“These days, the children don’t play at break time anymore.”

France bans smartphones from school


Wed, Dec 13th, 2017 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Starting September 2018, smartphones will be banned from schools entirely by order of the French ministry of education. Students, who already can't use them in the classroom, will also be forbidden from using them during breaks, lunches, and in between classes. The ban is upsetting students, teachers, and parents alike, but research shows that a lack of smartphones in the classroom improves children's learning.

Research is on Bloomberg—and the French government’s—side. According to a 2015 working paper (pdf) published by the London School of Economics, schools that banned mobile phones saw test scores for their 16-year-olds improve by 6.4%, or the equivalent of adding five days to the school year. “We found that not only did student achievement improve, but also that low-achieving and low-income students gained the most,” economists Philippe Beland and Richard Murphy told the BBC.

It’s not yet clear how the French ban will…


“He says he tries to use Facebook as little as possible, and that his children aren’t allowed to use that shit.”

Social media is destroying the social fabric of society


Tue, Dec 12th, 2017 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Former Facebook executive Chamath Palihapitiya criticises not just Facebook but Silicon Valley in general for creating "dopamine-driven feedback loops" that are destroying societies by fueling misinformation and mistrust while preventing civil discourse and co-operation.

These former employees have all spoken out at a time when worry about Facebook’s power is reaching fever pitch. In the past year, concerns about the company’s role in the US election and its capacity to amplify fake news have grown, while other reports have focused on how the social media site has been implicated in atrocities like the “ethnic cleansing” of Myanmar’s Rohingya ethnic group.

In his talk, Palihapitiya criticized not only Facebook, but Silicon Valley’s entire system of venture capital funding. He said that investors pump money into “shitty, useless, idiotic companies,” rather than addressing real problems like climate change and disease.…


“Previously unknown plastic contamination in the tap water of cities around the world.”

Study reveals microscopic plastic fibres are in your drinking water and more than likely in your food too


Mon, Dec 11th, 2017 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Journalistic website Orb discovered through a first-of-its-kind study that microscopic plastic pollution has reached the very bottom of the food chain and it is working its way into our water and food. Worse, some of these plastic fibers are made with plasticizers that contain endocrine disrupting chemicals, BPA, phthalates, flame retardants, and toxic heavy metals — and we are eating them.

If plastic fibers are in your water, experts say they’re surely in your food as well — baby formula, pasta, soups, and sauces, whether from the kitchen or the grocery. Plastic fibers may leaven your pizza crust, and a forthcoming study says it’s likely in the craft beer you’ll drink to chase the pepperoni down.

It gets worse. Plastic is all but indestructible, meaning plastic waste doesn’t biodegrade; rather, it only breaks down into smaller pieces of itself, even down to particles in nanometer scale — one-one…


AI and Robotic Arms Remove Trash from Recycling

The future of recycling


Sun, Dec 10th, 2017 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Watch an AI system combined with a robotic arm rapidly and efficiently determine what is trash and what is recyclable.

Artificial intelligence and robotic technology lead to this system that is far better than humans at removing trash from otherwise recyclable refuse. Video courtesy of Bulk Handling Systems.


Ubuntu 17.10 Artful "What the Fuck" Aardvark

Did anyone test this thing?


Sat, Dec 9th, 2017 11:00 by Lord Lansdowne ARTICLE

On my trusty desktop I like running Ubuntu's LTS (long term support) version.

This means that while I don't get the latest lame-assed eye-candy or that my icons don't go bouncing up and down in the cutest of cute ways, when I need to get shit done I can get shit done because things will consistently work and stay out of my way. Try doing that with Windows 10. Yeah, I didn't think so.

I know this may come as a total shock in an era where the personal computer is fading and everyone is using smartphones and tablets, but let's be perfectly honest here: handhelds are locked-down consumer devices used by idiots to make their idiocy public on Lamebook — special thanks to Mark Zuckerberg and Larry Page for turning the Internet into a giant pile of shit for personal monetary gain. If you have had to urgently…


“Google is our modern man's God.”

How Amazon, Apple, Facebook, and Google manipulate our emotions


Fri, Dec 8th, 2017 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

On TED, Scott Galloway explains how big internet companies got to where they are now and what their real goal is, but that ultimately it is our fault as the users for letting this happen. Disturbing but unsurprising that shareholde value is what is prized the most in our society..

Their defense: "Facebook is not a media company; it's a technology company." You create original content, you pay sports leagues to give you original content, you run advertising against it -- boom! -- you're a media company. Just in the last few days, Sheryl Sandberg has repeated this lie, that "We are not a media company." Facebook has openly embraced the margins of celebrity and the influence of a media company yet seems to be allergic to the responsibilities of a media company. Imagine McDonald's. We find…


“Millions of Americans are hassled to pay back money they don’t owe.”

Phantom debt


Thu, Dec 7th, 2017 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Like a comic book character determined to inflict revenge on a bunch of sleazy criminals, Bloomberg Businessweek looks at Andrew Therrien — hounded by aggressive debt collectors looking for money he didn't own — who made it his personal mission to track these people down and make them pay.

When the scammers started to hound Therrien, he hounded them right back. Obsessed with payback, he spent hundreds of hours investigating the dirty side of debt. By day he was still promoting ice cream brands and hiring models for liquor store tastings. But in his spare time, he was living out a revenge fantasy. He befriended loan sharks and blackmailed crooked collectors, getting them to divulge their suppliers, and then their suppliers above them. In method, Therrien was like a prosecutor flipping gangster underlings to get to lieutenants and then the boss. In spirit, he was a bit like Liam…


“End your life with a click.”

Futurama's suicide booths are here


Wed, Dec 6th, 2017 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

Much like Futurama's suicide booths, Australian euthanasia advocate Dr. Philip Nitschke has launched a 3D-printed sarcophagus for self-euthanasia. Only comes with the quick and painless setting.

It is easy to use the Sarco capsule. It just requires an access code. Anyone who wants to end their life is required to complete an online mental questionnaire in order to obtain a 4-digit code that will open the capsule. Once it is opened, the person can get inside and lie down inside the device and start it either by pressing a button, voice activation or a series of blinks. Once the lid is closed, the machine gets filled with liquid nitrogen which in turn lowers the oxygen level. Within a few minutes the person inside is dead. Later, the capsule can be removed to be used as a coffin.


“The story of a rodent's unrelenting quest for happiness and fulfillment.”

Oh, and here comes the money grab


Tue, Dec 5th, 2017 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

After you are done watching this short video by Steve Cutts, you can read about net neutrality and how that will impact Canadians.

Because Net Neutrality is part of a much larger structural problem that we have to deal with in Canada and around the world.

Like their American counterparts, Canada’s telecom giants have so much control over the market they can embrace what I call the Big Telecom price-gouging cycle [...]. Basically, Telecoms use their fists full of cash and their army of lobbyists to shape laws that enable them to price-gouge people across Canada, then they reinvest a portion of that parasitic revenue into more lobbying and control.

In addition to being massively inefficient, this broken telecom market has enabled telecom giants to extract money from Canadian families, community groups…


“The results of its People You May Know algorithm are anything but obvious.”

How Facebook's friend recommendations work


Mon, Dec 4th, 2017 11:00 by capnasty NEWS

If you have ever wondered how Facebook makes suggestions of people you might know, it does so not just with the data you provide it, but with a "shadow profile" it builds about you made of information it gathers from everyone else around you and to which you have absolutely no control over.

Connections like these seem inexplicable if you assume Facebook only knows what you’ve told it about yourself. They’re less mysterious if you know about the other file Facebook keeps on you—one that you can’t see or control.

Behind the Facebook profile you’ve built for yourself is another one, a shadow profile, built from the inboxes and smartphones of other Facebook users. Contact information you’ve never given the network gets associated with your account, making it easier for Facebook to more completely…

Nov 18“When automation starts displacing lawyers, accountants and bankers, then we might see some push-back.” #Future
Nov 23Knowing how to operate a smartphone does not qualify as being tech savvy. #Video
Nov 21“Session replay scripts collect can’t reasonably be expected to be kept anonymous.” #Privacy
Nov 20“Governments around the world are dramatically increasing their efforts to manipulate information on social media.” #Politics
Nov 17“Astronomers have sent a radio message to a neighbouring star system.” #Space
Nov 22When the Wrong Hastag Can Get You Killed by an Assassination Drone #Future
Nov 27“That's a drawback to the three-word system: a universal geocode isn't worth much if it's not, well, universal.” #Companies
Nov 11“It saddens me to say it, but we are approaching the end of the automotive era.” #Driving
Nov 14“Semis, not personal cars, are the smartest use of autonomous technology.” #Robots
Nov 24“Tech is like the tobacco industry.” #Internet
Nov 25Restoring Old Die-Cast Toy Cars #Games
Nov 16“A fraudster poses as an attractive woman and encourages a man to masturbate in front of a webcam.” #Scams
Dec 11“Previously unknown plastic contamination in the tap water of cities around the world.”
Dec 12“He says he tries to use Facebook as little as possible, and that his children aren’t allowed to use that shit.”
Apr 20iotacons: Pixelated Art by Andy Rash
Dec 13“These days, the children don’t play at break time anymore.”
Dec 09Ubuntu 17.10 Artful "What the Fuck" Aardvark
Dec 10AI and Robotic Arms Remove Trash from Recycling
Dec 07“Millions of Americans are hassled to pay back money they don’t owe.”
Aug 29Japanese Robot Serves Ice Cream From Inside a Vending Machine
Jan 11How to Avoid Jury Duty
Dec 04“The results of its People You May Know algorithm are anything but obvious.”
Dec 06“End your life with a click.”
Dec 08“Google is our modern man's God.”