The Intercept has published a fascinating, and eerie, investigation into the iconic Brutalist tower at 33 Thomas Street in Manhattan. Built to withstand a nuclear bomb, the modern fortress has no windows. At night, the building is a dark shadow blocking the illuminated towers around it.But...
The National Security Agency is researching opportunities to collect foreign intelligence — including the possibility of exploiting internet-connected biomedical devices like pacemakers, according to a senior official.
When asked if the entire scope of the Internet of Things — billions of interconnected devices — would be “a security nightmare or a signals intelligence bonanza,” [Richard Ledgett, the NSA’s deputy director] replied, “Both.” — the Intercept
For more on the world of the Internet of Things, check out these links:Don't get smart with me: reassessing the "Internet of Things" in the homeEnlisting the Internet of Things against California's historic droughtMap Plots the World's Internet DevicesTraffic Lights are Easy...
It’s a Thursday morning in Beijing, and the world’s most famous living artist, Ai Weiwei, is sitting with one of the world’s most controversial technologists, Jacob Appelbaum, in the second-floor lobby of the East Hotel. [...]
On a whim, Ai suggests that they call Wikileaks founder Julian Assange, who has been living for the last two years at the Ecuadorian embassy in London. [...]
Ai and Assange talk for several minutes about the mundanities of the dissident life. — fusion.net
Dressed in reflective yellow construction gear while working under the cover of darkness early Monday, a small group of artists installed a tribute to NSA-leaker Edward Snowden in a Brooklyn park.
But it was gone by midday.
The Snowden bust stood atop a column at the Prison Ship Martyrs Monument in Fort Greene Park, a site built to honor more than 11,000 American prisoners of war who died aboard British ships during the American Revolutionary War. — mashable.com
The idea behind CV dazzle is simple. Facial recognition algorithms look for certain patterns when they analyze images: patterns of light and dark in the cheekbones, or the way color is distributed on the nose bridge—a baseline amount of symmetry. These hallmarks all betray the uniqueness of a human visage. If you obstruct them, the algorithm can’t separate a face from any other swath of pixels. — theatlantic.com
Looking at the diagram of a restricted image reminded me of the ubiquitous stock photograph of the NSA, the one reminiscent of the Kaaba and among the few used by news outlets. The photograph’s ubiquity, along with its subject’s resemblance to another opaque monument, serves as shorthand for an institution that seeks to be perceived as beyond human comprehension or accountability.
I made my pilgrimage not to the NSA, however, but to adjacent temples of lesser gods. — creativetimereports.org
... thousands of hard-hatted construction workers in sweat-soaked T-shirts are laying the groundwork for the newcomers’ own temple and archive, a massive complex so large that it necessitated expanding the town’s boundaries. Once built, it will be more than five times the size of the US Capitol.
Rather than Bibles, prophets, and worshippers, this temple will be filled with servers, computer intelligence experts, and armed guards. — wired.com
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