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Cybercriminals are employing more sophisticated techniques all the time and far too many companies and organizations still don't have the protection they really need to safeguard their systems. The prevalence of targeted attacks and advanced persistent threats (APTs) is disturbing. The risk is that security is breached, typically through manipulation of employees using a technique such as spear phishing, and existing security systems are unable to detect the attack. Data can be harvested for many months, or even years, before the breach is discovered. According to a white paper from the Enterprise Strategy Group, 59% of enterprise security professionals believe their organization has been the target of an APT, and 40% of large organizations have invested in various new security technologies as a direct result of APTs. How Do They Get In? Penetration may be achieved... (more)

Can Sales Analytics Improve Your Bottom Line?

It has never been more important or difficult than it is today for sales people to make sure their messages are reaching their target audience. This is because potential customers are bombarded with a deluge of information everyday. They filter a growing amount of phone calls, scan endless amounts of email, and are often drowned in the constant tide of social media updates, text messages, alerts and reminders. For most salespeople, the once simple task of making sure their message is reaching the right people is now a daunting, seemingly impossible endeavor. Even with the ever-expanding options of communication and analytical tools available to sales professionals, the most well-connected sales teams have difficulty understanding what is working to engage customers and what isn't. The underlying issue is that it's impossible to know what resonates with customers w... (more)

HTML5 Web Sockets: A Quantum Leap in Scalability for the Web

Lately there has been a lot of buzz around HTML5 Web Sockets, which defines a full-duplex communication channel that operates through a single socket over the Web. HTML5 Web Sockets is not just another incremental enhancement to conventional HTTP communications; it represents a colossal advance, especially for real-time, event-driven web applications. HTML5 Web Sockets provides such a dramatic improvement from the old, convoluted "hacks" that are used to simulate a full-duplex connection in a browser that it prompted Google's Ian Hickson - the HTML5 specification lead - to say: "Reducing kilobytes of data to 2 bytes...and reducing latency from 150ms to 50ms is far more than marginal. In fact, these two factors alone are enough to make Web Sockets seriously interesting to Google." Let's look at how HTML5 Web Sockets can offer such an incredibly dramatic reduction of... (more)

Canadian Outfit Releases Encrypted Portable Private Web Browser

Vancouver-based ENC Security Systems, which is supposed to make "un-hackable" Encrypt Stick flash drive software, has released an Encrypt Stick 5.0 Private Browser, a digital privacy browser that it claims is the safest way to browse the Internet. Its timing couldn't be better considering the Federal Trade Commission is now backing the development of a Do-Not-Track system for web that's got the online ad people worried about their $23 billion sector and claiming it will mean the end of free content and Firefox revisiting a Do-Not-Track mechanism after Mozilla, pressured by an ad exec, killed such a tool a few months ago for fear Madison Avenue would come up with something sneakier, the Wall Street Journal says. Anyway, the Encrypt Stick Private Browser runs from the user's flash drive and applies polymorphic encryption, which creates unique encryption algorithms ... (more)

Using HTML5 Application Cache to Create Offline Web Applications

HTML5 introduces Application Cache, a new feature that enables you to make web apps and sites available offline. The new specification also provides an easy way to prefetch some or all of your web app's assets (HTML files, images, CSS, JavaScript, and so on) while the client is still online. During this caching process, files are stored in an application cache, where they sit ready for future offline use. Compare this to regular browser caching, in which pages that you visit are cached in the browser's cache based on server-side rules and client-side configuration. But-even if web pages are cached normally, this does not provide a reliable way for you to access pages while you're in offline mode (in an airplane, for example). In addition, an application cache can cache pages that have not been visited at all and are therefore typically unavailable in the regular br... (more)

Book Excerpt: jQuery Essentials | Part 1

This excerpt is from the book Murach's JavaScript and jQuery by Mike Murach and Zak Ruvalcaba. Now that you have the JavaScript skills that you need for using jQuery, you're ready to learn jQuery. So, in this excerpt, you'll learn a working subset of jQuery that will get you off to a fast start. When you complete this section, you'll have all the jQuery skills that you need for developing professional web pages. You can also go on to any of the three sections that follow because they are written as independent modules. If, for example, you want to learn how to use Ajax next, skip to section 4. Get off to a fast start with jQuery In this excerpt you'll quickly see how jQuery makes JavaScript programming easier. Then, you'll learn a working subset of jQuery that will get you off to a fast start. Along the way, you'll study four complete applications that will show you ... (more)

Part 2 | Five Steps to Improve E-Commerce Performance for Increased Sales

In my recent article, "Five Steps to Improve E-Commerce Performance for Increased Sales: Introduction" I discussed problems encountered by our client TescaraHats (name changed for commercial reasons), a European market leader in manufacturing customized hats. The company quickly realized that e-commerce performance is critical to the success of an e-commerce platform and that sales will not increase just because you have an application online. We argued that while improving search engine ranking is important, you should never forget about the performance and usability in an e-commerce application. In this episode of our e-commerce performance series, we will analyze the impact that the back-end performance has on your online sales. Improve Back-End Performance The effort put into building a visually appealing and easy to use e-commerce site might be lost if you do no... (more)

Mobile Marketing, Business Analytics and Code Halos

In an article I published earlier this week, Digital Transformation, Code Halos, Analytics and Mobility, I provided an overview of the concept of Code Halo™.  The idea is that nearly all organizations, brands, products and people are surrounded by a halo of data.  Companies that recognize the value of code halos will develop new business models and IT systems to utilize these code halos to better engage with customers and prospects, deliver more relevant content and employ precision marketing and support campaigns based upon known interests and desires. Today I want to explore the role of mobile marketing and how it relates to code halos.  First, let's review the four basic elements of a "logistics of information" system that can derive value from code halos: There must be effective data collection strategies - Often in the form of mobile apps, loyalty programs and o... (more)

The Website Performance Mistakes of Mobile Shopping Sites in 2013

Our new survey tells us that up to 50% of online shoppers this year will use their mobile device. Good news is that most retail stores that have an online store now also offer a mobile version, e.g., http://m.gap.com, http://m.jcpenney.com, http://m.bestbuy.com. In the past years we have done a deep dive web performance analysis on the desktop versions of these sites and blogged about it. This year we took a look at the mobile sites and found some "terrible" website performance mistakes that will most likely frustrate the mobile shopper. The "highlights" (or lowlights) that we found are: 87 roundtrips from 25 different domains for a single mobile page 28 redirects from the mobile site to the desktop site for downloading JS and CSS 2.5MB of page size for the shopping cart Some pages are already optimized for mobile - but some critical pages are overloaded, have too m... (more)

What Is 'Real-Time' Anyway...?

I love a good buzzword...cloud, Big Data, analytics... And even more than the buzzwords, I love the liberties people tend to take applying these buzzwords to their new systems and services. Such buzzwords regularly get abused and often get washed into marketing material and product websites in an attempt to hoodwink and woo new unsuspecting customers. One of my (least) favorite buzzwords, that I've noticed popping up more recently in particular in the logging space is "real-time." So what does real-time mean anyway? Like with all good computer science questions, it really depends on the context.  John Stankovic, in his seminal 1988 article in IEEE Computer entitled ‘Misconceptions of real-time computing' describes a real time system as follows: "A real-time system is one in which the correctness of the system depends not only on the logical result of computation, bu... (more)

Ulitzer News: Search vs New Media

New Media on Ulitzer Online ad network Chitika this week broke down over 123 million impressions across their 60,000+ publisher network and determined that the overwhelming dominance of search engines is facing little, if any, threat from social networks. Despite predictions that social media will replace search engines as Internet users' primary method of finding information online, a breakdown of the numbers shows that isn't the case. Google, Search Engines Leading the Way Chitika broke down the top 65 referral sites across their network for seven days in September, and compared the results to the same data from seven days in July. Unsurprisingly, in September Google leads the world with 76.13% of all referrals, followed by Yahoo! (7.34%), Bing (5.20%), AOL (1.24%) and Ask (0.84%) in that order. As a genre, search engines as a whole encompassed 97.82% of all refer... (more)