Category Archives: cyberspace

fake news media firestorm/ bombshells, obama/trump/russia/putin/congress/stein

hi all its only been 3 wks since posting on the fake news and election integrity topic, and its turned into a fast firestorm in a small amt of time, and various bombshells are reverberating. hard to keep up! am unloading this batch of links.

obama is releasing CIA intelligence report to congress/ public[d] which implicates russia/putin[c] as intentionally attempting to push election to Trump.[e]

congress is making loud noises about a bipartisan investigation. that is a rare occurrence. but one wonders if the partisans have some kind of secret agenda. in washington, increasingly the only thing that isnt bipartisan is the actual physical infrastructure, say the statues, and even then one wonders. (oops, even inanimate objects like statues have a bipartisan slant!) which reminds me of that old expr “reality has a liberal bias” and that in turn reminds me of old quote “We’re an empire now, and when we act, we create our own reality.”[x]

which leads nicely/ quickly into the next subj of “fake news”.[a] the technical term for this ofc is misinformation, disinformation, or propaganda. not exactly sure why those terms are not being used. guess we need a nice new buzzword in this 21st cyber century eh?

some media is already declaring jill steins recount effort over.[b] it looks like 2/3 states rejected it via judicial review. but probably the litigation will go on for months at least it seems like. conspiracy sites are even calling out outright fraud/ hacking.[b3][b12]

clearly we are right smack dab in the middle of a major cyber/infowar with massive domestic and intl implications.

facebook has done a 180 from zuckerbergs claims “theres nothing to see here folks” and is already agreeing to work on the issue with various near-term and long-term approaches.

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social media/ cyber 2016 Q4

whew! 2016 has been quite the fast-paced dizzying blur. this is the year that it seemed social media was utterly ubiquitous and not only that, probably had a big influence on the election.[a]

its quite a torrent. its grip on popculture seems to be nearly complete. how could it be any more coupled? we have multimilliondollar youtube stars and supermodels becoming so based on instagram accounts. although, have we reached Peak social media? kim kardashian backing off on her intensity somewhat might be a milestone or gamechanger. or maybe not!

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VR/Virtual Reality unleashed! state-of-the-art 2016

hi all. have been waiting for an opportune moment to unleash this post, collecting links for probably close to 2+yrs. VR/ virtual reality is a massive gamechanger/ disruptive technology. as a teenager several decades ago (ugh) fantasized about VR, and now its finally here. the final designated trigger for this post: was wandering around a great mall & walked into the gamestop and sony VR (PS4) was sitting around in boxes, and also samsung (gear) VR was in the best buy cell phone store. (old geezer me remembers a time when best buy didnt sell cell phones!) we’ve certainly come a long way!

tried out oculus rift demo about a year+½ ago. tried out gear VR a few mos ago. its all fantastic. may buy the sony VR for ps4 fairly soon, am debating. might buy it just for the battlezone game! actually it was probably mostly battlezone by atari released ~1980 that started my near-pre-adolescent VR dreams aflutter.

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fake news in election, cybersec, facebook, social media

hi all the chinese curse “may you live in interesting times” is out in full force these days. have tried to avoid blogging much on the election here but it has some interesting/ intense cyber/ tech angles. the media is reporting a few dribbles of the possibility of a recount in critical “swing” states michigan, pennsylvania, wisconsin by jill stein who has already raised a few million dollars on her web site.[a]

it is with a heavy heart this info/ pov/ angle is passed on here. one would think in 2016 we’d have it figured out how to hold secure elections/ voting (and woe unto us in this world where that phrase is not a tautology!). but the tragedy of democracy is that the apparently simple act of counting votes seems to be a very, very difficult problem and that our highly advanced information technology is a double-edged-sword and/or pandoras box added to the problem.

my feeling is that if we could get a national/ bipartisan consensus/ initiative on secure voting built up in congress, maybe some real progress is possible. DREAM ON right? but what could be more important for democracy? (as an old troll expr on the internet goes, not sure where it originated, “humans are stupid!”)

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facebook filtering algorithm/ policy causes big commotion (once again)

❗ 😮 hi all. recently facebook was accused/ implicated in steering news items away from conservative sites. every few years, facebook “faces” these types of PR messes and Zuckerberg is probably nearly a pro at handling them by now. there were a lot of press reverberations.

facebook is like the 800LB gorilla of the media. they embody the “winner takes all” aspect of our economy. most other media outlets are having serious troubles, such as old stalwarts like NYT somewhat “on the ropes”. oh yeah and then there was that crazy gawker judgement recently. hoo, boy!

facebook is rewriting the rules of the media game. much the way that tweaks to googles algorithms cause fat/ huge ripples/ shudders in the mass SEO business (and today, nearly every media outlet is in the SEO business to varying degrees), facebooks small adjustments to their site can have massive repercussions.

its interesting in all this how algorithmic theory is intersecting with media concerns like fairness, impartiality, freedom from censorship, openness, etc… is this a story about algorithms or people? its kind of about the intersection of the two. oh, throw in political pov (right vs left). its a volatile mix. throughout the story, people are grappling with a different landscape. a paradigm shift.

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