Archive for November 25th, 2008

A 64-Year-Old Crypto Challenge

As you might have heard, Google has made the photo archives from Life Magazine available online. You could spend hours searching through those images for fascinating glimpses of history, and while I strongly encourage you to do so – and share anything really cool you come across – there’s something I’d like you to do, first.

Earlier, I posted some old photos of the FBI, in it’s early, “Bureau of Identification” days. While looking for a photo of the old, physical filing system at FBI headquarters – which I found, thanks to Google and Life – I stumbled across a pretty darn awesome photo from 1944:
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Published in: Geekiness, General, History, Security | on November 25th, 2008 | 5 Comments »

A Glimpse Inside the FBI… of 80 Years Ago

Shorpy, one of my favorite websites, has posted a handful of photos over the years of the FBI – or its predecessor, the Department of Justice Bureau of Investigation. At some point, obviously, the interior of government buildings became important national secrets which couldn’t be photographed and shown to mere mortals, but way back when, reason and common sense prevailed, I guess.

Anyway, for a glimpse into the inside of the Bureau, way back when, check out their filing cabinets, their work areas, their office spaces, their index system, and their most famous employee, hard at work.

Incidentally, I believe this photo may be a fairly rare look at what would one day become the “physical index” of the Bureau’s “Central Records System”. Without giving the game away, would anyone like to confirm (or deny) that? 🙂

Published in: Geekiness, General, History, Security | on November 25th, 2008 | Comments Off on A Glimpse Inside the FBI… of 80 Years Ago

The War on Photography: Still Going Strong

It’s been a while since I heard about a photographer being “detained” or otherwise “having their rights violated” for engaging in a little innocent photography, so it’s easy to suppose that conditions have improved from the hyper-paranoid days right after 9/11, when merely carrying a camera in public was enough to get you a 75% discount on a one-way flight to Guantanamo Bay.

Uncle Sam, however, apparently feels differently about this recent complacency towards photographers; Homeland Security recently issued a reminder, warning everyone that while “questionable photography is among the more frequently reported activities” and “suspicious activity reporting such as dubious photography provides valuable information for analysis and further investigation”, it seems that “only a small number of reported suspicious activities actually receive further investigation.”
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Published in: Geekiness, General, Security, Urban Exploration | on November 25th, 2008 | 1 Comment »