January302014

Hiatus

I’m going to take a break from this blog for a while.  I’ll be back, I’m sure, but I think I need some time away for now.

I promise to keep my name and avatar the same when I return (at least for a while) so you’re less likely to go “Wait, who is that?  When did I follow this guy?

Well, unless you’re already asking that.  If that’s the case, I can’t help.

Have fun out there.

4PM
“Since 1999, student debt has increased more than 500 percent, yet the average starting salary for graduates has dropped 10 percent, adjusted for inflation. Student debts can’t be cancelled in bankruptcy. A default brings penalties and ruins a credit rating. To make matters worse, the job market for new graduates remains lousy. Which is why record numbers are still living at home.” Robert Reich | Why There’s No Outcry for a Revolution in America  (via housewifeswag)

(via insanityslament)

3PM
shezzainblue:

wrynny:


Maybe the Most Orwellian Text Message a Government’s Ever Sent | Vice
“Dear subscriber, you are registered as a participant in a mass disturbance.”
That’s a text message that thousands of Ukrainian protesters spontaneously received on their cell phones today, as a new law prohibiting public demonstrations went into effect. It was the regime’s police force, sending protesters the perfectly dystopian text message to accompany the newly minted, perfectly dystopian legislation. In fact, it’s downright Orwellian (and I hate that adjective, and only use it when absolutely necessary, I swear).
But that’s what this is: it’s technology employed to detect noncompliance, to hone in on dissent. The NY Times reports that the “Ukrainian government used telephone technology to pinpoint the locations of cell phones in use near clashes between riot police officers and protesters early on Tuesday.” Near. Using a cell phone near a clash lands you on the regime’s hit list. 
See, Kiev is tearing itself to shreds right now, but since we’re kind of burned out on protests, riots, and revolutions at the moment, it’s being treated below-the-fold news. Somehow, the fact that over a million people are marching, camping out, and battling with Ukraine’s increasingly authoritarian government is barely making a ripple behind such blockbuster news bits as bridge closures and polar vortexes. Yes, even though protesters are literally building catapaults and wearing medieval armor and manning flaming dump trucks.
Hopefully news of the nascent techno-security state will turn some heads—it’s right out of1984, or, more recently, Elysium: technology deployed to “detect” dissent. Again, this tech appears to be highly arbitrary; anyone near the protest is liable to be labeled a “participant,” as if targeting protesters directly and so broadly wasn’t bad enough in the first place.
It’s further reminder that authoritarian regimes are exploiting the very technology once celebrated as a vehicle for liberation; last year, in Turkey, you’ll recall, the state rounded up dissident Twitter users. Now, Ukraine is tracing the phone signal directly. Dictators have already proved plenty adept at pulling the plug on the internet altogether.
All of this puts lie to the lately-popular mythology that technology is inherently a liberating force—with the right hack, it can oppress just as easily.
(Reach this writer at brian.merchant(at)vice.com and on Twitter, at bcmerchant​ | Photo Credit: Wikimedia)

This is ridiculous.

This is scary as hell is what it is. 

shezzainblue:

wrynny:

Maybe the Most Orwellian Text Message a Government’s Ever Sent | Vice

“Dear subscriber, you are registered as a participant in a mass disturbance.”

That’s a text message that thousands of Ukrainian protesters spontaneously received on their cell phones today, as a new law prohibiting public demonstrations went into effect. It was the regime’s police force, sending protesters the perfectly dystopian text message to accompany the newly minted, perfectly dystopian legislation. In fact, it’s downright Orwellian (and I hate that adjective, and only use it when absolutely necessary, I swear).

But that’s what this is: it’s technology employed to detect noncompliance, to hone in on dissent. The NY Times reports that the “Ukrainian government used telephone technology to pinpoint the locations of cell phones in use near clashes between riot police officers and protesters early on Tuesday.” Near. Using a cell phone near a clash lands you on the regime’s hit list. 

See, Kiev is tearing itself to shreds right now, but since we’re kind of burned out on protests, riots, and revolutions at the moment, it’s being treated below-the-fold news. Somehow, the fact that over a million people are marching, camping out, and battling with Ukraine’s increasingly authoritarian government is barely making a ripple behind such blockbuster news bits as bridge closures and polar vortexes. Yes, even though protesters are literally building catapaults and wearing medieval armor and manning flaming dump trucks.

Hopefully news of the nascent techno-security state will turn some heads—it’s right out of1984, or, more recently, Elysium: technology deployed to “detect” dissent. Again, this tech appears to be highly arbitrary; anyone near the protest is liable to be labeled a “participant,” as if targeting protesters directly and so broadly wasn’t bad enough in the first place.

It’s further reminder that authoritarian regimes are exploiting the very technology once celebrated as a vehicle for liberation; last year, in Turkey, you’ll recall, the state rounded up dissident Twitter users. Now, Ukraine is tracing the phone signal directly. Dictators have already proved plenty adept at pulling the plug on the internet altogether.

All of this puts lie to the lately-popular mythology that technology is inherently a liberating force—with the right hack, it can oppress just as easily.

(Reach this writer at brian.merchant(at)vice.com and on Twitter, at bcmerchant | Photo Credit: Wikimedia)

This is ridiculous.

This is scary as hell is what it is. 

(Source: america-wakiewakie, via moodydk)

2PM

thepluralisphoenixii:

oftheforest:

wittyusernamed:

Let us take a moment to observe the awesomeness of octopus.

My buddy read an article about octopus intelligence. It was feeding time, and the handler dumped some shrimp into an octopus’ tank. Then he went into another room and sat at his desk.

A while later, a shrimp was tossed onto his desk.

The octopus, upon finding one bad shrimp in the lot, had grabbed it, escaped its tank, crossed the hall, and threw the expired shrimp at its caretaker. Not only does this showcase their problem-solving capabilities, but also that it could have escaped at any time. It just broke out this time to chuck an off shrimp in indignation at its handler. That’s not just intelligence, that’s a human-like reaction. Kinda make you wonder exactly how smart these guys can be…

I, for one, welcome our new cephalopod overlords.

The octopus, upon finding one bad shrimp in the lot, had grabbed it, escaped its tank, crossed the hall, and threw the expired shrimp at its caretaker.

Why does the Monty Python parrot sketch come to mind?

"THIS IS AN EX-PARROT!"

(Source: dralanabloomphd, via underscoreanea)

1PM

stunningbubbles:

fishmech:

stfueverything:

veggielezzyfemmie:

ilovecharts:

How many months it takes an average worker to earn what the CEO makes in an hour

whoa. 

well this puts things into perspective now doesn’t it.

i’m frankly shocked the best buy one is that low

ah yes mine is the highest

(via kalooeh)

1PM

danfreakindavis:

obama is fucking done with all this bullshit in that last gif

(Source: beybad, via underscoreanea)

12PM

caitlynkurilich:

The Thurifer, Owler, The Palace Guard, The Archer, & Gwyn | Graphite on Moleskine, 12” x 16 1/2”, 2013.

A collection of various ladyknights and wanderers I’ve drawn.

(via underscoreanea)

11AM

(Source: sandandglass, via tartdarling)

10AM
repmarktakano:

For-Profit colleges only spend 17% of their revenue on instruction. Source: Senate HELP Committee

repmarktakano:

For-Profit colleges only spend 17% of their revenue on instruction. Source: Senate HELP Committee

(via queenofhaiku)

9AM

Last May 8, a severe rainstorm left the streets of this city flooded once again, causing the mayor, Dawn Zimmer, to recall the inundation from Hurricane Sandy.

So she dashed off a letter to Gov. Chris Christie, imploring him to help with Hoboken’s “ongoing flooding emergency,” and attached photos of cars in water up to their hoods. She was due to meet the next day with officials of the New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection, when she hoped to talk about protecting Hoboken from the next catastrophic deluge to come.

But according to newly obtained emails sent among the participants, the first topic of discussion on the agenda was “review of concepts for flood control measures at Rockefeller property,” a reference to a billion-dollar office complex proposed at the north end of town. The developer, the Rockefeller Group, which had long been trying to gain approval from officials, sent two executives, two lobbyists and an engineer to the meeting.

Mayor Zimmer, through a spokesman, said on Wednesday that she went to the meeting but refused to discuss the project, feeling it was premature to do so.

The next day, the mayor has said, she received a call telling her that Lt. Gov. Kim Guadagno would visit Hoboken the following Monday. Ms. Zimmer, a Democrat, has alleged that during that visit, while in the parking lot of a Shop-Rite supermarket, Ms. Guadagno, like the governor a Republican, told her that the Rockefeller project was important to Mr. Christie and that the mayor needed to “move forward” with it if she wanted Hoboken to receive the flood protection money being distributed in the wake of the hurricane.

The Christie administration has denied ever linking the Rockefeller project to hurricane relief, an accusation that is now under federal investigation.

But whatever the outcome of the inquiries, the emails and interviews make clear that the development-wary mayor was coming under increasing and repeated pressure from politically connected lawyers working for Rockefeller Group and from the Christie administration.

The New York Times, "Christie Allies Pushed a Project in New Jersey."

Looks like those charges hurled by Hoboken mayor Dawn Zimmer are gonna be another albatross around Chris Christie’s and now Kim Guadagno’s corrupt necks.

(via inothernews)

(via queenofhaiku)

← Older entries Page 1 of 636