Krokodil | SeMeN SPeRmS SuPeR SiTe

Goo-Goo-Googly Eyes

  • The smugglers selected their targets by placing lookouts at the port of entry who identified vehicles that daily used the SENTRI express lane, according to the affidavit. Once a vehicle and driver were selected, the smugglers would secretly obtain the car’s vehicle identification number. The VIN was then used to make spare keys for that car.

    The keys would be used at night by smugglers to unlock the car, put drugs in it and lock it. The next morning, the drivers would get in their cars and drive to El Paso — without ever knowing that drugs had been placed in the vehicles overnight.

  • Scientists in London created an artificial windpipe which was then coated in stem cells from the patient.

    Crucially, the technique does not need a donor, and there is no risk of the organ being rejected. The surgeons stress a windpipe can also be made within days.

  • So much for tagging photographs with names, locations and activities yourself – a new cell phone application can take care of that for you.

    The system works by taking advantage of the multiple sensors on a mobile phone, as well as those of other mobile phones in the vicinity.

    Dubbed TagSense, the new app was developed by students from Duke University and the University of South Carolina (USC) and unveiled at the ninth Association for Computing Machinery’s International Conference on Mobile Systems, Applications and Services (MobiSys), being held in Washington, D.C.

    “When a TagSense-enabled phone takes a picture, it automatically detects the human subjects and the surrounding context by gathering sensor information from nearby phones,” said Xuan Bao, a Ph.D. student in computer science at Duke who received his master’s degree at Duke in electrical and computer engineering.

  • A top Department of Homeland Security official has admitted to Congress that imported software and hardware components are being purposely spiked with security-compromising attack tools by unknown foreign parties.
  • Yikes. Users of fitness and calorie tracker Fitbit may need to be more careful when creating a profile on the site. The sexual activity of many of the users of the company’s tracker and online platform can be found in Google Search results, meaning that these users’ profiles are public and searchable. You can click here to access these results. The Next Web reported this earlier this morning.
  • Collusion is a very simple website that visualizes the interwoven mesh and mess of third-party tracking cookies. You install an add-on, and then just start browsing the web. If you have multiple monitors, you can drag the Collusion tab out and watch as your web of browsing history and cookies expands; otherwise, just surf the web for an hour or so, and then take a look at Collusion. What you will see is quite astonishing. Each and every one of the red dots is tracking your movement and behavior across the web. Some of the red dots are obvious, like Google’s DoubleClick ad network — but did you know that the ShareThis and AddThis widgets, which are found on almost every news or blog website, are tracking your clicking and reading habits?
  • from the who’s-ripping-off-whom-again? dept

    Last year, we had a post on RIAA accounting, detailing how labels screw over many musicians, even some of the best selling ones, such that they never actually make a dime in royalties. Bas points us to an excellent 14 minute video from lawyer Martin Frascogna, entitled How To Sell 1 Million Albums and Owe $500,000

  • In conjunction with this week’s 40th anniversary of President Nixon declaring “war on drugs,” a group of police, judges and jailers who support legalization released a report today showing how the Obama administration is ramping up a war it disingenuously claims that it ended two years ago.
  • Forty celebrities were arrested for drugs (mostly marijuana) during the first six months of 2011. This doubles the total from the first half of 2010. Last year, 43 celebrities were arrested for drugs. In 2011, that figure will likely double as well
  • To produce the potentially deadly drug, which has a comparable effect to heroin but is much cheaper to make, users mix codeine with gasoline, paint thinner, iodine, hydrochloric acid and red phosphorous. Codeine, a controlled substance in the United States used to treat mild to moderate pain, is widely available over the counter in Russia.
  • “Our investigation shows that not only have police employees been found to have run background records checks on friends and possible partners, but some have been convicted for passing sensitive information to criminal gangs and drug dealers,” said Daniel Hamilton, director of the Big Brother Watch.
  • It’s great when cops catch criminals after they’ve done their dirty work. But what if police could stop a crime before it was even committed? Though that may sound like a fantasy straight from a Philip K. Dick novel, it’s a goal police departments from Los Angeles to Memphis are actively pursuing with help from the Department of Justice and a handful of cutting-edge academics.

    It’s called “predictive policing.” The idea: Although no one can foresee individual crimes, it is possible to forecast patterns of where and when homes are likely to be burgled or cars stolen by analyzing truckloads of past crime reports and other data with sophisticated computer algorithms.

  • Penis length cannot be determined by how big his hands or feet are — those and other supposed indicators have been widely discredited for years. But now a team of Korean researchers has produced what may be a more reliable guide: the ratio of the length of his index finger to that of his ring finger. The lower that ratio, the longer the penis may be, the researchers wrote Monday in the Asian Journal of Andrology.
  • Why The Organic Trade Association and Corporate Organic Food Brands do NOT want Labeling of Genetically Engineered and Genetically Modified Foods

    This Video provides financial evidence that the President of the Board of Directors at the Organic Trade Association, Julia Sabin, individually profits off of Genetically engineered foods as a VP and General Manager at Smuckers.

  • A man has been charged with breaking Ireland’s bestiality laws for forcing his dog to have sex with a woman who died from an allergic reaction brought on by the perverse act.

    Sean McDonnell, the 57-year-old charged in the case, apparently ordered his German Shepard to have sex with a 43-year-old mother of four that he met in an online fetish chatroom, according to the Journal.

    They met to perform the kinky act with the canine, but the woman died hours later from an attack similar to a reaction unleashed by a peanut allergy, according to the Irish Daily Star.

  • If you read the ingredients label on a loaf of bread, you will usually find an ingredient listed there as L-cysteine. This is a non-essential amino acid added to many baked goods as a dough conditioner in order to speed industrial processing. It’s usually not added directly to flour intended for home use, but you’ll find it throughout commercial breads such as pizza dough, bread rolls and pastries.

    While some L-cysteine is directly synthesized in laboratories, most of it is extracted from a cheap and abundant natural protein source: human hair. The hair is dissolved in acid and L-cysteine is isolated through a chemical process, then packaged and shipped off to commercial bread producers. Besides human hair, other sources of L-cysteine include chicken feathers, duck feathers, cow horns and petroleum byproducts.

    Most of the hair used to make L-cysteine is gathered from the floors of barbershops and hair salons in China, by the way.

  • As Kevin Warwick gently squeezed his hand into a fist one day in 2002, a robotic hand came to life 3,400 miles away and mimicked the gesture. The University of Reading cybernetics professor had successfully wired the nerves of his forearm to a computer in New York City’s Columbia University and networked them to a robotic system back in his Reading, England, lab. “My body was effectively extended over the Internet,” Warwick says.
  • This record can easily go from turntable to coffee table. Scottish band Found, looking for an inventive new way to release a new single, baked up a sugary idea: to press the 7” record on chocolate.

    The band enlisted the help of a friend, baker Ben Milne who, after several failed attempts, managed to successfully created the Willy Wonka-like treat; the entire record, including the paper label, is edible.

    While not audiophile quality by any stretch, the chocolate disc plays a decent version of the band’s “Anti-Climb Paint” single.

  • WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange has lost a financial lifeline.

    Since December bans by the world’s major credit card networks, it has been difficult for supporters of the controversial whistleblower to send him donations. But this week, WikiLeaks gained a brief respite with the unwitting help of an Icelandic bank.

    The window was quickly closed.

  • A nuclear reactor in Japan was forced to shut down due to infiltration of enormous swarms of jellyfish near the power plant.

    A similar incident was also reported recently in Israel when millions of jellyfish clogged down the sea-water cooling system of the power plant.

    Such massive invasions of the species have raised speculations and scientists are trying to figure out the reason behind such unusual growing trends.

    “The several [power plant incidents] that happened recently aren’t enough to indicate a global pattern. They certainly could be coincidental,” LiveScience quoted Monty Graham, a jellyfish biologist and senior marine scientist at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab off the Gulf Coast of Alabama stating.

    Recent studies have found out that jellyfish blooming occurs mostly during the summer and spring months.

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File under Fashion, Fetish, Music, SeMeN SPeRmS BLArRrG, SeMeN SPeRmS Links 'o Death, Sex

Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on July 10, 2011

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Put A Band-Aid On It!

  • The operator of the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear power plant says it lost control of an unmanned helicopter during a flight near the No. 2 reactor building, forcing the controller to make an emergency landing on a roof there.

    Tokyo Electric Power Company says the remote-controlled light helicopter took off from an observatory south of the Fukushima plant just past 6:30 AM on Friday. Its mission was to collect airborne radioactive substances around the No. 2 reactor building.

    The utility says its engine failed about 30 minutes later, making it impossible for the aircraft to ascend.

    The helicopter — 50 centimeters long and weighing 8 kilograms — was found lying on its side on the rooftop.

  • She claims that “during the course of these after-hours appointments, the plaintiff was placed under sedation by defendant Adams for the purposes, ostensibly, of defendant Adams conducting internal vaginal examinations and procedures including, but not limited to, internal ultrasounds of the plaintiff.”
    She says Adams prescribed large amounts of medication which was contraindicated in her conditions.
    “Over the course of the treatment regimen, defendant Adams insured that the plaintiff became dependent on the large volume of prescription drugs provided by defendant Adams to his patient … (H)e assured her that the prescription drugs being prescribed were necessary for her treatment and pain management,” the complaint states.
  • As typically happens in Russia, Pavlova began her drug use as a teenager shooting a substance called khanka, a tarlike opiate cooked from poppy bulbs, then graduated to heroin and finally, at the age of 27, switched to krokodil, because it has roughly the same effect as heroin but is at least three times cheaper and extremely easy to make. The active component is codeine, a widely sold over-the-counter painkiller that is not toxic on its own. But to produce krokodil, whose medical name is desomorphine, addicts mix it with ingredients including gasoline, paint thinner, hydrochloric acid, iodine and red phosphorous, which they scrape from the striking pads on matchboxes. In 2010, between a few hundred thousand and a million people, according to various official estimates, were injecting the resulting substance into their veins in Russia, so far the only country in the world to see the drug grow into an epidemic.
  • Philip Fursman has been buying plain models from a UK company, painting them and then selling them on the eBay website for a number of years for a small profit.

    But Mr Fursman from Card, Somerset, fell foul of the site’s policies when he tried to sell a model of Nazi leader Adolf Hitler.

    However, similar models of Osama bin Laden used in war games are allowed.

    The 37 year-old father-of-three said he was surprised by the policy because he had recently sold miniature figures of Osama bin Laden and the Taliban on eBay without any problem.

  • When art copies art

    The Flavour of Tears is established as a bona fide original, but René Magritte and his fellow Surrealists were no strangers to the dark arts of forgery. Magritte made a living during the Nazi occupation of Belgium by forging Picassos and Renoirs. Fellow artist Marcel Mariën would sell them on to private collectors.

    The Surrealist movement explores the tension of the real and the unreal, and Magritte may well have seen his forgeries as part that conflict. Playing a joke on the aficionados, he hung his forgery of Max Ernst’s The Forest in place of the original in 1943.

    Fellow Surrealist Giorgio de Chirico, in his later years, produced what he called “self-forgeries” of his earlier, more popular style. He would backdate them to fool the critics; ironic revenge for their attacks on his later works.

  • The name krokodil comes from its trademark side effect: scaly green skin like a crocodile around the injection site. TIME calls it “the dirty cousin of morphine,” because it’s three times cheaper than heroin and very easy to make, being that its main ingredient is codeine, a behind-the-counter drug that has sent many of America’s famous rap community to prison.

    The medical name of krokodil is desomorphine. A quick search for that will bring up graphic images of people with swollen faces, exposed bones and muscles and skin rotting off on any given body part.

    The reason the drug is so anatomically destructive is due to its mix-ins. Users stir in ingredients “including gasoline, paint thiner, hydrochloric acid, iodine and red phosphorus which they scrape from the striking pads on matchboxes,” reports TIME.

  • The Federal Communications Commission adopted new rules Thursday that increase the penalties for faking caller ID information in order to commit fraud or harm consumers.

    The practice, known as caller ID “spoofing,” can still be used for legal purposes such as safeguarding the privacy of individuals. But the commission argues spoofing is increasingly used for malicious purposes such as identity theft or placing false emergency calls to police.

    “Far too often, though, fake caller IDs are used by bad actors to get money from consumers, steal consumers’ identities, or stalk or harass,” said Joel Gurin and Sharon Gillett, the chiefs of the FCC’s Consumer and Wireline bureaus, respectively, in a statement.

  • Federal regulators are poised to hit Google Inc. with subpoenas, launching a broad, formal investigation into whether the Internet giant has abused its dominance in Web-search advertising, people familiar with the matter said.
  • After years of negotiations, a group of bandwidth providers that includes AT&T, Comcast, and Verizon are closer than ever to striking a deal with media and entertainment companies that would call for them to establish new and tougher punishments for customers who refuse to stop using their networks to pirate films, music and other intellectual property, multiple sources told CNET.
  • With more than 700 bulletins, email archives, images and other files, the 440MB package will keep readers busy for days. A few excerpts from the most obviously newsworthy documents follow.
  • The “limited kinetic action” in Libya has been one of the most misrepresented, selectively covered, and tragic imperialistic NATO adventures in recent history. We are presented a picture of a madman, frothing at the mouth, slaughtering civilians whenever possible. We are shown a Libya that is united against Qaddafi, with a population that wants NATO to save them and help depose the evil Qaddafi. But is this true?

    In fact, this is only a very small part of a large, complex picture. However, the Western media refuses to show their audience the entire reality while they are in fact there in Libya, able to fully appreciate the events. This just goes to show the strict gatekeeper aspect of Western mainstream media in which only certain things get covered and a very select few become major stories.

  • With Boise rainfall samples measuring by far the highest concentrations of radioactive nuclides in the country, apocalyptic rumors of nuclear disaster run rampant. Higher cancer rates, lower SAT scores, genetic mutations, and birth defects are just a few of the things doomsayers expect to see in the wake of the nuclear disaster at Fukushima’s Daiichi plant. But if the nuclear scare has you dumping milk and fleeing from radioactive rain, you might want to put the dangers into perspective.
  • In Sept. 1859, on the eve of a below-average1 solar cycle, the sun unleashed one of the most powerful storms in centuries. The underlying flare was so unusual, researchers still aren’t sure how to categorize it. The blast peppered Earth with the most energetic protons in half-a-millennium, induced electrical currents that set telegraph offices on fire, and sparked Northern Lights over Cuba and Hawaii.

    This week, officials have gathered at the National Press Club in Washington DC to ask themselves a simple question: What if it happens again?

    “A similar storm today might knock us for a loop,” says Lika Guhathakurta, a solar physicist at NASA headquarters. “Modern society depends on high-tech systems such as smart power grids, GPS, and satellite communications–all of which are vulnerable to solar storms.”

  • After visiting a Taichung beef noodle restaurant in July 2008, where she had dried noodles and side dishes, Liu wrote that the restaurant served food that was too salty, the place was unsanitary because there were cockroaches and that the owner was a “bully” because he let customers park their cars haphazardly, leading to traffic jams.
  • Police believe they have tracked down a missing portrait of Farrah Fawcett.
  • Penn & Teller call BULLSHIT!
  • The International Bottled Water Association on Wednesday took on what it described as a “a myth repeated by some anti-bottled water activists that bottled water which comes from municipal water sources is just tap water in a bottle.”

    At least one group opposed to bottled water, however, shrugged at the public-relations gambit, suggesting that no matter how much processing is involved, bottled water is, on its face, an unnecessary product.

  • Remember Kind of Bloop, the chiptune tribute to Miles Davis’ Kind of Blue that I produced? I went out of my way to make sure the entire project was above board, licensing all the cover songs from Miles Davis’s publisher and giving the total profits from the Kickstarter fundraiser to the five musicians that participated.

    But there was one thing I never thought would be an issue: the cover art.

  • Roosters looking to get a little action in local henhouses must first produce a clean bill of health under a newly adopted law regulating romantic interactions among chickens in backyard farms.

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File under Music, SeMeN SPeRmS BLArRrG, SeMeN SPeRmS Links 'o Death

Conjured by o~ SeMeN SPeRmS ~o on June 24, 2011

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