Tory chairman accused of smearing party rivals' Wikipedia entries

Wikipedia says that Grant Shapps, the bullying, untruthful millionaire spam kingpin who chairs the UK Conservative Party is behind an account that vandalised the entries for senior party officials and edited out references to Shapps's spamming career. Read the rest

Fast, accurate paper and fabric cutting with a rotary cutter

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Create a wireless network from any outlet on your electrical system

Our kitchen is a Wifi deadspot. I've tried using wireless extenders, but I think my walls have chicken wire in them, turning every room into a Faraday cage. This Trendnet Powerline power-to-wireless access point ($(removed)) is exactly what I was looking for.

Powerline is a sort-of standard for data networking over an existing electrical system. I already had a Powerline adapter (this one) that's plugged into my router, so I simply plugged the Powerline wireless access point into an AC outlet in the kitchen and configured it up by plugging an Ethernet cable between it and my laptop. In a matter of minutes, our kitchen had Internet that is good enough for streaming HD video. I'm going to get another one for our living room.

Image: Networking Reviews Read the rest

Harlem Renaissance chorus dancer, 102 years old, sees self on film for the first time

Alice Barker was a chorus line dancer during the Harlem Renaissance of the the 1930s and 40s.

Human rescues dying drone from sky

The poor thing's batteries died. Nice save, bro.

Mickey Mouse Treasures book – pockets, pouches and fold-outs filled with removable replicas of Disney memorabilia

The Mickey Mouse Treasures is literally a treasure trove of Mickey artifacts. Contained within the hard-cover book’s 63 pages are pockets, pouches, and fold-outs containing removable replicas of select Disney memorabilia from the Walt Disney Archives. This is as close as anyone can get to handling the real items without actually rummaging through the archives (not without SUPER special permission). Every item has been scanned and printed (front and back, inside and out) as is, showing every detail and decades of age.

The replica items represent the history and evolution of Mickey Mouse throughout the decades. Examples include an animation cell and background, a letter from Eleanor Roosevelt suggesting a cartoon idea, a Mickey Mouse Club membership mailer, a “Fantasia” premiere theater program, and much more. These gems supplement the plethora of additional images and photos found on the book’s pages, along with a brief written history by Robert Tieman.

While the book may be short on words, a picture is worth a thousand of them. Turn those pictures into three-dimensional replicas, and you have a book that you can “read” for years to come. When you’re ready to rest your eyes, the book and its treasures are safely stored within a hard slip cover. – Robert Nava

See sample pages from this book at Wink. Read the rest

US Congress to vote on 'cybersecurity' bills that are basically surveillance bills in disguise

Congress is expected to vote on two 'cybersecurity' bills sometime in the next week that are essentially surveillance bills in disguise. Trevor Timm writes in this editorial, cross-posted on the Freedom of the Press blog, about how they affect journalists and whistleblowers.

Cops can’t hold suspects without probable cause: Supreme Court

The Supreme Court ruled 6-3 today that it is unconstitutional to hold a suspect without probable cause, even if it's for less than 10 minutes.

In Rodriguez v. United States a man named Dennys Rodriguez was pulled over by police in Nebraska for driving erratically. The officer asked Rodriguez if could walk his drug-sniffing dog around Rodriguez' car. Rodriguez said no. The officer called for a backup officer and detained Rodriguez for “seven or eight minutes” until the other officer arrived. The first officer then got his dog and did a walk-around the car. The dog detected drugs and Rodriguez was charged with possessing methamphetamine.

According to the Supreme Court, though, that search of Rodriguez’s car was illegal, and the evidence gathered in it should not be used at trial. While officers may use a dog to sniff around a car during the course of a routine traffic stop, they cannot extend the length of the stop in order to carry it out.

“[T]he tolerable duration of police inquiries in the traffic-stop context is determined by the seizure’s ‘mission’ — to address the traffic violation that warranted the stop,” Ginsburg ruled. “Authority for the seizure thus ends when tasks tied to the traffic infraction are — or reasonably should have been — completed.”

The three staunchest civil liberties foes of the court – Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, and Anthony Kennedy – predictably disagreed with the ruling. Thomas wrote in his dissenting opinion: “But because [the police officer] made [the suspect] wait for seven or eight extra minutes until a dog arrived, he evidently committed a constitutional violation. Read the rest

Man snubbed by senior couple on cruise ship accused of battering them unconscious

Graeme Finlay, 53, is being tried in court for severely beating a senior couple who snubbed him at the dinner table on a Canary Islands cruise ship. The man, 70, suffered extensive facial injuries and the woman, 69, fractured two vertebrae.

Finlay sat with the couple and another couple but felt he had been snubbed after trying to make conversation.

He later found himself in a lift with the Phillips and said: “You ignored me, I want an apology.”

Finlay claims that Mr Phillips’ response was to tell him to “fuck off” and said the argument continued as they got out of the lift.

Finlay’s barrister Peter Kilgour put it to Mr Phillips: “Mr Finlay walked away and you called him a rude wanker and lashed out at him with your crutch.”

Mr Phillips replied: “No never in my life have I hit anyone, not even my wife, you can ask her.”

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Baby Jesus bong

The most high. Read the rest

Astronomy: Now's a great time to view Venus and Jupiter in the night skies.

“Right now, two planets dominate the sky after sunset: Venus in the west, and Jupiter high to the south.”

Michele Leonhart, head of scandal-plagued DEA, expected to resign

Michele Leonhart, who has reigned over an out-of-control Drug Enforcement Administration since 2007, is expected to resign as administrator soon. Read the rest

Iceman Gay

Marvel's character, one of the original X-Men, is to be outed. Read the rest

Games Not Allowed

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Take lots of dietary supplements? You may have increased cancer risk, says new meta-study.

Dr. Tim Byers, who is the director for cancer prevention and control at the University of Colorado Cancer Center, conducted a meta-analysis of 12 trials involving more than 300,000 people, over 12 years -- and found that high doses of certain vitamin supplements were linked to increased odds that a person would develop certain kinds of cancer.

The summary of his paper, released this week: “While dietary supplements may be advertised to promote health, new research shows a link between consumption of over-the-counter supplements and increased cancer risk, if the supplements are taken in excess of the recommended dietary amount.”

"We are not sure why this is happening at the molecular level but evidence shows that people who take more dietary supplements than needed tend to have a higher risk of developing cancer," wrote Byers in the study findings.

"This is not to say that people need to be afraid of taking vitamins and minerals," says Byers. "If taken at the correct dosage, multivitamins can be good for you. But there is no substitute for good, nutritional food."

From a CBS News report:

Byers began his investigation on the association between supplements and cancer risk 20 years ago. He and many other researchers observed that people who ate more fruits and vegetables cut their risk for cancer. Byers and his colleagues wondered if taking supplements that provide the same vitamins and minerals as fruits and vegetables could offer similar protection.

But his findings suggested just the opposite -- rather than warding off cancer, taking lots of supplements may raise a person's risk.

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Willie Nelson launching a personally-branded strain of marijuana

Music legend and noted marijuana aficionado Willie Nelson plans to launch a personal brand of cannabis that he intends to make "the best on the market." Read the rest

Sony sends pre-emptive threat letter to journalists

A lawyer retained by Sony has sent threat-letters to media outlets hinting at repercussions if they report on material in the huge dump of internal Sony docs from the North Korea hack that Wikileaks put online. Read the rest

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