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 veryhotthread  Author  Topic: Stuff & Nonsense  (Read 126588 times)
WingsofCrystal
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« Reply #210 on: Jul 22nd, 2010, 11:48am »

Gary McKinnon article

July 22, 2010
'You Couldn't Make This Up' Dept: NASA/Pentagon Hacker Searching for Evidence of Alien Life May Get Reprieve' (VIDEO)

Gary McKinnon admits hacking into US military computers in 2001 and 2002 but maintains he was looking for evidence of alien life. President Barack Obama has given fresh hope to the autistic man who is battling extradition to America on computer hacking charges. Mr Obama pledged to find an ‘appropriate solution’ after David Cameron raised the issue of Asperger’s sufferer Gary McKinnon during his first visit to the White House as Prime Minister. Mr McKinnon – supported by his mother Janis Sharp, has fought an eight year legal battle to prevent his extradition to the US – where he faces up to 60 years in jail if convicted of computer hacking.

http://www.stumbleupon.com/su/1qlLoK/www.dailygalaxy.com/my_weblog/2010/07/you-couldnt-make-this-up-dept-pentagon-hacker-searching-for-evidence-of-alien-life-may-get-repieve-.html/r:t

Crystal
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« Reply #211 on: Jul 22nd, 2010, 1:19pm »

on Jul 22nd, 2010, 07:39am, WingsofCrystal wrote:
New York Times

July 21, 2010
Obama Faces New Doubts on Pursuing Afghan War
By DAVID E. SANGER

WASHINGTON — When President Obama announced a new strategy for Afghanistan in December, he argued that by setting a deadline of next summer to begin drawing down troops he would create a sense of urgency for the Afghan government to take the lead in the fight, while acknowledging the limits of America’s patience with the longest war in its history.

But over the past two weeks — on Capitol Hill, in Kabul and even in conversations with foreign leaders — Mr. Obama has been reminded how the goal has become what one senior American military commander called a “double-edged sword,” one that hangs over the White House as surely as it hangs over President Hamid Karzai.
...

It's now over eight years since they're there and nothing has been solved yet. The afghan army is still unable to control their onw country. The police is whole another story. Both organizations have been corrupted from the beginning on by several warlords and the Taliban themselves. All you can learn from this lesson is that you will have to leave that country behind in chaos as it's always been. The former soviets learned their lesson. You can't force democracy on those people.

on Jul 22nd, 2010, 07:55am, WingsofCrystal wrote:
Telegraph

Shitterton village solves the theft problem.

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Shitterton villagers buy 'theft-proof' sign
A village sign has been stolen so many times that residents have clubbed together to buy a stone version cemented in to the ground

http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/7904196/Shitterton-villagers-buy-theft-proof-sign.html

Crystal

Shitterton! OMG! grin grin
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« Reply #212 on: Jul 22nd, 2010, 1:45pm »

begin Phil's quote -

It's now over eight years since they're there and nothing has been solved yet. The afghan army is still unable to control their onw country. The police is whole another story. Both organizations have been corrupted from the beginning on by several warlords and the Taliban themselves. All you can learn from this lesson is that you will have to leave that country behind in chaos as it's always been. The former soviets learned their lesson. You can't force democracy on those people.

- end quote

Sad isn't it Phil. All these lives lost and we are not one inch further along. Young and old dead for what?
Crystal
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« Reply #213 on: Jul 22nd, 2010, 1:53pm »

For the oil. It's the oil companies which were able to progress their agenda and are about to build a massive pipeline which will go all the way through Iraq and also has to go through Iran, which will be forced on them in one or the other way, and will then end in Turkey in a haven of their west coast. It's something which they're already planning since at least the early 80s. Maybe even much earlier. These guys always get what they want. rolleyes
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« Reply #214 on: Jul 22nd, 2010, 2:45pm »

The Illuminati always win and sad to say they do exist. They do not mind you knowing that either.
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« Reply #215 on: Jul 22nd, 2010, 6:40pm »

Hey Phil and Icarus99,

Yes, they are there and don't give a hoot who knows it. What are we the wallpaper going to do about it? Nothing we can do. All we can do is try to be decent to the people around us.

I'm 56 and I remember talking about gasoline and zero population growth in high school in 1970. Americans have known that we are gas guzzlers for decades and didn't want to hear it. Well we have people dying in Afghanistan and Iraq for that oil. Maybe now Americans will think a little more about being responsible. Who knows. I hope so.

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« Reply #216 on: Jul 22nd, 2010, 6:45pm »

Wired

How many times have you been stuck helping a friend move into a new apartment and thought, God, this couch needs to find a way to get into the U-Haul on its own. The Air Force wants you to run with that concept — except with bombs and sensors, not your buddy’s chest of drawers.

The Air Force Research Laboratory at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Ohio http://www.wpafb.af.mil/ is calling for small businesses to build what it calls an Intelligent Robo-Pallet: mechanical platforms that can haul stuff onto its planes autonomously. http://www.dodsbir.net/solicitation/sbir103/af103.htm It’s got to be able to move on its own, lift and stack as cargo masters instruct, possess a built-in navigation capability, fit and operate in tight quarters, and talk with all other tech that’s used to get things on and off planes. Basically, imagine a C-130 full of gear opening up and the pallets in the center raise up and roll out of the belly. Yes: the Air Force wants its Wall-E.

And it won’t just be for peacetime operations. According to the solicitation, the Intelligent Robo-Pallet has to be able to work not just at huge established bases but “contingency airbases” as well — that is, war zones and other dicey areas, where “qualified man-power and cargo handling equipment” is sometimes scarce. (Danger Room has seen the frustrations of Air Force cargo transport up close.) Why contract out when you can build a robot?


This is obviously years away from delivery, assuming that engineers out there somewhere can come up with working plans for the Air Force to consider. But if they can, the Intelligent Robo-Pallet might one day become a fixture at civilian airports. “[T]he technology developed by this effort will have direct application to commercial air-cargo handling, shipping and receiving, and warehousing,” the solicitation reads.

Some civilians are thinking along similar wavelengths: FedEx’s CEO recently told a Wired business conference that he wants a fleet of drone cargo aircraft led by a single piloted plane. If so, maybe the next step is to have a self-propelled army of pallet-bots to haul stuff onto the trucks.



Read More http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2010/07/paging-wall-e-air-force-wants-robo-cargo-to-load-itself/#ixzz0uSRmMyYL

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« Reply #217 on: Jul 23rd, 2010, 07:52am »

Washington Post

Minority leaders leaving Karzai's side over leader's overtures to insurgents

By Joshua Partlow
Washington Post Foreign Service
Friday, July 23, 2010; A01

PANJSHIR VALLEY, AFGHANISTAN -- The man who served as President Hamid Karzai's top intelligence official for six years has launched an urgent campaign to warn Afghans that their leader has lost conviction in the fight against the Taliban and is recklessly pursuing a political deal with insurgents.

In speeches to small groups in Kabul and across northern Afghanistan over the past month, Amarullah Saleh has repeated his belief that Karzai's push for negotiation with insurgents is a fatal mistake and a recipe for civil war. He says Karzai's chosen policy endangers the fitful progress of the past nine years in areas such as democracy and women's rights.

"If I don't raise my voice we are headed towards a crisis," he told a gathering of college students in Kabul.

That view is shared by a growing number of Afghan minority leaders who once participated fully in Karzai's government, but now feel alienated from it. Tajik, Hazara and Uzbek politicians have expressed increasing concern that they are being marginalized by Karzai and his efforts to strike a peace deal with his fellow Pashtuns in the insurgency.

Saleh's warnings come as the United States struggles to formulate its own position on reconciliation with the Taliban. While U.S. officials have supported Afghan government-led talks in theory, they have watched with apprehension as Karzai has pursued his own peace initiatives, seemingly without Western involvement.

NATO's senior civilian representative in Afghanistan, Ambassador Mark Sedwill, cautioned recently that "any political reconciliation process has to be genuinely national and genuinely inclusive. Otherwise we're simply storing up the next set of problems that will break out. And in this country when problems break out, they tend to lead to violence."

Still, with war costs and casualties rising, U.S. policymakers are increasingly looking for a way out, and a power-sharing deal between Karzai and the Taliban may be the best they can hope for. One senior NATO official in Kabul described Saleh as "brilliant." But the official said Saleh's hard-line stance against negotiations does not offer any path to ending the long-running U.S. war.

Saleh, 38 and a Tajik, began his intelligence career in this scenic valley north of Kabul working for the legendary guerrilla commander Ahmad Shah Massoud. He said he is not motivated by ethnic rivalries with the majority Pashtuns or by a desire to undermine Karzai, whom he describes as a decent man and a patriot.

Rather, Saleh said he wants to use nonviolent, grass-roots organizing to pressure the government into a harder line against the Taliban by showing that Afghans who do not accept the return of the Taliban are a formidable force. Saleh resigned last month as director of the National Directorate of Security after he said he realized that Karzai no longer valued his advice.

"The Taliban have reached the gates of Kabul," Saleh said. "We will not stop this movement even if it costs our blood."

Proceeding carefully

Karzai spokesman Waheed Omar declined to comment on Saleh's analysis. Karzai's government has made reconciliation a top priority, and officials say they are proceeding carefully. Karzai has invited Taliban leaders to talk, but he has said insurgents must accept the constitution, renounce violence and sever their links to foreign terrorists before they can rejoin society.

Those conditions do little to mollify Afghan minority leaders, many of whom had backed Karzai in the past but are now breaking with the president. Some are concerned that a deal between Karzai and the Taliban could spawn the sort of civil war that existed in Afghanistan prior to the U.S.-led invasion in late 2001.

"The new political path that Karzai has chosen will not only destroy him, it will destroy the country. It's a kind of suicide," said Mohammad Mohaqiq, a Hazara leader and former Karzai ally.

With the defection of Saleh and the transfer of another Tajik, Bismillah Khan, from his position as chief of army staff to interior minister, Karzai critics see an erosion of strong anti-Taliban views within the government. Khan, many argue, was more important to the war effort in his army post than at the interior ministry, which oversees the police.

"Now Tajiks, Hazaras and Uzbeks, they are not partners in Karzai's government, they are just employees," said Saleh Mohammad Registani, a Tajik parliament member from the Panjshir. "Karzai wants to use them as symbols."

To spread his message, Saleh has sought out young, educated students and university graduates. Through them he intends to form groups across the country to apply grass-roots political pressure. His aims are nonviolent, he said, and not intended to further ethnic divisions, but he has said they must prepare for the worst.

Saleh was born in the Panjshir Valley before the family moved to Kabul. He joined the armed opposition, or mujahideen, rather than be conscripted into the Afghan army and in 1997 started as an intelligence officer with Massoud's forces.

Saleh was appointed to run Afghanistan's fledgling intelligence service in 2004, and developed a reputation among U.S. officials as one of the most effective and honest cabinet ministers.

In Saleh's view, Karzai's shift from fighting to accommodating the Taliban began last August. The messy aftermath of the presidential election, in which Karzai prevailed but was widely accused of electoral fraud, was taken as a personal insult, Saleh said.

"It was very abrupt, it was not a process," Saleh said of Karzai's changing views. "He thought he was hurt by democracy and by the Americans. He felt he should have won with dignity."

Frayed relations

After the election, Afghan relations with the United States plunged to new lows, as Karzai railed against Western interference in his government and threatened to join the Taliban. Saleh said Karzai believes that the United States and NATO cannot prevail in Afghanistan and will soon depart. For that reason he has shifted his attention to Pakistan, which is thought to hold considerable sway over elements of the insurgency, in an attempt to broker a deal with the Taliban.

"We are heading toward settlement. Democracy is dying," Saleh said. He recalled Karzai saying, "'I've given everybody a chance to defeat the Taliban. It's been nine years. Where is the victory?'"

In his speeches, Saleh recounts Taliban brutalities: busloads of laborers lined up and executed, young men chopped in half with axes, women and children slain before their families. His rhetoric is harshly critical of Pakistan.

"All the goals you have will collapse if the Taliban comes back," he told a gathering of college students under a tent outside his house in Kabul. "I don't want your university to be closed just because of a political deal. It will be closed if we do not raise our voices."

Saleh believes the Taliban will not abide by a peaceful power-sharing deal because they want to regain total authority. Despite a significant U.S. troop buildup this year and major NATO offensives, he estimated that insurgents now control more than 30 percent of Afghanistan. He said the Taliban leadership -- about 200 people, many of them in the Pakistani city of Karachi -- are financed, armed and protected by Pakistan's intelligence agency. "The inner circle is totally under their control," Saleh said. Pakistan has long denied it supports the Taliban.

The second ring of Taliban leadership -- about 1,700 field commanders -- oversees a fighting force of 10,000 to 30,000 people, depending on the season, Saleh said. Under former NATO commander Gen. Stanley A. McChrystal, 700 of these Taliban commanders were captured or killed, Saleh said, only to be replaced by a new crop.

more after the jump
http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/07/22/AR2010072206155.html?hpid=topnews

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« Reply #218 on: Jul 23rd, 2010, 07:57am »

Please be an angel

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www.soldiersangels.org



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« Reply #219 on: Jul 23rd, 2010, 08:03am »

Wired - Danger Room

Flaming Helmets, Dancing Tanks at Russian Arms Expo
By Noah Shachtman July 22, 2010

In the long and storied history of the Russian ballet, there have been many legendary names — Mikhail Baryshnikov, Alexander Godunov, Olga Spesivtseva. Now, a new icon must be carved into this list of greats: Boris the Tank Driver.

Popular Mechanics’ Joe Pappalardo gapes in wonder as a quartet of Russian T-90 tanks weave in figure-eights and spin in unison. It’s a heavily armored pas de quatre. Except this time, the dancers are wearing helmets instead of tutus.

And that may not even be the strangest thing Pappalardo witnessed at the rehearsals for The Invincible and the Legendary, a grand theatrical spectacle set to debut at a Moscow arms show.

Knights with flaming helmets, men being attacked by dogs, and stones broken on soldiers’ backs all made their appearances. Then there was the wildest sight of all: tanks zooming through a motocross-style obstacle course, with guns blazing.

videos and more after the jump
http://www.wired.com/dangerroom/2010/07/flaming-helmets-dancing-tanks-at-russian-arms-expo/

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« Reply #220 on: Jul 23rd, 2010, 08:05am »

New York Times

July 22, 2010
Pentagon Faces Growing Pressures to Trim Budget
By THOM SHANKER and CHRISTOPHER DREW

WASHINGTON — After nearly a decade of rapid increases in military spending, the Pentagon is facing intensifying political and economic pressures to restrain its budget, setting up the first serious debate since the terrorist attacks of 2001 about the size and cost of the armed services.

Lawmakers, administration officials and analysts said the combination of big budget deficits, the winding down of the war in Iraq and President Obama’s pledge to begin pulling troops from Afghanistan next year were leading Congress to contemplate reductions in Pentagon financing requests.

Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates has sought to contain the budget-cutting demands by showing Congress and the White House that he can squeeze more efficiency from the Pentagon’s bureaucracy and weapons programs and use the savings to maintain fighting forces.

But the increased pressure is already showing up in efforts by Democrats in Congress to move more quickly than senior Pentagon officials had expected in trimming the administration’s budget request for next year.

And in the longer term, with concern mounting about the government’s $13 trillion debt, a bipartisan deficit-reduction commission is warning that cuts in military spending could be needed to help the nation dig out of its financial hole.

“We’re going to have to take a hard look at defense if we are going to be serious about deficit reduction,” said Erskine B. Bowles, a chief of staff to President Bill Clinton who is a co-chairman of the deficit commission. Senator Judd Gregg, a Republican from New Hampshire who is also on the debt commission, said that if the panel pushes for cuts in discretionary spending, “defense should be looked at,” perhaps through another base-closing commission.

Mr. Gates is calling for the Pentagon’s budget to keep growing in the long run at 1 percent a year after inflation, plus the costs of the war. It has averaged an inflation-adjusted growth rate of 7 percent a year over the last decade (nearly 12 percent a year without adjusting for inflation), including the costs of the wars. So far, Mr. Obama has asked Congress for an increase in total spending next year of 2.2 percent, to $708 billion — 6.1 percent higher than the peak under the Bush administration.

Mr. Gates is arguing that if the Pentagon budget is allowed to keep growing by 1 percent a year, he can find 2 percent or 3 percent in savings in the department’s bureaucracy to reinvest in the military — and that will be sufficient money to meet national security needs. In one of the paradoxes of Washington budget battles, Mr. Gates, even as he tries to forestall deeper cuts, is trying to kill weapons programs he says the military does not need over the objections of members of Congress who want to protect jobs.

Mr. Gates enjoys bipartisan support on Capitol Hill and has considerable sway within the administration. But while he may hold the line against major cuts for now, analysts say support for military spending could erode quickly once the Pentagon withdraws a substantial number of troops from Afghanistan.

“In the case of the Pentagon, they have been living very fat and very happy for so very long that they’ve almost lost touch with reality,” said Gordon Adams, who oversaw national-security budgets under President Clinton.

Senator Daniel K. Inouye, Democrat of Hawaii and chairman of the Senate Appropriations Committee, said that he would be looking first at tax increases and changes in Social Security and Medicare to lower the deficit, and that there was “no way” Congress would make major cuts in the military while more than 100,000 troops were still at war. But once most of them return, “I’m pretty certain cuts are coming — in defense and the whole budget,” he said.

The course of the war in Afghanistan will no doubt have an impact on the debate, as might the outcome of the midterm elections and ultimately the 2012 presidential race.

But the first signs of pressure on military spending have surfaced, as both the House and the Senate are moving to trim the administration’s Pentagon budget request for the fiscal year that starts Oct. 1.

The Democrats on the Senate Appropriations Committee voted last week to cut $8 billion from the Pentagon’s request for an $18 billion increase in its basic operations.

Representative Norm Dicks, Democrat of Washington and chairman of the House defense appropriations subcommittee, is planning to trim $7 billion from the administration’s budget request. “There’s a lot of support up here for restraint,” he said.

In the short run, the worries about the deficit could help Mr. Gates halt the two main arms programs he has identified this year — an alternate engine for the new Joint Strike Fighter and the purchase of five more C-17 cargo planes from Boeing.

General Electric and Rolls-Royce have been lobbying hard to save their engine, which would compete with another one for up to $100 billion of business.

Mr. Inouye said that with the administration’s opposition, “and faced with a deficit, that deal is dead.”

Mr. Gates sought to set the terms of the broader debate with a speech in May at the Eisenhower Presidential Library and Museum in Abilene, Kan.

“Military spending on things large and small can and should expect closer, harsher scrutiny,” Mr. Gates said. “The gusher has been turned off, and will stay off for a good period of time.”

Mr. Gates followed up with orders for the armed services and the Pentagon’s agencies to find $7 billion in spending cuts and efficiencies for 2012, growing to $37 billion annually by 2016.

Rahm Emanuel, Mr. Obama’s chief of staff, said the president fully supported Mr. Gates’s initiatives, which already have set in motion savings from canceling or trimming more three dozen weapons systems in 2009. “This is not business as usual,” Mr. Emanuel said.

Senior administration officials said they hoped Mr. Gates’s effort would help quiet critics who asked why military spending had been exempted from the president’s order for a 5 percent cut in the budgets of most domestic agencies.

At the moment, the administration projects that the Pentagon’s base budget and the extra war spending will peak at $708 billion in the coming fiscal year, though analysts say it is likely that the Pentagon will need at least $30 billion more in supplemental war financing then.

Two-thirds of Pentagon spending is on personnel costs. It is possible that the Pentagon will have to look for the first time at cuts to the health benefits provided to active and retired military personnel and their families.

Some analysts said the Pentagon would eventually come under pressure to reduce the size of the armed forces.

Mr. Adams, the Clinton administration budget official, wrote in a recent analysis that for “any real savings on defense budgets to occur, end strength must shrink.” But the Pentagon strongly opposes cutting the number of troops, said Peter R. Orszag, director of the president’s Office of Management and Budget.

“Secretary Gates and the military leadership have made it very clear that they do not support a reduction in end strength,” Mr. Orszag said.

more after the jump
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/23/us/politics/23budget.html?_r=1&hp

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« Reply #221 on: Jul 23rd, 2010, 08:07am »

New York Times

July 23, 2010
China Acts to Reduce Oil Spill Threat
By EDWARD WONG

BEIJING — Chinese officials are requiring ports around the country to revise their operations to better prevent oil spills in the aftermath of a pipeline explosion last week that resulted in an enormous spill in northeast China. The spill was the largest in this country in recent memory, and crews were still struggling on Friday to clean it up.

China Daily, an official English-language newspaper, reported Friday that the Ministry of Transportation had issued a notice urging all local transport authorities to check operations at ports handling dangerous chemicals by August. Special teams will be sent occasionally to patrol at major oil and chemical ports. Ports that handle oil, liquefied chemicals and gases are now required to carry out check-ups every two years, as well as coming up with emergency response plans and conducting drills.

The oil spill, at the port city of Dalian, is the result of a pipeline explosion on July 16. The first explosion triggered a similar burst at a smaller pipeline near Xingang Harbor. Both pipelines are owned by China National Petroleum Corporation, one of the large state-run oil enterprises.

The growing concern over the potential for further port disasters in China came on the same week as the International Energy Agency’s announcement that China had surpassed the United States as the world’s top energy consumer. The agency said China consumed the equivalent of 2.25 billion tons of oil last year, 4 percent more than the United States. The measurement takes into account all forms of energy. The Chinese government’s push to maintain rapid economic growth has led to a surge in the country’s appetite for energy sources, but China this week rejected the energy agency’s calculations.

About 140 square miles of ocean by Dalian have been affected by the oil spill, China Daily reported. On Tuesday, a firefighter, Zhang Liang, 25, drowned when a wave knocked him from a boat into the ocean. Rescue workers were still toiling away on Thursday to contain the spill. The local government has mobilized hundreds of fishing boats, specialized cleaning vessels, “oil-eating” bacteria and volunteers, China Daily reported. Many volunteers are using just their hands to try to clean up the polluted water and the beaches.

Beijing Youth Daily cited an official saying that some workers were using chopsticks to try and clean up the mess.

Dalian, in Liaoning Province, is a popular beach getaway during the summer, but many of the beaches were closed after the pipeline explosion. Environmental advocates have been calling on Chinese officials to give a full and accurate assessment of the ecological damage. China’s economic growth has pummeled the environment in many parts of the country, and Chinese cities are among the most polluted in the world.

On Thursday, an oil tanker came into port at Dalian, the first tanker to do so since the explosion. Dalian is one of China’s major oil production and distribution centers, and the refinery there is one of the nation’s largest. The damaged pipeline at Xingang has been repaired and is now transporting oil again.

more after the jump
http://www.nytimes.com/2010/07/24/world/asia/24china.html?ref=world

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« Reply #222 on: Jul 23rd, 2010, 08:12am »

Telegraph

'Darth Raider': NY police hunt armed robber 'dressed as Star Wars character'
An armed robber is being hunted by police after dressing as the Star Wars movie character Darth Vader during a bizarre raid on a New York bank in broad daylight.

By Andrew Hough
Published: 1:30PM BST 23 Jul 2010

Police said the bandit entered the Chase bank branch on Long Island at 11.30am Thursday, brandishing a semi-automatic pistol before demanding money from staff.

CCTV footage released by police showed the 6ft 2in gunman dressed as the Star Wars bad guy, with a costume complete with mask, dark cape and camouflage trousers.

Customers and bank staff initially thought the raid was a joke, with one witness thinking the costume was so amusing he starting joking with the bandit.

“The customer thought it might have been a joke and not a serious attempt at a robbery,” William Lamb, a Suffolk County Detective Sergeant, told the New York Daily News: http://www.nydailynews.com/news/ny_crime/2010/07/22/2010-07-22_empire_strikes_bank_thats_no_lightsaber_vaders_carrying_in_li_stickup.html

But they quickly realised the bandit was serious after he shouted “this is not a joke”, and reportedly becoming involved in a "shoving match" with an onlooker.

He then pointed his gun at customers as he ordered them to the floor.

He escaped on a motorbike from the Setauket branch with an undisclosed amount of cash stuffed in a bag, which featured a New York Yankees logo.

photo after the jump
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/newstopics/howaboutthat/7906616/Darth-Raider-NY-police-hunt-armed-robber-dressed-as-Star-Wars-character.html

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« Reply #223 on: Jul 23rd, 2010, 08:16am »

Telegraph

Quantum time machine 'allows paradox-free time travel'
Quantum physicists at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology believe it is possible to create a time machine which could affect the past without creating a "grandfather paradox".

By Tom Chivers
Published: 3:09PM BST 22 Jul 2010

Scientists have for some years been able to 'teleport' quantum states from one place to another. Now Seth Lloyd and his MIT team say that, using the same principles and a further strange quantum effect known as 'postselection', it should be possible to do the same backwards in time. Lloyd told the Technology Review: "It is possible for particles (and, in principle, people) to tunnel from the future to the past."

Postselection is a vital part of the nascent science of quantum computing. In traditional computing, if a user needs to determine which set of variables in an equation leads to the answer being true, the computer must try every combination until it hits upon one that works. In quantum computing, due to the weird parallel behaviour of subatomic particles, it seems to be possible to simplify the procedure by running all possible variations simultaneously, and selecting only the combinations that make the answer true.

Professor Lloyd and his team say that, by combining teleportation and postselection, it would be possible to carry out the quantum teleportation effect in reverse; that is, to decide after the teleportation what the quantum state must have been before it. This works as postselection allows you to dictate which quantum states can be teleported, limiting what state it can have been in before the teleportation. The state of the particle post-teleportation has therefore, in effect, travelled back in time.

Dr Richard Low, a quantum computing scientist from the University of Bristol, says: "You could think of it as postselection affecting the history of the particle, sending the state back in time."

Unlike previous theories of teleportation, this apparently avoids the "grandfather paradox" - or, to Back to the Future fans, the Marty McFly problem. If you go back and change time, and accidentally end up killing your own grandparent, you create a paradox - you will not be born, so you cannot go back and affect time. Even with subatomic particles, this is still a problem: upon travelling back in time, the particle could somehow destroy its earlier self or move it, thus preventing it from travelling.

However, because of the probabilistic nature of quantum mechanics, Prof Lloyd's method seems to avoid this. Anything caused by the time travel must have had a finite probability of happening anyway, so paradoxical impossibilities are out.

Further, this time travel method does not involve bending spacetime, unlike other proposed systems. At the moment, the only conditions known that would bend spacetime sufficiently exist in black holes, which would be impractical at best.

It is a controversial theory, to say the least. Some physicists claim that the apparently impossible things implied by postselection prove that it cannot work, which would destroy Prof Lloyd's theory before it got off the ground.

more after the jump
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/7904712/Quantum-time-machine-allows-paradox-free-time-travel.html

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« Reply #224 on: Jul 23rd, 2010, 08:22am »

Telegraph Laugh at my tweeting now! Ha! grin

Aliens have been trying to contact us by cosmic Twitter, scientists claim
Aliens may have been trying to contact us by communicating in a manner similar to Twitter, scientists have claimed.

By Laura Roberts
Published: 7:30AM BST 22 Jul 2010

ET is more likely to be sending out short, directed messages than continuous signals beamed in all directions, experts said.

''This approach is more like Twitter and less like War and Peace,'' said Californian physicist Dr James Benford, president of Microwave Sciences Inc.

He and twin brother Gregory, an astrophysicist at the University of California, Irvine, looked at the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (Seti) from the aliens' point of view.

They concluded that Seti scientists may have been taking the wrong approach for the past five decades.

Up to now scientists have listened out for unusual blips or bleeps from targeted nearby stars.

Despite 50 years of searching, no-one has yet been able to come up with evidence of an extraterrestrial signal. However, many scientists are convinced we are not alone in the universe.

''Whatever the life form, evolution selects for economy of resources,'' said Gregory Benford. ''Broadcasting is expensive, and transmitting signals across light years would require considerable resources.''

Writing in the journal Astrobiology, the Benfords claim that an alien civilisation would strive to reduce costs, limit waste and make its signalling technology efficient.

They propose that alien signals would be pulsed and narrowly directed in the one to 10 gigahertz broadband signal range.

Seti has been focusing its receivers on the wrong kind of signals, and also looking in the wrong direction, they claimed.

Rather than pointing their antennae at nearby stars, scientists should be aiming at the centre of our galaxy, the Milky Way.

''The stars there are a billion years older than our Sun, which suggests a greater possibility of contact with an advanced civilisation than does pointing Seti receivers outward to the newer and less crowded edge of our galaxy,'' said Gregory Benford.

more after the jump
http://www.telegraph.co.uk/science/space/7902958/Aliens-have-been-trying-to-contact-us-by-cosmic-Twitter-scientists-claim.html

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