Thursday, January 31, 2008

Amazon EC2 and S3 Surpassed

Amazon has announced in its fourth quarter earnings release that the bandwidth usage of the Amazon Elastic Compute Cloud (EC2) and Simple Storage Service (S3) has surpassed all of’s global website traffic combined. This milestone means that the 330,000 registered Amazon Web Services (AWS) developers collectively use more bandwidth than the web retailer itself. Amazon has become the leading cloud computing service provider with its own internet platform.

The Amazon Web Services solution catalog lists more than a hundred solutions based on AWS including innovative backup, archival, community and media hosting services by web 2.0 startups and developers.

The resources of AWS Developer Connection grows rapidly. Check out these featured tutorials and articles:
The Amazon Cloud propels new innovation by changing the economics of scalable computing and storage resources. Let's prepare for the Big Switch!

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Google Maps Apartment View (Fun Video)

Two young men take a turn down the wrong street view and discover a secret Google Maps feature. Brilliant!

A fun video by the Vacationeers - a stylized comedic film group that features Todd Berger, Kevin Brennan, Jeff Grace and Blaise Miller. Imagine the (frightening) possibilities of this innovative feature where reality and virtual worlds meet!

Monday, January 28, 2008

Trend Map for 2008+

See what to expect in 2008 and beyond on the latest Trend Map! and Future Exploration Network have once again collaborated to create a trend map for 2008 and beyond. The map uncovers key trends across Society, Politics, Demographics, Economy, and Technology.

Innowave is focused on technology innovations and trends so here they are:
  • Geospatial web
  • Ubiquitous connectivity
  • Robotics
  • Nanotech
  • Biotech
  • Embedded Intelligence
  • RFID
  • Open innovation
  • Transparency
  • GPS
  • Virtual worlds
  • Wireless
  • Device convergence
  • Mobile devices
  • Social networks
  • Place shifting
  • Too much information
  • Time shifting
  • Aggregation
  • Personalization
  • Online video
  • Web 2.0
  • Enterprise 2.0
  • Simplicity
  • 3D printers
  • VoIP
  • Artificial intelligence
  • Reality mining
  • Humans 2.0
Click on the map below to get the full pdf of Trend Blend 2008+.

Thursday, January 24, 2008

The Storm Worm and the Rise of P2P Malware

It is estimated that several million PCs have been infected by the Storm Worm. It represents a new generation worm/botnet. Although it's most commonly called a worm, Storm is much more: a worm, a Trojan horse and a bot all rolled into one. Storm has been around for a year, and the antivirus companies are pretty much powerless to do anything about it. Why?

The Storm worm first appeared at early 2007 in e-mail attachments with the subject line: "230 dead as storm batters Europe." Those who opened it became infected, their computers joining an ever-growing botnet of zombie computers.

There is no central "command-and-control point" in the Storm botnet that can be shut down. The infected windows host computers use encrypted communication over a modified version of the eDonkey/Overnet peer-to-peer protocol. The name and location of the remote servers which control the botnet are hidden behind a constantly changing DNS technique called ‘fast flux’, making it difficult to find and stop them.

We simply don't know how to stop Storm, except to find the people controlling it and arrest them. The Storm botnet uses the power of P2P networking to protect itself.

The Starfish and the Spider: The Unstoppable Power of Leaderless Organizations explains this nicely. Although a starfish and a spider have similar shapes, their internal structure is dramatically different—a decapitated spider inevitably dies, while a starfish can regenerate itself from a single amputated leg. In the same way, decentralized organizations, like the Storm botnet are made up of many smaller units capable of operating, growing and multiplying independently of each other, making it very difficult for a rival force to control or defeat them.

The Storm botnet has been used for spamming, distributed denial-of-service attacks, and other malicious activities including phishing attacks targeting banking European banks. It appears that portions of the Storm botnet and its variants were for sale. The controllers of the Storm seems to lease out portions of the network for misuse.

The Storm represents serious security threat for internet users but it is only the tip of the iceberg. It has started a new wave of innovation by hackers. More advanced P2P malware like Nugache is on its way. Are we prepared?

(To remove the Storm Worm from a Microsoft Windows computer use the Malicious Software Removal Tool as described in the link.)

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Most Compelling Startups and Innovations

The Winners of the 2007 Crunchies award have been revealed. The most compelling startups, internet and technology innovations of the year have been nominated and chosen by the internet community.

  • Best Overall: Facebook
  • Best technology innovation / achievement: Earthmine
    Earthmine picks up where Google Earth leaves off, bringing deep semantic data to 3D panoramas of the real world. They are indexing reality into 3D maps.
  • Best Clean Tech Startup: Tesla Motors
    Tesla’s green sports car has captured the imagination of a public who had come to expect electric cars to be dull are boring.
  • Best video startup: Hulu
    Hulu put television online. Their mission is to help you find and enjoy the world's premium content when, where and how you want it.
  • Best user-generated content site: Digg
  • Best mobile start-up: Twitter
  • Best International startup: Netvibes
  • Best consumer startup: Meebo
    Meebo made instant messaging ubiquitous by bringing it online.
  • Best enterprise startup: Zoho
    Zoho’s comprehensive online suite of 14 business applications ranging from document editing to CRM continues to lead the way in the move away from desktop computing to working in the cloud.
  • Best design: SmugMug
    SmugMug is professional photo site.
  • Best new gadget/ device: Apple iPhone. See the Apple acceptance speech here.
  • Best business model: Zazzle
    Zazzle is an on-demand factory of consumer goods for top brands. It lets consumers become producers by uploading their own images onto that T-shirt, mug, or mousepad and receive a commission on products that they sell and design.
  • Best bootstrapped startup: Techmeme.
    Techmeme serves as the front page of the tech blogosphere. The site’s advanced algorithms identify the day’s top stories by making sense of conversations across the web’s best blogs.
  • Best Startup Founder: Mark Zuckerberg (Facebook)
  • Best Startup CEO: Toni Schneider (Automattic)
  • Best new startup: iMedix
    iMedix combines search and social networking to change the way people find health information online. Users are encouraged to help each other by sharing health experiences and links from around the web.
  • Most likely to succeed: Automattic (WordPress)
    The open source blogging platform that powers the long tale and turned into a multi-million dollar spam fighting and hosted blogging service. They have just announced 3 GB of free space thanks to hosting on Amazon S3.
  • Best use of viral marketing: StumbleUpon
    StumbleUpon’s service lets users bookmark and discover new sites they love. With only a $1.5 million investment in 2005, StumbleUpon gew to over 4 million Stumblers and was bought by eBay in 2007 for $75 million
  • Best time sink site: Kongregate
    CEO Jim Greer describes Kongregate as XBox live for casual games. This site hosts some of the webs most addictive casual games. Remember Desktop Tower Defense?
  • Most likely to make the world a better place: DonorsChose is dedicated to connecting classrooms in need with individuals who want to help.

Monday, January 14, 2008

The Big Switch: Rewiring the World, from Edison to Google

I have found this review today:

Don't walk, run to your nearest bookstore to read Carr's dazzling THE BIG SWITCH. If you can only read one book in 2008 this should be it. The writing is clean, pure as spring water and thoughtful. Nicholas Carr makes the coming "information utility" simple for the layman to understand. The description of the development of electricity and its impact on society is fascinating and lays the groundwork for the likely outcome of the information age over the next few decades. I enjoyed this book which is a must for anyone interesting in the future of the information utility.

I am looking forward to receiving my copy of The Big Switch: Rewiring the World, from Edison to Google.

The Big Switch's full ramifications are still far from clear, but the areas it has touched so far are profoundly changed. We are further along in The Big Switch than most people suspect, and the momentum to continue is unstoppable.

The Big Switch represents a great opportunity for the next wave of internet innovations. In fact utility computing or cloud computing is maturing quickly thanks to Amazon EC2, Google and many others. Let's get ready for a great ride!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

2007 Year in Review

2007: What an exciting year in terms of internet innovations!

Let's highlight the most interesting news and trends of last year.

Amazon Web Services (AWS) has ruled the Cloud:

3D Virtual Worlds have met the Real World Online:

Devices and gadgets:

Web 2.0 and Telco 2.0 disruption:

Hot startups pioneered unbeaten paths: