On Password Security

I’m a bit annoyed at phones and passwords. I use a pretty complicated leet and punctuation mark pass phrase. Its a mnemonic of two/three things. But phone keypads are really shite for typing it in. Its pretty painful using the shift and number keys.

Frankly, I’m not sure if letter, number, punctuation marks and a pass phrase mnemonic is all that secure now-a-days. Especially when you can get multi-cored GPU’s, like the Nvidia Tesla k40 its got 2880 cores, mostly running in parallel, write something halfway decent using CUDA and you’ll crack my password in microseconds.

Yet sadly, most applications and most software only use one core of your standard multi-cored desktop. Most people are still using 32bit architecture OS, phones are only now shifting from single core 32bit Architectures, so if you got a laptop a couple of years ago and you’ve just got yourself a new iphone. Then the likelihood is is that your phone is spiffier than your laptop.

In my last job, I had this sack of shit ancient dell, a core2 processor and 2gb of ram. I said one day that I would be fast at coding, if i hooked my nexus up to a monitor and used a bluetooth keyboard.

I was scoffed at by my co-worker, but when I pointed out, that all the code was that we were writing was just text and that it was the compiler on the build server that was doing the magic of turning my high level language code into symbols that could be then executed by an OS that had the right runtime installed. They stopped scoffing.

My phone now is several orders of magnitude better than the Apple 2 and the Commodore 64 that I first wrote code on in 1979. Yes, 35 years ago. Yet still, software developers are confined (in the main) to office desks, and in financial services, still working on old heaps of junk.

That’s why I’m saddened that Canonical and Mark Shuttleworth never got the full backing for the Ubuntu phone, it could have started a workplace revolution, that and decent mobile data plans. The former will happen, but I doubt if the latter will as the mobile telecoms companies will screw people with the pricing and the data caps.