Sunday, August 8, 2010

Hide or protect?

One of the fairly traditional ways of concealing information from the eye, for which it is not intended to be its banal wrapping in a "black box" which will be tucked into the farthest on a shelf in the hope that under a mountain of other stuff nobody is interested. Oddly enough, this method is popular today in the protection of electronic documents...

By thinking about how perfect modern system of information protection, I was prompted recently occurred an incident involving U.S. military agencies, important documents which were made public site WikiLeaks.org. Defense Secretary Robert Gates said that "the consequences of disclosure of these documents may be difficult and dangerous for our troops, our allies and Afghan partners. They can damage our relationships and reputation in this key part of the world. Now, intelligence data collection methods, as well as military tactics and techniques will be known to our competitors".

That is, as you can see, the situation is more than serious - and certainly the data that has flowed from the Pentagon, were well protected, which, however, did not save the U.S. military from the machinations of insiders. In this case, it seems, an insider who has passed a scandalous site secret documents, had acted out of lust does not receive compensation for them, but because of some ideological reasons. Apparently, it did not work so the policy of secrecy, well protect such information from those who are willing to sell it to foreign intelligence.

Hide or ProtectThe main question is how could an active defense documents fail in this case is better than mere secrecy? Under the active protection here refers not simply limit access to documents, but also monitor the actions of employees (which is realized DLP-system), and even encrypted information. Obviously, each new level of protection all the more ideological fervor cools to an insider, especially a big credit for this belongs to the DLP-system - in fact, receiving the key, can retrieve secure cryptographic media. At the same time avoid DLP-system is not so easy - for it is not always a silent code, and the employee responsible for ensuring information security, which has all the powers to report on insider activity superiors. Of course, to ensure absolute protection against leaks of information to make just a Herculean effort, but certainly the number of utekshih documents on WikiLeaks would be much smaller.

Someone else's mistakes, we replace our own experience "to step on a rake", and a wise decision to learn from the mistakes of the Pentagon. Large-scale leakage of information, which ultimately will cost the U.S. government simply astronomical sum in dollars, allows anyone who underestimates the danger of leakage of information and the importance of utilizing DLP-systems, learn from someone else's bitter experience what can cause neglect of issues of information security . I think that after her many could learn and benefit from high-quality software products to protect their confidential information.

Game developers bullied.

Many suspect that the games in social networks - it is something from the category of silly fun. The developer Ian Bogost decided to prove it in practice. He created a deliberately dull game Cow Clicker and published it on Facebook. At this point in the game Cow Clicker There are about 20 thousand active users, the rating of 4.5 out of 5.

Developer Ian BogostEach player receives a cow and have to click the mouse on it every six hours. To get the right call more often, you can purchase additional credits for money. The social element is implemented through the neighboring cows, which can manage you invite users. If you have neighbors, your click is also added to their rating.

In his blog, Ian Bogost explains that this game was created as a result of a dispute that broke out at the recent Game Developers Conference 2010 between creators normal appearances and those working in the niche social networks. According to the first, the company Zynga and others like her are using design philosophy "F*** the Users", ie make the game, the main functionality which - draining money from the players.

Buy cheap advertising here!

Holograms in night clubs.

Since U.S. laws make it difficult maintenance of a normal strip club with girls dancing on the table, the club owners begin to think about using modern technology. For example, the company Digital Illusions has opened the world's first strip club with extremely holographic women. Club Lolita's Cantina began work on July 22 in Las Vegas.

Holograms Night ClubsOwners of clubs have already anticipate when the holographic technology can be translated as musicians, entertainers and other artists appearing on stage and demanding exorbitant fees. Nothing to be done, high technologies continue to raise the level of unemployment in developed countries - that's up to strippers have arrived.

Facebook can be purchased for $65 per share.

Trading Platform SecondMarket published statistics of trade in shares of private companies in the 2 quarter. 2010. This includes information about buying and selling shares, which are not traded on the open market. Seller was mostly former employees of companies.

In 2 quarter. 2010 turnover on the Stock Exchange fell to $51 million (though only in March, were sold at $70 million), but the average value of the shares continued to rise. For example, shares of Facebook have already offered for $65, while in April they can be bought for $50.

Facebook PurchasedShares Facebook constitute 64% of all traffic on the closed markets. Second place at Zynga (12%), followed by LinkedIn, Bloom Energy, and Silver Spring Networks (6%), Twitter and MobiTV (3%).

In the second quarter in the list to purchase the application appeared in the action eGarmony, Groupon, Skype and Mozilla Corporation, although the supply of shares in these companies is absent.

Is there a "Balmer discount" on shares of Microsoft?

Rumours that the top management of Microsoft began discussing the shift from his post Steve Ballmer CEO. The reason for this was a bad Dynamics Microsoft shares recently, because of which even Apple has pulled ahead in terms of capitalization.

Microsoft has a good financial results: an increase in revenue from Xbox, record sales of Windows 7, accumulating more than $20 billion in cash in the bank, but shares some reason feel worse than the market. According to some shareholders, capitalization effect "Balmer discount", which crushes the course. If the CEO will leave, the market may perceive it positively.

Steve Ballmer DiscountTalk about leaving Ballmer appeared after the recent corporate conference Microsoft Global Experience in Atlanta, which brought together 10 thousand employees Microsoft. Many of them had the impression that Steve is not the one he had lost his inspiration, and his speeches do not light as before. Some participants wrote about it in twitter, and other privately shared their impressions that Steve is the last conference of Microsoft Global Experience. The next year it will be gone.

Experts on condition of anonymity, said that with its products such as Kin, Bing and Zune, Microsoft looks "is not relevant in Silicon Valley".

Many agree that Ballmer is under pressure. However, his departure, there are several obstacles. In the first, Steve enjoys the unconditional trust of the Board of Directors. Secondly, in his place has not yet seen a worthy candidate. After the departure of Bill Gates was a lot of options, but now they do not, and post-CEO Microsoft, according to some, more like a dictatorship. It is also connected with a specific style of leadership inherent Ballmer, who is known for its rigidity and expressiveness. There is reliable evidence that in 2005, Ballmer threw a chair and used obscene language in his office when he learned that one of the programmers moving to Google.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

How to write a program for the iPhone (Part 1, Philosophical).

Today the iPhone - not just a popular device, but a real living legend. Legends of the walk and those who managed to earn astronomical programs for him, according to Belarusian standards, the sums of money. Where to start, so you got your piece of cake under the name iPhone/iPad?


Success stories

Starting without inspiration is not worth it, because programming is like art - even if you write a program solely to earn money with the help of money, not to self-realization, best of all it will be released in the case when she is called, " is the soul". Perhaps the best way in this case can motivate the history of those who have already achieved success on the field to build applications for "apple" devices.

How to write a program for the iPhone?So, here is the first of the success stories. Was working as a programmer at Sun Microsystems Ethan Nicholas, in a difficult financial situation because of the birth of her son, decided to try his luck and make money by selling their own games for "apple" communicator. In his own words, after the decision on her writing, within six weeks, he rocked his son with one hand while the other wrote the code on a completely unfamiliar language (this language will be discussed shortly). But as it turned out later, suffering Etana were not in vain: literally the first day after the publication of the game iShoot brought its creator two thousand dollars. Then, of course, selling "sagged", but after the release of stripped-down free version again risen to more than a decent level. And by the time the game moved into first place in popularity among iPhone-application and began to bring $37 thousand a day, Ethan, Nicholas managed to escape from Sun Microsystems and hire a nurse to his son.

However, this example, frankly, have not the most impressive, because the game for mobile platforms have always been in demand by users. iPhone opened this era entirely useless, but wildly successful mobile applications, which impressed with his success even journalists publications such as Forbes. Most, perhaps, a bright example of such a product - a program iSteam, which helps to create an imitation zaindeveniya screen device. The user blows into the microphone - depending on intensity of the resulting "wind" screen misted in many ways, and the resulting "frost" finger you can draw different patterns. What do you think, how much you can earn on such an application? It turns out that for the first month of sales of its creator Costas Eleftheria managed to get from users about $50 thousand, with the price of one copy at $0.99. Not a bit more useful and the other has become extremely popular among users of a program called iFart - although, perhaps, to entertain its user, it can be much better than iSteam. It is also iFart just one dollar, and for the money the user is a versatile tool to publish obscene sounds: burping, blowing your nose, farting... In her words are spelled Joel Comma, he was shocked when, after the publication of the program in AppStore catalog for the first ten days as it bought more than thirteen thousand people.

It inspires you? Well, we assume that the first step in creating applications for the iPhone we're done. Now let's talk about where to profiteer idea for creating a successful application.


In search of ideas

In fact, of course, to guess what kind of idea of "shoot", it is very difficult. Not the fact that today the same iFart and iSteam "gone" would be just as good as when they were written. At the same time, often you can guess what it will be interesting to users in the near future. A striking example of this would be another success story, which will help to understand what makes sense to align the development of iPhone/iPad-applications.

As you know, in America is very popular sport is baseball. This is obviously guess, and software vendors for "apple" device: during the American Association Baseball Championship, MLB has released an application MLB.com At Bat 2009, allowing fans to watch matches statistics, excerpts broadcast, etc. through their phones. The application cost $10 was purchased almost 130 thousand times, bringing the association over a million dollars net profit.

Attached to any widely publicized sports events or other types of events - a good enough strategy, but it is important to remember that competition in this niche is very high. In general, to give an idea about the tastes of users and trends in this area can monitor popular applications in the AppStore for some time. It is not worth while to rush immediately to write what is on Top - better track the program, which quickly rise from bottom to top, and try to write something along the same lines as the user preferences - a thing quite unstable, and while you're write their applications, those who were at the peak of popularity, may be already worthless.

And, of course, if you have an idea, which arose from the use of PDA, then it makes sense to implement it in the first place - as the experience of thousands of programmers who managed to make good money own mind, it is an application whose ideas were "the suffering" authors from the beginning to the finish, usually become the most popular and successful.


Do yourself iPhone?

A very important question that arises from beginner iPhone-developer, is whether there is a need for the phone itself. Needless to say, the question is not idle. Cost iPhone involuntarily raises a simple programmer, not yet earned his million dollars on the calendar baseball games or the regular variation on the theme of "Tetris", especially if the programmer has not yet left the college. Shall I take a loan and buy all the same device in the calculation of future profits? Or is it better to try to do an emulator, because not every Tetris makes its creator a wealthy man?

Of course, other things being equal, with "iPhones" in the hands of the development will more fun and better than without it. Because no matter how well was not an emulator, it still will not show you all the subtleties of movement of fingers across the screen, that is, an interface is not as good as the design with the use of the device. Again, no one has repealed and the usual inherent in the development of any software mysticism - especially the mystical "not working", although the idea does not work simply can not by definition. Needless to say, that even just to learn about the problems when they occur (if the device itself is absent), will from end users. Well, frankly, would force them to treat you not as good as we would like. Again, in the process of using the communicator may have some ideas about creating applications for it, which is also an unequivocal "yes" in favor of the acquisition iPhone.

However, if the iPhone really is too heavy for you to purchase, then, in principle, can try their luck and with the emulator. Another thing that happened today nxa market is the fourth generation of these devices, and it is quite possible to do what is called a "horse course" and buy a used camera of one of the earlier generations, which will cost significantly cheaper than the store. You can go even further and do not buy the communicator, and player iPod Touch, which has the same soft stuffing, like the iPhone, but without the "phone" functions and is somewhat cheaper "apple phone".

It must be said that the purchase of iPhone application development under it is justified even for the reason that, in essence, the developer put in enough greenhouse conditions - it is invited, in fact, a single device from one manufacturer with known hardware and software filling . Once designed interface (which, incidentally, will perform at the level of "guidance from the designers of Apple), a developer can forget about its testing on the screens of dozens of different devices - different in size and brightness, the touch-sensitive user ... In fact, developing applications for iOS (namely the so-now called the operating system used in portable devices, Apple), a developer is not confronted and a half of all the difficulties that await those who write software for other popular mobile system - Symbian, Windows Mobile, Android... Of course, if the application is "shot" on AppStore, it will make sense to think about writing a version for these mobile platforms, but it is down to a distant prospect. On the difficulties of porting iPhone-application to other systems, will need to think when there is a real threat facing them face to face.

So if you really develop applications for the "iphone", it still makes sense to buy some devays with iOS, the more so now able to do so, even with limited budget is not too little.

Well, this "philosophical" part of the conversation about creating applications for iPhone is finished - the next time we pass to the technical part.

10 interesting facts about Microsoft.

When and how did the name Microsoft?1. When and how did the name Microsoft?

For the first time the company name appeared in the correspondence of the two co-founders - Bill Gates and Paul Allen. The future is the richest man on earth shared the opinion that the name should reflect the essence of business - a symbiosis of "iron" and "a software" entities (Micro-Soft). This name and has become established formally. Then the partners have registered a new company in the state of New Mexico, where they would work on its first customer - Micro Instrumentation and Telemetry Systems, stationed in Albuquerque.


2. Who composed "Ringtone Microsoft"?

Melodious warble when you start Windows OSes, first appeared in Windows 95 and continues to accompany the more modern version of the platform. Author melodies became famous composer and producer Brian Eno, who worked with U2, David Bowie and other prominent performers. In the words of Ino, compose a melody to run the OS it was for him the task akin to "create a small gem".

What love is Microsoft employees?3. What love is Microsoft employees?

The company's management is wise and provides its employees free meals and drinks. In the offices of the company each year is consumed 23 million servings of beverages. The most popular of them - milk and orange juice. But the greatest demand from the food enjoyed pizza: it can be tasted in any of 35 cafes on campus.


4. How Microsoft encrypts your software products?

How to write a Russian journalist, Longhorn, Lone Star and Vienna - this is not the name of special operations to enforce peace, but only code names of operating systems from Microsoft. According to company managers, public relations help obscure names for new products. So, Mohave Project immediately attracted the attention of the public, though later turned out to be Windows 7.


5. How many years of Microsoft employees and how much they receive?

Microsoft has called a softie. In total the company employs 88,180 of the most softie. 50 thousand listed as an American office. Most of them are men (76%). Their average age 38 years, and the average annual income - $106 thousands.


6. As Microsoft employees celebrating their anniversaries?

Festive feast dedicated to the anniversary of the work - not only the Russian folk tradition. It is and the staff of Microsoft. Only instead of cake and drink for the celebration of colleagues held by the crunch of chocolate candy M & M's. The celebrated officer must "put down" one of a pound of candy for each year of work.


7. Microsoft nine times pounded their shares?

Splitovat shares - enough common technique for a company whose securities are quickly becoming more expensive. This maneuver is justified in order to make the shares more accessible to the general population. Microsoft spent split nine times since its release to the stock exchange in 1986. If she has not done that, each paper was released during the IPO, would cost now $6 thousand.


8. Microsoft - is not just software?

Few people know that Microsoft - is not only a company of software development, but also the largest corporate art collector. The total number of works of art acquired by the company, is now around 5 thousand is painting, sculpture, works of modern authors, including multimedia art. Most of the exhibits on display at the 150 office buildings of the company. In the opinion of management, communication with the works of art helps employees relieve stress.

How to take a job at Microsoft9. How to take a job at Microsoft?

Manager's easy to unsettle request to solve the case on his profile subject, but abstract questions can put in a deadlock. For Microsoft this is particularly true. When a candidate is asked why Manhole cover doing a round, he lost and did not know what to say. They say that the tradition of asking tricky questions borrowed and Google. Thus, the two companies to examine the candidates ability to think outside the box, that is very important in the development of software.


10. Microsoft has more than 10 thousand patents?

Microsoft, with its 10 thousand patents among the five largest U.S. patent. Most of them are true, of course, to the field of software. The founders of the company on a special account. In addition to the prize in $1,5 thousand for each patent, the employee receives a wooden "plaque" and a certificate confirming his genius.