- nupic (github) -GPL v3-licensed ode from Numenta, at last. See their patent position.
- Robocup — soccer robotics contest, condition of entry is that all codes are open sourced after the contest. (via The Economist)
- Security Data Science Paper Collection — machine learning, big data, analysis, reports, all around security issues.
- Building an Open Wireless Router — EFF call for coders to help build a wireless router that’s more secure and more supportive of open sharing than current devices.
ENTRIES TAGGED "security"
Numenta Code, Soccer Robotics, Security Data Science, Open Wireless Router
Distributed Systems Design 101, Patent Trolls, Intel's Half a Billion from IoT, and Google's Project Zero.
- Inside bit.ly’s Distributed Systems — this is a 101 for modern web distributed systems design.
- Patent Trolls are Now 67% of New Patent Lawsuits in USA (WaPo) — data from PwC.
- Intel Made Half a Billion from Internet of Things Last Year (Quartz) — half a billion here, half a billion there, pretty soon it adds up to real money.
- Google’s Project Zero (Wired) — G pays a team to attack common software and report the bugs to the manufacturer. Interesting hypothesis about how the numbers inbalance between Every Russian 14 Year Old and this small team doesn’t matter: modern hacker exploits often chain together a series of hackable flaws to defeat a computer’s defenses. Kill one of those bugs and the entire exploit fails. That means Project Zero may be able to nix entire collections of exploits by finding and patching flaws in a small part of an operating system, like the “sandbox” that’s meant to limit an application’s access to the rest of the computer. ”On certain attack surfaces, we’re optimistic we can fix the bugs faster than they’re being introduced,” Hawkes says. “If you funnel your research into these limited areas, you increase the chances of bug collisions.”
Scanner Malware, Cognitive Biases, Deep Learning, and Community Metrics
- Handheld Scanners Attack — shipping and logistics operations compromised by handheld scanners running malware-infested Windows XP.
- Adventures in Cognitive Biases (MIT) — web adventure to build your cognitive defences against biases.
- Quoc Le’s Lectures on Deep Learning — Machine Learning Summer School videos (4k!) of the deep learning lectures by Google Brain team member Quoc Le.
- FLOSS Community Metrics Talks — upcoming event at Puppet Labs in Portland. I hope they publish slides and video!
Journalism Security, Inclusive Technology, Network Magic, and Python Anti-Patterns
- Ex-Google Hacker Taking On The World’s Spy Agencies (Wired) — profile of the security expert working on protecting reporters.
- Meet Google’s Security Princess (Elle) — would have preferred to see her story in Wired. Much is good here, but this is pithy and strong: “If you have ambitions to create technology for the whole world, you need to represent the whole world, and the whole world is not just white men.”
- snabb switch — open source Linux userspace executable for making network appliances. Processes millions of ethernet packets per second per core. Suitable for ISPs. Speaks natively to Ethernet hardware, Hypervisors, and the Linux kernel. You can program it with LuaJIT extensions to do anything you want.
- Anti-Patterns in Python Programming — gold.
Efficient Representation, Page Rendering, Graph Database, Warning Effectiveness
- word2vec — This tool provides an efficient implementation of the continuous bag-of-words and skip-gram architectures for computing vector representations of words. These representations can be subsequently used in many natural language processing applications and for further research. From Google Research paper Efficient Estimation of Word Representations in Vector Space.
- What Every Frontend Developer Should Know about Page Rendering — Rendering has to be optimized from the very beginning, when the page layout is being defined, as styles and scripts play the crucial role in page rendering. Professionals have to know certain tricks to avoid performance problems. This arcticle does not study the inner browser mechanics in detail, but rather offers some common principles.
- Cayley — an open-source graph inspired by the graph database behind Freebase and Google’s Knowledge Graph.
- Alice in Warningland (PDF) — We performed a field study with Google Chrome and Mozilla Firefox’s telemetry platforms, allowing us to collect data on 25,405,944 warning impressions. We find that browser security warnings can be successful: users clicked through fewer than a quarter of both browser’s malware and phishing warnings and third of Mozilla Firefox’s SSL warnings. We also find clickthrough rates as high as 70.2% for Google Chrome SSL warnings, indicating that the user experience of a warning can have tremendous impact on user behaviour.
Interacting with Connected Objects, Continuous Security Review, Chess AI, and Scott Hanselman is Hilarious
- Interacting with a World of Connected Objects (Tom Coates) — notes from one of my favourite Foo Camp sessions.
- Security Considerations with Continuous Deployment (IBM) — rundown of categories of security issues your org might face, and how to tackle them in the continuous deployment cycle. (via Emma Jane Westby)
- The Chess Master and the Computer (Garry Kasparov) — Increasingly, a move isn’t good or bad because it looks that way or because it hasn’t been done that way before. It’s simply good if it works and bad if it doesn’t. Although we still require a strong measure of intuition and logic to play well, humans today are starting to play more like computers. (via Alexis Madrigal)
Google MillWheel, 20yo Bug, Fast Real-Time Visualizations, and Google's Speed King
- MillWheel: Fault-Tolerant Stream Processing at Internet Scale — Google Research paper on the tech underlying the new cloud DataFlow tool. Watch the video. Yow.
- The Integer Overflow Bug That Went to Mars — long-standing (20 year old!) bug in a compression library prompts a wave of new releases. No word yet on whether NASA will upgrade the rover to avoid being pwned by Martian script kiddies. (update: I fell for a self-promoter. The Martians will need to find another attack vector. Huzzah!)
- epoch (github) — Fastly-produced open source general purpose real-time charting library for building beautiful, smooth, and high performance visualizations.
- Achieving Rapid Response Times in Large Online Services (YouTube) — Jeff Dean‘s keynote at Velocity. He wrote … a lot of things for this. And now he’s into deep learning ….
Mobile Hacks, Advertising Returns, Solid Writeup, and Predicted Future
- Researchers Find and Decode the Spy Tools Governments Use to Hijack Phones (Wired) — I’m fascinated to learn there’s an Italian company making (and selling) the mobile phone rootkits that governments use.
- On the Near Impossibility of Measuring the Returns on Advertising (PDF) — Statistical evidence from the randomized trials is very weak because the individual-level sales are incredibly volatile relative to the per capita cost of a campaign—a “small” impact on a noisy dependent variable can generate positive returns. (via Slate)
- Reflections on Solid Conference — recap of the conference, great for those of us who couldn’t make it. “Software is eating the world…. Hardware gives it teeth.” – Renee DiResta
- Cybernation: The Silent Conquest (1962) — [When] computers acquire the necessary capabilities…speeded-up data processing and interpretation will be necessary if professional services are to be rendered with any adequacy. Once the computers are in operation, the need for additional professional people may be only moderate [...] There will be a small, almost separate, society of people in rapport with the advanced computers. These cyberneticians will have established a relationship with their machines that cannot be shared with the average man any more than the average man today can understand the problems of molecular biology, nuclear physics, or neuropsychiatry. Indeed, many scholars will not have the capacity to share their knowledge or feeling about this new man-machine relationship. Those with the talent for the work probably will have to develop it from childhood and will be trained as intensively as the classical ballerina. (via Simon Wardley)
Think your IT staff can protect you better than major cloud providers? Think again.
I just ran across Katie Fehrenbacher’s article in GigaOm that made a point I’ve been arguing (perhaps not strongly enough) for years. When you start talking to people about “the cloud,” you frequently run into a knee-jerk reaction: “Of course, the cloud isn’t secure.”
I have no idea what IT professionals who say stuff like this mean. Are they thinking about the stuff they post on Facebook? Or are they thinking about the data they’ve stored on Amazon? For me, the bottom line is: would I rather trust Amazon’s security staff, or would I rather trust some guy with some security cert that I’ve never heard of, but whom the HR department says is “qualified”? Read more…