Recent Blog Posts

April 11, 2013 |

Setting up the Django Base Template for Website Development

I’m trying to expand my technical repertoire by building a website using Python and Django. I’ve been through a couple of Django tutorials and have modeled my data, page design and website user workflow, so there’s not much left to do but get the stuff coded up. Actually, I started project-specific coding as I worked through the tutorials. ┬áBy the time I realized that I needed to use Django Base Template, I’d already gone through two restarts. Restarts are a natural part of learning a new development environment and the practices that surround development in any language. For those who aren’t coders, let me explain a little. Starting development in a new language is...

April 2, 2013 |

Raspberry Pi at the North Jersey Python/Django Developers Group

Thanks to Chris and all the other attending members for letting me drone on about building a Raspberry Pi web server. Aa promised, I’ve attached a copy of the presentation here.

If you’re interested in Python and live or work in the area, this is a good meetup group to attend.

March 19, 2013 |

Catching Up

I’m initiating a project on residential energy optimization, tracking a bear in the back yard, working with a Raspberry Pi to develop a Big Data development cluster, and getting ready for a couple of upcoming talks

November 14, 2011 |

Distribution Scope, Security, and Useful Tools

While working on the Facebook Privacy Informer App, I had to tackle the issue of “Scope of Distribution” of your personal information. Actually, this should be more properly named as “Scope of (Intended) Distribution”. Facebook privacy controls allow you to set the distribution of various aspects of your Facebook profile. In general, the controls allow you to set distribution to: (The inappropriately named) “Only Me” A subset of your friends, Your friends Groups that you belong to The general public Why does Facebook say “Only Me” when you share information with Facebook? Shouldn’t the setting be labeled, “Only Facebook (and whoever they decide to share it with)?”. Even when you spend the time to...

November 10, 2011 |

Update: Recent Online Privacy Activity

I was on a development death march for the weeks leading into the Internet Identity Workshop #13 (conference notes to be posted soon on the IIW website), but I succeeded and showed the Facebook Privacy Informer App at the conference. The goal of the Privacy Informer App is to analyze the inherent privacy risks associated with a particular website or online service. It then convolves the inherent risk metrics with how the viewer has configured their website and browser privacy settings, and generates a final number that rates your personal privacy risk (see this earlier post for more info on the algorithm). Detail data, and strategies for controlling that risk while still getting value...

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