NSA

Science & Technology
3:30 am
Thu August 7, 2014

This CMU App Watches Boring Video So You Don't Have To

Skip to the good part: algorithm scours hours of dull video to find the most interesting bits.
Credit courtesy LiveLight

Say you have a large volume of digital video — hours of nanny-cam footage, perhaps, or a wedding reception.

And it’s boring, deadly boring. 

But suppose that, somewhere on that tape, something interesting does happen. Maybe it's just five seconds’ worth of attention-worthy images, buried under a mountain of redundant and predictable ones.

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Essential Pittsburgh
3:22 pm
Thu January 9, 2014

Interpreting the Fourth Amendment in the 21st Century

Credit David Glover / flickr

Last month judges in New York and Washington DC issued two different opinions on the controversial bulk metadata collection program being done by the NSA.

In light of these conflicting decisions, many wonder if the Supreme Court will take up the issue.

David Harris, Distinguished Faculty Scholar and Professor of Law University of Pittsburgh School of Law says the opposite rulings were products of the environments where the judges preside, as well as the radically different views of the Fourth Amendment.

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Essential Pittsburgh
5:36 pm
Fri November 15, 2013

Gen. Michael Hayden on Why NSA Spying is Reasonable

Credit CIA / Wikipedia

In the wake of the Edward Snowden/NSA scandal, people all over the world are up in arms about their personal information being collected without their knowledge.

In America, citizens think their privacy is protected by the Fourth Amendment.

"Whatever happened to prohibiting unreasonable search and seizure?” asks Essential Pittsburgh host, Paul Guggenheimer.

According to General Michael Hayden, former Director of the CIA and NSA, the keyword is unreasonable.

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Essential Pittsburgh
5:18 pm
Mon August 5, 2013

Terror Threat Closes American Embassies & Consulates in the Middle East

The U.S. Embassy in Abu Dhabi is one of the many embassies and consulates that have been closed following terror threats.
Credit Ryan Lackey / flicr

Last weekend the US Government issued a worldwide travel alert for Americans abroad, and closed American embassies in the Middle East. It's been called the “most serious” terrorist warning post 9-11. Dan Simpson, former US Ambassador and Editorial Editor for the Pittsburgh Post Gazette, weighs in on the government’s decision, the NSA involvement and why he feels the alert is a political game.

Many believe that issuing these alerts is an attempt by the government to show support for the NSA wiretapping leaks.  Simpson agrees, saying that he can see the government wanting to identify a serious terrorist attack regardless of whether one is likely, in order to justify the NSA surveillance.

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Essential Pittsburgh
4:23 pm
Wed July 17, 2013

What Lies Beneath: The Internet's Dark Side

The Undernet is an anonymous network used for everything from arms dealers and narcotics traders to journalists in censored countries.
Credit Katie Blackley / 90.5 WESA

Beneath a sea of hashtags, behind the walls of Facebook users and beyond the top ten hits of a Google search is a set of websites and resources on the Internet called the “Undernet.” Also known as the “Dark Web,” these sites are not indexed by search engines and can provide complete anonymity to users.

Carnegie Mellon University Professor and Network Security Expert David Brumley explains this hidden Internet and the many legal, illegal and beneficial actions that occur within this web.

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