Charlie Zaloom May 14, 2021 7:34 PM

Your Friday post always makes me chuckle. My first job, before working for Lynn McNulty in the ’80s, was on 72′ dragger, the “Atlantic Queen”. In the summer, we fished squid, just off the beach. We would get a heaping deck full and ‘pick’ 50 lbs into what looked like heavy duty laundry baskets. As the low-man on the crew totem pole, I would jump down into the hold and shovel ice into a waxed box and the mate would drop the fish baskets down to me. The trick was to dump the lowering basket into the box in one descending motion, then stow the box in the hold. Of course, the fearing squid would have ejected their ink by this time and the oozings from the basket would run down my up-reached arms. By the end of the day, my arms were completely caked black and salty. Getting back late at night, I’d fall asleep standing in the shower, leaned up against the wall until the water ran cold.

Strangely, it was one of the most satisfying jobs I ever had. We’d tie up to the dock and unload the catch, food for a couple thousand people, into a semi. As the junior crew member, I only had one “lay”, or share of the catch, but at 18 it was more cash than I thought could be made. Then we’d clomp up to the 2nd floor bar overlooking the docked fishing fleet, filthy, like everyone else in the bar, and drink and laugh.

ABC May 15, 2021 12:11 AM

@ Ismar • May 14, 2021 7:41 PM

More cases of mistery illness in CIA officers

It sounds like they’re drunk on rotgut liquor or high on legsl marijuana. It’s a bad hangover or something.

I wouldn’t want to be the one to tell them their careers are over — if that’s the CIA, certainly no worse than their counterparts in other countries.

If they can’t attend local AA or NA meetings or something like that, then we in the United States should not be sending diplomatic agents to socialize with unrepentant drunks and avowed drug addicts in foreign countries.

The CIA has had this problem before.

Isn’t there a $50,000 pill or something like that “as seen on TV” supposed to cure Hepatitis C?

Hedo May 15, 2021 1:30 AM

After reading this Bitcoin related story:

I have decided to unMusk Mr. eLoan Musk.

He is not stupid, he’s just a put-on. He just wants your money by making you believe you are saving the planet by driving a Tesla because it doesn’t run on fossil fuels.

Mining, and extracting/processing Lithium leaves an Eco-Apocalypse behind, far and wide around and within any area where it’s done.
How many Tesla or Prius owners know about this?
eLoan does know it but he can always turn it around in his favor.

Winter May 15, 2021 3:23 AM

“The “leaky” vaccines will make things worse, and the Seychelles are an example of this. The vaccines are creating asymptomatic “super spreaders”…”

Not really. Vaccination prevents illness and death and reduces the period and amount of virus spread, R0. So it reduces new infections. We see this in countries with high degrees of vaccination, e.g., Israel and UK.

But not dying or having to visit a hospital are in itself already good things.

Claiming vaccines must be perfect or they are worthless (or dangerous) is a straw man used often by the anti-vaxxer movement.

BTW, the Seychelles used Sinovac and AZ. And let in ample infected tourists.

Winter May 15, 2021 4:19 AM

“Mining, and extracting/processing Lithium leaves an Eco-Apocalypse behind, far and wide around and within any area where it’s done.”

Driving electrical has environmental problems. Driving on fossil fuels kills the environment.

It is a balance. What should we do? Drive electrical and clean up the mess, or drive fossil and have nothing to clean up anymore?

Rj May 15, 2021 8:02 AM

So where does the electricity come from to run the eletric cars?

I comes from electrical generating plants, most of which are fossil fuel fired.

Just because the electric car does not have an attached exhaust pipe does not mean it does not have an exhaust pipe; that exhaust pipe is at the power plant, where fossil fuels are still being burned.

Consider how much MORE fossil fuels will need to be burned to increase the capacity of these plants, not to mention the cost of increasing the transmission capability to get the power to the charging stations.

Winter May 15, 2021 8:25 AM

“So where does the electricity come from to run the eletric cars?”

Eventually, all from sustainable sources. Until then only partially from “green” energy. Thing can change, if we want to.

If there is anything COVID-19 showed, it is that the unthinkable can be made real in a year if we want to.

And before you start, putting solar panels in a small corner of a desert could easily supply the world with electricity. And every continent has enough deserts to generate all the energy needed.

Winter May 15, 2021 10:57 AM

About replacing fossil fuels by solar energy.

The sums are not that difficult. If you do them you find you can deliver total energy (replacing ALL sources of energy) for 1B people at a level higher than current consumption in the EU by planting an area in the Sahara less than twice the size Germany with solar panels. Electricity can be transported by high voltage DC power lines with little loss over the whole of Europe.

For instance, solar flux in tropical regions is around 300 Wm-2 averaged over a day. Take a net efficiency of 5%, losses in surface use and transportation included. The German per capita energy use is ~5.5kW. If we take a generous 7.5 kW as the norm, it would take 500 m^2 per capita to power a country like Germany. For 1B people we would need 500,000 km^2. The area of Germany is 357,114 km^2.

Easy to translate to North America.

That is all with current technologies.

Mind you, the investments would be astronomical and there would still be maintenance and political problems. But it can be done with the means available.

Clive Robinson May 15, 2021 12:10 PM

@ AlanS,

With regards Riana Pfefferkorn’s article.

She says early on,

“Cellebrite’s products are part of the industry of “mobile device forensics” tools. “The mobile forensics process aims to recover digital evidence or relevant data from a mobile device in a way that will preserve the evidence in a forensically sound condition,” using accepted methods, so that it can later be presented in court.

As I understand it Cellebrite’s product under discussion is well known for quite some time to not actually conform to a number of “accepted methods” for evidence gathering etc.

This is something Riana Pfefferkorn later mentions with,

“Plus, unlike some cop taking screenshots, a logical data extraction preserves the recovered data “in its original state with forensically-sound integrity admissible in a court of law.” Why show that the data were extracted and preserved without altering anything? Because that’s what is necessary to satisfy the rules for admitting evidence in court. U.S. courts have rules in place to ensure that the evidence that is presented is reliable — you don’t want to convict or acquit somebody on the basis of, say, a file whose contents or metadata got corrupted. Cellebrite holds itself out as meeting the standards that U.S. courts require for digital forensics.”

Thus technically the Cellebrite devices should not be used as an “evidence gathering device with chain of custody suitable for presentation as evidence in a criminal case” (as for civil cases, judges apparently will take any old hearsay these days…).

Even though this failure of Cellebrite’s devices has been known for some time (the same with similar devices from other entities) it’s very very rarely if ever been challanged in court previously…

As I’ve noted in the past, one of the reasons this has not come up before is judges apparent dislike of “expert witnesses” contradicting each other. Because technically they are “Court Officers” and have been recogbised as such by the judge in each case. Thus such argumentative behaviour reflects badly on “the court” thus “the judge”. Also there is the “comprehension” issue, whilst logic might be a strong suit for judges basic STEM often appears to have allude their studies, and they do not take kindly to such issues being highlighted…

Unfortunately as Riana Pfefferkorn notes,

“Between Cellebrite and the other vendors in the industry of mobile device forensics tools, there are over two thousand law enforcement agencies across the country that have such tools — including 49 of the 50 biggest cities in the U.S. Plus, ICE has contracts with Cellebrite worth tens of millions of dollars.”

Thus we realy should ask why this state of affairs is still going on?

And why I have to disagree with,

“But a lot of vendors in this industry, the industry of selling surveillance technologies to governments, sell not only to the U.S. and other countries that respect the rule of law

Because they are very clearly “avoiding” it. And I do not think it is just because judges are not to hot on basic STEM.

If you think about it such avoidence has political advantages, it enables many Law Officers and Prosecutors to “rack up convictions” that help them falsely look “Tough on crime” thus get re-elected or promoted which has a very clear financial advantage for them. Such “knowing behaviour” comes under various criminal statutes including those for fraud.

Thus they get away with it by “pretending” they do not understand or know about it, and they will steadfastly refuse to “understand it” which is a very certain indicator that they are more certainly guilty than those they are locking up or attempting to do so by their “faux ignorance”.

This sort of “fraudulant politics” is far from new, it’s been endemic for over a century. So much so that Upton Sinclair made a now very well known quote about it.

Which makes me curious as to why Riana Pfefferkorn avoided it, surely she must be more than aware of it.

In her musings on Moxie’s reason to go public the way he did, she did not even consider that his target was actually those practicing “fraudulant politics” in the judicial system… Personally I rather think they were the target as they are the ones that are actually going to suffer the most from having their “easy ride” taken away from them.

But Riana Pfefferkorn also misses another point Moxie was making when she says,

“In a recent legal webinar about mobile device forensics tools, the discussion touched upon Signal’s Cellebrite hack. One of the panelists pointed out that Cellebrite’s not the only game in town when it comes to these extraction tools. It’s a whole industry, it’s not just this one company, although Cellebrite is probably the best-known actor in that industry. Therefore, as the panelist pointed out, if you’re law enforcement, you can just perform the same extraction through a different program, and there won’t be a problem because this flaw is unique to Cellebrite.

But in the same way as the attack would not be unique to Signal, any app could do it, the problem is very definately not unique to Cellebrite’s products, they all have them one way or another and will have more as time goes on. We all know this at a fundemental level, in fact our host @Bruce has pointed out on a number of occasions that attacks only get better with time. We also know at a fundemental level that most products are riddled with bugs that are exploitable, it is after all why we have “Patch Tuesday” not just for one commercial grade software supplier but, as far as I can tell all commetcial grade software suppliers that make an attempt at updating their software.

Thus we know fundementally commercial grade software development is a “Red Queen’s Race”. That is as a commercial grade software developer/supplier, you are going to fail to keep your product secure, no matter how hard you try, no matter what tools you use, eventually some zero day is going to come your products way, it’s just a matter of probability thus time before it happens. The question then becomes,

“What the zero day lead time is on your patch?”

As we know from Microsoft some vulnerabilities can be in their third decade when they finally get a patch. So the question then becomes,

“Can you honestly say that nobody has exploited it in that time?”

To which the answer is “Don’t be silly of course you can not”…

So I can by simple deduction and high probability of correctness claim,

“The entire ‘Extraction and Processing Tool Industry’ is vulnerable to this class of attack”

Thus no way can it be said by anyone with any domain knowledge that “this flaw is unique to Cellebrite”, none what so ever.

So why Riana Pfefferkorn did not make that ubundantly clear I’ve no idea.

What Moxie and Signal have done is start the shake up in the “fraudulant politics” of the justice system. And yes people will get hury in the process, but it also means in the longer term the justice system will have in one area improved.

But there is a second less obvious but more intriguing thing Moxie has done. In effect he has handed out a very clear signal that any app developer or data file originator can do this. Whilst Apple/Google might strip apps out of their “walled Gardens” they can not stop “data files” getting onto their systems. Thus they can not in any way stop carefully crafted files aimed at the “Extraction Tool and File Processing” industry. Further even if such a file is found on a phone by those working in the bottom end of the justice system, the best that can be shown is that the user got sent the file on such and such a date and time, along with some meta-data that could very very easily be made non attributable… The fact that the file will apparently behave normally on the phone because it’s payload is not aimed at the phone makes “plausable deniability” for the phone user that much easier…

With Signal on your phone, then the lack of meta-data Signal hold, and likewise the minimal meta-data the app keeps makes the attribution issue even harder.

The “File Extraction and Processing Tool” industry, as it aquires much of it’s software from places where others can get the source etc with no difficulty, will always be vulnerable to this issue, and I rather think that, that is the point Moxie was making… It’s a shame Riana Pfefferkorn kind of missed it.

1&1~=Umm May 15, 2021 4:39 PM

@Rj @Winter @ALL:

“So where does the electricity come from to run the eletric cars?”

From the Sun and previous Suns, and if physicists, mathmaticians and astronomers are correct the “big bang” when our current universe started some 14billion years or so ago.

So please don’t trot out the fosil and nuclear fuels -v- Green arguments, because that is where all the coherent energy sources we use originat from. And what is too infrequently mentioned is by countless years and efficiences so fractional small we can not meaningfully measure them, they have become sufficiently dense energy sources that we can usefully exploit them.

What we now call “Green Energy” just short circuits one of these paths from energy from Suns to that which we can ‘usefully’ use, and in the process does it a very great deal more efficiently.

The big problem polution wise is at the end of the day ‘residual energy’, some of which some call ‘heat’. Put simply the energy has become too chaotic in nature to be usefully used but still keeps atoms and molecules jumping around. Thus whilst the penultimate forms of polution are partly used hydrocarbons and depleted nuclear isotopes, these break down with time into the ultimate form of polution which we realy have no idea what so ever of how to deal with, which is the energetic but random movment and vibration of atoms and other particles we call “thermal energy”…

If we knew a moderately efficient way to do it, the sensible option would be to turn water and Carbon dioxide back to Carbon monoxide (producer gas) and light hydrocarbons (natural gas) as these are sufficiently coherant and energy dense molecules to make effective fuels.

However “No sweat no gain” all “work” is inefficient thus the coherant energy out is always considerably less than the energy input to create and operate the system. Thus thermodynamic “entropy” is always going to be creating polution.

The best we can do to reduce this is to move backwards up the dispersal chain to more coherent forms of energy. Currently the most coherent form of energy we can get at is light from the sun above the atmosphere. The problem is keeping the energy coherent in an as energy dense form as we can. This implies the use of a closed physical conduction channel not a radiation channel (1/d as opposed to 1/d^2 losses). But currently we have neither the materials or engineering knowledge of how to do this.

So untill we know how to do that, and deal with the ultimate polution problem, our most sensible option is to reduce our energy/time usage and live within our capabilities. As well as to clean up behind ourselves, and not pretend our children will solve the problems, just so we can carry on making a wasteful dirty fat profit today.

Depending on who you listen to and at what point in time… the US consumes half the worlds resources but with less than 5% of the worlds population, however bit by bit other people in the world are increasing their use of resources whilst neither the US nor other Western nations (except maybe the UK) are reducing their consumption or polution footprint.

It takes no great intelligence to work out where all this leads if changes are not made. As they say in a number of english speaking nations when offering a very light hydocarbon to consume ‘Name your poison’.

Anders May 15, 2021 5:57 PM

@SpaceLifeForm @Clive @ALL

Interesting development.




Any thought?

JonKnowsNothing May 15, 2021 7:13 PM


re: The tough hide of trolls

We all know, that we should know, that privacy, security are connected and are globally and individually important. Some know and know how to deal with the implications or the lack thereof but many still have to stumble into finding something that works or they hope works.

MSM report detailing some of the difficulties for individuals attempting to find their way through the various truth tables and their failings.

Cow Pies you have to toss when you are targeted by:

  • a target of cyber-attacks by hacker groups
  • a group that specifically targets activists, journalists and dissidents
  • a group that uses fake accounts on social media, like Facebook, to appear to be journalists, students, human rights advocates or members
  • a group that tricks the targets into clicking on malicious links that installs spyware on their devices
  • a group that forges faux news sites, feeds, information
  • a group that targets particular devices
  • a group that maintains “blacklist” for harassment, arrest, detention or other
  • a group that hijacks someone else’s accounts to send bobby trapped messages, email from a trusted source
  • a group that impersonates trusted sources and creates accounts on other services in those names, to send messages, email and comments from those accounts
  • a group that targets “known associates” for the same purposes but also to gain access to the primary target or contact lists
  • a group exploiting bugs in device software, applications to install malware
  • a group exploiting social media platforms and their internal mechanisms
  • a group exploiting existing legal loopholes or ignoring laws, knowing that LEOs will not investigate and 3Letters won’t intervene because doing so might expose their own operations using similar techniques.
  • the need to maintaining multiple disconnect points

Getting to be a familiar scenario…


cow pie = cow pats, cow dung or cow manure
cow pie toss = a game where the cow pie is tossed and winner is the one who throws it farthest.

ht tps://

  • BuzzFeed said it took “less than 10 minutes” to find Biden’s account, “using only a combination of the app’s built-in search tool and public friends feature”

ht tps://

ht tps://

ht tps://

  • listing of the various methods for determining outcomes

ht tps://

  • A type of confidence trick for the purpose of information gathering, fraud, or system access.

(url fractured to prevent autorun)

JonKnowsNothing May 16, 2021 2:57 AM

@Clive, SpaceLifeForm, All

re: It’s Masks Off in California…

We have self certification of vaccination status and can now walkabout in stores without masks. Many of the main stream stores and markets have jettisoned the Wear A Mask requirement.

We also have a tiny amount of B.1.617.2 India Variant 2, starting to trickle across the state. 60% of current cases here are B117 UK Variant.

Maybe 48% of the state has some sort of vaccination. The local dried up ocean bed here is around 34% but rural areas are not even that close.

What could possibly go wrong?

  • Herd Immunity Policy is not Dead;
    there will be plenty of dead soon enough to fill buckets

re: A Happier Update

My friend that had the reaction to the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, with “profound muscle fatigue” is making a good recovery and should regain full baseline status by next week.

To be noted: “profound muscle fatigue” does not mean sore muscles or feeling crappy or lethargic, it means

  Muscles Do Not Respond to Brain Signals

It is the same effect as being paralyzed, except in those cases no brain signals get to the muscles. In this case the signals get there but nothing happens.

The local medical outfit response was great on testing (COVID test negative) but short on the practical side after all the tests indicated Vaccine Reaction. They didn’t seem interested in the condition and didn’t indicate any report would be filed (with CDC or anyone). After the negative results came in they reverted to the Jettison the Patient Routine that was common before COVID.

Perhaps the condition is common to them, while the affected person is unable do anything for themselves.

The choices are:
 Go to Care Home with COVID Outbreaks and hope you don’t get it.
 Go Home unable to cook, wash, sit up, walk, roll over or toilet on your own.

Winter May 16, 2021 3:33 AM

“But currently we have neither the materials or engineering knowledge of how to do this.”

Sunlight to electricity is already ~20% efficient. That is what we have to work with. Solar panels are mainly silicon and glass, ie, sand. Structural strength is aluminum. Support can be everything.

Any conversion from electricity to another carrier will introduce losses, so should be minimized. A useful conversion would still be hydrogen, as it can be used to store energy, is useful if high temperatures are needed, e.g., steel production, and can be a source for conventional fuels in applications where electricity is not possible, eg, planes.

“So untill we know how to do that, and deal with the ultimate polution problem, our most sensible option is to reduce our energy/time usage and live within our capabilities.”

Won’t work. To stop climate change emissions must be reduced by 99%. Simply reducing energy use Wil not help much. Building out sustainable energy is crucial.

Weather May 16, 2021 11:19 AM

Hi I was wondering if I could get peoples help. I’ve taken a picture of a line graph, the red lines àre the char used in the hash the blue ones is the outputted data. There’s obvious pattern but I’m having trouble to convert it to code.

http s://

1&1~=Umm May 16, 2021 11:57 AM


“Sunlight to electricity is already ~20% efficient.”

You’ve misunderstood what I was talking about.

As you “move up” to get more coherent energy you leave the earths atmosphere and end up in space where the weather is somewhat different.

But lets say you have some space station at a hight not to disimilar to the ISS or new Chinese build.

You have the problem of getting the reliable coherant energy into a form by which it can be efficiently sent down to Earth.

Currently we know of know way to run a conductor from up in space down to the surface of the earth. British Scientist Arthur C Clark did the basic calculations of how you would keep a largish mass both in an orbit and above a fixed point on Earth and further developed the idea of a Space Elevator in his book “Fountains of Paradise” back in the late 1970’s.

He hypothesized synthetic diamond as a way to have a tether strong enough to go the 36,000kM and be able to carry any sensible kind of load.

We don’t have synthetic diamond yet but NASA amoungst others are working on the notion it is only a decade or three away at most. Which is why they are sponsoring research into the design of “tape crawlers” and how they would be proppeled up and down the tape.

Obviously none of our current crop of “efficient conductors” are strong enough to go into space that way even though there are appatently serious plans to do the equivalent of an Earth Based system. Going from Australia’s Northern Territories to Singapore it uses a 3800kM subsea link which is a tenth the distance required from geostationary orbit. Dave over at EEVblog has a fun analysis of it,

So how to get the energy across the gap? As I indicated you can use some form of physical channel, such as a cable, or drums of physical substance, as the losses of such a system are 1/d, any radiative system such as Microwave or Laser is going to have not just 1/d antenuation losses especially through clouds and the like, but it is also going to have the 1/(d^2) losses due to beam spreading as well as the “coherance” problem to deal with.

Which is, why the “current smart money” is supposadly on “factories in space” in part because that is engineering we do know how to do. But more importantly the distance between solar radiance collection and any “force multiplier” machines etc would be measured in meters not tens of kM thus losses would be small (however geting rid of thermal energy from the losses in work is going to be a very very significant problem in that your only option would be non coherant radiation).

But the smart money might not be as smart as it thinks, we live at the bottom of a gravity well, this presents all sorts of complications not least of which is the cost in energy of getting 1kg of matter up or down. But look on the flip side, we can store energy mechanically and chemically currently, neither has the energy density required to overcome the current gravity well energy requirments and be more efficient than 1930’s style water pump wind mills…

As for,

“Building out sustainable energy is crucial.”

In the way people currently talk about it will not work, we don’t know how to do it the best of our current technology which is fosil fuel to steam turbine genneration still produces more non cohrarant thermal energy polution than it does usefull electrical power. Then there is transmission losses, oh and of we are realy lucky we get maybe 1/6th of a day on average usefull sunlight, and solar pannels are at best only 25% efficient. Every time we “build” something it involves “work” and the consequent “inefficiencies” thus non coherant thermal energy polution. There is one sh1t load more to “climate change” than just the crap we dump in the air and water to turn into the next generations problem. The very hard real reality is “sustainable” means “living within our capabilities” and currently we are well well over what we can clean up and “making more” as we make new technology is not going to help.

The most stupid thing we currently do in this regard currently is “crypto coin mining” every year as much energy as is used by a European country is used to generate a handfull of “bits” that idiots think have “real value”… You might say it’s an extream example, but the whole idea behind it is what our Western economies actually function by. Back in the 80’s I was asking a question that few answered even remotely correctly,

“Is an economy based on the destruction of non renewable natural resources a sensible thing?”

I still ask it, more people get the answer right four decades later, but the reality is we are destroying at an ever faster rate and politicians are more and more actively encoraging it with the help of lobbyists etc.

Winter May 16, 2021 12:16 PM

“We don’t have synthetic diamond yet ”

Carbon nanotubes come close. They are also good conductors.

All this space stuff is very interesting, and I loved Clark’s book. But we still have enough unused space on earth that can supply all the solar energy humans need for the coming century.

Weather May 16, 2021 12:26 PM

@winter Clive
Back of the envople ,a 200watt solar panel would need to use a years joules just to melt the glass in the panel. With other energy cost in the process you could be looking at 20years before break even.

Winter May 16, 2021 1:57 PM

“Then there is transmission losses, oh and of we are realy lucky we get maybe 1/6th of a day on average usefull sunlight, and solar pannels are at best only 25% efficient.”

Solar power plants are already competitive on price in the Middle East. HVDC transmission has very low losses. It is used, e.g., between the UK and the Continent.

Weather May 16, 2021 2:44 PM

Assuming a panel has 1 kg of Aluminum, to make the Ingot’s take 13kwh, to remelt into shapes takes 462kj ,that’s 8 days plus 16 days at 100% effeicny of the process, if a 200 watt panel produce full power for 8 hours a day.
What about transport, drills riveters welders, mining the bauraxie.
That site looked like a sales pitch.

ResearcherZero May 16, 2021 7:23 PM

Practice saying this with a completely straight face, and without laughing.
“We developed AI for completely humanitarian purposes.”

So many robots were involved in the operation that no human operator could keep a close eye on all of them. So they were given instructions to find—and eliminate—enemy combatants when necessary.

Winter May 16, 2021 8:32 PM

“That site looked like a sales pitch.”

Energy Pay Back Time of photovoltaic panels.

Try Wikipedia:

Here is a PDF with the details.

(URL fractured for your protection)

Executive Summary:
* The Energy Payback Time of PV systems is dependent on the geographical location: PV systems in Northern Europe need around 1.5 years to balance the input energy, while PV systems in the South equal their energy input after 1 year and less, depending on the technology installed and the grid efficiency.
* A PV system located in Sicily with wafer-based Silicon modules has an Energy Payback Time of around one year. Assuming 20 years lifespan, this kind of system can produce twenty times the energy needed to produce it.

Winter May 17, 2021 3:25 AM

Apple sent my data to the FBI, says boss of controversial research paper trove Sci-Hub
(URL fractured for your protection)

received a few minutes ago to my GMail. at first I thought it was a spam and was about to delete the email, but it turned out to be about FBI requesting my data from Apple
— Alexandra Elbakyan (@ringo_ring) May 7, 2021

Bob Paddock May 17, 2021 7:30 AM


“…Just because the electric car does not have an attached exhaust pipe does not mean it does not have an exhaust pipe; that exhaust pipe is at the power plant, where fossil fuels are still being burned….”

One of the key design points of any vehicle is to keep its weight down.

Each EV no longer needs to carry the weight of its own pollution control system. Now the pollution control system can be placed at a fixed location where weight doesn’t mater at all, so it could be made far more efficient on a large scale compared to that of each individual vehicle carrying its own.

Yes, there are still issues, however this ‘exhaust pipe’ argument is not one of them.

AlanS May 17, 2021 8:33 AM


Thanks for the long, interesting response to Riana Pfefferkorn. My original post seems to have gone missing but was just a link to her posting on The Center for Internet and Society at Stanford Law School. For those wondering what’s being referred to, here’s the link.

EvilKiru May 17, 2021 10:30 AM

@1&1~=Umm: “We don’t have synthetic diamond yet”

A web search for Synthetic Diamonds suggests otherwise.

Freezing_in_Brazil May 17, 2021 10:52 AM


Re Bitcoin-Tesla

Some time ago there were rumors[1] that the American government [and possibly others] were preparing for a crackdown on cryptocurrencies. I think that may also have contributed to Tesla’s decision. Elon Musk said Tesla would keep its bitcoin wallet as proof of confidence in the currency

Now, observe if Tesla sells its bitcoin. If it sells, the future of cryptocurrencies may be really threatened.

On the other hand, platforms that enable smart contracts have a bright future ahead of them.

[1] hxxps://

Anders May 17, 2021 1:27 PM


“Due to tax restrictions the candidates need to reside in one of the following states: Florida, Pennsylvania, Idaho.”

Can anyone residing in US explain to me that “tax restriction”?
Is money or getting the cheapest solution more important than
getting the right candidate and ultimately protecting the systems? As i see this – in this way US will lose a lot of talents.

Sorry, i don’t get it.

vas pup May 17, 2021 2:49 PM

Former Navy pilot reveals daily sightings of UFOs that defy physics

“A former Navy pilot says flight crews saw UFOs maneuvering in restricted airspace off Virginia every day for years.

Lieutenant Ryan Graves claims that he and other members of his F/A-18 fighter squadron all detected unidentified flying objects for two years, beginning in 2015.

The former serviceman called the objects a security threat in an interview with 60 Minutes that aired on CBS on Sunday.”

Read the whole article if interested!

SpaceLifeForm May 17, 2021 4:41 PM

@ Anders

I do not get it either. If corporate is based in Colorado, why want other states?

It’s all very suspect.

The job position basically is looking for ‘God for cheap’, promote to CISO, and then throw them under the bus later.

Only an idiot would consider this ‘job’.

SpaceLifeForm May 17, 2021 5:30 PM

@ vas pup

Unidentified aerial phenomena (UAP) have also been observed off of California coast, and near the Moon. I observed UAP nearly 50 years ago in Flyover Country. Cigar shaped. High speed, high altitude.

And, of course, lots of other reports over decades from many people around the globe.

The ‘shape’ does not seem to matter.

There are very strange shapes reported over the years. Not just cigar shape or disc shape, but even boxes or U-shaped.

It’s something about physics, plain and simple.

The question is: Why?

hung May 17, 2021 8:15 PM

Is this security related news?

(I wonder, what if this was China, or some China supported state? …
Do they ever went even close to that, in modern times?)

Watching these news, i don’t know how to respond to my 11 yo kid questions.

JonKnowsNothing May 17, 2021 8:29 PM


re:LEA use of public access databases

MSM article about a missing person cold case. The person disappeared 18 years ago. The person was not reported missing by anyone. A pair of legs were found in a dumpster circa 2003.

The cold case cops recently revisited the case and using public fronting DNA and Genealogy services, were able to trace-back and trace-forward the DNA, a process called “investigative genetic genealogy”.

  • The coroner and crime lab extracted DNA from the stored legs in June 2020
  • The cops entered the DNA from the legs into public databases and found similar DNA from a distant relative
  • The cops start building a family tree to find the common ancestor between the victim and the relative
  • The family tree went back into the 1800s
  • Finding the common ancestor, detectives built the tree forward
  • As they built the backward-forward ancestry tree the cops got additional DNA from those relations
  • 6 months of checking found a living member of the family which gave confirmation of name and match
  • After the confirmed name and match, the standard homicide process took over

Things to note:

  • These are public databases, accessible for free or by subscription
  • There are 2 general types: a DNA database and a Genealogy database using standard genealogy notations
  • Genealogy databases go back as far as records can be found and then sometimes farther by oral histories
  • DNA databases require DNA extraction and submission
  • Cross referencing of the two systems matching record information with family DNA
  • The record search went to 1800
  • The initial DNA match was a distant match

Similar DNA searches have been done with “Living to Missing Persons”, particularly in cases of the Disappeared. This is a slightly different application using genealogy records to track back to a common ancestor and then building a DNA profile matching those records.


ht tps://

ht tps://

  • Six degrees of separation is the idea that all people on average are six, or fewer, social connections away from each other. As a result, a chain of “a friend of a friend” statements can be made to connect any two people in a maximum of six steps. It is also known as the six handshakes rule.

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  • The victim in such a case is typically abducted, illegally detained and often tortured during interrogation, and ultimately killed, their body concealed after the fact by the individuals or organization responsible for their death. The party committing the murder has plausible deniability, as nobody can provide evidence of the victim’s death. In enforced disappearance cases states are obliged under international human rights law to return the remains of the forcibly disappeared persons to their families.

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  • a character in the 1976 novel Roots: The Saga of an American Family by American author Alex Haley. According to Haley, Kunta Kinte was based on one of his ancestors: a Gambian man who was born in 1750, enslaved and taken to America and who died in 1822.

(url fractured to prevent autorun)

Clive Robinson May 17, 2021 9:39 PM

@ vas pup,

Researchers want to utilize this ability with a method called phytomining

Not sure what there is left to research, that was done back in the 1980’s and 90’s by amoungst others NASA.

The NASA method used a series of “sludge and lilly ponds” under plastic to create a high concentration CO2 atmosphear. They used a variety of very rapid growing African water lilly. Each step in the process cleaned the water up dramatically and the lillies were harvestedd and fermented to produce fuel, the waste plant matter was then dried to recover water and then it was used in a reduction process to recover the metals and various other minerals etc. Other biomass not poluted with the heavy metals etc was used for hydroponic systrms that “fixed nitrogen” etc to make fertiliser.

People with various types of zero energy consumption homes use similar systems to clean up their grey and sometimes black water befor releasing it back into the environment.

I’m guessing most “research” would be “engineering” and “biology” as the basic process is reasonably well proven.

I know some people are investigating the engineering behind “vertical farming” on south facing walls of buildings and rooftops, so I’m assuming one fruitfull area of research would be for very high growth rate plants for verticle systems that can be easily harvested.

lurker May 18, 2021 12:19 AM

I did my army medical training in a unit that had volunteered to also have small arms training: since some adversaries no longer regarded medics as unarmed non-combatants, there was no point being one. Or as a gnarly sergeant put it “That Red Cross on your arm makes a lovely target.”

Those who once used hospitals as bomb targets have now moved into cyberspace, continuing their moral turpitude.

Failed the bar exam May 18, 2021 1:10 AM

@ lurker

moral turpitude

That’s equivalent to a felony, now, isn’t it?

SpaceLifeForm May 18, 2021 1:25 AM

@ Clive, ALL

Kudos to Twitter and Judge Howell

Can someone explain why DOJ (going after @NunesAlt) actually would ask Twitter for ‘Local and long distance phone records’? As if, Twitter is in the telco business?

In the meantime, I’m waiting for Godot.

Chief U.S. District Judge Beryl A. Howell ordered the filing unsealed on Sunday, and it became public a day later.

Anders May 18, 2021 2:27 AM

@ Anders

“Due to tax restrictions the candidates need to reside in one of the following states: Florida, Pennsylvania, Idaho.”

Gah, that entire site is the Vogon OKCupid.

Joe K May 18, 2021 2:32 AM

@ Anders

That’s my reply to you, above, about the job posting. Sleep deprivation. Sorry.

JonKnowsNothing May 18, 2021 2:39 AM

@ SpaceLifeForm

re: Can someone explain why DOJ (going after @NunesAlt) actually would ask Twitter for ‘Local and long distance phone records’? As if, Twitter is in the telco business?

Is it possible that they are using the 3d Party Records and Business Records legal definitions to track a particular set of users?

I don’t use social media but I’m pretty sure most require some ID systems to set up an account plus you have to use the twitter app and that’s often on a smartphone. So if the account data has a Name+Id+1FA+2FA+PasswordReset that might be traced across the phone systems thru the cell network.

As business records, in the USA, there’s nearly no way to refuse. As 3d party information there’s also nearly no way to refuse.

If a troll was visible enough to gain the notice of a 3L, they would be screen scraping everything they find. Since most of twitter resides in the public sphere that would be an easy catch.

All they need is a linkage between the time of posting and the traffic analysis for the twitter account ID.

They could also be trawling to see how much they can get without push back. Business Records and 3d Party Records are pretty standard to ask for. Even if the response in None and Zero, they can still ask.

Reports are Twitter is planning a subscriber version and that would be traceable via financial transactions.

JonKnowsNothing May 18, 2021 2:57 AM

@ SpaceLifeForm

Another thought about “attribution” is that if the 3L declare the target to be outside of the USA and outside of the protections of the Constitution (or what’s left of them), they have full access to Incoming and Outgoing communications.

They can also pick up USA protected communications and either jettison that information (which is what they are supposed to do) or they can ask FISC for access. The 3L have a blanket FISC Warrant that gets renewed regularly and they can also request a FISC Warrant for a target’s-target (1)

Using a hidden claim that a troll is off-shore gives the 3L much more leeway to request full in-out comms traffic.

It’s one reason that much local communication is routed outside the USA (Canada) and then crosses back over the border as it puts all comms under the blanket FISC warrant.

Asking Twitter for the phone records and logs of any communications would be within the scope of those warrants.

It could be any comm records, help desk, download, subscriber contacts, etc. not necessarily the tweeters.


1, Target’s Target aka Target Forwarding in video combat games. Team members target their DPS or Tank and damage flows to whatever that player has targeted. Also a method of maintaining focus fire on a single target.

Team A B C D E – ABCD target on E / E targets A baddie / All damage flows through E to that target / When E changes target to B baddie the focus fire changes too.

Anders May 18, 2021 7:28 AM


At least Equifax is now taking security seriously!


SpaceLifeForm May 18, 2021 3:42 PM

@ JonKnowsNothing

Probably help desk records then.

Old trick: Create problem, force user to call help desk.

vas pup May 18, 2021 4:21 PM

New material could create ‘neurons’ and ‘synapses’ for new computers

“Classic computers use binary values (0/1) to perform. By contrast, our brain cells can use more values to operate, making them more energy-efficient than computers. This is why scientists are interested in neuromorphic (brain-like) computing.
==>Physicists have used a complex oxide to create elements comparable to the neurons and synapses in the brain using spins, a magnetic property of electrons.

The operation of our brains can be simulated in computers, but the basic architecture still relies on a binary system. That is why scientist look for ways to expand this, creating hardware that is more brain-like, but will also interface with normal computers. ‘One idea is to create magnetic bits that can have intermediate states’, says Tamalika Banerjee, Professor of Spintronics of Functional Materials at the Zernike Institute for Advanced Materials, University of Groningen. She works on spintronics, which uses a magnetic property of electrons called ‘spin’ to transport, manipulate and store information.”

Read the whole article for further details.

vas pup May 18, 2021 4:34 PM

Politically polarized brains share an intolerance of uncertainty

“Since the 1950s, political scientists have theorized that political polarization — increased numbers of “political partisans” who view the world with an ideological bias — is associated with an inability to tolerate uncertainty and a need to hold predictable beliefs about the world.

But little is known about the biological mechanisms through which such biased perceptions arise.

To investigate that question, scientists at Brown University measured and compared the brain activity of committed partisans (both liberals and conservatives) as they watched real political debates and news broadcasts. In a recent study, they found that ==>polarization was indeed exacerbated by intolerance of uncertainty: liberals with this trait tended to be more liberal in how they viewed political events, conservatives with this trait tended to be more conservative.

“This is the first research we know of that has linked intolerance to uncertainty to political polarization on both sides of the aisle,” said study co-author Oriel FeldmanHall, an assistant professor of cognitive, linguistic and psychological sciences at Brown. “So whether a person in 2016 was a strongly committed Trump supporter or a strongly committed Clinton supporter, it doesn’t matter.
==>What matters is that an aversion to uncertainty only exacerbates how similarly two conservative brains or two liberal brains respond when consuming political content.”

“This shows that some of the animosity and misunderstanding we see in society is not due to irreconcilable differences in political beliefs, but instead depends on surprising — and potentially solvable — factors such as the uncertainty people experience in daily life.”

Read the whole article if interested.

Winter May 19, 2021 6:23 AM

Not quite sure whether the headline had anything to do with the water poisoning:

Florida water plant compromise came hours after worker visited malicious site
Researchers find watering-hole attack targeting water utilities.

An employee for the city of Oldsmar, Florida, visited a malicious website targeting water utilities just hours before someone broke into the computer system for the city’s water treatment plant and tried to poison drinking water, security firm Dragos said Tuesday. Ultimately, the site likely played no role in the intrusion, but the incident remains unsettling, the security firm said.

Winter May 20, 2021 4:46 AM

@Weather @SLF
“Energy Pay Back Time of photovoltaic panels.”

Look here:
Green fuels mega project set to make Oman world leader in green hydrogen and green ammonia (PDF)
(URL fractured for your protection)

The consortium has been collaborating on the project for more than three years, which will consist of 25 gigawatts (GW) of renewable solar and wind energy at full capacity to produce millions of tons of zero-carbon green hydrogen per annum. The hydrogen can be used locally, exported directly, or converted into green ammonia for international export. The consortium partners will leverage their broad existing commercial relationships and partnerships to secure long-term product sales agreements. Given thesite’s strategic location between Europe and Asia, as well as excellent solar irradianceand wind resource facing the Arabian Sea, the development is well positioned to offer a secure and reliable supply of green fuels globally at a highly competitive price.

Winter May 20, 2021 6:55 AM

@Weather, SLF
“Energy Pay Back Time of photovoltaic panels.”

Here is a news story about Solar Power generation becoming less expensive than coal fired plants. The link below contains a link to more data.

Renewables Increasingly Beat Even Cheapest Coal Competitors on Cost

Replacing the costliest 500 GW of coal with solar PV and onshore wind next year would cut power system costs by up to USD 23 billion every year and reduce annual emissions by around 1.8 gigatons (Gt) of carbon dioxide (CO2), equivalent to 5% of total global CO2 emissions in 2019. It would also yield an investment stimulus of USD 940 billion, which is equal to around 1% of global GDP.

SpaceLifeForm May 20, 2021 3:22 PM

Looks like someone has not been paying attention as typical squid would have near 100, not 200 as we observed past 2-3 months. Most of the excess were garbage or fakes.

comment-379347 is disinfo.

Freezing_in_Brazil May 20, 2021 5:38 PM

@ All

I’ve been waiting for this moment…

One more vaccinated soul in this tortured planet. I had made a point to record it here [not that anyone cares] since I took part in the early discussions [when the future looked gloomy] last year.

AstraZeneca, 1st jab. Second dose in August. That is the best this unfortunate government I live under could do.

I bid you all peace.

JonKnowsNothing May 20, 2021 8:10 PM

@ Freezing_in_Brazil

There are plenty that care. Let us know how it goes.

Clive Robinson May 20, 2021 11:25 PM

@ Freezing_in_Brazil,

Take care to still “guard” as though you have not had the vaccination untill three weeks after the second jab.

I’m overdue my second jab due to other illness. I had to asses my risk of cattching the Indian Strain which is in the community near me and what that would mean with my illness… From my calculations I’m better of shielding and guarding my health at the moment.

Unfortunately “the powers that be” in the UK are soing the wrong thing yet again. Havibg totally mismanaged the issue with the Indian varients and having by their policy dragged it into the UK so we now have community spread, they have decided now is a good time to open everything up… The chances of the UK not going into another wave does not look good.

From the news, I’m assuming you have very similar problems where you are.

Take, care and let us know how you are doing.

SpaceLifeForm May 21, 2021 1:30 AM

@ Freezing_in_Brazil

It’s a start. Hang in there.

Make sure you have ventilation, even if cold, which I assume it is for you now.
At least once every day or so, make sure you have fresh air inside and you have expelled stale air to the outside.

That will definitely help.

name.withheld.for.obvious.reasons May 28, 2021 2:59 PM

An oft heard trope here is the irrelevance of politics in the realm of security, and today politics gave up on security. Senators turned down the opportunity to move to discover the elements of an attack on capital hill on 6 January 2021. I guess it was because they can’t handle the truth.

Those that have been dismissive of the effects and potential for political interests to adversely impact security fail to understand both the potential for a society to moderate the impulses of irrationality and the use of these impulses by others to affect a change in parallel to perceived injustices for their own narrow political interests.

To be besieged by incompetent plutocrats and psychopathic power hunger narcissists, using fellow countrymen as the cannon fodder is a low not historic to the United States. Or, a least not such a naked and overt form of political control and totalitarian hubris in which ultimately punishes the citizenry they represent–hah–represent. Now that’s funny!

The events have the potential to change the whole of society’s perceptions and experiences with respect to both social well being and personal security. Good luck to those of you in the United States, you’re going to need it.

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