Monday, 30 January 2006

Mom_airportI had a layover at the Denver International Airport for several hours today, so I called my mom, who lives over near Boulder. She jumped in the car and drove over to the airport for coffee and lunch.

The Pur la France chicken pot pie in the main terminal upper level is highly recommended. And so are those deals where they announce they have over-booked and will give a round trip ticket to anyone who will volunteer to take the next flight. I got lunch with my mom, a free round trip ticket, first class seat for no extra charge on the next flight, and on top of that I am able to work right now in the airport during business hours instead of being on an airplane during the time that counts. So I was able to test a very cool new demo version of one of our security software products and test market it to my mom. She provides good feedback.

I sent her a Logitech Quickcam Pro the other day so we can do video instant messaging and calls with Live Messenger v8, and I was showing her how to use the notebook camera I bought for my end of the connection. That's her right there, snapshot taken with my notebook Logitech cam (which is a great little camera).

Well, off to North Carolina... Then back home to Portland.

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Monday, 30 January 2006 11:25:01 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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Security training - especially good, quality training - can be hard to come by without traveling somewhere and paying some hefty class fees. That's why my eyes opened wide when I found the Carnegie Mellon University/CERT Virtual Training Environment, which has a whole slew of great documents, tutorials and other resources that can enable anyone to learn a whole lot about computer, network and application security and forensics.

The Virtual Training Environment (VTE) is a Web-based knowledge library for Information Assurance, computer forensics and incident response, and other IT-related topics. VTE is produced by the Software Engineering Institute at Carnegie Mellon University.

What specifically is available? The VTE houses four types of training materials:

  • Documents: Whitepapers, handbooks, instruction guides, and other written material related to one or more IT topics such as information assurance, computer forensics, or incident response.
  • Demos: Demos are narrated recordings of instructor’s desktops. They enable users to watch and listen as an instructor describes the activities he or she is performing on a particular machine or piece of software.
  • Lectures/Modules: Modules are actual class instruction that has been video captured and transcribed. Modules are synchronized to a PowerPoint slideshow. Users can navigate through the module using the slide title or using VCR-like controls.
  • Labs: Labs are hands-on training exercises in IT-related topics using virtual machines. Each Lab has an accompanying walkthrough document and can be reserved and ‘taken’ using the browser.

All of the materials except the labs are available to the public, without having to sign up or anything. The hands-on labs are available only to organizations that have a relationship set up with CERT. There's not any obvious information on the site that indicates how to establish that relationship. but I did a Google search and found a brief announcement on the Carnegie Mellon University site indicating that emailing the VTE support email address (which is available on the VTE site link, below) is the way to find out more.

Access the CERT VTE at:

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Monday, 30 January 2006 10:00:07 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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 Sunday, 29 January 2006

The Microsoft Download Center has a new audio podcast available (MP3 and WMA formats are listed) titled "How Microsoft IT Implements Encryption Using SQL Server 2005."

Podcasts appear to be a new thing there (first one was posted on January 19th), although I am not sure the technical name of "podcast" is accurate in this case, since I don't find a RSS Subscription feed anywhere that points to the files, and that's kind of half of what makes it a podcast. If anyone can find a RSS feed for these, please let me know.

But at any rate, there's some good content there. If you're an IT pro looking for some good drive time geek out audio, click here to search for podcasts on Microsoft Downloads. I'm grabbing "Podcasts: How Microsoft Information Security Protects Critical Information Assets" for my flight to North Carolina on Monday. Between that and the Battlestar Galactica season one video, I think I'll have plenty of content to keep me busy between powerpoint deck edits.

(via Chris Pirillo)

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AudioBlogging | IT Security | Tech
Sunday, 29 January 2006 22:34:47 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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Ask-A-Ninja-CoverArtDude. You think Robert Hamburger's the bomb? (You're right if you do, by the way)

Well then you MUST check out the Ask a Ninja video podcast blog thingie.

"You've got questions. Ninja's got answers."

Go here, don't delay:

Hahah. Sweet, super sweet. You can also subscribe to the video podcast in iTunes.

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Sunday, 29 January 2006 00:04:11 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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 Saturday, 28 January 2006

CNN has an article that covers the 25 worst words you can use in your resume. Why are they so bad? In a nutshell, because:

a) everyone uses them, so there's no originality, and
b) they don't really mean anything

Seriously. Read the article and then do something about it. I've looked at a couple hundred resumes in the past month or so and this article is spot on. Good advice that needs to be read by all.

Resumes are (or, rather should be) about standing out from the crowd on the merits and saying something real, so take the time to do it well. That's what the potential employer is looking for.

Oh, and never be your own resume editor. Always rely on a hard-core, ruthless and smart copy editor to point out your flaws. And if that makes you uncomfortable, find a therapist or trusted friend to help you with that character problem and you'll not only get over that hump, you'll also probably interview better.

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Saturday, 28 January 2006 21:49:17 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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If you're a geek and you don't know what Gnomedex is, you're truly missing out on something amazing. It's an annual conference, spawned from the brain of Chris Pirillo, and it's an event where a whole slew of the ultimate geeks and even some nerds gather and talk about all kinds of cool stuff. For example, last year IE7 was demo'ed for the first time at Gnomedex, where the IE team announced and showed off RSS integration in the browser and Longhorn/Vista OS. And many, many other interesting presentations were made. But most importantly, the people you meet are awesome.

There are 300 seats in the main hall. 100 are already sold. If you're going (or think you might be), act now! If you know a true geek and want to give him or her a great gift, a Gnomedex ticket and a trip up to Seattle is a terrific thing to do for someone.

Be there and be square. Word.

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Geek Out | GnomeDex | Random Stuff
Saturday, 28 January 2006 21:25:51 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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