Hanselminutes

A couple of weeks ago, Scott Hanselman stopped by my office, and we chatted for almost an hour for his Hanselminutes  podcast.   On Monday, he posted the interview – it’s mostly me rambling on about security and other stuff, but my ego requires that I mention it

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So Amazon brought out this "Kindle" thingy… But I have one question for them…

Amazon just brought out a new eBook reader called “Kindle“.  It looks pretty cool, but I have one question:  “Where can I go to try one of these out before I fork over $399 for one of them?”   I have a real problem with buying a new technology item (especially one where the form…

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Think Geek Responds

Valorie just received the following email from Think Geek (in response to our previous issue with them): From: Caroline Offutt [mailto:<email address at thinkgeek.com>]Sent: Sunday, November 18, 2007 7:05 PMTo: <valorie’s email address>Cc: Rob Patak Subject: Issues with ThinkGeek order Ms. Osterman, I would like to apologize for all of ThinkGeek for the fraud issues…

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I don’t know if I should be honored or ashamed :)

Yesterday, we had the weekly security contacts meeting for the WEX division.  At those meetings, they sometimes give out awards for people who have gone above and beyond the call of duty.   Much to my surprise, I won one of the awards! You can’t read the text, but it says “Most M1 TM’s Reviewed…

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How to lose customers without really trying…

Not surprisingly, Valorie and I both do some of our holiday season shopping at ThinkGeek.  But no longer.  Valorie recently placed a substantial order with them, but Instead of processing her order, they sent the following email: From: ThinkGeek Customer Service [mailto:custserv@thinkgeek.com]Sent: Thursday, November 15, 2007 4:28 AMTo: <Valorie’s Email Address>Subject: URGENT – Information Needed…

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Analog to Digital Conversion

Steve Rowe (test lead on the sound team) points to a great article from Ars Technica on D2A: If you want digital audio in a computer, you have to get it from somewhere.  Usually that means taking analog sound out of the air and turning it into the bits that a computer can understand.  Ars…

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When you’re analyzing the strength of a password, make sure you know what’s done with it.

Every once in a while, I hear someone making comments about the strength of things like long passwords. For example, if you have a 255 character password that just uses the 26 roman upper and lower case letters, plus the numeric digits.  That means that your password has 62^255 possible values, if you can try…

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My son is SUCH a geek (in a good way) :)

Back when Daniel was in 5th grade, his teacher Bob Whittemore taught a unit that he called “Patterns and Functions”.  The unit used sequences of numbers to introduce the students to the concept of polynomials and polynomial equations.   The core of the patterns and functions unit involves a mechanism that can be used to…

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The Shell used to get all the cool APIs :)

After I posted my article on the SHAutoComplete, I mentioned it to one of my co-workers.  His response “I’m not surprised – The shell gets all the cool APIs”.   And they do. For instance, my “new favorite” Win32 API: RegGetValue began it’s life as the SHRegGetValue function.  But increasingly, many of the cool shell APIs are…

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Chris Pirillo’s annoyed by the Windows Firewall prompt

Yesterday, Chris Pirillo made a comment in one of his posts: And if you think you’re already completely protected in Windows with its default tools, think again. This morning, after months of regular Firefox use, I get this security warning from the Windows Vista Firewall. Again, this was far from the first time I had…

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