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Comments

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Chinese State Media Declares iPhone a Threat To National Security

Trachman Golden era for intelligence agencies wordwide (143 comments)

Imagine Chinese have the ability not only to track location of every phone, but also to activate at will. In the past intelligence operations took year to find important targets, establish contacts, recruiting and learning about inner working of organizations of interests. In order to spy now all you need is a telephone # or email. That being said, would you be comfortable if you knew that Chinese have a capacity to listen not only the phone calls but also to record conversations near the phone at any time. Perhaps there are many professions where it does not matter what the telephone holder is talking about, but there are plenty of professions that can have a profound impact to security: military, intelligence, scientific areas for example. The truth is people are conditioned to assume that it is ok if someone listens, but it is also truth that every government have state secrets and China is no exception.

about three weeks ago
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After NSA Spying Flap, Germany Asks CIA Station Chief to Depart

Trachman They are sending home the wrong man (219 comments)

I think that Germany is sending the wrong man home. If US has any specialists worth their salt, then their station chief will be the driver, security guard. A cook perhaps, or public relations officer. If you remember from recent Snowden's revelations, officers are given made up identities. That being said, what is wrong with these Germans? The last time we have checked, Germany is an occupied nation since WW2 , it has occupiers' army and some must have forgotten who is the boss.

about three weeks ago
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Buzz Aldrin Pressures Obama For New Space Exploration Initiative

Trachman It should be the other way around (78 comments)

Some politicians would benefit from returning from the moon to earth, and not thinking about traveling from earth to the space. There are many issues that are many times cheaper to resolve, and would improve the world, the real world, in a meaningful way. I am all for the space exploration and new technologies. All of such endeavors need to be financed with private voluntary contributions.

about three weeks ago
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TSA Prohibits Taking Discharged Electronic Devices Onto Planes

Trachman Can anyone guess when cavity searches will be norm (702 comments)

I wanted to guess when anal and vaginal searches will become new normal, standard procedure. Sorry for direct and not necessarily tasteful reference here. I am sure that bearded men, sitting in the caves, will spread the new gossip about devices in bod cavities and will watch in disbelief what people in US allow for TSA personnel to do on themselves.

about three weeks ago
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New Russian Law To Forbid Storing Russians' Data Outside the Country

Trachman Good first step (206 comments)

Hopefully more countries will follow to encourage data keeping in the origination country. Next step will be ensuring that data is not forwarded to other countries without permission.

about a month ago
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Can the NSA Really Track You Through Power Lines?

Trachman Information collection via power lines from PC's (109 comments)

Information collection via power lines has been developed a long time ago against hard to reach targets, such as, for example adversary's strategic forces (icbm), nuclear plants and warehouse, headquarters and other similar high value targets. Many times such objects are disconnected from internet (but have local computers) and if such targeted computers are using electricity, then they can be targeted. If you remember, a while ago, there was DSL internet delivered via power lines. Be sure that such internet delivered via power lines is one additional avenue, a tool, in NSA's toolbox. One of many

about a month ago
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Employees Staying Away From Internal Corporate Social Networks

Trachman Email is the new Fax (131 comments)

I have very successfully managed implementations of several transformations where amount of work has been reduced by approx 90-95% by moving several processess to social networks, Yammer to be specific. There are many areas in the corporate world that would benefit greatly from broader adoption of work and communications within social networks. When I will be managing my own business enterprise, which I hope will happen soon, there will be no email for everyone. My prediction is that in the corporate world of productivity, email will take the role very similiar to the one currently taken by the fax and I predict that it will take 15 to 20 years for that. If anyone is interested I would be happy to share some of the best experiences.

about a month ago
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Russia Moves From Summer Time To Standard Time

Trachman They knew (158 comments)

They knew that people will be swearing when the new time will become official, as such they made two laws at the same time. Russians themselves are, actually, unhappy and in their view this is a pure restriction of the free speech.

about 1 month ago
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Fox Moves To Use Aereo Ruling Against Dish Streaming Service

Trachman So it is all about the fees and royalites? (210 comments)

Except that there are much more smaller and independent channels who would love to get included in the big company's, such as dish TV, programming schedule. I can bet that this will accelerate and will spur more independent producers of the content. Internet was supposed to be a communication medium, delivering a cost effective and convenient way to to share data. One way or another, Aereo ruling will strike back legacy companies in the ways that they have not anticipated.

about a month ago
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Meet Carla Shroder's New Favorite GUI-Textmode Hybrid Shell, Xiki

Trachman Ho.. hum (176 comments)

There is no Xiki yet. The link merely represents link to the kickstarter and this is fundraising article. Good audience, and insipirational idea how to kicstart your own project using slashdot audience.

about a month ago
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Supreme Court Rules Cell Phones Can't Be Searched Without a Warrant

Trachman Re:Double speak (249 comments)

Not according to the Snowden leaks and subsequent disclosures. They search it, they copy and catalog your contact lists and all other data. Please read again, but all the cellphone data and communications is currently being "backed up". How about police using microphone on your iphone to listen to you? As strange as it sounds it may be infringing third amendment, which says that you do no need to quarter uniformed people (no need to quarter the troops). Using the same logic it is not fair that somebody would be using your own assets against you.

about a month ago
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Supreme Court Rules Cell Phones Can't Be Searched Without a Warrant

Trachman Double speak (249 comments)

I think that we are getting deeper into the woods and Supreme Court can actually keep two opposing concepts in mind at the time and be ok with it. Supreme court decision covers police and says that police cannot spy on cellphone owners. Can somebody explain, if, then NSA, FBI, CIA, DHS, TSA, DIA and thousands of other agencies can continue spying? What if policeman will call his colleague at DEA, FBI and will ask for data: happens all the times. What about the usual process, where DIA employee working with NSA data while spying on US people will give a tip to local police to check "that person". Also, does the ruling cover only cellphones? What about the rest of devices, such as desktops, tablets etc. Ruling says that other devices are covered. The outcome is that spying and collection will continue as it has continued. People who have privacy concerns will be pacified with this ruling. Finest example of doublespeak and doublethink.

about a month ago
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Supreme Court Rules Against Aereo Streaming Service

Trachman Cut that cable, cut it now! (484 comments)

Heaven forbid the big 3 Luddite networks, ABC, CBS, and NBC go out of business, so people have to keep paying ridiculous fees for garbage channels? Big dinosaur companies still trying to be relevant with their outdated overpriced business structure. Big isp's getting paid by advertisers and being paid by subscribers, in my view, if someone subscribes to a service there should be ZERO advertisements. FCC and Supreme Court work hand in hand to stifle innovation and keep the fatcats of America in power. Here is the thing: SC can issue as many rulings as they want, the younger generation is not getting hooked on the cable as fast at someone might want to. This is the process that will only accelerate after the ruling, because wittier alternatives will pop up. In the future, ABC, CBS, NBC and others will be analyzing in the and will damn this date when they received what they think is a favorable ruling.

about a month ago
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Google's Nest Buys Home Monitoring Camera Company Dropcam

Trachman Nest's promise is a pinky promise (82 comments)

Legally, Matt Roger's promise is worthless. If google owns nest, then everything, all the assets, including chairs, notes and employee ideas are also owned by google. In addition, to that sooner or later such company will be financially consolidated to google consolidated financial statements. Consolidated financial statements are often linked to Company's general ledger, which often is managed by the same enterprise system which also records the sales. Sales recording system will all the customer information. Nest's promise is a pinky promise.

about a month and a half ago
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Google's Nest Buys Home Monitoring Camera Company Dropcam

Trachman I have closed my Gmail and Hotmail accounts (82 comments)

I did closed my "free" email accounts. I cant believe that Google et al. expects that not only we will let somebody else to control thermostat in our home but also install google cameras and google TV's on our refrigerators and other "things". Trust once lost can never be un-broken. I know that I am a minority, but I still cannot comprehend how so many people are ok with so much intrusion to the privacy. All of the house controls and security can and should be done without service providers, if any, knowing their customers.

about a month and a half ago
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NADA Is Terrified of Tesla

Trachman Stealerships (455 comments)

There is a reason dealerships are popularly referred to as stealer-ships. While people there are trying to make money, the selling practices are universally despised and not liked by many. As such, I say that we should welcome Tesla and all other manufacturers. The more the merrier. Dealerships are welcome to compete with the quality of their service in free market

about a month and a half ago
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Teaching Creationism As Science Now Banned In Britain's Schools

Trachman Very surprising (649 comments)

Very surprising to hear from UK government where the government actually is insisting on truth. The same day UK government cheekily explains that total surveillance is absolutely legal. I wish somebody could explain and reconcile these extremities, those instances where UK Government is randomly making pro-humanity and anti-humanity moves.

about a month and a half ago
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Tesla Releases Electric Car Patents To the Public

Trachman Briliant move (211 comments)

The easy way for Tesla to reaffirm their commitment to open source and innovation is to, specifically, allow those patents in question lapse by not to paying renewal fee. So how exactly shareholders will react? Old fashioned approach is that more competition is not good for the entity. However, Tesla realizes that freedom and liberty to create is so much more powerful, that additional entrants to the electric car industry will expand the infrastructure required to charge the cars, and, eventually, Tesla will win not by competing with others but by working and partnering with others. Remover restrictions, think outside the box and let others do the same, share success and support others and very soon you will see that everyone around you, including yourself, are incredibly successful and prosperous.

about 1 month ago
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A Quadcopter Development Platform (Video)

Trachman Wait. Drone diy kits will be banned (30 comments)

Just wait a little bit. I can smell that very soon there will be initiatives to regulate drones in the same way they want to regulate 3D printers For those who have not seen here is the link with impressive drone model, all DIY, http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...

about 2 months ago
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Geothermal Heat Contributing To West Antarctic Ice Sheet Melting

Trachman And who will be pushing the accelerator (387 comments)

I am siding with those that the climate changes. In my opinion it does. If CO2 curbing means more direct taxes on me, then I am against it.

about 2 months ago

Submissions

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Verizon Rewards Customers for Their Data

Trachman Trachman writes  |  about two weeks ago

Trachman (3499895) writes "Communication companies saw valuable data and have finally figured out how to monetize. For a token compensation (not even a cash money) of "10,000" points people will be giving away another source of information about themselves.

Should we expect that ISP's will soon start offering one or two percent discount in exchange for giving away your internet searches."

Link to Original Source
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Magnetic Field of Earth Weakening a Sign Poles Are Flipping

Trachman Trachman writes  |  about three weeks ago

Trachman (3499895) writes "The magnetic field of Earth is weakening more rapidly than many scientists thought it would, a sign that Earth’s magnetic poles might flip within a few hundred years as opposed to thousands of years. Data collected from Swarm, the collective name for three European Space Agency (ESA) satellites, confirms that Earth’s magnetic field is weakening, something which has led to many past switches in Earth’s magnetic poles.Deep ocean core studies have confirmed, according to NASA, that the Earth’s magnetic poles reverse on a relatively frequent basis. They usually switch anywhere from 200,000 to 300,000 years. As it has been 700,000 years or so since a flip has taken place, Earth is overdue for one. The weakening magnetic field might be a sign that the switch will occur sooner, rather than later. Scientists, according to a report by LiveScience, had thought that Earth’s magnetic field was weakening by about five percent every hundred years. At that rate, they calculated that a flip in the Earth’s magnetic fields would not happen for around another 2,000 years. However, the new data from Swarm indicates that Earth’s magnetic field is actually currently weakening at a rate of five percent every decade instead of century. That rate is 10 times faster than the scientists had allowed for in their calculations about when the next flip would happen. That being said, we know that the Earth's magnetic field is primary protecting shield from cosmic particles and, consequently, is a primary factor to the Earth's temperature.

My Scoop is following: At the risk of being not popular here at Slashdot I dare to ask: can magnetic field changes and climate changes be connected and analyzed in concert?"

Link to Original Source
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Airport Security will not allow to have discharged electronic device. What's nex

Trachman Trachman writes  |  about a month ago

Trachman (3499895) writes "Latest news to the travelers flying into the US: you will discover that getting through security will become even more time-consuming and stressful. The US Transport Security Administration revealed on Sunday that enhanced security procedures on flights coming to the US now include not allowing uncharged cell phones and other devices onto planes.

Let's think about it. In the next decade some perverted heads will announce anal and vaginal devices as the next transportation threat. How far Americans are willing to go, how many liberties to lose for the sense of security."

Link to Original Source
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Raging hockey fans destroed an LAPD drone last night. How?

Trachman Trachman writes  |  about a month and a half ago

Trachman (3499895) writes "Multiple videos have been posted online showing what uploaders described as hockey fans destroying a Los Angeles Police Department drone outside the Staples Center Friday night after the LA Kings won the NHLâ(TM)s Stanley Cup. Riot police were called in to break up what the LA Times described as a âoemeleeâ outside the arena following the Kingâ(TM)s victory over the New York Rangers. In one clip posted online, a drone can be seen hovering over the crowd of hockey fans before it was knocked out of the sky by people throwing shoes and clothing. The question: what was the antidrone weapon?"
Link to Original Source
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So what and how exactly "big brother" is monitoring at work

Trachman Trachman writes  |  about 4 months ago

Trachman (3499895) writes "Many of us working in corporations of medium and larger size are accustomed to periodic reminders that there is zero privacy on what employees do on their computers. There is a usual clause that incidental (infrequent) use is OK.

So what exactly is being monitored: I know that emails stay for ever, that we all know. Same with company provided chats and phone calls. I know that files on the servers monitor various "meta-data", such as when accessed, modified and deleted and keeps versions of data (every company can have different holding period).

To further narrow and scope the question, let's excluding those clear cut cases where someone is working after official warning, or complained (for whatever reason) to HR, or was specifically reported after complain.

Let's also scope out the work specific applications where the user activity is logged for audit and accountability purposes.

That leaves browser, P2P software (such as Skype), music listened over the work computer.

So the question is what are the common practices of reviewing the internet browsing and internet activities?

P.S. Once I worked within the audit team in top notch institution in, let's put it that way, not a very friendly environment and 100% of the calls were listened. My girlfriend called to tell me to share some very intimate news. I still blush when remember and realize that there were additional ears listening my telephone conversation."
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Karma is a bitch - Garbage disposed years ago is interfering with the search

Trachman Trachman writes  |  about 4 months ago

Trachman (3499895) writes ""Karma is a bitch" . That is a old and well worn cliche. But Malaysia airlines flight MH370 is a reincarnation and living proof of the principle. Garbage has been thrown away years ago, had it not been disposed into the ocean it, the Indian ocean, would have been much more pristine without distracting objects in the water and the plane would have been recovered and, who knows, maybe even rescued earlier."
Link to Original Source
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Obama to call for end to NSA's bulk phone data collection, version 2.0

Trachman Trachman writes  |  about 4 months ago

Trachman (3499895) writes "While we see the reports that current administration will have other than NSA organization collecting the phone, discussion completely leaves multiple other methods of data gathering in place (text messages, internet email, as well as phone data gathered by non-NSA agencies as well as "friendly" governments who are looking for "terrorists". In fact, NSA phone data gathering process has multiple redundant alternatives.

How about reaffirming people's rights to their privacy? Will it happen in our lifetime?"

Link to Original Source
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US intelligence officials to monitor federal employees with clearances

Trachman Trachman writes  |  about 5 months ago

Trachman (3499895) writes "We are going to the next level. The people who are entrusted with the state secrets will now have be officially under automated surveillance. Sounds fair? Except that all those with the clearances have been monitored in the past albeit in less organized way. For decades employees have been taught to snitch on each other by reporting "suspicious" behavior in any self respecting organization, private or state funded. So it does not appear to illogical, in fact, quite a reasonable justifications for 5 million or so of people with clearance to completely and officially lose their privacy, right? So who knows, perhaps in ten years when federal employee tracking will be "accepted social norm", there will be a new push (under whatever the issue of the day) called "entrusted citizen and taxpayer". In order to be deemed to be trusted citizen and taxpayer one will be subjected to the scrutiny currently extended to the federal security apparatus employees. The icing of the cake is the comment made by the program leaders : “The system only works well, if it has thoughtful, educated, careful human beings behind it” . I am happy to remind that this a less romantic quote of Soviet Cheka (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/%D0%A7%D0%9A), who have described themselves as patriots with flaming heart and cold mind."
Link to Original Source
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How Covert Agents Infiltrate the Internet to Manipulate, Deceive, and Destroy

Trachman Trachman writes  |  about 5 months ago

Trachman (3499895) writes "One of the many pressing and interesting stories that remains to be told from the Snowden archive is how western intelligence agencies are attempting to manipulate and control online discourse with extreme tactics of deception and reputation-destruction. It’s time to tell a chunk of that story, complete with the relevant documents.

Among the core self-identified purposes of (Joint Threat Research Intelligence Group) — JTRIG are two tactics: (1) to inject all sorts of false material onto the internet in order to destroy the reputation of its targets; and (2) to use social sciences and other techniques to manipulate online discourse and activism to generate outcomes it considers desirable.

Continued at:
https://firstlook.org/theinter..."

Link to Original Source
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TSA wants to count your bitcoins

Trachman Trachman writes  |  about 5 months ago

Trachman (3499895) writes "Here is the nice youtube podcast at: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v... , where the passenger was detained because most likely TSA suspected him of the possession of physical Bitcoin coins.

Original 25 BTC coins are indeed worth approx $15,000 each now, and obviously TSA heard something about BTC, but they are clearly ill-informed about it.

If you carry a passport of the wrong nation, such as Cuba, Syria, Sudan, Algeria etc, you are then, automatically subjected for enhanced body search/pat down. It looks like there is a new "risk factor" — Bitcoin, even if it is a Bitcoin logo on your t-shirt or a Bitcoin pin.

We can only speculate on what will happen to the innocent passenger who will be the first one to bring a spent/used bitcoin: will TSA want check it?

What will happen if one prints out the bitcoin on paper and encrypts it? Will there be a requirement to report it?"

Link to Original Source
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Black hole in the layman's terms

Trachman Trachman writes  |  about 5 months ago

Trachman (3499895) writes "National Geographic in March 2014 edition has excellent article about black holes, authored by Michael Finkel. http://ngm.nationalgeographic.... . This is by far one of the best and clearest articles about the black holes, without confusing mathematical formulas or complicated concepts. One hypothesis is very logical " ... At the center of a black hole is a conundrum called a singularity". Article hypothesizes that singularity is a dimension-less point in space. "... Singularities are imagined to be extremely tiny. Beyond tiny: Enlarge a singularity a trillion trillion times, and the world’s most powerful microscope wouldn’t come close to seeing it. But something is there, at least in a mathematical sense. Something not just small but also unimaginably heavy. "

Nevertheless, black hole theories are full of contradictions (not that I am implying a lack of efforts to clarify them). For example, if photons do not have mass then how exactly mass-less photons are impacted by gravity and how come heavy objects bend light and why light cannot escape black holes?

Has anyone noticed any other logical dichotomies that beg for a clearer answer and that would, hopefully, will lead to new and ingenious experiments helping to understand the universe around us?"

Link to Original Source
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Nations Largest Cocaine Smuggler Revealed: The DEA

Trachman Trachman writes  |  about 7 months ago

Trachman (3499895) writes "An investigation conducted in Mexico found the American government allowed that country’s largest drug cartel, Sinaloa, to operate without fear of persecution, effectively making DEA the largest cocaine supplier in the USA, controlling 80% of the market. DEA/ATF working together have also supplied weapons to Sinaloa to reduce competition, as we remember from ATF gunwalking scandal http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ATF_gunwalking_scandal.

The business has been elevated to the next level when DEA has started working together with NSA to weed out competition by parallel construction of incriminating evidence http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parallel_construction."

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