Daily Archives: April 8, 2017

Banning “Synthetic Marijuana” is Ignoring the Root Issue

The government’s solution to every problem they create is to just pass more draconian rules on top of the immense pile of crap they have already dumped on Americans.

The Drug Enforcement Agency will publish a new rule on Monday banning five forms of synthetic marijuana, sometimes called “spice” or “K2”.

This action is based on a finding by the Administrator that the placement of these synthetic cannabinoids into schedule I of the Controlled Substances Act is necessary to avoid an imminent hazard to the public safety. As a result of this order, the regulatory controls and administrative, civil, and criminal sanctions applicable to schedule I controlled substances will be imposed on persons who handle (manufacture, distribute, reverse distribute, import, export, engage in research, conduct instructional activities or chemical analysis, or possess), or propose to handle, [five types of synthetic cannabinoids].

Synthetic marijuana is a man-made creation which is said to mimic the effects of marijuana.

Source: Why New Regulation Banning “Synthetic Marijuana” is Ignoring the Root Issue | The Daily Bell

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Peanut-Free School Zones Don’t Work | American Council on Science and Health

Several years ago, a school bus full of elementary students in Massachusetts was evacuated. A potentially deadly item was found on the floor. Was it a gun? A bomb? A blood-contaminated hypodermic needle?No, it was a peanut.Over-the-top responses to peanuts aren’t uncommon. People are under the impression that the mere whiff of a peanut is enough to send some kids to the emergency room. But, that’s simply not true. The molecules in peanuts that are responsible for aroma are not the same as the ones that trigger allergies. Also, an allergic reaction only occurs if peanuts are eaten or inhaled; touching a peanut briefly will not trigger an allergic reaction, unless the child then rubs his or her eyes or mouth.High-profile stories (such as the one about a woman with an extreme peanut allergy who died after kissing her boyfriend) lead the public to think that this sort of thing occurs regularly. But it does not.

Source: Peanut-Free School Zones Don’t Work | American Council on Science and Health

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How Vitamin C May Help Cancer Treatments Work Better 

Cancer treatments are often hard on patients, but the side effects and challenges are necessary to control or even destroy tumor cells.Now researchers say there may be a way to make those treatments work even better. In a study published in Cancer Cell, scientists say that giving people high doses of vitamin C during treatment may weaken cancer cells and make them more vulnerable to the effects of chemotherapy and radiation.In the study, which was designed to determine if vitamin C in high doses was safe, 11 people with an aggressive brain cancer called glioblastoma were treated with vitamin C intravenously three times a week for nearly two months. The dose was increased gradually while the people underwent radiation therapy, to ensure that enough vitamin C remained in the blood. The people in the trial reported no additional side effects or adverse symptoms associated with the vitamin, only those associated with normal chemotherapy and radiation treatments.

Source: How Vitamin C May Help Cancer Treatments Work Better | Time.com

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Canadian town picks Uber for public transit

Uber is suffering from a legal attack, a self-driving car crash, sexism criticisms and other concerns, but it just won a victory in a Canadian town looking to help its citizens get around.Innisfil, population 32,727 as of 2014, concluded in a March council meeting that subsidizing the car-hailing service was a better deal than paying for a bus line.The city plans to pay 100,000 Canadian dollars (about $75,000) for a first stage of the program and CA$125,000 for a second round about 6 to 9 months in. That compares to CA$270,000 annually for one bus and CA$610,000 for two, the town said.The town evaluated on-demand transit proposals as an alternative to buses. “Uber emerged as the only company with an app-based platform (i.e. UberPool) that would facilitate ridesharing and the matching of two or more passengers on trips across the entire town,” the town said in its explanation of the move.

Source: Canadian town picks Uber for public transit

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Flash – New museum reveals power of poo in Italy – France 24

CASTELBOSCO (ITALY) (AFP) – It may pong, but Italy’s “Shit Museum” has the whiff of success about it: here in Castelbosco, farmers are transforming sloppy cowpats into plates you can eat off.Once upon a time there was a large farm about a hundred kilometres (62 miles) south of Milan. The farmer had not only hundreds of cows, but veritable mountains of excrement — stinking slops he thought he could do something with.”The idea came from the need to take advantage of animal dung in an ecological way. We managed to transform it into something useful,” farmer Gianantonio Locatelli, 61, told AFP.Over his various farms, 3,500 cattle produce 550 quintals (55 tonnes) of milk a day to make Grana Padano, a hard cheese comparable to Parmigiano Reggiano. They also generate 1,500 quintals of waste.

Source: Flash – New museum reveals power of poo in Italy – France 24

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Why Do Walmart and Target Have Their Own Digital Forensics Labs?

A highly secured digital-forensics laboratory sits tucked inside an enormous complex of low, boxy buildings in Bentonville, Arkansas. To get in, analysts have to scan their hands and enter a unique password. Inside, they comb through video-surveillance records and spirit data out of devices that have seen better days, like a hard drive that had been crushed with a hammer and dropped from a third-story window.Despite the sensitive nature of their jobs, these investigators aren’t high-level FBI agents or foreign spies. They’re Walmart employees.Walmart is one of six companies in the United States that run digital-forensics laboratories accredited by the American Society of Crime Laboratory Directors. American Express has an accredited lab; Target has two of them.

Source: Why Do Walmart and Target Have Their Own Digital Forensics Labs? – The Atlantic

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Teen Gets Into Stanford After Writing This Hashtag 100 Times For An Essay Question

Ziad Ahmed of Princeton, New Jersey earned admission to prestigious Stanford University after writing “#BlackLivesMatter” 100 times as an answer to the application essay question “What matters to you, and why?” The 18-year-old self-described “passionate social justice activist” took to Twitter to announce his acceptance to the private university, currently ranked #5 in the United States by U.S. News and World Report. In an interview with Mic, Ahmed expressed some surprise at the university’s decision. “I didn’t think I would get admitted to Stanford at all,” he said, “but it’s quite refreshing to see that they view my unapologetic activism as an asset rather than a liability.”

Source: Teen Gets Into Stanford After Writing This Hashtag 100 Times For An Essay Question

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What To Do If You’ve Been Hacked 

Getting hacked is a serious concern. If your e-mail, Facebook or any other social media account gets hacked, there’s a good chance that your sensitive and valuable information will end up in the wrong hands. The ramifications are severe. Payments could be made by cyber criminals, potentially emptying your bank account, any secretive company information could get leaked and your private data could be leveraged as blackmail.It’s important to understand how this can occur. One way involves large-scale account hacks. Recently, these sort of hacks have been committed against a number of big corporations, most notably Sony and Ashley Madison. Millions of passwords and log-in details of its users were stolen. Since many people use the same username and password for multiple accounts, the hackers also suddenly had access to many other facets of their lives. It’s also possible to expose yourself via phishing (fake e-mails that coax the recipient into giving up their details) as well as malicious software that infiltrates your computer and gathers data in the background.

Source: What To Do If You’ve Been Hacked » TechWorm

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You Can Now Send a Bag Of Dicks To Anyone Anonymously

Do you see this beautiful pile of dicks? It’s hard to look away right?It’s the product of this company called Dicks by MailThe company only does one thing, they give you the ability to anonymously send a bag of dicks to anyone you want or deserves to feel sad, disappointed or betrayal. How no one thought of this before is beyond me.

Source: You Can Now Send a Bag Of Dicks To Anyone Anonymously

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Shoemaker Slammed For ‘Sexualizing’ High Heels For Babies

A shoe company has been slammed over its high heels for babies, which some parents claim are “sexualizing” young girls.

America’s Pee Wee Pumps have designed a range of shoes aimed at “fashion-forward mothers” and their newborn tots—who are up to six months old.


The soft slippers have collapsible heels and pointed toes and come in leopard print, zebra and pink patterns—with a cute little bow on top.

The shoes normally sell for $23 (£19) a pair, although they’re currently on sale at $8 (£7), and have names such as Diva, Sassy, Swanky and Wild Child.

continue https://heatst.com/culture-wars/sexualizing-babies-shoe-company-slammed-over-high-heels-for-toddlers/

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Python on the Web: The Amazing Things You Can Build

In many ways, we’re living in the golden age of web development. Web technologies have never been as refined and flexible as they are today, and if you want to build a high-quality website or web app, you have so many viable ways to get there — including the use of Python.

Contrary to popular belief, Python isn’t only useful for data processing and utility scripts. Take a peek at HotFrameworks.com and you’ll see that the fifth most popular web framework is Python-based. Next to JavaScript and Ruby, Python is one of the best languages to use for web development.

How Python Is Used in Web Development

When developing a web app, Python serves in similar capacity to languages like PHP and Ruby: it’s mainly used to handle back-end processing and routing. Web pages still need to be rendered using HTML, the theme is still handled with CSS, and front-end processing is still done in JavaScript.

That may sound overwhelming, but depending on which Python web framework you use, it doesn’t have to be as bad as it sounds. For example, Django has a templating system for writing special HTML files that can embed Python code and interact with data from the Python back-end.

Source: Python on the Web: The Amazing Things You Can Build

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The challenge to rebuild a people’s Internet

World (ALAI) – It is already hard to imagine daily life without the innovations of the so-called digital technological “revolution” in spite of the fact that most of these innovations have proliferated over just one or two decades. How could we get along without mobile phones, without digital social networks or e-mail, without being able to search for information or do official or business procedures over the internet? Nevertheless, these are only the first steps of this transformation.

According to the technological utopia that big business promises us, very soon we will be able to make purchases with our mobile so a drone can deliver them to our home; we could have a self-parking car, or a robot that cleans the house and warns us if thieves break in. This supposed utopia comes hand-in-hand with a darker side: that of unlimited surveillance, vulnerable security, indiscriminate collection of personal data that further enriches mega-enterprises, massive loss of jobs through robots and automation, or the non-transparent algorithms — not always efficient or equitable –, that are ruling ever more aspects of our societies.

The fact is that in recent years, as more aspects of social and personal activity are digitalized, a good part of these innovations have been taken over by large monopolies (most of them from the United States), leading to an unprecedented concentration of power. Evidence of this is the fact that, according to the Bloomberg agency, in December of 2015, five of the 10 corporations with the highest stock-market value come from the technological sector; moreover, Apple, Alphabet/Google and Microsoft occupy the three first places, displacing the transnational oil companies.

At the same time, this consumerist utopia is very different from the one that characterized the beginnings of the Internet. Once it moved beyond its military origins, the network of networks was to a large extent developed as a collaborative initiative, controlled and designed mainly by civil society actors and academic sectors that conceived it under principals of democratization, horizontality and the free exchange of knowledge. In many areas, this focus has continued to be developed, with initiatives such as free software, open content and public platforms of interchange of knowledge and ideas. But as the Internet has gained in massiveness, it has become a terrain where the formerly public and self-managed spaces are now fenced in by private platforms, such as digital social networks, subject to the rules and algorithms imposed by Facebook, Twitter and the like.

Source: The challenge to rebuild a people’s Internet – The Fifth Column

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Novel Algorithm Could Help Predict Depression Diagnoses

An innovative supercomputing program could assist psychologists with diagnosing mental health conditions.Researchers are using the Stampede Supercomputer, stationed at the Texas Advanced Computing Center, to teach a machine-learning algorithm that can sift through diverse data sets and potentially predict which patients are at risk of developing depression and anxiety.The team conducted a study where they had 52 treatment-seeking participants with depression and 45 healthy control participants receive diffusion tensor imaging (DTI) MRI scans. This process entails tagging water molecules to analyze the level of which these particles are microscopically diffused in the brain over a certain period of time.”We feed in whole brain data or a subset and predict disease classifications or any potential behavioral measure such as measures of negative information bias,” said David Schnyer, a psychology professor and cognitive neuroscientists at the University of Texas at Austin, in a statement.

Source: Novel Algorithm Could Help Predict Depression Diagnoses

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Hackers Can Easily Hijack  Dildo Camera and stream the Inside of Your Vagina (Or Butt) 

If you’re using an internet-connected vibrator equipped with a camera that allows you to stream your “pleasure” right to the internet, your intended viewers might not be the only ones watching.Hackers from the UK-based security firm Pen Test Partners have found that it’s trivially easy to hack into a Svakom Siime Eye, a $249 Internet of Things dildo that has a small camera on its tip, allowing users to stream a video to anyone of their choosing over the internet. However, if you’re in Wi-Fi range of the dildo and can guess the password, which by default is “88888888,” you can watch the video stream. With a bit more hacking, you can take control of the firmware and then connect to it remotely as well.

Source: Hackers Can Easily Hijack This Dildo Camera and Livestream the Inside of Your Vagina (Or Butt) – Motherboard

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This Map Will Show If Your Web Traffic Passes Through an NSA Listening Post 

IXmaps wants to “make visible the secret, dangerous, often illegal forms of surveillance that are increasingly becoming part of everyday life.”Internet data pinballs across national borders, and for Canadians this means potentially exposing it to eavesdropping by US-based corporations and the National Security Agency.Now, an interactive mapping tool named Internet Exchange Mapping (IXmaps), re-launched for public use today, will show you how—and how easily—you data can be spied on by tracing the oftentimes byzantine routes data takes when traversing the internet.

Source: This Map Will Show If Your Web Traffic Passes Through an NSA Listening Post – Motherboard

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