Category Information Technology

A forewarning of IOT chaos?

Learning from the Wanna Decryptor 2.0 ransomware attack

On Friday 12 May thousands of organizations in dozens of countries became the victims of a ransomware attack until the attack was halted by the registration of a nonsensical domain name.

Plenty has been, and is still being, written about this cyberattack. We won’t repeat the story and analysis here.

Instead, we’re interested in what this means for the Internet of Things (IOT) and the risk of a cyber Pearl Harbor Read more

Google breakup? Now Europe gets it wrong

On the Internet four years behind USA as usual

Now the European Parliament has weighed into the battle, four years behind the US Consumer Watchdog, calling for a resolution that Google be broken up.

See this NYTimes blog article, for example.

This is going over old ground … very old ground.

We discussed it here.

Four and a half years later our opinion is Read more

Ten years of whitespace

Recycling unused parts of screens and paper

Ten years ago, Slate announced the introduction of whitespace, a language designed to compensate for the “white-space doesn’t count” culture of contemporary programming languages.

Whitespace uses spaces and tabs to code in the whitespace that surrounds text. The great advantage with this approach is that your documentation can be right in the middle of your code and yet not interfere with it.

You can see the slashdot article here.

Just be careful that you don’t use GZIP, Winzip, 7-zip or any other similar utility to package your whitespace program or you may find that it is rendered unexecutable. Read more

The Internet Age Emperor’s New Clothes

A Bit of a long shot

The BitCoin bubble is in full swing. But this bubble started a lot longer ago than most commentators report, and is much bigger than most commentators report.

The main reason is that most commentators give credence to BitCoin, and treat it like a respectable currency. Even laying aside the Silk Road connections, here at Vox Sapiens we have no confidence in BitCoin (or in its cousins such as LiteCoin and NameCoin). Here’s why. Read more

onlycoin – only ten years too late

PINning your hopes on an unCHIPped picture of the future

A new startup, onlycoin.com, is attempting crowdfunding for a new credit card wallet. This product, called coin, is the same size as a credit card and stores the details of up to eight other credit cards (or debit cards, or any similar card with a magnetic strip). The onlycoin.com card runs an application that allows you to select which of these eight cards the onlycoin.com card should emulate. This allows you to leave your other cards at home and carry just the onlycoin.com card.

Many people’s physical wallets are bursting with multiple cards, and the onlycoin.com card helps address this problem. But it has a major drawback. The onlycoin.com card does not Read more

Nok-nok-nokiaing on heaven’s door

Oh, oh, oh-oh-oh

Nokia and Microsoft have announced an alliance whereby Nokia will use Microsoft Windows on its new models of smartphones, beginning in 2013.

Will that save Nokia?

At Vox Sapiens we think Read more

CFOs should put their heads in the cloud

And save some money

As I perform my day job, as a management consultant with a bias towards IT, and the alignment of IT with business, I continue to be amazed at how CFOs are ignoring cloud computing.

Read more

Let’s Face(book) it, this time it is different

No it’s not !!!

Here we go again. Goldman Sachs drags up the mindless euphoria of the 1999 Internet bubble and makes a small investment in Facebook which indicates a valuation of USD 50bn. This is 25 times sales. When Google was valued at USD 50bn it had sales of USD 3.2bn, compared to Facebook’s USD 2bn, and a viable strategy to grow those sales rapidly.

And Facebook?

“Facebook is becoming like the telephone system,” according to a “the daily beast” commentator on Bloomberg, apparently justifying the stretched valuation.

Well here at Vox Sapiens we see this as a ridiculous overvaluation for several reasons. Read more

Paybox.me is not a competitor for Paypal

Beware this one.

This blog is not usually concerned with warning people about websites that show similarities with scams. But this post breaks with tradition because the website in question has been mentioned in the comments to a previous post: Google breakup? Wrong target again.

In that post I discussed why Paypal was far more dangerous than Google, with respect to consumer choice and other monopolistic matters.

Earlier today “Al” commented that Paybox (http://www.paybox.me/r/signuppage) was emerging as a potential competitor to Paypal.

I don’t think this is the case. For several reasons I think that the business is a l-o-n-g way from competing with Paypal. Read more

158 Million IT Jobs Sent Offshore in 2010

Yes, honestly, it’s in the press.

I never cease to be amazed at how some people have no innate feeling for the size of numbers.

One might expect IT people to be more numerically comfortable than the average person? Well today Read more

Simple defense to reduce email risks

Why don’t major webmail providers support this?

We have all been subject to spam. And most of us to malicious emails too. Particularly annoying are emails that present a threat simply by being read, even if no links are clicked. But there is a way to substantially reduce the risk that people will open dangerous emails. But for some reason none of the major webmail providers support a mechanism to enable this.

Why? I have no idea.

The simple solution is to Read more

Apotheker to run SAP again?

What are HP’s strategic plans?

So Leo Apotheker, former head of SAP AG, replaces Mark Hurd at HP. Mr Apotheker has a background in software, but was chosen over a large number of candidates with far more relevant experience and caught many observers on the back foot.

But here at Vox Sapiens we were not at all surprised. In fact, we half suspected it because Read more

The end of Open Source ?

The GPL debate will run and run

Over the last few days a debate has flared up over the GPL (the GNU General Public License). Specifically, the debate relates to the refusal of DIYThemes to release its WordPress Thesis theme under the GPL.

The details of the debate encapsulate a major nerdfest, with legal and technical nerds crawling out of their boxes and greeting the world. But beyond this, the debate has much wider implications.

In fact, at Vox Sapiens we wonder whether this debate will be seen as the tipping point that identifies the crest of the Open Source wave. We think that, maybe, the strength of the Open Source movement will wane from this moment because Read more

Has SAP missed a trick?

Sybase may be a costly mistake

So it looks like SAP is going to buy Sybase, database vendor. But SAP is paying a lot of money for the company placed fourth in its main market. The price per share, at USD65 and a 44% premium to the pre-announcement price, hearkens back to the mid-1990’s when Sybase was still considered a serious competitor to Oracle, IBM, Ingres (another decliner), and Microsoft was not taken seriously as an enterprise computing vendor.

Here at Vox Sapiens we are not sure this is the right move for SAP. Firstly, Sybase is probably a poor choice at virtually any price. But there is plenty of commentary available on this elsewhere on the web.

So instead, here at Vox Sapiens we will discuss the company that SAP should have bought. And that company is Read more

Google breakup? Wrong target again

Consumer Watchdog misses the biggest threat

The Consumer Watchdog April 21 asked the US Department of Justice (DOJ) to launch an antitrust action against Google. In its request it suggested that Google might be broken up.

While there is the potential for Google to develop into something that needs to be broken up, right now there is a candidate that is way higher in priority. And that is Read more

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