Worst Passwords of 2015

Two years ago I posted “The Worst Password of 2012.”

The use of insecure passwords hasn’t changed very much. Here are the worst passwords of 2015. The passwords in RED were also on the list for 2012 so if you are using one of these passwords then change it now.

1. 123456
2. password
3. 12345678
4. qwerty
5. 12345
6. 123456789
7. football
8. 1234
9. 1234567
10. baseball
11. welcome
12. 1234567890
13. abc123
14. 111111
15. 1qaz2wsx
16. dragon
17. master
18. monkey
19. letmein
20. login
21. princess
22. qwertyuiop
23. solo
24. passw0rd
25. starwars

This is a very helpful comic strip about selecting secure passwords from XKCD.

password

Magento Imagine 2015 – Monday

walking

Lots of walking at Imagine.  This was for today according to my phone’s pedometer.

Goodnight. More of the same all day tomorrow!

Magento Certified Developer Facebook Group

mcd-fb-group

 

I started this Facebook group several years ago to discuss becoming a Magento Certified Developer. Since then I’ve passed the exam and there have been over 1,700 people added to the group.

If you’re interested in one of Magento’s certifications or if you’re already certified then you should join today!

https://www.facebook.com/groups/magentocertifieddevelopers/

 

Affordable Fully-Immersive Virtual Reality is almost here!

Kickstarter has a new project that every VR nut should be digging into their virtual wallets to help out.  Combined with another favorite of mine, OculusRift, the Omni provides the most affordable fully-immersed VR experience out there.  There’s no moving parts and it’s compact enough to set up just about anywhere.

Check out their Kickstarter page for more information:  http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/1944625487/omni-move-naturally-in-your-favorite-game

VR
Virtual Reality in every living room

Mars street view

Photographer Andrew Bodrov connected 407 Curiosity photographs together to make a 4 gigapixel, 360 degree panoramic view spanning over thirteen days.  Enlarge to full screen to see this amazing panorama!


Mars Gigapixel Panorama – Curiosity rover: Martian solar days 136-149 in The World

mars curiosity rover
Curiosity is a car-sized robotic rover exploring Gale Crater on Mars as part of NASA’s Mars Science Laboratory mission (MSL). Curiosity was launched from Cape Canaveral on November 26, 2011, at 10:02 EST aboard the MSL spacecraft and successfully landed on Aeolis Palus in Gale Crater on Mars on August 6, 2012, 05:17 UTC. The Bradbury Landing site was less than 2.4 km (1.5 mi) from the center of the rover’s touchdown target after a 563,000,000 km (350,000,000 mi) journey.

 

 

CISPA is back…

Reddit, Craigslist and more than 30,000 other websites are flying the flag of opposition to the Cyber Intelligence Sharing and Protection Act, or CISPA, a controversial cybersecurity bill that was recently reintroduced in Congress.

The thousands of websites which oppose CISPA will, starting Tuesday, be displaying an interactive banner ad (seen below) from the Internet Defense League that allows voters to send the following message to their members of Congress: “CISPA is back. This bill sacrifices privacy without improving security. We deserve both.”

CISPA-IDL-modal
“CISPA takes away people’s 4th amendment right to privacy,” said Tiffiny Cheng of Fight for the Future and the Internet Defense League, an Internet activist organization which is organizing an anti-CISPA “Week of Action.”

The Internet Defense League is a product of Fight for the Future and includes Mozilla, WordPress, Public Knowledge, the Electronic Frontier Foundation, among other members.

“That’s why internet users are going to do what they’re good at; the Internet is good at fighting for itself and the rights of every user,” continued Cheng. “We’ve been able to tailor our responses to the unique threats and opportunities to free expression and rights online, and we keep winning.”

SEE ALSO: Internet Activists Deliver 300,000 Anti-CISPA Signatures to Congress

CISPA is designed to allow private companies and the government to share cybersecurity information with one another in an effort to bolster both sides’ defenses against hackers. However, it has come under fire from Internet activists and privacy advocates, who fear it will allow the government to spy on Internet users — claims which are vehemently denied by the bill’s authors.

CISPA passed the House of Representatives last year despite a veto threat from the White House on privacy grounds, but it was not picked up by the Senate. It has since been re-introduced in the new congressional term.

Grassroots Internet advocates successfully joined with some of the Internet’s top companies, including Google and Facebook, to defeat SOPA in early 2012. However, several of the companies which opposed SOPA have been kinder to CISPA, arguing it could help them protect themselves and their users from hackers and data breaches.

While CISPA’s fate remains uncertain, President Barack Obama in January signed an executive order which effectively put the less controversial half of CISPA’s intelligence flow — the transfer of data from government agencies to private companies — into practice.

By: Alex Fitzpatrick

Source: Mashable.com

 

Stop CISPA page on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/StopTheCISPA

 

Google Easter Eggs

Easter is around the corner so it’s time for more Google Easter Eggs!  Some of these are older but there are a few that I hadn’t seen yet.  Here they are in no particular order.

Happy Easter!

 

I’m feeling artistic?

google-feeling-artistic

Google Instant, which takes you to your search results when you start typing your query, has made the “I’m Feeling Lucky” button pretty much obsolete.  Last year, Google added some new text to this button that you can see if you hover over it.   Move away and back to see different button text.

 

Zerg rush

google-zerg-rush

A Zerg is a reference to a race in StarCraft called the Zerg Swarm.  By typing in “zerg rush” in the Google search box, your search results will be destroyed unless you can fend off endless waves of yellow and red Google Os.   Use your mouse to click on the Os until they’re gone.

 

Google Reader ninja

google-reader-ninja

Go to Google Reader and enter the Konami code on your keyboard: ↑ ↑ ↓ ↓ ← → ← → B A to reveal a ninja hiding in the left column.

 

Easter Eggs for number nerds

Type “binary,” “hexadecimal,” or “octal” into the Google search box. Google will give you the number of search matches in that numeral system—for example, if you type “hexadecimal,” Google will say “About 0x19a7620 results (0.27 seconds).”

 

8-bit Google Maps

Unfortunately this is no longer available, but for a while you could use Google Maps in 8-bit mode.  I hope they bring this back!

 

Robert Moog’s 78th birthday

May 23, 2012 was Robert Moog’s 78th birthday.  Google created a highly advanced Doodle to honor the inventor of the Moog Synthesizer.

You can access it here: http://www.google.com/doodles/robert-moogs-78th-birthday

 

Alan Turing’s 100th birthday

To celebrate Alan Turing’s 100th birthday, the Google Doodle was a Turing Machine.  See if you can crack the code here.

 

Walking to Mordor

Go to Google Maps and navigate to New Zealand. Hit “Get directions” and tap the “walking directions” tab. Then type “The Shire” in box A and “Mordor” in box B.

Google will spit out a Lord of the Rings-inspired warning: “Use caution—One does not simply walk into Mordor.”

I’ve entered it for you here.

 

Google Translate Beatbox

Go to Google Translate, select translate from English to German and type the following string in:

pv zk bschk pv zk pv bschk zk pv zk bschk pv zk pv bschk zk bschk pv bschk bschk pv kkkkkkkkkk bschk bschk bschk

When you mouseover the Listen button, you’ll see that it says “Beatbox.”

 

Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon

My brother is the master of this particular game, and now Google has made it easier.  The goal is to find the fewest steps between an actor and Kevin Bacon.  For example, the challenger may say “Kevin Smith” and your goal is to link Kevin Smith to Kevin Bacon through all of the various movie roles that they’ve appeared in like this: “Kevin Smith and Casey Affleck were in Chasing Amy.  Casey Affleck and Kevin Bacon were in Lemon Sky.”

To do this in Google, you simply type “bacon number Kevin Smith” and it will respond:

Kevin Smith’s Bacon number is 2
Kevin Smith and Casey Affleck appeared in Chasing Amy.
Casey Affleck and Kevin Bacon appeared in Lemon Sky.

 

Google Data Center

You can virtually visit  Google’s Data Center located in Lenoir, North Carolina.  There are some Easter eggs in the virtual tour like a large Droid figurine, a storm trooper and you can get Rickrolled by a Google employee.  Check out Google’s data centers tour here.

 
Do A Barrel Roll

Searching for “do a barrel roll” at Google or for “z or r twice” will make the Google page do a barrel roll.

 

Google 42 search

Ask Google the answer to the question of life, the universe, and everything and, in a tribute to “A Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy,” you’ll get the number 42.

 

Google Earth Flight Simulator

To load the Google Earth flight simulator, type Ctrl-Alt A or Cmd-Opt A on a Mac. You’ll have your choice of planes. Flying is another matter altogether, but the place to get started if you lack a joystick is the Google Earth keyboard controls help page.

YouTube’s Snakey

If you open a YouTube video, click in the frame right after the video starts loading, then immediately type one of the keyboard’s arrow keys, you can start playing a game of snakey on the video as it plays. Don’t run into the walls!

 

Google Gravity Search

The Google Gravity chrome experiment by Mr. Doob is amusing–especially since the search page still works, with new search results piling up.

 

Google ASCII Art Search

ASCII art is imagery made of monospaced letters named after the storied character encoding scheme. Search for ASCII art on Google and you get a fittingly adapted Google logo.

 

Google Maps’ pegman in Legoland

Google Maps’ pegman character, used to signify the perspective of the street view feature, changes on special occasions. And when he shows up at Legoland in Carlsbad, Calif., he turns into a Lego character.

 

Once in a Blue Moon

How often does the world experience a blue moon?

 

Google Anagram Search

Search for anagram at Google and the top result is, in fact, an anagram.

 

Google Pirate Interface

Google’s Pirate interface. can be found here.

 

Swedish Chef Interface

There’s one for the Muppets’ Swedish Chef, too.

 

Google Hacker Interface

Try the Google Hacker page.

 

Ooglegay Earchsay

Google in Pig Latin.


Recursion

Searching for “recursion” suggests that perhaps you meant to search for “recursion.”

 

LMGTFY

Ever get tired of people asking you questions that could easily be a Google search?  Let Me Google That For You has the answer.  Check it out here.

 

Google Terminal

Ever wanted to know what Google may have looked like as a BBS in the 80s? Typing “Google Terminal” and pressing “I’m Feeling Lucky”

 

Google Pond

Go to Google, type in “Google Pond” and the press “I’m Feeling Lucky.”

 

Google Sphere

This is another Google Easter egg that really isn’t from Google but is still pretty neat.  Go to Google, type “Google Sphere” and press “I’m Feeling Lucky.”

 

Google Tilt

Go to Google and type in “tilt” and press Enter.

 

Type “Chuck Norris” in Google and press “I’m Feeling Lucky.”

Just remember that you can’t find Chuck Norris, Chuck Norris finds you!

 

Google Doodle Search

Did you play a game in a Google Doodle that you wanted to see again? You can search for Google Doodles here.

 

Sources: Wikipedia, various Google searches and some original content.

Sir Richard Branson Says The Office Will Be A Thing Of The Past

Sir Richard Branson Chides Mayor Michael Bloomberg And Marissa Mayer, Says The Office Will Be A Thing Of The Past

Sir Richard Branson, the billionaire man of space tourism and founder of Virgin Airlines, is chiding New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg and Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, saying the office will soon become a thing of the past.

Branson is a respectful guy and says Bloomberg is someone he rarely disagrees with. But Branson says Bloomberg is just plain wrong when he says he’s always thought working from home is “one of the dumber ideas I’ve ever heard.”

“However, on this occasion I disagree completely. Many employees who work from home are extremely diligent, get their job done, and get to spend more time with their families. They waste less time commuting and get a better work/life balance. To force everybody to work in offices is old school thinking.”

Branson said he has always worked from home and it has worked well for him.

Source: TechCrunch.com

 


 

I couldn’t agree with this article more.  The type of work that I do allows me to spend my work day at home and I’ve done it successfully for the past 10 years.  There have been the occasional on-site stints as-needed, the longest one lasting one year.  From June 2011 to June 2012 I worked on location and had to commute every day.  At first the change was refreshing, but I found myself becoming bored, anxious and very distracted by working in a public place.  I have  the exact same set-up at home that I did in the office with one exception — silence.  I can concentrate and my employer gets an extra 1-2 hours/day out of me because I work when I’d normally be commuting.  While everyone at the office is having their morning coffee and getting set up for the day, I’ve already put several productive hours in.

The biggest problem that I’ve seen with employers that allow work-at-home people is trust.  To paraphrase a criticism I once heard, “You never know what they’re really doing.  They could be watching Oprah all day.”  Having worked in offices prior to being at home full-time, I have observed with my own eyes that people tend to goof off more while in an office, not less.  While attempting to manage other home workers I suggested that we use a system based on productivity instead of ass-in-seat hours.  If the coder is productive and you get what you expected for that week then who cares if they spent the entire time not sitting in the chair.  If someone is under-performing, then fix it by evaluating that employee.

I report in to to work around 7am, close my home office door and work until lunch.  I usually take less than 1 hour to stretch my legs, go for a walk and grab a bite to eat.  After that I work until 5-6pm.  The advantage to my employer is that I’m always near my office.  If something goes wrong, I simply have to walk into the next room, sit down and fix it — something I’ve done countless times over the past decade, and something I couldn’t do easily on-site.  The other main advantage is that I’m much more productive and happier working from home.

Here are some tips for people thinking about working from home:

  • Treat your home office like it’s your office at work.  Keep it neat, tidy and clean.  Maintain a professional environment in your home office.
  • Report to work on time.  You work at home — no excuse to ever be late.
  • Communicate often.  Touch base to let them know you’re working.  A simple status update shows that you’re involved and care about the company.
  • Respond.  If you get messaged or called, pick it up.  Never ignore or screen a phone call.  This is bad practice in an office and should never be done.
  • Do your job.  You’re being paid and you’re at home.  Do what you’re supposed to be doing.
  • Document your time.  Keep meticulous notes about how you spend your day.  I can tell you exactly what I was doing on this date 7 years ago because of my notes.  This becomes second-nature after a while.  If you get asked to do something, note it and keep track of how long you worked on it.

There are some jobs that simply can’t be performed at home but if you work in a field that permits it then by all means try to do it.  Just do it right.

-Sean

Riley on laptop
Working at home isn’t always easy.