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Author Topic: Political Apps Thread  (Read 2255 times)

Renegade

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Political Apps Thread
« on: April 14, 2015, 10:04:51 AM »
I keep coming across politically motivated software and apps, so it might be interesting to have a thread on it.

* Caveat: Keep the politics out or post in the Basement. This is a discussion about software, and any politics should be excluded or "meta".

I've casually posted a few in other thread on related topics, but there are more and more of these kinds of programs coming out. Here's a short round-up of a few:



Quote
Here are 8 great apps that make your world a little freer—and a whole lot easier to navigate.

Waze is a real-time, crowd-sourced map that not only tells you about traffic jams and finds the cheapest nearby gas station for you but also warns you of speed traps, police checkpoints, and ticket cams. Get this: The info is so good that the National Sheriffs Association is pressuring app stores to shut Waze down.

Open WhisperSystem’s Red Phone and Text Secure provide easy end-to-end encryption for phone calls, text messages, and chats. If you’re on Apple iOS, check out Signal.

Meerkat and Periscope allow you to livestream everything from your kids’ soccer games to police stops directly to Twitter. The only thing blocking these apps is that they’re only available on Apple’s iOS for now.

The Peacekeeper Emergency Response System app cultivates “benevolence” and independence in communities by allowing you to create your own personal emergency response network so that friends, family, and others can come to your aid at a moment’s notice—and you can come to theirs.

And then of course there’s Uber, the ride-sharing app that almost singlehandedly undermined taxi cab cartels all over the world. Uber is driving down a dark road by collaborating with state and local governments to keep out new competitors, but it’s also true that its ease of use and superiors product has brought safe, affordable rides to neighborhoods that never knew them before.

Here's a bonus app: Reason's mobile app is super-light and fast-loading—and constantly updated with our latest blog posts, videos, and articles about "Free Minds and Free Markets."

The "Peace Keeper" app is interesting. It's a kind of social app, but very different.

http://peacekeeper.org/

The author (Cody Drummond) has been interviewed a couple times that I know of here (Tom Woods) and here (Jeff Berwick).

One program not mentioned in the video above that I like (but can't seem to get anyone else to use) is Jitsi. It's secure chat & calling. Excellent when you want to discuss... uh... get Jitsi & I'll tell you. :P

Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

mouser

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Re: Political Apps Thread
« Reply #1 on: April 14, 2015, 10:13:00 AM »
Quick historical artifact post: In 2004 I wrote a little markov-chain monte-carlo prediction tool for the 2004 United States Kerry-Bush Presidential election; you can see the old page for it here: http://www.donationc...ouser/mep/index.html

mouser

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Re: Political Apps Thread
« Reply #2 on: April 14, 2015, 11:09:31 AM »
ps. Didn't mean to derail the topic -- i do think it's useful to talk about political-related apps, especially those dealing with political free speech.

Renegade

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Re: Political Apps Thread
« Reply #3 on: April 14, 2015, 11:18:35 AM »
ps. Didn't mean to derail the topic -- i do think it's useful to talk about political-related apps, especially those dealing with political free speech.

^ So much THIS!

Canada is facing legislation what will make a lot of speech criminal. Software to dodge around that is important.

Jitsi is one of those apps that can help people communicate securely. I just wish that it had more financial backing so that more people could find about about it and use it. I'd rather use it than Skype... but just try to convince someone to communicate privately with you when it takes more than 5 seconds to set up. :(
Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

TaoPhoenix

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Re: Political Apps Thread
« Reply #4 on: April 14, 2015, 01:32:59 PM »
ps. Didn't mean to derail the topic -- i do think it's useful to talk about political-related apps, especially those dealing with political free speech.

^ So much THIS!

((Canada)) ((Parens are mine)) is facing legislation what will make a lot of speech criminal. Software to dodge around that is important.


Heh this thread is like signing up people to work in a blacksmith forge for college credit! "Just don't get hurt! And don't make stuff that can hurt other people!"

My parens above are because Russia just got one too!
http://knowyourmeme....ussian-anti-meme-law

So I'm not sure how we can use a software angle in that situation to help!


TaoPhoenix

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Re: Political Apps Thread
« Reply #5 on: April 14, 2015, 01:40:50 PM »
Quick historical artifact post: In 2004 I wrote a little markov-chain monte-carlo prediction tool for the 2004 United States Kerry-Bush Presidential election; you can see the old page for it here: http://www.donationc...ouser/mep/index.html

Mouser, what about making a 2.0 version for the 2016 Election? This election has me quite confused which despite my "local network"  's assurances "things are just fine", how the wife of a former President can run for office. Then you have the whole First Female Candidate thing, and for whichever other reasons people may disapprove, she's not "the same kind of joke" as Sarah Palin.

So it might be interesting for the 2.0 version to work with the runner ups as well, all the way through the process. I have no idea what the Repub strategy will be. Just looking at their shenanigans with budget crises is making me cringe!


mouser

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Re: Political Apps Thread
« Reply #6 on: April 15, 2015, 11:03:07 PM »
no point in making a new version, the idea of markov chain monte carlo simulations of such thing has hit the mainstream of the web and there will no doubt be better slicker prettier versions of this online soon.. same with my similar World Cup simulator..

TaoPhoenix

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Re: Political Apps Thread
« Reply #7 on: April 16, 2015, 01:01:50 AM »
no point in making a new version, the idea of markov chain monte carlo simulations of such thing has hit the mainstream of the web and there will no doubt be better slicker prettier versions of this online soon.. same with my similar World Cup simulator..

Mouser ... 10 years ahead of his time!
 :Thmbsup:

Renegade

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Re: Political Apps Thread
« Reply #8 on: May 06, 2015, 11:30:07 AM »
https://www.techdirt...ns-to-consider.shtml

Quote
Citizens Looking To Safely Record Interactions With Law Enforcement Have A Couple Of New Options To Consider

The ACLU has a "new" app available that allows users to record interactions with the police and automatically upload them to the ACLU's servers to preserve the footage in case the phone is seized… or smashed on the ground.

The app itself is not new, although it is new to California. Previous ACLU apps that serve the same purpose have already debuted in New York (as "Stop and Frisk Watch"), New Jersey (the now-defunct "Police Tape" app that generated 'flash mob' fears all the way across the country in Burbank, CA), Mississippi, Oregon, Nebraska and Missouri.

Each version has been tweaked to comply with local recording laws and presumably more versions are on the way. The Mobile Justice app also provides a handy list of rights citizens have when interacting with law enforcement (subject to law enforcement recognition of those rights, of course) as well as incident forms that can be filled out post-interaction to give the ACLU more detail on the recording itself.

Inarguably, it has been footage obtained by citizens that has blown the lid off police misconduct in this country -- ranging from seemingly routine harassment of camera-wielding citizens to incidents like the death of Walter Scott at the hands of South Carolina police officer Michael Slager, who shot him in the back as he was running away.

If your local ACLU chapter hasn't put together an app to automatically archive recordings of law enforcement interactions, there's another app on the way that will give anyone the ability to capture footage and ensure that, not only will it survive attempts to destroy evidence, but that it will possibly be seen by others as the event unfolds.

  • ver the course of the weekend, developer Marinos Bernitsas demoed an app that immediately begins recording live audio and video as soon as you tap the app’s icon, but doesn’t actually display the video stream being recorded on the smartphone’s screen.


Meanwhile, instead of having the stream sent out to the public via social networks like Twitter, only designated contacts you’ve previously configured in the app’s settings are alerted to the incident via phone calls and text messages.

Unlike the ACLU's app, Bernitsas' program isn't specifically aimed at police accountability. It's also meant to act as a form of protection against any potentially dangerous interaction. Because it hasn't been crafted with an eye on local recording laws, there's a chance that footage captured could result in charges being brought against the person recording and streaming the incident.

It does have two advantages over the ACLU's app: First off, the app doesn't need to be opened to initiate a recording. Secondly, anyone who grabs the phone will have little clue they're being recorded. The only indicator that anything out of the normal is happening is a red banner across the top of the screen, which may look like nothing more than phone UI customization. The app also makes it possible to capture and stream recordings in areas where coverage is less-than-optimal.

What’s also clever about the app is that even if the user loses their Internet connection, Witness will record video in 10-second chunks and store them locally on the end user’s iPhone. When their connection returns, that video is uploaded to the server.
With the footage going to any contacts the user chooses rather than a neutral party only interested in certain incidents and interactions (like the ACLU), this app holds potential for abuse. One could easily "repurpose" this public safety app to stream sexual encounters, private conversations, etc.

The upside of this downside is that doing so will violate many states' wiretapping laws, which would provide for prosecution of those who use this app for purposes other than what was intended. That the perpetrator creates his or her own damning evidence is helpful and one would imagine captured footage (if still stored at the pass through point) could easily be obtained from Witness' servers with a subpoena. The ACLU notes that footage sent to it is also potentially accessible to law enforcement via subpoenas or other court orders, but does point out that it will fight these requests, rather than simply hand over whatever's requested.

Click the link for formatting and links.

Follow the links for the actual software.

2-edged swords?

The wonders and horrors of technology?

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Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker

Renegade

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Re: Political Apps Thread
« Reply #9 on: July 05, 2015, 12:35:49 AM »
Peacekeeper 2.0 has an Indiegogo campaign to raise funds.

https://www.indiegog...fire-rises--2#/story

Slow Down Music - Where I commit thought crimes...

Freedom is the right to be wrong, not the right to do wrong. - John Diefenbaker