Trump to sign yet another trash executive order, this time on 'the cyber'

'President' Donald Trump is expected to sign an executive order addressing cybersecurity today, Reuters reports in an item that cites "two sources familiar with the situation.” The EO is expected to be Trump's first action to address what he called a top priority of his administration during the Presidential campaign.

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Major U.S. websites inaccessible in "cyber attack" on domain name system

Much of the web struggled to stay on its feet today, with outages bringing down U.S.-based services and sites such as Amazon, Twitter and Netflix. A massive distributed denial of service (DDOS) attack on Dyn DNS is reportedly the cause: as a popular provider of domain-name lookup services, it falling over means that browsers simply don't know where to find websites.

Monitoring: Services have been restored to normal as of 13:20 UTC. Posted about 1 hour ago. Oct 21, 2016 - 13:36 UTC

Update : This attack is mainly impacting US East and is impacting Managed DNS customers in this region. Our Engineers are continuing to work on mitigating this issue. Posted about 2 hours ago. Oct 21, 2016 - 12:45 UTC

Investigating: Starting at 11:10 UTC on October 21st-Friday 2016 we began monitoring and mitigating a DDoS attack against our Dyn Managed DNS infrastructure. Some customers may experience increased DNS query latency and delayed zone propagation during this time. Updates will be posted as information becomes available.

This is "probably why half the internet is shut down today," reports Gizmodo, which offers the following list of sites that were down for the count.

ActBlue, Basecamp, Big cartel, Box, Business Insider, CNN, Cleveland.com, Esty, Github, Grubhub, Guardian.co.uk, HBO Now, Iheart.com (iHeartRadio), Imgur, Intercom, Intercom.com, Okta, PayPal, People.com, Pinterest, Playstation Network, Recode, Reddit, Spotify, Squarespace Customer Sites, Starbucks rewards/gift cards, Storify.com, The Verge, Twillo, Twitter, Urbandictionary.com (lol), Weebly, Wired.com, Wix Customer Sites, Yammer, Yelp, Zendesk.com, Zoho CRM,

Update: The Amazon AWS status page is a useful bookmark, as the service backends many websites and services. Read the rest

Fantastic radio show about virtual reality, c. 1992

Media artist Michael Naimark writes:

In 1990, right as the first VR wave was swelling, Stewart Brand and Grateful Dead manager Jon Mcintyre concocted a scheme to produce an invitation-only 24-hour VR event modeled after the Electric Cool-Aid Acid test. They convinced Colossal Pictures, the largest soundstage in San Francisco, to host it. Dozens of demos and scores of talks were presented, by far the largest and most prominent VR event of its kind. I directed the video production. In total, 66 hours of video, both from a pro crew and a “basket full of prosumer cameras”, was shot.

Shortly after the event, David (Lawrence), Jim (McKee), and Earwax received an NEA grant to make a radio show. The funding enabled all of the video to be logged and transcribed. From it they made several versions, organized in short 1-4 minute themed sections. Their style was very “pre RadioLab”. From the New American Radio website:

Virtual Paradise—The Reality Tape (1992-93)

Earwax Productions with David Lawrence. An exciting production created in the spirit of the technology it focuses on. Virtual Paradise examines the ideas, issues, and attitudes that currently surround virtual reality. As this technology evolves, it brings with it the potential for redefining our most basic assumptions about media, experience, and reality. Virtual Paradise features many voices recorded at Cyberthon, a 24-hour virtual reality event presented by Whole Earth Institute in 1990. It also includes interviews with such visionaries as science-fiction author William Gibson, VR architect Jaron Lanier, artificial reality pioneer Myron Krueger, and Timothy Leary—all intercut with music and sound effects and shaped into a highly entertaining and insightful "virtual" tape composition.

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Turns out the U.S. military really is dropping “cyber bombs” on ISIS

There's been an awful lot of talk about “cyber pathogens” and “cyber bombs” lately from the mouths of American officials discussing terrorism, and how we will vanquish it. President Obama mentioned “cyber ops” against Islamic State terrorists in one recent address. Today, we know a little more about what was behind last week's cyber-hawkish hacking headlines.

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U.S. military claims to be dropping 'cyber bombs' on ISIS

America's military forces are dropping "cyber bombs" on Islamic State terrorist groups for the first time, Deputy Defense Secretary Robert Work told reporters accompanying him on a military flight on Tuesday.

The ISIS internet attacks, whatever the particulars really may be, are part of a stepped-up coordinated effort to put increasing pressure on the militant organization.

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The perfect suffix for your "cyber-" buzzword

Adding "cyber-" to any initiative is a sure-fire budget- and approval-winner, at least in the military industrial complex. If you're struggling to figure out what to use on your opening slide, here's a handy crib-sheet. Read the rest