Month: August 2015

Recent Posts
Computing, Victoria

Driving a Point: Victorian Crash Statistics

Trigger Warning: This post discusses road-related trauma

 Introduction

VicRoads has released crash statistics for the calendar years 2010-14 inclusive, so I thought I'd fire up MATLAB and see what I could make of the data. My analysis follows.

Heatmaps: What Happens, When?

Initially, I was interested in the spread of reported incidents throughout the day, and the week. With a nod to Powershop's cool ability to track energy usage in a similar fashion, I thought I'd generate a heatmap to show when its most likely, on average, for a collision to occur on Victorian roads, for a given time of week.

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Today's Two Factor Authentication Is Nothing but a Cumbersome Burden Shift

The Latest Fad

Two factor authentication has made marked in-roads in web-based services lately, with the promise of additional security in the face of enormous data breaches being so commonplace as to bring about infographics on the phenomenon. What two-factor authentication does is protects access to your account, so that when a third-party site is breached and your (presumably re-used) password stolen, this isn't an issue for other services you might, where two-factor is enabled. That this is an implicit burden shift — from service providers being expected to securely hash and salt passwords (so they're hard to reverse into the original password) for a secure authentication implementation, to users having to opt-in, and then ensure their phones are charged and proximate whenever they want to use their email — isn't the worst part. Even engraining and encouraging the very behaviour — password re-use — that was the genesis of this Band-Aid solution requiring people to use both "something you have, and something you know" isn't it. It's just a Huge Pain in The Ass. And it doesn't have to be half as bad.

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