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There are great benefits to connectedness, but we haven't wrapped our minds around the costs.

Non-Obvious Relationship Awareness
Topic: Technology 11:25 am EDT, Jul  4, 2004

NORA answers the question "Who knows who?"

If security is the value proposition, then your ability to detect suspicious connections between individuals internal and external to your organization significantly decreases the threats of fraud, collusion, conflicts of interest, or even of the potential for corporate sabotage or terrorism.

NORA enables companies to identify and address a problem before it becomes a problem.

Like Keith, on Six Feet Under! (How's that for a non-obvious connection!)

The software is optimized to adjust to the data terrain within an enterprise and performs just as well using poor data as it does using pure data.

No Garbage In, Garbage Out to worry about here!

Are you not eerily reminded of the Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon?

Ask yourself, how many degrees are there between you and Osama bin Laden? It may be less than you think.

Are you uncomfortable yet?

Non-Obvious Relationship Awareness


About Independence
Topic: Civil Liberties 11:14 am EDT, Jul  4, 2004

People too often get the impression that the only people who use the nation's civil liberties protections are lawbreakers who were not quite guilty of the exact felony they were charged with.

Brandon Mayfield, a lawyer in Oregon, was held for two weeks, even though the only other connections between him and terrorism were things like the fact, as the FBI pointed out, that his law firm advertised in a "Muslim yellow page directory" whose publisher had once had a business relationship with Osama bin Laden's former personal secretary.

So is this what you call a Non-Obvious Relationship?

This nation was organized under a rule of law, not a dictatorship of the virtuous. The founding fathers wrote the Bill of Rights specifically because they did not believe that honorable men always do the right thing.

About Independence


The Smallest Court in the Land
Topic: Politics and Law 10:57 am EDT, Jul  4, 2004

Of the many thousands of sentences in the Supreme Court's decisions this term, the most telling came from Justice John Paul Stevens: "Even more important than the method of selecting the people's rulers and their successors is the character of the constraints imposed on the executive by the rule of law."

The Smallest Court in the Land


Guerrilla Raids Force Chechen Refugees to Flee Again
Topic: International Relations 10:41 am EDT, Jul  4, 2004

Following raids by Islamic guerrillas the night of June 21 in the southern Russian republic of Ingushetia, Chechen refugees are in motion once more, saying they are being blamed for the guerrillas' success and must leave [returning to Grozy] or face retaliation in the night. They are deeply afraid.

The guerrillas overran police stations and checkpoints here early last week, and, dressed in police uniforms themselves, systematically executed law enforcement and military personnel who tried to come to their besieged friends' aid. Nearly 100 people died before the guerrillas withdrew.

In the days since, Russian and Ingush police, wearing ski masks and carrying assault rifles, have accused Chechen refugees of assisting and sheltering the guerrillas. They have been rounding up Chechen men for questioning and, the refugees say, for beatings.

But Grozy is in ruins, occupied by the Russian Army. Armored vehicles roam what passes for roads. More frightening, civilians frequently disappear.

Read on for details of beatings, forced confessions, and more.

Guerrilla Raids Force Chechen Refugees to Flee Again


Chechnya's Refugees, Detained, Beaten, Disappeared, and Forever on the Move
Topic: International Relations 10:31 am EDT, Jul  4, 2004

"Guerrilla Raids Force Chechen Refugees to Flee Again" notes the irony of refugees who left Chechnya for Ingushetia now escaping reprisals by returning to war-torn Grozny, as some fled in 1999 to Kazakhstan, where Stalin had deported them in 1944.

By shutting down their camps, Russian and Ingush authorities have long been forcing refugees to leave so Russia can claim that Chechnya is normalizing. The Russian crackdown after the attack now prompts Chechens remaining in Ingushetia to flee; even once friendly Ingush target them, with many men detained and beaten.

Russia has destabilized Ingushetia in the past few years, engineering the election of a more obedient president. People began disappearing, including a prosecutor investigating the abuses. That the attack seems to have involved some Ingush fighters suggests that Russian policies triggered it, widening the Chechen war.

Those claiming that Chechnya is part of the war on terror should consider who is responsible for the horrors there.

Chechnya's Refugees, Detained, Beaten, Disappeared, and Forever on the Move


RE: A Russian view of the Supreme Court Decision
Topic: Civil Liberties 10:28 am EDT, Jul  4, 2004

Decius wrote:
]] And so it's come to this. The American people -- proud
]] heirs of a bold revolutionary spirit now marking the
]] 228th anniversary of its fiery eruption into the world --
]] have been reduced to thanking the robed Olympians on the
]] U.S. Supreme Court for preserving a few crumbs of the
]] nation's once-vast ancient liberties.
]
] Damn ...

I find this article rather ironic (hypocritical?) in the context of Chechnya today and Soviet/KGB practices of decades past.

RE: A Russian view of the Supreme Court Decision


The Phone
Topic: Games 8:27 pm EDT, Jul  3, 2004

The phone is ringing! Answer it!

Update: Now available here.

The Phone


Factiva chief: Google not a threat
Topic: Media 1:25 pm EDT, Jul  3, 2004

Factiva rocks.

"Our customers recognize the value in the comprehensive service they're getting and the time that they are saving. Time is one of the most important assets to business people."

Factiva chief: Google not a threat


Coca-Cola promotion prompts security measures
Topic: Military 1:23 pm EDT, Jul  3, 2004

GPS-equipped cans of Coca-Cola are being used in a prize promotion by the soft drink company. The can has officials at some of the most secretive U.S. installations worried that the cans could be used to eavesdrop.

Military bases are asking soldiers to examine their Coke cans before bringing them in to classified meetings.

Paul Saffo compared the concern about the Coke cans to when the Central Intelligence Agency banned Furbies, the stuffed toys that could repeat phrases.

Coca-Cola promotion prompts security measures


BGPlay - graphical visualisation of BGP updates
Topic: Technology 1:13 pm EDT, Jul  3, 2004

BGPlay is a Java application which displays animated graphs of the routing activity of a certain prefix within a specified time interval. Its graphical nature makes it much easier to understand how BGP updates affect the routing of a specific prefix than by analyzing the updates themselves.

BGPlay - graphical visualisation of BGP updates


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