Archive for category Internet

Evil Russkie Conspiracy Theory Report: High Confidence But No New Evidence

Vladimir Putin

Sam Biddle, writing on The Intercept:

After President Obama and Donald Trump were briefed on a classified report explaining the United States Intelligence Community’s belief that Russia hacked the Democratic Party, the public has received its own, declassified version. Unfortunately for us, it appears virtually anything new and interesting was removed in the redaction process, leaving us without the conclusive, technical evidence we were hoping for — and that the American people are owed….

The immensely confident report, based on the combined findings of the NSA, CIA, and FBI, includes virtually no new details about why the nation’s intelligence agencies attributed the attacks to the Russian government (and in some cases, directly to Vladimir Putin)…

Last night, Rachel Maddow was waving around this redacted nothingburger and shouting as if it were proof positive of the Evil Russkie Conspiracy Theory. But there is no supporting evidence in it unless you count already-debunked stuff about “Guccifer 2.0.” Repeating a baseless allegation in an official report does not convince anybody.

Here is what we know. A DNC staffer delivered the DNC e-mails on a disk to Craig Murray, a former British ambassador who now works for WikiLeaks. John Podesta’s e-mails became public after he fell for a simple phishing scam.

Unlike the U.S. intelligence agencies, WikiLeaks has never been found to have disseminated false information to the public. Certainly every DNC and Hillary campaign e-mail was genuine, because the authors of the e-mails never disavowed what they wrote.

Last Thursday, I watched James Clapper’s testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee. Remember that Clapper has lied to Congress previously, which makes his credibility very low indeed. At the hearing, Clapper was challenged on the issue of nonexistent Iraq WMDs. He acknowledged that he was partly responsible for the lies that the Bush administration used to launch the illegal invasion and occupation of Iraq, but claimed that mistakes were made and lessons were learned – things are different now!

So far I believe WikiLeaks over James Clapper. No doubt there will be further investigations, but at this point it looks like nobody can prove anything.

UPDATE:
Josh Marshall: Mind-Boggling

[J]ust two weeks before a new President is sworn into office, the country’s intelligence agencies are publicly releasing a report claiming that the United States’ great 20th century rival, Russia, conspired to assist in that new President’s election. Step back and just absorb that. That is simply mind-boggling.

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Explore The World Through Radio

Radio Garden

This is a really great idea I wish I’d had. It’s called “Radio Garden” and let’s you sort of Google radio stations from around the world. Next best thing to short wave radio, which I wanted, but never had as a kid. Mostly music though. Sound quality is decent, so put on your good headphones.

You can use the + and – signs on the bottom left, or your mouse wheel, to zoom in or out, and spin the world around by holding down the left mouse button and moving the pointer, or just click once on any of the thousands of dots to check them out.

Thought people could use a vacation from the worst election in American history.

Click on the image to begin!

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Take A Much Deserved Break With Matt Harding

No better way to do that, then to watch Matt Harding’s anticipated new “dancing-bad” video:

Matt Harding’s visit to Salt Lake resulted in me going to participate in his greatly successful effort at making the world feel better about at least one American’s campaign of pure fun.

Matt Dances In Salt Lake: Literally

Utah didn’t make the cut in his featured video that year, but he put out an outtakes reel that we’re in. I was thrilled to be in it!

Here are three of his videos, but be sure to look around and find others where he tells about his travels and whatnot. He even has a book. Support Matt!:

Matt’s first effort from 2006
The video that made him famous from 2008
The fantastic sequel from 2012

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What’s really at stake here

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There is a saying from Benjamin Franklin that tends to get quoted a lot by just about everyone. “Those who surrender freedom for security will not have, nor do they deserve, either one.” While many people on the right relate this to gun rights, there is no other subject where Franklin’s saying is more true and that is cyber security. John Mcafee recently said that the biggest issue the United States faces is cyberterrorism and cyber crime. If you have ever seen The Net, a really good movie by the way, you could see the damage that could be done when someone has control of the internet and they did so because they had a monopoly on security software. This movie was shrugged off as preposterous and unrealistic yet reality is much more terrifying than the movie portrayed. In the case of Apple, the FBI wants a back door key to all encryption and I say that Apple should refuse to comply even if they are held in contempt of court. Nothing and I mean nothing is worth making a back door key because not only does this mean that that the government can spy on you, but it also means that this key can end up in the wrong hands, meaning that someone with that key has access to every Apple device and if they forced Linux to do that which the NSA tried to do, then that means anyone can have access to everything. We are talking traffic lights, nuclear plants, military installations, data collection centers, nuclear missile silos, you name it. This is terrifying and it shows that Mcafee was right. Even if you make the argument that the government can have an unbreakable encryption key that doesn’t have a back door, then that simply means that the populace is at risk. Banks, airlines, corporations, doctors offices, weapons contractors. All once secure are now vulnerable. Apple cannot allow this because we face unimaginable horrors if they cave in, especially in an age where everyone is connected all the time. Yeah this would make it easier to go after criminals, but it would make it easier for criminals to go after us.

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Is Apple Going To Make Utah’s Spy Center Useless?

Oh well...

Oh well…

If all the other corporations that produce phones which provide a detailed log of the owner’s account numbers, passwords and all manner of other private information are not providing a firewall from the FBI, and Apple is, you’d have to be pretty dumb not to choose an iPhone if you had something to hide from the government.

It’s a scary new place we live in today. We don’t want somebody who wishes to harm America to plan things behind our back, but it’s just as likely they’d get hold of the secret code the FBI plans to use to unlock the whole, wide world. Besides, they can still find a way to do things behind our back.

I don’t have an iPhone, but I hope this battle results in safer world for me and my data. I don’t worry much about terrorists, environmental or otherwise anyway, but the big government snooping infrastructure, put in place during the George W. Bush administration creeps me out. I would have just as soon known my water was safe, and I’m sure Flint Michigan feels the same. And besides, James Comey reminds me of John Ashcroft.

We probably can’t have the money back that we and the rest of the nation spent on this giant Bluffdale, public works peepshow, but we can sure save the water it takes to cool it. It looks like we’re going to need it.

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How Could They?

Why Don't They Ever Represent Me?

Why Don’t They Ever Represent Me?

A short rant about losing one of our most important freedoms, and about the only thing you can do to keep it. Good luck.

After all these years of Americans fighting for “internet neutrality”, against the corporations who want control of the internet, and finally winning an important ruling by the FCC recently, the corporations got the house of “representatives” to sneak language into a funding bill that would stop the FCC’s ability to carry out it’s own ruling.

This bipartisan effort brought Americans from every political party together in staggering numbers in a common cause to protect our freedom to be heard and participate in the course of our lives. The internet provides the most exciting innovative possibilities imaginable, by allowing everybody – not just corporations – the unfettered ability to create new ideas for our future and even our survival.

Our collective congress doesn’t seem to care if our country has an open internet as long as they secure a campaign donation, or maybe they’re just tired of not being able to control it more to their liking. There hasn’t been a peep about this from the congress or our media. I’m sure ABC, NBC, CBS, print media and the politicians liked it a lot better when they had complete control over public discourse before the internet. I don’t share that sentiment.

DO THIS! It’s designed to be super fast and super easy. It even dials the phone for you! Can’t possibly take more then a couple of minutes and it might even be therapeutic. No excuses for you, Bubba!

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Happy April Fools’ Day

I couldn’t come up with a better April Fool joke than this.

Google Maps turns into Pac-Man’s chomping grounds

The gag on Google Maps enables visitors to click on a Pac-Man symbol in the lower left of the screen to play the video game on whatever location is listed in the address bar. As has been happening for nearly 35 years, Pac-Man eats blinking dots while trying to elude four “ghosts” — Pinky, Blinky, Inky and Clyde.

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All of you Net Neutrality people need a little education on how the Internet works.

The Internet is not like the public highway system where anyone who wants to ride the Freeway can regardless of whether you drive a beater or a Lamborghini. The Internet is a patchwork of thousands of private networks. Some networks owned by the big players are called backbone networks and they handle a lot of the traffic but they only take the traffic so far.

Go to your command prompt or terminal and type in traceroute followed by a url. You will see how many networks and nodes it took to get to your
destination. I did >traceroute youtube.com. I got 10 different networks that were traversed before it got to youtube.com

When you make a request to a server the request and the result of that request can traverse many networks to get to the server that hosts the information. These networks have cooperative agreements with other networks to allow traffic to go through them in return they get reciprocated with their traffic. When one network gets overloaded they cut off through traffic and the packets get rerouted someplace else that can handle the traffic. Sometimes there is no other option so the network has to throttle some traffic to handle the load. This is going to jeopardize this cooperation since they will want to protect their own traffic. The Internet cannot work without Inter network cooperation. If all networks circle the wagons nothing will get in or out and we will be left with thousands of private networks that can only talk to itself.

Why net neutrality will hurt and slow everyone down is because Networks will not be able to manage their networks based on the priority of the traffic so the result will be more traffic on their systems which means they will have to throttle Everyone to handle it. The result is it will take longer to receive packets and with streaming services such as Netflix it means you will see more of the dreaded buffering especially at night when most people want to watch Netflix.

What is interesting too is everyone is so concerned about net neutrality mainly because of Netflix but the funny thing is that Netflix uses a protocol that is low priority. The highest priority is TCP which requires every packet send back an acknowledgement that it was received or it sends it again. This makes no sense with streaming because if a packet doesn’t make it it is too late. Plus the protocol does not require every packet to be received to run the program. If anything you may lose a pixel of two. Netflix uses a protocol that has a “Best effort” protocol which is lower priority. So net neutrality will actually have no net benefit at all in streaming.

There are certain protocols used by the Internet to set priority for traffic. There is QoS (Quality of Service) and COS (Class of Service). These are part of the network protocols are are essential to operate the Internet smoothly and not bog it down. These prioritize traffic based on the nature or importance of the traffic. Net Neutrality is a small part of this and actually has little effect on the Internet and will not change QoS or Cos which means in reality Net Neutrality is mainly a marketing term. Sad something so insignificant has now resulted in the government taking over the Internet.

Obama was all gung-ho and used the full force of his administration to get ISPs to police copyrights but had no interest at all in doing the same thing to get ISPs to voluntarily adopt net neutrality. Rather he went the government takeover route. Hmmm wonder why?

Hey try the Android Game I created called CHOMP. https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.bingham.ken.chomp.android

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The Day The Internet Died

Internet

Only a short time ago the thought of a government takeover of the Internet would have caused a massive movement against it from the Internet and tech communities. The Internet and tech communities that defeated SOPA, and PIPA have been lulled to sleep and in many cases welcome the takeover with thunderous applause.

The FCC is doing this all in secret with no public input. Just like Obamacare, we won’t know what is in it until they pass it and by then it will be far too late.

Net Neutrality is the Trojan Horse the Obama Administration is using to take control of the Internet. The FCC is about to vote to make the Internet subject to Title II under the Telecommunications Act. An act that is 80 years old and is ill equipped to address issues of Today’s Internet but gives the FCC far sweeping power to regulate without Congressional oversight or public accountability. What Title II does is allow Monopolies to exist but regulates them in return. Regulations that will bar any new comers from popping up and keep the existing players as the only players for decades to come. The FCC by law is an independent agency and does not have to answer to the Congress or the White House for their actions.

Like the idea of Google Fiber? Say goodbye to it unless you are lucky enough to already have it. The Internet of tomorrow will require a lot more bandwidth than we have today but regulations will slow that process to a crawl and with it all the benefits we will now wait longer to receive. All so we can get our Netflix which we were never denied anyway.

Wake up people. Tomorrow may be the last day the Internet exists as we have known it.

obamanet fcc net neutrality

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Because a Policy is Wildly Unpopular in America Doesn’t Mean It Won’t Happen

Comcast

Consumerist’s Worst Company In America for 2014 (you guessed Comcast, didn’t you? – right on!) is trying to get bigger and more powerful. Where is democracy when we need it?

Comcast is trying to merge with another of America’s largest cable and Internet providers, Time Warner Cable. The proposed Comcast-TWC merger would create a juggernaut of a company that almost no one would be able to compete with. The merged company — which will be named Comcast — would control more than two-thirds of all cable television subscriptions in the country, and some 40% of the home Internet market.

Alternet:

Survey after survey shows that Americans wholeheartedly oppose the proposed merger. The latest survey, by Consumer Reports, finds nearly three-quarters of Americans believe it will result in higher cable and Internet rates, while two-thirds say it will likely have a negative impact on customer service and that Comcast would have no incentive to improve.

Let’s recall that Comcast is an enemy of net neutrality, which they underscored by the Netflix shakedown last summer. They are notorious for throttling your Internet connection. Comcast is currently trying to turn user home routers into publicly-accessible hotspots without telling customers. Their prices are too high (but it’s a local monopoly controlled by nobody). And of course their customer “service” is totally evil.

Will the Federal Communications Commission and the Department of Justice roll over and play dead, letting this merger go through? Stay tuned.

More info:
You Thought Comcast Couldn’t Get Any Worse? Think Again
When Your Cable Company Attacks: Why Comcast Abuses Its Customers
Insults directed at consumers are proof that Comcast is rotten to the core.

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Title II Is Necessary But Not Sufficient

Tom Wheeler
FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler

Via HuffPo:

Internet users haven’t won yet. FCC Chairman Tom Wheeler has indicated that he plans to reclassify consumer broadband Internet as a utility under Title II of the Telecommunications Act. However, this by itself does not guarantee the preservation of net neutrality.

[A]dvocates say that Title II authority won’t mean much unless the FCC creates enforceable rules and doesn’t allow loopholes.

“Right now, the big carriers are simply looking for a loophole,” said Marvin Ammori, a lawyer who advises major tech companies and supports net neutrality. He noted that there are multiple loopholes — like writing exceptions for mobile or specialized services — that could undermine the whole FCC rule. “They only need one,” he said.

…”Title II is necessary but not sufficient,” said Evan Engstrom, policy director at Engine, which advocates for startups. “We hope the FCC gets it right right away and comes out with a proposal that includes bright-line rules.”

Meanwhile, Tea-GOP members of Congress have introduced legislation to take away the FCC’s authority to save net neutrality.

UPDATE:
FCC Chief Announces Big Win For Net Neutrality Advocates

In a Wired op-ed, Wheeler said he is proposing the FCC use its authority under Title II of the Communications Act to protect consumer broadband Internet. This move will allow the FCC to stop Internet service providers from charging content providers like Netflix more money for reliable Internet access.

“Using this authority, I am submitting to my colleagues the strongest open Internet protections ever proposed by the FCC,” he wrote.

UPDATE:
Think Progress: Conservatives Do Their Best To Bash Net Neutrality

15 Comments

Do This NOW!

If you’re reading this, you know you support “Net Neutrality” and wouldn’t want OneUtah to have any more problems then it’s got now or had in the past.

The internet is abuzz with news that the Chairman of the FCC seems to be hearing Americans of ALL persuasions concerning our desire not to give away the promise of the internet, to be a forum for everybody and not just another movie, advertising or propaganda channel.

I don’t wish to cast any negative aspersions on the good chairman, but he DID used to be a lobbyist for the opposition to a free internet. Now isn’t the time to be pacified into thinking we’ve won.

You might not be a fan of Daily KOS, and I’ve had my issues with that blog myself, but they have provided a simple page which provides you with a way to easily make your comment to the FCC. I am happy that it doesn’t provide the text of your comment, which would most likely not get read and possibly get discarded automatically by the recipient.

Go here to construct and send your comment.

For all it’s worth, here’s mine:

I consider “net neutrality” to be the biggest issue today. The invention of the internet has allowed knowledge and ideas to flow in ways that were unimaginable to anyone just a few years ago. If the largest corporations are allowed to control this powerful tool, it will become just another advertising platform for wealth creation and people will lose interest. Personally, it would devastate my trust in what America used to stand for and lessen my interest in democracy itself.

I was nice, no?

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