LulzSec is now AntiSec

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The King is dead. Long live the King. LulzSec, the hackers who delighted and infuriated and apparently drew too much heat from other hackers and the Law, announced on June 25 that they were closing up shop. One kid, who may or may not have been part of LulzSec, had been arrested in the England. A woman, who may or may not have been part of LulzSec, was  paid a visit by the FBI at her home in Iowa. LulzSec (conveniently?) claimed that they only intended to be in existence for 50 days. Oh, and by the way, follow @AnonymousIRC on Twitter for more of the same, LulzSec tweeted. On Tuesday, #AntiSec (the transition uses the Twitter hashtag), dumped a bunch of hacked data from the governments of Zimbabwe, Brazil, Australia, and Anguilla, as well as some internal corporate data from some media companies. Wait, Anguilla? Down with Anguilla! LulzSec is now basically acknowledged to have been an offshoot of Anonymous and whoever were the driving forces behind LulzSec have now blended back into the hacktivist collective. The day LulzSec announced they were done with their mission of LULZ, some hacker group calling themselves the A-Team, released a boatload of info on suspected LulzSec participants. As I mentioned above, the woman in Iowa was in this “dox,” or release of identifying personal data. She claims not to have done anything illegal. She just happened to be hanging out (My friend asked me to hold this weed!). Is it just a matter of time before Sabu, Kayla, and the rest of the gang get tracked down by G-Men? Or were they clever enough to establish bogus identities to get doxed leading to dead ends? As with any criminal enterprise, authorities start with the small fish, scare them into cooperating, and move their way in. But can they bust these data Robin Hoods?

The Filter Bubble

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This weekend, I met Gabriel Weinberg, an MIT grad living in the Philadelphia suburbs who created a search engine called DuckDuckGo. It’s a simple website that weeds out spam search results and promises not to save your search requests like Google does. Time magazine’s Techland blog featured the site just two weeks ago. What makes the search engine especially intriguing now is that its promoted features dovetail perfectly with a new book warning about the perils of sites like Google filtering the information you receive based on data it has collected from you. The Filter Bubble: What the Internet is Hiding from You, by Eli Pariser, former executive director of, went on sale in May and is stirring a growing debate about how dominant Internet companies such as Google and Facebook are limiting your exposure to a diversity of ideas for the sake of selling ads that target you. More

Philly artist creating visuals for new mobile-app game

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Yis Goodwin, better known as Nose Go in Philadelphia street-art circles, has been busy designing characters and backgrounds for a developing mobile-app game called Catball. It is currently a Kickstarter project with 18 days to go to reach its goal of $4,000 in funding. You can watch the demo video here. I’m not much of a mobile gaming guy, but I like Nose Go’s art. He got a lot of attention recently from the popular Tyson Bees food truck, which he painted in his crazy, colorful style. I met him sometime in 2007 or ‘08 while I was researching a documentary of Philadelphia graffiti. He is more gallery than street these days, and his next canvas may be your iPhone, iPad and Android (and maybe even Xbox Live and PS3).

The Future of Photography?

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Click this link:

Click on the photo in different areas to change the focus. Is this for real?

Read about it at TechCrunch.

Will Apple turn off your iPhone video camera at concerts?

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Sure, video is decent, but this sounds horrible.

This really bugged me when I read about it: Apple is developing a system that would allow concert and sports venues to shut off the video function on your iPhone at arenas or stadiums (stadia?) to prevent unauthorized recording of shows or games. I am absolutely opposed to this. I am not renting my iPhone. I paid for it. I own it. It should be up to venue owners to prohibit recording devices and enforce those bans. More worrisome is the technology. Will governments (police? military?) be able to set up zones where your video-recording capabilities will be disabled? In theory, I am resigned to a future when technology will be messing with other technology. You can already buy devices now that block GPS signals around you. But I don’t have to sit back and say nothing as Apple devises ways to limit the functionality of the devices I pay for. Hey, Steve, when “it just works,” don’t mess with it.

Mt. Gox hacked – My Bitcoins trapped!


I’ve just had my first scare with Bitcoin, the virtual crypto-currency that I decided to dabble with. I bought 4.943 Bitcoins for $98 last week through the Mt. Gox exchange. I haven’t done anything with them since then, so they have remained at Mt. Gox in my trading account. I was scrolling through Twitter today and noticed a tweet from one of the Bitcoin-related accounts I follow warning of a hack at Mt. Gox. The site had a message posted saying all activity has been frozen after someone had $1,000 worth of Bitcoins stolen. Here’s the fun part: More

The LulzSec Manifesto

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Here it is, on the occasion of their 1,000th tweet, and here are the highlights: More

The Age of Hacker Celebrities


Welcome to the Age of Hacker Celebrity. It used to be that hackers became notorious after they got caught. Now we have hackers who are running amok and generating news stories on a daily – sometimes hourly – basis. Julian Assange – Mr. WikiLeaks – is a former hacker but still operates with a hacker ethos. The guy who has caused the most trouble for Assange is Adrian Lamo, the ex-hacker who linked Bradley Manning to WikiLeaks. As for active hackers, we have Anonymous, the hacktivist collective. They appeared on my radar screen a few years ago because they organized public demonstrations against Scientology. I made a video about one of their events in Philadelphia. They have aligned themselves with WikiLeaks. On the other end of the spectrum is a hacker known as The Jester – @th3j35t3r on Twitter. He is anti-Assange and has attacked the WikiLeaks website. More

I have Bitcoins!

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I now have Bitcoins! What should I do? Hopefully no one will steal them, like someone apparently did in the case of $500,000 from an early adopter. The theft report could be bogus. I don’t know! I’m playing with funny money. I have nearly 5 Bitcoins baby. Watcha gonna do? Are Bitcoins a scam? It’s up to you.

Google introduces search-by-image

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Google today will make widely available a new “search by image” feature. It’s up and running and I typed “Ed Rendell,” former Guv of Pennsylvania. This was the first image that came up. I did a search-by-image and came up with this. Pretty cool. The Google Goggles image-recognition function on its mobile app is very impressive: Analyze a picture of, say, a Coke bottle, and you get a link to a Google search for Coke. There are limitations. With the new image-search feature, it would be interesting to search a photo of an unidentified person you are trying to identify. However, Google is not keen on such a feature, according to

Google says it won’t be using any facial recognition technology and that the search works best when an image has some sort of “fame” — so that for instance, Google wouldn’t be able to tell you who lived in a given house in a photo, unless it was something like Graceland.


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