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Identity on the web is a complete mess. While there have been a few attempts (like OpenID) at solving this global problem, most sites out there either ask you to remember a unique username/password combination or choose to entrust a popular third party (such as Facebook or Twitter) with the task of holding user records for them. This sucks.
BrowserID is the open source solution we have been waiting for: a new web login mechanism with strong privacy protection where your browser is the trusted intermediary. Backed by Mozilla, it is based on the simple idea of a user proving that they own an email address, with a generous sprinkling of crypto under the hood. What makes this solution different is that it is designed to be simple (both for users and developers), distributed and privacy-protecting.
This talk will answer three questions:
by Bruce Perens
The Catalyst Open Source Academy is an initiative designed to provide training and work experience for young New Zealand technologists.
The pilot programme was held for two weeks in January 2011. It gave 17 Secondary School students a taste of real open source development through a combination of classroom sessions and hands-on project work.
The aim was to get the students to the point where they could usefully contribute to a real (open source) project.
By organising and funding the Academy, Catalyst hoped to show young technologists how to participate in open source communities and to fully explore their passion for IT through freely available open source tools.
In this presentation Catalyst's Ian Beardslee will outline how they put the initiative together, what worked and what didn't, and lessons learnt from the project.
by Greg Banks
Software is a human construct and like everything we make it
eventually falls into disrepair. Houses get mould, vermin
infestations, and frightening old wiring. Software projects get
equivalents of these, albeit a few decades faster.
This talk is about the experience of doing a major renovation on
a software relic: the Cyrus IMAP server. Fastmail (now Opera
Software Australia) has been using Cyrus commercially to provide
an IMAP interface to an email store for years now, and over the
last year has significantly contributed to a resurgent effort to
modernise the code and rejuvenate the community. The author
works fulltime on this project and has both observed and
Topics will include: introducing modern software engineering
practices like Continuous Integration, making testing happen,
attracting a developer community, a practical guide on how to
find and fix outdated coding practices (a.k.a. bugs waiting to
happen), and an introduction to paleoentomology. All
illustrated with real world examples.
If your organisation depends on ancient software in need of
revitalising, or if you're just looking for some spare time Open
Source work to keep your hand in, come to this talk and get some
practical tips and a laugh or two.
16th–20th January 2012