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Submission + - In San Francisco, Billionaires Tax School Districts! 1

theodp writes: The San Francisco Unified School District (SFUSD) has turned to crowdfunding to raise funds for classroom technology to enable its students to "contribute to and thrive in the digital world." And billionaire-backed crowdfunding site Tilt, explains the grateful SFUSD in a press release, "is taking only one percent [of donations] to offset the site maintenance expenses." SFUSD is following the example of tech leaders and their corporations, who have turned to "begfunding" sites to not only direct tax-free millions to their pet K-12 public education projects, but also to control who gets educated. Hey, Microsoft did say "there are better ways [than taxes] for us to address the state's [education] needs." Unfortunately, Tilt so far seems to do a better job of funding party experiences "normally reserved for Saudi Princes" than passionate critical thinkers. Still, SF Mayor Ed Lee is jazzed!

Submission + - Proof of aliens coming in 20 years, says NASA scientist (

An anonymous reader writes: A NASA scientist says we’re just a couple decades away from having conclusive proof of extraterrestrial life. On Tuesday, April 7, NASA chief scientist Ellen Stofan spoke on a panel about water in the universe. Water is an essential ingredient for life as we know it. So astrobiologists typically focus the search for extraterrestrial life on worlds where water is present.

Submission + - Report: NSA Can Hijack Existing Malware Botnets (

jfruh writes: According to a new report derived from the treasure trove of documents leaked by Edward Snowden, the NSA uses hijacks existing criminal botnets for its own purposes. Computers already infected by run-of-the-mill crooks might find themselves repurposed by the NSA, and then launching attacks that would be difficult to trace back to the shadowy security agency.

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