Category Archives: Conspiracy

It’s Time to Save the World

“Is my English OK? Is the microphone on?” asked Greta Thunberg, in one of her most recent addresses. “Because I’m beginning to wonder.”

Laughter from the audience.

It wasn’t a joke. No one seems to be listening.

Nine years ago, when I was Greta’s age, I wasn’t aware. I wasn’t politically, globally, socially, environmentally aware. I wasn’t aware of what our biggest problems were–or that I, as a kid, could do anything about it, even if I did know what was happening in the world.

Nine years ago, I was LARPing (live-action role playing). For those who don’t know, LARP is a game wherein you create a character for yourself, dress up in costume, and run around in the woods at night, fighting faux villains with foam sticks. It’s like playing make-believe in the backyard when you were little, but on a larger scale, with maybe a better production value.

LARP comes in a number of forms, but the game I played was mostly like Dungeons & Dragons. It was a fantasy game. Swords and sorcery. Lightning bolts. Storming the castle. All of that.

While I knew that the events in the game weren’t “real” and that the character I played wasn’t “real,” they always felt important. They felt bigger than the small “reality” I actually lived in. I often felt that my character was better than me. She was stronger, prettier, freer. She had more goodness in her; more to give. I wanted to be like her in real life.

This disconnect–the idea that my character was false and somehow separate from me–affected my growth in a number of ways. I could write a book on it. There’s a lot to unpack. But the point here is that even after I managed to quit the game, I had a hard time developing an idea of who I was without that character.

Recently, with the changing of the seasons, I was hit by a wave of nostalgia. It would be the start of LARP season now, if I was still playing.

I’m still sorting through it, but one of the things that finally occurred to me was that I could be like the heroic character I used to play. I already was like her. She came from me.

But there were still situational differences, systematic differences between that character’s world and mine, dragging me down.

I posted this on Facebook:

larp

And, only days later, the sentiment was echoed by somebody else:

dnd

I’ve been flailing for a solution. Something I could do to help the environment, and reconcile the reality of my apparent helplessness with the idea of once having played at being someone courageous and able to create change.

In this video, Jane Goodall advises people to act locally. “Quite honestly,” she says, “if you think globally, you get depressed.” Break it down, then. Start with what you know you can do. Do something. Even if it might seem small. “We’re all interconnected.”

I’ve been worrying myself sick. I woke up today with a sore throat, and a headache, presumably from my newfangled teeth grinding habit. In an anxious, somewhat dissociated haze, I drove to the store for some groceries, just to get out of the house. Everywhere, meat and dairy. Things packaged in plastic. Delicious things that I only felt bad about craving. I bought one of those chocolate bars that claims to help endangered species, and felt doubtful about its impact, but I hoped.

On my way home, it seemed like all I could see was trash. Scattered along the side of the road, accumulating in the ditches, washed up along the curb. Plastic bags blowing in the wind and caught up in bushes.

Enough is enough.

I found a metal stick–one of those garden hooks for hanging bird feeders or little candle pots–and I filed the end to a point on my dad’s bench grinder. I walked across the street to the park outside my house, and I attacked the garbage in the rain garden. I chased it through the foliage, piercing it with my makeshift rapier, collecting its remains.

Maybe this will help.

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Photo by Robert Stuart Lowden

I’m an adventurer. It’s my job.

And for all the shitheads out there who consume without thinking, and leave their trash lying around; for the people who continue to make a mess of the world, I have just one message:

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Was a security release funded by it’s competitor?

Computer.jpgBack in March of 2018 CTS-Labs disclosed a vulnerability that they found inside of AMD’s chipset line up. Now this is a normal thing that companies do in order to make sure that we are safe they try and break into electronics to find their vulnerabilities so that they can be updated. But what was odd about this disclosure was that they only gave AMD 24 hours of notice before they made the vulnerability public. To put this into perspective when Google release their security disclosure for Spectre and Meltdown they notified Intel 6 months before releasing it to the public. Now CTS-Labs reports “It doesn’t have any investment (long or short) in Intel or AMD.”, but it seemed a little fishy to me so I did some digging. While one site reports that they have a legal disclaimer stating “you are advised that we may have , either directly or indirectly, an economic interest in the performance of the securities of the companies whose products are the subject of our reports.” Which to most people just sounds like a red flag but I can give them the benefit of the doubt on that one Lawyers need to make sure to cover all bases whether it is currently happening or not.

Next I wanted to look into the actual company. The company of CTS-Labs was created in 2017 and is based in Israel.  They are a security company that focuses on hardware security so their report could be that they needed to get their name out to garner business and that is why the report was rushed but it could also be that Intel would have received the briefing about Spectre and Meltdown security flaws just around the time that CTS-Labs was created and Intel would have seen on the report that AMD was not affected by either of these issues. They would have know that when this gets out that is going to cause their stock to drop and AMD’s stock to jump up. So the logical thing to do is to find a security flaw in AMD’s chipset, but if they reported it that would look childish but if someone else reports it than it is fine. Supporting new business is something that many companies do and so they found a new business that couldn’t be traced to them offered them support and asked them to focus their efforts on finding security flaws in AMD’s chips hoping that they will find one by the time the public finds out about the security issues within their own chips.

Now all of this of course is conjecture as CTS-Labs has absolutely refused to give up any information about its funding for their investigation into the security flaws but this event has definitely created tension between security groups and manufacturers.

Resources:

https://www.anandtech.com/show/12536/our-interesting-call-with-cts-labs

http://cts-labs.com/

https://www.cnet.com/news/amd-has-a-spectre-meltdown-like-security-flaw-of-its-own/

Origins of the Mac network infection

If you were under the impression that Apple products are the way to go because they aren’t capable of getting viruses, that is a myth.  Being predominantly a Windows and Android user myself, I’ve had to live with and learn about computer viruses to maintain my own personal security.  Yes it’s true that your risks of getting a virus on a Mac is far less than a typical Windows user’s experience, but if you’ve never encountered a virus on your computer and believe you’re invincible, then you’re far worse off.

Basically Apple users have been infected with a very clever Botnet virus that causes it’s users to do the Botnet source’s bidding (See article about the infection here).  What is a Botnet?

A botnet, short for “robot network,” and also known as a zombie army, is a group of computers infected with malicious pieces of software that put the computers under the command of remote operators without the legitimate users’ knowledge.

Security News Daily

Instead of laughing at how weak Apple looks to the public from this virus attack with snide remarks, I want you to take a step back from this piece of the puzzle to envision a larger picture.  Because if you think Apple is the underdog to Windows or some small grassroots industry, then your soul has already been signed to them under the terms of usage contracts they continuously update.

The power of Apple is globally united.  Isn’t it a little strange that as this virus started to emerge and peak in it’s power while Mexico City had a terrorizing attack from a rather dormant volcano?

Overnight on Friday, the volcano emitted a deep roar that could be heard for miles and spooked residents. Experts say the volcano’s emissions have been particularly frightening to nearby residents at night because they give the false impression of being lava.

 – Wall Street Journal

Yes this volcano was dormant for decades and emerged as an active volcano in 1994, but consider the fact that “Apple sharply tops analyst projections” in 1994.  Yeah.  Powerful enough to awaken a volcano.

All this and I haven’t even mentioned the connection with the Cosmic Ray Origin.  Good evening.