| Friday October 31st 2014

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Canada’s new plastic $100 bill is all tricked out

A helpful YouTube video put out by the Bank of Canada explains the new security features. For example, a suspicious money taker should note that although the polymer bill is nice and smooth, there should be raised ink on the big number 100, the “Bank of Canada” text and the shoulders of the portrait of Sir Robert Borden, the prime minister of Canada from 1911 to 1920.

There are also two transparent windows on the note — one small one depicts a frosted maple leaf, the other extends the height of the bill, and has a copy of the portrait toward the top of the window, and an image of a building at the bottom. If you move the bill the colors of the building will change a lot, while the color changes on the portrait are more subtle.

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Identity theft marketplace sells mothers’ maiden names, dates of birth, etc

Many websites will allow you to “recover a lost password” if you (or a crook) can supply your date of birth, mother’s maiden name, etc. So, of course, crooks buy and sell data like dates of birth, mothers’ maiden names, Social Security Numbers, and other easily mined minutae. ID theftBrian Krebs reports from superget.info, a site that sells would-be fraudsters this information, and also has a wholesale program so that entrepreneurial crooks can resell your personal information to their friends.

Superget lets users search for specific individuals by name, city, and state. Each “credit” costs USD$1, and a successful hit on a Social Security number or date of birth costs 3 credits each. The more credits you buy, the cheaper the searches are per credit: Six credits cost $4.99; 35 credits cost $20.99, and $100.99 buys you 230 credits. Customers with special needs to can avail themselves of the “reseller plan,” which promises 1,500 credits for $500.99, and 3,500 credits for $1000.99.

“Our Databases are updated EVERY DAY,” the site’s owner enthuses. “About 99% nearly 100% US people could be found, more than any sites on the internet now.”

Customers who aren’t choosy about the identities they’re stealing can get a real bargain. Among the most trafficked commodities in the hacker underground are packages called “fullz infos,” which include the full identity information on dozens or hundreds of individuals.

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Tesla coil hat: “a really bad idea”

MIT student Tyler Christensen created a musical Tesla coil hat for his Halloween costume (it played the Mortal Kombat theme and the Harry Potter theme while discharging semi-tam lightning). While freely stipulating that this is “a really bad idea,” Tyler is still generous enough to document his project for others who might follow in his bad footsteps.

Really, it’s just a DRSSTC. Nothing less, nothing more, nothing fancy. It was a bit tricky to make a bridge appropriately sized, and even harder to make a boost converter for it. In fact, the boost never truly worked. If I play a mid to high note for a few seconds, the boost can’t keep up and it fades away. I think this is due to saturation of my boost core, but I haven’t really taken the time to do much on this since now I’m back in the gate driver world and also have to throw together my 6.131 power electronics final project. I’ll fix hatcoil in February.

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Amazon Kindle Fire Tablet reviews are out

Amazon Kindle tablet Amazon Kindle tablet

If you’re thinking about getting the Fire, you have to decide not just whether you want a tablet, but what kind of tablet you want. This isn’t an iPad-killer. It has the potential to do lots of things, but there are many things I have yet to see it do, and I wonder if it will get there given the lean software support. It’s my impression that Amazon believes that the Fire will be so popular that developers will choose to work on its platform rather than on Google’s main trunk of Android, but that’s just a theory right now.

Still, there’s no question that the Fire is a really terrific tablet for its price. The amount of content you have access to — and the ease of getting to that content — is notable to say the least. The device is decently designed, and the software — while lacking some polish — is still excellent compared to pretty much anything in this range (and that includes the Nook Color). It’s a well thought out tablet that can only get better as the company refines the software. It’s not perfect, but it’s a great start, and at $200, that may be all Amazon needs this holiday shopping season.

Good Stuff
Great Amazon content ecosystem
User friendly, consistent UI
Affordable
Bad Stuff
Software can be buggy
Amazon Appstore has limited selection
Uninspired hardware

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Best Apple ad I’ve ever seen

Putin is such a #bauce.

Occupy Miami

Occupy Miami

Blackberry “London.” Leaked pic of new BBX device

Blackberry London BBX

Specs:
TI OMAP dual core @ 1.5GHz
1GB RAM
16GB internal storage
8MP rear cam, 2MP front cam
BBX QNX OS

The President Of Russia Has Cheerleaders (Because Why Wouldn’t He?)

Medvedev girls

Aw, if you thought the unnecessary call for attractive females was done today, then you, my friends, just don’t know me very well. Allow me to introduce Medvedev’s Girls, an organization of females in Russia that has pledged its undying devotion to the country’s president, Dmitry Medvedev. Medvedev girlsThat’s right, Russia’s president has a group of attractive young females wearing cheerleading outfits that follows him around voluntarily and supports everything that he does. Somewhere Bill Clinton is soooooooooo pissed.

Apparently the group was formed in opposition of a similar group of attractive females that encourages – seriously, I can’t believe I’m typing this – other attractive young females to strip in support of Russian prime minister, Vladimir Putin. Most recently, Medvedev’s Girls have worn sexy schoolgirl outfits to support education initiatives and to support Medvedev’s ban on underage drinking (in Russia?) they shed articles of clothing as people poured out their beers. Seriously, how could you be mad about that?

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QR Markham’s plagiarized spy thriller didn’t stop being good when he was caught

Debutante plagiarist Q.R. Markham’s temporarily-lauded spy thriller, Assassin of Secrets, is in fact a string of passages lifted from other books in the genre. No-one noticed until it was released, at which time readers noticed at once.

Assassin of SecretsThe book’s been recalled by publisher Little, Brown, whose president, Michael Pietsch, apologized in a prepared statement: “We take great pride in the writers and books we publish and tremendous care in every aspect of our publishing process, so it is with deep regret that we have published a book that we can no longer stand behind. Our goal is to never have this happen, but when it does, it is important to us to communicate with and compensate readers and retailers as quickly as possible.”

The author represented others’ work as his own, deceived and embarrassed those he worked with, and created a nightmare for his publisher, and deserves no sympathy or respect.

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Oscar, the handstand-peeing dog, deserves an Oscar

Red White & Blue Flags

 

red white blue flags

Clip of Dark Knight Rises filming today in NYC

Asking an Oakland PD officer why he’s hidden his badge

These upstanding citizens noticed that an Oakland PD officer had hidden his badge, so they calmly, peacefully confronted him about this, escalating to his supervisor when he wouldn’t respond.

This how to properly engage with police when they do suspicious things. We were riding by on bikes and noticed hes hiding his name and has no badge number. SO we decided to ask him. He did not answer, we asked a ranking officer is that policy? The LT. quickly went about fixing his attitude. This is a common practice among cops at occupy’s around the US .That way he/she cannot be named or referenced if he participates in police miss-conduct . Its in most police departments policies that all officers in uniform must show some form of identification. OPD does not wear badges with #’s, how do we hold anyone accountable?

As you already suspected, the CIA is reading your tweets and Facebook status updates

CIA

According to this Associated Press story, the tinfoil beanie hat crowd was right all along:

In an anonymous industrial park in Virginia, in an unassuming brick building, the CIA is following tweets — up to 5 million a day. At the agency’s Open Source Center, a team known affectionately as the ‘vengeful librarians’ also pores over Facebook, newspapers, TV news channels, local radio stations, Internet chat rooms — anything overseas that anyone can access and contribute to openly.

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“Judge” beats disabled daughter for using the Internet

A YouTube video posted by a person who claims to be Hillary Adams, daughter of Aransas County Court-At-Law Judge William Adams shows a video of a man said to be Judge Williams viciously beating her as a teenager in 2004 (in the video, her age is given as 16). The accompanying text states…

Aransas County Court-At-Law Judge William Adams took a belt to his own teenage daughter as punishment for using the internet to acquire music and games that were unavailable for legal purchase at the time. She has had ataxic cerebral palsy from birth that led her to a passion for technology, which was strictly forbidden by her father’s backwards views. The judge’s wife was emotionally abused herself and was severely manipulated into assisting the beating and should not be blamed for any content in this video. The judge’s wife has since left the marriage due to the abuse, which continues to this day, and has sincerely apologized and repented for her part and for allowing such a thing, long before this video was even revealed to exist. Judge William Adams is not fit to be anywhere near the law system if he can’t even exercise fit judgement as a parent himself. Do not allow this man to ever be re-elected again. His “judgement” is a giant farce. Signed, Hillary Adams, his daughter.

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Third Person Effect: An excerpt from You Are Not So Smart

You Are Not So Smart book coverThe Third Person Effect, an excerpt from the new book You Are Not So Smart: Why You Have Too Many Friends on Facebook, Why Your Memory Is Mostly Fiction, and 46 Other Ways You’re Deluding Yourself, by David McRaney

The Misconception: You believe your opinions and decisions are based on experience and facts, while those who disagree with you are falling for the lies and propaganda of sources you don’t trust.

The Truth: Everyone believes the people they disagree with are gullible, and everyone thinks they are far less susceptible to persuasion than they truly are.

I can see right through that politician’s lies. People are such sheep. People are so stupid. People will believe anything. I prefer to lead, not follow.

Have you ever thought like this? Would it blow your mind to know everyone thinks this?

If everyone thinks they aren’t gullible and can’t be swayed by advertising, political rhetoric, or charismatic con artists, then someone must be deluding themselves. Sometimes it’s you.

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Occupy Oakland protesters claim presence of police infiltrators and provocateurs

It’s important that folks understand that, while many police are just honest, hardworking members of the “99%,” there are also some who are just servants of the 1%, and willing? to do whatever underhanded, dirty, and illegal tactics are necessary to break up and discredit #OWS.

Circusleaks: Docs show cruelty to elephants at Ringling Bros

MotherJones.com has published the results of its year long investigation that rips the big top off how Ringling Bros. circus treats its elephants.

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Explosive pumpkin carving in science class

This science teacher illustrated gas-expansion for his students by trapping a flammable gas inside a pumpkin whose Jack O Lantern face had been cut and not removed, then waited for the pressure to build up until the face exploded out of the pumpkin.

Online hackers threaten to expose cartel’s secrets

The person reportedly kidnapped is not named, and the video does not share information about the kidnapping other than that it occurred in the Mexican state of Veracruz during a street protest.

An international group of online hackers is warning a Mexican drug cartel to release one of its members, kidnapped from a street protest, or it will publish the identities and addresses of the syndicate’s associates, from corrupt police to taxi drivers, as well as reveal the syndicates’ businesses.

The vow is a bizarre cyber twist to Mexico’s ongoing drug war, as a group that has no guns is squaring off against the Zetas, a cartel blamed for thousands of deaths as well as introducing beheadings and other frightening brutality.

“You made a huge mistake by taking one of us. Release him,” says a masked man in a video posted online on behalf of the group, Anonymous.

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