Authentication, Identity and Zero Days: Web Security Ain’t What it Used to be

What a weird year it’s been for web security professionals. It seems like every year more threats arrive on the world stage, but 2012 has been a particularly crazy year even by recent standards.

This week’s article from ArsTechnica has a title that’s scary enough to make Donald Rumsfeld blush: “Crack in Internet’s foundation of trust allows HTTPS session hijacking”. That sounds kind of bad, right? Earlier this year Microsoft was forced to change their security practices around Certificates due to one of the largest targeted attacks in history. Recently’s Mat Honan had his Apple account hacked and his life torn apart by a 15 year old with no significant computer skills. This attack, while not technical, could be much worse because it involves social engineering instead of computer science. What’s an admin to do?!

Evolve. Read more »


TC3: What Carriers Want!

Check out my new Deck on TC3: Telecom Council Carrier Connections. It’s an AWESOME conference here in Silicon Valley.


Zero Energy Computing in the New Connected Web

ExtremeTech has an article covering the Intel Developer Forum which, as always, includes Intel’s vision of the future.

It comes as no surprise that Intel’s visions are interesting, sometimes bizarre, and sometimes mind-blowing (it comes with the silicon territory). Today, Intel predicted that by the year 2020, the energy cost of doing meaningful computing will approach zero. What impact does that have on Silicon Valley, and how will those ripples effect the world?

Intel is famous for prognostication. They’ve been at the forefront of the technical world since the early days of Silicon Valley, largely due to their knowledge and expertise in silicon fabrication. Now, Datacenters are less about raw computational power and more about using less energy to accomplish the same tasks. Hell, they’ve gone as far as submerging their servers in liquid pools as a means of reducing the costs of power. But why? Read more »


Black Swan Farming: Technical Appetite

Paul Graham is one of my favorite writers in this new Hi-Tech world. He released an essay today which struck a chord with me, you can read it here.

Essentially, Paul argues, much like Peter Thiel, that Startup returns follow a power-law distribution. That is to say that 75% of Y-Combinator’s returns have come from 2 startups: AirBnB and DropBox. When you think about the many startups Y-Combinator has funded, it seems sort of odd that only two startups would’ve contributed so much to the overall returns, yet this theme is actually repeated throughout the ecosystem. Read more »


Nokia 920: What the Hell is going on in Espoo???



The iPhone 5 launch is next week. The iPhone 5 will be in stores by September 21st. Nokia has been getting hammered on the Mobile front since the iPhone came out 5 years ago. How is it possible, in light of all of this, that today’s announcement of a new Nokia phone launch contained no actual launch? Read more »


Back to the Future Part 1: Who Am I?

This is my first post for the 2600hz corporate blog. You can read it on our site here:

This post is brought to you by Joshua Goldbard. He’s our Biz Dev ambassador, a writer, loves talking to people and for some reason is crazy about phone systems. Find him out and about in the Bay Area or at the pub with a pint of Pliny the Elder in hand.

Identity Blog PostIdentity is an idea.

We, as a society, take the idea of identity for granted. Verifying who someone is often really is as simple as looking at them, but this isn’t the case with computers. We have login servers and password databases, and many other methods for authentication, but none of these servers answer the fundamental question: who am I and what am I doing?

Telephony, as one of the few synchronous means of communication, holds a special place due to both the daily use of the technology, and its ubiquity. There are few systems which any business person is guaranteed to have, but a phone is one of them. There should be some way for this phone to communicate—based on all of its sensors and various control apparatus—what the owner is doing. There should be a way for your phone to communicate your identity.

We call this presence.

What is Presence?
Presence is the idea that your phone can update your coworkers or friends faster and more accurately than you can by yourself. It’s literally impossible for me to update my location constantly, but my device can report my GPS quickly and easily. Going even further, if I’m connected to a company access point, my presence information should be able to display information about why I’m there (by pulling information from my calendar). Correlating what we do with why we’re doing it, in real time, is tremendously valuable. Think about how many hours are wasted just tracking employees down; presence eliminates this.

But why stop at just knowing what someone is doing? Since where you are impacts how your devices should work, it’s easy to envision a world where your phone goes to vibrate mode when approaching your work campus, but automatically turns the ringer back on when you leave. Going even further, why can’t your phone serve as your login credential? Why can’t you pay with your phone? Why do you carry a wallet?

All of these concepts are topics we at 2600hz wrestle with every day. How can your phone be more functional and provide intelligence to your associates without damaging personal privacy? It’s a slippery slope, but one we’re treading down carefully.

Taking it Further
So how are we going back to the future? It turns out Presence is another one of those old concepts that no one has gotten quite right (this is a recurring theme in the Telecom industry). Our intention is to integrate Presence in a privacy conscious, controlled manner, while retaining the freedom to integrate whatever services you want. Doing this requires a lot of control, but we think that in the long run, Presence is going to change the way the world does business.

Too Long; Didn’t Read: your phone knows so much about you, and if you want to share what your phone knows, you should be able to. 2600hz is helping to make dynamic presence a reality.

Tune in next time when we talk about managing corporate phone systems, why that process sucks and how to make it a process that works for you.

Written by: Joshua Goldbard; Director of Business Development


Reddit Entrepreneurship 101, Session 1: The Art of the Start

I’m teaching a class for the new University of Reddit on Startup Entrepreneurship. It’s gonna be a lot of fun; if you have time, check it out!


2600hz makes list of Top 10 Reddit Startups

2600hz elected to Top 10 Reddit Startups List!

Check it out!



Google Fiber: Tripping the Light Fantastic

Google Fiber is an innovative new bandwidth delivery service in Kansas City









Ahh there’s nothing quite like the smell of multiplexing in the morning.

The Internet is aflame with Google Fiber! Yes it’s a very big deal that Google is finally selling their network access to the public. In terms of who would make an ideal ISP, they’re not my first pick, but they’ve got some desirable attributes that the current carriers don’t possess. Read more »


Virtualization, Optimization, and Procrastination

A small slice of the Internet of things (from the SP360 Cisco Blog)

I’ve been thinking more and more about the Nicira acquisition and where it fits in the larger context (specifically Cisco’s Internet of Things, multiplexing and hypervisors) and I keep coming back to one fundamental truth. Optimization and Virtualization generally maximize hardware, but they don’t replace hardware, at least not in the long term.

I think that organizations look to virtualization as a means of reducing cost, and while that might be true in the short term, the true value of virtualization is getting more for your money. Optimizations of any kind enable new innovations; faster bandwidth leads to higher resolution content, speedier processors to agile applications, and denser networks to ubiquitous access. I’d like to paint a rosy picture, but when I think back, optimizations haven’t always had immediate positive consequences. Read more »