My father's up-coming book finally gets a release date:

A Better Organization: Facing Challenges to Civilization” by Lev Shakhmundes goes on-sale December 1st, 2006, at Amazon.com

Check out the Editorial Reviews, Book Description, and About the Author, which are already available on Amazon.com

Happy Chanukah and Merry Christmas!

Given that the word “Chanukah” is spelt various ways in English, I referenced Aish.com to use a proper one from an authenticated/verified/veritable/validated, authoritative, dependable, factual, faithful, learned, legit, recognized, reliable, righteous, scholarly, trustworthy and truthful source (go Thesaurus.com!).
Aish HaTorah is a non-profit, apolitical network of Jewish educational centers, with 25 branches on 5 continents. Aish provides opportunities for Jews of all backgrounds to discover the beauty and meaning of their heritage in an atmosphere of open inquiry and mutual respect.
Aish.com is the complete Judaism website, covering Jewish Holidays, Israel News, Holocaust Studies, Jewish Spirituality, Weekly Torah Portions, Parenting, Dating, Marriage, Bar Mitzvah, Shabbat, and more. They also have a live streaming video-camera feed of the Western Wall.
Just over one year ago, I finished spending close to two solid months of exhaustive studies at Aish HaTorah's exceptional branch in Jerusalem, so this honourable and relevant mention was due.


Another CRTC Scandal

Star Ray TV [community television in Toronto] is also having odd difficulties with the Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission (CRTC)

Check out the latest news on Star Ray TV's web-site:

"The Grinch Who Stole a TV Station"
Star Ray TV receives a Yuletide Letter from the CRTC
on http://srtv.ca

I caught wind of the latest developments there from the Star Ray TV Press Release of December 21, 2005.


TV Niagara to file court challenge


Printed from www.wellandtribune.ca web site Thursday, December 22, 2005 - © 2005  Welland Tribune

Thursday, December 22, 2005 - 09:00

Local News
- WELLAND - Wendell Wilks is still programmed to get a Niagara television station up and running.

Welland city council is backing the businessman who claims the CRTC’s
decision handed down last month not to grant TVN Niagara a license
violated the Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

I was tremendously disappointed when I read the decision, and I read it in detail, said Ward 2 Coun. Barry Sharpe.

Tuesday night’s council meeting, politicians endorsed a resolution
supporting Wilks, who is putting an argument together that the CRTC
ruling is in violation of freedom of the press and other media.

Wilks says it would be the first such challenge.

has never been an argument on Constitutional grounds, he said in an
address to council, saying he spoke as a Niagaran who is not being
treated fairly and not as a jilted applicant.

Wilks said it’s
unfair that said anyone can start a newspaper or produce an online
newscast, and they don’t have to jump through the same hoops as someone
wanting to provide the same information via TV.

Wilks, who said
he’s been accused of being the Don Quixote of Niagara for tilting at
windmills, has plans to start what he said would be Canada’s first
entirely high-definition television station, starting with 34.5 hours a
week of local programming costing some 3.96 million.

Those figures include 19.5 hours of local news that would cost the station 2.4 million.

Wilks criticized claims of Toronto and Hamilton stations that say they are tuned into Niagara.

are a place where there’s a lot more than calamities and tragedies and
body-bag stories, he said of what he perceives to be their only
interest in the region.

He also said they worked together against his application at licence hearings in June.

We think they do not want Niagara infringing on their revenue.

1 Coun. David Alexander compared the TVN bid to the Avro Arrow plan
scrapped by John Diefenbaker’s Conservative government in the 50s.

Larger forces conspired to take that away, Alexander said, adding many still have ill feelings about that decision.

said Toronto station owners have not made efforts to open a station in
Niagara because they have maxed out their licensing abilities.

That, he suggested, leaves him and his partners alone in trying to bring a station to Niagara.

ID- 138359

Tai Chi Chuan videos on-line

“Shaolin” on Friendster sent me the link, way back in August, but I just got to it now...

Check it out:
A Series Of Video Clips Showing Basic Taijiquan Training In Shaolin Wahnam

From the the very same web-site came this image: Sifu Wong and Sifu Rama demonstrating "Striking Hands" at the Guan Yin Temple in Costa Rica

P.S. This is my first post in which I added an image using Google Picasa. I must say, Blogger and Picasa have some slick integration. However, I specified “Large Image”, and the image is small, even if you click on the image...

Posted by Picasa


Rogers Communications' official rebuke/resolution

in response to the news “Terror group cloned cellphones of Rogers execs”, printed in my previous blog posting

also brought to my attention by the same source shortly afterwards:

First and foremost, the media stories reference two separate issues that should not be confused – Cellular Cloning and Cell Phone Theft.

1) Cellular Cloning:

The reference to Mr. Rogers and other senior executives having their numbers intercepted (cloned) dates back to a situation that occurred in 1998 on a single Rogers' executive phone. Cellular cloning involves the fraudulent use of other individuals' wireless numbers to place calls, thereby resulting in charges on a customer account for calls they did not make.

At that time, cloning was an industry-wide problem which has been removed as a result of the industry move to digital technology. In fact, the vast majority of Rogers' customers today are on GSM digital phones, the world standard upon which more than a billion phones are in operation worldwide, and cloning of these phones is virtually impossible. Analog phones today represent less than 2% of our customer base.

Rogers has an existing policy of contacting consumers if fraud is suspected; our automated systems monitor calling patterns and will flag irregularities for review by our fraud team. However the specific details around fraud detection criteria are proprietary to Rogers and are not shared publicly, in order to protect our customers' interests. We do not want to offer any information publicly that may assist in illegal activity.

While no company or industry is immune to fraud, Rogers has a leading-edge security system that uses the best technology available to monitor customer accounts to help us detect and stop fraud.

2) Cell Phone Theft:

Ms. Susan Drummond's situation had to do with a lost or stolen phone and had nothing to do with cloning. The phone charges have now been eliminated and costs will be reimbursed. Ted Rogers was personally involved in helping to resolve the issue with Ms. Drummond's Wireless account and apologized on behalf of the Company.


Shame on Rogers Communications:

Terror group cloned cellphones of Rogers execs

From Sympatico / MSN : News : CTV.ca

Updated Sun. Dec. 18 2005 8:54 AM ET

CTV.ca News Staff

A group linked to terrorist organization Hezbollah has cloned the cellphones of Rogers Communications executives, including that of CEO Ted Rogers, The Globe and Mail reported Saturday.

Cloning involves duplicating a cellphone's number and encrypted security code.

The story came to light after law professor Susan Drummond returned from a month-long trip abroad, only to find her Rogers cellphone bill was more than $12,000, The Globe reported.

The Rogers Wireless bill listed more than 300 calls made in the month of August, some to foreign countries, including Pakistan, Libya, Syria, India and Russia.

When Drummond called about the bill, she was told she would have to pay it -- and that prompted her and her partner, Harry Gefen, to begin researching the cellphone giant.

In September, Gefen attended the Toronto Fraud Forum -- an annual conference for security experts -- where he spoke to Cindy Hopper, a manager in Rogers security department.

She told him that terror groups had repeatedly cloned cellphones of Rogers executives to make thousands of calls overseas, The Globe reported.

Hopper also said terror groups had identified Rogers executives as perfect targets because the company would be reluctant to shut off their phones due to inconvenience to busy executives.

Gefen, who is a technology journalist, tape recorded his conversation with Hopper, who did not know he was an aggrieved customer, according to The Globe.

Based on that interview, Drummond is considering legal action against Rogers. She claims that Rogers can spot a fraud-in-progress, and yet does not shut down the phones.

Rogers has automated security systems alerting them to radical changes in calling patterns, Hopper reportedly told Geffen.


Anyone who likes Google,

should like my new "Chicklet"!

Add to Google

It will always be handy on the right side of my blog.

Even if you haven't checked out Google homepage or Google Reader, try the "Chicklet" button!

I also enabled commenting to my blog posts again. I saw an option to "moderate" them, so I decided to try the feature again.


Still Exploited:

It has been one week since my previous post regarding hacked site "Together For Better Health" of Niagara Health System | Hotel Dieu, a client of Think Digital Media

Check out the the hacked site translated from Spanish to English, thanks to Google Language Tools

Even in English, it doesn't make much sense to me



Think Digital Media client Niagara Health System | Hotel Dieu gets hacked!

While checking out links on Think Digital Media's Clients page, my friend nevesis found a defaced web-site.

We'll see how long they take to recover from the abuse, but in the meanwhile, check out http://www.togetherforbetterhealth.ca - "Sitio HACKEADO...."

Thanks to nevesis for relaying this amusing news. Apparently the site was hacked on November 24, 2005. Today is December 4, 2005, which means that so far the problem has been neglected for a week-and-a-half.

While writing this blog entry, I also noticed that some files and data are exposed on Think Digital Media's own web-site.

If anyone connected to Think Digital Media pays attention to their web-server logs & statistics, they will find a link to this blog, so let's see how long it takes for any sort of reaction.


What is with MS Outlook's "winmail.dat" issue?

And can Google Mail (Gmail) handle it?

Sometimes when I get email from someone who is using Microsoft Outlook, the attachments are trapped in a "winmail.dat" file. In my case, I am using Novell Evolution on FreeBSD+XOrg+KDE, but I found many people with other email clients who are complaining about the problem too.

Today, as an experiment, I redirected an email containing a winmail.dat file to my Gmail account and also to another email address that I check with MS Outlook 2003. Of course, the latter showed the attachment (a PDF) fine. More-pleasing was the absence of winmail.dat in Gmail, as it handled the quirky Microsoft Outlook data with no problem.

Even though I am very busy today, I thought this experience would be worth sharing, rather than getting left behind in the To-Do pile...


How to display your web site logo on the address bar and in the favorites list

Thanks to Google, I found that great tip within minutes

Now my Daniel.Shakhmundes.Net logo will display on the address bar and in the favourites list

I used the SoulJourneys styled icon for this first icon
(foreshadowing of future graphic creativity)

Today, a new name for the blog...

Inspired while skimming a theoretical research paper in High Energy Physics

The title "Decrypting Reality" came to mind, because that's what physics looks like.

A search on Google found only ONE link for the exact phrase "Decrypting Reality" (i.e. with the quotes):

A Poem About Poetry, The Art Of Self Expression

How about some fundamental aspects of noncommutative geometry?

I take it there will soon be at least two results on Google for "Decrypting Reality"...