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Submission + - Should PETA Turn Jeffrey Dahmer's Home into Vegan Restaurant?

Jeremiah Cornelius writes: PETA, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, proposes that the former home of convicted murderer and cannibal Jeffrey Dahmer be turned into a vegan restaurant called, "Eat for Life — Home Cooking." "Rather than remaining as a stark reminder of it dark past, the building can instead become the site of a celebration of culinary compassion. Like Dahmer’s human victims, cows, pigs, and chickens are made of flesh and blood and fear for their lives when confronted by a man with a knife... The difference is that when Dahmer was caught, his killing spree ended. Today, however, more than 30 billion animals are slaughtered in the U.S. every year in similarly gruesome ways for food." Is this statement just callous appropriation of a terrible human tragedy for political opportunity, by those who claim to be motivated by deep compassion?

Submission + - First Commercial Moon Lander Unveiled (

Jeremiah Cornelius writes: Ready to launch in 2015, California-based Moon Express unveiled its MX-1 lunar lander on Thursday in Las Vegas, at the Autodesk University conference. The MX-1's main rocket engine will burn hydrogen peroxide, though it also relies on kerosene as an afterburner to accelerate out of Earth orbit. To reduce mass, engineers used composite materials and eliminated the structure that supports most spacecraft. Instead, the MX-1's fuel tanks serve as the structure. The lander is designed for delivering 132 pounds (60 kilograms) of payload to the lunar surface.

Submission + - Humans Born in Space May Be Doomed to Gravity Sickness ( 1

Jeremiah Cornelius writes: From the "What's-Up-Doc?" Dept.
NASA first started sending jellyfish to space aboard the Columbia space shuttle during the early '90s to test how space flight would affect their development. Under the fantastic headline "Space-Born Jellyfish Hate Life On Earth" Popular Science notes that jellyfish babies, born in microgravity environments, "have to deal with massive vertigo on Earth after spending their first few days in space". There's a possibility for future generations of space-born human children, who might never be acclimatised to a terrestrial environment, and in fact could be incapacitated by gravity forces approaching "normal". Jellyfish tell up from down through calcium sulfate crystals that ring the bottom edge of their mushroom-like bodies. Humans sense gravity and acceleration through calcium crystals in the inner ear — similar to jellyfish — moving sensitive hair cells that signal our brains on direction of gravitation.

Submission + - Will the US Lose Control of the Internet? ( 2

Jeremiah Cornelius writes: Upon revelation of the extent of US foreign intelligence surveillance, through efforts by Edward Snowden and LavaBit founder Ladar Levison, an increasing number of nation's have expressed official dismay and concern over the US dominance in managing the infrastructure for request and transit of information on the Internet. In the past, ICANN challenges have been secondary to efforts in the UN ITU — until now. Yesterday at a summit in Uruguay, every major Internet governing body pledged to free themselves of the influence of the US government. "The directors of ICANN, the Internet Engineering Task Force, the Internet Architecture Board, the World Wide Web Consortium, the Internet Society and all five of the regional Internet address registries have vowed to break their associations with the US government. The group called for "accelerating the globalization of ICANN and IANA functions, towards an environment in which all stakeholders, including all governments, participate on an equal footing". Any doubt about the reason or timing of this statement is dispelled with the inclusion: "the group 'expressed strong concern over the undermining of the trust and confidence of Internet users globally due to recent revelations of pervasive monitoring and surveillance'."

The US argument for maintaining governance has been the need to maintain "a free and open Internet" versus interests of authoritarian societies. Has recent understanding of the wholesale surveillance of telecommunications by the NSA completely ruined the US reputation as the just custodian of that mission?

Submission + - Brazil Aims to Bypass US on Internat (

ggraham412 writes:

Brazil is considering ways to make local use of the internet less dependent on US-based services, following leaks about Washington's cyberspy operations.The South American nation has suggested forcing internet firms to open data centres in Brazil, which would be used to store locally generated material. It is also pursuing a plan to build a new internet cable. The project would offer a way for data to bypass the US.

Interesting to ponder: how far are they and other countries likely to take this? Perhaps Balkanization of the internet was inevitable all along.

Submission + - Federation of American Scientists president explains situation at Fukushima (

Lasrick writes: Charles D. Ferguson of the Federation of American Scientists explains the current situation at Fukushima, and includes some information not widely known (such as the fact that there is a river that runs underneath the plant). It seems the leak of radioactive water may have been going on since 2011; clearly, TEPCO has not been telling the truth about the situation at the plant; they've asked for international help, but it remains to be seen whether they will actually accept that help.

Submission + - Two US Representatives Mouth Identical DMCA Talking Points at Same Hearing (

Jeremiah Cornelius writes: Comedy gold, as US House members sellout to the copyright industry. Watch two Congressional Representatives ask identical leading questions, framed for them by entertainment industry lobbyists, word-for-word. No pause, one right after the other. Ultimately, its the voter/taxpayer/consumer who is both paying for this directly and subsidizing it, while subject to the restraints that are being demanded.

Submission + - UK gov destroyed Snowden drives .. (

An anonymous reader writes: 'The mood toughened just over a month ago, when I received a phone call from the centre of government telling me: "You've had your fun. Now we want the stuff back."`

'one of the more bizarre moments in the Guardian's long history occurred – with two GCHQ security experts overseeing the destruction of hard drives in the Guardian's basement just to make sure there was nothing in the mangled bits of metal which could possibly be of any interest to passing Chinese agents. "We can call off the black helicopters," joked one as we swept up the remains of a MacBook Pro.`

Submission + - Proxy Use Made Criminal Under CFAA ( 1

WillgasM writes: "Changing your IP address or using proxy servers to access public websites you've been forbidden to visit is a violation of the Computer Fraud and Abuse Act." according to a judge's broad ruling during a case on Friday involving Craigslist and 3taps. Opponents argue that this creates a slippery slope that many unsuspecting web users may find themselves upon. With your typical connection being assigned an address dynamically, is an IP ban really a "technological barrier" to be circumvented? How long until we see the first prosecution for unauthorized viewing of a noindex page?

Submission + - DHS: Illegal to Freely Play Live Music in the United States (

Jeremiah Cornelius writes: According to a number of entertainment related sources, the US Dept of Homeland Security is attempting federal-level enforcement for a ban of unapproved live music performances. The wording is unclear, but the DHS seems to be leveraging its influence on State Fire Marshalls, and the their funding connection as "first responders".
"The Department of Homeland Security... is now demanding through enforcement from The State Fire Marshalls that all live music played in the United States must have a permit from the Department of Homeland Security."

Submission + - NSA Says It Can't Search Its Own Emails (

An anonymous reader writes: Responding to a Freedom of Information Act request by Justin Elliot, blogger and journalist at, the NSA regretfully informed him:

"There's no central method to search an email at this time with the way our records are set up, unfortunately," NSA Freedom of Information Act officer Cindy Blacker told me last week. The system is “a little antiquated and archaic," she added.

Maybe a little extra could be included in the next NSA budget for an Outlook license?

Submission + - What Can Lord of the Rings Teach Us About Surveillance? (

Jeremiah Cornelius writes: Slate has an article: The Eye of Sauron Is the Modern Surveillance State . Although the insights provided are not necessarily unique, and echo the observations of some like Bruce Schneier, Glenn Greenwald and Chris Hedges, they do illustrate them nicely, through an unexpected allegorical reading of Tolkien's familiar epic. The gist is that unlike most dystopian fantasy — especially the explicitly political variety — Tolkien understood that the minions of absolute power were untrusted by that power, itself. It's also worth reading for the defense of the fantasy-epic genre, which offered Tolkien the opportunity to explore themes like the "distinction between omnipotence and omniscience," that were under-examined in modern idioms, but relevant to Tolkien from a theological interest and connected to the experience under tyranny.

Submission + - Researchers Turn iPhone Into Handheld Biosensor (

Jeremiah Cornelius writes: Do you remember McCoy's Medical Tricorder from classic 'Trek? The capability of this device is rapidly approaching reality, via a research team at University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Using a cradle and app for the iPhone, they've developed a biosensor to detect toxins, proteins, bacteria, viruses and other molecules. The wedge-shaped cradle contains a series of optical components, similar to those in larger and more expensive laboratory devices. The cradle is able to utilize the phone’s built-in camera and processing power as a platform to replace the benchtop equipment. "We’re interested in biodetection that needs to be performed outside of the laboratory," said team leader Brian Cunningham, a professor of electrical and computer engineering and of bioengineering at the U. of I. The team demonstrated sensing of an immune system protein, but the slide could be primed for any type of biological molecule or cell type. The researchers are working to improve the manufacturing process for the iPhone cradle and are working on a cradle for Android phones as well.

Submission + - Will There Be Pizza on Mars? NASA Sponsors 3-D Printed Food

Jeremiah Cornelius writes: From the Earl-Grey-Hot Dept.
NASA granted $125,000, to Systems & Materials Research Corporation, to create a prototype universal food synthesizer. First stop? Pizza. Pizza is an obvious candidate for 3D printing because it can be printed in distinct layers, so it only requires the print head to extrude one substance at a time. If eating something produced in the same kind of 3D printers that are currently being used to make everything from jet engine parts to fine art doesn’t sound too appetizing, that’s only because you can currently afford the good stuff, says founder, Anjan Contractor. Anticipating the needs of a global population, Contractor envisions every kitchen with a 3D printer, with customized, nutritionally-appropriate meals synthesized one layer at a time, from cartridges of powder and oils they buy at the corner grocery store. The NASA award for a “pizza printer” is still at the conceptual stage. It works by first "printing" a layer of dough, which is baked at the same time it’s printed, by a heated plate at the bottom of the printer.

Submission + - Pentagon Special Ops Chief: "War on Terror" Another 10-20 Years (

Jeremiah Cornelius writes: Asked last week, at a Senate hearing, how long the war on terrorism will last, Michael Sheehan, the assistant secretary of defense for special operations and low-intensity conflict, answered, “At least 10 to 20 years.” A spokeswoman, Army Col. Anne Edgecomb, clarified that Sheehan meant the conflict is likely to last 10 to 20 more years from today. This is additional to the 12 years this conflict has already been pursued. Members of the Senate panel expressed shock that Sheehan envisioned such a broad, long war, unconfined by defined and measurable objectives or any territorial limitation. Senator Angus King (I-Maine) declared that the 2001 Authorization to Use Military Force (AUMF), was specifically bounded to al-Qaida as then defined, for the 9/11 attacks. The AUMF does not contain the words "associated forces", repeatedly invoked in the session by Pentagon chief lawyer, Robert Taylor. John McCain (R-Ariz.), protested the Pentagon’s interpretation of the AUMF. "None of us could have envisioned authority [to strike] in Yemen and Somalia," McCain said.

The two most common things in the Universe are hydrogen and stupidity. -- Harlan Ellison