September 2011

The Amazon Silk Browser — Privacy and the Technology

September 30, 2011

So, one of the new pieces with Amazon’s tablet is the “cloud-accelerated split browser” named Amazon Silk. According to the FAQ on the Amazon site, this is what is supposed to happen when you use an Amazon Silk browser in Kindle Fire: With Amazon Silk, most of the heavy-lifting is shifted from the processor on […]

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Culture Clash

September 29, 2011

Fred Wilson had a very funny guest post about products, but one of the images struck something in me. I understand the concept, but the problem is that I have never eaten bacon in my life. Nor would have any practicing Jewish or Muslim person, or a vegetarian, for whom bacon or meat can be repulsive. Having […]

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Amazon Lights a Fire in the Tablet Wars

September 28, 2011

It was not much of a prediction when I wrote this in May, but finally Amazon has announced their competitor to the NOOK Color in the form of the Kindle Fire. Call that more of a terminator rather than a competitor, because I cannot see the $249 NOOK competing with the $199 Kindle. Also, say […]

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The Key Management Problems With Public Key Cryptography

September 27, 2011

Sometime back, I had drawn a diagram to explain public key cryptography, but it is not complete. As Eric Lippert explains here, there are four management problems with them. To paraphrase him, If the sender does not keep their private key secret, then the saboteur can send a false message that seems to be coming […]

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Time Off, Vacations and Sabbaticals for Programmers

September 27, 2011

Joel Spolsky asked a question on Google+: Programmers: would you work for 75% of your current salary if you got 3 months vacation in the summer? There were many interesting responses. But let me highlight a few, ignoring the “no” comments. Some programmers liked it because they thought they could work the 3 months on […]

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The Increasing Sophistication of Spam

September 25, 2011

Erik talks about a new type of spam comments: a series of posts have started to come in that follow a distinct pattern. They’ll include some insipid compliment not referring to the content at all, and contain exactly one misspelled word. So, something like “Wow, great contnet!” The other defining characteristic is that they all […]

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Making Time for Hobby Programming

September 22, 2011

I noticed a couple of comments on DZone about programmers with family not having the time to do hobby projects. As I wrote about my own experiences having a child, I really empathize with such concerns. It is not easy. It is really hard to do a fair job with your parenting and family responsibilities […]

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RIP Michael Hart, Founder of Project Gutenberg

September 21, 2011

I learned this only a few days after. Michael S. Hart, the founder of Project Gutenberg, the online repository of copyright-free books, passed away earlier this month. Hart was best known for his 1971 invention of electronic books, or eBooks. He founded Project Gutenberg, which is recognized as one of the earliest and longest-lasting online […]

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The First Sale Doctrine

September 20, 2011

One benefit of the Netflix spin-off of the DVD-rental only Qwikster company is that I learnt about the First Sale Doctrine. In short, it means that once you purchase a copyrighted material, you don’t have to ask the original copyright owner for permission to do what you want with the content, such as selling it […]

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XKCD and the Spoken Word

September 19, 2011

Can you find the fatal flaw in this XKCD cartoon? It doesn’t work as a conversation! If “10” is treated as binary, it would be spoken as “TWO” and if it is treated as decimal, it would be spoken as “TEN”. If you use “ONE-ZERO”, the reply question would be (instead of “…4?”) either “What […]

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