Tag Archives: Legal

Minority Report-style pre-crime prediction using Twitter data: possible?

Retweet graph of Project X dataset (snapshot at 2012-09-26 04:32:15). (credit: Marijn ten Thij/University o Twente) It’s the year 2054, where “PreCrime,” a specialized police department, apprehends criminals based on foreknowledge provided by three psychics called “precogs.” That’s the premise of the Minority Report film. Now University of Twente (UT) mathematics student Marijn ten Thij* has developed a mathematical model that he says […]

Existing cropland could feed 4 billion more

An abundant supply of food for a hungry world, hidden in plain sight In many areas (lighter areas), crops used for non-food uses (biofuels, other) were not delivered to the food system. Credit: Emily S Cassidy et al./Environmental Research Letters Reallocating croplands away from fuels and animal feed could boost food available for people by 70 […]

XKeyscore: NSA tool collects ‘nearly everything a user does on the Internet’

NSA analysts require no prior authorization for searches of emails, social media activity, and browsing history A top secret National Security Agency program allows analysts to search with no prior authorization through vast databases containing emails, online chats and the browsing histories of millions of individuals — its “widest-reaching” system for developing intelligence from the […]

Google calls for greater transparency and challenges surveillance gag order

Google has called on the secretive Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court Tuesday to relax its gag order on tech companies targeted in U.S. security investigations, The Guardian reports. The legal filing cites the first amendment’s guarantee of free speech and follows on from a letter to attorney general Eric Holder asking for permission to disclose the number of requests Google […]

US State Dept. orders removal of 3D-printed gun designs

(Credit: Defense Distributed) The U.S. State Department has demanded designs by Defense Distributed for a 3D-printed gun be taken offline because publishing them online may breach arms-control regulations, Forbes reports. The order to remove the blueprints for the plastic gun comes after they were downloaded more than 100,000 times. However, the files were actually being served by Mega, the New […]

Domestic drones and their unique dangers

AR Drone 2.0 (credit: Parrot) The use of drones by domestic U.S. law enforcement agencies is growing rapidly, both in terms of numbers and types of usage, blogger Glenn Greenwald writes in The Guardian. A short summary of Greenwald’s comprehensive article: The belief that weaponized drones won’t be used on U.S. soil is patently irrational. Police […]

Russia asteroid impact: ESA update and assessment

The estimated orbit around the Sun of the Chelyabinsk object. It illustrates the orbits of Venus, Mars and Earth, together with the Sun and Earth at impact. The illustration is based on data provided by Dr Peter Brown. (Credit: NASA) The first firm details of the 15 February asteroid impact in Russia, the largest in […]

THE THREAT OF SILENCE

Meet the groundbreaking new encryption app set to revolutionize privacy and freak out the feds Credit: Silent Circle For the past few months, some of the world’s leading cryptographers have been keeping a closely guarded secret about a pioneering new invention. Today, they’ve decided it’s time to tell all, Slate Future Tense reports. Back in October, the […]

DARPA SHOWS OFF 1.8-GIGAPIXEL SURVEILLANCE DRONE, CAN SPOT A TERRORIST FROM 20,000 FEET

ARGUS view from 20,000 feet DARPA and the US Army have taken the wraps off ARGUS-IS, a 1.8-gigapixel video surveillance platform that can resolve details as small as six inches from an altitude of 20,000 feet (6km), ExtremeTech reports. ARGUS is by far the highest-resolution surveillance platform in the world, and probably the highest-resolution camera in the […]