Impressions on the Social Age

White House Stops Bullets

Posted in Local DC by Trace on November 16, 2011

Image: Associated Press

Two bullets were found outside the White House on Tuesday, having been fired by an unknown person. The Secret Service is investigating the source of the shooting as well as the shooter. Neither bullet is thought to have penetrated White House security do to the ballistic glass in place behind the historic glass on all White House windows.

One bullet was found after it had hit the ballistic glass, and another was found outside.

Gunshots were heard near the White House on November 11th. The Secret Service were quick to respond. Within five minutes of the shots, police had secured a vehicle on the 2300 block of Constitution Avenue, which runs along the National Mall near the White House. In the vehicle, police found an AK-47 assault rifle registered to Oscar Ramiro Ortega.

The evidence recovered at the scene led police to open an arrest warrant for Ortega, a 21 year-old white-hispanic male. Ortega is 5′ 11″ weighs 160 pounds, with a medium build, brown eyes and black hair and beard. He has a visible tattoo on his neck reading “Israel.”

Neither President Obama nor First Lady, Michelle Obama were at home when the gunshots were hear. That afternoon they were heading to San Diego, before heading to Hawaii for the Asia-Pacific economic forum.

According to a statement issued by the Secret Service, the sounds of gunfire likely originated from the Ellipse, a grassy area just south of the White House. If the shots were fired from the AK-47, and the Secret Service did not indicate this was the case, then they traveled 700-800 yards before hitting the White House. The AK-47’s effective range is only around 300 yards.

“There’s always an outer perimeter and this was on the very outer perimeter of our security,” the Secret Service official told CNN. “The gun and car were found within several minutes. We have a lot of security — a lot of layered security down there and the security worked.”

While the Secret Service does have a warrent for the arrest of Ortega, they are not saying the gunshots on Friday are conclusively tied to the two bullets found. But rather Ortega is a person of interest and the manhunt is currently underway. The Occupy Washington DC protest camp was searched in relation to the hunt when a few calls were placed possibly placing Ortega at the scene.

According to the US Park Police blog post, anyone with information on this incident is asked to contact local law enforcement or US Park Police at (202) 610-7500 for immediate assistance, or the Criminal Investigations Branch Tip Line at (202) 610-8737 for non emergent information.

Break Out Adventure

Posted in Uncategorized by Trace on August 12, 2010

The Problem

I, like many of my fellows, love my iPhone, but sometimes I just wish it was a bit more convenient to use. For example, when in New York City or DC there are 10 million* WiFi networks. When walking around, my iPhone pops up with a little notification every time I use an app that accesses the Internet:

Stop! I don’t want to join your network!

To turn off these pop-ups I can either disable WiFi or Disable the Notifications in the WiFi menu… However, either option requires me to go to Page 2 of my Home screen, tap Settings, scroll to and tap WiFi, then tap to toggle Notifications to Off or toggle WiFi to Off.

The whole process is simply arduous. Especially when an Android phone can put a toggle right on the home screen. This is just one example of the hoop-jumping iPhone users subjected to proprietary software. There are other examples, but I think we all get the point.

A Solution

JAILBREAK! Get that iPhone out of Apple’s exclusive grip: now without legal ramifications (instead only violates Apple’s terms and conditions).


Mind Is Blown, Then Content-Aware Filled

Posted in Social Networking Discovery by Trace on May 25, 2010

Adobe Photoshop CS5 was recently made available to the public. After watching this video…

I downloaded the CS5 free trial and played with the new content-aware deletion and spot-brush features. Needless to say, I was absolutely excited and amazed.

I spent about 10 minutes playing with various photos and then downloaded a random Facebook photo from a friends feed and began to see what I could delete. 20 minutes later I had deleted 10 or 11 things from the photo below. Can you spot them all?!

Click on the image to zoom

The mind-blowing thing here is, I am not a Photoshop Expert. I’ve never taken a PS class. I’ve played with it for many years, but always considered myself at an Intermediate level. If a mid-level untrained photo editor can remove items from a low-quality Facebook photo, what kind of creations could a professional make?

Now thinking about the future… *KABLOOIE!* Mind. Is. Blown.

The Photo, Made Creepy

Posted in Social Networking Discovery by Trace on May 17, 2010

By now many of us have heard of DailyBooth, but for those that haven’t… DailyBooth is a social networking/media site that allows users to upload a photo (similar to a visual status message).

With this in mind, were a Clark Kent impersonator to step into DailyBooth he would emerge not as superman, but as a strange/creepy version of DailyBooth.’s website self-describes it as gathering “the latest about you into a tiny, easy to update, video-enabled calling card.” These calling cards can then be embedded and used in place of some photos you see around the blogosphere.

Verdict? Creepy? Cool? Or a bit of both? To view my go to:

No One Likes a Qwitter

Posted in Social Networking Discovery by Trace on May 15, 2010

While using the ‘ol Twitter this week, I realized I’ve lost a follower. Now, I know it’s no big deal to lose a follower… but when you only have 190, a single follower is 0.5% of my overall user base!

During my Internet Advocacy class this semester, Rosenblatt has promised we will learn how to gain in followers, but in order to understand how you gain (easy looking at the Stats of # of clicks – I use Hootsuite) it’s not as obvious when people leave. For that, my social discovery of the week is Qwitter, an unfollow tracker for those who tie their self worth to their number of followers.

Qwitter is a free tool which sends you an email digest regarding your weekly unfollows you. It even gives you the exact tweet which might have possibly caused your fan-loss.

Simple and easy, my favorite kind of geekyness. I’ll check it out, maybe you should too, but don’t worry, it’s not what you know its who you follow… or maybe it’s who follows you? We need to update these old sayings.