My new identities on Facebook and Spock

Like Chris, I seem to be following in his footsteps by having recently joined Facebook in my post-30 era (only slightly over 30 i might add).

However, my introduction to his fascinating site came from an invitation from none other than the infamous Pat Patterson. Obviously, I have heard of Facebook before but up until now have never got around to joining it to see what it is all about. Whilst I have a fairly decent sized network (in my opinion) on LinkedIn, I am just setting out on the road to setting up my friends on FB.

I’m feeling very lonely on FB at the moment. Anyone interested in being my friend 🙂 ………..

http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=565438988

Interestingly, whilst I aren’t stalking Chris’s movements, I also recently joined Spock through another invitation I received. However, unlike Chris, I was pleased to see that searching on my name brought my profile back as the top two links. I was also surprised to see that there were another 4 people in the UK with the same name though and that they all seem to have MySpace profiles. I really must get myself one of those.

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Oracle on the acquisition train still

I saw in a press release today that Oracle has announced its intention to buy Bharosa. This is a company that specialises in fraud prevention and strong authentication security solutions. This will add the following capabilities to the IAM stack:

  • Proactive real time risk-analysis
  • Strong authentication
  • Fraud prevention

Working within Oracle’s Identity Management team, I see this as a really positive move for Oracle that will provide a real differentiator as well as a strong compliment for the existing products within the IAM suite.

I’m look forward to finding out more about Bharosa’s products in the coming weeks and months.

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View on the recent floods

Over the past couple of weeks, the UK has faced some terrible flooding across, mainly, several parts of England. Apparently we have had the equivalent of 2 months rain within 2 days. In case you haven’t seen the pictures, click here. Fortunately, where I live hasn’t been directly affected. However, several towns close by have been including Doncaster, Sheffield and Hull. The worst hit seems to be Hull in which 16,000 (1 in 5) houses have been affected.

Now that the flood waters have subsided the huge cleanup task begins.

On the news last night, a lady from Hull was meeting her local MP (and ex-Deputy PM, John Prescott) together with the Floods Minister (I didn’t know we had one). Other than the obvious PR exercise, the MPs were apparently assessing the damage to then work out how to deal with it. However, the main gripe on the woman was that she didn’t have house insurance and therefore wanted the Government to put their hands in their pockets and start allocating money to people like her. She argued that we give billions of pounds to foreign countries for any number of reasons and now she felt that we were having a disaster and therefore we need the money within this country. Whilst I can see her point about foreign aid, I do have to take issue with her reasons for requesting money.

Home insurance, like any insurance is designed to protect against the unexpected (e.g. floods). You have to question people who don’t have home insurance. Houses are typically our most expensive purchase throughout our lives, so why wouldn’t you insure it? Its not like you can pop out and buy another with cash if it breaks (well most of us can’t). Why should the UK taxpayer fund her cleanup because she didn’t have insurance.

However, I do think that they Government has a part to play in such disasters as this. I categorically don’t think that they should be funding the cleanup for people who don’t have insurance. However, short term aid such as shelter, emergency clothing, food etc should be provided by the Government to enable people to get over the immediate disaster so that they can start putting their own plans in place for recovery.

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Response to a comment I received

Recently I posted a comment about open source software and how impressed I continue to be by it. It seems that, in a comment on that post, Farrin feels that “99% of all open-source software are blatant ripp-offs and cheap plagiarism”.

I can only guess that their bias comes from the fact that they seems to work for a commercial vendor (MaxiVista) of the open-source software (Synergy) I was writing about.

I must admit that I have to take issue with his comment. I have responded directly to the comment on the original post but feel justified to include it here (in case you don’t subscribe to comments).

My response was:

“However, do you not think that having the open source community replicating commercial products is in the end-users advantage.

At the end of the day, technology keeps advancing and by having the open source community constantly pushing the boundaries of their open source software, it means that the commercial vendors must develop and innovate even more to ensure that their product stays ahead of the free versions and offers that value-add to their customers.

You have proved my point entirely by referring to the likeness between OpenOffice and Office 97. Office 97 is now 4 versions old (2000, XP, 2003 & 2007). Therefore, for the people that are happy to stick with the functionality that was provided 4 versions ago, OpenOffice is a good option for them. However, if they want the new whizz bang features, then they will be willing to purchase a later version from Microsoft.

I think open source provides a valuable purpose in the market.”

</soapbox>

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