Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Sailing across the sky

Tom Heany's Sailing across the sky, brought to life by Tom and Lara Schuler, is a a gentle and whimsical look at love, life and companionship. Enjoy.

Sunday, May 20, 2018

21T & Counting ...

Tech audits are really important when one does not know how a given system operates as dollars cannot be properly assigned to said system unless one knows how said system operates, a situation yours truly finds absolutely astounding when it comes to the Pentagon and it's amazing ability to not be able to account for 21 trillion dollars, a rather large sum, especially when one calculates the size, weight and volume of the Benjamins that would be required to cover the loss in question, an amount slightly larger than the 2017 20 trillion US debt that will expand to ever greater heights thanks to the 2018 passage of Trump's massive tax cut that will help the rich in ways that truly boggle the mind.

Read the rest of Nation of Change's astounding piece after downloading the IG office's PDF detailing this FUBAR if you dare. 

Friday, May 18, 2018

Newspeak 2018

Going beyond the mangled syntax of our beloved POTUS is the administration's push to censor, eliminate and codify words along the lines of Newspeak, the official language of 1984.

34 year later ...

Seen below is a partial list of Newspeak works. 
Addendum: The Trump administration is planning to instate a rule that will bar recipients of federal family planning funding from educating women about abortion options, making referrals to doctors that provide abortions, or providing abortion care. Conservatives have cheered the move as a way for the federal government to partially “defund” Planned Parenthood without requiring an act of Congress.

Any questions about this version of the Memory Hole circa 2018?

Success :)

Not as good as the original but not bad, not bad at all. :)

An Existential Question ... & then some :)

Lesson learned, right? :)

Monday, May 14, 2018

Thank you for sharing ... :)

On Camus, Language & reaching 2600 ...

Reading Camus is a zen process as his writing is spare, direct and disciplined. One is with the arrow when reading his work as his take on reality and life is that of wary positiveness & dry humor that also comes equipped with enormous cost as per his Myth of Sisyphus essay where the never ending process of pushing the rock up the hill is obviously absurd yet remains a worthwhile endeavor when facing the enormity of an existence we will never fully understand. For Camus, the role of the artist is to educate and inform on the human condition no matter what the cost may be, an act fraught with danger and uncertainty when the creative act exposes the inner most feelings of the individual in question creating the art.

For yours truly, language shapes one's view of reality and different languages cause man to view reality keyed to the specifics of that given language. When reading Camus in French, the poetic clarity of his thought process comes through undistilled as translation, no matter how good, is never a 1 to 1 process but rather an approximate mapping of one language into another. When reading about the Sapir -Whorf hypothesis, this relativistic approach to language rings true, especially when the syntax of one language differs drastically from the other, i.e. English to Chinese or interestingly enough, Chinese to Japanese where the pictographic (Mandarin/Kanji) alphabet is largely the same while the spoken language of each country is anything but.

And this ...

On reaching 2600, in conjunction with Camus and language, is a good thing without question. :)

Sunday, May 13, 2018

The ultimate embed

Embeds, you know, whenever you see a video or a gif like the one above, it's called an embed where said media is inserted into a web page via a url or direct placement depending on where the content resides. In terms of subliminal, the image or audio is not detectable, thus putting the person(s) in the path of such an operation at a rather distinct disadvantage depending on the severity of the subliminal action being perpetrated.

BERKELEY, Calif. — Many people have grown accustomed to talking to their smart devices, asking them to read a text, play a song or set an alarm. But someone else might be secretly talking to them, too.

Over the last two years, researchers in China and the United States have begun demonstrating that they can send hidden commands that are undetectable to the human ear to Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa and Google’s Assistant. Inside university labs, the researchers have been able to secretly activate the artificial intelligence systems on smartphones and smart speakers, making them dial phone numbers or open websites. In the wrong hands, the technology could be used to unlock doors, wire money or buy stuff online — simply with music playing over the radio.

A group of students from University of California, Berkeley, and Georgetown University showed in 2016 that they could hide commands in white noise played over loudspeakers and through YouTube videos to get smart devices to turn on airplane mode or open a website.

This month, some of those Berkeley researchers published a research paper that went further, saying they could embed commands directly into recordings of music or spoken text. So while a human listener hears someone talking or an orchestra playing, Amazon’s Echo speaker might hear an instruction to add something to your shopping list.

“We wanted to see if we could make it even more stealthy,” said Nicholas Carlini, a fifth-year Ph.D. student in computer security at U.C. Berkeley and one of the paper’s authors.

Reassuring is it not?

Saturday, May 12, 2018

The 3rd Rail issue regarding Israel ... is finally ending

One small but significant benefit regarding Trump's stupid move to back out of the Iran deal is in finally ending the 3rd rail issue of Israel and it's entangled alliance with America.

BREAKING: Donald Trump, spokesperson for US President Benjamin Netanyahu, announces pullout from Iran nuclear deal.

This represents a breakthrough because in defending the deal and making its destruction a political issue, as they promise they will, Democrats will have to take on Israel and the lobby. Yes, they will cover their behind by saying what J Street and Nancy Pelosi do, lots of former Israeli security chiefs were for the deal. But that’s a figleaf. There is a powerful rightwing Israel lobby, and Netanyahu is the leader. These are the same forces that pushed for the Iraq war 16 years ago to such ill effect for the Middle East, and they are sowing destruction once again.

During the Iraq debacle there was a reluctance to call out the Israel lobby for its role. Stephen Walt and John Mearsheimer were smeared for stating what Col. Lawrence Wilkerson said was “obvious,” that the war probably wouldn’t have happened without the lobby. To this day the Democratic Party is afraid of that analysis–surely because it could divide the base and endanger campaign fundraising.

But that analysis seems inevitable today because the politics are now so envenomed, and Israel’s influence is so transparent. Netanyahu is one of the most hated figures for the progressive Democratic base, and the hate temperature just went up, a lot. Dylan Williams of J Street puts out Netanyahu’s crazy speech recommending the Iraq War to Congress 16 years ago, and J Street is vowing revenge. “All of those who have sought to undermine the agreement by spreading fear and misinformation about it will bear their share of the culpability,” it writes. Ben Cardin, Bob Menendez and Chuck Schumer better keep their heads down.

Payback's a bitch.

Channeling Rumsfeld :)

Channeling Rumsfeld. :)