Friday Squid Blogging: Squid Filmed Changing Color for Camouflage Purposes

Video of oval squid (Sepioteuthis lessoniana) changing color in reaction to their background. The research paper claims this is the first time this has been documented.

As usual, you can also use this squid post to talk about the security stories in the news that I haven’t covered.

Read my blog posting guidelines here.

Posted on May 6, 2022 at 4:15 PM143 Comments


vas pup May 6, 2022 5:11 PM

Broken Arrows: The accidents that could end the world

I could assume if that terrible accident ended with real explosion, then those who want to safe their own ass will blame it on the foreign attack and start WWIII.

Are we all just hostages of military-industrial complex dangerous agenda?
More weapon, more chances of it accidental usage and escalation of events to Apocalypse.

ToXiC bEaR hUg May 6, 2022 5:12 PM

Tor users of all kinds should know about the Official Tor Forum:

It’s really a great bunch of people.

This is a re-post as it is buried in last week’s Squid Blog. (for those who may have missed it!)

No longer will you have to search the web for answers when you can go straight to the official forums!

Ezekiel 23:20 May 6, 2022 5:24 PM

Ezekiel 23:20:

20 There she lusted after her lovers, whose genitals were like those of donkeys and whose emission was like that of horses. (NIV)

Clive Robinson May 6, 2022 6:10 PM

@ vas pup, ALL,

The use of “mind alterating” drugs long predates both the CIA and LSD.

The hard part used to be, being able to get the drug into someone, without their beining aware of it.

For instance look up “the little green fairy” or absinthe, a spirit made with certain herbs added, that was at one time illegal in France simply because of one of it’s uses as a “seducers drug” sometimes caused irreversable madness.

There are several commonly available “essential oils” that when mixed with a spirit alcohol like gin will cause altered perception… Likewise some spices and herbs. Oh and “little brown mushrooms” have been known about since probably the stone ages. Even the seeds of poppies are known to cause effects (and you get those on bread rolls). Speaking of bread, look up St Vitas dance and similar caused by rye flour and similar molds.

Personally I like the way my mind works, so would not risk damaging it by using any of the many so called mind altering or perception altering substances.

Jonathan Wilson May 6, 2022 8:49 PM

India is forcing VPN providers to retain data and hand it to authorities:

Yet another example of supposedly democratic/free governments using excuses like “terrorists” and “cyber crime” and “child exploitation” as justification for laws that give ever more power to those governments to monitor and control their citizens.

Nick Levinson May 6, 2022 9:41 PM

It’s easy to say that people are stupid, and when I discovered that some people use their own exact personal names as passwords I probably had the same thought, but frankly no one knows every subject, and most people, even when they are smart in something, don’t know much IT security.

The only solutions that occur to me right now are ongoing education of the public about what not to do and improving of IT systems to catch more of the public’s shortcomings. These have already been suggested thousands of times. I keep thinking something else should be added to that list but I don’t know what.

lurker May 7, 2022 2:28 AM

@Jonathan Wilson, @Dancing on Thin Ice

Looking for something in the archives yesterday I came across an internet meme from a while back that seems apropriate:

“All Your Base Are Belong To Us,
You Have No Chance To Survive.”

search term zerowing

Clive Robinson May 7, 2022 7:39 AM

Hmmm comment blackholed…

So, little by little approach part 1,

In his statments Noam basically states,

1, War ends in the destruction of one nation or the other
2, That the Ukraine not Russia will be destroyed.
3, So the Ukraine must negotiate.

Clive Robinson May 7, 2022 7:51 AM

Hmmm comment blackholed…

So, little by little approach part 3,

Chomsky thus negates the actual solution that is going to cause the Russian behaviour to change…

To reiterate in Noam’s own words,

“There are two ways for a war to end”

Which sounds bold, incisive, informed and considered, but basically is actually not at all a true statment…

Clive Robinson May 7, 2022 7:55 AM

Hmmm comment blackholed…

So, little by little approach part 4,

To continue with Noam’s own words, and see why you first have to realise that Noam Chomsky’s first predicate of,

“One way is for one side or the other to be basically destroyed. And the Russians are not going to be destroyed. So that means one way is for Ukraine to be destroyed.”

Is actually wrong.

Clive Robinson May 7, 2022 8:01 AM

Hmmm comment blackholed…

So, little by little approach part 5,

Continuing, and to see ehy Chomsky’s conclusion is actually wrong,

The actual result of a war in the past century or so is more often, not one side destroys the other. The result is actually,

“Both sides change”

By how much and in what way determins the near immediate outcome and longer term future.

Clive Robinson May 7, 2022 8:11 AM

Hmmm comment blackholed…

So, little by little approach part 7,

Continuing with counter point,

Realistically such a system is doomed to fail, and it has so many times in the past people including historians have lost count.

The Empires that survive are generaly “commonwealths” they can be formed in many ways, but the outcome is fairly consistent, they survive all be it somewhat eratically by trade.

Thus Noam Chomsky’s statment of,

“If there’s a third way, no one’s ever figured it out.”

Is very much not true… They have and so far it appears to work.

Clive Robinson May 7, 2022 8:22 AM

Hmmm comment blackholed…

So, little by little approach part 9,

So in conclusion to my counter to Noam Chomsky’s argument,

I’ve previously noted several timrs before that the Russian citizens have a choice,

Firstly they can continue to follow the delusions of “Strong Russia” as “bully extrodinare, marching up and down the world stage screaming incoherently” and suffering the fate that brings.

Or they can try another option,

One that does not involve Putin and his cleaque of criminals or similar stealing all the natural resources and putting it in their pockets.

Thus use the resources to actually make Russia what it is capable of being, strong and importantly self sustaining in it’s own right not tied to some kow-tow past of serfdom. Based on the abilities and work of it’s citizens, which could make it the center of a trade commonwealth other nations would want to be part of.

Winter May 7, 2022 9:11 AM


1, War ends in the destruction of one nation or the other

As far as I remember, almost everything Chomsky said after his Computer Hierarchy was wrong. And most of what he said before it was wrong too.
[Yes, I am biased]

That said, not all wars end with the destruction of one nation, or both nations. India vs Pakistan, India vs China, Chins vs Vietnam, USA vs Vietnam,UK vs Argentina, Russia vs Georgia, Iraq vs Iran all ended before either participant was destroyed.

Other options are that the Russian army loses so much of it’s forces that the integrity of Russia is at stake. A civil war is not unthinkable, on the contrary, people are thinking about it, see rumors that Ramzan Kadyrov plans for a civil war. Russia could very well opt to stop before the civil war breaks out.

A weakened Russian army could also force Russia to negotiate a “temporary truce”. At a certain point, their might not be Russian troops left in Ukraine. Putin could decide that “health problems” would require retirement, say in a place that will not extradite him.

Also, “the army” will be less than thrilled with the current policies. Seeing their ranks decimated and their arms destroyed is bad enough. But all that by the hands of a “small” non-country, that must hurt. Also, realizing what would have happened had they “stumbled into Poland”, ie, annihilation, must also give them shivers.

The loyalty of the armed forces is something no dictator can do without. That Putin can lose too.

Winter May 7, 2022 9:16 AM


Thus use the resources to actually make Russia what it is capable of being, strong and importantly self sustaining in it’s own right not tied to some kow-tow past of serfdom.

Ukraine shows that this is possible, which was one reason Putin er al want it to be obliterated. But this would be a real first in the six centuries long history of the fiefdom of Moscow.

Clive Robinson May 7, 2022 9:27 AM

Oh I should mention one thing…

Commonwealths may not be the best future for anyone.

Commonwealths can also be called “trade blocks” or worse form into Super Power Federations of States. Such as the US or Europe.

As I’ve previously mentioned in the Northern Hemisphere there is a “North South Divide” with the South tending to be agrarian and the north industrial[1].

In trade blocks the industrialized states tend to have significantly more wealth and power[2]. This creates unrest and fights for power one way or another[3].

What few realise is that this alows a new player in the game, one with no allegiance to State or People only a very few who believe themselves entitled.

Thus we have seen two things,

1, The rise of Off-Shore Corporate Power.
2, The re-emergance of International Religious Power.

As most should be aware both Corporate and Religious power structures are filled with the “Self-entitled” who generally view the general population as “prey”.

Thus the importance of land and population is rapidly diminishing in the face of Corporate and Religious power. Already both are creating considerable concern, and unless steps are taken soon the notions of Sovereignty and Democratic Politics will quickly cease to be of relevance.

This is the downside of the near zero cost of transporting a byte of data to anywhere on the planet, at an appreciable fraction of the speed of light. It’s not going to be “fake-news” that should be of concern but “all news, opinion, and life influance” being under the control of a tiny few, who we the citizens of most states have absolutly no control over…

There is the old joke of,

“We welcome our new overlords in the name of peace, humanity, and prosperity.”

When they have no interest in anything other than the accumulation of what they call “profit” at everyone elses expense. But is actually so much more, that fiscal wealth is just a small steping stone almost an idle distraction to the real prize “control of everything without responsability”… And we are giving it to them willingly by sleepwalkng into their cages.

[1] This agrarian / industrial divide is historic in that pre 19th&20th Century industrialisation, economic power rested in agrerian production and trade. Thus the lands in the south with longer growing climates favoured multiple crops and so the land was of high value. As industrialisation developed it first started small where it’s potential customers were. However as it quickly grew and the cost of trade transportation continued to drop it moved where land for development was less expensive, and closer to raw energy supplies. Which as it developed economic power moved from agrarian to industrial and with it went the majority of the population[2].

[2] Currently economic power or fiscal wealth and thus political power exists with the industrialized states[3]. This is increasingly at the expense of agrarian states that are in effect being turned into serfdoms and vasal or slave states by the industrialized states. Because the industrialised states are very dependent on the agrarian states to feed their populations “cheaply”.

[3] As is becoming more apparant political power is being subsumed by the power of fiscal wealth of Corporations. That effectively buy the legislation they want, and pay to have legislation they do not want diminished or negated.

JonKnowsNothing May 7, 2022 9:36 AM


re:Chomsky Counters

A couple of skipped over items:

1) Wars destroy infrastructures and kill participants.
In UKR-RU situation, the current destruction in on UKR territory. If the war expands, that destruction may shift to RU. Expansion of the conflict brings only further destruction.

2) People have no choice in the matter. These choices were made for them and by people claiming authority to do so.
The Babushka in UKR and the Babushka in RU did not ask for their villages to be destroyed and did not ask for their families, relatives, friends and neighbors to be killed. Although that can happen and happened historically, so far not too much of this has made the Front Page.

The claim that they have a choice, has about the same level of claim that 50% of the population of the USA will have about their choice for their personal health care.

What you are advocating is not choice, it is regime change. And that isn’t a choice either, it is done by people with funding for a proxy war used for disposal of old armaments and munitions.

3) Geographically, UKR and RU are not going to pick themselves up and move to another spot on the globe. They are going to remain exactly in the same place for geologic epochs. Once the shooting stops and the bombing stops and the killing stops and the reprisals and counter reprisals stop, they are still going to have the same geographic relationship.

At some point, they will either agree to a variation for a peaceful relationship, which can extend from barely acknowledging the other party to full economic exchange, which takes a while, or they will do the “we aint talking to YOU” option, which will also take a while.

Even the bitterest of enemies can over come their histories. Not every country manages to do so in 1 generation. It can take many generations, but averaging 20-40 years.

4) Moral Superiority
I have no opinion at all on the “validity of claims” from either side, because the USA has just as many crappy relationships as it has good ones. Our wars shift because we get tired of bombing wedding parties and schools and hospitals. There is no moral high ground in the USA from which to speak.

But I can speak from the moral low ground, and the people of UKR and RU really deserve better.

They have both lasted through some of the worst of the last 80 years. I have hope they will do better over the next 80, even as that exceeds my own life span.

The sooner they stop, the sooner they can rebuild their cities, villages and their people can return to reclaim and recover what they can.

Winter May 7, 2022 10:19 AM


Currently economic power or fiscal wealth and thus political power exists with the industrialized states[3].

Power goes to the ones with the highest surplus productivity. Industrial states win this game hands down.

Within industrial nations power goes by productivity and size, ie, Total available capital. To have capital available, one needs a well organized tax system.

Hence Napoleon could conquer all of continental Europe, succeeded by Germany and Japan doing the same, succeeded by the USA (and USSR). The USA won that game in the end.

China is on track to succeed the USA shortly, with on its heels India. These last two can still falter if they do not get their act together. And Germany and Japan are still global powerhouses.

The USA is faltering because of the tax corruption where rich people do not pay enough taxes to make up for the non-taxable low incomes of the rest.

Russia fails on all accounts. It is not well industrialized and depends in everything on imports. It is miserably organized with it’s neo-Patrimonialism (look it up), aka Kleptocracy. Also, it’s tax system does not cover it’s government budget, which is based on uncertain mining income.

The best illustration of Russia’s sorry state is the fact that an amount of 3 times it’s GDP (300% of GDP as US economists say) has gone missing. Let that sink in, what could have been done with that money, 3*GDP, if it had not ended up floating aimlessly in tropical harbors.

MarkH May 7, 2022 10:56 AM

Re Chomsky etc:

Noam is the exemplar of the wise fool. Many arrogant Westerners insist that Ukraine should be forced into some kind of surrender “for its own good.”

These wise ones don’t know or don’t care that their “diplomatic concessions” would be fatal to the independent republic.

When an agreement is at last reached, its terms are shaped by what happened on the battlefield. To say that Ukraine should be pressured to stop fighting is to condemn the country’s national existence.

curt May 7, 2022 10:56 AM

Nick Levinson:

It’s easy to say that people are stupid, and when I discovered that some people use their own exact personal names as passwords I probably had the same thought, but frankly no one knows every subject, and most people, even when they are smart in something, don’t know much IT security.

I’d say that part of the problem is that everyone shits on users for things like this, but nobody really investigates the necessity of authentication systems. Just like people bitch about GDPR and add cookie banners, while rarely doing anything about unnecessary cookies (the only kind of cookie that requires consent under the law).

We’ll see a leak for some obscure shopping site or web forum, and then gawk “OMG, look how easily we can guess the passwords of these idiots!” But someone could potentially be a member of tens or hundreds of these sites, each of which wants a username and password on signup. Historically, people were told never to write passwords down, and never to reuse them, but that just doesn’t scale. So now we say “OK, write them down or use a password manager”, but as we’ve seen with COVID, constantly-changing advice breeds confusion and apathy.

It’s not like we’re always trying to guard Fort Knox. I don’t imagine most people even want to create an account just to buy some widget or post a few messages, but if the site forces them, they’ll do it. And if they go there again in a year or two, and the account creation screen says their email address is already used, they’ll just use the “reset password” button. Often, we need about as much security as my garden shed: a dollar-store lock to keep the raccoons out of the trashcan.

It’d be great if there were some better system—and not 10 “better” systems like we have now—but the reality is that probably 90% of passwords are not guarding anything anyone cares about. Maybe another 5% are guarding things the user doesn’t care about, but the service provider does—like when my workplace wants me to create a domain password, a timesheet password (though I’m not paid by the hour), a bugtracker password, etc.; I couldn’t use my personal password manager in this case, even if I wanted to and policy allowed it. Can’t install unauthorized software either, so guess what’s written down in a notebook…

MarkH May 7, 2022 11:04 AM


My favorite Ukrainian babushka asked her son to bring her a gun. If the Russian army comes to her village, she intends that three Russian soldiers will join her in death.

I’m confident that the great majority of Ukrainian grandmothers feel the same.

I detect the logical fallacy of “both-sides-ism.” The policy of independent Ukraine has been peaceful coexistence.

Russia has been an expansionist colonial empire for about 450 years. Since 1945, Europe has only one land-grabbing military aggressor.

Only one of these two combatants rejects the right of the other to be whole and free.

Winter May 7, 2022 11:48 AM


I detect the logical fallacy of “both-sides-ism.” The policy of independent Ukraine has been peaceful coexistence.

Both-side-ism is a variant of What-about-ism. The phrase “if two fight, two are to blame” is for people who look away from violence.

I once intervened when an 8 yo boy had a fight with two crying 4 yo girls. Obviously, the boy claimed the toddlers had attacked him. I was unimpressed and sided with the toddlers. Putin’s excuses remind me of that boy.

Winter May 7, 2022 11:59 AM


Just like people bitch about GDPR and add cookie banners, while rarely doing anything about unnecessary cookies

The cookie banner complaining stuff is propaganda anyway. Cookie add banners preceded the GDPR and are actually forbidden in their current form under the GDPR.

It’s easy to say that people are stupid,

My position is that if your system requires that all its users are smarter than the average user, you are the problem.

Ted May 7, 2022 1:58 PM

Is it irresponsible to wonder if the SCOTUS leak came from a foreign hack?

A Reason reporter notes that some of the Justices aren’t particularly tech-savvy. Also:

The Court lacks the technology to perform the requisite forensic analysis. Yet, the Court likely will not invite the FBI to investigate, as doing so would potentially breach the Separation of Powers.

It’s honestly a little surprising, and probably good, that SCOTUS leaks are as rare as they are.

Frank Wilhoit May 7, 2022 3:32 PM


wrt the question of “how wars end”, one of Richard Nixon’s third-string henchmen, Fred Iklé (pronounced as if “Fred E. Clay”) published his dissertation as a book entitled “Every War Must End”. I have often pointed out that that title blissfully elides the fact that, in the modern era, no war ever has. And the Russia/Ukraine war — which may have begun in 1920, or even longer ago — will not either. That far, if no farther, Chomsky is right. (Cue the witticisms about stopped clocks.)

lurker May 7, 2022 4:08 PM

“There have been problems with the UNSC veto since 1946”

“The greatest danger is if Russia loses in Ukraine”

A lot more concise than Chomsky, but just as far from the MSM pundits.

search: rnz sunday prof al gillespie [both 01 & 08 May

vas pup May 7, 2022 4:10 PM

Russian State TV Threatens to Annihilate the U.K. With 1,600-Foot-Tall Nuclear Tsunamis

My view: military UK without US (see WWI and WWII as example) is not even closely comparable to current RF nuclear potential.
So,stop hiding behind US wide back and poking Russian Bear eye.

The most important thing MI6 is missing – RF psychology on fight. It’s like Gulag psychology: You die today, but I’ll die tomorrow, meaning BOTH will die, but you first.

@Winter – my question is how such attack from RF may affect other countries, e.g. Ireland, Netherlands, Belgium, France? I doubt tsunamis is going one direction only OR those countries become collateral innocent damage?

For the record, I have nothing personal against UK people, but looks like they also become hostages of current UK foreign policy and possible tragedy it will bring on them.

Nick Levinson May 7, 2022 4:39 PM

@curt, @Winter, & @Ted:


Some passwords prevent most impersonation, such as at fora, but also with purchases using at least some payment systems. One vendor deletes card details automatically after a purchase, which is a good security step, but not immediately, in case of a chargeback or something; and login requires authentication. And it seems most vendors don’t automatically delete unless the user opts for that or at all. Not requiring authentication can cause or increase liability for site owners. I think we users are stuck with having to cope with widespread authentication in some form. When the same organization requires separate authentications, I may think of how they could combine them into one, but I doubt they can be brought to zero.

Cookies are annoying but the economic drive behind many of them makes it unlikely much will be done about them. I set my browser to delete them after a quit, but I don’t think I can do much about them between quits without sometimes downgrading site performance to my annoyance.

By the way, GDPR does not reach worldwide, as has been claimed, but only to entities with nexus in the European Union, but those are a lot of entities.


On users having to be smarter than average, it depends on the intended user base of the software and then it shouldn’t be higher, not only than of the average, but than of almost all of their users. The average, if what is meant is the arithmetic mean, would leave about half too low.


No, it’s not. I haven’t read what you linked to, but I read long ago that the Court doesn’t have email, but maybe Justices have it at home and could get fished for internal Court access. And I doubt the FBI will have a free hand if any hand at all, since it likely would read internal Court files for its investigation. The FBI might advise the Court’s investigator or fulfill investigatory requests on material supplied by the Court investigator. By the way, a few years ago I read on the site of the Administrative Office of the U.S. Courts a description of randomness that showed that the subject was not understood, and I found a similar misunderstanding elsewhere in the Federal judiciary. Their system of determining the content of most science at trial and often thus on appeal (appeals are not trials de novo) is to let each side present its own expert with jurors not being allowed to question witnesses directly during testimony; while that does not usually bring extremely fringe views it may not arrive at a contemporary scientific consensus; and if Einstein had been obscure at the end of his his testimony could have been impeached on relativity because of what he had said about a cosmological constant, which he called a blunder. So, if the Court isn’t good at computer security, I’m not surprised.

SpaceLifeForm May 7, 2022 6:27 PM

@ Ted, Nick Levinson

My gut feel is that the SCOTUS leaker is a Justice. A longshot like Rich Strike.

There is no way FBI will get involved.

Nick Levinson May 7, 2022 7:10 PM

@SpaceLifeForm & @Ted:

Maybe; or a law clerk to one (each Justice hires four of their own choice each year and a retired Justice can have one law clark). HuffPost, an expert in possibly nothing, argues that the leaker could have been either a liberal opposed to the outcome or a conservative opposed to a Roberts-style compromise and seeking to lock him into that draft. I gather the draft dates from February and that as many as 20 revisions can be prepared in a case, so I assume there already were some revisions. However, I don’t think Roberts, if that’s the issue, should feel locked in; an elected politician for a major office may lose an election because of being accused of flip-flopping, accused by voters who sort of follow issues but not closely until election day comes close, but I think that effect is very minor for a Justice. No lawyer is likely to quote the draft’s differences as a sort of dissent from what gets officially issued next month (or whenever). So the visibility of differences may be embarrassing but not worse.

lurker May 7, 2022 7:11 PM

@vas pup, re tsunami

I thought this strike – counter strike had been struck out 40 years ago. It’s the old game of those who don’t learn from history dragging all the rest of us down while they (hopefully) relearn it…

Ted May 7, 2022 8:23 PM

@SpaceLifeForm, Nick Levinson

Re: Source of SCOTUS leak

The article mentioned that there were two reporters on the Politico byline – Josh Gerstein and Alexander Ward.

The curious thing is that while Gerstein is Politico’s senior legal affairs reporter, Ward is a national security reporter. Is this a national security beat?

Politico was the first to publish the leaked draft.

Since the leaked document isn’t classified, prosecution wouldn’t happen under the Espionage Act. But, says Orin Kerr, if someone hacked into a computer or swiped it off a desk, a case could be prosecuted under computer fraud and abuse or theft. It would be very surprising to me if we didn’t hear more about this.

JonKnowsNothing May 7, 2022 9:04 PM

@ Ted, @SpaceLifeForm, @Nick Levinson

While contemplating who doxed SCOTUS, it might be well to remember in recent months the speeches given by some of the Justices.

The Justices do make appearances and normally give some insights into the minutia of the court workings. (1)

During the recent rounds the speeches contained phrasing similar to:

  • We are not political. We do not follow any political party policy. We do not allow our personal religious beliefs to interfere with our rulings.

It was clear at the time, and should be crystal clear now, that the troops were sent out to calm the masses while in the backroom the cards were being deal.


1) iirc(badly) and it might have changed:

The Justices do not use email and/or some of them still do not use it. Some prefer to use “hand written notes” sent down the hall to the other chambers.

The court clerks do have email and the entire back end workings of the court are automated and computerized.

There are still pallet loads of paper delivered and received, as each Justice is given a full copy of what ever cases are being presented for consideration or for adjudication.

Preliminary findings are presented at regular conferences with each other. These would adhere to the proper format and layout of USA legal documents and there would have to be many copies: 1 for the Justice and 1 for each law clerk plus N-Copies for the full time employed clerks of the court. They would also have to be printed in hard copy.

Maybe someone got a hold of the printer ribbon….

Winter May 8, 2022 12:13 AM

@vas pup

Russian State TV Threatens to Annihilate the U.K. With 1,600-Foot-Tall Nuclear Tsunamis

The crunch is, according to some expert, the supposed 100Mton Tsar bomb was never build. The heaviest bomb ever build was 50Mton, the first 2 stages of this Tsar bomb. It is also a suicide bomb as it’s fallout could easily reach Moscow.

Anyhow, a tsunami takes time and does not prevent the UK from firing its own nuclear missiles, or France. Or the US missiles scattered around Europe.

This is all propaganda for their own public.

As the response to earlier threats said: Your missiles reach London and Paris in 120 seconds, ours incinerate Moscow and St Petersburg in 90 seconds.

SpaceLifeForm May 8, 2022 1:08 AM

@ Winter, curt

re: GDPR and cookie banners

The good thing about cookie banners is that it has practically eliminated ReCAPTCHA.

Nick Levinson May 8, 2022 2:42 AM

@SpaceLifeForm, @Winter, & @curt:

Since ReCaptcha enhances security at a cost to users of usually just one checkmark and sometimes clicking on images and a button, why would GDPR be relevant? Is ReCaptcha likely a violation of GDPR? Is it the collecting of data Google doesn’t want to share because reverse-engineering might reveal the algorithm behind the security method?

Clive Robinson May 8, 2022 3:12 AM

@ vas pup,

So,stop hiding behind US wide back and poking Russian Bear eye.

The UK does not hide behind the US back when it comes to Radio Active Fall out, or direct strikes to the UK, as history points out.

Britain as was, knew long before the US about the consequences of nuclear weapons (look up Leo Szilard who actually wrote the letter Einstein signed).

The race for a practical bomb actual started in Britain on a street corner in London back in 1933. Within a Year Leo patented his idea and tried to get the British War Office to take him serioisly. At first they did not as they did not several years later in the US either.

Back then it was hard for military men and politicians to get their head around the idea that the force of explosives was not due to the “over preasure” of expanding gas from the actual explosive, but that raw energy could do the same. Also the spliting of the atom was just theory based on nobody had done it. Then just a half decade at most in the Kaiser Wilhelm Institute in Berlin a mild manered chemist much to his own astonishment when he bombarded thorium with neutrons and produced new chemically different elements.

The result of Otto Hahn’s analysis of the mid 1938 experiment he, physics proffessor Lise Meitner and chemist Fritz Strassmann had carried out, caused Hahn and Strassmann to run a different experiment later in the year which showed barium could be formed by neutron bombardment of uranium. In late december that year the mechanism behind the observations was explained by Lise Meitner and Frisch in a process they named “Fission” in their writeup to Nature, that was published in Feb 39. Sadly a sign of the times then and for decades to come was that the Nobel Committee tried to write women out of science so whilst Hann got the Nobel prize Lise Meitner did not, even afyer she had been nominated something like fourty times over the years.

However back then things were in the midst of the growing storm of Hitler’s activities, and fission at first went almost unnoticed. It did reach Neils Bohr in 1939, and it’s been said that it was this news that made him flee Denmark and cause him to spread the word.

Again it all appeared theoretical, and it was only when someone pointed out that the Germany had stopped the export from the Czechoslovakia uranian mines that the cold chill of reality went down various peoples backs.

Britain had the advantage of other and arguably better sources of uranium, and started it’s own research before the US. But quickly ran into problems, one of which was it could not realistically aford to do anything other than theoretical work and that was seen as a waste of resources, as the usuall “it will all be over by Christmas” type arguments came into play. As it turned out the US bomb project came very close to bankrupting the US military budget, and the final success came after the War in Europe was effectively over.

Russia like many others later stole the designs. They stole them not just from spies they had in the US but also from spies in Britain who still had their own independent research.

What the British and later UK senior politicians from Churchill onwards all were told is that the UK and London in particular was going to be the nuclear fall out zone for both Russian and US weapons. Look up London as “Ash City” it was a wry comment about the state of afairs that was common back in the 60’s through 80’s and kind of came to a head over CND and later Greenham Common.

But before that various people took an interest in what the UK government was hiding from it’s citizens, and a few people broke into secret nuclear defence bunkers and stole and released documentation that derailed much Military planning for Britain after a nuclear attack. Others myself included were more intrested in getting into the bunkers for the fun. A friend of mine from back then Nick Catford to my surprise took lots of photos inside (taking care not to photo people) and built up an amazing historical record of the inside of the bunkers we and others fairly easily managed to get into. Then Maggie Thatcher made life difficult, as she decided they all needed to be upgraded in the 80’s and the renewed Cold War threat to the UK.

So yes Britain was for various reasons one of the few nations in the world that had citizens rather more aware than others that they were the nuclear target for both sides of any European nuclear “proxie” conflict. Hence the reason for the “alledged” independent nuclear capability, to keep the two neighbouring dogs off the lawn. Also why many Brits are rather keen on unilateral disarmament, because the only way we will not be a target for nuclear bombs is if nobody has them, something that only South Africa has made any steps towards, and the current mess we find ourselves in because the US and UK has reneged on the deal it made to achive the denuclearization of eastern europe.

But getting back to the,

Russian State TV Threatens to Annihilate the U.K. With 1,600-Foot-Tall Nuclear Tsunamis

The host of that show is a “known wind bag” with a not very sound contact with reality.

There is not going to be a “1600 foot tall” column of sea water, let alone a tsunami wave, do the maths to work out just the pressure required at the base to support it (the vacuum hight of water can for easy mental arithmetic be assumed as 10meters).

It’s “scary monsters under the bed” type story telling and rightly has been laughed at.

Oh and take a look at where the wind patterns will take any radio active fall out, you might come to start considering the expression “own goal”.

Whilst I’ve no doubt there are a goodly share of crazies in Russia who might think that dropping nukes on the edge of the Atlantic trench might be a good idea, most people in their military would think otherwise.

You might want to look into the physics of what might happen at various hights of nuclear detonation. The information is out there if you want to read it.

I rather suspect this nuclear story has been cooked up, because of what has happened at Chernobyl and how the wind bags home nations soldiers have already been “cooked to death” by radio active fall out from the stupidity of the criminal classes that are the hallmark of their societal structures.

Clive Robinson May 8, 2022 3:42 AM

@ SpaceLifeForm, vas pup,

Did you know that psilocybin mushrooms taste bad? Like seriously really distasteful? Did you know that LSD has no taste?

Taste is a funny thing, based mainly on smell. I’ve mentioned in the past that the mint-orange taste problem led to the realisation that taste had a quantum component and that humans have quantum structures in them.

The thing is there is no “has no taste” that is all atoms interact in some way, and we now have the notion of “anti-taste” that came about through water…

Water was supposed to have “no taste” but myself and others say it does, and not just from the other chemicals in it. Further we’ve demonstrated we can taste it.

It’s because it has “anti-taste” that detracts from the taste balance. That is the fact that something is claimed to be not present, does not mean it does not effect other things around it. It’s kind of similar to the notion of shadows and likewise information.

As physicist friend once pointed out, “If you fall in a hole, you know it exists as it trips every bit as much as a similar sized object”.

It’s almost as bad as the correct observation that all mechanical sweep hand clocks turn anti-clockwise 😉

Clive Robinson May 8, 2022 3:53 AM

@ SpaceLifeForm,

Re : test

“ sent an invalid response.

I’ve no idea where along the windy-path or by whom it was originated, but I hope that helps.

Winter May 8, 2022 4:16 AM

@lurker, vas pup

I thought this strike – counter strike had been struck out 40 years ago.

re: tsunami

There is method in madness. The current war was “anticipated” in a 2006 novel, The Third Empire: Russia as It Ought to Be,. The Ukraine and NATO strategies of Putin follow this “manual” eeriely close.


Mikhail Yuriev’s 2006 utopian novel, The Third Empire: Russia as It Ought to Be, anticipates—with astonishing precision—Russia’s strategy of hybrid war and its recent military campaigns: the 2008 war with Georgia, the 2014 annexation of Crimea, the incursion into the Donetsk and Luhansk regions the same year, and Russia’s current assault on Ukraine.

There are several premises on which the plot of this book, and the Russian strategy, depend:

  • NATO is a Charade. The US and other members will never step up to help each other
  • The West is decadent, weak, and in decline. They will not fight or endure any hardship for freedom, or each other.
  • The Russian army is capable and a real force

Therefore, the Russians assume they can destroy the UK and scare the rest of Europe into submission. Europe will not dare to oppose Russia for fear of losing their fuel.

Whether the Kremlin strategists, of they have them, actually still believe this is immaterial. This has been the narrative since 2000 and this is what their population believes. Keeping up a front of mad brinkmanship is also good for any negotiatons needed later on.

But in the end, will all their missiles actually work? Will their warheads detonate? Will they reach their targets? Who will want test it out?

As a closing remark, I would like to quote Tom Nichols:

Many years ago, a former KGB official said to me that he’d been assured by Soviet military leaders that if the USSR had wanted to attack during the Cold War, Warsaw Pact forces could have cut through West Germany in a week. I agreed. “You could have gotten in,” I said. “How were you planning on getting out?” An uneasy silence followed: my interlocutor’s clear assumption was that by Day Seven, NATO would have surrendered already, and there was no real need to think about Day Eight.

Russia Can’t Beat NATO–But Putin May Try


JonKnowsNothing May 8, 2022 8:09 AM

@Ted, @SpaceLifeForm, @Nick Levinson, @All

re: SCOTUS doxing paper trails

There is an good MSM primer on how to avoid getting nailed by investigators when doxing a restricted-security publication.

The short is:

  • It is very hard to avoid and doing so will alter your life style and also (perhaps) bring up further troubles (from failed mitigations).

The report states that the doxed item is a photocopy of the Document. The photocopies contain identifying marks from the original document that might be enough to ID the original paper copy.

For the average, on the fly, at the moment, unplanned doxer, even considering identifying marks as a problem isn’t likely (see RealityW).

There’s a section on what, where, when use of office equipment might have happened and tracking the document through the office internet.

Finding the metadata connected with the scanner-photocopier equipment, as well as metadata if they find the source document.

The tracing of “Colonel Mustard in the Library with the Photocopier”: who had access, who had opportunity, who talked to who, who went where, who changed their normal routine(s), all through various tracking requests, data aggregator information purchases, and geofence warrants.

It’s a good primer on what to do and not to do, but functionally, anyone “planning” to dox something important is going more add-on problems than someone who does it on “impulse”. They are still going to get a lot of bother either way. Claiming impulse won’t work if you do any planning at all.

ex: Dec37 Sentencing: the impulsive compared to the coordinated


Search Terms

Supreme Court



Leak Might Unfold


Ted May 8, 2022 9:25 AM

@JonKnowsNothing, SpaceLifeForm, Nick Levinson, All

The report states that the doxed item is a photocopy of the Document.

Hmm. Interesting. I see what you’re saying about that. A NYT article also noted that the leaked document was slightly askew, the top-left corner was dog-eared, and it looked as if a staple had been removed. The words “1st Draft” were highlighted in yellow.

It’s reported that the leak investigation will fall to Col. Gail Curley, SCOTUS’s Marshall. However functionally:

“This is not Scotland Yard”

And Colonel Curley may have to bring in an outside party to conduct interviews and examine computers. Also from the NYT:

Draft opinions are normally emailed to the offices of other justices and are sometimes printed and distributed among the justices, the clerks, and the conference secretaries. Each of them could potentially be a target for questioning.

The leaked draft:

curt May 8, 2022 10:03 AM

@Nick Levinson,

Some passwords prevent most impersonation, such as at fora, but also with purchases using at least some payment systems. One vendor deletes card details automatically after a purchase, which is a good security step, but not immediately, in case of a chargeback or something; and login requires authentication. And it seems most vendors don’t automatically delete unless the user opts for that or at all. Not requiring authentication can cause or increase liability for site owners. I think we users are stuck with having to cope with widespread authentication in some form.

Based on your message, re: purchases and chargebacks, I’m still not quite sure what risk the authentication protects me against. Some other person causing money to be sent back to my card? Obviously it would be bad if someone impersonated me to purchase something—except, had there been no account, there’d have been no way for my card details to be stored in the first place (or no way acceptable to card issuers). I suspect the average person doesn’t know much more than me about these things, which kind of proves the point: they’ll see the account as pointless friction with no security value.

My understanding is that, for in-person purchases, the credit card issuers require that the card itself (and PIN/signature if required) be considered sufficient authentication—which is to say that no merchant shall require additional identification data for card-present transactions. They have no trouble doing purchase and chargeback transactions under this restriction. It boggles the mind that the issuers have not provided any way to do card-present transactions from home, perhaps by mailing a $5 smartcard-reader to everyone who lacks NFC capability. At present, though, I’d be fine with just typing the damn numbers every time; it’s easier than typing the password every time.

Since ReCaptcha enhances security at a cost to users of usually just one checkmark and sometimes clicking on images and a button

…and enabling Javascript, without which a page tells the user to check a box that simply isn’t there. Presumably the GDPR is at least somewhat relevant here, because Google uses some kind of data-collection-based risk-profiling to determine how much to bother users (checkbox or “full” CAPTCHA or outright block). And of course Google is a third-party with which personal data (at least IP address) is being shared. All for the security of the service provider, not the user.

I’m surprised there hasn’t been much legal wrangling about the (in)accessibility of ReCAPTCHA. The existence of the audio CAPTCHAs appears to be a mere pretense of accessibility, as in my experience they’re not something a human being could actually solve.

Nick Levinson May 8, 2022 12:37 PM


Someone could spend your money, if your card is still on file. By the time you find out, assuming the spender didn’t claim to already have a business relationship with you that would apparently legitimize the bogus transaction, the purchase could have been shipped out and so the site owner would lose one way or another and so might the card issuer.

To do your legit transaction without storing card details for even a few minutes and more likely for a few days requires designing a system that would still protect all appropriate parties. I don’t know how to design that system. An issuer might offer a card that doesn’t allow chargebacks, like some ways of sending money that don’t allow a sender to recall the money from the transit path, but not many customers would want that kind of card.

Although the risks to the card issuer seem the same no matter how you buy, some risks vary, and issuers likely notice. Criminals who succeed tend to develop specialties, so their knowledge is not that of an average person. An online scammer with card details could try once every second with different vendors until one bogus transaction goes through, then change cards for the next attempts. They wouldn’t try that face-to-face in a store because even a dim-witted and underpaid (undermotivated) clerk would notice.

A user likely sees authentication as friction, but it is so widespread I don’t know where you’d buy with a card that doesn’t use it. So users either live with it or go to stores. If stores have too much friction with cards in person, users can use greenbacks in most stores and likely avoid the other stores. If carrying a lot of greenbacks in a pocket is too risky, the customer has to think through their choices. Making life easier may require complex design.

If a site owner can’t have some minimum security for a service, they may decline to provide the service. When I want to withdraw cash from my bank, the bank does not leave a pile of it on the sidewalk outside my home for when I wake up and leave the house, even though that would be very convenient for me. It’s a rare bank that would even consider it.

I haven’t tried the reCaptcha audio. Accessibility suits likely are on each website’s design overall rather than on a particular element even when the element is from a third party.

Winter May 8, 2022 2:22 PM


The report states that the doxed item is a photocopy of the Document.

The newspapers of old would retype the document in it’s entirety, or OCR. Then convert to plain text or minimal layout. Then drop at news outlet.

This leaves only the textual aspects for identification. Provided that the news outlet can cover your tracks.

vas pup May 8, 2022 4:24 PM

@all responded to my posts – thank you very much! That is how free exchange of opinions very useful.

vas pup May 8, 2022 6:06 PM

Social media break improves mental health, study suggests

“Asking people to stop using social media for just one week could lead to significant improvements in their wellbeing, depression and anxiety and could, in the future, be recommended as a way to help people manage their mental health say the authors of a new study.”

curt May 8, 2022 6:32 PM

@ Nick Levinson,

Someone could spend your money, if your card is still on file.

I’m still not seeing how. OK, so the card’s on file in some backend system for a few days. But then what? How does an attacker do anything with it? If they compromise the vendor, it makes no difference whether or not I had an account. If I contact the vendor wanting a refund or adjustment, I’d presumably have to tell them the card details to confirm my identity.

A user likely sees authentication as friction, but it is so widespread I don’t know where you’d buy with a card that doesn’t use it.

Physical stores. Personally, for online stores, I’m more bothered by the friction of complex legal agreements and insufficient shipping details (one does not want to have something shipped into Canada without knowing the exact shipping method, because UPS and FedEx are known for extorting surprise customs fees). And when I worked in an office that didn’t allow personal deliveries, I couldn’t take a few days off to wait for a package, so I’d always miss the thing have go on a 3-hour trek to the airport to get it.

So, I don’t shop online all that much, though my recollection is that Digi-key didn’t require an account last time I used them (and their shipping was customs-prepaid with next-day arrival, so I only had to burn one vacation day).

SpaceLifeForm May 8, 2022 8:42 PM

@ Clive, Scott_Helme


Thanks for testing. I just wanted to make sure it was not a problem on my end. So, I did some more research. It turns out the work-around is simple. Simple, but not immediately obvious. But, I needed to refresh some neurons and I did find a problem for cloudflare to figure out.

Results from different TLS tests vary.


It just spins. The cloudflare test needs a timeout.


Assessment failed: Failed to communicate with the secure server


There was a problem with the handshake. The site may not support a protocol or cipher we can use.

curl -v
* Trying…
* Connected to ( port 443 (#0)
* ALPN, offering h2
* ALPN, offering http/1.1
* successfully set certificate verify locations:
* CAfile: /etc/ssl/certs/ca-certificates.crt
* CApath: /etc/ssl/certs
* TLSv1.3 (OUT), TLS handshake, Client hello (1):
* TLSv1.3 (IN), TLS alert, internal error (592):
* error:14094438:SSL routines:ssl3_read_bytes:tlsv1 alert internal error
* Closing connection 0
curl: (35) error:14094438:SSL routines:ssl3_read_bytes:tlsv1 alert internal error

At this point, I was thinking there was some kind of certificate problem. And there may very well be one.

Something changed, as my many years old bookmark used to work.

The simple work-around: Do not use www actually works in TLS mode. So it appears.

A shout out to Scott Helme for which is the best.

But now, there is another rabbit hole. It’s always DNS.

Nick Levinson May 9, 2022 7:04 AM


It depends on how your card gets compromised. It may not be in the same website where you shop without a site account. Details may have been copied from a large batch, then used with impersonation of you to buy something the unknown user sells on another site. You get blamed, possibly criminally. If you have to have a site account to use a card, impersonation of you becomes harder and exoneration of you becomes easier. If entering the same card twice requires a login, the second entries become harder.

But if a site does not require a site account and someone copies your card details from that site and then uses the details at that same site, you can be framed. One vendor specified that I’m responsible for anything done under my login. That’s reasonable except that the vendor routinely transmitted my password in plaintext across the Internet, where snooping was easy. I tried to close my account but was told that doing so was illegal; I could only turn emails off. I told them exactly what I thought of their legal theory and they closed my account.

One shortcoming in my argument is with CVV and similar codes, which, I’m told, should remain in a system for only a very brief time, making theft of that less likely than for other details. But if that can be stolen, the problem is as above.

I bought cell phone airtime with plastic without logging into the cell phone website. I gave my phone number and the plastic’s details. But I think I had to have registered the phone number as mine under a login previously. So the risk is limited to buying airtime and the cell company could take back whatever I haven’t used up if they think the plastic was stolen. I don’t know if I could have bought a new brand-name phone from the same site without a login if I was using plastic.

Physical brick-and-mortar stores don’t use the same kind of authentication, but they use something. Don’t do this, just imagine it as a thought experiment, but imaginarily go into a store and use five cards for five people as if you change your identity every thirty seconds. You can do that online. To paraphrase a The New Yorker cartoon about dogs: On the Internet, no one knows you’re five people. And no one knows you’re the same person who said you are. If no login is needed, after each identity just quit the browser and restart it for the next identity, and maybe switch IP addresses. For another version of the thought experiment (don’t actually do this), make a photocopy of a card, go to a store’s card reader, and swipe or insert the photocopy. Authentication is real, although different.

At least you may be reading the terms; most people don’t. Long ago, I declined to register with eBay when I saw it had 15 agreements and I didn’t want to read that many. I still sometimes decline to agree to terms. But that also applies to brick-and-mortar places, albeit not as often: I want to open a bank account but have particular requirements, and the bank executives are not as well informed or want to say what will make a sale, so I have to read their terms.

I haven’t used Digi-Key.

On a previous point: I don’t imagine anyone’s going to send $5 anythings to very many people for free and I may not want to pay for one; and that doesn’t consider repair costs, hacks, etc.

SpaceLifeForm May 9, 2022 4:59 PM


When you fail to plan, you plan to fail

Coldstart. Remember Colonial Pipeline?

Chump Change, but sends a message.

From January through November 2020, PHMSA conducted an inspection of Colonial Pipeline Company’s procedures and records for Control Room Management (CRM) in Linden, NJ, Hebert, LA, Greensboro, NC, and Alpharetta, GA. PHMSA made preliminary determinations that Colonial Pipeline Company was in probable violation of several PSRs, including a probable failure to adequately plan and prepare for manual shutdown and restart of its pipeline system.

SpaceLifeForm May 9, 2022 5:10 PM

@ vas pup, Clive

Bad link. I have no Smart Socks.

But Clive and myself have a lot of floppies, and RSN, they will be worth more than a bitcoin.

lurker May 9, 2022 6:21 PM

@SpaceLifeForm re F5

Best comment from Ars:

Basically they take a bunch of open source code, improve it not at all, and then add more attack surface on top of it.

Clive Robinson May 9, 2022 6:55 PM

@ SpaceLifeForm,

Re : The username is all that is required.

F5 and Big IP…

Hmm just a little while ago in the UK it was,

5G and Big BoJo Show.

Where every one was supposedd to be getting majorly pantie wedged, or so we were getting told because 5G was so important to sort out because,

“Horange Man in U S Hay, he say, 5G vely vely bad…”

So many bad jokes, so little time 😉

JonKnowsNothing May 9, 2022 6:57 PM

@ vas pup

re: Elon Musk Fears for His Life …

He has a lot more to fear from Wall$$ now that rumors are floating that he is reneging on the price per share for Twitz.

Elon has a lot in common with Ross Perot …


Search Terms

Ross Perot / targeted for assassination

Reaganomics / Voodoo Economics

Ted May 9, 2022 9:18 PM


A ransomware attack was, in part, responsible for the closing of a US college. It’s reportedly the first time this has happened.

The ransomware attack originated from Iran and hit the 157-year-old school in December 2021. The college did not regain access to its data until March.

Would it have made a difference if the school had been a part of the Research and Education Networks ISAC?

SpaceLifeForm May 9, 2022 11:38 PM

@ Clive


It’s always DNS.

Currently, I see via nslookup



Two separate hosting servers.

But the does not have a working https server for the subdomain, hence the error.

Interestingly, plain http to (sans www) does redirect to https.

Anyway, something happened in past month or so, as this used to work.

If you want plain http, use http and the www.

If you want https, use http or https without the www.

Clear as mud, right?

lurker May 10, 2022 12:05 AM

@SpaceLifeForm, “Clear as mud, right?”

Sure, when it happens on a site like cryptome…

Winter May 10, 2022 1:59 AM

Russia is trying to destroy Ukraine in every way. The extend of the destruction is unbelievable, probably running in the $100B+ range. This is several times the Ukrainian GDP.

What about war reparations? A pipe dream. Maybe not. Especially if war crimes and genocide are proven.

Can the EU or Ukraine ever use Russia’s frozen assets?

“I think it’s much easier for Ukraine or individual Ukrainians who have suffered as a result of this war to take action to get hold of state assets,” Bond explained, “because there’s such a clear connexion between the decisions and the actions of the state and its agents and the assets that have been frozen.”

“The whole thing becomes a lot easier if the International Criminal Court does find that Russia has committed genocide or crimes against humanity. If you are either the Ukrainian state or individual Ukrainians, you’ve got a judgement from the International Criminal Court that says a terrible wrong has been done to you — the most serious wrongs that can be committed by a state — then it’s a bit easier to start going to other jurisdictions and other courts and saying: ‘We want to enforce this judgement’,” he went on.

MEPs ask that frozen Russian billions be used to rebuild and arm Ukraine

While there are obstacles to liquidising the assets, such as national legislation, the initiative’s supporters believe that “it is equally fair that Russia’s state assets are also dedicated to support the victims of Putin aggression”.

“The international community should take the Italian anti-mafia legislation, which provides for the re-use of assets confiscated from sanctioned persons, as a model”, Five Star Movement MEP Fabio Massimo Castaldo told EURACTIV.

Clive Robinson May 10, 2022 3:36 AM

@ Winter,

Russia is trying to destroy Ukraine in every way.

No it’s not.

It’s trying to destroy the people and the cities they live in and their culture. Many many years ago this behaviour was called a “progrom”.

It is a “purposeful land clearance”, with a very definate purpose.

The Ukraine farms produce around 1/8th and 1/5th of the worlds grains depending on if it’s wheat, corn, etc. Then there are the vegtable oils, then the chicken and other animal proteins etc.

Russia will take all of that away at the point of a gun and use it to “buy dominion”, or worse still “salt the fields” in some way to achieve the same effect.

Putin is going to “Starve Europe” to his will, as well as create yet another refugee crisis, so more food pressure.

The fact the warning signs have been clearly on the table most of this century and all the EU has done is bicker amongst themselves in oh so short sighted political preening and posturing. Whilst worse the Council of Ministers have been weakening much of the South of Europe to get food even cheaper in it’s own less obvious “clearing of the lands”.

You might not have noticed, but the increases in food prices and deliberate stagnation of income to those not in the top few percent of society is creating mass poverty in Europe, and Putin is going to capitalize on that, every which way he can…

Winter May 10, 2022 3:50 AM


It is a “purposeful land clearance”, with a very definate purpose.

They also mine the fields and booby trap the homes, so it looks to me more like scorched earth.

Winter May 10, 2022 3:53 AM


Putin is going to “Starve Europe” to his will, as well as create yet another refugee crisis, so more food pressure.

If there is anything the EU is good at, it is increasing food production. That was the initial rationale to even start with the then EEG. And they can do that all over the world.

Winter May 10, 2022 5:06 AM


Putin is going to “Starve Europe” to his will, as well as create yet another refugee crisis, so more food pressure.

@Winter (myself)

If there is anything the EU is good at, it is increasing food production.

And they are working on it:

Safeguarding food security and supporting EU farmers

In response, the Commission has announced a number of measures it is taking to safeguard global food security and support EU farmers and consumers that have been impacted by Russia’s military aggression against Ukraine.

The point is that the EU still has all the politics, economics, and financial procedures in place to do this. What does throw a wrench in this pipeline is Climate Change that is making the former staple growth areas less productive.

Clive Robinson May 10, 2022 6:17 AM

@ Winter, ALL,

They also mine the fields and booby trap the homes, so it looks to me more like scorched earth.

Do not let such things give you the wrong impression.

Remember two things,

1, The Russisns know where they have mined fields.
2, They don’t care because the people who will work the fields for them have no value to the Russian lradership.

Remember where you I and most others see people of worth, that is not how Putin and those around him think. Study what Stalin did, where one end result was Russian’s turning to canabilism.

There is much that history can teach us, but we are not taught, or it is deliberately hidden from even young adults.

What went on between the 1880’s and beyond WWII with regards those in power not seeing others even of their own community as even worthy of the respect you would give a farm animal still goes on.

Not just the barbarism of what goes on in the Middle East, but how about “Down Town Chicago” where even the Mayor was complicit in setting up their own private “Black Center” where unlawfull “Enhanced Interrogation Techniques” were being used on people to make Police Officers meet their political “Tough on Crime” figures…

As we come across the Atlantic, what went on in Northern Ireland was horrific, but we get to the UK mainland with Police Forces in Northern England being found in the middle of “crime rings” where abused children were rather than being helped turned into criminals by the Police and other Agencies.

You have to understand that between 5% and 15% of the population will do things that others of us consider horrifying just because there is no one to stop them. They will laugh and take pleasure from others pain and anguish, they will debase people to feel superior, likewise some will care nothing about others even their very close family as what they want is the only thing they consider.

It’s about time that people realy started to understand what Putin means by “Strong Russia”. He will with no emotion destroy anything and everyone that gets in the way of his plans, that includes everyone except himself.

His plan is to be the ultimate Emperor to find an eternal place in history over however many bodies and destruction it takes.

The fact his plans are not just delusional, they are also about as inept as you can get with a “throw them at the cannons” mentality, that he tries to keep hidden.

The funny thing in a very sick way, is have a look at what the Russian’s did to Napoleon, the Ukranian’s appear to have a more upto date version using “spread them thin, or bottle them up” techniques that leave those Russian Conscripts failing to asymetrical warfare…

Winter May 10, 2022 6:44 AM


What went on between the 1880’s and beyond WWII with regards those in power not seeing others even of their own community as even worthy of the respect you would give a farm animal still goes on.

First, mined fields will increase costs and reduce profits, however you slice it.

But this is not between the 1880’s and beyond WWII, but since the invention of agriculture. And the trend more or less is, the more the people live in cities, the more civilized they become (pun intended). As a majority of humans now live in cities, people get less brutal.

In WWI, people send in a million soldiers to die in a single front. The USA was willing to lose 60k soldiers in the Vietnam war. The losses in Afghanistan were some 2,000 soldiers. Nowadays, even tens of casualties are too much.

The Russians are clearly still in the barbarous state, but the rest of the Europeans do have a much lower pain threshold on this and that does help explain the response.

Winter May 10, 2022 12:24 PM

A belated update on the Cyber war front:

Russia Is Being Hacked at an Unprecedented Scale

Russian online payment services, government departments, aviation companies, and food delivery firms have all been targeted by the IT Army as it aims to disrupt everyday life in Russia. “Russians have noticed regular hitches in the work of TV streaming services today,” the government-backed operators of the Telegram channel posted following one claimed operation in mid-April.

Russia, once considered a top force in cyberspace, now being mocked by world’s best hackers

“These are complex attacks aimed at not only gaining access to a website or database, but also spreading the truth about what is happening,” the minister said. “We have already hacked more than 80 databases that are critical for Russia. These are databases of citizens, businesses – rather sensitive data. Also, a digital blockade has made, for example, so that today Vkontakte (a Russian social network) cannot even buy servers. Their cybersecurity has been hit hard by sanctions.”

Ransomware has gone down because sanctions against Russia are making life harder for attackers

“One interesting trend we see is, in the last month or two ransomware is actually down. There’s probably a lot of different reasons why that is, but I think one impact is the fallout of Russia-Ukraine,” said Joyce.

“As we do sanctions and it’s harder to move money and it’s harder to buy infrastructure on the web, we’re seeing them less effective – and ransomware is a big part of that,” he added.

URLs are -ened for your protection

Winter May 10, 2022 12:36 PM

More Cyber Warfare. Nice to have PII of suspected war criminals.

Russia Is Leaking Data Like a Sieve

Names, birthdays, passport numbers, job titles—the personal information goes on for pages and looks like any typical data breach. But this data set is very different. It allegedly contains the personal information of 1,600 Russian troops who served in Bucha, a Ukrainian city devastated during Russia’s war and the scene of multiple potential war crimes.

The data set is not the only one. Another allegedly contains the names and contact details of 620 Russian spies who are registered to work at the Moscow office of the FSB, the country’s main security agency. Neither set of information was published by hackers. Instead they were put online by Ukraine’s intelligence services, with all the names and details freely available to anyone online. “Every European should know their names,” Ukrainian officials wrote in a Facebook post as they published the data.

Grima Squeakersen May 10, 2022 6:57 PM

@ Nick Levinson re: SCOTUS leak – My observations: It seems extremely likely to me that the leaker intended to motivate increased Democrat voter turn-out in November to ameliorate what at the moment would appear to be a Republican tsunami. My read on the Justices is that none of them would deliberately do this, for a number of reasons, among which is the risk that the leaker might be effectively ostracized in chamber for a very long time if he or she was found out. So, most likely a clerk. One might assume it would be the clerk of a liberal Justice, but that raises a question. When the Justices select their clerks, do they typically select based on philosohical agreement, or is legal professional talent and potential the primary or only criteria? In that case it might be possible for a conservative Justice to have a clerk with liberal sympathies. Ironically, if my take on the motivation is correct, the chosen strategy could easily backfire. SCOTUS typically releases very important decisions that could be controversial on or about June 31, at the end of court term. That would have meant release of this one roughly 120 days before election day, which is probably nearly optimal for the MSM and their co-agitators to stir up a pre-election furor. As it is, election day is nearly 6 months away, which might be a bit too long, considering the attention span of the average voter. For any interest it might have, I generally support a woman’s LEGAL right to end a pregnancy on the grounds that an unborn child is parasitic, and no one should be required by law to harbor a parasitic organism. There are imo several morality questions that should be extra-legal, and I do have serious issues with abortions done at the end of term, and partial birth abortions, based on viability as an independent, sentient, organism, complete with its own rights. In my opinion, the leaked opinion is 100% correct in its conclusion that Roe erred in finding abortions to be protected by a Consitutional right of the doctor to privacy. That was, after all, what the current case was about and the charge to the Court: not whether abortion is moral or immoral; not whether it should be permitted by law or criminalized; but simply whether or not the reading of the Constitution by the Warren Court in 1973 as evinced in the prevailing decision in Roe v. Wade was reasonable and justifiable. Any attempt to read more into than that is an indication of someone who does not understand the process, or someone who is an outright charlatan.

lurker May 10, 2022 7:15 PM

@Ted, “EU proposing law to search all private digital correspondence…”

No, they propose to search all public digital correspondence, because that’s what it is when you use any of the usual services. The question is, how are they going to enforce this on the small sites that will run IRC thru SSH? Such sites will spring up like toadstools in the forest…

Ted May 10, 2022 8:38 PM


Re: EU Message Scanning

No, they propose to search all public digital correspondence

I’m reading that the proposed legislation makes the scanning mandatory. The law would also apply to end-to-end encrypted services.

The question is, how are they going to enforce this on the small sites that will run IRC thru SSH?

The draft is 135-pages. Here’s a clip:

“The proposal covers inter alia providers that offer interpersonal electronic communications services and hence are subject to national provisions implementing the ePrivacy Directive18 and its proposed revision currently in negotiations19.”

Not exactly sure what this means. But in other articles, I’m seeing this would apply to providers of email, chat, and messaging services. Haven’t yet seen a mention of small sites that run IRC thru SSH.

lurker May 10, 2022 10:37 PM

“providers that offer interpersonal electronic communications services” might appear to cover all bases, although who else is involved in “inter alia”, and how each country implements the ePrivacy Directive, are typically European indeterminism.

Even @Clive’s constant nagging:

Paper, always paper.

is no guarantee. After all, this latest electronic message scanning has long precedent in the European high art of lifting and replacing wax seals.

JonKnowsNothing May 10, 2022 10:40 PM

@ lurker, @Ted, @All

re: Scanning for the public good…

Anyone remember that proposal to scan for the bad-POs to save the Kiddos? The one that got retracted?

JonKnowsNothing May 10, 2022 11:19 PM

@ Grima Squeakersen , @ Nick Levinson , @All

re: SCOTUS leaky pipes

There are a good number of suggestions it was from the Left and an equal number that suggest the Right. I doubt it is either.

If it was from a Justice themselves, they probably don’t know how to work the copier.

If it was from a high placed clerk, the future risk would be untenable, unless after clerking for Justice-ZXY they found that they really couldn’t stand them, or their judicial philosophy and as a fair few came with ribbons tied to their … ahems … coke cans. Maybe such a clerk after getting a similar direct insight, decided to chuck the legal profession and get an orange paint job instead.

I’d look below the salt a bit farther. Someone with access, someone who might be able to read (no guarantees of that in the USA), someone who can not only read but read fast as since they were in the copy center to make n-copies and made n+1 by mistake, then took the extra home to line the bird cage.

Someone who makes not very much money, maybe can no longer make ends meet and got incensed that the Justices get special treatment and special privileges and maybe got tired of tugging their forelock and genuflecting when the black robes pass by.

I’d add on that an important extra requirement is that these person(s) (it could be all the 1st year clerk staff), had some personal experience in either direction. Someone either euphoric about the potential block (1) or devastated that it might return (2).

Someone who has nothing to lose, maybe someone ready to retire…


1) iirc(badly) a MSM article about the daughter of a woman who was raped. The woman never pressed charges against the rapist because it was and remains difficult to get a prosecution much less a conviction. The adult daughter convinced the mother to press charges and said “I am a living crime scene”.

2) iirc(badly) a MSM article about the women from Ukraine and evacuated to Poland and now discover that there are zero options in Poland where as the Ukraine had the standard set. They now have to flee to Germany or other country and if they ‘Declare it to a doctor, and it’s over’.

Search terms

Below the Salt : in medieval times, salt (a valuable seasoning) was placed in the middle of a dining table and the lord and his family were seated “above the salt” and other guests or servants below.

Tugging the Forelock: A man wearing a hat will tip the hat as male greetings to people they knew. A man was not wearing a hat he might touch his hair to the side of the front of his head to replicate a hat tipping gesture. This was typically performed by lower-class men to social superiors, such as peasants to the land-owner, and is known as “tugging the forelock”.

SpaceLifeForm May 11, 2022 12:58 AM

@ Grima Squeakersen

SCOTUS typically releases very important decisions that could be controversial on or about June 31, at the end of court term.

Clearly, what comes out on the 31st, are Shadow Docket rulings. 😉

JonKnowsNothing May 11, 2022 8:55 AM


Yet another article about faulty AI/ML applications. This one, again, pointing out the flaws of AI/ML when used to “scan resumes and match applications with jobs”. Nothing terribly new there, but just more of the horrible AI/ML data set bias in full panoply.

There are all sorts of bogus methods people and corporations use to “pick someone”. The halo effect is well defined. So much easier to work with someone just like yourself, than to work with someone who might be a PITA because the ask too many questions.

In this article, yet another quasi-possible-bogus method has re-surfaced the pathway to employment: 1) Puzzles 2) Personality 3) More Personality 4) Behavior.

From the website it states:

In all seriousness though, you’re not going to find how to “beat” the Plum assessment by a Google search. Sorry. You’ll never find the “answer” because the Plum Assessment just can’t be “beat.”

The P l u m (not the fruit) Assessment (1) (also known as the “Discovery Survey”) uses questions developed by Industrial/Organizational Psychologists (super smart people who study the psychology of the workplace) to gauge your personality, social intelligence, and problem solving ability. Then, our software compares those data points against the needs of the role.

With that high assessment of their own “super smartness”, it shouldn’t be that surprising that the CEO said:

P l u m ’ s CEO Caitlin MacGregor … she stands behind her product:

“I should not be interviewing somebody that is a 35, regardless of how much experience they have.


Search Terms

P l u m s (as in not-the-fruit)

Finding it hard

get a job?

Robot recruiters

1) Extra spaces in some nouns to avoid barfage.

Ted May 11, 2022 10:34 AM

@JonKnowsNothing, All

Re: AI and job screening

I think I found article you were referencing. I saw it said:

In the US, a recent local law requires employers to inform job seekers how their application materials are screened by AI upon request.

Hmm, where local? It can be really challenging to try to get finger holds into the employment market. My library system is crazy-rich in job hunting resources. Of course there are more than a few job support gems. At this moment I don’t know how they are helping people “game” the AI systems. But they will. They are awesome.

I always like doing the O*Net Interest Profiler. It asks questions about interests and suggests jobs that may be good fits. I think it’s fun.

Clive Robinson May 11, 2022 10:35 AM

@ JonKnowsNothing, ALL,

Re : Job candidate selection methods / techniques.

They are almost all failures at all levels.

Two main reasons,

1, There is to much money involved.
2, Nobody realy tests the methods.

Which means it’s a “charlatans market for Emperor’s clothing”.

One of the laments you hear in engineering from managers is that the candidets they see or new hires they get given are fundementally “not worth the feed”.

To my knowledge this has been getting worse for decades, and is not uncoincident with the rise in power in companies of “Human Remains” depts. Which has not been uncoincident with certain types of managers who’s connection with engineering reality is shall we say less than you would find in a childrens toy catalog (which at least has some…).

In ICT / ICTsec we tend to hear the same lament, only it is about “C level” managment.

Which should make people realise the problem is managment that can not for some reason manage…

So you have to ask the obvious queation as to why they would be attracted to ML / AI in the first place…

Well one obvious answer is,

1, “Stupid is as stupid does” which is a fair critisism of both managment and general ML/AI.

The second less obvious answer is,

2, “It woz t’machine wot dun it” avoiding of responsability which is a primary activiry in modern managment.

But there are other more insidious answers, one of which we’ve seen with law enforcment,

3, You can by selective feedback of training and operational data make most ML and some AI systems prejudice in certain ways.

It’s this last group that infact the big Social Media Silicon Valley Corps use to build their profiles on you because pigeon-holing people by alleged “demographics” is how marketing people want to see people to sell to… The fact it has little reality beyond quite simple bounds, does not stop them drilling down in an asinine way to try to find out if you sleep on the left or right side of the bed as thy think it predicates who you will vote for” or some such.

In fact testing such things has a dark little secret, psychologists and the like don’t like to talk about…

That is if you come up with what you think is a scientifically sound hypothesis, and test. Then likewise a scientifically sound and conducted experiment and it gets past peer review and published. Two things are likely to happen in fairly short order,

1, Over time the test results will become closer to random.
2, Tests for the opposit will start strong then become closer to random.

Why this should happen nobody is actualy sure, but the result is many psychological hypothesis at best have a moment in the sun, then fade away to random.

Winter May 11, 2022 11:15 AM


This one, again, pointing out the flaws of AI/ML when used to “scan resumes and match applications with jobs”.

Machine Learning works by combining historical hires with jobs and resumes.

This has been tested extensively. ML is very good at replicating past prejudices very, very accurately. As a result, if you are not a male WASP, you get a very raw deal.



SpaceLifeForm May 12, 2022 12:20 AM

Rumor has it that some Twitter users in Texas may encounter connectivity issues, and that debugging this may take years. Your tweet may not appear for a day or two. Travel to Cancun may not help.



Texas law prohibiting social media companies from banning users over their viewpoints reinstated by appeals court

The court did not evaluate the law on its constitutionality but will allow it to go back into effect while a legal case plays out. Texas lawmakers passed the law, saying social media platforms have an anti-conservative bias.



So, you may not be banned after all. You just may find it unusable.


SpaceLifeForm May 12, 2022 12:53 AM

Tulips would have been a better investment. At least you would have something to look at.


Winter May 12, 2022 1:25 AM


Tulips would have been a better investment.

Tulips lost more than half their value.

I think it is also the increase in interest rates. You can get actual interest nowadays with much less risk. That would reduce the attraction of Bitcoin.

Gambling itself is not problematic when there is cheap money. Junk bonds have repeatedly been popular, and will be popular again.

Winter May 12, 2022 1:28 AM


Tulips would have been a better investment.

PS: This is not the first time Bitcoin halved in price. It has a perpetual boom-bust cycle. And each time it’s demise has been predicted.

Clive Robinson May 12, 2022 2:52 AM

@ Winter, SpaceLifeForm, ALL,

This is not the first time Bitcoin halved in price. It has a perpetual boom-bust cycle.

And will continue to have them deliberately orchestrated… A sure sign of a “long con” in play.

I suspect a careful analysis of the block chain will reveal the “pump-n-dump” type players and probably where they are shifting the “value” to/through…

Nick Levinson May 12, 2022 3:28 AM

@Grima Squeakersen, @JonKnowsNothing, & @SpaceLifeForm:

@Grima Squeakersen:

Each Justice chooses their own law clerks; selection is not centralized and someone who’d like to be a law clerk applies directly to the Justice they hope to work for. They tend to be graduates of the top law schools in the nation, because the position is wonderful for a career. And the likelihood is high that ideology is a criterion; there’s not much reason for it not to be, given the presence of academic quality in the leading candidates.

News agency Reuters did a study maybe a year or two ago in which they found that a case in which a party was represented by an attorney who formerly was a law clerk to a Justice stood a better chance of being accepted for oral argument by certiorari than a case in which no attorney had that experience. Since it takes 4 Justices out of 8 or 9 to grant cert, at least 3 of the 4 would be Justices for whom the attorney who previously was a Supreme Court law clerk was not such a law clerk (in other words, the former law clerk had served one Justice and not the other 3). So, apparently, Justices tend to regard highly the work of law clerks for other Justices.

I agree that a Justice is very unlikely to be the leaker. I think that a law clerk is likelier and someone lower still with access even likelier.

Yes, late June (there’s no June 31), and it might be a few days before June 30, but not after the 30th, since they go on vacation.

In my limited observation, courts often pay little attention to political schedules, and can time their decisions quite inconveniently, probably without trying to be inconvenient.

It is said that voters’ attention to the Supreme Court’s composition is higher among Republicans than among Democrats, who vote more on the basis of other issues.

Whether someone should be exempt from having to harbor parasites is a difficult question for this context, since there likely are many kinds of parasites having little or nothing to do with a fetus or birth. Some of these latter kinds of parasites may even be good for us, if they perform useful functions while being parasitic. I haven’t looked up the biological or medical issues since you mentioned parasites. Perhaps getting rid of all of one’s parasites might be so harmful as to be unlawful, just as a nondoctor is generally not allowed to perform invasive surgery on oneself (but I do not know if that ban on some self-care has been judicially tested for Constitutionality).

Whether a fetus at any point prior to actual birth should have its own rights is hotly debated. As far as I know, right now it has none. If a pregnant woman hopes for a birth and needs money for food and so robs a bank, the fetus having rights infers that the fetus can be charged as a co-conspirator in the robbery. On the other hand, laws criminalizing or increasing penalties for drug abuse resulting in the fetus being harmed might imply just such a right. Yet, a right is optional in its exercise; and no one argues that a fetus should be able to choose to ingest, say, marijuana. I have a right to free speech but I do not have to speak in support of Nazism.

I haven’t read the draft. I’m glad for the controversy but the draft insofar as it differs from the official opinion will probably have no legal weight thereafter.

I’m not sure reasonableness or justifiability is relevant to a reconsideration. I think the standard has to be stricter, or else whenever the Court swings ideologically a bunch of cases would be overruled, just as Presidents of opposite parties on some issues reverse each other’s decisions. Unlike among Presidents and Congresses, the Federal courts are inherently antidemocratic institutions, protecting democracy but not practicing it. At the same time, someone considering doing something and wanting to be within the law needs to be able to rely on courts for predictability, so, once a court has reached a decision and stated its reasoning and the time for a direct appeal has passed, courts should hesitate to change that decision and usually should leave the prospect of change to the other branches of government.


The Court may be low-tech where Justices have their hands but I doubt the Justices as individuals are quite so low-tech themselves. For example, former professors and deans likely used email in their prior career stages and may still do so for personal email at home. Even if they had always delegated that to their staff and student interns and so on, they know enough about that tech to continue knowing about it in the High Court.

At least one law clerk left the legal profession after clerking for two Justices, but I think both aspects are unusual.

A law clerk usually serves for only one year, although the Court has a permanent career staff for Court-wide positions.


The shadow docket is acted on year-round, including during Justices’ vacations.

Clive Robinson May 12, 2022 3:34 AM

@ SpaceLifeForm,

Mind you this did make me laugh,

“There’s no turning back on this. Cat’s out of the bag,”

Reportedly said by “Tascha Che”, some form of macroeconomist who apparently has a tweet-based “crash course” on “crypto economics”.

What can I say… Other than as I’ve said in the past, economics is based on neither science or mathmatics, but human pride, greed and other less likable failings… The only connection it has with reality is that it can tell you over and over –but without any tested evidence it is true,– that they can predict the future….

Funny, when I think about “telling the future” I tend to trust Evolution and Entropy more, and they tell me that nearly all “new economics” is litle more than gambling with a very bad hand of cards.

Can I suggest if you want to see something totaly mad you want to look at Helium and it’s proof of coverage as a reason to get tokens…

Just keep humming “She flies like a bird”[1] or similar…

Also remember Web3 and Web3.0 are very different beasts, one might one day purr, the other will definately scratch and almost certainly bite a chunk out of you…

[1] The song called “I can’t let Maggie go” by Honeybus from the 1960’s has been said to be about the need for increased levels of perception altering chemicals in the brain to shift it to an alternative reality. Only nobody is quite sure what chemicals and from what source…

Winter May 12, 2022 6:43 AM


Other than as I’ve said in the past, economics is based on neither science or mathmatics, but human pride, greed and other less likable failings…

To make your point, economics is the social science that couldn’t foresee even the possibility of the financial meltdown in 2008, let alone it actually happening.

Over history, the only countries that were able to lift themselves out of poverty were those that ignored mainstream economics dogma.

SpaceLifeForm May 12, 2022 2:23 PM

re: 5th circus court on social media

As I knew yesterday, Mike Masnick would address this unconstitutional nonsense.

He did two articles today. This first one, when I saw the comment count, I knew that the resident troll Koby got up early.


Clive; Side note. Techdirt not long ago, converted to WordPress. It allows markdown or plaintext. You pick one.

SpaceLifeForm May 12, 2022 4:00 PM

re: 5th circus court on social media

(just connecting dots)

The fascists are ALL IN on controlling Twitter, so they can bombard the users with propaganda. They want the Elon Musk takeover, so that trump can get back on the platform, for he is their ‘leader’. The authoritarian figure that will solve all problems.


Twitter CEO pushes out top execs, freezes hiring

Note the timing of the 5th circus court ruling and this.

There is a spanner in the works.

Elon Musk does not really have the scratch.


Elon Musk’s Belated Disclosure of Twitter Stake Triggers Regulators’ Probes

SEC is investigating Tesla CEO for tardy notification after buying 5% of Twitter’s stock; FTC has separate probe under way of purchase reporting

In re timing.


Key Points

The Senate confirmed President Joe Biden’s nominee to the Federal Trade Commission, Alvaro Bedoya.

The vote means the FTC finally has the power to move forward with its aggressive enforcement and policy agenda.

Bedoya is a privacy expert who founded the Center on Privacy and Technology at Georgetown Law.


Vice President Kamala Harris cast the tie-breaking vote for the Georgetown University law professor.

All of the US Senate goppers voted nay.

They are ALL IN in the fascist cult. And can not escape. Their brain can not understand. They are insane.

SpaceLifeForm May 12, 2022 5:16 PM

@ Clive, Winter, Ted

SIGINT is the rock and roll band playing on stage. A very good band. Tickets are free.

Kinetic roaming charges may apply.

See pic.


Clive Robinson May 12, 2022 7:29 PM

@ SpaceLifeForm, ALL,

Re: 5th circuit nut-bar behaviour.

The obvious question arising is,

“Is social media dead?”

To which the answer is “Yes if the politicos get their way”.

People are making the mistake of thinking this is all about “The cult of the blow dry Job” or “Orange little hands, little feet fandom” or what ever they want to name it. It’s not, even though he might have been what brought it to the fore.

It’s actually about something deeper a lot lot deeper, and I saw it comming years ago[1].

Think of your history of religion and “The one true message” nonsense and the centuries and vast fortunes spent indoctrinating entire populations and the consequent stagnation and pointless but nevertheless destructive and bloody wars to oppress, to try to spread or maintain the oppression. And how it is used as a foundation technique not just in suicide-cults but in all “Religion and King Games” that are in reality “Politics in different cloths”.

It is ultimately a war between “truth” and “belief” where those who desire control via oppression and stagnation, proclaim actual truth to be “evil” and their faux-belief to be so “good” it is without doubt not just above but beyond question. Thus they create a “Status Bubble” that they intend to last for “them and theirs” for eternity. Only the real truth is the fundemental laws of nature of both entropy and evolution prevent that. If you want to see such failings in action look at all the “Royal Diseases” that are the result of “closed stud book breeding” which has led to irreversable genetic disfiguration, madness, weakness, sterility and extiction… In very small tribes/groups where genetic diversity was low there were amongst many others the “village idiots” and those with disfiguration and debilitating deformity. Which whilst common in agrarian societies pre-industrialisation, became almost a thing of the past as early industrialisation gave rise to towns and cities.

As I have oft pointed out the notion of good, bad, or even evil, is in the mind of an observer directly –as witness– or by recount (testimony). The observer in effect very imperfectly watches the physical manifestation or “effect” –actus reus– of a Directing Mind controling a physical technology to some purposeful end usually unknown. The observer then tries to guess at the state –mens rea– of that directing mind to ascertain the “cause” for it to take the action it has.

Something that when you think about it is actually impossible to do, but we try to do it all the time anyway…

We see this sort of faux-belief nonsense going on in Russia currently. Where reality and truth is kept from people and faux-patriotism via faux-history is used to not just prevent the citizens actually knowing just what is going on, but to actually build in cognative bias so that reality and truth will be actively disbelieved.

It is this “One true message” nonsense that is the actual reason behind this Texas 5th circuit nut-bar activity. They want to go back in time, to where they controled the “News-Sources” and the “beliefs taught” and any differing view point was “evil” that had to be eradicated in various ways as it was heresy.

It’s a grave danger to the common citizen, yet if you stand back and look you will see most “sleepwalking into the trap”… Part of the reason we do this is that we delude ourselves about our abilities not to be conned.

But we know it’s easy to con sheep and such like with a slaughterhouse “Judas Goat”. The goat walks through the stock yard and into the slaughter room pen, they follow, the goat then slips out of the end gate and is led out of the slaughter room. The first sheep is pushed out by the preasure of those behind and it gets slaughtered, each sheep is pushed by those behind, it can not back up it’s fate is sealed, and it’s guts will spill upon the floor as it’s still beating heart pumps out it’s very life blood.

Those MSM talking heads are the equivalent of Judas Goats, as in fact are most politicians. The fact we know they are not to be believed is in part through “social media” exposing us to other messages, thus it is upto us to investigate. Thus from one perspective, social media is an enemy of the man who pays for the path the Judas Goat takes. But that man realises that if he can have MSM act as his Judas Goat, then why should he not use social media the same way. The trick is firstly making a lever, then finding the right place to build the fulcrum.

Social media is in reality a “Push-Message” system, just as television, radio, and newspapers are. That is they are “Broadcast Systems” which push messages from the center. If you control the center, then it becomes your Judas Goat.

Thus the battle is to control the center, but not directly, because just like judges, that means taking on responsability, thus liability. The trick is to insert one or two layers of willing cut outs. As we know “legislators” in more recent times have their legislation written for them by lobbyists.

The nice thing about that Texas legislation is no matter what you do as a major social media provider you are “guilty” under it. Thus your existance, health and wealth is beyond your control, you only exist under the protective gaze of the chosen few in Texas… Who now have more control thus power in this respect than the actual US President currently…

[1] And one of the primary reasons I do not have either Email or Social Media. Because they are essentially “Push-message” not “Pull-message”. I regard my time as important to me thus have very very strong objections to “Push-messaging” of any kind. I see it as one of the most insidious forms of pathogen there is. Some have claimed I’m “paranoid” over this, but that actually says more about them than it does about me as I’ve indicated in the past,

JonKnowsNothing May 12, 2022 8:40 PM

@Clive @All

re: Push-Me” “Pull-You”

As I’ve mentioned I do have to have email otherwise I won’t know when I’ve been opt-in on something that should be and always is set for opt-out, those pesky data field resets because someone can’t Read One Write One.

However, I do not stay logged in. I login get the daily dumpster load. Trash 90% of it. Clean the trash barrel. Log out.

I’m not sure that’s an official Pull-Message Method but … maybe.

I don’t use social media at all. I’m amused at SLF who seems to live on NutButter; I appreciate the summaries, useful to know and glad I didn’t have to wade through the NutTrolls to find the Acorns.

Then we come to the ever more common doom-scrolling and I do admit to checking in several times a day by direct URL (no apps here) to the MSM headlines and I do collect my COVID-History Files daily or whenever the HIP-RIP-LOVIDs deign to publish information. One never knows when they might start to admit the BA2.12.2 Wave is here and push a bit more data. (1)


1) The wave in CA is shaping up quite nice mathematically. The CDC is several weeks at least behind the curve. The CA reported curves are delayed. The accuracy is questionable but at some point the line goes UP no matter how much the try to “flatten the curve”. One of the more common techniques used by HIP-RIP-LOVID is to append zero the terminal point in calculated averages, or a week of zeros.

lurker May 12, 2022 9:23 PM

@Clive Robinson

We see this sort of faux-belief nonsense going on in Russia currently. Where reality and truth is kept from people . . .

Of note Beijing has brought up some unadvertised SW channels on their Russian service. They are currently reading the exploits of Caocao[1], possibly as a role model to emulate, possibly a warning of what can come from excess ambition.

[1]When the Han empire was splintered ~170AD by crafty bureaucrats taking advantage of a weak emperor, Caocao inveigled himself into the trusted position of Grand Chancellor and attempted to reunite the empire. He suffered some spectacular military defeats through failing to expect the unexpected. But he learned the lessons and bounced back stronger. See also: Three Kingdoms

lurker May 12, 2022 9:31 PM

@JonKnowsNothing @All

Our seven day rolling average death rates are taking a battering as cases up to 3 months ago are being reclassified as “of” C rather than “with” C. Hanlon’s Razor tells me they are not trying deliberately to confuse the watchers. . .

Clive Robinson May 12, 2022 9:35 PM

@ SpaceLifeForm,

Re : Kinetic roaming charges may apply

Shame the data is so out of date as it’s from March.

But yes it does show what I’ve been talking about. There are two ways to get this info,

1, Be on the network backbone signalling.
2, Use a low cost easy to make drone to sniff as you go.

Both are “real-time” but whilst the first can be blocked to a certain extent, the second has you dead via both electronic serial numbers. That of the phone, and that of the SIM.

So if you’ve used a SIM in your phone just once you are tagged by the two numbers being associated.

Secondly if you use SIM after SIM in the same phone, the behaviour is “odd” thus easy to pull out of data…

Then of course there is something the Russian’s may not have considered… “Over The Air”(OTA) updates to both the SIMs and the Smart Phones via the SMS(0) and just walled garden applications. So the chances are both Apple and Google know where all the phones are anyway.

But then of course as I’ve mentioned several times in the past even though the phone might appear to be turned off, it can actually still be on. Oh and any on phone for “Health and Safety”(H&S) reasons can have the microphone turned on remotely and the GPS and other location data pulled…

Back in the 1980’s UK Prime Minister “mad” Maggie Thatcher, used to upset all the “Tory toy boys” by making them leave their mobile phones in TEMPEST boxes on the advice of GCHQ specialists…

As I keep saying the ICTsec industry for some reason does not learn from it’s “living history”…

I just hope that any “spotter planes” remember to not just turn off but remove their ADS-B and similar beacons. As some newer emergancy beacons can be turned on remotely again for health and safety, or more correctly “Search and Rescue”(SAR) reasons.

Part of SAR equipment requirments is all the registration paperwork, which means there are detailed paperwork trails of electronic serial numbers with planes and say life jackets and the like…

If even the CIA screw it up over and over, with “armchair sluths” tracking them down via OSint, what do you think cooperating industry and agencies can come up with in the way of not just intel but order of battle as well on the Russians?

Oh and remember our chat about mobile devices and “Rendezvous Protocols”? They always lead to a database of some form. Be it centralized or distributed such a database haemorrhages information, not just of what’s in it but also who is looking, when and from what IP address and thus geo-location.

It’s why if you are going to war you realy should leave the mobile phone at home and all those other devices that have Bluetooth and similar in them.

Anything that has an electronic serial / ID number that gets communicated is going to act as a major target on your back.

As I’ve already mentioned, one of the downsides of “military exercises” is that you can overlook or just ignore things you want, as they won’t get people killed[1]. But in a real fight to the death war, your enemy will not overlook or ignore anything they can use to their advantage. A leason a bumber of Russian Generals and other Command staff are now never going to learn…

The thing is the more corrupt and authoritarian a military force is, the more rigid it is, and so it’s military excercises tend to be to make the seniors and Command Staff look good. Oh and an oportunity for NCO’s and Field Officers to put the boot into the conscripts… In other military forces the excercises are to test out new ways of gaining advantage and how to defend against the unexpected by being not just flexible but responsive.

[1] But it might get them fed… I’m sure there are a lot of soldiers who can tell similar stories. Imagine a cold dark and very damp wood somewhere in England, with a small radio detachment in it that some junior officer has moved repeatedly faster than the supply chain… They’ve eaten their last issued 24Hour RAT-PACK more than 48hours ago, and even the last packet of the dire plastic-cow milk has been consumed with the last tea-bag and bit of bread as poormans porridge. Even the more savvy old boys who always have a bit extra at the bottom of their bag like a bar or five of Kendle-mint cake or similar you can eat or brew-down have run out. Normally with a larger detachment you would send out an emergancy “chippy run” in a Landi even if it was only to a MacHurls. But with only one vehicle and one trailer, not a chance… So you get bugged out again… With not even a sniff of food coming your way, and you are having strange thoughts about spit roasting an officer… You’ve got dug in at the new Loc and you are clearing “Flash Traffic” and your brain is loosing it’s vertical hold and your gut is sending out stronger signals than the transmitter. When one of your number says they are “goes to do a number two” and will be a while… What the actually do is “phone a friend” with our OS Grid position and gets chatting, and gets a phone number. A little while later with a lot of persuasion and a Gold Amex a little motor scooter turns up next to a phone box, and a large object arises from a ditch and hands over a handfull of cash in return for six boxes and three plastic carrier bags, then disapears back into the ditch. Shortly there after the Det-Commander thinks they have started to hallucinate as ten miles from anywhere and at just gone midnight the smell pizza… 15minutes later there are some contented noises originating from various dark forms. Turns out the Pizza Guy delivered not only pie&fizz but had got a large carton of fresh milk and a box of PG Tips tea bags from a local all night garage a jar of Nesscafe and two boxes of eggs and loaf of bread.

Now had it been a real war not an excercise, the chances are just under a hundred pounds of high elevation 155mm shell would have dropped from on high and exploded a few meters overhead.

The point was the EndX Det-Report contained a copy of the Amex card slip and a “bill payable” for the junior officer who had given us the run around… Two things happened, first of not only was the bill payed it came with a case of beer. Secondly there were some changed procedures for future excercises that ment there were always a couple of Landis full of Rat-Packs moving around independently of other re-supply.

A lesson the British Army learnt during the later part of the cold war is modern warfare especially in more open country is very fast moving, and you can not be tied down by the speed of your resupply trucks. The solutions are not as obvious as might be thought.

Anyway, “to absent friends, may they be at peace”.

ResearcherZero May 13, 2022 12:51 AM

The draft law, unveiled yesterday in Brussels, does not specify which technology must be used. Privacy advocates fear that in practice, the law could mean that most services will have to use client-side scanning, an intrusive technology that circumvents end-to-end encryption.

While opposition to the new law is led by privacy organisations and members of the European Parliament, a leading voice in lobbying in its favour is Thorn, a non-profit founded by Hollywood actor Ashton Kutcher and his then-wife Demi Moore. While the organisation has little public profile in Brussels, its advocacy has reached the highest levels of the European Commission.

Kutcher is known to older millennials for movies such as “Dude, where’s my car”. Outside of his acting career, he has dabbled in technology investing. With Thorn, Kutcher entered the market for surveillance technology: In 2020, the organization launched “Safer,” which claims to be the “first comprehensive third-party CSAM [child sexual abuse material] detection platform”.

To EU institutions, Thorn presents itself as a charity organization that fights against child abuse. Meanwhile, the organization repeatedly brought up its proprietary child abuse tracking software in meetings with EU officials. This is shown by more than a dozen emails and meeting minutes that obtained through freedom of information requests to the EU Commission, German and Swedish authorities.

Thorn lobbyists have been canvassing the most important digital policy decision-makers in Brussels since last year. According to the official lobby register, they have met with Von der Leyen’s staff, as well as with those of her deputies Margrethe Vestager and Margaritis Schinas, and Internal Market Commissioner Thierry Breton. The topic of conversation: child abuse and what Thorn wants to do about it.

Thorn also revealed that it was working on “issues related to encryption.”


ResearcherZero May 13, 2022 1:00 AM

Mandatory scanning and encryption busting with help from the industry…

“The proposed rules will oblige providers to detect, report and remove child sexual abuse material on their services. Providers will need to assess and mitigate the risk of misuse of their services and the measures taken must be proportionate to that risk and subject to robust conditions and safeguards.”

“A new independent EU Centre on Child Sexual Abuse (EU Centre) will facilitate the efforts of service providers by acting as a hub of expertise, providing reliable information on identified material, receiving and analysing reports from providers to identify erroneous reports and prevent them from reaching law enforcement, swiftly forwarding relevant reports for law enforcement action and by providing support to victims.”

“Providers will have to deploy technologies that are the least privacy-intrusive in accordance with the state of the art in the industry, and that limit the error rate of false positives to the maximum extent possible.”

“National law enforcement and Europol, by reviewing the reports from the providers to ensure that they are not submitted in error, and channelling them quickly to law enforcement.”

Proposal for a Regulation laying down rules to prevent and combat child sexual abuse

Winter May 13, 2022 1:39 AM

To predict the targets of Chinese malware, look at the target of Chinese laws

In a presentation about an emerging China-nexus modular trojan named “Pangolin8RAT”, Taiwan-based cybersecurity firm TeamT5’s Silvia Yeh noted that attacks on online gambling operators occurred around the same time that China announced action against such outfits.

While Yeh said the timing could be coincidental – attacks on gambling and online gaming companies are not exactly new – Pangolin8RAT appears to be a weapon of choice for Chinese state-sponsored cyber operations.

Pangolin8RAT has been used in a targeted fashion, which lends credence to the assertion that it may be used to achieve regulatory or political means. For instance, an attack launched on Kazakhstan’s KZ Telecom may have been used to infiltrate associated carriers across Eurasia, and the threat actors have employed social engineering tactics in forums to lure dissidents into the open.

Clive Robinson May 13, 2022 4:10 AM

@ SpaceLifeForm, ALL,

Re : Ukranian food supplies

The first point of,

The UN World Food Programme’s David Beasley, who has been sounding the alarm for weeks, said: “Right now Ukraine’s grain silos are full. At the same time, 44 million people around the world are marching towards starvation.

He’s not been the only one ringing the bell. But it’s not just grain, it’s other food stuffs as well.

But it’s also Energy and quite a bit else that Putin hopes to profit by both financially and politically.

I’d suggest people look up what the Ukraine was an exporter of including some of the quite small by value but important technologically like small jet engines needed for quite a few drone designs, plus all the other technology much of which Russia believe it or not dors not have a competent home industry for. A look at history shows for what apprars to be an agrarian product nation, the Ukraine has some very smart people. Remember during the cold war the Ukrainians serviced much of the Russian long-range “defence” weapons.

We might feel sorry for the Ukranian people, but we also have to also pull our heads up and see what their loss is going to bring our way…

We have the idiot Macaroon dilettante sitting in Paris pretending it is just “a little something” and no reason for Europe to involve it’s self with. Further saying that he’s going to see the Ukranian issue kicked into the very very long grass.

But we also have the UN making a quite unequivocal statment with,

“We have to open up these ports so that food can move in and out of Ukraine. The world demands it because hundreds of millions of people globally depend on food that comes through these ports.”

That is as close to a “call for war” as you can get. Russia has illegally blockaded ports and sunk and taken ships in modern day “Piracy” to further the criminal aims of it’s leadership.

Putin has thrown down the gauntlet and it is no time for vascilating dilettantes or worse –see UK– to be at the helm of state. It’s what Putin hopes for and is counting on, like all bullies and mindless gutter thug criminals he thinks a quick show of force against a weak opponent will frighten others to pay him tribute and genuflect to his vanity so he has something to crow about to his very much captive audience.

It’s almost as though he has been reading Orwell’s books as training material, much as many European and American politicians north and south have been doing. Orwell’s books are,

“A Warning not a How-To”

But every day we do not take sufficient corrective action is another day closer to an inevitable global change brought about by violence and greed that will cause societal destruction on a major scale.

I’ve pointed out in the past that the UN-Veto by the permanent security council renders the organisation effectively impotent. Well this is just one of the things those Veto’s lead to, all to predictably.

Winter May 13, 2022 6:13 AM


We might feel sorry for the Ukranian people, but we also have to also pull our heads up and see what their loss is going to bring our way…

I can see how blocking food exports can be seen as a “siege” strategy that would be considered an act of war by the countries affected.

If there would be food scarcity due to Russia’s actions, I can see how the affected countries, EU and USA, might start a trade war/punishing every country that helps Russia doing this.

As the USA and EU together make up more than 50% of world GDP, and together account for 1.5 times the trading volume of China, getting on the wrong end of sanctions is bad.

Clive Robinson May 13, 2022 9:49 AM

@ SpaceLifeForm,

Re : round manhole question.

I love this sort of question and the similar ones for two reasons.

Firstly you know from that question you do not want to work for this company unless the money is atleast twice what you get currently as wages, benifits, bonuses, and free food as you are only going to work there long enough to find a better job anyway.

Secondly it’s also a good question to throw back at them and have a little fun before you make your excuses and leave the interview.

So the correct answer is,

“It’s a turtles all the way down issue…”

And see if anyone of the interview pannel shows even a spark of recognition then ask,

“It’s a lesser fleas problem?”

Most interviewers look fairly dumbfounded at that point so you go on to say,

“It’s what they used to call an infinite regression issue… And the manhole cover is round because the socket in the frame it sits in is also round, which realy makes the question why are manhole cover sockets round… And the answer to that is a clockface problem…”

If they let you, you ask them,

“Which way does a clock turn it’s hands?”

Most people get it entirely wrong.

The actual answer is “It depends on which point of refrence you observe the clock mechanism[1] and clock face (there are actuall four basic araingments when you look along the drive shaft).

Or just say,

“The hands will turn in both directions at the same time, a person looking into the clockface sees one direction a person looking out of the clockface sees the opposit direction. Similar logic applies to the frames of manhole cover as any good design engineer should well know.”

So you’ve usually managed to slip one insult in at this point 😉

But the reality is with engineering design solutions the reason things are round and not a more useful triangle[2] is many fold.

Firstly we know or atleast should remember that a circle as a two dimensional shape has the greatest internal area for a given perimiter distance. A side consequence of which is it offers multiple forms of efficiency. The most obvious being it offers an opportunity to minimise material thickness, in part by having the man hole cover in crosswise tenssion rather than width wise compression[3]. Which should give you a clue as to why a circle is also stronger for any given thickness of material than a square.

Then there are the manhole cover “lip” arguments, the least of which is how a round lid will always fit a round hole frame… Oh and that more usefull quality mentioned of the ease of getting a lifeless body down 😉

But the important thing to note is that a circle is, –unlike most other two dimensional shapes that enclose a given area– the strongest in all directions for a given wall thickness. Which makes a “round hole” rather more stable than any other shape of hole, and much more resistant to compression.

But why mention “infinite regression” well how many people have looked down a well and realised the brickwork is in rings not a continuous spiral?

The reason is that although digging down and making a spirl wall would be easier than seperate rings, it would be a lot lot weaker and much more prone to compression failure, especially from uneven compression which mostly it would be after “settling”.

Having an interest in “industrial archaeology” and the engineering and design behind it I can “talk the hind leg off of a donkey” with regards the design and engineering behind holes and the resulting manhole covers. And as I’ve given an hour long presentation on the subject to Civil Engineers and Architects, on several occasions I can keep the topic going way longer than most interviwees just to be evil. Oh and make most, who are daft enough to ask such a question, –out of “101 questions for the new interviewer”– feel at best uninformed at every step of the way[4].

Which as others may think on reflection is the suitible way to punish those daft enough to ask such questions at interviews without having done their research which invariably they will not have.

I’m apparently “much nastier” with the nice simple questions I ask interviewees. Because the questions I ask reveal not what you know –beyond the simple basics needed to check we are speaking using the same terms– but how you actually think and why, and importantly how you are likely to interact with your prospective new work colleagues. Oh and the questions are usually unrelated to the work it’s self so “mugging up” is not going to help. Oh and twice they have worked through an interpreter well enough to make good hiring decisions.

[1] Mostly if as the question implies you are observing from the clock mechanism then it’s “anti-clockwise”. There are a few funny clocks around where the opposit is true such as some of those used to hold trays of flowers in those big civic clocks that were kind of getting to the end of being fashionable in the late 1950’s through 1960’s.

[2] Unlike round, or square or any other shape that is “corner supported” three corner man hole covers like three legged bar stools within predictable limits do not rock on uneven surfaces.

[3] Think about how the wires of a push bike wheel work to hold the hub in the correct position. Which also brings us back to triangle corners, that is the minimum number of wires is three, and all subsequent numbers should idealy be multiples of three suitably rotated (or primes but lets not go down that path 😉

[4] I have a friend who can do the same with quite fascinating discussions on nearly 10,000 years of renders, plasters, morters, and mouldings. And in his younger days used to train people how to do historic monument restorations for UK National Monuments including Royal Palaces (the odd few he’s touched up even with lockdown). How ever as he once said of me I’m one of the few people he’s ever met who has made Saxon wattle-n-daub with their bare feet, and as he notes goning down to your local builders merchants for bales of straw and a few qubic meters of fresh pig muck to make daub with is likely to get you thrown out…

JonKnowsNothing May 13, 2022 10:21 AM

@Clive, @All

re: File under Manhole Lip Arguments

Long time back it was shown to me that

  • The round manhole cover is slightly larger than the access tube.
  • Therefore the round cover always covers the tube part.

But the important part was this:

  • The round shape being slightly larger than the tube, prevents the cover from falling down on the heads of the folks inside.
  • Any other shape can rotate so that it falls inside the tube.
  • As manhole covers are very heavy, made of cast metals, having one crash down 10-15-20++ feet onto the heads of the folks working there would lead to serious injuries and deaths.

I never had one crash down on me, so I don’t know if that’s true.

I did notice that utility boxes that are accessed from the surface-only tend to be rectangular or square. Excepting cable systems where they pull n-cables through the round conduit and bring it up in the front yard.

In USA cities many city services have access points in the street or sidewalk or near the exterior of the building. If it has a squarish cover it’s most often surface accessed.

  • Sewer (some parts have round connectors but the cover box is square)
  • Water (some parts have round connectors but the cover box is square)
  • Electrical
  • Storm drains

Some services have a mix of access points and if they do not require deep burial, there are usually piano-hinged dual doors, that flop open and give access to systems perhaps 1-5 feet below grade.

Wells tend to be round. Some open water storage cisterns, particularly older ones can be squarish (see rectangular pools). Larger enclosed water storage is almost always round tanks (evenly distributed weight against the sides). More recently “pillow” tanks, soft sided, larger water-bed style tanks, are getting popular because they do not require a flat grade to set on. They can self-mold and deform to the terrain (box wine bladders, wine & water skins).

SpaceLifeForm May 13, 2022 3:58 PM

@ JonKnowsNothing

re: round manhole covers

Yep, it is because they can not be oriented to fall in.

In my youth, I traversed many storm sewer systems when it was not raining.

You can imagine the surprise on some, when the manhole cover magically rises in front of their house, and I popped out.

Forced exit. Upstream pipeline was too small to continue even crawling.

umberto May 14, 2022 4:44 AM

So you’ve usually managed to slip one insult in at this point

Some people enjoy doing this, it’s a common trait of narcissists as it makes them feel superior. Other signs of the same:

  • calling names on anyone they disagree with,
  • writing long posts to show off their supposedly superior knowledge of some completely off-topic subject,
  • referring to or quoting themselves all the time,
  • suggesting they had any clever idea that comes up a few decades before anyone else,
  • using populist generalisations: all politicians are corrupt, all judges are cowards, all experts are imcompetent, etc.

Winter May 14, 2022 6:06 AM


“Which way does a clock turn it’s hands?”

Sun-wise, when you are north of the equator, counter-sun-wise when you are south of the equator.

Why? You have 2 seconds to answer.

- May 14, 2022 7:51 AM


1, umberto #comment-404778

We have seen an increase in certain tell tale activity repeated several times in the past few days.

It appears to be continuing.

In the past such behaviours have presaged an increasing level of behaviour contrary to the posting rules of this blog.

SpaceLifeForm May 14, 2022 3:37 PM

@ Winter

Sun-wise Clock on East or West wall: It’s all retrograde to me.

Clive Robinson May 14, 2022 3:41 PM

@ Winter,

Re : You have 2 seconds to answer.

You have supplied insufficient information…

Such as in which direction the axis of rotation of the clock hands is pointing.

Whilst “lefthand threads” do not become “righthand threads” when you turn them over[1], the “observed” direction a clocks hands sweep however does change with the direction of the axis of rotation.

Oh and the “which way does the water go down the plug hole?” question is not realy true either as anyone sailing across or along the equator at the time would observer.

[1] It’s the same with proppellers, which many story writers and film script writers get wrong.

Winter May 15, 2022 1:42 AM


You have supplied insufficient information…

You are overthinking this. Think where kloks were invented and what their User Interface model was.

SpaceLifeForm May 15, 2022 2:24 AM

@ Winter

With a few years of sufficient training, it could also approximate day of year and geolocate itself.

Would be an interesting project. Batteries not included.

Winter May 15, 2022 6:39 AM

@Clive, SLF

You have supplied insufficient information…

With a few years of sufficient training, it could also approximate day of year and geolocate itself.

Seems I watched different knights in shiny armor children’s adventures when I was young.

The first clocks had a single hand who’s movement emulated the shadow of a sundial. See example picture. As these clocks were built in the northern hemisphere, they moved sunwise as viewed north of the equator.

SpaceLifeForm May 15, 2022 3:49 PM

@ Winter

I spent some time on this, but have not yet geolocated the specific clock you linked to.

Do you have any more info?

&ers May 15, 2022 5:01 PM


Your skills are getting rusty 🙂


SpaceLifeForm May 15, 2022 5:25 PM

@ Winter, Clive

It all depends upon the location of the observer, and the orientation of the observer. I.E., what is the vector between the observer and the object being observed, and what is that vector relative to? What is the Frame of Reference? IIRC, Einstein may have mentioned this.

As Clive noted, insufficient information.




If you tell me where that clock is, I can give you a couple of approximate dates when the picture was taken.

Remember, the Sundial shadow is retrograde. It is Anti-Sunwise.

&ers May 15, 2022 5:46 PM

@Clive @SpaceLifeForm @Winter

Actually this is all an illusion.


SpaceLifeForm May 15, 2022 5:48 PM

@ &ers

Thank you. I was pretty certain I had found it (based upon the construction), but I did not conclusively tie the specific clock image that Winter linked to. My goooglefu let me down. Or, maybe, Google has failed and has lost its way.

When you do OSINT, it is very important to know for sure what you are observing.

Winter May 16, 2022 12:31 AM


Remember, the Sundial shadow is retrograde. It is Anti-Sunwise.

You mean the sun moves clockwise through the sky.

Clive Robinson May 16, 2022 4:36 AM

@ Winter, SpaceLifeForm, ALL,

You mean the sun moves clockwise through the sky.

If you are in the northern hemisphere and you “face the sun” then you look are looking south and the East is on your left. So in that case the sun does rise clockwise. Look north away from the sun and the East will be on your right and the sun will rise anti clockwise.

Now, the fun comes when you start thinking about things from the Southern hemisphere. You have to distinguish looking north or south from looking “face into” or “face out of” the sun.

The equator kind of acts as a virtual clockface and you can look on it from either side.

Winter May 16, 2022 5:00 AM


Now, the fun comes when you start thinking about things from the Southern hemisphere.

Which was of no concern at all to those who designed the first clocks. They were “north centric” and ignored everything that could concern people living south of the equator.

This mindset was based on the then correct assumption that they would never in their lives meet anyone who lived south of the equator, and that no one from the southern hemisphere would ever get to see their non-transportable tower clock.

So they designed their clocks to move the hand like the shado of a sundial in their vicinity.

And that is why the hands of a clock move in the same direction as the sun through the sky (and shadows on the ground) north of the equator.

SpaceLifeForm May 16, 2022 5:28 PM

@ Clive, Winter

If you are in the northern hemisphere and you “face the sun” then you look are looking south and the East is on your left.

Even that is not completely accurate. It may be true much of the year, but it depends on your latitude.

As I am in Northern Hemisphere (latitude approx 38 degrees north of equator), pretty soon, at high noon, if I was to face the Sun, I would be facing north, watching the Sun move Anti-Clockwise.

Clive Robinson May 16, 2022 7:04 PM

@ SpaceLifeForm, Winter,

Re : Even that is not completely accurate

No it’s not, and it is something I’m quite aware of and have been for oh around half a century, having started learning how to do basic maritime navigation for sailing before being even a teenager (hence in part my earlier comment about the equator).

It gives rise to other fun calculation problems when doing astro-sights with some planets having what appears the strangest of movments. That is slowing down in their orbits, then stoping and moving for a while in the westward direction with respect to the stars. Or making little “loop the loops” as though orbiting around a phantom object.

Whilst fun for star gazers, “serious” astronomers boringly call this “retrograde motion” and it realy should have the word “apparent” tucked in at the front. Because neither the Earth or the Planets orbit changes like that, it is an illusion due to our changing viewpoint from Earth. Not the planets literally changing direction, the worst offender is usually “The God of War” Mars, and it can be a real pain in terms of doing orbit tracking calculations to point high gain antennas.

SpaceLifeForm May 16, 2022 11:32 PM

@ Clive, Winter

Correction. I am too far north for what I said about apparent Sun position at high noon at this time of year. The Sun can not be north of me at noon (as I am too far north), but it appears to be north of me hours before and after noon in the day. I usually do not go out and stare at the sun around noon (ophthalmologists recommend against this), but it definitely appears to rise in the Northeast and set to the Northwest at this time of year.

If however, I was south of the Tropic of Cancer at this time of year, it could be true, as the apparent position of the Sun could be to my north. Again, depending upon location and time of year.

Winter May 17, 2022 2:16 AM


Even that is not completely accurate. It may be true much of the year, but it depends on your latitude.

Tropic of Cancer. 23½° North, is the turning point. Mechanical clocks were invented North of that.

All this is not relevant for the question:
Why do clock hands follow the direction of the sun in the Northern hemisphere?

SpaceLifeForm May 17, 2022 2:48 AM

@ Winter, Clive, &ers

re: insufficient information

I am escaping from the rabbit hole, trying to figure out when the pic that Winter linked to was taken.

My original guess was that the church was near London, and that the clock was indeed facing true south. I found an article that indicates the clock does face south. I have found other dated pictures with shadows and tree foliage that confirm the clock must somewhat face south. But those pics did not have full timestamp.

Yet, using the geolocation (latitude 52.52, longitude 1.28) and the time on the clock (approx 09:10), and the angles of the visible Sun shadows, I can not make the azimuth and altitude work assuming the clock faces true south.

My only conclusion, assuming the clock was correct, is that the clock can not be facing true south, that the pic was taken near Winter Solstice (maybe Dec 25th?), and the clock is really facing more towards the southwest.

Maybe I am missing something, but I have studied shadows on pictures for a long time, and the shadows don’t lie if you can geolocate, or conversely, you can geolocate an image if you know the date and have shadows with some other orientation clues.

Winter May 17, 2022 3:22 AM


My original guess was that the church was near London, and that the clock was indeed facing true south.

The face of the tower has a sundial. The clock says 9 o’clock and the sundial says the same.

I think that adding a sundial would have been rather pointless if the tower faced, e.g., North or East.

Clive Robinson May 17, 2022 7:19 AM

@ SpaceLifeForm,

I found an article that indicates the clock does face south.

The latin word for East is “oriens” from which we get the word “orientation”. But… the word is long predated by the way churches were laid out on the points of the compass, with the alter to the east.

Thus it would be the right side of the church as you enter from the west as you look up towards the alter that faces south.

However… Remember that the magnetic north pole is not stable, nore is the celestial north pole and the earth does a lirtle more than just spin on it’s axis, so don’t expect it to be aligned with current south precisely.

SpaceLifeForm May 17, 2022 4:56 PM

@ Winter, Clive

The face of the tower has a sundial. The clock says 9 o’clock and the sundial says the same.

I can not conclude that is true because the Azimuth and Altitude of the star do not compute using geolocation and shadow angles if the clock is facing true south.

If the clock is facing true south, then it appears based on shadows, that the Azimuth is 90, but if the Azimuth is really 90 then the Altitude would be higher than the shadows indicate for the time and geolocation.

I can not fit the geolocation, the shadow angles (Altitude approx 30), and the time of day and make the math work with Azimuth 90. For ANY day of year.

That is why I said the clock can not be facing true south.

The sundial orientation is not valid. It needs to be flat on the ground.

Maybe Clive can do a road trip.

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