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Who Invented E-Commerce?

5 min read

In the second David vs. Goliath legal tussle of his career, Leon Stambler thinks he has again come up with a key technology

5 March 2003—In the 1980s, a little-known electrical engineer invented the way personal identification numbers are used with bank automated teller machines. Because of some legal technicalities, he was barred from enforcing his patent. Still, it’s remarkable that after an undistinguished career in which he seemingly bounced from one low-level job to another, this lone inventor, Leon Stambler, had come up with a critical underpinning to millions and millions of financial transactions.

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How Police Exploited the Capitol Riot’s Digital Records

Forensic technology is powerful, but is it worth the privacy trade-offs?

11 min read
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 Illustration of the silhouette of a person with upraised arm holding a cellphone in front of the U.S. Capitol building. Superimposed on the head is a green matrix, which represents data points used for facial recognition
Gabriel Zimmer
Green

The group of well-dressed young men who gathered on the outskirts of Baltimore on the night of 5 January 2021 hardly looked like extremists. But the next day, prosecutors allege, they would all breach the United States Capitol during the deadly insurrection. Several would loot and destroy media equipment, and one would assault a policeman.

No strangers to protest, the men, members of the America First movement, diligently donned masks to obscure their faces. None boasted of their exploits on social media, and none of their friends or family would come forward to denounce them. But on 5 January, they made one piping hot, family-size mistake: They shared a pizza.

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