Rahat and his buddy are very good at quickly switching places in the driver's seat. They put this unusual talent to good use by driving to fast food places and making the drive-up workers think they are hallucinating.
The Earth is round, and maps are flat. While we have may mapped nearly every inch of our world, figuring out how to translate that information from three dimensions to two remains a problem. (more…)
The Metadata+ app which tracks U.S. military drone strikes by was created by Josh Begley, research editor for The Intercept. Begley changed its name from Drones+ after it was rejected as "objectionable" by Apple five times. (more…)
I cheered the news that the Federal Trade Commission was suing Roca Labs, the sleazy "weight-loss" company that sold people industrial food thickeners as "non-surgical gastric bypasses" and made them sign contracts promising not to post about any negative experiences they after trying the scammy, high-priced "treatment." (more…)
Every time the Bureau wants to spy on someone whose communications are encrypted, they just hack them.
The FBI has made a huge deal out of wanting back doors in encryption -- back doors that could be exploited by dirty cops, by crooks, by foreign spies -- to make their jobs easier. But in every single case where the FBI has wanted to eavesdrop on a suspect, they've just deployed one of their many dirty tricks to compromise their target's computer.
Sometimes, they hack a website to serve malware to everyone who visits it. In one case, the Bureau publicly asked a judge for permission to sneak a rootkit onto a target's computer so that they could covertly operate its camera and mic. The judge turned them down, but they may have done it anyway through one of the many secret warrant processes available to them.
They really like the idea of forcing tech companies to serve poisoned updates that contain malware, a measure that would reduce the rate at which people installed vital security updates. If this were to become common, responsible tech companies might adopt binary transparency to make it useless.
And as the Washington Post recently reported, an Obama administration working group exploring possible approaches tech companies might use to let law enforcement unlock encrypted communications came up with one that involves the targeted installation of malware — through automatic updates. “Virtually all consumer devices include the capability to remotely download and install updates to their operating system and applications,” the task force wrote. Law enforcement would use a “lawful process” to force tech companies to “use their remote update capability to insert law enforcement software into a targeted device.” That malware would then “enable far-reaching access to and control of the targeted device.” The Post did not report who came up with that idea, or whether it was already in use. And little is known about how much access the agency has to the extensive hacking capabilities developed by other government agencies, especially the National Security Agency.
THE BIG SECRET THAT MAKES THE FBI’S ANTI-ENCRYPTION CAMPAIGN A BIG LIE [Jenna McLaughlin/The Intercept]
Atheism needs feminism. Heck, it needs to be more socially conscious about everything.
He also provides an excellent list of rational atheist/feminist youtube channels.
The Breakfast Club
The Atheist Voice
David Landon Cole
The Messianic Manic
The Atheist Experience
I took a look at some of them (I’ll work my way through the list eventually), and unsurprisingly…their comment sections, including that of the video above by Steve Shives, are full of flaming asshats who precisely prove their point for them. Lewis’ Law strikes again!
I should probably do some more youtube stuff. I’ve tried a few times, and had to run screaming from the revolting vileness of the average commenter.
Someone is unhappy that scientists have found water on Mars. It’s Rush Limbaugh. As he says, he’s always right, and he has seen the truth.
…this news that there is flowing water on Mars is somehow going to find its way into a technique to advance the leftist agenda.
Yep, he caught us. It’s entirely true. Leftists are planning to use facts, science, and evidence to promote a reality-based agenda.
Also omitted is the very high rate of suicide by firearm in Switzerland.
"Switzerland’s high rate of gun ownership is tied to the fact that it does not have a standing army so virtually every male citizen is conscripted into the militia where they receive comprehensive weapons training. Since they are a militia, they keep their government issued weapons (without ammunition) at home. Therefore, many of the guns in Swiss homes were issued to them by the government and most Swiss gun owners are highly trained in gun safety...Addendum:
And with a law worthy of Orwell’s worst nightmare, every gun in Switzerland is registered by the
Unless those two laughing women on the bicycles are transporting those weapons to a gun show or are members of the militia reporting for duty (in which cases the guns must not be loaded) or they are security personnel licensed to guard Roger Federer, they are probably breaking the law. “Open carry,” as we understand it in the United States, is only allowed in those very limited circumstances...
You can see that the Swiss militia inculcates the idea of gun ownership as a responsibility to protect the nation while to the American gun proliferation advocates, the reason for the 2nd Amendment is to protect the citizens from the government."
“In Switzerland, firearms are like pesticides in developing countries. They are accessible,” Ajdacic-Gross explained. “Many suicides are impulsive. In other words, the decision is taken very quickly.”
At such moments, availability – or a lack of it – is crucial. “If somebody has to make a lot of effort to find something that will kill them, that’s a strong preventative factor.”
Zeek the monkey escaped his owner's home in a suburb of Orlando, Florida. Within hours after escaping, he accomplished a lot. He chewed on a neighbor's mail, pulled molding off a police car, and was found rocking back and forth on a street sign.
As funny as this headline is, Jesus Christ what is wrong with people that they think it's cool to keep a goddamned monkey as a household pet? Rocking back and forth like that sounds to me like a sign the poor little primate was experiencing stress.
What's worse, this is not the first time Zeek has escaped. In 2012, this happened more than once with the same owner and the same captive wild animal. Why is this man still allowed to keep this highly intelligent creature in his home? Because Florida, I guess.
He was picked up by the Sanford police and safely transported to his owner, according to the police department's Facebook page:
Shortly after 8:00 a.m., we received a call from a Sanford resident that lives in the Hidden Lakes subdivision reporting that a monkey was eating mail out of a mailbox. When we arrived to help the monkey, later identified at Zeek, decided to pull off molding from one of our patrol cars. We were able to distract Zeek with a bottle of water until his owner came and retrieved him.
“Zeek had a little fun with our patrol car,” the police department reported, with this video.
John Mogan, 28, and Ashley Duboe, 24, were arrested in connection with an Ohio bank robbery after Mogan posted a series of photos of himself playing with a thick wad of cash. In one photo, he pretends the money is a phone. In another photo, he is biting the money.
The Smoking Gun has more:
Mogan is a convicted felon who was just released from prison after serving about five years for robbing a bank in Lancaster, a city 20 miles east of Ashville. A female accomplice was also arrested in connection with Mogan's July 2010 robbery of a Fairfield National Bank branch.
Mogan began serving a three-year parole term immediately following his July 19 release from an Ohio state lockup. The heavily tattooed Mogan has the phrases “Loyalty’s Thin” and “Betrayal’s Thick” on opposite cheeks.
A foolish motorist was lucky to escape unharmed after trying to kill a spider in Center Line, Michigan, with fire. At a gas pump. While pumping gas.
After spotting the terrifying creature and perhaps remembering the Internet's advice on how such things are best disposed of, he whipped out a lighter and promptly set ablaze everything in front of him. He put out the fire himself with a nearby extinguisher, but not before the pump was destroyed.
Fox News Detroit reports that he later came back to say he was sorry.
This charred fuel pump says it all. We are told his car was barely damaged from the flames. But his embarrassing mistake didn't stop the man from coming back the next day as a customer.
"He was sorry," Susan said. "He was sorry, he said he didn't know. It is just one of those things that happen - stupidity."
Adams said this serves as a reminder about being careful around gas pumps. Whether it is using a cell phone or static electricity, the smallest spark can cause a gas station fire.
It is not noted in reports whether the spider escaped immolation.
The scientists point out that RICO threats were critical to ending big tobacco's program of denying the link between cancer and smoking.
We appreciate that you are making aggressive and imaginative use of the limited tools available to you in the face of a recalcitrant Congress. One additional tool – recently proposed by Senator Sheldon Whitehouse – is a RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corrupt Organizations Act) investigation of corporations and other organizations that have knowingly deceived the American people about the risks of climate change, as a means to forestall America’s response to climate change. The actions of these organizations have been extensively documented in peerreviewed academic research (Brulle, 2013) and in recent books including: Doubt is their Product (Michaels, 2008), Climate Cover-Up (Hoggan & Littlemore, 2009), Merchants of Doubt (Oreskes & Conway, 2010), The Climate War (Pooley, 2010), and in The Climate Deception Dossiers (Union of Concerned Scientists, 2015). We strongly endorse Senator Whitehouse’s call for a RICO investigation.
The methods of these organizations are quite similar to those used earlier by the tobacco industry. A RICO investigation (1999 to 2006) played an important role in stopping the tobacco industry from continuing to deceive the American people about the dangers of smoking. If corporations in the fossil fuel industry and their supporters are guilty of the misdeeds that have been documented in books and journal articles, it is imperative that these misdeeds be stopped as soon as possible so that America and the world can get on with the critically important business of finding effective ways to restabilize the Earth’s climate, before even more lasting damage is done.
Play the video
This is so damn cute
Hovertext: We do skype together now and then.
The strictest laws are the best ones to break.
Whether you're a bona fide globe trotter or just dream of visiting parts unknown, nothing says romance and adventure quite like travel.
(By Cakes 2 Cupcakes)
So it's no wonder you see everything from wedding to baby shower cakes featuring luggage, passports, globes - even adorable map pinwheels:
(By Plum Tree Cakes)
Here's an elegant nautical take:
(By Gateaux Inc)
And now a little of everything!
(Also by Gateaux)
The handpainted map really makes this compass cake:
(By The Sugar Studio)
With so many vintage styles out there, it's fun to see this quirky modern design:
(By Beau Petit Cupcakes)
And don't you just love those colors?
Here's the cutest little aviator:
(By Little Lady Baker)
The plane! The clouds! That perfect globe! So good.
This subtle wedding style has just the right touch of glam:
(By Alma Pasteles)
And my personal favorite:
(By The People's Cake)
Those birds of paradise flowers are perfect. PERFECT, I say.
And finally, a wedding masterpiece of vintage sweetness, pastel romance, and hot air balloony, globe-y goodness:
Right? GLOBE-Y GOODNESS.
Happy Sunday, everyone!
Hovertext: I hate you! I hate you!
it’s….. it’s right there…..right where you didn’t highlight….
It isn’t just the raising of taxes and the ending of endless military spending. Ending the war on drugs would vastly reduce our prison population and law enforcement costs immensely (and would generate millions to billions in tax revenue for pot). Rebuilding the infrastructure would put thousands of people to work, pumping money into the economy (money provided by taxing the 1% and corporations and diverting from our insane military spending).
The thing about money, is it only has power when it is moving. Money being sat on by the wealthy might as well not exist. It is taken out of the economy and it only regains its power through being spent. Capitalism has to be blended with socialist and progressive programs and taxation because humans tend to hoard wealth.
This also leads to the main complaint I have about how conservatives talk about government spending. They act as though that money is being shoveled into a furnace never to be seen again. That’s the Walton family, not government spending. That money the government spends goes to people: law enforcement, emergency services, food programs, etc. That puts money in the hands of people, who then spend it,on food, homes, services and goods. If the programs benefit the poor, almost all of that money will wind up going right into the economy, immediately.
It is the opposite of trickle down, and as one would expect from trickle down’s opposite, it works.
In contrast to yesterday's post about the way the Internet is depicted in patent drawings, check out these photos of the Internet's secret actual infrastructure.
Photographer Heinrich Holtgreve's The Internet as a Place is a beautiful series of images of the deceptively banal places where the Internet's infrastructure lives -- the fiber passing through the Suez canal, the exchanges where networks talk to each other, the anonymous buildings and sewer openings that lead to dark spaces that course with data.
On a recent trip to NYC, Henrik Moltke led me on a guided tour of the sidewalks around NASDAQ, which are spraypainted with markings indicating whose fiber goes where. It's precisely because these markings are so innocuous and easy to miss that they're exciting -- a form of secret knowledge that can be discovered by anyone who chooses to see it.
His first stop was Egypt. The country is a major hub for undersea cables, 11 of which now run through the Suez Canal to connect people as far away as Germany and Malaysia. Holtgreve spent three months trying to visit places like the Cairo Internet Exchange, but no dice. Such places thrive by assuring their members of the utmost security. That means not advertising what’s inside, much less letting a photographer poke around with a Canon 5D Mark III. Even when someone would let him in, he wouldn’t always to take pictures. “I was shown around another data center in Cairo, but I wasn’t allowed to bring my camera,” he says. “They half-jokingly suspected me for being an Israeli spy.”
Still, he caught a few breaks. Holtgreve met a friendly dentist who let him photograph the Cairo exchange building from his balcony. Someone who worked for an undersea cable company gave him the GPS coordinates of a beach manhole in Alexandria where cables like SEA-ME-WE-4 and FLAG meet land. In the desert near Cairo, he photographed a warehouse owned by a major French global telecom equipment company. Hundreds of seemingly ancient antennas sat dusted with sand. “It felt like walking around Mos Eisley,” Holtgreve says.
This Is What the Internet Looks Like IRL [Laura Mallonee/Wired]
Donald Trump is lashing out at an Associated Press photographer over photos of empty chairs at a Trump speech in South Carolina. The presidential candidate is accusing the photojournalist of portraying a dishonest story through his photos.
Photographer Mic Smith covered the event in Charleston, South Carolina, on Wednesday. The photos he transmitted to the Associated Press appear to tell two different stories: one was a closeup of the front of the room, showing Trump speaking to a crowd of people seated and gathered around him: