Picture this…

Source:  http://research.stlouisfed.org/fred2/data/BORROW_Max_630_378.png


Adding Cory Doctorow’s Little Brother to the required reading list at Georgetown

A few weeks ago I read Cory Doctorow's latest novel entitled Little Brother and was impressed enough with the book to add it to the required reading list for both my classes at Georgetown (Information Warfare and Security and Introduction to Information Privacy). Little Brother introduces us to a group of teenagers who become concerned with their privacy and security in the aftermath of a series of attacks against San Francisco.  Operating in an environment where the cure (DHS security measures) seems to be worse than the disease, they chose to act to disrupt the system and hopefully educate the populace that some freedoms just aren't worth sacrificing.  I don't want to give away too much of the plot, but suffice it to say the story is…


Does Knol provide null value?

Like many other technologists, I've been following the launch of Google Knol closely and finally had a chance this evening to create a couple of entries.  As someone in the knowledge and intelligence business I'm having a hard time seeing the value in the product thus far.  A couple of immediate reactions. 1)  As Jason Calacanis has been pointing out, this squarely puts Google in the publishing business which will make a lot of people uncomfortable.  If your business is driven by producing content based on a specific expertise or business and then monetizing traffic based on that expertise, Knol promises to have an impact on your livelihood.  This could have a negative backlash within the Adsense community as some publishers will see Knol…


iPhone apps I’d like to see

Inspired by Merlin Mann's list at 43 Folders SSH - I expect someone will do this shortly. If this phone is running OS X, it is there somewhere to begin with. I want a nice app for this, not a jailbroken command line. SlingPlayer - Watch my slingbox on my iPhone Qik - Live video streaming Traffic Ping - Three buttons to designate current road conditions that gets transmitted over 3G and can be inserted as a layer over Google Maps. Similar to what the dash is doing now, but with one time snapshots. iTether - Use my iPhone 3G to get a tethered data connection to my laptop. iLowJack - This would require background services running, but once a day (or every 48 hours or user designated time) prompts me a for a pin. Don’t get the pin right, it…


Infrant ReadyNAS – horrible support after NetGear purchase

I have three ReadyNAS devices.  In general, I've been very happy with them, but there is a power supply issue that has resulted in all three devices failing.  The first two failed prior to the NetGear purchase and my support requests were responded to quickly and replacement parts were sent for self-installation.  The new parts, with an updated firmware have resulted in those two devices operating perfectly since then. The third device failed after the purchase by NetGear.  Here is how NetGear responded to my request detailing this was a known issue and that I was intimately familiar with replacing this part: 6/10/2008 10:02:00 PM Agent ID:1402 Dear Matthew, Thank you for choosing NETGEAR. My name is Vinoth and I will be your support…


Two memes I’m over

I wish they would die a quick and painless death. "I drink your milkshake" & "FAIL!" ...


Shall we play a game?

Wired is running a fantastic article about the 25th anniversary of the movie WarGames, which is arguably one of the most influential movies of my generation and certainly the most influential within the Generation X technology clique. As noted this interview conducted with me in the year 2000, I had a WarGames poster in my office for years (it is now relegated to the server room in my basement). When you enter the office of Matthew Devost, one of the most visible monuments to his life’s work is — a poster. More specifically, it’s a poster advertising the 1980s movie War Games, a hacker classic in which a high school kid almost starts World War Three. Devost would admit to the hyperbole of that Cold War film, yet he has become one of the…


Apple tablet on the horizon

There is a lot of speculation today about an Apple tablet on the horizon, which is a product many of us have been predicting for quite some time now.  I'd say it is very likely we'll see some sort of tablet device this quarter at highly incentivized prices (based on Apple's earnings call the other night). I've heard a lot of folks dismiss the "touchscreen" tablet as a real workable device based on how difficult it is to have the keyboard on the screen you are working in.  While that is true, let's not forget that there are three very viable input options available to Apple 1)  With their acquisition of FingerWorks several years ago, Apple is in possession of some very significant IP for gesture based input devices.  I used my TouchStream…


iPhone applications I’ve installed

Here is a quick review of the iPhone applications I've installed on my phone: Productivity: Wordpress - Post to your Wordpress blog.  Very well done application allows for basic blog management and posting. Evernote - Allows recording of text and voice notes that sync over the cloud to your Evernote account.  Your notes created with the desktop application and via your web browser are also available via your phone.  If you upload a photo with text Evernote will OCR it and make the text searchable from all platforms.  If I could get the iPhone camera to take a clear picture of a business card, that functionality alone would be a great reason to use Evernote. Jott - Record voicenotes or text notes.  Voice notes you record are translated to…


One phone to rule them all…

As expected, I got my hands on an iPhone 3G last week.   After one week of use, I thought I offer up some first reactions: First off, this is a beautifully engineered device.  The form factor is very similar to the 1st generation iPhone, but they've added a bit of polish with the glossy backing.  While it is plastic, it really has a ceramic feel to it and doesn't feel cheap.  Even after one year, the imitators of this technology aren't even close to achieving the perfection of form factor and user interface that Apple has achieved here. There are three key features for me that resulted in the upgrade being worthwhile. 1)  3G - browsing at high speeds is nice and thus far the 3G network has been up to the task.  Web pages load quickly and…


WordPress iphone application

Has been released and works great. Not sure how useful it is without cut and paste though.


TEW article concerns

I don't know the details of this story, but I do know the players involved on the TEW side and it is guys like John Sullivan and Larry Richards that advanced concepts of information sharing at the state and local level and efforts like theirs are what stand between us and the next attack.  I've worked with the folks at the TEW for almost a decade and never have I met a group of local responders so dedicated to addressing the threats their jurisdiction faced and helping counter them with old fashion analysis and information sharing. One can't condone the unauthorized sharing classified information, but what we should really be focusing on is why this information was not getting to the folks that needed it in the first place.   If one…


Who’s getting an iPhone today

Not me...


iPhone 2.0 software is a game changer

I took the risk and loaded the unofficial version of the iPhone 2.0 software on my 1st Gen iPhone.  Installation went off without a hitch.  There are a few glitches, like iTunes backing up the whole device every time I sync and a few crashed (in the iTunes remote app).  Regardless, this software will firmly establish Apple as the dominant cell phone manufacturer for years to come. In just a few short hours I was able to: Play some great games which were controlled via the iPhones motion detectors Chat on AIM Listen to AOL radio Listen to ShoutCast radio stations including my own. Record notes and voicenotes and autosync over the cloud to EverNote. View stocks in the Bloomberg app Use Jott to record voice notes which are translated to text…


Trying out Friendfeed

You can find my page at http://friendfeed.com/mattd


Interesting predictions

It is interesting to watch a predictive market that is comprised of international security analysts: [Link--->]