'The Times breathlessly reveals to us that ISIS "bases its ideology on prophetic texts stating that Islam will be victorious after an apocalyptic battle to be set off once Western armies come to the region. Should that invasion happen, the Islamic State not only would be able to declare its prophecy fulfilled, but could also turn the occurrence into a new recruiting drive at the very moment the terrorist group appears to be losing volunteers."

The newspaper often used by the White House to distribute public relations narratives, then directly tells us, "It is partly that theory that President Obama referred to in his speech on Sunday …"

Now all the bizarre nonsense spewing from Mr. Obama's henchmen and sycophants makes perfect sense, if you're being driven by Koranic prophecy, that is. We've been told for over a year now that we can't confront ISIS directly because … that's what they want!

The singular talking point has been so absurdly pushed, the folks over at the online investigative magazine, Free Beacon, have produced a video titled, "The Islamic State Wants Us To Destroy It," within which they lampoon a litany of talking heads, politicians and academics moving the White House's narrative:

"Dozens of thought leaders familiar with the terrorist group say that its members yearn for the day that close air support from an A-10 Warthog cuts them in half while coalition soldiers storm Raqqa," notes the Beacon. "They are begging for U.S. troops on the ground," former Obama administration official Van Jones said. "That's what they want."

"The one thing ISIS wants the most: American boots on the ground," CNN anchor Fareed Zakaria said. "As long as we're relying on military force, this is the kind of terms [sic] that ISIS wants. This is what strengthens them," Institute for Policy Studies scholar Phyllis Bennis said. "More war is exactly what ISIS wants," Sen. Angus King, Maine independent, said.



Fwd: fast food app

'Starbucks says its mobile app that lets people order and pay in advance will be available nationally starting Tuesday. That means lattes, breakfast sandwiches and other items you want could theoretically be waiting for you by the time you arrive.

Mobile order-and-pay is still rare, but could become more common as fast-food chains look to keep up with changing expectations. Taco Bell also introduced a mobile app last year that lets people order and pay in advance, and Wendy's says it's testing the option. If it works well, companies see such services and mobile apps in general as a way to build customer loyalty.'




Fwd: Rising Star

'This Face Changes the Human Story. But How?

Scientists have discovered a new species of human ancestor deep in a South African cave, adding a baffling new branch to the family tree.'


Robin Williams and Lewy body dementia

It was revealed following his death that Williams had been suffering from severe depression, and had been sleeping in a different room from his wife due to restlessness and anxiety caused by his Parkinson's.[136]

The final autopsy report, released in November 2014, affirmed that Williams had committed suicide as initially described;[136] neither alcohol nor illegal drugs were involved, while any prescription drugs present in Williams' body were at "therapeutic" levels. The report also noted that Williams had been suffering "a recent increase in paranoia".[137] An examination of his brain tissue revealed the presence of "diffuse Lewy body dementia".[138] Williams' doctors reportedly believe that Lewy body dementia "was the critical factor" that led to his suicide​.


Fwd: un-"herd" of

'within four days, the entire herd — 60,000 saiga — had died...

Now, the researchers have found clues as to how more than half of the country's herd, counted at 257,000 as of 2014, died so rapidly. Bacteria clearly played a role in the saigas' demise. But exactly how these normally harmless microbes could take such a toll is still a mystery, Zuther said.

"The extent of this die-off, and the speed it had, by spreading throughout the whole calving herd and killing all the animals, this has not been observed for any other species," Zuther said. "It's really unheard of."'



Fwd: China

'In China, drivers who have injured pedestrians will sometimes then try to kill them. And yet not only is it true, it's fairly common; security cameras have regularly captured drivers driving back and forth on top of victims to make sure that they are dead. The Chinese language even has an adage for the phenomenon: "It is better to hit to kill than to hit and injure."'




"Double-hit cases" have been around for decades. I first heard of the "hit-to-kill" phenomenon in Taiwan in the mid-1990s when I was working there as an English teacher. A fellow teacher would drive us to classes. After one near-miss of a motorcyclist, he said, "If I hit someone, I'll hit him again and make sure he's dead." Enjoying my shock, he explained that in Taiwan, if you cripple a man, you pay for the injured person's care for a lifetime. But if you kill the person, you "only have to pay once, like a burial fee." He insisted he was serious—and that this was common.

Most people agree that the hit-to-kill phenomenon stems at least in part from perverse laws on victim compensation. In China the compensation for killing a victim in a traffic accident is relatively small—amounts typically range from $30,000 to $50,000—and once payment is made, the matter is over. By contrast, paying for lifetime care for a disabled survivor can run into the millions. The Chinese press recently described how one disabled man received about $400,000 for the first 23 years of his care. Drivers who decide to hit-and-kill do so because killing is far more economical. Indeed, Zhao Xiao Cheng—the man caught on a security camera video driving over a grandmother five times—ended up paying only about $70,000 in compensation.

Security cameras have regularly captured drivers driving back and forth on top of victims to make sure that they are dead.

In 2010 in Xinyi, video captured a wealthy young man reversing his BMW X6 out of a parking spot. He hits a 3-year-old boy, knocking the child to the ground and rolling over his skull. The driver then shifts his BMW into drive and crushes the child again. Remarkably, the driver then gets out of the BMW, puts the vehicle in reverse, and guides it with his hand as he walks the vehicle backward over the boy's crumpled body. The man's foot is so close to the toddler's head that, if alive, the boy could have reached out and touched him. The driver then puts the BMW in drive again, running over the boy one last time as he drives away.

Here too, the driver was charged only with accidentally causing a person's death. (He claimed to have confused the boy with a cardboard box or trash bag.) Police rejected charges of murder and even of fleeing the scene of the crime, ignoring the fact that the driver ran over the boy's head as he sped away.'


Fwd: Skylake

'first-ever Xeon processor family for laptops, the E3-1500M v5…


the mobile workstation market is one of the few areas where Windows PC sales are growing -- it only makes sense for Intel to court the increasing numbers of creatives and engineers that want to do their jobs away from the office.'



Fwd: Skylake

I looked at just released 5th generation Broadwell chips, but in the next month or two we should have 6th generation skylake…


'Skylake ships with an integrated graphics core inside of it, which Intel had previously said would be optimized for low-power video decoding. What was surprising, however, was apparently how good it is – Skaugen showed off the chip decoding 15 4K videos using the chip's H.265 decoding engine, and compared it against to a machine with a pair of Nvidia Titan chips performing the same task. They struggled.'



Fwd: Japan

'More Japanese school pupils commit suicide on September 1 each year than on any other date, according to figures collated by Japan's suicide prevention office over a period of more than 40 years.

The grim spike in the statistics is linked to the typical start date of the new school term after the summer holiday has ended.

"The long break from school enables you to stay at home, so it's heaven for those who are bullied," Nanae said. "When summer ends, you have to go back. And once you start worrying about getting bullied, committing suicide might be possible."..

Nanae thinks the Japanese education system's focus on collective thinking is at the root cause of the problem.

"In Japan, you have to fall in line with other people. And if you cannot do that, you're either ignored or bullied," she said. "You are required to have a unified opinion, and it crushes the uniqueness every person has. But that uniqueness is not something to destroy."

Some experts agree. Child psychiatrist Dr. Ken Takaoka said the suicide rate increases when school restarts because schools "prioritize collective (action). Children who do not get along in a group will suffer."'




Fwd: Healing Material

Fwd: Mars

In 2021, Orion's crew will set off on its first mission to collect an asteroid and bring it into the Moon's orbit. This will not only provide further insight into these masses, but will also serve as an evaluation for the capabilities of the spacecraft. This will allow NASA's team to test the durability, electrical systems and safety to ensure that a longer journey will go smoothly.

NASA hopes to send astronauts to Mars in the next 20 years. At the moment, there are rovers and robots exploring the red planet, gathering information and searching for signs of life. This will help NASA plan for maintaining human life for an extended time on Mars.'




Fwd: economics

'Since the dawn of capitalism, closed societies with repressive governments have — much like China — been capable of remarkable growth and innovation. Sixteenth-century Spain was a great imperial power, with a massive navy and extensive industry such as shipbuilding and mining. One could say the same thing about Louis XIV's France during the 17th century, which also had vast wealth, burgeoning industry and a sprawling empire.

But both countries were also secretive, absolute monarchies, and they found themselves thrust into competition with the freer countries Holland and Great Britain. Holland, in particular, with a government that didn't try to control information, became the information center of Europe — the place traders went to find out vital information which they then used as the basis of their projects and investments. The large empires, on the other hand, had economies so centrally planned that the monarch himself would often make detailed economic decisions. As these secretive monarchies tried to prop up their economies, they ended up in unsustainable positions that invariably led to bankruptcy, collapse and conflict.

In Spain, the result was a slow collapse, which has left it and its former empire suffering from perpetual economic crisis and political instability. In France, an open society would eventually be born through monarchial bankruptcy that pulled down banks around Europe, and ended in violent revolution and the vastly destructive Napoleonic wars.'




'The letter, presented at the International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence in Buenos Aires, Argentina, was signed by Tesla's Elon Musk, Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak, Google DeepMind chief executive Demis Hassabis and professor Stephen Hawking along with 1,000 AI and robotics researchers.

The letter states: "AI technology has reached a point where the deployment of [autonomous weapons] is – practically if not legally – feasible within years, not decades, and the stakes are high:'


Musk and Hawking have warned that AI is "our biggest existential threat" and that the development of full AI could "spell the end of the human race". But others, including Wozniak have recently changed their minds on AI, with the Apple co-founder saying that robots would be good for humans, making them like the "family pet and taken care of all the time".

Fwd: Afghanistan

'The district of Musa Qala fell after the Taliban over-ran police and army posts in an offensive that lasted several days. Three U.S. air strikes on Saturday killed up to 40 militants, but they regrouped and chased government officials out of town.

Elsewhere in Helmand, two men in military uniforms opened fire in the former British base of Camp Bastion, killing two NATO soldiers.

In the first summer fighting season since foreign troops formally stepped back from combat roles in the Afghan war, the Taliban have pushed into a number of districts but have struggled to hold them when the Afghan army counter-attacks.'


Fwd: Britain

'IT IS hard to exaggerate the chaos of the Labour Party in the 1980s. It once held a press conference to announce that Michael Foot was still party leader. Visitors to Walworth Road, recalls Tom Watson, now a party grandee, were "met at the front door by two striking miners and their table full of Davy lamps and buckets of shrapnel" and treated to harmonica recitals of "The Red Flag". On Peter Mandelson's first day as head of communications one colleague tried to kill another with poison.

This was a time when the party strayed far into the electoral wilderness, then succumbed to years of infighting as modernisers like Mr Mandelson, Tony Blair and Gordon Brown wrenched it away from the loony left and led it back to power after 18 years in opposition. Three decades on, however, one of the losers in that battle—Jeremy Corbyn, the hard-left MP for Islington North—is on the verge of winning the party leadership. Once more a period of introspection and infighting looms.'


Fwd: streaming

'Annual U.S. sales of DVDs and Blu-ray discs has fallen from a high of $20.2 billion a decade ago to around $10 billion, according to data from the Digital Entertainment Group, while the Recording Industry Assocation of America reports shipments of CDs fell from $13.2 billion in 2000, to $1.9 billion last year.

In response, the city of Chicago is experimenting with having local taxes collected on cloud computing services and streaming music and video. Other state governments like Tennessee and Idaho are experimenting with new taxes as well….

Yahoo Finance's Michael Santoli says while the Netflixs of the world may not like it, it's not surprising that these tax schemes are arising. "Many [local goverments] have done it under the guise of 'you can tax services as well,' so I do think that it's a very predictable thing when you see these municipalities losing revenue from a big consumer area and essentially trying to replace that."'



Fwd: Smart Skin

'BAE Systems' U.K. division is developing the Smart Skin concept, which aims to give machines the ability to 'feel' the world around them, sense and process the data like an animal and relay the information to a "brain" within the machine.

In future combat, all machines could leverage this mega-smart skin, detecting heat, damage and stress. Combat aircraft, drones, tanks and other land vehicles, as well as naval vessels could covered with the smart skin. Drones operating in air, on land, at sea or underwater could also deploy the technology. 

Using a skin loaded with a range of sensors, machines could "feel" and sense things like an animal does. The smart skin would cover a combat aircraft -- reading, recording and processing the machine's sensations.'




'Almost 80,000 people had by Monday signed a petition urging the arrest of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu for war crimes when he visits London next month.


The petition was launched earlier this month by British citizen Damian Moran and is posted on the government's website.

"Under international law he (Netanyahu) should be arrested for war crimes upon arrival in the UK for the massacre of over 2,000 civilians in 2014," Moran said, referring to the 51-day offensive by Israeli forces in Gaza last year.

If the number of signatories reaches 100,000, the petition can be considered for debate in Britain's parliament. '


Fwd: China

'China's central bank on Tuesday cut its benchmark interest rate and freed banks to lend more, the latest signs of the government's growing distress over slumping stocks and slowing economic growth.

The central bank's action came after a global stock market rout in which China's markets led the declines. The main Shanghai share index plunged another 7.6 percent on Tuesday, to its lowest level this year. That brought its three-day decline to 22 percent and signaled that two months' worth of attempts by the government to prop up stock prices had limited effects.

In an aggressive two-part move on Tuesday, the central bank lowered the benchmark lending and deposit rates by 0.25 of a percentage point. It also cut the so-called reserve requirement ratio for the amount of cash that banks are required to hold in reserve by 0.5 of a percentage point. It was China's fifth interest rate cut since November, and the fourth reduction of the reserve ratio since February. The central bank made a similar tandem cut to both rates in June, when the stock market first began to fall from its peak, but that reduction of the reserve ratio did not apply to the biggest banks.'



Black Lives Matter Declares Minnesota State Fair Racist, Plans to Disrupt

Koch Bros. Cut Trump Out of Invites, Campaign Armory

Fwd: low power

'By using absorption and reflection to indicate data states, NASA reckons it's created a Wi-Fi device for the wearable market that uses just 0.1 per cent of the power of ordinary transceivers.

Working with Frank Chang at Caltech UCLA, the JPL boffin Adrian Tang is keen on ways to let devices with relatively low communications needs do without recharging.

As NASA explains here, their idea is to let a chip either reflect a signal back to a base station or access point (representing a binary 1), or absorb it (representing a binary 0). That way, the Wi-Fi device (be it a smart-watch or a a bio-sensor, for example), only needs enough energy for its own operations, instead of having to carry power for a full transceiver.

Not only that, but the device is fast. The NASA release says that at a short 2.5 metre distance, it can communicate at up to 330 Mbps, "using about a thousand times less power than a regular Wi-Fi link".'


Fwd: 3D Xpoint memory

'The companies say the forthcoming chips will be up to 1,000 times faster than the NAND flash memory chips now used in most mobile devices, while storing 10 times more data than dynamic random access memory, or DRAM, chips that are another mainstay of electronics hardware.

Their technology—dubbed 3D Xpoint—doesn't quite match the speed of the chips known as DRAMs. But unlike those chips—and like NAND flash memory—the new chips will retain data even after they're powered off, the companies say.

"This is a whole new paradigm," said Mark Adams, Micron's president, predicting the technology will cause "a major disruption" in the $78.5 billion memory-chip market…


 compare to nram…




Fwd: Google translate

'Google Translate's real-time translation tool, first introduced in January, instantly transcribes a sign from a foreign language to your own when you point your phone camera at it—and now, the feature has expanded to cover 27 languages. Through the standalone Translate app, users can translate signs in tongues ranging from Catalan and Indonesian, to Slovak and Ukrainian.

The service previously offered translations between English and French, German, Italian, Portuguese, Russian, and Spanish. The app works both ways: Non-English speakers can also translate English signs into their native languages. For Hindi and Thai translations, however, Google Translate can only convert English to the two languages—not the other way around—due to the complexity of their characters.

The app also works in the absence of a data connection for a phone, which makes it optimal for travelers.

The instant translation feature is largely derived from the Word Lens app, which Google acquired last year when it purchased the company behind it, Quest Visual.'


Fwd: EW

'Hodges acknowledged that US troops are learning from Ukrainians about Russia's jamming capability, its ranges, types and the ways it has been employed. He has previously described the quality and sophistication of Russian electronic warfare as "eye-watering."…

In contrast with the US, Russia has large units dedicated to electronic warfare, known as EW, which it dedicates to ground electronic attack, jamming communications, radar and command-and-control nets…


NY Post Taunts Jared Fogle


Fwd: 14 acres each

'Today at Disney's D23 Expo, CEO Bob Iger made a huge announcement: the company is creating an enormous Star Wars-themed land for its parks. There will be two different parks, one at Disneyland in Anaheim, California, and another in Orlando, Florida, where Disney World is located. Each will be made up of 14 acres — what Iger described as the largest single themed expansion in the company's history.

The parks will each have two main attractions: one allows visitors to board the Millennium Falcon and fly what is described as a "secret mission." The other is a battle that puts visitors between the New Order and the Resistance from Star Wars: The Force Awakens. The parks will be populated by characters from the new movies as well as the classic Star Wars trilogy, and it sounds like quite a few fan favorites will be included. "You'd expect to find a cantina," Iger said, "and there will be one."'



Fwd: Fire Rainbow?

'It's one of the rarest meteorological phenomenon - and beach goers were treated to the sight of it for over an hour.

An incredible 'fire rainbow' floated in the air over South Carolina on Sunday, thankfully lingering so that it could be photographed and posted to social media.

The phenomenon is actually a cloud formation, formally referred to as a circumhorizontal arc. '



Fwd: Carbon sequestered to useful product

'A team of chemists have said that they've found a way by developing a method which can convert any atmospheric CO2 into carbon nanofibers which can be used for consumer and industrial purposes. These findings are going to be unveiled at the American Chemical Society's National Meeting & Exposition.

The way of finding these so called "diamonds in the sky" is going to let industrial manufacturers produce high-yields of carbon nanofibers which will make very strong carbon composites such as the ones used for the Boeing Dreamliner aircrafts and turbine blade, sports equipment as well as a number of other products…

It will cost around $ 1000 for each ton of carbon nanofiber in order to pay for the energy which is going to be hundred times less than the real value of the product.'





Fwd: China

'Southeast Asian nations want China to stop land reclamation in the disputed South China Sea, a regional official said Tuesday, but China insisted it has a right to continue the activity.

Le Luong Minh, secretary-general of the 10-member Association of Southeast Asian Nations, said ASEAN foreign ministers expressed concerns in a meeting Tuesday over massive Chinese island-building activities that have escalated tensions in the area.

the amount of land reclaimed by Vietnam, Malaysia, the Philippines and Taiwan in the disputed area over the last 45 years totals 40 hectares (100 acres), a fraction of the more than 1,200 hectares (3,000 acres) reclaimed by China in the last 18 months alone.'


Fwd: China

'The death toll from last Wednesday's multiple blasts in the New Binhai district remained 114 yesterday, but is expected to rise sharply over the next few days, with officials admitting it is unlikely any of the 60 missing people will be found alive.

A majority of those killed are understood to be firefighters first on the scene and engulfed by a much larger second explosion. Many were aged just 17 and earned less than 3000 renminbi ($640) a month.



'Deputy head Dong Shexuan is the son of a former police chief of Tianjin port.

"My connections is in police and fire. When we needed a fire inspection, I went to meet officials at the Tianjin port fire squad. I gave them the files and soon they gave me the appraisal," Dong said, according to Xinhua.

The warehouse was storing hundreds of tonnes of sodium cyanide, far more than legally allowed, it has emerged.


Fwd: Iran

'Despite a five-year ban on arms shipments to Iran under the nuclear agreement announced last month, Russia appears willing to proceed with the sale of advanced S-300 surface-to-air missiles to the country -- in a development triggering objections from the Obama administration.  


Fwd: Germany

'Germany to expect 750,000 refugees in 2015 - reports

The numbers are far higher than the record 438,000 asylum applications in 1992 during the Bosnian crisis.

Few arrivals from Balkan countries such as Albania or Kosovo are granted asylum in Germany and the government in Berlin is currently considering measures aimed at discouraging Balkan migrants from arriving.'



Fwd: Temple Mount

'Palestinian religious leaders – both Muslims and Christians – signed a declaration stating that Jews have no right to enter the Temple Mount at a press conference in east Jerusalem on Wednesday.

The declaration, titled "the Blessed Aksa Mosque Document" and signed by scores of religious figures, expressed their objections to Israeli and Jordanian understandings that allow Jews to visit the Temple Mount and to claims that the two countries had agreed to jointly supervise archeological excavations at the holy site.

The declaration was initiated by the Islamic Supreme Commission, which is headed by former Jerusalem mufti Sheikh Ekrima Sabri.

The Israeli presence in Jerusalem, the sheikh emphasized, was an "illegal occupation," and added that Israel has no sovereignty over the Aksa Mosque.

Sabri told journalists at the press conference that the Aksa Mosque, as well as all the area surrounding it and above and beneath it, was "purely and exclusively sacred to Muslims."

Neither Jews nor any other party had any right to the site, "not even one grain of soil," he said, adding that entering the site is considered an incursion of Palestinian Muslim rights.'




Fwd: Iran

'Just two weeks after Western nations and Tehran struck a deal to limit Iran's nuclear program, the Pentagon says Saudi Arabia wants to buy 600 new Patriot missile interceptors.


The $5 billion-plus purchase is likely just the first of many more as America's Middle Eastern allies arm themselves in response to the nuclear deal, which would lift Iran's conventional-arms embargo sanctions in five years and sanctions on long-range missile projects in eight.


"We're going to see more of this," Karako said. "So long as the Iranian missile threat exists, GCC and other countries in the region are going to have to invest in counters offensive and defensive."





Fwd: IRS

'A computer breach at the IRS in which thieves stole tax information from thousands of taxpayers is much bigger than the agency originally disclosed.

An additional 220,000 potential victims had information stolen from an IRS website as part of a sophisticated scheme to use stolen identities to claim fraudulent tax refunds, the IRS said Monday. The revelation more than doubles the total number of potential victims, to 334,000.

The tax agency first disclosed the breach in May.

The thieves accessed a system called "Get Transcript," where taxpayers can get tax returns and other filings from previous years. In order to access the information, the thieves cleared a security screen that required knowledge about the taxpayer, including Social Security number, date of birth, tax filing status and street address, the IRS said.'


Fwd: China

'The Obama administration has warned Beijing about the presence of Chinese agents in the United States who are secretly attempting to pressure prominent expatriates to return home to China immediately.


The Obama administration's warning to Beijing is likely to increase tensions between the two countries ahead of an official visit by President Xi Jingping to Washington next month.'



Fwd: China

'One of the hottest reads among Washington national security experts this summer is not the latest White House policy document or a big report from an influential think tank, but a novel by two of the national security community's own: Peter Singer and August Cole. Their book, "Ghost Fleet," is a riveting thriller in the Tom Clancy tradition. Much of the attention it is getting is due to its explanation of cutting-edge military technology, but it is also captivating—and important—because its core scenario is one that every policymaker and policy expert fears: a major war between the United States and China.

Fwd: e-mail

'Chinese cyber-spies are reading the private email accounts of Obama administration officials and other "national security" figures, in an operation first code-named the "Dancing Panda", it has been revealed.

A National Security Agency briefing from 2014 showed that the intrusion was first detected in April 2010, and the attacks are still ongoing, according to a senior intelligence official who spoke to NBC.


Fwd: detainers

'A California toddler fighting for her life Thursday after a brutal beating at the hands of an illegal immigrant with a long criminal record is the latest case to rile California sheriffs and police against a U.S. immigration policy they say is forcing them to release dangerous criminals out on the street.

The issue, says Parkinson and dozens of other sheriffs and police chiefs across California and Arizona, is that, while Immigration and Customs Enforcement routinely asks departments to hold prisoners like Chavez until they can take custody of them for deportation, the local law enforcement officials believe doing so will expose them to lawsuits. 


Under road charging of cars


'Before her death earlier this year, American hostage Kayla Mueller was repeatedly raped by the top leader of ISIS, Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi, according to counter-terrorism officials.'


Fwd: China

'Global markets fell Tuesday after China unexpectedly devalued its yuan currency amid weaker economic growth.


Beijing's devaluation of the yuan allowed it to fall by its biggest one-day margin in a decade. The central bank said the 1.9% decline was due to changes aimed at making the way it sets exchange rates more market-oriented. The U.S. dollar also gained against the yen, Indian rupee, South Korean and other Asian currencies.'




Fwd: $100 million

'According to federal officials, the defendants made a combined $100 million in illegal profits. The group includes two Ukrainian men who are believed to be the hackers, plus 30 other people from the U.S. and elsewhere who made the stock traders

The SEC initially filed fraud charges under seal on Aug. 10 in the U.S. District Court in Newark, N.J. The Justice Department announced criminal charges against several of the same defendants, including the alleged hackers, Ivan Turchynov and Oleksandr Ieremenko.

The Ukrainian men are said to have led the scheme over a five-year period. They hacked at least two newswire services, stealing hundreds of corporate earnings announcements before they were released.

The two hackers created a secret location on the Internet to send stolen data to traders in Russia, the Ukraine, Malta, Cyprus, France, and three U.S. states: Georgia, New York and Pennsylvania. In some cases, the traders shared a portion of their illicit profits with the hackers.'



'The Islamic State group released a video Monday showing the brutal execution of Afghan tribesman by detonating explosives they had positioned earlier underground.

In the video, the men, wearing traditional tribal clothes and with blindfolds around their heads are made to kneel in front of machine gun-toting jihadists clothed fully in black.

A scene that was filmed earlier showed the Islamic State fighters burying explosives in mounds on which the captives would later sit.

The men were accused by the so-called Khorasan province of the Islamic State of collaborating with the Taliban and Pakistan's intelligence agency against the Sunni jihadist group that aims to establish a global caliphate'




Fwd: Greece

'The Greek government said on Tuesday that it had reached a deal with its international creditors for a third bailout, though a number of European officials expressed caution.

The rescue plan, outlined in a 20-hour negotiating session in an Athens hotel, would provide aid worth up to 86 billion euros, or about $94.4 billion, to Greece in exchange for harsh austerity terms. It also acknowledged that the economy has been so severely damaged that it is now likely to wallow in recession through at least next year.

But whether the accord would satisfy Germany, or be ratified by other European governments in time to send Greece new aid to make a crucial €3.2 billion payment to the European Central Bank on Aug. 20, remained to be seen.

Martin Chaudhuri, a spokesman for the German Finance Ministry, said that Berlin had not yet been notified of an agreement. Should a deal emerge, "we are ready to evaluate it quickly," he said.

"What we have is a technical-level agreement," Annika Breidthardt, a spokeswoman for the European Commission, told a daily news conference on Tuesday, referring to the negotiations with the government in Athens. "What we don't have at the moment is a political agreement."'




'In 2010 the U.S. Treasury Department linked Mr. Soleimani to the failed Iranian plot to assassinate the Saudi ambassador to the United States while he dined in a D.C. restaurant.

"Qassem Soleimani is the one who has been exporting malign activities throughout the Middle East for some time now" 


Qassem Soleimani, the leader of the Iranian Quds Force that is tied to terrorist activity and reports directly to the supreme leader, recently visited Moscow to meet with … Russian Defense Minister Sergei Shoigu and President Vladimir Putin'


Fwd: Russian oil

'Russia has lots of oil, but in a weird twist of fate, the nation could soon run dangerously low on gasoline.

The head of Russia's biggest oil company is warning that the world's second largest oil producing nation could soon face a fuel shortfall.

Rosneft's Igor Sechin predicts that Russia's gasoline shortage could reach 5 million tonnes a year by 2017. It produced around 38 million tonnes of gasoline in 2014, according to the energy ministry.

The expected shortfall is a result of many factors, including new tax rules, a weakening economy and Western sanctions that are hurting Russia's oil refining businesses. This is pushing fuel prices up, even as oil prices have plunged.


Fwd: Energy

'When politicians propose a new policy, such as Barack Obama's and Hillary Clinton's plans to outlaw one third of US CO2 emissions in the next 15 years, it is always worth asking: Has this been tried before? And what happened when it was?

The answer is: a much, much milder version of the Obama-Clinton plan has been tried in Germany—and it has already impoverished millions.


Fwd: Coal

'Some 1,200 coal plants are planned across 59 countries, with about three-quarters in China and India, according to the World Resources Institute…

• "The U.S. is dropping coal plants at an unprecedented rate, but still nowhere near as quickly as India is adding them," Bloomberg Business reckons.

"By the end of this year, some 7.5% of the U.S. coal fleet will have disappeared ... . But by 2020 India may have built about 2.5 times as much capacity as the U.S. is about to lose."

Then, of course, there's the world's biggest coal addict by far — the People's Republic of China


Lawson's calculations of how coal use is growing in China are jaw-dropping




Obama's speech on the Iran deal.

Of the two videos I found, this one had the best video quality.  Unfortunately, the speech doesn't start until 1 hour and 15 minutes into the video.
Here Obama does a good job of highlighting the different choices.  As a result, he seems to make a really good case for his agreement with Iran.
I think that the opposition considers Iran to be completely untrustworthy and an ongoing threat.



'An illegal immigrant suspected of murdering one woman, wounding another and attempting to rape a 14-year-old girl was released earlier this month by Ohio sheriff's deputies after U.S. Customs and Border Protection agents told them not to hold him, law enforcement officials said Tuesday.

Juan Emmanuel Razo, 35, was arrested Monday after a shootout with police following a crime spree police say began with the attempted rape of a girl in a park in Painesville, about 30 miles northeast of Cleveland. He later shot a woman in front of her children and murdered a 60-year-old woman in nearby Concord Township, according to police. While Razo is being held on $10 million bond, authorities are trying to explain why he was allowed to remain in the U.S. illegally after local authorities questioned him just three weeks ago.



Fwd: Japan Taxi

Fwd: Mars and Earth

Now, scientists have found that Earth's magnetic field could be up to 4.2 billion years old — about 750 million years older than had been previously thought…


A machine at China's National University of Defense Technology in Guangzhou, called Tianhe-2 (Milky Way-2) is thought to currently be the fastest supercomputer in existence — variously reported as doing either 34 or 55 petaflops (1 petaflop is equivalent to 1 quadrillion floating-point operations per second).

The executive order, issued by Obama on Wednesday, would set up a body known as the National Strategic Computing Initiative (NSCI) to research and build what is hoped to become the first machine to hit 1 exaflop, equivalent to 1,000 petaflops…

But Industry Tap notes that such a machine would require 200 megawatts of power (compared with 3 megawatts for the current-generation machines). That means "a power plant would be required to run it."

​<Insert joke about global warming here.>

The president's executive order is just the latest salvo in something of an international supercomputer arms race that has broken out in recent years



The question on my mind is why do they need it?  I wonder if the Chinese machine would be sentient with the right software running on it?​


100-petaflop machine is being developed in the U.S. and is expected to be ready by 2017

​But can I play Candy Crush on it?​

Bravo, Microsoft

Fwd: Iran

"He basically said, if Congress votes this down, there will be some saber-rattling and some chaos for a year or two, but in the end nothing will change and Iran will come back to the table to negotiate again and that would be to our advantage," Sanchez told me in an interview. "He thought if the Congress voted it down, that we could get a better deal."…

 They all say that if the Congress doesn't lift U.S. sanctions, the rest of the international regime will collapse and allied countries will rush to do business in Iran. That would make the U.S. sanctions moot and put U.S. businesses at a disadvantage, the argument goes. 



Fwd: Xeon

'China's Tianhe-2 is the world's fastest supercomputer with a theoretical peak speed of 54.9 petaflops. It was scheduled to be expanded, and reach a new peak speed of 100 petaflops this year.

Now those plans may be in jeopardy. The U.S. government claims the Tianhe-2 has been used in "nuclear explosive activities," and has banned Intel from shipping its Xeon chips to four related Chinese supercomputing centers.

"I think the U.S. doesn't want the Tianhe-2 to reach 100 petaflops," said Zhang Yunquan, a professor at the Institute of Software Chinese Academy of Sciences, who also keeps track of China's top supercomputers. '


How to beat the S&P 500 Index.


'Until recently, Turkey was an emerging market darling. In 2010, its economy was growing at a robust 9.2 percent. But by 2013, GDP growth had fallen to 4.1 percent. The slowdown has continued, and growth for 2015 is now forecast at 3.1 percent, which may actually be a generous estimate. Unemployment in the country has reached 11 percent, the highest rate in 5 years...


Turkey was a secular Muslim country for nearly a century until 2002, when Erdogan's Islamic Justice and Development Party (AKP) rose to power.


Turkey is currently providing shelter for nearly 2 million Syrian refugees, and that figure is projected to rise another 500,000 by the end of 2015...

​  ​
The problem is the cost—Ankara estimates that it has spent nearly $5.6 billion on refugees since the beginning of the crisis…



Fwd: Montana

'FBI agents say Deniz, a Mexican national and green card holder, "admitted to shooting three people with a .22-caliber rifle and then driving away from the scene in the victim's vehicle."

"Deniz told the interviewing agents that he shot the victims because he was getting tired of waiting around, and because the daughter laughed at him."



'The Book of Mormon' gets rousing reception in Utah


SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — The biting satirical musical that mocks Mormons received a rousing reception in its first-ever showing in the heart of Mormon country, kicking off a sold-out, two-week run at a Salt Lake City theater.

Fwd: China

'A Communist party campaign during which crosses have been stripped from the roofs of more than 1,200 Chinese churches is being conducted "for the sake of safety and beauty", a government official has claimed.

Human rights activists accuse authorities in Zhejiang province in eastern China of using the protracted campaign to slow Christianity's growth in what is one of the country's most churchgoing regions.

By some estimates, China is now home to 100 million Christians, compared with the Communist party's 88 million members.

Since the government campaign began in late 2013, hundreds of places of worship have had bright red crosses removed. Some churches have been completely demolished, while civil servants have been banned from practising religion. Some observers suspect the campaign has the backing of the Chinese president, Xi Jinping, and could be a "pilot project" before a nationwide crackdown.'




Fwd: Xpoint

'Much of that possibility hinges on the actual performance of 3D XPoint. Intel and Micron didn't get into specifics beyond the "1,000X" faster switching speed, but they did say 3D XPoint would offer "10X" the performance of an NVMe PCIe device. You don't have to look far to find that NVMe PCIe device either: The only one I know of today is Intel's excellent 750 series SSD, which hits in excess of 2.5GB of read speed on some loads. If that is the drive both companies are using as a reference, it's pretty easy to see that they expect 3D XPoint drives/devices to reach beyond 20GBps of read and write speed.

For reference, a typical PC with a Haswell or Broadwell CPU and dual-channel DDR3 offers around 17GB+ of memory bandwidth, while lower-end machines survive on 9GBps or less. Higher-end systems reach into the 55GBps range, while graphics card memory far outstrips those.'


Fwd: 1979

'What happened in 1979? For starters, there was the takeover of the Grand Mosque in Mecca by Islamist extremists who challenged the religious credentials of the Saudi ruling family, accusing them of impiety. The al-Sauds responded by forging a new bargain with their religious conservatives: Let us stay in power and we'll give you a freer hand in setting social norms, relations between the sexes and religious education inside Saudi Arabia — and vast resources to spread the puritanical, anti-women, anti-Shiite, anti-pluralistic Sunni Wahhabi fundamentalism to mosques and schools around the world.

This Saudi lurch backward coincided with Iran's Islamic Revolution in 1979, which brought Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini to power. That revolution set up a global competition between Shiite Iran and Sunni Saudi Arabia for leadership of the Muslim world, and it also led to a big surge in oil prices that gave both regimes more money than ever to export Shiite and Sunni fundamentalism. That is why the Egyptian scholar Mamoun Fandy liked to say, "Islam lost its brakes in 1979."

That competition was further fueled by the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979 — which spawned the Sunni jihadist movement and eventually Al Qaeda — and by the Three Mile Island nuclear accident, also in 1979, which basically ended all new building of nuclear power plants in America, making us more dependent on fossil fuels. Of course, the Islamic Revolution in Iran also led to a break in relations with the U.S. — and shifted Iran from a tacit ally of Israel's to a country wishing "death to Israel."'



'On July 9, Agence France-Presse reported that the International Monetary Fund estimated Saudi Arabia, whose population tripled since 1975, would run a budget deficit this year exceeding "$130 billion, the largest in the kingdom's history," and "to finance spending Riyadh has already withdrawn $52.3 billion from its fiscal reserves in the first five months of the year." Iran's population has doubled since 1979, and 60 percent of its residents are under 30 and it has 20 percent unemployment. Last April, Issa Kalantari, a former Iranian agriculture minister, warned that because of dwindling water resources, and over-exploitation, if Iran doesn't radically change its water usage "50 million people — 70 percent of Iranians — will have no choice but to leave the country," Al-Monitor reported.'


Impossible EM Drive.

Although this definitely would be interesting, I find it highly questionable.  The wording of the article makes me think that they are trying way too hard to make their claims, as if the article was written by the proponents of this.  Although not technically perpetual motion, it has that kind of ring to it.

Over the last 4 decades there have been a number of people claiming to extract energy out of basically nothing.  Most of these have not panned out or have been shown to be an artifact of something else.  Although not the same thing, this EM Drive has the same kind of ring to it.



​In order for this to be true, our understanding of the laws of physics would have to change.  (That could be a good thing.)​  If their claims of manipulating Quantum Vacuum were true, then one would have to wonder if there is some unseen environmental impact?



'The leader of a terrorist group bent on attacking the United States and other western targets was killed in a targeted strike earlier this month, the Pentagon said Tuesday.

Muhsin al Fadhli, a Kuwaiti-born jihadi with a $7 million bounty on his head from the U.S. government, was the leader of the Khorasan Group -- a collection of senior al Qaeda members who had moved into Syria amid the chaotic destruction of the country in recent years.

"His death will degrade and disrupt ongoing external operations of al-Qaeda against the United States and our allies and partners," Pentagon spokesman Capt. Jeff Davis said in a written statement…

While terrorist groups like ISIS and the al Qaeda affiliate Jabhat al-Nusra are responsible for much of the violence inside Syria, the Khorasan Group was believed to direct most of its energy plotting external attacks in the West…

Al Fadhli who fought alongside al Qaeda and the Taliban in Afghanistan, and was among the "few trusted al Qaeda leaders that received advanced notification of the September 11, 2001, attacks," Davis said.'




Fwd: Sanders

'Bernie Sanders drew more than 11,000 people to a rally Saturday night in downtown Phoenix -- the largest crowd to date for a presidential candidate whose audiences have been swelling in recent months…

Aides to the self-described socialist had originally booked a Phoenix theater that could accommodate fewer than half the number of people who turned out. The crowd estimate of more than 11,000 people was provided by staff at the convention center, where Sanders also appeared Saturday at a convention of progressive activists…

Saturday night's crowd -- in a reliably red state -- surpassed Sanders's previous largest draw, a few weeks ago in Madison, Wis., where close to 10,000 people turned out.'


'"I'm the only presidential candidate who will tell you this," he said to a roaring crowd, "no president, no matter how good [he or she is] can bring about the change we need in this country unless there is a political revolution."'