Happy 4th of July to all the wonderful Americans here, and to those that wish they were American, or ARE American in spirit.
1776 was a good year.
1776 was a good year.
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|Application Name||Xaya Name Utility|
|Short Description||The Xaya Name Utility helps to create Xaya names in bulk and to transfer names in bulk to a CHI address.|
“Encryption threatens to lead us all to a very, very dark place. The place that this is leading us is one that I would suggest we shouldn’t go without careful thought and public debate,” FBI Director James Comey said of the encryption of mobile devices in 2014.
New Year’s deal: MSP432 LaunchPad™ Development Kit for $4.32!
To get your New Year started off right, MSP developers can now test out the ultra-low-power and high performance MSP432 LaunchPad Development Kit for only $4.32 with the TI Store coupon code [email protected]
That's right, only $4.32, marked down from the regular price of $12.99. So get your MSP432 LaunchPad Development Kit today! This deal is only for a limited time.
1Wamp Electric Guitar Amplifier - Open Hardware
1Wamp is a one Watt small guitar amplifier based on a JFET guitar pre-amp, the Big Muff Pi tone control and the LM386 power amplifier. This portable amp is an open hardware project designed by ElectroSmash using only free and open-source tools.
The HTTP 451 Error Code for Censorship Is Now an Internet Standard
The 451 HTTP status code is now official in the eyes of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF), the independent organization responsible for many of the internet’s operating standards. Now, when an internet user hits a web page that has been blocked for legal reasons (read: censorship), they may be presented with a 451 error instead of the more generic 403 “forbidden” error. This is a win for transparency.
The 451 code has been on the table for two years now, having been first been put forth by software engineer Tim Bray in 2013, who was in turn inspired by a blog post by security thinker Terence Eden. Eden’s call for a censorship error code is clear enough:My ISP have recently been ordered to censor The Pirate Bay. They have done so unwillingly and, it would seem, have complied only with the letter of the ruling. Their block is, for now, trivial to circumvent. I am concerned that this censorship will become more prevalent. As network neutrality dies, we will see more sites ordered to be blocked by governments who fear what they cannot understand.
So, Eden proposed a code and Bray ran with it, using “451” in reference to Ray Bradbury’s censorship dystopia Farhenheit 451. Web standards are, however, not changed overnight.
In a post published on Friday, Mark Nottingham, chair of the IETF HTTP Working Group, explains a bit more. “Initially, I and some others pushed back,” he writes. “HTTP status codes are a constrained name space; once we use everything from 400 to 499, for example, we're out of luck. Furthermore, while 451 met many of the guidelines for new status codes (such as being potentially applicable to any resource), there wasn't any obvious way for machines to use it -- i.e., this was something you could do in a header or the message body of a 403, so it didn't seem to justify expending a status code.”
Sites began to use the code anyway on an experimental and unsanctioned basis, and Nottingham and co. received more and more feedback from administrators in favor of the code. Crucially, advocacy orgs Lumen and Article19 expressed interest in having a machine-readable flag that could be used to spider the web in the hunt of censored websites. That’s just what a new HTTP status code could offer.
Finally, the support was there. Some technical details still need attending to, but the code is ready to use immediately. What can it actually do?
“By its nature, you can't guarantee that all attempts to censor content will be conveniently labeled by the censor,” Nottingham explains. “Although 451 can be used both by network-based intermediaries (e.g., in a firewall) as well as on the origin Web server, I suspect it's going to be used far more in the latter case, as Web sites like Github, Twitter, Facebook and Google are forced to censor content against their will in certain jurisdictions.”
There’s still nothing stopping a government from forbidding the code’s usage, however, which is a serious but perhaps unavoidable limitation.
Hi, I’m from the games industry. Governments, please stop us.
This may not be popular, but its how I feel. First, some background and disclaimers. I run a small games company making games for the PC, strategy games with an up front payment. We don’t make ‘free to play’ games or have micro transactions. Also, I’m pretty much a capitalist. I am not a big fan of government regulation in general. I am a ‘get rid of red tape’ kind of guy. I actually oppose tax breaks for game development. I am not a friend of regulation. But nevertheless.
I awake this morning to read about this:
*** see link for graphic ***
Some background: Star Citizen is a space game. Its being made by someone who made space games years ago, and they ‘crowd-funded’ the money to make this one. The game is way behind schedule, and is of course, not finished yet. They just passed $100,000,000 in money raised. They can do this because individual ships in the game are for sale, even though you bought the game. I guess at this point we could just say ‘A fool and his money are soon parted’, but yet we do not do this with gambling addiction. In fact we some countries have extremely strict laws on gambling, precisely because they know addiction is a thing, and that people need to be saved from themselves.
Can spending money on games be a problem? Frankly yes, and its because games marketing and the science of advertising has changed beyond recognition from when games first appeared. Games ads have often been dubious, and tacky, but the problem is that now they are such a huge business, the stakes are higher, people are prepared to go further. On the fringes we have this crap:
This is not market research, this is not game design. This is psychological warfare.
Of all the things we do at Raspberry Pi, driving down the cost of computer hardware remains one of the most important. Even in the developed world, a programmable computer is a luxury item for a lot of people, and every extra dollar that we ask someone to spend decreases the chance that they’ll choose to get involved.
The same thing is happening with the V8 PRNG and our random identifiers — under certain conditions, the PRNG’s lack of randomness is making it less likely that we’ll see a collision.
In this case the generator’s determinism worked in our favor, but that’s not always true. The general lesson here is that, even for a high quality PRNG, you can’t assume a random distribution unless the generator’s cycle length is much larger than the number of random values you’re generating.
The Birth of “Lumen”
With all of that in mind, we felt that this latest incarnation of the project would be best served with a new and more inclusive name, accessible and comprehensible worldwide. We are therefore excited to announce that as of today, the Chilling Effects project and database will be known as “Lumen”:
Lumen, the measurement unit for visible light, epitomizes our interest in illuminating the online public sphere and the platforms through which all users of the Internet post, search, speak, and read. We plan to be a light shining onto requests to remove online content for many years to come. From a practical perspective, very little will change for our users and notice submitters. All links to existing Chilling Effects notices will continue to function normally, simply redirecting to our new domain of https://www.lumendatabase.org. Notice numbers will remain unchanged, and will function as they currently do. After accommodating the name change and the change to our domain name in their internal procedures, bulk submitters will have the same access to our API that they currently do. And of course, the people on the Chilling Effects team will remain the same.
Looking at the Unicode Criteria for Encoding Symbols, the bitcoin sign BTC is a good fit for addition to
Unicode. It occurs in running text. It has a well defined user community. Being able to search for it in
text would be useful. It has well-defined semantics that make it appropriate for computer processing. It
is needed to complete the class of currency symbols already in the standard.  Finally, it is letter-like
in the sense that it should match the surrounding font style.
The bitcoin sign is used extensively in running text in online forums, research papers, websites and
other publications. There is a strong demand for this character and the lack of Unicode support requires
inconvenient workarounds. Providing the bitcoin sign in Unicode would be highly beneficial.
THE ANONYMITY NETWORK Tor has long been the paranoid standard for privacy online, and the Tor Browser that runs on it remains the best way to use the web while revealing the least identifying data. Now the non-profit Tor Project has officially released another piece of software that could bring that same level of privacy to instant messaging: a seamless and simple app that both encrypts the content of IMs and also makes it very difficult for an eavesdropper to identify the person sending them.
On Thursday the Tor Project launched its first beta version of Tor Messenger, its long-in-the-works, open source instant messenger client. The app, perhaps more than any other desktop instant messaging program, is designed for both simplicity and privacy by default: It integrates the “Off-the-Record” (OTR) protocol to encrypt messages and routes them over Tor just as seamlessly as the Tor Browser does for web data. It’s also compatible with the same XMPP or “Jabber” chat protocol used by millions of Facebook and Google accounts, as well as desktop clients like Adium for Mac and Pidgin for Windows. The result is that anyone can download the software and in seconds start sending messages to their pre-existing contacts that are not only strongly encrypted, but tunneled through Tor’s maze of volunteer computers around the world to hide the sender’s IP address.After some auditing, Tor Messenger is set to become a powerful and popular tool for instant, idiot-proof, and surveillance-resistant communication.
“With Tor Messenger, your chat is encrypted and anonymous…so it is hidden from snoops, whether they are the government of a foreign country or a company trying to sell you boots,” Tor public policy director Kate Krauss wrote to WIRED in a Tor Messenger conversation. She emphasized that despite those features, the program’s use of a pre-existing chat protocol means users won’t need to rebuild their network of contacts. “You can use your Jabber address and your old contacts–you aren’t reinventing the wheel–but wow, much safer.”
Tor Messenger Beta: Chat over Tor, Easily