Sunday, April 24, 2016

…and a serious “heads-up” for the US.  (And we’ve already had some fuss about dropping people from the voter rolls)
This column by Cecilio Arillo has some interesting figures…. and concerns.
IF no security contingency plan is yet in place, the country’s armed services (police and military) should immediately draw up one because the likelihood of an election failure is not far removed as a result of the massive hacking of the confidential biometric files of voters stored in the Commission on Elections (Comelec) databank.
The hacked data included the complete names, fingerprints, pictures, cell phones and landline telephone numbers, individual addresses of 54,363,329 voters and the exact locations of the 84,000 clustered precincts they will be voting in on election day (May 9) in 81 provinces, 145 cities and 1,489 municipalities throughout the country.
The National Capital Region officially listed 6,253,249 voters; Luzon, 24,164,023; the Visayas, 11,316,792; and Mindanao, 12,629,265.
Read more on Business Mirror.  I wonder how readily the cheating scenarios he describes could actually be implemented but where there’s a will, there may be a way?

Probably a really good idea but I can’t help asking, are they reading these tweets while driving? 
Highway Regulators Fight Texting and Driving by Calling Out Culprits on Twitter
In what is pretty definitively the best government use of social media of all time, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration is pushing back at Twitter users who admit to texting and driving.  Over a dozen times a day during April, it has @-replied to tweets mentioning or confessing to the bad habit.
Most of those on the receiving end of the tweets seem to be stunned into silence—NHTSA isn’t getting many replies from its targets, and some seem to have even deleted questionable tweets.  But the exercise in public shaming is drawing onlookers, with NTSHA’s tweets getting a good bit of interaction and shares.
It’s a gutsy move for a government agency, and probably took some real work to sell internally.  Direct replies on social media can backfire, and have landed big brands in hot water, especially when automated or generic.
But NHTSA’s tweets are personalized, and mostly strike just the right tone—stern but caring, rather than bossy, scolding, or judgmental.  Plenty of social media marketers could learn from the example.

Where there’s a will (to bypass censorship) there’s a way.  And a market. 
The Ingenious Way Iranians Are Using Satellite TV to Beam in Banned Internet
   YouTube is blocked in Iran. The TED site isn’t, but Iran’s trickling internet speeds make its videos virtually unwatchable anyway.  So every couple of days, Reza plugs a USB drive into his satellite TV’s set-top box receiver and changes the channel to a certain unchanging green and white screen that shows only fixed text instructions.  He sets the receiver to record to the USB. Then a few hours later he takes the resulting MPEG file on the USB over to his computer, where he decodes it with a piece of software called Toosheh.  The result, each time, is more than a gigabyte of compressed, fresh digital contraband pulled directly from space, past both Iran’s infrastructure bottlenecks and its draconian censors.
   a Los Angeles-based group of eight Iranian and American activists that calls itself Net Freedom Pioneers officially launched Toosheh, that free anti-censorship system.

Are you familiar with all of these people?  You probably can’t be elected if you aren’t.
Five internet powerbrokers who could shape the election
Mark Zuckerberg
Matt Drudge 
Matt Drudge 
Arianna Huffington
Erin Hill
Erin Hill is the executive director of ActBlue, a company started in 2004 that provides online fundraising software to Democratic candidates. 
   Sanders is using ActBlue, Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton is using her own online fundraising tools.  [Was nothing learned from the email debacle?  Bob]

Interesting.  This may explain how why some of my students are confident before a test and stunned after.
Searching for Explanations: How the Internet Inflates Estimates of Internal Knowledge
by Sabrina I. Pacifici on
Searching for Explanations: How the Internet Inflates Estimates of Internal Knowledge, Matthew Fisher, Mariel K. Goddu, and Frank C. Keil, Yale University.  Journal of Experimental Psychology: General. 2015 American Psychological Association 2015, Vol. 144, No. 3, 674–687.
“As the Internet has become a nearly ubiquitous resource for acquiring knowledge about the world, questions have arisen about its potential effects on cognition.  Here we show that searching the Internet for explanatory knowledge creates an illusion whereby people mistake access to information for their own personal understanding of the information.  Evidence from 9 experiments shows that searching for information online leads to an increase in self-assessed knowledge as people mistakenly think they have more knowledge “in the head,” even seeing their own brains as more active as depicted by functional MRI (fMRI) images.”

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