Eikonal Blog


Knowledge management

Knowledge bases: Wikies, etc.


Mind maps, Concept maps, Concept networks


Mind-mapping tools:

The only concept networking tool that I know about is:



Process management



After years of trying various blog-like tools, in my opinion, the blogs are not a good tool for knowledge management. A blog-like interface may be useful as an additional “view” of the knowledge bases (e.g. wikies), for example to keep users informed on the changes to the knowledge base.

Tagging, Labeling, Categorizing, etc.

Nothing to see here ….

PIMs (Personal Information Managers)

Related here at this blog: personall wikies – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2010/07/02/personal-wikis/ | Issue mapping, Dialog mapping – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2010/10/29/issue-mapping-dialog-mapping/ | Productivity – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2011/05/31/productivity/ | Skills – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2010/09/09/skils/



Intentional loss of functionality (arrogance of Atlassian, Mozilla, Microsoft)

Filed under: business, it, knowledgeManagement — Tags: , , — sandokan65 @ 11:02

It appears that every modern tech company feels that it is a home of bunch of visionaries, of technical prodigies that are entitled to keep changing user experience (of their products) all the time. Adding new features would be fine. Providing alternate (frequently better) ways of doing something (that was already doable within product) is also fine. Removing long present features is not fine. Doing so is akin to an invitation to an religions war. It insults users by implying that developer knows better that all users what is better for them. Is every developer under impression that he has to do bold arrogant moves like Steve Jobs use to do or Microsoft does all the time?

Few recent examples follow.

1) Atlassian Confluence wiki removal of wiki markup

Confluence used to be one of the best wiki engines. Rich in features, suitable for corporate deployment. Its downsides are that it is written in Java, hard to install and properly configure – but if you have someone else take these administrative jobs from your hand, it used to be very powerful knowledge management platform.

In version 4 of Confluence, the Atlassian removed the wiki markup editor.

2) Firefox removing users’ ability to switch off JavaScript

  • “Firefox 23 Makes JavaScript Obligatory” by Ian Elliot (at his bloh “I Programmer”; 2013.07.01) – http://www.i-programmer.info/news/86-browsers/6049-firefox-23-makes-javascript-obligatory.html
    • Why has Mozilla decided that this is the right thing to do?The simple answer is that there is a growing movement to reduce user options that can break applications. The idea is that if you provide lots of user options then users will click them in ways that aren’t particularly logical. The result is that users break the browser and then complain that it is broken. For example, there are websites that not only don’t work without JavaScript, but they fail in complex ways – ways that worry the end user. Hence, once you remove the disable JavaScript option Firefox suddenly works on a lot of websites.

      This seems very reasonable, but removing options from dumb users also removes them from the expert user – and that’s us. Reducing freedom, even freedom to crash the application, can be seen as a bad thing. And if reducing that freedom exposes the browser user to all manner of nasties, then it is even more a bad thing.

  • “Firefox 23 Makes JavaScript Obligatory” (SlashDot; 2013.07.16) – http://news.slashdot.org/story/13/07/01/1547212/firefox-23-makes-javascript-obligatory
  • Bugzilla@Mozilla – Bug 873709: “Firefox v23 – “Disable JavaScript ” Check Box Removed from Options/Preference… ” – https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=873709
    • User can still go to about:config and change its javascript.enabled parameter manualy.
    • Change is set in stone, as the lead developers have set their mind. Here is the justification for change by one of them: “Checkboxes that kill your product” by Alex Limi – http://limi.net/checkboxes-that-kill/.

Come again? What is the next, removing the navigation/URL window so users can go only to predefined links on their home portals?

Comment added later:

3) FireFox removed right-click option to send a page link

FireFox Right Click


Since version 16 of Mozilla’s FireFox browser, that options is removed. Now it can be found under the File > Send Link location.

FireFox Right Click 2

This is a minor annoyance. One can either reprogram his mind and start using the new location, or install extension “Send Link in context menu” (https://addons.mozilla.org/en-US/firefox/addon/send-link-in-context-menu/).


Issue mapping, Dialog mapping


  • Compendium – http://compendium.open.ac.uk/institute/about.htm [FREE, requires registration]
  • perlIBIS – http://eekim.com/software/perlIBIS/ – a suite of Perl modules for processing IBIS dialog maps.
      “… Issue-Based Information System (IBIS) is a methodology for discussing and exploring “wicked problems,” problems that are not well understood and that have no straightforward answers. Invented by Horst Rittel and colleagues in the 1970s, IBIS provides a simple grammar for mapping conversations. The grammar consists of questions (issues), possible solutions (ideas), and arguments (pros and cons) for and against an idea.

      In the 1980s, Jeff Conklin and others developed software for graphically mapping and representing IBIS conversations. This software eventually evolved into a Windows program called QuestMap….”

Definitions and other blurbs

  • Collective Memory = Also known as group memory. (Source: [1])
  • Deep Structure – http://www.cognexus.org/deep_structure.htm
  • Dialog mapping
  • Knowledge is information that has been internalized. (Source: [2])
  • Information is a knowledge artifact (Source: [2])
  • IBIS = Issue Based Information System(s)
  • Issue mapping: … the process of crafting an issue map, a way of making critical thinking visible. An issue map is a graphical network that integrates many problems, solutions, and points of view and shows the deep structure of an issue… (Source: [4])
  • Issue Mapping and Dialogue Mapping: … Issue Mapping is Dialogue Mapping minus group facilitation. (Source: [4])
  • Knowledge vs. Information: People often confuse “knowledge” with “information,” but there is an importance distinction between the two. Knowledge is information that has been internalized. If you have a physics textbook on your shelf, then you have information (or a knowledge artifact). If you are capable of doing the problems in the textbook, then you have knowledge. (Source: [2])
  • Dynamic Knowledge Repository [DKR] = (Source: [2])
  • Shared Understanding = An important pattern where the group has achieved a unity … of goal/mission/vision such that the question “what are we trying to do” doesn’t really come up. (Source: [3])
  • Wicked problem – … describe a problem that is difficult or impossible to solve because of incomplete, contradictory, and changing requirements that are often difficult to recognize. Moreover, because of complex interdependencies, the effort to solve one aspect of a wicked problem may reveal or create other problems…. (Source: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wicked_problem)


Related here: Knowledge management – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2010/05/15/knowledge-management/



Success and Productivity



Clutter control

Related here: Knowledge Management – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/?s=knowledge+management | GTD (Getting things Done) – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2010/08/05/gtd/ | Schmoozing – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2010/09/29/schmoozing/


Personal Wiki’s

Related here: Knowledge management – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2010/05/15/knowledge-management/



SSHFS (SSH FileSystem)


Authentication via public keys



Using SCP

  • Example syntax for Secure Copy (scp) – http://www.hypexr.org/linux_scp_help.php
    • Copy the file “foobar.txt” from a remote host to the local host: $ scp your_username@remotehost.edu:foobar.txt /some/local/directory
    • Copy the file “foobar.txt” from the local host to a remote host: $ scp foobar.txt your_username@remotehost.edu:/some/remote/directory
    • Copy the directory “foo” from the local host to a remote host’s directory “bar”: $ scp -r foo your_username@remotehost.edu:/some/remote/directory/bar
    • Copy the file “foobar.txt” from remote host “rh1.edu” to remote host “rh2.edu”: $ scp your_username@rh1.edu:/some/remote/directory/foobar.txt \
    • Copying the files “foo.txt” and “bar.txt” from the local host to your home directory on the remote host: $ scp foo.txt bar.txt your_username@remotehost.edu:~
    • Copy multiple files from the remote host to your current directory on the local host: $ scp your_username@remotehost.edu:/some/remote/directory/\{a,b,c\}. Also:: $ scp your_username@remotehost.edu:~/\{foo.txt,bar.txt\} .

Use of Expect with SSH suite applications

Password-less SFTP

Establish the SFTP connection to the system AAAA where the user account BBBB has password CCCC, and go to the directory DDDD, all without being prompted to enter the password:

    # sftpToAAAA.expect
    spawn sftp BBBB@AAAA
    expect "password" {
       sleep 1
       send "CCCC\n"
    send "cd DDDD\n"

All normal warning on the danger of hard-wiring the password into scripts are in place here.

Password-less SCP

Use the SCP to upload connect system AAAA with user account BBBB (that has password CCCC), and upload the file EEEE to the directory DDDD, all without being prompted to enter the password:

    expect "password" {
      send "CCCC\n"



Virtualization tools


Converters and builders




Installing Vagrant

  1. Install VirtualBox
  2. Install Ruby
  3. Install Ruby gem:
    1. Get the latest version from Ruby Forge: http://rubyforge.org/frs/?group_id=126: wget http://rubyforge.org/frs/download.php/74954/rubygems-1.8.5.tgz
    2. Unpack it: tar zxvf rubygems-1.8.5.tgz
    3. cd rubygems-1.8.5/
    4. ruby setup.rb
  4. Install Vagrant: gem install vagrant
  5. Follow configuration instructions from http://vagrantup.com/docs/getting-started/index.html

Related here: Virtualization Security – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2010/08/09/virtualization-security/ | Cloud security – https://eikonal.wordpress.com/2010/08/09/cloud-security/.



Filed under: infosec, logging — Tags: , , , , , , — sandokan65 @ 14:27


Logging tools

Articles and Papers


    The standard UNIX syslog facilities are

    • kern – kernel
    • user – application or user processes (this is the default if the application sending a message does not specify the facility)
    • mail/news/UUCP/cron – electronic mail/NNTP/UUCP/cron subsystems
    • daemon – system daemons
    • auth – authentication (login) and authorization related commands
    • lpr – line printer spooling subsystem
    • mark – inserts timestamp into log data at regular intervals
    • local0-local7 – 8 facilities for customized auditing
    • syslog – internal messages generated by syslog itself
    • authpriv – non-system authorization messages
    • * — on most versions of UNIX, refers to all facilities except mark

    Syslog message levels:

    • 0 Emergency (emerg) – system is or will be unusable if situation is not resolved
    • 1 Alert (alert) – immediate action required
    • 2 Critical (crit) – critical conditions
    • 3 Error (error) – error conditions
    • 4 Warning (warning) – warning conditions, recoverable errors
    • 5 Notice (notice) – normal but significant condition; unusual situation that merits investigation; a significant event that is typically part of normal day-to-day operation
    • 6 Informational (info) – informational messages
    • 7 Debug (debug) – debug-level messages; verbose data for debugging

    Syslog actions:

    • filename – write message to the specified file on the local machine
    • @hostname or @ipaddress – forward message to remote loghost
    • user1,user2,… — write message to consoles of users named in list, if user is logged-in
    • * — write message to all logged-in users



Infosec blogs

Similar collections (and partial sources) of links:

Blog at WordPress.com.