Archive for August 12, 2019

BREAKING: Tumblr To Be Acquired By Automatic

Posted in Commentary with tags on August 12, 2019 by itnerd

The news is breaking that Automatic, who are the people behind WordPress, have picked up Tumblr. What’s is mind blowing is that when it was sold to Yahoo, it was sold for $1.1 billion. Guess how much Automatic paid for Tumblr?

Give up? Here’s the answer from Dan Primack who broke the story on Axios:

Wow. I guess that Verizon who paid all that cash really wanted to dump Tumblr. I guess the traffic drop on Tumblr made it worth it to Verizon to basically give it away. But before you think that this means that porn is back on Tumblr, think again. According to The Wall Street Journal, the platform’s ban on adult content will remain in place.

OVH Launches Its Managed Kubernetes Service For Canadian Customers

Posted in Commentary with tags on August 12, 2019 by itnerd

Following Kubecon in May where OVH announced the deployment of Kubernetes on its dedicated servers through a partnership with Platform9, it is now Canada’s turn to have the service deployed on all OVH solutions. OVH already facilitated the use of Kubernetes on its public cloud via a free and fully managed offer through a partnership with Platform9, but now stand-alone customers can choose to install a Kubernetes distribution on all OVH solutions as well. OVH is the industry player that offers the most choice to deploy Kubernetes on its services.

The Kubernetes solution includes delivering a common standard among hybrid cloud and multi-cloud service providers. OVH has therefore decided to implement Kubernetes to ensure freedom of choice, reversibility and transparency for users, thus helping OVH come forward as the alternative provider on the cloud market.

While the OVH Managed Kubernetes Service is mainly designed for teams that have embraced the DevOps approach and operate on a public cloud, OVH has also listened to its clients who wish to take advantage of Kubernetes orchestration software on OVH dedicated bare-metal servers. To meet those clients’ expectations, OVH has teamed up with Platform9, a US-based specialized software vendor who offers the industry’s only fully managed Kubernetes-as-a-Service that works on any infrastructure – guaranteeing 99.9 per cent SLA anywhere, while eliminating the operational burden of managing Kubernetes at enterprise-scale.

OVH cater to all potential users of Kubernetes, including:

  • Users who wish to get started by ramping up easily and affordably with OVH Managed Kubernetes Service® on OVH Public Cloud
  • Users who prefer full hardware isolation or easy integration with their corporate IS through deploying a dedicated Kubernetes service managed by Platform9 on all OVH bare-metal servers, after subscribing to the Platform9 solution
  • Users who want to deploy Kubernetes on a stand-alone basis on the various environments provided by OVH through a combination of public (OpenStack), private (VMware) or bare-metal infrastructure offerings to install their Kubernetes distribution of choice

The Great Canadian Road Trip II – Part 8: The Artisan Tour

Posted in Commentary with tags on August 12, 2019 by itnerd

This day’s post is being done by wife because she’s really into the artisans of PEI. Here’s her report of the day’s activities. (Note: All photos are taken with the Nikon Coolpix P1000):

We could not leave PEI a second time without visiting some of the local artists. Today we headed off to explore of some PEI artisans. We started our day visiting Suzanne Scott of Village Pottery in New London, PEI and while the Studio tours will resume in September we were treated to a chance meeting of Suzanne Scott herself. She provided us with a personalized tour of her studio downstairs where we learned that it takes anywhere from 6 – 8 months to develop a new glaze. Knowing that their Etsy store is currently on hold I took the opportunity to purchase some beautiful pieces from their Celtic shore line. The gallery on the 2nd floor is open to visitors. Visitors can also pop in to Pottery’s Parlour next door for an ice cream. 

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On our next stop was the Bottle Houses in Cap Egmont, PEI. Take your time to take in everything from the moment you enter the property. Edouard Arsenault, an artist who combined his construction skills with his design dream was ahead of his time before recycling of bottles was available. Starting in the 70’s Edouard started the painstaking process of collecting, cleaning and removing the labels of over 12,000 bottles. Then starting the spring of 1980 at the age of 66 he started construction of his first bottle house. As you walk through the beautiful whimsical bottle houses you notice the riot of colours all around you in the gardens. The gift shop offers some unique decorative garden items for you to purchase.

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We were inspired to taking a side trip to the Cape Ergmont Lighthouse after seeing a small replica of it in Bottle Houses and learning that Edouard was the last resident lighthouse keeper. Note that the Cape Ergmont is not listed as a tourist lighthouse but when we did learn that it was approximately 2 km from the Bottle Houses property we couldn’t resist. The beauty of the landscape takes your breath away and was well worth the trek. Note that you have to do some off-roading to get there.

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As soon as we arrived at the PEI Preserve Company we knew that judging by the tour buses in the parking lot that it would be packed with visitors. This popular destination should be a must see on your list. Give yourself time to not only sample the amazingly tasty preserves but stroll through the beautiful Garden of Hope by the river. 

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During our visit to the PEI Preserve Company we once again got an alert from our  Belkin NetCam HD+ units and once again a maintenance person was in our unit doing some emergency plumbing work. Something that we had to again confirm with the management company while I watched them work. Good thing that my wife and I have great data plans with TELUS. And once again they failed to turn off the bathroom lights when they were done.


Speaking of TELUS, I will note that there were a few areas where there was no cell service in some parts of Prince Edward Island. But we would be in and out of those areas in a few minutes which meant that coverage was generally good.

By the time we got back to Charlottetown, it was happy hour at the hotel. My wife ate a ton of oysters from a place called Merchantman while I had a beer. Based on what she felt about the oysters, I’m pretty sure that we’re going there before we leave. From there, we went to Peaks Quay which had average food at best. But it had a great view of the Charlottetown historic waterfront.

Tomorrow, we’re going on our last bike ride around the East Point which also has a lighthouse in the area. Stay tuned to see how that goes.

Every iPhone On Planet Earth Is At Risk To Being Pwned….. And Apple May Have Known About This For Years

Posted in Commentary with tags on August 12, 2019 by itnerd

Apple seriously has some explaining to do now that it’s come to light that every iPhone on Earth (which is about 1.4 billion of them if you believe Apple’s numbers) is at risk of being pwned by hackers. As reported by AppleInsider, security firm Check Point has revealed it has found a way to hack every iPhone and iPad running iOS 8 right up to betas of iOS 13:

 Speaking at Def Con 2019, the company showed the technique being used to manipulate Apple’s iOS Contacts app. Searching the Contacts app under these circumstances can be enough to make the device run malicious code.

“SQLite is the most wides-spread database engine in the world,” said the company in a statement. “It is available in every operating system, desktop and mobile phone. Windows 10, macOS, iOS, Chrome, Safari, Firefox and Android are popular users of SQLite.”

“In short, we can gain control over anyone who queries our SQLite-controlled database,” they continued.

When you search for a contact or look up information in any app, you are really searching a database and very commonly that will be using SQLite.

And here’s the worst part:

Documented In a 4,000-word report seen by AppleInsider, the company’s hack involved replacing one part of Apple’s Contacts app and it also relied on a known bug that has hasn’t been fixed four years after it was discovered.

“Wait, what? How come a four-year-old bug has never been fixed?” write the researchers in their document. “This feature was only ever considered vulnerable in the context of a program that allows arbitrary SQL from an untrusted source and so it was mitigated accordingly. However, SQLite usage is so versatile that we can actually still trigger it in many scenarios.”

In other words, the bug has been considered unimportant because it was believed it could only be triggered by an unknown application accessing the database, and in a closed system like iOS, there are no unknown apps. However, Check Point’s researchers then managed to make a trusted app send the code to trigger this bug and exploit it.

Wow. Apple has failed to fix this bug for four years which means that it could have been exploited long before it was discovered by Check Point. Even if it hasn’t, you’d think that Apple would have fixed it long before now. Well, they have no choice but to fix it now seeing as it’s public information and those who play on the dark side of things are now going to come up with attacks that leverage this. Thus expect a fix to be out very quickly. Though I would much rather hear an explanation from Apple as to why they didn’t address this much earlier.