School System Considers Jamming Students' Phones
Posted by ScuttleMonkey on Friday July 31, @03:30PM from the only-one-man-would-dare-give-me-the-raspberry dept. communications education
An anonymous reader writes
"The St. Ansgar, Iowa school system is considering buying cell-phone jamming equipment for up to $5000 if it is deemed legal. The use of the equipment would be suspended in the case of an emergency, but one has to wonder if they would be quick enough to shut it down should an emergency arise. 'A Federal Communications Commission notice issued in 2005 says the sale and use of transmitters that jam cellular or personal communications services is unlawful.'"
Privacy is where you find it.
A hard case makes bad law
What case did Debbie Purdy win on Thursday? I am sure that most people believe that, as Channel 4 News put it, she won “a landmark ruling allowing her husband to travel with her to Switzerland where the MS sufferer plans to end her life”. That is how most of the media, who seem to favour the “right-to-death” campaigners, have presented it.
But it is not so. The Law Lords’ ruling did not allow Miss Purdy’s husband to do anything. It merely called on the Director of Public Prosecutions to produce a “custom-built” policy (whatever that is) about when he would prosecute people for assisting suicide.
It is interesting that the Purdy case has employed the law of “privacy”. We have been here before. In the Roe vs Wade case in the United States in 1973, the Supreme Court decided that abortion, previously a matter for states, was permitted by the 14th Amendment to the Constitution. That amendment does not talk about privacy, let alone abortion, but it upholds “due process” when the authorities try to take any liberty away from a person. The Supreme Court found the right to “privacy” hidden in that amendment, and the right to abortion hidden within privacy. It was a stretch of the meaning of words.
Now “privacy” is the favourite again. Because the European Convention on Human Rights is now entrenched in our law, we are subject to Article 8, which says that “everyone has the right to respect for his private… life”. It is, indeed, vitally important that private life is respected, but when they found on the other side of the argument in the Diane Pretty case in 2002, the Law Lords said that Article 8 “related to the manner in which a person conducted her life, not the manner in which she departed from it”. Now they have decided the opposite – that assisted suicide is “part of the act of living” and therefore related to privacy. Again, judges have stretched the meaning of words. When you strip away their legal language, you see that they are merely expressing their own opinions.
In 1973, in America, the judges were pro-abortion, and decided to make the law fit their view. In 2009, in Britain, they are pro-euthanasia, and euthanasia has been blocked by previous court judgments and by Parliament. So the judges decide that rights which concern life are actually rights to promote death. It is a morally arguable point of view, but it does not have much to do with upholding justice. As was always predicted by opponents of European “human rights” legislation, the courts have become a tool for reflecting the elite views of the age, rather than carefully interpreting the laws made by elected legislators.
Read more of columnist Charles Moore’s commentary in The Telegraph.
I reiterate my concern with “automated updates”
Defcon: New Hack Hijacks Application Updates Via WiFi
Researchers will release a tool that lets attackers replace application updates with malware
Jul 31, 2009 | 03:21 PM By Kelly Jackson Higgins DarkReading
DEFCON 17 -- LAS VEGAS, NV -- Researchers here tomorrow will demonstrate a way to hijack the application update process via WiFi and replace the updates with malware.
It doesn't take long to start thinking like a monopoly
FCC Probing Apple, AT&T Rejection of Google Voice
Posted by Soulskill on Saturday August 01, @08:16AM from the now-you've-done-it dept.
suraj.sun writes with an update to the news from a few days ago about Apple pulling Google Voice apps for the iPhone. Their actions have raised the interest of the FCC, which is now beginning an investigation into the matter.
"In a letter sent to Apple, the FCC asked the company why it turned down Google Voice for the iPhone and pulled several other Google Voice-related programs from the iPhone's only sanctioned online mart. The FCC also sent similar letters to both AT&T — Apple's exclusive carrier partner in the US — and Google, asking both firms to provide more information on the issue. The FCC's letter asked Apple whether it rejected Google Voice and dumped other applications on its own, or 'in consultation with AT&T,' and if the latter, to describe the conversations the partners had. In other questions, the FCC asked Apple whether AT&T has any role in the approval of iPhone applications, wants the company to explain how Google Voice differs from any other VoIP software that has been approved, and requested a list of all applications that have been rejected and why."
(Related) Thoughts from the other side...
VoiceCentral Developer Talks About Being Pulled from App Store and Apple's Lack of Communication
Posted 07/31/2009 at 9:09:39pm | by Michelle Delio
It’s been a long and confusing week for Kevin Duerr, thanks to Apple’s stubborn belief that it’s perfectly fine to conduct business as if you are high-level government officials from a particularly snarky banana republic.
Duerr and his team at Riverturn, a technology consulting firm that also builds iPhone apps, have spent the past five days trying to figure out the real reason why Apple pulled their VoiceCentral Google Voice app from the App Store and whether there is any hope that Apple will reconsider its decision.
Tools & Techniques Save these to your Hacker Folder. You never know when you might need them.
Researchers offer tools for eavesdropping and video hijacking
by Elinor Mills July 31, 2009 5:51 PM PDT
LAS VEGAS--Showing off technology that James Bond would love, two researchers at Defcon on Friday demonstrated tools that allow people to eavesdrop on video conference calls and intercept surveillance camera video.
If you don't use an RSS Reader, give one a try. There is too much useful information out there to continue ignoring. (I still use SharpReader. Simple but effective.)
How To Discover The RSS Feed Of A Webpage If A Link Isn’t There
Jul. 31st, 2009 By Saikat Basu
Works in Denver too. Describes in intricate detail how I could use Public Transportation to travel the 3 ½ miles to Colorado Tech in a mere hour. Might be very useful back ease where they know how to run a transit system.
July 31, 2009
Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority Partners with Google Transit
News release: "MBTA General Manager Daniel A. Grabauskas announced the T's partnership with Google Transit and the convenience and ease travelers will have when planning a trip on the authority's bus, subway, commuter rail, and boat service. Similar to the MBTA's Trip Planner, Google Transit, a feature of Google Maps, is a web-based application that plans a trip using public transportation options. The service calculates the route, transit time, and any necessary walking directions. This on - line feature which provides directions in various languages using the [public] transit option on Google Maps; and reaches people that the MBTA trip planner does not by surfacing public transit itineraries as an alternative when a user does a directions search within Google Maps. Including the Boston Metro area, Google provides transit information for many major cities across the United States and elsewhere around the world. Transit trip planning is also available on mobile phones including iPhone, Blackberry, Windows Mobile, S60, and other Java enabled phones."
Get started in three easy steps:
1) Go to http://maps.google.com
2) Click on Get Directions, then enter your start and end points.
3) Select By Public Transit from the drop down menu
For my students who can't read?
ThoughtAudio: Collection of Free Full Audio Books
If you are looking for downloadable audio books, ThoughtAudio.com is good place to start. It is a web resource that lists cool collection of free full audio books. The collection consist of books from classic literature, history and philosophy, and includes well known titles such as The Call of the Wild, Sidhartha, Metamorphosis… etc. You can browse books, listen them online and download as mp3 file.
How To Download Free Hulu Movies To Your Computer
Jul. 31st, 2009 By Tim Watson
… One problem, though. Hulu videos stream in Flash video, and there wasn’t any way to download and save programs for mobile viewing. That was true until I read up on the appropriately-named Hulu Video Downloader, a simple yet powerful little program, for which I have yet to find a free equal.
Think of a future where every student can learn any subject from the best teachers in the field.
New Cook or Be Cooked! Teaches Kitchen Skills With Wiimote
By Tracey John Email Author July 31, 2009 2:55 pm
NEW YORK — Step away from the stove, Cooking Mama. Iron Chef Michael Symon wants to teach gamers how to cook with a new videogame.
The Food Network’s upcoming Wii title Cook or Be Cooked!, developed by Red Fly Studio (Mushroom Men) and published by Namco Bandai, features more than 30 recipes taken from the Food Network Kitchens. Would-be cooks can play through the game and learn the basics, like bacon and eggs, or move to more advanced recipes such as lasagna and steak.
Global Warming! Global Warming! I have to admit, I missed “The Gore Effect” but that would be yet another indication that Mother Nature is out to get him...
May 04, 2009
Has the global sea ice decline stopped?
These are good times to be a climate change skeptic.
The planet has not shown substantial warming for a decade now. The Gore Effect seems to be holding. Some glaciers are advancing. And the Arctic Sea ice appears to have halted its decline, if only temporarily.
[From the link:
The so-called Gore Effect happens when a global warming-related event, or appearance by the former vice president and climate change crusader, Al Gore, is marked by exceedingly cold weather or unseasonably winter weather.