What Kevin Durant might do, it seems, is more heavily analyzed than what he actually does. His free-agency fortunes are dissected almost daily even though nothing will happen involving the Oklahoma City Thunder star until this summer. Will he stay in Oklahoma City, where the honeymoon appears permanent? Will he go home again, picking the Washington Wizards in a move that would reunite him with Scott Brooks, his one-time coach? Or will he take a chance on a wildcard like the Lakers, becoming the centerpiece of a suddenly faceless franchise?
The Dodgers placed Carl Crawford on the disabled list Saturday morning, the seventh time in the last six seasons the 34-year-old outfielder has ended up there. The cause this time was soreness in his lower back, which has affected him since the middle of March. The team recalled infielder Micah Johnson, who could useful on the bases as a pinch runner for Manager Dave Roberts. Johnson also played the outfield on Friday night for triple-A Oklahoma City. With Crawford out, Roberts intends to split the playing time in left field between veteran Scott Van Slyke and rookie Trayce Thompson.
A feature in Intel's Haswell CPUs can be abused to reliably defeat an anti-exploitation technology that exists in all major operating systems, researchers have found. The technique, developed by three researchers from State University of New York at Binghamton and the University of California in Riverside, can be used to bypass address space layout randomization (ASLR) and was presented this week at the 49th annual IEEE/ACM International Symposium on Microarchitecture in Taipei. ASLR is a security mechanism used by operating systems to randomize the memory addresses used by key areas of processes, so that attackers don't know where to inject their exploit shellcode. ASLR is used to prevent memory corruption bugs, such as stack and heap overflows, from arbitrary code execution as opposed to crashes. Once such a vulnerability is exploited, the malicious code needs to be injected at a position in memory where the target process or the OS kernel itself will execute as part of normal operation.
Air quality regulators have issued a notice of violation to the Torrance Refining Co., saying the 750-acre refinery -- whose flare stacks shot flames and billowed thick black smoke Tuesday -- had caused a public nuisance with air pollution. The former Exxon Mobil refinery "has been responsible for an unacceptably high number of flaring events resulting from shutdowns at its Torrance facility," the South Coast Air Quality Management District said in a news release Thursday. The refinery, owned by New Jersey-based PBF Energy, lost power Tuesday morning as a result of faulty wiring during the upgrade of a substation, according to Southern California Edison. The shutdown left about 100,000 customers without electricity in the South Bay, and the resulting eruptions from the refinery prompted the city to order residents to keep their doors and windows closed. Most customers had power restored within hours.
More than 200 million gallons of contaminated waste water from a fertilizer plant in central Florida leaked into one of the state's main underground sources of drinking water after a massive sinkhole opened up beneath a storage pond, a phosphate company said Friday. Mosaic, the world's largest supplier of phosphate, said the hole opened up beneath a pile of waste material called a "gypsum stack." The 215-million gallon storage pond sat atop the waste mineral pile. The company said the sinkhole is about 45 feet in diameter. Mosaic says it's monitoring groundwater and has found no offsite impacts.