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Submission Summary: 0 pending, 12 declined, 6 accepted (18 total, 33.33% accepted)

Security

+ - student arrested wearing hoax device at airport 1

Submitted by SuperBanana
SuperBanana (662181) writes "According to a report by the Boston Globe, Star Simpson was nearly shot by Logan Airport police who thought she was armed with a bomb. She approached an airline employee wearing a prototyping board with electronic components, crudely attached to the front of her sweatshirt and holding "putty" in her hand. She asked about an incoming flight, and did not respond when asked about the device. Armed police responded. Her actions seem purposefully designed to elicit a reaction from airport security- or this is further proof of the poor judgment of Boston area college students."
Privacy

+ - License Plates Optional for California Elite

Submitted by SuperBanana
SuperBanana (662181) writes "Steve Jobs is part of a small group of California residents who can go without license plates. Instead, they have a small barcode located in the plate area. Not only does this make one invulnerable to tollbooth ticketing systems, but it makes them harder to target with a LIDAR speed gun (police use the highly reflective front plate as a target for the infrared beam.) Not to mention, if they commit any vehicular crimes or traffic infractions, witnesses have no plates to look for. States and the Federal government have numerous safety reasons why we are compelled to have two license plates, but if you've got enough commas in your bank account, you get to drive with no plates at all..."
The Internet

+ - MBTA website overhauled, crashes instead

Submitted by SuperBanana
SuperBanana (662181) writes "Today the Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority (aka "The T" in Boston, a network of several subway, Light Rail Vehicle, bus, commuter rail, and ferry lines) announced a $466,000 "revamp" to its website by RDVO, allowing features like bus and subway route maps for iPod users (video iPods only), better ordering of regular passes, email alerts, and (at some point) real-time positioning of busses. RDVO's company press release mentions "The new website for the MBTA went 'live' this morning. Initial reviews have been postive, and we're working through some performance problems." That is a bit of an understatement, as the site has been inaccessible since at least lunchtime. Boston.com readers who were able to view the site have not been especially kind towards either the site or the MBTA itself. This is not surprising given the major fare hike coming in January, mandatory bag searches, the T's crumbling infrastructure, poor reliability, and issues with the new RFID-based Charliecard. Apparently, you can't load existing CharlieCards (handed out en-mass recently) with a monthly pass; you need a second pass. I've personally found the system flaky as well: I loaded $2.50 onto a Charlie Card, went through a Green line gate ($1.25), and hopped on a bus at Copley (transfer of 35 cents), where the machine flashed "insufficient fare." Even if it was a full fare (90 cents), I should have had enough money in the card and the card should have had the $2.50 stored in its chip. Amusingly, during my green line trip, the driver had to "reboot" the train twice to get the doors to close. Also: the new fareboxes on busses don't give change; if you put in $1 for a 90 cent bus fare, you don't get 10 cents back. You only get the ability to store the change on a Charliecard or the Charlieticket, a "reloadable" mag-stripe paper ticket soon to be phased out."

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