Stephen Owens' Blog

Heartbleed and OpenSSL Statement
The ThoughtWire platform does not directly incorporate or use OpenSSL. Nevertheless, information security is extremely important to ThoughtWire and we started a thorough investigation immediately after the OpenSSL vulnerability was announced on April 8th. Additional Details: ThoughtWire uses Forgerock's OpenAm for authentication, which was not exposed to this bug (see: ...
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Step 1 Gather Information - Step 2...
Historically empiricism started in the Renaissance, at least in western civilizations. For me, it started with one of my first mentors, a wonderful manager who was a physicist by training, but working on textile graphics systems. He always stressed the importance of understanding the data before trying to reach conclusions. Whenever I was faced with a particularly tough bug I'd go walk...
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Load and Circuit Breakers
This circuit breaker design pattern shows how a software component that acts like a circuit breaker can be used to protect high volume systems from uneven availability across distributed functionality. The basic idea is to insert this new component between two subsystems where failure in one could adversely affect the availability or performance of the other and it is desirable to detect a...
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Agile and Non-Functionals
I thought this post laid out an interesting paradigm for how to integrate non-functional requirements into story creation and estimation in an agile process. It shows how by thinking through the monitoring criteria for a given non-functional requirement you can make that requirement tangible. By extension it says something interesting about how to describe those requirements as part of an...
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One myth about personal assistant myths
I saw this post about the film Her, How Real Is "Her?" Five Myths About Intelligent Assistants and had to comment. I was going to wait until I'd seen the movie, which I'm hoping to do soon, but thought this deserved mention in the meantime. (Beware a few very small spoilers in the post, I haven't seen the film yet and came across them unexpectedly.) I think there's some good information here...
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