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Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Off the Record -- deniability amd perfect forward secrecy

Nikita Borisov and Ian Goldberg have released Off-the-Record Messaging. This is a really cool IM plugin for private communication. It goes beyond the usual encryption and authentication of GPG. It also deniability and perfect forward secrecy. Deniability means that no one can prove that a message is from you, while still maintaining authenticity for for the intended recipient. Perfect forward secrecy means that your past messages and conversations remain protected even if your keys are compromised.

I've read their paper and I'm very impressed. Their system is very clever, while being based entirely on tried-and-true technology (DH key exchange, HMAC, etc). If you are interested in secure communication, I do recommend you take a look at this. They have a GAIM plugin and an LGPL library.

Sunday, March 06, 2005

Bi-Weekly IRC conference -- Success !!

If you are in the discuss or native-lang list, you know about the bi-weekly IRC conferences. These are informal talks, around 10-20min each. Each talk is followed by Q&A and then group chat. The goal is for diffrent language groups to exchange ideas, and have more contact.

The first talk was today. You can see the IRC log , and the slides. I admit I was nervous, but it turned out quite well. We had 16 attendees, the talk went well, and the discussion was great. I heard some very good ideas. I'll let you read about them in the log.

Coming next time is Ian Lynch. Ian is the head of the OOo for schools project. He'll talk about the INGOTs program, and how it can educate kids about open source and open standards. And how it teaches them to become FOSS volunteers. I've seen his talk, and I highly recommend it.