Las Vegas ‘Institution’ Peppermill, Throws Salt On LVCVA Expansion/Demolish plans

The Las Vegas institution says it is not going anywhere.

It’s “hell no, we wont go” for The Peppermill, as the beloved 42-year old dining institution puts the rumors to rest and blocks the Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority’s expansion plans onto its restaurant footprint.

Rumors of the Peppermill takeover surfaced after word leaked of the LVCVA’s purchase of close neighbor, the Riviera. The venerable casino is now confirmed to have been purchased for $182.5 million and a 60-year-old slice of Vegas history will be demolished.

Reportedly, the Riviera will have six months to phase in a shut down and hand over the keys. The Convention Center is also said to be looking at adjacent lots to further enhance the Las Vegas Global Business District, adding new space and a necessary “transportation hub.”

Peppermill Throws Salt On LVCVA Expansion Plans – Eater Vegas.

Russian researchers expose breakthrough U.S. spying program, embedding Spyware in factory Hard Drives

NSA Spying Center in Utah

NSA Spying Center in Utah

(Reuters) – The U.S. National Security Agency has figured out how to hide spying software deep within hard drives made by Western Digital, Seagate, Toshiba and other top manufacturers, giving the agency the means to eavesdrop on the majority of the world’s computers, according to cyber researchers and former operatives.

That long-sought and closely guarded ability was part of a cluster of spying programs discovered by Kaspersky Lab, the Moscow-based security software maker that has exposed a series of Western cyberespionage operations.

Kaspersky said it found personal computers in 30 countries infected with one or more of the spying programs, with the most infections seen in Iran, followed by Russia, Pakistan,Afghanistan, China, Mali, Syria, Yemen and Algeria. The targets included government and military institutions, telecommunication companies, banks, energy companies, nuclear researchers, media, and Islamic activists, Kaspersky said. (reut.rs/1L5knm0)

Russian researchers expose breakthrough U.S. spying program | Reuters.

Cell Phone Carriers Must Unlock Phones

The days of carriers locking down devices to keep customers in place are officially dead.

Starting Wednesday, all US carriers must comply with requests from postpaid and prepaid customers to unlock their devices, as long as certain parameters are met. The rules officially came down in 2013 and the industry group CTIA committed last year to have all wireless carriers adhering to the regulation by February 11, 2015.

The debate over phone unlocking has come a long way in just a few short years. Unlocking a phone allows owners to put the device on whatever carrier network they choose. For years, carriers have locked down devices, allowing them only to connect to their own networks. The move was designed to keep customers close and not see them stray to other carriers.

“We are pleased the FCC acknowledged the participating wireless carriers met the deadlines to unlock their customers’ devices per the Consumer Code for Wireless Service,” said Scott Bergmann, the CTIA’s vice president for regulatory affairs, in a statement. “We also remind consumers than an unlocked device does not necessarily mean an interoperable one since different carriers use different technologies and spectrum bands.”

US carriers, you’ll have to unlock those phones – CNET.

Chicago Little League Team Stripped of Championship for CHEATING and Coach Suspended – Las Vegas Team awarded Title (Chicago Should Be Banned From Future Competition)

Little League Baseball has stripped the U.S. championship from Chicago-based Jackie Robinson West and suspended its coach for violating a rule prohibiting the use of players who live outside the geographic area that the team represents, it was announced Wednesday.

Jackie Robinson West must vacate wins from the 2014 Little League Baseball International Tournament — including its Great Lakes Regional and United States championships.

Little League strips Chicago team of U.S. championship, suspends coach – ESPN Chicago.

Largest Bike Park on the Planet, opens in Louisville Caverns

Forget horse racing and bourbon distilleries. Next time you go to Louisville, bring your bicycle and head underground to the world’s largest indoor bike park, which officially opened Monday.

The Mega Underground Bike Park is located in an old limestone mine 100 feet below ground. It’s the latest addition to Louisville’s Mega Cavern, a massive entertainment complex where you can ride zip lines, swing from aerial ropes, and take historic tram rides, in addition to partaking in other activities.

There’s over 320,000 square feet of space, 45 trails, jump lines, pump tracks, dual slalom, BMC, cross country, and singletrack, and it’s 60 degrees year-round. Eventually there will be a bike rental. A four-hour pass is $24 and helmets are required.

Mega Underground Bike Park in Louisville Cavern opens – Business Insider.

Chicago Little League Championship Team Allegedly Cheated – Strip Them Of Title!

 - Jackie Robinson West last year made headlines when it won the national championship. - Shane Collins

(AP) — Citing “new information,” Little League International officials met Tuesday to discuss whether Jackie Robinson West, the Little League World Series national championship team from Chicago’s South Side, added top suburban players in violation of residency rules.

Spokesman Brian McClintock said the organization’s charter committee was meeting to discuss “possible resolutions” regarding the team and that a final decision would likely be made this week. He declined to discuss if the team was in danger of being stripped of its title.

Late last year, the organization said it was confident that there were no violations of residency regulations after investigating allegations made by an official from a suburban Chicago league that some of Jackie Robinson West’s players live in suburbs with already-established Little League teams. It said it would reopen the investigation if necessary.

Did Jackie Robinson West cheat? Little League is checking – Consumer News – Crain’s Chicago Business.

Go Inside Britain’s Super-Secret Spy Agency For The First Time Ever

For the first time, Britain’s spy agency, the Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ) has opened its doors to the media, giving the public its first-ever look at how the organisation operates on a day-to-day basis.

The surprising truth: it’s not much different to any other office.

Sky News got a tour of the place and we’ve broken out some of the highlights.

The building is known as the “doughnut,” and from this aerial view, it’s easy to see why. According to Sky News, this design helps limit sound leakage that could be intercepted by spy satellites. There’s also a museum in the center that houses Alan Turing’s code-breaking enigma machine.

GCHQ First Look Video – Business Insider.

BREAKING: Mid-Engine C8 Chevrolet Corvette First Photos!

Behold, mid-engine Corvette fans: The car you’ve waited patiently for Chevrolet to build has finally evolved beyond titillating concepts to the engineering mule revealed here. An 82-second strike by our recon op resulted in 15 frames before security narcs dropped the curtain on this black test car—with its two occupants still inside.

Don’t fret over the pointy-pickup camouflage; more attractive attire will follow. Instead take solace in a cabin hugging the front axle, ample space between the cockpit and the rear wheels for the hot parts, and this Corvette’s crouched and ready attitude.

The nose clip is from Holden Commodore SSV (with even wider flares), while the cabin module, roof, and exterior mirrors are hand-me-downs from today’s Stingray. A Holden SSV ute’s sheetmetal wraps door to door around the heinie. The wing keeps the tail planted during high-speed runs and what could be more practical than the bumper-mounted 2×10 for shoving this test sled back to the garage when it breaks down? Other items of note: The fuel-filler located on the driver’s-side B-pillar and the cooling intakes located along the rocker panels.

EXCLUSIVE: Mid-Engine C8 Chevrolet Corvette First Photos! – News – Car and Driver.

NFL Admits ‘Incompetent Referees’ BLEW 2 Calls in Detroit vs. Dallas game

Detroit Screwed by incompetent Referees

Detroit Screwed by incompetent Referees

More than 48 hours after officials in the Lions-Cowboys wild-card game ignited a firestorm with their overturned pass interference call, the controversy just won’t go away.

First, President Barack Obama took his turn sounding off on the officials, expressing his sympathy for fans in Detroit. Then came the day’s big bombshell.

According to a report by ESPN’s Adam Schefter, NFL officials admitted to the Detroit Lions on Tuesday that officials in that game — won 24-20 by the Cowboys — missed what the report called a “blatant hold” committed on Lions defensive tackle Ndamukong Suh after the more controversial call.

According to the report, the hold happened on a fourth-and-6 with 6 minutes to play and Dallas trailing 20-17. Cowboys quarterback Tony Romo connected with tight end Jason Witten for 21 yards to keep the drive alive, a drive which ended with an 8-yard TD pass from Romo to Terrance Williams for the game-winning score.

Detroit Lions get apology from NFL for second blown call in loss to Dallas Cowboys | FOX Sports.

UFC Champion Jon Jones tests positive for Cocaine, enters Rehab

UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones failed a drug test prior to this past weekend’s UFC 182 event due to cocaine metabolites and has entered rehab.

MMAjunkie today confirmed the test results with Nevada State Athletic Commission Executive Director Bob Bennett.

Jones (21-1 MMA, 15-1 UFC) successfully defended his title for an eighth consecutive time after defeating Daniel Cormier (15-1 MMA, 4-1 UFC) via unanimous decision at the Jan. 3 pay-per-view event. He was randomly tested on Dec. 3, and results came back on Dec. 23, Bennett said.

The drug test detected benzoylecgonine, a primary metabolite of cocaine.

“At this point and time, Jones checked himself into a rehab center, and we’ll cross that bridge when he get to it,” Bennett told MMAjunkie when asked of the NSAC’s plans in wake of the failed test.

Because benzoylecgonine is not banned out of competition by the World Anti-Doping Agency, the NSAC could not halt Jones from fighting at UFC 182, which proved to be one of the biggest events in recent MMA history.

UFC champion Jon Jones tests positive for cocaine, enters rehab | MMAjunkie.

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