4 million vote in Afghanistan despite violence and technical glitches
- Kabul, Afghanistan (CNN) - More than 4 million people cast their ballots in Afghanistan's parliamentary election amid spates of violence and logistical issues, Afghanistan's Independent Election Commission announced.
- In an address to the nation shortly after the polls closed on Sunday, President Ashraf Ghani thanked the Afghan people for such a large turnout despite security risks that saw reports of dozens of deaths and injuries throughout the nation.
- A campaign manager, Israr Karimzai, told CNN that he had "20 reports of different centers across the country where people are being denied their right to vote" because "no ballot papers or no biometric devices or IEC staff have shown up" at the polling stations.
- More than 20,000 polling stations were open across the country, with the exception of Kandahar and Ghazni provinces, where voting will take place at a later date, Afghan Interior Ministry spokesman Najib Danesh said earlier.
75 years ago, US bombers flew into the 'most violent, savagely fought, and bloodiest' battle of their campaign to halt the Nazi war machine
- Between 1940 and 1945, Allied forces dropped more than 2.7 million tons of bombs on Europe, producing enough energy to leave a mark at the edge of earth's atmosphere.
- About half of that was dropped on Germany, as the Allies attempted to break the back of the Nazi war machine that sent German troops and tanks to the English Channel and the gates of Moscow.
- In Germany, the air campaign produced horrors like the February 1945 bombing of Dresden, which killed roughly 25,000 people, many of them civilians and refugees, in the resulting firestorm.
- In the early days of the war, the US Army Air Force was not only working to destroy German targets but also to prove that daylight bombing by unescorted bombers was a viable doctrine.
- While the British advocated a general bombing campaign against German cities, US commanders pushed for precision attacks against specific industrial targets.
Free societies face emerging, existential threats from technology
- As venture capitalists, we need to do more to find, fund and help a new generation of technology companies that build the infrastructure and applications to deal with technology-based threats to stability and security.
- Our portfolio company Evolv Technology, for example, is using advanced sensors and AI in weapons detection systems that can screen hundreds of people per hour without making them slow down or empty their pockets and purses.
- Companies like ShieldAI, Convexxum, Echodyne and others are using machine vision and advanced radars/lidar technologies to prevent people from being put in harm’s way by drone-type attacks.
- DCVC recently invested in Fortem Technologies, and Shasta Ventures in AirSpace, which make Star Wars-ish systems of AI-based drones whose only role is to automatically detect, identify, and slam into drones that wander into unauthorized airspace — say, over a private estate, or a factory.
Attack on Titan is getting a VR experience in Japan
- In Japan, you can pilot a Gundam or try your hand at DBZ VR, Dragon Quest VR, Mario Kart VR, and more VR Zone at Shinjuku.
- The experience will support up to four players as they battle against the Female Titan and is based on a chapter from the original manga.
- We’re still a ways off from a real Sword Art Online VR MMO (Nostos is making some steps in the right direction), but until then the likes of Attack on Titan VR will certainly hold us over.
- Above: Attack on Titan VR rigs.
- Attack on Titan VR is getting a location test in Tokyo at Ginza Sony Park from October 19 to October 26.
- With Mario Kart VR available in London already and coming to the U.S. soon, maybe more location-based VR experiences from Japan will start making their way to the West over too.
Apple CEO Tim Cook calls on Bloomberg to retract its Chinese spy story
- Apple CEO Tim Cook is calling on Bloomberg Business to retract a story that said his company was the victim of a hardware-based attack carried out by the Chinese government.
- Apple and Amazon have said they have no knowledge of ever finding or removing servers that contained the kind of spy chips Bloomberg alleged were found in the companies’ networks.
- Further ReadingIf Supermicro boards were so bug-ridden, why would hackers ever need implants?Meanwhile, an official from the US Department of Homeland Security has said he has no reason to doubt the Apple and Amazon denials, and a top official with the National Security Agency has said the vast resources at his disposal have been unable to confirm the report.
- An article BuzzFeed published on Friday said Cook is now calling on Bloomberg to retract the claims, which are solely attributed to unpublished information provided by 17 unnamed people the news service says worked for US governmental agencies and the companies that discovered and removed backdoored servers from their networks.
We're living in the last innocent moments before the first AI-related massacre
- It seems shocking that, as of October 2018, we’ve yet to see the headline that’s going to send the killer robots debate into high gear: “Officials still searching for humans behind terrorist attack carried out by autonomous weapons.” But, sadly, it’s almost surely coming.
- Through its Campaign To Stop Killer Robots the organization has dedicated itself to the incredibly difficult mission of spreading awareness about autonomous weapons — mostly as it pertains to government, military, and police use.
- We live in a world where you can 3D print a firearm, mount it to a battery-powered tripod, and use open-source machine learning software and a Raspberry Pi (that may be an exaggeration, maybe not) to create something that, just a few years ago, would have seemed like experimental weapons at the cutting-edge of military research.
The Taliban just took a shot at America’s top general in Afghanistan and barely missed, the latest sign the US is losing the war
- Gen. Scott Miller, the top US and NATO commander in Afghanistan, on Thursday narrowly escaped a bold, deadly insider attack the Taliban claimed responsibility for.
- A Taliban commander told NBC News if it had been successful in killing Miller, who emerged from the attack unscathed, that President Donald Trump would've withdrawn the roughly 15,000 troops stationed in Afghanistan.
- Thursday's attack came just one day after a Taliban suicide bomber targeted a NATO convoy close to Kabul, the Afghan capital, killing two civilians and injuring five Czech troops.
- This is a far-cry from the deadliest year of the war for American in 2010, when 499 US troops were killed.
- The war is on track to kill over 20,000 civilians in Afghanistan this year alone, according to data from the Uppsala Conflict Data Program, meaning the conflict has reached its deadliest point in years.
A Trove of Facebook Data Is a Spammer's Dream and Your Nightmare
- The possibility that scammers were behind the theft, though, highlights the ways in which centralized data repositories like email accounts and social media profiles are potential gold mines for—and frequent targets of—phishers, spammers, and shady marketers.
- Segura points out that a trove like the one stolen from Facebook would be valuable for launching massive malvertising campaigns that try to entice web users to click on malicious ads, since it contains so many indicators of a person's background and preferences.
- And having such granular data about people would enrich all sorts of phishing attacks and so-called "business email compromise" scams, in which attackers try to gain access to email accounts within a business to gain credibility, and then influence malicious activity like payments to the attacker.
- While the stolen data could fuel online scam campaigns for years, consumers have little recourse against malicious advertising and persuasive phishing and spam attacks.
Top Afghan police chief killed in attack; US commander unhurt
- Three Americans also were wounded in the shooting attack at Kandahar Palace, said Col. Dave Butler, a spokesman for US Forces-Afghanistan.
- The police chief, Gen. Abdul Raziq Achakzai, was one of the most prominent security figures in Afghanistan.
- The Taliban released a statement claiming responsibility saying they killed "the notorious police chief" who was their primary target in the attack.
- The shooter was killed by the US military, one official said.
- The Americans wounded in the attack included one US service member, a US contractor and one US civilian government employee, according to two US military officials.
- All of those shot were in close proximity to Miller, one official said, adding that the US assesses that Raziq was the target because the shooter had the first choice of shot and went for Afghans, not Miller.
Opinion: The real lesson of Beto O'Rourke's run
- He thinks a positive message can win in the state where Karl Rove sharpened political long knives and attack tactics to elect the entire government.
- His ability to generate those types of numbers without accepting PAC money has Texas Democrats wondering if Beto has awakened the sleeping progressive masses.
- O'Rourke did get more aggressive the day after Dallas and began spending on ads that went directly at Cruz's record and the accusations in his broadcast attacks.
- Middle-class, conservative, suburban women in Texas may also be hiding their contempt for President Trump and may be ready to send a message to Cruz and the GOP, and young millennial voters could realize their future is slipping away and they are not using their collective voices.
- If Beto's magical narrative can prompt those new young voters, Latinos and suburban women to turn out in unprecedented numbers, he might become the new US senator from Texas.