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Daily Random: WW2, Illegal Activity, and an Old School Year Book

September 20, 2012 Written by Dan Oravasaari

It’s time for another Daily Random, our Daily Reaction replacement when one or more of us is sick, tired, or out of commission, that tackles random bizarreness in lieu of daily news discussion.

Dan: Here’s one of the OG (original Game) characters’ yearbook entries, looks like he was tied down from the beginning.

Seb: I’ve always thought Ms Pac-Man was a hottie, I’m jealous.

For today’s Random, I’ll start off with another part in my ‘diary series’ (although this time it’s a letter), from the perspective of a collateral NPC:

Dear Mirabelle,

I hope this letter finds you well, the officers say life is good in Blighty, that the Bosche bombers can’t reach our sacred shores. How are the children? Tell Sammy I love him, he has a strong right swing, and could play cricket with the best of them when he is older. The war is progressing faster than expected, when you read this letter I may even be on a ship home. I’m in the company of an odd soldier, different from the rest – faster, stronger, smarter. I could have sworn I even saw him take several rounds to the chest, and proceed unharmed. Is he a government super soldier, or a god walking among men? I don’t know, but he seems to be a dab hand at the rifle, or any other weapon he is given – even able to commandeer enemy vehicles, despite their strange design. And he’s only a Private! I shall stay by him, in his wake I shall surely be safe. Tomorrow we raid an enemy aircraft hanger – I can’t say more for fear the letter will be confiscated – but I shall ensure my proximity to the stranger at all times. He’s rash, quick to rush into battle, but seemingly impervious, I’m sure all will be well.

Mirabelle, I think of you always. Sleep is scarce, but I spend every resting moment dreaming of your golden locks. We shall walk the beaches of Brighton again, I swear it.

Put the kettle on, I’ll be back for tea.

-Corporal William Anders, May 1941.

Dan: Seb, these diaries really make wonder how often you actually wished you were a 12 year old girl.

Seb: Who doesn’t? I’ve always wanted a pony, I’d have stuck a horn to her head and told people she’s a unicorn.

Next, I’m going to share a few tips on how to trick biometric machines, in the wake of the recently uncovered Sony patent to clone you.

First off, you should steal someone’s head.. but if that is not available, there are some safer alternatives.

CV Dazzle is an ongoing project to create a face paint that fools face recognition algorithms into not seeing a face. Depending on the quality of the camera, a simple print out of another person’s face could also work.

Dan: Is that like a vajazzle for your face?
Seb: Yup, pretty much, didn’t know you guys had that too.
Dan: Yeah…its everywhere.
Seb: Wonderful, we live in such a golden age…

Anyway, iris scanners are a bit more difficult to trick, but still not impossible. A reverse engineered scanner has been used to re-create someone’s iris on a contact lens, fooling scanners. This is also one of the many reasons why it probably wouldn’t be that great if someone else hacked your info.

Fingerprint scanners are notoriously unreliable, and so can be easy to hack – depending on the quality of the scanner. With a rubbish scanner, something as simple a photocopy tricking one in Mythbusters. More advanced scanners can also be tricked with a little more work.

Voice recognition is easy as pie if you have a recording of the person, all you have to do is play it.

DNA, on the other hand, is a whole other kettle of fish. You’ll probably need the person’s blood, which is rather harder to acquire. Doing so can be fun, though.

Finally, it’s time for a look into the future:

3 weeks ago, Ben Parton was an ordinary repairman. How did it go so wrong? Why were they after him?

He ducked into an alley as a car flew past, cowering behind a dumpster as the headlights made a brief silhouette of his ragged frame against the wall. He couldn’t keep this up much longer, the rain would clear soon and the scanners would be functional again.

First, he needed food. But the credit-chip machines needed iris identification, the shops needed fingerprints, the vending machines used voice recognition. There was only one option, to break into the local megastore and grab what he could. But that meant crossing the Rubicon. He hadn’t committed a crime, despite what the news streams said, he didn’t want to start now.

How had this happened? Could someone have used his identity, his virtual passport to break the law? The state said it was impossible, flagging anyone who mentioned it, but there was no other explanation.

Some of you may have noticed the slight additions we have made to today’s Daily Random article, the most prominent being the addition of our commentary. If you liked or hated the slight quips, please let us know in the comments section below. Also, please feel free to steal your sister or mom’s diary and send them to us at Seb and Dan.