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CNET Founder Halsey Minor’s Voxelus to Issue Its Own Cryptocurrency

Bitcoin Magazine -

Virtual reality and 3-D design content creation platform developed by technology entrepreneur and media outlet CNET founder Halsey Minor has started the pre-sale of its in-game cryptocurrency “voxels.”


The pre-sale of voxels is a part of the platform’s upcoming launch of a new marketplace for VR assets, animations and games in the first quarter of 2016.


Introduced at a virtual reality forum and conference Oculus Connect, the Voxelus platform has processed more than 20,000 downloads of its Creator software despite the relatively small market that the company is targeting.


The rising popularity of the platform derives from its simplicity -- the Voxelus platform and technologies enable all users regardless of artistic abilities and technical skill levels to design virtual spaces and virtual reality games such as RPG and MMO games without writing a single line of code.


“Voxelus is using voxels to make the content accessible to anyone, anywhere in the world, including the 2.5 billion people with no access to a bank account,” Voxelus adviser Michael Terpin told TNW in an interview. “Uphold will help make this universally accessible. It will also trade on exchanges globally and by early next year, it can be purchased on Uphold using traditional credit/debit cards.”


The Voxelus team will be offering 31.5 million voxels in a private crowdsale. Built on Litecoin Core, Voxelus engineers added extra security measures and two-minute verifications on the original core.


Over the next few years, a total of 178.5 million coins will be issued and stored in an online wallet designed by Uphold, previously known as Bitreserve

The post CNET Founder Halsey Minor’s Voxelus to Issue Its Own Cryptocurrency appeared first on Bitcoin Magazine.

Forced laborers sue Mississippi debtors' prison

Boing Boing -

If you're poor in Jackson, MI and you get a fine that you can't pay, the City of Jackson will sentence you to a "pay or stay" forced labor farm where you will work off your debts at $58/day literally shoveling shit; the alternative is to sit in an overcrowded, jail notorious for its violent guards and filthy conditions and pay down your fines at $25/day. (more…)

Docker spouts cash, sucks up Tutum

LXer -

Limitless beta service due in production, erm, well, last monthDocker has hoovered up container hosting outfit Tutum, creating what the cash-packed buyer claims will be a complete platform to build, ship and run distributed applications.…

Lawsuit Challenges a Mississippi Debtors Prison

The Intercept -

LOW-INCOME RESIDENTS of Jackson, Mississippi, are being coerced into working on a penal farm in a “modern-day debtors prison” for being unable to pay municipal fees and fines for misdemeanors, according to a class-action lawsuit filed in a federal court last week.

The suit alleges that the City of Jackson, in Hinds County, employs a “pay or stay” system in which impoverished plaintiffs who are unable to pay court-ordered fines must work off their debts at the county’s penal farm in nearby Raymond at a rate of $58 per day. Those unable or unwilling to work can sit out their debts in jail at a rate of $25 per day.

Seven Hinds County residents are listed as plaintiffs in the complaint, all impoverished black men. Many of them also have physical disabilities.

Jerome Bell, 58 years old and disabled following a series of strokes, owed more than $4,000 in fines and other fees related to traffic violations when he was arrested in July. In court, Judge Gerald Mumford ordered Bell to pay the fines or sit in jail until the debt was paid off. Bell, who lives off a monthly Social Security disability check and food stamps, could not afford to pay and was consequently jailed. The lawsuit claims Bell’s public defender made no effort to assess the accuracy of the court’s charges, nor did he ask the court to consider Bell’s financial difficulties.

According to court documents, Bell was housed at the Raymond Jail for more than 35 days. For 20 days he “slept on the concrete floor of a holding cell in the booking unit of the jail with no mattress or cushion of any sort.” According to his attorney, Jacob Howard, who works with the University of Mississippi’s MacArthur Justice Center, Bell suffers from diabetes, high blood pressure, and weakness on the left side of his body as a result of multiple strokes.

Despite his physical impediments, Howard told me, Bell would have preferred to be jailed on the penal farm because the living conditions there are said to be better than those at the overcrowded Raymond Jail. Unfortunately for Bell, the county kept him in the jail because his daily insulin shot was unavailable at the penal farm, which sits less than 1 mile from the jail. “I have no idea why they’re incapable of providing daily insulin,” Howard said.

Those incarcerated at the farm pay off their debts by cleaning up horse and chicken dung and collecting eggs, among other tasks.

After spending more than a month in jail, Bell was discharged after Howard argued before the court that his client was legally entitled to perform community service. Judge Mumford ordered Bell to perform more than 500 hours of community service to pay off his debt.

Asked to comment on the lawsuit, a spokesperson for the City of Jackson released a prepared statement denying the lawsuit’s allegations and vowing to fight it:

The City of Jackson does not operate a “debtors prison,” and aims to treat all of its citizens fairly under the law. The City of Jackson does not imprison any citizen without statutory authority and the weighing of all factors, unlike surrounding municipalities who make it a practice to imprison individuals who cannot pay immediately. … The City of Jackson will vigorously defend against these unfounded claims.

Jails in Hinds County have faced criticism before.

In May, the Department of Justice completed an investigation finding that the county jail in Raymond and the Jackson City Detention Center were “facilities in crisis.” In a 29-page report, the DOJ charged that Hinds County “violates prisoners’ constitutional rights at both jail facilities” and that officials “fail to protect prisoners from violence by other prisoners and from improper use of force by staff.”

Jail staff members were accused of being poorly trained and quick to use improper and excessive force against the incarcerated population. Conditions in the jails were filthy and “grossly inappropriate.” In one instance, while touring an isolation unit, inspectors and jail officials were surprised to discover a prisoner occupying a cell that was supposed to be out of service. “It turned out that the prisoner had spent the past three weeks in this cell, without properly functioning plumbing and in horrible living conditions. The cell stank, and the floor toilet was clogged with urine-soaked blankets and cloth,” the report said. In another instance, the report highlighted the case of an unnamed inmate “who could neither speak nor hear,” who “had been living in a cramped, dark booking cell with a reeking toilet for nearly three years.”

In response, county authorities told the Jackson Clarion-Ledger that measures were being taken to address the problems, including the addition of cameras and dogs and a new ceiling. “This highlights what we’ve been saying since we were in office since 2012,” Sheriff Tyrone Lewis told the paper. “We appreciate what the DOJ has come in and done.”

The post Lawsuit Challenges a Mississippi Debtors Prison appeared first on The Intercept.

Researchers Warn Computer Clocks Can Be Easily Scrambled Via NTP Flaws

Slashdot -

alphadogg writes: Researchers at Boston University said this week that they've found flaws in the Network Time Protocol (NTP), a 30-year-old Internet protocol whose security shortcomings could undermine encrypted communications and even jam up bitcoin transactions. The importance of NTP was highlighted in a 2012 incident in which two servers run by the U.S. Navy rolled back their clocks 12 years, deciding it was the year 2000. Computers that checked in with the Navy's servers and adjusted their clocks accordingly had a variety of problems with their phones systems, routers and authentication systems. There is at least one alternative out there, and reason to use it.

Read more of this story at Slashdot.

Democracy Now! 2015-10-22 Thursday

Democracy Now! Videos -

Democracy Now! 2015-10-22 Thursday
  • Headlines for October 22, 2015
  • "Domestic Terrorism": Spate of Black Church Burnings Near Ferguson Raise New Hate Crime Fears
  • Shaker Aamer: After 5,000 Days of Torment, Last British Prisoner at Guantanamo is Set for Release
  • U.S. Ally Saudi Arabia Prepares to Behead, Crucify Pro-Democracy Protester Ali Mohammed al-Nimr
  • "Where Does This End?": After Drone Papers Leaks, U.K. Gov't Has a Kill List of Its Own
  • As Hillary Clinton Testifies Before GOP Panel, Friends of 2 Benghazi Victims Remember the Lives Lost

Download this show

Democracy Now! 2015-10-22 Thursday

Democracy Now! BitTorrents -

Headlines for October 22, 2015; "Domestic Terrorism": Spate of Black Church Burnings Near Ferguson Raise New Hate Crime Fears; Shaker Aamer: After 5,000 Days of Torment, Last British Prisoner at Guantanamo is Set for Release; U.S. Ally Saudi Arabia Prepares to Behead, Crucify Pro-Democracy Protester Ali Mohammed al-Nimr; "Where Does This End?": After Drone Papers Leaks, U.K. Gov't Has a Kill List of Its Own; As Hillary Clinton Testifies Before GOP Panel, Friends of 2 Benghazi Victims Remember the Lives Lost

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