Fixing the Heartbleed vulnerability on CentOS

While the popular media have jumped on the Heartbleed Bug as if the sky were falling causing mass panic, it is actually quick and easy to fix for us CentOS users. Red Hat released a patched version of OpenSSL on 8th April and it has already filtered down to the CentOS updates repository, so all you need to do is: [user@localhost ~]$ sudo yum update openssl [user@localhost ~]$ sudo service Read More...

Social TV is Dead?

Despite much of the recent noise that “Social TV Is Dead” the truth is far from it and a little more complicated. In a recent piece on WIRED, Richard Kastelein makes some interesting observations about Social TV in general as well as singling out Miso and Zeebox for particular attention. In case you’re new to the Social TV ‘thing’ it essentially boils down to this: Social TV is a battle Read More...

The problem with Big Data is not the Data

There is a seemingly irrational obsession about how BIG your Big Data has to be before a magical unicorn appears and delivers the answers your business needs. Not a day goes by where I don’t see some swanky infographic reminding me that Facebook collects several Yottabytes of data every day. Ok, so I may have embellished that a little but you get the idea. The key thing is that the ‘size’ of the Read More...

Integrated Systems & Virtualization for Midsize Business – IBM #expertsyschat

Earlier today @IBMPureSystems held a #ExpertSysChat discussion on Twitter; they run these periodically about a variety of issues surrounding Cloud & Virtualization adoption. Obviously they have a product in this area but the discussions tend to be interesting. Generally they get an independent expert to chair the discussion and propose questions, a selection of IBM staff are on-hand to answer questions and stimulate the debate. Today Paul Gillin (@pgillin) chaired the discussion, Read More...

Is Google infringing on my patent?

Firstly I should qualify post by saying I’m not a “patent troll” nor do I agree with the mess that is “software patents” in the US. However in my previous life I worked in R&D at British Sky Broadcasting and part of my job was to create Intellectual Property that Sky could turn into new products and services. Summary On the left is a drawing from UK Patent Application GB2455331 created during Read More...

Social Picture Sharing: Instagram nears 60% market share

Highlights Instagram‘s massive surge in April is likely due to; release of their Android app publicity around the Facebook aquisition Twitpic, Yfrog, Lockerz were already in decline before Instgram’s surge and are flattening out Pinterest (very slowly) increased its share from 1% to 2% for the year to date Background The Twitter “spritzer” stream – a random sample approximately 1% of the full firehose – is freely available and I have been Read More...

Winning with Big Data – IBM Research

Earlier today (10th August 2012) IBM Research (@IBMResearch) ran a webinar titled “Box Office to Front Office – Winning with Big Data in Sports & Entertainment“. It was split in two halves, one Entertainment focused and one more Sports focused. I tuned in primarily for; Todd Yellin, VP of Product Innovation, Netflix Ray Elias, CMO, StubHub You might be able to see replay of the video on the livestream.com page. Read More...

It’s not how big your data is, it’s how you use it!

Over the past couple of months I have met and talked to a lot of new and interesting people. Everywhere I go I encounter the same questions about Big Data, it’s like some sort of mass hysteria around what on the face of it is a simple concept “volumes of data”. Example questions; “How much data is Big Data?” “I’m using NoSQL, is that Big Data?” “How many servers do Read More...

Installing CentOS packages on Red Hat Enterprise Linux

At the weekend I got into a discussion with Andy Stanford-Clark and Richard Appleby on Twitter troubleshooting basic application installation in Red Hat Enterprise Linux (like Pidgin). Not finding a solution later began to plague me, I grabbed a copy of RHEL and installed it on a Virtual Machine to solve the problem. If you’re interested in the history of the Red Hat-based distributions, please see my other article.   Are you registered to the Red Hat Read More...

A brief history of Red Hat, Fedora and CentOS

The Linux ecosystem can be confusing because of the shear amount of choice available. I’ve always been a Red Hat guy and have spent a significant amount of my life staring at it’s installer. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve used just about every other distribution out there as well as create my own one. This article just clarifies where Red Hat came from and introduces Fedora & CentOS.   What Read More...

Reasons why QR Codes aren’t dead!

I’ve always been a big advocate of QR codes – provided they’re used correctly and not stamped on all sorts of stuff for the sake of it. I think they can be an amazingly powerful way of communicating information in a simple cross-platform way. A couple of months back Forbes asked Are QR Codes Dead? and were thin on examples of their success.   What’s a QR Code? A Quick Response Read More...

Hadoop: Processing ZIP files in Map/Reduce

Due to popular request, I’ve updated my simple framework for processing ZIP files in Hadoop Map/Reduce jobs. Previously the only easy solution was to unzip files locally and then upload them to the Hadoop Distributed File System (HDFS) for processing. This adds a lot of unnecessary complexity when you are dealing with thousands of ZIP files; Java already has a ZipInputStream - it should be a lot easier.   Map/Reduce Background When you Read More...