Who to believe, revisited

First, while we did discuss legal compliance requirements with the government as reported last week, in none of these discussions did Microsoft provide or agree to provide any government with direct access to user content or the ability to break our encryption. — Microsoft MS, working with the FBI, developed a surveillance capability to deal with the new SSL. — NSA News story here, documents here, OCRed text.

Transparent Society hardware update

How would you like a digital video camera that records 15fps video in 3GP format (QuickTime-compatible) direct to flash drive, is small enough to fit in a pack of gum, and has 33 hour capacity? It’s currently $295. In less than 10 years cameras like this will be so cheap anyone will be able to afford one. Phones will be able to upload their video live to the Internet, in case of confiscation.

News from Airstrip One

When Britain started deploying surveillance cameras everywhere, civil libertarians got worried. No need to panic, they were reassured—the cameras were just to watch criminals, they weren’t going to be spying on law-abiding citizens. Well, starting next year the government will be using the networked cameras to feed computers running license plate recognition software. They will record the time, date and location of every car they see, and store the information in a big database.

Shuttle porn at 0.007 mpg

Someone with a new Nikon digital SLR took a bunch of photos of the Space Shuttle as it rolled out to the launch pad from the Vehicle Assembly Building. Sheesh, that thing looks skanky, the right side looks like a model that someone’s spilt coffee on. Now I understand what they mean by “ageing shuttle fleet”. I’m not sure I’d want to fly in it. There are more photos posted at keyhole.