Posts Tagged ‘Dave’

Is the Flickr API a National Treasure?

December 16th, 2012 12:20 admin View Comments


First time accepted submitter somekind writes “Over the past few months Twitter imposed restrictions on the use of its client API, and Facebook shut down the facial recognition API supporting after acquiring the company. Mathew Ingram noted these and other examples (Google starting to charge for high-volume use of Google Maps) as evidence that ‘open APIs’ published by a single vendor can’t be trusted by outside developers. Worried about the possibility that Yahoo! might do the same with Flickr, Dave Winer has just launched a petition to Obama asking the President to declare the Flickr API a National Historic Landmark, thus (by Dave’s reckoning) legally protected from arbitrary withdrawal or wholesale changes by its corporate masters.”

Source: Is the Flickr API a National Treasure?

CmdrTaco Looks Back on Fifteen Years of Slashdot

October 3rd, 2012 10:28 admin View Comments

CmdrTaco sent in a link to his weblog post looking back on his experience running Slashdot for fifteen years: “For me the story of Slashdot utterly inseparable from my own life. I built it while still in college: when normal people did their homework or had personal lives, I spent my evenings making icons in The Gimp, crafting perl in vim or writing a new story to share with my friends. I’ll never forgot the nights spent tailing the access_log and celebrating a line from or with friends like Jeff, Dave, Nate, and Kurt.”

Source: CmdrTaco Looks Back on Fifteen Years of Slashdot

Global Bacon Shortage ‘Unavoidable’

September 25th, 2012 09:17 admin View Comments


New submitter The name is Dave. Ja debuts on the front page with the most dismal news of our time: “This is truly ‘Stuff That Matters’. Where would civilization be today without bacon? I don’t mean to be alarmist but … sound the alarms! This is big — it could lead to civil unrest.” Yes, a bacon shortage. Hopefully what bacon there is will be more delicious after being fed with gummi worms.

Source: Global Bacon Shortage ‘Unavoidable’

Doctorow on the War on General Purpose Computing

August 26th, 2012 08:40 admin View Comments


Cory Doctorow has posted the content of his talk delivered at Google this month on what he calls the coming civil war over general purpose computing. He neatly crystallizes the problem with certain types of (widely called-for) regulation of devices and the software they run — and they all run software. The ability to stop a general purpose computer from doing nearly anything (running code without permission from the mothership, or requiring an authorities-only engine kill switch, or preventing a car from speeding away), he says boils down to a demand: “Make me a general-purpose computer that runs all programs except for one program that freaks me out.” “But there’s a problem. We don’t know how to make a computer that can run all the programs we can compile except for whichever one pisses off a regulator, or disrupts a business model, or abets a criminal. The closest approximation we have for such a device is a computer with spyware on it— a computer that, if you do the wrong thing, can intercede and say, ‘I can’t let you do that, Dave.’”

Source: Doctorow on the War on General Purpose Computing

These People are Ruining the Future of the Internet

April 27th, 2012 04:01 admin View Comments

The U.S. House of Representatives passed the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act (CISPA) last night by a vote of 248-168. In the days leading up to the vote, opposition lined up drummed up awareness for the bill while the groups supporting the bill steadily pushed ahead. In the end, 112 Congress members cosponsored the bill. Major technology corporations also lent support along with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. Did your representative support CISPA? See the list below. 

Top photo, clockwise from top left: Benjamin Quayle, Michele Bachmann, Mike Rogers, Darrell Issa, Peter King, Sue Wilkins Myrick, Dutch Ruppersberger, Greg Walden.

Twenty major tech companies have sent letters supporting CISPA along with major U.S. industry trade groups including the Bay Area Council, TechAmerica, 11 financial trade associations and TechNet. These companies and groups represent billions of dollars in American industry, dollars that members of Congress will need to eventually be re-elected. Below we have aggregated the names of every single Congressional cosponsor of CISPA along with the links to their personal websites. The list is organized by date of stated support of the bill, starting with the first round of Congress members that supported the bill when it was introduced in November 2011. The first round had 28 official cosponsors. The majority of the 112 sponsors offered support from January 18 through April 17.

CISPA went through the mark up process in the Committee on Intelligence, of which the bills two primary authors, Representatives Mike Rogers and Dutch Ruppersberger, are members. Amendments included language the would protect citizens from damage caused by the sharing of information as well as adding the term “utilities” to the list of private sector industries that can share cyber threat information with the federal government. The addition of utilities, such as water, electric and gas companies, was seen as a boost to the bill as such utilities are part of the critical infrastructure of the United States and are targets of malicious hackers. The House of Representatives then voted for the amendments before passing the final bill and sending it to the Senate and ultimately the White House.  Is your Congress person on the list? See who supported CISPA below.

Original Supporters (November 30, 2011)

Rep Ruppersberger, C. A. Dutch [MD-2]

Rep King, Peter T. NY-3]

Rep Upton, Fred [MI-6] 

Rep Myrick, Sue Wilkins [NC-9]

Rep Langevin, James R. [RI-2] 

Rep Conaway, K. Michael [TX-11] 

Rep Miller, Jeff [FL-1] 

Rep Boren, Dan [OK-2]

Rep LoBiondo, Frank A. [NJ-2]

Rep Chandler, Ben [KY-6]

Rep Nunes, Devin [CA-21]

Rep Gutierrez, Luis V. [IL-4]

Rep Westmoreland, Lynn A. [GA-3]1 

Rep Bachmann, Michele [MN-6] 

Rep Rooney, Thomas J. [FL-16]

Rep Heck, Joseph J. [NV-3] 

Rep Dicks, Norman D. [WA-6]

Rep McCaul, Michael T. [TX-10]

Rep Walden, Greg [OR-2]

Rep Calvert, Ken [CA-44]

Rep Shimkus, John [IL-19]

Rep Terry, Lee [NE-2]

Rep Burgess, Michael C. [TX-26]

Rep Gingrey, Phil [GA-11]

Rep Thompson, Mike [CA-1]

Rep Kinzinger, Adam [IL-11]

Rep Amodei, Mark E. [NV-2] 

Rep Pompeo, Mike [KS-4]

Second Wave (December 2011)

Rep Latta, Robert E. [OH-5]

Rep Quayle, Benjamin [AZ-3]

Rep McHenry, Patrick T. [NC-10]

Rep Frelinghuysen, Rodney P. [NJ-11]

Rep Yoder, Kevin [KS-3]

Rep Walberg, Tim [MI-7]

Rep Camp, Dave [MI-4]

Rep Eshoo, Anna G. [CA-14]

Rep Michaud, Michael H. [ME-2]

Gaining Steam (January/February 2012)

Rep McMorris Rodgers, Cathy [WA-5]

Rep Sullivan, John [OK-1]

Rep McKinley, David B. [WV-1]

Rep Ros-Lehtinen, Ileana [FL-18]

Rep Coffman, Mike [CO-6]

Rep Goodlatte, Bob [VA-6]

Rep Wolf, Frank R. [VA-10]

Rep Forbes, J. Randy [VA-4]

Rep Miller, Gary G. [CA-42]

Rep Stearns, Cliff [FL-6]

Rep Issa, Darrell E. [CA-49]

Rep Cole, Tom [OK-4]

Rep Turner, Michael R. [OH-3]

Rep Brooks, Mo [AL-5]

Rep Huizenga, Bill [MI-2]

Rep Carter, John R. [TX-31]

Rep Hartzler, Vicky [MO-4]

Rep Grimm, Michael G. [NY-13] 

Rep Miller, Candice S. [MI-10]

Rep Guthrie, Brett [KY-2] 

Rep Rogers, Mike D. [AL-3] 

Rep Benishek, Dan [MI-1]

Rep Broun, Paul C. [GA-10]

Rep Lance, Leonard [NJ-7]

Rep Hastings, Doc [WA-4] 

Rep Davis, Geoff [KY-4]

Rep Meehan, Patrick [PA-7]

Rep Shuster, Bill [PA-9] 

Rep Olson, Pete [TX-22]

Rep Kline, John [MN-2]

Rep Bono Mack, Mary [CA-45]

Rep Bachus, Spencer [AL-6]

Rep Schock, Aaron [IL-18]

Rep Roe, David P. [TN-1]

Rep Fleischmann, Charles J. “Chuck” [TN-3]

Rep Baca, Joe [CA-43]

Rep Boswell, Leonard L. [IA-3]

Rep Noem, Kristi L. [SD]

On the Bandwagon (March/April 2012)

Rep Wittman, Robert J. [VA-1]

Rep Hultgren, Randy [IL-14] 

Rep Blackburn, Marsha [TN-7] 

Rep Hastings, Alcee L. [FL-23]

Rep Hurt, Robert [VA-5]

Rep Johnson, Bill [OH-6]

Rep Smith, Adrian [NE-3] 

Rep Crawford, Eric A. “Rick” [AR-1] 

Rep Franks, Trent [AZ-2] 

Rep Larsen, Rick [WA-2] 

Rep Sires, Albio [NJ-13]

Rep Towns, Edolphus [NY-10]

Rep Bordallo, Madeleine Z. [GU]

Rep Ross, Mike [AR-4]

Rep Cooper, Jim [TN-5]

Rep Pitts, Joseph R. [PA-16]

Rep Runyan, Jon [NJ-3]

Rep Costa, Jim [CA-20] 

Rep Cardoza, Dennis A. [CA-18] 

Rep Woodall, Rob [GA-7]

Rep Bartlett, Roscoe G. [MD-6]

Rep Shuler, Heath [NC-11]

Rep Stivers, Steve [OH-15]

Rep Wilson, Joe [SC-2]

Rep McIntyre, Mike [NC-7]

Rep Kissell, Larry [NC-8]

Rep Scalise, Steve [LA-1]

Rep Bilbray, Brian P. [CA-50]

Rep Griffith, H. Morgan [VA-9]

Rep Peterson, Collin C. [MN-7]

Rep Owens, William L. [NY-23] 

Rep Mulvaney, Mick [SC-5]

Rep Hall, Ralph M. [TX-4]

Rep Cuellar, Henry [TX-28]

Rep Lamborn, Doug [CO-5]

Rep Austria, Steve [OH-7]

Rep McKeon, Howard P. “Buck” [CA-25]


Source: These People are Ruining the Future of the Internet

Stealthy Pen Test Unit Plugs Directly Into 110 VAC Socket (Video)

March 1st, 2012 03:31 admin View Comments


Pwnie Express is a cute name for this tiny (and easily hidden) group of Pen Test devices. Their website says, ‘Our initial hardware offering, the Pwn Plug, is the first-to-market commercial penetration testing drop box platform. This low-cost plug-and-play device is designed for remote security testing of corporate facilities, including branch offices and retail locations. A security professional or service provider can ship this device to a corporate facility and conduct a security test over the Internet without travel expenses.’ Hardware buffs will recognize this unit as a SheevaPlug, but the value-add is that it’s preloaded with Ubuntu Linux and and a rich suite of intrusion/testing tools. The company’s ‘Founder and CEO and everything else’ is Dave Porcello. The video is an interview with Dave, in which he shows off and demonstrates some Pwnie Express products.

Source: Stealthy Pen Test Unit Plugs Directly Into 110 VAC Socket (Video)

FOIA Request Shows Which Printer Companies Cooperated With US Government

February 18th, 2012 02:08 admin View Comments


New submitter Dave_Minsky writes “The U.S. Secret Service responded to a FOIA request on Monday that reveals the names of the printer companies that cooperate with the government to identify and track potential counterfeiters. The Electronic Frontier Foundation revealed in 2005 that the U.S. Secret Service was in cahoots with selected laser printer companies to identify and track printer paper using tiny microscopic dots encoded into the paper. The tiny, yellow dots — less than a millimeter each — are printed in a pattern over each page and are only viewable with a blue light, a magnifying glass or a microscope. The pattern of dots is encodes identifiable information including printer model, and time and location where the document was printed.” Easy enough to avoid government dots; just don’t buy printers from Canon, Brother, Casio, HP, Konica, Minolta, Mita, Ricoh, Sharp, or Xerox.

Source: FOIA Request Shows Which Printer Companies Cooperated With US Government

What is Really New About the Cloud?

January 5th, 2012 01:30 admin View Comments

cloud streaming 150.jpgSocrates: And you did not know, you never suspected, that they were goddesses?
Strepsiades: No, indeed; I thought the Clouds were only fog, dew and vapour.

- Aristophanes, The Clouds

Billions of words have been written about “the cloud” and its benefits, implications, and challenges. Hundreds of vendors have sprung up or re-positioned themselves as cloud companies, and there is a vast amount of real business change underway. However, I have seen very little that explains for the layperson what is actually new about the cloud that makes it so interesting and important.

Infrastructure-as-a-Service: All of the Benefits, None of the Commitment

Dave Jilk is CEO and co-founder of Standing Cloud, a Boulder-based provider of cloud-based application management solutions. An experienced software and Internet entrepreneur, Dave previously co-founded Wideforce Systems and eCortex.

The advent of infrastructure-as-a-service (IaaS) with Amazon Web Services’ Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) offering suddenly made it vastly cheaper and easier for anyone to provision a system in the cloud.

Previously, the primary options were:

  • Using a shared hosting service, install an application in the shared host container. This is inexpensive, but also very limiting: Only applications that can operate in the shared-host sandbox and do not need to scale will work in this environment.
  • Lease or buy physical servers, rent co-location space, and either set up and manage the physical machines yourself, or hire a managed services provider to do so. This is relatively expensive, because it requires a minimum commitment.
  • Build your own data center.

With IaaS, you simply sign up for an account, enter a credit card number, and start launching servers from the control panel. These servers are available in minutes, and although they are “virtual” machines, they behave for most purposes as an entire computer system. They are persistent and they have their own public Internet address. The minimum commitment is an hour of server time, which can cost as little as a penny and a half on Rackspace Cloud.

Consequently, while the idea of deploying a system “in the cloud” was not new, the ability to provision the required servers quickly, easily, with no human physical contact, and with virtually no commitment – that was entirely novel.

Two innovations have enabled providers to offer this capability: virtualization technology, which enables the creation of multiple virtual machine servers on the same physical server via a “hypervisor”; and orchestration technology, which fulfills provisioning requests by tracking the physical server pool and the virtual machines running on them.

Virtualization took a big leap forward in 2006, when both Intel and AMD added hardware virtualization capabilities to their processors. This both improved performance and made the hypervisor code simpler and more reliable. Popular hypervisors today include VMWare ESX, Xen, and KVM. Perhaps not coincidentally, Amazon built its orchestration system for EC2 around the same time, with the first beta release in mid-2006. Dozens of orchestration systems are now available, including VMWare vCloud, Citrix CloudStack (formerly, and Eucalyptus.

Software-as-a-Service: Now Playing Anytime, Anywhere

So it’s not really the cloud that’s new. It is the ease, convenience and value of using the cloud that has vastly improved. There was real innovation involved in making that possible: for IaaS, the virtualization and orchestration technologies; for SaaS, progressively improving connectivity along with more interactive browser technologies.

While software-as-a-service (SaaS) is not new and has always operated “in the cloud,” the ubiquity of web browsers, broadband Internet and Wi-Fi has made them more responsive and easier to access. Improvements in web browser capabilities and the use of powerful Javascript frameworks and other RIA (Rich Internet Application) technologies have made it possible to build web user interfaces that rival the sophistication and interactivity of locally installed Windows or Mac applications.

As a result, new categories of applications for which a series of separate web pages is unsatisfactory – such as word processing and spreadsheets – can now be operated as SaaS, on any device that supports a full web browser. These seemingly incremental improvements have created a qualitatively different experience for SaaS, and that experience is new.


Sum of the Parts

But look at what all this means:

  • I can deploy custom systems in the cloud easily and with low commitment.
  • I can keep all my documents and data on cloud systems.
  • All my standard business systems can be run as SaaS.
  • I can use different client devices at different times without creating a data mess.
  • As my usage of systems or services increases, the cost and scale of the systems scales with that usage in granular increments.
  • Whether I am acting as an individual or as a business, I no longer need to own or manage any physical servers, and I am no longer tethered to particular client devices either.

So it’s not really the cloud that’s new. It is the ease, convenience and value of using the cloud that has vastly improved. There was real innovation involved in making that possible: for IaaS, the virtualization and orchestration technologies; for SaaS, progressively improving connectivity along with more interactive browser technologies.

The cloud may still be just “a computer attached to a network,” but how that computer got there and how it is used is now very different from the days when those pictures of clouds first showed up on architecture diagrams.

Cloud photo by Jeff Ruane

Source: What is Really New About the Cloud?

DoJ Investigates eBook Price Fixing

December 8th, 2011 12:13 admin View Comments

The Almighty Buck

dave562 writes “The U.S. Justice Department’s antitrust arm said it was looking into potentially unfair pricing practices by electronic booksellers, joining European regulators and state attorneys general in a widening probe of large U.S. and international e-book publishers. A Justice Department spokeswoman confirmed that the probe involved the possibility of ‘anti-competitive practices involving e-book sales.’ Attorneys general in Connecticut and, reportedly, Texas, have also begun inquiries into the way electronic booksellers price their wares, and whether companies such as Apple and Amazon have set up pricing practices that are ultimately harmful to consumers.”

Source: DoJ Investigates eBook Price Fixing

Estimating Age With Kinect’s 3D Camera To Filter Content

October 1st, 2011 10:41 admin View Comments


theodp writes Hal in 2001: ‘I’m sorry, Dave. I’m afraid I can’t do that [open the pod bay doors].’ Kinect in 2011: ‘I’m sorry, Dave Jr. I’m afraid I can’t do that [tune in to the Spice Channel].’ A Microsoft patent filing made public this week proposes to restrict access to TV, movies and video games by using a 3D depth camera to estimate viewers’ ages based upon the dimensions and proportions of a person’s body, such as head width to shoulder width, and torso length to overall height. For adults with short arms or other seemingly childlike proportions, settings can be overridden by someone with an administrator password.”

Source: Estimating Age With Kinect’s 3D Camera To Filter Content