Car hacking, time to collision, basic history, a nuke above midtown, algorithm auditing

This image was removed due to legal reasons.

1. Cheap access to the world of car hacking is now available.

"Tomorrow at the Black Hat Asia security conference in Singapore, 24-year-old Eric Evenchick plans to present a new device he calls the CANtact. The open source board, which he hopes to sell for between $60 and $100, connects on one end to a computer’s USB port, and on the other to a car or truck’s OBD2 port, a network port under its dashboard. That makes the CANtact a cheap interface between any PC and a vehicle’s controller area network or CAN bus, the collection of connected computers inside of every modern automobile that control everything from its windows to its brakes."


+ Does anyone have any really good stories about DIY car software modders? I rarely see them.

2. Humans are constantly calculating "time to collision" with other people and objects.

"'If two people are going to collide very imminently you feel really strong discomfort from that interaction, whereas if they are walking close to you but in the opposite direction there's almost no effect.' The theory’s veracity, says Guy, is based on an examination of a vast amount of visual data. 'Thanks to surveillance cameras, thanks to advances in computer vision, we can get hundreds and hundreds of trajectories of people walking in different kinds of environments. Something that's nice about living in the 21st century is there's lots of data.' 'We had data from previous researchers who studied people in bottlenecks, people on college campuses, people just outside of shopping malls, and what we can see is we have lots of trajectories, lots of paths that these people are taking, and we look for patterns in these paths, patterns in the trajectories.'"

3. A cantankerous and wild look at the past and present of fashion with Fran Lebowitz.

"If you're 18 right now, you think you invented platform shoes. You think you're doing something new. You think you've invented something so ugly that it's beautiful. When we were young, we knew things. We knew basic history, even as it related to fashion. Now, when something reappears, an 18 year old has no clue that it's a revival. Despite the fact that they're almost always online they don't get references. I think that's part of why visual things are becoming so derivative. Designers now, they all have these things called mood boards. I suppose they think a sense of discovery equals invention."

4. What would happen if a large nuclear weapon were to detonate above midtown Manhattan.


"The warhead would probably be detonated slightly more than a mile above the city, to maximize the damage created by its blast wave. Within a few tenths of millionths of a second after detonation, the center of the warhead would reach a temperature of roughly 200 million degrees Fahrenheit (about 100 million degrees Celsius), or about four to five times the temperature at the center of the sun. A ball of superheated air would form, initially expanding outward at millions of miles per hour. It would act like a fast-moving piston on the surrounding air, compressing it at the edge of the fireball and creating a shockwave of vast size and power."

5. 'Algorithm auditing' is going to be a key part of understanding the future.

"An emerging area of research we call 'algorithm auditing' allows researchers, designers, and users new ways to understand the algorithms that increasingly shape our online life. This research investigates algorithms 'from the outside,' testing them for problems and harms without the cooperation of online platform providers. So far, researchers have investigated the systems that handle recommendations, prices, news, commenting, and search, examining them for individually and societally undesirable consequences such as racism or fraud. In this workshop we treat this new area as a development of the traditional social science technique—the audit study—that creates new ways of investigating the function and relevance of algorithms. Through a cumulative set of activities designed by a group of multidisciplinary organizers, participants will create, document, trick, interrogate, and propose revisions to social media and other algorithms…"


On Fusion: The Tron: Legacy designer also designed this info-sec data visualizer.

Today's 1957 American English Usage Tip:

divorce, v. The constr. is properly from NOT by. Strictly a divorced woman is one whose husband has divorced her, not one who has divorced her husband; but (in US) the term is loosely used of both.



The Credits

1. 2. 3. | @silviakillings 4. 5.


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