government

Kremlin cracks down on Internet memes

Kremlin cracks down on Internet memes

The Russian government has cracked down Internet memes, with a court in the nation ruling that ones featuring celebrities are unacceptable if the resulting image "has nothing to do with the celebrity's personality". This applies to any celebrity in the nation, but spawned as the result of one common Russian meme in particular featuring a saccharine sweet singer with obscene text overlaid -- the amusing part, of course, being that the saying is something unlikely to be said by the singer himself.

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People care about privacy when John Oliver sells it to them

People care about privacy when John Oliver sells it to them

Last Week Tonight with John Oliver just did a bang-up job showing off the newest in government surveillance law in the United States. Such a bang-up job, in fact, that the YouTube release of the 33-minute segment has garnered nearly 3-million views in less than two days. As Oliver explains, no one cared about the government surveillance program known as the Patriot Act for the first decade it was active, authorized, and re-authorized after it was enacted following September 11, 2001. Fast forward to June of 2013 and Edward Snowden infamously revealed the goings-on of the NSA - fast forward to 2015 and John Oliver is interviewing Edward Snowden.

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Department of Homeland Security seeking national license plate database

Department of Homeland Security seeking national license plate database

Early last year, it was revealed the Department of Homeland Security was seeking a Federal License Plate Reader Database, something that was later abandoned in light of privacy concerns. Now the DHS has changed its mind and is again pursuing such a national database, soliciting bids from those who could provide it with such a product. The reason for its return is the department's belief it can now mitigate those aforementioned privacy worries. To prove it, DHS has published a report detailing the info.

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All 650 MPs in House of Commons to receive iPad Air 2

All 650 MPs in House of Commons to receive iPad Air 2

Once the current elections are wrapped up, all 650 members of the House of Commons will receive a special tool to help them perform their tasks. With a funding boost of about $300,000 (£200,000) annually, the MPs will all get an iPad Air 2 and a laptop of unknown make. It’s the latest workaround for Apple, who has been diligently working to get the iPad into hands of enterprise, schools, and now government. Questions loom, though, as critics say MPs will be playing games, not passing laws.

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FTC launches new office for tech research and investigation

FTC launches new office for tech research and investigation

The FTC has formed a new research office called the Office of Technology Research and Investigation, and as you'd expect given its name, it focuses on technology and all of the issues that might arise surrounding it. The FTC is currently on the prowl for new hires that'll be joining the office, which it said will ultimately help it "protect consumers" in a world where technology is developing rapidly. This new office is a successor to the Mobile Technology Unit, which was formed a few years ago to tackle mobile-centric technological issues in particular.

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New US Navy diving suits conserve helium for longer missions

New US Navy diving suits conserve helium for longer missions

Diving can be a serious business, and no one takes it more seriously than the US Navy. Working to engineer a new diving suit, the Navy has come up with a new design that will be safer, lighter weight, and most importantly the suits are designed to conserve helium which is a precious resource. The new diving suits are part of the US Navy's Initial Response Diving (IRD) project which is engineering new ways for divers to reach salvage targets up to 600 feet deep.

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Cuba launches its first free public WiFi hub in Havana

Cuba launches its first free public WiFi hub in Havana

In a first of its kind project in Cuba, the nation's government has approved the opening of a WiFi hub in the city of Havana that's free for the public to use. The country has had limited internet access resources before this, but they have been strictly allocated for schools and necessary businesses. Not only will the WiFi be free to use at a local cultural center, but the service itself is being generously shared by the center's operator, a popular visual artist by the name of Kcho.

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The UK steps closer to creating Europe’s first spaceport

The UK steps closer to creating Europe’s first spaceport

American companies like Elon Musk's SpaceX have been testing new limits in spaceflight. Airports are for airplanes, while rockets, satellites, and commercial spaceflights have to use their very own spaceports. The US is dappled with spaceports, and now the UK plans join us on the forefront of spaceflight. The British government has come that much closer to action in building its own spaceport, which would be the first spaceport in all of Europe. They just released their results coming off of a three-month long consultation.

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Hillary Clinton operated email server for state business

Hillary Clinton operated email server for state business

What you’re about to read is actually really impressive. It’s also highly unorthodox, extremely suspicious, and downright sidesteps all the governmental safeguards and checks/balances in play for the security of its employees. But man, it sure is interesting. Hillary Clinton was recently found to use her personal email address for official state business while Secretary of State. Bad enough, right? A new report also details how Clinton used her own server to run this email service. At her home. See?! Pretty impressive, right?

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Portland adds Hydroelectric Water Pipes

Portland adds Hydroelectric Water Pipes

The city of Portland is known to be progressive, and their latest venture into hydroelectricity is no exception. The eco-friendly city is adopting the latest technology, LucidPipe from Lucid Energy, to harness the power of the city's existing water line. Installed last December and financed privatedly by Harbourton Alternative Energy, the 200-kW LucidPipe system replaces a only a portion of the conventional water pipeline.

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Google voices opposition to court-blessed remote hacking

Google voices opposition to court-blessed remote hacking

The Internet has definitely changed the legal landscape by blurring the boundaries of geophysical territories. It has made the world both a smaller and bigger place, and the law is having a bit of trouble trying to catch up. Sometimes, in scrambling to adjust to the times, governments overreact and try to claim overarching powers. Such might be the case with the proposed amendment to the Federal Rule of Criminal Procedure 41, which could allow the government to remotely access computers even in other countries.

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Ecuadorian government adopts virtual money

Ecuadorian government adopts virtual money

To get things straight immediately, Ecuador isn't making Bitcoin its official currency. In fact, the cryptocurrency, which is just one form of such digital currency, is banned in the country. Instead, Ecuador will be implementing its own electronic money system, formally known as "Sistema de Dinero Electrónico". The digital payment system, according to government officials, will simply be an addition to its own US dollar-based physical money system, but some experts seem to think that the move might have other motives as well.

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