To illustrate the problems with authorization, we shall take the example of the Indiana Jones and the Raiders of the Lost Ark. To access the Ark of the Covenant, Indy has to fly to Nepal, engage in a gunfight, escape a burning tavern, retrieve the headpiece for the Staff of Ra, fly to Cairo, use the Staff of Ra to figure out the correct location, survive deadly snakes (he hates snakes) before even finding the Ark.
The subsequent part of the movie where the Ark is hijacked by Nazis will be covered in a later post entitled "Password Retrieval" ;)
As this example illustrates, such a complicated system still fails to protect the Ark from falling into the wrong hands (first the Nazis, later the U.S. government). While I feel that a snake pit would be quite effective in ensuring proper access to systems like email, the cost of snakes/snake feed, as well as replacing poisoned upper management would be too high.
For web applications, the widely accepted practice is for users to select their own "password", a sequence of alphabets, numbers and/or punctionation, in the hopes that the password is :
a) Unknown to anyone else
Having had to reset countless passwords over the years, I know for a fact that this doesn't work because :
a) Sometimes you have to share passwords with other people
Being old and lazy myself, this is the current way I deal with having to remember passwords :
a) Pick a word via word association to use. For example, email would be "spam", the online banking page would be "debt" and my blog password would be "boring".
"spam" becomes "e09f6a7593f8ae3994ea57e1117f67ec"
I've whipped up a simple PHP page to do that here (it only returns 12 characters instead of the 32 characters of MD5, since I doubt most places would support a 32 character password) :
Sunday September 30, 2007 01:58 PM | Comments (1)
I'm not what you call a fan of Batman, at least not in the generic sense of the word. I don't own any merchandising (T-shirts, toys, posters, candy, action figures or trading cards) in his likeness, I can't really remember all people that have been Robin (Dick Grayson, Jason Todd, Tim Drake, Stephanie Brown, arguably Carrie Kelley), but most of all...
I can't stand to watch Batman movies.
Unfortunately there's going to be another one, The Dark Knight is scheduled to appear sometime in 2008. To refresh your memory, there was "Batman", "Batman Returns", "Batman Forever", "Batman and Robin", "Batman Begins" and now "The Dark Knight"...yeah, I don't really see a pattern.
I feel a certain sadness because the Batman fights and triumphs against so many super-villains, but he is powerless to stop his own commericialism. Batman movies are terrible, except for the one with Val Kilmer. That one was okay.
There is a confusing lack of continuity between all the movies...different directors, different actors playing Batman, different villians...if you watched all the Batman movies in a row you'll probably not be any closer to understanding anything about Batman.
For the impatient, this is the short introduction to Batman. There won't be much discussion on why he does it, its pretty much accepted that one dedicates their lives to secretly fighting crime once your parents get murdered.
The tight outfits, large inheritance, loyal man-servant and teenage sidekick are just perks that come with the job.
So is striking fear the motivation for wearing the mantle of the bat? There are lots of scary things out there, he could have very well been named "Clownman" (Coulrophobia : fear of clowns), "Big Walk Man" (Ambulophobia : fear of walking), "Elevator Man" (Claustrophobia : fear of enclosed spaces) or "Naked Man" (Gymnophobia : fear of...nudity).
Some have argued that Batman is just nuts. Mental illness is a prevalent theme for Batman, from his inception, his villains, his methods and his social interactions (or lack of).
While he has no extraordinary powers to begin with, he is still a force to be reckon with with his investigative skills, physical prowess, technology and use of fear and intimidation.
With these has has been able to defeat Superman (The Dark Knight Returns), dared to love the daughter of his enemy (Talia al Ghul), helped out the Justice League, walked again after his back is broken (Knightfall), there is much more to Batman than just fighting bad guys.
You could do yourself more of a favour by enjoying what the real Batman has to offer. Essential reading would be : The Killing Joke, The Dark Knight Returns, Tales of the Demon, The Long Halloween, Year One. There's plenty more...but these would be a good place to start.
I'll probably still go watch the movie. I mean...how else can I complain about it? :p
Wednesday November 08, 2006 04:47 PM | Comments (1)
Sadly, on my way to the pantry to make myself a morning cuppa, I bumped the cup on the side of my cubicle and the handle broke off.
Understandably I was a bit miffed at being so clumsy, but then I noticed that while the cup was aesthetically pleasing, it was a bit poorly designed to be entirely useful.
Not too impressed with IKEA right now, as I suspect the poor design has more to do with planned obsolescence than better living.
Unfortunately its not entirely useful at even this simple task, the shallow bottom means that it tips over easily, and it doesn't really store that many pens and pencils. Perhaps I could make it into a plant pot, or a container for sweets.
But that, gentle readers, is a tale for another day...
Tuesday October 31, 2006 09:37 AM | Comments (6)
>> Open wide...
Sometimes, you just want to *$!@$@&)#($^@& someone real good.
Wednesday August 09, 2006 08:55 PM | Comments (0)