October 23, 2008

On the discipline of good writing

It's easy to be cheesy, when writing a long piece or just writing for a long period of time, the tendency to get lazy appears. Resist the temptation.


If you flatter and fawn upon your potential audience, I might add, you are patronizing them and insulting them. By the same token, if I write an article and I quote somebody and for space reasons put in an ellipsis like this (…), I swear on my children that I am not leaving out anything that, if quoted in full, would alter the original meaning or its significance. Those who violate this pact with readers or viewers are to be despised.

Christopher Hitchens, a controversial commentator and writer, in a scathing piece on yet another, even more controversial filmmaker.

August 02, 2008

History of Computer Security project

Here are some of the classic papers in computer security from the 1970s and early 1980s.


Is there much new under the sun or are we just repeating old mistakes we learned about 20-30 years ago?



July 08, 2008

Great Research on P2P takedown notices

http://dmca.cs.washington.edu/ is the site for the research into the credibility of some takedown notices for alleged copyright violations enabled by P2P such as BitTorrent.

The alarming, yet sadly unsurprising highlights, from the overview page:

  • Practically any Internet user can be framed for copyright infringement today.
    By profiling copyright enforcement in the popular BitTorrent file sharing system, we were able to generate hundreds of real DMCA takedown notices for computers at the University of Washington that never downloaded nor shared any content whatsoever.

    Further, we were able to remotely generate complaints for nonsense devices including several printers and a (non-NAT) wireless access point. Our results demonstrate several simple techniques that a malicious user could use to frame arbitrary network endpoints.