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Exploring the science and magic of Identity and Access Management
Monday, May 2, 2016

On April 27, 4877 BC, the universe was created!?

Physics
Author: Mark Dixon
Wednesday, April 27, 2016
9:22 am

Do we really understand space-time?  Two interesting articles have recently crossed my virtual desk.

In the first, History.com reported:

On this day in 4977 B.C., the universe is created, according to German mathematician and astronomer Johannes Kepler (1571-1630), considered a founder of modern science.

Kepler2

Best known for his theories explaining the motion of planets, Kepler first observed the visible universe with his naked eye, and later with a telescope similar to the one used by Galileo Galilei.

While Kepler’s estimate of the age of the universe may have been based upon the best scientific understandings of his day, we now consider his view quaint and short-sighted.  We now have such sophisticated equipment for measuring time and distance that a current estimate of the age of the universe has been pegged at 13.77 billion years.

But will that current estimate meet the test of time (pun intended)?

In the second article, “Why Space and Time Might be an Illusion,” George Musser stated:

The ordinary laws of physics, operating within time, are inherently unable to explain the beginning of time. According to those laws, something must precede the big bang to set it into motion. Yet nothing is supposed to precede it. A way out of the paradox is to think of the big bang not as the beginning but as a transition, when space crystallized from a primeval state of spacelessness.

O SOMBRERO GALAXY 570

What will ultimately explain this paradox? What will give us a really accurate picture of the age of the universe? Perhaps “string theory, loop quantum theory, causal-set theory,” or perhaps something else?

When you take a step back from the dispute, you notice all agree on one essential lesson: the space-time that we inhabit is a construction. It is not fundamental to nature, but emerges from a deeper level of reality. In some way or other, it consists of primitive building blocks — “atoms” of space — and takes on its familiar properties from how those building blocks are assembled.

Atoms of space? Will the textbooks of a future generation speak of them as casually as we currently discuss carbon or plutonium atoms?  Just what will the future hold for our progressive knowledge of how space and time really work?  

I predict that at some future date, scientists will look back on our day and proclaim, “How quaint, but short-sighted were the theories of physics in 2016!”

 

Kuppinger Cole: Computer-Centric Identity Management

Identity, Information Security, Internet of Things
Author: Mark Dixon
Wednesday, April 27, 2016
8:16 am

Yesterday, I enjoyed attending a webcast entitled, “Computer-Centric Identity Management.” Led by Ivan Nicolai, Lead Analyst at Kuppinger Cole, the presentation was subtitled, “From Identity Management to Identity Relationship Management.  The changing relationship between IAM, CRM and Cybersecurity.”

I found the presentation to be concise, informative, and thought-provoking – particularly the concept that the IAM practitioner must transition from the role of “protector” to “enabler”.

I think the following diagram does a good job of illustrating the relationships people have with organizations, mobile communication devices and other devices in the growing world of IoT. Identity Relationships are critical in enabling the potential of Digital Transformation.

Kc

 

2016 Data Breach Investigations Report

Identity
Author: Mark Dixon
Tuesday, April 26, 2016
7:39 am

VerizonBIR2016

Verizon’s 2016 Data Breach Investigations Report (DBIR) is now available to download:

The 2016 dataset is bigger than ever, examining over 100,000 incidents, including 2,260 confirmed data breaches across 82 countries. With data provided by 67 contributors including security service providers, law enforcement and government agencies, this year’s report offers unparalleled insight into the cybersecurity threats you face.

Enjoy!

 

Have Fun Today – Throw a Frisbee!

History
Author: Mark Dixon
Saturday, January 23, 2016
7:56 am

On this day, way back in 1957, the first patch of Frisbees were produced by Wham-O toy company! Who can imagine life without Frisbees? Have fun!

Frisbee

 

 

My Awe in New Gismos

History, Technology
Author: Mark Dixon
Tuesday, January 12, 2016
3:33 pm

Camera mini

It has been my privilege to experience astounding advances in electronics and computer technology during my lifetime.  I started poring over electronics magazines like Popular Electronics and mail order catalogs from Allied ElectronicsRadio ShackLafayette Radio Electronics, and Heathkit over 50 years ago.  I was amazed then with the neat things I saw and I am still amazed at new stuff I see in 2016!

I rarely click on the ads that appear on Facebook, but was intrigued today by this little ad. Just think of it!  A digital camera with lens, for ten bucks! And this wasn’t advertised in an obscure parts catalog – it was posted on Facebook!

I don’t know how well this gismo works. There are probably things that are even more impressive. But the convergence of digital electronics, optics, miniaturization and manufacturing techniques to produce something like this for so little money fills me with awe just like some new gismo I read about in my youth. Really cool!

 

What a Cute Baby!

Nature
Author: Mark Dixon
Tuesday, December 22, 2015
3:12 pm

Momentous day when I was three years old!

On this day in 1956, a baby gorilla named Colo enters the world at the Columbus Zoo in Ohio, becoming the first-ever gorilla born in captivity. Weighing in at approximately 4 pounds, Colo, a western lowland gorilla whose name was a combination of Columbus and Ohio, was the daughter of Millie and Mac, two gorillas captured in French Cameroon, Africa, who were brought to the Columbus Zoo in 1951.

  

 

A Stroll in Space

Space Travel
Author: Mark Dixon
Tuesday, December 22, 2015
2:58 pm

What a way to celebrate Winter Solstice!  According to NASA:

Expedition 46 Flight Engineer Tim Kopra … and Commander Scott Kelly successfully moved the International Space Station’s mobile transporter rail car ahead of Wednesday’s docking of a Russian cargo supply spacecraft.

  

 

Digital Business – Do We Have the Right Buzzwords?

Business, Identity
Author: Mark Dixon
Monday, December 7, 2015
9:17 pm

Today at the Gartner IAM Summit today I heard the term “Digital Business” dozens of times.  Do you think we have the right collections of buzzwords to describe that trend?

Buzzwords

Thanks to the Marketoonist for the insightful drawing!

 

Chuck Yeager – Breaking the Sound Barrier

Aircraft, Technology
Author: Mark Dixon
Wednesday, October 14, 2015
6:53 am

Question: Do you know how many transistors were in the radio Chuck Yeager used in the Glamorous Glennis X-1 rocket plane when he broke the sound barrier 68 years ago today, on October 14, 1947?

Answer: Zero.  His radio had to use vacuum tubes, because the first working transistor wasn’t demonstrated until November 1947, and the first transistor radio was not produced until 1954.

Yeager

Isn’t it amazing what was accomplished with technology that seems so rudimentary by today’s standards?

 

First Model T Introduced 107 years ago today

Automotive
Author: Mark Dixon
Thursday, October 1, 2015
3:48 pm

One hundred and seven years ago today, on October 1, 1908, the first Model T Ford was introduced.  According to the Ford media center:

The car that established a mass market for automobiles, the Model T, was introduced on Oct. 1, 1908. The first Model T had a 20-horsepower, four-cylinder engine, reached a top speed of about 45 miles per hour, got about 13 to 21 miles per gallon of gasoline and weighed 1,200 pounds. It was the ninth of Henry Ford’s production cars.

More than 15,000,000 Model T’s were built and sold. The Model T was the first low-priced, mass- produced car with standard interchangeable parts. The Model T popularized the left-side steering column. The engine design, a single block with a removable cylinder head, became the industry standard.

The Model T’s agile planetary transmission enabled novices to operate the gears, and was a forerunner of modern automatic transmission designs. Vanadium steel, an alloy manufactured for the company at the direction of Henry Ford, gave the car great strength and durability without extra weight.

Here is a short video that discusses the history of the Model T and show some cool old photos and moving pictures!

 
 
 
 
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