A Browser Plugin To Circumvent Googles New Privacy Policy Is Needed

Google is combining many of its 70 privacy policies into one that spans most of their internet properties. This is information they already have, now it is spread out over multiple websites. This will allow Google to track your online habits across most of its websites. Many individuals, privacy groups, the US government, and the EU are worried about this. This personally worries me on many levels. It allow the government a single place to find most, or if you are a heavy Google user like myself, all of your online habits. The more I look at this issue, the more I understand the privacy rights issues the Europeans are expressing.

The solutions given by Google are don’t use Google, sign out to not be tracked, and create a new account for each service. The last one is the interesting one, and offers a possible solution for most online tracking.

Browser plugins are applications that adds additional functionality to a web browser. What is needed is a plugin that does several things, securely stores users names and passwords for individual sites, logs you out of a site as you are leaving it, and protects your privacy. All of this functionality has already been created, and is available as individual opensource plugins on sourceforge.net. This needs to be combined into a single application, that clears both standard and flash based cookies, cleans up URL’s as you are browsing, logs you into and out of sites automatically, can be configured to prevents JavaScript from loading or running, and allows you to browse anonymously while logged out.

I will work on this in my spare time. When I am done coding this I will tweet it, post here, and contact techdirt, the EFF, and TorrentFreak.

Posted in GooglePrivacy, IP | Tagged , , | 1 Comment

The Epic Failure Of SOPA And PIPA – And What Everyone Doesn’t Seem To Realize Yet

Several hundred years ago, the transit times of books and news was extremely long, information spread at a very slow rate. Centuries ago for like minded individuals to come together, for a conspiracies to form, or for people to come to a consensus, it took years.

That has changed. We live in a time when information and news spreads at an unbelievable rate. Now you do not need to wait six months for a letter to reach you. It doesn’t take 3 months to travel to conference to meet face to face. Now you turn on your cellphone and text, tweet, or hit you Facebook or Google+ page.

Due to modern communications, we are seeing an acceleration of consensus, and a shortening of the time it takes for systems to be attacked for corruption or being overbearing. This trend is accelerating at an amazing rate. People are slowly beginning to understand this is occurring. Most people currently believe it is only a “don’t touch our Internet” thing. Silly people …

ABC News –“PIPA / SOPA and the Online Tsunami: A First Draft of the Future”

 

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Augmented Reality And A TV Studio In You Pocket

http://gizmodo.com

For a while now it has been obvious that the effects done by TV and movie studios would eventually make their way to cellphones and tablets.  This year at CES many of the cellphones and tablets on display had built in augmented reality apps.

We are rapidly approaching a time when everyone will have a TV studio in their pocket. One that allows editing of footage, CGI effects, and real time virtual sets.    This is a seriously disruptive technology. All you will need is a copy of blender to create your sets, and you can film in any location on earth without ever leaving your home. The Over the next several years the TV and movie studios will face real competition from several billion people.

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A Moment Of Peace, Great Image

After two weeks of setting up this blog and posting mainly interesting fluff. It is time to take a breather for the weekend and then do some real writing.

Nanotechnology, 3D printing, Intellectual Property, Biology, Brain Computer Interfaces, Programming, Predictions of Technology, Unintended Consequences, Simple Solutions, and Life Extension Technologies are the themes of this blog.

I thank you for your patience, there was a large learning curve setting up this blog.

Posted in Disruptive, First Amendment, Fourth Amendment, Future Legal Issues, Future Technology Abuses, Generating Electricity, Mind Machine Interfaces, Power Generation, Prediction, Simple Solutions, Solar, Stirling Engine, Technology, The Party Of We, Thing That Make You Go hmmm.... | Tagged , | 2 Comments

TPPA – Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement- Full

TPPA – TRANS-PACIFIC STRATEGIC ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP AGREEMENT – FULL

TRANS-PACIFIC
STRATEGIC ECONOMIC PARTNERSHIP
AGREEMENT

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The Cellphones Tablets and the Future of Hollywood

Independent movies don’t have to be block busters to ruin the studios. All they need to be is marginally successful. Already 10% of Sundance is Kickstarter funded movies. Imagine 10 years from now, when large numbers of movies are done by online funding through sites like Kickstarter.

Very soon  technology will make it possible for anyone to make a good movie by drop, drag, and click editing.  Cell phones and tablets will have access to every filter and transition possible, for little or no cost. Since every 18 months the same dollar buys double the computing power, cellphones and tablets will soon have the power to do real time CGI.  This will allow people to create what ever content they can conceive of with little or no cost, except an investment in time.

This year at CES, we saw the beginnings of augmented reality on cell phones and tablets. Very soon we will see the ability to do real time virtual sets, and replace everything around a person with computer generated imagery. Once that happens the TV and movie studios have nothing going for them. Spending $100 million dollars on a movie will never be profitable, especially when competing with smaller more nimble competitors. They will be up against thousands of productions with better plot lines, less repetition of the same themes, and more targeted genres. The future of the studios does not look very bright.

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The Party Of We – Communications in the world of good and evil.

This is the first in a series of essays on how communications and social media are changing the world. Several years back, large groups of people began spontaneously coming together    online for various causes. There was however, no definition or description for these events,  until Douglas Wood’s article “WikiLeaks Lessons: The Party of We — Already in Control”. In it he described telcom based flash mobs which he called “the party of we”. The party of we is united by a belief in cooperation, what is right, the truth, and freedom. This is the philosophical opposite of every corporation and governments on earth. We extends across every race, religion, national border, and political belief system and knows no sovereign authority.

The pen is mightier than the sword

The phrase the pen is mightier than the sword was coined in 1839 by an English author named Edward Bulwer-Lytton, in a play called Richelieu; Or the Conspiracy. This phrase is simple yet powerful it says, words have meaning, words can strike passion and fear in the hearts of men, words can change things, words can bring the truth forward, and words can give you hope. Never in history has this been more true than today. Much like a pen Facebook, Google+, twitter, LinkedIn, YouTube, and other social media, have this power. They speed messages along to friends, family, and people who have similar interests. Social media in all its forms allows us to create communities that span all national borders, all races, and all religions.

The growing trend of communicating and finding friends

Facebook and Google+ are the fastest growing communications firms on the planet.  People using social media have the potential to influence and change the direction the world is headed. The ability to quickly find people who like, compliment, or believe the same things you do, is a growing trend in the world of telecommunications. Because of this trend you are no longer alone in the darkness.  Heck, you could believe that fairies make the flowers grow, and you can find someone who believes the same. A simple cellphone and twitter, Facebook, Youtube, Google+, or just an email contact list can shine a light on the things that are good or evil in this world. Governments are beginning to take notice and fear their citizens, and this is a good thing. For to long it has been the other way around.

The acceleration factor of social media in promoting change

Communications and social media are becoming an accelerator of justice and societal change. In the recent past we have seen SOPA and PIPA crash and burn, the Occupy Wall Street movement, the Arab spring, Chinese human flesh search engines, the Tea Party, and Anonymous taking on large corporations and governments. These events did not happen spontaneously, they were all proceeded by years of corruption, abuse, or a growing discontent among those participating.

For several years now Techdirt has been reporting on ACTA, SOPA, PIPA, and the TPP. All these agreements were negotiated, created and lobbied for in secret, by the MPAA, RIAA, and USTR. Every attempt to gain access to the negotiations was denied. The US  stated that the ACTA negotiations were secret and denied access to the document.

SOPA and PIPA crash and burn

SOPA and PIPA were written by industry lobbyists. When SOPA was brought up for discussion in the US House of Representatives Judiciary Committee, the entire proceeding was biased in favor of the content industry. The House Judiciary Committee admitted to not understanding the technology, then refused to hear from the “Nerds”.  None of this was carried on broadcast news or in the newspapers, it was however vigorously debated online.  The news of these bills spread far and wide crossing international borders. All valid concerns were ignored.  It became obvious that the outcome was a predetermined, and the legislation was bought and paid for. Throughout these proceedings, the level of  frustration and angry rose at the crony capitalism and corruption that were on display.

In protest of these bills WikipediaReddit, and many other web sites went dark. Google censored its name in search. All of the sites directed people in the US on how they could contact their government representatives about SOPA and PIPA. The bills became toxic to be associated with. The president and many on both sides of the political isle dropped support of these bills, their passage into law almost impossible. Contrary to what the politicians and content companies believe, Reddit, Google and Wikipedia were not the cause of these protests, they were the catalyst.  It was the 14 million people who responded, many of whom had read or participated in the online discussions about these bills, saying in one voice, enough already.

Arab Spring

The Arab Spring, is an ongoing uprising against several oppressive governments, that have  repressed, tortured, and unjustly imprisoned their own people. In Iran, Tunisia, Egypt, Libya, and Syria, social media helped organize, focus, and accelerating these rebellions. It is probable that without the influence of social media, these events would have taken place,   only at a latter date with greater casualty rates. The governments were unprepared and for these uprisings because there was no real warning and a relatively small portion of the population participated. These governments were prevented from fully using their military’s to engaging their citizens. The fear of being tried for crimes against humanity looms large in an age of citizen reporters and YouTube. Yet another win for social media and the party of we.

Conclusion …. hmmm ….

These events and occurrences have two things in common. The issues causing people to fight oppression, censorship, misdeeds, corruption, and wrong doing, have been there simmering for an extended period of time. The second is a catalyst which triggers a cascade of messages and the events that follow.

Telecommunications is playing an increasingly important role in these events. When oppression occurs, when a person cries out in the darkness, when a horrendous act happens, now all it takes is one individual to point it out to the world. Then, that occurrence can reach global attention in a matter of moments. This is something that should sober up every corporate board member, and head of state. Their words and actions are being discussed outside of channels that they control, and no amount of press releases can contain misdeeds. Social media accelerates the distribution of information, of news, of communications, and of consensus. Social media allows people who, in the past, would have never found each other in real life, to collaborate online. This allows like minds to come together quickly. Today people can organize around an idea in moments, an idea can take on a life of its own, spreading, and growing in ways that can not be anticipated.

Brought together by modern telecommunications, the party of we can be seen as a bunch of do gooding, protectors of the innocent, light in the darkness, ally to good, nightmare to the oppressor types(1). When We gathers applying real world crowd dispersal techniques does not work. Online you can not disperse a crowd, you can only move them outside of your realm of influence.

 

(1) A little tribute to Goku.

 

Posted in PIPA, SOPA, The Party Of We | Tagged , , , | 9 Comments

TPP – TPPA – Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership Agreement- Intellectual Property Chapter

TPP  – Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership
also known as
TPPA – Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement

Intellectual Property Chapter

 

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Prior Restraint and the Closure of MegaUpload

Prior restraint is a simple concept.

A man owns a book store where half the books are evil, the other half are not. Because his stores inventory is half evil, it is shut down.

A man owns a book store with one evil book and forty thousand good books.  Because of that one evil book, his store is shut down.

Prior restraint describes both of these cases. Both book stores were shut down, preventing access to the good, legitimate, and legal works. When in reality only the evil books should have been removed, and the stores allowed to continue doing business. Simple isn’t it?

The lead up is done, now the article …

Recently a web site called MegaUpload.com was taken offline by the FBI. MegaUpload.com was an online file hosting service where you could store your files and access them from anywhere with an internet connection. Many of the files infringed on copyright, but many others did not. This is a difficult conundrum, for a sizable portion of the 180 million users of this file service. If even 2% of them are not sharing files that are somehow are illegal, that means 3.6 million people have lost their files. What they see is this, with no ability to reclaim their files.

Now I ask a simple question. If one book in a store is good, and 40 thousand are bad, do you close down the book store, or do you remove the bad books and leave the one?

 

Before you answer. ….   the Dictionary, A Tree Grows in Brooklyn,  Death Be Not Proud, The Collected Works of Shakespeare,  Kama Sutra,  collected works of Ancient Greece, Bible, Koran, philosophy from Thales to Aristotle.

 

Posted in First Amendment, Fourth Amendment | Tagged , , , , | 1 Comment

Welcome to the Internet, Please, do not Poke the Hornets Nest

Welcome to the internet. If this is your first day here let me explain some rules to you.

There are two billion of us here and we all talk to each other. So, don’t be a dick. Don’t come here with an agenda, we will sniff it out and tell everyone.  It will not end up on the nightly news, but it will ruin your reputation. If you are here to spout talking points, we will ignore you. If you are here to astroturf a movement, push your political views, rally the masses towards your corporate agenda, feel free to try. No one will listen.

If you run a blog, allow everyone to comment, especially anonymously, and  do not require moderator approval to post. Censoring comments, and having rules on what can, and can’t be said doesn’t go over well here. People have reputations and will self moderate.

If you have a social media page, allow people to express themselves, and respond to their comments and concerns. The nature of the internet isn’t the same as broadcast news. People expect interaction online, if they do not get responses they do not return. Do not create false comments online to present the image of being followed. It will be found out and fail.

Allow people to have their say and express their views. If you look out for people, are righteous, enlightened, and truthful, they will believe and believe and follow. In this place, we are not watching TV, we are interacting.

Remember, there are two billion of us here, once you lose our trust, it can never be regained, and you will not be remembered kindly. Please, do not poke the hornets nest, we are in here.

 

Posted in The Party Of We | Tagged , , , | 6 Comments

To The Nay Sayers …

Quote:

Unknown origin

There are so many people out there who will tell you that you can’t. What you have to do is turn around and say “Watch me”.

Sappy I know, but it ended up in my quote of the day list.
Also : mousover the picture.
Posted in ACTA, PIPA, SOPA, TPP | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

The Original Party of We Article

THE PARTY OF WE

Douglas Wood wrote a great article titled “WikiLeaks Lessons: The Party of We — Already in Control” on Law.com. This is one of those classic articles that begins to understand what is going on online.

The party of we is Anonymous, the Arab Spring, the 14 million strong protest over SOPA and PIPA. It is the growing separation between old news sources and online blogs, it is us finding, discussing and spreading news and ideas online.

This is a concept that I will  expand and report on over time.

  archived version
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A Short Open Letter to the Content Industry

Dear Big Content

I recently heard that you said “that there would be no culture if there was no copyright monopoly.” I guess the library of Alexandria is a myth, there are no Greek tragedies, the Bible doesn’t exist, the Koran is a fairy tale, that fairy tales are recent fakes, philosophy from the times of Thales and Aristotle is one of my delusions, and we do not have extant literature from Sophocles and Euripides.

Thanks for clearing that up for me.

David

my comment on  techdirt.com
Posted in Copyright Clause, Thing That Make You Go hmmm.... | Tagged | 16 Comments

Full Text of ACTA, TPP, SOPA and PIPA

In order to make an truly informed decision about (wikpedia links >>->) ACTATPP*, SOPA, and PIPA you need to read them. Everyone is talking about how these are internet-killing, speech-stifling, and how they will be abused. All this is true. In all actuality  how many have actually read these bills, and trade  agreements?

Here they are the actual texts for your perusal.

ACTA – Anti-Counterfeiting Trade Agreement (text)

TPP – Trans-Pacific Strategic Economic Partnership (text)

SOPA – Stop Online Piracy Act (text)

PIPA – PROTECT IP Act (text)

 * The TPP is a leaked draft from 2011
Posted in ACTA, Bills Laws and Treaties, Copyright Clause, Future Legal Issues, IP, PIPA, SOPA, TPP | 2 Comments

A Quote From Thomas Jefferson That is Very Relevent Today

Quote:

Thomas Jefferson

“A wise and frugal Government, which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government.”

Something to ponder … With all our governments, doing the exact opposite, what does that make them?

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SOPA, PIPA, and Google’s Changes to Privacy Settings

Google Censors its Name in Protest

SOPA and PIPA are two bills that have been temporarily shelved due to public pressure. They are internet crippling pieces of legislation written and pushed forward by the MPAA.  They make it possible to shut down almost any website that allows user generated content. These bills open the door to second and possible third party liability for user generated content. Under these bills private rights of action are allowed, circumventing the legal system and due process. Financial institutions and advertisers are given immunity for shutting down payments to sites accused of infringement,  can be sued, and may face criminal penalties if they do not comply. Which will lead to site being shut down after being accused of infringement. Much like the DMCA, this will be abused to shut down websites that compete with, embarrasses, ridicule, and tell the truth people do not want the public to see.

On Wednesday the 18th of January 2012, Wikipedia, Reddit, and many other sites went dark, Google censored its name in search and all of them directed people to where and how they could contact their government representatives about SOPA and PIPA. Leading to 14 million people emailing, calling, and signing petitions.

There was a virtual blackout on these events on the news networks and in the newspapers, who supported these bills. After the massive public outcry they suddenly began coverage of the events on the 18th.

Many people in the content and news industries believe Google is the root of their ills. Stealing their precious ideas, ruining their businesses, pointing people at infringing material, or just plain paranoid.

Unless you live on the corner of Rock and Under,  you know this already. It is an important lead up to the events that are, and will, unfold over the next year.

What most people do not know is, on 1-24-2012 Google announced changes to its privacy policy. Those changes are an being done so Google can pull all of their properties under the umbrella of Google+.  Currently they have in excess of 70 privacy policies, which will become a single policy that spans most of their properties. What this means to you is, you will no longer have to search YouTube for your cat video’s, G+ for your friends invite, and docs for that Vogon poetry you wrote for your ex. Instead, Google will allow you to search for the information that is spread out across multiple Google properties. This is information that is already on Google’s websites, you can become anonymous by just logging out.

With the lead up done,  now to the prediction tag on this post.

Over the next few months we will be seeing the news media attempting to out hype each other over Google’s privacy changes. Each reporter will be trying to out do the previous one in scare tactics and exaggerations. We are already seeing TV news organizations targeting the privacy changes. Since the politicians pay no heed to what is going on online, they know what is on the news, and believe that to be what people believe. The end result for Google will be federal investigations,  sub committee meetings into Google’s policy changes, and possible investigations into Google’s role in the events of the 18th. All driven by the mistaken belief, that Google is responsible for the public outcry. Even though they came to the party just a few hours beforehand. All of which will make the politicians, news, and content industry, look even more petty and corrupt to the people that actually communicate. We the people online.

Anyone see any other outcomes?

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Freedom of Speech and The Right to Privacy -vs- Corporations and Government

Quote:

Ayn Rand

“In any compromise between good and evil, it is only evil that can profit.”

 

Suggestion – never compromise.

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Why Internet Trolls Are a Good Thing

It occurred to me recently that a lot of my time online is spent responding to the always dreaded Trolls. They live on blogs, and hide in the shadows of news sites, and are forever present.  They always attempt to alter peoples views or change the subject of the conversation to suit their agenda. Trolls are also a teaching tool.

After arguing with a troll in a blog, for the better part of a day, something extremely interesting happened. Call it an inspirational flash or a realization, the trolls, the sock puppets, and the shills are having the exact opposite effect they intend. They come from an age of one way communications. Where they broadcast to you, expect you to sit idly by, and assume you believe what you are being told. Where they give you of their version of the facts, and do not want your feedback. This isn’t the way the internet works.

We live in an age where information that is fed to us, can be questioned, discussed, and verified or discounted very quickly. We do not need to go to town hall meetings, write letters and wait two weeks for a response, or spend time in multiple libraries to find an answer. We Google it, we use social media with our friends, we blog, we chat and text, we walk away from lies and deceit, and eventually we end up with the truth. With our almost unlimited access to knowledge, people seem to be using Occam’s Razor, on an instinctive level to find the simplest answer.  The rate at which this happens has gone from weeks or months to hours.

On blogs and news sites, we get baited, and we respond. It is human nature to defend your position and your beliefs. What trolls do not understand is, with each response we post, things become more clear and concise in our minds. Each post a troll makes teaches us to spot the straw men, ad hominem attacks, and the misdirection’s more quickly. We watch other people respond to the misinformation and the trolling, and we learn.  In essence the trolls are teaching us how to spot those who lie, twist meanings, contradict themselves, and attempt to misdirect.

The internet is a very large place, with 2 billion people online at this point, each one adds to the discussion. Each discussion teaches people. Each response to a troll makes people think things through. Internet trolls are a good thing.  We read their posts, we realize that what they are saying is not true or a distortion. We respond, and we learn. In the end their words do not convince us, they have the opposite effect.

 also : mouseover the pictures, top to bottom, there is a second story.
Posted in Sock Puppet, Trolls | Tagged , | 13 Comments

Anonymous a Hero in The Eyes of Thomas Jefferson …

Quote:

Thomas Jefferson

“I hold it, that a little rebellion, now and then, is a good thing, and as necessary in the political world as storms in the physical.”

lol … 

 also : mouse over the mask and the links, another story
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Your memories as evidence … the thought police are coming for you.

image credit - emotiv.com

Truth be told, being an engineer and a programmer, a brain computer interface (BCI) or headband is something I crave to the core of my being. The ease of having a swype style mental keyboard. The ability to think a mouse into position and click, highlight, copy, and paste is amazing. The ability to visualize an image onto the screen (1), with just a thought. The ability to record and playback events through my own eyes. This seems like science fiction yet IBM predicts that mind reading computers are less than five years away.

This is worrisome with the continued slow erosion of the US fourth amendment and EU privacy rights. Combine that with warrant-less wire tapping and the push to have ISP’s track everything you do online, and you have serious issues. Computer programs now store most of what you type temporarily so that you can undo mistakes. They cache the websites you have visited and the searches you have done. They store the files you have opened recently. Now imagine a time when there are no keyboards or mice, when you wear a headband instead of a using a keyboard. When you think to your computer. The programs will likely store your thoughts.

Imagine your first day with a new BCI headband. You just picked it up at the local computer store, the clerk blue toothed it to your phone with 64 T-bytes of memory and you turn it on and begin recording. You you look at the person passing by, think about work, how your boss is a jerk, you wife annoys you, your kids screaming, and fantasize about the woman in the red dress that just walked by. You then begin your drive home and get pulled over.

What random memory could a law officer find while pulling someone over for a traffic violation.  It is an interesting thought, in light of how often police search cellphones without  a warrant, and US customs agents need no warrant is needed to search through your electronics. In this near future an officer is able to pick up your BCI and go through your last mental notes, any stray stored fantasies, or random thoughts. That is the first step towards saying good bye to the fifth amendment, having thought police (*), and allowing dreams and fantasies to be used against you in a court of law.

Between ISP monitoring, the drift away from the fundamental rights of the US Constitution, ACTA in the EU and US, never ending expansions of copyright lengthswarrant-less wire tappingthe cloud, and mission creep this is a reality far from what our founding fathers could have ever predicted when penning the constitution.

In ten years, don’t worry when a politician asserts. “If you aren’t thinking anything wrong, then you shouldn’t worry about us monitoring your thoughts.” after all he only has your best interest in mind.

also: mouseover the links, I was told the titles are funny.

Posted in Fourth Amendment, Future Legal Issues, Future Technology Abuses, Mind Machine Interfaces | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

WikiPedia Says More Than Thank You

Looking at the header of Wikipedia the first thing that comes to mind is, you’re welcome and thank you for helping us. Then you notice the second line “We’re not done yet”, and you wonder, what do they mean? Could this be warning us of more site blackouts, that Hollywood and the MPAA will continue to push some version of SOPA and PIPA forward, that we should remain eternally vigilant against the loss of our Constitutional rights, or all of the above.

 

 

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