Tag Archives: technology

“UNC Dildo-Boy” accosts homophobic preacher, releases anti-technology declaration

1 Mar

Protestor heckles Pit Preacher

 

 

By Danny Nett
Protester's self publicized picture on Facebook account.

Protester’s self publicized picture on Facebook account.

 

An unidentified man who went head-to-head with the controversial Pit Preacher Gary Birdsong faced a warning from the Department of Public Safety’s penal system Tuesday.

 

The shirtless individual – whose student status could not be confirmed — had a homosexual slur painted on his chest and a dildo sticking out of his pants. He approached Birdsong and simulated masturbation while waving the sex toy at the preacher.

 

When someone reported the incident to the Student Union, the demonstrator was taken into the Union. Student employees stood with him until DPS arrived to trespass him from campus.

 

“I think normally we would say, ‘Okay, you’re both going to exercise your right to free speech,’ until such time that somebody seems to think something is out of control,” said Joe Singer, senior associate director of events management at the Student Union.

 

“Our office is supposed to be content-neutral. Our role is to provide the space to speak.”

 

Posting on Facebook under the name “Unc DildoBoy,” the demonstrator stated his actions were not made as an attack on Birdsong or anti-gay sentiments, but on a technologically driven, post-industrial civilization. The individual did not give a real name to be interviewed.

 

While he refused to speak on the record, he posted a letter explaining his actions on the Facebook page.

 

“Because of the total penetration of mass media, humans on YouTube or Facebook, or people who are TV stars or politicians are put in a situation we humans are simply incapable of dealing with,” he wrote.

 

DPS spokesman Randy Young said if a person on campus is engaged in a situation or activity that could be considered provocative, results in harm to anyone or interferes with operations of the University or another person’s free speech, DPS may get involved. It is then at the discretion of the responding officers whether the disruptive individual is removed from a specific area like the Pit or from campus entirely, he said.

 

Cathy Packer, a professor who specializes in media law, said legally the Pit falls under what is considered a dedicated or limited forum. That means UNC, as a public university, can limit the forum for certain topics or speakers as long as it does not favor one viewpoint over another.

 

Packer said although she wholeheartedly disagrees with what the demonstrator did, she supports his First Amendment rights. She said his actions would not fall under a judicial definition of obscenity, but that it is irrelevant if he was removed for trespassing.

 

“My view about all of that is that the reason people come to Carolina is to see and hear things they didn’t hear at home,” Packer said.

 

“You go to Carolina and see some of what the rest of the world looks like and all the opinions other people have that your parents didn’t have.”

 

university@dailytarheel.com

Explanations of the Actions of Dildo Boy

Spark of Wildness Website

Facebook Account

How Technology has Stopped Evolution and is Destroying the World

3 Aug

Doug Tompkins, founder of The North Face, on battles with Steve Jobs and why we need to dismantle our techno-industrial society

by Jo Confino / The Guardian

Doug Tompkins, founder of North Face and Esprit, has been instrumental in creating two huge nature reserves in Patagonia. Photograph: Aaron Black/Getty Images

Doug Tompkins, founder of North Face and Esprit, has been instrumental in creating two huge nature reserves in Patagonia. Photograph: Aaron Black/Getty Images

It has become something of a mantra within the sustainability movement that innovations in technology can save the world. But rather than liberating us, Doug Tompkins, the cofounder of retail brands The North Face and Esprit, believes technology has enslaved us and is destroying the very health of the planet on which all species depend.

Tompkins, 70 has used his enormous wealth from selling both companies to preserve more land than any other individual in history, spending more than £200m buying over two million acres of wilderness in Argentina and Chile.

He challenges the view that technology is extending democracy, arguing that it is concentrating even more power in the hands of a tiny elite. What troubles him the most is that the very social and environmental movements that should be challenging the destructive nature of mega-technologies, have instead fallen under their spell.

Continue reading

UK Police Testing New Chemical Weapons for Crowd Control

10 May

by Claire Carter, Cross Posted from The Telegraph

london-riots

Tests of the Discriminating Irritant Projectile (DIP) – a form of gun that will fire an irritant substance like CS gas or pepper spray – are believed to be in the late stages.

The gun has a far greater range than a Taser, which can be fired from 21 feet.

It was put forward for testing along with ideas to use skunk oil pellets and anti-laser technology by Government scientists as a method for controlling future protesters in the wake of the 2011 riots, which took place across the country.

Deputy Chief Constable Simon Chesterman told police news website http://www.policeoracle.com: “The Discriminating Irritant Projectile can be fired from a baton gun and has a quantity of micronised CS in the nose cone.

“The range of a Taser is 21 feet – if there is an operational requirement to incapacitate somebody at a distance, the DIP can be deployed from up to 131 feet away.”

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Saboteurs Cut Undersea Internet Cable Near Egypt

28 Mar

IDG News Service – Egypt said it has arrested three men suspected of slicing a crucial undersea Internet cable on Wednesday, causing widespread problems from Kenya to Pakistan.

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The South East Asia-Middle East-West Europe 4 (SEA-ME-WE 4) cable runs 12,500 miles from France to Singapore, with branches connecting telecommunication companies in Malaysia, Thailand, Bangladesh, India, Sri Lanka, Pakistan, United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Italy, Tunisia and Algeria.

Egypt published photos of three men in a boat with their hands tied along with scuba diving tanks. The men were apprehended just offshore where SEA-ME-WE 4 reaches land, according to a Facebook posting purportedly by Egypt’s military.

Egypt’s Facebook account could not be immediately verified with the social networking company, but Telecom Egypt also wrote about the arrests on its Twitter feed. Continue reading

FinSpy Software Used To Surveil Activists Around The World, Report Says

24 Mar

by Gerry Smith / the Huffington PostFinSpy Surveillance Software Hijacks Activist Computers

FinSpy surveillance software, marketed worldwide to law enforcement agencies as a way to monitor criminals, is widely used by repressive governments to spy on human rights groups and dissidents, according to a report released Wednesday.

The report by researchers at the Citizen Lab of the Munk School of Global Affairs at the University of Toronto found the software is “regularly sold to countries where dissenting political activity and speech is criminalized.”

FinSpy, named after a line of code in its software, is a surveillance tool that infects computers to capture screenshots, log keystrokes, record Skype conversations and activate cameras and microphones. Gamma Group, a British company, makes the software and markets it to law enforcement agencies as a lawful way to monitor criminals. Continue reading

Raytheon’s “Riot” Software Uses Facebook To Track Your Future Whereabouts

19 Mar

riot

by Pratap Chatterjee / CorpWatch.

Raytheon, a U.S. military manufacturer, is selling a new software surveillance package named “Riot” that claims to predict where individuals are expected to go next using technology that mines data from social networks like Facebook, Foursquare and Twitter.



Based just outside of Boston, Massachusetts, Raytheon sells $25 billion worth of equipment a year to military clients like the Pentagon. Some of its most famous products include Sidewinder air-to-air missiles, Maverick air-to-ground missiles, Patriot surface-to-air missiles and Tomahawk submarine-launched cruise missiles.

Raytheon’s Rapid Information Overlay Technology (Riot) software extracts location data from photos and comments posted online by individuals, and then analyzes this information to create a variety of spider diagrams to show where the individuals like to go, what they like to do and whom they communicate with. Continue reading

Eat, Sleep, Click: A bicycle-powered internet?

8 Jan

By Jane Anne Morris31bike2-blog480

Save a tree, bank online. Subscribe Online, reduce your carbon footprint. Listen to music online, watch movies online, read books online. No mess, no fuss. Google Inc. has photovoltaic (PV) solar panels on its headquarters. With all that footprint-lightening, you may soon be down to no ecological footprint at all, right?

Since everyone wants the Internet to have a gentle footprint and not be “evil,” we should power it with green electricity. Start with a bicycle generator and a server. Here are some back-of-the-envelope figures.

All the stuff on the Internet, or in the “cloud,” is kept aloft by computers called servers (plus routers and so on). An average server draws 400 watts/ hour, half of that for cooling (fairly typical), and 3500 kilowatt-hours (kwh) per year, because it never shuts down.

A healthy biker can produce a constant 100 watts/hour on a bicycle generator, a generous estimate. Four generator bikes at 100 watts/hour apiece would power a server. Alas, that single server can’t accomplish much by itself. Various techies have estimated that a single online search activates between 1000 and 20,000 servers, often located all over the world.

A Google data center.

A Google data center.

Numerous servers are housed together in places called server farms or data centers. To power a modest-sized data center (50,000 servers) by bicy- cle power would require almost a million pedalers and an area equivalent to 347 football fields. Data centers can be as small as closets at the back of a business, or as large as several football fields and use as much electricity as small cities. They run 24/7/365, and tend to have multiply redundant backup systems, so no one has to wait ten seconds to learn from a web site if it’s raining outside. Continue reading