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Submission + - Happy 30th Birthday, Windows!

v3rgEz writes: And what a ride it's been. Today marks the 30th anniversary since the debut of Windows 1.01, the first commercial release of Windows. At the time, it was derided as being slow, buggy, and clunky, but since then ... Well, it looks a lot better. .The Verge has a pictorial history of Windows through the years. What's your fondest memory of Bill Gates Blue Screen-of-death that could?

Submission + - The famous authors FOIA offices around the U.S. write like (

v3rgEz writes: MuckRock took samples of FOIA responses from various federal agencies and ran it through a text analysis parser that finds which famous author they write most like. The responses, while probably useless for any practical purpose, are enlightening, pairing up the Bureau of Prisons with Stephen King and the Department of Interior with Edgar Allan Poe. But you'll never guess which agency could sub in for Cory Doctorow ...

Submission + - Burt Shavitz, of Burt's Bees fame, was accidental international man of mystery (

v3rgEz writes: Eternalized as the familiar face of Burt’s Bees personal care products, Ingram Berg Shavitz is famous as the face of Burt’s Bees. But while he was known as (and generally was) a mild-mannered hippie, a trip to Communist-era Poland took a few dozen unexpected turns, having him seduce a government agent, get captured and interrogated by mysterious strangers, and ultimately serve his country — all during what was supposed to be a peaceful vacation.

Submission + - Microsoft and Red Hat Team-up (

v3rgEz writes: Sign of the apocalypse? Microsoft and Red Hat today are announcing a partnership that will bring Red Hat solution to Microsoft Azure customers. Based on this partnership, Microsoft will begin offering Red Hat Enterprise Linux as the preferred Linux for Microsoft Azure workloads. Additionally, Microsoft and Red Hat will be working to deliver application management and development for both private and public clouds.

Submission + - How California police are tracking your biometric data in the field (

v3rgEz writes: EFF and MuckRock teamed up in August to reveal how state and local law enforcement agencies are using mobile biometric technology in the field by filing public records requests around the country. With the help of members of the public who nominated jurisdictions for investigation, we have now obtained thousands of pages of documents from more than 30 agencies. Here's how police around California are using iris scanners, fingerprint readers, and facial recognition to monitor civilians.

Submission + - J. Edgar Hoover Presents: The FBI files of Alfred Hitchcock (

v3rgEz writes: Like almost everyone else in the J. Edgar Hoover era, Alfred Hitchcock managed to catch the attention of the FBI, leading to a 16-page file. Did it investigate the rumored murders the Master of Suspense committed? Secretive ties to foreign states? Nope, mostly just the fact that, in one episode of Hitchcock Presents, a bad guy was briefly referenced to be a "former FBI agent," a plot point that the Bureau worked surprisingly hard to change ... perhaps worth of a Hitchcock treatment all its own. Read on for the full story.

Submission + - Backlash grows over Microsoft's Eternal Patch Tuesday plan (

v3rgEz writes: This summer, Microsoft rolled out a nearly perfect Patch Tuesday. Maybe that’s what helped boost the company’s confidence in a plan to more aggressively push and package patches, but now users are revolting: A Microsoft MVP is leading the charge with a petition asking that Microsoft better explain the patches its pushing forward, and allow users (and IT admins) to opt out of wants that disrupt their systems.

Submission + - DEA spent millions on cell phone trackers and training (

v3rgEz writes: Over the past ten years, the Drug Enforcement Administration has spent millions of dollars on cell phone tracking. Federal purchasing documents that are already posted online indicate the make and model of the tracking device, and often even the DEA field office that bought it, according to federal payment records reviewed by MuckRock.

Submission + - MythBusters' FCC complaints allege hidden sex acts in mushroom clouds (

v3rgEz writes: Did Adam Savage pull a Lion King and hide sex acts in various explosions? One viewer, watching alone late at night, thought so, and blew the whistle by writing in to the FCC. Another writer, who actually liked the show, wrote in to complain they are fed up with the number of tweets crammed in all over the screen, which is, to be fair, a pretty legit complaint. Read on for the full set of FCC complaints about MythBusters.

Submission + - What non-geeks hate about the Big Bang Theory (

v3rgEz writes: There's a lot to dislike about the Big Bang Theory, from the typical geek's point of view: It plays in stereotypes of geekdom for cheap laughs, makes non-sensical gags, and has a laugh track in 2015. But what does the rest of America (well, the part of America not making it the number one show on television) think? FCC complaints recently released accuse the show of everything from animal cruelty to subliminal messaging, demanding that the sitcom be ripped from the airwaves lest it ruin America. The full complaints for your reading pleasure

Submission + - In Afghanistan, billions spent on flightless planes & melting buildings (

v3rgEz writes: MuckRock takes a look at the latest report from SIGAR, the Special Inspector General for Afghanistan Reconstruction, and the findings are rough: In a scathing critique that finds U.S. officials "operate in a world where personal accountability is nonexistent," they uncovered billions of dollars wasted on buildings that simply melted during rain, planes that were never able to take off, and other boondoggles, even as cold weather clothing ordered in 2013 still has not been actually shipped over. Read the full story on MuckRock.

Submission + - FBI files show Walt Disney imagining FBI of tomorrow (

v3rgEz writes: Union-busting Walt Disney became cozy with J. Edgar Hoover, the iconic animator's FBI files show, helping shut down dissident workers while infusing Disney programming with fond portrayals of federal enforcement. Disney even wanted to dedicate a special section of Tomorrowland to highlighting the Bureau of tomorrow â" which ended up being a step too far for America's head investigative agency.

Submission + - Private colleges, public safety: few disclosure requirements for campus police (

v3rgEz writes: Want some transparency from your local police? Then public records law is probably on your side if you're in the US â" unless you happen to be a college student. MuckRock's Shawn Musgrave looks at the broad exemptions that give campus police almost all the rights and powers of regular cops, without any of the public accountability.

Submission + - The labor professor the FBI trailed, blackballed, but ultimately couldn't stop (

v3rgEz writes: Philip S. Foner was one of the 20th centuries pre-eminent labor scholars, publishing over 100 times, including a massive 10-part history of the American Labor Movement which he published between 1947 and 1994. But close ties with labor in the 40s meant one audience was sure to hang on every word: The FBI. Recently released files show the Bureau's long history tracking labor's historian.

Submission + - FBI: Burning Man testing ground for free speech, drugs ... & new spy gear (

v3rgEz writes: The 29th annual Burning Man festival kicks off this week in Nevada's Black Rock Desert. Among those paying close attention to the festivities will be the FBI's Special Events Management unit, who have kept files on "burners" since at least 2010. One of the more interesting things in those, files, however, is a lengthy, heavily redacted paragraph detailing that the FBI's Special Events Management Unit gave Las Vegas Police Department some specialized equipment for monitoring the week-long event, as long as LVPD provided follow up reports.

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