Public Transport — And Smartphones — Make You Dumber (plus revolutionary parapsychology, Fukushima, NSA/games PDF, Snowden/Manning, CyanogenMod/TextSecure, NYT IT guy. Whew.)

Drivers, walkers, and bicyclists know their cities better than public transport users, new research shows. Smartphone users and GPS map addicts are also at a disadvantage.

By relying on the bus or train driver, or that shiny little app, it seems the average man’s mental map-making mettle is minimized.

Revolutionary parapsychology: I covered “magnetism” last time. Is this why Mesmer — despite being the father of so much of our psychological understanding — was so widedly hated by the establishment?

Either way, there’s something funny about Haiti… I’ve pointed out the Scientologists are active there (despite there being no money for them to appropriate) and even the Jesuits (of which the current Pope is one) have deployed military intelligence methodology to that country for what is billed as humanitarian work.

“In Saint Domingue (pre-Revolutionary Haiti) Magnetism degenerated into a psychic epidemic amongst the Negro slaves, increasing their agitation, and the French domination ended in a bloodbath. Later Mesmer boasted that the new Republic, now called Haiti, owed its independence to him.”

What-the-fuck-ushima: 25 sieverts/hr.

NSA spying on video games paper. Here’s the PDF. WARNING: background appears to be some ill-advised attempt to defend against TEMPEST attacks, or maybe just “eyeball” attacks. “Eyeball” as in “it might get read by management.”

Snowden vs. Manning: Greenwald/etc-critical commentator Tarzie is getting themselves twisted on the Snowden vs. Manning argument. Let me clarify, for those of you who are also getting confused.

The difference is simple: Snowden took responsibility for what he wanted leaked himself, as evidenced by his meticulous filing system. The people he handed documents to have in turn kept responsibility for the complete set to themselves as much as possible.

Manning — should one still use “allegedly” after a guilty plea? —
handed off responsibility to Wikileaks, which in turn handed off responsibility to N different newspapers, of which one published the password and thereby released the lot against everyone’s wishes.

And neither Greenwald nor Snowden have actively criticized Manning or Wikileaks for the dump, rather, they’ve criticized the — incorrect —
argument that Manning and/or Wikileaks had been responsible for the dump.

Ur doing it right: CyanogenMod gets Moxie’s TextSecure. Not a secure platform, but that’s not the point — the point is to get everything encrypted everywhere by default.

NYT IT guy’s hilarious paranoia at handling drives with the Snowden docs.

“According to new research, drivers, walkers, and bicyclists will generally provide us with more useful directions than transit riders. Published in Urban Planning, “Going Mental” shows that cognitively active travelers, regardless of commute by foot or car, tend to trump cognitively passive travelers, (those who frequent public buses and trains) in perceiving distance. Questioning cognitively active, passive, and mixed travelers about distances from a survey site to LA’s city hall, the research demonstrated that the passive bus and subway riders have less of a grip on distance. Actively cognitive travelers, according to the results, were more likely to integrate street names in their directions, and also exhibited a sharper understanding of distances.[…]

In the modern world of maps 2.0, neogeography, and ‘everyone loves maps,’ could an increased use of navigation systems, digital heads-up-displays, cell phones, and augmented realities become detrimental to a driver’s superior ability to describe a route? As the authors theorize:

…there may be tradeoffs between short-term benefits of smartphone navigation and long-term deficits of spatial knowledge. Regardless, cognitive mapping and spatial knowledge have been missing from our analysis of travel behavior and from transportation planning for accessibility.”

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