Overheard: Word of the Day


May 4, 2012  12:31 PM

Overheard talking about mobile development and the role of middleware

Margaret Rouse Margaret Rouse Profile: Margaret Rouse
“People are saying it costs 50 to 70% of the original project cost to port a mobile app to a second platform. Even in cases where needs for rewrites slim, testing and tweaking for different devices’ screen sizes can still run from 20 to 30% of the cost of the original project.” – Jeffrey Hammond

Today’s WhatIs.com Word of the Day is mobile middleware. Like other types of middleware, it connects disparate applications, programs and systems.  Look for the buzzword mobile middleware-as-a-service (MMaaS) coming to an app/dev meeting near you!

May 3, 2012  11:02 AM

Overheard talking about persistent desktop management

Margaret Rouse Margaret Rouse Profile: Margaret Rouse
“Persistent desktops could potentially become an administrative nightmare. The amount of disk space needed to maintain this setting will grow and datacenter storage doesn’t come cheap. Patching and upgrades are now necessary for each persistent image and this can eat up tons of man hours, which usually occur after hours.” –Greg Stuart

Today’s WhatIs.com Word of the Day is persistent desktop, a virtual desktop that retains the user’s data from session to session.


May 2, 2012  10:06 AM

Overheard talking about parallax and 3-D imaging

Margaret Rouse Margaret Rouse Profile: Margaret Rouse
quotes and quotations Human beings have binocular vision — each eye sees a different image, and the brain combines them into a single, unified picture. The brain uses the slight difference in angle between the two images, known as parallax, to help it perceive depth.” – Tracy V. Wilson

Today’s WhatIs.com Word of the Day is parallax — it describes the way an object’s position or direction seems to change depending on which eye you have open. In 3-D imaging, this phenomena is used to create the illusion of depth.


May 1, 2012  1:42 PM

Overheard talking about Google Drive

Margaret Rouse Margaret Rouse Profile: Margaret Rouse
“This week, both Google and Microsoft announced offerings that aim to provide more IT value than other cloud storage and file-sharing services. Unlike Dropbox, Google and Microsoft use their file-sharing services to extend applications.” — James Furbush

Today’s WhatIs.com Word of the Day is Google Drive, a cloud storage service that incorporates Google Docs, the company’s business applications suite.


May 1, 2012  12:50 PM

Overheard talking about HTML5 clients

Margaret Rouse Margaret Rouse Profile: Margaret Rouse
quotes and quotations “It’s tempting to think that the future will be only HTML5 apps, but in reality HTML5 VDI clients will never have the performance or features of native clients.” — Brian Madden

Today’s Whatis.com Word of the Day is HTML5 client, a remote desktop client that uses JavaScript and WebSocket to provide the end user with access to a remote desktop through their web browser.


April 30, 2012  12:00 AM

Overheard talking about Raspberry Pi

Margaret Rouse Margaret Rouse Profile: Margaret Rouse
quotes and quotations “We learn English and maths not for specific jobs but because they’re life skills. Coding is a life skill too.” — Kevin Fong

Today’s WhatIs.com Word of the Day is Raspberry Pi, a single-board $35 computer for education.


April 20, 2012  4:32 PM

Overheard talking about cramming landline phone bills

Margaret Rouse Margaret Rouse Profile: Margaret Rouse
“An investigation by Rockefeller’s Senate Commerce Science and Transportation Committee last year found that phone companies had placed $10 billion in third-party charges on customers’ landline phone bills over the last five years — and that a large percentage of those charges were unauthorized.” — Brendan Sasso

Today’s WhatIs.com Word of the Day is cramming, padding your phone bill with sneaky little charges for things you don’t want and never knew you were paying for.

U.S. Senator Amy Klobuchar has convinced  Verizon, CenturyLink and AT&T to stop cramming  landline phone bills. The Senator is on the Commerce Subcommittee on Communications, Technology and the Internet — which has oversight over the FCC and the wireless industry.


April 19, 2012  1:18 PM

Overheard talking about memory maps

Margaret Rouse Margaret Rouse Profile: Margaret Rouse

“Bad computer memory is one of the three main reasons for random system failures; the other two are heat (usually caused by fans or heatsinks being blocked with dust) and bad power.” — Serdar Yegulalp

Today’s WhatIs.com Word of the Day is memory map, a massive table that tells your computer how much memory is available and helps ensure that data is always written to, and read from, the proper places.

There’s an interesting article at Forbes.com this week about recent advances in understanding human memory. Author Roger Kay writes about his own memory issues and explains how memories may not be held in their entirety in the brain but are maintained as a kind of chemical residue of the original perception.

That means my brain, in effect, uses hash values to store and retrieve data.  Does that also mean that when I remember things incorrectly it’s because my brain has suffered from a hash collision?  Makes sense to me!


April 18, 2012  8:21 PM

Overheard talking about smart meter hacks and PKI

Margaret Rouse Margaret Rouse Profile: Margaret Rouse
“Advanced metering infrastructure (AMI) components — in particular, the smart meters that are responsible for measuring and managing the delivery of electricity use for more than 110 million households and companies in the United States — rely on secure communications channels in order to transmit usage data. Many AMI equipment manufacturers rely on PKI for identification, authentication and establishment of secure communications channels.”  — Seth Bromberger

Today’s WhatIs.com Word of the Day is smart meter hack.  If you live way out in the country, you may still have an old-fashioned spinning mechanical electrical meter, but you are fast becoming the exception. Ironically, the very features that motivate power companies to install smart meters also make them vulnerable to new kinds of attacks. According to an FBI bulletin, smart meter hacks may end up costing utility companies about $400 million per year.

Keep your eye out for a new kind of service provider who will independently verify the security of AMI components and the smart networks they use.


April 18, 2012  5:48 PM

Overheard talking about Anonymous and the abuse of its name

Margaret Rouse Margaret Rouse Profile: Margaret Rouse
“Anonymous is more of a brand and a franchise that is borrowed and often abused by anyone. I’m concerned about the false attacks and pretenders stealing intellectual property in the name of ‘Anonymous.’” — Joshua Corman

Today’s WhatIs.com Word of the Day is Anonymous, a decentralized hacktivist group which is either a gang of Robin Hood’s merry men, an authoritarian self-appointed collective Sheriff of Nottingham, or simply a group of politically-motivated cowards with computer skills, depending on who you talk to.

Anonymous has its roots in the Antisec movement in the early 2000s and its members, when seen in public, often wear Guy Fawkes masks.


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