Category: New Technology


In Memoriam of Aaron Swartz and his dream to make the world a better place

Swartz smiling

11/8/1986 – 01/11/2013


Aaron is dead.

Wanderers in this crazy world,

We have lost a mentor , a wise elder. 

Hackers for right, we are one down,

we  have lost one of our own.

Nurturers, carers, listeners,

feeders, parents all,

we have lost a child.

Let us all weep.

~Sir Tim Berners-Lee, January 11th 2013

 photo FamilySurvivalProtocolColliseumBannergrayscale900x338_zpsb17c85d0.jpg

Global Community Report Banner photo FSPLogoGlobalCommunityFulloldworldmapbckgrnd_zps43d3059c.jpg


A real cell tower. (Image: Flickr, Carl Lender via Bus. Insider)

A real cell tower. (Image: Flickr, Carl Lender via Bus. Insider)



The federal government has been fighting hard for years hide details about its use of so-called stingray surveillance technology from the public.

The surveillance devices simulate cell phone towers in order to trick nearby mobile phones into connecting to them and revealing the phones’ locations.

Now newly released documents confirm long-held suspicions that the controversial devices are also capable of recording numbers for a mobile phone’s incoming and outgoing calls, as well as intercepting the content of voice and text communications. The documents also discuss the possibility of flashing a phone’s firmware “so that you can intercept conversations using a suspect’s cell phone as a bug.”

The information appears in a 2008 guideline prepared by the Justice Department to advise law enforcement agents on when and how the equipment can be legally used.

The Department of Justice ironically acknowledges in the documents that the use of the surveillance technology to locate cellular phones ‘is an issue of some controversy.’

The American Civil Liberties Union of Northern California obtained the documents (.pdf) after a protracted legal battle involving a two-year-old public records request. The documents include not only policy guidelines, but also templates for submitting requests to courts to obtain permission to use the technology.



Read More Here

Global Community Report Banner photo FSPLogoGlobalCommunityFulloldworldmapbckgrnd_zps43d3059c.jpg




Apple loses patent lawsuit to University of Wisconsin, faces hefty damages

Apple Inc could be facing up to $862 million in damages after a U.S. jury on Tuesday found the iPhone maker used technology owned by the University of Wisconsin-Madison’s licensing arm without permission in chips found in many of its most popular devices.

The jury in Madison, Wisconsin also said the patent, which improves processor efficiency, was valid. The trial will now move on to determine how much Apple owes in damages.

Representatives for the Wisconsin Alumni Research Foundation (WARF) and Apple could not immediately be reached for comment.

WARF sued Apple in January 2014 alleging infringement of its 1998 patent for improving chip efficiency.

Related Stories
Schools that sue: Why more universities file patent lawsuits
Top 100 Innovative Universities: University of Wisconsin System

The jury was considering whether Apple’s A7, A8 and A8X processors, found in the iPhone 5s, 6 and 6 Plus, as well as several versions of the iPad, violate the patent.



Read More Here

FULL: Edward Snowden and ACLU at SXSW

T Bert·



Published on Mar 10, 2014

Edward Snowden speaks about privacy and technology with the ACLU’s Ben Wizner and Christopher Soghoian at SXSW Interactive. -Links are below-…… – Main “Time to Rein in the Surveillance State… – Patriot Act Info… – FISA Amendments… – FISA Court Info

Edward Snowden warns of personal data vulnerability

The former NSA contractor takes part in a video conference at the South by Southwest tech event in Texas and answers questions via Twitter to an enthusiastic audience.

Edward Snowden

Former National Security Agency contractor Edward Snowden speaks remotely to the South by Southwest Interactive conference in Austin, Texas, superimposed over an image of the Constitution. (Spencer Bakalar / Los Angeles Times / March 10, 2014)

AUSTIN, Texas — Edward Snowden brought no bombshells when he arrived to an excited round of applause Monday, his stubbled face relaxed as it was beamed in from across the continents for a “virtual conversation” about the vulnerability of personal data. His presence was event enough.

Public appearances by the former National Security Agency contractor and U.S. exile are rare, and this one was beamed in from an undisclosed location in Russia via several online proxies for his own security, a bit of technological cloak-and-dagger that could only add to his mystique for the three roomfuls of international tech specialists struggling to hear his words in video that was choppy and often inaudible.

His message still got through: Personal information is vulnerable not only to government prying but to growing numbers of outside infiltrators because companies have failed to adequately protect the data of their customers. His own exile after leaking to reporters secret information he had gathered while an NSA consultant has made him a central figure in that conversation, and he says he has no regrets.

“Would I do it again? Absolutely,” Snowden said into the camera, in response to one of several questions submitted to him via Twitter (#AskSnowden) and screened backstage at the South by Southwest Interactive conference. “I took an oath to support and defend the Constitution. And I saw the Constitution was being violated on a massive scale.”

He warned, “If we allow the NSA to continue unrestrained, every other government will accept that as a green light to do the same.”

The chosen Twitter questions were notably nonconfrontational for a figure often the subject of heated debate even among supporters. One asked whether the mass surveillance was driven by privatization. Another wondered about the potential for society to “reap benefits” from the “big data.” None asked about his life in Russia, or what further revelations might be coming.

The first question came from Timothy John Berners-Lee, a British scientist known as the inventor of the World Wide Web, who asked Snowden how he would create an accountability system for governance.

Read More Here



Edward Snowden discusses NSA leaks at SXSW: ‘I would do it again’

• Whistleblower patches in to Texas conference from Russia
• Snowden insists leaks have strengthened national security

Edward Snowden, the NSA whistleblower whose unprecedented leak of top-secret documents led to a worldwide debate about the nature of surveillance, insisted on Monday that his actions had improved the national security of the United States rather than undermined it, and declared that he would do it all again despite the personal sacrifices he had endured.

In remarks to the SXSW culture and technology conference in Texas, delivered by video link from his exile in Russia, Snowden took issue with claims by senior officials that he had placed the US in danger. He also rejected as demonstrably false the suggestions by some members of Congress that his files had found their way into the hands of the intelligence agencies of China or Russia.

Snowden spoke against the backdrop of an image of the US constitution, which he said he had taken an oath to protect but had seen “violated on a mass scale” while working for the US government. He accepted praise from Sir Tim Berners-Lee, the inventor of the world wide web, accorded the first question via Twitter, who described him as “acting profoundly in the public interest”.

The session provided a rare and extensive glimpse into the thoughts of Snowden, granted temporary asylum by Russia after the US revoked his passport. He struck back strongly against claims made again last week by the NSA director, General Keith Alexander, that his release of secret documents to the Guardian and other outlets last year had weakened American cyber-defences.

“These things are improving national security, these are improving the communications not just of Americans, but everyone in the world,” Snowden said. “Because we rely on the same standard, we rely on the ability to trust our communications, and without that, we don’t have anything.”

He added later that thanks to the more secure communication activity that had been encouraged by his disclosures, “the public has benefited, the government has benefited, and every society in the world has benefited”.


Read More Here



Enhanced by Zemanta

S.C.G. News

Posted by S.C.G. February 12, 2014

Rather than grovel and beg for the U.S. government to respect our privacy, these innovators have taken matters into their own hands, and their work may change the playing field completely.

People used to assume that the United States government was held in check by the constitution, which prohibits unreasonable searches and seizures and which demands due process in criminal investigations, but such illusions have evaporated in recent years. It turns out that the NSA considers itself above the law in every respect and feels entitled to spy on anyone anywhere in the world without warrants, and without any real oversight. Understandably these revelations shocked the average citizen who had been conditioned to take the government’s word at face value, and the backlash has been considerable. The recent “Today We Fight Back” campaign to protest the NSA’s surveillance practices shows that public sentiment is in the right place. Whether these kinds of petitions and protests will have any real impact on how the U.S. government operates is questionable (to say the least), however some very smart people have decided not to wait around and find out. Instead they’re focusing on making the NSA’s job impossible. In the process they may fundamentally alter the way the internet operates.


Decentralized Social Media –

Anyone who was paying attention at all over the past several years knows that many of the top social media websites Facebook and Google have cooperated with the NSA’s surveillance program under PRISM, handing over the personal information that they’ve been hoarding over the years. Many of us have grown to despise these companies but continue to use their services due to the fact that no real competitors have presented themselves. Yes there are a few sites oriented towards the anti-government niche but nothing that has the potential of opening up the kind of reach that’s possible on Facebook or Google plus. The underlying problem here is that the server technology to run a site even a fraction of the size of Facebook is highly expensive, and to build and maintain a code base that can handle millions of users requires a full time team of highly skilled programmers. What this means is that anyone who wants to launch a real competitor to these sites would have needed to be well funded and have a sustainable business model. But what if someone came up with a system that removed the need for massive centralized servers? That’s just what is working to accomplish. is a decentralized social media system in development based on bittorrent and Ember.js which completely cuts the server out of the equation and allows users to build social media networks without exposing their personal information to “authorities” or data mining companies.


Getsync Decentralized and Encrypted File Sharing – A Dropbox Alternative

With the revelations that data in Apple’s iCloud was available to the NSA as part of PRISM it has become clear that any centralized file sharing service is vulnerable, and any information that you upload to services like dropbox may end up being inspected by government agents. The folks at Bittorrent didn’t like that idea, so they decided to build a viable alternative, one that doesn’t depend on a centralized server at all and encrypts your data to make it difficult if not impossible to open without your permission. The service claims to already have amassed over 2 million users. Interestingly the social media project uses Getsync to manage the social media data on your computer.



Decentralized & Encrypted Communications – Bittorrent Chat

Don’t like the fact that the NSA has been rummaging through your skype chats, emails and other instant messaging services? Well if you were a bit tech savvy you might have opted to set up your own mumble server or IRC channel, but this route will likely never be approachable for the average citizen and the reliance on a centralized server brings security vulnerabilities. However work is currently underway on a protocol that will completely remove the need for a centralized server and cut the NSA out of the loop entirely.


Read More Here

Enhanced by Zemanta

freespeechtv freespeechtv

Published on Feb 5, 2014

Thom Hartmann shares how the city of Chattanooga, Tennessee has created its own high speed internet service.

Enhanced by Zemanta

Google will buy London-based artificial intelligence company DeepMindThe Information reports that the acquisition price was more than $500 million, and that Facebook was also in talks to buy the startup late last year. We’ve emailed Google and DeepMind for comment. The acquisition was originally confirmed by Google to Re/code.

Google’s hiring of DeepMind will help it compete against other major tech companies as they all try to gain business advantages by focusing on deep learning. For example, Facebook recently hired NYU professor Yann LeCunn to lead its new artificial intelligence lab, IBM’s Watson supercomputer is now working on deep learning, and Yahoo recently acquired photo analysis startup LookFlow to lead its new deep learning group.

DeepMind was founded by neuroscientist Demis Hassabis, a former child prodigy in chess, Skype and Kazaa developer Jaan Tallin, and researcher Shane Legg.

This is the latest move by Google to fill out its roster of artificial intelligence experts and, according to Re/code, the acquisition was reportedly led by Google CEO Larry Page. If all three of DeepMind’s founders work for Google, they will join inventor, entrepreneur, author, and futurist Ray Kurzweil, who was hired in 2012 as a director of engineering focused on machine learning and language processing.

Read More Here


***Presently there are approximately 143 Google mergers and  acquisitions listed.  I  have  only provided  the  most recent 43.  More  can be seen Here on Wikipedia***

~Desert Rose~


List of mergers and acquisitions by Google

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Google’s logo

Google is a computer software and a web search engine company that has been acquiring, on average, more than one company per week since 2010.[1] The table below is an incomplete list of acquisitions, with each acquisition listed being for the respective company in its entirety, unless otherwise specified. The acquisition date listed is the date of the agreement between Google and the acquisition subject. The price of each acquisition is listed in US dollars because Google is headquartered in the United States. If the price of an acquisition is unlisted, then it is undisclosed. If the Google service that is derived from the acquired company is known, then it is also listed here.

Google has acquired over 100 companies, with its largest acquisition being the purchase of Motorola Mobility, a mobile device manufacturing company, for $12.5 billion. Most of the firms acquired by Google are based in the United States, and, in turn, most of these are based in or around the San Francisco Bay Area. To date, Google has divested itself of three [2] business units: Frommers, which was sold back to Arthur Frommer in April 2012;[3] SketchUp, which was sold to Trimble in April 2012;[4] and Google Radio Automation, which was sold to WideOrbit in 2009.[5]

Many Google products originated as services provided by companies that Google has since acquired. For example, Google’s first acquisition was the Usenet company Deja News, and its services became Google Groups. Similarly, Google acquired Dodgeball, a social networking service company, and eventually replaced it with Google Latitude. Other acquisitions include web application company JotSpot, which became Google Sites; Voice over IP company GrandCentral, which became Google Voice; and video hosting service company Next New Networks, which became YouTube Next Lab and Audience Development Group.

Following the acquisition of Israel-based startup Waze in June 2013, Google submitted a “10-Q” filing with the Securities Exchange Commission (SEC) that revealed that the corporation spent US$1.3 billion on acquisitions during the first half of 2013, with US$966 million of that total going to Waze.[6]

100 August 1, 2011 Dealmap One deal a day service  USA Google Offers [121]
101 August 15, 2011 Motorola Mobility Mobile device manufacturer  USA $12,500,000,000 Android, Google TV, Patent portfolio [122]
102 September 7, 2011 Zave Networks Digital coupons  USA Google Offers [123]
103 September 8, 2011 Zagat Restaurant reviews  USA $151,000,000 Google Places, Google Maps [124][125][126]
104 September 19, 2011 DailyDeal One deal a day service  GER $114,000,000 Google Offers [127]
105 October 11, 2011 SocialGrapple Social media analytics service  CAN Google+ [128]
106 November 10, 2011 Apture Instantaneous search  USA Google Search [129]
107 November 14, 2011 Katango Social circle organization  USA Google+ [130]
108 December 9, 2011 RightsFlow Music rights management  USA YouTube [131]
109 December 13, 2011 Clever Sense Mobile apps  USA Android [132]
110 March 16, 2012 Milk, Inc Social networking service  USA Google+ [133]
111 April 2, 2012 TxVia Online Payment  USA Google Wallet [134]
112 June 4, 2012 Meebo Instant Messaging  USA $100,000,000 Google Hangouts [135]
113 June 5, 2012 Quickoffice Productivity Suite  USA Google Docs [136]
114 July 20, 2012 Sparrow Mobile apps  FRA $25,000,000 Gmail [137][138][139]
115 2012 WIMM Labs Android powered smartwatches  USA Android [140]
116 August 1, 2012 Wildfire Interactive Social media marketing  USA $450,000,000 Google, Google+ [141]
117 September 7, 2012 Security  ESP Google [142][143]
118 September 17, 2012 Nik Software, Inc. Photography  USA Google, Android [144][145][146]
119 October 1, 2012 Viewdle Facial recognition  UKR $45,000,000 Android [147][148]
120 November 28, 2012 Incentive Targeting Inc. Digital coupons  USA Google Offers [149][150]
121 November 30, 2012 BufferBox Package delivery  CAN $17,000,000 Google Shopping, Android [151][152]
122 February 6, 2013 Channel Intelligence Product ecommerce  USA $125,000,000 Google Shopping
123 March 12, 2013 DNNresearch Inc. Deep Neural Networks  CAN Google, Google X [153]
124 March 15, 2013 Talaria Technologies Cloud computing  USA Google Cloud [154]
125 April 12, 2013 Behavio Social Prediction  USA Google Now [155]
126 April 23, 2013 Wavii Natural Language Processing  USA $30,000,000 Google Knowledge Graph [156]
127 May 23, 2013 Makani Power Airborne wind turbines  USA Google X [157]
128 June 11, 2013 Waze GPS navigation software  ISR $966,000,000 Google Maps [6]
129 September 16, 2013 Bump Mobile software  USA Android [158]
130 October 2, 2013 Flutter Gesture recognition technology  USA $40,000,000 Google, Android, Google X [159]
131 October 22, 2013 FlexyCore DroidBooster App for Android  FRA $23,000,000 Android [160]
132 December 2, 2013 Humanoid robots  JPN Google X [161]
133 December 3, 2013 Industrial Perception Computer Vision  USA Google X [161]
134 December 4, 2013 Redwood Robotics Robotic Arms  USA Google X [161]
135 December 5, 2013 Meka Robotics Robots  USA Google X [161]
136 December 6, 2013 Holomni Robotic wheels  USA Google X [161]
137 December 7, 2013 Bot & Dolly Robotic cameras  USA Google X [161]
138 December 8, 2013 Autofuss Ads and Design  USA Google X [161]
139 December 10, 2013 Boston Dynamics Robotics  USA Google X [162][161]
140 January 4, 2014 Bitspin Timely App for Android   CHE Android [163]
141 January 13, 2014 Nest Home automation  USA $3,200,000,000 [164][165]
142 January 15, 2014 Impermium Internet security  USA Google+ [166]
143 January 26, 2014 DeepMind Technologies Artificial Intelligence  UK $400,000,000 [167]


Read More Here


Google buys British artificial intelligence firm DeepMind

Google has bought UK start-up DeepMind for a rumoured $400 million

Google logo

Photo: AFP

Google is buying London-based artificial intelligence company DeepMind Technologies, according to reports.

Technology news website Re/code, which first reported the deal, said the price was $400 million (£242m), which would make it Google’s largest European acquisition so far. Other reports suggest the acquisition price was closer to $500 million.

Google declined to confirm the figure, while privately-held DeepMind was not immediately available for comment.

DeepMind was founded by 37-year-old neuroscientist and former teenage chess prodigy Demis Hassabis, along with Shane Legg and Mustafa Suleyman.

Read More Here


Enhanced by Zemanta



Published on Dec 15, 2013


As governments and corporations around the world move to make their actions and products ever more opaque, a counter-movement is rallying around the opposite of flag of openness and transparency. Borrowing its metaphor from the programming creed of “open source,” this movement is moving beyond the world of bits and bytes to find innovative, collaborative and open solutions to a whole host of problems confronting our everyday lives. Find out more about the open source solution in this week’s GRTV Backgrounder.

Enhanced by Zemanta

NBC News Technology



The reputation of Snapchat as an “ephemeral” photo messaging service took another blow Monday, when the app let it be known that it can — and will — share your snaps and (newly introduced) “stories” with the cops. There are two conditions, though: The snaps can’t have been opened by the recipient yet, and law enforcement needs to have a warrant. And while 350 million snaps are now sent every day, Snapchat has turned over unopened snaps to law enforcement “about a dozen times,” since May 2013, according to a company blog post.

Civilians can use several methods (as well as a new app called Snaphack) to save snaps, which are designed to disappear 30 seconds after opening, both from the recipient’s mobile device and from Snapchat’s own servers. The app company says as much in its privacy policy. “We cannot guarantee that deletion always occurs within a particular time frame. We also cannot prevent others from making copies of your Snaps (e.g., by taking a screenshot).”

Read More Here

Enhanced by Zemanta
  • SnapHack, a $0.99 (62p) app, lets you look at old images at anytime
  • There will soon be a version that allows users to forward saved messages
  • In May, a forensics firm discovered a way to download so-called deleted Snapchat images from a ‘hidden’ location

By Ellie Zolfagharifard


Think those embarrassing images you sent over Snapchat are safe? Think again.

An app that lets you save and re-open Snapchat messages, without the sender ever knowing, has now been launched.

Snapchat is a picture-sharing app that lets you send photos, text, messages and drawings to your friends.


SnapHack, a $0.99 (62p) app, lets you look at old images sent through the Snapchat app at anytime


Snapchat is a picture-sharing app that lets you send photos, text, messages and drawings to your friends.

You can choose how long you want the picture to be viewable, up to ten seconds, before the app ‘deletes’ it.

To use it, open the app and create your message.

Special effects and even text can also be added.

Choose a recipient from a list of friends.

Specify how long you want the picture or video to last, up to 10 seconds, then send.

In theory a user can choose how long they want the picture to be viewable – up to ten seconds – before the app deletes it.

But now SnapHack, a $0.99 (62p) app, lets you look at old images sent through the Snapchat app at anytime.

Enhanced by Zemanta