It's hard to say what's more interesting about this video in which a CNN reporter tours the New South China Mall, the largest mall in the world when it was built five years ago, now a deserted ghost-mall. On the one had, there's the "eerie urban landscape" of the mall itself, and on the other, there's the comforting, sinophobic narrative of the clip: "China's economy is huge and growing, America's is contracting, but look, it's all smoke and mirrors! The Chinese growth is just an illusion!"
Stephen sez, "I recently helped set my grandad get set up on his new PC and spotted a photo of him from when he was about 20 years old. It was in a sorry state, so I emailed it to myself and posted it on Reddit, where the community came together and restored it beyond its original state! It was amazing what they did, and so I printed off everyone's contributions and framed my favourite. I then got my girlfriend to record the moment I gave my Grandad, so that I could share it with the people who did the work!
The result is a funny, yet heart-warming video."
Katana Leigh sez, "I want to provide memorable ways to learn to draw that are interesting and visually entertaining. The proportions of a red spotted button mushroom are the same as a skull and these LSD colors provide maximum contrast so you can see the process and hopefully copy it. Not your boring art lessons but a new way to think about seeing."
Here's a quick and fascinating look at "Robot Self-Assembly by Folding: A Printed Inchworm Robot," presented at the 2013 IEEE International Conference on Robotics and Automation. The authors demonstrated a foldable inchworm robot that actually folds itself into shape. The goal is to have all the components placed on the robot's shrinky-dink surface using a robotic pick-and-place machine, so that the inchworm robots can be produced, assembled, and set a-inching on their way without human intervention.
The tricky part of the process is the folding of the robot itself: installing the battery and motor is trivial enough for a human to do, which means that a relatively simple pick and place robot should have no problems doing the same thing. This means that these robots have the potential to scale massively: they can be printed out of cheap materials, they fold themselves together, and another robot can plonk some hardware on them and they’re good to go.
Brian Krebs delves into the world of "booter" services, low-level, amateurish denial-of-service websites where you can use PayPal to have your video-game enemies' computers knocked off the Internet by floods of traffic. Many booter services run off the same buggy codebase, and Krebs was apparently able to get inside the administrative interfaces for them and get some insight into their business.
One such is "Asylum," which appears to be run by Chandler Downs, a 17-year-old Chicago-area honor-roll student who reportedly made $35,000 in PayPal payments in exchange for denial-of-service attacks. Asylum even has an ad (narrated by an actor hired through the casual labor exchange site Fiverr) where, for $18/month, you can launch unlimited DoSes against "skids on Xbox live."
Young Mr Downs claimed that his service was not used to attack people, but only for legitimate stress-testing, then he changed his story and said he was only managing the service for someone else, and "You are able to block any of the 'attacks' as you say with rather basic networking knowledge. If you're unable to do such a thing you probably shouldn't be running a website in the first place."
Nixon noted that all of the packets incoming from the traffic she ordered to her test machines appeared to have been sent from spoofed IP addresses. However, when she used the “Down or Not?” host checker function on Asylum, the site responded from what appears to be the real Internet address of one of the servers that are used to launch the attacks: 188.8.131.52. She noted that a booter service that appears to be a clone of Asylum – vastresser.ru – is hosted on the same server.
Asylum, like most other booter services, is hidden behind Cloudflare, a content distribution network that helps sites block attacks that services like Asylum are designed to launch. Apparently, getting attacked is something of an occupational hazard for those running a booter services. Behind the Cloudflare proxy, Nixon found that the secret IP for the Asylum stresser Web frontend was 184.108.40.206.
Both IP addresses map back to Voxility, a hosting facility in Romania that has a solid reputation in the cybercrime underground for providing so-called “bulletproof hosting” services, or those that generally turn a deaf ear to abuse complaints and requests from law enforcement officials. In January 2013, I profiled one data center at this ISP called Powerhost.ro that was being used as the home base of operations for the organized cybercrime gang that is currently facing charges of developing and distributing the Gozi Banking Trojan.
According to Krebs, "Between the week of Mar. 17, 2013 and Mar. 23, 2013, asylumstresser.com was used to launch more than 10,000 online attacks."
In details your support will enable us to complete:
* CG character design, modelling, animation, texturing, lighting and final rendering
* Digital Set Extensions (matte paintings, digital environments, effects)
* Compositing: rotoscoping, green screen keying, plate clean up, CG implementation into live action footage
* Conforming and Grading
Furthermore, your contributions will help us cover the costs of:
* Post production Sound and Film Soundtrack
* Film Identity Design (Titles, Poster, General communication material)
* Deliverables (DVD/Blu-Ray masters, digital master, materials, legal documentation)
* Marketing and Publicity
* Festival submissions and Distribution costs
Kern County deputies are accused of savagely beating a man to death while he begged for his life and then intimidating witnesses into giving up their cameras and phones in a coverup. The victim, David Sal Silva, was a 33-year-old father of four, and is alleged to have been publicly intoxicated in Bakersfield, CA, when Kern County deputies and California Highway Patrol officers began to beat him. After he was dead, the officers are said to have then systematically intimidated all witnesses into giving up their cameras and phones:
John Tello, a criminal law attorney, is representing two witnesses who took video footage and five other witnesses to the incident. He said his clients are still shaken by what they saw.
"When I arrived to the home of one of the witnesses that had video footage, she was with her family sitting down on the couch, surrounded by three deputies," Tello said.
Tello said the witness was not allowed to go anywhere with her phone and was being quarantined inside her home.
When Tello tried to talk to the witness in private and with the phone, one of the deputies stopped him and told him he couldn't take the phone anywhere because it was evidence to the investigation, the attorney said.
"This was not a crime scene where the evidence was going to be destroyed," Tello said. "These were concerned citizens who were basically doing a civic duty of preserving the evidence, not destroying it as they (sheriff deputies) tried to make it seem."
A search warrant wasn't presented to either of the witnesses until after Tello arrived, he said, adding that one phone was seized before the warrant was produced.
Tello said the phone of the first witness was taken after the deputies told him he was either going to give up the phone the easy way or the hard way.
"They basically told him they were either going to keep him at this house all night until they could find a judge to sign a search warrant or he could just turn over his phone," he said.
MC Frontalot sez, "At long last, here's the third of three videos from my album Solved that were funded by fans via Kickstarter. It was directed by Carly Monardo and features my nerdcore rap compatriots ZeaLouS1 and Dr. Awkward.
Lyrics and credits are on the youtube page. The single is out today, too, and it's free at frontalot.com.
Bright-colored robotic space rhinoceri
that we pilot — why? 'Cause they're in supply.
Plus, we heed the cry of our planet's population
to defend them. We report to battle stations!
Split screen — ready! — and our rhinos are rocket ships
with fully articulated tusk, jaws, and hips.
They come equipped with individual special attacks,
none with a lack (but a couple a little bit slack).
I'm not naming any pilot specifically,
but we're all color coded so you notice that typically
I (in the gold) lead the charge, do the most damage
to whatever very giant space invader managed
to threaten the globe in yet another of our episodes.
This week? Malevolent galactic nematode!
Already beat up the squad when we faced him.
I'm calling it: let's form a giant robot and waste him.
Astronaut Chris Hadfield -- the tweeting, tumbling Canadian astronaut who's a one-dude astro-ambassador from the space programme to the Internet -- has produced and released a video of his own performance of David Bowie's "Space Oddity" (AKA the "Major Tom song") on the ISS. He adapts the lyrics a bit to his own situation -- and changes out the whole dying-in-space chorous -- but is otherwise pretty faithful. From the credits, it appears that David Bowie gave permission for this, though that's not entirely clear. I would think that not even a major record label would be hamfisted and cack-handed enough to send a takedown notice over this one (it's been suggested for Boing Boing more than any other link in my memory), but I'm prepared to be surprised.
Alex sez, "Algoraves are parties where people come together to dance to algorithms. It generally involves some live coding but any producers making music "wholly or predominantly characterised by the emission of a succession of repetitive conditionals' are welcome. Generally some aspect of the algorithmic processes are visible, but the focus is actually on the audience, and having serious fun.
We've had a few parties across the UK and Germany, and are spreading further afield in Mexico and Australia. The concept is still developing though, and is being defined by whoever turns up."
I am a committed Tabasco Sauce fiend. It is neither too hot, nor too mild, nor too vinegary -- I put it on pretty much everything. I'd use it for contact lens solution if I could. My life was radically transformed by my discovery of tiny, individual Tabasco sachets that aviation security X-rays don't identify as liquids, which means I can carry Tabasco with me at all times without worrying about getting stopped at airports for not having a stupid baggie with my liquids in it.
I found this video describing the production of Tabasco absolutely riveting. The fermentation process, the salted barrels, and let us not forget le petit baton rouge.
EFF is celebrating the new inductees into its Takedown Hall of Shame with a new cooking show! In this episode, EFF staffer Parker Higgins bakes a "Mean Spirited Censorship Pie" -- which is what all have to call the classic Southern dessert formerly known as "Derby Pie," now that Kern's Kitchen in Louisville is threatening to sue anyone who posts a family recipe with that name.
It's sarcastic, carbtastic, and informative -- delicious!
James sez, "The boys of Viva La Dirt League (a New Zealand boy-band parody group specialising in songs about Starcraft!) have just released this funny, awesome, video about the pleasures of buying indie games. I think their work deserves your viewing!"
I concur. This is what boy bands should all be about: cussing, indie game references, and fursuits.