By Larry Magid | [email protected] | March 7, 2019 at 6:30 am The World Wide Web turns 30 this month, and you’re invited to its birthday party that will take place in Meyrin, Switzerland, London and Lagos, Nigeria over a 30-hour period starting March 12. Don’t worry about plane reservations, you can join via the web at webcast.web.cern.ch. This is not the anniversary of the launch of the web itself, but of the publication of a paper, “Information Management: A Proposal” by Tim Berners-Lee, that laid out his vision and pointed out how a “‘web’ of notes with links (like references) between them is far more useful than a fixed hierarchical system.” The author, now Sir Berners-Lee, paid homage to previous hypertext systems, observing that “Most of them use ‘hot spots’ in documents, such as icons, or highlighted phrases, as sensitive areas. Touching a hot spot with a mouse brings up the relevant information.” … [Read more...] about Magid: Looking back at the web on its 30th birthday
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A team of academics from the Ruhr-University Bochum in Germany say they've managed to break the digital signing system and create fake signatures on 21 of 22 desktop PDF viewer apps and five out of seven online PDF digital signing services.This includes apps such as Adobe Acrobat Reader, Foxit Reader, and LibreOffice, and online services like DocuSign and Evotrust --just to name the most recognizable names.The five-person research team has been working since early October 2018 together with experts from Germany's Computer Emergency Response Team (BSI-CERT) to notify impacted services.The team went public with their findings over the weekend after all affected app makers and commercial companies finished patching their products.The reason why researchers were willing to wait months so all products would receive fixes is because of the importance of PDF digital signatures. Digitally signed PDF documents are admissible in court, can be used as legally-binding contracts, can be used to … [Read more...] about Researchers break digital signatures for most desktop and web-based PDF viewers
"We insist on this ability to say 'no'," Nicolas Hernandez, co-founder and CEO of Aleph Networks, says at the company's offices near Lyon, in the heart of France's Beaujolais wine country. He said Aleph refused 30 to 40 percent of licensing requests for its "Google of the dark web," based on reviews by its ethics committee and input from its government clients. Most web users never venture beyond the bounds of sites easily found and accessed with casual web surfing. But people and sites seeking anonymity can hide behind layers of secrecy using easily available software like Tor or I2P. These sites can't be found by searching: instead, users have to type in the exact URL string of often random characters. In an authoritarian regime, a protest movement could use the secrecy to organise itself or connect with the outside world without fear of discovery. But the dark web is also ideal for drug and weapon sales, people-smuggling and … [Read more...] about French start-up offers ‘dark web’ compass, but not for everyone
You may have heard that machine learning technology has been able to beat all the world's greatest players of the ancient game of Go.But can it book a flight on the web? That's the intriguing prospect raised by the latest research for Google AI investigators. In a new paper from the team, they trained a neural network to understand the structure of web pages and the choices it can make when filling out forms in an airline ticket booker, or interacting with a social media site. The work broadly employs the same category of machine learning as Google's Go-winning AlphaZero software, what is known as "reinforcement learning." In RL, a neural network develops strategies of steps to take at each stage of trying to solve a problem as it receives rewards for good choices. Also: Google suggests all software could use a little robot AI The researchers figured out a way to train a neural network without being given human examples of how to navigate an online booking … [Read more...] about Forget Go, Google helps AI learn to book flights on the web
PWAs are hybrid properties that possess the advantages of the web and conveniences of apps. They're discoverable, easily updated and platform-independent. In our connected world an ever-increasing amount of computing occurs in the cloud, browser-based activity dominates users' behavior and constant connectivity fosters leisure and professional collaboration. Virtually everything we do on our devices has a connected component, and we (particularly digital natives) can barely conceive of computing that is not connected in some way. PWAs seem a natural fit for this reality. In its attempts to make its web and mobile experiences more efficient, Google has invested heavily in PWAs. And in an unlikely partnership Microsoft has been working collaboratively with its frenemy, Google, on the creation of standards to advance PWAs. Other companies including Mozilla and even Apple have shown interest in the technology. Thus, in our app-driven connected environment, major industry-drivers are … [Read more...] about Looking for more good Progressive Web Apps, or PWAs? Check out Appscope.