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Showing posts from February, 2018

Understanding Blockchain : The theory and the threats

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In this post I'll break down some key aspects of what makes a blockchain, blocky and chainy. I'll also break out some ideas I have on what threatens block chain applications in design an implementation potentially speaking.

What is the blockchain? Blockchain applications essentially provides a means to orchestrate transactions based on something called a "state-machine" that propagates and maintains global addressable list of all transactions ever.  Essentially folks needed a way for all agreements of a given theme based on the value of something to follow a strict grammar and language i.e. based on principles that "this thing" must appear before "this thing" rules that follow this format are great for language based machines like state machines. After all we designed computers and all formal definitions so far on these properties, they are such powerful means of scrying computation out of nature we are applying them to quantum bodies in profound…

On Forced Open Sourcing of End of Life Software

Recently I heard of a regulation France introduced (or was proposing be introduced internationally at least) in order to force companies developing closed source applications to open source them once end of life is declared for the software. And again I shall state this is almost purely in an effort to be fair to the users of the software. Why is this "fair"? What does it reflect about the rest of the life of the software? i.e. What is the impact on the non-end of life- life of the software and the user?

If it is fair to force declaration of the source code because the users are no longer supported with updates and maintenance of the software. Then this means it is recognized that forcing users to use software that doesn't remain in appreciation of their security needs is seen here as ethically wrong. In essence we recognize here that users cannot be held captive by software they are not allowed to understand or change by the imposition of the company that owns the soft…

On the ontological duality of Software and Hardware II : and What it means for Open Source.

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Folks in France had the brilliant idea of requiring software companies to hand over source code for software they have ended support for. Obviously this is done in an effort to protect the users who suffer from needing to use their software. But of course this means much much more for the future of software, and highlights a key insight the French have on the reality of software and how it actually affects society.


Why does Source code matter? Because its all source code!
Computer Scientists have since before the existence of computers argued the break in ontological duality of hardware and software (most recently I think JH Moore's "Three Myths of Computer Science" being the last major blow to it from a philosophical stand point). Essentially they've been screaming at us that there is no difference between hardware and software - no means to actually differentiate them according to the ontological realities. And whats more because of the advent of quantum computing…

[Android Security] Attacking the Android Package Manager from the past.

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Hi folks, here's a quick post about something I see very often in android application code. Something that could have pretty devastating effects if taken too lightly. Something that I believe is known about in some Android development circles but according to some of the things I've seen in apps - it doesn't seem this abuse of the PackageManager is as widely understood as it should be.  So in the following post I'm going to lay out a small trust problem folks seem to miss when dealing with Intents and the PackgeManager on Android.

So here's whats up...
When developing applications for Android you often want to take advantage of other applications and services available on the hosting system. For instance you might want to develop an app that opens Google Maps on a given set of co-ordinates , or perhaps opens a browser on a given page. Of course this is very common, its even common to host applications that forward potentially sensitive information to other applica…