Tag Results for risk analysis (13)

  1. Investigators Rule Out Wireless Device Interference in Qantas Mishap

    Authorities in Australia today concluded that the cause of a dangerous plummet by a Qantas airliner last week resulted from the malfunction of an onboard navigation computer, not from interference by a passenger's electronic device as was first suspected. According to a news item today in the The Sydney Morning Herald, the Qantas jet's air-data inertial reference unit sent "erratic and erroneous information" to the plane's flight control system, taking command of the aircraft out of the pilot's hands. The dramatic 650-foot fall of Flight QF72 from 37 000 feet over the Indian Ocean, flying from Singapore to …

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  2. Who Watches the Automated Watch Watchers?

    The French bank Société Générale SA admitted that a "rogue trader" who lost $7.2 billion in trades was able to by-pass five levels of controls for a year before finally slipping up and getting caught. The trader, by the name of Jérÿme Kerviel, hid the trades by making fake orders to balance each of the genuine orders he placed. Although the bank says he operated alone, many are skeptical. It is known that he used to work in the bank's back office, and therefore had detailed knowledge of how trades were processed and monitored. Apparently Kerviel spent time hacking …

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  3. New NASA Rocket Has Vibration Problems

    Over the weekend, we learned the U.S. space agency's new rocket for the next generation of space vehicles has a design problem that could seriously undermine its progress. Still on the drawing board, the proposed Ares class of main propulsion engines has an engineering flaw that will most likely lead to severe vibrations upon launch, according to a report from the Associated Press. The new Ares rockets are being developed to lift the spacecraft that will replace the shuttle into orbit. They are designed to take advantage of successful technology modified from the shuttle program and are …

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  4. Suing Over Weather Forecasts

    The Drudge Report has a link to a Orlando Florida television news story that tells of Central Florida's most famous hotel owner, Harris Rosen, who is threatening to sue hurricane expert Dr. William Gray of Colorado State University for his hurricane storm predictions saying they have damaged state tourism. According to the story, Rosen rhetorically asks Gray: "Look, doctor, you've made these forecasts and you were wrong once. You made the forecast and you were wrong twice. Are you going to continue to make these forecasts?" Rosen said he believes Florida lost billions of dollars in business because …

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  5. Subtle Chip or Apllication Math Errors Can Lead to Big Problems

    Over the weekend, the New Yorks Times ran an article on a potential IT security problem posed by errors in microprocessor chips such as the Intel Pentium error of a few years back or the recent Microsoft Excel spreadsheet bug. Adi Shamir, a professor at the Weizmann Institute of Science in Israel and one of the three designers of the RSA public key algorithm, circulated a research note about how an attacker could exploit an undetected subtle math error and make breaking public key cryptography possible. The Times article notes that Mr. Shamir believes …

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