snydeq writes: The Squeaky Wheel's Brian Katz offers a refreshingly simple take on the buzz around BYOD in business organizations these days: 'BYOD is only an issue because people refuse to realize that it's just about ownership — nothing more and nothing less.' A 'hidden issue' hiding in plain view, BYOD's ownership issue boils down to money and control. 'BYOD is pretty clear: It's bringing your own device. It isn't the company's device or your best friend's device. It's your device, and you own it. Because you own the device, you have certain rights to what is on the device and what you can do with the device. This is the crux of every issue that comes with BYOD programs.'
snydeq writes: 'The 23rd century may seem a long way off, but you'd be surprised by how much of the future predicted by Star Trek is already here. We already have handheld communicators (smartphones), sassy voice-driven computers (Siri), Geordi La Forge-like vision (Google Glass), and at least 4.5 billion Earth-like planets to choose from. (Whether any of them contain green-skinned alien babes in gold bikinis is still to be determined.) As for warp drives, transporters, phasers, and the rest? It will be here sooner than you think. Join us as we boldly go on a tour of Trek tech.'
snydeq writes: For more than a decade we've been hearing that online privacy is dead, and it's hard to argue with the evidence. Law enforcement agencies routinely obtain location and call data from wireless carriers, government agencies can access data from cloud storage with minimal judicial oversight, and then there's CISPA, by which Congress wants to enable private companies to share even more customer data with Uncle Sam. And that says nothing about the increasing online tracking and data mining being done by private entities. 'Despite this gloomy assessment, all hope is not lost. While threats to our personal privacy expand daily, so do potential solutions — whether it's new privacy legislation, enhanced regulation, stealth computing technology, or the emergence of a consumer-driven data economy.'
snydeq writes: If you avoid some gotchas and keep a close eye on resource usage, you can have a handy server in the Amazon cloud for free, InfoWorld's Serdar Yegulalp reports. 'In the long run, any serious AWS user will want to take fuller advantage of what the Amazon cloud has to offer — but why not make the most of the free resources in the meantime? The free tier is a great way to find one's legs with AWS, start some projects, and maybe even build a functional application or three.' Servers, storage, databases, data transfer — the article offers tips on billing, I/O usage, elastic addresses, and backup.
snydeq writes: We need bare-bones Linux distros tailored for virtual machines or at least the option for installs, writes Deep End's Paul Venezia. 'As I prepped a new virtual server template the other day, it occurred to me that we need more virtualization-specific Linux distributions or at least specific VM-only options when performing an install. A few distros take steps in this direction, such as Ubuntu and OEL jeOS (just enough OS), but they're not necessarily tuned for virtual servers. For large installations, the distributions in use are typically highly customized on one side or the other — either built as templates and deployed to VMs, or deployed through the use of silent installers or scripts that install only the bits and pieces required for the job. However, these are all handled as one-offs. They're generally not available or suitable for general use.'
snydeq writes: Computer scientists have unleashed hordes of humanlike social bots to infiltrate Facebook — and they are awfully effective, InfoWorld reports. 'These social bots masquerade as online users, adding posts that seem like they came from real people. But they secretly promote products or viewpoints, and some you might friend use their new connections to siphon off your private information. When coordinated by a botmaster, these social bots can wreak havoc and steal information at a massive scale.... Furthermore, because so many services build on top of social networks, the risk runs deeper. Many technologies, including data sharing and backups, integrate with sites like Facebook. Their authentication schemes rely on the implicit trust network that social bots are designed to break into.'
snydeq writes: From forced maintenance teams to locking out all libraries, Andrew C. Oliver lists 16 surefire ways to torture developers — and watch them walk out the door. 'Having great developers means creating a great environment. In an increasingly competitive world, that means everything from free food to paid screw-off time. But not everyone has gotten the message. Some places still practice developer abuse. Here are its many forms. Do not indulge in more than one or two, or you may never see your best developers again.'
snydeq writes: "Everyone knows the secret to business success is to hire great talent. But some of the most talented employees around might already be working for you — and you may not even know it. From holding a hackathon to identify closet geeks, to establishing extracurricular projects for employees to show off their skills, IT managers and business leaders offer 7 tips for finding and fostering hidden IT talent within your organization."
snydeq writes: "Java founder James Gosling sees promise in JNI, which modifies standard Java to package runtime, as well as native and Java application code on iOS devices, InfoWorld reports. 'Java has been on iOS for quite a while' via Oracle ADF Mobile, Gosling notes. 'The catch is that to deal with an arcane nit in the Apple terms of service, the JIT code generator has to be turned off. I'm not at Oracle, and I'm not involved, but I'd be willing to wager that JEP 178 can be used as a part of complying with the Apple TOS (terms of service) without turning off code generation.'"
snydeq writes: "Ubuntu, Firefox, Tizen, Sailfish, WebOS, Nokia Series 40, BlackBerry, and Windows Phone want a piece of the pie, but it won't be a cakewalk. 'With iOS and Android dominating the mobile ecosystem so thoroughly, the other eight — yes, eight — wannabe players are seeking ways to stand out. Most are targeting what they hope are niches that iOS and Android won't take over, though a couple still have dreams of displacing Android or iOS, or at least becoming a significant No. 3. Realistic? No — most will fail, though we won't know which for a while. In the meantime, here's who else is vying for your attention as a user or developer and how they hope to convince you they're worth adopting.'"
snydeq writes: "The IT security world is full of charlatans, and all of us have been 'advised' by at least one of them. From big-ticket items that solve tiny problems you don't have, to surprises about the feature set after you've already signed the dotted line, here are 14 underhanded techniques that security consultants use to drain IT security budgets and avoid accountability."
snydeq writes: "Apple was recently attacked by hackers who infected the Macintosh computers of some employees, the company said on Tuesday in an unprecedented disclosure that described the widest known cyber attacks against Apple-made computers to date, Reuters reports. 'The same software, which infected Macs by exploiting a flaw in a version of Oracle Corp's Java software used as a plug-in on Web browsers, was used to launch attacks against Facebook, which the social network disclosed on Friday.... A person briefed on the investigation into the attacks said that hundreds of companies, including defense contractors, had been infected with the same malicious software, or malware. The attacks mark the highest-profile cyber attacks to date on businesses running Mac computers.'"
snydeq writes: "As PC prospects decline, Microsoft has been moving toward a hybrid, cross-platform future with an eye toward opportunities in the server closet and the cloud. But the question remains, How might Microsoft evolve to get there? 'It's tempting to say the past five years has seen Microsoft's desktop-centric strategy slowly give way to a pell-mell free-for-all made up of equal parts desktop, server, mobile hardware and software, cloud services, and auxiliary systems like the Xbox. Truth is, intention has always been present. It's only now, thanks to major upheavals in consumer tech and the cloud, that Microsoft's broad-spectrum plays are becoming more evident and critical.... What may be new for Microsoft is the need to better cohere its strategy around an ever-widening array of services and technologies, especially as the breadth of competition it faces widens. Most of all, if there ever comes a time to stop being a consumer-oriented company, Microsoft shouldn't flinch. A future where Microsoft doesn't make hardware or end-user programs seems remote, but there was a time when IBM abandoning its PC business seemed jarring, too.' And if Microsoft can't quite cohere its strategy, the best means to this end may be to divide."