Daily Archives: February 9, 2018

Formula E will have grid girls despite Formula 1 jibe – Agag

Formula E will continue to incorporate grid girls into future races, despite a series statement claiming Formula 1 had only just joined the 21st century by dropping them

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Tadashi Shoji Fall 2018 Runway

images: Imaxtree

See all the Tadashi Shoji Fall 2018 looks from the runway.

 

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Japan’s Largest Cemetery Is An UNESCO World Heritage Site That Contains A Termite Memorial

Japan’s Largest Cemetery Is An UNESCO World Heritage Site That Contains A Termite Memorial

Generally speaking Buddhism is one of several eastern religions that consider all living things to be sacred, even termites. If a Buddhist monk discovers a termite infestation within his living area, it would not be in accordance with his religion to call upon the services of a pest control professional. So what is a peace-loving Buddhist supposed to do when he finds himself at the mercy of termites? It should not be surprising to learn that this particular dilemma has troubled many strict Buddhists in the past. Termites are common and economically significant insect pests in the eastern hemisphere, which can make life hard for Buddhists living in Japan, China, India, Nepal, Tibet or any other eastern country. However, no matter how annoying or damaging some insect pests may be, Buddhists consider pest control practices to be tragic. In fact, Japan’s largest and most treasured cemetery contains a memorial to termites that had been killed by pest control professionals.

Located within the Koyasan Mountains of Japan is the Okunoin Cemetery. The cemetary, and the surrounding area, is registered as an UNESCO world heritage site, and it contains a memorial to dead termites. The cemetery is sacred to those practicing Shingon Buddhism. The area contains more than two hundred thousand graves of people who were strict followers of Shingon Buddhism while they were alive. The headstone located at the termite memorial reads: “termites, rest in peace”. The memorial is specifically referring to all of the termites that were killed by a particular Japanese pest control company. Since Buddhists hold all forms of life to be sacred and equal, it does not necessarily seem strange to find a termite memorial located within a cemetary that also contains several important figures in Japanese history.

The Japanese Termite Control Organization helped to create the memorial by providing a large tomb. This tomb was brought to the cemetery in remembrance of all of the termites that were killed by the termite control organization. While it is not known how much the termite organization paid for the large tomb, there are several other tombs within the cemetery that were purchased for millions of dollars. Not only is this termite-tomb located near the graves of some of the most influential monks in Japanese history, but the cemetery is widely regarded as the most sacred area within the country.

If you traveled to Japan would you be interested in visiting the termite tomb?

 

 

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Could Tomek Mackiewicz Have Been Saved on Nanga Parbat?

When it comes to mountaineering, second guessing is often a sport unto itself. Such is the case with the recent tragedy on Nanga Parbat, where Polish climber Tomek Mackiewicz lost his life, but a team of climbers on K2 risked their own to rescue French alpinist Elisabeth Revol. But now that the dust has settled, and the operation is being examined, Revol herself is lashing out at authorities in…

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Private texts show FBI agents thought Tim Cook was a 'hypocrite' in the San Bernardino iPhone encryption fight (AAPL)

Tim Cook

  • Apple publicly fought the FBI in 2016 over issues related to privacy, encryption, and an iPhone used by a terrorist.
  • Texts between FBI employees released earlier this week give a peek into how some agents saw the battle. 

 

In February 2016, as Apple and the FBI were quietly sparring over how to unlock an iPhone owned by one of the perpetrators of the mass shooting in San Bernardino, California, two FBI officials unrelated to the case back in Washington DC were privately discussing their distaste for Apple CEO Tim Cook.

“And what makes me really angry about that Apple thing? The fact that Tim Cook plays such the privacy advocate,” Peter Strzok, an FBI counterintelligence agent, wrote on February 9, 2016. “Yeah, jerky, your entire OS is designed to track me without me even knowing it.”

“I know. Hypocrite,” Lisa Page, a lawyer for the bureau, replied minutes later. 

A week after that exchange, the strained relationship between Apple and the nation’s top law enforcement agency became international news when Cook wrote an open letter explaining why Apple would not create special software to unlock the shooter’s iPhone, defying a request to do so by the FBI.  The FBI eventually dropped the request because it found a third-party vendor who was able to extract data from the iPhone 5C without Apple’s help.

FBI iPhone

Courtesy of the Hillary Clinton probe

The exchange between FBI agents Strzok and Page is part of hundreds of pages of bureau text messages recently published by the Senate Committee on Homeland Security and Governmental Affairs as part of a Republican-driven investigation into how the the bureau handled the Hillary Clinton probe. 

While the texts may not reveal a “bombshell” conspiracy inside the FBI related to the Clinton investigation, they do provide a revealing window into how some people inside the FBI reacted to the standoff with Apple. The discussion is a long-running, unguarded conversation between two people who were close to each other and their opinions cannot be taken to represent all FBI agents. Earlier this year, for instance, a FBI agent in San Francisco publicly praised Apple and its willingness to work with law enforcement. 

Although Strzok nor Page were apparently on the Apple case, at one point, Page appears to have been told who the FBI contracted with the ultimately unlock the phone without Apple’s help, which remains a public secret. Comments that appear to provide revealing information about the third-party is redacted in the published texts. 

The two FBI employees seem to be skeptical of Cook and Apple throughout their text relationship — although they were also critical of many other people and institutions including politicians, newspapers, and foreign spies. The two also lament that it appeared to them as if Apple had won the public relations battle over the phone. 

February 9, 2016 — accusations of hypocrisy

feb 9The battle between Apple and the FBI had not yet broken out into international news. On February 9, then-FBI director James Comey announced that the bureau had not been able to access data on an iPhone 5C used by Syed Farook, who had committed a mass shooting in San Bernardino, California. 

“We still have one of those killer’s phones that we have not been able to open,” Comey said.

It was then that both Page and Strzok started following the issue. “And what makes me really angry about that Apple thing? The fact that Tim Cook plays such the privacy advocate,” Strzok wrote.

“I know. Hypocrite,” Lisa Page, a lawyer for the bureau, replied minutes later. 

“Ha, I had mine already turned off. Apparently I’m paranoid,” Strzok wrote, although it’s unclear which iPhone feature he’s talking about. 

February 20, 2016 — Agents on iMessage

feb 20

Five days after Cook wrote a letter to Apple customers on the front page of Apple.com, the two discuss Apple once again.

“Oh god. And [REDACTED] is trying to explain/defend apple’s position. Based entirely on the misinformation Apple and privacy groups are spewing,” Strzok wrote.

He then sent Page a link to two different New York Times articles about the controversy. 

“The times, for once, does a decent job of explaining our position, for once,” he concludes. 

Most of Page’s reply is redacted, but she asks, “What was the Apple thing?” 

“You can tell me on imsg, or it can wait,” she continues, suggesting she knows that these texts are being recorded. iMessage, Apple’s messaging service, is end-to-end encrypted, which offers additional privacy benefits.

It wasn’t the first time that the two had discussed the trade-offs between computer security and law enforcement priorities. In 2015, Page had sent a link to a blog post about a government court filing about Apple’s encryption, noting, “Still, I like the reasoning. Yay imsg”. 

March 6, 2016 – Staying abreast of Apple news

march 16

Page sent Strzok a link to a New York Times article with a comment that is redacted in the public version of the texts.

This is the article

March 28, 2016 – “Everyone and their mother wants to know how we did it.”

march 28

In a heavily redacted text, Page says that she got “Brian” to “tell me the whole story of the Apple thing.”

Strzok quickly replies, “Everyone and their mother wants to know how we did it and who the third party is.” 

“Hope he didn’t tell you for former as that is likely classified by now…”

The fact that the section above is redacted suggests that the information relates to the mysterious third-party that cracked the iPhone.

April 9, 2016 — What does the ACLU say?

april 9

The two FBI employees discuss a New York Times op-ed written by Jameel Jaffer, then an ACLU attorney. 

April 15, 2016 — a mystery news article about Apple

april 15

Strzok teases an “interesting Apple story if you have time to talk this weekend.”  The next several replies are redacted. 

September 2, 2016 — Love the tech, not the techies

sept 2

Strzok texts Page: “NYTimes.com breaking” and “You saw the byline, right?”

Although there’s no link, it’s likely this story about the FBI’s Hillary Clinton investigation.

Page replies: “It helps that the Director and Deputy really hate these phones too. And really love their personal iphones.”

Strzok: “Now if Tim Cook would only fall off the face of the earth.” 

The subsequent discussion that reveals how some people at the FBI feel about the country’s most valuable technology company — the love the products, but dislike the people in charge. The text also suggests that Comey, as bureau director, has a personal iPhone that he likes. 

October 18, 2016 — Vice President Tim Cook? “Gross”

october 10

The two FBI employees gawk at Clinton campaign chairman John Podesta’s emails, which had recently been leaked at the time by WikiLeaks. A list of possible vice presidential candidates include Cook.

“You see Tim Cook made the list of potential [Hillary Rodham Clinton] running mates?”

“Gross, no.” 

November 14, 2016 — “making me very angry”

november 13

“God, I hate academics. Lots on the big bad fbi litigation with apple. It’s making me very angry.” 

SEE ALSO: Apple and the FBI in major privacy fight

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NOW WATCH: Elon Musk’s The Boring Company sold out of these $500 flamethrowers

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Fuji WEC date change for Fernando Alonso gets green light

The Fuji round of the 2018/19 World Endurance Championship season will move forward a week to allow Fernando Alonso to race there and avoid a Formula 1 clash

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IndyCar aeroscreen makes track testing debut at Phoenix

IndyCar’s new aeroscreen made its track testing debut at Phoenix on Thursday, with four-time Scott Dixon positive but suggesting work needs to be done before its full implementation

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