LJ Archive

New Products

James Gray

Issue #276, April 2017

VMKings' VPS Hosting Solution

The management team of cloud provider VMKing, as developers themselves, found standard virtual servers not to be well tailored to the developer community—too much or too little space, insufficient security and no support for their preferred Linux OS(!). To meet the specialized needs of developers everywhere, VMKings developed a fast, uncomplicated, developer-focused VPS (Virtual Private Server) hosting solution. Now developers can serve as administrators of their own maintenance-free, customizable solution that can be upgraded instantaneously and scaled to match user needs. The hosting adapts itself to the preferences of the user, not vice versa, says VMKings. Key features include the choice of distributions and frameworks that best suit the project, spin up and root access in minutes, flexible and scalable resource configurations, 99.9% SLA, blazing-fast enterprise-grade SSDs, a 40-gigabit fault-tolerant network with multi-regional data-center support and enterprise-grade hypervisor technology at the back end.



The new production release of Mender 1.0, an open-source tool for updating embedded devices safely and reliably, is now available. Mender's developers describe the tool as the “only open-source over-the-air (OTA) software updater for embedded Linux devices that integrates both an updater client and deployment management server”, both of which are licensed under Apache 2.0. Using Mender, embedded development teams venturing into IoT can focus completely on developing their product instead of squandering time on building and maintaining a homegrown software updater or cobbling together a custom combination of tools or scripts to deploy software updates. Mender utilizes a dual A/B rootfs partition layout to deploy full image updates and provides automated rollback of failed updates for any reason, including power loss on the device or poor network connectivity. This feature allows users to deploy software updates confidently without the fear of bricking their devices. The Golang-based Mender runs efficiently on the embedded device and is tightly integrated with the Yocto Project and U-Boot, making Mender easy to integrate with most production-grade embedded boards. Going from a fresh system to completing your first managed deployment with Mender, including server setup, sayeth Mender folk, should take less than one hour.


MultiTaction's MT Canvus-Connect

“A new era in visual collaboration” is the promise of MT Canvus-Connect, MultiTaction's new real-time collaboration software that enables visual touchscreen collaboration across remote locations in real time. The platform-agnostic solution provides remote users the means to share, manipulate, draw and input information in real time wherever they are based. MT Canvus-Connect grew out of MultiTaction's MT Canvus product, which “is already unique in the way that it helps visualize big data and encourages collaborative working”. It enables multiple sources, such as video feeds, web-based applications and content from smart devices, to run in parallel. MT Canvus-Connect extends this functionality by enabling multiple remote locations to collaborate in real time. MultiTaction is also a leading manufacturer of ultra-responsive large touch-display systems, so the software solutions are all designed from the ground up to function in touch-enabled environments. MT Canvus-Connect operates in both Linux and Windows environments and integrates with current meeting-room technologies.


CodeLathe's Tonido Personal Cloud

CodeLathe counts Dropbox and OneDrive as competitors to its Tonido Personal Cloud storage service. While the former can cost anywhere from $50 and up per year to store a TB of data, CodeLathe's cross-platform Tonido for the desktop is fully free, and storage space is limited only by users' hard drive capacities. CloudLathe also boasts 100% private, secure file sharing due to, for instance, not storing user credentials by effecting authentication directly between the client device and the Tonido server running on a home PC. Recently, the company launched a next generation of the Tonido personal cloud software that offers remote access to all documents, photos, music and videos stored on Intel Core processor-based desktop PCs from a web browser, smartphone, tablet and DLNA-enabled devices. Seamless global access is enhanced via Tonido Relay servers strategically placed across three continents and six countries.


Omesh Tickoo and Ravi Iyer's Making Sense of Sensors (Apress)

In today's data-driven world, we are surrounded by sensors collecting various types of data about us and our world. These sensors are the primary input devices for wearable computers, IoT and other mobile devices. Professionals seeking to better understand today's sensor-rich devices and acquire knowledge and skills to develop innovative solutions that exploit them will be pleased to learn about the new book Making Sense of Sensors. Written by the team of Omesh Tickoo and Ravi Iyer and published by Apress, the book is subtitled End-to-End Algorithms and Infrastructure Design from Wearable-Devices to Data Centers. Presented in a manner that permits readers to associate the examples with their daily lives, Tickoo and Iyer's book covers the most common architectures used for deriving meaningful data from sensors. This book provides readers with the tools to understand how sensor data is converted into actionable knowledge and provides tips for in-depth work in this field. Starting with an overview of the general pipeline to extract meaningful data from sensors, the book then dives deeper into some commonly used sensors and algorithms designed for knowledge extraction. Practical examples and pointers to more information are used to outline the key aspects of Multimodal recognition. The book concludes with a discussion on relationship extraction, knowledge representation and management.



Partners Canonical, openHAB Foundation and Azul Systems have collaborated hard to drive development of the new openHAB 2.0 smart-home platform as a snap package. An alternative to Apple Homekit and Samsung SmartThings, openHAB from openHAB Foundation is completely free and open source, and acts as a control hub for home IoT setups. The platform is easy to install, highly customizable and comes with great performance across a wide range of hardware, from PCs to Raspberry Pis. Furthermore, openHAB can be used to control, automate and complement smart-home setups. As an open platform, openHAB is not tied to any single brand and supports many protocols and technologies, which enables consumers to mix and match devices. Ubuntu's contribution to openHAB is snap, a secure universal Linux application format that makes applications available as a simple one-click download and install from the Ubuntu Appstore. The snap packaging of openHAB makes it simpler for home-automation creators to build, test and distribute their smart-home services. Finally, Azul System's contribution to openHAB is Zulu Embedded Java Runtime, which is available for a wide range of hardware and provides optimal performance on home gateways, PCs or ARM-compatible devices. The sum of the partnership between openHAB, Ubuntu and Azul means openHAB can be packaged and distributed as a single application, including a tested Java Runtime, without click-through licenses.


PasswordPing Ltd.'s Exposed Password and Credentials API Service

The typical online user has an average of 90 active and inactive online accounts. This exposure to threats, notes software and IT security specialist PasswordPing Ltd., helps to inform us why billions of credentials have been exposed in the past five years alone. To assist organizations and companies to screen their user accounts for known, compromised credentials, PasswordPing Ltd. announced the launch of its new password and credential breach notification service. Organizations can be alerted of exposed credentials and request users to update their credentials when they set up their account, reset their password or log in to their account. At its core, PasswordPing is a massive cloud database of exposed credential data. The company's various web-based APIs provide different views into this data, tailored for different use cases. The Passwords API, which can be used as part of a sign-up form or a password-change form, takes a password and returns a result indicating whether that password has been exposed. The Credentials API takes a user name/password combination and returns a result indicating whether those credentials have been exposed. If a user's credentials are exposed, the user can be notified and prompted to change the password.


CyKick Labs Ltd.'s Telepath

When a shopper enters a store, the retailer doesn't know if the person will simply browse, make purchases, shoplift or hold up the register. The same goes for visitors to a website. The challenge is to prevent and stop the bad guys without hindering beneficial customer transactions. A new approach to threat protection, Telepath from CyKick Labs Ltd., leverages big data to apply behavioral analytics and machine learning to protect web applications against exploitation by individuals and bots alike. With Telepath, cyber security teams get early and actionable intelligence on emerging threats and comprehensive forensics capabilities, as well as insight into sophisticated attacks. Telepath is able to stop fraud by understanding normative site visitor behavior, inspecting enterprise web application transactions non-intrusively. It employs a hybrid approach based on rules and machine learning to identify suspect behavior. The solution protects web applications from multiple threats, such as industrial espionage information theft, account takeover, service disruption, business logic abuse and insider threats.


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