Security, the TSA, and the No-Fly List You would think that our National Security apparatus would be like the TV series "24", with the most ingenious and sophisticated technology available. You would be wrong. Disclaimer: TSA is not an
intelligent intelligence agency.
Here's a blurb from the resume of the designer(Kenneth Mack) of the application the airline industry uses for *PDF* managing their employee data and the cross-checking them with the no-fly list:
- Sr. Developer: Developed a program [for Goddard Technologies] that uses the "No-Fly List" Excel spreadsheet, provided by the FAA and the database of badged employees to permute the name combinations. It takes into consideration multiple first and middle names, with Soundex and the various "initial" combinations. This program reduced the time for comparison from 3 days to 10 minutes.The scary yet interesting part of all of this is that the No-Fly List is nothing more than a password-protected spreadsheet (see this PDF). One would guess our Government's geeks would know that it's a bad idea to send email attachments containing social security numbers and dates of birth, unencrypted, over the internets, even if they might be terrorists.
Former Carrier, USS America, CV-66, leaves port for the last time The conventional powered aircraft carrier, USS America, CV-66, of the Kitty Hawk class, previously docked at the former Naval Base in Philadelphia (photo), has left for her date with Davy Jones. The Navy intends to "attack" the America with a variety of tactics and munitions, in order to measure the hardiness of US carriers, especially against unconventional terror attacks. Personally named by President John F. Kennedy and having seen active duty through much of the Cold War, from 1961 until 1996, it's suprising that the Navy decided to dispose of the country's namesake in this way. Veterans who served aboard the America are sad to see her go, and mounted an effort to save her from the bottom. Their efforts have been unsuccessfull - she left port for the last time today.