Thursday, November 30, 2017
Its a Utility Stupid.
Wired's terrific article, Ajit Pai's Shell Game, demystifies what's really at stake regarding Pai's move to privatize the net by describing how small town Wilson, North Carolina turned the net into a utility, thus ending Time Warner's ability to rip off its citizens 24/7, a process that can be done by any town in America that has the guts to do it.
The real problem is a complete absence of leadership and policy aimed at making sure that low-priced, ubiquitous, world-class fiber optic services reach every home and business. Left to their own devices, the giant US companies Pai is determined to protect have every incentive to divide markets, avoid capital investments in upgrades to fiber that reach everyone, charge as much as they can get away with, and leave out poorer and rural people. That is in fact what has happened here.
The differences between the way the unrestrained, profit-at-all-costs-driven operators run things and the way a public interest-driven operator acts are obvious. For a clear illustration, take a look at Wilson, North Carolina.
I recently traveled to Wilson, a town in the eastern part of the state that is known to most as an exit ramp on Interstate 95. I found it to be a scrappy place with a tradition of taking the long view—most notably by successfully deploying a low-priced fiber optic service. Earlier this decade, the citizens of Wilson weren’t happy with the low-capacity connections and poor customer service offered by Time Warner Cable (now Spectrum). Wilson already had a public electric utility, so it was familiar with the benefits of operating a utility in the public interest. It built its own fiber optic network, and today offers 50 Mbps service (equal uploads and downloads) for $40 a month.
This can be done without question. Take back the net and take back America at the same time because it's the right thing to do.
Tuesday, November 28, 2017
The age of strong bots is nigh.
Humans have soft muscles and rigid skeletons, and when exerted in optimal sync they have the potential to lift a fairly impressive amount of weight. But a new technique, created by humans, that uses soft muscles and rigid skeletons allows a device to lift 1,000 times its own weight. This is a major development because, while soft robotics have exhibited promise with dexterity and human-like motion, they have typically lacked sufficient strength.
In a new paper published in the journal PNAS, scientists from MIT CSAIL and Harvard’s Wyss Institute show how soft robotics can retain immense strength with the help of rigid origami skeletons. Professor Daniela Rus, CSAIL director and lead author of the paper, said in an interview with The Verge, “Soft robots have so much potential, but up until now, one of the limitations has been payloads. [They’re] very safe, very gentle, but not good for lifting heavy objects. This new approach allows us to make strong and soft robots.”
And so it goes. - K. Vonnegut
Monday, November 27, 2017
Sunday, November 26, 2017
Sunday, November 19, 2017
Friday, November 17, 2017
Check out the impact of GW regarding sea level rise for your city via
JPL's interactive Virtual Earth System Laboratory. Disquieting without question.
JPL's interactive Virtual Earth System Laboratory. Disquieting without question.
New York should be flooded with concern about global warming.
Scientists at NASA are using simulation technology from their Jet Propulsion Lab to predict what cities the ice caps will affect when they melt. Using New York, London and a few other port cities as examples, the simulation shows which Arctic and Antarctic ice sheets will affect 293 port cities across the globe over the course of the next century.
According to the demo, which was also published in the journal Science Advances, New York will be most affected by the ice on the northeastern half of Greenland. The tilt of the Earth as it spins around the sun shifts the water from the melting caps, so the water doesn’t trickle straight down. This means that, though the icy country is pretty far away from New York, the water from Greenland will affect New York more than other, closer coastal cities.
It's just a matter of time ...
Thursday, November 16, 2017
Smarts comes in all shapes, sizes and configurations with the most surprising being that of microbes whose collective intelligence truly boggles the mind.
The slime mold Physarum polycephalum sometimes barely qualifies as a microorganism at all: When it oozes across the leaf litter of a forest floor during the active, amoeboid stage of its life cycle, it can look like a puddle of yellowish goo between an inch and a meter across. Yet despite its size, Physarum is a huge single cell, with tens of thousands of nuclei floating in an uninterrupted mass of cytoplasm. In this form, Physarum is a superbly efficient hunter. When sensors on its cell membrane detect good sources of nutrients, contractile networks of proteins (closely related to the ones found in human muscle) start pumping streams of cytoplasm in that direction, advancing the slime mold toward what it needs.
But Physarum is not just reflexively surging toward food. As it moves in one direction, signals transmitted throughout the cell discourage it from pushing counterproductively along less promising routes. Moreover, slime molds have evolved a system for essentially mapping their terrain and memorizing where not to go: As they move, they leave a translucent chemical trail behind that tells them which areas are not worth revisiting.
Something's afoot. - S. Holmes :)
With nooze being nooze, the hysteria about Russian hacking continues unabated with bloviators telling everyone the RUSSKIES are everywhere but in reality, to discover the truth, all you have to do is just ask.
It’s also noteworthy that the usual suspects – Neocon warmongers such as Max Boot – have tried to discredit both Binney and Pompeo.
But there’s a huge part of the story that the entire mainstream media is missing …
Specifically, Binney says that the NSA has long had in its computers information which can prove exactly who hacked the DNC … or instead prove that the DNC emails were leaked by a Democratic insider.
Remember – by way of background – that the NSA basically spies on everyone in America … and stores the data long-term.
It gets better.
Binney also sent me hard-to-find company literature for Narus. Here are some interesting excerpts:
Provides full visibility into network traffic …
Analyzes at macro or micro level targeting specific or aggregate full-packet data for forensic analysis
Universal data collection from links, routers, soft switches, IDS/IPS, databases, etc. provides total network view across the world’s largest IP networks.
Binney also pointed me towards a couple of network engineering principles that show that figuring out who hacked the emails (or proving they were leaked) is well within NSA’s capabilities.
Initially, when data is transmitted online, it is sent using the TCP/IP Packet format. Put simply, data is not sent in a vacuum, but rather as part of a bundle containing a lot of other information.
So any data analyst can learn a tremendous amount about the source address of the sender, the destination address of the receiver and a boatload of other information by using a “packet sniffer” to inspect the “packets” of information being sent over the web.
Additionally, it’s simple to conduct “traceroute” searches. “Traceroute” is a computer network diagnostic tool for displaying the route and measuring transit delays of packets across an Internet Protocol network.
“Anything that comes through (an internet protocol network), we can record,” says Steve Bannerman, marketing vice president of Narus, a Mountain View, California, company. “We can reconstruct all of their e-mails along with attachments, see what web pages they clicked on, we can reconstruct their (voice over internet protocol) calls.”
Which means ... All you have to do is JUST ASK.
Sunday, November 12, 2017
Saturday, November 11, 2017
Jove's latest selfie & yet another, seen below, of Jove's intense aurora. :)
This is a reconstructed view of Jupiter’s northern lights through the filters of the Juno Ultraviolet Imaging Spectrograph instrument on Dec. 11, 2016, as the Juno spacecraft approached Jupiter, passed over its poles, and plunged towards the equator.
Thursday, November 09, 2017
Wednesday, November 08, 2017
Monday, November 06, 2017
Talking about speed. Here's a screamer that blows away any remote controlled aircraft yours truly has ever seen without question. :)