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Friday, April 21, 2017

News Bias Checker 2, Random Stuff and More

This is an obvious continuation of my last post:

Turns out that we're back here sooner then later. I've been meaning to build something like this for a while but I couldn't really figure out a way to do it in a quick, easy fashion. 

My Github Info and Downloader scripts really gave me the basis for this.
http://dtbnguyen.blogspot.com/2017/04/linux-planet-blog-checker-script-github.html

Basically, the logic behind it was to pick a series of words which I could use as the basis for measuring relevance with regards to political bias. Then use this to create a metric to gauge bias. Not easy in a way that and almost forces you to create a custom search engine (done it in the past. Guess I could re-use the code though or some other FOSS code out there? One thing that is extremely interesting for me is that what you think is happening and what is actually occurring mightn't be the truth... Subjectivity seems to play a huge role in life? Imagine doing the same as I have. Does it work out the way you think it does?)

This update is an iteration of my work in my previous script (results included in the script/download immediately following this paragraph. Summary of some the findings included further down in this post):

Obviously requires a bit more work...

Results make for fascinating analysis (because of what they think about and how they think about it)... It's as I thought. Once you quantify things in a more fair fashion things begin to 'normalise' a bit more. The other thing that's obvious is what people are interested in and the region that they're from?

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[Currently checking URL] - https://www.rt.com/rss/
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - https://www.rt.com/rss/
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 188
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 1033
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .18
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    716 rt
    202 dc
    103 left
    101 full
     99 style
     99 enclosure
     51 uk
     26 trump
     18 un
     13 study
     12 new
     10 two
      9 speech
      9 french
      9 drug
      8 press
      8 no
      8 judge
      7 test
      7 petersburg

[Currently checking URL] - http://www.smh.com.au/rssheadlines/world/article/rss.xml
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://www.smh.com.au/rssheadlines/world/article/rss.xml
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 4
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 6
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .66
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    145 dc
    101 smh
     32 trump
     20 uk
     13 new
     12 turkey
     12 steve
      9 mosul
      8 test
      6 sydney
      6 pence
      6 french
      6 dump
      5 two
      5 street
      5 no
      5 john
      5 found
      5 church
      4 vote

[Currently checking URL] - http://www.nytimes.com/services/xml/rss/nyt/World.xml
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://www.nytimes.com/services/xml/rss/nyt/World.xml
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 164
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 542
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .30
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    130 nyt
     63 emc
     63 dc
     43 des
     41 geo
     38 europe
     32 true
     28 moth
     22 trump
     19 mdes
     13 new
     13 french
     11 le
     10 pen
      7 steel
      5 xe9
      5 reuters
      5 press
      5 oldest
      5 joseph

[Currently checking URL] - http://www.news.com.au/world/rss
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://www.news.com.au/world/rss
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 21
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 62
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .33
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
     10 wp
     10 subd
     10 post
     10 host
     10 blog
      4 trump
      3 europe
      2 seek
      2 ledell
      2 elysees
      2 docs
      1 vp
      1 trump’s
      1 trumps
      1 three
      1 shot
      1 room
      1 resurrects
      1 reese
      1 pence

[Currently checking URL] - http://rss.cnn.com/rss/edition_world.rss
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://rss.cnn.com/rss/edition_world.rss
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 1
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 2
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .50
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    321 turner
    152 cnn
     43 protests
     29 synd
     29 hp
     17 hotels
     17 french
     13 students
     13 protest
     12 should
     12 europe
     12 cut
     12 7ccnn
     11 op
     11 eu
     11 elex
     11 ed
      6 ts
      6 bsd
      6 7cbsd

[Currently checking URL] - http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/rss/world_rss.xml
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://www.chinadaily.com.cn/rss/world_rss.xml
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 2716
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 15464
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .17
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
   1435 center
   1026 style
    781 cn
    715 left
    656 tr
    444 two
    416 text
    371 md5
    369 ffffff
    343 trump
    327 new
    210 development
    172 country
    165 uk
    148 europe
    132 dprk
    129 such
    123 most
    121 three
    118 self

[Currently checking URL] - http://feeds.feedburner.com/zerohedge/feed
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://feeds.feedburner.com/zerohedge/feed
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 261
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 834
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .31
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    122 rsquo
    108 em
     31 term
     28 style
     28 new
     28 most
     28 french
     27 trump
     27 so
     25 two
     25 end
     24 co
     22 dc
     19 js
     18 home
     18 en
     16 some
     15 reuters
     15 document
     15 do

[Currently checking URL] - http://www.infowars.com/feed/custom_feed_rss
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://www.infowars.com/feed/custom_feed_rss
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 212
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 818
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .25
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    202 dc
     22 trump
     13 show
      7 shows
      7 new
      7 fox
      6 joseph
      6 french
      5 roger
      5 pence
      5 no
      5 bundy
      4 truth
      4 speech
      4 rt
      4 rock
      4 problem
      4 nuke
      4 now
      4 looks

[Currently checking URL] - http://zeenews.india.com/rss/world-news.xml
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://zeenews.india.com/rss/world-news.xml
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 30
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 106
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .28
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
     10 europe
      5 zee
      5 eu
      4 queen
      4 no
      4 move
      4 known
      4 euros
      4 doubt
      4 document
      4 defense
      3 rejects
      3 91st
      2 get
      2 french
      2 dc
      2 bollywood
      1 turned
      1 though
      1 ste

[Currently checking URL] - http://indianexpress.com/section/world/feed/
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://indianexpress.com/section/world/feed/
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 545
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 4276
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .12
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    403 post
    402 dc
    309 trump
    201 wp
    200 subd
    200 host
    200 blog
    135 express
     42 pence
     36 uk
     35 shvmkr
     33 un
     31 turkey
     29 rex
     26 new
     26 mosul
     23 pm
     18 vote
     18 eu
     16 two

[Currently checking URL] - http://www.newindianexpress.com/World/rssfeed/?id=171&getXmlFeed=true
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://www.newindianexpress.com/World/rssfeed/?id=171&getXmlFeed=true
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 1129
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 3402
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .33
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    125 text
    123 style
    121 trump
    114 two
     89 pm
     60 new
     56 press
     51 no
     49 un
     44 three
     44 country
     35 should
     33 some
     33 eu
     30 vote
     30 left
     30 french
     28 so
     28 set
     25 through

[Currently checking URL] - http://www.presstv.ir/RSS/MRSS/1
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://www.presstv.ir/RSS/MRSS/1
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 2
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 2
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 1.00
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
     53 presstv
     11 trump
      6 mh370
      6 eu
      5 uk
      4 turkey
      4 french
      3 sends
      3 rome
      3 rmz
      3 new
      3 mcv
      3 gulf
      3 ep137
      3 ep05
      3 ed
      2 two
      2 troops
      2 shot
      2 seeker

[Currently checking URL] - http://www.timesofisrael.com/feed/
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://www.timesofisrael.com/feed/
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 63
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 253
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .24
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
      5 sy
      4 trump
      4 soccer
      4 freed
      4 elysees
      4 bomb
      3 modules
      3 jcc
      3 hunger
      3 end
      3 club
      2 two
      2 ss
      2 shooter
      2 ruled
      2 reopens
      2 pence
      2 hosts
      2 home
      2 extends

[Currently checking URL] - https://sputniknews.com/export/rss2/archive/index.xml
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - https://sputniknews.com/export/rss2/archive/index.xml
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 1
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 2
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .50
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    146 enclosure
     75 europe
     71 trump
     30 french
     19 le
     18 pen
     15 new
     15 defense
     13 should
     12 sco
     12 elysees
     11 two
     11 free
     10 un
     10 petersburg
     10 eu
      9 turkey
      9 opcw
      9 now
      8 yemen

[Currently checking URL] - http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/c/world/feed/
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://www.theepochtimes.com/n3/c/world/feed/
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 866
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 1755
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .49
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    922 eet
    351 post
    288 reuters
    281 wp
    186 turkey
    139 protests
    139 100vw
    120 pence
    112 trump
    102 dc
    101 wfw
    100 encoded
     92 style
     80 bomb
     73 country
     70 metro
     69 new
     69 mosul
     65 school
     63 epoch

[Currently checking URL] - http://mediamonarchy.com/feed/
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://mediamonarchy.com/feed/
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 640
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 2043
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .31
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    102 dc
    100 post
     52 wp
     50 mh
     49 yes
     48 new
     48 enclosure
     19 trump
     17 volume
     17 pump
     14 tv
     14 free
     10 un
     10 purge
     10 future
      8 wv
      8 seed
      8 love
      8 doj
      8 blood

[Currently checking URL] - http://www.washingtonsblog.com/feed
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://www.washingtonsblog.com/feed
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 422
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 1318
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .32
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    152 pm
    138 tr
    129 style
     96 em
     90 wp
     48 left
     40 no
     37 trump
     37 nerve
     37 even
     33 so
     31 whr
     30 now
     28 such
     28 rogue
     24 some
     24 event
     23 never
     22 most
     22 how

[Currently checking URL] - https://www.democracynow.org/democracynow.rss
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - https://www.democracynow.org/democracynow.rss
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 262
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 544
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .48
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    169 trump
     92 encoded
     64 now
     48 new
     46 en
     39 left
     36 style
     29 protest
     21 hunger
     20 ul
     18 bomb
     17 turkey
     17 judge
     17 dozens
     16 yemen
     16 old
     16 center
     15 drugs
     14 fellow
     14 drug

[Currently checking URL] - http://globalnews.ca/pages/feeds/
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://globalnews.ca/pages/feeds/
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 45
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 467
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .09
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
     38 wounds
     18 trump
      8 now
      6 new
      6 glbn
      6 bc
      5 students
      5 schools
      5 rules
      5 pm
      5 nhl
      5 judge
      4 tv
      4 tech
      4 show
      4 sex
      4 red
      4 most
      4 deer
      4 block

[Currently checking URL] - http://feeds.feedburner.com/CorbettReportRSS
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://feeds.feedburner.com/CorbettReportRSS
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 61
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 249
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .24
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
     27 truth
     25 new
     22 how
     22 dc
     21 wfw
     21 no
     14 rose
     11 wp
     10 free
     10 doj
      9 enclosure
      9 deleted
      8 tr
      8 most
      7 know
      6 love
      6 keep
      6 john
      6 get
      6 ever

[Currently checking URL] - http://www.theatlantic.com/feed/all/
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://www.theatlantic.com/feed/all/
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 32
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 64
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .50
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    204 em
     85 trump
     66 how
     65 so
     62 new
     54 entry
     53 do
     51 joel
     45 some
     42 my
     38 even
     37 two
     33 me
     33 get
     32 no
     30 mole
     26 now
     24 church
     23 wrote
     23 much

[Currently checking URL] - http://www.latinospost.com/rss/sections/world.xml
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://www.latinospost.com/rss/sections/world.xml
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 371
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 1315
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .28
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    197 text
     98 full
     96 est
     68 el
     49 nov
     46 new
     32 drug
     27 trump
     27 dec
     18 how
     16 two
     16 turkey
     16 now
     13 del
     12 penn
     11 soccer
     10 july
     10 de
     10 dc
      9 plot

[Currently checking URL] - https://www.theguardian.com/world/rss
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - https://www.theguardian.com/world/rss
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 274
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 1669
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .16
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    329 dc
    205 uk
    164 co
    160 urn
    160 ebu
     96 development
     72 trump
     51 europe
     46 getty
     29 un
     29 french
     28 reuters
     28 eu
     27 new
     26 ul
     25 le
     22 two
     18 old
     17 how
     16 press

[Currently checking URL] - http://www.arabnews.com/cat/3/rss.xml
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://www.arabnews.com/cat/3/rss.xml
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 72
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 156
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .46
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
     85 even
     30 text
     22 dc
     17 odd
     16 term
     12 queen
     10 pence
     10 nodes
     10 node
      8 reuters
      7 three
      7 put
      7 eu
      6 sos
      6 some
      6 need
      5 street
      5 rescue
      5 left
      5 country

[Currently checking URL] - http://www.nationalinterest.org/feed
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://www.nationalinterest.org/feed
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 299
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 509
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .58
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    106 em
     54 trump
     50 node
     44 style
     33 blog
     32 text
     26 no
     26 full
     25 styles
     25 edt
     22 buzz
     21 new
     16 yemen
     16 trump’s
     16 defense
     15 most
     13 pence
     13 does
     12 two
     11 how

[Currently checking URL] - http://www.boilingfrogspost.com/feed/
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://www.boilingfrogspost.com/feed/
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 628
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 1168
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .53
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    373 defense
    284 em
    123 center
     97 turkey
     97 en
     71 systems
     70 trump
     59 system
     55 new
     52 post
     43 dc
     41 wfw
     40 encoded
     33 currency
     30 fms
     29 how
     27 co
     24 sole
     24 development
     22 dod

[Currently checking URL] - http://diplomat.so/feed/
[Following URL is OK for connectivity] - http://diplomat.so/feed/
[News Bias Checker measures this particular URL RSS Feed at] - 141
[Line count for this URL RSS Feed is at] - 326
[News Bias Scaled Metric (Metric divided by line count) for this URL RSS Feed is at] - .43
[Word Frequency Count for this URL RSS Feed]
    176 wp
    131 so
     22 dc
     21 post
     20 encoded
     16 turkey
     16 europe
     15 troops
     15 protests
     12 trump
     12 full
     12 emergency
     11 opened
     11 loc
     11 guled
     11 country
     10 two
     10 text
     10 style
     10 speed

----

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Automated job application software...and how it (could) ruin your chances...
automated job application
- might rework my Github Downloader and Info scripts for in favour of something more universal? Have partly been thinking about building a 'universal repository download tool' that downloads via the Internet (as opposed via specific services/applications). Useful for reasons of portability
universal repository download tool

Random Quotes:
- "Alcohol is not the thing that makes people violent," she said. "Abusing someone in a relationship is always a choice."
- "An Australian government needs to be careful not to allow a doe-eyed fascination with the leader of the free world to distract from the reality that our national interest requires us to truly (and not just rhetorically) maintain both an ally in Washington and a good friend in Beijing."
- Alas, some time back, Microsoft announced that Silverlight development would effectively end and De Icaza was left with a lot of code that was of no use. There was no beacon left to follow, no light in the sky to guide his way.
- He added: "...the evidence shows that computers by themselves have no effect on learning and what really matters is the institutional environment that makes learning possible: the family, the teacher, the classroom, your peers."
- Turnbull also raised the question of data stored offshore, data that is collected by companies like Google. "Google currently permanently deletes emails or Youtube videos from their server once the customer deletes it. Search logs are rendered anonymous after nine months. It would be utterly impractical, and possibly unlawful, for Google to discriminate against customers from Australia and treat them differently from any others," he said.
- There is one reason for this (and it isn't speculation). Most data theft these days is done with a view to making money - and personal data, such as that which Brandis and Turnbull propose to keep for two years, is prime material which will fetch a handy price. (Why, if Google could buy the whole lot quietly, the Australian government may be able to balance its budget sooner.)

Such data breaches are not publicised either by those who commit it or those who are at the receiving end. The person/people who stole the data want money and a quiet ransom note is all they send. The company concerned quietly pays up and keeps things hush-hush; if the incident were to become public, then that company's business would suffer greatly.
- Proprietary software companies love to use code that is available under the BSD family of licences,  because they can take it, make changes, and lock it away for good in the depths of their own operating systems. They benefit no end from this, but rarely offer even a cent in goodwill to those who wrote the code.

Developers who release their code under the GPL family of licences have a safeguard against the kind of usage detailed above, because the GPL licences are a "share and share alike" breed. One can freely use code and modify it for one's own purposes. But if one distributes it, then one has to offer all the changes to anyone who asks for it.

But despite these safeguards, proprietary software companies often do not play fair. And free software and open-source software developers are not the most militant, and let things lie. Unless someone takes up cudgels for them, they just let it go as it is too exhausting to fight these battles.
- ISPs would be expected to reduce bandwidth for those who download content that is deemed to be unauthorised, block websites which host such content, limit the web acivity of offending subscribers and force them to do an educational tutorial on copyright.
- Mediocre people are always the most ambitious and the FOSS community is no exception. It will be interesting to see the next moves in what is clearly an attempt to undermine Torvalds and try to undercut his leadership. In the end, the ones who crave power could end up doing a Samson on the FOSS community.
- And he added: "Systemd may help with some of this, and may hurt with some of it; but I see the problem (as) more of an attitude of desktop environments to add features fast without really thinking of the implications. There is something to be said for slower progress if the result is higher quality."
- Nearly 17 years ago, Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates made his policy clear when he said, during an interview: "Although about 3 million computers get sold every year in China, but people don't pay for the software... Someday they will, though. As long as they are going to steal it, we want them to steal ours. They'll get sort of addicted, and then we'll somehow figure out how to collect sometime in the next decade."
- To his supporters, Clarkson is a humorous, straight-talking man-of-the-people standing up to the petty bureaucracy and political correctness which they blame for the country's ills.

In the eyes of his detractors, he is a boorish bigot who speaks only for out-of-touch white men and whose friendship with the country's most powerful figures belies his anti-establishment posturing.

Caught in the middle is the BBC, for whom Clarkson has worked since 1988, turning the show from a specialist program aimed at petrolheads into a weekly hit watched by five million people in Britain, around 40 per cent of them female. 
- The submission goes on to say that independent oversight of metadata use should do the job, as if law enforcement agencies know their access to the trove " is a strong deterrent against non-compliance or misconduct." The current bill proposes the Commonwealth Ombudsman take on that role.
- Sometimes I fall asleep writing songs and wake up spooning my guitar. #babeinmybed 
https://twitter.com/HonorEastly
So that is a capex (capital expenditure to set it up) of around $250 million, with an opex (running costs) of around $160 million a year. Brandis said in Parliament that he considered this to be a quite a reasonable cost - not mentioning that last year he and Prime Minister Abbott were saying the scheme would cost virtually nothing because telcos and ISPs were already collecting the data.
...
For that money Australia gets a restrictive mass surveillance regime, with minimal oversight, that has been proven to be ineffective for its stated purposes but will have a chilling effect on the freedom of the press, on the ability of whistle blowers to remain undetected, and on the confidence of average citizens to be assured of the privacy of their personal communications.

Welcome to 21st century Australia.
- It's well past time the pushy bastards of the world were requested - politely - to move their stuff. The meek, by definition, are not given to immoderate outbursts of vengefulness or schadenfreude, but surely there must have been a gentle punching of the air a fortnight ago when Orica boss Ian Smith was shown the door after yelling at his colleagues. Perhaps this is the beginning of something extraordinary; a global uprising of the meek, in which the massed ranks of the unassuming will band together and chant as one: "What Do We Want? WORLD DOMINATION! When Do We Want It? AS SOON AS IT'S CONVENIENT FOR EVERYBODY ELSE!"
- "Making scientific progress faster doesn't necessarily mean better -- unless if you're an aging philanthropist and want an answer in your lifetime," she said. "Science is about an arc of knowledge, and it can take a long time to play out. Sometimes we won't know answers for generations."

"I think that research into life extension is going to end up being a big social disaster," Fukuyama said in an interview. "Extending the average human life span is a great example of something that is individually desirably by almost everyone but collectively not a good thing. For evolutionary reasons, there is a good reason why we die when we do."
- He said that in the past 25 years the pace of innovation in the biomedical realm has been demoralizing. "Nixon declared war on cancer in 1971, and there has been frustratingly slow progress," he said. "One third of people age 85 and older have Alzheimer's or dementia, and we're not even motivated to start a war on Alzheimer's. At the end of the day, we need to do more."

For all the thought Thiel has given to how to combat aging, he says he does not have a lot of specific ideas about what he would do if he could live significantly longer.

Instead of living each day as his last, he says, he lives it like he'll live forever.

"If you did this, you might start working on some great projects you might otherwise not have attempted because you didn't think you'd finish," Thiel said. "You'd treat strangers a lot better because you'd likely see them again. You'd be a much better steward of the Earth than if you thought it was your last day and you were having a crazy party or something."
- "As a member of Congress, you have three options. 1. You may pretend corruption does not exist. 2. You may pretend to oppose corruption while you sabotage reform. 3. You may actively participate in real reform."
- In a call to investors, Mr Wells said the company reduced the price of subscriptions to its video streaming service in countries with a high prevalence of piracy in order to stay competitive.

"Piracy is a governor in terms of our price in high piracy markets outside the US," Mr Wells said.
Netflix chief executive Reed Hastings.

"We wouldn't want to come out with a high price because [if] there's a lot of piracy ... we have to compete with that."
- The concept is pretty straight-forward. Visit Facebook with your VPN disabled, then use the same browser to visit The Pirate Bay with your VPN enabled. The IP addresses logged by the websites won't match, but you've used the same browser fingerprint - it's like wearing a fake moustache when you rob a second bank but leaving the same fingerprints on the counter.

A database search for the browser fingerprint you left at The Pirate Bay would turn up your visit to Facebook - even if your browser fingerprint isn't unique it would narrow the search down to a handful of suspects. From here the Facebook logs could be traced back to your true IP address which your ISP can match to your account details.

For this trick to work, law enforcement and intelligence agencies would need a way to embed browser fingerprint tracking on third-party websites. If you've been reading the news lately then it's naive to think that they couldn't pull this off. Admittedly they're more likely to use such tools to catch terrorists than file-sharers, but once such a system was in place it would be open to scope creep. Hollywood pirate hunters and others could demand access - something the Trans Pacific Partnership might assist with.

Just because you're paranoid doesn't mean they're not out to get you. How do you protect your privacy online?
- Men who were warned that their penises would shrink unless they sought treatment for erectile dysfunction may be able to seek compensation after a court found the promoters of a nasal spray that promised "longer-lasting sex" guilty of unconscionable conduct. 
...
In one phone consultation -- one of about three million rec-ordings seized by the ACCC in its investigation -- a consultant told a prospective -client that "the penis is a muscle like every other. If you don't train it properly, it will start shrinking".
- That effort prompted The Economist magazine to summarise: "If you look at history, Australia is one of the best managers of adversity the world has seen - and the worst manager of prosperity."
- That happens when you have more knowledge about the subject than the CS dept.

With DSL it's the same in Spain, they train the CS people in this way.

(Happened to me)

Me: "Internet is friggin' slow".
CS: "Let me check" (5 min later) "Someone is using your wifi".
Me: "No, I have password and I checked a website to analyze my speed and it indicates 800kbps instead of 20Mbps"
CS: "Let me check" (5 min later) Maybe it's your computer.
Me: "Which one of them, I get the same result in 2 computers"
CS: "Let me check" (5 min later) Maybe you have a virus and it infected all the computers.
Me: "I'm running 1 Mac OSX and 1 Windows. It's impossible"
CS "Sorry, we don't have support for Mac OSX. Good evening". BEEP BEEP BEEP BEEP.

I called later, a guy pressed a magical button and I returned to my current speed + 3Mbps. They always said that you can't reach 100% of the speed, and then with a simple button they can add you more bandwith...

So, how do you train a CS guy?

Blame the customer with terminology like "Your supernodamegamaxi converter may be infected". If the customer knows more than you about the subject get a real expert to solve the problem. 
- I guess my day has come when I can add to this thread.

I purchased Komplete 9 Ultimate from Guitar Center 2 weeks ago. It was new, in a sealed box. When I installed it, I couldn't register, because the NI Service Center determined that the serial number was already in use. It took 5 days for NI to respond to me. They told me to try to register again, that it seems like a server issue on their part, that should be fixed by now. Tried, same problem. Send another email. 2 days later, I am told that it's definitely in use by someone else, to provide a packet of documents to them to verify I am a legitimate purchaser. Did that, they are now "investigating". No one knows how long this will take. They did not provide me with a temp serial number so I can start working. No ETA on how long I have to wait.

So now I have a $1,000 brick sitting on my desk, waiting for an "investigation" to be completed.

I have a friend with a hacked version of Komplete 9 Ultimate that he bought in Penn Station for $40. Works like a charm. He can't stop laughing at me. I hate doing the right thing and still feeling like a schmuck. 
- Azeem: Where I come from, we talk to our women. We do not drug them with plants. 
- ... I wanna be the bee-blower-upper-guy's friend. I get stung by a bee and as payback... he blows up the entire colony and scares the crap out of an entire suburban neighborhood? Yes, please. This dude rules.
...
Never underestimate the power of an idiot, especially when joined by idiot friends. 
- Located on their website, OCZ lists overall return rate of their storage solutions at only 0.57% as of December 15, 2014. OCZ also claims that 0.31% of their total manufactured drives are confirmed as defective, meaning that only a tad over half the returned drives are actually faulty. 
- Chronic surpluses are a way of stealing demand from elsewhere. They export unemployment to other countries. This matters in an era of "secular stagnation" and excess global savings. Societies are entitled to retaliate once this gets out of hand.

 Nor does this mercantilist policy make any sense for Germany itself. The surpluses are being recycled into capital flows abroad with a negative rate of return, eroding the wealth base that the country will need over the next 10 years as it goes into precipitous demographic decline. Historians will view the Schroder/Merkel era as a series of policy blunders.

The sooner Germany abandons fiscal fetishism and invests its own money in its own country for its own good, the better it will be for everybody. 
- A 33-year-old man was kidnapped at gun point and gangraped by three women.

They stole his semen and threw him out of the car before fleeing.

This shocking incident occurred in Kwazakhele township in South Africa. Three women came in a BMW and dragged a man walking on the street into the car. They took him some distance and tried to arouse him by fondling him. When that did not work, they made him force drink a potion, which aroused him. They then raped him by turns and collected his semen. They stored the semen in a freezer box and pushed him out of the car.

The victim is identified as Constable Mncedi Mbombo and is a constable. The traumatized man approached the police authorities and lodged a complaint.

What is shocking is that the road is a busy one with over 7000 vehicles plying on it every day.
The internet has opened the doors to a glittering global bazaar of endless new products and services to try. It has never been easier to discover prices and transact. The internet has created deep and liquid global markets in which we can trade with perfect strangers. It's no longer necessary to know the name of your local shopkeeper. Brand loyalty is shot. We'll buy from whoever, wherever, as long as they name the lowest price.

In a sense, it is liberating, the worlds that have opened up to us. And there have been enormous benefits: cheaper prices and the availability of a vast array of new goods to consume. Consumption is, after all, the economists' highest goal.
- "Our experience tells us most employees who accept a counter offer will leave the organisation within six to twelve months anyway. Counter offering employees is a very short-term strategy."

"A better option is to ensure the employment experience being offered is as good as it can be, day in, day out. Employers need to find out what motivates their IT personnel and then improve satisfaction around those drivers.

"By the time you have a resignation letter on your desk or find yourself involved in a counter offer situation the battle, and the employee, is already lost."

Ending Disease and Disability/Extending Life, Prophets/Pre-Cogs, and More

On Disease/Disability/Ageing: - for interest's sake, I decided to see what it would be like to see whether realistically we can cure ...