A bank has just been robbed. The only evidence left behind is grainy security camera footage – detectives have a blurry face, but nothing else to go off of. The photo gets enhanced and run through a database. A few drama-filled moments later, the computer spits out the name and address of a suspect.
This may sound like a terrible plot from an episode (every episode?) of CSI: Miami. But it’s also happening every day in police departments across the country. According to the Washington Post, police officers in 26 states are empowered to use facial recognition software in conjunction with a database of driver’s license photos to track down witnesses, verify IDs, and learn more about potential suspects. Over 120 million Americans appear in these facial recognition systems nationwide.
It doesn’t matter if you’ve never been arrested for a crime before – if you drive, the police…
View original post 212 more words
People are upset (or scared or confused or ambivalent) about the revelation that the National Security Agency is collecting information from Verizon concerning telephone calls made on its network. What does it all mean???
Let’s dive right in.
So the government is listening to all my Verizon calls, right?
What’s happening, then?
Verizon is handing over “all call detail records or ‘telephony metadata’ created by Verizon for communications between the United States and abroad; or wholly within the United States, including local telephone calls.”
They’re handing over my telephony metadata???
Apparently only if you’re using Verizon Business Network Services which, according to the New York Times, “is one of the nation’s largest telecommunications and Internet providers for corporations.”
Now that I’m upset about the possibility of my telephony metadata being shared, what is telephony…
View original post 800 more words
Have you heard about Mycobacterium vaccae yet? It is a type of good bacteria that you breathe in when you spend time in nature or dig in your garden. M. vaccae was discovered on accident during an experiment to find a cure for lung cancer, after boosting the immune system it was also observed that patients “emotional health, vitality, and cognitive function” had improved.
Christopher Lowry, a neuroscientist at the University of Bristol in England, had a hunch about how this process might work. “What we think happens is that the bacteria activate immune cells, which release chemicals called cytokines that then act on receptors on the sensory nerves to increase their activity,” he says.
Current studies are using this bacteria to shorten treatment for MDR-TB (multi-drug resistant tuberculosis) which will revolutionize TB care and control.
Within the last 10 years M. vaccae has been shown to:
– increase activity…
View original post 54 more words
Book: The Amulet of Samarkand
Author: Johnathan Stroud
This exciting tale revolves around Nathaniel, an eleven year old magician’s apprentice, Bartimaeas, a five thousand-year old djinni, and their adventures together. It all starts when Nathaniel gets humiliated by a magician named Lovelace. Nathaniel then Summons Bartimaeus to steal one of Lovelaces amulets. It turns out that the amulet is very powerful and Lovelace will do anything to get it back. When he finds out that Nathaniel has it he tries to kill him, so Nathaniel has to go into hiding. With an anti-magic rebellion going on as well, Nathaniel has to use his wits, and Bartimaeus’s help, to get out of the dangerous position he has put himself in.
Book: All-American Girl
Author: Meg Cabot
This is the story about how a regular high school named Sam Madison, saved the president’s life. It goes on to explain how her life dramatically changed afterward. The president names her teen ambassador to the U.N. and appoints her, an extremely artsy person, to decide the winner of an art contest. Not to mention that the president’s son might be in love with her. Sam’s life has just take an exciting turn.
If you want to buy this book go here.
Book: Blue Bloods
Author: Melissa De La Cruz
This story changes points of view between Schyler Van Alen, Bliss Llewellyn, and Mimi Force. Schyler is a social out cast, Bliss a Texan girl who has recently moved to New York, and Mimi is one of those popular girls. This book is about how Schyler and Bliss find out that they are vampires, or fallen angels, and that they and the other vampires, are being hunted by the Croatan, other wise known as the silver-bloods.
If you want to buy the book go here.
Author: Robin Wasserman
This story focusses around a seventeen year old girl named Lia Kahn. The story is set in the future where you can choose how smart, how athletic and good-looking your children are. Lia gets into a car accident and, being rich, she gets to test out a new technology. She gets “downloaded” into a new body. then the book goes on to show how her family and friends react to the new her. Later she meets others who have been “downloaded” as well. The book then explains how she goes about finding how she fits into the world.
If you want to buy the book go here.
There seems to be a consensus going around that farmers have no choice when it comes to the seed they choose to plant. Or if they do have a choice, large corporations like Monsanto force it upon them. And if anybody tries to voice their opinion and let the farmer’s themselves speak upon their choices, the individual suddenly becomes a pawn for Monsanto.
Okay so the above example may be a little extreme. Doesn’t mean I haven’t seen it happen again and again online. Why is it that because we are behind a computer it gives us the license to be disrespectful? Anyway, back to farmers. I was interested in what the farmers themselves have to say about their seed choices, how they choose the seed they do, and why do they CHOOSE to plant GMOs or maybe they don’t? So I asked several farmers some questions… And here’s what…
View original post 1,698 more words