Wednesday, July 17, 2013

You can't hide from license-plate scanners

          I wrote about this story before, but here it is again with more info , before it was about how they are used by car repo agents & how the repo guy can pick up 8 times as many cars as before. If you go out in public they can scan your face & your license plates & track your cell phone. I wonder what's next - 

         It does however make you wonder however why we still have so much crime if you and me are being tracked everywhere 24/7/365 across all 49 states ? Maybe the bad guys have a secrete way to hide that the other 99% of us don't know about yet ? I can tell you they are "NOT" using it across the street from my house - to track the 200 crack heads that come to get their fix and squat in the condemned neighbors house !! Oh but they don't have any id's and only ride bikes :-))

The story is direct from USA today today, see the link below.

"This is a way to track all Americans all the time, regardless of whether they're accused of any wrongdoing" -- ACLU.

Police across the USA are using automatic cameras to read and snap digital photos of millions of car license plates to help solve crimes, but in the process stores information on millions of innocent people, the American Civil Liberties Union says in a report out Wednesday.
The digital dragnet mostly collects data that are unrelated to any suspected lawbreaking or known activity of interest to law enforcement. It is a fast-growing trend ripe for misuse and abuse, the ACLU says.
License plate scanners are "in effect, government location tracking systems recording the movements of many millions of innocent Americans in huge databases," said ACLU staff attorney Catherine Crump, the report's lead author. The ACLU says there is little supervision or control over the data that were recorded, usually without motorists realizing their locations have been recorded.
"This is a way to track all Americans all the time, regardless of whether they're accused of any wrongdoing," said Crump, calling the readers "the most widespread location tracking technology you've probably never heard of."
The ACLU report is based on information compiled from Freedom of Information requests a year ago in 38 states and the District of Columbia.
One striking finding is the lack of standardized procedures for dealing with license plate information.
In Minnesota, pop. 5.3 million, the State Patrol purges scanned data after 48 hours and has fewer than 20,000 license-plate readings on file, the ACLU found.
Milpitas, Calif., pop. 68,000, has 4.7 million license-plate scans on file and no policy for erasing them. Police Sgt. Frank Morales says Milpitas, "is a small community, but we attract very many visitors. We have a large mall here, the Great Mall," and that could account for the outsize number of license plate records. "A person who gets his (stolen) car back probably would see (scanners) as a success," he says.
The plate scanners generally are mounted on the rear fender, trunk or roof of police cars and parking enforcement vehicles. Some also are mounted on road signs, toll gates or bridges. They're rarely part of the larger debate on government surveillance, but a 2012 survey by the not-for-profit Police Executive Research Forum found that 71% of police agencies now use them.
Thursday's ACLU findings come just over a month after Americans first learned of a massive National Security Agency electronic surveillance program that, since 2007, has tracked millions of phone records and e-mails. The program was secret until early last month, when disclosed by former NSA contractor Edward Snowden. He has left the U.S. and faces espionage charges.
And unlike the mountain of mostly anonymous calling data gathered by the NSA, the plate data include a specific location and can be, via a separate police inquiry, correlated to personal data in the state motor vehicle registration records.
Police say the devices are effective at finding stolen vehicles and cutting auto theft rates.
Police also say they've used readers to solve cold cases, including homicides.
The ACLU report says the plate scanning casts a wide net for little gain -- that only "a tiny fraction of the license plate scans are flagged as 'hits.' For example, in Maryland, for every million plates read, only 47 (0.005%) were potentially associated with a stolen car or a person wanted for a crime." In one Sacramento shopping mall, private security officers snapped pictures of about 3 million plates in 27 months, identifying 51 stolen vehicles -- but that's a success rate of just 0.0017%.
"Yet the documents show that many police departments are storing – for long periods of time – huge numbers of records on scanned plates that do not return 'hits.' For example, police in Jersey City, N.J., recorded 2.1 million plate reads last year. As of August 2012, Grapevine, Texas, had 2 million plate reads stored and Milpitas, Calif., had 4.7 million," the report says.
Police Sgt. Frank Morales said Milpitas, pop. 68,000, "is a small community, but we attract very many visitors. We have a large mall here, the Great Mall," and that could account for the outsize number of license plate records. It's a discount mall situated between two interstate highways and two freeways.
Civil liberties activists say the data could be used to track innocent drivers' whereabouts and private lives, including where they worship. Even the International Association of Chiefs of Police has said there's a potential for invasion of privacy, as plate readers can snap pictures of a car at a political gathering, psychologist's office, abortion clinic or church and have recommended tight control over use of the data.
In perhaps the most high-profile case, police in New York City used the readers to record license plates of congregants as they arrived to pray at a mosque in Queens.
Part of their appeal for police is that they are efficient and relatively cheap. They can scan plates about eight times more quickly than a cop with a laptop driving down the road, a recent study found.
As the device costs drop, said Crump, "Even small-town police departments have it within their budget to buy one." The cost of storing data has also dropped she said, so police can store images "not just for days but for weeks or months or even years." Eventually, she said, agencies could share the data to build a detailed travel profile "of all Americans simply because they chose to drive a car."
Over the past few years, federal anti-terrorism funding also has helped more police agencies get them. Police in New Castle County, Del., used a $200,000 federal grant to purchase 10 cameras that they've mounted on vehicles, said police spokesman Cpl. John Weglarz. "For us it's an effective tool. It's one of those things that we've obviously researched and we feel (that) as long as our officers are using it within proper guidelines and within the policy, it acts as an effective tool."
He said his agency keeps the license data for one year and said any officer misusing the data "would be subjected to a disciplinary action."
He said drivers shouldn't be concerned about privacy breaches. "We use (the data) within the proper channels and ... it gets stored for a year and that's it," he said.
That's the policy there, but the ACLU says that in 45 states there are no laws on how long police can keep the records.
"More and more cameras, longer retention periods, and widespread sharing allow law enforcement agents to assemble the individual puzzle pieces of where we have been over time into a single, high-resolution image of our lives," the report says.
The U.S. Supreme Court ruled last year that police need a court order to attach a GPS tracker to a suspect's car, but ACLU says the USA's growing network of license readers could someday allow police to do the same thing without a warrant as they tie together individual snapshots of innocent drivers' cars.
Police say that drivers have no expectation of privacy on a public streets.
Privacy activists see it less clear-cut.
"There's a difference between walking down a public sidewalk and being observed, vs. walking down the next sidewalk and being observed, and walking down the next sidewalk and being observed, and walking down another sidewalk and being observed, and walking down the sidewalk next week and being observed," says Amie Stepanovich, lawyer at the Electronic Privacy Information Center and director of the group's domestic surveillance project.
"The prevalent use of automatic plate readers is a threat to privacy. They can be used to track the location of individuals. And there are no laws governing the retention of the information," she says. "This is an issue we've been following for quite some time. We've had quite a few inquiries," she says.
Mobile readers don't discriminate between public and private settings. In one case, a San Leandro, Calif., man got police to hand over all the photos of his Toyota Tercel for the past two years and found that they were photographing him almost weekly, according to The Wall Street Journal. One snapshot captured him and his two daughters getting out of a car in their driveway.
In another case, the Minneapolis Star Tribune found last August that Mayor R.T. Rybak's city-owned cars were photographed 41 times by license readers over the course of a year.
Last summer, the ACLU filed nearly 600 Freedom of Information Act requests in 38 states and Washington, asking federal, state and local agencies how they use the readers. The 26,000 pages of documents produced by the agencies that responded – about half – include training materials, internal memos and policy statements.
The civil liberty organization has more than a dozen recommendations for government use of license plate scanner systems and the data collected, including:
•Police must have reasonable suspicion that a crime has occurred before examining the data.
•Unless there are legitimate reasons to retain records, they should be deleted within days or weeks at most.
•People should be able to find out if their cars' location history is in a law enforcement database.

Easy Trailer Registration

Do you need to register your new cargo trailer or maybe reregister your old trailer ? Hate doing lots of complicated paperwork ? Just wanna sign your name one time & let someone else fill out all the forms and do all your work ? Hate standing in line and getting stressed out for 4 hours at your Dept of Motor Vehicles. Want to get your trailer registered for 5 - 10 - 20 years and never worry about it again ?
You don't even need to live in Maine !!


But it's 100% TRUE - just let Jennifer be your man - to get the JOB DONE !!
Or to be 100% correct , let Jennifer be your "Trailer Registration Agent."

5 years registration for $100

10 years registration for $200


Just click below & your 99% done

Sunday, July 14, 2013

More AC TESTING , another adjustment

The first time around I made a little jig for the AC to sit in the side door for testing, then I realized I could not close the door "DUFUSS" guess I'm getting old.

The bottom 3 pictures below I built a box with some more scrap plywood , with 2" clearance on the top and sides to allow air to be sucked in by the fan and then vented outdoors. Now the door can be closed "genius" the ac works ok with the door open only about 2" 

Again this is all a temp set up while testing the ac and deciding where the final location may be.
The whole ac could even put on hinges and swing out of the way.

AC sticks out door can't be closed

Inside view looks nicer

New view with the a/c being set back behind the door

Now door can be closed, actually a/c works ok
if the door is just cracked open 2" 

Inside view
The case was made a little too big at 12" deep
it would look better at 9" deep

Again - this is just for testing for now

Friday, July 12, 2013

777 San Francisco Crash landing Asiana Flight 214 video

Click on link to see video:

Now this might be a little bit of speculation on my part, but I have said that had the pilot not lost his nerve in the last 7 seconds, "i'm sure i would have done the same" then he would have made a perfect landing right in the end-zone of the runway on the ZERO yard line, if you watch the video you can see how the plane pitches upward, the tail drops 10-15 feet and CRASH landing here we go.

This detailed animation depicting Saturday’s crash at San Francisco International Airport was created by a former pilot who runs a computer animation company that specializes in re-creating air crashes.
Jack Suchocki, who flew 727s and other aircraft, made this animation to demonstrate his company’s work, and because he believes “this was a very unique crash that will be influential in evaluating pilot training and qualifications.”
Suchocki started Eyewitness Animations in Pompano Beach, Fla., after his career as a captain with Eastern Airlines. His company uses computer-aided design modeling from San Rafael-based Autodesk to re-create air crashes for investigations and litigation.
The video depicts the crash of Asiana Flight 214, which killed two and injured approximately 180. The audio is communications from the plane and emergency radio broadcasts.
The animation begins when the plane is below 500 feet in elevation, and transpires in real time. Speed was a major issue in the crash, and the ghost plane in the video showing how the plane should have landed would have immediately left the frame of the video if depicted realistically. For that reason, Suchocki had the two planes travel together.
This is a new version of the video from one posted earlier today. This version shows the plane skidding to a halt, before it erupted in fire.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

The white floor is done

         Finally I have 3 layers, a total of 2.5" of foam insulation and then a 1/8" layer of plastic flooring , not sure but it's something like FRP ? This time around I want to go for light weight & moisture proof.

        Slowly the plan is coming together, today 2 of us worked about 4 hours to get the final flooring laid down. It would have been easier with thicker insulation, however you gotta use what the store has for sale. On the 1/2 of the material I got 50% off - because it was being discontinued by Lowes, the other 1/2 I had to pay full price and I picked it up from North Dakota. The cost of the insulation was around $1,000 not cheap if I have to say so !

State Parks pricing out the public | Tom Stienstra's Outdoors | an blog

This is a good but sad story , I hope you read it !!

In 10 years, the price of this campsite at Jedediah Smith Redwoods has gone from $12 to $35 Photo Tom Stienstra/The Chronicle

In its new mission to extract every dollar possible out of park visitors, California State Parks is pricing itself out of reach of many, starting with young families, city kids and young adults.
So is the Department of Fish and Wildlife, which charges the highest-priced fishing licenses in America and yet is providing the public with less than ever this summer.
Ten years ago, it cost $2 to park and $12 to camp at state parks.
Now it’s $10 to park and $35 and up to camp.
State Parks wants to add electronic self-pay stations, where you pay by credit card. That would allow them to add new pay sites without adding staff, and also add specialty fees, such as for “premium campsites.”
My boys, for example, your basic cash-strapped young adults in the 20s, are not going to pay those prices, but simply go elsewhere where it’s free or far cheaper. Many are in the same boat.
At the peak of the camping season, mid-July, the first six popular state parks I checked Tuesday morning had campsites available for this weekend and throughout the next two weeks: Big Basin Redwoods in the Santa Cruz Mountains, Samuel P. Taylor on Sir Francis Drake in Marin, Salt Point on the Sonoma Coast, Mount Tamalpais State Park in Marin, Emerald Bay State Park near South Lake Tahoe and Oroville State Recreation Area in the Sierra foothills.
Ten years ago, same week, all but Oroville had been booked full for months.
[Another four I checked were booked full for this weekend: Butano Redwoods near Pescadero, Prairie Creek Redwoods near Orick in the Redwood Empire, Tahoe State Recreation Area and D.L. Bliss State Park at Lake Tahoe.]
The price hikes are the result of the budget put together by the governor and legislature, which has cut the general fund contribution to State Parks from 91 percent to 29 percent. In the process, Parks cranked up the rates and they are pricing out the very people they are supposed to serve.
The parks were created to provide public access, recreation and camping to beautiful parks to anybody, regardless of their ability to pay. The government violates that ethic each day.
So has the Department of Fish and Wildlife. It plants fewer trout than ever, despite a legislative mandate to put one of every $3 into trout plants. This year, the cost of a license was jacked up to $45.03 and $59.97 with a two-rod stamp, more if you fish for the bay for sturgeon or rivers for salmon or steelhead.
There’s no way that young adults over 16, city people not oriented to the outdoors, or young families in rural areas are going to pay this. It’s too expensive for them and that’s all there is to it. And if people don’t feel they have a chance to catch a fish, they are not going to buy the license.
If you want a blueprint how to exclude the public from state parks, access, camping and fishing opportunities, these two state agencies are showing the rest of America how to pull it off.
Tom Stienstra is The San Francisco Chronicle’s outdoors writer. E-mail: Twitter: @StienstraTom

Friday, July 5, 2013

Goodies from Amazon just arriving

Here are some pictures of goodies I just ordered for the trailer, hopefully in the next few weeks these can all be installed. If your building a trailer many of these parts may interest you.

Whats all being included in my trailer build ?

To start you guys off I'll throw in a few of my crazy ideas of how I came to my name anyway, If you see something I missed PLEASE let me know :? :? 

OverTheTopCargoTrailer :

Now my build version 2.0 is still in progress but will include

Interior wood framed trailer walls 
180,000 Btu endless water heater
40,000 Btu grill 
2 x 20 gallon propane 
2 x 38 gallon water tanks 
2,000+ watts solar panels 
3 x 300 Morningstar pure sine inverter 
1 x 1500 MSW inverter 
Outback 80  AMP charge controller 
700+ amp hour batteries
Insulated walls, floor, ceiling & doors R 15-19
5,000 watt window AC - runs on solar
Digital entry door lock 
10+ exterior extra LED Lights
10+ exterior extra running lights 
6+ exterior LED brake, blinker & back up lights
Back up alarm 107 db 
Boat horn 110 db 
Sound controller for exterior LED lights 
Exterior IR Light for 300 ft 
3x Exterior 700 line IR Sony cameras
4 x 12 LED exterior flood lights 
Exterior backup sensors - alarms to alert for visitors 
Inertior quality kitchen cabinets
DVR - CCTV recorder , color quad splitter, 
2 x 7" color TFT Color monitors 
27" 1080 tv & DVR 
ARB 63 quart cooler 12 dc - 120 volts AC 
Interior color changing LED lights 
Exterior trailer 7 way plug to operate lights W/O - TW 
Top secrete security system & emergency responder 
Exterior diamond plate tool box
Never- Adjust -Dexter Breaks & torsion axels 

To be honest looking at this list I need some desperate treatment, maybe the project has gotten out of hand  :lol: :lol: :lol: 
This thing better last me 20 years & 200,000 miles 


here are 2 cool links

Glamping trailers & pictures

Glamping trailers 

Thursday, July 4, 2013

The 2nd AC test was successful

Today my 2nd AC test was a grand slam also, it was 98 outside & inside never over 78 deg :D :D :D :D , my cargo door is now insulated as are all the wall studs but not the last 20% of the ceiling. 

Without me in the trailer & only the fan running temp was around 70 deg !!
So you can see that warm body & a few appliances can quickly kill the AC by 8 degrees. 

The inside is still mostly empty & I had myself, a big fan , tv and DVR running - that's about 150 watts worth of heat load all being cooled by 500 watt ac unit. With the trailer loaded & the other 50% insulation installed I should be able to keep interior at hopefully 70 deg. 

PS today a BUNCH OF MY GOODIES ARRIVED , soon you will see them being installed

:beer: :beer: :beer: :beer: :beer:

Here is a picture of day # 3 

Yesterday it was not quite as hot, it only reached 94 deg F outside.
Right now its 88.5 degrees outside 
The current inside temp is 68 deg F - quite impressive for
only using a 5,000 Btu window a/c on a empty 7 x 18 trailer.

As a comparison a unit this size would use at least a 13,000 BTU AC