An Austrian operator of Tor servers—that were used to anonymously route huge amounts of traffic over the Internet—has been charged with distributing child pornography. This comes after police detected illegal images traversing one of the nodes he maintains.
William Weber, a 20-year-old IT administrator in Graz, Austria, said nine officers searched his home on Wednesday after presenting him with a court order charging him with distribution and possible production of child pornography. The crimes carry penalties of as many as 10 years in prison. Police from the Styrian Landeskriminalamt, which has jurisdiction over the Austrian state of Styria, confiscated 20 computers as well as a game console, iPads, external hard drives, USB thumb drives, and other electronics. Evidence cited in the document showed that one of seven Tor Project exit nodes he operated transported illegal images.
Four men – Sohiel Omar Kabir, Ralph Deleon, Miguel Alejandro Santana and Arifeen David Gojali – were charged with material support for terrorism in Riverside County, Nov. 19. The government alleges the men were planning to join the resistance to the U.S./NATO occupation of Afghanistan.
According to the indictment, evidence against the men includes postings and ‘likes’ on Facebook. The criminal complaint against the men also cites a Facebook discussion between two of the defendants, where they allegedly discuss plans of the Afghan resistance to negotiate with the U.S.
Much of the ‘evidence’ presented in the indictment is constitutionally protected speech, where the defendants express their views on the resistance to the occupation of Afghanistan. An entire section of the complaint is devoted to “social media.”
NASA has just announced that MESSENGER, the first spacecraft to orbitMercury, has confirmed the presence of ice covered by an unknown organic material inside craters near the planet’s north pole – two major building blocks for life!
One current theory is that the ice and organic material could have been delivered to Mercury aboard anasteroid or comet perhaps hundreds of millions of years ago. Of course there’s a lot of painstaking research involved in the findings, as well as other details about this and other theories, so you can get the full story here.
But that’s crazy, right? How could there be ice on the closest planet to the sun? It turns out the deep craters shade anything inside from the sun’s rays, keeping the temperature cool enough to allow ice to form. It’s even possible that liquid water exists on the planet somewhere under the ice!
Every two months, AV-Test takes a look at popular antivirus software and security suites and tests them in several ways. In their latest test which was performed on Windows 7 during September and October, Microsoft Security Essentials didn’t pass the test to achieve certification. Although that may not sound that impressive, Microsoft’s program was the only one which didn’t receive AV-Test’s certificate. For comparison, the other free antivirus software, including Avast, AVG and Panda Cloud did.
I remember about a year ago, there was an article where Microsoft was one of the best. Either the playing field changes rapidly, or all these tests are bogus.
On Wednesday, a majority of parties in the Netherlands stated that the blasphemy law was no longer relevant in the 21st century.
The VVD party had refused to support efforts to annul the law during the tenure of the previous government in order not to upset the fundamentalist Christian party SGP, whose support was necessary in the upper house of parliament.
According to the SGP, the decision to lift the ban on blasphemy is a “painful loss of a moral anchor and a symptom of a spiritual crisis.”
The law, introduced in the 1930s, has not been invoked over the past half century.
However, it is still off-limits under the Dutch law to insult police officers or the country’s monarch, Queen Beatrix.
It’s thought that at the heart of most if not every spiral galaxy (as well as some dwarf galaxies) there’s a supermassive black hole, by definition containing enormous amounts of mass — hundreds of millions, even billions of times the mass of our Sun packed into an area that would fit inside the orbits of the planets. Even our own galaxy has a central SMBH — called Sgr A*, it has the equivalent of 4.1 million solar masses.
Now, astronomers using the Hobby-Eberly Telescope at The University of Texas at Austin’s McDonald Observatory have identified what appears to be the most massive SMBH ever found, a 17 billion solar mass behemoth residing at the heart of galaxy NGC 1277.
Located 220 million light-years away in the constellation Perseus, NGC 1277 is a lenticular galaxy only a tenth the size of the Milky Way. But somehow it contains the most massive black hole ever discovered, comprising a staggering 14% of the galaxy’s entire mass.
Dear Judge Algeo,
You may not remember me, but I will remember you for the rest of my life. I am Prince’s mother. The Prince who died on October 20, 2012. The Prince who died on just his fourth court ordered unsupervised visit with his father.
Michael David Dunn, 45, was in Jacksonville, Fla., this Friday for his son’s wedding, when afterward he decided to stop at a convenience store with his girlfriend. Four unarmed teenagers were in an SUV near where Dunn parked. After Dunn’s girlfriend went into the store to buy a bottle of wine, Dunn made a comment to the teenagers about their music being too loud. An argument ensued, and then Dunn, a gun collector, pulled out his gun and fired at the SUV between eight to nine times. Two shots hit and killed 17-year-old Jordan Davis.
His attorney, Robin Lemonidis, said:
It will be very clear that Mr. Dunn acted very responsibly and as any responsible firearms owner would have acted under these circumstances.
A recent survey of 500 financial services professionals, conducted by market researcher Populus at the behest of law firm Labaton Sucharow, turned up some surprisingly candid results from the folks surveyed. For example:
- 39% of financial industry insiders surveyed “reported that their competitors are likely to have engaged in illegal or unethical activity in order to be successful.”
- And this was more than just suspicion. “26% of respondents indicated that they had observed or had firsthand knowledge of wrongdoing in the workplace.”
- Nearly one in four “believed that financial services professionals may need to engage in unethical or illegal conduct in order to be successful.
- Nearly one in three said they themselves felt “pressured by bonus or compensation plans to violate the law or engage in unethical conduct.
But pressure need not be succumbed to. Surely these financial industry professionals put their ethics, and the interests of their clients, ahead of personal gain, right?
Well … not necessarily.
- 16% of respondents admitted that they — personally — would break the law by trading on insider information “if they could get away with it.”
- Fewer than half could say unequivocally that they would not engage in insider trading in a situation where they knew for sure that they would get away with it.
- What’s more, chances are they can get away with it. Because “only one in four financial services professionals believe [financial watchdogs such as the SEC or other government regulators] are effective.”
When water started trickling down a statue of Jesus Christ at a Catholic church in Mumbai earlier this year, locals were quick to declare a miracle. Some began collecting the holy water and the Church of Our Lady of Velankanni began to promote it as a site of pilgrimage.
So when Sanal Edamaruku arrived and established that this was not holy water so much as holey plumbing, the backlash was severe. The renowned rationalist was accused of blasphemy, charged with offences that carry a three-year prison sentence and eventually, after receiving death threats, had to seek exile in Finland.
Now he is calling for European governments to press Delhi into dropping the case. And on the first leg of a tour around EU capitals on Friday, he warned that India was sacrificing freedom of expression for outdated, colonial-era rules about blasphemy.
“There is a huge contradiction in the content of the Indian constitution which guarantees freedom of speech and the blasphemy law from 1860 under then colonial rule,” Edamaruku told the Guardian in an interview in Dublin.
The online version of China’s Communist Party newspaper has hailed a report by The Onion naming North Korean dictator Kim Jong Un as the “Sexiest Man Alive” – not realizing it is satire.
The People’s Daily on Tuesday ran a 55-page photo spread on its website in a tribute to the round-faced leader, under the headline “North Korea’s top leader named The Onion’s Sexiest Man Alive for 2012.”
It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a person in possession of a fast internet connection must be in want of some porn.
While it’s difficult domain to penetrate — hard numbers are few and far between — we know for a fact that porn sites are some of the most trafficked parts of the internet…
It’s probably not unrealistic to say that porn makes up 30% of the total data transferred across the internet.
That’s pretty hard to swallow.
Nintendo sold more than 400,000 Wii Us in the gaming console’s first week on sale, a disappointment compared with its Wii predecessor, although retailers are reported to be sold out of the unit…
“We are essentially sold out at retail. As soon as we replenish product into stores, it is immediately selling through,” Reggie Fils-Aimé, Nintendo US president, told the Financial Times. “We are working with our retail partners to expedite product to their stores as quickly as possible.”
He said Nintendo had learnt a lot of lessons from the launch of the Wii, which was sold out for months to the frustration of consumers, but demand for the new console was still outstripping supplies at the moment.
Is it me, or is it stupid in here?
Wal-Mart has become so big and so pervasive that it effectively sets prices for everyone who sells to it, and everyone who competes against it. It has lowered prices for American workers — even those who don’t shop at Wal-Mart — even as it has done much to destroy the American labor movement and to encourage the offshoring of American jobs. It has changed how goods are shipped, packaged and produced. It has, at different times, encouraged devastating environmental practices and admirable ones. Any accounting of Wal-Mart’s effect on workers has to go far beyond a simple look at the wages they themselves pay to their direct workforce. See, for instance, this Wall Street Journal article on what happened in Thailand after Wal-Mart demanded higher standards from its shrimp suppliers.
Back in 2006 and 2007, I spent quite a bit of time reporting on the Wal-Martization of the economy, and I never came across an accounting I found sufficient. Whether Wal-Mart has been, on net, “good” or “bad” is a complicated question to frame and a devilishly tough one to answer. Soon, I’m sure, the question will be whether Amazon.com has been good or bad. I wish I had a definitive answer. All I’m certain of is that Wal-Mart has been — and Amazon.com will be — economically transformative.
SUPPOSE that an investor you admire and trust comes to you with an investment idea. “This is a good one,” he says enthusiastically. “I’m in it, and I think you should be, too.”
Would your reply possibly be this? “Well, it all depends on what my tax rate will be on the gain you’re saying we’re going to make. If the taxes are too high, I would rather leave the money in my savings account, earning a quarter of 1 percent.” Only in Grover Norquist’s imagination does such a response exist.
Between 1951 and 1954, when the capital gains rate was 25 percent and marginal rates on dividends reached 91 percent in extreme cases, I sold securities and did pretty well. In the years from 1956 to 1969, the top marginal rate fell modestly, but was still a lofty 70 percent — and the tax rate on capital gains inched up to 27.5 percent. I was managing funds for investors then. Never did anyone mention taxes as a reason to forgo an investment opportunity that I offered.
Under those burdensome rates, moreover, both employment and the gross domestic product (a measure of the nation’s economic output) increased at a rapid clip. The middle class and the rich alike gained ground.
So let’s forget about the rich and ultrarich going on strike and stuffing their ample funds under their mattresses if — gasp — capital gains rates and ordinary income rates are increased. The ultrarich, including me, will forever pursue investment opportunities.
Another fine American. Why are they all so old?
The doctor who performed the world’s first successful kidney transplant and won a Nobel Prize for his pioneering work, has died in Boston.
News of Dr Joseph Murray’s passing on Monday was confirmed by a spokesman at Brigham and Women’s Hospital.
He was 93 years old and died in hospital after suffering a stroke at his home in Boston…
“My only wish would be to have 10 more lives to live on this planet. If that were possible, I’d spend one lifetime each in embryology, genetics, physics, astronomy and geology,” Murray said.
“The other lifetimes would be as a pianist, backwoodsman, tennis player, or writer for the National Geographic.”
Walmart, the US retailer, has admitted and ended its relationship with the unnamed supplier who sourced goods from the Bangladesh garment factory that saw 110 workers die in a blaze in the capital, Dhaka over the weekend.
The multinational company severed ties with its supplier as anger over safety standards in Bangladesh’s clothes manufacturing industry mounts.
The 12-storey building of the Tazreen factory that housed 1,000 employees, saw at least 110 textile workers with no emergency exits die in the blazing inferno on Saturday.
We have to hope that, over 100 years since the Triangle Shirtwaist Factory fire in NYC, Bangladesh will reform (and apply) its manufacturing regulations.
But not everyone is happy with Costco’s business strategy. Some Wall Street analysts assert that Mr. Sinegal is overly generous not only to Costco’s customers but to its workers as well.
Costco’s average pay, for example, is $17 an hour, 42 percent higher than its fiercest rival, Sam’s Club. And Costco’s health plan makes those at many other retailers look Scroogish. One analyst, Bill Dreher of Deutsche Bank, complained last year that at Costco “it’s better to be an employee or a customer than a shareholder.”
Mr. Sinegal begs to differ. He rejects Wall Street’s assumption that to succeed in discount retailing, companies must pay poorly and skimp on benefits, or must ratchet up prices to meet Wall Street’s profit demands.
Good wages and benefits are why Costco has extremely low rates of turnover and theft by employees, he said. And Costco’s customers, who are more affluent than other warehouse store shoppers, stay loyal because they like that low prices do not come at the workers’ expense. “This is not altruistic,” he said. “This is good business.”
Facing the possibility that President Obama might not win a second term, his administration accelerated work in the weeks before the election to develop explicit rules for the targeted killing of terrorists by unmanned drones, so that a new president would inherit clear standards and procedures, according to two administration officials.
The matter may have lost some urgency after Nov. 6. But with more than 300 drone strikes and some 2,500 people killed by the Central Intelligence Agency and the military since Mr. Obama first took office, the administration is still pushing to make the rules formal and resolve internal uncertainty and disagreement about exactly when lethal action is justified.
Mr. Obama and his advisers are still debating whether remote-control killing should be a measure of last resort against imminent threats to the United States, or a more flexible tool, available to help allied governments attack their enemies or to prevent militants from controlling territory.
Yes, after 300 strikes and 2,500 dead, Obama and his team are still debating when drone strikes are OK and when not.
Dan Motrescu, 29, a Ukrainian of no fixed abode, was also charged with criminal damage, Scotland Yard said.
Kudos to Adam Davidson for some much-needed mythbusting about the supposed skills shortage holding the US economy back. Whenever you see some business person quoted complaining about how he or she can’t find workers with the necessary skills, ask what wage they’re offering. Almost always, it turns out that what said business person really wants is highly (and expensively) educated workers at a manual-labor wage. No wonder they come up short.
And this dovetails perfectly with one of the key arguments against the claim that much of our unemployment is “structural”, due to a mismatch between skills and labor demand. If that were true, you should see soaring wages for those workers who do have the right skills; in fact, with rare exceptions you don’t.
So what you really want to ask is why American businesses don’t feel that it’s worth their while to pay enough to attract the workers they say they need.
So, all in all, especially considering the upset endured by the little girl and her family, this week’s events have been a disaster for the copyright lobby in Finland.
Almost universally the cash demands made to the girl’s father are being viewed as MAFIA-like extortion tactics. Furthermore, the fact that CIAPC can get the police to jump over a single album download has the Finnish public looking on in disbelief. Officers’ time could be spent on much more serious issues, surely?
Additionally, IP address evidence has been shown to be as flimsy as ever – unless of course CIAPC magically knew they were targeting a child and in which case they fully deserve the ‘bully’ label bandied around this week. One of these scenarios is true, and it’s a loss / loss situation for the copyright lobby whichever way you cut it.
Finally, the artist who was being ‘protected’ by this action has seen her reputation damaged by it instead. Aside from scaring little girls, and using the police for a small and private matter, this is perhaps the biggest travesty of all.
Add this all together and what you have here is a 9-year-old martyr who doesn’t know how important she is. She’s sad today because she doesn’t have a laptop, but tomorrow is another day and her suffering will not be in vain.
Because the public are angry, politicians will be nervous too, and uncooperative politicians are bad news for tougher copyright law. But in the short term anyone sent a “pay-up-or-else” letter from CIAPC (if they even dare to send any more) will be thinking long and hard about paying. The chances of the police coming next time must be slimmer than last week.
Evidence has emerged showing the Department of Homeland Security served a search warrant on Mr Dotcom’s file-sharing company Megaupload in 2010 which he claims forced it to preserve pirated movies found in an unrelated piracy investigation.
The 39 files were identified during an investigation into the NinjaVideo website, which had used Megaupload’s cloud storage to store pirated movies.
When the FBI applied to seize the Megaupload site in 2012, it said the company had failed to delete pirated content and cited the earlier search warrant against the continued existence of 36 of the same 39 files.
Mr Dotcom said Megaupload co-operated with the US Government investigation into copyright pirates NinjaVideo and was legally unable to delete the 39 movies identified in the search warrant.
Mr Dotcom said: “We were informed by (the US Government) we were not to interfere with the investigation. We completely co-operated.
“Then the FBI used the fact the files were still in the account of the … user to get the warrant to seize our own domains. This is outrageous.”
He said the revelation was the first insight into the FBI’s case against Megaupload and it showed bad faith on the part of the US Government. “Immediately we hit the jackpot – the first little piece of paper is this super-jackpot.”
New Zealand’s district court has ordered the FBI to provide documents relating to its investigation through an order for discovery. It was currently being appealed.
“I understand why the US is working so hard to appeal the discovery decision.”
The body of 43-year-old Uwe Sattler was found in the River Elbe in July by a fisherman. He was wearing a rucksack full of rocks and had been shot in the head and put into a sack fastened with cable ties before he hit the water.
Local media was rife with speculation about a Mafia murder – but after extensive investigation, the police now say they are nearly certain that the Sattler killed himself.
Today the Boeing Company told union negotiators that it intends to deny pension survivor benefits to same-sex married couples, even though Washington State voters decisively approved a marriage equality law earlier this month.
Representing 23,000 Boeing engineers and technical workers, Ray Goforth is executive director of the Society of Professional Engineering Employees in Aerospace (SPEEA), IFPTE Local 2001. He was sitting at the negotiation table today—as part of ongoing talks over retirement benefits—and says the company’s position “says to employees that they can be discriminated against based on who they are.”
I sure as hell won’t be buying my next airplane from Boeing, and I ‘ll take my defense contracts elsewhere too!