Day Two RSA 09: Confessions of a Booth Troll

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Feet hurt, back aches, conference center food making the worst smelling farts I have let since the Tennessee Chili Cook Off of 1999. Welcome to Day Two of RSA San Francisco. The show floor was moderately crowded and the RSA staff did a nice job engineering traffic flow so we weren't bumping into folks all the time. I did shoulder chuck a few competitors and blamed it on our Producer Rick. I was major league booth trolling today. I had a camera crew with me walking around grabbing content from interesting booths. I was looking for some good stuff, some ground breaking new ideas and not just a version upgrade story. That meant getting out of the center of the show floor and over to "Start Up City" Of course before doing that I had to pay homage to the defacto king of secure communications; PGP. How many of us have ever been to a PGP Key Signing Party? I just hosted one two weeks ago. I knew that Zimmerman's crew would be working on something cool and sure enough, I was right. They have a nice way to actually manage encryption if a end user loses a pass phrase (I know that is rare but humor me here) or a pissed off network admin encrypts the company data and leaves the company. Hearing this story in San Francisco after what the city just went thru I could actually hear the space-irony continuum tearing...or maybe that was the burrito... On to Start Up City! great stuff here. But my hands down fav was the interview I did with Breaking Point. A Dude from Tennessee interviewing a Dude from Boston had all the makings of a new sitcom from NBC... I have been following Breaking Point's awesome blog and on twitter for a while now, but to see their gear in action was like seeing In N Out Burger after not eating for a day. It was awesome and yet filling at the same time! Network gear testing sucks worse then borrowing money from your Mother In Law but in time all of us have to do it. Either in development or fair charter testing for a RFP, it's one big giant brussel sprout we have to take a bite of. Vendors like Spirent and Ixia make us go running and screaming back to perl scripts and synthetic traffic samples. The Breaking Point model really changed that and gives us real world network testing for engineers. I was very impressed and highly recommend camping out at that booth. The robot pouring beer was cool demo that I could immediately put to use in my lab. The bad thing it was a pouring a Heineken but that could be fixed in programming. I was surprised at the lack of Ethernet switch vendors at RSA. Really it was only Cisco and Juniper. Is L2/L3 security not that big of a deal anymore? There were a couple of things that torked my chaps at some booths. The big one was I tried to get the Department of Homeland Security on camera to talk about US-CERT and cyber security/warfare but they had strict orders to not go on camera with anyone. I needed to go thru a public relations officer and some knob admiral at another thanks...I walked away thinking: "My tax dollars at work" and I farted in the booth as I walked away. Of course they could have the last laugh. I still need to fly back to Milwaukee from here and I could on a watch list. Who's laughing now fatty! I need to write some apology cards... I saved a little time for looking at hacking the RFID badge and to be honest it is a silly setup. They are using a Omnikey reader that requires the booth staff to insert the card in the reader one by one! What?!?! So the point of RFID is....I thought it would be a prox reader and I could look at a way to attach an antenna to grab conf badges as people walked by. With the method they use a mag strip reader would be faster. Day Three is TechWiseTV show day. We will be streaming live, so that should be a real hoot! If you would like to check it out you can click over to: watch Robb's face as I load up on conference center food before we tape.... Jimmy Ray Purser Trivia File Transfer Protocol In 1871 when the Chicago Fire devastated the city, Schlitz donated hundreds of barrels of beer to the Windy City citizens. Sadly George Schlitz's good karma ran out a few years later. He died in a shipwreck of the coast of England.

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