Sunday, May 15, 2011

Oh hell no! “Greetings citizen. We noticed that you have a large flat screen TV and a keg of beer, so the entire Police force is here to watch the Super Bowl. Don't make us search for chips!”

IN: Court: No right to resist illegal cop entry into home

May 14, 2011 by Dissent

Overturning a common law dating back to the English Magna Carta of 1215, the Indiana Supreme Court ruled Thursday that Hoosiers have no right to resist unlawful police entry into their homes.

In a 3-2 decision, Justice Steven David writing for the court said if a police officer wants to enter a home for any reason or no reason at all, a homeowner cannot do anything to block the officer’s entry.


[From the article:

"We believe ... a right to resist an unlawful police entry into a home is against public policy and is incompatible with modern Fourth Amendment jurisprudence," David said. "We also find that allowing resistance unnecessarily escalates the level of violence and therefore the risk of injuries to all parties involved without preventing the arrest."

David said a person arrested following an unlawful entry by police still can be released on bail and has plenty of opportunities to protest the illegal entry through the court system.

How old must this data be to become useless? Is there a statute of limitations?

OR: Deputies: Man Used DMV Database In ID Theft

May 14, 2011 by admin

Personal information belonging to more than a million Oregonians could be in the hands of criminals, deputies say.

Sheriff’s detectives arrested Tim Nuss on April 28 in east Multnomah County. They say he had access to an old Oregon Department of Motor Vehicles database.

Spokesman David House says the DMV database was once sold to marketing companies, but the department stopped selling the information in the late 1990s.

House says the sold data include the names, addresses, birth dates, gender and ages of people who registered with the DMV, but no financial information.


Prosecutors have charged Nuss with 26 counts of aggravated identity theft — one count for each letter of the alphabet representing his potential victims.

Read more on KPTV.

So how much did the state make by selling the lists and how much has that sale cost in terms of ID theft or state personnel time investigating crimes that used these lists? And no, I won’t even ask what recourse victims have, because we all know that individuals generally have no real recourse or private cause of action.

[From the article:

Police aren’t sure how Nuss was able to get a hold of the database, but Portland police say in previous cases, criminals have sold or traded the database using USB drives or CDs.

Acting on a tip, deputies moved in on Nuss, who was staying at the Travelodge Motel near Troutdale. Inside the motel room, investigators found a laptop, four printers and the material used to produce fake checks and Oregon temporary driver's licenses, investigators say.

Deputies say it appears Nuss was printing the fake checks to make purchases at local retail stores and then returning the items to make a profit.

Because the database is more than a decade old, deputies say anyone who had their identity compromised likely already knows. [So, because it is “old data” there is no reason to inform anyone? Bob]

Sony limps back?

Sony Releases PS3 3.61 Update Ahead of PSN's Imminent Return

"Sony has released the PS3 3.61 firmware update as a part of the phased return of the Playstation Network and Qriocity. The new update now requires all PSN users to change their passwords in order to sign back into the PSN service."

And several readers are pointing to reports that the network is slowly being spun up. Snips one anonymous submitter:

"Sony Japan told customers today that it would begin phased restoration of its services of its beleaguered Playstation Network which has been suffering from an outage for nearly a month. The company would start bringing back its gaming network this Sunday, on a country-by-country basis, and expects it to be completed by May 31."


Sony Begins Gradual Restoration of PlayStation Network

After over three weeks of waiting, Sony will begin to restore PlayStation Network services on Saturday.

Certain functions of the online gaming service for PlayStation 3 and PSP will be up and running on May 14, Sony said in a press release. The services that will be revived first are Netflix and Hulu viewing, online multiplayer gameplay and friends list access among others. Notably absent from this list is the PlayStation Store digital content shop, which Sony says will be back up and running by May 31.

I think the impact on Cloud and Outsourcing is greatly overrated. After all, any data you put on Facebook belongs to Facebook, so there is no need to get your permission to send it to China or India.

New Privacy Laws In Asia May Cripple Data-Centric Outsourcing

"Think privacy issues are a pain when they affect consumers? Get ready for the grandfather of all corporate computing headaches. Big privacy-law changes in India and China are about to turn data-processing outsourcing into a hurdle-leaping, paperwork-generating mess."

How will this work?

Judge issues gag order for Twitter

A British judge has banned Twitter users from identifying a brain-damaged woman in one of the first attempts to prevent the messaging website from revealing sensitive information.

The ruling follows the publication on Twitter on Sunday of a list of celebrities alleged to have tried to cover up sexual indiscretions by obtaining court gag orders.

… It was issued in the Court of Protection in the case of a mother who wants to withdraw life support from her brain-damaged daughter. It prevents the identification of the woman and those caring for her.

"This is among the first injunctions specifically referring to Twitter and Facebook, but there have been others banning publication on the internet," said intellectual property and media partner Keith Arrowsmith at law firm Ralli Solicitors.

Lawyers say leaks of information protected by a British injunction on U.S.-based Twitter show that court orders to gag the press are unsustainable.

Bloggers can reveal secrets on Twitter anonymously, said member of parliament John Hemming, who is compiling a report on the strictest kind of gag orders called "superinjunctions".

"They (injunctions) depend really on people's willingness to follow the rules rather than any ability to force it on them," he told Reuters when asked about Twitter.

How is this money distributed? If I hum a tune and post it to a website in Canada will I ever see a penny? (Could I sue for the vast fortune I've been cheated out of?)

Canadian Music Industry Seeks Copy Tax On Memory Cards

"The Canadian music industry's copyright collective is demanding the creation of a new copying tax on all memory cards sold in Canada. The Canadian Private Copying Collective has filed for a tax of up to $3 per memory card to compensate for music copying on SD cards. If approved, the tax could cost consumers millions of dollars."

Makes no less sense than the current levy exacted on blank CDs and audiotapes in Canada — and no more sense, either.

I don't think this clears thing up for me..

When Dinosaurs Ruled The Books

This is a really weird time to be a writer. Agents are becoming publishers; publishers have moved to “the agency model“; and some self-published authors are making millions—all because e-books are now outselling all other segments. Magazines and newspapers are dying, blogs and aggregators are thriving, and the line between them all is blurring. Last year Apple was their savior; now it’s damned as a destroyer.

So what’s a writer to do?

These days I’m mostly a developer, but I’ve had a clutch of novels (thrillers about globetrotting techies) published by traditional houses, and also experimented with just about every form of The New Publishing. My latest book (an epic urban fantasy about a squirrel) was Creative Commons-released and self-Kindle-published before I sold it to a publisher. I’ve scripted a Vertigo Comics graphic novel, and a free online comic for Plus I write here, and for magazines.

I’ve been calling the major publishers dinosaurs for some years now, but they are slowly being forced into greater willingness to experiment… and even if they don’t, you can always pull a Hocking and e-publish your book yourself. Sure, most such books will be crap, and most of the rest will fail to catch fire; but a few will become cult classics, and a tiny handful may turn into modern-day The Godfathers.

… Because the dinosaurs still don’t get it. Ten years of object lessons from the music industry, and they still don’t get it. We have learned, painfully, that media consumers—be they listeners, watchers, or readers—want one of two things:

  • DRM-free works for a reasonable price

  • or, unlimited single-payment subscription to streaming/DRMed works

Give them either of those things, and they’ll happily pay. Look at iTunes. Look at Netflix. But give them neither, and they’ll pirate. So what are publishers doing?

  • Refusing to sell DRM-free books. My debut novel will be re-e-published by the Friday Project imprint of HarperCollins UK later this year; both its editor and I would like it to be published without DRM; and yet I doubt we will be able to make that happen.

  • crippling library e-books

  • and not offering anything even remotely like a subscription service.

For my Computer Security and Ethical Hacking students

Keeping a Cellphone System Going In a War

"An Al Jazeera article provides fascinating insight about how engineers for one of the Libyan cell providers in the rebel held East have kept the system going in the middle of a civil insurrection. Administering a now-free cellular system in a war zone brings new meaning to the term BOFH as the engineers deal with bandwidth hogs and prioritize international traffic. A technical decision to keep a copy of the user database (the HLR) in Benghazi was crucial to keeping people's phones on line. There are reasons besides earthquakes and Tsunamis to keep your data backed up in geographically diverse locations. The report expands on and corrects the WSJ article covered on Slashdot before."

Something for my website students... - Create Widgets For Your Blog

There are different ways to have a more engaging website. On the one hand, you can try to master coding and do all the necessary fine-tuning yourself. On the other, you can try a service like SnackTools, and reap great results in less time than it would take you if you opted to do things manually.

We can define SnackTools as a repository of tools that will let bloggers and webmasters create rich media widgets. Widgets for conducting live surveys, widgets for posting content such as videos and photos, widgets for sharing PDFs as if they were books whose pages can be flipped... these are some of the most interesting widgets that can be created through this website

And all the widgets that can be built using SnackTools will be usable on virtually every major blogging platform and CMS - Blogger, Wordpress, Tumblr, Joomla and Drupal are all supported. And so are social media sites like Facebook, Twitter et al.

For the toolkit Let's face it. Sometimes web designers are too cute for their own good.

Readable: Convert Websites To Text Only Friendly Version

Not all websites have fonts that can be conveniently read. Different people are comfortable with different types of fonts. Thanks to Readable, you can read text on any website in your preferred fonts and colors.

Similar tools: Magazinify, NotForest, Readmeo, TidyRead, Readability, Readable, and AllTextPaper.

We are likely going to see many digitized collections. These are not the first.

May 14, 2011

Digital Images of Yale’s Vast Cultural Collections Now Available for Free

News release: "Scholars, artists and other individuals around the world will enjoy free access to online images of millions of objects housed in Yale's museums, archives, and libraries thanks to a new "Open Access" policy that the University announced today. Yale is the first Ivy League university to make its collections accessible in this fashion, and already more than 250,000 images are available through a newly developed collective catalog. The goal of the new policy is to make high quality digital images of Yale's vast cultural heritage collections in the public domain openly and freely available. As works in these collections become digitized, the museums and libraries will make those images that are in the public domain freely accessible. In a departure from established convention, no license will be required for the transmission of the images and no limitations will be imposed on their use. The result is that scholars, artists, students, and citizens the world over will be able to use these collections for study, publication, teaching and inspiration."


May 14, 2011

Explore Australian collections and worldwide online sources

Australia Trove: "Find and get over 238,389,330 (and counting) Australian and online resources: books, images, historic newspapers, maps, music, archives and more."

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