.gov (www.science.gov) is the official search engine for federal government STM
(http://worldwidescience.org) is new and extends the Science.gov concept to international STM
Scitopia.org (www.scitopia.org) searches a rich trove of information in the content of STM societies.
ScienceResearch.com (www.scienceresearch.com) is from Deep Web Technologies (www.deepwebtech.com), the company whose search technology powers the other three. It is also a portal for searching a wide range of STM content.

Soorce: http://deepwebtech.com/talks/InfoTodayReprint.pdf


This is a project that began in 1997 but got put aside for what I thought would be "a little while." But it languished on a lost set of floppies for 5 years. The images and text were scanned from a copy of Scribner's archived in the Special Collections room of the University of Iowa Libraries. Between then and now the library at Cornell University reproduced the entire issue of Scribner's Magazine, which includes this article, as a set of gif images in their Making of America Web site. Go there if you'd like to see the original layout (search on "end of books").

New Library Bookmark released.

Visit the Library to get one.

Internet standards expert, CEO of web company iFusion Labs, and blogger John Pozadzides knows a thing or two about password security—and he knows exactly how he'd hack the weak passwords you use all over the internet.

Note: This isn't intended as a guide to hacking *other people's* weak passwords. Instead, the aim is to help you better understand the security of your own passwords and how to bolster that security.

If you invited me to try and crack your password, you know the one that you use over and over for like every web page you visit, how many guesses would it take before I got it?

Let's see… here is my top 10 list. I can obtain most of this information much easier than you think, then I might just be able to get into your e-mail, computer, or online banking. After all, if I get into one I'll probably get into all of them.

  1. Your partner, child, or pet's name, possibly followed by a 0 or 1 (because they're always making you use a number, aren't they?)
  2. The last 4 digits of your social security number.
  3. 123 or 1234 or 123456.
  4. "password"
  5. Your city, or college, football team name.
  6. Date of birth – yours, your partner's or your child's.
  7. "god"
  8. "letmein"
  9. "money"
  10. "love"

Statistically speaking that should probably cover about 20% of you. But don't worry. If I didn't get it yet it will probably only take a few more minutes before I do…

Hackers, and I'm not talking about the ethical kind, have developed a whole range of tools to get at your personal data. And the main impediment standing between your information remaining safe, or leaking out, is the password you choose. (Ironically, the best protection people have is usually the one they take least seriously.)

One of the simplest ways to gain access to your information is through the use of a Brute Force Attack. This is accomplished when a hacker uses a specially written piece of software to attempt to log into a site using your credentials. Insecure.org has a list of the Top 10 FREE Password Crackers right here.

So, how would one use this process to actually breach your personal security? Simple. Follow my logic:

  • http://tags.lifehacker.com/assets/lifehacker.com/img/unordered_list_icon.gif); background-position: initial initial; background-repeat: initial initial; ">You probably use the same password for lots of stuff right?
  • http://tags.lifehacker.com/assets/lifehacker.com/img/unordered_list_icon.gif); background-position: initial initial; background-repeat: initial initial; ">Some sites you access such as your Bank or work VPN probably have pretty decent security, so I'm not going to attack them.
  • http://tags.lifehacker.com/assets/lifehacker.com/img/unordered_list_icon.gif); background-position: initial initial; background-repeat: initial initial; ">However, other sites like the Hallmark e-mail greeting cards site, an online forumyou frequent, or an e-commerce site you've shopped at might not be as well prepared. So those are the ones I'd work on.
  • http://tags.lifehacker.com/assets/lifehacker.com/img/unordered_list_icon.gif); background-position: initial initial; background-repeat: initial initial; ">So, all we have to do now is unleash Brutus, wwwhack, or THC Hydra on their server with instructions to try say 10,000 (or 100,000 – whatever makes you happy) different usernames and passwords as fast as possible.
  • http://tags.lifehacker.com/assets/lifehacker.com/img/unordered_list_icon.gif); background-position: initial initial; background-repeat: initial initial; ">Once we've got several login+password pairings we can then go back and test them on targeted sites.
  • http://tags.lifehacker.com/assets/lifehacker.com/img/unordered_list_icon.gif); background-position: initial initial; background-repeat: initial initial; ">But wait… How do I know which bank you use and what your login ID is for the sites you frequent? All those cookies are simply stored, unencrypted and nicely named, in your Web browser's cache. (Read this post to remedy that problem.)

And how fast could this be done? Well, that depends on three main things, the length and complexity of your password, the speed of the hacker's computer, and the speed of the hacker's Internet connection.

Assuming the hacker has a reasonably fast connection and PC here is an estimate of the amount of time it would take to generate every possible combination of passwords for a given number of characters. After generating the list it's just a matter of time before the computer runs through all the possibilities – or gets shut down trying.

Pay particular attention to the difference between using only lowercase characters and using all possible characters (uppercase, lowercase, and special characters – like @#$%^&*). Adding just one capital letter and one asterisk would change the processing time for an 8 character password from 2.4 days to 2.1 centuries.

How I’d Hack Your Weak Passwords

Remember, these are just for an average computer, and these assume you aren't using any word in the dictionary. If Google put their computer to work on it they'd finish about 1,000 times faster.

Now, I could go on for hours and hours more about all sorts of ways to compromise your security and generally make your life miserable – but 95% of those methods begin withcompromising your weak password. So, why not just protect yourself from the start and sleep better at night?

Believe me, I understand the need to choose passwords that are memorable. But if you're going to do that how about using something that no one is ever going to guess AND doesn't contain any common word or phrase in it.

Here are some password tips:

  1. Randomly substitute numbers for letters that look similar. The letter ‘o' becomes the number ‘0′, or even better an ‘@' or ‘*'. (i.e. – m0d3ltf0rd… like modelTford)
  2. Randomly throw in capital letters (i.e. – Mod3lTF0rd)
  3. Think of something you were attached to when you were younger, but DON'T CHOOSE A PERSON'S NAME! Every name plus every word in the dictionary will fail under a simple brute force attack.
  4. Maybe a place you loved, or a specific car, an attraction from a vacation, or a favorite restaurant?
  5. You really need to have different username / password combinations for everything. Remember, the technique is to break into anything you access just to figure out your standard password, then compromise everything else. This doesn't work if you don't use the same password everywhere.
  6. Since it can be difficult to remember a ton of passwords, I recommend usingRoboform for Windows users. It will store all of your passwords in an encrypted format and allow you to use just one master password to access all of them. It will also automatically fill in forms on Web pages, and you can even get versions that allow you to take your password list with you on your PDA, phone or a USB key. If you'd like to download it without having to navigate their web site here is the direct download link.(Ed. note: Lifehacker readers love the free, open-source KeePass for this duty, whileothers swear by the cross-platform, browser-based LastPass.)
  7. Mac users can use 1Password. It is essentially the same thing as Roboform, except for Mac, and they even have an iPhone application so you can take them with you too.
  8. Once you've thought of a password, try Microsoft's password strength tester to find out how secure it is.

By request I also created a short

Katherine Paterson Named National Ambassador for Young People's Literature

Katherine Paterson, two-time winner of the National Book Award and the Newbery Medal, was named National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature by Librarian of Congress James H. Billington on Jan. 5, 2010. Paterson will serve in the position during 2010 and 2011; she succeeds Jon Scieszka, appointed in 2008, who was the first person to hold the title. Paterson has chosen “Read for Your Life” as the theme for her platform.

Katherine Paterson’s international fame rests not only on her widely acclaimed novels but also on her efforts to promote literacy in the United States and abroad. A two-time winner of the Newbery Medal (“Bridge to Terabithia” and “Jacob Have I Loved”) and the National Book Award (“The Great Gilly Hopkins” and “The Master Puppeteer”), she has received many accolades for her body of work, including the Hans Christian Andersen Medal, the Astrid Lindgren Memorial Award and the Governor’s Award for Excellence in the Arts, given by her home state of Vermont. She was also named a Living Legend by the Library of Congress.

Ms. Paterson is vice president of the National Children's Book and Literacy Alliance, a nonprofit organization that informs, promotes, educates and inspires the American public to pursue literacy for young people and support libraries. She is both an Alida Cutts Lifetime Member of the United States Board on Books for Young People and a Lifetime Member of the International Board on Books for Young People.

Ms. Paterson’s most recent book is “The Day of the Pelican,” a moving, dramatic story of a refugee family's flight from war-torn Kosovo to America. It is the 2010 selection for Vermont Reads, a statewide reading program.

She and her husband, John, live in Barre, Vt. They have four children and seven grandchildren. For more information, visit www.terabithia.com or Ms. Paterson’sFacebook page.


Katherine Paterson’s Literary Awards

Bread and Roses, Too
New York Public Library Best Books for Teen Age, 2007
Bank Street Best Children's Books of the Year, 2007
VOYA's 2006 Top Shelf Fiction for Middle School Readers
Notable Social Studies Trade Book for Young People, 2007
Christopher Award, 2006
Parents' Choice Gold Medal, Fall 2006, Historical Fiction

The Same Stuff as Stars
Co-winner of the Paterson Prize, 2003
Honor Book for The Red Mitten, Judy Lopez Memorial, and Jane Addams Awards, 2003

Preacher's Boy
Parents' Choice 1999 Story Book Award
Jefferson Cup of Virginia Library Association

THE COLLECTION OF written knowledge in some sort of repository is a practice as old as civilization itself. About 30,000 clay tablets found in ancient Mesopotamia date back more than 5,000 years. Archaelogists have uncovered papyrus scrolls from 1300-1200bc in the ancient Egyptian cities of Amarna and Thebes and thousands of clay tablets in the palace of King Sennacherib, Assyrian ruler from 704-681bc, at Nineveh, his capital city. More evidence turned up with the discovery of the personal collection of Sennacherib's grandson, King Ashurbanipal.

The name for the repository eventually became the library. Whether private or public, the library has been founded, built, destroyed and rebuilt. The library, often championed, has been a survivor throughout its long history and serves as a testament to the thirst for knowledge.

Literacy Builds Libraries

Early collections may have surfaced from the Near East, but the ancient Greeks propelled the idea through their heightened interest in literacy and intellectual life. Public and private libraries flourished through a well-established process: authors wrote on a variety of subjects, scriptoria or copy shops produced the books, and book dealers sold them. Copying books was an exacting business and one in high demand, because a book's "trustworthiness" translated into quality. An Athenian decree called for a repository of "trustworthy" copies. Though the public library first appeared by the fourth century bc, the private library was more prevalent. Aristotle, for instance, amassed a large private collection. Ancient geographer Strabo said Aristotle "was the first to have put together a collection of books and to have taught the kings in Egypt how to arrange a library."

Read the full article here http://www.history-magazine.com/libraries.html

Popular legal thriller author John Grisham has broken his holdout against selling his books in an electronic format and will sell all of his 23 titles as e-books, his publisher said.

The former lawyer, whose best sellers include "The Firm" and "A Time To Kill", had previously held off selling his books electronically,expressing concern that e-books would wipe out traditional book stores and make it harder for new writers to succeed.

But beginning Tuesday, all Grisham's fiction and non-fiction books will be available through e-book retailers, publisher Random House said. As e-books have grown in popularity, some authors have been embroiled in

royalty negotiations with publishers. Publishers in turn have had disagreements with e-book retailers such as Amazon.com about how to split e-book sales.

Stuart Applebaum, a Random House spokesman, would not disclose the terms of the deal, but said "today was a watershed deal."The deal "is certain to usher in a new generation of Grisham readers ande-book adopters," Sonny Mehta, chairman of the Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group, which is owned by Random House and publishes Grisham's hardback titles, said in a statement.

Since his first novel "A Time To Kill" was released in 1989, Grisham has sold more than 250 million books worldwide, according to Random House.Several of his novels have been turned into films.Grisham's literary agent said the author had no comment on Tuesday's announcement. Grisham said in a TV interview last November that discounting of printedbooks by major retailers and the advent of e-books was "a disaster in
the long term" for publishers, bookstores and authors. "If a new book is now worth about $9 then we have seriously devalued that book," Grisham said on the "Today" show. "Suddenly the whole industry is going to change, you are going to lose publishers, you are going to lose bookstores. I am probably going to be
alright, but the aspiring writers are going to have a hard time getting published," he added.

Grisham's e-books were available on Tuesday through e-book retailers such as the Sony Reader Store, Barnes & Noble.com and Amazon.com, who all had Grisham's newer print editions like "The Associate" listed
at $9.99 and his older books at $7.99. According to statistics released by International Digital Publishing Forum, wholesale revenue from e-book sales in the United States morethan tripled in the fourth quarter of 2009 to $55.9 million from $16.6million in the same quarter in 2008.

(Reporting by Christine Kearney, editing by Jill Serjeant)
Source: http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/03/16/AR2010031603150.html

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