Quick! Grab everything you can before they are down again!

Lawmakers are set to approve plans for an enormous new database that will collect biometric data on almost all non-EU citizens in Europe’s visa-free Schengen area. The database — merging previously separate systems tracking migration, travel and crime — will grant officials access to a person’s verified identity with a single fingerprint scan.

Source: Politico

This sounds like Mielke’s wet dream come true. I doubt there’ll be any improvements in security. Just more surveillance and possibilities to repression.

You see, Internet Explorer is a compatibility solution. We’re not supporting new web standards for it and, while many sites work fine, developers by and large just aren’t testing for Internet Explorer these days. They’re testing on modern browsers.

Chris Jackson at Microsoft. See full article.

Good to see this has been clarified finally. As I say for many years Internet Explorer is not a browser. It’s a compatibility solution without any right to exist any longer.

On one hand you can not serve lobby interests, especially to serve large publishers, labels and artists, and then on the other hand stand up and fight off the consequences that result from the collateral damage, by calling for meaningless and completely useless additional protocols. They are not required, they are one necessary consequence of the law.

The policy doesn’t require upload filters. But companies without extensive blocking are constantly in danger of claims for damages. That’s why they have no choice. Article 13 is a shift in the burden of proof. But in a liberal democracy everything is allowed, what’s not forbidden.

Thanks to Article 13, everything has to be blocked first, until it’s proven that it’s allowed. There’s no doubt that no culture can thrive this way. Principles of a pluralistic democracy, and also those of a liberal constitutional state get abolished by this policy.

It does not strengthen artists. On the contrary, many will find that they can not even bring their own material online without proving that it does not violate any third party rights. So everyone has to join the same large collecting societies, in order to enjoy the benefit of flat-rate licenses, which only large global players can and will do.

This disaster is applauded by journalists, who otherwise always like to demand the solidarity of the net community with their concerns of free reporting. But they themselves punch all unorganized Internet broadcasters directly in the face; according to the motto “we also want to get paid”. Have you not been paid, yet?

Is it really worthwhile to enforce 30-40 years old business models in a network that removes the role of recipient and sender? You want to turn back the Internet into consumers and professional producers, so that your dinosaur world is right again.

Don’t be surprised if the solidarity regarding your concerns suffers in the future, because you have just made yourselves real enemies of free cultural practice. And by no means I’m talking about the straw man of an “everything’s free culture” that you allegedly suffer from. You threw out the baby with the bathwater. You, as the alleged fifth pillar of democracy, have just laid your hands upon the possibilities of freedom of expression. You have made yourself part of the problem, not part of the solution; and that way one should treat you from now on. This is not a good day for freedom in Europe, it is a very bad day. A catastrophe promoted by publishers and law-abusers.

These automatisms in browsers are giving me a bad time. Who the hell came unmedicated to the conclusion to let browsers transform emoticons into emojis? Text has to remain text and images have to remain images.

Of course I could add the text presentation selector (&#xFE0E) as suffix to every emoticon I write, but that’s not the point. Also the suffix gets removed upon editing, so I need to add it over and over again. Programmatically scanning all texts and adding the suffix automatically is overkill and results in a huge performance loss.

I found an add-on for Firefox which claims to do disable emojis. But it doesn’t work, and also I don’t want a separate add-on for that. Seems like no one thought of a simple CSS setting to disable this crap. I don’t want smileys, emojis, whatever. This is all so painful.

Oh, what a pity! My beloved wallpapers site is down for several months now, and despite all those alternatives I really miss them. Their last tweet on their Twitter account is from 2015, so I guess they’re dead. :(

Currently I’m preparing a full dump of the user submissions. If you cannot or do not want to wait, here a some torrents to respective dumps:

All images 1920 x 1080 + vote on submissions

All images 3840 x 2160 + vote on submissions

All images in maximum resolution link 1 and link 2.

Thanks to Yuri Gudilin for those torrents.

2019-04-12 @ 08:17: Amazon’s clean energy lie News

Remember when Amazon told you they’ll use renewable energy for their AWS cloud centers? Turns out, they still use massive amounts of oil.

That’s because Amazon is spying on you. And if that are not enough bad news for you, then keep in mind that you payed them for spying on you, when you bought one of their home-intrusion-microphones.

There’s a whole team at Amazon reviewing audio clips in an effort to help the voice-activated assistant respond to commands.

I don’t feel sorry for you. You’ve been warned several times.

According to this article a new bill regarding IT security is being planned in Germany.

If this bill is passed it will be illegal to refuse turning over your credentials (e.g. for social media, e-mail, encrypted devices and other accounts) to government agencies, such as the police.

Punishment could be up to six months of coercive detention, no matter whether their allegations are true or not. Just another steps towards the abolishment of the constitutional democracy.

In case you don’t like either handing over your credentials or getting detained I recommend to store sensitive information in a hidden, encrypted volume on an encrypted device. Doing it this way will give you plausible deniability. This is your ultimate “Get Out of Jail Free” card.

To create a hidden volume use either TrueCrypt or VeraCrypt. Both programs are free open-source software.


  • About

    We never asked for this.