Friday, 25 November 2005

But it's scientific research, luv!

Whoever persuaded a university to fund research forthis deserves a sales job anywhere in the world!

It's cyber-war! Chinese hackers breach US military defences

What's interesting about this is not the spying implications, nor even the minor revelation that, in these internet security times, several important military installations seem to be readily breachable. These are repeating patterns over centuries. What made me pause to reflect is the traceability. For spies these days the hardest thing is no longer getting in, but covering your tracks afterwards. Electronic information systems, by their nature, log every activity. In the real world evidence can be burned, tracks covered. In the virtual world all is recorded. Even doctored evidence is traceable, insofar as the fact that it was altered is logged. Tricks can be used, but there is still a trace to show that they were used. And if they are traceable, they can also be monitored...

Thursday, 24 November 2005

Microsoft loses money on each Xbox on Yahoo! News

What's surprising here is not that Microsoft are price dumping (they did that with the original xbox), but the staggering amount: 40% over the retail price - so probably double the wholesale price.

That's a huge grasp for market share, if ever I saw one... it will be interesting to compare to Nintendo and Sony's offerings. Even if Sony's is comparable, I think they have a much larger portfolio of games development companies to lean on to recoup the cost.

Related to this, the first news of Xbox 360 crashes are pouring in. Seems that although Microsoft are addressing security, they're still having problems with robustness.

Wednesday, 9 November 2005

Demanding Apple

Well, I know gadget freaks are a demanding bunch, but I have started to use my Treo 650 more frequently (~conveniently) than my ipod these days, mainly because I don't have to remember to take my ipod.

Will Apple's stringent sense of proprietary technology and DRM shot it in the foot again? In 1984, they had the PC market sewn (sown, even) up but refused to share. Other companies went to the next best thing: IBM's 8086 architecture. Now, in 2005 Apple seem to have the digital media market sewn (sown, even) up. Will they allow their seeds to cross-germinate this time?

Tuesday, 1 November 2005

Traceroute and Google Earth
It was only a matter of time before someone combined the two.

Remember to click the 'Traceroute' box, and be sure you have Google Earth installed (obviously).

Now all we need is a 'dial a missile' service, and the port scans on my firewall will be no more...!