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Health and Environment News: Nature Still Not a Priority

Posted in News Roundup at 11:31 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Health and Nutrition

  • Surgeons perform ‘world’s first’ implant of entire 3D-printed plastic skull dome (VIDEO)

    Dutch surgeons have successfully placed an entire 3D-printed skull dome over the brain of a 22-year-old woman suffering from a rare bone disorder. Doctors say this surgery is unprecedented.

  • Homeopathic remedies recalled for containing real medicine

    The US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has recalled homeopathic remedies made by a company called Terra-Medica because they may contain actual medicine — possibly penicillin or derivatives of the antibiotic.

  • 7 million premature deaths annually linked to air pollution

    In new estimates released today, WHO reports that in 2012 around 7 million people died – one in eight of total global deaths – as a result of air pollution exposure. This finding more than doubles previous estimates and confirms that air pollution is now the world’s largest single environmental health risk. Reducing air pollution could save millions of lives.

  • Over 168,000 Gallons of Oil Spills into Ecologically Sensitive Galveston Bay

    A barge moving through Galveston Bay collided with another ship Saturday afternoon, spilling over 168,000 gallons of marine fuel oil. The spill is particularly devastating, even though it isn’t the largest in recent memory, because Galveston Bay is a migratory bird habitat and shorebird season is fast approaching. On top of that, the type of fuel that spilled is particularly difficult to clean up. The ship was being towed when it collided with the other vessel, though there are no details at this point on how the collision occurred.

  • U.S. fisheries dump 500 million pounds of bycatch back to the ocean annually: Report

    Seafood is an integral part of American cuisine. However, the ocean pays a steep price for every plate of tuna sashimi and every serving of grilled salmon that Americans consume.

  • Information poses bigger bioterrorism threat than microbes
  • Thanks, Anti-Vaxxers. You Just Brought Back Measles in NYC.

    Measles was considered eliminated at the turn of the millennium. Now it’s back, thanks to the loons who refuse to vaccinate their children.

  • With confirmed resistance, western corn rootworm worthy of being watched

    It isn’t an epidemic and it won’t shut down corn production anytime soon. However, researchers have confirmed that western corn rootworms have developed resistance to Bt corn hybrids that express the Cry3Bba trait in some areas of Nebraska.

  • Open Source Seeds

    Open-source software is now everywhere. For example, Android, Google’s open-source operating system, now accounts for 80% of the smartphone and tablet market. Our next guest dreams of the same kind of explosive success by applying the open-source model to one of humanity’s oldest technological achievements: agriculture. Jack Kloppenburg, a professor of community and environmental sociology at the University of Wisconsin, co-founded the Open Source Seed Initiative to help protect the public domain of seeds. He joined the Buzz on Monday, March 30th to tell us more about the project.

  • Scientists’ hidden links to the GM food giants

    He is group director at the Sainsbury Laboratory, and is also the founder of and adviser to biotech company Mendel Biotechnology, which counts Monsanto – a GM giant – as a major client. Mendel has been granted more than 20 biotechnology and GM patents.

  • CropLife America and the European Crop Protection Association discuss joint proposal during TTIP negotiations

    CropLife America (CLA) and the European Crop Protection Association (ECPA) called for a more harmonized risk assessment framework for pesticide regulations during the fourth round of negotiations of the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP). The comments follow the submission of a joint proposal on U.S. – EU regulatory cooperation that CLA and ECPA sent to Assistant United States Trade Representative Daniel Mullaney and Director of DG Trade for the European Commission Ignacio Garcia Bercero on March 7, 2014.

  • Watch an expert teach a smug U.S. senator about Canadian healthcare

    A U.S. politician’s I-don’t-need-no-stinkin’-facts approach to health policy ran smack into some of those troublesome facts Tuesday at a Senate hearing on single-payer healthcare, as it’s practiced in Canada and several other countries.

  • MEPs reject draft seed regulation

    The European Commission’s proposal for plant reproductive material law, also known as the “seed regulation”, was voted down by Parliament on Tuesday, amid concerns that it would give the Commission too much power and leave EU countries without any leeway to tailor the new rules to their needs. Following the Commission’s refusal to withdraw its draft text and table an improved one, Parliament closed the first reading.

  • GM foods and application of the precautionary principle in Europe

    European regulations restricting the growth of genetically modified (GM) foods in the UK and across the continent are to be scrutinised in a new cross-party parliamentary inquiry launched today by MPs on the Science and Technology Committee.

    The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) believes that GM is one of several technologies necessary to foster a “vibrant sector” in UK agriculture. But the European Union’s application of the ‘precautionary principle’ has been criticized for holding back development of the technology, despite European Commission reports finding no scientific evidence associating GM organisms with higher risks for the environment or food and feed safety.

  • You’re Absorbing BPA From Your Receipts, Study Shows
  • Store Receipts on Thermal Paper Can Transfer BPA

    Volunteers who handled receipts containing the hormone-altering compound bisphenol A for two hours showed elevated BPA levels in their urine. Dina Fine Maron reports

  • ​Monsanto’s Roundup may be linked to fatal kidney disease, new study suggests

    The new study was published in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health.

    Researchers suggest that Roundup, or glyphosate, becomes highly toxic to the kidney once mixed with “hard” water or metals like arsenic and cadmium that often exist naturally in the soil or are added via fertilizer. Hard water contains metals like calcium, magnesium, strontium, and iron, among others. On its own, glyphosate is toxic, but not detrimental enough to eradicate kidney tissue.

  • Sweden to sue the Commission for delaying hormone-affecting criteria

    Sweden’s government is considering suing the European Commission for stalling on criteria which are required to stop hormone-affecting substances, says the minister for the environment, Lena Ek.

    In December, the Commission was supposed to publish the necessary criteria for banning different endocrine-disrupting substances found in anti-bacterial agents for shoes and clothes.

    However, Commissioner for the Environment Janez Potočnik has delayed the clearance. According to Ek, Potočnik has told the Swedish government that the Commission wants to make an impact analysis first.

  • China’s toxic air pollution resembles nuclear winter, say scientists

    Chinese scientists have warned that the country’s toxic air pollution is now so bad that it resembles a nuclear winter, slowing photosynthesis in plants – and potentially wreaking havoc on the country’s food supply.

    Beijing and broad swaths of six northern provinces have spent the past week blanketed in a dense pea-soup smog that is not expected to abate until Thursday. Beijing’s concentration of PM 2.5 particles – those small enough to penetrate deep into the lungs and enter the bloodstream – hit 505 micrograms per cubic metre on Tuesday night. The World Health Organisation recommends a safe level of 25.

  • UN Report Says Small-Scale Organic Farming Only Way to Feed the World

    UN Report Says Small-Scale Organic Farming Only Way to Feed the World

  • Take a stand for Organic Farmers around the World!

    Right now an important case is being heard halfway around the world in Western Australia about organic farmer Steve Marsh, whose organic field was contaminated by his neighbor’s genetically engineered canola. As a result, Steve lost his organic certification and as much as 70% of his Steve’s farm has been contaminated with Monsanto’s patented genes.


Nuclear Energy


  • Oil spills into Lake Michigan from BP refinery
  • Pollution Caused by Chip Fabrication

    It is a sobering fact that the chip fabrication industry which is so vital to our modern society is also the cause of a lot of pollution. This unglamorous topic doesn’t get much media attention. No one wants to be reminded that the hi-tech world of computers isn’t possible without the use of a lot of caustic chemicals.

  • Great Barrier Reef authority argued against dredge dumping, FOI reveals

    The dredging and dumping of 3m tonnes of spoil in Great Barrier Reef marine park waters posed an “unacceptable social and environmental risk”, the authority in charge of the world heritage area wrote in draft assessments just months before it approved the permit to carry out the disposal.

  • Is The Solution To Climate Change In Vancouver?

    Across America, the impacts of climate change are already being felt as temperatures rise, droughts are prolonged, and weather becomes increasingly severe and unpredictable. But solutions seem few and far between — and solutions that both sides can agree on even fewer. Outraged Republicans and recalcitrant conservative Democrats cut down the cap-and-trade bill in 2009; and President Obama’s promised regulations are probably destined for years of give-and-take between the Environmental Protection Agency, the courts, and the power industry. The result: America remains one of the few advanced nations with no national policy of any sort to curb its carbon dioxide emissions.

  • EU to force large companies to report on environmental and social impacts

    The negotiations were long and painful, but in the end a deal was done. EU member states finally agreed to back reforms that will mean large listed companies are required to report on their environmental and social impacts.

  • Excuse me, but we shouldn’t be moving on from West Virginia’s chemical spill

    America has grown a vast and complex regulatory and financial support system for cheap, dirty energy. This isn’t over


  • Cameron’s Prime Aberdeen Angus Bullshit

    David Cameron is peddling bullshit of the premium Aberdeen Angus kind today. At today’s oil prices, recoverable North Sea oil is worth a minimum of 1.2 trillion and a maximum of 2.4 trillion dollars. Cameron is claiming that potential will not be released without government subsidy of 24 billion dollars, and that only the UK government’s “broad shoulders” can raise this.

  • A Small Little Bolt: The Tar Sands Poisoning of An Alberta Family
  • Nigeria ravaged by $20bn oil robbery

    It was 2am when a fireball pierced the inky night sky above a small community in the Niger delta. The explosion near Port Harcourt last June killed several people and released 6,000 barrels of crude oil. The cause: contractors hired by Royal Dutch Shell to stop pirates siphoning oil from a huge pipeline were themselves stealing fuel, and something went terribly wrong. The blast led to the shutdown… Shell, the largest foreign operator in the country, was responsible for more than 20,00 barrels of last year’s spills.

Financial News: Bitcoin and Financial Issues Around the World

Posted in News Roundup at 11:22 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz





North America

Censorship News: Russia Mocks Copyright-driven Blocking, China Can’t Block Like Google and Microsoft Block

Posted in News Roundup at 11:15 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Copyright and Monopoly News

Posted in News Roundup at 11:11 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz




  • US says India should prefer US business and workers for its solar plants
  • US is bent on raising the price of drugs in developing countries

    Recent developments by the Obama administration seem bent on making it more difficult to purchase top rated drugs in developing countries. The move follows patent rulings around the globe that may place U.S. drug companies at a disadvantage in the industry; a matter which is not taken lightly by the U.S. of course. India has made the news for ordering drug companies to give up their patent rights, all in an effort to help lower the spiraling costs of drugs. Canada, likewise, became something of a villain when several court rulings dismantled the patents of popular drug companies in favor of the country’s generic industry. The threat has been detected, and there is an urge to act, but it’s not that simple.

  • Networks Skip Controversial Trade Deal

    The proposed Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) trade deal has drawn heavy criticism. Over 500 labor, environmental and farm groups oppose granting the White House “fast track” authority to speed the pact through Congress. The deal, still being negotiated in secret, has spawned protests around the world. Even some Democrats are pushing back against the White House.

  • How Big Pharma (and others) began lobbying on the Trans-Pacific Partnership before you ever heard of it

    In 2009, four years before the Trans-Pacific Partnership (TPP) was a widely-debated trade deal, few would have noticed a new issue popping up in a handful of lobbying reports. That year, 28 organizations filed 59 lobbying reports mentioning the then far-off trade agreement. Almost half of those organizations were pharmaceutical companies or associations.

  • Obama Nominates Former SOPA Lobbyist to Help Lead TPP Negotiations

Free Software/Open Source Software News

Posted in News Roundup at 11:09 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz






  • Fake Tor Browser finally removed from App Store

    Almost three months after being alerted to its presence, Apple has taken down from the App Store an allegedly fake Tor Browser containing adware and spyware.

  • Report: Tor Project Leaders Call Out Fake Tor Browser

    It’s notable that according to recent statistics available through Tor Metrics Portal there has been a large 1increase in the number of Tor clients used and more than a million users are now connecting to the network. Tor, from the Tor Project, is one of the most powerful and flexible open source solutions for online anonymity, and it’s clearly gaining popularity.


  • Blender Foundation’s 5th Open Movie “Gooseberry” Teaser Trailer [Video]

    Blender is perhaps open source’s biggest poster child for years now. And in every year or two, Blender foundation showcases the product’s 3D graphics capabilities by releasing animated movies created exclusively using Blender software. They are called “open movies” and you’re free to download and reuse the movies the way you want, standing true to its open source credentials. We have featured each and every Blender “open” movie ever released here and here. Now its time for the fifth one codenamed “Gooseberry”, and unlike its predecessors, the project’s goal would be to produce a feature length animated film.

  • Blender 2.70 Enhances Its UI, Cycles Rendering

    Out today is another big update to the open-source Blender 3D animation software.

  • Blender 2.70 Release Notes

    New features include initial support for volumetrics in Cycles, and faster rendering of hair and textures. The motion tracker now supports weighted tracks and has improved planar tracking. For mesh modeling there are new Laplacian deform and wireframe modifiers, along with more control in the bevel tool. The game engine now supports object levels of detail.



IRC Proceedings: February 9th, 2014 – March 29th, 2014

Posted in IRC Logs at 4:52 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

IRC Proceedings: February 9th – February 15th, 2014



#techrights log

#boycottnovell log



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IRC Proceedings: February 16th – February 22nd, 2014



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IRC Proceedings: February 23th – March 1st, 2014



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IRC Proceedings: March 2nd – March 8th, 2014



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IRC Proceedings: March 9th – March 15th, 2014



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IRC Proceedings: March 16th – March 22nd, 2014



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IRC Proceedings: March 23rd – March 29th



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Enter the IRC channels now


Links: Civil Rights Abuses, Secrecy, Surveillance and Assassination Without Oversight

Posted in News Roundup at 7:24 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Civil Rights

  • Books for prisoners – A novel approach

    New rules that stop UK prisoners receiving parcels have led to a political row over prisoners’ access to books being restricted. Justice secretary Chris Grayling sees books as a privilege that must be earned through prisoner cooperation rather than as a basic right for everyone. While prisoners will still have access to prison libraries, the new rule clearly greatly reduces prisoners’ access to the wide range of reading opportunities that they might like. Whether prisoners are reading for pleasure or education (or both), easy access to a wide range of books should be non-negotiable in a decent society, even for the most notorious or uncooperative prisoners. People are more than just flesh and blood; we need to feed our minds as well as our bodies.

  • Global Guantánamo

    The state continues to deny people of color the ability to self-govern.

  • Using Flags to Focus on Veteran Suicides
  • After seven years, exactly one person gets off the gov’t no-fly list

    A hearing in federal court Tuesday has apparently marked the conclusion of a drawn-out, costly, and, to use the judge’s own term, “Kafkaesque” legal battle over the government no-fly list. Malaysian college professor Rahinah Ibrahim sued the government back in 2006, after Dr. Ibrahim’s name mistakenly ended up on a federal government no-fly list.

  • If You Don’t Want a SWAT Team at Your Door, You Shouldn’t Be Drinking Tea
  • US Takes a Break From Condemning Tyranny to Celebrate Obama’s Visit to Saudi Arabia

    Selecting the year’s single most brazen example of political self-delusion is never easy, but if forced to choose for 2013, I’d pick British Prime Minister David Cameron’s public condemnation of George Galloway. The Scottish MP had stood to question Cameron about the UK’s military support for Syrian rebels. As is typical for Western discourse, criticizing western government militarism was immediately equated with support for whatever tyrants those governments happened to be opposing at the time: “Some things come and go,” proclaimed the Prime Minister, “but there is one thing that is certain: wherever there is a brutal Arab dictator in the world, he will have the support of [Galloway].”

    What made Cameron’s statement so notable wasn’t the trite tactic of depicting opposition to western intervention as tantamount to support for dictators. That’s far too common to be noteworthy (if you oppose the war in Iraq, you are pro-Saddam; if you oppose intervention in Libya, you love Ghaddafi, if you oppose US involvement in Ukraine, you’re a shill for Putin, etc. etc.). What was so remarkable is that David Cameron – the person accusing Galloway of supporting every “brutal Arab dictator” he can find – is easily one of the world’s most loyal, constant, and generous supporters of the most brutal Arab despots. He has continuously lavished money, diplomatic support, arms and all sorts of obsequious praise on intensely repressive regimes in Bahrain, Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Oman, and Egypt. That this steadfast supporter of the worst Arab dictators could parade around accusing others of supporting bad Arab regimes was about as stunning a display of western self-delusion as I could have imagined . . .



  • Lookout’s Open Source Privacy Policy Could Change the Game on Mobile App Transparency

    It’s taken as a truism that “no one understands the privacy policy.” Lookout, a startup that focuses on mobile privacy and security, wants to change that with its new open source privacy policy toolkit. The project seeks to improve the current poor state of mobile app transparency. It grew out of the Department of Commerce National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s recent multistakeholder process, which CDT participated in, aimed at creating a set of best practices to promote mobile app transparency.

  • On The Use of Computer Monitoring Software

    First off I would like to argue that I don’t consider these private monitoring practices to be in any way morally hazardous, and thus I would not put them in the same category as government surveillance or “privacy violations” The simple fact is that if a company employs a person to work on building company value, especially when this is clear from the contract, then the company has a right to hold the employee accountable to this, and monitoring their activities then is one way of doing this.

  • Pentagon plans three-fold cybersecurity staff increase to counter attacks

    The Pentagon plans to triple its cybersecurity personal over the next several years to bolster US national security, said Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel.

  • There Is No Oversight: The NSA Withheld Documents From Intelligence Committee Heads

    There has never been effective oversight of the NSA’s bulk collections programs, or indeed, intelligence agencies in general. There’s been a lot of noise made about this vaunted oversight in defense of programs revealed by leaked documents, but this is nothing more than a talking point.

    The NSA (along with the CIA) has no interest in real oversight or accountability, not even to the final arbiter of its domestic surveillance, the FISA court. Judge Walton threatened to end the Section 215 collection back in 2008 after uncovering widespread abuse of the collections and the NSA’s constant misrepresentation of how it was handling the data it collected.

  • Former Qwest CEO Joe Nacchio Tells Story of Fight Against NSA, SEC

    According to Nacchio, his troubles can be traced back to a meeting at the NSA’s Fort Meade…

  • Big Brother vs. Wall Street

    The industry regulator gathers vast amounts of data about brokerage accounts and charges. But some observers say it’s overdone.

  • Want to see the NSA’s public relations press kit?

    This is a page from the National Security Agency’s press kit mailed earlier this month to news organizations.



NSA’s Lust for Back Doors

  • How Huawei became the NSA’s worst nightmare

    An unfamiliar name to American consumers, Huawei produces products that are swiftly being installed in the internet backbone in many regions of the world, displacing some of the western-built equipment that the NSA knows — and presumably knows how to exploit — so well.

  • NSA stole Huawei’s source code, could have added back doors

    Internally Huawei routed all of its emails through one server in Shenzhen where the NSA managed to siphon off the data and gain access to a large portion of the internal communications including messages from company CEO Ren Zhengfei and Chairwoman Sun Yafang. Since the company employs some 150,000 people, the amount of data coming out of Huawei was more than the NSA could handle. According to Der Spiegel an internal NSA document stated that, “we currently have good access and so much data that we don’t know what to do with it.”

  • Huawei on NSA: If foreign spies attacked a US firm, there’d be “outrage”

    Chinese tech company still trying to track down NSA infiltration.


Federal Government’s Lust for Back Doors


  • Circumventing the Panopticon, Transmediale Berlin

    Last month I was on a panel dis­cus­sion at the Ber­lin Trans­me­diale con­fer­ence with NSA whis­tleblower Bill Bin­ney, Chelsea Man­ning rap­por­teur Alexa O’Brian, and act­iv­ist Diani Bar­reto.

  • Oxford Union Society Debate

    The cham­ber was full and I am happy to report that we won the debate by 212 votes to 171, and that Oxford stu­dents do indeed see Edward Snowden as a hero.



  • Hacker Weev’s attorney: The FBI is intercepting my client’s mail

    The FBI is intercepting the prison correspondence of infamous Internet troll Andrew “weev” Auernheimer, including letters from his defense team, according to his attorney.

    “He’s sent me between 10 and 20 letters in the last month or two. I’ve received one,” Tor Ekeland, who had just returned from visiting Auernheimer at the federal corrections institute in Allenwood, Pa., told the Daily Dot in a video interview.


  • Shares Your Data Far and Wide

    The Android version of Angry Birds available on Google Play, last updated March 4, shares personal information such as age, gender and address along with device information with multiple parties, according to a blog post by FireEye researchers Jimmy Su, Jinjian Zhai, and Tao Wei. Users who play the game without a Rovio account are also sharing information about their devices without realizing it, the post said.

  • Google Chrome Taking on New Music and Voice Features

    Meanwhile, both Chrome and Chrome OS are getting voice search features. To use the feature, you open a new tab or visit Google.com in Chrome, say “Ok Google,” and then start speaking your search. This is being rolled out progressively to users on Windows, Mac and Linux.

  • ​Facebook plans to spread web access with ‘drones, satellites and lasers’

    Facebook has announced an ambitious plan to use drone, satellite and laser technology “to deliver the internet to everyone” via the preeminent social media site’s Connectivity Lab project.


  • Come Clean on Deadly Drone Activities

    Three years ago last week, a U.S. drone strike hit the small town of Datta Khel in Pakistan. Local business owners and leaders were in the midst of a two-day tribal council meeting, called to address a dispute regarding a chromite mine in the area. Local authorities had been notified about the meeting, which is a traditional forum employed to resolve community conflicts.

  • Medals for drone pilots?
  • Soapbox: Let’s not be known for dirty wars and drone executions

    On a warm October night in 2011, an American teenager was sitting outdoors with several friends and cousins, about to begin his dinner. The boy was mourning the loss of his father, who had been killed just two weeks earlier. His family had been encouraging him to get out of the house, spend time with friends and enjoy the fresh air to begin the healing process. But there was to be no healing for Abdulrahman Awlaki. A missile fired from a U.S. drone ended his life and those of several of his companions that night. They were buried in a common grave, because the missile tore them into unrecognizable fragments — except for the back of Abdulrahman’s head, which was still covered by his long, curly hair.

  • Govt shy to share drone statistics
  • EU should press Obama on drone secrecy

    Trade and the crisis in Ukraine are likely to dominate the agenda during US President Barack Obama’s first official visit to Brussels on March 26.

  • UK telecoms giant likely bolsters in US secret drones war

    Lord Livingston, ex CEO of famous BT telecoms company, is in the epicenter of a row over the company’s involvement in America’s horrendous military drone war, which has killed hundreds of civilians in Yemen.

  • Use of drones should be under global law

    The United Nations called on all states on Friday to ensure that the use of armed drones complies with international law, including international humanitarian and human rights law, backing a proposal from Pakistan.

  • UN rights forum calls for use of drones to comply with law

    The resolution was adopted by a vote of 27 states in favour to six against, with 14 abstentions at the 47-member Geneva forum. The United States, Britain and France voted against

  • Protesters march against drones center in Horsham

    Three Buddhist monks, having walked from Massachusetts, covered their saffron robes with rain parkas, wrapped their drums in plastic bags and joined peace groups on Saturday to trek another 2½ miles to the Horsham Air Guard base to protest the planned ground-control command center for drone operations.

  • Targeting the Humanitarian Side of Drones

    Failure to account and justify lethal drone activity by the United States represents a major violation of international law and international human rights law, a former U.N. rapporteur said Wednesday.

    Since the beginning of drone attacks in 2001, the U.S. has conducted around 450 lethal drone strikes that have raised humanitarian and international legal issues.

  • International consensus emerging against Drones

    Although President Obama promised to make drone programme more transparent in May 2013, the follow up has rather been negligible as no new statement on drone policy or its legal framework has come out as yet. There is a need to ensure transparency of drone programme.

  • Drone strikers say the government is unfairly denying them jury trials

    In a ritual they have followed for nearly four years, they crisscrossed the four-way intersection near the gate, laying out the tools of their trade: anti-war banners, an American flag with a peace symbol instead of 50 white stars, a series of cardboard squares adorned with bright purple, battery-powered LED lights that spelled out the message “No Drones.”


    They have been demonstrating since 2010 against unarmed surveillance drones based and operated at Beale that are used to pinpoint targets for armed killer drones in war zones and elsewhere overseas.


  • Letter: Decommission out-of-control CIA

    Congress recognizes no CIA claims of “privilege.” Congress has complete legal rights to review documents of any government agency. Any claim of “privilege” by any governmental branch is a bold announcement that they will not obey our laws: U.S. Constitution, Speech and Debate clause, and Fourth Amendment, Computer Fraud and Abuse Act, Executive Order 12333.

  • A Debate on Torture: Legal Architect of CIA Secret Prisons, Rendition vs. Human Rights Attorney

    As the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence feuds with the CIA over the declassification of its 6,000-page report on the agency’s secret detention and interrogation programs, we host a debate between former CIA acting general counsel John Rizzo and human rights attorney Scott Horton. This comes as the United Nations Human Rights Committee has criticized the Obama administration for closing its investigations into the CIA’s actions after Sept. 11. A U.N. report issued Thursday stated, “The Committee notes with concern that all reported investigations into enforced disappearances, torture and other cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment that had been committed in the context of the CIA secret rendition, interrogation and detention programmes were closed in 2012 leading only to a meager number of criminal charges brought against low-level operatives.” Rizzo served as acting general counsel during much of the George W. Bush administration and was a key legal architect of the U.S. interrogation and detention program after the Sept. 11 attacks. He recently published a book titled “Company Man: Thirty Years of Controversy and Crisis in the CIA.” Attorney Scott Horton is contributing editor at Harper’s magazine and author of the forthcoming book, “Lords of Secrecy: The National Security Elite and America’s Stealth Foreign Policy.”

  • Opinion: The CIA, running amok for 60 years
  • Guest Column: Government secrets: Too many held too long

    Recent controversies involving the NSA surveillance program and alleged CIA eavesdropping on Congress have dominated the news. This has led to healthy and heated discussions about clandestine activities of intelligence agencies to include the amount of classified information collected and how long it is maintained.

  • U.S. may expand Syrian assistance

    The Obama administration, stung by reversals in Ukraine and Syria, appears to have decided to expand its covert program of training and assistance for the Syrian opposition, deepening U.S. involvement in that brutal and stalemated civil war.

    The White House announced that President Obama discussed “the crisis in Syria” along with other subjects when he met Friday in Riyadh with Saudi King Abdullah, but the statement didn’t mention any details of the stepped-up Syria assistance program.

Android News: Wearables, Tegra, Obama Switch, New Devices, Desktops…

Posted in News Roundup at 3:08 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz


  • Android Stomps Into Wearables Field
  • Sony, Samsung won’t use Android Wear in their watches

    Every mobile company is desperate to bring a ‘usable’ smartwatch to the market. While companies like Samsung did bring their smartwatches to the market, these devices are still half-baked products which ‘try’ to do a few things. These are no where close to the way smartphones have become a viable alternatives of PCs. These watches are nothing more than a side-kick or assistant to your smartphones. Then came Google, doing what it did with Honeycomb to address the immediate need of a tablet OS. Google announced Android Wear, an OS optimized for smart watches. One would expect that entire industry will embrace it, but that’s not what seem to be happening.

  • Why I’m not impressed with Google’s Android Wear platform
  • Android Wear — wearable devices built around relevance

    Google is able to offer something with Android Wear that no other player, big like Apple or small like Pebble, can offer. And that’s why it’ll win…

  • Motorola smartwatch does Android Wear in the round

    Motorola Mobility announced a round-faced Moto 360 smartwatch, based on Google’s new Android Wear platform and due this summer.

  • Everyone loves Motorola’s Moto 360 Android Wear watch
  • Pocket’s prototype for Android Wear saves articles right from your wrist

    Googled unveiled Android Wear this week and encouraged developers to build apps purpose-built for the wrist. Pocket is among the first companies to rise to the challenge, showing off a prototype version of a software development kit for Android Wear today that will let you save links directly from your watch. The prototype allows developers to integrate Pocket into their own apps so that users can save items with a couple of taps. “Up until now, smartwatches have focused solely on delivering short notifications,” Pocket says. “What’s been missing is the ability to quickly act on that information by saving or sharing it.”

  • Google reveals Android Wear operating system: Linux rules

    Android Wear is a version of Android which is optimized for wearable devices such as smartwatches. One of the core components of Android Wear will be Google Now. Just like Google Glass, users will be able to say “Ok Google” to activate the ‘HAL’ and ask questions. Since it will work with Google Now, it will have access to your travel and Amazon orders so you can check status of your flight or package. You will also be able to get generic answers like scores from ongoing machine. Anything that you use Google Now for will be able to use with Android Wearable.

  • Android Wear: Google Gets Serious About Wearable Computing

    There is a lot going on on the wearable computing front, and Google is already a player in the race with its Google Glass efforts, but the company has also shared much news this week about Android Wear, a project that extends Android to wearables.

  • Google debuts wearable Android

    Google debuted a Google Now-infused Android Wear platform for wearables based on a lightweight version of Android, which will first appear in an LG G Watch.

  • Developers asking for Omate smartwatch source code, MediaTek stalling?

    One of the key strengths of the Linux kernel is that it is licensed under the GNU General Public License (GNU GPL), an open source license which gives everyone the right to use and even modify the Linux kernel, with the condition that the source code is made available for any publicly released versions.



New Devices

  • Yotaphone review
  • Motorola prepping to release 6 inches phablet in Q3

    It was long back when reports surfaced about Motorola working on a 6.3 inches phablet. So if we have forgotten about the device, we cannot be blamed, since not much was known about the device that time. Only thing known was that a 6.3 inches device, dubbed Motorola XPlay will be rolled out by 2014. However, it seems that the device is being prepped up for release this year.

  • Android-based touchscreen router does home automation

    The Soap project has already surpassed its $80,000 funding goals, and there are still some packages left at discounted prices until the campaign closes Mar. 23 at 10:34 AM EDT. The touchscreen-enabled Soap Touch costs $150, and will retail at $200 when it ships in November. There’s also a non-touchscreen Soap Essentials version, which will go for $80 when it ships in August, but no more discounted versions are available at the $60 funding price. The Soap Essentials is otherwise similar except that it offers less onboard storage.

Developing World



  • Huawei backtracks on dual-booting Windows Phone and Android plans

    The backtracking contradicts statements from Huawei’s chief marketing officer, Shao Yang, last week. Yang claimed the firm was following a “dual OS” strategy with Android and Windows Phone on a single handset. It’s not clear if such a handset was ever in development, or whether Yang simply misspoke. Huawei’s change of heart follows reports that Microsoft and Google have both scuppered Intel’s plan for dual-OS tablets and laptops running both Android and Windows Phone.

  • Huawei kills plans to launch a dual-OS Windows Phone-Android smartphone

    In a statement to FierceWireless, a Huawei spokesperson said that “Huawei Consumer Business Group adopts an open approach towards mobile operating systems to provide a range of choices for consumers. However, most of our products are based on Android OS, [and] at this stage there are no plans to launch a dual-OS smartphone in the near future.”


Ballnux (Microsoft Patent Deals)

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