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Comment: In the Netherlands, the currency is the euro (Score 1) 104

by fondacio (#44666007) Attached to: Van Gogh Prints In 3D: Almost the Real Thing For $34,000

The article is in The Guardian, so it makes sense for the price of the paintings to be mentioned in pounds, but they could have changed it to euros for the summary. After all, that is the currency in the Netherlands. A bit of googling yielded more details and a price of € 25,000 (about US$ 33,500) for each replica.

Comment: Re:Lazy Intelligence? (Score 4, Informative) 179

by fondacio (#43510453) Attached to: Utility Box Exposed As Spy Cabinet In the Netherlands

But pretty much irrelevant to this story. The neighbourhood in which they found the cabinet is far removed from where the international institutions are and from where the internationals live. As mentioned by previous posts, the Schilderswijk is a low income area with a large immigrant population. The purpose of the cabinet is most likely to help a police investigation into anything between organised crime or jihad recruitment, and on Dutch websites some have already pointed out that exposing this method effectively renders it useless in the future, but police have been doing it for at least ten years. This kind of surveillance was most likely done with the permission of a public prosecutor, unless it was the intelligence services in which case another law applies.

Comment: My Q&D human translation of the Dutch article (Score 4, Informative) 288

by fondacio (#43384421) Attached to: Researcher Evan Booth: How To Weaponize Tax-Free Airport Goods

Researcher builds bomb out of articles from airport shops

To demonstrate the futility of current airport security, next week a security expert will demonstrate a remotely controllable bomb. All the materials were bought at the airport once past security.

The detonation mechanism will be presented at security conference Hack in the Box in Amsterdam. It is the result of two years of research by security expert Evan Booth.

“There are all kinds of things we cannot take with us and security checks for those. But it turns out that this doesn’t make much sense,” says Booth.

The detonation mechanism is the result of more than two years of research into deficient security at airports and available materials which are sold the in stores which are located ait airports behind customs.

Drone

To build the mechanism, Booth has used a Zippo lighter, disposable lighters, adhesive tape, dental floss and a remote controlled drone. “Which can be opreated with a mobile phone through a wireless network”, claims Booth.

He used the engine from the drone to operate the zippo lighter. With disposable lighters, it is possible subsequently to create a blowtorch. By doing this, it would be possible to cause a fire, but at the conference Booth will present a more developed concept which even enables the detonation of a bomb.

Simple

“The trick is to prove that you can have dangerous weapons on board without carrying any forbidden items with you”, Booth has stated to NU.nl.

Apart from a bomb, Booth also managed without much effort to create a bow and arrow out of items he had bought in a shop at an airport. For this, he used an umbrella, a hairdryer, socks, a leather belt and condoms. He did not want to further develop things were too obvious, such as using a lighter and deodorant as an alternative gas burner.

Also remarkable is a club he created out of a souvenir, some magazines, dental floss, a leather belt and adhesive tape. During a test, this club turned out to be so solid that a single strike sufficed to break a coconut into several pieces.

Profiling

“Airport security has not been done well for a while now. What annoys me, is that we spend a lot of money on it and, for example, violate people’s privacy with body scanners. In the meantime, it turns out it doesn’t work well”, explains Booth.

“It is a difficult problem, but I don’t know if this security makes any sense at all. I believe more in good intelligence and preventing the wrong people from coming to the airport.”

To pre-empt problems with authorities, Booth has contacted the responsible government agencies in the United States in February. “I have offered to demonstrate my research and provide explanations, but I haven’t received any response. In the meantime, I have continued my research.”

Canada

Cellphone Privacy In Canada: Encryption Triggers Need For Warrant 111

Posted by timothy
from the rot13-baby-rot13 dept.
codegen writes "The Ontario Court of Appeal has just ruled that the police can search your cellphone if you are arrested without a warrant if it is not password protected. But the ruling also stated that if it is password protected, then the police need a warrant. Previous to this case there was no decision on if the police could search your phone without a warrant in Canada."

Comment: Re:is this for real? (Score 5, Informative) 915

by fondacio (#41045939) Attached to: Assange Makes Statement Calling For an End To the "Witch Hunt"

Thanks. That clarifies things a bit and you also raise an important point regarding the difference between diplomatic asylum and other cases of people seeking refuge in an embassy.

Before we all get too worked up about the US not recognising the concept of diplomatic asylum (too late I guess), there's less here than meets the eye. Diplomatic asylum is a concept that has long been accepted in Latin America, and it developed there in part because of some periods in which there were many coups and people trying to escape from new regimes found refuge in foreign embassies. Diplomatic asylum is however not the same as Chinese dissidents seeking refuge in the US embassy in Beijing or the Cold War cases, as parent points out, and this reflects that outside of Latin America, the concept of diplomatic asylum is not accepted under international law. That's why it's sometimes described as regional international law. Chinese and other dissidents are rather making use of the diplomatic immunity that these places enjoy, which prevents the authorities of the host state from exercising their jurisdiction on the premises but doesn't mean they can leave.

So while Ecuador sees the Assange case as a one of diplomatic asylum, the UK only accepts the immunity of the embassy (and if the story about threats is to be believed, not even that - but that would be a violation of international law). Had the UK accepted the notion of diplomatic asylum under international law, it could also grant safe passage to Assange to leave for Ecuador upon recognition of the diplomatic asylum granted by Ecuador. In any case, both UK practice and the US position reflect longstanding positions of international law, regardless of what we think about all the other aspects of the case.

I'd like to say at this point IANAL, but I can't, since I'm actually an international lawyer.

Comment: Mistake in the summary (Score 5, Informative) 158

The summary misstates the person responsible for using Comic Sans in the Higgs boson announcement. The full quote:

Lisa Randall, a Harvard physicist, kindly e-mailed Fabiola Gianotti on my behalf. Gianotti, the coordinator of the CERN program to find the Higgs boson, provided a compelling rationale for why she had used Comic Sans. When asked, she said, “Because I like it.”

I was already wondering why a Harvard physicist would be making the announcement of a discovery by CERN.

Comment: Re:Not the first (Score 1) 40

by fondacio (#39862669) Attached to: MIT <em>Tetris</em> Hack: Source Code Released

I doesn't seem that anyone was claiming that MIT were the first, but as long as we're looking at prior art: the first Tetris-on-a-builiding was done by electrical engineering students in Delft, the Netherlands, all the way back in 1995, as you can see on this archived webpage. Futhermore, students at Brown University did it in 2000 (BBC article here). Both prior projects, but not Blinkenlights, are mentioned in an article about the MIT project here. It seems to me that each of these projects has something the others didn't, so no need to be competive about it - it's all in good fun.

China

+ - In China, Human Costs Are Built Into an iPad (nyti->

Submitted by cpotoso
cpotoso (606303) writes "In the last decade, Apple has become one of the mightiest, richest and most successful companies in the world, in part by mastering global manufacturing. However, the workers assembling iPhones, iPads and other devices often labor in harsh conditions, according to employees inside those plants, worker advocates and documents published by companies themselves. Problems are as varied as onerous work environments and serious — sometimes deadly — safety problems."
Link to Original Source

Comment: Re:Heavy Metal Solid Gear? (Score 1) 195

by fondacio (#31780962) Attached to: Kojima Predicts the End of the Console

For such a short summary, it sure contains a lot of errors. Kojima is not even a founder of Konami - the company was established in 1969, and Kojima was born in 1963. He only joined Konami's MSX division in 1986, when the company had already been making video games for a while. He did go on to become a VP for a while. And this error isn't even in the original article.

Comment: Re:The issue has been resolved. (Score 1) 94

by fondacio (#27965791) Attached to: New York Times Wipes Journalist's Online Corpus

Apologies for the reply to self, but I tried a few more links which did not resolve, but the current IHT landing page says it all: "The most recent IHT articles can now be found by searching NYTimes.com. We are in the process of moving IHT articles dating back to 1991 over to NYTimes.com. Thanks for your patience as we complete this transition."

Comment: The issue has been resolved. (Score 1) 94

by fondacio (#27965657) Attached to: New York Times Wipes Journalist's Online Corpus

Interesting. I got quite upset with the IHT-NYT change a while ago for exactly this reason: many bookmarks and links to news articles that I had made throughout the years evaporated overnight, making me regret not printing or saving the text of those articles when I had the chance. But apparently the NYT has fixed it now. Crampton links to two articles of a scoop he had a few years ago, and they resolve to a new page. And a bookmark that I have on the computer I'm working on now has the same thing, suggesting that they must have transferred their news archive to the new site.

The original bookmark: http://www.iht.com/articles/2009/02/24/opinion/edcardenas.php now resolves to http://www.nytimes.com/2009/02/24/opinion/24iht-edcardenas.1.20395821.html

I'll try it later with my other bookmarks, but it seems like they have responded to the criticism well.

Comment: Re:wifi drivers, atheros and ralink (Score 1) 466

by fondacio (#26977451) Attached to: Which Distro For an Eee PC?
Thank you for this and obviously for the work you put into the EEE PC kernel, which I am using on my 901 in the unfortunately named Easy Peasy. I'd just like to add for information that even though my wireless card works fine on WPA and other networks, I have not been able to get LEAP or PEAP working, and therefore assume that something is still not working properly even with 1.7.1.1. People who need this kind of authentication may be better off getting a netbook with a different chipset.

MATH AND ALCOHOL DON'T MIX! Please, don't drink and derive. Mathematicians Against Drunk Deriving

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