Ignite Boston Recap

I went to the third installment of Ignite Boston this evening. It’s a series of five-minute lightning talks on various technical talks, along with a couple of upsized keynotes. My (partial) recap:

  • The most illuminating talk for me was by Jonathan Zdziarski on security on the iPhone ecosystem. Turns out using the iPhone is a huge security risk because people are actively hacking on the iPhone but not disclosing their hacks because Apple will fix them. This makes it really easy to get data off a stolen iPhone. Scarier still is that if your iPhone breaks, and you turn it in for a new one under warranty, then the person who buys your old one refurbished has a pretty good chance of recovering your data. Pretty scary stuff, and downright outrageous that Apple doesn’t do a better job of wiping the memory under those circumstances. See Jonathon’s site for more information.
  • Jesse Vincent had a good rant on the parallel between sharecropping and Web 2.0 sites. Its your data and your time, but their property, tools and profit…
  • Juhan Sonin talked about design tenets for beautiful design. Is putting together an online collection of them on wikia somewhere, but I don’t have the url handy. There’s an earlier draft of the presentation on flickr.
  • Alexander Wissner-Gross presented co2stats.com which aims to (precisely) calculate the co2 emissions of a web site based on its location and the location of its users (eg, having lots of browsers from West Virginia = lots of coal burning). They’ll “automatically” buy carbon offsets for you so you can advertise your site as green, but I’m still not convinced carbon offsets mean anything. Lots of money pouring in there, but not a lot of proof what works and what doesn’t and for how long.

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