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Submission + - How the UK police can coerce journalists into surrendering photographs 1

Andy Smith writes: I'm a press photographer. Recently the police wanted to seize some of my work photos to use as evidence in a prosecution. As a member of the National Union of Journalists I adhere to a strict code of ethics and I couldn't surrender the photos. Rather than trying (and likely failing) to get a warrant to seize the photos, the prosecutor used a tactic that nobody had heard of before: He got a warrant to seize all of my cameras, computers, memory cards, etc, even though the photos were in a secure location, not at my home or in my possession. I was then given 24 hours to retrieve and hand over the photos, or the police would raid my home and take everything, effectively ending my career.

Submission + - SPAM: California Law Enforcement Union Sues To Block Police Accountability

schwit1 writes: Because there's just not enough opacity shrouding police misconduct and not enough slanting of the criminal justice system against defendants, California police unions have decided to get involved in a judicial dispute over lists of law enforcement officers whose half of "our word against yours" isn't quite as bulletproof as is normally assumed.

A Los Angeles sheriff is trying to do the right thing, but he's running into opposition from his own supposed "representatives."

The Los Angeles County Sheriff's Department has collected the names of about 300 deputies who have a history of past misconduct — such as domestic violence, theft, bribery and brutality — that could damage their credibility if they testify in court.

Sheriff Jim McDonnell wants to send the names to prosecutors, who can decide whether to add them to an internal database that tracks problem officers in case the information needs to be disclosed to defendants in criminal trials.

I don't imagine prosecutors are exactly thrilled to be the recipient of information that damages the credibility of their favorite witnesses, but it's probably better than having your witness destroyed in open court by a defense attorney. But prosecutors may never see this information, thanks to the police union's belief that officers shouldn't be held accountable for anything.
Link to Original Source

Submission + - Check whether Hacking Team demoed cyberweapons for your local cops (

v3rgEz writes: Turns out death squads aren't the only agencies buying Hacking Squad's controversial spyware. Town from Miami Shores, FL to Eugene, OR appeared on a list of US agencies that received demonstrations from the hacked surveillance vendor. MuckRock has mapped out who was on the lists, and is working to FOIA what these towns actually bought, if anything. Check and see if your city is on the map.

Submission + - Land Rover's Transparent Hood Is The Kind Of Automotive Tech That Excites Us 1

cartechboy writes: Land Rover's Transparent Hood Is The Kind Of Automotive Tech That Excites Us

When we were kids, we were promised flying cars in the future, like The Jetsons . Well, now it's the future, and we don't have any flying cars. But Land Rover just unveiled some crazy new technology called the Transparent Hood system. It's brilliant in its simplicity, and yet quite complex in its implementation. Using a web of camera images and projectors, the Transparent Hood system projects the area just in front of and underneath the nose of the vehicle onto a head-up display along the lower portion of the windshield. Not only is this obviously breathtaking, but when it comes to off-roading—or parking in tight urban spaces—this could change the game. It will allow drivers to see precisely what's below them and immediately in front of them allowing precise placement of the vehicle's front wheels. The system also displays key vehicle data including speed, incline, roll angle, steering position, and drive mode. People, this is the future, and the future is now.

Submission + - NASA Now Accepting Applications From Companies That Want To Mine The Moon (

cold fjord writes: The Verge reports, "NASA is now working with private companies to take the first steps in exploring the moon for valuable resources like helium 3 and rare earth metals. Initial proposals are due tomorrow for the Lunar Cargo Transportation and Landing by Soft Touchdown program (CATALYST). One or more private companies will win a contract to build prospecting robots, the first step toward mining the moon. ... Final proposals are due on March 17th, 2014. NASA has not said when it will announce the winner. ... According to the 1967 Outer Space Treaty of the United Nations, countries are prohibited from laying claim to the moon. The possibility of lunar mining and the emergence of private space companies has triggered a debate over lunar property rights ..." — More at the Examiner.

Submission + - Australian team working on engines without piston rings

JabrTheHut writes: An Australian team is seeking funding for bringing an interesting idea to market: cylinder engines without piston rings. The idea is to use small groves that create a pressure wave that acts as a seal for the piston, eliminating the piston ring and the associated friction. Engines will then run cooler, can be more energy efficient and may even burn fuel more efficiently, at least according to the story at Mind you, they haven't even built a working prototype yet. If it works I'd love to fit this into an older car...

Submission + - Microsoft, We Need to Talk About Visual Studio (

jones_supa writes: 'I really hope Microsoft employees (from the Visual Studio team) or the management read this post', begins Matias at Yosoygames blog. He is assured that latest revisions of Visual Studio are failing to satisfy the video game industry. One by one: horrible compilation performance, excruciatingly slow IntelliSense, unusually high RAM consumption, no native 64-bit version, high latency text editor input. Matias's benchmarks show that GCC is almost 3x faster than MSVS2013 C++ compiler (Clang is fastest), even when not using precompiled headers. IntelliSense's 'Go to Definition' is too slow, he continues. 'Often it takes noticeable time (between 750ms and 2 seconds probably) while VC 2008 was nearly instantaneous (except for a few cases).' The VS2013 IDE uses 3 times more RAM than Visual C++ 2008, and its compiler uses 2 to 3 times as much RAM. 64-bit version would also be needed, as some components of the toolchain run out of their 3GB memory space. As the icing of the cake, the editor input occasionally lags behind. For his purposes, it's hard to switch, as Visual Studio is the default and standard compiler for the Windows platform. As a workaround, Matias uses the aging Visual Studio 2008 and makes some positive remarks about Qt Creator.

Submission + - Bill Nye To Debate Creationist Museum Founder Ken Ham 1

cusco writes: Creation Museum Founder and AiG President/CEO Ken Ham will debate Bill Nye at the Creation Museum on Tuesday, February 4, at 7 PM. According to the Washington Post, 'Ham had been hoping to attract the star of TV’s “Bill Nye The Science Guy” to the northern Kentucky museum after Nye said in an online video last year that teaching creationism was bad for children. The video was viewed nearly 6 million times on YouTube.'

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