"Techdude" embellishes upon his previous expert analysis on Obama's birth certificate and gives us his impeccable credentials. I am honored to be the recipient of this most excellent and enormously entertaining and informative exegesis. I have checked out Techdude's credentials - he is unequivocally expert in the field of forensic digital forgery examination. I am running his remarks completely unedited. It's funny and smart. There is nothing Atlas finds sexier than witty and wise.
Adam's Apple (the fruit of knowledge) fasten your seat belts [emphasis mine]
I would like to address a few questions and concerns which have been raised around the collective blogosphere since I first posted my original comments explaining some of the conclusions I reached in my forensic investigation of the KOS certificate controversy.
Think of it [as] my own “Fight the Smears” campaign and before you have to even ask – yes, the certificate is still a horrible forgery. Please keep in mind that I am writing this at 3 AM after having spent the last 18 hours working on imaging and examining a 2 TB RAID array so I may ramble on a bit and I may miss some the questions people wanted answered.
Q. Why should we trust the findings of some anonymous blog poster?
A. These days that is one of the most insightful questions people should be asking about anything they read or see on the Internet and in even mass media. I applaud you for questioning my credentials which I will get to momentarily. Today we are so inundated with misinformation and rumors posed as facts that if you fail to question everything and if you do not do your own research about all you are force fed - you are doomed to be some one else’s sock puppet.
I feel that the same question demands to be asked about the claims made by the Daily KOS blog since they posted Senator Obama’s “Certificate of Live Birth” which they received from an anonymous source who they claim works for the Obama Campaign. If Senator Obama had personally provided the document to the folks at KOS I never would have given the issue a passing thought even if my friend had asked me to look into it – not that I would take any politician on their word but it would have been a verified source f or the information which, for me at least, would have removed some of the red flags.
I am sure we all remember last year’s problems that Reuters was having with their digitally manipulated “news” images – so to accept a digital image at face value without any substantiating corroboration is just plain silly whether you support the candidate or not.
Next allow me to explain why the original story was posted with the username “techdude” and not my real name – when you register to post a comment it asks for a screen name a/k/a handle or nickname. I have used techdude as my screen names since the early 90’s. It was not done as a way to create some odd air of mystery and people actually call me “techdude” as a nickname in the real world too. As for me, my given name is Adam, and no you can not currently have my last name – too many nut cases in the world, but if you want a copy of my full CV contact Ms. Geller at Atlas Shrugs and, if you ask her very nicely, perhaps she will forward your emails to me and if I am in a giving mood I may send you a reply.
I also strongly suggest donating some money to her blog to help keep her independent and insightful thoughts alive and well online – but if you want to have some fun trying and you have some free time you should also able to locate me all by yourself. I am the owner and primary forensic examiner of a computer forensic science laboratory – [the name of which I will also not give out at this time – still too many nut cases and I will not endanger people around the lab.
But again if you feel like donating some money to Atlas Shrugs perhaps Ms. Geller will forward your emails to me.] I am an active member of the Association of Certified Fraud Examiners, American College of Forensic Examiners, The International Society of Forensic Computer Examiners, International Information Systems Forensics Association - the list could go on. I am also a board certified as a forensic computer examiner, a certificated legal investigator, and a licensed private investigator. I have been performing computer based forensic investigations since 1993 (although back then it did not even have a formal name yet) and I have performed countless investigations since then. I also volunteer my services for free to those who can not afford the $250 an hour it takes to secure the services of their own private computer forensic expert. I did not go into this field for the money. Just call me an idealist.
I prefer to call him a Randian or in Geller terms, the ideal man.
Now to quickly clear up some of the strangest speculations I have read about my supposed background - all in one or two rather convoluted run-on sentences…yes, I have a government issued security clearance (sensitive but unclassified information – sorry but I have no access to space aliens) and NO I am NOT an agent of the federal government.
Yes, I have received training from the Treasury Department, Department of Homeland Security and FEMA, and yes I am involved with the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s InfraGard program but again that does NOT make me a federal agent. They do not get paid enough to put up with the massive amount of crap they have to deal with. All will be revealed eventually – I am just wary of finding my brake lines cut and my bunny boiled in a pot of water as this issue has raised more ire than the time I found inculpatory evidence against some local law enforcement officers. At least all they did in retaliation was to randomly pull me over for a couple of weeks where as here I only gave a sound opinion based on established facts in the comment section of a blog and I am already hearing about physical threats from whack-jobs.
Q. Why would you waste your time with something so trivial?
A. Some people collect stamps, others prefer to garden. I enjoy forensic challenges such as the Department of Defense’s DC3 Forensic Challenge which this year (and last) just so happen to include the issues raised by the KOS certificate controversy.
Is it a real image or has it been created on a computer…or is it a mix of both? I have simply been using this exercise as a way to verify and validate both proven and theorized methodologies for detecting digital tampering. That is after all what good science is all about. What may appear as a trivial waste of time on the surface to the casual observer is actually part of a deeper rooted issue facing computer forensic investigations.
Since the US Supreme Court ruled in their Ashcroft decision that possessing digitally created and modified images of children engaging in sexual conduct is legal the computer forensics community has had to meet this challenge to prove to a court of law that images were either real or they were created or modified on a computer. Not too surprisingly, since that decision was handed down, almost every one arrested for possessing child pornography has tried to use “it is not a real image” as a defense. It now beats the “a virus downloaded those 5,000 images” defense as the biggest waste of our time.
So before you say looking at the KOS COLB is a waste of time try looking at the much larger picture and forget about your politics. Besides, “forensics” is the process of using science to establish facts suitable for the courtroom and also to inspire public debate. I believe this issue accomplishes both.
Q. Are you politically biased? Do you hate Obama? What are you REALLY working towards?
A. I am a political agnostic – While I know there is a Congress I do not worship at the alter of any political ideology because it is a worthless endeavor. I am a proud American and nothing more. Besides today’s politicians all demand to be treated like spoiled rock stars and I have never really been fan of any of their music. Sure there may be that one-hit wonder or a chart topper or two but generally their entire collection of records suck and can all be bought for a few dollars at WalMart. If you have enough money they will even perform at your son’s wedding. I vote only for the person or issue NOT for the party and NO I am not a Republican operative, a Right Wing nutcase, an angry Hillary supporter, a NeoCon Zionist, or an Israeli Mossad agent (it sounds like a fun job though).
In this election cycle I am still one of those G-d forsaken undecided voters who do not belong to any political party. I mean can you really blame me? Generally I am just your average every day middle of the road kind of guy with the occasional very strong opinion. In the interest of full disclosure I was rooting for Rudy, and out of all the candidates running for President I would only want to go out for drinks with Hillary as she would easily be the most entertaining. Oh, and for the stories and gossip I am sure she could tell.
Obama appears to be a somewhat nice person but I would not be interested in attending a Mets game with the guy. I just do not get a good vibe from him. There are too many real issues that he has not addressed plus the ones that he has flipped on and I believe he is just another typical politician in a long line of typical politicians offering more of the same BS in a shiny new package.
Now before you run off screaming that I am biased against Obama I also feel the same way about McCain – minus the shiny and new part. Some people also took my “Obamanationalists loosing their minds” comment completely out of context assuming that I could not possibly be even remotely unbiased in my findings that the KOS certificate is a really bad fake because I would dare to make a disparaging comment. Well, you can fix dumb but you can not fix stupid so I will not even bother to address that one and if you were offended by the remark – grow a damn pair. If it makes you feel any better I also call McCain’s brain dead legion of followers “McMorons” and the occasional “CaptMcNutterButters”. Hey, I may not be Mother Teresa but I am always honest.
In this race I am not betting on any horse and I really do not care about the outcome so you can check that off your bizarre conspiracy theory list. Just call me disenfranchised. Everyone is free to just assume I dislike all stupid people if that will make you feel better. Plus as I stated in the previous section this was never about a campaign issue for me – it is about improving forensic methodologies and scientific techniques to spot digital image manipulations and for prosecuting pedophiles. Granted at this point in time my curiosity is peaked and I would really like to see what his real COLB looks like just to see how bad of a forgery the KOS version really is.
Q. Are you the same techdude who posts comments full of conspiracy theories on all the blogs?
A. Uhmmm…..no. First time I ever felt compelled to leave a comment on a blog was the one that caused me to have to write this mess of an answer. (Or is this part of some vast conspiracy? (j/k) Apparently “techdude” has just become a rather popular handle.
Q. Are you the same techdude who posts all those articles on StormFront?
A. Uhmmm…..hell no.
Q. Wasn’t the KOS COLB already declared real and this issue laid to rest? Haven’t you read the blogs? You cannot both be right.
A. If you are talking about the findings of a certain 2 initialed blogger [The Obama “Forged Birth Certificate” Myth Is Busted -ed] whose dubious findings are based on obviously false conclusions and a complete lack of basic information that was compiled in under an hour and was then picked up across the blogosphere and taken as the word of G-d even though it has absolutely no basis in fact then yes I have read that. That will be addressed once I compile all of my findings (there are many that I just did not bother to post at the time as I had wrongfully assumed that every already knew it was a fake) and the results of several experiments which may explain more than anyone ever wanted to know about that KOS COLB image and exactly how the forgery was created. I will also touch a little bit on the OpenDNA COLB versions but that really is a dead horse at this point as everything he has already admitted can be corroborated by looking at the images which are based on the pre-existing KOS COLB.
But for the fun of it I will beat that horse a bit longer just to prove a point and show how wrong some people can be when they begin to develop implausible theories that have no basis in fact – and how they loose all credibility when they start to make up their own facts or purposely misquote other people’s conclusions. It will be both entertaining and informative. And before we all go off in a huff let us not forget that there are more than one known official Hawaiian COLB's to work with. Now of course if you have two very differing opinions – one saying it is authentic and the other saying it is a forgery – only one can be correct. It is almost impossible to prove a negative such as trying to prove G-d does not exist but I assure you it is pretty easy to prove a document is a forgery by comparison.
That is why all of my findings are being made public (the good and the bad, the parts I can explain, and the unanswered questions that need further study or examination) – it is called peer review. For the ill-informed and the amature analysts that may have seen one too many episodes of CSI that means a point by point rebuttal showing how certain findings are factually incorrect or inaccurately interpreted or simply the admission and acceptance that the findings are correct. Calling me a doody-head and making even more implausible theories having no basis in fact is not generally considered a proper peer response but I will accept those if that is the best that you can offer.
Q. When will you post your final summary with all the goodies?
A. If I am able to conclude some interpolation of various bits of missing data before this weekend (7/12/2008) and I do not get any emergency calls that will take me away from the lab and if I do not keep finding more corroborating evidence for the summary – it should be completed and emailed to Pamela with all of the associated screenshots sometime next week.
Sorry but Atlas Shrugs gets the Exclusive – no soup for anyone else. [- ed]
Now go donate some damned money to support this blog or she may just decide to NOT publish the data! (How is that for the hard sell?) And do not worry about understanding the summary – I will de-geek it the best that I can while also including footnotes and references for those of you who are trying to follow along or teach yourself as you go.
In fact I may try to write it up as a step by step guide so you can follow along and recreate everything yourself in the comfort of your living rooms using freely available software if at all possible.
Learn to do it “on the cheap” as my grandmother used to say. The world needs more forensics geeks. And to the previously aforementioned 2 initialed blogger I just read your latest reply to my conclusions on your blog – and once I stop laughing, take a nap, and get this paid case done I will have to write up a very subjective reply but until then please stop typing you are really beginning to embarrass yourself. I mean seriously just stop it man. Oh gosh...I just read your replies to the comments left under your masterpiece of deductive reasoning and I just spit my coffee all over my laptop. Oh hey, I see here you are a “computer expert, which covers all aspects of computers and how they manipulate data” with an obvious grasp on your special version of reality...how do I get this crap out of the nooks and crannies of my keyboard since it is obvious you know all about crap?
Just one more question – since you claim you are “also a NASA engineer who focuses on and reviews computer and communications systems flight and ground. Documents are a simple niche in my world.” What computers does NASA use that run on paper? Or did you mean you read magazine articles about hardware reviews? Just asking. And as a busy NASA Engineer you are obviously busy engineering NASA or something to be able to spend more than a few minutes posting logical replies. [cat fight cat fight!] Now go send some money to support Ms. Geller's blog or it will be no more soup for you!
Techdude, I think I'm in love.
UPDATE: How insane is the left on this issue? Check out the New York Crimes. NUTS! (hat tip lucsious Larwyn)
*** Copyright © 2005-2008 Pamela Geller | All Rights Reserved *** (credit and link back to Atlas)