Privacy and online data sharing is a journey into the unknown: report from QCon London

I’m at QCon London, an annual developer conference which is among my favourites thanks to its vendor-neutral content.

One session which stood out for me was from Robin Wilton, Director for Identity and Privacy at the Internet Society, who spoke on “Understanding and managing your Digital Footprint”. I should report dissatisfaction, in that we only

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What’s up with Facebook acquiring “we don’t sell ads” WhatsApp

Facebook has acquired WhatsApp for a breathtaking $16 billion. Too much money by any normal valuation; but that might not matter if it makes sense strategically.

What is the value of WhatsApp?

WhatsApp is on a path to connect 1 billion people. The services that reach that milestone are all incredibly valuable.

says

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Mobile: Windows Phone appeal growing, iOS and Android secure say Titanium developers

Appcelerator and IDC have released their latest mobile developer report, in which nearly 3,000 users of the cross-platform development tool Titanium report on their views and intentions.

These reports are always interesting but experience suggests that they are poor predictors. A year ago, the Q4 2011 report told us:

Amazon’s new Kindle Fire ignites developer

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Hands on debugging an Azure application – what to do when it works locally but not in the cloud

I have been writing a Facebook application hosted on Microsoft Azure. I hit a problem where my application worked fine on the local development fabric, but failed when deployed to Azure. The application was not actually crashing; it just did not work as expected. Specifically, either the Facebook authentication or the ASP.NET Forms Authentication was

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The frustration of developing for Facebook with C#

I am researching a piece on developing for Facebook with Microsoft Azure, and of course the first thing I did was to try it out.

It is not easy. The first problem is that Facebook does not care about C#. There are four SDKs on offer: JavaScript, Apple iOS, Google Android, and PHP. This has

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Why is Microsoft giving away web traffic and abandoning users?

I am puzzled by Microsoft’s decision to close Live Spaces and send all its users to WordPress.com. Of course WordPress is a superior blogging platform; but Spaces made sense as an element within an integrated Live.com platform. According to Microsoft it has 7 million users and 30 million visitors; and if you accept that business

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Oracle: a good home for MySQL?

I’m not able to attend the whole of Oracle OpenWorld / JavaOne, but I have sneaked in to MySQL Sunday, which is a half-day pre-conference event. One of the questions that interests me: is MySQL in safe hands at Oracle, or will it be allowed to wither in order to safeguard Oracle’s closed-source database business?

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Microsoft Vine formally withered

Remember Microsoft Vine? It was a well-meaning but puzzling product intended to assist communication in emergencies, but with additional potential for social communication. To nobody’s surprise, Microsoft has emailed beta testers to inform that that the project is to be discontinued:

The decision to discontinue future development of Microsoft Vine was not easily made. Multiple

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BBC iPlayer goes a little social – but what can it learn from YouTube?

BBC’s iPlayer, which offers but live TV and radio and an on demand catch-up service, has gone live with a new version that adds personalisation as well as links to Facebook and Twitter for limited interaction with your social media contacts.

Presenting a personalised iPlayer web page is more demanding, as every visitor sees a

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Spotify goes social with Facebook, supports local music library

Spotify has announced a set of new features with the aim of “evolving into a total music management platform”, according to today’s blog post. There are two key features, available to both free and paying users.

The first is a link to Facebook, enabling you to see and share the playlists of your Facebook friends

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