32 Years of the Digest ... founded August 21, 1981
The Telecom Digest for November 4, 2013
====== 32 years of TELECOM Digest -- Founded August 21, 1981 ======
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Date: Sun, 3 Nov 2013 17:13:19 -0400 From: Monty Solomon <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com. Subject: U.S. Postal Service Logging All Mail for Law Enforcement Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> U.S. Postal Service Logging All Mail for Law Enforcement By RON NIXON July 3, 2013 WASHINGTON - Leslie James Pickering noticed something odd in his mail last September: a handwritten card, apparently delivered by mistake, with instructions for postal workers to pay special attention to the letters and packages sent to his home. "Show all mail to supv" - supervisor - "for copying prior to going out on the street," read the card. It included Mr. Pickering's name, address and the type of mail that needed to be monitored. The word "confidential" was highlighted in green. "It was a bit of a shock to see it," said Mr. Pickering, who with his wife owns a small bookstore in Buffalo. More than a decade ago, he was a spokesman for the Earth Liberation Front, a radical environmental group labeled eco-terrorists by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Postal officials subsequently confirmed they were indeed tracking Mr. Pickering's mail but told him nothing else. As the world focuses on the high-tech spying of the National Security Agency, the misplaced card offers a rare glimpse inside the seemingly low-tech but prevalent snooping of the United States Postal Service. Mr. Pickering was targeted by a longtime surveillance system called mail covers, a forerunner of a vastly more expansive effort, the Mail Isolation Control and Tracking program, in which Postal Service computers photograph the exterior of every piece of paper mail that is processed in the United States - about 160 billion pieces last year. It is not known how long the government saves the images. Together, the two programs show that postal mail is subject to the same kind of scrutiny that the National Security Agency has given to telephone calls and e-mail. ... http://www.nytimes.com/2013/07/04/us/monitoring-of-snail-mail.html
Date: Tue, 29 Oct 2013 14:04:10 -0400 From: danny burstein <email@example.com> To: firstname.lastname@example.org. Subject: looking for a good home: Radio Shack CPA-1000 phone number logger Message-ID: <Pine.NEB.email@example.com> - if you're ok with posting this, I'd rather it find a good home than a garbage pile. Thanks. This is that nifty unit that plugs into your phone line, and prints out the numbers that are "touch toned" (dialed) from your house. In other words, you get a list of all calls made from your line. Some more info courtesy of another person's ebay listing: http://www.ebay.com/itm/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=200946669646 Ten dollars gets it out to you. - it worked when I last played with it umptity years ago, but I can't test it here these days. ***** Moderator's Note ***** I'm granting a once-in-a-while exception to the rules and allowing this post. Mr. Burstein is a long-time contributor, and the device is no longer made, and there's only a small community of people who would want one, and the $10 won't break anyone's back. Please don't make a habit of it, OK? Bill Horne Moderator P.S. The Ebay listing is NOT for this item. It's just an illustration of the unit.
Date: Sun, 3 Nov 2013 17:20:11 -0400 From: Monty Solomon <firstname.lastname@example.org> To: email@example.com. Subject: Cracking the Apple Trap Message-ID: <firstname.lastname@example.org> Cracking the Apple Trap By CATHERINE RAMPELL October 29, 2013 At first, I thought it was my imagination. Around the time the iPhone 5S and 5C were released, in September, I noticed that my sad old iPhone 4 was becoming a lot more sluggish. The battery was starting to run down much faster, too. But the same thing seemed to be happening to a lot of people who, like me, swear by their Apple products. When I called tech analysts, they said that the new operating system (iOS 7) being pushed out to existing users was making older models unbearably slow. Apple phone batteries, which have a finite number of charges in them to begin with, were drained by the new software. So I could pay Apple $79 to replace the battery, or perhaps spend 20 bucks more for an iPhone 5C. It seemed like Apple was sending me a not-so-subtle message to upgrade. Of course, there are more benign explanations. The new software and recent app updates offer fancy new features that existing users want; maybe the battery is sealed with tiny five-point screws for aesthetic considerations. Perhaps, but this isn't the first time that tech analysts and random crazies on the Internet have noted that breakdowns in older Apple products can often coincide with when upgrades come onto the market. Many have taken this as evidence of "planned obsolescence," a term that dates to the Great Depression, when a real estate broker suggested that the government should stimulate the economy by placing artificial expiration dates on consumer products so people would buy more. ... http://www.nytimes.com/2013/11/03/magazine/why-apple-wants-to-bust-your-iphone.html
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