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Why I'm No Longer On The Facebook

I've had a Facebook account for a few years, largely because other people were on it and were organizing useful communities there.  I stuck with it (not using it for private information) even while I grew increasingly concerned about Facebook's inability to be trustworthy guardians of private information.  The recent slap on the wrist from the FTC for Facebook violating the terms of its prior consent agreement made it clear that there wasn't going to be any penalty for Facebook for continuing to violate court orders.
Mark Zuckerberg claimed he had made a mistake in 2016 by ridiculing the idea of election interference on his platform, apologized, and claimed he was turning over a new leaf:
“After the election, I made a comment that I thought the idea misinformation on Facebook changed the outcome of the election was a crazy idea. Calling that crazy was dismissive and I regret it.  This is too important an issue to be dismissive.” It turns out, though, that was just Zuck ly…
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Shadowgate: The Lost D&D Campaign

Recently unearthed in a cache of my 1980s-era papers: Shadowgate, totally original Dungeons & Dragons campaign.  Published here for the very first time.  Enjoy!

"Situation: Shadowgate is the name of an ancient fort situated in the foothills of the mountains which mark the kingdom of Quild's northern boundary.  It was constructed long ago, by the magis and artisans of the First Kingdom, to protect the land from the attacks of creatures from beyond the walls of the world.  The central part of the keep was built around a gate which the creatures used to reach the lands of men.  The keep was built to keep safe the magical wards which locked the gate.  The physical keystone of those wards was a large, multifaceted crystal.  With it in place, the shadow creatures could never break through..."
Of course, it would not be a D&D adventure without a map.  The map looks like I spent a lot of time on mountains.









And yes, naturally, there is an evil priesthood:



Troll swords?  Bo…

Goodbye G+!

As I prepare to help shut down public G+ tomorrow, I realize how much I rely on it for long form postings and how much history there is.  I'm frequently on twitter these days, so I'm putting my G+ shutdown playlist there:

https://twitter.com/jpanzer/status/1112831788659798017

I'll likely move back here for long form posts where Twitter is less than optimal.  In that spirit, here's my final goodbye on G+ (which will disappear like tears in the rain tomorrow):

Goodbye, G+!  I've worked, off and on, building and maintaining G+ for mumble years now.  I'm currently working feverishly on winding down the public G+ product and bringing things in for a landing.
All kinds of feels for this.  Even now, with people leaving, the feed I have here is amazingly good and the social network isn't replicated anywhere else.  Thank you all for using my[1] code.  Thanks for being here.
[1] I had a small part, give all credit to the many talented engineers who have poured their ski…

This kind of reaction from a Secretary of State is garbage

This kind of reaction from a Secretary of State in charge of elections is absolutely incorrect, wrong, and deeply disturbing:

'Democrats are launching a manufactured crisis,” Kemp spokeswoman Candice Broce said. “They would love nothing more than for us to flout Georgia law and use paper ballots so they can challenge the results when they lose, but we will not cater to such childish antics.”'

(http://www.myajc.com/news/state--regional-govt--politics/georgia-democratic-leader-demands-details-voter-data-breach/syAe6Hw5TGKAqfohOqEItM/)

Voter verifiable paper audit trails ("paper ballots") are the consensus recommendation of ALL security experts who have looked at this issue, for the past decade or more:

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Voter-verified_paper_audit_trail#cite_note-5

This is NOT a partisan issue. Kemp can legitimately push back on technical critiques of his state's systems, but to pretend that paper ballots are less secure than the systems Georgia is using (…

My faxed letter to both my Senators this morning

My faxed letter to both my Senators this morning.

Senators Grassley and Graham, this morning, engaged in an obvious act of witness intimidation. They leaked a letter to the Justice Department referring criminal prosecution against Mr. Steele for alleged but unspecified false statements to, apparently, the FBI.

This is on the heels of Senator Grassley refusing to release the testimony of Fusion GPS, refusing to allow the public to evaluate the claims of Simpson vs. selective and apparently inaccurate leaks of said information from the Republican members of the committee.

This is outrageous.

It is unacceptable. It is un-American. These Senators are trying to achieve in then court of public opinion what they have no chance of doing in a real court. They are themselves engaging in witness intimidation & obstruction of justice.

I call on you to denounce this desperate and illegal act by your colleagues and to introduce a motion to censure these two sitting Senators who have demeaned th…

What exactly hosts the mail on ijkfamily.com?

So what exactly hosts the mail on ijkfamily.com?

To sum up: Right now, it appears to be just the Trump organization email servers, which does not inspire confidence in their security.

Best as I can tell, as of 8pm Pacific time, it appears that it's hosted by the same servers running Trump org email, possibly hosted by "BBH Solutions" Here's what I did:

1) dig ijkfamily.com MX
yields:
;; ANSWER SECTION:
ijkfamily.com. 3055 IN MX 0 ijkpph01.ijkfamily.com.
ijkfamily.com. 3055 IN MX 0 ijkpph02.ijkfamily.com.

2) dig ijkpph01.ijkfamily.com
yields:
ijkpph01.ijkfamily.com. 3600 IN A 144.121.114.12

3) OK, let's try to telnet to port 25 and see what happens:

The problem with creation date metadata in PDF documents

Last night Rachel Maddow talked about an apparently fake NSA document "leaked" to her organization.  There's a lot of info there, I suggest you listen to the whole thing:

http://www.msnbc.com/rachel-maddow/watch/maddow-to-news-orgs-heads-up-for-hoaxes-985491523709

There's a lot to unpack there but it looks like somebody tried to fool MSNBC into running with a fake accusation based on faked NSA documents, apparently based on cloning the document the Intercept published back on 6/5/2017, which to all appearances was itself a real NSA document in PDF form.

I think the main thrust of this story is chilling and really important to get straight -- some person or persons unknown is sending forged PDFs to news organization(s), apparently trying to get them to run stories based on forged documents.  And I completely agree with Maddow that she was right to send up a "signal flare" to all the news organizations to look out for forgeries.  Really, really, really import…