Wednesday, November 09, 2016

Once again, we have the President we deserve.  How sad.

Election hacking.  Where did those horrible Russian hackers strike? 
A Glitch Caused Donald Trump's Site to Say Whatever The Internet Wanted It to Say
Until recently, Republican presidential candidate Donald Trump’s official campaign website featured an amusing glitch that allowed Internet users to modify its headline text however they so pleased.
The campaign website’s home page auto-generated a default message that encouraged visitors to vote for the Trump ticket.  But by editing the text in the page’s URL—replacing words between its “%20” notation dividers, typical URL encoding that denotes spacing—anyone could replace those words with their own message.

(Related)  See?  The election must have been hacked!

Hackers tried to take down pro-Clinton phone banks the day before the election, but inadvertently hit Republican calls too
Hackers tried to knock out political call centers on Monday in an effort to "harm Clinton's chances of winning," but they may have done equal damage to Republican phone lines, according to the company that was targeted.
TCN, a company that provides political phone banking services, has a number of conservative clients in addition to pro-Clinton ones, the firm's chief technology officer Jesse Bird told Wired.
"The ironic thing is that they were probably impacting Republican calls just as much as Democrat calls," Bird said.

Could this be where Russian hackers concentrated their efforts? 
Elections Usher In New Crop of Political-Tech Startups
   Hustle, a venture-backed startup that was founded in 2014, caught on early with Bernie Sanders’s grass roots organizers.
   Starting in mid-2015 Sanders field personnel started using the app, which allows users to aim texts at a long list of recipients, sending each one individually in rapid-fire, then giving the user a platform to manage their text conversations with voters.  This approach allows the campaigns to get around regulations that prevent robo-dialing mobile phone numbers.

So, who is liable?  What was promised? 
Zack Whittaker reports:
If you bought a car in the last few years, there’s a good chance your personal information may have found its way to the open internet.
Names, addresses, phone numbers and social security numbers for both customers and employees for over a hundred car dealerships have leaked online, all thanks to a centralized records system coupled with shoddy security.
The system, built and operated by DealerBuilt, an Iowa-based database software company, sells management systems for car dealerships across the US, offering a central system for sales, customer relations, and employee payroll needs.
Last week, MacKeeper security researchers found 128 dealership systems, known as LightYear machines, were backing up to DealerBuilt’s central systems without any encryption or security, allowing anyone to see what was being backed up.
Read more on ZDNet.

Are we doing the same thing here?
Matt Burgess reports:
At least 1,000 schools across the UK are using forms of ‘surveillance’ technology to monitor the activity of pupils, a new report has claimed.
Privacy advocates Big Brother Watch has published research claiming 72 per cent of secondary schools use ‘Classroom Management Software’ to keep an eye on pupils.  The system, which can check use of computers, including internet history, is installed on 819,970 school-owned devices and 1,416 private devices, the group says.
Read more on Wired (UK).

Might be fun to fiddle with…
Google to Offer SDK for Assistant in December
   Where the new Assistant is concerned, Google is soon to offer up keys to the city, so to speak, starting next month with the launch of developer tools to make it even easier for people to add their own functionality to the wider platform.
Starting in December, Google will open up the Assistant in three distinct ways, one of which will be allowing users to embed the Assistant itself inside of third-party hardware, a la Amazon’s Alexa. Direct Actions will allow services and products to offer simple, recognizable commands for the Assistant to connect other devices and services together and finally, Conversation Actions, will allow developers to add in more sophisticated features, like offering access to a bank account, going back-and-forth with the user to complete the task at hand.

For when you cut the cable?
With Kodi being a free, open source media center, it’s no surprise there are plenty of options to customize your experience when using it.  These range from changing the overall appearance of Kodi, to setting up profiles for different family members.

Perhaps if my neighbors do this I won’t need to pay the Internet!

In high school, I worked summers at a summer stock theater that hosted music on Mondays.  I got to see both Louis Armstrong and Ella Fitzgerald (not together).  Since I played trumpet (poorly) in those days, Armstrong was already a hero.  Ella is still the best jazz voice I have ever heard.  Follow this link and listen for yourself.
The Story of ‘Ella and Louis,’ 60 Years Later
by Sabrina I. Pacifici on Nov 8, 2016
Two of America’s greatest musicians- listen and fall in love with music that will stay with you a lifetime: A century-defining album’s improbable genesis “…The first of three successful collaborations between Ella Fitzgerald and Louis Armstrong, “Ella and Louis” is nearly perfect.  It is one of those works of art — and they don’t come along often — that seems to have always existed.  It features two of the greatest artists the century produced: Armstrong, the innovator and ambassador of jazz, and Fitzgerald, its most gifted singer.  The album was produced by a man almost solely responsible for bringing jazz into the realm of respectability and desegregating its audience, who founded the label which released it, and assembled the all-star team of musicians who made it so marvelous.  “Ella and Louis” helped rekindle interest in what would become known as The Great American Songbook.  Though it is something only American culture could produce, “Ella and Louis” was also something a large part of American society worked hard to prevent…”

Anything to get rid of find jobs for my students.
Facebook threatens LinkedIn with job opening features
   A Facebook spokesperson tells me, “Based on behavior we’ve seen on Facebook, where many small businesses post about their job openings on their Page, we’re running a test for Page admins to create job postings and receive applications from candidates.”
The new features could compete with LinkedIn, as well as developers like Work4, Workable and Jobscore that build “Jobs” tab applications that businesses can embed in their Facebook Pages.  Perhaps Facebook was prepping for these new features when it tested Profile Tags last year that mimic LinkedIn’s endorsements feature.

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