Wednesday, July 2, 2014

Are Information Technology (IT) Organizations Spiraling Out of Control?

The following is an interesting collection of news items posted on BBC News site just this week about major technology companies and organizations overstepping reasonable bounds and starting to spiral out of control. The stories are becoming more frequent. For example:

So what's going on? Should citizens be more concerned? Should we be more concerned about personal 'privacy' protection? What are the implications for our future if these organizations are left to spiral out of control?

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

The Open Source & Hacking Communities and National Defense

The open source and hacking movements have now spread into every industry – including defense.

Well over a decade ago, when I was the Director of the VA National Center for Information Security (NCIS), I was interviewed for an article on information technology (IT) security by a major news magazine. I remember saying that in the next major war, the first series of battles would be fought in cyberspace. That turned out to be very true, as we saw in the Iraqi Wars, and will hold true if we are ever faced with another global war.

So it was not unusual to me to see a number of recent stories about the NSA, DoD, and other government agencies attending the DefCon Hacking Conferences and hear that they are busily hiring hackers to come work for them. The authors of these stories expressed some surprise that this was happening. However, I saw nothing surprising in this. In fact, it seemed very practical to me.

The U.S. is simply in the process of building up its capability to conduct cyberwarfare – preparing for the next major conflicts around the globe. It just makes sense. China, Russia, and many other countries are doing the same. However, it does seem a little strange to realize that the open source and hacker communities, often belittled or attacked by government agencies in the past, may be the key to our national defense in the future.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Investing in Top 'Open Source' Companies

I recently looked over the "Top 50 Open Source Companies Ranked by Momentum Index" posted at  These are businesses built on top of open source technologies. The list of successful companies is growing and investors have been pouring money into them.

The following are selected mid-size open source companies to watch and possibly invest in as they grow and go public over time.  Many of these were simply open source projects just 5 years ago. They're now thriving startup companies that continue to innovate, expand, and position themselves to become some of the top companies in the future as we move further into the 21st century 'Information Age' where collaboration, open solutions, and innovation (COSI) are king.

Company & Website

What other companies do you think ought to be added to the list? Explain