Tag Archives: tsa

TSA for the lonely [COMIC]

TSA for the lonely [COMIC]

Everywhere you look online, there are articles where people are yelling long and loud about the way the TSA has been handling passengers recently. Many TSA agents reportedly are touching people in spots they feel are completely inappropriate. Prosecutors are speaking out and claiming that charges will be pressed. Passengers who feel violated are filing police reports and lawsuits.

While nothing about this situation is funny, I thought that perhaps a little bit of humor injected into it would go a long way.

How Do Stormtroopers Get Through Airport Security?

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Chat room visitor Benson wanted to know how difficult it is for a Stormtrooper to get through airport security while wearing all that armor. What do YOU think – seriously?

Let me tell ya – it’s a joke. They asked me to remove my watch. I don’t wear one – where the hell would I put it? They asked me to remove metal. Dude, come on! I can’t! If I’m not wearing my armor, I’m open to the elements. I can’t do it!

They tend to let me twist through, cuz they really don’t want to get shot. I’m not trying to downplay airport security, but they really don’t want to mess with a Stormtrooper. You don’t want me to even explain what happened when one of the security people tried to do a strip search on one of our guys. I still shudder every time I think about it.

We don’t encounter this too often, anyway. Stormtroopers usually prefer to use their own form of transportation.

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What Smartphone Do Real Men Use?

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Wired reported that American Special Forces favor the Google Phone, vs. the Army who designs their own hardware/software. They like the fact that it’s an open source option, which means that they can customize it to their liking, vs. spending extra money/resources on designing something from scratch. These devices will assist soldiers with vital communications while on the field.

Lamarr wants to know if he uses a Blackberry or iPhone if that makes him a “girly man.” Just because he orders a light salad on the side with every meal does not make him less manly!

US Special Forces were looking for a simple communications platform to use with their soldiers. They wanted something that was highly customizable and configurable, so they chose Android. They asked coders to develop a suite of applications that soldiers can use in the field.

This is going to be called the Tactical Situational Awareness Application Suite. This includes files transfers, video displays, multi-touch white-boarding and even live chat.

What do you think about this? Can we trust the open source community with this? Would it be a security risk?

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Your MacBook Air Can Stay in the Bag in Airport Security Lines

Reports earlier today claimed that the TSA was making a big exception for the new 11″ MacBook Air machines. The rumor was that the devices did not need to be removed from their bags when going through security checkpoints in airports. Several people were angry over this news, wondering why their machine of choice wasn’t given the same treatment.

Is this really a case of being prejudiced or selective in what the TSA wants to require? It certainly seemed that way when the original article was published. However, they apparently didn’t do their homework before blasting the Security Administration. Right on the TSA blog, it was revealed earlier this year that the guidelines had changed.

Electronic items smaller than the standard sized laptop should not need to be removed from your bag or their cases.

There were no special exceptions for the new MacBook Air – nor the iPad. Every device the size of a netbook is treated equally, and left in their protective bag.

Unlock Your Hotel Room with Your Cell Phone

I hate traveling. I love the places that I visit and the people I interact with when I get there. It’s the actual travel part that gets to me every time. There’s always such a rush to do everything, you know? Checking into my hotels is probably my least favorite task. God love ’em for what they do, but the desk clerks always make me batty. They’re always so helpful and happy. I know, it’s a good thing that they’re good at what they do. But when I check in, I’m usually frazzled and just want to pass out on my bed. Like all of you, though, I have to stand in line and then go through the entire process while talking to someone who is entirely too perky. InterContinental Hotels understands my frustrations, and is working on a plan to change things drastically.

Next month, InterContinental Hotels Group will start testing new technology at two of their Holiday Inn locations which allows guests to use their smartphones to unlock the doors to their rooms.

IHG exec Bryson Koehler thinks that the phones may be the perfect answer for weary (and harried) travelers. “The proliferation of smartphones is growing in such a way that we have to look at what people are already bringing with them to make their stay more enjoyable,” he said. “We don’t need to burden people with additional items; it just clutters up their lives. The beauty of the smart phone is that they’ve already got it.”

The test will begin in June at the Holiday Inn Chicago O’ Hare Rosemont and the Holiday Inn Express Houston Downtown Convention Center. To join the trial, participants will need to download an Open Ways app to their phone. Guests will call up the confirmation email on their screen and hold it up to a sensor on the door which will automagically unlock it.

What are your thoughts on this? If you have a smartphone and travel often, is this something you feel you would take advantage of?

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What Place Does Social Media Have in our Schools?

I came across a very interesting post a little while ago, over on Geeks. The author, Will, is asking our opinions as to what place social media should play in our educational systems. Will mentioned that his high school principal has asked students for ideas as to how social media could be incorporated into education in general. He then asks for your input and ideas. I’d love to see a high rate of responses to this thread, which is why I chose to highlight it here.

Social media such as Facebook and Twitter isn’t a fad that will fade away any time soon. It’s important, it’s real, and it’s here to stay. I do have to point out something that Will said at the end of his post. He stated that he is all for social media in the schools, but that he doesn’t want to allow them access to his privacy. That is a common misconception amongst many people today. You need to remember that anything you put online is public. There is no privacy when it comes to places such as Twitter. Once something is online, it’s there for the World to see. Even at a young age, you always need to be cognizant of that fact when posting anything in any place. Things you say and do online can – and WILL – come back to bite you in the proverbial ass someday if you aren’t careful.

What are your thoughts? Instead of posting them here on the blog, please post them over on Geeks as a response to Will’s questions. Let’s see how much community participation we can get on this, and show his principal a thing or two! Will’s post wasn’t the only thought-provoking thing going on in our community today. Hopefully, you haven’t missed out on any of the action!

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What are Your Pet Peeves?

You already know that one of my biggest pet peeves is to see people using simple words incorrectly. It drives me batshit to see someone use your and you’re interchangeably. Hello! They are not the same word! Are people seriously not learning these things in school, or are they too lazy to type/spell the words correctly?! It makes me want to tear my hair out.

I have a lot of pet peeves, I admit it. I freak out if I see someone using those yellow Post-It notes thingies. I hate those!! I could sit here all night talking about things that drive me nuts, but that’s not the point of my post! I want to know what makes YOU crazy? What little things make you want to run and scream?!

While you’re making your list – and checking it twice – make sure you take the time to read the things that our community has published today. There are some excellent discussions going on!

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TSA: Transportation Security Administration?

So, I’m passing through the security checkpoint at the mouse fart of an airport in San Jose, CA (coming back from a rather remarkable Under the Radar event)… TSA tells me that my carry-on bag would need to be inspected. I was a bit puzzled, but not shocked – as I decided to store all my electronics in the mini-whale and not check it at the ticket counter.

He tells me that I’m carrying liquid. I was?

I normally check my luggage, so I completely forgot about the small tube of toothpaste (which cost me $47.99 at the hotel mini-bar – a bargain at any price), my lip balm, and my freakin’ can of freakin’ antiperspirant / deodorant. What the freak? Are they freakin’ serious? Yeah, I know – these things should have been in a baggie, but…

Okay. This is how we stop terrorists. Seriously?

I’m just going to check my bag next time, as I should have done tonight (in the first place). The ten minutes I save by not having to wait for baggage to come around on the carousel is simply not worth the hassle of having to chuck products that could apparently take down an entire plane.

And to the guy who was unfortunate enough to sit next to me on the flight, I deeply apologize for all the garlic farts – Brandon was the one who suggested the Macaroni Grill for dinner. I would have popped a few butt mints (great idea – someone needs to fund it) but they were confiscated along with my collection of rare Commemorative Abe Vigoda snow globes (too much liquid, had to abandon at checkpoint).

I come home from the airport, unpack my suitcase, and guess what I find lying underneath all my dirty clothes? A pair of extremely sharp scissors.

I shit you not.