Ancient floppy disks are still used in U.S. nuclear computer system

Many government agencies, U.S. and international alike, have a reputation for sometimes using tools that are horribly out of date. 

But according to a report from a congressional watchdog agency, a particularly vital arm of the U.S. government may be using the oldest tech you could possibly imagine.

According to a new report from the Governmental Accountability Office (GAO), at least one part of the U.S. Defense Department (DoD) still uses floppy disks in one of its systems.

the DoD uses 8-inch floppy disks in a legacy system that coordinates … the nation’s nuclear forces

What’s a floppy disk you ask? Well, decades ago, instead of using USB sticks, data was transported between computer systems using a thin square plastic case that contained a magnetic disk (which is where the data was stored).

But most systems today wouldn’t be able to accept a floppy disk even if the user wanted to, so the presence of such an outdated piece of technology is pretty surprising, particularly within the halls of such a historically technically advanced part of the government.

The revelation, surfaced on Wednesday in a report from CNBC, is included in a GAO research document titled “Federal Agencies Need to Address Aging Legacy Systems.”

In it, the document states:

Federal legacy IT investments are becoming increasingly obsolete: many use outdated software languages and hardware parts that are unsupported. Agencies reported using several systems that have components that are, in some cases, at least 50 years old. For example, the Department of Defense uses 8-inch floppy disks in a legacy system…

More troubling is the fact that the old school floppy disks are used as a storage solution for the DoD’s Strategic Automated Command and Control System, which “coordinates the operational functions of the United States’ nuclear forces,” including intercontinental ballistic missiles and nuclear bombers. The floppy disks are used as a part of the section’s IBM Series/1 computer (a system from the ’70s). 

The good news? The agency plans to update the ancient system in 2017, according to the GAO report. 

In the meantime, let’s hope the fate of peace on Earth doesn’t come down to an 8-inch floppy disk that not even the smallest, poorest business office would ever think of using. 

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via Mashable http://on.mash.to/1OYOzoJ

Dream House






May 26, 2016


Dream House



Photograph by Tobias Hägg, National Geographic Your Shot




During the last ice age, Sweden was covered by a blanket of ice. When the land thawed, myriad streams, rivers, and lakes were left behind. In this image submitted by Your Shot member Tobias Hägg, a tiny island, seen from above, sits in one of Sweden’s nearly 100,000 lakes. “This little island connected to a small boathouse makes me dream about my own home in the future,” Hägg writes.


This photo was submitted to Your Shot, our storytelling community where members can take part in photo assignments, get expert feedback, be published, and more. Join now >>








via National Geographic Photo of the Day http://on.natgeo.com/1TBbX8F

At least 3 wounded in shooting at TI concert in New York, report says – Fox News

At least three people reportedly were wounded Wednesday night in a shooting before rapper T.I. was set to perform in New York.

Sources told PIX 11 that a woman was shot in the leg and a man in the chest at around 10 p.m. at Irving Plaza in Union Square. Police said a third person was shot. There was no immediate information about their conditions.

At least 1,000 people were at Irving Plaza for the concert. One attendant told PIX 11 that no one was searched before going into the venue.

Police haven’t released information about a possible suspect in the shootings.

Police have cleared the building and are searching for other possible victims.

Click for more from PIX 11.

via Top Stories – Google News http://bit.ly/1TBbQtP

It’s OK to let your baby cry himself to sleep, study finds


It’s OK to let your baby cry himself to sleep, study finds
A new study adds support to the idea that the method is effective and does not cause stress or lasting emotional problems for babies.

May 26, 2016 at 12:29AM
via Digg http://cnn.it/20EqwMT