R. Emmett O'Ryan

R. Emmett O’Ryan is the pen name for an inventor, scientist, engineer, architect, program manager and author who has been living, working and writing in the Silicon Valley since the early '80s. He is a fourth generation Californian.

Apple Could Be Courting Twitter, Adobe or Corel

Apple Thumb
Apple’s got a lot of things it can do with all the cash it’s now open to spending. In Silicon Valley, speculation abounds about what those things might be. Will Apple go on a buying spree? Tell us what you think in the comments below. Three of the more likely scenarios deal with acquisitions that would further enhance Apple’s technology position. ZDNet’s Jason Perlow suggests that either Adobe or Corel would be ripe for acquisition and valuable additions to Apple’s… continue…

Yahoo, Facebook and the Strategic Value of IP

Yahoo Logo
The pending patent infringement battle between Yahoo and Facebook reveals why IP and patents are so important, and how they can be used to reap millions of dollars in the world of IT. Yahoo recently dipped into its patent portfolio and, after discussions on patent licensing broke down, decided to sue Facebook over the infringement of 10 patents that are somewhat basic to social networking infrastructures. Many in Silicon Valley view Yahoo’s move as a desperate attempt to find novel ways to… continue…

Federal Government Needs Hackers

The Department of Defense is looking for a few good hackers. The agency announced an Ethical Hacker Certification that trains in the art and science of hacking, for good, according to an article in Information Week. The U.S. Department of Defense injected $500 million over five years to the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) in order to speed up the development of cyberweapons and defensive technology, reported the Washington Post. This points to the government’s increasing focus on maintaining the nation’s critical infrastructure… continue…

Cybersecurity: How to be Truly Great

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Security people, really good ones, are hard to find. In the U.S, there are maybe a dozen true recognized experts—those with the right technical background, practical experience and mindset to practice effective cybersecurity, along with the curiosity and passion of an accomplished hacker. See our detailed list of necessary cybersecurity skills This capability is in such short supply that I’ve tried to do my small part by using my informal position as a mentor to encourage those who have those… continue…

Google Goggles Bring Geek Chic to a Store Near You

Posted In Living in Tech
Google’s consumer product division announced a new development: Geek Chic “heads up display glasses.” An overview, video, and prototype photo of this new headgear, which is expected to be released by the end of the year, was featured in a recent article by Search Engine Land. Google Goggles will “utilize a range of Google technologies and databases to deliver a real-time stream of information to the wearer.” “The people familiar with the Google glasses said they would be Android-based, and… continue…

Apple Co-Founder Woz Believes Android Bests iPhone?

Apple iPhone 4S
Apple CEO Steve Jobs vowed to destroy the Android operating system, but his Apple co-founder, Steve Wozniak (or Woz), thinks that in many ways, Android has leaped ahead of Apple’s iOS operating system. In a recent interview in the online publication The Daily Beast, Woz says that he’s a fan of Android-based smartphones.  He goes on to say that “he still thinks Apple’s iPhone is the best overall smartphone, but he says there are ways in which Android has leapt… continue…

Symantec Admits to Being Hacked

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Symantec, one of the premier Sillicon Valley computer security companies and makers of the Norton computer security and utility products, admitted in a Jan. 17 ComputerWorld article, that not only was their network hacked but source code for Symantec Endpoint Protection 11.0, Symantec Antivirus 10.2, Norton Antivirus Corporate Edition, Norton Internet Security, Norton Utilities, Norton GoBack and pcAnywhere, had been stolen. Norton Antivirus, Norton Internet Security and Norton Utilities are among Symantec’s most prominent consumer-grade products.  pcAnywhere is  a multi-platform remote access… continue…

Internships: Start Applying Now

Posted In Looking in Tech
Starting Line
I had the opportunity to meet with one of my college mentees not long ago. For the sake of this article, we’ll call her Zoe. Zoe was back for winter break from one of the UC campuses in Southern California, having just completed the Fall term of her second year of a Computer Science and Communications double major. Here in Silicon Valley, when I meet my mentees in person, I  usually like going to breakfast at little restaurant in Menlo… continue…

More Free Online University Training for High-Tech Workers

What many of us in Silicon Valley once thought was just an aberration could be the start of a new trend: free online university training. Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) is the latest to follow Stanford and Princeton in offering free online education, according to Forbes. MIT’s online learning initiative, called M.I.T.x, will offer the online teaching of MIT courses free of charge to anyone in the world. More universities have jumped on the free online university training trend.  The website Academic Earth is a clearing… continue…

Android: Is it Safe? I’m Not So Sure…

Not long ago, the viaForensics blog demonstrated and Android app which requires no permissions and yet is able to give an attacker a remote shell and allow them to execute commands on the device remotely from anywhere in the world. Wait, aren’t Android-based handheld devices starting to be used throughout the Federal government? While I think that it’s great there are so many apps now on Android, many of us in Silicon Valley and other tech centers who deal with… continue…