★ Graffiti artists caught out by their handiwork
Being hand-drawn, each piece is different, even when the same design is drawn by the same person, so Jain’s system identifies key points in the design that remain more-or-less consistent. And since a gang’s graffiti often incorporates its name or other identifying words, he uses crowdsourcing to identify those words, asking the human workers of Amazon’s Mechanical Turk service to decipher any text in the images.
When using both text and image features to assess a piece of graffiti, the system correctly names the gang or individual about 65 per cent of the time. Michael O’Grady, who researches graffiti detection at the University of Huddersfield, UK, says this means it is only really good enough for filtering images down to a manageable level for a human to examine. “I’d want it up around 85 per cent,” he says.
★ The Poppers Story
In the gay ghettos of the Seventies and early Eighties, poppers were always at the center of the action. On any given night at, say, the Anvil in Manhattan, a large percentage of the men on the dance floor would have poppers in hand, and many of the rest would be helping to pass the bottles around. Some disco clubs would even add to the general euphoria by occasionally spraying the dance floor with poppers fumes.
Michael Rumaker, in his classic book A day and a Night at the Baths, describes the tubs as “permeated with that particularly inert, greasy odor of poppers. Wherever you went, the musky chemical smell of it was constantly in your nostrils.” He found himself heading to the single, small window, in order to gasp a few breaths of “something other than the cold, kerosene smell of amyl.”
★ Warsaw protester launches drone to spy on police
During protests in Warsaw last weekend, one crafty activist deployed a flying drone to spy on riot police.
YouTube user latajacakamera — or “flying camera” in Polish — uploaded the amazing video that the drone effortlessly captured as it hovered over teargas-filled streets.
In another video, the unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) floats in front of a formation of police in riot gear as they rush towards demonstrators. None of them appear to notice.
★ 101 Year Old Inventor Of LSD Asked Steve Jobs How Dropping Acid Helped Him Create The Mac
Steve Jobs had a life-long fixation on LSD, and often ended up asking potential Apple employees during interviews how many times they had dropped acid to throw them off guard. Steve Jobs personally considered doing LSD to be one of the formative experiences in his life, and was insistent that others should do it, too.
With such a famous advocate working for free, it’s not a surprise that the man who invented LSD eventually contacted Steve Jobs. What is surprising, though, is how long he waited to get in touch… until he was 101 years old!
★ All About Poppers
WIDELY RECOGNIZED AS THE MOST CREDIBLE SOURCE OF INFORMATION ABOUT POPPERS. REGULARLY REFERENCED BY RESEARCHERS FROM AROUND THE GLOBE. SERVING THE RESEARCH COMMUNITY FOR OVER A DECADE.
★ Vandal renames Avenue J station ‘Avenue Jew’
A vandal altered a sign at a subway station in a heavily Jewish neighborhood in Brooklyn to make it read “Avenue Jew,” according to Assemblyman Dov Hikind. A subway rider saw the graffiti, photographed it, and contacted Hikind’s office.
The photo shows the letters “e” and “w” in blue spray paintin at the end of the “J” in the Avenue J sign. The station is located at the intersection of Avenue J and East 16th Street.
Police removed the sign and are investigating it as a possible bias incident, according to a news release from Hikind’s office. But the NYPD has not confirmed that information.
★ Paul A. Laduke, Schaumburg Christian School Teacher, Charged With Masturbating During Class
A teacher at Schaumburg Christian School has been charged with sexual exploitation of a child after allegedly masturbating while students were in his classroom.
Paul A. Laduke, 75, allegedly told police he had been “masturbating while fantasizing about various students for the past 10 years,” according to the Chicago Tribune.
Schaumburg police told Fox Chicago that a student spotted Laduke “engaged in what appeared to be inappropriate lewd conduct while seated at his podium” on Nov. 11. That student informed a teacher and Laduke, described by his family as a “strict Christian,” was fired the same day.
★ Facebook users hit by hardcore porn, violence and animal abuse images
Explicit and violent images have flooded the newsfeeds of many Facebook users in the last 24 hours or so.
The content, which includes explicit hardcore porn images, photoshopped photos of celebrities such as Justin Bieber in sexual situations, pictures of extreme violence and even a photograph of an abused dog, have been distributed via the site – seemingly without the knowledge of users.
★ Divorcing couple ordered to hand over Facebook and dating site passwords
Do you, Facebook user, take your privacy, as stated in Terms of Service, to have and to hold, from this day forward, for better, for worse, through scams and through flirtations with high school sweethearts, in viral malware and in health, to love and to shield your adulterous licentiousness, till death do you
Forget about it. The courts have no compunction about parting us from our supposed privacy, regardless of what social media privacy terms of service seem to promise us vis-a-vis confidentiality.
That was made evident in the case of Stephen and Courtney Gallion, a Connecticut couple who’ve been ordered to turn over their social networking passwords in their impending divorce.
★ John Lennon’s Tooth Sells for More Than $31,000 at Auction
The tooth fairy’s rates have dramatically increased in the last 40+ years, especially when the bounty is a Beatle’s molar. John Lennon’s tooth fetched £19,000 (about $31,200) at auction in England Saturday.
The tooth had been in the family of Lennon’s former housekeeper. Lennon gave it to Dot Jarlett to dispose of sometime between 1964 and 1968, but then he suggested she keep the tooth to give to her daughter, who was a big Beatles fan.
★ ‘Family Circus’ creator Bil Keane dies at 89
Bil Keane’s “Family Circus” comics entertained readers with a simple but sublime mix of humor and traditional family values for more than a half century. The appeal endured, the author thought, because the American public needed the consistency.
Keane, who started drawing the one-panel cartoon featuring Billy, Jeffy, Dolly, P.J. and their parents in February 1960, died Tuesday at age 89 at his longtime home in Paradise Valley, near Phoenix. His comic strip is featured in nearly 1,500 newspapers across the country.
★ Jerry Sandusky Ice Cream Out Soon at Penn State?
The Penn State Creamery is renowned for its ice cream. It makes about 100 different flavors, some of which are named after famous Penn Staters.
One of those flavors – the Sandusky Blitz – was named in honor of disgraced former Penn State defensive coordinator Jerry Sandusky, who is facing felony charges for allegedly sexually abusing young boys. While it reportedly has not been served for several years, it was still listed on the creamery’s website on Sunday and described as a banana flavored ice cream with chocolate covered peanuts and a caramel swirl.
It has since been pulled down from the site.
While it sounds delicious, who would take their kids out for ice cream and buy a flavor named after an alleged child molester?
★ Met police using surveillance system to monitor mobile phones
Britain’s largest police force is operating covert surveillance technology that can masquerade as a mobile phone network, transmitting a signal that allows authorities to shut off phones remotely, intercept communications and gather data about thousands of users in a targeted area.
★ A Different Kind of Secret Code
Researchers have invented a new form of secret messaging using bacteria that make glowing proteins only under certain conditions. In addition to being useful to spies, the new technique could also allow companies to encode secret identifiers into crops, seeds, or other living commodities.
★ The Rise of Crime-Sourcing
Crowdsourcing began as a legitimate tool to leverage the wisdom of the crowds to solve complex business and scientific challenges. Unfortunately, these very same techniques are increasingly being adopted by the criminal underground for nefarious purposes.
★ Police arrest man for child pornography after tipoff from burglars
But the young people who stole the CDs were in for a surprise. When they began putting the discs into their computer, they discovered that some of them contained pornographic images of children, the statement said.
Despite having obtained the CDs under decidedly shady circumstances, the pair decided to report Stockard to the police.
A search warrant was served and three more computers and three laptops were taken from Stockard’s home, along with several external hard drives. Police said there were thousands of pictures and movies on the CDs — more than 30 of the 50 discs had child pornography on them.
Investigators said Stockard has been downloading indecent images of children since 2004. He has admitted possessing the pornography on the CDs but has refused to say whether there is pornography on the computers, they said. Stockard was booked for possession of child pornography and posted $25,000 bail.
The two burglar suspects who reported Stockard have not been arrested.
★ Texas county police buys drone that can carry weapons
The ShadowHawk from Vanguard Defense Industries is a pilot-less helicopter remotely controlled by an operator using a game console-like, laptop size device. The drone was purchased with a $300,000 grant from DHS.
The Montgomery police says it will be used in chases of escaping criminals and tracking drug shipments.
Michael Buscher, chief executive officer of manufacturer Vanguard Defense Industries, told the Examiner that Montgomery County is the first local law enforcement agency to buy one of his units.
He said they are designed to carry weapons for local law enforcement. “The aircraft has the capability to have a number of different systems on board. Mostly, for law enforcement, we focus on what we call less lethal systems,” he said, including Tazers that can send a jolt to a criminal on the ground or a gun that fires bean bags known as a “stun baton.”
★ 24 year old student lights match: Europe versus Facebook
Max is a 24 year old law student from Vienna with a flair for the interview and plenty of smarts about both technology and legal issues. In Europe there is a requirement that entities with data about individuals make it available to them if they request it. That’s how Max ended up with a personalized CD from Facebook that he printed out on a stack of paper more than a thousand pages thick (see image below). Analysing it, he came to the conclusion that Facebook is engineered to break many of the requirements of European data protection. He argues that the record Facebook provided him finds them to be in flagrante delicto.
★ Rave kills dolphin
A DOLPHIN died after marine park bosses allowed a deafening rave yards from its pool.
Wildlife experts warned the banging techno at the two-day dance event would lead to stress among the ten dolphins. Animal activists even turned up to protest at Connyland marine park in Lipperswil, Switzerland.
Shadow, an eight-year-old dolphin, appeared very distressed and disoriented after the event, and was later found dead.
An activist said: “The sound levels dolphins heard were comparable to a pneumatic drill.” Connyland bosses denied any wrongdoing.
★ Lush Workers Cut Wallets From the Pockets of Drunk Train Riders
In the world of crime statistics, there is a certain subsection of victim on the city subways: a reveler who, overserved during a night on the town, nods off on a train. He wakes with a flapping, precision-cut hole in his trousers and cool, thin air where his wallet used to be.
This victim shakes his head in self-disgust, joining the besotted ranks to fall prey to a brand of criminal as old and established below the streets as a twisted root.
The police, long ago, coined a name for this criminal. The lush worker.
★ ‘Urine power’ tests at UWE in Bristol are successful
‘Regulating the flow’
The bacteria anaerobically (without oxygen) respire just like any other living organism, and this process gives off electrons.
Those electrons are then passed through an electrode and a measure of electricity is generated.
Bacteria feed on the urine, which they effectively use as a fuel to continue to breathe and give off electrons.
“Urine is chemically rich in substances favourable to the MFCs,” said Dr Ieropoulos.
“Through this study… we were able to show that by miniaturisation and multiplication of the number of MFCs into a stack and regulating the flow of urine, it may be possible to look at scales of use that have the potential to produce useful levels of power, for example in a domestic or small village setting.”
★ Josie From Josie And The Pussycats Is Possessed By The Devil
In the last Occult post, I showed you a story in Archie comics that seemed a bit heavy handed with the occult. Well, that was nothing, folks. In this one, Josie becomes possessed by an evil spirit… and it is disturbing as shit.
I know Archie comics became “born again” at some point in their history, but this ain’t it – the rest of the issue is completely “normal”. The Josie issues before and after this issue were free from overt religious messages…. so, I don’t know what the f–k is going on here.
I’m no expert in Archie comics (I have, however, been reading them for four decades), so I’m hoping someone more knowledgeable than I can fill me in.
Perhaps Archie comics were slipping in “born again Christian” story lines as early as ’73, but I seem to remember this happening much later (like the early eighties). Or, perhaps, the authors had just seen The Exorcist and let their enthusiasm run away with them.
★ Is an abortion based sexual fetish immoral?
One of my friends is sexually submissive and recently she encountered a man online who is to be her sexual dominant. The two of them have come to the conclusion that they are soulmates and one of the ideas that they particularly agree on is that he should be able to impregnate her and then abort the baby. He is a doctor so he would do it himself. My question is, she says that because abortion is legal… this isnt immoral. But I feel that it is premeditated murder. I mean, I am pro-choice: accidents, rape – there are lots of reasons to abort. But she is PLANNING to get pregnant for the sole reason to kill the child. And not just once… they want to do this thing over and over again. He says, “I will let you keep the baby just long enough to let you get attached to it and then I will take it from you.” UGH. Am I the only one that thinks this is INSANE?! I mean, sure abortion is legal.. but premeditated PLANNED abortion?!? How in the world can I express to her how wrong this is? Help!!
★ Ultrasound of patient’s testicles reveals startling image of a man in agony
Doctors at a Canadian hospital found a shocking image staring right back at them as they were scanning the testicles of a 45-year-old paraplegic man. The image of one of the testicles, shown above, looks like a man’s face grimaced in agony.
“It was very ghoulish, like a man screaming in pain,” Dr. Naji Touma of Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario told The Toronto Star. “His mouth was open and it looked like one eye was gouged out.”
★ Apple Vice President of Global Security John Theriault departs company following lost iPhone 4S investigation
In July, an Apple employee was reported to have lost a prototype version of the later to be announced iPhone 4S with Siri, an improved camera, and the dual-core A5 processor. Following the loss of the prototype device, Apple apparently also visited the home of the device’s purported finder and offered him cash for the return of the phone. Apple security officials reportedly posed as police officers in their search of this prototype iPhone, and the San Francisco Police Department have been said to be investigating the situation.
★ Embarrassing Bodies – Large Labia (Video)
★ Labiaplasty (Video) NSFW
Yikes! The Donner Cut
★ Judge William Adams beats daughter for using the internet [Video]
2004: Aransas County Court-At-Law Judge William Adams took a belt to his own teenage daughter as punishment for using the internet to acquire music and games that were unavailable for legal purchase at the time. She has had ataxic cerebral palsy from birth that led her to a passion for technology, which was strictly forbidden by her father’s backwards views. The judge’s wife was emotionally abused herself and was severely manipulated into assisting the beating and should not be blamed for any content in this video. The judge’s wife has since left the marriage due to the abuse, which continues to this day, and has sincerely apologized and repented for her part and for allowing such a thing, long before this video was even revealed to exist.
★ In dangerous new development, TEPCO detects nuclear fission occurring in destroyed reactors at Fukushima Daiichi – Bellona
Tokyo Electric Power Co (TEPCO) detected signs of a nuclear chain reaction at its crippled Fukushima Daiichi power plant, raising the risk of increased radiation emissions as trace amounts of radioactive Xenon gas isotopes were discovered at the wrecked plant’s reactor No 2, officials said.
★ DMX — Mopping Up Messes at Waffle House
The rapper adds, “The minute you get too big to mop a floor or wipe a counter, that’s the exact minute you have life f**ked up.”
★ Steven Tyler Says He Wasn’t Drunk Or High When He Fell In Shower
Aerosmith front man Steven Tyler said that the Paraguay shower fall that knocked his teeth out and cut his face was caused by food poisoning not a drug relapse, in a TV interview Thursday.
The veteran rocker, who has spoken openly about his drug and alcohol problems in the past, told NBC’s “Today” show that he blacked out in an Asuncion hotel shower because he was suffering “Montezuma’s revenge” not because he had fallen off the wagon.
“Quite frankly I just passed out,” he said during a phone interview from Buenos Aires. “I was on the shower and I got nauseous and I started to get sick and I fell on my face, passed out, and woke up with the water running over me wondering where the hell I was.”
★ Man claims prostitute turned into a donkey
A MAN caught having sex with a donkey told a court the beast was actually a prostitute who turned into an animal overnight.
★ Cheat Sheet: What’s Happened to the Big Players in the Financial Crisis
Widespread demonstrations in support of Occupy Wall Street have put the financial crisis back into the national spotlight lately.
So here’s a quick refresher on what’s happened to some of the main players, whose behavior, whether merely reckless or downright deliberate, helped cause or worsen the meltdown. This list isn’t exhaustive — feel welcome to add to it.
★ Wiki – 1993
★ Copper Traded For Crack
Some enterprising drug dealers are helping copper thieves cut out the middleman. They’re accepting copper pipe as legal tender in exchange for crack cocaine.
“Whether it’s a copper aluminum coil or insulation, it can be sold at night to bootleggers who are open from 9 o’clock at night to 3 in the morning,” scrapyard owner Van Kono told Local 10 in Miami, Florida.
File under Comics, Fetish, Graffiti, Music, SeMeN SPeRmS BLArRrG, SeMeN SPeRmS Links 'o Death, Sex