Category Archives: Things I Read

Malvertising. Nice term. A new wave of bad Ads is coming!

A New Wave Of Bad Ads Is Hijacking Even Top-Tier Websites … :

Malvertising, as it’s sometimes called, isn’t new. The first recorded sighting of a malware-loaded ad, in late 2007 or early 2008, stemmed from a vulnerability in Adobe Flash, and affected a number of platforms including MySpace, Excite, and Rhapsody. In 2012, the Online Trust Alliance, an industry group, estimated nearly 10 billion ad impressions were compromised by malicious ads. But those in the digital ad industry say the problem has been rapidly growing worse.

In some cases, unscrupulous advertising code even purposely displays marketing messages that users will never see, according to a report on Monday from ad security company GeoEdge. Instead, the ads hijack phones and computers to simulate mouse clicks and finger taps on the hidden ads, in order to pull in revenue from advertisers who can’t distinguish automated interactions from legitimate potential customers.

Alongside the rise in ad malware, security researchers have also recently highlighted a surge in cryptojacking—scripts and software that secretly mine cryptocurrency using website visitors’ CPUs. According to a report by Check Point this week, cryptojacking malware accounted for two of the three most widespread malware infections globally in December 2017. And, Israeli adtech firm Spotad warned recently, websites and publishers need to be prepared for this kind of malware slipping in through their sites’ ad networks.

The risk to publishers, of course, is that internet users who are fed up with malicious ads will turn increasingly to adblocking software.

Yes I did. :-\

Moosweiblein, Brotteig und Mouskounl – Fichtelgebirge

Kösseine, Jörg Braukmann, Wikipedia, CC-BY-SA

Über die Entstehung des Schurbacher Hausnamens “Mouskounl” berichtete Irene Kunz aus Waldershof. Nach der Erzählung kneteten nachts Moosweiblein den Teig für das Brot. Als neugierige Hausbewohner bemerkten, dass sie dies mit bloßen Füßen taten, baten sie die Moosweiblein doch den Teig mit den Händen zu kneten. Von diesem Tag an waren die Moosweiblein verschwunden.

Schöner Artikel hier: Schmalspurbahn und Adler aus Kösseine-Granit | Onetz … :

“Im Jahr 1890 wurde eine Schmalspurbahn von der Steinmetzhütte der Grasyma in Neusorg zum Steinbruch in Schurbach gebaut. Die Burschen aus Schurbach hatten damals viel Spaß daran, die Gleise einzufetten und der Lokomotive und dem Personal die Fahrt auf der steilen Strecke zu erschweren.”

Mehr Sagen und Geschichten aus und übers Fichtelgebirge gibt’s hier: Märchen – Sagen – Legenden über das Fichtelgebirge … :

Libra, a Cyberpunk Nightmare in the Midst of Crypto Spring

It’s an ELE, an Extinction Level Event for the old financial world order. When historians look back they may just point to this moment as the catalyst.

Are we racing towards a financial renaissance or a cyberpunk nightmare of oligarchical mega-corporations ripped from the pages of William Gibson?


In a way, Facebook just did the community a massive favor.

They’ll draw the fight away from smaller projects and Bitcoin to a more conventional enemy, a top down, hierarchical enemy. This is an enemy the state understands well. There’s nothing states love more than cutting off the “head of the snake.”

Facebook, Cognizant and modern slavery.

 Facebook moderators break their NDAs to expose desperate working conditions – The Verge … :

Utley worked the overnight shift at a Facebook content moderation site in Tampa, FL, operated by a professional services vendor named Cognizant. The 800 or so workers there face relentless pressure from their bosses to better enforce the social network’s community standards, which receive near-daily updates that leave its contractor workforce in a perpetual state of uncertainty. The Tampa site has routinely failed to meet the 98 percent “accuracy” target set by Facebook. In fact, with a score that has been hovering around 92, it is Facebook’s worst-performing site in North America.

Things and … things. Described. Little things, indeed

Reality update: Web of Things (WoT) Thing Description … :

A Thing Description describes the metadata and interfaces of Things, where a Thing is an abstraction of a physical or virtual entity that provides interactions to and participates in the Web of Things. Thing Descriptions provide a set of interactions based on a small vocabulary that makes it possible both to integrate diverse devices and to allow diverse applications to interoperate.

Nuclear, horses and Dabbelju

 Language wars: the 19 greatest linguistic spats of all time | Science | The Guardian … :

‘Nucular’ war The fact that we used to make fun of George W Bush for his malapropisms seems quaint these days. But it was worrying to many of us at the time that the man in charge of the world’s most powerful nuclear arsenal didn’t seem to be able to pronounce it right. He said “nucular” and it was one more black mark against his intelligence. But this syllable-flip is in fact a fairly common linguistic process called metathesis. All English speakers live with the results of historic metatheses that caught on: horse used to be “hros” and bird used to be “brid”.

Interesting Study on Self-Supervised Learing…

Ai is now learning with images of kittens, and I really like the cats, birds and moving images examples in these slides: 


The ImageNet Challenge Story … Outcomes Strong supervision:

• Features from networks trained on ImageNet can be used for other visual tasks, e.g. detection, segmentation, action recognition, fine grained visual classification

• To some extent, any visual task can be solved now by:
1. Construct a large-scale dataset labelled for that task
2. Specify a training loss and neural network architecture
3. Train the network and deploy

The US of A has a huge security problem: poverty

 The United States Has a National-Security Problem—and It’s Not What You Think | The Nation … :

It’s time to rethink the American national security state with its annual trillion-dollar budget. For tens of millions of Americans, the source of deep workaday insecurity isn’t the standard roster of foreign enemies, but an ever-more entrenched system of inequality, still growing, that stacks the political deck against the least well-off Americans. They lack the bucks to hire big-time lobbyists. They can’t write lavish checks to candidates running for public office or fund PACs. They have no way of manipulating the myriad influence-generating networks that the elite uses to shape taxation and spending policies. They are up against a system in which money truly does talk—and that’s the voice they don’t have. Welcome to the United States of Inequality.

Right-Wing populists as “Revenge of places that don’t matter”

The revenge of the places that don’t matter | VOX, CEPR Policy Portal … :

Persistent poverty, economic decay and lack of opportunities cause discontent in declining regions, while policymakers reason that successful agglomeration economies drive economic dynamism, and that regeneration has failed. This column argues that this disconnect has led many of these ‘places that don’t matter’ to revolt in a wave of political populism with strong territorial, rather than social, foundations. Better territorial development policies are needed that tap potential and provide opportunities to those people living in the places that ‘don’t matter’.