Searching \ for '[EE] Microcontroller programmer == terrorist devic' in subject line. ()
Make payments with PayPal - it's fast, free and secure! Help us get a faster server
FAQ page: www.piclist.com/techref/microchip/devprogs.htm?key=programmer
Search entire site for: 'Microcontroller programmer == terrorist devic'.

Exact match. Not showing close matches.
PICList Thread
'[EE] Microcontroller programmer == terrorist devic'
2007\09\16@125825 by Mark Rages

face picon face
Apparently, the TSA bans "improvised electronic devices" from checked luggage.

More details on the blog post: http://vivara.net/blog/?p=61

Has anyone else run into this?  As an electronics consultant I have
never hesitated to modify my tools to suit my needs. It is a shame
that I can't fly with the modified tools.

Regards,
Mark
markrages@gmail
--
Mark Rages, Engineer
Midwest Telecine LLC
spam_OUTmarkragesTakeThisOuTspammidwesttelecine.com

2007\09\16@134346 by Chris McSweeny

picon face
That's distinctly worrying - would be interested if anybody has a link to
this rule. Would stop me flying with my home-made bike lights - something I
have done many times in the past - if strictly enforced (I presume it is
only a US rule, but I have flown in and out of there with my lights before).
Question is, given I have the lights all packaged up, and on proper PCBs,
how do they tell it's an improvised electronic device, and what's the
difference from a commercial one?

Chris

On 9/16/07, Mark Rages <.....markragesKILLspamspam@spam@gmail.com> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2007\09\16@134834 by limor

picon face
On 9/16/07, Mark Rages <.....markragesKILLspamspam.....gmail.com> wrote:
> Apparently, the TSA bans "improvised electronic devices" from checked luggage.

mm, are you sure its checked luggage? its not clear from this post
whether its carry-on or checked...

 limor

2007\09\16@135843 by Mark Rages

face picon face
On 9/16/07, limor <EraseMEladyadaspam_OUTspamTakeThisOuTgmail.com> wrote:
> mm, are you sure its checked luggage? its not clear from this post
> whether its carry-on or checked...
>

It's checked luggage. (that's my blog.)

Regards,
Mark
markrages@gmail
--
Mark Rages, Engineer
Midwest Telecine LLC
markragesspamspam_OUTmidwesttelecine.com

2007\09\16@154623 by Hector Martin

flavicon
face
I've never had it happen, and I've had luggage where 40% of the contents
was clearly homebrew electronics (complete with breadboards, loose
wires, and whatnot).

Are you sure this is an actual rule?

--
Hector Martin (@spam@hectorKILLspamspammarcansoft.com)
Public Key: http://www.marcansoft.com/marcan.asc

2007\09\16@164458 by Philip Pemberton

face
flavicon
face
Chris McSweeny wrote:
> That's distinctly worrying - would be interested if anybody has a link to
> this rule.

I'd be surprised if it actually in print. Most of the TSA bullshit seems to be
'secret laws' and such. Speaking as an 'outside observer' (I suppose that's
the right term to use) I'm not surprised at all, in the least.

Much as there's a lot of stuff in the USA I'd like to see (the Grand Canyon
and Wolf Park in Indiana are on my shortlist), while ever this crap is going
on, it's going to take a lot to get me on a US-bound plane...

(even before 9/11 it was bad - getting shouted at and generally verbally
abused by security at Manchester, plus the compulsory ruining of £40 worth of
photographic film wasn't even the remotest bit fun)

--
Phil.                         |  (\_/)  This is Bunny. Copy and paste Bunny
KILLspampiclistKILLspamspamphilpem.me.uk         | (='.'=) into your signature to help him gain
http://www.philpem.me.uk/     | (")_(") world domination.

2007\09\16@180618 by Chris McSweeny

picon face
I tend to agree - waited an hour in immigration in the US once because of
stupidity when the computers went down, and on another occasion when we were
rushing to try and make a connection when our flight from the UK was
delayed, when we were asking very politely to try and get through quicker to
make our flight, the ********** person (I'm hesitant to even use that term
to describe them, as it implies some semblance of humanity) who sorts you
and determines how easy it was for you to get through customs deliberately
sent us off for extra slower checking. Just to get back onto the security
aspect, on that occasion our luggage made the flight that we didn't, as I'm
fairly sure it couldn't have made the 10 minute connection we then did at
Denver (we ran from one gate to the next, and they closed the doors after
us!)

I enjoyed what I saw of the US, but with the current situation I'm
definitely not rushing back, and when I next go to NZ, I'll choose a carrier
who goes via Singapore / Aus rather than LA, as I'm not keen on the needless
having to jump through all the immigration hoops (I'm guessing that the
correct answer to "why do you want to visit the US" isn't "I don't - looking
forward to leaving as soon as possible").

No offence to people on this list, as in general all the ordinary people
I've met have been wonderful.

On 9/16/07, Philip Pemberton <RemoveMEpiclistTakeThisOuTspamphilpem.me.uk> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

>

2007\09\17@034904 by Mark Rages

face picon face
On 9/16/07, Hector Martin <TakeThisOuThectorEraseMEspamspam_OUTmarcansoft.com> wrote:
> I've never had it happen, and I've had luggage where 40% of the contents
> was clearly homebrew electronics (complete with breadboards, loose
> wires, and whatnot).
>
> Are you sure this is an actual rule?

I doubt it.  I think the TSA agent chose the phrase "improvised
electronic device" because it sounds scarily like "improvised
explosive device", the military term for homemade bombs in Iraq.

When I return I will take a photo of the offending electronics, a
small electrolytic capacitor and two resistors.

Regards,
Mark
markrages@gmail
--
Mark Rages, Engineer
Midwest Telecine LLC
RemoveMEmarkragesspamTakeThisOuTmidwesttelecine.com

2007\09\17@095842 by Timothy Weber

face picon face
Mark Rages wrote:
> On 9/16/07, Hector Martin <hectorEraseMEspam.....marcansoft.com> wrote:
>> I've never had it happen, and I've had luggage where 40% of the contents
>> was clearly homebrew electronics (complete with breadboards, loose
>> wires, and whatnot).
>>
>> Are you sure this is an actual rule?
>
> I doubt it.  I think the TSA agent chose the phrase "improvised
> electronic device" because it sounds scarily like "improvised
> explosive device", the military term for homemade bombs in Iraq.

I was not under the impression that TSA agents were bound by rules.
That is, it seems they can confiscate anything they like, or detain you
because they don't like your looks.

Which is basically nothing new - airlines have always been clear that
you fly at their option; it's a privilege, not a right; and they can
revoke that privilege at will.

What seems new is the possibility of detention without charge.
--
Timothy J. Weber
http://timothyweber.org

2007\09\17@103537 by Mike Hord

picon face
Since you sent this I've read everything on the TSA website and
I can find NO indication that this is even close to being on the
banned list.

There is one sentence suggesting that if you show up AT THE
SECURITY CHECKPOINT with any item IN YOUR CARRYON
that the screener feels is potentially hazardous, they can deny
you passage.  I can't find ANYTHING that suggests that a
blanket denial of checking "improvised electronic devices" is
legitimate.

My guess is you ran afoul of the sort of person who ends up
working the security checkpoint in Rapid City, SD.

Mike H.

On 9/16/07, Mark Rages <EraseMEmarkragesspamgmail.com> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2007\09\17@112347 by Russell McMahon

face
flavicon
face
> My guess is you ran afoul of the sort of person who ends up
> working the security checkpoint in Rapid City, SD.

Whatever a man in Customs insists that you must do tends to be what
you must do - especially in other than your own country.

I had NZ customs people attempt to intimidate and bully me when
returning to NZ 2 years ago - one man in particular. Anywhere else in
the world I would probably have been suitably intimidated and been
very careful and polite. Here he was just another guy and, as i had
done nothing wrong and had no contraband, incorrect papers etc I was
not at all worried - just annoyed at his theatrical approach. I
presume that the stage managed environment was intended to fluster
potential drug smugglers etc but in my case they were using it wholly
to be officious and annoying. I considered writing a report and
sending it to the minister of customs but didn't. Next time ... .



       Russell

2007\09\17@115651 by Herbert Graf

flavicon
face
On Tue, 2007-09-18 at 03:24 +1200, Russell McMahon wrote:
> > My guess is you ran afoul of the sort of person who ends up
> > working the security checkpoint in Rapid City, SD.
>
> Whatever a man in Customs insists that you must do tends to be what
> you must do - especially in other than your own country.
>
> I had NZ customs people attempt to intimidate and bully me when
> returning to NZ 2 years ago - one man in particular. Anywhere else in
> the world I would probably have been suitably intimidated and been
> very careful and polite. Here he was just another guy and, as i had
> done nothing wrong and had no contraband, incorrect papers etc I was
> not at all worried - just annoyed at his theatrical approach. I
> presume that the stage managed environment was intended to fluster
> potential drug smugglers etc but in my case they were using it wholly
> to be officious and annoying. I considered writing a report and
> sending it to the minister of customs but didn't. Next time ... .

I have a rule when traveling: don't mess with customs agents. No matter
how illogical or even insane a customs agent is acting, just go with the
flow. People don't realize how much power customs agents actually have,
and I prefer not being brought to "the room". TTYL

2007\09\17@124045 by Mike Hord

picon face
On 9/17/07, Russell McMahon <RemoveMEapptechspam_OUTspamKILLspamparadise.net.nz> wrote:
> > My guess is you ran afoul of the sort of person who ends up
> > working the security checkpoint in Rapid City, SD.
>
> Whatever a man in Customs insists that you must do tends to be what
> you must do - especially in other than your own country.

Agreed- Customs Man, yes, ESPECIALLY in another country and
doubly (or triply) so if you do not fluently speak the language.

However, for a domestic flight within the US when you are a
national, I would be a bit more firm.  Especially if it was something
of such a ridiculous nature, and even more especially if it stood to
interfere with my business.

FWIW, 10 months ago I flew to Japan out of Minneapolis/St. Paul
International- direct to Tokyo.  In my carry-on bag I had a device
I'd wired up the night before to let me charge my MP3 player on the
go- two 3-cell AA holders wired 6 cells in series, with the appropriate
barrel connector at the end of a six-foot cable.  I'd shrink-wrapped
the appropriate parts, and the holders were held together by a
rubber band.  OBVIOUSLY homemade.  No one in security even
blinked (nor did they at Narita on the way home).

In my experience flying in and out of small airports in the midwest
(Bismarck, Fargo, Des Moines, and Grand Rapids), the screeners
fall into two categories.  The larger by far is people doing their jobs
who handle fewer passengers in a day than the MSP agents do by
7 a.m. (or earlier), and who have a realistic view of what it means to
be a screener in a very small airport.  The second, smaller group
are the ones who, in elementary school, were placed in charge of
the classroom when the teacher left and wrote names on the
chalkboard for such recalcitrant behavior as nose-blowing,
pencil-dropping, page-turning, and stretching.  They never really
grow up, they just get bigger and receive a badge.  Be careful with
them as they'll have you arrested if you give them a chance, but
don't hesitate to call them on their crap and get their supervisor
involved.  If the supervisor has to leave his/her cushy office chair
enough times in one day on account of a single employee...

Mike H.

2007\09\17@195613 by Howard Winter

face
flavicon
picon face
Timothy,

On Mon, 17 Sep 2007 09:58:35 -0400, Timothy Weber wrote:

>...
> I was not under the impression that TSA agents were bound by rules.
> That is, it seems they can confiscate anything they like, or detain you
> because they don't like your looks.

I can't believe they don't have some rules that they are working to - even if they don't tell you what they are.

> Which is basically nothing new - airlines have always been clear that
> you fly at their option; it's a privilege, not a right; and they can
> revoke that privilege at will.

Actually I don't think this is right.  First we're discussing a government agency, not a commercial company, and secondly over here there's EC Regulation 261/2004,
which says that if an airline denies you passage they have to compensate you.  If you do something illegal (such as being drunk) then obviously you forfeit this
right, but they can't just decide to exclude you for any reason that isn't backed by law without compensation.

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2007\09\17@203731 by William \Chops\ Westfield

face picon face

On Sep 17, 2007, at 4:56 PM, Howard Winter wrote:

> I can't believe they don't have some rules that they are
> working to - even if they don't tell you what they are.

Frankly, a rule that says "don't let anything on the plane
that makes you suspicious" is a fine idea, assuming a certain
minimal level of intelligence in the screeners (that may not
be present (but apparently they're expected to memorize long
lists reflecting the offical rules?).)  And of course thereafter
you're faced with the question of what one should allow to reduce
your suspicions after you've raised the question in the first place.

Treat people like idiots; how do you expect them to behave?

BillW

2007\09\17@205930 by Timothy J. Weber

face picon face
Howard Winter wrote:
> On Mon, 17 Sep 2007 09:58:35 -0400, Timothy Weber wrote:
>> I was not under the impression that TSA agents were bound by rules.
>> That is, it seems they can confiscate anything they like, or detain you
>> because they don't like your looks.
>
> I can't believe they don't have some rules that they are working to - even if they don't tell you what they are.

Well, maybe they do have secret rules... but they must have pretty wide
latitude in enforcement, given the frequency of "I've always been
allowed to carry X but this guy at this airport says absolutely not" events.

But the rhetoric in America is generally about "preventing terrorist
attacks through constant vigilance."  It's a sweeping statement, and I
don't see how you *could* implement it without giving extremely wide
latitude and authority to the enforcers.

>> Which is basically nothing new - airlines have always been clear that
>> you fly at their option; it's a privilege, not a right; and they can
>> revoke that privilege at will.
>
> Actually I don't think this is right.  First we're discussing a government agency, not a commercial company, and secondly over here there's EC Regulation 261/2004,
> which says that if an airline denies you passage they have to compensate you.  If you do something illegal (such as being drunk) then obviously you forfeit this
> right, but they can't just decide to exclude you for any reason that isn't backed by law without compensation.

Ah, but the fact that there are two groups involved here (Feds +
airlines) means they can both duck responsibility.  If TSA agent X says
you can't fly with electronic device Y, and your trip was intended to
demonstrate Y to customer Z, so you cancel or make other plans, the
airline will happily tell you that your ticket was non-refundable and
that they're under no obligation since you voluntarily chose not to fly.
 Even more so if TSA hauls you off to a small room for a day or two,
and you therefore miss your flight.

The TSA has no monetary obligation to you, and the airline can simply
say that the TSA represents the law, so anything they require you to do
or not do is irrelevant to their business.

Now, whether these kinds of incidents *should* happen is another
question - but they do.
--
Timothy J. Weber
http://timothyweber.org

2007\09\17@231200 by Russell McMahon

face
flavicon
face

> Now, whether these kinds of incidents *should* happen is another
> question - but they do.


Alas, after all is said and done and complained about, they probably
should.

A major psychological deterrent is uncertainty. If the genuine bad
guys know that they MIGHT get away with carrying something large and
obvious aboard, either via carry on or in checked luggage, but that
it's also reasonably probable that they will be arbitrarily checked in
the minutest detail and caught out on anything that's even slightly
unusual, then it may well discourage the low to mid level attempts.
Nothing you can reasonably or even unreasonably do will stop the very
highest level of attempts and, given this sad fact, it's surprising
that there are not more of them. But, as the real people seem to be on
holiday, discouraging the low and medium level people by random acts
of senseless stupidity seems quite an effective way to go. (I believe
that if I had a suitable reason to do so (and I can't imagine EVER
having one) that I would have a very good chance of effectively
penetrating any system they could sensibly implement. (If you want to
know how, ask me offlist and I'll refer your name on to the Feds
;-) ).

It may even be that the current 'random walk' security system is not
just a serendipitous outcome of typical 'small man in authority
standover tactics', but a purposeful policy implemented by someone
very high up and very powerful and wise, but don't count on it.   :-)



       Russell


2007\09\18@191234 by Chris McSweeny

picon face
I'm not very convinced by that, given the obvious levels of stupidity being
exhibited with some of the items they stop (which quite clearly aren't
terrorist devices) do you really expect them to be clever enough to spot the
terrorist devices which are made not to look like anything out of the
ordinary? After all if you really were trying to use an "improvised
electronic device" to commit a terrorist attack, wouldn't you simply package
it up nicely to look just like a normal COTS piece of electronics kit, so
that you can slip right by without them paying you any attention?

All this level of activity does is make it look like they're doing
something, without achieving anything at all in the way of real increased
security, whilst inconveniencing normal travellers (which can be said for
the vast majority of the recently increased security measures - though to be
fair, before 9/11, security at some US airports was shockingly lapse).

(hoping there are no stupid terrorists on this list who I've just given a
big hint to for getting their weapons past security!)

On 9/18/07, Russell McMahon <RemoveMEapptechTakeThisOuTspamspamparadise.net.nz> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2007\09\18@215931 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Chris McSweeny wrote:

> After all if you really were trying to use an "improvised electronic
> device" to commit a terrorist attack, wouldn't you simply package it up
> nicely to look just like a normal COTS piece of electronics kit, so that
> you can slip right by without them paying you any attention?

It is quite obvious that you don't know that bombs /always/ have a timer
with big bright red LED numbers that count down from the time it has been
activated, and a green, a red and a blue wire connecting the timer to the
bomb. So there is just no chance that anything like that could be casually
"slipped right by" them.

Gerhard

2007\09\19@002541 by Dr Skip

picon face
If you think about it, almost all non-DoD security in the US is based on the
assumption that the bad guys are dumb. I have loads of examples, but here's a
good one: In the US, there are large office buildings where there are multiple
businesses inside with a shared lobby and some sort of 'security' desk to pass
on the way in. Unless it's all one company, 'security' can't tell who is going
where, except if they all badge their employees and have common protocols,
which is rare. If someone comes in (especially at lunch time) dressed in a
suit, they pass right in, unless they are acting very confused. If they are in
jeans or worse, they get stopped and told no one except employees and
authorized guests are allowed in. It assumes the bad guy can't afford a suit,
or is dumb enough to not dress the part. In most cases, that seems to be true.
It's worked so far it seems, so there's no need to be more formal. It's never a
formalism that bad guys dress poorly, just a method that has worked in the past
to identify people that don't belong here. It would take a run of bad guys
successfully penetrating buildings in suits and doing harm to change the
thinking. [just in case you think this is new news, and lots of bad guys are
going to infiltrate buildings now, it's been written about in books from prank
idea books to sales books on how to get by security so you can cold-call on the
businesses within for 30+ years now]

The serious attempt just needs to employ a suit, and maybe even a decoy in
jeans to keep an otherwise sharp guard busy. Not really high tech or brilliant.

So, the assumption is that if they had a device, it would look like one, and
not be prettied up. Sorta like dressing in a suit first... The dangerous bad
guy is a smart one! I would assume that with all that one must do to get away
with something, and the stresses and paranoia involved, aesthetics won't often
enter the picture for most bad guys.

There is also the disconnect between what they are looking for and what the bad
guys think they are looking for - creates FUD. They know they will be examined,
but not what the detailed parameters are, so how pretty or aesthetically
changed will be pretty enough? It keeps the casual terrorist at bay... ;-)

In the end, all crimes are solved by law enforcement finding some error or
mistake or omission on the part of the criminal, which revealed their actions.
This doesn't cover airport security though, which is merely a gauntlet that
implies a higher level of 'looking' than most bad guys might be able to
'cover', and keeps them guessing and hesitant.


Chris McSweeny wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2007\09\19@024624 by Russell McMahon

face
flavicon
face
> It is quite obvious that you don't know that bombs /always/ have a
> timer
> with big bright red LED numbers that count down from the time it has
> been
> activated, and a green, a red and a blue wire connecting the timer
> to the
> bomb.

... and that stops reading "007" when you cut the blue wire. Or, as it
the red wire.


       Russell

2007\09\19@030653 by Russell McMahon

face
flavicon
face
part 1 2591 bytes content-type:text/plain; format=flowed; charset="iso-8859-1"; (decoded 7bit)

> It's never a
> formalism that bad guys dress poorly, just a method that has worked
> in the past
> to identify people that don't belong here. It would take a run of
> bad guys
> successfully penetrating buildings in suits and doing harm to change
> the
> thinking. [just in case you think this is new news, and lots of bad
> guys are
> going to infiltrate buildings now, it's been written about in books
> from prank
> idea books to sales books on how to get by security so you can
> cold-call on the
> businesses within for 30+ years now]

At APEC in Australia 2 weeks ago (September 6th) two Australian
comedians took a limo with security men running alongside in through
the security cordon to a place where they could have done some some
real damage. When they had got far enoughy in to scare themselves they
turned their car around, with help from the many security people
standing around and started to take it out again. When it became clear
that nobody was paying any attention they decamped their Osama bin
Laden look alike with robes (burnous*?) headgear beard etc who then
went walk about. At that stage people realised that they were being
had. Security ran after them and first arrested NOT te OBL lookalike
but the suited companion. He was indignantly pointing out that they
should be arresting OBL and not him.

They got it all on vodeo which was shown on our TV and is on some of
the pages refd below.

   http://www.scoop.co.nz/multimedia/tv/1250.html
   www.tv3.co.nz/News/InternationalNews/ComediansbreachofAPECsecurityangersofficials/tabid/417/articleID/34186/Default.aspx
   www.npr.org/templates/story/story.php?storyId=14208189
   thinkrightaz.blogspot.com/2007/09/aussie-comedians-breach-apec-security.html
   www.theage.com.au/news/national/chaser-duo-held-over-apec-stunt/2007/09/06/1188783379922.html
   www.guardian.co.uk/australia/story/0,,2164487,00.html
   http://www.news.com.au/entertainment/story/0,23663,22377778-10229,00.html

> The serious attempt just needs to employ a suit, and maybe even a
> decoy in
> jeans to keep an otherwise sharp guard busy. Not really high tech or
> brilliant.


The obvious conclusion is that you need to dress in not a suit but a
burnous.
A bikini may also work (depending on one's sex and figure).


           Russell




* http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Burnous

In fact the Burnous is particular to African Berber Arabs but it
conjours up the right visual images.



part 2 4256 bytes content-type:image/jpeg; (decode)


part 3 35 bytes content-type:text/plain; charset="us-ascii"
(decoded 7bit)

2007\09\19@031445 by Jinx

face picon face


> It is quite obvious that you don't know that bombs /always/ have
> a timer with big bright red LED numbers that count down from the
> time it has been activated, and a green, a red and a blue wire
> connecting the timer to the bomb

Well mine do. And they tick too. In fact I take a lot of care prepar....

Oh, wait. Hmmm, note to self, Gerhard knows too much. Gerhard
must not know too much for any longer than is necessary

2007\09\19@051502 by Tony Smith

picon face
> > It is quite obvious that you don't know that bombs /always/ have a
> > timer with big bright red LED numbers that count down from
> the time it
> > has been activated, and a green, a red and a blue wire
> connecting the
> > timer to the bomb
>
> Well mine do. And they tick too. In fact I take a lot of care
> prepar....
>
> Oh, wait. Hmmm, note to self, Gerhard knows too much. Gerhard
> must not know too much for any longer than is necessary


Change it so they need to cut the green wire.  No-one will ever guess that.
Needs a laser too.

Tony

2007\09\19@053159 by Howard Winter

face
flavicon
picon face
Tony,

On Wed, 19 Sep 2007 19:15:08 +1000, Tony Smith wrote:

{Quote hidden}

Yes, and of course the red wire is the divide-by-10 signal, which if you cut it means the timer runs that much faster!  :-)

Some friends of mine were discussing colour-blindness once, and decided that bomb disposal was the most dangerous job for someone who suffered from it:

"I'm about to cut the reddy-greeny-greyish wire"!  :-)

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2007\09\19@092836 by Mike Hord

picon face
> The serious attempt just needs to employ a suit, and maybe even a decoy in
> jeans to keep an otherwise sharp guard busy. Not really high tech or brilliant.

I've always been a fan of the orange jumpsuit method.  I firmly believe that a
slightly unkempt man (just enough to suggest "working class", i.e., hasn't
shaved that day, maybe one week over due for a haircut, weathered hands
with callouses and a bit of dirt around the nails) in an orange jumpsuit with
a tool box can go basically anywhere and do basically anything without being
questioned.

I've yet to test the theory, but sitting there reading this, ask yourself when
the last time you saw a person in a jumpsuit is.  Then, for the next couple of
days, watch for them.  You may be surprised.

Mike H.

2007\09\19@093609 by Jinx

face picon face
> an orange jumpsuit with a tool box can go basically anywhere
> and do basically anything without being questioned

Seen that work with shoplifters and big appliances. Walk in
with a trolley, stick a boxed TV on it, walk out

A friend told me that he and a friend got through their whole
National Service (compulsory military training) by wandering
around with clipboards

2007\09\19@122352 by Timothy Weber

face picon face
Jinx wrote:
>> an orange jumpsuit with a tool box can go basically anywhere
>> and do basically anything without being questioned
>
> Seen that work with shoplifters and big appliances. Walk in
> with a trolley, stick a boxed TV on it, walk out
>
> A friend told me that he and a friend got through their whole
> National Service (compulsory military training) by wandering
> around with clipboards

I've also heard that if you dig a small hole, put orange cones around
it, and wear a reflective vest and hard hat, you become completely
invisible.
--
Timothy J. Weber
http://timothyweber.org

2007\09\19@145956 by Peter Todd

picon face
-----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
Hash: SHA1

On Wed, Sep 19, 2007 at 08:28:35AM -0500, Mike Hord wrote:
> > The serious attempt just needs to employ a suit, and maybe even a decoy in
> > jeans to keep an otherwise sharp guard busy. Not really high tech or brilliant.
>
> I've always been a fan of the orange jumpsuit method.  I firmly believe that a
> slightly unkempt man (just enough to suggest "working class", i.e., hasn't
> shaved that day, maybe one week over due for a haircut, weathered hands
> with callouses and a bit of dirt around the nails) in an orange jumpsuit with
> a tool box can go basically anywhere and do basically anything without being
> questioned.

But don't forget the tool box! 'Cause around certain facilities in
various countries an orange jumpsuit means something else...

- --
http://petertodd.org
-----BEGIN PGP SIGNATURE-----
Version: GnuPG v1.4.6 (GNU/Linux)

iD8DBQFG8XGz3bMhDbI9xWQRAsC4AJ9WF59EygIl7+bFY6FNL3RDwcsi/wCgmKBp
GXx9Rh9L5GJ8Kse+7KQwZD0=
=Wr8D
-----END PGP SIGNATURE-----

2007\09\20@044211 by Alan B. Pearce

face picon face
>I've also heard that if you dig a small hole, put orange cones
>around it, and wear a reflective vest and hard hat, you become
>completely invisible.

I heard of some students who did this as a capping stunt, right in the
middle of a busy thoroughfare. Took several days before anyone queried who
was responsible for this enormous hole that was appearing in the road.

2007\09\20@090713 by Martin Klingensmith

face
flavicon
face
Alan B. Pearce wrote:
>> I've also heard that if you dig a small hole, put orange cones
>> around it, and wear a reflective vest and hard hat, you become
>> completely invisible.
>>    
>
> I heard of some students who did this as a capping stunt, right in the
> middle of a busy thoroughfare. Took several days before anyone queried who
> was responsible for this enormous hole that was appearing in the road.
>
>  
You don't even have to dig a hole, you could just cover the road with
plywood and sprinkle some dirt around it. You can bet that nobody is
going to run over that plywood!
--
Martin K

2007\09\20@090826 by Jake Anderson

flavicon
face
Russell McMahon wrote:
>> Now, whether these kinds of incidents *should* happen is another
>> question - but they do.
>>    
>
>
> Alas, after all is said and done and complained about, they probably
> should.
>  
I just think the whole thing is so stupid and brain dead as to be
laughable unless you handcuff everybody naked into their seats on the
aeroplane and put the people through the xray you will fail to do your
security. I just got back from an overnight trip to another state here
in Australia, After being forced to remove my shoes because of the steel
caps and watching a decent number of women in heels do the same i
realized i had walked through the scanner with my mp3 player still on me.
To make it worse the earphones were hanging out of my jacket.

I'm still waiting for somebody to eat something, my hope is that people
will then realize the futility and fallacy of the "security" procedures
at airports. Personally i think the best security system would be to get
passengers in groups of 20 or so and stand them up in "the big white
room" whilst some suitably intimidating guard walks around eyeballing
them. After 2 minutes or so he pulls 3 people out who get the "fine
toothed comb" treatment. As far as I'm aware nobody has been "busted" by
any system other than the MK1 eyeball anyway.

2007\09\20@100410 by Russell McMahon

face
flavicon
face
> You don't even have to dig a hole, you could just cover the road
> with
> plywood and sprinkle some dirt around it. You can bet that nobody is
> going to run over that plywood!

I must remember that idea :-)


       RM

2007\09\20@162900 by Matthew Mucker

flavicon
face
You *do* make it beep every second when the timer digits change, don't you?

All the cool terrorists are doing it that way.

{Original Message removed}

2007\09\22@083113 by Jinx

face picon face
After all the discussion about OTT security reactions, this little
Miss didn't really give them a choice

http://edition.cnn.com/2007/US/09/21/bomb.hoax/

BOSTON, Massachusetts (CNN) -- Massachusetts State Police
arrested a 19-year-old MIT student Friday at Boston's Logan
International Airport after receiving a report that a woman had
what appeared to be a bomb strapped to her chest.

Authorities said the device proved to be fake.

Star Simpson, a student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology,
was charged with disorderly conduct and carrying a hoax device.

Pare said the device the suspect was wearing was a small circuit board
attached by wires to a battery that lit up a display. He said the woman
also was holding Play-Doh.

[other reports I've read say the Play-D'Oh ! was fashioned to "look
like plastic explosives"]

The woman described the fake device as "art" that she was proud
of and wanted to display

2007\09\22@115716 by Mark Rages

face picon face
On 9/22/07, Jinx <RemoveMEjoecolquittKILLspamspamclear.net.nz> wrote:
> After all the discussion about OTT security reactions, this little
> Miss didn't really give them a choice
>
> http://edition.cnn.com/2007/US/09/21/bomb.hoax/
>
> BOSTON, Massachusetts (CNN) -- Massachusetts State Police
> arrested a 19-year-old MIT student Friday at Boston's Logan
> International Airport after receiving a report that a woman had
> what appeared to be a bomb strapped to her chest.
>
>
> [other reports I've read say the Play-D'Oh ! was fashioned to "look
> like plastic explosives"]
>

Actually, it was a plug-in breadboard with some LEDs and a 9-volt
battery, zip-tied to her sweatshirt:
http://machinist.salon.com/blog/2007/09/21/star_simpson/index.html

Regards,
Mark
markrages@gmail
--
Mark Rages, Engineer
Midwest Telecine LLC
markragesSTOPspamspamspam_OUTmidwesttelecine.com

2007\09\22@141045 by Lindy Mayfield

flavicon
face
I'm glad I live where the sun don't shine half the year. Seriously, I'm
thinking about moving even further north where I only have to worry
about rutting reindeer.  

> {Original Message removed}

2007\09\22@143157 by William \Chops\ Westfield

face picon face

On Sep 22, 2007, at 8:57 AM, Mark Rages wrote:

> Actually, it was a plug-in breadboard with some LEDs and a 9-volt
> battery, zip-tied to her sweatshirt

Apparently she always wears it.  The playdough remains unexplained.
Much here, from some of the collegiate techno-art crowd:
  http://www.instructables.com/forum/TSCVLCSF6S8RV9V/

And elsewhere,  other encounters of homemade electronics:
http://www.natch.net/stuff/TSA/

BillW

2007\09\22@154240 by Bob Blick

face picon face
William "Chops" Westfield wrote:
> On Sep 22, 2007, at 8:57 AM, Mark Rages wrote:
>
>> Actually, it was a plug-in breadboard with some LEDs and a 9-volt
>> battery, zip-tied to her sweatshirt
>
> Apparently she always wears it.  The playdough remains unexplained.

The play-dough was imagined by an over-zealous reporter. Her sweatshirt
had painted writing on it, "Socket To Me / COURSE VI." Authorities
referred to the paint as "putty."

Why settle for the truth when fantasy is so much more interesting?

-Bob

2007\09\22@165657 by William \Chops\ Westfield

face picon face

On Sep 22, 2007, at 12:42 PM, Bob Blick wrote:

>> The playdough remains unexplained.
>
> The play-dough was imagined by an over-zealous reporter.

No, it was apparently in her hand rather than on the shirt,
but I don't see anyone denying that it was there.  As someone
pointed out, it's technically correct to consider a mass of
playdough in conjunction with "electronics" to be suspicious
even if they're not directly connected at the time.  I doesn't
take long to slap the plastique onto the detonator...

BillW

2007\09\22@175855 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
William "Chops" Westfield wrote:

>>> The playdough remains unexplained.
>>
>> The play-dough was imagined by an over-zealous reporter.
>
> No, it was apparently in her hand rather than on the shirt, but I don't
> see anyone denying that it was there.  

Who would be denying that, even if it wasn't there? For sure not the people
that took part in the arrest, and probably also not the same journalists
who just copied the same story all over from each other :)

> As someone pointed out, it's technically correct to consider a mass of
> playdough in conjunction with "electronics" to be suspicious even if
> they're not directly connected at the time.  

Suspicious is fine, but arrest? I thought they have these high-tech sniffer
machines at the airports. If they can't distinguish play-dough from plastic
explosives, they may not be worth their money, and probably not be that
useful after all. For all I have read, there was nothing that would have
stopped the security personnel or police to use such a machine and check
whatever she had in her hands after she was "stopped" -- and before she was
arrested.

Also "apparently" she has been charged with possessing a "hoax device"
(which "apparently" is nothing more than a handful of LEDs blinking). I can
understand the first reaction, to tell her to raise her hands and so on,
but arrest? And charges? For a homemade Christmas tree light on her
t-shirt?

"The device had many wires and lights." Right... those guys watch too many
bad movies, that's for sure. Real-life detonators don't have blinking LEDs.
(Jinx, I got you... I know this one too :) Where's the profiling when you
need it? (I mean that in the sense of "use probabilities based on past
experience", as in "no real-life detonator so far has had blinking LEDs on
it".)

Gerhard

2007\09\22@183507 by William \Chops\ Westfield

face picon face

On Sep 22, 2007, at 2:58 PM, Gerhard Fiedler wrote:

> Who would be denying that, even if it wasn't there? F

Her friends.  Did you look at the link I provided?

>
> Suspicious is fine, but arrest?

I think once you call out the goons with the submachine guns,
arrest is pretty inevitable.  She was released on $750 bond,
which seems rather reasonable, given the rest of the overreaction.

In fact, I found the press conference (on CNN:
http://tinyurl.com/2dsout or
http://www.cnn.com/video/#/video/us/2007/09/21/
sot.ma.airport.bomb.hoax.whdh )
to be rather ... mild and reasonable, in terms of not "demonizing"
student in question.  A sort of "we were suspicious and acted
accordingly.  We were wrong and we'll be really pissed off if we
were intentionally fooled."  I mean, they even managed to figure
out that the shirt was NOT dangerous without having EOD "detonating"
it.  Clearly at some point SOMEONE recognized it for what it was.
(and the CNN video has pictures, so all us EE types can laugh
while the normal folk go "yes, that does look suspicious."

BillW

2007\09\22@185957 by Jinx

face picon face
> Suspicious is fine, but arrest?

They are probably trying to discourage time-wasters - people who
may do something to scare other passengers. For example you do
not verbally joke about bombs or hijacking if you want to avoid
prolonged scrutiny and haranguing from security guards

Another example is the enormous fine handed down to streakers
at sports matches. Streakers don't do any real harm, and that thing
down there isn't a stick of dynamite (personal comments stifled)
but they are annoying to many for holding up play

Waving a toy gun or "art" that looks like a bomb if you squint is a
little more serious though. You have to wonder if this was actually
a planned publicity stunt

> Also "apparently" she has been charged with possessing a "hoax
> device"

You would not be popular shouting "Fire !" in a theatre either

> (which "apparently" is nothing more than a handful of LEDs
> blinking). I can understand the first reaction, to tell her to raise her
> hands and so on, but arrest? And charges? For a homemade
> Christmas tree light on her t-shirt?

I can imagine the scenario where someone, perhaps a nervous flyer,
thinks she has a bomb and panics, which could cause a right kerfuffle
in a crowded airport. Although AIUI she was outside the terminal

> "The device had many wires and lights." Right... those guys watch
> too many bad movies, that's for sure. Real-life detonators don't
> have blinking LEDs. (Jinx, I got you... I know this one too :) Where's
> the profiling when you need it? (I mean that in the sense of "use
> probabilities based on past experience", as in "no real-life detonator
> so far has had blinking LEDs on it".)

Therefore, given the chances of seeing a Hollywood bomb are next
to zero, you'd think they'd profile and examine anyone NOT wearing
an LED display. In this case though I think the "threat" was so right
there in front of them they didn't have a choice

I'm 50:50 on it. A dumb, possibly naive, thing to do, and lucky
she didn't get shot or tasered. But neither do I want people like
her spoiling my day with that sort of nonsense

2007\09\23@092012 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Jinx wrote:

> Waving a toy gun or "art" that looks like a bomb if you squint is a
> little more serious though. You have to wonder if this was actually
> a planned publicity stunt

If it was one, I think a few weekends community service (or airport
security service? :) might be a good thing.

> I can imagine the scenario where someone, perhaps a nervous flyer, thinks
> she has a bomb and panics, which could cause a right kerfuffle in a
> crowded airport. Although AIUI she was outside the terminal

> I'm 50:50 on it. A dumb, possibly naive, thing to do, and lucky she
> didn't get shot or tasered. But neither do I want people like her
> spoiling my day with that sort of nonsense

OTOH it's not necessarily people like her who are spoiling your day, it's
more the people who see a blinking LED and shout "bomb". Taking the people
in who are wearing blinking LEDs doesn't help much with that.

The problem for me is that the 'rules' are so arbitrary. If what she had on
the chest looks like it might be dangerous, how about the millions of
laptop batteries that go on flights every day? Sure look more dangerous to
me. You get my drift; there's enough material about this out there. The
thing is that they don't ban what's dangerous; they only ban something when
it's not bad for business. This attitude doesn't make me feel that there's
really a concern about security; it seems more a publicity action targeted
towards appeasing the overreacting crowd than real security measures
towards increasing security. The moment business travelers wear blinking
LEDs on their chests and maybe won't fly if they can't, that'll be allowed.
(Don't hold your breath, though :) If electronics is considered something
dangerous, then they should just ban them from carry-on, end of story. But
you won't see that happening... isn't popular.

The consequence is that increasingly anybody who is not 'normal' in the
sense of only wearing normal brand clothes and traveling with normal travel
gear (for whatever values of normal the security guy applies) is becoming
suspicious. To me, that's at least as dangerous as the few hoaxers with LED
displays on their chests, and once in a while having such a hoaxer -- or
even an EE traveling with her normal client-visit gear :) -- may be a good
thing to put some things in perspective.

Gerhard

2007\09\23@094155 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
William "Chops" Westfield wrote:

> On Sep 22, 2007, at 2:58 PM, Gerhard Fiedler wrote:
>
>> Who would be denying that, even if it wasn't there? F
>
> Her friends.  Did you look at the link I provided?

Some of them... there are just so many :)  But it seems it was there.

>> Suspicious is fine, but arrest?
>
> I think once you call out the goons with the submachine guns, arrest is
> pretty inevitable.  

Maybe... During my second night ever in the US (in LA) I was greeted by the
"goons with the submachine guns" while sleeping on the porch of a house
that obviously was abandoned (back in the 80ies, doing what I'd be done all
over Europe countless times and not thinking I was doing anything wrong),
but I wasn't arrested; I was told that this doesn't work that way there and
that had to leave, in a reasonable way. I found that adequate (even though
I didn't like it), and I would have found it grossly over the top if they
had taken me in.

Gerhard

2007\09\23@131419 by David VanHorn

picon face
> I'm 50:50 on it. A dumb, possibly naive, thing to do, and lucky
> she didn't get shot or tasered. But neither do I want people like
> her spoiling my day with that sort of nonsense

Tasering someone that might be wearing electrically detonated
explosives would be worthy of a darwin award, don't you think?

2007\09\23@153133 by Lindy Mayfield

flavicon
face
Yeah, and so would putting blinking lights on your bomb and strapping it
to the outside of your clothes.  

> {Original Message removed}

2007\09\24@072529 by Alan B. Pearce

face picon face
> Actually, it was a plug-in breadboard with some LEDs
> and a 9-volt battery, zip-tied to her sweatshirt

Some neighbours we had many years ago moved from the UK to NZ. Hubby went
out some weeks beforehand to find a job and accommodation, then wife came
later with 3 kids, eldest almost teenager, youngest still pre-school.
Standing in line at LA International to board flight to NZ, an alarm clock
goes off in packed luggage. She said you have never seen such a busy crowd
of people become an empty space so fast, leaving her and 3 kids standing in
the middle of a vast space, with airport security man approaching with hand
on gun in holster ...

This would have been in '80 or '81.

2007\09\24@101348 by Mike Hord

picon face
> Therefore, given the chances of seeing a Hollywood bomb are next
> to zero, you'd think they'd profile and examine anyone NOT wearing
> an LED display. In this case though I think the "threat" was so right
> there in front of them they didn't have a choice
>
> I'm 50:50 on it. A dumb, possibly naive, thing to do, and lucky
> she didn't get shot or tasered. But neither do I want people like
> her spoiling my day with that sort of nonsense

My two cents to this thread:

First cent:  the young woman in question was probably just being
young: testing the boundaries set for her by her elders.  Not smart,
but largely what youth is all about.

Second cent: whilst I hate this overblown security crap as much as
anyone, and agree that it's a painfully stupid thing to do, the
unfortunate truth is that if these people weren't the ones doing the
security screening, someone capable of much more complex
contributions to the advancement of society would be doing it.  We
COULD just stick 'em all on the "B" ark and be done with (Google)
but then we would likely end up wiped out by unsanitary telephones.

Mike H.

2007\09\24@133241 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Alan B. Pearce wrote:

> Standing in line at LA International to board flight to NZ, an alarm
> clock goes off in packed luggage. She said you have never seen such a
> busy crowd of people become an empty space so fast, leaving her and 3
> kids standing in the middle of a vast space, with airport security man
> approaching with hand on gun in holster ...
>
> This would have been in '80 or '81.

As I say... they watch too many bad movies and get them confused with
reality. I'm rather confident that there is no case reported where a /real/
bomb detonator beeps rather clearly and loudly before igniting the payload,
so there seems to be little reason to assume it's anything but an alarm
clock. (Which, incidentally, is quite normal to be packed in a suitcase.)

This confusion of screen life with reality is already a problem for the
ones who live in reality, and probably becomes more of one.

Gerhard

2007\09\24@163929 by Mike Hord

picon face
"If you hear hoofbeats behind you, don't expect to see a zebra."

Of course, on 9/11, 19 zebras walked right through security and
onto four airplanes, with dramatic results.

Now we're looking for zebras everywhere.  And woe unto the
smaller, stripier horses around!

Mike H.

On 9/24/07, Gerhard Fiedler <spamBeGonelistsSTOPspamspamEraseMEconnectionbrazil.com> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2007\09\24@182104 by Jinx

face picon face
> Standing in line at LA International to board flight to NZ, an
> alarm clock goes off in packed luggage

Yeah, that's the way I'd have made it. Priority at 00:00 ? Go
bang ? No no no no no. Ring the bell first

I'm not a monster after all. Let the alarm clock do what it
wants to do just one last time ;-)

2007\09\24@190731 by Jake Anderson

flavicon
face
Jinx wrote:
>> Standing in line at LA International to board flight to NZ, an
>> alarm clock goes off in packed luggage
>>    
>
> Yeah, that's the way I'd have made it. Priority at 00:00 ? Go
> bang ? No no no no no. Ring the bell first
>
> I'm not a monster after all. Let the alarm clock do what it
> wants to do just one last time ;-)
>
>  
The only thing I'll say with that one is alarm clocks are a staple of
the IED manufacturer, the genuine kind. However step one of these kind
of things is usually "remove speaker".
If somebody wants to put a bomb on a plane they will do it. About the
only thing thats going to stop them is a suspicious person looking for
people sweating in the middle of winter. All this other security stuff
is just an excuse to make people sweat as far as i can tell.

Only once you start putting people through the x-ray (and then that said
x-ray uses a really good spectrum to look for odd chemicals in places)
could you stop a *passenger* putting a bomb on a plane. Your still
screwed as far as ground-crew or packages are concerned.

2007\09\24@192455 by Chris McSweeny

picon face
I'd have thought that was kind of unnecessary, given it's a toss up whether
you hear the alarm or the bang first.

On 9/25/07, Jake Anderson <KILLspamjakespamBeGonespamvapourforge.com> wrote:

> The only thing I'll say with that one is alarm clocks are a staple of
> the IED manufacturer, the genuine kind. However step one of these kind
> of things is usually "remove speaker".

2007\09\24@195606 by Jinx

face picon face
> I'd have thought that was kind of unnecessary, given it's a toss up
> whether you hear the alarm or the bang first

Think you'd hear the alarm first and bang last. Really really last

You can bet that the CIA, FBI, XYZ know that terrorists don't
get their ideas sitting around watching George Clooney or Keanu
Reeves DVDs. Whereas we might conjure up all manner of
ingenious ways, terrorists are not known for their subtlety. A few
hundred kg of ANFO will do just fine. And who knows what's
come inside a shipping container

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Container_Security_Initiative

http://www.gsb.stanford.edu/news/research/supplychain_security_costs.shtml

"Because only a small fraction of incoming containers are inspected -
the Brookings Institution estimated recently that customs officials
inspect only about 2 percent of all containers arriving in the United
States - there have been calls to double or even triple that number"

It appears common sense doesn't always get to the front line though

What's the point confiscating Grandad's nail-clippers and file ?

"Before we crash the plane, we give you all Number One manicures"

"Get back, all of you !! I'll cut her nails, so help me"
"Everyone, leave him alone, he's just crazy enough to do it"

But it's not funny really

2007\09\24@205129 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Mike Hord wrote:

> Now we're looking for zebras everywhere.  

Right... just the next ones probably won't be zebras, they'll be plain old
cows (or whatever fits the analogy :)

Gerhard

2007\09\25@015646 by wouter van ooijen

face picon face
> Now we're looking for zebras everywhere.  And woe unto the
> smaller, stripier horses around!

and all elephants, orca's, tigers, and snakes go unnoticed...

Wouter van Ooijen

-- -------------------------------------------
Van Ooijen Technische Informatica: http://www.voti.nl
consultancy, development, PICmicro products
docent Hogeschool van Utrecht: http://www.voti.nl/hvu



2007\09\25@105353 by Russell McMahon

face
flavicon
face
> Only once you start putting people through the x-ray (and then that
> said
> x-ray uses a really good spectrum to look for odd chemicals in
> places)
> could you stop a *passenger* putting a bomb on a plane. Your still
> screwed as far as ground-crew or packages are concerned.

The XRay systems ARE already spectrum selective. They colour code
items that they deem to merit further attention - usually in an
orangey-red colour. They may also use other colours for secondary
purposes.

I brought a realistic looking cow horn into NZ from Germany *BUT* it
was actually plastic. It was a drinking horn for my son who is / was
keen on mediaeval reenactments. I didn't declare it as it was
irrelevant. They XRayed out bags incoming for agricultural purposes.

Customs man: Have you got a cow horn in there.

I:    Yes, but it's plastic.

He:    Ah. Yes. I wondered - it's the wrong colour.

I do have a number of photos that I have taken of airport XRay screens
that show things that ARE the right colour for security checking
purposes. Running such screens in a public space (as some of the
screens in my photos were) is utter lunacy. The 'bad guys' get to see
how things look and can trial various disguise systems using dummy
objects to make their products inobvious. Some of the screens were in
non public spaces but had sight lines that allowed them to be viewed
and photographed. Also not good design. None of the photos I took
were, I think, illegally taken but I probably ran the risk of having
my trip severely interrupted. But it should not have been possible for
me to have taken such photos under any conditions.

In Taiwan during a recentish bird flu scare they had a temperature
scanner which they used to try to spot people with fevers. I asked and
was allowed to take a photo of my own thermal image.



       Russell




2007\09\25@122200 by Alan B. Pearce

face picon face
>I do have a number of photos that I have taken of airport XRay
>screens that show things that ARE the right colour for security
>checking purposes.

I don't have a photo of it, but had occasion to take a 'scientific
telescope' in hand luggage - just before the July 7 London bombings as it
happened. Now this thing is about 10" long with a vertical mount post as
part of the telescope. You can imagine how it looked on the X-ray. The
inspectors couldn't unwrap it fast enough when I was boarding the flight to
Kourou, French Guiana. Least it didn't take long to show them it was
definitely a 'scientific telescope' and not the gun looking object on the
X-ray ...

2007\09\25@124858 by Dr Skip

picon face
Back in the late 80's I had TI's first laptop and the battery wouldn't last
long, so I made a 'special' accessory. I took 2 lead batteries that Radio Shack
sold for their briefcase cell phone (6 lead cylinders in a row encased in
plastic and on a flange affair) and hot melt glued them together. I then took
apart a lighter-plug battery monitor (red-yellow-green LEDs) and hot glued the
bare board and lights to the top. The voltages all worked out perfectly. I then
coiled up the excess wire around it. I couldn't have made it look more
dangerous if I tried! ;)

I traveled all over the US with it in my briefcase. The good part is that I
could use the laptop for hours on it (remember, laptops were new then too).
However, colleagues wouldn't even stand in the same security line as I did to
avoid what they thought was going to be the inevitable detainment. The bad part
is, in the several years, I was never stopped or questioned once! I even got to
see it on the Xray screen once - 12 'cans' about twice the size of shotgun
shells, with a circuit board and coiled wire around it and connected here and
there. No one at the airports even asked....



Alan B. Pearce wrote:
>
> I don't have a photo of it, but had occasion to take a 'scientific
> telescope' in hand luggage - just before the July 7 London bombings as it
> happened. Now this thing is about 10" long with a vertical mount post as
> part of the telescope. You can imagine how it looked on the X-ray. The
> inspectors couldn't unwrap it fast enough when I was boarding the flight to
> Kourou, French Guiana. Least it didn't take long to show them it was
> definitely a 'scientific telescope' and not the gun looking object on the
> X-ray ...
>

2007\09\25@155138 by Chris McSweeny

picon face
Sounds a lot like the "security" I encountered at US airports back in the
90s. Once had a bicycle stem in my briefcase which showed up as funny on the
scanner. They discussed it in front of me and concluded it was part of the
locking mechanism for the case - I could see it was the stem and was all set
to open the case to show them it was an innocuous bike part, but they
happily waved me on my way having concluded it was something else. Surely
they should have at least asked to see inside the case?

On 9/25/07, Dr Skip <EraseMEdrskipspamEraseMEgmail.com> wrote:
{Quote hidden}

> -

2007\09\25@162420 by Howard Winter

face
flavicon
picon face
Russell,

On Wed, 26 Sep 2007 02:52:30 +1200, Russell McMahon wrote:

{Quote hidden}

I'm a bit amazed by that - you certainly can't take photos anywhere near the security area (or customs or baggage reclaim) over here - you'd be whisked away for
a little chat if you tried, I'm sure!  And at Heathrow, at least, you can't see the screens.  I know, I tried!  I'd love to see what my luggage looks like in x-ray.

Incidentally, NZ is the only place I've been that x-rays baggage on the way in (looking for wood, feathers, soil, possums, etc.)

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2007\09\25@165911 by Howard Winter

face
flavicon
picon face
Chris,

On Tue, 25 Sep 2007 20:51:35 +0100, Chris McSweeny wrote:

> Sounds a lot like the "security" I encountered at US airports back in the
> 90s. Once had a bicycle stem in my briefcase which showed up as funny on the
> scanner. They discussed it in front of me and concluded it was part of the
> locking mechanism for the case - I could see it was the stem and was all set
> to open the case to show them it was an innocuous bike part, but they
> happily waved me on my way having concluded it was something else. Surely
> they should have at least asked to see inside the case?

A friend of mine used to work in security at one of the London airports.  He worked for the airport, but PanAm used to do their own security screening for some
reason.  Sometimes he'd be seconded to the PanAm security team when they were short-staffed.  Now there are standards about the minimum time the x-ray
operator spends looking at each case, but to speed things up, PanAm used to stack the cases three high to go through the x-ray machines.  He said that it was
impossible to get a clear view of what was in the cases, but he was working for them so had to do as he was told.

Then Locherbie happened - and it was the beginning of the end for PanAm!

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2007\09\25@173510 by Steve Baldwin

flavicon
face
> I'm a bit amazed by that - you certainly can't take photos anywhere
> near the security area (or customs or baggage reclaim) over here -

You'd be really amazed at a TV program that's been here for a couple of
years (and is now being done in Australia too) called "Border Patrol". It's a
"fly on the wall" about Customs & Immigration. It shows how they pick things
up, what things look like on X-ray, some of the things they look for on a
passport, etc.

> Incidentally, NZ is the only place I've been that x-rays baggage on
> the way in (looking for wood, feathers, soil, possums, etc.)

We recently travelled through some of the US with dive gear and at every
internal flight (6) , we got the "please step to the side" treatment. When we
got back to NZ we were asked, "what are the round things ?". "They're
scuba regulators". "Oh. They look like grenades on the x-ray".

Steve.



2007\09\25@184002 by Russell McMahon

face
flavicon
face
> I'm a bit amazed by that - you certainly can't take photos anywhere
> near the security area (or customs or baggage reclaim) over here -
> you'd be whisked away for
> a little chat if you tried, I'm sure!  And at Heathrow, at least,
> you can't see the screens.  I know, I tried!  I'd love to see what
> my luggage looks like in x-ray.

They weren't taken in NZ :-).
This was on our 2003 round the world trip and I took photos at a
number of airports. At least 1 was in the US and another may have been
Heathrow. Possibly also in CDG airport in Paris. It can take a little
creative line of sight finding :-). In one location they had a
conveyor belt with baggage going past an XRay screen. The seated bored
employee had his feet up on the edge of the conveyor and his chair was
rocked back on its back legs. I don't know how much that would have
affected his chances of seeing anything interesting. The photo is not
an overly good one :-). Another was an open XRay machine in a public
space with people all around it.

I bought an item in Venice (of all places) that gave me a scare once
and an insight the second time it happened.

Irish customs person (a  lady) stands in slight crouch on balls on
feet poised for action, slightly away from counter. Not overly
pronounced stance so but enough to be very obvious once you realise.
Her colleagues form a rough half circle at a distance. What's
happening here? Can't recall the exact wording but it was a very
formal and polite and, as it turned out, probably text book standard
wording - "... Would you please open your bag for me sir". Bag in
question was my camera belt bag with camera and batteries and other
accessories. I carefully and slowly did as asked. Camera wasn't of
interest. When I took out the small collapsible tripod she relaxed
visibly, the half circle of onlookers faded away to other duties and
the world returned to normal. The tripod is in a U shape with a screw
extending foot clamp combo and two blade fold out steel legs. I don't
know if the legs looked like knives or the assembly as a whole looked
like a gun.

Whatever it was I got the identical procedure in Australia some weeks
later. That time when I heard the identical phrase I realised what the
problem was and also that they were following a probably
internationally standardised procedure. I didn't see the (wo)man with
the M16 :-).




           Russell


2007\09\25@185219 by Jinx

face picon face
> Incidentally, NZ is the only place I've been that x-rays baggage on
> the way in (looking for wood, feathers, soil, possums, etc.)

That's absolutely right Howard. There just aren't enough possums in
NZ and people are always smuggling more in ;-)))) Who needs trees
anyway

I've seen a couple of the Border Patrol programs. I'm sure they focus
mostly on the positive, ie filming the incidents that result in detection of
generally prohibited items and drugs

> "Oh. They look like grenades on the x-ray".

Interesting. So what exactly does an explosive device look like ?

Hearing a lot of anecdotes about things that appear dodgy at first
glance, but are Customs actually catching anyone with real bombs ?

I'm not bagging Customs staff BTW, I don't envy their task at all.
If anything does get through, they'll be the ones getting it in the neck.

www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/03/28/AR2006032800
774.html


'[EE] Microcontroller programmer == terrorist devic'
2007\10\01@201956 by Jinx
face picon face
Don't pack RC car for US trip

http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/2/story.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=10467226

2007\10\01@205910 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Jinx wrote:

> Don't pack RC car for US trip
>
> http://www.nzherald.co.nz/section/2/story.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=10467226

Ahem... I want to connect a cell phone modem to an RC servo. Can someone
help me with that? What transistors do I need? :)

Gerhard

2007\10\01@222153 by Peter Todd

picon face
-----BEGIN PGP SIGNED MESSAGE-----
Hash: SHA1

On Mon, Oct 01, 2007 at 09:58:33PM -0300, Gerhard Fiedler wrote:
> Jinx wrote:
>
> > Don't pack RC car for US trip
> >
> > www.nzherald.co.nz/section/2/story.cfm?c_id=2&objectid=10467226
>
> Ahem... I want to connect a cell phone modem to an RC servo. Can someone
> help me with that? What transistors do I need? :)

You know, it always puzzles me how these "dangerous terrorist groups"
with enough funding and man power to get access to training, weapons,
explosives and even box-cutters aparently end up with such primative
bomb designs.

A $30 solid-state altimeter should be more than enough to take down a
plane. Even just a bunch of bombs sent via courier would be quite enough
to do some serious economic damage I suspect. I doubt they'd really even
have to be particularly effective, just enough to ignite the cargo and
force the plane to land, done repeatedly.

Good luck x-raying packages and determining which is the bomb and which
is an old laptop... And I doubt bomb-sniffing equipment/dogs will do
much good against bombs sealed in epoxy and then boiled/cleaned with
solvents.

At the very least you could shut down post boxes accepting anything
larger than a small letter.

- --
http://petertodd.org
-----BEGIN PGP SIGNATURE-----
Version: GnuPG v1.4.6 (GNU/Linux)

iD8DBQFHAaoj3bMhDbI9xWQRAlGiAKCGhlGPd/YzMUKw92Q1CSs+SaSV0gCgpgci
FToDl1yV7GRJRfCcUTMBvg4=
=Z/Yi
-----END PGP SIGNATURE-----

2007\10\01@224006 by Jinx

face picon face

> Ahem... I want to connect a cell phone modem to an RC servo. Can
> someone help me with that? What transistors do I need? :)

Bloody newbies ;-)))

Have you Googled ? Searched PIClist ? What have you tried for
yourself ? Looked in the forums at http://www.mummytiesmylaces.com ?

Apparently then you would try to smuggle an RC toy into the US
because they don't sell them there

Duh, a radio what ?

2007\10\01@224347 by 556RECON

picon face
Peter Todd wrote:

> You know, it always puzzles me how these "dangerous terrorist groups"
>
>with enough funding and man power to get access to training, weapons,
>explosives and even box-cutters aparently end up with such primative
>bomb designs.
>
>A $30 solid-state altimeter should be more than enough to take down a
>plane. Even just a bunch of bombs sent via courier would be quite enough
>to do some serious economic damage I suspect. I doubt they'd really even
>have to be particularly effective, just enough to ignite the cargo and
>force the plane to land, done repeatedly.
>
>Good luck x-raying packages and determining which is the bomb and which
>is an old laptop... And I doubt bomb-sniffing equipment/dogs will do
>much good against bombs sealed in epoxy and then boiled/cleaned with
>solvents.
>
>At the very least you could shut down post boxes accepting anything
>larger than a small letter.
>
How about some other hints to give the amateur want to be terrorist
ideas .  Just to give your address so they can mail them to you for a test.

RECON


2007\10\01@224829 by Jinx

face picon face
> just enough to ignite the cargo and force the plane to land

That 100ml limit on liquids is ridiculous. Some nasty co-reagents
could come in 100ml bottles. Peroxide + catalyst, phosporous,
cyanates, nerve gas, biologicals ........

PIC10F and a piezo igniter, how small could you make that ?

Needle in a haystack of needles. Don't envy the guys at the coal
face one bit but, apart from the psychological factor for the benefit
of the travelling public, is it at all actually necessary or fruitful ?

2007\10\01@231739 by Robert Rolf

picon face
Uhh, I think he was making a joke in the context of an earlier posted link.

"
Airline passengers who pack remote-control toys in their carry-on
bags should expect a little more security screening at the airport,
the Transportation Security Administration announced yesterday.
It appears that terrorists may have an interest to use these
remote-control toys as a means to initiate devices used in a
terrorist attack," agency administrator Kip Hawley said in an
audio posting on the TSA website."

Jinx wrote:

{Quote hidden}

2007\10\02@005025 by Jinx

face picon face

> Uhh, I think he was making a joke in the context of an earlier
> posted link

Yes, of course. Gerhard is no newbie. Well maybe when it
comes to connecting a cellphone modem to a servo !! ;-)))

2007\10\02@044825 by Alan B. Pearce

face picon face
>Don't pack RC car for US trip

Hmm, weapon and counter-weapon.

2007\10\02@060750 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Jinx wrote:

> Gerhard is no newbie.

Aren't we all eternal newbies?

Gerhard

2007\10\02@063738 by Jinx

face picon face
> > Gerhard is no newbie.
>
> Aren't we all eternal newbies?

Guess so. If you think there's nothing left to learn, might as
well say goodnight

2007\10\02@183546 by Howard Winter

face
flavicon
picon face
Jinx,

On Tue, 02 Oct 2007 23:37:11 +1200, Jinx wrote:

> > > Gerhard is no newbie.
> >
> > Aren't we all eternal newbies?
>
> Guess so. If you think there's nothing left to learn, might as
> well say goodnight

I've just realised that Olin hasn't been in here for quite some time...

Shame!

Cheers,


Howard Winter
St.Albans, England


2007\10\02@191456 by James Newton

face picon face
>I've just realised that Olin hasn't been in here for quite some time...

Didn't you notice the lack of flame wars, name calling, and offended
newbies?

>Shame!

JOY!

--
James.


2007\10\02@200708 by Jake Anderson

flavicon
face
James Newton wrote:
>> I've just realised that Olin hasn't been in here for quite some time...
>>    
>
> Didn't you notice the lack of flame wars, name calling, and offended
> newbies?
>
>  
>> Shame!
>>    
>
> JOY!
>
> --
> James.
>  
Noticing the absence of something is generally a difficult thing to do.

2007\10\02@205742 by Dr Skip

picon face
Not when you're hungry! ;)

Jake Anderson wrote:
> James Newton wrote:
> Noticing the absence of something is generally a difficult thing to do.

2007\10\03@072236 by olin piclist

face picon face
Howard Winter wrote:
> I've just realised that Olin hasn't been in here for quite some time...
>
> Shame!

That's because my posts usually take a day or two to make it to the list,
and sometimes dissappear altogether without any bounce message.  I still
skim the PIClist, but I'm over at the Microchip forums nowadays.  Web
interfaces and email lists each have their advantages and disadvantages, but
on the whole the Microchip forums are a nicer place.  If you or anyone has a
PIC or electronics topic to discuss, I encourage you to post it there.  Feel
free to send me a PM (personal message, a feature or the web forum) if you
want to make sure I notice it.

I don't want to add any value to this list as long as my account is treated
differently from everyone else's.

I'm also CCing this message to you in addition to replying on the list
because I never know if a post will get to the list.  I apologize if you get
this twice.


********************************************************************
Embed Inc, Littleton Massachusetts, http://www.embedinc.com/products
(978) 742-9014.  Gold level PIC consultants since 2000.

2007\10\03@080538 by olin piclist

face picon face
James Newton wrote:
>> I've just realised that Olin hasn't been in here for quite some time...
>
> Didn't you notice the lack of flame wars, name calling, and offended
> newbies?
>
>> Shame!
>
> JOY!

But what you don't easily notice is missing content.  There have been a
number of times I could have spoken up to clear up a misconception, correct
a outright error, or to make a relevant and useful comment, but I have
refrained because of the way I'm being treated here.

I also think that you have forgotten who this list is for.  I believe it was
intended as a service to the PIC user community, and as such should reflect
the general consensus of that community.  You have decided to impose your
own strict standards, which are way off to one end.  Being a large group,
there are opinions accross the whole spectrum.  There will always be some on
either side of a particular issue.  However, every time what was acceptable
on the list was openly discussed, the majority were considerably more
liberal than you.  Your reaction was to ban the open discussion instead of
adjusting your practices.  This list is a censored dictatorship, not a
community.  In a community the members can at least discuss how the
community should be run.

And if you look closely at the so-called flame wars you will find that the
name calling was usually directed at me, not from me, and the "flame war"
were usually comments reacting to something you did.  If someone says
something in public, they should be prepared to be called on it if it was
stupid.  That's the way the world works, get over it.  This is actually
doing them a favor is you think about it.  Sometimes they may get a little
hot under the collar in response and call someone a name.  Big deal.  I've
had a lot worse things happen to me in my life, and someone calling me a
name just doesn't make it to the top of the list of things to worry about.
It can even be entertaining.  Get over it.  Once that person has let off
some steam, things usually end there quickly enough unless you decide to
step in and "fix" things.  That's when the ruckus starts.

James, I think you also have an exaggerated sense of your own importance to
this list.  Yes, you and the other admins run the list.  That is a important
and useful job.  But you don't have a list without people adding content
either.  That's also important, and so are people requesting content.
Arguing who is more important is as pointless as trying to decide which of
marketing, sales, engineering, manufacturing, or management, of a company
are more important.  You need them all else all the remainder are useless.

So James, if you can't lighten up, you should consider stepping down and
letting someone fresh take over.


********************************************************************
Embed Inc, Littleton Massachusetts, http://www.embedinc.com/products
(978) 742-9014.  Gold level PIC consultants since 2000.

2007\10\03@082736 by Xiaofan Chen

face picon face
On 10/3/07, Howard Winter <@spam@HDRW@spam@spamspam_OUTh2org.demon.co.uk> wrote:
> I've just realised that Olin hasn't been in here for quite some time...
>
> Shame!
>

I thought he was banned. Now I know he is not banned but censored.
Personally I think this list should have people like him with extensive
knowledge. And I think I have no problems with his styles.

Xiaofan

2007\10\03@083708 by wouter van ooijen

face picon face
> Didn't you notice the lack of flame wars, name calling, and
> offended newbies?

I did notice that.

I also missed the outright funny remarks on questions that IMHO (YHOMV)
deserved such answers.

Alas, from statistics we know that it is impossible to avoid both type I
and type II errors.

Wouter van Ooijen

-- -------------------------------------------
Van Ooijen Technische Informatica: http://www.voti.nl
consultancy, development, PICmicro products
docent Hogeschool van Utrecht: http://www.voti.nl/hvu



2007\10\03@084206 by wouter van ooijen

face picon face
> But what you don't easily notice is missing content.

On this I tend to agree (to some extent) with you, Olin.

> So James, if you can't lighten up, you should consider
> stepping down and letting someone fresh take over.

But here I must disagree: James has stated over and over that anyone who
is willing to spent serious effort (== lots of time) in managing this
list is welcome to the 'clan' of administrators. I don't have the
impression that a lot of people volunteerder and were rejected (correct
me if I am wrong?). So if that 'someone fresh' actually exists he either
does not want to take over, or has already joined the clan and is now
part of it.

Wouter van Ooijen

-- -------------------------------------------
Van Ooijen Technische Informatica: http://www.voti.nl
consultancy, development, PICmicro products
docent Hogeschool van Utrecht: http://www.voti.nl/hvu



2007\10\03@085725 by Xiaofan Chen

face picon face
On 10/3/07, wouter van ooijen <spamBeGonewouterspamKILLspamvoti.nl> wrote:
> > Didn't you notice the lack of flame wars, name calling, and
> > offended newbies?
>
> I did notice that.

But I do not think this is really related to Olin. And I do not quite
like some of the occasional posters from Nabble. Some of them have
no clues of PIC/EE and PIClist.

>
> I also missed the outright funny remarks on questions that IMHO (YHOMV)
> deserved such answers.
>
> Alas, from statistics we know that it is impossible to avoid both type I
> and type II errors.
>

Funny you mentioned statistics. I am now helping my wife on her
bio-statistics class for her postgraduate of public health study of
epidemiology. It has been a while I need to learn statistics other
than several hours of lean/six sigma lecturers by the black belts.

2007\10\03@090351 by Russell McMahon

face
flavicon
face
> But what you don't easily notice is missing content.  There have
> been a
> number of times I could have spoken up to clear up a misconception,
> correct
> a outright error, or to make a relevant and useful comment, but I
> have
> refrained because of the way I'm being treated here. ...


There's a real education to be had in reading this response.
It's almost worth reading it thought by thought and considering what
the message in each thought is.
It may not be the most pleasant of experiences, but sometimes such a
review can be useful to give perspective to one's own life choices.

Some here will agree in large part with the sentiments expressed.
Some won't. I'm one who more largely disagrees than agrees. But in
either case it's an education.
I'd not want to live in a community where the norm is as espoused here
by Olin, but apparently he does want to, and presumably he's also
saying that he manages to do so.

I think that "get over it" is a valuable personal choice that each of
us can make as our own reaction to life's situations. I'm still trying
to do it as often as I ought.  But it's much less valuable when it's
an assumed add on to one's input to other people, as Olin expressly
indicates is the way he intends it.

I'll avoid making further necessarily counter-productive attempts to
address any of the points raised *EXCEPT* re one area which is
important to all of us and which Olin must not be allowed to undermine
with weapons of mass disruption - namely his comments about list
operation, management etc. Hopefully and presumably James will not
rise to the bait. This list is the list that Jory started only in name
and mantle. It's been a long time since then and any number of people
have suggested that other lists could or should be started that fill
the "intended" role "better". Some few have even tried, but I'm not
aware that any have succeeded for any length of time. Olin's
suggestion that James should "step down" is manifestly ludicrous as
it's obviously not meant to be a serious suggestion to replace list
leadership with any available alternative. Or, not with any serious
one. Who is it suggested will fill the role? Mayhaps Olin is
suggesting that he himself will rise to the occasion, although I
suspect that that is unlikely. (Stranger things have happened). It's
far more likely that the aim is simply to annoy and bully the 'leader'
to create FUD with no intention of offering a viable alternative.
Whatever.

I've personally noted Olin's absence, but the loss of his genuinely
valuable contributions has been offset by a substantial gain in peace
and goodwill to all men - given the choice myself I know which I'd
choose. Fortunately for some, the choice isn't mine :-)


       Russell

PS

> but I have refrained because of the way I'm being treated here. ...

Olin, that doesn't sound like you are taking your own "get over it"
advice to heart.
I can genuinely identify with how you feel, having been in the same
situation both in this sort of environment and in much more important
situations in real life*. Learning the "get over it" message one's
self before trying to inflict it on others with blunt instruments is a
highly desirable skill. I'm still trying to learn it :-)

If I was (one again) in your situation (which may happen sooner than
later at this rate) I may well tend to adopt a similar 'dog in the
manger' attitude. But until you (and I) manage to learn to first
practice what we seek to preach we will be less effective than we wish
to be. Learn that and James may GIVE you his job :-).



* You think this is real life .... ? :-)


2007\10\03@090807 by Martin Klingensmith

face
flavicon
face
Xiaofan Chen wrote:
> On 10/3/07, Howard Winter <.....HDRWspam_OUTspamh2org.demon.co.uk> wrote:
>  
>> I've just realised that Olin hasn't been in here for quite some time...
>>
>> Shame!
>>
>>    
>
> I thought he was banned. Now I know he is not banned but censored.
> Personally I think this list should have people like him with extensive
> knowledge. And I think I have no problems with his styles.
>
> Xiaofan
>  
Olin has his own style and often times people get personally offended,
especially the people who aren't initiated to his style. I think
secretly he enjoys telling newbies that they're dumb. I think that many
newbies need to be told that they're dumb, or at least not going to get
anywhere by asking people to do their homework for them.

--
Martin K

2007\10\03@125713 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Xiaofan Chen wrote:

> Now I know he is not banned but censored.

How do you know this?

Gerhard

2007\10\03@130417 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Olin Lathrop wrote:

> In a community the members can at least discuss how the community should
> be run.

I don't know how much real-life experience you have with living in a
non-hierarchical community (I mean one where the hierarchy is not formally
defined). But mostly, you have to /do/ something to be taken seriously; the
ones who only discuss about how something should be done only get so far,
and the community usually recognizes that -- not always quickly, but
usually eventually.

Anyway, point in question is that anybody who seriously want to have a shot
at influencing how the community is being run should join the ones who run
it. As far as I can tell, that's open to every list member. And most
members who do not choose to join the admins recognize that it's their
choice that they're not participating in the administration of the list.

Another point is that any community without a formal hierarchy in the end
depends on consensus -- or a majority so strong that it has a similar
effect. Consensus is not gained by offending people (or by making them feel
offended, which for this purpose is the same). Community is a lot about
/feeling/ good. Fighting with the one who is by consensus (that's not just
a simple majority vote) the list manager is not a good way of influencing
the way things go. And it's not a good way of making anybody feel good.

(This all is a lot different in, say, a company setting. While that is also
a community, the hierarchy is formally defined and the goals are different.
While I may choose to work with a real unpleasant fellow because he's good
at what I want him to do and I can "box" his attitude sufficiently for me,
I probably would think a lot more about joining a non-hierarchical
non-profit community where he also is a part.)

Gerhard

2007\10\03@135028 by Dario Greggio

face picon face
Xiaofan Chen wrote:

>>I've just realised that Olin hasn't been in here for quite some time...
>>Shame!

> I thought he was banned. Now I know he is not banned but censored.
> Personally I think this list should have people like him with extensive
> knowledge. And I think I have no problems with his styles.

I agree with you.

--
Ciao, Dario il Grande (522-485 a.C.)

2007\10\03@135152 by Herbert Graf

flavicon
face
On Wed, 2007-10-03 at 07:22 -0400, Olin Lathrop wrote:
> Howard Winter wrote:
> > I've just realised that Olin hasn't been in here for quite some time...
> >
> > Shame!
>
> That's because my posts usually take a day or two to make it to the list,

That should be rare. Since moderated accounts must have posts "approved"
by one of the moderators there is a delay, mainly the time between you
post, and one of the moderators logging in and approving the post.

Generally it should at most be a few hours, one of us usually is on
within the span of an hour or two during the day.

If the post is late at night it may not be approved till the next
morning.

Weekends are possible times when it would take a day, especially if all
of us are away from the computer (rare, but does happen).

> and sometimes dissappear altogether without any bounce message.  

That should NOT happen. It was agreed among the admins that if we felt a
post by anyone currently being moderated was inappropriate, they would
be told. I know that is what I personally do, although I don't recall
specifically rejecting any of your posts (but my memory isn't perfect,
it may have happened).

> I still
> skim the PIClist, but I'm over at the Microchip forums nowadays.  Web
> interfaces and email lists each have their advantages and disadvantages, but
> on the whole the Microchip forums are a nicer place.  If you or anyone has a
> PIC or electronics topic to discuss, I encourage you to post it there.  Feel
> free to send me a PM (personal message, a feature or the web forum) if you
> want to make sure I notice it.

It's certainly a personal preference, some like web forums, some like
lists. Me personally, I dislike web forums, way to many bugs (although
admittedly the MChip forums are relatively bug free), and not possible
to use with only a keyboard.

> I don't want to add any value to this list as long as my account is treated
> differently from everyone else's.

That is your choice.

TTYL

2007\10\03@141604 by Dr Skip

picon face
I don't know Olin, and I'm not a psychologist (and I don't even play one on
TV), but his note had a lot of pain in it. It seems to me that as long as no
rules are broken, and it's a style thing, that the problem arises when others
act to represent the 'community' rather than just themselves. The flavor of the
community is what is observed, not what is described.

If someone says "dumb question" and others say "good question", without flaming
the other guy, then not only would there not be a problem, but the OP and any
observer would then draw their own conclusions about the validity of each
response. Nothing more has to be said.

Anything else would tend to form groups or gangs, which then impose a 'will'
upon others not in the group. This isn't a physical community. The rules should
be defined such that anything within them is OK, and otherwise they aren't. I
don't seem to recall a problem, but I don't read all the email all the time.
Perhaps a good approach would be to avoid addressing anyone you find offensive.
Limit your response to just the OP. He has his say, and so do you, and no war
results. The preponderance of replies to the OP, one way or the other, will
demonstrate the intent of the community on its own.

For instance, if someone says the moderator is doing a bad job, there are 2
choices someone could make: reply with an argument, or reply with a comment to
the moderator on how well the moderator is doing and why. Most people will then
conclude the truth based on the responses and facts given. No war results and
everyone has an opportunity to say his part.

Just my suggestion...

-Skip

2007\10\03@173536 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Dr Skip wrote:

> If someone says "dumb question" and others say "good question", without
> flaming the other guy, then not only would there not be a problem, but
> the OP and any observer would then draw their own conclusions about the
> validity of each response. Nothing more has to be said.

I agree with this, and this is how it would work, ideally. Practically,
there's style and there's style, and observation shows that certain styles,
while maybe not formally violating any hard rules, tend to cause ruckus.
Just check an archive if you don't know what this is about.

It's the lack of these "excited" threads that James mentioned. Not creating
them is nothing that can be 100% assured with hard rules; it depends on a
certain "feel" on the part of the list members to understand what causes
this "excitement" and what doesn't. Some may not have that feel, or may not
like to follow it.

Gerhard

2007\10\03@185113 by James Newton

face picon face
Olin's moderated bit was set last time because of this:

> -----Original Message-----
> From: TakeThisOuTpiclist-bounces.....spamTakeThisOuTmit.edu
> [TakeThisOuTpiclist-bouncesKILLspamspamspammit.edu] On Behalf Of Olin Lathrop
> Sent: 2007 Jun 18, Mon 13:53
> To: Microcontroller discussion list - Public.
> Subject: Re: [PIC] MCP-USB Programmer Firmware
>
> scott larson wrote:
> > I contacted Olimex and they
> > said that the firmware is copyrighted and I'd have to pay $30 +
> > shipping for a new 18F252 with the firmware on it.
> >
> > Again, does anyone have this programmer and can upload the firmware
> > for me?
>
> Perhaps I'm missing something, but the above certainly sounds
> like you're a dirtbag trying to steal $30 worth of
> copyrighted material.

You may agree or disagree with Mr. Larson being a "dirtbag" but calling
people names typically leads to them yelling and screaming and wasting
bandwidth. So we moderate (censure if you like) people who have a habit of
doing that. As Herb has said, it shouldn't delay a post more than a few
hours in most cases, and we NEVER reject a message without notification
being sent to the poster. It seems to make the place more livable.

But, Perhaps I was too hasty last time and I'm more than willing at this
point to forgive and forget.

Olin, I'll be happy to turn off your moderated bit if you will promise to
refrain from name calling and generally follow the list rules.

And I'll be happy to turn the PICList over to you, or anyone else, if you
will take the time to read the list server documentation and serve for a few
months as a co-admin. If you really think you can do a better job of keeping
flame wars to a minimum, have at.

As a separate point, I would really like to see Olin apologize for calling
Herb Graf and I "Nazi's" over on the public Microchip forums. Microchip
removed his original post at my insistence, but the text of that post is
still visible in other posts on that
thread which quote it. E.g.
http://forum.microchip.com/printable.aspx?m=249970 and Microchip has ignored
my repeated requests to have it removed.

Since I have some German ancestry, and I abhor the actions of that
particular regime, the insult goes beyond what I think Herb and I should
have to put up with for what we have said publically about Olin.

James Newton: PICList webmaster/Admin
.....jamesnewtonspamRemoveMEpiclist.com  1-619-652-0593 phone
http://www.piclist.com/member/JMN-EFP-786
PIC/PICList FAQ: http://www.piclist.com


{Quote hidden}

2007\10\03@191729 by Xiaofan Chen

face picon face
On 10/4/07, Herbert Graf <spamBeGonemailinglist3EraseMEspamfarcite.net> wrote:
> It's certainly a personal preference, some like web forums, some like
> lists. Me personally, I dislike web forums, way to many bugs (although
> admittedly the MChip forums are relatively bug free), and not possible
> to use with only a keyboard.

Strange that you say that Microchip Forum is bug free...
Either the forum software is broken or the admin is bad.
Eg:
http://forum.microchip.com/tm.aspx?m=274083
http://forum.microchip.com/tm.aspx?m=265484
http://forum.microchip.com/tm.aspx?m=280603

Xiaofan

2007\10\03@192838 by Xiaofan Chen

face picon face
On 10/4/07, Xiaofan Chen <xiaofancspamBeGonespamgmail.com> wrote:
> On 10/4/07, Herbert Graf <RemoveMEmailinglist3@spam@spamspamBeGonefarcite.net> wrote:
> > It's certainly a personal preference, some like web forums, some like
> > lists. Me personally, I dislike web forums, way to many bugs (although
> > admittedly the MChip forums are relatively bug free), and not possible
> > to use with only a keyboard.
>
> Strange that you say that Microchip Forum is bug free...
> Either the forum software is broken or the admin is bad.
> Eg:
> http://forum.microchip.com/tm.aspx?m=274083
> http://forum.microchip.com/tm.aspx?m=265484
> http://forum.microchip.com/tm.aspx?m=280603
>


Starange this is the first time I receive two of my own
posts from PIClist. Something is strange.

2007\10\03@202126 by Carl Denk

flavicon
face
One of the big things Ford Motor taught me in the 20 years I spent with
them was. Always focus on the problem, not the people. The example was
if the night shift made a bunch of defective parts. The issue is what do
we do with the parts (the future), and NOT Bill, the night shift
foreman, fouled up a bunch of parts! :) With this list being
international in members, it's likely between English being a 2nd
language, and other customs, that occasionally something comes out of
context and meaning. Everyone needs to be a little (maybe a lot at
times) tolerant. And that's one of the real poor sides of E-mail, one
can't really read the face of the sender (maybe need to end in a ":)" or
2. And this doesn't mean you can't disagree with something, if possible
try to put some reasons to enlighten others. :) :)

James Newton wrote:
> Olin's moderated bit was set last time because of this:
>
>  
>> {Original Message removed}

2007\10\03@203106 by Herbert Graf

flavicon
face
On Thu, 2007-10-04 at 07:17 +0800, Xiaofan Chen wrote:
> On 10/4/07, Herbert Graf <.....mailinglist3@spam@spamEraseMEfarcite.net> wrote:
> > It's certainly a personal preference, some like web forums, some like
> > lists. Me personally, I dislike web forums, way to many bugs (although
> > admittedly the MChip forums are relatively bug free), and not possible
> > to use with only a keyboard.
>
> Strange that you say that Microchip Forum is bug free...
> Either the forum software is broken or the admin is bad.
> Eg:
> http://forum.microchip.com/tm.aspx?m=274083
> http://forum.microchip.com/tm.aspx?m=265484
> http://forum.microchip.com/tm.aspx?m=280603

Hehe, to be technical, I DID say "relatively bug free..." :)

That said, I don't think any forum is 100% bug free, just that, in my
experience, the MChip forums are pretty good with keeping the bugs to a
minimum.

TTYL

2007\10\03@213400 by Cedric Chang

flavicon
face
Why does Dr. Skip say he is not a psychologist and then proceed
to offer psychological opinion ?  Is this a tongue-in-cheek barb  
launched
at psychologists ?  I find it painful to live in a world where people  
interfere
in other people's business and have ultra-thin skins as well ; most  
people
are extremely easy to offend and react with " there ought to be a law ".
Cedric

On Oct 3, 2007, at 12:16 PM, Dr Skip wrote:

I don't know Olin, and I'm not a psychologist (and I don't even play  
one on
TV), but his note had a lot of pain in it. It seems to me that as  
long as no
rules are broken, and it's a style thing, that the problem arises  
when others
act to represent the 'community' rather than just themselves. The  
flavor of the
community is what is observed, not what is described.

If someone says "dumb question" and others say "good question",  
without flaming
the other guy, then not only would there not be a problem, but the OP  
and any
observer would then draw their own conclusions about the validity of  
each
response. Nothing more has to be said.

Anything else would tend to form groups or gangs, which then impose a  
'will'
upon others not in the group. This isn't a physical community. The  
rules should
be defined such that anything within them is OK, and otherwise they  
aren't. I
don't seem to recall a problem, but I don't read all the email all  
the time.
Perhaps a good approach would be to avoid addressing anyone you find  
offensive.
Limit your response to just the OP. He has his say, and so do you,  
and no war
results. The preponderance of replies to the OP, one way or the  
other, will
demonstrate the intent of the community on its own.

For instance, if someone says the moderator is doing a bad job, there  
are 2
choices someone could make: reply with an argument, or reply with a  
comment to
the moderator on how well the moderator is doing and why. Most people  
will then
conclude the truth based on the responses and facts given. No war  
results and
everyone has an opportunity to say his part.

Just my suggestion...

-Skip

2007\10\03@234220 by Dr Skip

picon face
- The reference to playing one on TV says it all...

- One doesn't have to be a psychiatrist to recognize pain, just human...

- In case there was misunderstanding of the rest of the text, it says pretty
much the same thing - ignore it rather than make an issue of something you
don't like...


Cedric Chang wrote:
{Quote hidden}

2007\10\04@004413 by Bob Axtell

face picon face
Xiaofan Chen wrote:
> On 10/4/07, Herbert Graf <.....mailinglist3RemoveMEspamfarcite.net> wrote:
>  
>> It's certainly a personal preference, some like web forums, some like
>> lists. Me personally, I dislike web forums, way to many bugs (although
>> admittedly the MChip forums are relatively bug free), and not possible
>> to use with only a keyboard.
>>    
>
> Strange that you say that Microchip Forum is bug free...
> Either the forum software is broken or the admin is bad.
> Eg:
> http://forum.microchip.com/tm.aspx?m=274083
> http://forum.microchip.com/tm.aspx?m=265484
> http://forum.microchip.com/tm.aspx?m=280603
>
> Xiaofan
>  
I have been waiting 18 months for somebody to fix my Microchip login; I
have registered so
many times that every variant is now blocked, but my login still doesn't
work. I'd lodge a
formal complaint, but of course my login won't work, so I can't.

I only way I could alert them 6 months ago when some mfg dates of the
PIC12F629's had
EEPROM write problems, I had to email a friend INSIDE MICROCHIP to do
it... Nobody
acknowledged the error but at the next version it was all fixed...

_I_ would think that a big supporter like me would get at least a
modicum of atteantion, but
no dice...

I love 'em anyway...

--Bob A

2007\10\04@010137 by Bob Blick

face picon face
I think it's weird that if you don't have "adjust clock automatically
for daylight savings time" you can't file a support ticket.

Perhaps that's only a problem certain times of the year :-)

Cheerful regards,

Bob


Bob Axtell wrote:

{Quote hidden}

2007\10\04@051641 by Xiaofan Chen

face picon face
On 10/4/07, Bob Axtell <.....engineerSTOPspamspam@spam@cotse.net> wrote:
> > Strange that you say that Microchip Forum is bug free...
> > Either the forum software is broken or the admin is bad.
> >
> I have been waiting 18 months for somebody to fix my Microchip login; I
> have registered so many times that every variant is now blocked,
> but my login still doesn't work. I'd lodge a formal complaint, but of
> course my login won't work, so I can't.

Send an email to JasonK. He will fix it for you. Or you can try Nanci.
Example:
http://forum.microchip.com/tm.aspx?m=281170
http://forum.microchip.com/tm.aspx?m=272173

> _I_ would think that a big supporter like me would get at least a
> modicum of atteantion, but no dice...
>
> I love 'em anyway...
>

You may want to talk to your local FAE. I got to know some
local FAEs because I used PICs in my previous job. Then I
also got to know some engineers in USA because of my
involvement in pickit-devel mailing list. They can be quite
useful if you need some help.

In the forum, JasonK is the one to talk to.

Xiaofan

2007\10\04@080122 by Lee Jones
flavicon
face
>>> I've just realised that Olin hasn't been in here for quite some time...

>> Didn't you notice the lack of flame wars, name calling, and offended
>> newbies?

> But what you don't easily notice is missing content.

Actually, I had.  I miss Olin's posts & have no problems with his style.

                                               Lee Jones

2007\10\04@232539 by Bob Axtell

face picon face
Xiaofan Chen wrote:
{Quote hidden}

I'd gladly complain, but I can't login to the forum, nor can I fill out
a ticket....

--Bob
> Xiaofan
>  

2007\10\10@091530 by olin piclist

face picon face
James Newton wrote:
> Olin's moderated bit was set last time because of this:
>
>>> I contacted Olimex and they
>>> said that the firmware is copyrighted and I'd have to pay $30 +
>>> shipping for a new 18F252 with the firmware on it.
>>>
>>> Again, does anyone have this programmer and can upload the firmware
>>> for me?
>>
>> Perhaps I'm missing something, but the above certainly sounds
>> like you're a dirtbag trying to steal $30 worth of
>> copyrighted material.

This is exactly the kind of overreaction by you that I'm talking about.
There should be nothing wrong with pointing out to the OP that he is
perceived as possibly doing something illegal and therefore may not get much
help.  The label "dirtbag" is just a convenient and a little bit funny way
to get the point accross.

There was no problem here to fix.  At worst, the OP might bet upset and
respond with FU A******.  Big deal.  I'd probably get a laugh out of that.
If he really was trying to steal, he'd probably go away.  Sounds like a good
result to me.  Part of the purpose of my post was also to alert others that
might have been inclined to help the OP to at least think about the fact
that he might be trying to steal something.

> As Herb has said, it shouldn't delay a post more than a
> few hours in most cases,

The majority of cases, yes, but there have been cases where the delay was a
day or two.

> It seems to make the place more livable.

If you prefer to live in a artifically sugar coated (and more boring)
version of reality.

> Olin, I'll be happy to turn off your moderated bit if you will promise
> to refrain from name calling and generally follow the list rules.

Note that the above was not "name calling".  I didn't say he was a dirtbag,
but that his actions indicate he might be.  I consider that a important
distinction.  If you can't see the difference or otherwise consider my
comment to be outside the rules, then I can't promise to live within your
rules.  I think my response was well within the limits of what should be
allowed on this list.  If you think otherwise, then: 1) I think you're off
the deep end.  2) I'm not going to participate here until either the rules
change or someone else enforces them who interprets them more reasonably.

> And I'll be happy to turn the PICList over to you, or anyone else,

There was a time a few years back when I might have been willing to help in
some way if asked nicely, but that train has left the station.

> If you really think you can do a better
> job of keeping flame wars to a minimum, have at.

There will occasionally be small fracasses.  Big deal.  The big discussions
that I think you are calling flame wars resulted from your actions in trying
to deal with small fracasses.  If you look back, you will find it was YOU
who turned small problems into big problems.

> As a separate point, I would really like to see Olin apologize for
> calling Herb Graf and I "Nazi's" over on the public Microchip forums.
>
> ...
>
> Since I have some German ancestry, and I abhor the actions of that
> particular regime, the insult goes beyond what I think Herb and I should
> have to put up with

I'm sure nobody thought I was claming you or Herb were members of the Nazi
party.  I was merely likening your tactics to a totalitarian regime.  I
realize the label "Nazi" has a lot of other baggage associated with it, but
I thought my use of it was rather clear in context.  I do apologize if
anyone interpreted it beyond the totalitarian part.

> for what we have said publically about Olin.

This little qualifier is very telling.  You claim to stand for civility and
politeness, but I think many people here would be shocked to see some of the
stuff you have written privately, including many cases of outright name
calling with the only purpose being a deliberate insult.


********************************************************************
Embed Inc, Littleton Massachusetts, http://www.embedinc.com/products
(978) 742-9014.  Gold level PIC consultants since 2000.

2007\10\10@123200 by Gerhard Fiedler

picon face
Olin Lathrop wrote:

> Note that the above was not "name calling".  I didn't say he was a dirtbag,
> but that his actions indicate he might be.  I consider that a important
> distinction.  

It is an important distinction, in some contexts. But still, in some
contexts, other distinctions are more important.

> There was a time a few years back when I might have been willing to help
> in some way if asked nicely, [...]

As you correctly mention here, the "nicely" part is also important.

I think for most people this mailing list is not a contest who can say the
least "nice" things without formally violating the rules. IMO part of it
working well is the "nice" part (which, apparently, is as true for you as
it is for everybody else). This part doesn't depend primarily on the
distinction you mentioned above, as it is not a mental quality, it is an
emotional quality.

Gerhard

More... (looser matching)
- Last day of these posts
- In 2007 , 2008 only
- Today
- New search...