IonOtter (629215) writes "A series of 11-second videos have been driving the Internet crazy. There are over 80,000 of them, and all they show are a series of blue and red rectangles moving around on screen in seemingly random directions. The soundtrack is equally obtuse, comprised of a series of varying sine wave tones. The mysterious videos, posted by YouTube user Webdriver Torso, have become something of an infuriating web phenomenon. Why? Well, the internet can't resist a good mystery (or a bad one for that matter). Are they encoded spy messages? Contact from aliens? Or, just plain, old test videos that have caught the collective imagination? A lot of internet man-hours have gone into figuring out what, or who is behind them, and we can exclusively confirm the answer." Link to Original Source top
IonOtter (629215) writes "Ars Technica tells us that the Iranian government is reportedly blocking access to websites that use the HTTPS security protocol, and preventing the use of software residents use to bypass the state-run firewall.
From post on Hacker News today, apparently written by an Iranian resident:
Since Thursday Iranian government has shutted [sic] down the https protocol which has caused almost all google services (gmail, and google.com itself) to become inaccessible. Almost all websites that reply on Google APIs (like wolfram alpha) won't work. Accessing to any website that replies on https (just imaging how many websites use this protocol, from Arch Wiki to bank websites). Also accessing many proxies is also impossible.
Several Hacker News users confirmed the original post's statement that Iran is blocking encrypted Internet traffic. "I live in Iran. The fact about the shut down is correct," one person wrote. Another said "They drop all encrypted connections. This means no https, no IMAP over TLS and no SSH connections. (Im in Iran)." Link to Original Source
IonOtter (629215) writes "An 89-year-old Raleigh man accused of voter fraud said he was trying to prove a point by casting two ballots. "I think the election system is pathetic," Leland Duane Lewis said Wednesday. Lewis, a retired engineer and World War II veteran, said he has been a faithful voter since 1949.
Lewis was released from the Wake County jail on Wednesday after posting a $10,000 bond. He could face up to 15 months in prison if convicted. "I want to see them straighten out the election system," he said." Link to Original Source top
IonOtter (629215) writes "From the IBTimes Green Economy section: A new regulation was introduced this March which stipulates that seeds are supposed to be checked for GMO before they are introduced to the market. Unfortunately, some GMO seeds made it to the farmers without them knowing it. Almost 1000 acres of maize were found to have been grown with genetically modified seeds throughout Hungary, and has been plowed under, according to deputy state secretary of the Ministry of Rural Development, Lajos Bognar.
IonOtter (629215) writes "From the Portland Bee: For seven years, members of “Mahr’s Metal Beavers”, the club’s brand name, were proud to say they were from Franklin High School. But now, going into their eighth year, the students and volunteer mentors find themselves physically locked out of the disused auto repair shop they once called home, in the bowels of the Inner Southeast high school. To make matters worse, school officials tried to claim the club money.
"We do our own fundraising, and have eleven club mentors, most of whom are professional engineers, working with us." said Rebecca LohKamp, the club's main mentor. "The last printout from the school I saw shows they are holding $7,500, funds dedicated to ‘Team 1432’,” LohKamp added. “Now they claim the money that we raised was given to the school, and might now belong to the school district."
FBI Agents in Chicago served search warrants on the single-family home of Joe Losbaker and his wife, Stephanie Weiner, around 7 a.m, their attorney said. Losbaker, clearly shaken, briefly stepped outside his home as FBI agents searched inside and told The Associated Press: "I have done nothing wrong." Attorney Melinda Power stated: "The government said they can take what they want. It's an invasion of their rights." The homes of three longtime Minneapolis anti-war activists also were among those searched. The three were subpoenaed to appear before a federal grand jury in Chicago next month. Also involved, Peace Activist Mick Kelly was able to submit a video describing his experience while officers stripped his apartment above the cafe.
IonOtter (629215) writes "In what may turn out to be a blatant violation of free speech guaranteed by the Bill of Rights of 1688, the UK Parliament has issued a "gag order" on The Guardian regarding parliamentary proceedings which, according to the gag order, cannot be revealed.
"Today's published Commons order papers contain a question to be answered by a minister later this week. The Guardian is prevented from identifying the MP who has asked the question, what the question is, which minister might answer it, or where the question is to be found.
The Guardian is also forbidden from telling its readers why the paper is prevented-for the first time in memory-from reporting parliament. Legal obstacles, which cannot be identified, involve proceedings, which cannot be mentioned, on behalf of a client who must remain secret." (full story)
The only thing they are allowed to say is that the issue involves "...the London solicitors Carter-Ruck, who specialise in suing the media for clients, who include individuals or global corporations." However, one British newspaper, The Spectator, isn't backing down, and have given detailed answers.
N Paul Farrelly (Newcastle-under-Lyme): To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of legislation to protect (a) whistleblowers and (b) press freedom following the injunctions obtained in the High Court by (i) Barclays and Freshfields solicitors on 19 March 2009 on the publication of internal Barclays reports documenting alleged tax avoidance schemes and (ii) Trafigura and Carter-Ruck solicitors on 11 September 2009 on the publication of the Minton report on the alleged dumping of toxic waste in the Ivory Coast, commissioned by Trafigura."
The Spectator is also providing routine updates on the spread of the story, which is hitting the Twitterverse as #trafigura, and also commenting on how this story has yet to be seen on the BBC website."
The two sides presented opening arguments Friday morning, over the legality of a restraining order barring RealNetworks from selling RealDVD, a program to allow users to rip and manage DVD movies copied to a hard drive. Several Hollywood studios including Warner Bros. and Disney claimed that the RealDVD technology facilitated piracy and violated the terms of the CCA's contract. Real, for its part, maintained that it respected copyright and provided additional security through enhanced encryption.
Reuters: A thief in Germany was charred beyond recognition by a 10,000-volt electric shock when he tried to steal a live copper cable, authorities said Monday. Police in the western city of Duisburg found the 32-year-old man's blackened remains by a set of cable cutters and a pile of cables he had already stolen. Only because one of his hands survived incineration were officers able to identify the man as a German of Kazakh origin. Story on MSNBC
Speaking as a person working in the telco repair industry, I find this disturbingly gratifying." top
IonOtter writes "Business Week reports...
Apple Inc. on Monday warned iPhone owners who have used unauthorized programs to unlock the cellular service feature of their handsets that they may end up with a phone that doesn't work after the company's next software update for it." Link to Original Source