Hoping for answers about blocks on internet calls, NGOs take telecom regulator to court

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Hoping for answers about blocks on internet calls, NGOs take telecom regulator to court

The temporary outage of internet-based calling services like WhatsApp and Viber caused a social media storm in October 2015, but the episode left more questions than it answered: Are internet-based calling services illegal in Egypt? Was the block imposed by the National Telecom Regulatory Authority (NTRA)? And where do telecom companies and consumer rights fit into the equation?

A lawsuit scheduled to be heard Wednesday in the Administrative Court is hoping to force some answers. The suit, which was already postponed earlier this month, was filed against the NTRA by the NGOs Support Center for Information Technology and the Association for Freedom of Thought and Expression.

The lawsuit aims to force the NTRA to release a list of the services or websites that have been blocked in Egypt in recent month and to divulge the criteria upon which they were blocked, explains Aziza al-Taweel, the  Support Center’s lawyer.

So far, Taweel says, the NTRA denies blocking WhatsApp and other voice calling services, but also maintains that such apps provide unlicensed international calls and are therefore illegal. “They are claiming that they need to be licensed first, while denying any blockage at the same time,” Taweel explains.

NTRA spokesperson Karim Soliman confirmed to Mada Masr that the regulatory body considers these services to be illegal, but added no further comments.

Did the NTRA block VoIP?
Questions about the NTRA’s stance on internet calls came to public attention in October 2015, when social media went into a rage after many users reported being unable to use internet calling apps like Viber, Skype, WhatsApp on 3G networks and ADSL. Disgruntled users’ reaction worsened after a few scattered statements by customer service operators of telecom companies on social media confirmed that the services had been blocked.

Shortly after, the services went back to working, with the usual poor quality on 3G networks. Both the telecom companies and the government regulator assured the public there was no blocking whatsoever.

Exactly what happened was, and remains, unclear. After nearly six months, there has been little clarification about the incident, highlighting the lack of transparency among the agencies responsible for enabling and regulating telecommunications in Egypt.

When Mada Masr investigated the issue in November 2015, Egypt’s Ministry of Communications and Information Technology deflected any questions about the government’s plans for internet voice calls. Ministry spokesperson Mariam Fayez said such matters are in the hands of the National Telecom Regulatory Authority. Fayez declined to answer direct questions about whether the government is considering blocking VoIP services. The ministry is only concerned with strategic work, she said.

Meanwhile, the NTRA’s official media office refused repeated requests for information. Ali Anis, the NTRA’s Societal Interaction Director, told Mada Masr the authority has not blocked any services so far, and is not planning to do so.

All three of Egypt’s mobile phone companies — Mobinil, Etisalat and Vodafone — also insisted they took no action to block VoIP applications, apart from Skype, which has been blocked on 3G networks since 2010. Any problems with other applications were due to individual mobile phones or the applications themselves, company representatives said.

Telecom Egypt, the country’s landline monopoly and a major internet service provider, also insisted it is not blocking any applications, but refused to answer any further questions.

One could almost believe reports of service outages were a series of strange coincidences magnified by social media, or perhaps a technical glitch that affected users on different mobile networks, using different applications on different devices. And yet, a few accounts dispute the official narrative.

Before and during the outage in October, customer service representatives on Twitter clearly stated that the NTRA gave orders to block VoIP services.

One NTRA representative also reportedly told a journalist for news site DotMsr.com that the agency had blocked VoIP — reports the NTRA later denied. This call, however, has been used in court by Taweel and the defense team as a proof.
An industry insider, who would only speak on condition of anonymity, also told Mada Masr the telecom companies did indeed block VoIP services, and on direct orders of the government.

Who does the NTRA work for?

Whether or not the NTRA is actually behind the block on VoIP applications, the episode raises questions about whose interests the regulator serves.
By law, the NTRA’s mandate is to protect users and their rights, a responsibility the agency is given in Article 2 of Egypt’s 2003 telecommunication regulation law. However, Article 4 of the telecommunications law requires the NTRA to protect “National Security and the state’s top interests.” Attempts to regulate the use of VoIP apps shows what happens when user rights and national security come into conflict.
“It is arguable that the NTRA is enforcing the ban on unlicensed trafficking of international calls, which is a crime according to Article 72 of the Telecom Act. However, it is also arguable that in enforcing this ban, the NTRA is also preventing users from making VoIP calls to other users in Egypt, even if those calls are routed internationally via the internet,” says independent researcher Amr Gharbeia.
One of the arguments against VoIP services is that, without cooperation from app developers, Egyptian authorities are unable to trace or monitor calls made over apps — unlike international or local phone calls made on landlines and mobile phone networks. This, opponents of the technology say, is a major security issue. “Legally speaking, if a crime occurred and you wanted to check call records of a suspect for example, they won’t agree. A famous examplehappened in Italy, where they tried to get records from the VoIP operators but they refused to even negotiate,” says Khaled Hegazy, external affairs and legal director at Vodafone Egypt.
Amr Gharbeia, an independent researcher, believes the telecom companies’ opposition to VoIP stems more from financial motivations than security concerns. Every free or low-cost call through VoIP apps takes money out of the phone companies’ pockets. This is especially true for lucrative international calls, all of which have to run through Telecom Egypt’s infrastructure, keeping rates high. “The reason for banning VoIP is all economic and is hardly a privacy or security issue. The telecoms want to keep the users paying higher fees for services they can get for much better prices or for free, so they are trying to monopolize the international calls market,” Gharbeia explains.
Vodafone, for example, has clearly expressed its desire to block VoIP, in particular WhatsApp’s voice calling feature. In March 2015, after WhatsApp's voice calling service was launched, Vodafone Egypt sent a letter to NTRA asking about the legality of blocking the service “for the negative impact it has on the telecom sector.” However, according to Hegazy, NTRA never replied.
Hegazy, says that the telecom sector in Egypt, and in particular Telecom Egypt, has been hurt by these applications, although he was not willing to quantify how companies are affected.
“Telecom Egypt is the main international gateway for Egypt, so any international call must go through it. I think they are the most negatively affected in terms of revenues,” he says. “We earn almost the same amount from international calls as we do in local ones, so we are not really affected,” he adds, speaking of his own company.
However, telecom companies’ financial disclosures appear to belie claims that VoIP services are seriously affecting the industry.
Despite a sharp drop in landline subscribers over the last five years, Telecom Egypt, announced a 360 percent increase in Q3 net profits for this year, reaching LE1.2 billion, while Q2 net profits increased by 55 percent. Vodafone Egypt revenues rose from LE6.4 billion in the first six months of 2014 to LE7.01 billion in the first half of 2015.
Even Mobinil, which incurred losses from 2012-2014, appeared to rebound in 2015, reporting a 5.3 percent increase in profits three quarters of the way into 2015. Etisalat Misr’s revenues grew by 2.6 percent by the end of 2014 as well.
Anis of the NTRA also dismisses the idea that VoIP apps are doing serious damage. “The financial impact of these applications in not big to begin with, and it affects the telecom companies, not the sector as a whole,” he says.
Ironically, phone companies don’t seem to have a problem with using VoIP services when it suits them. Expanding Egypt’s call center industry remains a hallmark of the country’s economic development strategy. Among the most prominent call center operators is Vodafone Egypt, which provides call center services for affiliates around the world, from the UK to New Zealand. These businesses would not be sustainable if operators had to pay international calling rates to route calls through the landline network. “Call centers in Egypt do use VoIP services. However, it is not illegal, they have obtained a license since they started operating in the country, because otherwise, no one will come here and firms will open its call centers in other countries like India,” an industry source says.
This presents another bind for the NTRA, and perhaps explains some of their ambiguity about VoIP. Any economic or security interests that would be served by blocking VoIP have to be balanced against the potential fallout of speaking too strongly against the technology.
Digital security researcher Ramy Raouf says officially blocking VoIP would have particularly bad repercussions for the digital economy. “If you block Viber for example, you will also block a number of advertisers alongside it, which will severely affect traffic levels and investment," he says. “In 2011, when the internet was blocked during the revolution, the economy lost a lot of money as a result.”
Uncertainty about the official reaction toward these applications is not reassuring for any investor trying to enter the market, since it gives a bad idea about the Egyptian market as a whole, says Mahmoud al-Banhawy, a digital freedoms officer at the Support for Information Technology Center.
Hegazy disagrees. “Blocking these service in Saudi Arabia and UAE did not scare potential investors, nor will it do so here,” he argues.   
With such mixed messaging about VoIP, the role and real intentions of the sector’s regulator remain a mystery. The Communications Ministry deflected questions, as did the NTRA’s media office. Anis, the agency’s social interaction director, simply says the NTRA is currently studying the situation as a whole, in attempt to reach a compromise among competing interests. "We are only trying to set some determinants," he says. Customers, meanwhile, are left wondering where their rights fall into the equation, and waiting to see if VoIP apps are blocked overnight — a situation Wednesday’s lawsuit hopes to change.

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100 GB of NASA space photos turned into epic 4K time-lapse

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100GB of NASA space photos turned into epic 4K time-lapse

It took over 95,600 NASA photo files taken from the International Space Station and a month of meticulous photo editing to produce this epic high-definition time-lapse video.
The compilation work turned almost 110 Gigabytes of original material into some 40 minutes of raw footage in 4K resolution. Of those Dmitry Pisanko, a Russian photo blogger, selected four minutes of highlights.

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The Terminator Google’s Army READY

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The Terminator Google’s Army READY

Boston Dynamics
Posted by Boston Dynamics on Sunday, 3 August 2014

Boston Dynamics
Posted by Boston Dynamics on Saturday, 6 December 2014
Boston Dynamics
Posted by Boston Dynamics on Saturday, 17 May 2014
US Dynamics Cheetah !*Boston Dynamics
Posted by Boston Dynamics on Wednesday, 14 May 2014
Boston Dynamics
Posted by Boston Dynamics on Friday, 20 December 2013

Google’s latest acquisition is one of the most advanced robotics companies in the world, and makes robots for the US military.

Google’s recent acquisition of Boston Dynamics marks its eighth robotics purchase in the past six months, showing Google’s “moonshot” robotics vision is more than just a pet project.
Boston Dynamics is the most high-profile acquisition, however, instantly adding world-leading robotics capability, including robots that can walk all on their own, to Google’s arsenal – as well as significant links to the US military – conjuring images of Skynet and the artificial intelligence-led robot uprising straight out of the 1984 film The Terminator.

What is it?

Boston Dynamics is an engineering and robotics design company that works across a wide range of computer intelligence and simulation systems, as well as large, advanced robotic platforms.
The company was created as a technology spin-off from Massachusetts Institute of Technology by Prof Marc Raibert in 1992, then the founder and lead researcher of the Leg Lab – a research group focussed on systems that move dynamically, including legged robots.

What does it do?

Raibert describes the Boston Dynamics team as “simply engineers that build robots”, but in reality Boston Dynamics is much more than that.
Its robotics work is at the forefront of the technology creating the self-proclaimed “most advanced robots on Earth” particularly focused around self-balancing humanoid or bestial robots.
Funding for the majority of the most advanced Boston Dynamics robots comes from military sources, including the US Defence Advanced Research Projects Agency (Darpa) and the US army, navy and marine corps. The terms of contracts currently held by Boston Dynamics with military bodies are unknown, althoughGoogle has committed to honouring existing contracts, including recent $10.8m funding from Darpa.

What else has Google got?

Boston Dynamics is not the only robotics company Google has bought in recent years. Put under the leadership of Andy Rubin, previously Google's head of Android, the search company has quietly acquired seven different technology companies to foster a self-described “moonshot” robotics vision.
The acquired companies included Schaft, a small Japanese humanoid robotics company; Meka and Redwood Robotics, San Francisco-based creators of humanoid robots and robot arms; Bot & Dolly who created the robotic camera systems recently used in the movie Gravity; Autofuss an advertising and design company; Holomni, high-tech wheel designer, and Industrial Perception, a startup developing computer vision systems for manufacturing and delivery processes.
Sources told the New York Times that Google’s initial plans are not consumer-focused, instead aimed at manufacturing and industry automation, although products are expected within the next three to five years.
Rubin, before making Android into a mobile powerhouse, started life as a robotics engineer at Zeiss. He has now convinced Google founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page to fund a commercial robotics venture, something Rubin has been mulling for some 10 years.

Robotic cars

Google is no stranger to robots. Its robotic car project, which kicked off in 2009, is one of the leaders in the field. It currently has a fleet of at least 10 converted Toyota Priuses, which have covered more than 300,000 miles on Californian roads without incident.
The robotic cars have roof-mounted cameras and sensors that monitor the road ahead and its surroundings, building a 3D model of the route and navigating obstacles.
In 2012, a blind man names Steve Mahan was allowed behind the wheel of a Google self-driving car in Morgan Hill, California.

Presently, most of these robots are controlled externally and don't demonstrate any real intelligence. But when combined with the AI systems now rapidly exploding in complexity and intelligence -- Ray Kurzweil insists AI systems will be smarter than humans by 2029 -- you have the perfect recipe for a walking, thinking, calculating "Terminator" robot that's ready to commit mass genocide against humanity.

Who will control these robots? Google, of course, the same corporation that spies on all your email, searches and web surfing behavior. Google is now being called the "evil empire" of the modern world, and many are convinced the corporation intends to pursue an agenda of global domination at every level: technology, social engineering, robotics and militarization.

Humanity's defense: Guns and EMP

What is humanity's defense against the rise of the robots? Firearms and EMP weapons, it turns out. Making robots bulletproof is very difficult to achieve, as they would become too heavy to carry out their tasks with efficiency. While robots could be outfitted with Kevlar vests, there are more than enough sniper rifles in the hands of everyday Americans -- especially across the hunting industry -- to take out millions of robots with high-velocity rounds and long ranges.

EMP weapons, too, can disable robots unless they are hardened against EMP attacks. EMP weapons were depicted in The Matrix sci-fi film as a key weapon against the search-and-destroy "Squiddies" that stalked humans and destroyed their transport craft. In order to survive for the long term, humans would have to seek out and destroy the robotfactories that keep churning out the Terminators. They might also cut off the supply of power or raw materials to the factories by sabotaging supply lines.

In the original Terminator film, future humans managed to invent a time machine that could send a naked human into the past to reshape the course of events. Kyle Reese was transported to 1984 -- a year of really bad punk fashion -- to protect future military leader John Conner, who was being hunted by a Terminator also sent back in time.

While Google hasn't yet created a time machine, it's getting frighteningly close to the Terminator android robots depicted in the film of the same name. Once achieved, this willgive a corporation the military might of the Pentagon. Essentially, Google would be the first corporation in the world to raise its own private combat army.

Survival of the human race may soon depend on humanity's ability to disable or destroy armies of corporate-controlled robots programmed to terminate human life. Don't search for how to accomplish this on Google.com, or you will be scheduled for termination.

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#Smartwatch #Apple Launches Smartwatch, Updates #IPhone6 Line

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Launches Smartwatch, Updates IPhone Line

It will start with a friend. A friend who lives in San Francisco, maybe. Or who works as a venture capitalist. Or who recently had a birthday.

This friend will be wearing an Apple Watch. And at first, you'll giggle. It's a wrist computer! It looks silly, like something out of Dick Tracy. You'll say something snide, like, "Get a lot of dates with that thing?" The friend will laugh good-naturedly. He'll show you some of the things the Apple Watch can do: Twitter notifications, turn-by-turn directions, conversations 

with Siri. You'll pretend to be wowed. You'll move on to other subjects.

Then, a few weeks later, you'll start seeing more of these goofy-looking watches being worn by actual humans. Your boss will get one for Father's Day. They'll raffle one off at a benefit dinner. A hot woman will be wearing one in a restaurant and, somehow, be pulling it off. People will start talking about it in your earshot. Eh, the battery life isn't great, but it saves me a lot of time when I travel. Oh yeah, I use it to pay for stuff. Did you know you can share your heartbeat with this? 

Better, cooler apps will be built for these watches. Silly apps that let you take selfies and send them places. Useful apps that put vital information on your wrist when you need it. Apps for work, for commerce, for killing time on the subway platform. Then the accessories will come: rich-looking leather bands, gorgeously thin Chanel straps, carrying cases that have an extra battery tucked away inside. You'll get numb to the boxy, geeky look of the watches. Maybe one day, you'll catch yourself admiring one from afar. Is that ... an Apple Watch?

And then, sometime around June, you'll get an unexpected infusion of cash — a security deposit you forgot you'd paid, or a few hundred dollars from your tax return. And you'll find yourself on Apple.com late at night, admiring the watch, wondering if the $349 you'd spend would ever really be worth it.

What the hell, you'll say. Add to cart.

For all the hemming and hawing about the devices Apple released yesterday — the tech specs, the dimensions, the informed analysis of How It Will All Work Together — the most overlooked aspect of the entire day was that Apple gadgets have always been, and will always be, pure fetish objects. Our iPhone, iPad, and Macbook Air purchases may end up helping us be productive at work, or saving us time on the go, but our decision to buy them always starts with the same thought: This looks cool and I want one.

This instinct, and the simple, primordial envy that produces it, is what's made it possible for Apple to sell luxury devices to the masses even in a time of stagnant wages and widening inequality, inspiring millions of people to stretch their budgets in order to accommodate yet another device they can't really afford. It's what's made my first thought, after dropping a $600 piece of metal and glass in the ocean by accident last year, not "Why did I buy a $600 piece of metal and glass that isn't waterproof?" but "Where can I get another one, stat?"

A few months ago, I wrote about wearables — the unfortunately named category to which the Apple Watch now belongs. My prognosis wasn't great. I thought that "despite all the buzz surrounding wearables, it isn’t clear who’s supposed to be buying them," and wondered aloud who, exactly, would be willing to shell out hundreds of dollars for a glorified notifications screen for their wrist.

But I left myself a small opening. The smartwatch, I wrote, "could succeed as a high-end fashion accessory" if designers conspired to turn it from a geek status symbol into something truly trend-worthy.

This is, of course, exactly what Apple wants to do. By putting the Apple Watch in the hands of fashion people rather than just tech and marketing experts, by making it cost $350, by letting third-party designers accessorize the hell out of it, Tim Cook is going to try to turn the Apple Watch into something aspirational — a thing you covet not because it's got an S1 processor or a Taptic engine, but because having it on your wrist will make you feel better about yourself.

I know, a fashionable smartwatch sounds like an oxymoron. But that's the strategy here. And if it works, you'll find yourself succumbing to the pressure eventually — just like you did with the iPhone, just like you did with the iPad, just as you'll do with any number of future Cupertino-conceived gadgets.

The bottom line is that you'll never need an Apple Watch. But you may very well want one. In wristwear, as in computing, Apple's social engineering may matter more than its technical engineering.

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Can You Do Real Work With the 30-Year-Old IBM 5150?

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When IBM released its first personal computer, the 5150, 30 years ago, it was deliberately drab--black, gray, and low-key. That’s because IBM intended the 5150 to be a serious machine for people doing serious work

So how better to celebrate this important anniversary than by using the 5150 for what it was meant to do? Working on a 5150 seems to be a tall task in today's vastly accelerated computing world, however. Could a PC that’s as old as I am manage to email, surf the Web, produce documents, edit photos, and even tweet?
I sequestered myself for four days amid boxes of 5.25-inch floppy drives and serial cables to find out. The answer to my question turned out to be both yes and no--but more interesting was all the retro-computing magic I had to perform. In the end, my experiment proved two things:
  • People now use the PC for many things that weren't even conceived of in 1981, and the 5150, unsurprisingly, is woefully underpowered for those advanced tasks. But when you use it for the core computing tasks the 5150 was designed for, IBM's first PC has still got game.
  • Early floppy discs were just too darned small!

Day 1: Setting Up

I was interested in spending more time with the Model 5150 because it's the foundation of so much modern computing. For the past 30 years, the platform created by the IBM PC has served as the basis for personal computing innovation and progress. Today, most people use PCs that retain some level of compatibility with a computer system released three decades ago.
When I first set out to test the mettle of the 5150, I realized that this special challenge called for a unique test environment. I couldn't pull this off at my house; I would be too tempted to use modern computers as a crutch. I needed a secret bunker, a distant location where I could wrestle with vintage technology unhindered and uninterrupted. (Did I mention that I have a one-year-old at my house?)
After careful thought, I sequestered myself in an infrequently used room in the upstairs corner of my parents' house. The bulk of Day 1 consisted of moving equipment over. I needed to take not only the PC itself, but also what seemed like 15 metric tons of supporting hardware that I could use for repairs in case the PC broke. Among those supplies were a few dozen ISA expansion cards (including spare video cards, serial cards, and the like), a couple extra 5.25-inch floppy drives, some tools, and a box of assorted cables.

Day 2: Trying to Fix the Thing

Can You Do Real Work With the 30-Year-Old IBM 5150?

Day 2 began with a general survey of the PC. The first thing I did was open the case and assess what was inside. In the PC's five ISA expansion slots, I found a CGA video card, a memory expansion card, a floppy controller card, and a serial card for communicating with mice and other peripherals. For storage, my PC came equipped with a lone, full-height 5.25-inch 360KB DS/DD floppy drive. Thankfully, someone had maxed out the RAM at 640KB (yep, that's a massive 640 kilobytes--roughly 0.032 percent of the RAM on today's low-end PCs). When I looked for the processor, I found a surprise: One of this system's previous owners had replaced the Intel 8088 CPU with a Zilog V20 CPU.

Can You Do Real Work With the 30-Year-Old IBM 5150?

The V20, originally designed by NEC, was a pin-compatible enhancement of the 8088 that could run certain programs 30 percent faster than the 8088 could--even though it ran at the same 4.77MHz clock speed. But it wouldn’t be historically accurate to run such a speed demon for this challenge, so I replaced the V20 with an 8088 chip that I had in my collection.
Next, I hooked the machine to my period-authentic IBM 5153 CGA monitor and booted it up. I briefly had some trouble with the video connector on the CGA board, but after I cleaned it a bit, everything worked fine. Then I encountered the next obstacle: a bad RAM chip. The POST error code told me exactly which RAM chip was bad (okay, I cheated and looked it up on the Internet using a netbook I had with me). Luckily, this socketed chip (a 4164C, to be precise) could be easily swapped out--but I didn't have a replacement on hand.
Despite the malfunctioning RAM, the machine seemed to work well. The 5150 contains, as the Apple II did, a full version of BASIC in ROM that loads right up if you don't boot from a disk.

Can You Do Real Work With the 30-Year-Old IBM 5150?

Targeted mostly at computers without floppy drives (the lowest-priced 5150 sold with 16KB of RAM and no drives), this version of BASIC could save programs only to cassette tapes.
You read that right: Like other personal computers of the era, the 5150 came equipped with a cassette port on the back.

Can You Do Real Work With the 30-Year-Old IBM 5150?

With the appropriate cable, users could save and load programs from a standard Philips compact cassette tape. The tech was slow and poorly implemented on the PC, but cassette players (and tapes) were orders of magnitude cheaper than floppy drives in 1981.

Stuck in 40 Columns

Once I booted into BASIC, I noticed that the machine's display was stuck in 40-column mode (that is, capable of showing only 40 columns of letters on the screen at once). As a business machine, the 5150 supported an 80-column display. Switching it was possible, but I didn't remember how.
Instead of a software-based BIOS, IBM equipped the 5150 with a series of dip switches on the motherboard for configuring basic system parameters, such as what kind of video card you're using, how much RAM the system has, and how many floppy drives are installed. I saw that all the dip switches on this PC's motherboard were set correctly for 80-column CGA, so I was stumped.
Next I booted into PC DOS 3.3 (PC DOS is what IBM called its version of MS-DOS) off a floppy disk. Still 40 columns. Then I remembered that there was some way to change the video mode in DOS. I thumbed through an authentic PC DOS 3.3 paper manual to find the solution: A DOS command called "MODE" sets the video mode. The mode I needed was called "CG80," which set up a color, 80-column mode in DOS. Yes, 80 columns at last!
Somewhere along the way, I decided to add a second 360KB floppy drive to make my journey easier. Thinking ahead, I had brought a half-height unit (pulled from another PC years ago) along from my house the day before. Doing serious work on a single-floppy-drive machine involves a lot of disk swapping, which is never fun.

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#Google glass

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Learn everything about Google Glass including the latest news, Glassware updates, new Explorer Stories, how to keep in touch, and more.

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Top Commando: Iron Man Suits Coming Soon #USA

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An ambitious effort to build a high-tech armored suit for elite U.S. commandos has entered a new phase, as the military prepares to analyze three new prototypes it will receive this summer, the U.S.'s top Navy SEAL said Tuesday.
Adm. William McRaven, commander of U.S. Special Operations Command, said the military will receive the prototypes in June. The project was launched last year to revolutionize the capabilities and protection of Navy SEALs, U.S. Army Special Forces, and other elite commandos who perform some of the U.S.'s most dangerous and violent missions. It's already been nicknamed the "Iron Man" suit, a nod to the futuristic technology it will require resembling that of the popular comic book hero popularized in movies starring Robert Downey Jr.
There's a catch with the prototypes, however. McRaven told a crowd at a special operations conference in Washington that they will be unpowered - meaning the days of super-soldier commandos wearing exoskeleton armor is still years away. Best-case scenario, the admiral wants the suit to be used in combat situations by August 2018.
"Obviously if you're going to put a man in a suit -- or a woman in a suit -- and be able to walk with that exoskeleton... you've got to have power," McRaven said. "You can't have power hooked up to some giant generator."

Still, the admiral said he already has seen "astounding results" in the project. The prototypes in assembly now will be evaluated, with the results incorporated into the suits the U.S. eventually wants to see on the battlefield. It's unclear what the total price of the project may be, but McRaven said he would like to offer a $10 million prize to the winner in a competition. That hasn't happened yet, but it's likely the cost of developing the suit would be many times that.
"That suit, if done correctly, will yield a revolutionary improvement to survivability and capability for U.S. special operators," McRaven said.
The admiral said the project was inspired by a U.S. special operator who was grieving the loss of a comrade in combat. It's commonly known in the military as the TALOS, or Tactical Assault Light Operator Suit. Despite more than a decade of war in Iraq and Afghanistan, the U.S. still doesn't have a way to adequately protect commandos who "take a door," McRaven said, a reference to the controversial raids that kill and capture insurgents all over the globe.

Already, SOCOM has predicted the suit will include futuristic liquid body armor that hardens when a magnetic field or electrical current is applied, officials say. It also will include wearable computers, communications antennae, and a variety of sensors that link it to its wearer's brain.
McRaven isn't shy about how important he thinks the project is. He wants companies to partner with the military on the project, even if they're still uncomfortable sharing information that otherwise would give them an edge in competitions with industry competitors.

"If we do TALOS right," he said, "it will be a huge comparative advantage over our enemies and give the warriors the protection they need in a very demanding environment."
Photo by Chip Somodevilla/Getty Images

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Meet our Egyptian Tablet With not So Egyptian Name “INAR” #egypt

Meet our Egyptian Tablet With not So Egyptian Name “INAR


The minister of telecommunication announced today in Cairo the production of the first so-called Egyptian tablet.
The tablet’s name  is “ENAR” and I think that this is not so Egyptian. Its operating system is Android 4. It will be distributed on students in secondary stage and university.

From Arab PC world
This makes me happy as Egyptian to see Katron once is competing electronics giants but seriously Can someone please tell Katron to improve their official website !? It is disgrace.
By the way Katron is from the state owned 1960s companies and what you know about the 1960s !!?? Seriously speaking I am glad that we started to produce tablets
Katron is going to produce in the upcoming 4 years units of “INAR” worth of LE 2 billion according to Ahram Online.
The first 1,000 units will be produced before the end of the year.
The specification of the tablet 

  • Resolution : 720 X 1024 pixel , 9.7 inches
  • OS : Android 4.0
  • Video Camera primary : 2 MP
  • Video Camera secondary : 2 MP
  • Weight : 750 g
  • Memory : 8 to 32 GB storage / 1 GB RAM
  • Connections : WiFi and 3G
By the way when you search for Egyptian tablet , this is what you get. Yes the first Egyptian tablets.


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First Look at the iPhone 5 – New World Order Phone?

First Look at the iPhone 5 – New World Order Phone?


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حلول فى حالة انقطع خدمات جوجل عن #مصر

ولانك مش لازم تستسلم، عليك باستخدام TOR...

في البداية ماهي شبكة تور؟
تور عبارة عن شبكة من مستخدمي الانترنت الذين يقومون بتبادل سعة الوصلة (وصلة الانترنت) لديهم. يعني تقدر تعتبر ان تور حاجه كده زي التورينت،  بس في تورينت يتم تبادل الملفات وليس سعة الوصلة، بينما في تور، فان التبادل او المشاركة تكون في سعة وصلة الانترنت وليست الملفات...

اختارت المنظمة القائمة على تور شكل "البصلة" لتور، في رأيي انهم موفقين في هذا الاختيار، فتور يجعل عملية تتبع او تعقب ماذا يحدث في شبكة تور اشبه بـ "ياداخل بين البصلة وقشرتها" ههههههه (بايخة!؟ طظ، كمل...)
دلوقتي كل واحد بيستخدم تور بيقوم بـ"تمرير" اتصالاته عبر متصل آخر (يسمى Node) بشبكة تور، وبالتالي فان الموقع النهائي - ولنفترض ان الموقع المراد زيارته هو الموقع ص، دلوقتي ص مش هايشوفك على اساس انك جاي من مصر، لأ، هايشوفك على اساس انك جاي من آخر مشترك (يسمى Exit Node) تم تمرير اتصالاتك من خلاله، قد يكون هذا المشترك في امريكا، فرنسا، المانيا، الهند، كوالالمبور حتى، المهم، ان مصطلح البصلة مناسب تماما هنا، فمن الممكن ايضا ان يتم تمريرك من خلال اكثر من مشترك بالشبكة، يعني تطلع من مصر على مستخدم في الهند، يقوم الهندي بتمرير اتصالاتك (مشفرة ماتخافش) الى الامريكي اللي يطلعك على صيني (دي بأه واسعة على الآخر لسبب بسيط ان الصين مانعة البرنامج ده هناك وعامل "جدار النار العظيم" لحجب هذه الخدمة تماما) ياباني اللي في الأخير يوصلك للموقع ص اللي انت عايز توصله...

والآن ماهو برنامج تور؟
برنامج تور هو البرنامج الذي يقوم باشراكك وتوصيلك بشبكة تور ويقوم بتنفيذ التوصيفات - Configuration - التي تقوم بتحديدها. على سبيل المثال، يمكنك استخدام شبكة تور في وضع "الانانية" - هذا التأليفاشن من عندي، فلا يوجد هذا الوضع في تور، لكن تقول ايه للي يستخدم سعة وصلة غيره ولا يسمح باستخدام سعة وصلته (زيي مثلا :) - او يمكنك ان تسمح بمشاركة وصلة الانترنت وبالتالي يتم "تمرير" اتصالات الغير من اعضاء شبكة تور عبر وصلتك (وضع الـ Relay).

ماهي بدائل تور؟
هناك البروكسي - Proxy - لكنه ليس في كفاءة وجودة تور وذلك لعدة اسباب، اهمها:
- البروكسي المجاني كثير الاعطال
- تضطر لتغيير اعدادات المتصفح كلما غيرت البروكسي
- لاتضمن ان يقوم البروكسي بتسجيل الاتصال الذي يتم بينك وبين الموقع - حيث يكون البروكسي في المنتصف
- لا يفيدك في باقي خدمات الانترنت - مثل FTP و POP3 و IMAP وغيرها من خدمات الانترنت

والآن مع برنامج... البرنامج...  تور
ياتي تور في اصدارين، اصدار المجموعة (Bundle) واصدار البرنامج فقط (Vidalia)
في اصدار المجموعة لا تحتاج لتثبيت اي برنامج او القيام باي توصيفات، فقط قم بتحميل المجموعة، ثم فكها في مجلد، ثم شغل البرنامج  الموجود في المجلد، ودمتم...
في اصدار البرنامج، سوف تقوم بتثبيت تور مثلما تقوم بتثبيت اي برنامج آخر.

اصدار المجموعة
لتحميل المجموعة، انقر هنا. ثم قم بتشغيل الملف وسوف تظهر رسالة تسألك عن المجلد الذي سوف يتم فيه فك الملفات المضغوطة (الشكل - 1)

الشكل - 1
اختر مجلد ليتم فيه فك الملفات المضغوطة
بعد ذلك قم بتشغيل البرنامج Start Tor Browser، هذا البرنامج سوف يقوم بتشغيل كل البرامج اللازمة لحصولك على تصفح آمن وخاص (وهي الميزة الرئيسية لشبكة تور) من أول تور وحتى المتصفح الجاهز بتوصيفات خاصة...

برنامج Vidalia وهو برنامج يتم التعامل مع تور من خلاله وله واجهه سهلة الاستخدام

انتظر برهه وسوف يتم اطلاق المتصفح الخاص بالمجموعة - مش المتصفح بتاعك - جاهز تماما لاستخدام شبكة تور وسوف يقوم المتصفح بتحميل صفحة من موقع تور تبين لك ما اذا كنت تستخدم شبكة تور (بنجاح) ام لا

تم تشغيل متصفح المجموعة - انت الآن تستفيد من خدمات شبكة تور
برنامج Vidalia
هذا البرنامج يتطلب بعض العمل لتوصيف المتصفح للتعامل مع شبكة تور، لكن في آخر الأمر الموضوع في غاية السهولة.
تثبيت البرنامج عملية عادية، بعد التثبيت قم بتشغيل البرنامج، سوف يبدأ البرنامج بالبصلة - في شريط المهام - في وضع الاستعداد (باللون الاصفر) وسوف يبدأ بانشاء "دوائر" - حلقات الاتصال بين (بعض) مستخدمي تور وبينك حسب حسابات تور الخاصة بسرعة الشبكة وجاهزية مستخدمي تور (المتواجدين حاليا)...
دعه يعمل حتى يتحول الى اللون الأخضر...

لوحة التحكم الخاصة بـ Vidalia (واجهة تور الرسومية)

الآن تور جاهز للعمل (البصلة خضراء)، قبل الشروع في ما تريد، فقط تأكد من انك لا تقوم بتمرير الاتصالات عبر وصلة الانترنت الخاصة بك (اكثر أمانا اذا اردت رأيي! احنا في مصر ياعم الحج)، لهذا قم باختيار الخيار الأول (Run as Client Only) او وضع الأنانية :)

قم باختيار نوعية المشاركة التي سوف تقدمها لشبكة تور (يفضل الاختيار الأول الا اذا كنت تعلم ما تفعل)
 وهذه بعض المعلومات حول باقي الخيارات:
* الخيار الثاني: قم بتمرير الاتصالات داخل الشبكة فقط (يعني مرر اتصالات عبر وصلتي ولكن لا تجعلني آخر نقطة بين مستخدم تور والموقع النهائي ص)
* الخيار الثالث: مرر الاتصالات عبر شبكة تور حتى لو كنت انا آخر نقطة بين الاتصالات المررة والوجهة الأخيرة (الموقع ص)
* الخيار الرابع: ساعد مستخدمي تور اللي حكومتهم حاطة عليهم - مراقبين المنفذ 9050 بتاع تور - بحيث انك تفتح منفذ عندك - 80 مثلا - لتمرير الاتصالات عبر ذلك المنفذ

اذا كانت الحكومة لحقت تحط عليك او بتستعمل تور من جهة، منظمة، شركة، او حتى مقدم خدمة الانترنت "غلس" وبيمنع الاتصال بالمنفذ رقم 9050، فهذه الخيارات سوف تساعدك في "التملص" و"الافلات" من الرقابة...

هذه الخيارات مفيدة في حالة ما اذا كنت لا تستطيع الوصول الى المنفذ رقم 9050
الذي تستخدمه شبكة تور لتمرير
الاتصالات عبر مستخدميها
دلوقتي ناقص آخر حاجه، وهي توصيف المتصفح ليستخدم تور...
سوف اقوم بالشرح على Firefox ويمكنك تطبيق نفس الاسلوب في باقي المتصفحات...
اذهب الى Tools | Options | Advanced | Network | Settings، سوف تظهر نافذة مثل التي في الصورة التي بالاسفل
قم باختيار الخيار الأخير Manual Proxy Configuration.
ثم قم بلمئ الخانات بالضبط كما في الصورة (بالاسفل)

دع الخانات خالية ما عدا خانة SOCKS ثم قم بملئها كما في الصورة
والآن لتطمئن على ان كل شيء يعمل بشكل سليم، ادخل على موقع http://www.whatismyipaddress.com، اذا وجدت نفسك تدخل من بلد مختلف، المانيا، ايطاليا، فرنسا، امريكا، الخ (او حتى مفيش اسم بلد أصلا، برضه شغال) فكده طلعت قماش...

لو لقيت نفسك جاي من مصر، يبقى تحترم نفسك هههههههههههههه

الصورتين دولت لبرنامج صغير - سكريبت - بيقوم بالحصول على رقم الآي بي الخاص بي، لاحظ الفرق بين المستخدم hytham و root (الأول بدون تور والآخر باستخدام تور)

hytham لا يستخدم تور، هذا الآي بي يشير الى رقم آي بي من شركة اتصالات (فلاشة نت)

أما المستخدم root يستخدم تور - عبر نفس فلاشة اتصالات - رقم الآي بي اختلف (ولاية نيو جيرسي، امريكا)

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