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Unmanned Russian rocket explodes seconds after liftoff cnn.com
53 points by antr  1 hour ago   28 comments top 15
yread 1 hour ago 1 reply      
solomatov 2 minutes ago 0 replies      
Proton isn't the most reliable rocket. About 10% of all its launches are unsuccessful. However, it's the cheapest way to deliver cargo to the space. It's even cheaper than current SpaceX offers (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Comparison_of_heavy_lift_launch...) of course, If a satellite isn't too expensive.
JacobiX 4 minutes ago 0 replies      
It's worth noting that the combination of Proton-M rocket and the DM-03 booster has previously failed in 2012. This is a relatively new technology compared to the mature Soyuz rocket for example.
deletes 1 hour ago 2 replies      
>Russian launchers do not carry a Flight Termination System that could be used to remotely trigger the destruction of the rocket in a scenario like this.<

Hope there aren't any cities in the rockets path.

plq 1 hour ago 0 replies      
This rocket was carrying three of the GLONASS (the Russian GPS) satellites, very bad news.

The RBTH has some more footage: http://rbth.ru/news/2013/07/02/proton-m_rocket_with_glonass_...

jstsch 58 minutes ago 0 replies      
This reminds me of Kerbal Space Program: https://kerbalspaceprogram.com
ars 53 minutes ago 2 replies      
Why do they use such toxic and expensive fuel? I understand using it on a satellite, but why does the rocket need it? Why not just kerosene and LOX?

Is the specific impulse much higher?

Edit: It's not, it's actually lower than kerosene. It's simply easier to ignite - that seems like a really bad reason to use it.

zaph0d 45 minutes ago 1 reply      
Compare with the ISRO launch on Monday that was a success - http://www.spaceflight101.com/pslv-c22-launch-updates-irnss-...
Sami_Lehtinen 52 minutes ago 1 reply      
Strange, I would have expected it to self-destruct immediately when navigation problem got apparent.
ars 1 hour ago 1 reply      
What causes those strange colored flames at the very end?
fwr 48 minutes ago 0 replies      
Such a terrible commentary in the video.
zozu 30 minutes ago 3 replies      
I hope this launch doesn't cause Russia a huge setback in their spaceprogram. That is quite the expensive launch failure if it carried a sattelite.
gren 53 minutes ago 1 reply      
"It is not the way it supposes to go" <- oh, thanks for the comment!
theorique 31 minutes ago 0 replies      
"Well, it's not like it's rocket science ... oh, wait..."
pawelwentpawel 30 minutes ago 0 replies      
This looks like they were trying to imitate SpaceX's Grasshopper but forgotten to land vertically.
Google Reader is dead google.com
203 points by voidfiles  5 hours ago   113 comments top 48
georgebashi 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Google Reader kept the content of RSS feeds cached forever, meaning it was the last surviving record of a huge number of dead and deleted blogs. The Archive Team have spent the last month or so fetching those blogs out of Reader to serve as a permanent archive. They posted a few days ago on HN asking for some last minute help, and managed to archive 46.23M feeds.

Check out their efforts here: http://www.archiveteam.org/index.php?title=Google_Reader

bdz 5 hours ago 3 replies      
"... were pouring all of our energy into fewer products. We think that kind of focus will make for a better user experience."

Yeah, Reader held back the development of the robot car, glasses, floating balloon internet and the brazilian social site...

steve19 5 hours ago 4 replies      
Right up till the 11th hour I held out hope that Google would give Reader a last minute stay of execution. A sad day indeed.
mtowle 5 hours ago 1 reply      
BREAKING: In a surprise belated April Fool's joke, Google revives Reader, according to former CEO Eric Schmidt, "just to fuck with everyone who spent money developing a shitty alternative."
unicornporn 4 hours ago 3 replies      
For me, this was a good move.

It inspired me to finally look past Google for the web based services I use daily (search, mail, rss, analytics, calendar, video hosting etc). Google's wants to know as much about me as possible. Putting all of my eggs in their basket seems like horrible idea. I've now come quite far in my exodus. Yesterday I found https://www.startpage.com/ uses Google) which gives good results (roughly same as Swedish Google but not filter bubbled). DDG (uses different sources, but seems to weight Bing) is downright terrible when not using English as search language.

petercooper 4 hours ago 0 replies      
It'll be less important now than it was 3-6 years ago, but get ready for all those FeedBurner subscriber count widgets to show huge subscriber # crashes as Reader no longer checks in.

Back in the day, they were a sort of informal auditing system and definitely helped me land advertisers for my blog (simply because I could "prove" I had 20,000 readers or whatever).

Thankfully I ditched the Web and moved to e-mail and know exactly how many subscribers I had, but this was certainly more luck and not any great piece of foresight on my part ;-)

ivank 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Organizing the World's Information... and setting it on fire 8 years later.
mikemoka 16 minutes ago 0 replies      
It is their right to choose to discontinue a product, I would have appreciated them more anyway if they would have chosen to give back to the community and put in the limited amount of work needed to opensource it though.

Goodbye Reader.

faizanaziz 11 minutes ago 0 replies      
Happens all the time You are the product not the customer Thats why we built Pixter - http://pixter.in
ciniglio 57 minutes ago 0 replies      
If you're looking for a new reader to try, check out www.readuction.com .

It's a different take on RSS, that intelligently gives you fewer articles to read. A friend and I built it over a few months, and we'd love any feedback you have.

You can import and export your feeds, so no need to worry about having data locked in.

Narretz 3 hours ago 2 replies      
I use The Old Reade, which I can use exactly like Google Reader, with the exception that k does not always skip to the next article; if you're reading an article it skips to the top of that. Same strange behavior as Google Reader is that while the number of unread posts is correct, the content of your feed is not up-to-date, so you first have to click on the result number, then it is updated.

Apart from that, it's really nice. I never used any social features of the Reader, just the aggregation. That's why I couldn't care less if they implement RSS support or a recommendation engine in G+.

magoon 20 minutes ago 0 replies      
Gmail's days may be numbered -- you never know..
csense 4 hours ago 3 replies      
I have no gmail account, no Youtube account, and no Google Reader...Google's always been a little too big for me to want to trust more than I have to, so I've gotten by without accounts on their services...

And that means I get to feel smugly superior to everyone else in this discussion.

nakedrobot2 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Sad, sad. I love seeing all the stealth replacements pop up in the last week or so.

Still, it is a sad day for RSS in general.

Google, this will not help me use G+.


camus 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Long live to Google Reader! I hope, it will allow some startupto come up with great products, but please ,think users first , not showing off your html5 skills or whatever... RSS is about reading text content and suscribing to feeds , not bells and whistles or closed social networking plateforms.
habosa 5 hours ago 1 reply      
RIP Reader. For those looking for a replacement, especially those with an Android phone, check out Newsblur. It's all open source, the developer is accessible, and most importantly it works insanely well. I honestly like it better than Reader.
pgambling 1 hour ago 0 replies      
"I felt a great disturbance in the Force, as if millions of voices suddenly cried out in terror and were suddenly silenced. I fear something terrible has happened."
beaker52 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I wish there was a decent alternative out there. They all seem to be a bit unpolished.

The most polished alternative I've seen is Feedly. I wrote to the founder about this many moons ago explaining that in trying to be 'innovative' with the UI, for me the whole user experience detracts so badly from the functionality I want from the app that I don't want to use it.

Where is the alternative, with the polish, without the 'innovation'. Perhaps I should build one...

I'll get my coat.

shreeshga 28 minutes ago 0 replies      
Its for the better.First step towards a 'news push'[ex. Google currents] rather than a 'news pull'
thomasf1 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Quick poll:

Where do you stand on this?

-> Focus (1...10) Keeping the product

Im a bit conflicted.. on one hand they lost user confidence by discontinuing Reader, on the other I completely get the approach to focus on a few things and really do them well.

stephen_mcd 3 hours ago 0 replies      
If you've left finding a replacement to now, please take a second to check out kouio:


We posted it to HN a few days ago, and since then have had over 600 signups and processed over 1.5 million feed items!

We've made a ton of tiny improvements since then, with many more to come.

gmantastic 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I liked Google Reader, but all those great posts queued up with no time to read them properly felt like neglected homework. It's a shame to lose it, but maybe for the best. I won't be rushing to recreate it.

Links posted on Hacker News and Twitter allow me to find something interesting to read when I need it, without making any kind of commitment. For the very rare thing that I don't want to miss, I subscribe by email.

prfeedreader 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Even though Google Reader is dead you can still migrate to alternative services, like Feedreader Online: http://feedreader.com/online/ Just use OPML files to import your feeds and categories.
olegp 5 hours ago 0 replies      
If you still haven't found a replacement, here's our list of alternatives that was on the front page of HN on Friday: https://starthq.com/apps/?q=reader

It now includes the additions mentioned in the comments and the countries where the service is hosted for those that are concerned by Prism.

stevewillows 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I've found a decent experience using Feedly in Chrome for the desktop and GReader for Android using the Feedly API. Still not as good as EasyRSS, but it will suffice until the dust settles.

In other news: EasyRSS has been open sourced: https://github.com/davidsun/EasyRSS

tzury 3 hours ago 0 replies      
no news.

has been chewed over and over. here and everywhere.

yet, get the top position at HN.

What does this means?

Confusion 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Now if only Feedly will allow me some way to pay them...
tdicola 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Should be a fun next couple of weeks as all the Reader replacements get a big spike in traffic and deal with inevitable scaling problems.
bdz 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Serious question: Why no one offered to buy or take over the service? Like Google Wave - Apache Wave
iliaznk 3 hours ago 2 replies      
RIP By the way, I quite like the Digg Reader but it doesn't display the unread count regardless of the settings. Is it only me?
shurcooL 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I didn't want to accept this would happen. So it's kinda hard to believe it actually did.

Oh well, more free time.

workbench 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Last time I ever trust that company with a service I rely on.

and before you ask no I have never used GMail

lunchladydoris 3 hours ago 0 replies      
This sucks. Hitting RE in Alfred has become muscle memory by now.

I've switched to Feedly and it's pretty decent. Something feels a little off, but it does most of what I want.


ensmotko 5 hours ago 0 replies      
The Android application still seems to be working, but they'll probably kill it soon enough.
rob22 4 hours ago 2 replies      
In future, G+ also dead like this.......

RIP for GReader.....

lsdkfj 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Fuck google.Seriously. Really? Couldn't keep it running?Bastards.
alinspired 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Bastards, they killed reader :
pjmlp 4 hours ago 0 replies      
So what! My native RSS reader is still working.
iamkhush 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Just cant figure it out why?? Anyways , using Feedly on web and android. Looks ok!!
tlrobinson 5 hours ago 0 replies      
moreentropy 4 hours ago 0 replies      
This is hardly news now is it?
tvwonline 5 hours ago 2 replies      
3rd party apps are still working, I wonder how long until they are cut off?
otikik 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Good-night, sweet prince.
binarydreams 5 hours ago 0 replies      
A Sad Day. RIP.
chrra 4 hours ago 0 replies      
So it goes.
SCdF 5 hours ago 0 replies      
alolz 4 hours ago 0 replies      
i can not belive..google reader is dead..
adamnemecek 5 hours ago 0 replies      
We hardly knew ye.
Snowden needs "world's protection", says Venezuelan President reuters.com
14 points by qubitsam  23 minutes ago   1 comment top
marknutter 8 minutes ago 0 replies      
Then offer him asylum.
NSA E-Mail Eavesdropping schneier.com
16 points by qubitsam  33 minutes ago   2 comments top
bartl 15 minutes ago 1 reply      
What I don't get is that in the USA, figuring out a password to an email account is a crime punishable with years of jailtime (think of the Sarah Palin case) [1], but somehow, when the NSA does it to everyone in the world it's just "yesterday's news"?

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sarah_Palin_email_hack

Snowden withdraws Russian asylum bid after Putin says he must 'stop harming' US nbcnews.com
67 points by joshfraser  3 hours ago   34 comments top 10
jwdunne 1 hour ago 0 replies      
As an outsider looking in, I don't really see it as harming the US, just the US government, by exposing how the US government are harming its people. I think this is how Putin has worded it too, he hasn't said "harming the US" but "US partners". It's horrible that there is such a distinction because the ideal should be the government is the equivalent of the people.
skc 8 minutes ago 0 replies      
I wonder if it's as simple as the old rule of the streets being at play here? That is, if the USA and Russia are rival gang members, they would each look poorly on "snitches" even if they are from the other side.
zby 1 hour ago 3 replies      
Russia wants to have him as a possible tool to press the USA in the future - that is why they want him to stop the leaking now - when all is leaked he'll be of no value to them.

By rejecting these terms Snowden shows character - but he is now in a really bad situation. Requesting asylum in Poland (where one of the secret CIA prisons was located) was an act of desperation.

quackerhacker 1 hour ago 3 replies      
Snowden withdraws Russian asylum bid after Putin says he must 'stop harming' US

This title strongly implies that he seeks to harm the US. Let the media marauding begin. I really don't feel that Snowden looked to harm the US, but rather hold the country he was serving accountable for what it was and still may be doing.

toddsiegel 2 hours ago 5 replies      
> If #Snowden can't find asylum, it will be depressingly clear that the US not only eavesdrops on the world but runs it.

- @JPBarlow https://twitter.com/jpbarlow/status/351937848217317380

I am trying to imagine what leverage we have over Russia.

philliphaydon 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Can't see Snowden harming America. Pretty sure America is harming itself.
loceng 7 minutes ago 0 replies      
He could be testing waters to see how different countries react, just to see what their true colours or at least public ones are.
camus 1 hour ago 2 replies      
Well , there is no freedom of speech in russia , but there is none in most European countries neither. He should chose carefully where he wants to go. I'd suggest him to avoid France and UK. Dont know about other european countries.
drunkenmasta 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Well if true then the move makes no sense. Why would he ruin any chance of getting out of the airport if that's where he is? Also, if he really is there then why have no photographs of him been taken? Surely there is at least a couple (sarcasm) of people that go through the airport each day? Where is this guy and why don't we see his face anymore?
quchen 1 hour ago 0 replies      
All these page-long news articles published in the last couple of weeks usually consist of one bit of useful information - in this case the first paragraph - and then the same things over and over again. It doesn't even cite the source, let alone name it (no, "a government spokesman" is not a source). I feel like many news websites just use the issue to throw out as much content containing the word "Snowden" as possible these days, and I'm finding it hard to gather new information in this ocean of entropy.
Pixate Engine Now Free pixate.com
43 points by robin_reala  2 hours ago   14 comments top 8
joeblau 20 minutes ago 0 replies      
Since this is free, can you please put an download link up that's not hidden behind the license key registration form?


gearoidoc 28 minutes ago 0 replies      
I've been following Pixate for a while (plan to use it on my current project) but I'm really confused by this.

If a product is generating revenue then why switch it to a free model? To encourage buy-in for the upcoming product or something similar?

Just seems like a really odd business decision as I would have gladly paid for the app...

millerm 42 minutes ago 1 reply      
I helped fund the project (only $100), but I don't mind it being given away. I hope this is being continued though. I have seen a couple other similar APIs out there that are free(dom) and available on GitHub but I really liked this API.

Anyone know if there are plans on providing source in the future? Not that I really want to look at it, I've enough code to write. But, It's nice to have it so I can make sure I'm safe for the future.

Also, does anyone know if this decision was brought by the design changes in iOS 7?

jasonkolb 50 minutes ago 2 replies      
Looks pretty cool, but iOS only from what I can tell. Not sure I can seriously look at a technology that doesn't support Android at this point.
Ecio78 34 minutes ago 0 replies      
Another news published on their site:

We've raised $3.8M from Accel Partners to expand Pixate's products and servicesToday we're announcing our Series A round, and we're super excited about it!


grigy 31 minutes ago 0 replies      
It would be awesome if they also support Android (and other platforms), which I think they will eventually do. You would design once and get the same look across all the platforms.
grigy 40 minutes ago 1 reply      
I wonder if anyone here actually used it. How much does it increase the size of executable?
killahpriest 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Thank you! That splash screen slowed down development time so much. Add 3 to 5 seconds to every single build and run.
You May Not Like Weev, But Your Online Freedom Depends on His Appeal wired.com
30 points by Libertatea  2 hours ago   9 comments top 5
nicholassmith 8 minutes ago 0 replies      
I agree with the sentiment that computer use crimes need to be reworked, and that weev shouldn't have been hoisted by the fact he is a colossal dick but the article seems to gloss over things for the sake of the argument.

   - `The spoofing was irrelevant; Spitler would have gotten the same email addresses if he had manually inputted the URLs on an iPad rather than a spoofed desktop browser.`, the spoofing is incredibly relevant, it's an important technical detail. Sure he could have sat and put each string in in a long laborious process, but they circumvented that and went straight to the faster option. Once they'd established there was a hole they could have stopped rather than going for the motherlode.    - `if theres no technical barrier...`, there was a technical barrier, it was just very, very small. 
Don't misunderstand me, AT&T are massive idiots for letting a security violation on that scale leak out into the wild, and they should't have surprised for it to be discovered, but if you're doing live security research and find a hole is taking 114k email addresses a particularly good way to report it?

He certainly didn't deserve the ridiculous amount of time that he got, but he's not an innocent in this example by any stretch of the imagination.

stfu 55 minutes ago 2 replies      
I, for one like Weev. He is a boundary pusher. Many even around here on hn might perceive his stuff as tasteless. But I sincerely wished more people were as dedicated to their "ideals" as Weev is.

Defending free speech means standing up for people who have controversial views - no matter how unease you personally are with these views.

mjn 25 minutes ago 0 replies      
The brief is actually quite readable: https://www.eff.org/file/37297

If you're already familiar with the background of the case, for the meat of the argument on appeal, skip to p. 15 (26th page of the PDF), starting with "Summary of Argument". That section lays out the five objections being raised on appeal, and is then followed by five sections making the detailed arguments.

edit: direct link, https://www.eff.org/file/37297#page/26/mode/1up

lesslaw 1 hour ago 2 replies      
It is a terrible decision

    curl http://domain.com/showdocument?[00000-99999]
should not be a crime!!

andyzweb 1 hour ago 0 replies      
free weev
Restore the Fourth Organizes Protests Against Unconstitutional Surveillance eff.org
171 points by ndesaulniers  8 hours ago   24 comments top 9
sinak 7 hours ago 1 reply      
SF HNers, check out the event details here: https://www.facebook.com/events/553989834652790/

If you're elsewhere, find the nearest event on the Rt4 homepage: http://www.restorethefourth.net/

(Edit to add a shameless plug) If you're a dev interested in creating campaigns like this, sign up here: http://sina.is/task-force

aspensmonster 6 hours ago 0 replies      
I too take irony in utilizing Facebook to organize this sort of protest. Regardless, the Austin Facebook page is here:


Hope to see any fellow Austinites there. Starts at 11AM at the capital building, which has seen plenty of protest in the past few days given Governor Rick Infinite-Special-Sessions Perry's latest call to special session on a controversial abortion bill. Judging by the Austin subreddit, it seems many are in support and plan on being there for Restore the Fourth since it's in the morning and won't interfere with evening celebration plans with family and friends.

jayfuerstenberg 4 hours ago 1 reply      
With each passing successful terrorist attack the effectiveness of this surveillance system will be questioned. It's already considered highly ineffective...


In the meantime keep protesting (to be seen and heard) and use technology to thwart said surveillance.

Don't listen to the "if you use encryption they'll definitely watch you" logic. Your messages are still encrypted until they brute-force their way through (a very long process compounded by how many people are using encryption).

If you don't use encryption they might not watch now you but when they do they'll see everything guaranteed.

Privacy is a basic human right that cannot be granted or taken away by any institution, be it government or other.

znowi 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Now we're talking! This is exciting. People take charge. Way to go, America!
bendoernberg 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Please join us in NYC: https://www.facebook.com/events/378073495627134/http://restorethefourthnyc.org/

We're expecting a much larger crowd than the FB page would indicate; we've been doing a lot of offline outreach in the community, and obviously not everyone's comfortable signing up on FB nowadays :)

jayfuerstenberg 6 hours ago 1 reply      
People also need to educate themselves on encryption, in case the government doesn't care to hear their voice.

Stand up with technology and not just policy.

babesh 6 hours ago 3 replies      
Why don't we just vote the bums out of office? I voted for Obama both times. Going forward, I sure won't vote for anyone who supports this. We should organize and figure out who is for and against this.
jaekwon 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Wow, HNers for restore the fourth! Hello comrades.

I'd like to create or join a working technical organization for the creation and distribution of existing of liberating technology, such as distributed social networks with strong perfect forward secrecy encryption, alternative currency systems etc.

RestoreTheFourth protests will be a great place to find more like minded techies, so let's organize before the 4th and spread the word during the protest.

Please join me, `fourthtech` on cryptocat, or see you in front of the Civic Center.

wavesounds 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I'll be at the protests in LA! First at Santa Monica parade at 8am (bring a whistle to support whistleblowers!) then in DTLA at Pershing square at 1pm. Hope to see you there!
The 4 AM Army time.com
16 points by w1ntermute  1 hour ago   4 comments top 2
eliben 28 minutes ago 0 replies      
An interesting case study in modern journalism. This article has an interesting story to tell, but the author seems unaware of it, so he tries really hard to use every trick in the book to extract hyperbolic statements suitable for headlines.

Authors should realize that a good article stands on its own merits, and tabloid-driven drama just lowers its value.

Stranger2013 9 minutes ago 1 reply      
"Ive always dreamed of having a little house, a really small little house" the thing is that it's not economically possible for everyone to have those.
Breaking a Toy Hash Function twistedoakstudios.com
132 points by pizza  8 hours ago   9 comments top 5
pcwalton 5 hours ago 0 replies      
"On the other hand, the equivalent imperative code is stupidly hard to get right because you end up mixing everything together in a big jumble. (I spent my time doing other things while the computer did the tedious work.)"

The PL geek in me really likes this nice demonstration of the power of higher order functions, as opposed to C-style for loops, when it comes to getting things done.

gklitt 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Fascinating writeup! I enjoy it when a writer thoroughly details an entire thought process like this, instead of just focusing on the end result. This is precisely the type of content that belongs on the HN front page.
tomp 5 hours ago 2 replies      
Wow! I've never before seen C# LINQ in action. I must say, it's amazing! I hope more languages would adopt this.
GuiA 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Brilliant. OP, thanks for writing; submitter, thanks for posting.
girvo 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Seriously impressive write-up! I love it, and really want to have a go at doing something like this myself. Where's the best place to start? I know a _tiny_ bit about hashing functions, enough to know not to ever write one myself... ;)
Harry Potter and the Methods of Rationality just got several fascinating updates hpmor.com
56 points by benhamner  3 hours ago   49 comments top 8
swombat 3 hours ago 1 reply      
If you've not read this yet, don't start... unless you have a weekend to spend on it.

HP & the MoR is one of the most compulsive and intelligent reading experiences out there. Comparable to the late Iain M Banks in compulsion, imho, and half again as clever and witty.

Osmium 1 hour ago 2 replies      
Out of interest, how many people recommending this usually read fanfiction? Because I gave it a try a good while back but got a bit frustrated with it. It seemed to read more as a parody (albeit a good one) rather than something more faithful to the characters.
bryanlarsen 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Is it done yet? I read it when it was half the length it is now, and thoroughly enjoyed it. When it is done I will read it again, starting from the beginning.
nullspace 1 hour ago 2 replies      
The index page looks really interesting, the kind of index page that would lead me to read the book. Can someone give a gist of what this fanfic is about?

(I loved the Harry Potter series and I love Nassim Talebs works if that matters)

tehwalrus 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I've not seen this before - the first three chapters have had me guffawing something dreadful!

I'm going to have to ration my reading of this...

JulianMorrison 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Just gotta say, I don't appreciate the "women in refrigerators" trope.
manku_timma 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Lost two nights to this one. It is definitely the best fan fiction I have read and more so. IMO JK Rowling's version pales in comparision to this, but without the inconsistencies of the original book, this HPMOR wouldn't have been possible. If you've read the original, you owe it to yourself to read this.
n09n 2 hours ago 7 replies      
So, why should an adult choose to read this over actual literature?
Tesla: almost at 100000 votes
39 points by lelf  1 hour ago   14 comments top 7
neonhomer 1 minute ago 0 replies      
I understand and agree with the reason behind the petition, but ultimately this is a state issue, not a federal one. So i wouldn't see this petition really doing anything meaningful. It's the whole basis of the 10 amendment.
swamp40 13 minutes ago 0 replies      
Funny: I read this as Tesla: almost at 100000 volts.
ohwp 1 hour ago 2 replies      
mrt0mat0 7 minutes ago 0 replies      
i think it's hilarious that we tell other countries that we're a free market but clearly we're not if you have to ask law makers to allow you to do business.
pschastain 19 minutes ago 0 replies      
Already signed it, but thanks for putting it back on the radar; it's an important issue that needs to be addressed.
stfu 48 minutes ago 1 reply      
On another board I would usually respond to something like this with "not your personal army"...
Why the Story on Snowden and the NSA Doesn't Add Up motherjones.com
63 points by Libertatea  4 hours ago   50 comments top 10
grey-area 2 hours ago 2 replies      
The fuzziness surrounding this is frustrating. I'd certainly like to know more about what Snowden did for the NSA. Did he work on network security? Was he a threat analyst of some kind?

Frankly, I don't think any of these questions matter, and the speculation without evidence is not useful. We should be discussing the leaks, not Snowden's motivation in leaking, his background, his girlfriend, how much he understands of what he leaked etc. The motivation of a source in journalism is not really important, what is important is discovering the truth about what is happening in the world and our true relations with our government.

What's more, Snowden apparently thought the entire set of slides should be revealed to the world. I'd like to know what changed his mind.

Snowden gave the documents to journalists so that they could fact-check, start asking questions, and release what they thought was appropriate. According to Greenwald he specifically mentioned that he didn't want to dump all this data, and I can see good reasons why he wouldn't want to - there are probably things in the documents that would be very damaging (and not just to reputations) if released, some documents have been redacted before release, and they require explanation and context - none of that comes with a simple dump of the documents.

There are also sound tactical reasons for allowing the administration to tangle itself in its own lies, and to prevent the story simply being buried so I completely understand why they do this. Of course the newspapers and journalists involved have their own opinions, but trying to reduce those opinions to left wing or libertarian or whatever other labels you care to apply does nothing to elucidate how they have affected the presentation of the information. On the contrary, it just allows people to dismiss the information without bothering to address its implications. Greenwald for example has been labelled extreme left-wing, libertarian, extreme right-wing and everything in between, but I think he's really interested in privacy and surveillance, not joining the left-wing or right-wing club and hating the other side. The Guardian has not pursued an agenda here that I can discern aside from trying to sell more newspapers or get more hits - they've printed stories from all over the political spectrum, and they are not the only newspaper releasing stories - the most important recent leak of 4 slides was from the Washington Post, which is also in possession of this material, papers in Hong Kong and Germany have also been given some information. Snowden was also interviewed in Hong Kong by veteran diplomatic reporter Ewan MacAskill[1] who seemed impressed with his credentials and honesty so he's not completely opaque. I'd recommend any who haven't to watch this interview with the Guardian editors explaining the process in a bit more detail[2].

I find the disturbing allegations of unregulated, widespread, and deep surveillance used for economic and political ends far more important than Snowden's role in all of this, and I think he'd agree with that. While it's tempting to get obsessed with Snowden, his character, his job, why he leaked etc, and create grand conspiracy theories surrounding it, it's more healthy to discuss the facts we do know and their implications for how we use the internet. More information will come to light in time, and the information we do know raises serious questions about just how far state surveillance should be allowed to go.

[1] http://www.guardian.co.uk/profile/ewenmacaskill[2] https://www.youtube.com/watch?feature=player_embedded&v=7pdz...

jgrahamc 3 hours ago 5 replies      
This whole affair gives me an odd vibe. For reasons I can't figure out, I feel like everyone is holding back information. Obviously the government is, but it sure seems as if the journalists reporting this story have also declined to tell us everything they know. Maybe there's good reason for this. But I wish I knew what it was.

Perhaps it's that the information is in the hands of a 'left wing' newspaper which has a specific agenda/editorial slant and is using the information for those purposes. It makes sense for The Guardian/Glenn Greenwald to put out just enough information to cause a ruckus while keeping everything else to themselves.

swombat 3 hours ago 4 replies      
Money quotes:

an infrastructure analyst at the N.S.A., like a burglar casing an apartment building, looks for new ways to break into Internet and telephone traffic around the world.

Infrastructure analysts like Mr. Snowden, in other words, are not just looking for electronic back doors into Chinese computers or Iranian mobile networks to steal secrets. They have a new double purpose: building a target list in case American leaders in a future conflict want to wipe out the computers hard drives or shut down the phone system.

So basically he was a professional hacker. That takes a fair bit of intelligence, knowledge and experience, and is a fair bit beyond the job of a sysadmin, which is what everyone was assuming based on the title.

I guess it made sense. Unless you're Dr Evil, you probably won't call your hired mobsters "assassins" either, instead you might call them something neutral like "Situation Specialists"...

Zirro 3 hours ago 0 replies      
"Profiles describe him as secretive, fascinated with computers, and with knowledge of things like Tor (a peer-to-peer network for maintaining anonymity for computer communications)."

Doesn't that describe most of us on HN? ;-)

mtgx 3 hours ago 2 replies      
It was the right "strategy". If they would've released everything in one day, we'd probably already be on to the next thing by now, and the whole scandal would've lasted a week. They've done you a favor doing it like this.
JunkDNA 2 hours ago 1 reply      
I have to admit I've been increasingly concerned that something about this is not adding up as well. I can't precisely put my finger on it. The link to wikileaks gives me pause and the more recent stuff about foreign spying which, while politically incorrect, is kind of the NSA's primary sigint job. The most recent PRISM slide release also seems to suggest a narrower and more targeted US role than was let on initially.
brown9-2 51 minutes ago 0 replies      
I do find it baffling that Greenwald hasn't written an article detailing his relationship with Snowden, the timeline of when they began communicating and when Snowden started at BAH, if they are in contact still, etc., at least to dispel any questions people would raise about it.

I suspect Greenwald would say he hasn't done this because he thinks that Snowden isn't important to "the story", yet he still happily tweets snarky things about Snowden and what other journalists write/think:


DanBC 2 hours ago 0 replies      
> What was Edward Snowden's job when he worked for Booz Hamilton as a contractor to the NSA?

We don't know. That's the nature of jobs with security clearances doing work for Secret Government Spy Agencies.

> The fuzziness surrounding this is frustrating. I'd certainly like to know more about what Snowden did for the NSA. Did he work on network security? Was he a threat analyst of some kind? Did he actively search out vulnerabilities in other networks that NSA could exploit? Did he do this only at Booz Hamilton, or did he have basically the same job previously when he worked directly for the NSA? Exactly how much does he know about the NSA programs he's been revealing to the world?

There are two issues here.

1) How can we organize effective oversight of secret spy agencies?

2) How can we trust whistleblowers? How knowledgeable are those whistleblowers?

For 1) we have to create strong law. We then give a small independant group oversight powers. We then have to trust the spies, and the people overseeing them, to obey the law. We have to be careful about crafting the laws, because these people want to push the boundaries of what they can do.

For 2) I guess we just have to accept that people tend not to whistleblow unless they feel strongly about something. He's been called a traitor for revealing this much. Imagine what happens if he reveals even more.

> Or, at the very least, I'd like to know why I can't know.

There are several guesses we can make here. i: The slides reveal information that put people's lives at risk. ii: The slides reveal information that give too much information to the enemy; or cut off information to the US. iii: The slides are not particularly relevant to the prism story. iv: The slides contradict the prism story, and giving the whole context ruins the story, and the journalists are sensationalising scumbags. v:etc.

HarrietJones 2 hours ago 1 reply      
The whole thing doesn't make any sense to me. I can understand that governments may have shadowy departments doing illegal things we don't know about, but the whole scope of Prism seems to be too wide. When people talk about it, they describe computer systems I couldn't even begin to imagine, let alone design.

Somehow, the US government is spying on every piece of internet traffic for the grad sum of $20M a year. I just don't believe it's technically possible.

Add to this the emphasis by all parties on Snowden and his shenanigans, and I'm just left confused.

nodata 3 hours ago 3 replies      
I find it very interesting that there is only one photo of Snowden, and that nobody has seen him.
Opera 15 released opera.com
46 points by lordlarm  4 hours ago   34 comments top 13
ishansharma 1 hour ago 2 replies      
I'm downloading it right now. But based on first impression, and reason why I started using Opera in first place, it may alienate users.

I started using it because I was on a slow connection and back then, Opera was a 10 MB internet package. It had email, download manager, chat and everything.

I am not sure about these features but size is 29.7 MB! Curious, did it increase just because of brink?

rorrr2 1 hour ago 2 replies      
I don't get the point of Opera anymore.
upthedale 1 hour ago 0 replies      
This has so many missing features that I would expect from an Opera browser. Lots of seemingly little things that add up (where's the mouse chording!)

Where is this bleeding edge Opera Developer version that they mention in the post available for download, so I can at least see if the little things that have kept me on Opera for 9 years are in the pipeline?

FatalBaboon 16 minutes ago 0 replies      
Users who may be alienated from this new version will probably not ever hear of it. It's kind of a beta, you can play with it but it's not ready, I mean what did you expect so fast?

I think it shows the Opera team is motivated and tackles the engine switch fiercely.

exterm 1 hour ago 0 replies      
More in-depth release message on their developer blog: http://my.opera.com/ODIN/blog/2013/07/02/introducing-opera-1...
bschwarz 3 hours ago 2 replies      
I didn't expect them to release a stable build this fast. The current build is still lacking a lot of features which might alienate some users forever.

And while they didn't add native bookmark support (they really seem to want to push this) they have released an official bookmark extension which is also a work in progress. You can get it here: https://addons.opera.com/en/extensions/details/bookmarks-man...

squidi 1 hour ago 1 reply      
"Although most users don't use bookmarks"

Wow. I'm sure they have the data to back that up. I guess most people now get the news from their Facebook stream perhaps.

navs 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Wow, this is fast! Then again so was Chrome when I didn't bog it down with all my preferences, extensions, etc. Off-Road looks like a rebranding of their Turbo feature, which was my main reason for using Opera in the first place.
mataug 3 hours ago 2 replies      
I am unable to download version 15 for linux, probably it doesn't exist.
mavhc 1 hour ago 0 replies      
When are they planning to release Opera 15 for Humans?
lampe3 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Still no Love for Linux :(
itsbits 2 hours ago 2 replies      
is it webkit based??..
mtreder 4 hours ago 1 reply      
15 releases and still almost nobody uses it. Couple of years ago Opera was a solid browser and a great hope. Today it's on the verge of being forgotten.
Can Snowden fly by private jet from Moscow to Ecuador? privatefly.com
21 points by abrimo  1 hour ago   14 comments top 6
ck2 24 minutes ago 0 replies      
A better question is if such a flight would ever arrive considering how close it would come to the US east coast.

Remember it's now magically legal to kill US citizens without a trial.

What makes me ill is that there would be a number of people arguing on both conservative and liberal networks that this is acceptable.

farolino 45 minutes ago 3 replies      
That may be the single most blatant piece of PR I have ever seen!
midnitewarrior 43 minutes ago 2 replies      
You can fly wherever you want. No international commercial airline will let you on their plane unless you have a valid passport / VISA for the destination. If you show up by private plane, you will have to show your passport to enter the country, or else you are denied entry.

Currently, Snowden is denied entry to Russia, and is stuck in the "Transportation Zone" of a Russian airport, unable to enter the country. Snowden was in discussions for asylum with Russia (who would issue papers allowing him in if granted), but Snowden has reconsidered this option and is seeking asylum elsewhere.

dnesteruk 6 minutes ago 0 replies      
This is shameless advertising.
itan1um 51 minutes ago 0 replies      
He still has no passport though...
CSS filters, GIFs, and performance medium.com
52 points by geelen  5 hours ago   11 comments top 6
kryten 3 hours ago 3 replies      
Appears to be another "the whole world uses Google Chrome" bits of advice.

I bet other browsers have different performance profiles if this even works...

jstsch 53 minutes ago 0 replies      
Why not simply have a bunch of JPEG's and animate through those? Something like Javascript-powered MJPEG. GIF is awful for animations.
dan1234 1 hour ago 0 replies      
24MB of GIFs I hope the author has a generous bandwidth allowance.
dhotson 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Love this. Cool hack!
seferphier 4 hours ago 0 replies      
that is pretty cool. don't understand why he put other gifs that increases the size of the site.
Nekorosu 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Definitely one of the best CSS tricks I've learned this year.
Motorola cell phones are regularly phoning home beneaththewaves.net
423 points by freejoe76  16 hours ago   88 comments top 24
speeder 15 hours ago 4 replies      
Since lots of this data is sent through not encrypted HTTP, this means that NSA (and any other intelligence agency) can also get all this data...

Then people wonder the "nothing to hide" well, you might not, but will everyone you know be bothered you are sending their e-mails around to intelligence agencies?

adrinavarro 14 hours ago 3 replies      
This seems related to Motorola's MOTOBLUR system: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Motoblur

In all fairness, it seems that the implementation uses a middle server (pretty common in big companies where good engineering isn't a requirement) where log in data is sent, is stored in the users' profile and where timelines and other content is parsed before being sent back to the user's device, in a "dumb" format that the BLUR system can understand.

Nokia has a bit of the same for their low-end phones (understandably) and BlackBerry used to do much of the same. Yet, in those days, and in an Android phone that can easily connect to social networks on its own, this seems like a very unfortunate techncial decision.

In other words: the official Gmail app, Twitter or Facebook apps are unlikely to be "compromised".

antoncohen 15 hours ago 3 replies      
I noticed that my Droid 4 running 4.1.2 was opening an XMPP connection to Motorola servers a month ago. I was watching the logs trying to diagnose another problem, and the XMPP connection happened to be failing at the time. The XMPP connection is no longer failing.

    D/CheckinProvider(  507): insertEvents Process tag not allowed: XMPPConnection    I/XMPPConnection(  772): Preparing to connect user XXXXXXXXXXX to service:        jabber1.cloud2.sdc100.blurdev.com on host: jabber-cloud2-sdc100.blurdev.com and port: 5222    E/PacketReader(  772): at org.jivesoftware.smack.PacketReader.parseXMPPPacket(PacketReader.java:503)    D/CheckinProvider(  507): insertEvents Process tag not allowed: XMPPConnection    I/XMPPConnection(  772): Shutting down connection for user XXXXXXXXXXX to host jabber-cloud2-sdc100.blurdev.com    W/System.err(  772): at org.jivesoftware.smack.PacketReader.parseXMPPPacket(PacketReader.java:503)    E/XMPPConnectionManager(  772): Failed to connect user 'XXXXXXXXXXX' to host         'jabber-cloud2-sdc100.blurdev.com on port 5222: Connection failed. No response from server.:

dendory 15 hours ago 1 reply      
If true, it's surprising that it took so long for someone to find this. Isn't it trivial to check on what your phone is sending off if you use wifi with a network scanner?

With that said I bet this is all for their social networking integration, some engineer thinking it would be cool for them to aggregate all your social data in the cloud, with no concept of the privacy implications.

javert 15 hours ago 2 replies      
Wait, am I understanding correctly that your Facebook password (for example) is being shared with Motorola?
shenberg 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Small nit to pick: IMSI + IMEI aren't enough to clone your phone - the SIM card stores a shared secret used for challenge-response authentication with the network, and the device (theoretically) can't read the secret, only send the SIM a challenge and get the response to send to the network.
eliasmacpherson 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm sure the servers that this data is stored on are completely locked down from malicious employee access, are protected by a diligent legal department from overzealous government access and above all completely safe from malicious external threats. Oh and I bet the logging is water tight.
teeja 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Why did it take someone 2 years to spot this????? Doesn't anybody care to watch what's going in/out of their appliances any more?

Furthermore, if this report is true: why aren't there more tools out there so that there are more eyes watching this stuff? Or is everyone just too busy being "social" ??

qwerta 14 hours ago 0 replies      
I thought this is well know information. Motoblur always restores your accounts with passwords after factory reset. It is not even possible to start phone without logging in to your Motoblur account.

Anyway Cyanogen solved problem on my Defy.

smegel 13 hours ago 3 replies      
Isn't that the whole point of the Blur service...it logs into all these social services and combines them to produce a unified presentation? How else could it work?
eknkc 14 hours ago 1 reply      
Account passwords?! WTF?

Just curious, were these devices manufactured before or after Google acquisition?

javert 15 hours ago 0 replies      
> Fortunately, I already removed most of those apps when I first got the phone (it was loaded with enough bloatware),

Lucky you. I can't remove, for example, my NFL application (which came installed by default), without rooting the phone. I do enough Linux stuff everyday that I really don't want to bother with it on my phone.

Honestly, this kind of stuff makes me want to get as far away from engineering as possible. I simply do not want to make complete shit and sell it to people for a living. I'm very thankful that Steve Jobs showed us that there are still people who want to make beautiful products.

msoad 15 hours ago 0 replies      
This is unacceptable!
josephpmay 14 hours ago 1 reply      
The author seems perplexed that Motorola is not collecting information from Google or Gmail accounts. This is probably because they already have the information: remember that Motorola is owned by Google.
yason 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I've been wondering if there's any reason to actually keep the original OEM modified operating system instead of replacing it with a vanilla Android installation. I haven't found any but it seems that there are now compelling reasons to not keep it in any case.
antitrust 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Basically, I need to make all of my technological tools out of raw steel, silicon and wood and then I'll be OK, but otherwise, somebody's monitoring me. Right?

* sigh *

Well, if I must...

chenster 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Fuck you, Motorola. Why do you want my login and password information for?? Your EULA is nothing but a fraud. I smell lawsuit.

Wait, isn't Motorola owned by Google now???

ww520 9 hours ago 0 replies      
What are some of the good tools on Android to monitor all network traffic incoming or outgoing of the phone? Like a super sniffer app for TCP, SMS, 3G/4G data.
mikelat 4 hours ago 0 replies      
My next phone probably won't be a Motorola then.

Does anyone know if this is a part of the Android Kernel? If it is it means they've modified the source code and they're obligated to share their changes.

jorgecastillo 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Motorola has never been one of my favorite cellphone brands but after this I am never buying a Motorola phone.
steven777400 15 hours ago 0 replies      
This reminds me of the Nokia HTTPS proxy incident.
Mordor 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Samsung must be rubbing their hands with glee :-)
D9u 12 hours ago 0 replies      
[from the article]

    *" I was using my personal phone at work to do some testing related to Microsoft Exchange ActiveSync. In order to monitor the traffic, I had configured my phone to proxy all HTTP and HTTPS traffic through Burp Suite Professional - an intercepting proxy that we use for penetration testing - so that I could easily view the contents of the ActiveSync communication.    Looking through the proxy history, I saw frequent HTTP connections to ws-cloud112-blur.svcmot.com mixed in with the expected ActiveSync connections."*
Whoever said that this has nothing to do with ActiveSync; You are being disingenuous.

D9u 14 hours ago 1 reply      
I believe that the keyword here is "ActiveSync," which is another Microsoft product.

Since I made a conscious effort (years ago) to remove all Microsoft products from my life, ActiveSync is another app which I have never used.

Who needs it?

Never Trust Facebook wellpreparedmind.wordpress.com
468 points by mikecane  18 hours ago   170 comments top 56
lukejduncan 16 hours ago 9 replies      
Facebook has value, but no matter what your privacy settings are set to, no matter what you delete, always assume that anything you write or do on Facebook - in any context - will be embarrassingly public. 1) Because it will and 2) because it just makes life easier.

When my wife and I were first dating, for religious and cultural reasons her parents didn't know. Her parents are conservative Muslims and mine conservative Christians. She had a picture of the two of us as her profile picture, and it was set to private (that existed once). More importantly in the picture she wasn't wearing the hijab (the head scarf).

One day Facebook removed the ability to have private profile pictures - automatically converting every profile picture to public. Her sister saw the picture and long story short that was the last time she talked to her parents. That was 2+ years ago. Facebook can't be blamed for the cultural and relationship issues at play here, but they can be blamed for how they went about this. And we can be blamed for trusting them.

I still use facebook. I don't blame them for trying new things, pushing the boundaries, etc. I have however learned that no matter what that data isn't mine. It's facebooks. And whenever facebook decides to innovate they will do whatever they want with their data to try doing it.

novum 17 hours ago 6 replies      
FB has, over the years, gradually lost my trust until I deleted my account in November 2010 after having been a member since late 2004 when FB was college-only.

As a 20-something living in SF, it's a daily thing now: I don't get invited to parties, I don't know about birthdays, I don't see my friends' photos, I don't have any contact with anyone from high school or college anymore.

There is a real social cost for someone in my situation to not be on FB. I struggle to quantify the harm, but it's there. I struggle too to explain to my friends why I'm not on FB. And yet I still think I'm better off without it.

The whole situation contributes to the isolation I already experience as an introvert and someone who doesn't much care for bars, clubs, or alcohol -- though I suppose I don't need to remind this audience that being alone != loneliness.

I guess it doesn't matter much anyway, since FB is still collecting information on me (and other 'shadow profiles' of users not on FB).

smutticus 14 minutes ago 0 replies      
"Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me."

It's simple folks. If you still trust FB with anything at this point you're going to get hurt. If you do trust them with something and they burn you then it's your fault.

yid 15 hours ago 4 replies      
I find rants like this quite interesting, especially when they end with lines like this:

> That is why I may delete my Facebook account. And that is why you should too.

"May". In spite of this pretty egregious behavior/bug, it's still a "may delete my Facebook account". That alone says something about the longevity of the business.

sgrenfro 12 hours ago 2 replies      
My name is Scott Renfro, and Im a software engineer at Facebook working on security and privacy. I thought I'd post the comment I submitted on the original blog post here as well. Weve put a lot of work into making deletions permanent, so I can imagine how frustrated you must be. Im pretty sure those story deletions are permanent, and I cant think of any place where we can or do automatically restore user-deleted content months later.

If you happen to have any more details about specific stories that reappeared, Id love to try and figure out exactly what happened. Admittedly, that may be difficult now that several months have passed.

As one of the other commenters mentioned, your Activity Log is a better place to get a full list of your activity and delete it item-by-item. It also shows posts that Timeline omits and includes other types of content such as likes and comments. This help page may be useful https://www.facebook.com/help/activitylog and you can find your Activity Log at https://www.facebook.com/me/allactivity?privacy_source=activ...

I couldnt tell from your description, but one possibility is that you only saw and deleted the stories rendered on your Timeline, which is just a summary of your activity.

devindotcom 16 hours ago 2 replies      
There seems to be a philosophical difference in how users versus services view ownership of data and posts like this. If you write status "foo" and someone else comments "bar," who owns what? Do you own the comment because it is subordinate to your post? If your post was just a letter, and someone wrote an essay in a comment underneath it, do you own that essay and can you delete it without permission from its creator?

No, we shouldn't trust facebook. But no, we also shouldn't pretend that the word delete means the same thing on your personal computer as it does on a shared resource like facebook. It's way more complicated than that. It should be simple, but it isn't, at least not yet.

Also, not upvoting this because of the eye-rollingly overdone "merriam-webster defines..." line. God, I can't stand that!

dangerlibrary 17 hours ago 2 replies      
I deleted my Facebook account a few years ago. The whole deal - waited the requisite month or so to ensure that it was gone, and any further login attempts wouldn't re-instate the account.

Six months later I signed up with a different email address, and Facebook forced me to confirm my account with my phone number. Javascript Error - that phone number is associated with another Facebook account. I click OK, and I'm redirected to my "new" account with all my old Facebook friends (on the opposite side of the country) showing up as "people I may know."

Nothing is deleted from Facebook, ever.

pyvek 16 hours ago 0 replies      
Another thing to note is that they don't want their users to delete stuff or do any action that may suggest abandoning the platform. I thought that I deleted my profile 1.5 years ago but I tried logging in last week (after seeing a similar HN thread) and was surprised to find that it was all there. It occured to me that I must have deactivated my profile. Then I tried looking for delete option but couldn't find it anywhere. All I could find was a _deactivate_ button. I had to use a third party (Google) to find out about how to delete my profile.

Facebook has made it unnecessarily hard to delete accounts and instead pushes the _deactivate_ option in a very psychologically manipulative way. Even after using the delete option, I'm sure that they're going to retain my data for as long as they like. I still did it for my own sake, prevent myself from using it at all.

baddox 16 hours ago 0 replies      
While I agree with the gist of the argument (Facebook shouldn't bring back user-deleted posts, and you shouldn't trust Facebook), the semantic arguments over the term "delete" are frivolous. It's not unreasonable for Facebook to keep storing things that I delete. Windows has the Recycle Bin, word processors have undo, databases have backups, etc. The problem is restoring the content without the user's permission. Citing a dictionary definition then overfitting your argument to that specific definition is something I expect from a high school speech class.
mahyarm 17 hours ago 1 reply      
This is the frustrating thing about facebook. They often have bugs that make things suddenly become public, or settings for visibility of new posts all of a sudden reset to 'all friends' or public. G+ handles this kind of stuff far better.

I really wish there was an auto-delete items older than X months. Most of the value of facebook goes away after a month, anything older than that is usually negative history digging and stalking by others.

hamoid 15 hours ago 0 replies      
I wonder if I could get my account really deleted and my data put offline by breaking the terms [1] (posting ads and logos or sharing my password for example).

I'm afraid it would not work, though. Probably they delete the recent content, leave the rest online, and refuse me to log in...

Did anyone try?

[1] https://www.facebook.com/legal/terms

randartie 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Timeline shows only popular posts you make. If you delete the posts on timeline then only a subset of your posts are deleted AND they will get replaced by other less popular posts you made in the past. You'd need to go into user settings and delete items directly from the activity log. This clearly isn't a huge usecase (1 by 1 item deletion).

This is just another case of user misunderstanding/error which gets blamed on facebook.

ten7 17 hours ago 3 replies      
Perhaps the way to delete the information in the account is to replace the status posts, comments, photos with junk. Words and sentences that don't mean anything; photos that are noise. Perhaps there's a way to do that in an automated fashion. I'd use that.
junto 16 hours ago 4 replies      
If I hadn't seen exactly the same thing with my own eyes then I would be tempted to believe you.

I said this previously in another Facebook related thread:

  Facebook don't properly delete content that you choose to delete.   Photos, check-ins and posts are just archived. I've been through   and deleted everything manually on my timeline back to 2007. I noted   that certain pages still showed the "counts" of content that had long   been deleted:    - http://i.imgur.com/zdwTl.png    - http://i.imgur.com/27RFG.png
Recently I went back to delete some of the newer content. To my surprise, ALL of my previous posts, and comments had returned.

I don't think Facebook are playing fair. Delete means delete, and I want to delete it permanently.

If they archive the data instead of deleting it, then they should say 'archive' on the damn button.

I also no longer trust Facebook at all. I don't post on it, and keep the account only for OAuth testing purposes (and lurking).

If my deleted posts mysteriously appear again I plan on updating every single one to gibberish. Maybe quoting loremgibson.com or 1984.

speeder 15 hours ago 1 reply      
I just remembered a very interesting tale.

There is a social networks for some stuff that you don't want known (for example, sexual fetishes, or gay stuff, or anti-government stuff, and so on).

I know a case where someone (that was never found out who, although there are some suspects) in one of those social networks started to attack some other people there. Until things started to get out of hand, with the person finding the Facebook profiles of those involved (even if they had completely fake profiles) and posting on that network, and then getting their profile in that network and posting back on Facebook...

Then the attacker posted on the niche social network the Facebook profiles of children of the victims, stuff escalated to the point of people hiring private investigators and professional assassins (some of the victims were soldiers and/or military police shock troops, and were not amused at all at threats toward their family... and happily supported plans for a assassination).

Happily the attacker suddenly gave up, and things de-escalated... But it made me much more aware that social networks can be VERY dangerous...

Of course (considering the tone of social networks here, professions of those involved, and that people wanted to do illegal stuff) I cannot explain better or give more information.

mtgx 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Facebook always does this. Everytime there's a privacy policy change in some way, they restore everything to default (public) again.
ultimoo 15 hours ago 0 replies      
I wonder what facebookers who are HNers have to say about this. Do you guys have any opinions about this -- it is by design? Are there ways around it? Will there be ways around this?
pothibo 17 hours ago 1 reply      
I understand this is not good. I do.

But I'm surprised people think entity like Facebook, Google and any other web businesses delete records permanently. It's not worth it on so many level:

- People that actually want to retrieve their stuff,

- It's harder to implement a full delete than it is to add a flag,

- They would have to give up on data-mining assets.

I don't endorse, but I understand.

faizanaziz 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Thats exactly the reason why we built http://pixter.in . Facebook's incentive is to get as much data of you and retain it. Our incentive is to build the best product. If your incentive's are clear and aligned things like this won't happen.
jorgecastillo 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Every time this sort of articles come up, I feel glad I don't have a Facebook account. As I see it if you care enough about somebody, you have their phone number and their address.
D9u 13 hours ago 0 replies      
I stopped using FB over a year ago, and I deleted my account there last December.

Once you delete your FB account your profile remains visible for another two weeks, provided you don't login during the interim.

Today I can happily say that I am no longer on the publicly-available Facebook site, but who knows if FB maintains an LEO version of the site for use by the fascists (spies) and other government entities...

yaix 4 hours ago 0 replies      
In the EU, there was a law in the makeing around "the right to be forgotten". Looks like we really need it, probably for Google as well.
workbench 2 hours ago 0 replies      
"My name is Scott Renfro, and Im a software engineer at Facebook working on security and privacy. Weve put a lot of work into making deletions permanent"

Had to LOL at this comment

kailuowang 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Thank you. I didn't know that you can actually delete your facebook account until I saw you post. The only option I knew was to deactivate the account. From the UI, I couldn't find any other option, but a single Google point me to the delete account form. Thanks!
davexunit 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Ditch Facebook and join Diaspora. It's a great project that Rails/Javascript devs can contribute to.


marknutter 15 hours ago 1 reply      
I've had similar issues with Facebook. After it became clear they were using my "likes" and profile information (favorite movies, books, tv shows, etC) to serve me ads I removed every single "like" I had ever done and all information from my profile. Yet I still get targeted adds based on that information.
johnjlocke 12 hours ago 0 replies      
I always think back to that time when Zuck was on stage a couple of years ago, and he was talking about user-generated content, and he slipped, and referred to it as Facebook's. There you go. Anything you put on their site is their property, to do with as they like. I really think their days are numbered. Not anytime soon, but eventually, they are going to become as obsolete as Friendster, Bebo, and MySpace are now, but first a new social network that is built in that same style must emerge.
PavlovsCat 14 hours ago 0 replies      
I am not going to waste time deleting all of my content a third time.

I did that once, there's a Firefox extension (the name escapes me at the moment sorry) you can use to create macros. Sure it's useless in a way, but it's also fun in a way :D If it pops back, it's macro time again -- better than nothing, right?

grandalf 15 hours ago 3 replies      
I think this is far more likely due to incompetence on the part of Facebook than malice.
rinon 17 hours ago 1 reply      
Perhaps FB automatically decided that the deletions were in fact unauthorized tampering with the account and nicely restored the "damage?"
vog 5 hours ago 0 replies      
In this context, it's worth noting that as a Facebook user, you are not their custumer, but their product.
shadesandcolour 16 hours ago 0 replies      
I wonder if this is the case because those wall posts aren't specifically yours. You posted those onto another user's timeline, and thus it's probably not within your power to delete them. I'm not saying that this is the right thing to do, but it fits with the available data. If you removed all your photos and they're still gone, but wall posts are still there, it's an issue with how Facebook view data ownership. If you delete status updates or relationships, work etc, they stay gone too I imagine.
diminoten 14 hours ago 1 reply      
For the 100th time, the only reason any of us are on Facebook and not Google+ or MySpace or Friendster or whatever is because all of our friends are on there with us.

Facebook can and will do whatever it wants to abuse this fact, and as long as they provide the most convenient way to communicate with other people, there is nothing we can do about it, period.

So rant away, my Internet friends, it's all we can do anyway.

capkutay 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Personal story, but nevertheless humiliating and tied to facebook. I was never able to get an explanation or even contact FB's support about it.

Within a matter of hours, I lost over 150 facebook friends. Somehow, it was also tied into instagram and I unfollowed all my friends. Not sure how this happened. But you could imagine that it's embarrassing to have to re-friend people on facebook and explain that you didn't do it on purpose. I'm sure there are some people I forgot to refriend who think that I just de-friended them for personal reasons. This just ties into the fact that whatever happens to you on facebook will be broadcast to your entire social network.

tedsanders 9 hours ago 0 replies      
I think the title is an overreaction. Just because something can and has violated your trust doesn't mean you should never trust it. Never is a very strong word.
boi_v2 15 hours ago 1 reply      
I bet when you "delete" something facebook (and many others) just marks it as "hidden" so you will think it is gone.

The same happen to me but with yahoo, I had an old account that was long unused, because I didn't want to lose any contact that could happen I redirected it to another email, then, after a couple of years, I decided to delete the account because only spams were being redirected. A year later I notice that emails started to come from this "deleted" account again and so I tried to login and for my surprise it was active.

So don't expect to "delete" anything, and I think we shouldn't expect to have our rights respected, these companies provide a service that is not really for us.

readme 7 hours ago 0 replies      
And Google doesn't delete your emails, either. Even if you click delete.

They own you.

Duhck 17 hours ago 1 reply      
Clearly they have a bug, but as far as actually deleting your data; I am willing to be it'll never be deleted.

They couldn't possibly manage the data if you could remove pieces, since everything on facebook is intertwined (likes, comments, shares, etc).

aka this doesn't surprise me.

jmandzik 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Facebook lost me a while back when the Android app first came out. Logging into the site and finding contacts that had no account in my facebook "phonebook" felt like a breach of trust. I figured they'd act in good faith and enrich Android contacts with facebook data. I did NOT think they'd yank my contacts the other way, doing who-knows-what with it. Shame on me for not reading the app permissions with more scrutiny.

Leaving facebook removed a distraction I did not realize I was weary of. At risk of sounding dramatic, it felt like I got a few minutes a day of my life back.

rshm 16 hours ago 2 replies      

I deleted my twitter profile picture as well as account in 2008. I had a url of the profile image saved. After five years the the link works and image is still there.

donniezazen 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Not having facebook makes you look like an anti-social element irrespective of what it does to your mental health and well being. At the end of the day, I feel like make a small circle of friends that engage with you on deep level and not just superficially. What kind of friend it would who couldn't or forgets to text or call you?
mililani 16 hours ago 1 reply      
Just create a fake FB account for things like authentication, or getting coupons, etc...

I don't trust FB, but I do need it for certain things. Keeping in touch with friends/family is definitely not one of them

dysinger 14 hours ago 0 replies      
I just went and looked too and all my content going back to 2007 which a painstaking hand deleted is back(!)

I hope mark zuckerberg ends up broke doing LAMP consulting.

ziko 17 hours ago 1 reply      
I'll give you a little advice that's been working wonderfully for me so far - don't ever post something that is politically/ethnically/whatever questionable and you'll be fine. Even better than that, it'll play in your favour.
nadahalli 15 hours ago 0 replies      
The only reason I am on Facebook and also not use AdBlock on Google Search is, I am in the internet business. And if you are in the internet-business, you do have to be a part of the system: all in.

I do not want to mull over a social media monetizing idea and wonder if Facebook has already figured it out. I just need to be there and know it myself.

Sad reason, but that's the way it is.

shmerl 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Just use better alternatives like Diaspora.
Arnor 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Regarding:>> Or is it? If Facebook doesnt understand what should happen when I delete my wall posts, whos to say that if I delete my account, it wont come back too?

I thought I had deleted my account in 2009, but I was curious when I saw this. It turns out I can still log in. Curious...

sidcool 6 hours ago 0 replies      
I read other posts by this guy and he really seems pissed of at FB.
eyeareque 15 hours ago 1 reply      
So if you break their T.O.S. bad enough, will they delete you for real?
kimlelly 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Is this real life?

Do you really think it's still necessary to state that you should not trust a company that works with the NSA?

Does anybody do any thinking after reading the news?

What exactly do you need to wake up?

EDIT: :-D just keep downvoting and burry your heads deep in the sand...

h2ohno 15 hours ago 0 replies      
I did the very same thing with my account, and also noticed everything that I deleted still showing up in the timeline. Pissed me off.

Need I remind everyone that Zuckerberg himself said people were "dumb fucks" for trusting him with their data?

alariccole 13 hours ago 0 replies      
"That is why I may delete my Facebook account. And that is why you should too."

We should also do something that you're not even certain you're going to do yourself?

marcelocamanho 13 hours ago 0 replies      
It is probably issues with cache and/or data replication.
cliveowen 16 hours ago 2 replies      
One thing that has always bothered me it's that if you ever decide to post a comment on a site that uses the Facebook commenting system and you decide not to publish that comment on your timeline, then you have no way of recovering it (and thus deleting it, if you ever decide so). You have to resort to search engines that behave poorly for this kind of things.

I admit that after some mishaps Facebook has greatly improved the privacy controls on the site and allowed user to more easily control what they share and with whom, but I guess pretty much everyone would agree that it's not enough yet. We need the ability to delete the very content that we create, everyone has the right to be forgotten should he decide so.

3327 15 hours ago 0 replies      
wow after reading this I went and closed account.
talhof8 16 hours ago 1 reply      
Do you think facebook is going down?
The Best Name Ever for a Computer Language pokercopilot.com
7 points by stevoski  46 minutes ago   discuss
Artificial Intelligence for Humans Vol 1: Fundamental Algorithms kickstarter.com
27 points by danboarder  3 hours ago   3 comments top
circuiter 3 hours ago 2 replies      
Looks pretty good. But I'm afraid someone complaining about the mathematical foundations of AI is like an aspiring surgeon complaining about how much anatomy s/he has to study.
Statement from Edward Snowden in Moscow wikileaks.org
862 points by mvbrasil  14 hours ago   452 comments top 43
tokenadult 14 hours ago 19 replies      
I'd really like to see Wikileaks devoting more of its time, energy, and fund-raising into breaking news about government-operated surveillance programs in the last two countries where Edward Snowden has been located, namely China and Russia. As an American citizen and voter, I'm still mulling over what I think should be the correct policy response to the revelations about NSA claims about NSA data-gathering programs, but I have deep ties to China as a speaker and reader of Chinese and a long-time student of the language, culture, and history of China, and I have similar connections, less thoroughly developed, to Russia. People everywhere just wanna be free. We ought to be hearing a lot more about all the various governmental data-gathering and surveillance programs, everywhere in the world, and of course we should also be learning more about the actions of private business corporations to gather data on all of us. That Wikileaks tells us much more about the United States federal government than about any of those other entities tells me something about Wikileaks, and perhaps tells me something favorable about the United States.

If you really want to be an idealistic but hard-headed freedom-fighter, mobilizing an effective popular movement for more freedom wherever you live, I suggest you read deeply in the publications of the Albert Einstein Institution,


remembering that the transition from dictatorship to democracy described in those publications is an actual historical process with recent examples around the world that we can all learn from.

AFTER EDIT: Good catch by the readers who noticed the non-American English in the Wikileaks press release here (mentioned in other comments in this thread). The press release kindly submitted here is plainly not Edward Snowden's verbatim words, but more self-publicizing from Wikileaks.

bobwaycott 7 hours ago 3 replies      
I find it most interesting, and perhaps frightening, that Snowden's passport was revoked. I've been thinking quite a bit about it since that bit of news broke, and since it's referenced in this statement, it's back in my head.

I winced a bit at the claim of being a stateless person, as I'd previously understood that to mean lacking citizenship anywhere, not being without a passport for travel. Perhaps I've been wrong about that all these years.

I'm still researching, but so far, I've found the following passport-revocation authorities:

1. Obtained illegally or through fraud

2. Altered or misused (no definition yet on 'misused')

3. Issued to persons whose citizenship is cancelled

4. Non-payment of child support

5. Non-repayment of repatriation loan

6. Persons convicted of sex tourism

7. Persons convicted of drug trafficking

8. [based on comment below] Standing warrants for arrest (and other standing legal/court orders against the bearer)

Interestingly enough, 22 USC 2721 states that:

> A passport may not be denied issuance, revoked, restricted, or otherwise limited because of any speech, activity, belief, affiliation, or membership, within or outside the United States, which, if held or conducted within the United States, would be protected by the first amendment to the Constitution of the United States.

I've yet to find an authority to revoke a passport from a citizen who is openly seeking political asylum.

However, there is 22 USC 217a:

>A passport shall be valid for a period of ten years from the date of issue, except that the Secretary of State may limit the validity of a passport to a period of less than ten years in an individual case or on a general basis pursuant to regulation.

So, there's that. Perhaps this is one such individual case.

Additionally, the law requires the DOS to send the passport owner written notification of revocation. I wonder if the US is considering a press statement to be such written notice?

Any lawyers versed in passport issues know whether revoking a passport in a situation like this runs afoul of law or established precedent?

[edit: formatting failure on my part]

eblume 14 hours ago 7 replies      
It's probably too late now, but I feel like it was a mistake not to release a public encryption key along with his initial effluence of records. I for one believe that this was written by Snowden, but it seems like an obvious use of some basic form of identity signing.

Edit: It now seems like there is some reasonable doubt that this notice was forged. I still remain confident this is no forgery, but the point I'd like to make is that there may in fact be an identity question -- and that is a problem with a technical solution that unfortunately seems not to have been leveraged.

olefoo 14 hours ago 3 replies      
It's almost as if he's deliberately provoking the most rabid response possible from the United States Government.

Regardless of what happens to him; he is writing himself into the pages of history.

His actions have opened the possibility of Western Europe defecting from the US led coalition that has dominated world affairs for the past 70 years. Which is not a result anyone could have predicted.

javajosh 14 hours ago 4 replies      
It occurs to me that there is a kind of deep hypocrisy for those who make the rules to claim that someone broke the rules. Rules require focus and diligence to apply, and they favor those that apply them regularly, vs those to whom they are applied.

I suspect that the Obama administration broke may of their own rules rushing through the a change in status that fast - a bureaucracy the size of the US doesn't process anything quickly without breaking the rules.

The Russians are clearly using Snowden as a pawn, probably because Russia is threatened by people like Snowden just as much as the US is. Snowden threatens those who make the rules, and then apply them fully to others and not at all to themselves and their cohorts.

For the third time in my life (the first two courtesy Bush Jr.) I'm deeply ashamed of my government.

jgrahamc 14 hours ago 13 replies      
He's not a 'stateless person'. His passport has been revoked, but he remains a US citizen.
abalone 13 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm not taking sides here but Snowden is wrong on the facts about passport revocation. It is perfectly within the established law to revoke the passports of fugitives with federal arrest warrants. It doesn't make you a "stateless person" or "exile" you -- you're still welcome to return voluntarily.

The relevant U.S. law is 22 CFR 51.70 and 51.72 http://www.gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CFR-1999-title22-vol1/xml/CFR-1...

He does have a point that restricting travel does make it harder for you to seek asylum. But that's nothing new.

mpyne 13 hours ago 2 replies      
He's not still complaining about his passport, is he? Did Assange tell him to say that too?

A passport means that the host nation is comfortable with the person traveling abroad. For what should be obvious reasons the U.S. would rather he be back home (to stand trial). Even if you disagree with everything the NSA has done or will do, he technically broke the law. If the U.S. considers itself to observe the rule of law, then they have to pursue him as much as they'd pursue anyone else.

The U.S. has stripped persons of their citizenship for things as mundane as fraud, so this is hardly a made-up case for Snowden.

In fact, it's so not made up that there are existing procedures for when a passport may be revoked [1] [2]. Note that despite the foia_reading_room in the URL of [1], it is simply the U.S. Attorney's Manual, which is accessible directly from http://www.justice.gov/usao/index.html .

[1] http://www.justice.gov/usao/eousa/foia_reading_room/usam/tit...

[2] http://travel.state.gov/passport/ppi/info/info_870.html

Edit: Also, since when did a conversation without an exchange of consideration or an agreement to perform certain actions become "wheeling and dealing"? This is the kind of stuff that has turned me off from Assange a long time ago; he's just as willing to distort as a government, as long as it suits his purpose.

Kylekramer 14 hours ago 2 replies      
Accusing the United States of depriving him of the right to seek asylum seems like a tautology to me. If the United States wasn't attempting to bring him back to the US for a trial, he wouldn't need to seek asylum.

Does this mean every country who attempts to prosecute people who subsequently seek asylum is violating "a basic right"?

cletus 14 hours ago 2 replies      
There are several interesting aspects to this story.

The first is obviously the revelations about NSA "overreach".

The second is that this guy could've remained hidden but he put his name behind the revelations rather than choosing the far safer path of being an "anonymous source". This lends his revelations more credence and you have to respect the guy for standing by his convictions. Maybe he would've been found out had he stayed in the shadows but he certainly didn't try to do that.

The third is that the US is very much two-faced here. It seems clear that the surveillance is being justified by a technical ruling to do with US vs foreign persons, a classified ruling no less. While this might be a fine legal argument, it doesn't engender support amongst foreign powers when you tell them you have every right to spy on their citizens but oh, by the way, can you do us a solid and hand over that fugitive?

In what world does the US think they'll get cooperation from anyone when they aren't treated not even as equals but with simple decency? So the foreign policy apparatus resorts to bullying tactics.

The fourth is that both China and Russia were blatantly thumbing their noses at the US. I see no world in which Russia hands the guy over so the actions of the US have done little more than force a guy in possession of Top Secret information to be harboured by a rival. Congratulations on that statecraft, Obama, Biden and Kerry.

What's more it's made the US appear internationally weak.

The last is that the various players on Snowden's side do seem to have screwed the pooch on this one by both issuing a letter of safe passage and not having some kind of contingency when the US did the predictable thing and revoked his passport. This could hardly have been an unprecedented move.

So good luck to you, Edward Snowden. I hope your sacrifice hasn't been in vein. The optimist in me hopes that a future president will pardon you and otherwise reverse this self-destructive course the US is on.

jgoodwin 12 hours ago 0 replies      
One thing that concerns me is that many Americans are adopting what is essentially a Tory/Loyalist attitude towards these events, without understanding the Tory/Loyalist political philosophy of dissidence, which differs from 'civil disobedience' and 'non-violent resistance' (those are the other guys).

Don't get me wrong -- we can't all be Patriots and Revolutionaries -- but our history has ill-fitted us to be good at being Tories and Loyalists. Those were the bad guys in all our grade-school stories ... and now we are those bad guys.

The classical Tory theory of dissidence is called "Passive Obedience." This doesn't mean bending over and being a wimp. It means being obedient to higher authority (God and Constitutional Law), while seemingly disobeying usurpers and tyrants, who are themselves violating the higher Law -- constitutional, moral, and natural. The "Passive" part is an old word meaning suffering (like the Passion of Christ).

Edward Snowden has given us a very good example of Passive Obedience -- if he is correct the programs are indeed unconstitutional. He certainly is suffering for his beliefs, and is fleeing, not resisting or rebelling against the State. Failure to obey the commands of usurpers and tyrants, or to obey bad law in defiance of the dictates of one's conscience, are not required even of Loyalists and Tories.

The fact that Tories and Loyalists, which the American people have become, are condemning his actions, shows only that we have forgotten how to be good Redcoats, as well as most certainly having forgotten how to be good Patriots.

As good Tories (not good Patriots though), Loyal to the American State, we have the right to petition our sovereign -- the American People, not its representative Government -- i.e., to request a constitutional convention to strike down these Star Chamber courts, redress the alleged tyranny, and end the usurpations against our Sovereign's previously constituted declarations, and granted Bill of Rights.

As far as Snowden's flight is concerned, Sir Thomas Hobbes gives a very clear explanation of both Passive Obedience and the right of the dissident to flee, in an attempt to evade the sure punishment he would otherwise receive with or without justice (however if he is caught he must meekly accept his Passion and martyrdom, without resistance -- Civil Disobedience and Resistance are the contrary of the Tory doctrine).

Time to pick sides -- but if we are going to be Tories all, let us not be bad ones. These are the times that try men's souls.

jusben1369 14 hours ago 2 replies      
Obama is saying "You broke the law. We want you back. We won't wheel and deal for you with any country who wants to use you iike a pawn to win some other concession or just enjoy sticking it to us. Take him in at your own risk" Nothing new here or deceitful. Pretty standard operating procedure.
jpdoctor 13 hours ago 1 reply      
Article 14 - Universal Declaration of Human Rights

Everyone has the right to seek and to enjoy in other countries asylum from persecution.

This right may not be invoked in the case of prosecutions genuinely arising from non-political crimes or from acts contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations.


cpursley 13 hours ago 0 replies      
If there were ever a case for a second passport, this is one.

You can get buy one for $135,000. This is what Derek Sivers did. https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=3944339



brown9-2 13 hours ago 1 reply      
Serious question: how has the US been "extrajudicial"?

Isn't it common to revoke a passport of someone you want to try of a crime and have extradited?

Does one expect the government to assist in your asylum attempts?

I don't believe one has the right to not be charged with a crime, especially one you have admitted to.

falcolas 12 hours ago 2 replies      
A meta comment.

It reflects strongly on the state of our world now that I was more concerned about the fallout from visiting wikileaks.org than I was by the latest information coming from Snowden.

webghost 14 hours ago 1 reply      
Just an FYI:

Nicolas Maduro, president of Venezuela is in Russia right now. He flies not the national presidential airplane but a cuban plane.

Rumor has it, he visited Russia with the intention of giving Snowden a ride back to Venezuela.

We'll see.

Kapura 14 hours ago 5 replies      
I very much doubt that the United States government is afraid of me. Snowden is a real drama queen.

I don't think that he deserves asylum either. I think he should come back to America, have a public trial with media coverage, and then we can firmly establish if what he did was wrong.

Edit: It appears that I'm unable to reply to the various comments on this, so I'll try to refine what I'm saying:

I do think that whistleblowers are necessary, especially in large, secretive organisations. But I think that Snowden's limbo isn't providing the requisite closure on the matter. I think that he should be compelled to explain his actions in court. I think all whistleblowers should, just as I think that anybody who kills somebody under a make-my-day law should still have their actions examined. Whistle blowing isn't something that somebody does lightly, and i think that should be doubly true for matters of national security.

Additionally, trying to vilify the government in a press statement is silly. Let their actions speak for them, and let your own actions speak for you.

mililani 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Damn, we live in a shitty world. And the comments in here are not much better. I wish him the best. It's sad that Ecuador is wavering. What a joke their leader is. First, they're posturing and puffing out their chests, now they look like fools.
paul9290 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Is the world a different place after 9/11 .. heck yes!

How can the govt. prevent such an event from happening again or at least attempt to prevent it from happening again? Only way I can think is to invade every citizen's privacy of every nation, as they have done.

It seems for us the US there is no win win and with human nature there never is. If another 9/11 happens we'd be crying why didnt the govt. do more though the govt. is doing more and now we are crying what the hell are they doing?

Humans..we're never satisfied!

yaix 4 hours ago 0 replies      
> using citizenship as a weapon. Although I am convicted of nothing, it has unilaterally revoked my passport, leaving me a stateless person.

And, ironically, this terrible decision of the US government, ultimately is responsible for Snowden having to stay in Moscow and probably having to tell the Russian everything he knows, even the parts he never intented to reveal. The US government just did a classical "shot yourself in the foot", I'd say.

snicklepuff 12 hours ago 1 reply      
To imply that the US is somehow out of order to pursue his extradition makes no sense. What does he expect them to do?

IMHO, he should not have run. I don't think he would have any trouble convincing 12 people that what he did was the right thing. Running was bad form.

I don't like this guy, and I don't trust him.

DannyBee 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Waiting for the onion to write "Edward Snowden issues statement confirming he wrote earlier statement from Edward Snowden"
arbuge 13 hours ago 1 reply      
There is little doubt he is winning the war of public opinion at this point - certainly overseas, and possibly back at home.
mpyne 8 hours ago 0 replies      
> Providing a counterbalance makes it harder for the government propaganda machine to sway public opinion against him and turn him into Just Another Terrorist.

Maybe he should tell Russian state media to tone it down a bit then. From http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2351981/Is-Ed-Snowde... :

"In several rapidly-aired shows on state-run TV, Snowden was flattered as 'a soldier in the information war, who fights, of course, on the side of Russia'."

As far as Russia is concerned Snowden isn't fighting for some pan-national ideal; he's fighting on the side of Russia

thufry 14 hours ago 0 replies      
This reads like the statement of someone who realizes it might be his last.
vijayboyapati 13 hours ago 0 replies      
This young man is a true American hero.
kbd 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I love that he included his middle name in the signature, after the US bungled its extradition request by getting that wrong.
spickelmier 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Exposing US surveillance of US citizens is clearly whistleblowing and a good thing. Taking government laptops with NSA information, telling the Chinese what sites of theirs the NSA hacked, and then releasing information about NSA listening in on others (outside of the US) goes well into the realm of breaking the law and should have consequences. Of course, taking a tour of our adversaries doesn't help his cause much...

Also, I find it hard to swallow those who are up in arms about NSA spying on non-US citizens... seriously??? What do they think the NSA was formed to do??? That should not be a surprise...

I do worry that Wikileaks is pretty much hijacking his agenda and substituting their own...

isaacb 10 hours ago 1 reply      
"and neither is the extralegal penalty of exile"

Okay, so this guy keeps saying some pretty strange things. If he came to the States, he would no doubt be tried in the legal system. He is putting himself into an extralegal position. I think it's probably the best thing for him to do at this point, but to say that the government has in any way forced him out of the legal system is pretty silly.

suyash 14 hours ago 1 reply      
What is the proof that this Statement came from Snowden directly?
Kiro 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm so very tired of WikiLeaks. Since when is this their case?
Uchikoma 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm not sure you know how Wikileaks works "I'd really like to see Wikileaks devoting more of its time, energy, and fund-raising into breaking news about government-operated surveillance programs in the last two countries where Edward Snowden has been located, namely China and Russia."

From my understanding people submit content to Wikileaks which then decides what and when to publish. But I guess this depends on if you believe Assange pushed Mannings to release documents.

SkyMarshal 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I wonder what exactly happened with Hong Kong. Did he get wind that the HK govt intended to end-run its own laws and asylum process and extradite him, or something similar?
mcarlin 13 hours ago 0 replies      
rolfwind 14 hours ago 0 replies      
I wish him the very best.
jabits 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Thank you, Edwin Snowden. In the end, you have made us more free.
jabits 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Thank you Edwin Snowden. In the end, you have made us more free.
stcredzero 12 hours ago 0 replies      
Is there a way we can send cash to Edward Snowden?
guard-of-terra 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Best read if you can imagine a voice in your head a-la Diablo III, how various spirits of past talk.
epynonymous 6 hours ago 0 replies      
edward is a very strong writer, his rhetoric is perfect.
dmead 11 hours ago 3 replies      
why would he date it d/m/y instead of m/d/y?
diminoten 14 hours ago 5 replies      
For someone who doesn't want the story to be about him, he sure talks a lot about himself...
How Google is Killing Organic Search tutorspree.com
478 points by akharris  20 hours ago   186 comments top 52
jcampbell1 19 hours ago 13 replies      
The auction model for ads basically ruins internet searches in transactional categories. If you want to win at the "italian restaurant" search game, you have to bid the highest for the ad, which means you must have the highest margin. The best way to win is to open a restaurant with ridiculously high margins (over priced wine and cheap ingredients).

Want the "cheapest car insurance"? Google is zero help. It sends you to Geico or a bunch of lead-gen sites, and no matter what, you will end up at an insurance company that makes the biggest margins.

If you really want the cheapest car insurance, you need to find a company that doesn't advertise, and is non-profit, that way your premium is spent buying insurance, not TV ads and Berkshire Hathaway's stock appreciation.

Whenever I see a SERP full of ads, I search for something different. When there is nothing but ads, Google is sending you to high-margin crap.

ChuckMcM 19 hours ago 1 reply      
This is true of course, Google doesn't make any money on organic search, nobody does, so it gets the short shrift.

At Blekko we built a search engine (crawler, extractor, ranker, fetcher, the whole stack) and let people know exactly how we rank things, for users who created an account and logged in they could turn off everything except organic results. We have been moderately successful (we were the first to use a 'masked results' option [1] to show how much better our results were than Google's in contested searches) but there isn't enough outrage about that yet to build a business yet.

Most of our business (people who pay us money) comes from folks who either want to figure out how to game Google's results, or want some organic results to create a 'search like experience' much as Google does. When you think about it with only 7% of the page dedicated to organic results that is like 2 or maybe 3 actual search results and the rest of the page is a carefully crafted advertising vehicle. Sort of like a free 'newspaper' which has one article of editorial content and the rest are all ads. You can serve that market quite effectively with a relatively small index (a couple of billion URLs).

If you look at Google's financial performance over the years you can see how this evolution has affected their bottom line. Today you see it in declining revenue per click sorts of things. It feels to me as it did when banner ads went from this massive cash cow into something less useful.

One thing is true though, the world is changing yet again.

[1] http://techcrunch.com/2011/06/21/be-the-mark-in-blekkos-3-en...

saalweachter 20 hours ago 4 replies      
Nit: this article is really criticizing a UI change which makes local results more prominent (in that they take over the entire page). The local results at the top of the page when you search for "Italian restaurants" are all still organic. In fact, whenever there's a map on the right-and side of the page, it's displacing ads.

Now, you can be against Google ever making a UI change, or even against Google showing different results for "Italian restaurants" in New York and Chicago, but this doesn't really have anything to do with "organic" search results.

sethbannon 20 hours ago 4 replies      
DuckDuckGo is far less cluttered, which makes sense considering they have less things to push aside from the results: http://i.imgur.com/OnBJHkS.png
sologoub 19 hours ago 1 reply      
Maybe this is a misconception on my part, but isn't local search listings and map info a form of organic search, just derived using different signals for authoritativeness and relevancy, of which proximity is only one variable?

If the above is true, Google is dedicating way more real estate to organic than ever. It's just a different form of organic.

brudgers 19 hours ago 2 replies      
I turned on my television and none of the programs were organic. Instead all the content was controlled by my cable provider. I'm beginning to suspect that they just put on those shows to make money off the advertising.

It's rather simple.

When you type terms into the search box, just imagine the words, "Please show me advertisements for " in front of it.

fastball 3 hours ago 0 replies      
This is absurd.

First, the author factored the screen space taken up by the google search bar into his calculations. Really? You want to press the back button each time you want a new search? And don't get me started on the fact that the author factored in the goddamn page margins as part of his percentage.

Secondly: the 7% of the page that is taken up by a map? Yeah, those are also organic results. In fact, they are probably more helpful to most people than the author's version of organic results (just links to websites).

Thirdly: after you scroll down (takes about 0.1 seconds) the percentages change significantly, as the entire box of sponsored results is no longer there.

So. If we eliminate the search bar and the margins, and we include the map in our percentage, and we scroll down a tad so that the sponsored ads disappear, you're looking at a page that is about 70% organic results.

FINALLY AND MOST IMPORTANTLY. Google did not become popular because it showed the highest PERCENTAGE of organic search results per page. It won the search wars because IT'S RESULTS ARE MORE RELEVANT THAN OTHER SEARCH ENGINES. Percentages DO NOT affect the relevance of google's results. It's all about relevance.

andrewljohnson 20 hours ago 2 replies      
I'm typically a Google fanboy, but spot on. Here's a search for sushi for me: https://www.dropbox.com/s/q3epmld2ffqzg3f/Screen%20Shot%2020...

It's like full circle back to Yahoo.

Maybe this is a result of listening to the data too much, and not depending on the greater vision enough. Or maybe it's the future and you're gonna love it.

ChrisAntaki 20 hours ago 1 reply      
There is a way to increase the percentage of organic search results on a Google page, with relative ease. Just scroll down.
programminggeek 20 hours ago 1 reply      
What you don't understand is Google's been doing this for almost a decade now. It's about profit optimization while not pissing off your users, or sometimes helping them even.

A paid result can be a useful thing and might even be better than an organic result in many cases, but both have their pitfalls and it's not surprising for them to keep going this route more and more.

Google is a company, not a nonprofit. They are in it for the money. Why is anyone surprised?

andrewjshults 19 hours ago 0 replies      
The first result for mobile is organic as far as I can tell (it just happens to be a google property when looking for Italian Restaurants in Tribeca). Try switching the query for mexican restaurant and just a few blocks to the west in SoHo (hi Aaron) a menupages result is first. Also, on the mobile front, I believe the quick results are from places and not Zagat, since with the same mexican restaurants query there are a number of places with just ratings and not "Zagat" ratings (you can see this in the blog's screenshot for Olive Garden as well).

I actually don't mind this on mobile (but I also generally use something else for finding restaurants) since the majority of restaurant websites are basically impossible to navigate on mobile and all I really need to know is 1) where are they 2) what's their phone number. How organic that database is, I'm not sure, but it doesn't seem to be showing specifically paid placements.

wicknicks 19 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm not convinced with the arguments in this post. Auto Mechanic and Italian Food are both vague queries. Auto Mechanic could mean the definition of the term or places around you or even . And its not super hard to get rid of advertisements. If you really want better "organic" results, type in a better query -- "Auto Mechanic, Bay Area" or "Italian Food, New York".

I think its almost taken for granted that all search is interactive. If the first try is not precise, refine the query and try again. Its not correct to compare the Google of today with the "organic" search engines of a decade ago. The world, and the web have changed tremendously since. It can be argued that Google is trying to help the consumer by showing multi-faceted search for vague queries (which can potentially narrow search requirements) or provide cues about forming the next query -- and if a company can make money doing that, whats wrong in it?

jmarbach 19 hours ago 0 replies      
I agree with the arguments here on the whole. However, if you declare a local search on your own, by simply including "italian restaurant in tribeca", Google offers far more organic results. https://dl.dropboxusercontent.com/u/32342947/Screen%20Shot%2...
chaz 17 hours ago 2 replies      
Measuring the usefulness of a page by percentage of screen real estate only seems useful if the user is looking or clicking randomly around the screen. The structure, layout, and clarity of communication are far more important.

> 7% is all thats left for the entrepreneurs and restaurantuers who believed Google over the years when they were told that good business with well structured pages would be able to get in front of potential customers searching the internet.

I'm really curious how the author would propose to fix this. Even with all of the other stuff cut away, there are only still 10 blue links to give.

thecosas 19 hours ago 0 replies      
This is making the arguments based on only things "above the fold". There are plenty of people that have dispelled the myth that content NEEDS to be above the fold (1)(2).

That said, the implication with Google results is that the higher up on the page the link is, the more relevant that link is to a user's search. In my experience, very few people ever get to the second page of Google Search results. I'm all but certain that if we looked at heatmaps of clicks across all Google search pages, we would see this quite clearly. It's the entire reason that SEO has been an industry at all.

It gets more troubling with products like Google Cars (3)(4). It is literally another layer of PPC results specific to cars. I've got to think that other car retailers (including manufacturers) can't be too happy about this.

(1) http://iampaddy.com/lifebelow600/(2) http://blog.kissmetrics.com/why-the-fold-is-a-myth/(3) http://www.drivingsales.com/blogs/InvestigativeReporting/201...(4) http://searchengineland.com/google-tests-new-car-leads-produ...

VMG 15 hours ago 0 replies      
The numbers are somewhat misleading: they don't add up to 100% because whitespace is counted as well (although not displayed). I personally like the whitespace on the results page.

Also the ads on the right side are delineated very liberally - one could argue that the actual area is half as wide.

znowi 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Google Search was totally awesome when it first came out. Disrupted the whole industry and set new standards of search on the web.

Now I find myself longing for a new company and a new disruption of what is essentially Google monopoly.

_jmar777 16 hours ago 1 reply      
This feels somewhat disingenuous. Naturally a site making it's money off of ads is going to give them an above-the-fold and prominent position. Just scroll down... the value add is in the qualify of the organic results (which is still there), not in the absence of scrolling.

If you think the ratio is off, then write an article about it... but this is hardly "killing organic search".

j45 12 hours ago 0 replies      
Google is becoming like a newspaper. A connecting point between people, ideas and information.


1) Google has steadily moved away from optimally presenting search results which they possess.

2) In being this connecting point, ads increasingly have taken over the space where organic results are published, much like ad space is sold first in a newspaper and articles are squeezed in around it.

Everything changes, or does it? Content is king, except finding content is a new king.

3) Google generally has the content we seek - in the form of search results. The results are squeezed around ads. This creates a cognitive cost to separate ads from results, instead of just finding what we need, which was the original promise of Google. This implies, at some point we're giving into reading the ads like they were the results?

Users have only ever been interested in search results from a search engine, not ads. In a way, good search results was a promise shared by AltaVista and Google. Being able to easily access them is what is changing.

Last year I was irritated enough to build my own search interface, focused on presenting results how I wanted to see them.

4) The cognitive cost had added up to be too much to scan Google constantly to find the one weather, or movie link I have looked at for the last 10 years, and becoming increasingly harder and harder to find.

My thoughts come back to the announced shuttering of AltaVista, in wondering whether we really ended up ahead. Google certainly has done things no one else has, getting search so good, and now finding what we want is a little more work.

5) Google is a business, and need a financial engine. As much as advertising currently seems to pay for the internet, I wonder if a day is coming where we're more willing to put our money where our mouth is.

It may take some time, for the majority of internet users to have 10+ years of online experience of doing the same searches and finding them harder to find.

What to do? I feel like brushing up my custom search interface and use it a little more.

Eclyps 20 hours ago 1 reply      
For some reason I was surprised to see bing's results even more cluttered and useless... http://i.imgur.com/kuRTMhO.png

You would think that bing would be trying to win the popularity contest by actually providing more relevant searches in the short term and then expanding ads in the future...

Afforess 19 hours ago 0 replies      
I wonder if there is interest in someone building a search site that uses the google custom search API to search. The CSE that Google provides does not include advertising or local results unless specifically requested. The only problem would be that it costs money for large volumes, so you might have to charge or use ads to pay for it.
lmgftp 19 hours ago 0 replies      
This article seems to make a point of showcasing Zagat's rating in search above others, somehow indicating that Google is unfairly manipulating search results to it's own gain (as Zagat is Google, Inc. owned).

However, there's an important point here to be made, which has been said in numerous antitrust arguments against Google, and that is, "what if the product in No. 1, Google's, is in fact preferred by consumers and therefore is, to use language of the tutorspree authors 'organic'?".

It's an interesting question. I find much of the article interesting and of course the screen space dedicated to search is a hot topic, and Google's minimal style still remains in my favor, I just wanted to briefly object to the claim that somehow showing a non-ad Zagat page is "0%" (in the author's numbers) organic search.

davidedicillo 19 hours ago 0 replies      
To be fair searching for "italian restaurants" in San Francisco the first result returned is a Yelp link on mobile, so I guess that the Zagat one wasn't a way to show necessarily a Google owned property. Everything else is the same.
wyck 19 hours ago 0 replies      
It gets even worse, on some searches I have to scroll a full page down, just to see a result not pushed by a google asset (ads/map/etc). In essence it takes up about 90% of screen space on a large desktop.

Example: http://imgur.com/AJtOPkf this is zoomed down to 65% to capture all of it....)

They need to remember that there are alternatives just a click away, and serving too many ads degrades the entire internet.

hcarvalhoalves 19 hours ago 0 replies      
To put it simply, if you're top 3 on organic results, Google is useless for your business. And sometimes not even being top 3.

Nowadays you're supposed to buy ads to stay competitive. Google grew so much that it's now a monopolist behemoth, and that's why they're swimming in money. But because they keep all the nerds in love with them, they manage to get zero flak for it.

achille2 19 hours ago 0 replies      
I see lots of comments bashing Google, ads are evil, all that. But honestly how many people search for "italian food" on the web expecting global results to be relevant locally? Google is providing exactly what people are looking for when they google for Italian.
islon 5 hours ago 0 replies      
You either die a hero or live long enough to became the villain. At least we have duck duck go.
ZanderEarth32 20 hours ago 0 replies      
While this is true, users are still clicking organic results much more often than the paid options even though the organic results real estate keeps shrinking[1].

Even with the shrinking organic screen space, the first three results still capture the vast majority of the clicks, so results 4-10 receive fewer clicks regardless of the amount of space given to organic results.

I'd like to see a study where organic results 1-10 all appear on the page above the fold, giving users the ability to see all the results without having to scroll and measure click through rates at that time.

1. http://searchenginewatch.com/article/2200730/Organic-vs.-Pai...

kenster07 9 hours ago 0 replies      
I disagree with the premise. "Organic" search will not exist, barring a radically new business model. Any search engine with the resources to produce good search results must carry auction-based advertising in order to fund the quality of their results.

Good luck finding that business model, and being able to reap the profits from it.

arbuge 19 hours ago 0 replies      
The rub is that a paid result can be just as useful from the consumer perspective as an organic result. If that's the case, Google will show the paid result every time.
philhippus 20 hours ago 1 reply      
Let them greed themselves into irrelevance I say. That leaves the door open for some YC startup to implement some type of peer to peer search protocol that will leave google in the dust.
dennisgorelik 16 hours ago 0 replies      
What kind of startup could exploit that situation with Google SERP?

My guess would be that some sort of rating site that better answers questions like "what car to buy?" should benefit from Google removing organic results from searches like that.

lazyjones 19 hours ago 0 replies      
Do results from https://startpage.com work for people in the US? I've been using it for a couple of weeks now (I'm in the EU) and it seems like it works very well (it claims to get its results from Google, but without affecting privacy). It shows some display ads, the percentage of screen real estate used is much smaller than for Google itself.
zokier 16 hours ago 0 replies      
I just tested this myself, and got 43.8% of organic results (I'm counting the image result preview as organic results), 18.9% of google UI (the bars on top), and 35,2% whitespace. They do not sum to 100% because I just roughly measured stuff at photoshop. Zero ads or curated content on either search, logged in with my personal google profile.

I guess adblock and not living in US has some advantages.

anizan 18 hours ago 0 replies      
Before Google, people used to use Yahoo directory to find links.The only all encompassing directory in competition now with Google search is Wikipedia (not even its intended purpose)

People can use Yelp to find Italian restaurants in San Francisco but try typing the same in Wikipedia.

Is there any personalized search engine which lets you choose Yelp/Zagat/Tripadvisor when you type in that keyword? and maybe pull down Google map so Google doesnt feel left out ;)

nostraspamus 11 hours ago 0 replies      
To reduce the amount of useless clutter that Google displays in search results, try verbatim mode.

You can turn on verbatim mode on the search results page. Click on the Search Tools menu, then look in the All Results menu for the Verbatim option.

The verbatim option tells Google to use all your search terms, as-is, and (at least at present) the search results are much less cluttered.

To always use verbatim mode, remove the search terms from the URL in the address bar (leaving intact the other parameters that turn on verbatim mode) and create a bookmark.

Don't tell Google about this feature... I depend on it!

mydpy 19 hours ago 0 replies      
From a network centrality metrics perspective, is there such a thing as "organic search"? Is the premise flawed or is the Page Rank metric considered organic?
sengstrom 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Those percentages don't add up to 100%. Seems disingenious to count the white space in the display just to make a point.
api 19 hours ago 0 replies      
dakimov 19 hours ago 0 replies      
I would use a paid search service with a quality search, no ads, no tracking, and no selling my data to third-parties.
gojomo 17 hours ago 0 replies      
Big dog's gotta eat.
mattbarrie 11 hours ago 0 replies      
Panda and Penguin are euphemisms for Google A/B testing revenue.
sctt311 20 hours ago 1 reply      
Great article! Sad in a way how Google continues to dominate and impose it's will on us.
wxspll 16 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm happy with Google because no ads while using www.google.com ( not .hk ) in Mainland China where Google quited from. Thanks Google! :
benradler 17 hours ago 0 replies      
Google == advertising companyGoogle != search engine
limejuice 19 hours ago 1 reply      
On desktop, set http://duckduckgo.com as your search provider. Problem Solved.

Even when I !g to see google results, I see 100% organic results because I have Adblock Plus plugin installed on firefox. Problem Solved.

Make sure you have 'Hide placeholders of blocked elements' option enabled, otherwise AdBlock will show a blank rectangle where the ads used to be.

gordaco 17 hours ago 0 replies      
This is why I block ads.
marban 20 hours ago 0 replies      
goto.com anyone?
teeboy 16 hours ago 0 replies      
Adblock,FTW ! Never seen an ad in several years now.
soundgecko 20 hours ago 1 reply      
There's the other problem of decreasing contrast and lack of borders separating the last ad and first organic search result.



A few years ago this was the style http://www.ismoip.com/blog/wp-content/uploads/2011/01/Screen...

Before that http://cdn.userstyles.org/style_screenshot_thumbnails/58617_...

Now http://i.imgur.com/Wmdd0.png

Some of those keywords are worth tens of dollars per click so no wonder,the colors have been A/B optmized to get the most clicks from people not knowing they are ads.


Google: #fff7ecBing: #f9fcf7Yahoo: #fafaffDuckDuckGo: (255,212,0,0.18)

Not to say that Bing, Yahoo etc. are much better but I expect more from the "Do No Evil" Google rather than increasing the next quarter's earnings instead of targeting older people and people with bad monitors and hurting people who did a lot of good work to come in the first few in organic results but don't and/or can't pay Google for expensive ads. Also, Bing and the rest continue to mostly lose money and they can't afford to separate ads while the big guy continues to reduce the difference between ads and search results.

"Study:Contrast sensitivity gradually decreases with age"http://www.eyeworld.org/article.php?sid=818&strict=0&morphol...

igorgue 15 hours ago 0 replies      
scroll down.
Time to come Clean Motorola (2012) motorola.com
87 points by pppppo  9 hours ago   15 comments top 7
xxpor 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Wow. Here are some highlights (these are from Mark, the moderator/Moto employee:

>I take privacy quite seriously. You notice that we use HTTPS on the site because we feel your privacy is important.

>Lastly, I'm saddened by the fact that you didn't abide by the Motorola Feedback Network Non Disclosure agreement you agreed to upon joining the Motorola Feedback Network. Discussing MFN activities outside designated areas is strictly prohibited. Provided this thread excludes MFN related activities here on out it will remain open. Further violation of the NDA will result in closure of this thread. If you(cythrawl) would like to discuss MFN activities further please email me at supportforums@motorola.com.

What! You revealed that we spy on you? That's under NDA!

jezclaremurugan 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I found this statement there...

    "IT IS YOUR PRIVATE INFORMATION... Look at the permissions, they could read pretty much EVERYTHING you do with the phone and track WHERE you was when you did it, and WHO you did it with.. There is NO REASON why its in there, none at all. And last I checked Motorola Corporation was NOT a Government entity, and if it WAS a Government trying to do this very thing the outrage would be extensive (unless you lived in a Country like North Korea)."

bcoates 6 hours ago 1 reply      
The business with the reset count tracking isn't necessarily as creepy as the shovelware/adware apks in the default image, or the serious information leak in activesync in the other Motorola thread.

I'm guessing the firmware update downloader sends some sort of hardware identifier, plus a firmware flash counter, to the update server. This would be the obvious way to prevent re-updating a device that reset itself or was manually reset after a firmware update hosed the system, which would trap the user in a loop. A (device id,firmware revision,reset count) table somewhere in the motosphere isn't exactly PRISM.

Outside a tiny number of hardcore custom ROM tweakers, 21 resets almost certainly indicates some sort of problem.

ajays 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Now that Motorola is owned by Google, I wonder what Google has to say about this?
peter_l_downs 4 hours ago 1 reply      
The scariest part of this thread is the responses from the user 'Poko' a little bit further down. Go ahead an read them I'm still not sure if that's an astroturf account or not.
nereus 8 hours ago 0 replies      
The wider internet community needs to know about this.
mathattack 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Andrew Mason's album "Hardly Workin'" now available smandrew.com
69 points by bjeanes  8 hours ago   48 comments top 23
jmduke 7 hours ago 6 replies      
This is awesome. I don't care if the actual music sounds terrible, but the fact that there's a dude out there with millions of dollars and what he wants to do is record a educational business CD makes me happy.

This is the kind of eccentricity I think we should be lauding.

downandout 7 hours ago 0 replies      
"...I spent a week in LA earlier this month recording Hardly Workin', a seven song album of motivational business music targeted at people newly entering the workforce"

So this is what happens when you are "unemployed" with $200 million in the bank.

meritt 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I'll be the first to say it: what the fuck?

I've actually listened to this album and, uhh, yeah. This took some chutzpah. I'll give him that.

noonespecial 6 hours ago 0 replies      
So yeah, its a rich guy doing goofy stuff with his money. Outstanding! I think its way less socially awkward and certainly less environmentally damaging than another giant boat or an Everest expedition. Good for him.
cm2012 50 minutes ago 0 replies      
If people are looking for other motivational songs, I can heartily recommend Poor Jack from nightmare before christmas. It seems like it was scientifically designed to pick up spirits, and Jacks role is quite entrepreneurial. It encapsulates recovering from failure.
ritchiea 46 minutes ago 0 replies      
Now when people say no one in music makes money anymore we can simply point to Andrew Mason.
pshin45 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Reminds me a lot of this classic scene from the TV show "Arrested Development":


samstave 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Where can I get a discount coupon for the purchase of this?
aurelius83 7 hours ago 2 replies      
" I've probably listened to the album over a dozen times now, and with each spin I feel like I learn something."

That's sort of an awkward statement to make as the creator.

adamnemecek 6 hours ago 1 reply      
How is no one here understanding that it's a joke?
kybernetyk 4 hours ago 0 replies      
For everyone else wondering who that guy is: It's the ex-CEO of Groupon.


sinak 7 hours ago 3 replies      
If anyone finds a Spotify link, please post it.
alxbrun 7 hours ago 2 replies      
Given the average level of morale and motivation of Groupon's employees right now, I'm not sure why I would want to follow Mason's advice...
marcos123 7 hours ago 0 replies      
For the record, as someone who has read a few articles about the guy, seen a couple pictures, and in all honesty was leaning more towards not liking him more than I do, this news has excavated a nice, temporary soft spot in my heart for the guy. Funny stuff.
rb2e 5 hours ago 0 replies      
The music isn't actually bad. It is much better than I expected from some of the 'hating'. Production wise, it's stellar. He can sing well in the rock/pop style.

Is this Zepplin, Pink Floyd or Beatles? No but it's not trying to be. Would I want to buy it and listen to it? No, but I'm not in the target market and this music style bores me but musically, I cannot fault it.

lukeh 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Wow, Jim Allchin, that is pretty funny. Who would have thought?

(Here's a shameless plug for my new record, FWIW. http://music.lukehoward.com. I have also worked as a coffee-making intern in a studio. And written some software. Perhaps this isn't that uncommon...)

chucknibbleston 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Is this a joke?
swatkat7 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I can understand his reasons behind taking a break from all this and understandably so. However bad it turns out, this is the kind of behaviour we should be promoting. The 'bounce-back-ability', if I may, is what makes being an entrepreneur worth all the blood, sweat and tears.
tommaxwell 7 hours ago 1 reply      
I give him credit for doing awesome stuff after being ousted at Groupon. Takes strength to brush your shoulders off after a hard fall and do something like this.
cmod 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Pure Andy Kaufman.
return0 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Why not bandcamp + "name your price"?
donniefitz2 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Oh, okay. Um. Yeah.
lfuller 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Oh boy...
Yes, there is a better search engine (1998) salon.com
29 points by bobsil1  5 hours ago   8 comments top 4
ethor 3 hours ago 1 reply      
"The irony here is that the big portal sites are the ones, increasingly,making it harder to use the Web: Theyre under such pressure to turna profit to justify their market valuations that their pages have becomecrowded, blinking arrays of commercial distractions. Meanwhile, theyrefailing to drive forward the technology at the root of their business."

Striking similarities to Facebook's current position.

Kiro 1 hour ago 0 replies      
"And a Silicon Valley start-up company with the unlikely name of Google.com is showing the way."

Funny how brainwashed you get. Nowadays Google seems like the perfect name.

tempestn 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Nice to remember just how rough we had it to really appreciate the state of search today. Searching for something as obvious as "President Clinton" (while he was President) and having the official White House page not even come up in the top 10 is unthinkable today.

Of course, it still isn't #1, since that spot is universally reserved for Wikipedia... something that I suppose would've been unthinkable in 1998!

DavidWanjiru 2 hours ago 1 reply      
The author said at the time that he is not an internet investor, but please tell me he was an early stage investor in google, please? I mean, google is just 3 months old, you're savvy enough to see what's right with it and what's wrong with everything else, he can't have missed the opportunity, can he? I mean, he is not being told by his investment advisor this and that, he can see it himself! I hope he invested.
Application for registration approved The Wikileaks Party aec.gov.au
58 points by ra  8 hours ago   11 comments top 4
_delirium 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I looked around a bit, but I couldn't find any information about why they preferred to start a separate Wikileaks Party, rather than joining the already extant Pirate Party Australia. http://pirateparty.org.au/ Anyone know?
dfc 7 hours ago 3 replies      
I apologize for being lazy. Can any Australian HNers describe what privileges are afforded to registered parties? I thought the proportional voting scheme in Australia was based on a party system but I did a little research and it seems that the votes are cast for candidates and not parties. Thanks for indulging my curiosity and laziness.
marcooda 6 hours ago 0 replies      
It's correct Australian's vote in candidates, which in these circumstances would be great (not only for Assange's case) but more importantly to see greater diversity in our Senate, because the majority right now are Labor/Liberals.

Imagine in 100 years time, they become the major political party, forming government. It could possibly be something entirely different.

damian2000 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Yelp Hipster Finder yelp.com
161 points by struys  14 hours ago   76 comments top 30
iharris 13 hours ago 1 reply      
Try the "sketchy" keyword... is that the infamous Tenderloin that I hear about? (I haven't been to SF before)
ctrager 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Here's something similar I recently created.http://ifdefined.com/hack_week.htmlIt uses a collection of keywords that you choose and then uses Nokia's HERE.com APIs to create a heatmap. The fun is coming up with the keywords. "Vegetarian" and "yoga" work pretty well for finding hipster places in the US, but for India not so much. Instead I tried "coffee", "pub", "pizza". "Sushi" works internationally except you-know-where.
liquidcool 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Am I missing something? For LA, it's telling me that the hipster areas are Silver Lake, WeHo, Venice, etc. Well, duh. As the Dothraki would say, "It is known."

Why doesn't it actually show the individual establishments adding heat to the map? I realize I could just search for it on their site, but I don't know if the measure of relevance would be the same. I'm really curious what's causing all that bacon heat.

semiprivate 12 hours ago 5 replies      
This is actually a good way to figure out where to stay when visiting a city. Click tourist and avoid, click hipster and go there. Maybe go to the slightly less red areas for a more low key night. At least that's how you'd have fun if you were a 20-30 something in NYC.
Aardwolf 4 hours ago 0 replies      
The map refuses to zoom out more than a small bit. Is that some kind of in-joke about hipsters being only in that area?
sadfaceunread 11 hours ago 2 replies      
Kinda interesting but I wonder if it is normalized at all for the yelp review density in a given area. See xkcd: http://xkcd.com/1138/ as I draw some unusual correlations in the Boston maps.
basicallydan 6 hours ago 1 reply      
In London, "cheap" and "pricey" tend to stay around the same sort of area.


Well, shit.

This is awesome though. Nice one, Yelp :)

tathagatadg 1 hour ago 0 replies      
some days back i posted a question on quora asking which is the most hipster neighborhood of chicago. i must admit the map concurs with the humans:


apendleton 11 hours ago 1 reply      
Haha, both my office and home neighborhoods have red blobs over them (for "hipster" in DC). Excellent.
cb18 12 hours ago 0 replies      
My initial thoughts were to comment, This is really freaking cool, great idea whoever. But when I realized I couldn't put my own keywords in the url and zoom the map out and move it around I was somewhat less impressed, it's still a neat idea though.

But, I think it would be 'really freaking cool' to do this while accessing the entire database of places and reviews with any keywords you want. I know that would require more development and server resources. It would probably be rather challenging to do this efficiently on the fly rather than using preprocessed data from a limited geographic range, I'm sure there is a yelp engineer or two that would like to take on the challenge though.

jmspring 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Surprisingly, the overlap between PBR and hipster isn't as great as I thought it would be. Though it is a bit closer in the east bay.

Pity it doesn't go down the peninsula.

tracker1 12 hours ago 3 replies      
And another one.. this one doesn't have Phoenix or San Antonio.. I mean there are a LOT of techie types in Phoenix and other cities in the top 10 excluded... it's not all "creative" most of the development here is more business oriented.. I just really get sick of these types of things not taking into account some of the largest cities in the country.

I'm just getting really, really tired of living in the 6th largest city in the US, not even including the very large suburbs, and always being excluded from these kinds of things.

wavesounds 11 hours ago 1 reply      
This is great! Anyone have information on the technology used? Specifically what they used for real time front end and data analysis. I also wonder if they could open it up for dynamic keywords.
captainbenises 13 hours ago 3 replies      
How does this work - is it rendered server side or client side? Very cool! Reminds me of the 2d historgrams and contour maps you can generate with R.
jaredsohn 13 hours ago 1 reply      
It would be interesting to turn this into an API for use with looking at apartments/hotels, Google Now (and related), etc. as a warning system for people new to an area. (Thinking more in terms of the 'sketchy' warning than the 'hipster' warning here.)
vilius 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Hipster Bermuda Triangle in London http://cl.ly/image/303A3s1R0E22
tzury 10 hours ago 1 reply      
For NYC, I would expect the Lower east side to be the hit http://www.yelp.com/wordmap/nyc/hipster
snikolic 13 hours ago 0 replies      
I appreciate how well this lines up with the PBR finder: http://www.yelp.com/wordmap/sf/pbr
hmsimha 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Am I seeing things or does it look just a little bit like the PBR heat map puts a bird on Portland?


gourneau 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I am surprised the map for 'hipster' and 'pbr' is not almost identical.
eksith 12 hours ago 0 replies      
That map is alarmingly accurate. And people say meta-data is no big deal.
Sealy 12 hours ago 0 replies      
That is a very cool feature. A great example of well applied Business Intelligence and data mining.

Hackers take note, this is how you get value out of your growing datasets.

kapilkale 12 hours ago 2 replies      
This is one of the best SEO pieces I've seen all year.
epynonymous 6 hours ago 0 replies      
awesome, now i know the places to avoid when i'm in san francisco!

if this was nyc, you'd see williamsburg with big solid red dots.

pinchyfingers 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Plenty of tortillas in Austin.
austinl 11 hours ago 1 reply      
Living in Logan Square, I can attest to this http://www.yelp.com/wordmap/chicago/hipster
czbond 12 hours ago 1 reply      
They're telling us the places to avoid ;) (The areas with high concentrations of Hipsters).
EricMuller22 12 hours ago 0 replies      
This is a hilarious little hack. Neighborhood stereotypes seem to find themselves reinforced in Yelp reviews.
JoshGlazebrook 13 hours ago 1 reply      
Well it seems accurate for Seattle. Tourist is dark red all around the pike place market.
wittysense 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Yelp does not like Tor.
Tell-all telephone Six months of phone metadata visualized zeit.de
544 points by danielhunt  1 day ago   70 comments top 17
drpancake 1 day ago 3 replies      
You can infer some amazing things from simple metadata. I spent six months in an R&D team at a large mobile telco, with the task of trying to infer as much as possible from anonymous customer data just like this.

Figuring out where you live and work, to a reasonable accuracy, is quite easy; you simply look at where the most outgoing calls/SMS originate from at certain hours of the day over an extended period.

We built up our own social graph. You treat calls and text messages as directed edges and phone numbers as nodes. These were fascinating to look at.

You can even try to guess when someone gets off a plane. When a plane lands you'll suddenly see lots of incoming undelivered text messages as people turn their phones back on. If a node was last seen in a far away cell, but then reappears in this group, you can cross-correlate with arrival times and make a reasonable guess.

tripzilch 23 hours ago 2 replies      
Well, if location data is considered part of this "metadata", then I don't see how anyone could argue against the dangers of this.

My physical location in the real world I consider way more private in matters of wide scale tracking than what I write or say.

For instance, I hardly ever let my browser determine my location and send it to some site, it's none of their business where I am, and if I want the local weather they can get the name of the city I'm at.

But I was hoping this article would be about another, way more dangerous, because way more information-rich type of "metadata": Social graphs and contact lists. The problem with this is, humans underestimate the depth of this kind of data because we're not really well-equipped to reason about them.

If you have a table that consists of (time, location) records, it's pretty easy to envision what sort of information could be extracted from this data. Add a few more fields, and it becomes harder, maybe you need some creativity and statistics, but it's all basic detective work.

A free form directed graph (such as a social graph or collection of contact lists) doesn't look like a table at all (well, you can represent it as a table, but that won't make you much wiser). It's in fact a very high-dimensional object.

The older generation out here, may remember when they first encountered the WWW, when you could only navigate it by clicking links. I got this sense of vastness, perhaps even helplessness. They don't call it hypertext for nothing. The sense of vastness comes because clicking and navigating those links gives an idea of moving through a space. Except this space is in some sense "larger" than our usual 3D space. Every door (link) can open into every room, regardless of whether it would be possible in a physical space.

This is why those "graph of (part of) the Internet" pictures you sometimes see are generally always a tangled clutter of strings, usually vaguely ball-shaped. This is because there is no sensible representation of this type of inter-connected data. You can't make a hierarchy or a map, at least, not in the general case (and the thing you want to reason about is the general case, most of those graphs are exponential small-world graphs, highly inter-connected).

Same thing for social / contact list graphs. Except they usually don't have web-rings or directories (you can sometimes make them like FB does, but they aren't generally available, again the general case).

So okay we're not really good at keeping large graph networks of "friends of friends of friends" and other relationships in our heads and reason about them. We're really not. What you think you can reason about those graphs is just scratching the surface.

Computers, however, and Big Data Machine Learning algorithms in particular, have no problems at all with this type of data. An algorithm never lived in a 3D space, it doesn't care if a dataset makes no sense as a physical configuration of nodes, in order to navigate it and extract information from it.

Another important distinction is, people tend to think of these social graphs as labeled nodes with edges between them. Which is correct, in a sense. But it gives the impression that the labels are more important than they actually are. This may sound weird, in the building/room analogy, if you have millions of rooms, and every room is directly connected to 50-200 other rooms, somehow the shape of the paths between the nodes and way they are connected becomes a vastly more information-rich data source than the actual values of the labels of the nodes themselves.

They don't need your name or your photo, the local shape of your social graph is a highly unique fingerprint of whoever you are.

And you can delete Facebook, but on the next social network you sign up for (or any of the other social graphs you're generating, email/IM contact lists, etc), this fingerprint will echo, and in many cases be similar enough to clearly indicate this is the exact same person. No names necessary. (this may be a bit harder if you have a strictly separate business persona and social persona, but there are still some unexpected artifacts to pick up for a ML algo even in these cases) If you're not on a network at all, your presence can be extrapolated from the "hole" in the graph you left (all your friends are there, with their particular local graph shapes, but one node is missing), that is even if you have nothing to hide, you will be leaking info about those who do.

rayiner 1 day ago 5 replies      
The argument isn't that meta-data can't be used to get a lot of information about someone. The argument is that in the U.S., meta-data isn't protected information. Call meta-data is not your information, but information the telephone company keeps about you. In the U.S., the 4th amendment does not protect those sorts of records: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Smith_v._Maryland. Your cell phone, which you use voluntarily, gives the phone company tremendous information about you, and under U.S. law nothing keeps the government from getting that information from the phone company.

Does call meta-data give the government a lot of information? Yes. Does it give the government too much information? Quite possibly. But arguing shrilly about how collecting call meta-data is "illegal" is counter-productive. Maybe it should be illegal, but you can't start the process of making it so by proceeding from an incorrect premise. And you can't dismiss the goal of making it illegal, by arguing that the government is already ignoring the law, with reference to activity where the government is clearly attempting to stay within the law, even if it is pushing the boundaries as much as it can.

mtgx 1 day ago 1 reply      
And that's just from the phone metadata. Imagine how much more they can do with all your online info from all the services you're using, all the blogs you're commenting on, and so on.

The same person being talked about above wrote this article in NYTimes yesterday:


skwirl 20 hours ago 1 reply      
"Metadata doesn't matter" to me seems to be a really poor strawman. Maybe a small minority of people think that, but I'm pretty sure most people are smart enough to realize that if it "didn't matter" the NSA wouldn't be collecting it to begin with.

Also, I don't believe that it has been shown that location information has been collected. That claim is conjecture only. We've seen a lot of conjecture related to these leaks that has been taken for fact. Sometimes it is hard to tell them apart.

grey-area 1 day ago 0 replies      
What a remarkable visualisation - this is a clear demonstration of just how intrusive these metadata records can be. If they're not controlled by law, they should be.
lazyjones 1 day ago 0 replies      
Let's not forget that combined metadata from millions of people allow much greater detail than this (who you meet, talk to regularly, share interests with, are likely to run into ...).
qwerta 1 day ago 0 replies      
What do you thing that graph databases with trillions of connections are used for? The real fun will start after someone leaks couple of terabytes of tracking data.
blackdogie 1 day ago 1 reply      
Malte Spitz (the guy who's data you see) is a German Green Party politician and did a TED presentation in 2012 http://www.ted.com/talks/malte_spitz_your_phone_company_is_w...
moreentropy 1 day ago 1 reply      
I'm afraid the actual definition of "meta-data" is up to interpretation in the context of IP communication.

What if the NSA considers not only IP source & destination as "metadata" but also anything down to the application layer that is not strictly content? Like the HTTP GET line or HTTP headers.

sfaruque 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Slight off-topic question: I want to collect my own metadata at this level (for just calls and SMS)?

From what I can tell I need to collect:

- List of all incoming and outgoing calls and SMS

- Get my location data and match them to the timestamp (?) of the calls and SMS's

- Display this on a map.

Any suggestions on how to do this?

binarymax 1 day ago 2 replies      
Does anyone know if these work as advertised? http://www.ebay.com/sch/items/?_nkw=cell+phone+signal+block&...

I rarely receive calls on my mobile - and only really carry one just in case I need to make a call.

lifeisstillgood 22 hours ago 0 replies      
Eventually, all the social and location graphs will be mapped for all of humankind - and we shall find out that everyone, on the whole planet, is exactly 42 feet from Kevin Bacon.
Bosence 22 hours ago 1 reply      
Of course it matters, otherwise they wouldn't collect it.
mikecane 1 day ago 3 replies      
Given the remarkable intel that can be gathered, I'm surprised the NSA/CIA/FBI aren't giving away smartphones to targets as anonymous presents or under the pretense of winning a contest.
teeja 12 hours ago 0 replies      
People might think that (apart from GPS) signals to one tower only are unlocalizable. Add the variable of signal strength (with fairly uniform xmit pwr) to that single vector and it gets more interesting.
SourApples 17 hours ago 0 replies      
Just me or, anyone else just throw up a little bit.

Almost overwhelming.

Jury finds protester not guilty in chalk-vandalism case latimes.com
136 points by scottshea  9 hours ago   54 comments top 17
jessaustin 8 hours ago 2 replies      
That the Bank of America contacted the city attorney's office to reportedly urge prosecution has become part of the dispute.

Make that, they called and visited her office repeatedly over the course of many months to emphasize the quid pro quo established by previous political donations. If any corner store had made a similar ruckus for a one-time chalk-on-sidewalk "incident", the store owner would have been cited for interfering with the duties of the City Attorney.

I look forward to voting for Mayor Filner when he runs for higher office. I'm also glad the jury saw fit to correct the judge's egregious Constitutional error.

noonespecial 6 hours ago 0 replies      
This is why when you are summoned for jury duty, go.
kanja 9 hours ago 0 replies      
In all of the bad news about the system, this makes me feel pretty good
jack-r-abbit 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Where did this guy get a permanent chalk WMD?

Wait... you're telling me this was chalk like my kids use on my driveway nearly every weekend? The same stuff that takes about 2 seconds to hose off? No shit he's not guilty of vandalism. SMH

tlrobinson 7 hours ago 2 replies      
Was he actually facing jail time for this, or was the "13 years" line fed to the media by him/his defense?

Jail time for writing in chalk is absurd, but surely he deserved some reasonable punishment for doing this 13 times. A small fine and/or community service seems appropriate.

_delirium 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Here's some discussion of the legal issues, mostly based on another recent chalk-vandalism prosecution: http://www.volokh.com/2013/07/01/chalking-and-the-first-amen...
quackerhacker 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I could not express my elation in words for this victory!

I said it before when this trended on HN, that I hoped he would go to trial and not take a deal. I don't care if BOFA showed video of him doing it, he had chalk on his hands, and posted pictures up online on FB or Twitter...if I was on the jury, I would've said he wasn't guilty.

Ridiculous lobbying of resources and obvious oppression by BOFA!

sirsar 9 hours ago 2 replies      
Good, we've acquitted the guy with children's chalk.

Now can we please jail those responsible for the illegal foreclosures?

lightyrs 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Dismayed that this is news. This guy should have never been charged. Now we're surprised he wasn't convicted. SMH.
quackerhacker 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Just for a reference, the old HN thread:


ryanac 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Wow... Embarrassing that this guy was ever charged in the first place. I thought it was some kind of joke when reading the title or that there was more to it, but nope, that pretty much sums it up, chalk. :|
stretchwithme 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Thank god. Reason prevails!
javert 8 hours ago 9 replies      
The public should have zero tolerance for graffiti and vandalism of public property. This guy should have been fined and stuck in jail for 30 days. End of story.

I heard they were trying to put him away for 13 years. That is gross abuse by the justice system. If I were on the jury, I would also declare him not guilty, even though he is.

P.S. You do not have a first amendment right to write on public property. People who are too stupid to understand that, don't actually deserve first amendment rights (though I will still defend their rights, anyway).

alayne 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Jan Goldsmith needs a new job.
jmomo 7 hours ago 0 replies      
This seems to be a classic case of jury nullification. He was clearly guilty, but the jury refused to find him guilty.
coyotebush 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Beside the point, but

"a 40-year-old man" "He was a civil rights activist in the 1960s"

doesn't really add up.

gfodor 7 hours ago 2 replies      
I respect the jury's decision but have a had time swallowing that anyone who wants to should be able to systematically slander a business in chalk 13 times and it not be considered some sort of crime. Poor precedent. Should have gotten a slap on the wrist.
How We Hit $912 Million in Sales inc.com
105 points by gavreh  11 hours ago   49 comments top 14
npalli 9 hours ago 5 replies      
He started with $1000 and grew to $912 Million over 43 years. That's compounding annually at 38% percent. I was surprised that after 43 years it is still under a billion. Just goes to show how big a billion dollars is :-).

He must also really really love his space and company, nowadays when companies are flipped in 43 weeks, he is going on for 43 years. Wow, that's some dedication and calls for a very difficult temperament and set of skills.

mcculley 25 minutes ago 0 replies      
I'm all for bootstrapping and avoiding VC, but I get annoyed with these proclamations that make all businesses sound the same. (I suspect it is the writing at fault here as Mr. Dangermond probably doesn't think about business so simply. Maybe he just means software businesses when he refers to "young entrepreneurs".)

There are plenty of business models that aren't viable without lots of capital early on. Tesla and SpaceX are good examples of companies that could not be bootstrapped as they need lots of capital to actually build things and to build the factories that build those things.

netcan 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I was watching an architecture show yesterday where a rich artist couple were re-purposing a barn as a house. It was a strange building for living in. Unconventional and contrary. The show follows people through the build and visits them after they've moved in.

At various point they seemed to be obsessed with concepts like rooms and how important they are for dividing up a house or walls and how useful they are for putting furniture against, directional lighting in the kitchen, etc. All these obvious things that come standard with a standard house and most people don't think about were discoveries to them. They started by rejecting everything until they begrudgingly let some of the things in or found workarounds. The result was pretty cool.

We end up with big lists of rules about things, whether we are aware of them or not. You can call them rules of thumbs or call them cargo cults. Either way, there is value to be had from rejecting standards and then rediscovering for yourself the ones that demand to be discovered. It's like a cleanup process.

spoiledtechie 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Ive met Jack and had conversations with him a few times. He is in the DC area often since an office is out there as well as the government.

He is a humble go getter just like you would imagine Steve Wozniak. He doesn't seem to talk about his money nor does he really care. What I have taken away from our few talks is that he actually does care about the customer and thats why I believe he keeps winning.

The software at version 1 was poorly written and sadly still poorly maintained. But since 2005 or so, its been improving ever since.

Ps. They are hiring folks of all types in the DC area.

xanadohnt 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I've done a lot with both ESRI and the open source alternatives. I created zigGIS. With that said, the side you dont read about is that Mr. Dangermond - outside the ESRI compound - is generally considered a very cutthroat personality. Often his success is more attributed to this than most anything else.
useflyer 10 hours ago 1 reply      
This parallels Warren Buffet's strategy of residing in Omaha to completely avoid the influence of Wall Street hive-mind thinking.

There's something to be said for uninterrupted focus, whether its an individual coding solo, or a business focused on steady growth.

fixxer 9 hours ago 1 reply      
I had to learn ArcGIS for a class. Ugh. That application brings new meaning to "feature creep".

They make their money off people who can't "afford" open source (ie. institutions & gov).

davidw 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm more interested in how companies hit $10,000 or $100,000 in sales, and in profits, on their way to become a "real company".
gearoidoc 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I read this and still don't know how to make $912m. What a rip off.
mathattack 10 hours ago 4 replies      
I don't follow it. He seems folksy, but if "Not taking outside money, and serving customers based out of a low cost area" were the path to $912 million in Sales, wouldn't a lot more people be doing that?
nickpersico 8 hours ago 1 reply      
This article does not mention much about how they hit $912 million in sales. However, the title made me furiously click on the article. So they've done their job.
swamp40 9 hours ago 0 replies      
He's a little behind the times on the "going public" part, but I think it's good to hear these things every once in a while.
PhilipA 5 hours ago 1 reply      
The difference is that he built a lifestyle company, and not just one to flip for $$$.
krob 8 hours ago 1 reply      
for a while, I remember when ESRI was constantly hiring new people. The problem is, it's in redlands, and redlands in way the heck out side of L.A.C. or O.C.
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