Archive for the ‘Matrix’ Category

New Hi-Tech Clothing Line Makes You ‘Invisible to Drones’

January 15, 2013

In February of last year, Congress approved a bill that will allow as many as 30,000 unmanned vehicles to tour the US sky by 2020. The Federal Aviation Administration plans to open up national airspace to drones by the year 2015,but one New York artist is launching a clothing line that will keep you invisible to the robotic aircraft. RT’s Liz Wahl brings us more…

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Henningsen on RT: ‘Syria is a gangster’s paradise right now’

January 9, 2013

21st Century Wire and UK Column’s analyst Patrick Henningsen discusses with RT about how NATO’s recent deployment of missile defense batteries in neighboring Turkey is nothing more than a chess move to prepare for western/NATO airstrikes at some point further down the timeline, and also how Syria’s so-called ‘opposition’ are using the chaos in the country to steal land, businesses and profit from the new black market that has replaced the previous economy.

2045: ‘Man Becomes Machine’ – The Transhumanist Agenda

December 31, 2012

Over the decades, technology has progressed faster than any other time in human history. Electronic machines are being used to improve our everyday lives and it is believed that by 2045 humans will become one with machines. RT’s Liz Wahl has more on the future of the human race…

‘Robocops’ to Patrol Los Angeles by Year 2025

December 31, 2012

In 1987, the film RoboCop debuted and featured a half-man half-robot cop patrolling the streets of Detroit, but now some car companies are planning on replacing cop cars in Los Angeles with drone cars by 2025. Ramon Galindo gives us a glimpse of the future police force…

The ‘Great Filter’ Theory: That Humans Have Already Conquered Threat of Extinction

December 22, 2012

George Dvorsky
io9.com
Dec 22, 0212

It’s difficult to not be pessimistic when considering humanity’s future prospects. Many people would agree that it’s more likely than not that we’ll eventually do ourselves in.

And in fact, some astrobiologists theorize that all advanced civilizations hit the same insurmountable developmental wall we have. They call it the Great Filter. It’s a notion that’s often invoked to explain why we’ve never been visited by extraterrestrials.

But there is another possible reason for the celestial silence. Yes, the Great Filter exists, but we’ve already passed it. Here’s what this would mean.

Before we can get to the Great Filter hypothesis we have to appreciate what the Fermi Paradox is telling us.

The Fermi Paradox and the Great Silence

The so-called “Great Silence” is the contradictory and counter-intuitive observation that we have yet to see any evidence for the existence of aliens. The size and age of the Universe suggests that many technologically advanced extraterrestrial intelligences (ETIs) ought to exist — but this hypothesis seems inconsistent with the lack of observational evidence to support it.

Despite much of what popular culture and sci-fi would lead us to believe, the fact that we haven’t been visited by ETIs is disturbing. Our galaxy is so ancient that it could have been colonized hundreds, if not thousands, of times over by now. Even the most conservative estimates show that we should have already made contact either directly or indirectly (such as from dormant Bracewell communication probes).

Some skeptics dismiss the Fermi Paradox by suggesting that ETI’s have come and gone, or that they wouldn’t find us interesting.

Unfortunately, most solutions to the FP don’t hold for a number of reasons, including the realization that a colonization wave of superintelligent aliens would likely rework the fabric of all life in the cosmos (e.g. uplifting), or that these solutions are sociological in nature (i.e. they lack scientific rigor and don’t necessarily apply to the actions of all advanced civilizations; all it would take is just one to think and behave differently — what astrobiologists refer to as the non-exclusivity problem).

There have been many attempts to resolve the Fermi Paradox, including the herculean attempt by Stephen Webb in his book, Fifty Solutions to Fermi’s Paradox and the Problem of Extraterrestrial Life.

But one solution stands out from the others, mostly on account of its brute elegance: The Great Filter.

The Great Filter

Conceived in 1998 by Robin Hanson, the GF is the disturbing suggestion that there is some kind of absurdly difficult step in the evolution of life — one that precludes it from becoming interstellar.

And like the immutable laws of the universe, the GF is a stumbling block that holds true across the board; if it applies here on Earth, it applies everywhere.

Many look upon the GF as evidence that we’ll destroy ourselves in the future. The basic idea is that every civilization destroys itself before developing space-faring technologies. Hence the empty cosmos. Given our own trajectory and the ominous presence of apocalyptic weapons, this scenario certainly seems plausible. We’re not even close to going interstellar, yet we’re certainly capable of self-annihilation.

But that doesn’t mean this interpretation of the GF is the correct one. Rather, it’s quite possible that human civilization has already passed the Great Filter. Should this be the case, it would be exceptionally good news. Assuming there’s no other filter awaiting us in the future, it means we might be the first and only intelligent civilization in the Milky Way.

It’s a possibility, however, that demands explanation. If the filter is behind us, what was it? And how did we manage to get past it? Interestingly, there are some excellent candidates.

Rare Earth

First and foremost there’s the Rare Earth Hypothesis (REH), the suggestion that the emergence of life was extremely improbable for a confluence of reasons. The theory essentially suggests that we hit the jackpot here on Earth.

This argument, which was first articulated by geologist Peter Ward and astrobiologist Donald E. Brownlee, turns the whole Copernican Principle on its head. Instead of saying that we’re nothing special or unique, the REH implies the exact opposite — that we are freakishly special and unique. What we see here on Earth in this solar system and in this part of the Galaxy may be a remarkable convergence of highly unlikely factors — factors that have resulted in a perfect storm of conditions suitable for the emergence of complex life.

It’s important to note that Ward and Brownlee are not implying that it’s one or two conditions that can explain habitability, but rather an entire array of happy accidents. For example, stars might have to be of the right kind (including adequate metallicity and safe distance from dangerous celestial objects), and planets must be in a stable orbit with a large moon. Other factors include the presence of gas giants, plate tectonics, and many others.

But even with all the right conditions, life was by no means guaranteed. It’s quite possible that the Great Filter involved the next set of steps: the emergence of life and its ongoing evolution.

The improbability of life

Indeed, in addition to all the cosmological and chemical prerequisites for life, there were at least three critical stages that could all be considered candidates for the Great Filter: (1) the emergence of reproductive molecules (abiogenesis and the emergence of RNA), (2) simple single-celled life (prokaryotes), and (3) complex single-celled life (eukaryotes).

Chemists and biologists are still not entirely sure how the first self-replicating molecules came into existence. Unlike its big brother, DNA, RNA is a single-stranded molecule that has a much shorter chain of nucleotides. Moreover, it usually needs DNA to reproduce itself — which would have been a problem given the absence of DNA in those early days.

That said, scientists know that RNA is capable of reproducing through autocatalysis. It does this by storing information similar to DNA, which allows it to become its own catalyst (a ribosome). This so-called RNA World Modelsuggests that RNA can function as both a gene and an enzyme — a pre-DNA configuration that eventually became the basis for all life.

Given that we’ve never detected life elsewhere, it’s difficult to know how difficult this initial step was. But that said, this form of life emerged super-early in the Earth’s history — about a billion years after its formation, and immediately after the cooling of rocks and the emergence of oceans.

But what we do know is that the next few steps — the leap from single-celled life to complex single-celled life — was exceedingly difficult, if not highly improbable. The process of copying a genetic molecule is extremely complex, involving the perfect configuration of proteins and other cellular components.

Here’s how it likely happened: Once a self-replicating molecule emerged, the presence of RNA allowed for the formation of protobionts, a theoretic precursor to prokaryotic cells. These tightly bound bundles of organic molecules contained RNA within their membranes — which could have evolved into proper prokaryotic cells.

And here’s where it gets interesting. After the formation of prokaryotes — about 3.5 billion years ago — nothing changed in the biological landscape for the next 1.8 billion years. Life in this primitive form was completely stuck. Imagine that — no evolution for almost two billion years. It was only after the endosymbiosis of multiple prokaryotes that complex single-cell life finally emerged — a change that was by no means guaranteed, and possibly unlikely.

And it’s this highly improbable step, say some scientists, that’s the Great Filter. Everything that happened afterward is a complete bonus.

Now that said, there may have been other filters as well. These could include the emergence of terrestrial organisms, hominids, and various civilizational stages, like the transition from stone age culture to agricultural to industrial. But unlike the first primordial stages already discussed, these are porous filters and not terribly unlikely.

More filters ahead?

So, if the GF is behind us, it would do much to explain the Fermi Paradox and the absence of extraterrestrial influence on the cosmos. Should that be the case, we may very well have a bright future ahead of us. The Milky Way Galaxy is literally ours for the taking, our future completely open-ended.

But before we jump to conclusions, it’s only fair to point out that we’re not out of the woods yet. There could very well be another GF in the future — one just as stingy as the filters of our past. The universe, while giving the appearance of bio-friendliness, may in reality be extremely hostile to intelligent life.

Just What the World Needs Now: Pentagon Plans Big Expansion of its Espionage Operations Overseas

December 2, 2012

By Greg Miller

The Pentagon will send hundreds of additional spies overseas as part of an ambitious plan to assemble an espionage network that rivals the CIA in size, U.S. officials said.

https://i0.wp.com/www.dia.mil/images/logo_dia.pngThe project is aimed at transforming the Defense Intelligence Agency, which has been dominated for the past decade by the demands of two wars, into a spy service focused on emerging threats and more closely aligned with the CIA and elite military commando units.

When the expansion is complete, the DIA is expected to have as many as 1,600 “collectors” in positions around the world, an unprecedented total for an agency whose presence abroad numbered in the triple digits in recent years.

The total includes military attachés and others who do not work undercover. But U.S. officials said the growth will be driven over a five-year period by the deployment of a new generation of clandestine operatives. They will be trained by the CIA and often work with the U.S. Joint Special Operations Command, but they will get their spying assignments from the Department of Defense.

Among the Pentagon’s top intelligence priorities, officials said, are Islamist militant groups in Africa, weapons transfers by North Korea and Iran, and military modernization underway in China.

“This is not a marginal adjustment for DIA,” the agency’s director, Lt. Gen. Michael T. Flynn, said at a recent conference, during which he outlined the changes but did not describe them in detail. “This is a major adjustment for national security.”

The sharp increase in DIA undercover operatives is part of a far-reaching trend: a convergence of the military and intelligence agencies that has blurred their once-distinct missions, capabilities and even their leadership ranks.

https://i1.wp.com/www.infowars.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/drone_attack_Obama_090123_mn.jpgThrough its drone program, the CIA now accounts for a majority of lethal U.S. operations outside the Afghan war zone. At the same time, the Pentagon’s plan to create what it calls the Defense Clandestine Service, or DCS, reflects the military’s latest and largest foray into secret intelligence work.

The DIA overhaul — combined with the growth of the CIA since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks — will create a spy network of unprecedented size. The plan reflects the Obama administration’s affinity for espionage and covert action over conventional force…

Read more at Washington Post

European Regulator Forces Facebook to Change Its Data Policy

November 28, 2012

By Laura O’Reilly

The privacy watchdog responsible for regulating Facebook in Europe is understood to have forced the social network to change one of its latest proposed policies that would see it blend user data with that of ‘Instagram’.

The Irish Data Protection Commissioner (DPC), which presides over the social network’s European headquarters in Dublin, says it expects Facebook’s proposed data use policy to be modified to allow users a greater level of consent over the way their actions and content on the site can be used by the company.

A spokeswoman at the Irish DPC told technology blog The Register: “We have sought and received clarifications on a number of aspects and have outlined our position in relation to what consent will be required for aspects of the policy.”

It is not yet clear the exact aspects of the policy Facebook has agreed to change, but it is thought to relate to the Instagram data share proposals.

Facebook was hoping that by combining data from its platform and the photo sharing app it acquired earlier this year would be able to help the company offer brands more targeted advertising opportunities.

The social network said in a statement last week when it first emerged the Irish DPC had contacted the company: “We are in regular contact with our regulators to ensure that we maintain high standards of transparency in respect of our policies and practices. We expect to maintain a continuous dialogue with the Irish DPC as our service evolves.”

Facebook’s proposals to combine its user data with that of Instagram have also been opposed by two privacy campaign groups – The Electronic Privacy Information Center (EPIC) and the Center for Digital Democracy (CDD) – which wrote a joint letter requesting the company reconsiders the amends to its policy.

They also object to Facebook’s plans to stop users’ ability to vote on changes to its privacy policy, which it has allowed since 2009 for any change that attracts at least 7,000 comments. It is also looking to change users’ inbox default settings, which could lead to members receiving more unwanted messages from other users or spam from companies.

The letter says: “Because these proposed changes raise privacy risks for users, maybe contrary to law, and violate your previous commitments to users about site governance, we urge you to withdraw the proposed changes.”

In the UK, the Open Rights Group is writing to the Information Commissioner’s Office to ask it to examine the changes in Facebook’s privacy policy and act on them in a similar way to other data protection authorities elsewhere.

In April Facebook reached a settlement with the US Federal Trade Commission over claims it had deceived users into sharing more information than they realised. Under the settlement, Facebook must obtain user consent for significant changes to its privacy settings and must commit to 20 years of independent audits.

Terminator Stage One: Drone Makers Lobbying Congress to Open Skies for Surveillance

November 26, 2012

Even the celebrity gossip site TMZ is actively seeking to use drones

By Gary Martin
Houston Chronical

Are unmanned aircraft, known to have difficulty avoiding collisions, safe to use in America’s crowded airspace? And would their widespread use for surveillance result in unconstitutional invasions of privacy?

Experts say neither question has been answered satisfactorily. Yet the federal government is rushing to open America’s skies to tens of thousands of the drones – pushed to do so by a law championed by manufacturers of the unmanned aircraft.

The 60-member House of Representatives‘ “drone caucus” – officially, the House Unmanned Systems Caucus – has helped push that agenda. And over the last four years, caucus members have drawn nearly $8 million in drone-related campaign contributions, an investigation by Hearst Newspapers and the Center for Responsive Politics shows.

Interactive: See who donated and which companies received money

Video: See animation of a drone

The Federal Aviation Administration has been flooded with applications from police departments, universities, private corporations and even the celebrity gossip site TMZ, all seeking to use drones that range from devices the size of a hummingbird to full-sized aircraft like those used by the U.S. military to target al-Qaeda operatives in Pakistan and elsewhere.

Read more

Police In Finland Raid Pirate Bay User – A 9yr old Girl and Confiscate ‘Winnie The Pooh’ Laptop

November 23, 2012

An anti-piracy company has found itself in the middle of a huge controversy. CIAPC, the company that had The Pirate Bay blocked by ISPs in Finland, tracked an alleged file-sharer and demanded a cash settlement.

However, the Internet account holder refused to pay which escalated things to an unprecedented level. In response, this week police raided the home of the 9-year-old suspect and confiscated her Winnie the Pooh laptop.

Very soon in the United States, letters will be sent out to Internet account holders informing them that they should stop sharing copyrighted material on BitTorrent.

The message in the US from mainstream rightsholders is designed to be educational, but more aggressive companies carry out the same process but with a sting in the tail – a request for cash-settlement to make potential lawsuits go away.

One such request for cash landed on the doorstep of an Internet account holder in Finland during the spring. Known locally as TTVK, Finnish anti-piracy group CIAPC sent the man a letter informing him that his account had been traced back to an incidence of online file-sharing.

To stop matters progressing further the man was advised to pay a settlement of 600 euros, sign a non-disclosure document, and move on with his life. He chose not to give in to the demands of CIAPC and this week things escalated as promised.

Tuesday morning the doorbell of the family home rang around 8am and the man, who works in the hospitality sector, had quite a shock. Police were at his door with a search warrant authorizing the hunt for evidence connected to illicit file-sharing.

Surprisingly, the man isn’t a previously unknown Kim Dotcom-related “co-conspirator”, nor does he run a warez site or BitTorrent tracker. He is, however, guilty of having a 9-year-old daughter with a taste for pop music.

Having failed in her quest to put enough money in her piggy bank to buy the latest album from local multi-platinum-selling songstress Chisu, in 2011 she turned to the Internet, first via Google and then The Pirate Bay.

The girl’s father said the resulting downloads didn’t work so the following day they went to the store to buy music. Nevertheless, this week’s police visit shows that CIAPC mean business, no matter how young the targets or whether or not they also buy music.

In concluding their search, the police confiscated the girl’s file-sharing weapon of choice – her Winnie The Pooh laptop – and according to her father offered some final words.

“It would have been easier for all concerned if you had paid the compensation,” the police advised

“I got the feeling that there had been people from the MAFIA demanding money at the door,” the girl’s father explained.

“We have not done anything wrong with my daughter. If adults do not always know how to use a computer and the web, how can you assume that children or the elderly – or a 9-year-old girl – knows what they are doing at any given time online?

“This is the pinnacle of absurdity. I can see artists are in a position, but this requires education and information, not resource-consuming lawsuits,” he added.

Electronic Frontier Finland say that this week’s developments are an indication of just how far copyright enforcements issues have progressed in Finland.

Read more at Refreshing News

Are Secretive Cabals Keeping Us in the Dark Over UK Child Abuse?

November 17, 2012

Peter Sterry
21st Century Wire
Senior Editor

An ugly truth: our system of law enforcement and justice is broken. Quite simply, it bullies the victims, and protects men in positions of power.

Old wounds are being reopened again…

Another previously buried report of organised paedophilia in North Wales has turned up – fears that revelations could lead to the authorities being sued – again. It’s the same pattern of key evidence and key witnesses NOT being included in these Inquiries and Hearings.

It prompts the question: what else hasn’t been included as evidence? Was evidence destroyed? More key incriminating evidence in the North Wales scandal has been reported as ‘lost’ by the police. This appears to be generally acceptable for the government, seeing that no counter investigation was launched to find out who has been ‘losing’ all this important evidence.

It’s also known that former Deputy Director of the Bryn Alyn boys home, Des Frost, was NOT called as a witness, despite being one of the men who had originally reported abuse at the home to the police.

What should be clear by now, is that the Waterhouse Inquiry was anything but thorough, and now Lords Peers are calling for further Waterhouse reviews to stop.

Question: What did then Welsh Secretary, William Hague, know and when did he know it?

The establishment’s story line today were expected to support is this: five separate documented cover-ups in 27 years, and 0ver 2000 witness statements… are all the work of media vandals and deluded conspirators.

It seems like those in positions of power and influence, as well as wealthy elites in public life are pushing back, because they don’t want certain dirty deeds to be exposed to the public at large. If they are exposed, it will most surely alter the power structure in Britain for some time to come. These revelations simply cannot come to light, period.

Watch this latest report about ‘lost’ evidence…

Here is Sian Griffith’s interview she speaks, among other things, about Thomas Kenyon, son of Lord Kenyon, and others, along with more ‘missing evidence’, more proof (how much does the government need?) that from the onset, the police and judiciary have intervened to suppress evidence which is in the public interest:

The elite claim that all these witnesses are lying, and making up their abuse. To what benefit? But if the elite are covering up their sordid crimes, one can easily see why they would want to do this, Qui Bono?

You decide…


RELATED: 
Police ‘Lost’ Thick Dossier But Seized by MI5 on Suspected Paedophile Sir Cyril Smith

RELATED: The Original SCALLYWAG Magazine paedophile ring investigation is available online

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