A group of Spanish activists organized under the #QuerellaPaRato ("Lawsuit for Rato") hashtag, have raised a large private fund to pay for a civil action against Rodrigo Rato, the disgraced former chairman of Bankia, one of the banks at the heart of the Spanish financial crisis. The activists also plan on paying private investigators to amass as dossier detailing Rato's wrongdoings in the hopes that Spain's prosecutors will bring criminal charges against the banker.
In the first 12 hours of the campaign, organisers reported that dozens of Bankia shareholders, as well as former employees, agreed to testify against Rato in a lawsuit. According to a survey by Spanish paper El País, 91% of respondents want an investigation of Rato's management of Bankia...
"Bankia did not last even two years; how is it that Rodrigo Rato leaves his position, hastily and receiving millions in compensations without anyone in an institution having asked nothing before, without anyone asking for an explanation, and nobody asking for an investigation? The Spanish political class is complicit in covering up anything that could have happened, and even more troubling, will continue to do so."
Inman first lampooned FunnyJunk last year, after discovering its users had scraped most of his own website; in return, he received a sneering response that exhorted FunnyJunk's fans to "contact" Inman. But the boot was soon on the other foot: The Oatmeal's comic retort was so widely linked—because it was funny—that it is now among the highest-ranking results when you search for FunnyJunk itself.
You want ME to pay YOU $20,000 for hosting MY unlicensed comics on YOUR shitty website for the past three years? No, I've got a better idea.
1. I'm going to try and raise $20,000 in donations. 2. I'm going to take a photo of the raised money. 3. I'm going to mail you that photo, along with this picture of your mom seducing a Kodiak bear. 4. I'm going to take that money and donate half of it to the National Wildlife Federation and half of it to the American Cancer Society.
To this day, Inman points out, FunnyJunk maintains a substantially complete scraping of his site. But the funniest thing about FunnyJunk is, of course, that nothing there is funnier than the Streisand Effect.
The fine gent pictured to the top right is FunnyJunk's lawyer.
Last year Kyle Thiessen created a series of "fake month at the museum" five-minute short films that explore different odd facts from history and the natural world. I've just started watching these, and I'm totally hooked. Whatever you do, don't miss the epic food disasters and creepy underwater things. Thiessen's delivery is great, and he's a superb editor. Combined with fab material, these videos are the perfect knowledge-snack for happy mutants.
Etsy seller Packmania is selling this gigantic CAD$40 Legend of Zelda map/mural:
97x32" (8 FEET BY NEARLY 3 FEET!). Amazing wall mural of the map of The Legend of Zelda for the NES! This amazing centerpiece is printed on a heavy and durable fabric for indoor use. Extremely high quality and durable! Would make a perfect addition to a game room, kids room or man cave...OR pretty much anywhere. Totally unique and found only HERE.
[Video Link] "The Guns & Gardens crew launches a new reality show called Doomsday Design. In this episode we test the remote hunter killer target drone. Can the drone track and shoot an intruder? Will the drone's armor plating stand up the our AR15, SKS, 12 Gauge, .45 and more?"
Last week, Boing Boing presented a series of essays about movies that have had a profound effect on our invited essayists. We are extending the series for several additional days. See all the essays in the Mind Blowing Movies series. -- Mark
[Video Link] "The film you are about to see and hear is based on the life experiences of William Douglas Street, Jr. and Erik Dupin. Many of the characters appear as themselves, while others assume fictional personae."
Chameleon Street is a movie that blew my mind even before I saw it, and then once more when finally, after nearly a decade without a theatrical run, it was finally released on video.
What do I mean by that? In the early '90s, I was a teenager making a VHS tape of a short-lived news magazine TV show called Edge one evening, which happened to feature a curious story about a Sundance Jury Prizewinning film which, oddly, could not get a distributor to release it. There was no graphic content. It wasn't inaccessibly "arty," indeed it was very plainspoken. The root of the problem, the show explained, was that the plain speaking -- even if elegantly-worded -- was delivered by a very sharp-witted black guy. Wendell B. Harris Jr. not only wrote and directed, but he actually spoke every nuanced piece of dialog into the camera as the lead actor portraying Doug Street; who, more incredibly, was a real guy. From Wikipedia:
Chameleon Street is a 1989 independent film written, directed by and starring Wendell B. Harris, Jr.. It tells the story of a social chameleon who impersonates reporters, doctors and lawyers in order to make money.
The film is a satire based on the life of Detroit con artist and high school drop-out William Douglas Street, Jr., who successfully impersonated professional reporters, lawyers, athletes, extortionists, and surgeons, going so far as to perform more than 36 successful hysterectomies. A Sundance Film Festival press release in 2008 described it as "one of the first films to examine how mellifluously race, class, and role-playing morph into the social fabric of America." Chameleon Street won the Grand Jury Prize at the 1990 Sundance Film Festival.
The show went on to interview fellow prizewinner Steven Soderbergh, who said "I'd never seen a film like it," and Harris himself, who explained that in order to get it picked up, a company wanted to re-make the whole thing starring budding actor Will Smith; which, if they had gone through with it would have made Chameleon Street the first movie to be re-made in its native language in order to receive distribution. The show's interviews were interspersed with many clips including this one,which, frankly, blew my mind.
I soon went off to college where I served on my school's film committee for two years, where I pored through every distribution catalog and made calls looking for Chameleon Street, to no avail. Around that time, in 1994, I showed some friends the VHS tape in my dorm room. And that, I assumed, was that. Three or four years later, I got an excited phone call from my homie Camille: the video store on Chapman Highway had a copy! She was trying to convey the rush of ideas she'd just seen into a jumble of quotations and comments on editing techniques, particularly the pot dealer whose line "do you want to make some money!" was looped several times. At the time of it's 1989 release, this would have been an early example of what we would probably now consider a "hip-hop" type of an edit, but which was then either a first of an "early-adopter" type of thing. It was still fucking fresh as hell when I finally rushed over to the shop, rented and absorbed this film nearly a decade after its completion.
In the wake of a series of very high-profile password leaks, Brian Krebs talks to security researcher Thomas H. Ptacek about the best practices for securing passwords. The trick isn't to merely hash with a good salt -- you must use a slow password hash that takes a lot of work, so that making rainbow tables is impractical.
Ptacek: The difference between a cryptographic hash and a password storage hash is that a cryptographic hash is designed to be very, very fast. And it has to be because it’s designed to be used in things like IP-sec. On a packet-by-packet basis, every time a packet hits an Ethernet card, these are things that have to run fast enough to add no discernible latencies to traffic going through Internet routers and things like that. And so the core design goal for cryptographic hashes is to make them lightning fast.
Well, that’s the opposite of what you want with a password hash. You want a password hash to be very slow. The reason for that is a normal user logs in once or twice a day if that — maybe they mistype their password, and have to log in twice or whatever. But in most cases, there are very few interactions the normal user has with a web site with a password hash. Very little of the overhead in running a Web application comes from your password hashing. But if you think about what an attacker has to do, they have a file full of hashes, and they have to try zillions of password combinations against every one of those hashes. For them, if you make a password hash take longer, that’s murder on them.
So, if you use a modern password hash — even if you are hardware accelerated, even if you designed your own circuits to do password hashing, there are modern, secure password hashes that would take hundreds or thousands of years to test passwords on.
The problem is that you really need to make this design decision from the start -- it's hard to retrofit once you've got millions of users.
NY Daily News posted a fine gallery of old timey altered photos. Above, "Lincoln's head was placed atop South Carolina politician John Calhoun's body in this 1860 photo. Interestingly enough, Calhoun died in 1850." At left, the powerful Benito Mussolini would never require the services of a horse handler! "Historic photos that have been altered" (via Dave Pell's NextDraft)
Here are ten clever sucker bets from Richard Wiseman. They're a good mix of physics, logic, low trickery, concept-shifting, misdirection, topology, and breathtaking chutzpah. Seriously, I can't believe that he ever tried #10, because he is still breathing.
Cody Shaw, a first year Co-op Electrical Engineering student at the University of Waterloo, spun up these wonderful electronic business cards for his job-search: set a 9V battery on the contacts and vary the light on the photo-sensor and you get a wicked blinkenlights show!
There were quite a few idea revisions in my mind before I actually got around to spinning the PCB. Microcontroller? Basic LED’s? No circuitry at all? Finally I got the idea of using a 555 timer (after seeing something about worldwide 555 timer competitions on the EEVBlog) that would be outputting a clock to LED’s, which would flash depending on some external interaction to the timer.
First idea: a photoresistor of course! The external RC circuit worked perfectly in ambient light with a simple 10k photoresistor. I quickly ran into an issue though; if I wanted to use a photoresistor, I would have to make my PCB through hole. I was not able to find one surface mount photoresistor. Therefore, I had to “fabricate” my own! How does one do that?!
Current in parallel with a normal resistor, of course! A phototransistor could act in place of the photoresistor, limiting the current in the RC circuit control for the 555 timer. Some issues with this, of course, is that phototransistors are quite expensive, and I managed to purchase opaque top photoresisors (which Digikey first sent as Red LED’s… D’OH)! After some trial and error with a scope and a breadboard, a working 555 timer, LED blinking, opto-frequency controlled circuit formed.
Click here to play this episode. Gweek is a podcast where the editors and friends of Boing Boing talk about comic books, science fiction and fantasy, video games, TV shows, music, movies, tools, gadgets, apps, and other neat stuff.
My co-hosts for episode 55 are:
Ruben Bolling, the author of the weekly comic strip Tom the Dancing Bug, which premieres each week on Boing Boing,
Michael Pusateri, a lifelong tinkerer and former television tech executive for Disney who blogs at Cruftbox,
and Rainn Wilson, the actor and comedian best known for his role as Dwight Schrute in the hit series The Office. He’s also the founder of a very cool website and YouTube channel called Soul Pancake, which is devoted to discussing life’s big questions in art, philosophy, creativity, and spirituality.
Here are a few of the things we talked about in this episode:
An interview with Rainn about Soul Pancake, the Bahá’í Faith, and the Malibu Triathlon.