龙八8国际

          
          

                    Archive for Nov 2007


                    PayPal Really Makes Me Mad!

                    I got an email from PayPal today: We have reason to believe that your account was accessed by a third party. We have limited access to sensitive PayPal account features in case your account has been accessed by an unauthorized third party. We understand that having limited access can be an inconvenience, but protecting your account is our primary concern. Well, it wasn't a third person, it was me. I used PayPal to collect registration fees for IIW (happening next week). All the money we have to pay vendors, etc. is in that account and I can't get to
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                    Pakistan is Iran 30 Years Ago

                    Here's a very informative--and scary--analysis from David Ignatius about how our experience in Iran 30 years ago ought to inform our interactions with Pakistan today.
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                    The Nerd Handbook

                    If you're a nerd, or live with one, Michael Lopp, writing as Rands, has a very funny piece you should read. The start: A nerd needs a project because a nerd builds stuff. All the time. Those lulls in the conversation over dinner? That's the nerd working on his project in his head.
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                    Using CardSpace in Low-Value, Low-Overhead Situations

                    Kim Cameron has a nice post, including a screencast on how to use CardSpace in low-value, low-overhead installations like blogs. (By "low-value" I mean that the cost of a bad authorization decision isn't high, e.g. a spam comment).
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                    Scoble on Tech at Fast Company

                    Scoble is doing a video column at Fast Company called Scoble on Tech. Interesting format: Scoble and Ed Sussman from Fast Company are chatting on video. There's pretty high production value--it's edited down so that you see each person when they talk and there are out takes to sites they talk about and graphics. I just heard about it from Brad Baldwin while we were meeting about Podcamp SLC (Jan 26--more later). I watched the show on Open Social and learned some things. There's definitely meat here. Still, I'm not convinced that lots of people are going to take
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                    The Gang is Back!

                    The Gillmor Gang is back and still the same. If you loved if before, you'll still love it. I laughed out loud twice in the first 15 minutes of show II. It's only on Facebook, so you'll have to join if you're not already a member. If you do, feel free to add me as a friend.
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                    CTO Breakfast Report

                    As we did introductions today, a surprising number of people were remodeling their basement (time of the year, I guess). Consequently we ended up talking about home theaters set ups for the first part of the meeting. Interesting tidbit: maximum run length for HDMI is 50 feet. We talked about Facebook Beacon for a while. There was much more discussion of social networks in general than of Beacon for a while, but then we dove into the meat of the power of recommendations and the vast value in coloring the social graph with meta data--including trust data. Kids see
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                    Facebook Beacon Demo

                    If you've been curious about privacy concerns over Facebook Beacon, this demo shows how it works and why some are concerned. I think Moveon.org is totally the wrong organization to take this on, but whatever. If you're a Firefox user (one more good reason to switch), these instructions show how to use the BlockSite plugin to kill Beacon. This will still allow you to use the rest of Facebook.
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                    HQ9+

                    Here is proof positive that the utility of a domain specific language depends on the domain.
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                    CTO Breakfast This Thursday

                    The last CTO Breakfast of the year will be held this Thursday at 8am in the Novell Cafeteria. Despite it's name, you don't have to be a CTO to attend--just interested in technology, where it's headed, and the problems of starting and building a high-tech business in Utah. If you're reading this, you're invited. Be sure to subscribe to the Google calendar for future events. Here's the next several: Jan 24 (Thursday) Feb 28 (Thursday) Mar 27 (Thursday) For directions, see the CTO Breakfast page.
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                    Stop Complaining and Starting Building

                    Doc, as usual, hits the nail on the head in explaining how to solve the privacy-problem-de-juer: Facebook's advertising platform. To wit: If we want our reach to truly exceed Facebook's grasp, we can't just tell Facebook to stop grasping. We have do deals on our terms and not just theirs. We have to have real relationships and not just systems on the sell side built only to "manage" us, mostly by minimizing human contact. Perhaps most of all, we need to come up with systems that help demand find supply, rather than just ones that help supply find (or
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                    Facebook Beacon: The Fine Line Between Advertising and Recommendations

                    I posted a piece at Between the Lines on the fine line between advertising and recommendations. The basic idea: Facebook has missed out on a tremendous opportunity to use recommendation permissioning to annotate their social graph with trust information--that's an order of magnitude more valuable than the graph itself.
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                    Internet Safety Podcast

                    One of my colleagues at BYU, Chuck Knutson, has launched the Internet Safety podcast. If you're a parent wondering about tools and techniques for guiding your children's exploring, then check it out.
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                    Leopard and Mail

                    I was forced to upgrade to Leopard last week by a Tiger update gone bad. I'm not convinced I can blame Apple--I've updated my machine hundreds of times before with nary a fault and I was, without thinking about what was going on, installing a monitor and plugging and unplugging USB devices while the update was underway. I might have messed something up. In any event, I had a problem that I couldn't find enough information to fix (something to do with a file locking problem in the IPv6 code, but I couldn't figure out the file name). Reinstalling
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                    Virtualization Security Threats

                    Laurianne McLaughlin has an excellent article in CIO magazine about security threats in virtual machines and what you can do now to mitigate them. One that caught my eye was No. 4, "Understand the Value of an Embedded Hypervisor". The reason I was tuned into that was a conversation I had with Gregory Ness on a Technometria podcast where he went into some detail about the role of a hypervisor in VM security. As an aside, am I the only one who finds the interstitial page ads that IDG is placing in this online magazines completely annoying? I wouldn't
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                    Free Ringtones on iPhone

                    The 1.1.2 update to the iPhone quietly added the ability to add free custom ringtones to the iPhone. The ringtones can be made from any (non-DRM'd) ACC file on your computer. I discovered this accidentally while downloading SoundSource from Rogue Amoeba. They had a new freebie called MakeiPhoneRingtone. Just drop an ACC sound file under 40 seconds onto the app and it puts it in iTunes, ready to be downloaded to the iPhone the next time you sync. Works like a charm.
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                    I'm on YDN Theater

                    While I was at Defrag, I sat down with Jeremy Zawodny for an interview on the Yahoo! Developer Network Theater. You can watch it here: Alternately, you can download it. We talked about a variety of topics, including the idea behind my new startup, Kynetx.
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                    The State of FOSS in Utah

                    Clint Savage was the speaker at tonight's PLUG meeting. Clint is the founder of the Utah Open Source Foundation. UTOSF was the power behind the recent Utah Open Source Conference. Clint ran down a long list of activities that UTOSF is sponsoring to promote open source in Utah. Some of the most promising, IMO, were promoting open source at local colleges and universities and open source family day. BYU's UUG sponsors Linux install fests, but I'm generally disappointed by the lack of interest in open source among CS students. They mentioned the Home Runs in IT Conference that will
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                    Kinetic Energy, Flywheels, and Friction

                    I read this essay on Kinetic Energy, Flywheels, and Friction at A List Apart when it first came out last year. I just reread it. Here's the basic idea: The reason you have a Web site is to get visitors to take some action. In order to induce them to do so, you have to give them enough momentum to get them through the process--with all its attendant friction. There's real power in this. Retail Web sites, for example, are full of friction and rely on their customer's determination to get the product to overcome that friction. Too often
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                    Exploiting Online Games

                    I had a fascinating discussion with Gary McGraw last week about his latest book Exploiting Online Games: Cheating Massively Distributed Systems. For the next two days I was telling everyone about it. The issues surrounding online game security are representative of the kinds of security issues that plague any large-scale distributed system. I heartily recommend the interview and the book to anyone who plays games or is just interested in the larger security picture.
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                    30 Inch Dell Monitors Are a Steal

                    I've got two Apple 30: displays--one at home and one in my office at BYU. They're lovely. I can't imagine programming without one. All that real estate makes a huge difference in productivity. Last week I picked up three Dell 3007WFP 30 inch monitors. They're a steal; Dell has them priced less than $1200 (compare that to the Apple educational price of $1600). A c|net head to head review puts them neck and neck. I'm sure the esthetics won't be the same, but I can live with that. Why the price drop? Dell's got a new 30 inch display
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                    ParenScript: A Lispy JavaScript Generator

                    Feedback on my interview with Bruce Johnson on the Google Web Toolkit led to ParenScript, a little language for Lisp that generates JavaScript. From the intro: ParenScript is a small Lispy language that can be compiled to JavaScript. It also comes with client-side HTML and CSS generation libraries. This approach simplifies the development of web applications by enabling all components of the application to be written in Lisp, so that HTML, CSS and JavaScript code can all be generated with the full power of Lisp and its macros. At the same time, ParenScript strives to produce maximally readable JavaScript
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                    Barbie Key Signings

                    What's hot for Christmas 2007? Barbie key signings.
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                    November PLUG on the State of FOSS in Utah

                    The Provo Linux User's Group meeting for November will be on the 14th at 7:30pm. Omniture is hosting, so head on over to Canyon Park Technology Center. I'm going to try to make it. Here's the announcement: This is an exciting month for PLUG. We have a new meeting location: Omniture. Never before has the local FOSS community been stronger. The reach of groups like PLUG is growing beyond just a few computer hobbyists. Linux is now becoming the premiere solution for countless business tasks, rather than just an alternative one. If there was any doubt, it was dispelled
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                    Starting a High Tech Business: Commitment

                    I'm starting a new business called Kynetx (nothing to see there yet). As I go through some of the things I do, I'm planning to blog them. The whole series will be here. This is the fourth installment. You may find my efforts instructive. Or you may know a better way--if so, please let me know! Tuesday night, after Defrag was over, I was at dinner with Andre Durand, the CEO of Ping ID. At one point we were talking about startups, something Andre has a lot of experience in, and he spoke about commitment in a way that
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                    Spending Loyalty

                    Radiohead is earning customer loyalty while Apple spends it.
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                    New Conferences on IT Conversations

                    This week, I published shows on IT Conversations from two new series: the Singularity Summit and RailsConf. Here are the show descriptions. Rodney Brooks - The Singularity: A Period Not An Event - In the keynote presentation from the 2007 Singularity Summit, Rodney Brooks, Panasonic Professor of Robotics at MIT, explores many possible singularity futures based on decades of experience researching, inventing, and commercializing robots. During this presentation Dr. Brooks examines why we need robotics and AI as well as how the singularity will not be like it is portrayed by Hollywood. David Heinemeier Hansson - Rails 2007 Keynote
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                    The New Federated Identity

                    I've been asked to put together a feature for InfoWorld on user-centric identity. The feature will include written text, a couple of podcasts, and some flash animations. I'm a little excited about the opportunity to use these different media to communicate the idea of this important topic to business. The podcasts will be 15-20 minutes each on the following topics: Podcast on user control and laws of identity Podcast on state of identity in enterprise I've already got these scheduled with guests, so please don't ask to be on the podcast. The initial outline for the written part is:
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                    Defrag Closing: Relevance and Information Overload

                    Paul Kedrosky, moderator of the closing panel at Defrag.(click to enlarge) "Everytime I try to get more personalized information, I end up with more celebrity obituaries in my newsfeed. Why is that?" asks Paul Kedrosky, moderator of the closing panel at Defrag. At issue: is information overload real, or is it something that people at Defrag (and other's like us) invent so we can have a problem to solve? Is this a problem a relatively few people care about because only a few people are really all that connected or involved? People are fundamentally lazy. Most people aren't going
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                    Top Ten IT Conversations Shows for October 2007

                    Here are the top ten shows on IT Conversations (by download) for October 2007: Bruce Johnson - Technometria: Google Web Toolkit (Rating: 4.20)Recently, Google released from beta its Google Web Toolkit. Google Web Toolkit (GWT) is an open source Java software development framework that makes writing AJAX applications like Google Maps and Gmail easy for developers who don't speak browser quirks as a second language. Phil and Scott talk to Bruce Johnson, one if its co-creators. In addition to discussing its development, Bruce gives a number of examples of projects that took advantage of GWT. Robert Trivers - What
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                    Andrew McAfee on the Exploitation of Ties

                    Andrew McAfee of Harvard Business School(click to enlarge) I'm listening to Andrew McAfee's keynote at Defrag. He's talking about how social software can be used inside the enterprise. One of the key tasks facing proponents of social software is to articulate the value. Any worker has relationships of various strengths with co-workers. They might have strong ties to a core group who they work with all the time and weaker ties to others. There are still others who have the potential to provide value through relationship whom the worker doesn't know yet. The prototypical tool for strongly tied teams
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                    Free Markets: Your Choice of Silo

                    Doc is giving his riff on VRM. It's new and different every time. No one does this sort of thing as well as Doc. With respect to VRM, he quotes Whitman: And I know I am solid and sound;\t To me the converging objects of the universe perpetually flow;\t All are written to me, and I must get what the writing means. I know I am deathless;\t I know this orbit of mine cannot be swept by the carpenter's compass;\t I know I shall not pass like a child's carlacue cut with a burnt stick at night.\t I know
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                    Dick Hardt on Trust

                    Dick Hardt is giving a new talk at Defrag. He's talking about trust; his thesis is that trust defrags identity. Much of what's he's saying is right in line with the reputation work (PDF) my students and I have been working on. He makes a critical link to identity: identifiers bind personas together to increase trust. Intuition doesn't work well online because of the absence of clues and the ability to create false context. Institutions haven't done much better. He brings up another key concept this is largely about accountability. Key point: binding behavior from multiple sites together leads
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                    Defrag: Making Interactions Explicit

                    Eric Nolin is being very explicit about sponsor talks at Defrag. No harm there--in fact, I like it. The sponsor talk is clearly labeled as such and right before lunch. Today, it's Shane Pearson, from BEA. I interviewed him for Technometria (as part of our coverage of Defrag) a few weeks ago. Shane said a couple of things that piqued my interest. One was referring to a McKinsey study on interactions on the workplace. He put of a graph about the evolution of managed assets showing that capital was the earliest and easiest asset to manage. Information was second
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                    Defrag: Web 2.0 and Security

                    I just put a piece on Michael Barrett's (CISO, Paypal) presentation at Defrag. He started by saying that Web 2.0 scares the hell out of him.
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                    Forgetfulness as a Virtue

                    Joshua Schachter, the creator of del.icio.us, just mentioned that one of the key methods we have for dealing with too much information is forgetting. He said it in the context of talking about how every time he finds an interesting blog and adds it to his feed reader, he has one more thing to do. Not adding it right away and only adding it if he remembers and goes back saves that effort. This is a critical survival function in the modern world, I think. We have to be willing to let things fall off our plates--and be more
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                    At Defrag

                    I'm in Denver at Defrag. Eric Nolan, Brad Feld, and Phil Becker have organized it to discuss "the internet-based tools that transform loads of information into layers of knowledge, and accelerate the "aha" moment. Defrag is about the space that lives in between knowledge management, "social" networking, collaboration and business intelligence." I missed Dave Weinberger's keynote. I didn't want to--he's an engaging speaker and this performance must have been great: I walked in as someone commented that she never expected to come to a tech confernce and cry in the first sessions. But to make it I would have
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                    Domain Specific Languages

                    Recently, I've been designing a domain specific language for Kynetx, the start-up I'm working on. When you tell someone you're designing a language, the usual reaction is incredulity. "Why would you design your own language?!?!" they say. I'm here to tell you why. First, let me say that I'm a big believer in notation. Using the right notation to describe and think about a problem is a powerful tool--one that we're too eager to give up it seems. People seem to believe that (a) all languages are pretty much the same and (b) the world has enough notations. While
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                    Why Can't My Car Tell the Speed Limit?

                    I got a ticket on my way to the Guy Kawasaki event yesterday--34 in a 25. I wasn't trying to speed--I simply wasn't paying attention. Here's my question: why can't my car tell the speed limit and warn me when I'm over? Seems simple enough to do in theory. You wouldn't need to annotate the roads physically, you could do it with GPS and maps. I'd pay for this service.
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                    Label that Brick!

                    Don Reisinger hates power bricks. More specifically, he hates that he can't tell which brick goes with which product. Years ago, I got frustrated not knowing what brick went with what device when I pulled them out of a box and hit on a simple strategy. Every time I open a new box of anything, the first thing I do is label the brick. It's saved me a ton of frustration.
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                    Guy Kawasaki in Utah

                    Guy Kawasaki was in Utah speaking on the Art of Innovation. Guy is a humorous speaker. I enjoyed it in spite of the fact that I've heard the talk several times before--on IT Conversations. I listened to the talk twice as we were getting ready to publish it and so I could finish most of Guy's sentences. Nothing wrong with that. There were a few unique elements to the talk that Guy threw in and he responded well to some technical difficulties with the mic. It was a shame that it happened, but didn't detract too much. I also
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