Sunday, 27 July 2008
Over on the Internet Evolution site I recently wrote an article discussing the fact that MySpace is becoming an OpenID provider. Of note is the fact that they will be provider-only, and not a relying party, at least initially. This is a trend we've seen with other big companies like Yahoo!, and many of us are not-too-patiently waiting for these companies to start trusting and relying upon other organizations, so the utopia of user-controlled Internet single-sign-on can become a reality.

That begs the question, "What will it take to achieve the level of trust and confidence needed to make it easy for these big provider companies to join the relying-party crowd?" I'm certain there are plenty of detailed conversations and that things are being hammered out and actively discussed behind the scenes at all these major companies, but I tend to think about these things out loud anyhow.

So, I hope you'll read my article and thoughts over on Internet Evolution and that you'll take advantage of the opportunity to comment there. I'd be interested to know what you think.

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IT Security | Tech
Sunday, 27 July 2008 09:56:08 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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 Saturday, 26 July 2008

The DNS vulnerability discovered earlier this year by Dan Kaminsky, and recently patched by DNS software providers in an unprecedented cross-vendor cooperation, has graduated from vulnerability to exploit-in-the-wild.

According to Kaminsky, 52% of the DNS servers on the Internet are still vulnerable, better than the number of exploitable systems just a few weeks ago when the patches were released by all the vendors.

Kaminsky has written up a plain-language helper guide to explain the problem to non-technical (read: management and decision-making) people. There's also a Black Hat webcast with Kaminsky available where he details the vulnerability and discusses the fixes.

Read more at Ars Technica.

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IT Security | Tech
Saturday, 26 July 2008 11:38:05 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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 Friday, 25 July 2008

On the Google blog, Jesse Alpert & Nissan Hajaj posted an article today called "We knew the web was big..." which indicates Google engineers recently noted that the number of web pages on the Internet passed the one-trillion mark. That's 1,000,000,000,000 pages. For those who don't process the impact of adding that many groups of zeros at a time, think about this:

  • Take 1,000 pages.
  • Multiply that 1,000 times and think about just how big that is.
  • Multiply that amount another thousand times, and stop to think about how big that is.
  • Now, again take that huge amount and multiply it by 1,000. Now you're at a trillion pages.

That's freakin' huge, really. If you started counting from one to a trillion and counted one number per second, it would take you almost 317 centuries before you were done (and by the way I asked google to help me figure that out). That's almost 32,000 years. It almost completely boggles the mind. That's a lot of web pages.

Google also notes that every day, the number of pages on the web increases by several billion.

Alpert and Hajaj have another explanation to try to explain the sheer size of the Internet today:

Today, Google downloads the web continuously, collecting updated page information and re-processing the entire web-link graph several times per day. This graph of one trillion URLs is similar to a map made up of one trillion intersections. So multiple times every day, we do the computational equivalent of fully exploring every intersection of every road in the United States. Except it'd be a map about 50,000 times as big as the U.S., with 50,000 times as many roads and intersections.

That's really just amazing to me. Wow. And now you know why we call this the Information Age. A lot of that information may be inaccurate, pornographic or otherwise useless, but some of it's good, and the sheer immensity of it is truly awesome.

TechCrunch has a slightly different take, calling the Google post misleading. The end of the TechCrunch post alludes to some news coming next week that might turn Internet indexing on it's head. Interesting - Is there some big search engine news in the works? Is it Microsoft's BrowseRank or something else? Stay tuned.

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Geek Out | Random Stuff | Tech
Friday, 25 July 2008 20:50:06 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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Apple has released a version of the iPhone 2 software (v2.1) to beta programmers along with an updated SDK. The firmware release supposedly includes additional core GPS features that allow computation and use of direction of travel and speed. This is good for those of us waiting patiently for turn-by-turn direction software for the phone.

Apparently there's also some functionality that enables apps to process push notifications in the background, as well. I, for one, hope for more background processing capabilities in general in the app arena. Would be nice to have Pandora keep playing music when exiting, or not to have to reload any of several twitter clients every time I click a Safari link and want to go back.

Read the story at Mac Rumors and Gear Live.

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Friday, 25 July 2008 00:07:17 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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 Thursday, 24 July 2008

Dunno about twice as fast, but will it blend? Blendtec (of course) decided to find out. Found via the Google Mobile blog.

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Humor | Mobile | Random Stuff | Tech
Thursday, 24 July 2008 10:48:16 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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Over at OSCON just a short time ago, the Open Web Foundation was just announced. Eran Hammer-Lahav just blogged about it at the OWF site. This is great news, and should go a long way to enabling better community development of standards and specs in a non-proprietary fashion.

This morning at OSCON, David Recordon announced the creation of the Open Web Foundation. The Open Web Foundation is an attempt to create a home for community-driven specifications. Following the open source model similar to the Apache Software Foundation, the foundation is aimed at building a lightweight framework to help communities deal with the legal requirements necessary to create successful and widely adopted specification.

The presentation slides are also available in Eran's post.

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Thursday, 24 July 2008 08:55:04 (Pacific Standard Time, UTC-08:00)
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