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NYPD has no backup for its seized property database, recording millions in annual seizures

The Property and Evidence Tracking System (PETS) is the NYPD‘s huge database where it stores ownership information on the millions in New Yorkers‘ property it takes charge of every year (including about 68m in cash and counting), through evidence collection and asset forfeiture. (more)

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Edition of Fahrenheit 451 that can only be read by burning the pages

Next year, French graphic design house Super Terrain will publish this very special edition of Ray Bradbury‘s Fahrenheit 451 that can only be read by burning the pages. Of course Fahrenheit 451, published in 1953, is a dystopian novel about a future where books are outlawed and burned. Ironically, the book itself has been subjected to banning, censoring, and redacting over the years. "A Heat Sensitive Edition of ‘Fahrenheit 451&lsqu

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A talented impersonator is scamming Richard Branson and pals for millions

Richard Branson got a call from the UK Secretary of State for Defence asking for his help in a covert ransom payment of 5m to rescue a ranking diplomat from kidnappers; Branson recognised the man‘s voice but he was suspicious of the plan to validate the scheme by sending an assistant to lobby of a government building to meet the Secretary‘s secretary and exchange codewords. (more)

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Leaked ICE forfeiture manual instructs agents to seize houses if they contain a phone implicated in crime

ICE have become house-flippers, using the notorious and discredited "civil asset forfeiture" process to steal houses from people they say were involved in crime, then selling the houses to fund their operations, and more seizures of more houses. (more)

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An update from the War on Rats

I cut back the vegetation around my home, as it had grown up too high over the wild rainy season and hot summer. Rats had taken over the brush and ivy. My landscaping left them nowhere to go. Nowhere but my woodshed... (more)

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Here is Apple‘s self-driving car prototype

Here are new images of Apple‘s self-driving car technology (Project Titan) mounted on a Lexus RX350. That gear on the top is a rack of six LIDAR sensors that use lasers to collect spatial data about the vehicle‘s surroundings. Going to need more than 140 characters to go over s Project Titan. I call it The Thing pic.twitter.com/sLDJd7iYSa- MacCallister Higgins (@macjshiggins) October 17, 2017 I saw one of these a few weeks ago pu

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Mobile ad technique allows stalkers to follow you around a city for less than 1000

This month, University of Washington researchers will present Exploring ADINT: Using Ad Targeting for Surveillance on a Budget - or - How Alice Can Buy Ads to Track Bob at the Workshop on Privacy in the Electronic Society in Dallas; the paper details a novel way that stalkers and other low-level criminals can accomplish state-grade surveillance on the cheap with targeted ad-purchases. (more)

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Smalltown America finds ecstasy at Dollar General

I love dollar stores, and so does rural America. Dollar General, in particular, is cleaning up in the towns so out of the way even Wal-Mart can‘t make business there. The Decatur store is one of 1,000 Dollar Generals opening this year as part of the 22 billion chain‘s plan to expand rapidly in poor, rural communities where it has come to represent not decline but economic resurgence, or at least survival. ... Already, there are 14,

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Troubles loom for patent trolls who rent sovereign immunity from Native American tribes

In September, we learned that the pharma giant Allergan had sold key patents to the St Regis Mohawk band in upstate New York, in a bid to avoid a streamlined patent-challenge process called inter partes review (IPR). (more)

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Syndaver: A 95K animatronic cadaver that‘s replacing med-school corpses

The Syndaver is a super-realistic robotic human corpse simulator with replaceable viscera that med students can dissect again and again, freeing them to use the donated bodies of people who willed their remains to science for med school pranks, like sneaking them into the alumni dinner in a tuxedo. (more)

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IRS to America: you were probably already doxed before the Equifaxpocalype, so don‘t worry about it

IRS Commissioner John Koskinen said that he didn‘t expect the risk of fraud to go up this tax-filing season despite the world-beating Equifax breach of 145,000,000 Americans‘ sensitive personal and financial data because a "significant" number of Equifax‘s breaches had already been exposed by earlier breaches of other databases. (more)

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The social media marketing biz is booming

Running your social media profiles with a razor-sharp focus has proven to be a viable way to keep your brand above the ever-increasing noise of the internet. If you are looking to drive more traffic to your freelance hustle, almost-famous dog, meme account, or score a job as a social media manager, take a look at theSocial Media Management Pro Bundle, available now in the Boing Boing Store for 34.Not positive you want to dive all the way in? We&l

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Happy birthday, Dawn Wells!

The amazing Dawn Wells turns 79 today. (Thanks, Rob Bronstein!)

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Engineer/hero/entrepreneur Limor "ladyada" Fried was kicked off Facebook and no one will tell her why

Limor "ladyada" Fried (previously) is one of the great hardware hackers of her generation and is the co-founder of the pioneering open source hardware company Adafruit; she‘s also not allowed on Facebook anymore. (more)

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Can it be true? A working ‘Dick Tracy Wrist Watch‘

Oh boy! A working Dick Tracy Wrist Watch is probably second only to a working Class B9 Model M3 General Utility Non-Theorizing Environmental Control Robot on my wishlist! These guys don‘t tell you much, but this lovely watch sounds similar to an Apple Watch on speakerphone-mode I‘m probably in. CLOSE ENOUGH. These guys sell watches that look like a Dick Tracy watch, now, but only tell the time. While I am tempted, I‘ll wait

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Two of the Chicago airport cops who beat up Dr David Dao got fired for lying about it (but not for the beating)

Two of the four Chicago Department of Aviation Security officers who beat United Airlines passenger Dr David Dao until he was unconscious, concussing him, breaking his nose and then dragging him off the plane, have been fired -- but not for administering the beating. Rather, they were fired for lying about it. One of the other two officers involved has quit and the final one got a two-day paid holiday ("suspension"). (more)

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The insincerity of your protest is deafening

This jerk at an NFL game doesn‘t feel folks should protest civil injustice against black Americans by kneeling, but thinks the flag is there to keep his ass dry. Who is disrespecting what? Via Deadspin.

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10 photo lightbox sure comes in handy

I‘ve been using this 10 lightbox an awful lot. This is simply a white plastic box with some very white LED lights and two foam backdrops. There is nothing to it. You can fold it up to the size of a legal pad if you want to put it away, or take it someplace. I‘m getting lovely photos using just my iPhone 7+. Imagine if I tried any of the tens of cameras I have laying around the house? Probably not much different. Photo Light B

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Dying 59-year-old chimpanzee recognizes old friend

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=INa-oOAexno&feature=youtu.be Mama was 59 years old, the oldest among Amsterdam‘s Royal Burgers Zoo chimpanzee colony. Jan van Hooff (emeritus professor behavioural biology at Utrecht University and co-founder of the Burgers colony) who has known Mama since 1972, visited her in the week before she died of old age in april 2016. It took a while before she became aware of Jan‘s presence. Her reaction was

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The Tories replaced benefits with "universal credit" and left a town to starve

In 2013, the Scottish city of Inverness had the unfortunate fate of being picked as the trial site for a pilot of "universal credit," one of the UK Conservative government‘s big ideas, in which the various benefits paid to low-income people were replaced with a single payment, centrally administered. (more)

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BBC news anchor inexplicably clasps ream of paper during segment

https://streamable.com/cvn90 "Where‘s my fucking iPad prop? I need m...Just give me some fucking paper or something! Wait, not that, oh for FUCK‘S SAgood morning and welcome to BBC News."

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Gentleman takes issue with fellow car racer‘s parking skills

At Anderson Speedway in Indiana, driver Jeffrey Swinford was not pleased with Shawn Cullen for crashing into him and taking both of them out of a race. Then Cullen was not pleased with Swinford parking his car on top of Cullen‘s. (more)

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Dead 2017 pop culture trends are laid to rest in this art teacher‘s front lawn

For art teacher Michael Fry of Mamaroneck, New York, certain 2017 trends need to be dead and buried. So, for the past few Halloweens, he‘s made tombstone lawn decorations that lay specific trends to rest. This year it‘s "so long!" to ombre hair, the hashtag #rosallday, the "old Taylor Swift," homemade slime, and more. ABCNews writes: ‘Things from that year that have either died, or are dying or are no longer fashionable o

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Swedish-to-English IKEA product name dictionary

My Swedish-born (former Rubik‘s Cube champion) pal Lars Petrus has created a Swedish-to-English IKEA product name dictionary. He writes: Part of what makes IKEA unique is their product names. Each name means something, often in a funny or ambigious way. When IKEA went international, they decided to use the same Swedish names everywhere. This makes sense from an organizational sanity standpoint, but it deprives most of the world of this p

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