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John’s file

Commenter John said that he had scanned an Obama birth certificate copy of some sort on a Xerox machine, and it didn’t look anything like the President’s birth certificate from the White House. John was kind enough to provide the file as part of the ongoing conversation about Xerox and its role in creating the White House PDF, and as I promised, I’m hosting the file.

This article is primarily for the purpose facilitating the conversation between John and others about the Xerox machine and his experiment. However, I do have a few comments to start off with.

The scan was done on a Xerox Color 550 multi-function copier/printer/scanner/fax machine. I know this was the machine used because I used a special complex forensic document analysis tool, Notepad++, to examine it. Here’s the smoking tag:

<xmp:CreatorTool>Xerox Color 550</xmp:CreatorTool>

I agree with John that the scan doesn’t look much like the President’s birth certificate. For one thing, John’s file is huge (12.5 Mb) compared to the President’s file at a mere 377 KB. There’s a lot of compression in the President’s version compared to John’s.

The file doesn’t have layers, suggesting that MRC compression was not employed. The Xerox 550 Color does MRC compression, but that appears not to be the default setting. The 550/560 User Manual says that you have to check a box to invoke the MRC High Compression mode when scanning to email or to a file.

To apply MRC High Compression to PDF and XPS format files, select the MRC High Compression Enabled check box. Select the desired quality from the Quality drop-down list.

Page 205

JBIG2 also seems to be an option (found in another manual):

If you select [PDF] and then select [Manual Select] in [Compression Method] under [File Format], you can select a compression method from [MH], [MMR], [JBIG2 Arithmetic Encoded], and [JBIG2 Huffman Encoded] under [Black & White Pages], and one from [JPEG] and [Flate] under [Grayscale/Color Pages]. Selecting [Flate] saves the image data with higher compression than [JPEG].

Page 158

Visually, one notes very poor reproduction of the security paper background, but a second-generation scan of security paper shouldn’t look good anyhow. Now that real security paper is starting to circulate, we should get some more valid results.

76 Responses to John’s file

  1. avatar
    john September 1, 2013 at 4:15 pm #

    I tried to have them optimize the file but they were confused by my request. Perhaps, I will try again.

  2. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy September 1, 2013 at 4:21 pm #

    Perhaps the references from the 2 Xerox manuals in the article (I added a second) will be helpful.

    john:
    I tried to have them optimize the file but they were confused by my request.Perhaps, I will try again.

  3. avatar
    Monkey Boy September 1, 2013 at 4:25 pm #

    john:
    I tried to have them optimize the file but they were confused by my request.Perhaps, I will try again.

    Has it occurred to you that your request might have been confusing?

    John: “Scan this document and preserve all the layers.”

    Poor employee: “I’m sorry, sir, could you make that plainer?”

  4. avatar
    Bovril September 1, 2013 at 4:50 pm #

    A question for John.

    Did you request AND receive the file as an email attachment?

    The reason is many email servers are set to reject emails with attachments past 10 MB in size.

    In addition the 550C total attachment max size default is 10240 KB

  5. avatar
    Jimbo September 1, 2013 at 4:56 pm #

    If you follow the workflow discovered by NBC, you get a file that reproduces the anomalies found in the President’s BC. John did not follow the workflow therefore he did not reproduce the anomalies. NBC has clearly shown that the document features the “Cold Case Posse” claimed could ONLY be due to forgery are in fact innocuously produced by Xerox copiers. It’s really pretty simple, and unlike the CCP, all of NBC’s work is easily verifiable by visiting his/her website.

  6. avatar
    CarlOrcas September 1, 2013 at 5:35 pm #

    john:
    I tried to have them optimize the file but they were confused by my request.Perhaps, I will try again.

    From another thread an unanswered question that is very appropriate here: What did you scan on the machine at Staples?

  7. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy September 1, 2013 at 5:38 pm #

    NBC’s point is that there are normal workflows that create PDF files like the one from the White House. He proves the point by creating the files.

    No number of other work flows not creating a similar PDF prove anything. It’s like me saying” “look at this white crow–it means that there really are white crows” and someone else saying “look at this black crow–your evidence is no good–all crows are black.” See my article, Counting crows.

    http://www.obamaconspiracy.org/2012/08/counting-crows/

    John is hanging onto hopes that NBC’s results (which are rather technical and not easy to follow) aren’t very good. John, to his credit, did an experiment. While the parameters of his experiment were wrong, he seems willing to try to do a better experiment. The value in this exercise is that it offers some possibility that John could independently discover MRC artifacts just like those in the Obama form, and if so encounter an existential crisis that might (in the best of all possible worlds) lead him to rethink his opinion of the Cold Case Posse and their forgery claims.

    Since the machines are different, there’s no assurance that John will ever get the result he doesn’t want, but it’s plausible that he could. Of course, we need to get John some security paper. Maybe Zullo will send him some.

  8. avatar
    nbc September 1, 2013 at 5:43 pm #

    John is hanging onto hopes that NBC’s results (which are rather technical and not easy to follow) aren’t very good. John, to his credit, did an experiment.

    Yes, he has taken the necessary steps. Well done John.

  9. avatar
    CarlOrcas September 1, 2013 at 5:51 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy: Since the machines are different, there’s no assurance that John will ever get the result he doesn’t want, but it’s plausible that he could. Of course, we need to get John some security paper. Maybe Zullo will send him some.

    Maybe I’m missing something but nothing about john’s effort makes sense to me.

    Unless he has an original certified long form birth certificate from Hawaii on the same sort of safety paper that was used when Obama’s record was copied then nothing from that point on matters.

    If, by chance, he does have a real certified certificate (and not a printed version of what is posted on the White House website, which is what it looks like from what you are hosting) then the failure to use the same type of machine to scan the document makes this part of the effort pointless.

    Looks like two strikes to me. Did I miss something?

  10. avatar
    Foggy September 1, 2013 at 6:36 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy:

    The value in this exercise is that it offers some possibility that John could independently discover MRC artifacts just like those in the Obama form, and if so encounter an existential crisis that might (in the best of all possible worlds) lead him to rethink his opinion of the Cold Case Posse and their forgery claims.

    Yes, and maybe pigs will learn to fly. Actually, I hope that doesn’t really happen, especially here in a state where there are so many hog farms. How could the hog farmers keep track of all their hogs if they could fly around to other hog farms, or even worser, fly into the cities? They’d have to build enclosures, and even then you’d have hogs trying to bust through the windows and fly away. Do hogs fly north or south for the winter? They seem to have a good layer of fat and might be more comfortable in Canada during the winter. Plus aren’t there enough overweight people in Florida already without a lot of obese hogs flying around in Miami and Orlando and like that? That’s not what I go to the beach to see, frankly.

    Anyway, congratulations John and … keep an open mind. Someday you may realize what 98.34% of the people in the United States already know: President Obama was born in Hawaii; therefore, he’s a natural born citizen. Simple as that.

  11. avatar
    GLaB September 1, 2013 at 6:42 pm #

    CarlOrcas: Maybe I’m missing something but nothing about john’s effort makes sense to me.

    Unless he has an original certified long form birth certificate from Hawaii on the same sort of safety paper that was used when Obama’s record was copied then nothing from that point on matters.

    If, by chance, he does have a real certified certificate (and not a printed version of what is posted on the White House website, which is what it looks like from what you are hosting) then the failure to use the same type of machine to scan the document makes this part of the effort pointless.

    Looks like two strikes to me. Did I miss something?

    Modelling as a substitute for direct measurement and experimentation

    Models are typically used when it is either impossible or impractical to create experimental conditions in which scientists can directly measure outcomes. Direct measurement of outcomes under controlled conditions (see Scientific Method) will always be more reliable than modelled estimates of outcomes.

    Modelling as a substitute for direct measurement and experimentation” Wikipedia.

  12. avatar
    CarlOrcas September 1, 2013 at 7:18 pm #

    GLaB: Direct measurement of outcomes under controlled conditions (see Scientific Method) will always be more reliable than modelled estimates of outcomes.

    Especially if your lab is the copy center at Staples.

  13. avatar
    tim September 1, 2013 at 8:17 pm #

    CarlOrcas: then the failure to use the same type of machine to scan the document makes this part of the effort pointless.

    I came here to say exactly this. Even incremental model numbers in the same series printers by Xerox, Cannon, etc can utilize different default settings and provide dramatically different results. Anyone who has ever worked in an office for any length of time can tell you that.

  14. avatar
    Andrew Vrba, PmG September 1, 2013 at 8:34 pm #

    Foggy:

    Anyway, congratulations John and … keep an open mind. Someday you may realize what 98.34% of the people in the United States already know: President Obama was born in Hawaii; therefore, he’s a natural born citizen. Simple as that.

    That’s giving John entirely too much credit. He’s more than likely gonna pretend his failed experiment never happened, then go on birthering.

  15. avatar
    nbc September 1, 2013 at 8:36 pm #

    I came here to say exactly this. Even incremental model numbers in the same series printers by Xerox, Cannon, etc can utilize different default settings and provide dramatically different results. Anyone who has ever worked in an office for any length of time can tell you that.

    Yes, there will invariably be differences, so one has to make sure to test the parameter space carefully. It appears that the WH Xerox was not changed much from the default. The problem is not to find a Xerox WorkCentre that fails to do what I have shown, but rather to explain that what I have shown does not explain the artifacts found in the PDF. The CCP has a real problem here as their inference was based on one of ignorance. We cannot explain how a scanner could have done this, therefor forgery is an explanation.

    Such explanations never survive close scrutiny for long and when they fail, they totally collapse dragging with it anything that was built on its foundation.

    Remember that without the PDF artifacts, there is no reason to presume a forgery and thus the actions of the DOH of HI and others should be reconsidered in light of the new data. The CCP could claim that the DOH was hiding something because they had released a known fraudulent document…

    It’s become a giant mess…

  16. avatar
    Reality Check September 1, 2013 at 8:40 pm #

    I posted a list of Xerox models that use MRC compression. You don’t have to use special settings. I used all the default settings on the WorkCentre 7535. The model that your store had will not work. Don’t waste your time going there again.

    john:
    I tried to have them optimize the file but they were confused by my request.Perhaps, I will try again.

  17. avatar
    CarlOrcas September 1, 2013 at 8:41 pm #

    tim: I came here to say exactly this.Even incremental model numbers in the same series printers by Xerox, Cannon, etc can utilize different default settings and providedramatically different results.Anyone who has ever worked in an office for any length of time can tell you that.

    And then there are different versions/revisions of the device’s software/firmware even if you have exactly the same model. The possibilities are endless!

  18. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund September 1, 2013 at 8:48 pm #

    If you select [PDF] and then select [Manual Select] in [Compression Method] under [File Format], you can select a compression method from [MH], [MMR], [JBIG2 Arithmetic Encoded], and [JBIG2 Huffman Encoded] under [Black & White Pages], and one from [JPEG] and [Flate] under [Grayscale/Color Pages]. Selecting [Flate] saves the image data with higher compression than [JPEG].

    It looks like the JBIG2 is only available for 1-bit B&W images, rather than a layered MRC image.

  19. avatar
    Lupin September 2, 2013 at 5:17 am #

    I hope I’ll be forgiven if I reiterate my conviction that this is an utterly idiotic experiment.

    Proving (like NBC did) that the xerox wc does create certain feature as part of its scanning/ compression/ reproduction process IS valuable in explaining the origins of said features.

    Merely attempting to duplicate the WH copy of Obama’s BC starting from an already existing printed copy of same (originating from the WH presumably?) strikes me as utterly imbecilistic.

  20. avatar
    The Magic M September 2, 2013 at 5:46 am #

    Andrew Vrba, PmG: He’s more than likely gonna pretend his failed experiment never happened, then go on birthering.

    No, he’ll just move the goalposts to “there is no proof the WH used a WorkCentre 7535” and “nobody from Xerox has come forward and confirmed they ever delivered one to the WH”.
    It’s the birther version of “just because you’re paranoid doesn’t mean nobody’s following you” – they will go “just because some process results in the same inconsistencies as a forgery doesn’t mean no forgery was committed”. So predictable…

  21. avatar
    Slartibartfast September 2, 2013 at 5:46 am #

    You’re not the only one, but hopefully it will prove to be a learning experience for John.

    Lupin:
    I hope I’ll be forgiven if I reiterate my conviction that this is an utterly idiotic experiment.

    Proving (like NBC did) that the xerox wc does create certain feature as part of its scanning/ compression/ reproduction process IS valuable in explaining the origins of said features.

    Merely attempting to duplicate the WH copy of Obama’s BC starting from an already existing printed copy of same (originating from the WH presumably?) strikes me as utterly imbecilistic.

  22. avatar
    Keith September 2, 2013 at 8:37 am #

    Lupin:
    I hope I’ll be forgiven if I reiterate my conviction that this is an utterly idiotic experiment.

    Proving (like NBC did) that the xerox wc does create certain feature as part of its scanning/ compression/ reproduction process IS valuable in explaining the origins of said features.

    Merely attempting to duplicate the WH copy of Obama’s BC starting from an already existing printed copy of same (originating from the WH presumably?) strikes me as utterly imbecilistic.

    You do understand that you are preaching to the converted, don’t you?

    On the other hand, there really is no justification required when dealing with hobby/leisure activities. People are doing this stuff because they want to and it doesn’t hurt anyone.

    Have I detected a bit more intolerance in your comments lately?

  23. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy September 2, 2013 at 9:21 am #

    Aha, we now have a lead on obtaining some authentic Hawaiian security paper 😉

    When I was in high school we had a phrase, “rurnt,” that meant “ruined.” The Cold Case Posse is rurnt.

  24. avatar
    The Magic M September 2, 2013 at 9:49 am #

    Rurnt berond recognition. Scooby-Doo, where are you?

  25. avatar
    Jim September 2, 2013 at 10:10 am #

    Slartibartfast:
    You’re not the only one, but hopefully it will prove to be a learning experience for John.

    The only way John will learn is if you cement those goal posts into place…otherwise he’ll just keep moving them.

  26. avatar
    Hektor September 2, 2013 at 10:30 am #

    Dr. Conspiracy:
    Aha, we now have a lead on obtaining some authentic Hawaiian security paper

    When I was in high school we had a phrase, “rurnt,” that meant “ruined.” The Cold Case Posse is rurnt.

    Thanks for the notice. I’ve just invested all of my Iraqi Dinars in Acme Goalpost Movers Inc. I anticipate they will have a big contract coming up.

  27. avatar
    Jim September 2, 2013 at 10:41 am #

    I think the anti-birthers have move from debunking the CCP to trying to totally destroy the CCP and Mr Zullo’s sewing circle. Good work folks! BWAHAHAHAHA

  28. avatar
    alg September 2, 2013 at 10:49 am #

    Nicely done, as is NBC’s work identifying the true culprit of this “crime of usurpation.” Not that it matters really – birthers will keep on birthing. But this information might be helpful to some members of Congress facing rabid birthers in the audiences of their town halls while home on recess.

    Still, none of this should really be necessary at all given that the State of Hawaii has officially verified the accuracy and authenticity of the President’s LFBC as posted online at Whitehouse.gov. Nothing else is required. That’s all any member of Congress needs to know and say when confronted at a town hall.

  29. avatar
    Lupin September 2, 2013 at 12:03 pm #

    Keith: You do understand that you are preaching to the converted, don’t you?

    On the other hand, there really is no justification required when dealing with hobby/leisure activities. People are doing this stuff because they want to and it doesn’t hurt anyone.

    Have I detected a bit more intolerance in your comments lately?

    I fear you’re missing my point. The idiotic experiment that John embarked on cannot by its very nature prove or disprove anything.

    It’s like trying to breed rabbits with cats hoping to get fluffy felines. Yes, it could be a hobby, but it’s so pointless and doomed to fail that one has to wonder.

  30. avatar
    Rickey September 2, 2013 at 1:11 pm #

    CarlOrcas: From another thread an unanswered question that is very appropriate here: What did you scan on the machine at Staples?

    John still hasn’t answered you, but I’ll hazard a guess that he downloaded and printed the PDF from the White House website and then scanned it.

    And it still shows that Obama was born in Hawaii.

  31. avatar
    CarlOrcas September 2, 2013 at 1:40 pm #

    Rickey: John still hasn’t answered you, but I’ll hazard a guess that he downloaded and printed the PDF from the White House website and then scanned it.

    And it still shows that Obama was born in Hawaii.

    I suspect you are absolutely correct. And, of course, it will always show Obama was born in Hawaii.

  32. avatar
    nbc September 2, 2013 at 2:07 pm #

    Lupin: I fear you’re missing my point. The idiotic experiment that John embarked on cannot by its very nature prove or disprove anything.

    That’s because the CCP’s ‘forgery’ theory is based on an argument from ignorance. Thus when someone fills in the gaps of ignorance, you cannot rebut the findings by saying “look this Xerox’ does not work… You need to follow the evidence and rebut it.

    Even Zullo recognized how shaky the foundation of the ‘forgery’ claim really was when he challenged people to present a workflow and proudly claiming that ‘noone has stepped up to the plate’… That was then, what will Zullo’s response be today?…

    Will he hide behind ‘criminal investigation’? Or will he address the findings…

    Time shall tell which route they decide to take.

  33. avatar
    nbc September 2, 2013 at 2:08 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy: Aha, we now have a lead on obtaining some authentic Hawaiian security paper 😉

    Such a tease…

  34. avatar
    Suranis September 2, 2013 at 2:32 pm #

    If you took the AP copy which is very highly detailed, printed that off on safety paper then scanned it it would be valid.

    Printing off the White house PDF and then scanning it looking for even more haloy halos because the printout has halos is silly.

    Lupin:

    Merely attempting to duplicate the WH copy of Obama’s BC starting from an already existing printed copy of same (originating from the WH presumably?) strikes me as utterly imbecilistic.

  35. avatar
    nbc September 2, 2013 at 3:26 pm #

    If you took the AP copy which is very highly detailed, printed that off on safety paper then scanned it it would be valid.

    Printing off the White house PDF and then scanning it looking for even more haloy halos because the printout has halos is silly.

    Yes, to the latter. The former would be interesting. There appears to be a 300 ppi version of the AP JPEG available for sale… 28 Mbytes so probably not jpeg… Now that would be a true test…

  36. avatar
    nbc September 2, 2013 at 3:28 pm #

    Location of the image

    Max File Size: 24 MB – 3234px × 2698px • 10.00in. × 8.00in @ 300 ppi

    Uncompressed file sizes and pixel dimensions are approximate. Grayscale images are 1/3 the file size of RGB files. Files downloaded directly from the website are compressed JPEG format. You may request a TIFF file, if available, or a larger interpolated size for your output needs. Please contact Customer Service for associated production fees.

  37. avatar
    JPotter September 2, 2013 at 10:35 pm #

    nbc:
    Location of the image

    Max File Size: 24 MB – 3234px × 2698px • 10.00in. × 8.00in @ 300 ppi

    The image in the Applewhite PDF is the exact same pixel dimension and color depth … but maybe the file at Corbis is higher quality / uncompressed.

    Not worth my cash to find out!

  38. avatar
    JPotter September 2, 2013 at 10:41 pm #

    John’s file is a plain vanilla color scan to PDF … an image and a clipping path in a PDF capsule.

    A scan of a print of the WH PDF. At best, it’s a scan of a print of a scan of a copy. Guaranteed to fail to reproduce them earlier scan, regardless of equipment employed.

    My question is, “Hey, john, what printer (make and model), did you print this on?”

  39. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund September 3, 2013 at 1:28 am #

    Speaking of CreatorTools, I may have discovered something. The following is a comment I made over at Native and Naturalborn Citizenship Explored, prompted by something Hermitian said:

    A forensic examiner must establish the chain of custody of all documents that are utilized in his examinations. Doug Vogt and Paul Irey have carefully done that in spades.

    This comment got me wondering how well a chain of custody Doug Vogt had established, so I read through his report, and noticed something interesting on Page 12:

    I have received other White House PDF files from Graphic artists around the country. As a result I received a PDF Certificate that was put up on the White House web site no more than 10 minutes after it was uploaded. That PDF showed nine layers, no OCR (see Figure 28), Image file created at7:50 am on the 27th (see Figure 29) and finally the PDF file created using Preview (the print driver)and modified on 4/27/11 at 12:09 p.m., which is similar to my file. My conclusion is that this shows the individuals in the White House were “fixing” or changing this forgery as late as 7:50 a.m., an hour before the pre-news conference.

    So, there were three different versions (all with 9 layers, so most likely from the same source). Vogt noted that two of them had Preview as the Creator (the middle one chronologically is the one that is now available for download – the third one is the one Vogt analyzed, and from Page 10 it sounds like it was modified in some manner by another program, since Preview strips out xmp METADATA, and the structure is obviously different). But the first one, according to Vogt downloaded a mere 10 minutes after it was uploaded, does not have a Creator noted. It was created an hour before the news conference. And if you look at Figure 28, you can see that the filter is FlateDecode/DCTDecode/, which is found in the Xerox files, but not the Preview files.

    It could be that the first version was just an earlier Preview version, and the two filters is just the listing of all filters used in the file. But if so, why didn’t he mention that it was Created by Preview, like he did for the other file he received and specifically identified by the fact that it was created using Preview?

    Is it possible that the first file uploaded to the WH website was actually the PDF file before it was touched by Preview? Did it perhaps have a Creator different from Preview?

    Did Doug Vogt have proof that the WH LFBC PDF was originally scanned on a Xerox WorkCentre 7655, and has kept it hidden from us for over two years?

  40. avatar
    nbc September 3, 2013 at 1:43 am #

    Did Doug Vogt have proof that the WH LFBC PDF was originally scanned on a Xerox WorkCentre 7655, and has kept it hidden from us for over two years?

    Let’s see what Vogt has to say about this…

  41. avatar
    JPotter September 3, 2013 at 2:11 am #

    nbc: Let’s see what Vogt has to say about this…

    As usual, at least part of the answer is that Vogt is an idiot. He states that the modify date/time on the final PDF at the WH website is 4/27/11 12:09pm.

    The creation date and modify date in the PDF is given as 2011-04-27T12:09:24Z

    The ‘Z’ indicates Zulu time … it’s a Universal Time Coordinate. That isn’t 4/27/11 12:09pm EDT (3hrs after the presser!). It’s 8:09am EDT, an hour before the press conference.

    When I open the file and check properties, it tells me it was created modified at 4/27/11 7:09am. I’m on Central time, so that’s …. 8:09am Eastern.

    http://www.wrh.noaa.gov/eka/satellite/timetable.html

    As far as his having multiple versions, etc., he states he rec’d “files from graphic artists all over the country”. No provenance, chain of custody, no documentation of whether any were resaved for any reason at any point .. and from his inconsistent, scant detail provided … I can’t figure out what the hell he’s talking about!

    It’d be hilarious if Vogt had something in the way of a “more original” file, but I think he’s got nothing … and judging from his report, he wouldn’t recognize it if he did. Or didn’t.

  42. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy September 3, 2013 at 2:45 am #

    I debunked this back in 2011.

    http://www.obamaconspiracy.org/2011/08/time-anomalies-in-the-white-house-long-form-pdf/

    The way I read the PDF manual, the Z is for Zone and the two digits following are the zone, in this case Z00 or UTC.

    JPotter: As usual, at least part of the answer is that Vogt is an idiot. He states that the modify date/time on the final PDF at the WH website is 4/27/11 12:09pm.

    The creation date and modify date in the PDF is given as 2011-04-27T12:09:24Z

  43. avatar
    nbc September 3, 2013 at 3:13 am #

    goodness sake what a bunch of bungling fools

  44. avatar
    Bovril September 3, 2013 at 4:14 am #

    Hermie REALLY needs to try and grasp what a forensically sound chain of custody for digital data consists of.

    Getting lots of differing copies form lots of different people, none of whom have the foggiest idea of how to demonstrate the provenance and integrity of the data is not sound.

    Does he know the people who sent him the stuff
    Does he know how they got the stuff
    Is there a demonstrable evidence chain of how the data was downloaded
    Is there any proof evidenced that the file was digitally fingerprinted such as via hashing to show the file was not tampered with in transit initially as well as when it was sent to the “expurt”
    Did the “expurt” ensure that the “original” (to him) file was secured, hashed and only forensically identical copies made and utilized for testing

    One could continue, but why bother, they are Birfoons ergo they lie…..

  45. avatar
    Slartibartfast September 3, 2013 at 4:27 am #

    Aren’t you being a little unfair? Sometimes they’re not lying, they’re just too stupid to understand that they are wrong.

    Bovril: One could continue, but why bother, they are Birfoons ergo they lie…..

  46. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund September 3, 2013 at 10:37 am #

    Dr. Conspiracy:
    I debunked this back in 2011.

    http://www.obamaconspiracy.org/2011/08/time-anomalies-in-the-white-house-long-form-pdf/

    The way I read the PDF manual, the Z is for Zone and the two digits following are the zone, in this case Z00 or UTC.

    Interesting – I looked at other Preview files, all of them have the Z00’00’ time zone – in other words, it fails to include the timezone for some reason. But it looks like the first one (chronologically) Vogt looked at does have a timezone (that, or they were making it a 3:09 am – highly unlikely). So the probability of this first file being the ‘missing link’ just went up.

  47. avatar
    JPotter September 3, 2013 at 12:03 pm #

    W. Kevin Vicklund: all of them have the Z00’00′ time zone – in other words, it fails to include the timezone for some reason. But it looks like the first one (chronologically) Vogt looked at does have a timezone

    When UTC is employed, the time zone is provided on the user’s end, allowing an app to report the local time that corresponds to the timestamp, which is Greenwich.

    As far as “the first one” Vogt looked at … are you referring to a figure in his report?

  48. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund September 3, 2013 at 12:30 pm #

    Vogt looked at three different versions. In chronological order: 7:50 am on 4-27-2011 (unknown timezone, unknown CreatorTool), 12:09 pm on 4-27-2011 (UTC, Preview), and 9:58 am on 4-28-2011 (PDT, Preview subsequently modified by unknown program). Figure 28 and 29 show some detail on the first one, figure 30 on the second (which is the one currently available on the WH page), the third one is the one Vogt spent most of his time analyzing. He claims to have downloaded the third from the WH page, but when I tried using the Internet Archive, all the instances I looked at were of the second.

    I am open to a standardized way to reference these three files.

  49. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund September 3, 2013 at 12:34 pm #

    W. Kevin Vicklund: (that, or they were making it a 3:09 am – highly unlikely)

    Make that 3:50, not 3:09. Oops!

  50. avatar
    JPotter September 3, 2013 at 12:46 pm #

    Thanks, I was just wanting to confirm we are seeing the same things in his report … and checking to see if I was missing anything! I see the same. Bu tam still stuck on his saying “I got a bunch of files from a bunch of people”, and then failing to explain his screenshots. Honestly, he’s demonstrating, documenting nothing.

    Vogt is on the West Coast. 7:50am his time is 10:50am in DC, well after the press conference. 4/28 is the next day, and the file currently up is still dated 4/27. If the file was being switched out like that, the birthers would have let us know.

    Until Vogt can document otherwise, I believe what’s in his report is the result of a bunch of knuckleheads pulling “Save As”s. After all, why would he need to “receive files from all over the country”? That indicates his correspondents were saving the file down, through whatever process (perhaps making a YouTube video involving Illustrator! 😉 ), and then forwarding ‘their’ file on to Vogt. Proving … what? How not to document chain of custody?

  51. avatar
    JPotter September 3, 2013 at 12:50 pm #

    W. Kevin Vicklund: Make that 3:50, not 3:09.Oops!

    I’m conjecturing that the 7:50am is user’s local time. In his Fig. 29, he’s looking at File > Properties in some or another app.

  52. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund September 3, 2013 at 1:20 pm #

    Indeed, that’s the problem with timestamps. If you don’t include the timezone, the chronology can be affected when events are taking place across multiple timezones. And of course, Daylight Savings makes things even more complicated.

  53. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund September 3, 2013 at 1:27 pm #

    I note that when I look at the Properties of Preview-generated PDFs, the timestamp does not change to reflect the local timezone. But it does for other files.

    So it’s quite possible that the 7:50 am is in PDT and the PDF METADATA was altered by the way it was downloaded (the way I download files from the internet does not alter the METADATA, but I think I understand how it could happen).

  54. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy September 3, 2013 at 2:52 pm #

    If someone were trying to save a PDF file from the web, and not being careful to preserve internal details, I think most folks would view the file in a web browser first, and then save it. My belief is that in 2011, most browsers would have displayed that file in Adobe Reader, operating as a browser plug in. To save a copy of the file, they would probably use the Save As function of Adobe Reader. When that happens (at least with the current version), Reader rewrites some of the tags.

    Specifically, the President’s White House PDF file as it has been for the last couple of years is a Version 1.3 file and the only tag with “2011” is this one:

    (D:20110427120924Z00'00')

     
    However if you view it in Acrobat Reader and then Save As, what you see is also a version 1.3 file, but with these tags:

     <xmp:createdate>2011-04-27T12:09:24Z</xmp:CreateDate>
            <xmp:creatortool>Preview</xmp:creatortool>
             <xmp:modifydate>2013-09-03T14:40:30-04:00</xmp:modifydate>
             <xmp:metadatadate>2013-09-03T14:40:30-04:00</xmp:metadatadate>

     

    The modify date and time is today. So variants of the President’s PDF with different time stamps COULD be explained by a highly-plausible work flow involving a Web Browser and Acrobat Reader.

    W. Kevin Vicklund: I note that when I look at the Properties of Preview-generated PDFs, the timestamp does not change to reflect the local timezone. But it does for other files.

    So it’s quite possible that the 7:50 am is in PDT and the PDF METADATA was altered by the way it was downloaded (the way I download files from the internet does not alter the METADATA, but I think I understand how it could happen).

  55. avatar
    nbc September 3, 2013 at 3:28 pm #

    If he had a 7:50 document and the document on the server shows 8:09 and if the document showed FlateDecode/DCTDecode then it may very well have been the Xerox document.

    I’d love to find out more about this document. Perhaps it can be located on line somewhere?… Alternatively, Vogt could help us out here.

  56. avatar
    nbc September 3, 2013 at 3:35 pm #

    Imagine that the document was not first previewed and posted ‘upside down’ on the internet…

  57. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy September 3, 2013 at 4:41 pm #

    I couldn’t find it. I could email Vogt and say: “I’ll agree not to call you an idiot or a liar for the balance of the year, if you’ll send me that file.” Nah.

    nbc: I’d love to find out more about this document. Perhaps it can be located on line somewhere?… Alternatively, Vogt could help us out here.

  58. avatar
    nbc September 3, 2013 at 4:44 pm #

    There are quite a few documents on SCRIBD but none appear to be relevant afaict

  59. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund September 3, 2013 at 4:44 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy: However if you view it in Acrobat Reader and then Save As, what you see is also a version 1.3 file, but with these tags:

    2011-04-27T12:09:24Z
    Preview
    2013-09-03T14:40:30-04:00
    2013-09-03T14:40:30-04:00

    The modify date and time is today. So variants of the President’s PDF with different time stamps COULD be explained by a highly-plausible work flow involving a Web Browser and Acrobat Reader.

    Does it also reorder the objects? Hmmm… time for an experiment.

  60. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund September 3, 2013 at 4:51 pm #

    W. Kevin Vicklund: Does it also reorder the objects? Hmmm… time for an experiment.

    Yes. In the same order Vogt listed, in fact. The METADATA format is slightly different, but that appears to be from an update to Adobe. Vogt must have used an older version than I am currently using, which is not surprising, as my version is dated to 2012, and the report was written in 2011.

  61. avatar
    JPotter September 3, 2013 at 5:03 pm #

    W. Kevin Vicklund: Yes.In the same order Vogt listed, in fact.The METADATA format is slightly different, but that appears to be from an update to Adobe.Vogt must have used an older version than I am currently using, which is not surprising, as my version is dated to 2012, and the report was written in 2011.

    Further, if it helps (and I do need to re-confirm this….) I noticed that when opening an unaltered copy of the WH PDF here in Acrobat X, simplistically checking the time via File > Properties, it reflects Greenwich time, 12:09. When i opened it last night at home in Acrobat 7, it rendered the timestamp into local time 7:09 (CDT is -5:00).

  62. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund September 3, 2013 at 5:03 pm #

    Order’s the same but the object number is different – in my test, the metadata was in obj 2 instead of obj 1, and the layers were in obj 15-23 instead of obj 13-21.

  63. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy September 3, 2013 at 5:21 pm #

    One thing I noticed on the various web articles by birthers where they show “pdf information” with Adobe Illustrator, the tags have been rewritten, similar to when I saved the file with Adobe Reader; however, in their examples the create and modify times are the same. So it appears that you really can’t examine PDF metadata in tools capable of altering the PDF because they internally restructure stuff.

    JPotter: Further, if it helps (and I do need to re-confirm this….) I noticed that when opening an unaltered copy of the WH PDF here in Acrobat X, simplistically checking the time via File > Properties, it reflects Greenwich time, 12:09. When i opened it last night at home in Acrobat 7, it rendered the timestamp into local time 7:09 (CDT is -5:00).

  64. avatar
    JPotter September 3, 2013 at 5:29 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy: So it appears that you really can’t examine PDF metadata in tools capable of altering the PDF because they internally restructure stuff.

    Dunno, haven’t tested that, but it makes sense. Metadata is read in and interpreted by the application. When I want to read the metadata itself, i use a simple text editor. In this instance I was opening in Acrobat trying to judge how likely it was that Vogt had fooled himself.

    It’s extremely likely. Duh 😉

  65. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund September 3, 2013 at 5:30 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy:
    One thing I noticed on the various web articles by birthers where they show “pdf information” with Adobe Illustrator, the tags have been rewritten, similar to when I saved the file with Adobe Reader; however, in their examples the create and modify times are the same. So it appears that you really can’t examine PDF metadata in tools capable of altering the PDF because they internally restructure stuff.

    You can, at least for some, but you have to be careful not to save.

  66. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy September 3, 2013 at 5:31 pm #

    I do so regret not having a decent Internet connection April 27, 2011.

  67. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund September 3, 2013 at 5:33 pm #

    This may also explain why Gallups said Zullo said they had metadata info that proved that it was made using Photoshop and Illustrator.

  68. avatar
    JPotter September 3, 2013 at 5:44 pm #

    W. Kevin Vicklund:
    This may also explain why Gallups said Zullo said they had metadata info that proved that it was made using Photoshop and Illustrator.

    Even after all this time, I still have that reflex reaction that says, “Oh, c’mon! They are that stupid!”

    Apparently, birfers ain’t the onliest ones that ne’er learn nuthin’!

  69. avatar
    justlw September 3, 2013 at 8:46 pm #

    I’m surprised Vogt hasn’t noticed this about the timestamp. …or has he?

    Year: 2011
    Month: 04
    Day: 27
    Time: 1209 and 24 seconds — that’s 4/10 of a minute, or 1209.4.

    Remove the decimal point from the time, and you have 12094.

    Add the last digit of the year 2011, and that’s 12095, of course.

    Subtract the day of the month, 27, and that’s…

    12068

    “About the author: Douglas Vogt is an amature geologist and science philosopher and writer”

  70. avatar
    gorefan September 3, 2013 at 8:57 pm #

    Dr. Conspiracy: Aha, we now have a lead on obtaining some authentic Hawaiian security paper

    As a suggestion, when you make your authentic Hawaiian birth certificate, could you put some pencil marks along the very right hand edge of the paper? That way when Preview creates the clipping mask it will hide the information.

  71. avatar
    Dr. Conspiracy September 3, 2013 at 11:10 pm #

    Good suggestion. It probably won’;t be me making the test document, though. I’m playing facilitator and paper broker.

    gorefan: As a suggestion, when you make your authentic Hawaiian birth certificate, could you put some pencil marks along the very right hand edge of the paper?That way when Preview creates the clipping mask it will hide the information.

  72. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund September 4, 2013 at 10:06 am #

    Wait, he’s that Vogt? No wonder he was leaping to all sorts of weird connections.

  73. avatar
    JPotter September 4, 2013 at 10:47 am #

    W. Kevin Vicklund:
    Wait, he’s that Vogt?No wonder he was leaping to all sorts of weird connections.

    Yep, he’s that Doug Vogt. The first hot load of birtherism I came across was his May 2011 report, that Corsi supposedly sent to the FBI, getting the Faithful all in a lather. I was completely unaware of birtherism, and seeing his work through virgin eyes had me thinking I was in the Twilight Zone … in what kind of world is such shoddiness taken seriously?!?

    Looking into Vogt, it all fell into place. I posted a review of WTBC? at Amazon, that was, honestly, a review of Corsi’s expert du jour, Vogt. It actually got a few of the birther curious to think. But the hardcore just seethed, “This isn’t about us, it’s about HIM (Obama) !!!”

    Yep, it’s all about them, how unhinged they are and the places that takes them 😉

  74. avatar
    W. Kevin Vicklund September 4, 2013 at 11:35 am #

    gorefan: As a suggestion, when you make your authentic Hawaiian birth certificate, could you put some pencil marks along the very right hand edge of the paper?That way when Preview creates the clipping mask it will hide the information.

    It still needs to be inset, because of edge erase. Also, the printable area of the current printer needs to be set to allow for some distance between the edge erase and the clipping mask.

  75. avatar
    gorefan September 4, 2013 at 11:39 am #

    W. Kevin Vicklund: Wait, he’s that Vogt? No wonder he was leaping to all sorts of weird connections.

    My favorite is his explanation of Santa Cruz’s Mystery Spot.

    http://www.vectorpub.com/Gravitational_Mystery_Spot.html

  76. avatar
    G September 4, 2013 at 9:13 pm #

    Further proof that Vogt is a total quack…

    gorefan: My favorite is his explanation of Santa Cruz’s Mystery Spot.

    http://www.vectorpub.com/Gravitational_Mystery_Spot.html