Juliana Barile, the former employee of a New York credit union, pleaded guilty to accessing the financial institution's computer systems without authorization and destroying over 21 gigabytes of data in revenge after being fired. BleepingComputer reports: According to court documents, the defendant worked remotely as a part-time employee for the credit union until May 19, 2021, when she was fired. Even though a credit union employee asked the bank's information technology support firm to disable Barile's remote access credentials, that access was not removed. Two days later, on May 21, Barile logged on for roughly 40 minutes. The defendant deleted over 20,000 files and around 3,500 directories during that time, totaling roughly 21.3 gigabytes of data stored on the bank's share drive. The wiped included files related to customers' mortgage loan applications and the financial institution's anti-ransomware protection software.
Besides deleting documents with customer and company data, Barile also opened various confidential Word documents, including files containing board minutes for the credit union. Five days later, on May 26, she also told a friend via text messages how she was able to destroy thousands of documents on her former employer's servers, saying, "They didn't revoke my access so I deleted p drift lol. [..] I deleted their shared network documents." Although the New York credit union had backups of some of the data deleted by the defendant, it still had to spend more than $10,000 to restore the destroyed data following Barile's unauthorized intrusion.
Why destroy, encrypt instead. I dream of the ending of Mr Robot Season 1 coming to pass- all credit histories encrypted and inaccessible. Everyone starts at zero. Bonus upside: This would the ruling class.
vaccine passports are utimately trying to protect her since she isn't fully vaccinated. the virus also racist itself and disproportionately affects PoC, and the vaccine and the passport are entirely free.
With the recent improvements to bike services on various Amtrak routes, it’s easier to get your bike to where you want to go. Last year, Amtrak introduced trainside checked service for bicycles on all 15 of their long distance routes, effectively eliminating the need to box your bike.
“Trainside checked” just means that you check your bike the same way you would your luggage — but without having to disassemble it into a box. Hand it off to the baggage car staff, they hang it up on a bike rack in the baggage car, and you grab it when you get off the train. The only catch: as with any checked baggage on these trains, you can only take your bike off at staffed stations with baggage service. But — NO MORE BOXES!
So what better opportunity to start looking at which national parks one can get to with Amtrak? And what better time to go than on Bike Your Park Day, September 30?
Here are a few ideas to start planning your Bike Your Park Day ride:
1. Glacier National Park on the Empire Builder
The Empire Builder is one of the long distance routes that now has trainside checked service. Luckily, Amtrak realized how popular Glacier National Park is as a bicycling destination and made an exception for allowing passengers to take bikes on and off the unstaffed stations at West Glacier and the seasonally open station at East Glacier.
And if you register a ride for Bike Your Park Day by September 18, you’ll be entered to win an Amtrak trip for two with bikes to Glacier Park. Going for free is the best way to go!
2. Chesapeake & Ohio Canal National Historical Park on the Capitol Limited
If you’re looking for off-road trail riding, this is the place to go, and with the Capitol Limited you can do a one-way ride and take the train back. This route has carry-on bicycle service, so you can get your bike on and off at any station. The C&O Canal is a lovely national park, and though the 184-mile towpath can be occasionally rough, it’s a popular destination for cycling. It also connects to the 150-mile Great Allegheny Passage, another trail gem that continues to Pittsburgh from Cumberland, Maryland.
3. Crater Lake National Park on the Coast Starlight
Since 2013, Crater Lake has been organizing Ride the Rim on two Saturdays in September, during which they close a portion of Rim Drive and open it up only to non-motorized traffic. Over 5,000 people participated last year, and this year the events will take place September 9 and 16th. While we’re sad it doesn’t coincide with Bike Your Park Day, September 30, it’s probably the best possible way to #bikeyourpark, so we wanted to help promote it. Plus, when you take the Coast Starlight to Klamath Falls, you can also reserve an Amtrak shuttle that will take you and your bike straight to the park.
4. Shenandoah National Park or Blue Ridge Parkway on the Cardinal or Crescent
Check out this list of more Amtrak routes that service national parks for more ideas.
How to Plan Your Amtrak/National Parks Trip With A Bike
It can take a little research to connect the dots on what route to take and what kind of bike services are offered, so here’s how we usually go about it. Check out the multi-modal page for the full list of resources.
1. Where do routes/stations align with national parks?
Amtrak/Adventure Cycling map. This map displays Amtrak routes and stations over the Adventure Cycling Route Network, so you can connect bike and train routes.
2. Which Amtrak route is it?
Amtrak routes and stations. Once you’ve chosen a route/station, check out this page to find out the name of the route you’re interested in. Unfortunately, since many routes overlap, it’s difficult to show names of routes on the national map.
3. What kind of bike service does the route have?
Amtrak bike services. Find out whether your chosen route has trainside checked or carry-on bike service, so you can determine whether you can get on and off at any station with your bike (carry-on) or just the ones with baggage service (trainside checked).
4. Does the station have bike service?
5. Are there any bike spaces available?
When you buy your ticket online, you’ll see a bike icon with a number showing how many bike spaces are left to reserve on that train. The image below shows what it will look like:
Enjoy the ride! Please comment below with any questions or feedback.
Photos 1 and 2 Saara Snow | Photo 3 Brian Managan
Bike Your Park Day Bike to or within nearby parks and public lands with thousands of people around the country on the same day — Bike Your Park Day on September 29, 2018. Bring friends and family to join the ride and discover the outdoor adventures in your backyard. Make it your own experience: ride any distance; go with friends, family, or join a group; bike on trails or roads. Visit a national or state park, monument, historic site, river, seashore, recreation area, preserve, forest, wildlife refuge, or parkway. #BikeYourPark
Seventy years ago, Italian-American nuclear physicist Enrico Fermi asked his colleagues a question during a lunchtime conversation. If life is common in our Universe, why can’t we see any evidence of its activity out there (aka. “where is everybody?”) Seventy years later, this question has launched just as many proposed resolutions as to how extraterrestrial intelligence (ETIs) could be common, yet go unnoticed by our instruments.
Some possibilities that have been considered are that humanity might be alone in the Universe, early to the party, or is not in a position to notice any yet. But in a recent study, Robin Hanson (creator of the Great Filter) and an interdisciplinary team offer a new model for determining when the aliens will get here. According to their study, humanity is early to the Universe and will meet others in 200 million to 2 billion years from now.
To break it down succinctly, the “grabby aliens model” assumes that civilizations are born according to a series of steps similar to what we see with the biological evolution of life here on Earth. These civilizations, which Hanson and his colleagues refer to as “grabby civilizations” (GCs), will then expand at a common rate, alter the volume of space they occupy, and prevent technologically advanced civilizations (similar to where humanity is today) from arising in these volumes. The model has three parameters, consisting of:
Expansion speed (s) from the fact that we don’t see loud alien volumes in our sky,
Power (n) from the history of significant events in the evolution of life on Earth,
Constant (k) by assuming our date is a random sample from their appearance dates.
The model assumes that the expansion speed of alien civilizations can be estimated based on the fact that we (13.8 billion years after the Big Bang) do not detect the presence of them at this time, the amount of time it takes for advanced life to evolve (based on) and the assumption that humanity’s location in space and time is not unusual, relative to the appearance of advanced and expanding civilizations (similar to the Copernican Principle).
From this, Hanson and his team Moreover, Hanson and his colleagues were able to produce estimates on where the GCs are in our Universe, how much of the Universe they have occupied so far, and how long it will be before we encounter them.
“Where is Everybody?”
The first parameter (s) harkens back to the Fermi Paradox, as initially framed by Michael Hart and Frank Tipler), which refers to the apparent disparity between the statistical likelihood of intelligent life in our Universe and the absence of evidence for it. Within this theoretical framework, scientists are forced to find explanations for how intelligent life could be ubiquitous but has remained invisible to human instruments until now.
As noted, this has spawned various proposed resolutions over the past few decades. Some key considerations include the timeline of the Universe and the evolution of life on Earth. Current estimates indicate that the Universe is 13.8 billion years old (± 40 million years), while the Solar System and planet Earth formed roughly 4.5 billion years ago. Based on the most recent fossilized evidence, the earliest lifeforms are believed to have emerged between 4.2 and 3.8 billion years ago.
Meanwhile, humanity has only existed for the last 200,000 years of Earth’s history and has only enjoyed a level of technological development that allows for SETI surveys for about 70 years. Given the disparity between these numbers, many scientists argue that it is simple anthropocentrism to assume that humanity could be the most advanced intelligence (or worse, alone) in the Universe.
On the other hand, some argue that if intelligent species had emerged millions or billions of years before humans even existed, would they not have gone on to occupy the visible Universe to a significant extent? Does the fact that we don’t see any GCs when we look up into the night sky not support the notion that no one is out there, or at least not in a position to communicate with us yet?
Others still have argued that a 4.5 billion evolutionary timeline means that only longer-lived stars and planets could support life, such as M-type (red dwarfs). These stars are known to have incredibly long lifespans, remaining in their main sequence phase for up to trillions of years. At the same time, recent exosolar planet surveys have suggested that they are the most likely place to find rocky planets orbiting within their habitable zones (HZs). As Hanson explained to Universe Today via email:
“95% of planets are around longer-lived stars than ours, and most live longer than a trillion years. Furthermore, advanced life like us should appear toward the end of a planet’s life, as life needs to first evolve through many stages. So we are quite early compared to when we’d expect advanced life to appear.”
So while our planet has only existed during the past 30% of the Universe, our evolutionary timeline corresponds to 1% of the lifespans of long-lived planets. Essentially, this means that 99% of advanced lifeforms in our Universe will appear after today. Add to that the fact that we do not see evidence of alien civilizations occupying the majority of the cosmos (something that becomes more likely with time), and one is left with the foregone conclusion that humanity is an “early arrival.”
The second parameter (n) is based on the notion that biological evolution can be modeled based on a number of steps. This concept was introduced by Australian physicist and Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) Brandon Carter, renowned for having coined the Anthropic Principle. In response to what he saw as the overextension of the Copernican Principle in cosmology, this principle states that the very existence of intelligent life indicates that the Universe itself is conducive to its creation.
Using life on Earth as a template, Hanson argued that there were eight possible steps between the earliest known life forms and where humanity is today, with a ninth step representing our possible future. These consist of:
Habitable star system (organics and habitable planets)
Reproductive molecules (e.g., RNA)
Prokaryotic single-cell life
Eukaryotic single-cell life
Animals capable of using tools
With every step, the probability for failure increases, a situation that Hanson summarized using a lockpicking analogy. Imagine you have a series of locks that you need to pick before a deadline, and they have different levels of difficulty. The odds of picking all the locks before the deadline is up is a power law, where a change in one quantity gives rise to a proportional rise in another quantity.
For the sake of this study, Hanson and his colleagues reconsidered these steps, taking into account that some may take longer to achieve than others (what they group as “easy” or “hard” steps). The combination of these steps is what they referred to as the “hard steps power law,” where each step has an impact on whether or not a species could advance sufficiently before another GC occupied their space and suppressed them. As Hanson explained it:
“The timing of events in the history of life on Earth suggests that there were 3-9 hard steps that life had to go through to reach our level and that most planets like ours never achieve our level before the window for life on that planet closes,” said Hanson. “Thus, advanced life like ours is rare. We can also see that it is rare because we don’t see any life out there at the more advanced level of making big visible impacts on the universe.
“Thus, we know there is a “great filter” standing between simple dead matter and expanding lasting life. Our new analysis allows us to estimate the numerical magnitude of this filter. Advanced life at the grabby aliens level appears roughly once per million galaxies before the grabby aliens deadline.”
In other words, there is a deadline for advanced life in the Universe, where it must emerge and reach complexity before a more ancient and advanced species overtakes it. Far from placing humanity alone in the Universe, the prospect of humanity being an early arrival suggests that are plenty of GCs out there, as well as ones that have not yet reached an advanced stage of development.
Diagrams showing a sample stochastic outcome from a GC model in one (1D) and two (2D) spatial dimensions. Credit: Hanson (et al.)
“If alien civilizations randomly appear that then expand out to remake the universe, then once all of the Universe is filled with such aliens, there aren’t any places left for life to evolve toward our level,” Hanson added. “That is, ‘grabby aliens’ create a deadline by which advanced life must appear. This deadline is within a few billion years from now. Relative to that deadline, we are not early.”
The final parameter (k) is based on the assumption that the time and space we occupy are representative of the norm (as noted already, the Copernican Hypothesis). According to the GC model, this is the result of a selection effect whereby advanced alien life will eventually expand to fill up the Universe. This raises the final aspect that Hanson and his team considered, which is how less-developed civilizations make the transition to become GCs – aka. go from being “quiet” to being “loud.”
Loud civilizations are so-called because they increase their volume (of space), change their volumes’ appearances (show signs of activity produce technosignatures). Quiet civilizations are those that do not increase their volumes or alter them, which effectively describes our current level of development. Given time, quiet civilizations (if they survive) will advance to the point that they too will become loud, provided they do so before the deadline passes.
With these parameters defined, Hanson and his colleagues simulated how variations in the expansion speed of GCs (s) and the time it takes for life to evolve (n) would yield different results on how many GCs were currently active in our Universe, how much of it they had come to occupy, and (as a result) when we might encounter a GC. These variables were visualized in terms of 1D and 2D diagrams (shown above) and a 3D animation (shown below).
The s parameter is especially significant since faster-expanding aliens would be more difficult to detect before they reached our doorstep. Due to the speed of light, any activity in an occupied volume of space would take thousands of years to reach us. If a GC is expanding rapidly enough, the light they generated when they first began expanding will not arrive before they do. As Hanson put it:
“At the origin date of a random civilization, about half of the universe is filled with very big visible alien civilizations. If these grew very slowly, then the sky would be full of them, huge circles in the sky, far bigger than the full moon. However, if they grew at the speed of light, then we wouldn’t see them until they got here.
“If they grew very fast, such as at over half of the speed of light, then most of the places that could see them would be places where they had arrived and colonized and changed. That is, if we could see them, then they would likely be here instead of us. In which case, we would not exist.”
When Do We Meet Them?
Ultimately, the results Hans and his team obtained indicated the following range of possibilities:
GCs (or “loud” civilizations) emerge from quiet ones at a rate of about once per million galaxies
They expand and increase their volume at about half the speed of light
They currently control 40-50% of the Universe’s volume
Each GC will eventually control 105 – 3 x 107 (100,000 to 30 million) galaxies
Last but certainly not least, they estimated that humanity is likely to encounter the nearest GC roughly 200 million to 2 billion years from now. In the meantime, their modeling also indicates that the odds of humanity detecting signs of technological activity (aka. “technosignatures”) are very low. As Hanson explained, this could be bad news for those engaged in the Search for Extraterrestrial Intelligence (SETI).
“Once per million galaxies is very rare, and if grabby aliens were the only kinds to see, then the chances for SETI to see any aliens nearby would be very low,” he said. “However, it may be that there are many times more “quiet” alien civilizations out there. The higher the ratio of quiet to grabby aliens civilizations, the closer might be the nearest quiet aliens to be found.”
Illustration of the selection effect, where expansion speeds (s) are near lightspeed c, a GC is likely to have overtaken us by the time we see. Credit: Hanson (et al.)
Conversely, the fewer quiet civilizations out there (relative to GCs) right now, the higher our future chances of becoming a GC ourselves. Alas, this prospect also lowers the odds of us detecting and observing alien civilizations in our galaxy. In fact, the model Hanson and his colleagues created predicts that the “quiet-to-grabby ratio” needs to be over 10,000 to 1 for us to realistically expect that even one quiet civilization has ever been active in the history of our galaxy (ca. 13.5 billion years).
That ratio needs to be as high as 10 million to 1 for us to expect that any alien civilizations with a million-year lifetime are active right now in our galaxy. While none of these outcomes are particularly encouraging for SETI researchers, the research team notes that it’s possible that the volumes of space occupied by GCs are more subtle in appearance and that their expansion speed is slower. In this case, they estimate that we can predict there being signs in the night sky.
Another positive takeaway from this research is the fact that this sort of modeling is now possible. Whereas early SETI efforts were guided by conjectures that were subject to a lot of uncertainty (like the Drake Equation), we now have enough data on the types of stars and exoplanets in our Universe that we can make educated inferences.
“It’s exciting that we’re here now,” said Hanson. “We’re no longer speculating about aliens; we are reasonably sure they exist, and we can say where they are in spacetime. We have a simple statistical model that says where they are, what they are doing, and where we might see or meet them.”
Print of the proposed Washington Monument by architect Robert Mills (1781–1855), Proposed Plan circa 1845–1848
Mavi Boncuk |
During the construction of the Washington Monument only a handful of nations donated stone. The Ottoman Empire, a predecessor of the Republic of Turkey, gave this stone as a gesture of friendship to the United States.
Donor: Sultan of Turkey Dates: 1854/1885 Original material: marble, possible gilding Dimensions: 2' 8" x 5' Original inscription: [text in Turkish] Translation of text: So as to strengthen the friendship between the two countries. Abdul-Mejid Kahn has also had his name written on the monument to Washington.
[Frederick L. Harvey, compiler, “History of the Washington National Monument and Washington National Monument Society,” 57th Congress, 2d Session, Senate Document No. 224, Washington: Government Printing Office, 1903. ] 
Ottoman Sultan Abdul Mejid I  donated $30,000 toward the construction of the Washington monument. The Sultans' donation was the largest single donation toward the building of the Washington Monument. The Sultan's intention was to bridge peace between the Ottomans and the Americans. The stone containing the Turkish inscriptions commemorating this event is on the 190-foot level. The translation of the inscriptions state, "To support the continuation of true friendship Abdul Mejid Khan's clear and pure name was written on the lofty stone in Washington.": 128 It combines the works of two eminent calligraphers: an imperial tughra by Mustafa Rakım's student Haşim Efendi, and an inscription in jalī ta'līq script by Kazasker Mustafa Izzet Efendi, the calligrapher who wrote the giant medallions at Hagia Sophia in Istanbul.
The Washington Monument is an obelisk within the National Mall in Washington, D.C., built to commemorate George Washington, once commander-in-chief of the Continental Army (1775–1784) in the American Revolutionary War and the first President of the United States (1789–1797). Located almost due east of the Reflecting Pool and the Lincoln Memorial, the monument, made of marble, granite, and bluestone gneiss, is both the world's tallest predominantly stone structure and the world's tallest obelisk.
The Washington Monument was originally intended to be located at the point at which a line running directly south from the center of the White House crossed a line running directly west from the center of the U.S. Capitol on Capitol Hill. French born and military engineer Pierre (Peter) Charles L'Enfant's 1791 visionary "Plan of the city intended for the permanent seat of the government of the United States ..." designated this point as the location of the proposed central equestrian statue of George Washington that the old Confederation Congress had voted for in 1783, at the end of the American Revolutionary War (1775–1783) in a future American national capital city.[D] The ground at the intended location proved to be too unstable to support a structure as heavy as the planned obelisk, so the monument's location was moved 390 feet (118.9 m) east-southeast.
 1852: “His Imperial Majesty Sultan Abd-al-Majid, through John P. Brown, of the U.S. Legation, has signified his intention of contributing to the national monument to Washington, a block of marble to contain the cipher of the Sultan, and a suitable inscription.—Boston Daily Adv. [Providence Daily Journal, October 16, 1852.]
1853: “By a late letter from Constantinople we learn that the stone which the Sultan of Turkey is having prepared for the National Washington Monument is being done ‘in the handsomest style, and will do his Imperial Majesty credit.’ . . .” [DNI, May 7, 1853.]
1853: “This block is said to be of white marble, (it has not yet been received,) and the sculpture and inscription are richly gilded. . . .” [DNI, October 11, 1853.]
1854: “May 11, 1854 New York: E. Whittlesey from Aug O. Van Lennep, according to the instruction of F.W. Edeloff, who has the pleasure of inclosing the bill of lading of the block of marble sent by the Sultan of Turkey and shipped abroad the Schooner Arctic and which is expected to sail next Saturday.” [MR] • 1903: “Block is of white marble, highly polished, and ornamental.” [source]
 Abdulmejid I ( عبد المجيد اول, Abdülmecîd-i evvel,Birinci Abdülmecid; 25 April 1823 – 25 June 1861), was the 31st Sultan of the Ottoman Empire and succeeded his father Mahmud II on 2 July 1839.
His reign was notable for the rise of nationalist movements within the empire's territories. Abdulmejid wanted to encourage Ottomanism among secessionist subject nations and stop rising nationalist movements within the empire, but despite new laws and reforms to integrate non-Muslims and non-Turks more thoroughly into Ottoman society, his efforts failed.
He tried to forge alliances with the major powers of Western Europe, namely the United Kingdom and France, who fought alongside the Ottoman Empire in the Crimean War against Russia. In the following Congress of Paris on 30 March 1856, the Ottoman Empire was officially included among the European family of nations.
Abdulmejid's biggest achievement was the announcement and application of the Tanzimat (reorganization) reforms which were prepared by his father and effectively started the modernization of the Ottoman Empire in 1839. For this achievement, one of the Imperial anthems of the Ottoman Empire, the March of Abdulmejid, was named after him.
 Notified the Society that the [Charlestown] stone had been shipped on the Baltimore Packet and from Baltimore to Washington by rail;” “the block of marble sent by the Sultan of Turkey and shipped abroad the Schooner Arctic and which is expected to sail next Saturday,” [No primary sources available, in: Richman.] and “the drearisome trip of three months across the country was made principally by ox team.” [Ray C. Colton, “Brief History of the Deseret Stone,” in “Utah State Memorial Stone,” Proceedings held January 4, 1951, . . . Presented by Mr. Watkins, March 12, 1951, 82nd Congress, 1st Session, Senate Document No. 12.]