The Digital Texas Tea (IPv4)

February 10th, 2011 No comments

On February 3rd of this year, the Internet Assigned Numbers Authority (IANA) who according to their website “is the body responsible for coordinating some of the key elements that keep the Internet running smoothly,” assigned the last 5 remaining blocks of IPv4 addresses to the five Regional Internet Registries. One of the five, the American Registry for Internet Numbers (ARIN) assures us that they still have a pool of available addresses and will continue to assign those addresses in accordance with documented policy. To help put the folks who get all edgy at rest they are publishing daily updates on their website linked above. All that being said I’ve still seen quite a bit of hype about the rapidly depleting quantity of available IPv4 addresses so I thought I’d take a moment to address the issues at hand.
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All or… Something!

January 6th, 2011 No comments

In the past few years I’ve been playing with and occasionally preaching virtualization but is it really worth it. Companies like VMWare would have you believe so, I get the feeling they stand to profit from your decision though. In my personal opinion it’s a mixed bag. There are several reasons to virtualize and there are several reasons not to. In this post I will explore some of the benefits and shortcomings of virtualization.
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A Leap of Faith

December 24th, 2010 No comments

Believe it or not the entire concept of the Internet is built on trust, certain factors help build that trust, but every time you surf the web you’re taking a huge leap of faith. Lets focus on the Domain Name System (DNS), this seemingly simple concept is the key to simple human interaction with the web. Without DNS the web would work quite a bit like the telephone, dial a number to get to the site you want. http://en.wikipedia.org/ might become http://208.80.152.2:80/ where IP addresses work like phone numbers and ports work more like extensions connecting you to a specific website on the server.
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Simply Secure

November 13th, 2010 No comments

This is by no means a complete set of my thoughts on the issues of server security rather it is intended as a means to get people thinking about what can be changed in order to improve the quality of service they provide. With the wires cut and the world becoming more and more dependent upon constant connection there are of course people out there who would take advantage of all that valuable information floating out there on the air waves. But are average users the only ones taking unnecessary risks?
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Analytics, Is it really a word?

November 2nd, 2010 No comments

Website analytics tracking has become all the rage of the online community; it may be our natural desire to compete or just a way of boosting our ego that sparks the process but in the end making use of that data can be a bit tricky. With means of tracking analytics ranging from programs that passively analyze server logs such as AWStats to complex systems that take a more active approach such as Google Analytics. While most of these suites provide similar information, knowing what information you need and how you’re getting it is the first step in figuring out what works best for you.
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Finding Balance

October 12th, 2010 No comments

So I’m setting up a low-budget production use web based application. This means web servers, database servers, file servers with the smallest possible footprint, the lowest possible cost, and the greatest level of reliability. These can be tricky things to manage and while there are plenty of solutions available finding one that fits your needs may prove to be difficult.
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On-communicado

September 18th, 2010 No comments

It’s amazing today the speed at which data travels around the world and yet it seems so common place. The part I can’t figure out is why we’re still paying such outrageous prices for some data transfer; specifically I don’t understand the phone industry.

Since the invention of the telephone by Alexander Graham Bell in 1876 people have been communicating instantly over great distances. Martin Cooper invented the first mobile phone in 1973 cutting the lines that tied people to one location. Today almost anyone can be reached almost anywhere. But this convenience comes at a price, at first it made sense, the mobile phone industry was providing a luxury service that was expensive to maintain. With over 4.6 billion cellular subscriptions world wide as of last year its become a necessity of life; again, a good reason for cellular companies to gouge the consumer.

Fortunately the internet has been fighting back. Read more…

Information Overload

August 4th, 2010 No comments

I have recently been involved in several discussions regarding the use of technology in the classroom. This conversation first started with a discussion of Google Wave, a product that is still in its very early stages of development but has great potential, then moved to the iPad, and eventually found its way to all technology. We discussed everything including the obvious technology such as student laptops and response clickers to web applications and LiveScribe Pulse pens. So the question is what is useful and what is just to much?
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Conceptual Sourcing

November 11th, 2009 No comments

The art of web design is a process that changes from company to company and person to person but no matter how the final product is produced there are always three factors that come into play: cost, time and quality. As a project manager of a major design firm or an individual creating a web presence you must carefully weigh these three elements; in the end you only get to pick two of them, the third is going to suffer. If you, for instance, want a high quality website developed at a low cost it is going to take longer, and if you want a low cost website produced quickly it is going to be a lower quality. As web development becomes a larger market developers are finding ways to mitigate these factors. One of the most popular ways to accomplish this goal within the development community has been web application framework development.
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Social Media Marketing

August 10th, 2009 No comments

According to a press release by Facebook.com (http://www.facebook.com/press/info.php?statistics), their site has over 250 million users and more than half of those users visit the site at least once every 24 hours. Similar sites such as Myspace.com and Linkedin.com are experiencing similar numbers of users. These sites offer businesses the unique opportunity to reach a very targeted group of users beyond the conventional methods of advertising.
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