Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Internet Explorer users warned to change browser over security fears - Times Online

Internet Explorer users warned to change browser over security fears - Times Online: "A spokesman today estimated that one in 500 internet users had been affected."

1 in 500 is stupidly high when you've got billions of people using your system. This is the kind of thing that can actually destroy people's trust in the internet.

Hope they manage to solve this quickly. If more people switch browsers, we should see these sort of problems become less frequent - someone would have to find a way to compromise firefox, IE, chrome, opera and safari (plus numerous others) in order to get to 1 in 500. If there are 600 million internet users (a stat I remember seeing recently), then we're talking about 1.2 million people being compromised. That's stupidly huge.

I hope the spokesperson was just being wrong and meant that 1 in 500 may be affected...

Wednesday, December 03, 2008

Me being Slow

Founders of Google looking Geekys somewhere

It's taken me a long time, but I finally got around to reading the paper Google's founders wrote when they had their search engine up and running.
I haven't seen a similar example from any other startup where their actual process of starting up is written up in so much detail. Obviously it is still quite biased as it is an academic paper which will naturally try to talk up the achievements of the authors.
Just seeing what they did though does impress me. They came up with:
  • The whole concept of crawlers
  • A new way of storing files on disks
  • A programme that could understand web pages
  • The pagerank idea (and more importantly the implementation)
  • Storing the index in a flexible manner
Much as we all hear about the company, it's very interesting to see how it all started. Right from the start they were looking to create a platform rather than just a search engine. Quite scary really.
Also interesting to see they wrote the initial crawler in Python. Been playing around with this recently and it's good to see the best in the business are using this too.