No, not on your music player; down at town hall:
Thirteen Virginia newspapers tested the state’s Freedom of Information Act to find out whether officials are actually disclosing documents they’re supposed to by law.
The Daily Press reports (http://bit.ly/1jrucBD ) that the newspapers found that more than half of the police or sheriff’s departments wouldn’t provide information about felony incidents, which the law considers public records.
The newspaper says that about 1/4 of local government and school board officers surveyed wouldn’t release the salaries and allowances of administrators, as required by the law.
Much, much more at the link.
If white right-wingers do it, it is ipso facto not terrorism. After all, they are white, not brown.
That’s how it works, isn’t it?
Also, in more news of not terrorism . . . .
A confluence of cons runs out of steam.
As much as my day-to-life is steeped in tech and as much I love making computers do stuff, I have, from the beginning, considered the idea of cyber-schools to be too stupid for words, a pipe dream of those enamored by electrons and exploited by those enamored of new sources of vigorish. They might have some use in areas where the population is too dispersed for regular schools, but the idea that they are some sort of magickal mystickal tool to remake education is hooey of the highest order.
If you want to school people, you need people in a school.
Kids (and adults) have a hard enough time learning in real schools with real teachers doing real things. The idea that turning real schools into “cyber-schools,” further removing students from teachers by interposing a layer of electrons, would somehow make learning easier and more effective while making teaching cheaper was mug’s dream from the start, embraced by those deluded by the cool graphics on their screens and promoted by con artists rapacious for new marks.
(Ask me nicely; I’ll tell you what I really think.)
The EFF points out the inherent contradictions in governments’ efforts to weaken encryption (in this case, the United States FBI, but the same thing has been happening in the UK and other countries which call themselves “democratic”).
A snippet (emphasis in the original):
What if, in response to the terrorist attacks in Paris, or cybersecurity attacks on companies and government agencies, the FBI had come to the American people and said: In order to keep you safe, we need you to remove all the locks on your doors and windows and replace them with weaker ones. It’s because, if you were a terrorist and we needed to get to your house, your locks might slow us down or block us entirely. So Americans, remove your locks! And American companies: stop making good locks!
In related news, Italy decides to eavesdrop on gamers.
You may worry about the gamers’ privacy. I used to hear Second Son chat with other gamers while playing on his XBox Three. I worry about the eavesdroppers’ sanity.
The Booman takes down Kathleen Parker’s latest foray into both-siderism.
No Republican will ever admit that the Republican Party created the conditions from whence sprang Donald Trump. But it did.
Via Michael in Norfolk.
The farcical War on Christmas goes international.
Computer security is always an afterthought when there’s money to be made.
Mattel’s latest Wi-Fi enabled Barbie doll can easily be hacked to turn it into a surveillance device for spying on children and listening into conversations without the owner’s knowledge.
. . . US security researcher Matt Jakubowski discovered that when connected to Wi-Fi the doll was vulnerable to hacking, allowing him easy access to the doll’s system information, account information, stored audio files and direct access to the microphone.
Play it safe. Give your kid a Raggedy-Ann, not a Mata Hari Barbie.
Details at the link.
Guns and safety go together.
Police say the woman and her 15-year-old son where sitting in their vehicle when the teen removed a gun from under a seat.
According to police, the teen pulled the trigger thinking the gun had an external safety that would prevent the gun from firing. However, the gun had a trigger assembly safety and went off when the he pulled the trigger.
EPD says the woman was shot in the back.
If the lady had also had a gun, no doubt this would not have happened.
I have a new podcast at Hacker Public Radio about Qmmp, the Qt-based MultiMedia Player.
Qmmp was inspired by Winamp, the venerable but now defunct Windows player, and XMMS, a similarly venerable and defunct Linux media player. It runs on Linux, BSD, and Windows; I’ve tested it on all three.
If you are an old Winamp and XMMS user, as I am, you can use your legacy Winamp and XMMS skins with it. You can also easily make your own skins with skinamp for Windows.
Qmmp is a nice job of work; I use it daily to listen to streaming audio and OTR (though it can be quirky with URLs that have unusual characters, such as parentheses, in them).
If you’re a Linux or BSD user, it’s in your repos, and, if you are a Slackware user, there’s a Slackbuild. If you’re a Windows user, you can get the install program at the Qmmp website.
You too can podcast at HPR; all are welcome. Contribute a show and join the community.