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Comments

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[Big Bad] Yahoo Takes on The Big Bad Government

schwit1 Lavabit was private, Yahoo is not (1 comments)

If Yahoo execs tried to do a Lavabit they would have been ousted and probably criminally charged.

yesterday
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New Global Plan Would Crack Down On Corporate Tax Avoidance

schwit1 Re:Most taxes are legalized theft (311 comments)

... in any way that gets them reelected.

A bit closer to reality.

2 days ago
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U.S. Senator: All Cops Should Wear Cameras

schwit1 Can we stop using the word 'TAPE' (643 comments)

It's 2014 and nobody uses tape to record. Recorded data should be sent to a remote data store that the defendants, PD and DA have read only access to.

about three weeks ago
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U.S. Senator: All Cops Should Wear Cameras

schwit1 Re:One rule (643 comments)

I agree, but let's start with the IRS on this one. The feds have had data retention rules in place for many years but if the DA refuses to prosecute the guilty it's a toothless rule.

about three weeks ago
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The Flight of Gifted Engineers From NASA

schwit1 Another sign NASA is circling the drain ... (160 comments)

NASA headquarters staff votes to unionize.
http://www.ifpte.org/news/deta...

Anyone with the slightest objectivity knows that the working conditions for federal employees in Washington is glorious, with pay about double what everyone else in the country makes and benefits far exceeding even the best private packages. In addition, the hours are great and just slightly longer than what my generation would have called bankers’ hours. Moreover, if I can be blunt, these engineers are mostly paper pushers. They are not the one’s designing and building anything that might fly in space. Their only reason to unionize now is because they see a threat to their cushy jobs with the advent of private space and are organizing to secure their unneeded positions.

about a month ago
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Judge: US Search Warrants Apply To Overseas Computers

schwit1 What if Ireland seized the data? (502 comments)

And told the US courts that it must make its request through them.

about a month and a half ago
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Social Security Administration Joins Other Agencies With $300M "IT Boondoggle"

schwit1 Re:dear us govt (144 comments)

Lockheed Martin is not the free market when it comes to government. They are closer to a lamprey.

about 2 months ago
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Verizon's Accidental Mea Culpa

schwit1 Re:Connect with a VPN (390 comments)

Not thanks to AT&T. The thanks goes to Congress and the President that made the laws permitting forced arbitration.

about a month ago
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New York State Proposes Sweeping Bitcoin Regulations

schwit1 Does New York have the authority to do this? (121 comments)

What could go wrong if 50 states and the feds decide on differing, possibly conflicting regulations. But maybe that's the point - regulate them into obscurity.

about 2 months ago
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Malaysian Passenger Plane Reportedly Shot Down Over Ukraine

schwit1 Re:Ah. (752 comments)

Do we know it's a MANPAD and not an S-300? The plane was probably at ~40,000ft.

http://www.globalsecurity.org/...
max range=6000m. That's only half the distance to cruising altitude.

about 2 months ago
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Why the FCC Is Likely To Ignore Net Neutrality Comments and Listen To ISPs

schwit1 FCC doesn't have a mandate to answer to the public (140 comments)

The FCC is supposed to answer to Congress. Congress makes the laws that define the scope of FCC responsibilities. The FCC should only listen to the public as it pertains to regulated entities doing something wrong or the FCC not doing its job.

I do agree that the FCC head should never be a shill for the regulated industries.

about 2 months ago
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97% of U.S. Banks Allow Clickjacking Fraud. 44% Don't Even Use SSL.

schwit1 What banks or CUs did not fail? (2 comments)

This should be public knowledge so users can vote with their feet.

about 2 months ago
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FCC Approves Subsidy Plan to Upgrade School and Library Networks

schwit1 How is this the FCC's business? (70 comments)

Federal agencies should regulate.
Congress should subsidize.

about 2 months ago

Submissions

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Clemson is requiring students & faculty to complete survey of sexual history

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  11 hours ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "Failure to complete the course will be a violation of the “Student Code of Conduct, General Student Regulation 8: Failure to Comply with Official Request.”"
Link to Original Source
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A new impact crater on the Moon

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  yesterday

schwit1 (797399) writes "Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter has confirmed the creation of a new crater on the Moon, the impact flash of which was spotted when it happened on September 11, 2013.

The before and after images not only identify the new ~112 foot wide crater, they also show ejecta effects surrounding the crater."
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NASA has chosen Boeing and SpaceX to build manned spacecraft

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  2 days ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "The competition heats up: NASA has made a decision and has chosen two companies to ferry astronauts to and from ISS, and those companies are Boeing and SpaceX. Some quick details from NASA here.

This is a reasonable political and economic decision. It confirms that SpaceX is ready to go and gives the company the opportunity to finish the job, while also giving Boeing the chance to show that it can compete while also giving that pork to congressional districts.

Some details: After NASA has certified that each company has successfully built its spacecraft they will have then fly anywhere from four to six missions. The certification process will be step-by-step, similar to the methods used in the cargo contracts, and will involve five milestones. They will be paid incrementally as they meet these milestones.

One milestone will be a manned flight to ISS, with one NASA astronaut on board.

One more detail. Boeing will receive $4.2 billion while SpaceX will get $2.6 billion. These awards were based on what the companies proposed and requested."
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The next step in civil forfeitures

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  2 days ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "Theft by government: Having broken no law, a Philadelphia husband and wife were evicted from their home and the house taken from them by the DA’s office, which stood to personally profit from the confiscation.

The nightmare began when police showed up at the house and arrested their 22-year-old son, Yianni, on drug charges — $40 worth of heroin. Authorities say he was selling drugs out of the home. The Sourvelises say they had no knowledge of any involvement their son might have had with drugs.

A month-and-a-half later police came back — this time to seize their house, forcing the Sourvelises and their children out on the street that day. Authorities came with the electric company in tow to turn off the power and even began locking the doors with screws, the Sourvelises say. Authorities won’t comment on the exact circumstances because of pending litigation regarding the case.

Police and prosecutors came armed with a lawsuit against the house itself. It was being forfeited and transferred to the custody of the Philadelphia District Attorney. Authorities said the house was tied to illegal drugs and therefore subject to civil forfeiture. In two years, nearly 500 families in Philadelphia had their homes or cars taken away by city officials, according to records from Pennsylvania’s attorney general.

This quote from later in the article is also key: “The very authorities taking the property appear to be profiting from it, according to Pennsylvania state records.”"
Link to Original Source

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Extent of Antarctic sea ice reaches record levels

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  3 days ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "Scientists have declared a new record has been set for the extent of Antarctic sea ice since records began. Satellite imagery reveals an area of about 20 million square kilometers covered by sea ice around the Antarctic continent. Jan Lieser from the Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre (CRC) said the discovery was made two days ago.

"Thirty-five years ago the first satellites went up which were reliably telling us what area, two dimensional area, of sea ice was covered and we've never seen that before, that much area."

Link to Original Source
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Refusing TSA sex abuse

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  3 days ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "Does this make you feel safer? The TSA last weekend tried to body search an individual after he had completed his flight. The man refused, and walked away.

Last Saturday, Kahler Nygard took a Spirit Airlines flight to Denver to visit with friends. When he departed from Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, Transportation Security Administration agents patted him down and allowed him to board his flight. When the plane landed, he was singled out and ordered to exit before the other passengers. After he exited the aircraft, TSA agents approached Nygard and demanded that he go through an additional pat-down and a screening of his luggage for explosive materials.

He had already arrived safely at his destination in Denver and simply wanted to leave the airport. After an argument, which can be seen in the above video [embedded below the fold], Nygard refused the pat-down, despite the fact that TSA agents claimed that he would be arrested if he did not comply, and exited the airport without incident. Nygard flew back to Minnesota yesterday without any complications.

Watch the video below the fold to see him successfully refuse to comply with these fascist thugs and leave the airport. They had no justification for detaining him, he had broken no laws, and so they could not force him to comply. He asks politely “Am I being detained? Is that an order or a request?” When it is clear that it is only a request he says he is leaving and walks away.

Had they tried to detain him at that point he would have easily won a court suit for false arrest and police abuse.

Note that this incident illustrates two things. First, TSA security is a joke. This man was on their so-called “no-fly” list (for no justifiable reason) but they still failed to screen him properly before his flight. Second, their attempt to screen him after his flight shows us that airport safety has nothing to do with the TSA’s reason for existing. The TSA serves as a tool of the government to destroy our freedoms and to establish the power of government over our lives. We should stop submitting to this abuse, and demand that it end."

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Despite Obama's Pledge to Curb It, NSA Mass Surveillance Wins Rubber Stamp

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  4 days ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "The Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court approved the Justice Department's request for another 90-day extension of the National Security Agency's controversial mass surveillance program, exposed publicly last summer by Edward Snowden and authorized under Section 215 of the post-9/11 Patriot Act. The spying authority is next set to expire on Dec. 5.

The extension marks the third of its kind since President Obama pledged in January to reform how the NSA spies on Americans during a major policy speech delivered amid withering scrutiny of the nation's intelligence-gathering practices."

Link to Original Source
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Universal Big Bang lithium deficit confirmed

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  about a week ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "New data from a globular cluster in nearby dwarf galaxy has confirmed that the deficit of lithium that astronomers have found in the Milky Way also exists in other galaxies.

According to the Big Bang theory, the amount of lithium in the universe should be two or three times more than it is. This result shows that the deficit exists outside the Milky Way, which suggests strongly that something significant is wrong with the Big Bang theory."
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Who is buried in the largest tomb ever found in northern Greece?

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  about a week ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "Excitement continues to build as archeologists dig deeper into a massive tomb discovered two years ago in northern Greece.

This past weekend the excavation team, led by Greek archaeologist Katerina Peristeri, announced the discovery of two elegant caryatids—large marble columns sculpted in the shape of women with outstretched arms—that may have been intended to bar intruders from entering the tomb’s main room. “I don’t know of anything quite like them,” says Philip Freeman, a professor of classics at Luther College in Decorah, Iowa.

The curly-haired caryatids are just part of the tomb’s remarkable furnishings. Guarding the door as sentinels were a pair of carved stone sphinxes, mythological creatures with the body of a lion and the head of a human. And when archaeologists finally entered the antechamber, they discovered faded remnants of frescoes as well as a mosaic floor made of white marble pieces inlaid in a red background.

Archeologists believe this tomb is connected somehow to Alexander the Great and could very well be the burial site of one of his relatives or close allies. They will not know more until they actually enter the tomb."

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Salt Doesn't Cause High Blood Pressure?

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  about a week ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "Sodium has long been labeled the blood-pressure bogeyman. But are we giving salt a fair shake?

A new study published in the American Journal of Hypertension analyzed data from 8,670 French adults and found that salt consumption wasn’t associated with systolic blood pressure in either men or women after controlling for factors like age.

Why not? One explanation, the authors write, is that the link we all assume between salt and blood pressure is “overstated” and “more complex than once believed.” It should be noted, however, that even though the study found no statistically significant association between blood pressure and sodium in the diet, those patients who were hypertensive consumed significantly more salt than those without hypertension—suggesting, as other research has, that salt affects people differently.

As for the factors that did seem to influence blood pressure, alcohol consumption, age, and most of all BMI were strongly linked to a rise. Eating more fruits and vegetables was significantly linked to a drop."

Link to Original Source
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Scientists: 'Extreme' solar storm heading to Earth

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  about a week ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "An extreme solar flare is blasting its way to Earth and could mess up some power grids, satellites and radio transmissions, scientists say.

It's been several years since Earth has had a solar storm of this size coming from sunspots smack in the middle of the sun, said Tom Berger, director of the Space Weather Prediction Center in Boulder, Colorado.

Solar storms happen often, especially during peaks in the solar cycle, and don't directly harm people. But what makes this one more worrisome is its location on the sun along with its strength, he said."

Link to Original Source
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One of John Franklin's lost ships found?

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  about a week ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "A Canadian expedition thinks it has located one of the ships from John Franklin’s lost 1845 Arctic expedition.

The Canadian government began searching for Franklin’s ships in 2008 as part of a strategy to assert Canada’s sovereignty over the Northwest Passage, which has recently become accessible to shipping because of melting Arctic ice. Expedition sonar images from the waters of Victoria Strait, just off King William Island, clearly show the wreckage of a ship on the ocean floor.

"
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Apple Said to Negotiate Deep Payments Discounts from Big Banks

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  about two weeks ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "Apple is including some sort of automatic credit card payment system with the iPhone 6. It's using some security feature of the phone and system to negotiate a cheaper transaction fee.

Basically, there are two kinds of credit card transactions: card-present, and card-not-present. The former is cheaper because there's less risk of fraud. The article says that Apple has negotiated the card-present rate for its iPhone payment system, even though the card is not present. Presumably, this is because of some other security features that reduce the risk of fraud."

Link to Original Source
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The first suspension bridge connecting mountain peaks

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  about two weeks ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "Switzerland is about to open the first suspension bridge ever built between two mountain peaks.

The bridge, suspended 9,700ft in the air, will also have a partial glass floor to allow visitors a once in a lifetime view of the 6,500ft drop between the Glacier 3000 and Scex Rouge.

It is scheduled to open in November, and is being built in an effort to attract more tourists to the Swiss Alps."

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Electrified car sales stall as buyers back away from hybrids

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  about two weeks ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "Sales of electrified vehicles in the United States have slowed dramatically in the last year, causing concern that the emerging technology has lost its charge. The whole automobile market has grown. We're not seeing electric vehicles as part of that growth says Jessica Caldwell, Edmunds senior analyst

"This was a market that was supposed to grow, relatively rapidly, as people embraced these new technologies and more brands began selling these models,” said Edmunds senior analyst Jessica Caldwell. “That hasn’t happened.”"

Link to Original Source
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Army can't track spending on $4 billion system to track spending

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  about two weeks ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "Our government in action: An inspector general has found that the Army was unable to track the spending on a project designed to help the Army track spending.

As of this February, the Army had spent $725.7 million on the system, which is ultimately expected to cost about $4.3 billion. The problem, according to the IG, is that the Army has failed to comply with a variety of federal laws that require agencies to standardize reporting and prepare auditable financial statements. “This occurred because DOD and Army management did not have adequate controls, including procedures and annual reviews, in place to ensure GCSS-Army compliance with Treasury and DOD guidance,” the IG report concludes.

"
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New York dumps NASA contract because of cost overruns

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  about two weeks ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "New York Mayor de Blasio has fired a team of NASA consultants that had been hired by the previous mayor to lead the overhaul of the city’s 911 system after costs skyrocketed and the project fell far behind schedule.

Up to 20 NASA consultants had spent the past two years working on the project, at average annual salaries of $250,000. They’ve conducted technical designs for new radios and computer dispatch systems. That technology will eventually link police, FDNY and emergency medical system dispatchers and field units to the city’s main emergency call center in downtown Brooklyn, and to a still-unfinished backup call center in the Bronx.

City officials did not say they were dissatisfied with NASA’s performance. They simply believe the work can be done cheaper in-house.

Why does this sound familiar?"

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Battle of the heavy lift rockets

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  about three weeks ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "Check out this very detailed and informative look at unstated competiton between NASA’s SLS rocket and SpaceX’s heavy lift rocket plans that are even more powerful than the Falcon Heavy.

Key quote: "It is clear SpaceX envisions a rocket far more powerful than even the fully evolved Block 2 SLS – a NASA rocket that isn’t set to be launched until the 2030s."

The SpaceX rocket hinges on whether the company can successfully build its new Raptor engine. If they do, they will have their heavy lift rocket in the air and functioning far sooner than NASA, and for far far far less money."
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Opportunity to get a reboot

schwit1 schwit1 writes  |  about three weeks ago

schwit1 (797399) writes "Because of an increasing number of computer resets on the Mars rover Opportunity, engineers plan to reformat the rover’s computer.

The resets, including a dozen this month, interfere with the rover’s planned science activities, even though recovery from each incident is completed within a day or two.

Flash memory retains data even when power is off. It is the type used for storing photos and songs on smart phones or digital cameras, among many other uses. Individual cells within a flash memory sector can wear out from repeated use. Reformatting clears the memory while identifying bad cells and flagging them to be avoided.

Obviously there is a risk, though small, that this action will not work and the mission will end here."

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