Microsoft Surface RT Impressions

Microsoft launched the Surface RT last week to decidedly mixed reactions. I’m not getting one myself – I think it’s rather overpriced and much less useful than the upcoming Surface Pro. However, the device is the first manifestation of Microsoft’s new tablet strategy, so its reception should be instructive. The emerging picture is one of … Continue reading “Microsoft Surface RT Impressions”

Hardware Failure Analysis

Back in April 2011 a Microsoft Research team published an interesting paper, Cycles, Cells and Platters: An Empirical Analysis of Hardware Failures on a Million Consumer PCs, which I found through Joel Hruska’s summary at ExtremeTech. The team analyzed crash reports sent from ca. 950,000 machines over an 8-month period in the year 2008. While … Continue reading “Hardware Failure Analysis”

The Internet Archive

Matt Simon’s recent article Alexandria 2.0 traces the history of the Internet Archive and the Wayback Machine, vast public data repositories established by millionaire Brewster Kahle. The non-profit organization maintains mirror servers in San Francisco and Alexandria, and accepts donations of both money and all forms of content. Its goal is to make as much … Continue reading “The Internet Archive”

Search with DuckDuckGo

Tired of Google’s global tracking & filtering empire? The fledgling search engine DuckDuckGo aggregates results from Microsoft Bing and other non-Google sources, but more importantly does not store or transmit any personal data, including your search terms. At your next search DuckDuckGo won’t know what you have searched for last time, nor will it tell … Continue reading “Search with DuckDuckGo”

Hacking the Cloud

As cracking passwords and encryption by technical means is getting harder, the employees in charge of security become the weakest links in the chain. Social engineering hacks use a combination of publicly available data and expert bluffing to tweak confidential data out of customer service personnel. “Are you the LOD today?” contestant J.C. asked as … Continue reading “Hacking the Cloud”