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PORTSIDE  April 2012, Week 1

PORTSIDE April 2012, Week 1

Subject:

Bits & Bytes - Spring Cleaning Edition

From:

Portside Moderator <[log in to unmask]>

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Date:

Tue, 3 Apr 2012 22:38:32 -0400

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text/plain (309 lines)

Bits & Bytes - Spring Cleaning Edition 
April 3, 2012

 #  #  #

 Data Mining You 
 
 How the Intelligence Community Is Creating a  New American 
 World 
 
 By Tom Engelhardt

 TomDispatch.com 
 April 3, 2012

 The NSA "has established listening posts throughout the
 nation to collect and sift through billions of email
 messages and phone calls, whether they originate within the
 country or overseas. It has created a supercomputer of
 almost unimaginable speed to look for patterns and
 unscramble codes. Finally, the agency has begun building a
 place to store all the trillions of words and thoughts and
 whispers captured in its electronic net."

http://www.tomdispatch.com/post/175524

 #  #  #

 Techies Team Up to Make Wikipedia Smarter 
 
 By Shira Ovide

 Wall Street Journal 
 March 30, 2012

 Three of the world's most high profile technologists are
 trying to make Wikipedia smarter and more accurate.  A grant
 from Google and foundations backed by Paul Allen, the
 Microsoft co-founder, and Gordon Moore, Intel's co-founder
 and the namesake of Moore's Law, will kick off a project
 called Wikidata, aimed at automating and centralizing pieces
 of "structured" data, such as lists of the 10 tallest
 mountains in the world, or a synopsis of Peru's presidents
 through history.

 Right now, if Peru elects a new president, Wikipedia
 contributors have to manually input the revised information
 into each page that mentions his or her name, in more than
 280 languages. The project hopes to link together each piece
 of information so when a contributor inputs revised facts,
 names and figures, this data will automatically update on
 every Wikipedia page in the world.


 http://blogs.wsj.com/digits/2012/03/30/techies-team-up-to-make-wikipedia-smarter/

 #  #  #

 Police Are Using Phone Tracking as a Routine Tool 
 
 By Eric  Lichtblau

 New York Times 
 March 31, 2012

 WASHINGTON - Law enforcement tracking of cellphones, once
 the province mainly of federal agents, has become a powerful
 and widely used surveillance tool for local police
 officials.   The practice has become big business for
 cellphone companies, too, with a handful of carriers
 marketing a catalog of "surveillance fees" to police
 departments to determine a suspect's location, trace phone
 calls and texts or provide other services.


 http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/01/us/police-tracking-of-cellphones-raises-privacy-fears.html?hp

 # # #

 Longest-Ever Fiber-Optic Link Will Run Through Thawing
 Arctic, Between UK and Japan 
 
 By Rebecca Boyle

 Popular Science 
 March 30, 2012

 Diminishing sea ice in the Arctic could be a boon for
 international trade - both for heavy ships using the
 Northwest Passage, and now for speedier telecommunications
 via new fiber-optic cables. In August, companies will start
 construction on the first deep sea cables to cross the
 Arctic Ocean.

 Undersea cables carry huge amounts of data in the form of
 light, and they're still the most effective and most
 efficient means of doing so.  A 9,693-mile cable via the
 Canadian Arctic will link the UK and Japan and shave 62
 milliseconds off the present latency between London and
 Tokyo, meaning potentially millions of dollars for high-
 frequency traders who rely on ultrafast connections.


 http://www.popsci.com/technology/article/2012-03/thawing-northwest-passage-will-allow-new-fiber-optic-link-between-uk-and-japan

 # #  #

 Free the Gannett 25! 
 
 By Jack Shafer

 Reuters Blogs 
 March 27, 2012

 Last week, the hall monitors who run Gannett's 11 newspapers
 in Wisconsin brought the mean end of the ruler down on the
 wrists of 25 journalists for signing petitions to recall
 Governor Scott Walker.

 Kevin Corrado, publisher of the chain's Green Bay Press-
 Gazette, spoke the company line when he stated that signing
 the petition constituted a "breach of Gannett's principles
 of ethical conduct." Promising "disciplinary measures" and
 additional "ethics training" for the signatories.


 http://blogs.reuters.com/jackshafer/2012/03/27/free-the-gannett-25/

 #  #  #

 Arbitron Agrees to Improve How It Counts Minority Radio
 Listeners 
 
 By Ben Sisario, Media Decoder - Behind the  Screens, Between
 the Lines

 New York Times 
 March 27, 2012

 Arbitron, the largest radio ratings service, has settled a
 lawsuit in California over how it measures minority
 audiences, agreeing to pay $400,000 and to abide by certain
 research methods in tracking black and Latino radio
 listeners.  The agreement settles a suit that contended that
 Arbitron undercounted minority audiences in how it recruited
 people to use its Portable People Meter, an electronic
 device that measures radio listening habits.

 Recalling an earlier lawsuit in New York and New Jersey, the
 California suit asserted that Arbitron's method of relying
 on landline telephones to find users of its metering devices
 left out many minority households and that stations serving
 blacks and Latinos suffered lower ratings as a result.


 http://mediadecoder.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/03/27/arbitron-agrees-to-improve-how-it-counts-minority-radio-listeners/

 #  #  #

 The billion-dollar fight for control of mobile money 
 
 By  Matthew Braga

ars technica 
March 28, 2012

 The billion-dollar fight for control of mobile money The
 philosophy behind mobile payments is simple; everyone should
 have the ability to buy anything, anywhere.  Today, there
 are essentially two main camps in the mobile commerce space-
 those who want to use phones as a tool to make money, and
 those who want to use phones as a means to spend money.
 Square and PayPal want to empower small-to-medium size
 merchants-think artists, food trucks or mom-and-pop shops-to
 accept plastic payment, instead of just plain old cash.
 Google Wallet is quite literally an attempt to replace your
 traditional wallet with an Android phone. Instead of paying
 for goods and services with a traditional credit card, you
 can use your phone instead. Competitors from pretty much
 every retail and mobile-oriented industry you can imagine-
 including Target, Walmart, Verizon, and AT&T-are joining the
 fray.


 http://arstechnica.com/getting-it-done/2012/03/the-billion-dollar-fight-for-control-of-mobile-money.ars

 # # #

 YouTube Offers Live Streaming Video to Nonprofits 
 
 By Cody Switzer

 The Chronicle of Philanthropy 
 March 20, 2012

 YouTube has started a new feature that will allow all
 nonprofits to broadcast live events through their own video
 channels.   YouTube has provided step-by-step instructions
 to help nonprofits activate the feature, as well as a
 detailed guide for organizations planning to live stream
 events.

 The American Foundation for Equal Rights, a gay-rights
 organization that is challenging California's ban on gay
 marriage, was one of the first to use it. The group
 broadcast a live performance of "8," a play about the ban
 starring Brad Pitt, George Clooney, and other celebrities.
 It has been viewed more than 530,000 times.


 http://philanthropy.com/blogs/social-philanthropy/youtube-offers-live-streaming-video-to-nonprofits/30316?sid=pt&utm_source=pt&utm_medium=en

 #  #   #

 Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency director exits
 agency for Google, assumes mysterious role

 By Joseph Volpe

 engadget.com 
 March 12, 2012

 Regina Dugan, DARPA's current director, will be moving on
 from the Department of Defense's fantastical research arm
 for an unspecified "senior executive position" with Google.
 Dugan's role for the past three years shifted her agency's
 focus from out-there R&D experiments to more practical
 military applications. Look out Uncle Sam - the Google brain
 drain's got its sights set on you, and now no government
 sector is safe.


 http://www.engadget.com/2012/03/12/darpa-director-exits-agency-for-google-assumes-mysterious-role/

 #  # #

 FCC Fines Radio Station for Airing `Fake News' From Labor
 News Show 
 
 By Mike Elk

 Working In These Times 
 February 28, 2012

 The Federal Communication Commission fined the Chicago-based
 for-profit radio station WLS-AM $44,000 for running eleven
 90-second labor journalism news segments paid for by Workers
 Independent News (WIN). Based in Madison, Wis., WIN produces
 full-length radio shows about labor struggles around the
 country.  Some radio stations broadcast them for free, while
 WIN pays others to air them.

 The FCC claims that WLS did not make clear to listeners that
 the spots were paid for by WIN.


 http://www.inthesetimes.com/working/entry/12806/fcc_fines_illinois_radio_state_for_fake_news_about_workers/

 # # #

 Library forced to shut down intelligent computer that
 'learns'  after it starts giving borrowers saucy X-rated
 backchat 
 
 By David Baker

 Daily Mail On-Line 
 February 11, 2012

 Tsinghua University in China was forced to shut down a much
 lauded intelligent computer system at its library when it
 appeared to have 'learned' a host of X-rated remarks.

 According to the Beijing News, the library's sassy assistant
 Xiaotu had been programmed to answer more than 10,000
 questions about borrowing books and searching for essays.
 But as a result of pranks by students, it was taught 40,000
 responses, many of which have been deemed too sexy by the
 university.


 http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2099784/Library-forced-shut-intelligent-learns-starts-giving-borrowers-saucy-X-rated-backchat.html

 #  #  #

 April 1 Video:       Tap into the future, building on the
 technology of the past!

http://youtu.be/1KhZKNZO8mQ

 #  #  #

___________________________________________

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