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FBI retains right to issue national security data requests in secret

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Enlarge (credit: Saul Gravy, Getty Images)

A federal appeals court is giving the Federal Bureau of Investigation a big boost when it comes to secretly investigating national security affairs. The 9th US Circuit Court of Appeals on Monday upheld federal rules prohibiting companies from promptly disclosing to customers that the FBI is demanding a user's private data with a National Security Letter (NSL).

The FBI annually issues thousands of so-called NSLs to ISPs, financial institutions and telephone companies. A judge's signature is not required, and targets of NSLs cannot challenge them because they don't know they exist.

The Electronic Frontier Foundation, on behalf of Cloudfare and CREDO Mobile, brought a challenge to the gag orders under the First Amendment. They argued that the gag orders burdened the speech of companies that receive them. A federal judge in 2013 agreed, and declared NSLs unconstitutional for that reason.

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Romanikque
120 days ago
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"the FBI must review the need for the nondisclosure requirement of an NSL three years after the initiation of a full investigation and at the closure of the investigation. The bureau must terminate the nondisclosure requirement when the investigation is closed or when the 'facts no longer support nondisclosure,' the FBI must review the need for the nondisclosure."

Self regulation is really what they came up with here? I'm sure the FBI will take that burden very seriously....
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Trump team endorses FCC rollback of Obama-era net neutrality rules

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Enlarge / President Donald Trump. (credit: Getty Images News | Pool)

The Trump administration supports the Federal Communications Commission effort to overturn net neutrality rules passed during the Obama years, a White House spokesperson said yesterday.

"The previous administration went about this the wrong way by imposing rules on ISPs through the FCC's Title II rulemaking power,"White House Deputy Press Secretary Sarah Sanders told reporters yesterday. "We support the FCC chair's efforts to review and consider rolling back these rules and believe that the best way to get fair rules for everyone is for Congress to take action and create regulatory and economic certainty."

The net neutrality rules passed in 2015 are enforced with the FCC's Title II authority over common carriers; a previous version of the rules that did not rely upon Title II was thrown out in court. Under Chairman Ajit Pai's leadership, the Republican-controlled FCC took a preliminary vote to undo the Title II classification and the net neutrality rules in May.

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Romanikque
120 days ago
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Get ready for round 47 of this fight...
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A cosmic selfie for your birthday!

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What if I told you you’ll never have to search for the perfect birthday or anniversary gift ever again? Once you get the concept behind the SpaceTime Coordinates Memento, you’ll agree it’s the best way to commemorate an important day in the life of a person you care for. The STC Memento is a simple, unsuspecting looking disc with rings and holes on it… at first glance. However, these designs aren’t arbitrary. They’re a portrait of the solar system, and its exact formation on the day of your choice. So the pendant for your birthday in your year literally is a map of the position of the planets around the sun on that day, in that year! That pattern is unique to you and doesn’t recur for at least another 500 years. Plus, these coordinates are backed by NASA data, if the idea itself wasn’t impressive enough!

The STC Memento is one of those products that are at the convergence of a great idea, and marvelous execution. Each disc shaped Memento is 3D printed in either plastic or metal. They come in two sizes and a wide array of materials (including precious metals, for those perfect jubilee moments!) Each material brings a different dimension to the STC Memento and you can choose between polished and matte finishes. The STC Memento’s design makes it a beautiful choice for a pendant, or bracelet ornament. Especially if you opt for the silver, gold, rose gold or platinum build. The plastic/aluminum/steel variants can be hung in a keyring too, or converted into a push-pin for your bag. They even come with custom-made story cards, and image files that you can use to make your own memorabilia. Is there any better way to celebrate a special day?! I think not! So go ahead, gift yourself a solar-system selfie!

Designer: govy

Buy It Here: $25.00

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Romanikque
381 days ago
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neat
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christophersw
378 days ago
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Court: Uber drivers are company employees not self-employed contractors

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Uber drivers have the same employment rights as other full-time employees in Britain, a court has ruled in a landmark decision which looks likely to send shockwaves through the nation's so-called "gig economy."

The ruling means that drivers are now entitled to earn the national minimum wage, holiday pay, sick pay, and other benefits, after the San Francisco-based taxi firm lost a case brought against them by two drivers backed by the GMB union. Uber had argued that it was a tech firm rather than a transport one, and that as its drivers were self-employed contractors it was not obliged to provide the kinds of statutory employment rights full-time workers would expect.

According to the GMB, the Central London Employment Tribunal's decision will have ramifications in other industries which rely on casualised labour, and that "similar contracts masquerading as bogus self employment will all be reviewed."

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Romanikque
382 days ago
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Baltimore, MD
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CenturyLink to buy Level 3, get another 200,000 miles of fiber

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Enlarge / CenturyLink servers. (credit: CenturyLink)

CenturyLink today announced a deal to purchase Level 3 Communications in a merger that would give CenturyLink another 200,000 miles of fiber and make it a bigger player in the business network market. CenturyLink will reportedly pay $25 billion, and the deal is valued at $34 billion when accounting for the Level 3 debt that will be assumed by CenturyLink.

CenturyLink has nearly 6 million residential Internet customers in the US US, but makes about 60 percent of its revenueselling network services to businesses. Level 3 sells only to businesses, and 76 percent of the combined company's revenue will come from business customers.

The companies hope to complete the merger by the third quarter of 2017. If approved by the Federal Communications Commission and other regulators, the deal will greatly expand CenturyLink's fiber footprint in the US and overseas.

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Romanikque
382 days ago
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Baltimore, MD
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Animated GIFs Illustrating the Art of Japanese Wood Joinery

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Japanese wood joinery dates back to the seventh century and is a craftsmanship technique that involves complicated, interlocking wooden joints that form bonds without the use of nails, screws or adhesives. Even until recent times when carpentry books began to be published, mastery of these woodworking techniques remained the fiercely guarded secret of family carpentry guilds.


Several years ago a young Japanese man working in automobile marketing discovered one such book. “I was fascinated by the traditional techniques of creating strong bonds without the use of nails or adhesive,” he says, speaking with Spoon & Tamago. But the instructions were very systematic and difficult to visualize. So he began ordering wood joinery books from all over the world but was unable to find any that were fully comprehensive. And the two-dimensional stills weren’t helpful either. were didn’t help all that much. So he began to create his own three-dimensional, animated illustrations.

Working with self-taught woodworking skills and mechanical design software Fusion360, he began creating his animations and posting them the to a twitter account: @TheJoinery_jp.

Wood joinery is a dying art but the man behind these animations has hope. “3D printing and woodworking machinery has enabled us to create complicated forms fairly easily” he says, indicating that wood joinery techniques have plenty of applications for digital processing and manufacturing as well. “I want to organize all the joinery techniques and create a catalog of them all.”












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Romanikque
396 days ago
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Holy Cow!
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