- PirateBox 1.0 — turns a wireless router into a filesharing joy. v1.0 has a responsive ui, among other things for use on tablets and phones.
- Dystopia Tracker — keep on top of which scifi dystopic predictions have been realised. I’d like filters for incubators, investors, and BigCos so you can see who is investing in dystopia.
- The Harvester, the Botmaster, and the Spammer (PDF) — research paper on the spam supply chain.
- Technical Interviewing (Moishe Lettvin) — lessons learned from conducting >250 technical interviews at Google. Why do I care? Chances are, your technical interviews suck so you’re hiring poorly.
ENTRIES TAGGED "open source"
Filesharing Box, Realised Dystopias, Spam Ecosystem Research, and Technical Interviews
Video Transparency, Software Traffic, Distributed Database, and Open Source Sustainability
- Video Quality Report — transparency is a great way to indirectly exert leverage.
- Control Your Traffic Flows with Software — using BGP to balance traffic. Will be interesting to see how the more extreme traffic managers deploy SDN in the data center.
- Cockroach — a distributed key/value datastore which supports ACID transactional semantics and versioned values as first-class features. The primary design goal is global consistency and survivability, hence the name. Cockroach aims to tolerate disk, machine, rack, and even datacenter failures with minimal latency disruption and no manual intervention. Cockroach nodes are symmetric; a design goal is one binary with minimal configuration and no required auxiliary services.
- Linux Foundation Providing for Core Infrastructure Projects — press release, but interested in how they’re tackling sustainability—they’re taking on identifying worthies (glad I’m not the one who says “you’re not worthy” to a project) and being the non-profit conduit for the dosh. Interesting: implies they think the reason companies weren’t supporting necessary open source projects was some combination of being unsure who to support (projects you use, surely?) and how to get them money (ask?). (Sustainability of open source projects is a pet interest of mine)
Local Clusters, Pancoopticon, Indie Oversupply, and Open Source PDF
- Ferry — helps you create big data clusters on your local machine. Define your big data stack using YAML and share your application with Dockerfiles. Ferry supports Hadoop, Cassandra, Spark, GlusterFS, and Open MPI.
- What Google Told SEC — For example, a few years from now, we and other companies could be serving ads and other content on refrigerators, car dashboards, thermostats, glasses, and watches, to name just a few possibilities. The only thing they make that people want to buy is the ad space around what you’re actually trying to do.
- The Indie Bubble is Popping (Jeff Vogel) — gamers’ budgets and the number of hours in the day to play games are not increasing at the rate at which the number of games on the market is increasing.
- pdfium — Chrome’s PDF engine, open source.
Funnel Tool, Security Tools, Inside Mac Malware, and Everything is Broken
- EventHub — open source funnel/cohort/a-b analysis tool.
- Mantra — a collection of free/open source security tools, integrated into a browser (Firefox or Chromium).
- Reverse Engineering Mac Malware (PDF) — fascinating to see how it’s shipped, bundled, packaged, and distributed.
- Everything is Broken (Quinn Norton) — Computers have gotten incredibly complex, while people have remained the same gray mud with pretensions of Godhood. Today’s required read, because everything is broken and it’s the defining characteristic of this age of software. We have built computers in our image: our cancerous STD-addled diabetic alcoholic lead-sniffing telomere-decaying bacteria- and virus-addled image.
- Mozilla’s Winter of Security — Students who have to perform a semester project as part of their university curriculum can apply to one of the MWOS project. Projects are guided by a Mozilla Adviser, and a University Professor. Students are graded by their University, based on success criteria identified at the beginning of the project. Mozilla Advisers allocate up to 2 hours each week to their students, typically on video-conference, to discuss progress and roadblocks.
- New Ways to Pay Your Bills (The Economist) — roundup of new payment systems that are challenging the definition and value of “bank”.
- The Difference a Data Point Makes — the change in the new parent’s life, as seen in personal data. Awesome.
Design Review, Open Source IDS, Myths of Autonomy, and Rich Text Widget
- Questions I Ask When Reviewing a Design (Jason Fried) — a good list of questions to frown and stroke one’s chin while asking.
- Bro — open source network security monitor/IDS.
- Seven Deadly Myths of Autonomy (PDF) — it’s easy to fall prey to the fallacy that automated assistance is a simple substitute or multiplier of human capability because, from the point of view of an outsider observing the assisted human, it seems that—in successful cases, at least—the people are able to perform the task faster or better than they could without help. In reality, however, help of whatever kind doesn’t simply enhance our abilities to perform the task: it changes the nature of the task.
- Quill — open source in-browser rich text editor. People, while you keep making me type into naked TEXTBOX fields, I’m going to keep posting links to these things.
Hardening Android, Samsung Connivery, Scalable WebSockets, and Hardware Machine Learning
- Hardening Android for Security and Privacy — a brilliant project! prototype of a secure, full-featured, Android telecommunications device with full Tor support, individual application firewalling, true cell network baseband isolation, and optional ZRTP encrypted voice and video support. ZRTP does run over UDP which is not yet possible to send over Tor, but we are able to send SIP account login and call setup over Tor independently.
- The Great Smartphone War (Vanity Fair) — “I represented [the Swedish telecommunications company] Ericsson, and they couldn’t lie if their lives depended on it, and I represented Samsung and they couldn’t tell the truth if their lives depended on it.” That’s the most catching quote, but interesting to see Samsung’s patent strategy described as copying others, delaying the lawsuits, settling before judgement, and in the meanwhile ramping up their own innovation. Perhaps the other glory part is the description of Samsung employee shredding and eating incriminating documents while stalling lawyers out front. An excellent read.
- socketcluster — highly scalable realtime WebSockets based on Engine.io. They have screenshots of 100k messages/second on an 8-core EC2 m3.2xlarge instance.
- Machine Learning on a Board — everything good becomes hardware, whether in GPUs or specialist CPUs. This one has a “Machine Learning Co-Processor”. Interesting idea, to package up inputs and outputs with specialist CPU, but I wonder whether it’s a solution in search of a problem. (via Pete Warden)
Internet Broadband, Open Radio, Excel Formulae in JS, and Block Chains
- Observations of an Internet Middleman — Five of those congested peers are in the United States and one is in Europe. There are none in any other part of the world. All six are large Broadband consumer networks with a dominant or exclusive market share in their local market. In countries or markets where consumers have multiple Broadband choices (like the UK) there are no congested peers. Relevant as competition works for gigabit fibre to consumers.
- Open TX — open source firmware for RC radio transmitters. The firmware is highly configurable and brings much more features than found in traditional radios.
- Minimum Viable Block Chain — The block chain is agnostic to any “currency”. In fact, it can (and will) be adapted to power many other use cases. As a result, it pays to understand the how and the why behind the “minimum viable block chain”.
A Knowledge Currency Exchange for health and wellness
This article was written together with Mike Kellen, Director of Technology at Sage Bionetworks, and Christine Suver, Senior Scientist at Sage Bionetworks.
The current push towards patient engagement, when clinical researchers trace the outcomes of using pharmaceuticals or other treatments, is a crucial first step towards rewiring the medical-industrial complex with the citizen at the center. For far too long, clinicians, investigators, the government, and private funders have been the key decision makers. The citizen has been at best a research “subject,”and far too often simply a resource from which data and samples can be extracted. The average participant in clinical study never receives the outcomes of the study, never has contact with those analyzing the data, never knows where her samples flow over time (witness the famous story of Henrietta Lacks), and until the past year didn’t even have access to the published research without paying a hefty rental fee.
This is changing. The recent grants by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) are the most visible evidence of change, but throughout the medical system one finds green shoots of direct patient engagement. Read more…
On Google, Non-Profit Cleverness, Textbooks in Markdown, and Amazon with Docker
- Letter to Google from CEO of Axel Springer — very well-written and articulate challenge to the positive Google frame: your company will play a leading role in the various areas of our professional and private lives–in the house, in the car, in healthcare, in robotronics. This is a huge opportunity and a no less serious threat.
- Brewster Kahle Talk — notes from a Brewster Kahle talk. Internet Archive using non-profit status to engineer lower costs in surprising ways: accommodation and banking. (via David Weinberger)
- gitbook — code to turn markdown for textbook-style works (including problems and solutions) into PDF, ebook, HTML, etc.
- AWS Elastic Beanstalk for Docker — use Amazon’s deployment tool with Docker images or Dockerfiles.