Tuesday, 18 September 2007

Smiling already

Wow, I must have been getting used to Spanish telecoms. I just got my new broadband installed and it flies. I can now download a 30Mb file in a few seconds, where it was taking minutes with Telefonica. So what have I missed whilst the posting's been thin on the ground?

Uncle Mike Rothman has turned into Security Mike I see, which made me smile, not least because of the rather flattering avatar he's used. Don't get me wrong, Mike's a handsome devil, but have you seen the arms on this guy?

A bit of news today which made also made me smile, but this time in disbelief, was the story that Intel have bought Havok. "Who?" I hear you ask. I did some work with these guys over in Dublin 3 years ago, and there were about 10 of them sitting in a freezing cold darkened room, coding some arcane magic called a Physics Engine. It's amazing stuff. If you've ever played Half-Life 2, you'll have run along in the water shooting at imaginary fish. The realistic gun interaction with bullet, and bullet interaction with water, is courtesy of Havok. They have worked on some major games. So why the need for a security fiddler?

What Intel don't know (OK, they probably do, but it makes better gossip this way) is that 4 years ago the source code for HL2 was leaked and displayed on the Internet. This was traced back to a developer at Havok, I'm not sure they ever knew which one, and they called in a consultant at DCSR to fix the problem. DCSR were a Vormetric reseller, and thus Havok became my first account in Europe. It was incredibly complicated, and they had a huge amount of code to protect. I won't divulge any more details of the account as I don't want the SEC on my back, and I now work for the competition.

Another thing which made me smile today was a chat I just had with a guy called Richard Morrell. I had a mail from him earlier today to ask me a couple of questions. Richard was a founder of SmoothWall, which most of you will have heard of if not used, and was most recently working for Zimbra, which was purchased by Yahoo! yesterday for $345m. Well done Richard.

What I didn't know until today was that Richard wrote SmoothWall in Oliver's Battery, which is less than a mile from where I am sitting now. He has a house in Colden Common, which is about 5 miles away, and is coming back next week. He's read my blog, and wanted to talk about Kinamik whom I have just left, but it appears we have much in common. He's coming home next week for a few days and said he'll call me for a drink.

Small world, interesting place.

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