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Tiny $35 Raspberry Pi computer causes big stir on launch day – CNN.com March 2, 2012

Posted by John Ruby in *New Products, CNN, News and politics.
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By Nick Thompson, CNN

updated 8:26 AM EST, Fri March 2, 2012 |

<br/>The $35 credit card-sized Raspberry Pi computer sold out within hours of its debut Wednesday.

(CNN) — The debut of the tiny $35 Raspberry Pi computer crashed its distributors’ websites on the way to selling out within hours of launch.

Looking like little more than a credit card-sized chip of circuit board, the powerful, fully-programmable PC can plug into any TV and can power 3D graphics and Blu-ray video playback.

Its British-based designers at the Raspberry Pi Foundation hope the computer, which has been in the works for six years, will spark new interest in programming among children.

"The primary goal was to build a low cost computer that every child could own, and one where programming was the natural thing to do with it," said co-founder Robert Mullins.

Read More…Tiny $35 Raspberry Pi computer causes big stir on launch day – CNN.com

Microsoft to reveal more Windows 8 Enterprise details at CeBIT conference next week | The Verge March 2, 2012

Posted by John Ruby in BlogoSphere, Microsoft, Platforms & EcoSystems, The Verge, Windows.
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By Dieter Bohnon February 29, 2012 11:00 am

Windows 8 Enterprise

During today’s Windows 8 keynote, Microsoft showed off a previously-known Enterprise features like Windows To Go, which allows a computer to boot into Windows 8 off of a USB stick. Microsoft also demoed "Storage Spaces," which allows a Windows 8 machine to act as a hard drive array, providing simple, massive storage to any computer on the network. It seems as though there’s yet more to Windows 8 Enterprise that the company has yet to reveal, but more will be revealed next week at the CeBIT conference in Hanover. The conference begins on March 6th and The Verge will be there to bring you all the details from the next Windows 8 event.

Microsoft also emphasized that enterprise users will benefit from the fact that Windows 8 offers the same experience on all manner of devices, from very small to very large and powerful. It’s a theme that the company hit on consistently throughout the entire keynote, and very likely going to be one of the big talking points when it comes time to directly compete with Apple’s iPad ecosystem.

Read More…Microsoft to reveal more Windows 8 Enterprise details at CeBIT conference next week | The Verge

That’s a great diagram showing how the ecosystem has reach in many spaces.

Windows NT Security Systems March 2, 2012

Posted by John Ruby in Archives, Security, Technologies.
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Windows NT Security Systems

The starting point for strong Internet security is the operating system of any machine connected to it. Fortunately for the organizations using IIS 4.0, strong levels of security were built into the core of Windows NT in order to meet and exceed certifiable security standards, i.e. the C2 security guidelines required by the U.S. Department of Defense’s evaluation criteria. Windows NT security contrasts sharply with the thin and weak security layers that are bolted on to the top of some other operating systems.

Compliance with the C2 security standard was originally only required for government organizations. However, many commercial organizations are demanding the same level of security, and they recognize the value that such standards offer. The main requirements for C2 compliance are:

  • User identification and authentication. Before gaining access to the systems, a user must prove their identity. This is typically done by providing a user-id / password combination, for example by entering the details via a keyboard or by the presentation of a device such as a smart card which stores such information.
  • Discretionary access control. Each object within the system, for example files, printers and processes, must have an owner—who can grant or restrict access to the resources at various degrees of granularity.
  • Auditing Capabilities. The system must provide the ability to log all user actions and object access, and include enough information to identify the user that performed any operation. Such information must only be accessible by system administrators.
  • Safe Object reuse. The system must guarantee that any discarded or deleted object cannot be accessed, either accidentally or deliberately, by other entities.
  • System integrity. The system must protect resources belonging to one entity, from being interfered with by another entity.

The C2 guidelines are applicable to standalone systems, and are specified in the document Trusted Computer System Evaluation Criteria (TCSEC). Fortunately, to make life simpler, this is often referred to as the Orange Book, thanks to the color of its cover. Other specifications that expand on the Orange Book include the Red Book for networking, and the Blue Book for subsystems.

Obtaining C2 certification is a long and complex task, and Microsoft are pushing hard for complete certification. Windows NT has passed the Orange Book certification process (for a standalone PC, not connected to a network) and is on the DOD’s official list of evaluated products. At the time of writing, Windows NT 4.0 is undergoing Red and Blue book evaluations.

Read More…Windows NT Security Systems

With Windows 8 Consumer Preview, Microsoft Silences the Critics March 2, 2012

Posted by John Ruby in BlogoSphere, Microsoft, Paul Thurrott, Software, Windows 8.
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Suddenly, you can see it happening: A future in which Microsoft melds the traditional Windows desktop with the highly mobile and highly connected devices that are just now exploding isn’t just possible. It’s a sure thing.

Microsoft on Wednesday unleashed its nearly feature-complete Windows 8 Consumer Preview to the public. This new pre-release milestone, called the Beta internally, is one of just a handful of public releases the company plans before delivering the final version of the OS in an expected Q4 2012 timeframe. But it’s already got the Internet buzzing.

"Get psyched," commentator and professional Apple promoter David Pogue wrote from his column at the New York Times. "With Windows 8, Microsoft has sweated the details, embraced beauty and simplicity, and created something new and delightful." 

"A Silicon Valley startup called Lytro is shipping a camera this week that actually lets you focus or refocus your pictures on a computer after you take them," commentator and professional Apple promoter Walt Mossberg wrote from his equally lofty perch at the Wall Street Journal.

Wait, what?

OK, so Mr. Mossberg hasn’t opined on Windows 8 yet, but then why would he with other such exciting topics to discuss this week? The point, however, is simple: Even Microsoft’s biggest critics—and Apple’s biggest public backers—love Windows 8. Well, assuming they give it the time of day, that is.

"We really are on the threshold of a whole new era of personal computing,
USA Today‘s more moderate Ed Baig noted in his own review. "I’m impressed by what I see."

So am I, Ed. So am I…….

With Windows 8 Consumer Preview, Microsoft Silences the Critics