The daily irrelevant si hoc legere scis nimium eruditionis habes Mon, 27 Mar 2017 11:26:13 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Mister Rogers Haunts Trump from Beyond the Grave Mon, 27 Mar 2017 11:26:13 +0000 [Quote:]

Thirty-four years ago, another pro-military president was making noise about cutting PBS to pay for more bombs and guns. In response to Ronald Reagan’s Cold War-era saber-rattling, legendary children’s television host Mister Rogers put together a series of (by his standards) five edgy episodes in which the characters in the “Land of Make Believe” allegorically waged their own Cold War, selling everything they valued—including their art—to build a bomb in order to protect themselves from a threat that did not actually exist. These five episodes have attained near-legendary status among Mister Rogers fans, since they were aired only once (in November of 1983) and then were pulled from syndication and disappeared. All searches for the tapes proved fruitless, and they were widely presumed to be lost.

At least, they were presumed to be lost until last week. Mysteriously, two of the five missing episodes were posted in their entirety to YouTube last Monday. The user who did so, under the name TROG SLEEP NOW, has posted no other videos or other material, has not commented on any other videos on the site, and doesn’t even have a profile picture. Thus far, there is no indication as to who this person is or how they got the missing tapes. The timing certainly appears to be a comment on Donald Trump’s budget, however, while Mister Rogers (who died in 2003) almost seems to be addressing himself directly to the President at some points in the programs:

Rules are very, very important. Not just for games but for all things. Even big things like countries. Countries have to have rules to protect people, too. And someday you’ll be helping to make the rules for your country. I trust that you’ll make the best kind you know how.

Maybe the other three episodes, the ones that are still missing, have Mister Rogers talking about how Muslims are not banned in his neighborhood. (Z)

]]> 1
Ads praising GOP for replacing Obamacare aired after AHCA flopped Sat, 25 Mar 2017 20:35:31 +0000


Basketball fans were given a dose of alternative facts as a number of pre-bought ads praising Republicans for repealing Obamacare aired on local TV stations during Friday night games.

Only problem was, GOP representatives didn’t repeal Obamacare — and are most likely not going to anytime soon.


The ads, which were produced by the conservative American Action Network PAC, urged constituents to thank their Republican congressmen and women for “keeping” their promises and “replacing the Affordable Care Act with the better health care you deserve.”

]]> 4
A FICTIVE FLIGHT ABOVE REAL MARS Sat, 25 Mar 2017 00:07:02 +0000

A FICTIVE FLIGHT ABOVE REAL MARS from Jan Fröjdman on Vimeo.

The anaglyph images of Mars taken by the HiRISE camera holds information about the topography of Mars surface. There are hundreds of high-resolution images of this type. This gives the opportunity to create different studies in 3D. In this film I have chosen some locations and processed the images into panning video clips. There is a feeling that you are flying above Mars looking down watching interesting locations on the planet. And there are really great places on Mars! I would love to see images taken by a landscape photographer on Mars, especially from the polar regions. But I’m afraid I won’t see that kind of images during my lifetime.

It has really been time-consuming making these panning clips. In my 3D-process I have manually hand-picked reference points on the anaglyph image pairs. For this film I have chosen more than 33.000 reference points! It took me 3 months of calendar time working with the project every now and then.

The colors in this film are false because the anaglyph images are based on grayscale images. I have therefore color graded the clips. But I have tried to be moderate doing this. The light regions in the clips are yellowish and the dark regions bluish. The clips from the polar regions (the last clips in the film) have a white-blue tone.There are a lot of opinions and studies of what the natural colors on Mars might be. But the dark regions of dust often seems to have a bluish tone. Please study this issue on e.g sites by NASA.

This film is not scientific. As a space enthusiast I have just tried to visualize the planet my way.
The video begins with a nearby approach to Mars moon Phobos.

]]> 0
Is This What Quantum Mechanics Looks Like? Fri, 24 Mar 2017 17:46:08 +0000

]]> 0
Man Puts Computer Through Hell By Installing Every Major Windows Upgrade Fri, 24 Mar 2017 13:09:32 +0000


Beginning with MS DOS 3.10—which he notes wasn’t even available as a retail product before version 5, you had to buy a whole computer to get your hands on it—he uses VirtualBox to install every Windows operating system from there on up.

]]> 3
Wife Now Regrets Supporting Trump After Husband Set to be Deported Fri, 24 Mar 2017 12:28:30 +0000 [Quote:]

Helen Beristain is a vocal supporter of President Donald Trump. She’s said in the past that she voted for the President because she agreed with an immigration policy that he promoted. Now, as her husband is about to be deported, her family is on the wrong side of a system she thought would spare them.

]]> 0
Colorado Republican Who Claimed Widespread Voter Fraud Charged with Voter Fraud Thu, 23 Mar 2017 14:04:38 +0000 [Quote:]

Steven Curtis, the former head of the Colorado Republican Party, frequently charged that voter fraud was common and it was all committed by Democrats. He will soon get his day in court—as a defendant. He has been charged with—you guessed it—voter fraud. In the criminal complaint filed in Weld County District Court, he is charged with a felony count of forging his former wife’s signature on a mail-in ballot, as well as a misdemeanor count of tampering with a mail-in ballot. On his Colorado talk radio show on Oct. 6, 2016, he said: “It seems to me, and correct me if I’m wrong, but virtually every case of voter fraud I can remember in my lifetime was committed by Democrats.” If he is convicted on the felony forgery charge, he could face up to 18 months in jail. A spokesman for Colorado Secretary of State Wayne Williams said the Curtis case is the only allegation of voter fraud in the state in 2016 that resulted in a criminal charge being filed. If Curtis is convicted, then at least for Colorado in 2016, 100% of the voter fraud will have been committed by Republicans. (V)

]]> 0
PC Keith Palmer, 48. Died protecting parliament. Thu, 23 Mar 2017 08:17:19 +0000


We sleep safely in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would harm us.
]]> 0
CIO Magazine award Thu, 23 Mar 2017 08:02:44 +0000 [Quote:]

Melanie Rieback heeft de jaarlijkse TIM Award gewonnen voor de meest innovatieve IT-leider van Nederland. De medeoprichter en CEO van Radically Open Security (ROS) won de prijs voor haar inspanningen om de online securitywereld te dwingen tot transparantie.

]]> 1
Apple may have deployed unauthorized patch by mistake Wed, 22 Mar 2017 21:42:21 +0000 [Quote:]

Last month, reports came out that Apple accidentally installed a fake firmware patch on internal development servers. That’s a lesson to all companies to be careful about where they get their patches.

What may have happened is that an Apple employee installed a patch shared by the hardware vendor’s employee, instead of using the official release of the patch, said Chris Nietzold, senior platform engineer at security appliance manufacturer MBX Systems.

“They may have procured the firmware from an unofficial source and didn’t follow the official release schedule,” he said.

The firmware included a potential security vulnerability and Apple reportedly ended its relationship with the supplier, Super Micro Computer, as a result.

]]> 0
Trump’s budget makes perfect sense and will fix America, and I will tell you why Mon, 20 Mar 2017 14:25:16 +0000  


Environmental Protection Agency: We absolutely do not need this. Clean rivers and breathable air are making us SOFT and letting the Chinese and the Russians get the jump on us. We must go back to the America that was great, when the air was full of coal and danger and the way you could tell if the air was breathable was by carrying a canary around with you at all times, perched on your leathery, coal-dust-covered finger. Furthermore, we will cut funding to Superfund cleanup in the EPA because the only thing manlier than clean water is DIRTY water.

Agriculture Department: NO MORE OF THIS NAMBY-PAMBY “GATHERING” NONSENSE. We will be HUNTERS again. This is also why we are cutting the Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children: Let them FIGHT for their meat or have NONE.


On Friday, the White House blasted out an email that included headlines from and links to favorable news articles—it’s just that one of those links was to a satirical comedy piece written by Washington Post columnist Alexandra Petri that mocks President Donald Trump’s new budget blueprint, quoted above.

]]> 4
Astronomy Picture of the Day Sun, 19 Mar 2017 22:02:19 +0000


Explanation: When does the line between day and night become vertical? Tomorrow. Tomorrow is an equinox on planet Earth, a time of year when day and night are most nearly equal. At an equinox, the Earth’s terminator — the dividing line between day and night — becomes vertical and connects the north and south poles. The featured time-lapse video demonstrates this by displaying an entire year on planet Earth in twelve seconds. From geosynchronous orbit, the Meteosat satellite recorded these infrared images of the Earth every day at the same local time. The video started at the September 2010 equinox with the terminator line being vertical. As the Earth revolved around the Sun, the terminator was seen to tilt in a way that provides less daily sunlight to the northern hemisphere, causing winter in the north. As the year progressed, the March 2011 equinox arrived halfway through the video, followed by the terminator tilting the other way, causing winter in the southern hemisphere — and summer in the north. The captured year ends again with the September equinox, concluding another of billions of trips the Earth has taken — and will take — around the Sun.

This Article Won’t Change Your Mind Sun, 19 Mar 2017 12:16:35 +0000 [Quote:]

In one particularly potent example of party trumping fact, when shown photos of Trump’s inauguration and Barack Obama’s side by side, in which Obama clearly had a bigger crowd, some Trump supporters identified the bigger crowd as Trump’s. When researchers explicitly told subjects which photo was Trump’s and which was Obama’s, a smaller portion of Trump supporters falsely said Trump’s photo had more people in it.

While this may appear to be a remarkable feat of self-deception, Dan Kahan thinks it’s likely something else. It’s not that they really believed there were more people at Trump’s inauguration, but saying so was a way of showing support for Trump. “People knew what was being done here,” says Kahan, a professor of law and psychology at Yale University. “They knew that someone was just trying to show up Trump or trying to denigrate their identity.” The question behind the question was, “Whose team are you on?”

In these charged situations, people often don’t engage with information as information but as a marker of identity. Information becomes tribal.

]]> 1
RIP Chuck Berry Sat, 18 Mar 2017 23:05:17 +0000

]]> 2
Claims GCHQ wiretapped Trump ‘nonsense’ – NSA’s Ledgett Sat, 18 Mar 2017 15:32:40 +0000 [Quote:]

The claim that GCHQ carried out surveillance on Donald Trump during the election campaign is “arrant nonsense”, Rick Ledgett, the number two at the US National Security Agency (NSA) has told the BBC in an exclusive interview.

A commentator on Fox News had claimed that GCHQ had carried out the activity on America’s behalf, but Mr Ledgett said the claim showed “a complete lack of understanding in how the relationship works”.

Each side, he said, was prohibited from asking the other partner to carry out acts that they were prohibited from doing.

He also said the huge risks to the UK in carrying out such an act would completely outweigh any benefits.

“Of course they wouldn’t do it. It would be epically stupid,” he told me.

Okay – let’s see if we can understand how the relationship does work. The chances were very  high that Donald Trump’s phone calls were picked up and recorded by both the UK agencies. He made calls out of the US and those either went through or were terminated in the UK. Trump owns large tracts of land in Scotland and it has proved quite controversial and there is “blood in the water” there. He had close relationships with the then Scotish First Minister Alex Salmond  which would have automatically made him a person of interest in the UK especially to the Conservative Party in Westminster who hate the Scots, and the Scots hate them in return as you might have noticed in the news about Brexit (if you’ve been following UK news). As a person of political interest GCHQ info on Trump would have been seen by the UK Cabinet Office. UK Prime Minister David Cameron and US Pres Obama have a close relationship. And Donald Trump would almost certainly have come up in conversation as he was an obvious thorn in both their sides. Therefor it is quite likely information was shared. But, as Mr Ledgett correctly notices, not by the NSA asking the GCHQ. They are completely in the clear because of how the relationship works…

]]> 2
US reporters praise German journalists for questioning Trump Sat, 18 Mar 2017 08:58:55 +0000 [Quote:]

Trump was also asked point-blank by one reporter why he keeps making statements he knows are not true. It was a question that DW’s Brent Goff said “shocked” US reporters.

]]> 1
My favourite bible verse Fri, 17 Mar 2017 22:14:06 +0000

To keep Tor hack source code secret, DOJ dismisses child porn case Thu, 16 Mar 2017 16:55:36 +0000 [Quote:]

Rather than share the now-classified technological means that investigators used to locate a child porn suspect, federal prosecutors in Washington state have dropped all charges against a man accused of accessing Playpen, a notorious and now-shuttered website.

The case, United States v. Jay Michaud, is one of nearly 200 cases nationwide that have raised new questions about the appropriate limitations on the government’s ability to hack criminal suspects. Michaud marks just the second time that prosecutors have asked that case be dismissed.

“The government must now choose between disclosure of classified information and dismissal of its indictment,” Annette Hayes, a federal prosecutor, wrote in a court filing on Friday. “Disclosure is not currently an option. Dismissal without prejudice leaves open the possibility that the government could bring new charges should there come a time within the statute of limitations when and the government be in a position to provide the requested discovery.”

Trump’s budget: the dream of a paranoid strongman and a vicious Scrooge Thu, 16 Mar 2017 16:41:57 +0000 [Quote:]

Trump likes to compare himself to Reagan, and the comparison isn’t unwarranted: Reagan’s legacy, too, was putting the country massively into debt to pay for an arms race. That Trump’s arms race is not only wasteful but impractical is, like Trump, another 80s throwback: the proposal leans heavily on military hardware that is entirely inappropriate for the wars the US finds itself fighting today, with outlays for warships and fighter jets, despite the fact that Isis, last anyone checked, does not have a navy or air force.

]]> 1
How used cars became a security nightmare Thu, 16 Mar 2017 16:40:43 +0000 [Quote:]

At the RSA security conference last week in San Francisco, IBM’s X-Force Red leader Charles Henderson told a twisted tale of a car he couldn’t get rid of. Despite the fact that he’d sold his old car and gotten a new one, his previous vehicle’s controls were still accessible through the its shoddy app.

Being a hacker, he was very careful when he traded his old car in at the dealership. He wanted to make sure none of his personal information went with it, so he performed factory resets on everything and de-authorized all the accounts connected to the car.

He took great pains to make sure the car was transferred securely.

When he got home with his new vehicle, he noticed the old one was still listed on his app. He waited for it to go away.

He thought it would take a few days to clear out of the connected car system. Days turned into weeks, then months. After two years, he became a car-app hacker to figure out exactly what was going on. Shockingly, as noted in his RSA talk, “four years later, I still have control of the car.” He added, “If I were a criminal, I could’ve stolen the car.”

Vibrator Maker To Pay Millions Over Claims It Secretly Tracked Use Thu, 16 Mar 2017 16:37:01 +0000 [Quote:]

The makers of the We-Vibe, a line of vibrators that can be paired with an app for remote-controlled use, have reached a $3.75 million class action settlement with users following allegations that the company was collecting data on when and how the sex toy was used.

Standard Innovations, the Canadian manufacturer of the We-Vibe, does not admit any wrongdoing in the settlement finalized Monday.

]]> 1
Preinstalled Malware Targeting Mobile Users Thu, 16 Mar 2017 16:35:21 +0000 [Quote:]

The Check Point Mobile Threat Prevention has recently detected a severe infection in 36 Android devices, belonging to a large telecommunications company and a multinational technology company. While this is not unusual, one detail of the attacks stands out. In all instances, the malware was not downloaded to the device as a result of the users’ use, it arrived with it.

According to the findings, the malware were already present on the devices even before the users received them. The malicious apps were not part of the official ROM supplied by the vendor, and were added somewhere along the supply chain. Six of the malware instances were added by a malicious actor to the device’s ROM using system privileges, meaning they couldn’t be removed by the user and the device had to be re-flashed.

D.C. Circuit Court Issues Dangerous Decision for Cybersecurity: Ethiopia is Free to Spy on Americans in Their Own Homes Thu, 16 Mar 2017 13:58:09 +0000 [Quote:]

The United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit today held that foreign governments are free to spy on, injure, or even kill Americans in their own homes–so long as they do so by remote control. The decision comes in a case called Kidane v. Ethiopia, which we filed in February 2014.

Our client, who goes by the pseudonym Mr. Kidane, is a U.S. citizen who was born in Ethiopia and has lived here for over 30 years. In 2012 through 2013, his family home computer was attacked by malware that captured and then sent his every keystroke and Skype call to a server controlled by the Ethiopian government, likely in response to his political activity in favor of democratic reforms in Ethiopia. In a stunningly dangerous decision today, the D.C. Circuit ruled that Mr. Kidane had no legal remedy against Ethiopia for this attack, despite the fact that he was wiretapped at home in Maryland. The court held that, because the Ethiopian government hatched its plan in Ethiopia and its agents launched the attack that occurred in Maryland from outside the U.S., a law called the Foreign Sovereign Immunities Act (FSIA) prevented U.S. courts from even hearing the case.

The decision is extremely dangerous for cybersecurity. Under it, you have no recourse under law if a foreign government that hacks into your car and drives it off the road, targets you for a drone strike, or even sends a virus to your pacemaker, as long as the government planned the attack on foreign soil. It flies in the face of the idea that Americans should always be safe in their homes, and that safety should continue even if they speak out against foreign government activity abroad.

]]> 3
The Oxford comma Wed, 15 Mar 2017 22:35:13 +0000 [Quote:]

The serial comma, also known as the Oxford comma for its endorsement by the Oxford University Press style rulebook, is a comma used just before the coordinating conjunction (“and,” or “or,” for example) when three or more terms are listed. You’ll see it in the first sentence of this story—it’s the comma after “milk”—but you won’t find it in the Maine overtime rule at issue in the Oakhurst Dairy case. According to state law, the following types of activities are among those that don’t qualify for overtime pay:

The canning, processing, preserving,
freezing, drying, marketing, storing,
packing for shipment or distribution of:
(1) Agricultural produce;
(2) Meat and fish products; and
(3) Perishable foods.

There, in the comma-less space between the words “shipment” and “or,” the fate of Kevin O’Connor v. Oakhurst Dairy was argued. Is packing (for shipment or distribution) a single activity that is exempt from overtime pay? Or are packing and distributing two different activities, and both exempt?

If lawmakers had used a serial comma, it would have been clear that distribution was an overtime-exempt activity on its own. But without the comma, wrote US appeals judge David J. Barron, the law is ambiguous as to whether distribution is a separate activity, or whether the whole last clause—”packing for shipment or distribution”—is one activity, meaning only the people who pack the dairy products are exempt. The drivers do distribute, but do not pack, the perishable food.

Officer Darren Wilson’s List of Admissions Wed, 15 Mar 2017 21:47:36 +0000 [Quote:]

>41. Before drawing your weapon, Michael Brown had not displayed any weapon.

>Response: Objection on the grounds the term “weapon” is vague. To the extent Michael Brown’s body (including his fists) constitute “weapons”, this is denied.

>42. Before drawing your weapon, Michael Brown had not displayed any threatening object.

>Response: Objection on the grounds the term “weapon” is vague. To the extent Michael Brown’s body (including his fists) constitute “threatening objects”, this is denied.”

To sum up: black people walking around in possession of their own bodies is grounds for shooting them.

]]> 2
New Texas bill takes aim at men’s masturbation habits Wed, 15 Mar 2017 13:39:34 +0000 [Quote:]

A man would face a $100 penalty for each emission made outside of a vagina or medical facility. Such an emission would be considered “an act against an unborn child, and failing to preserve the sanctity of life,” according to the legislation.

]]> 4
Dutch Elections Wed, 15 Mar 2017 07:24:47 +0000 So I went a bit early to cast my vote at the local polling station. Saw a bunch of camera teams again, and a swedish radio journalist doing interviews with the people in line.

Now a couple of elections ago I walked into Geert Wilders casting his vote, and it was the same kind of media mess that time around.  I’ll watch the TV news later this morning to confirm, I didn’t bother to wait.

But after casting my vote I did walk up to a guy leaning against he back wall, so obviously part of a security force that it’s almost funny.

“So, Geert Wilders again, right? Walked into him before when voting here you know…”

Guy looks at me as if I just pissed in his breakfast..

“Look, if you’re not allowed to tell me, no worry, I understand”.

Guy raises an eyebrow but still says nothing.

“Good luck today mate, not an easy job you got” and I start walking off, but I did get a small smile out of him.

I guess next election they’ll pick a different polling station…

Boaty McBoatface to go on its first Antarctic mission Mon, 13 Mar 2017 21:51:38 +0000


A small yellow robot submarine, called Boaty McBoatface after a competition to name a new polar research ship backfired, is being sent on its first Antarctic mission.

Boaty, which has arguably one of the most famous names in recent maritime history, is a new type of autonomous underwater vehicle (AUV), which will be able to travel under ice, reach depths of 6,000 metres, and transmit the data it collects to researchers via a radio link.

Its mission will be to investigate water flow and turbulence in the dark depths of the Orkney Passage, a 3.5km deep region of the Southern Ocean. The data it collects will help scientists understand how the ocean is responding to global warming.

The name it was given came in the wake of a campaign by the Natural Environment Research Council (NERC) that asked members of the public to suggest names for its new polar research ship.

A comment left on Slashdot. – Development Chaos Theory Mon, 13 Mar 2017 14:23:52 +0000 [Quote:]

The problem is that our industry, unlike every other single industry except acting and modeling (and note neither are known for “intelligence”) worship at the altar of youth. I don’t know the number of people I’ve encountered who tell me that by being older, my experience is worthless since all the stuff I’ve learned has become obsolete.

This, despite the fact that the dominant operating systems used in most systems is based on an operating system that is nearly 50 years old, the “new” features being added to many “modern” languages are really concepts from languages that are between 50 and 60 years old or older, and most of the concepts we bandy about as cutting edge were developed from 20 to 50 years ago.

]]> 3
Daylight savings Mon, 13 Mar 2017 14:15:45 +0000