wasting bandwidth since 1999

Tag: bugs

The Right Person For the Job

The Department of Homeland Security needed someone to be the deputy undersecretary of the department’s National Protections Program Directorate.

That’s government HR speak for the person in charge of making sure the government’s computers are secure and protected from cyber attacks and all kinds of malware.

So, who did they decide was the right person for the job?

Reitinger comes to DHS from his job as chief trustworthy infrastructure strategist for Microsoft, a job that required him in part to help develop and implement strategies for enhancing the security of critical infrastructures.

In other words, DHS picked someone who was responsible for making “trustworthy” the operating systems and software many people in the security industry feel are largely at fault for providing the many holes allowing all those cyber attacks and malware to do their thing.

We call that irony, kids. :-)

At least his qualifications are an improvement over the last person who held the job, continuing a major theme of the Obama administration.

And, if you think about it, if anyone knows where the bugs are buried, it would probably be Mr. Reitinger.

Still Some Bugs in the Voting Booth

When it comes to elections in this country, the philosophy is supposed to be “every vote counts”, right?

Well, maybe not.

A voting system used in 34 states contains a critical programming error that can cause votes to be dropped while being electronically transferred from memory cards to a central tallying point, the manufacturer acknowledges.

The problem was identified after complaints from Ohio elections officials following the March primary there, but the logic error that is the root of the problem has been part of the software for 10 years, said Chris Riggall, a spokesman for Premier Election Solutions, formerly known as Diebold.

A logic bug that’s been around for ten years?  Even the Big Monopoly of Redmond pushes out fixes for their crappy software faster than that.

But it gets worse.  When the problem was discovered, the company blamed it on third party anti-virus software.

Which brings up the question of why it’s necessary to protect against viruses on a system that by all rights should be closed to any outside network?

Supposedly there are “crosscheck procedures” election officials can use when they certify the results.

However, and correct me if I’m wrong, wasn’t electronic voting supposed to make counting the ballots more accurate and fair after the 2000 disaster in Florida?

Or am I just being paranoid and/or naive?

Living in a Beta World

I’ve decided that developers should drop the pretense of releasing a “final” version of their products and just admit that all their software and web applications are beta.

That thought came to mind this week as I played with the new version of the OS for my iPhone and tried to figure out if the little glitches were just my imagination.

If you don’t frequent the web world that encompasses all things Apple, you may not have heard all the rantings about bugs in the latest techie object of lust, iPhone 3G.

Almost all the problems involve the 2.0 upgrade to the software, which those of us who own the now obsolete and totally uncool previous version also received.

The solution to some apps crashing the system, an annoying lag between clicking an icon and the app running, and other “anomalies” seems to be to wait for the 2.01 update (coming soon according to the rumors).

On the positive side, at least I’ve learned how to do a forced restart.

But the situation really isn’t any different with other software, is it?

The Big Monopoly of Redmond spent almost seven years creating Vista and then another a year to produce the service pack that fixed the problems they should have know about in the first place.

In fact, in the past few years I can’t think of a paid upgrade from a major software publisher (and a few hardware makers) that wasn’t followed soon after with a .1 release to make it work correctly.

At least when it comes to web applications, developers are up front in telling users their stuff is beta and may not work as advertised.

Gmail (which actually works very well) is almost three years old and still labeled beta.

Generally, however, those web 2.0 company also don’t charge for the services.

Or at least they ask for far less than the cost of one night in a good hotel.

© 2021 Assorted Stuff

Theme by Anders NorenUp ↑