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Submission + - RIP John Ellenby, godfather of the modern laptop (nytimes.com)

fragMasterFlash writes: John Ellenby, a British-born computer engineer who played a critical role in paving the way for the laptop computer, died on Aug. 17 in San Francisco. He was 75.

Mr. Ellenby’s pioneering work came to fruition in the early 1980s, after he founded Grid Systems, a company in Mountain View, Calif. As chief executive, he assembled an engineering and design team that included the noted British-born industrial designer William Moggridge.

The team produced a clamshell computer with an orange electroluminescent flat-panel display that was introduced as the Compass. It went to market in 1982. The Compass is now widely acknowledged to have been far ahead of its time.

Submission + - British Companies Are Selling Advanced Spy Tech To Authoritarian Regimes (vice.com)

An anonymous reader writes: Since early 2015, over a dozen UK companies have been granted licenses to export powerful telecommunications interception technology to countries around the world, Motherboard has learned. Many of these exports include IMSI-catchers, devices which can monitor large numbers of mobile phones over broad areas. Some of the UK companies were given permission to export their products to authoritarian states such as Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates, Turkey, and Egypt; countries with poor human rights records that have been well-documented to abuse surveillance technology. In 2015, the UK's Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) started publishing basic data about the exportation of telecommunications interception devices. Through the Freedom of Information Act, Motherboard obtained the names of companies that have applied for exportation licenses, as well as details on the technologies being shipped, including, in some cases, individual product names. The companies include a subsidiary of defense giant BAE Systems, as well as Pro-Solve International, ComsTrac, CellXion, Cobham, and Domo Tactical Communications (DTC). Many of these companies sell IMSI-catchers. IMSI-catchers, sometimes known as “Stingrays” after a particularly popular brand, are fake cell phone towers which force devices in their proximity to connect. In the data obtained by Motherboard, 33 licenses are explicitly marked as being for IMSI-catchers, including for export to Turkey and Indonesia. Other listings heavily suggest the export of IMSI-catchers too: one granted application to export to Iraq is for a “Wideband Passive GSM Monitoring System,” which is a more technical description of what many IMSI-catchers do. In all, Motherboard received entries for 148 export license applications, from February 2015 to April 2016. A small number of the named companies do not provide interception capabilities, but defensive measures, for example to monitor the radio spectrum.

Submission + - Trump's shock troops: Who are the 'alt-right'? (bbc.com)

alternative_right writes: Anthony Smith, a journalist for the website Mic, got a tip that the image had appeared on 8chan, an extreme message board with many users who self-identify as members of the alt-right movement.

At first Smith was sceptical that he'd be able to stand the story up. The message board is fast-moving, threads get deleted quickly, and it's difficult to search for and find images. But within an hour, he had his answer.

Submission + - FBI: Hillary Clinton used BleachBit to wipe emails (neowin.net) 1

An anonymous reader writes: The open source disk cleaning application, BleachBit, got quite a decent ad pitch from the world of politics after it was revealed lawyers of the presidential hopeful, Hillary Clinton, used the software to wipe her email servers. Clinton is currently in hot water, being accused of using private servers for storing sensitive emails.

“She and her lawyers had those emails deleted. And they didn't just push the delete button; they had them deleted where even God can't read them. They were using something called BleachBit. You don't use BleachBit for yoga emails or bridesmaids emails. When you're using BleachBit, it is something you really do not want the world to see.”

Two of the main features that are listed on the BleachBit website include “Shred files to hide their contents and prevent data recovery”, and “Overwrite free disk space to hide previously deleted files”. These two features would make it pretty difficult for anyone trying to recover the deleted emails.

Comment Re:It causes other issues too - (Score 1) 167

Have you gotten a physical QWERTY Keyboard Second Half for it? Jolla needs to include that as a default addon.

PS MOD PARENT UP! Supporting projects like Neo900 & Jolla is the only way to defeat The Enemy as they try to dominate our lives & domesticate us further & further until our essential humanity & liberty (especially Cognitive Liberty) is obliterated.

Comment The project's been suspended/hidden (Score 2) 190

"Unavailable For Legal Reasons

This record has been suspended"
https://osf.io/p9ixw/files/

Kirkegaard's other work (still available) on Open Science Framework: https://osf.io/a2yfn/

Interestingly enough, it works out to be great advertising for a really neat science site/service...

Comment Displacement Activity (Score 1) 108

Perhaps many people get subtly (or not-so-subtly) rubbed the wrong way by inhumane aspects of modern society/technology/the world of work & business, & it builds up, & many incidentally just dispel the discomfiture & such by lashing out at those around them, be it jokingly, passive aggressively, or outright abusive language/behavior. It sure takes a lot of metacognition (& meta-metacognition ("mindfulness"?)) to keep a handle on that sort of phenomenon & in the process (hopefully) take a more active role to heal themselves & those around them, especially individuals who are suffering from behavioral complexes of this variety. And best of all to change the inhumane aspects of our world!

Comment If I had mod points... (Score 1) 146

Nokia was still making well-designed phones with full keyboards up until fairly recently, with the last holdouts in their Asha line. The X2 was very low-end but a good design (rugged as heck but tragically low onboard memory, slow processor, low-resolution camera, & no WIFI/3G), despite lackluster stats. Usability, ruggedness, & things other than "can it play [latest ad-revenue/money-harvesting game]?" or "does it [make money for] google?" is what's key.

As nice as keyboard slider phones can be, I personally think the best design is the Blackberry-style full-QWERTY bar phone with a d-pad (& a screen which can have the touch-functionality switched on & off (capacitive touchscreens can be *too* sensitive)). NEC *tried* to make an Android phone meeting some of these specs, but I understand it fell far short of expectations. I had high hopes.

The new Blackberries, & the NEC Terrain, both have full QWERTY, but lacked any other meaningful inputs than the touchscreen, like the ever-useful d-pad, which is also lacking in the HTC ChaCha/Status. Nokia made the last good phone design with their E6 (or N950/E7), but that was underpowered & had numerous flaws. So I've (personally) settled on what I consider to be the least worst phone around still, a Nokia E73. I still see people with them out & about in the world, & it works quite well for me, as my primary mobile. I can do most anything on it that I need to: I can use various social media/internet functionalities (whatsapp (which is amazing how a major company designs their software to be accessible on most device platforms, not just iDevices & Android!), facebook, synctxt, okc, goodsearch - an enlightened alternative to google, twitter, etc.) & have access to an excellent email client, Citrix support, FM radio built-in (lucky me, I live near Good radio stations), & an amazing GPS. The camera's decent, too. Sure, it's carrier-locked (T-Mobile) but it has better stats than the E72, has built-in WIFI calling & has better data/radio frequencies. It has an older processor & low ram, but I have a 64gb microSD card & if I offload messages semi-regularly it's great for intense everyday use. I have destroyed many mobiles with what I consider "normal" everyday use, so real durability is important, & lacking as a design consideration in most mobiles.

I also have an N900, & bought a spare for when I can buy the Neo900 upgrade. I think that is still too slow (1ghz processor, 1gb ram (but a good sight better than the old specs (which still work decently well)), & the 3-row QWERTY is a setback, but I can do a lot with it, & it's an amazing device in essentially every other regard (admittedly, it's not my primary mobile). The N900/Maemo was/is too touch-driven, interface-wise, &, at least in theory, a Moto Droid or some other 4+ row QWERTY slider phone (Android seems to be the only option, as I don't think anyone's making non-Bluetooth (seriously, why waste even more battery with that when you can make a battery hutch/slide-out keyboard that plugs into the microUSB port (or Lightning port on iDevices)?) QWERTY keyboards for touchscreen-only mobiles other than Jolla with the "other half" attachment (a QWERTY keyboard "other half" should be a standard/free included addon, not something you have to 3D-print yourself (which is serious hobbyist territory at this point)) but most devices are behind the curve, specs-wise, from the touchscreen-only phones (HTC G1, etc.) MOTO Droids, Samsung (Intercept, Captivate Glide, Galaxy 551, Galaxy Ace), etc. http://ibnlive.in.com/photogal... http://www.androidauthority.co... )) would suit my needs fine, but even with CyanoGenMod I'm still averse to Android devices. I'll probably end up buying a 1.2ghz+ Android QWERTY slider at some point, but I think it's a travesty that there's a virtual wasteland of modern-spec phones in various design formats. Some people just plain hate touchscreen-only phones. No virtual keyboard/SWYPE/etc. is going to make up for that. Also, *very* easily shattered/broken screens, & plastic-toy design do *not* qualify as a "winning strategy".

I think most smartphone reviewers on major sites are idiots, but I'll afford them the benefit of the doubt; they're just Educated Stupid. The same goes for whoever is making design decisions for most phone companies. Until new phones in better formats are produced, I will gladly stick to my E73 & my N900/Neo900 (friends & strangers think it's pretty cool when they see me using it (the kickstand, stylus, & multi-OS features win points) or try it themselves); I refuse to acquiesce, & I'm sure there are a lot of us out there, but we need to be more vocal, or start a company that *will* make such phones. If Nokia made the N950 (developer-only keyboard version (E7 style) of the MeeGo (I sometimes read that as "me ego") N9 (why no microSD???)) available cheaply, or with modern specs...

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