How about selfies as password substitutes then?

Tuesday, 21 October, 2014

Michael Daniel, a senior US government official, thinks that passwords may not be the best way to maintain the security of computer systems. It’s possible he’s not alone on that point either. But what to make of his suggestion that selfies, or photos we take of ourselves, might be a better option?

Daniel suggested that “selfies” would be one possibility. A device could scan a photo of a person’s face and grant access only to the right one. “You could use the cameras on cell phones, which are now ubiquitous, so the selfies are used for something besides posting on Facebook,” Daniel said.

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A photographic glimpse of life in a nunnery

Friday, 17 October, 2014

Probably not something that we see all that often, a glimpse into life in a nunnery, or convent, by Edinburgh based photographer Craig Buchan.

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Timbuktu, a city in decline?

Monday, 13 October, 2014

In the past the Malian city of Timbuktu was a metaphor of sorts for far away, alluring destinations, and for the more adventurous traveller, it may still be those things.

With its population falling, from well over fifty thousand about five years ago, to some fifteen thousand today, the former trade hub appears, sadly, to be in decline, on account of a number of factors:

Timbuktu, city of gold, ancient centre of learning, is slowly turning to dust. The Sahara desert is stifling life, but residents know the blame lies not only with natural forces. Timbuktu is teetering on the edge of existence also because of human neglect, war and greed. Under-development and corruption are the co-conspirators of desertification. The city is not only garrisoned physically, it is mentally sanded in.

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A jet engine powered train… is that a fast train or what?

Tuesday, 7 October, 2014

Soviet Turbojet Train

A Soviet era turbo train, powered by aircraft-like engines, was designed to reach speeds of 360 kilometres per hour (about 220 miles per hour). It managed to reach 250 kilometres per hour during tests, but was never used commercially on account of its high fuel consumption.

That’s too bad really… travelling by a train with an aircraft engine would have almost felt like flying, and without the hassle of having to board a flight.

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Ideas for living a life a little less ordinary

Monday, 6 October, 2014

Spelunking is holding a dinner party in an abandoned or disused utility, or erstwhile public place. It is but one – and likely the safest – of a number of… activities that latter day urbanites partake of nowadays.

I’ve held 40-person dinners in abandoned power plants, church theaters, hospitals. I scope out the area multiple times beforehand to make sure, say, I haven’t picked the time a security guard makes his rounds. I have people help me escort the guests in, in groups of 12 to 15; at that size, they can move relatively quickly. I once held one at the Freedom Tunnel [the Amtrak underpass in Riverside Park]. You can enter through a rarely used access door, and there’s no regular security in the tunnel, so we just made it a point to not be seen by passing trains. I assigned each guest a dish to bring, and I had two musicians, eight dancers, an actor, and a sculptor who assembled and hoisted a chandelier for decoration.

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Some of the best panoramic photos from the last year

Friday, 3 October, 2014

A selection of panoramic photos from this year’s Epson International Pano Awards.

In a word, stunning.

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Reports of the death of disco in Italy have not been exaggerated

Thursday, 2 October, 2014

A selection of photos by Antonio La Grotta of long abandoned Italian discotheques. The end of disco didn’t bring about the demise of all of these clubs however, one, the Woodpecker, ran into other problems…

Most of the clubs La Grotta visited were built in that boom period of the 1980s with the exception of the Woodpecker, which was built by Filippo Monti in the 1960s. “Its structure is quite unique: a series of walkways around a small pond connect several artificial islands, one of which hosts a huge fiberglass dome, which reproduces the proportions of the dome built by Brunelleschi in Florence,” he said. “Unfortunately, the club did not last very long because of the location. It was very humid and there were a lot of mosquitoes and frogs inside the room. In the early 1970s it closed for good.”

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Photos of the solar flare powered auroras

Friday, 26 September, 2014

Solar flares have been in the news in recent weeks, and while they can cause a certain degree of havoc to the Earth, possibly disrupting radio and satellite communications, the auroras created of late as a result, around the polar regions, have been eye-catching to say the least.

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A helpful drone took our photo after we climbed this mountain

Wednesday, 24 September, 2014

Climbers, summit of the Jungfrau

Whose to say, but this photo, of a group of people who scaled the Jungfrau, a mountain in the Swiss Alps, by a drone, might just be the beginning of a trend…

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We played mile high tennis and have the photos to prove it

Tuesday, 23 September, 2014

Tennis game, aircraft wing

There’s playing tennis, and then there’s playing tennis on the top wing of a biplane, at an altitude of one kilometre or thereabouts. I wonder how long a rally might last on such a narrow… court?

Via Historical Pics.

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