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The Day AppGet Died.

The story of how Microsoft em­braced and then killed AppGet.

Microsoft re­leased WinGet (Not to be mis­taken with ) ear­lier this week as part of their Build 2020 an­nounce­ments. For the past few days, I’ve been col­lect­ing my thoughts fig­ur­ing out what ac­tu­ally hap­pened in the past 12 months. TLDR; I’m no longer go­ing to be de­vel­op­ing AppGet. The client and back­end ser­vices will go into main­te­nance mode im­me­di­ately un­til August 1st, 2020, at which point they’ll be shut down per­ma­nently.If you are still in­ter­ested, here is how AppGet died.A year ago (July 3rd) I got this email from Andrew, a high-level man­ager at Microsoft,

I run the Windows App Model en­gi­neer­ing team and in par­tic­u­lar the app de­ploy­ment team. Just wanted to drop you a quick note to thank you for build­ing appget — it’s a great ad­di­tion to the Windows ecosys­tem and makes Windows de­vel­op­ers life so much eas­ier. We will likely be up in Vancouver in the com­ing weeks for meet­ings with other com­pa­nies but if you had time we’d love to meet up with you and your team to get feed­back on how we can make your life eas­ier build­ing appget.

Naturally, I was ex­cited; my hobby pro­ject be­ing no­ticed by Microsoft was a big deal. I replied, and two months and a few emails later, we fi­nally had a meet­ing planned on August 20th at Microsoft Vancouver. The meet­ing was be­tween me, Andrew and an­other en­gi­neer­ing man­ager in the same prod­uct group. I had a great time; we talked about the ideas be­hind AppGet, what I thought was bro­ken about the cur­rent pack­age man­ager sys­tems in Windows and what I had planned for AppGet’s fu­ture. We went out for lunch and talked a bit more about AppGet, Windows Phone, and a few other things, but the out­come of the meet­ing as far as I un­der­stood it was, what can Microsoft do to help? I men­tioned some Azure credit would be nice, get­ting some doc on how the new MSIX pack­ages work and if they could fix a few is­sues I had with some of their down­load links.Fast for­ward to next week (August 28th), and I got this email from Andrew,

it was a plea­sure to meet you and to find out more about appget. I’m fol­low­ing up on the azure startup pric­ing for you. As you know we are big fans of pack­age man­agers on Windows and we are look­ing to do more in that space. My team is grow­ing and part of that is to build a team who is re­spon­si­ble for en­sur­ing pack­age man­agers and soft­ware dis­tri­b­u­tion on Windows makes a big step for­ward. We are look­ing to make some sig­nif­i­cant changes to the way that we en­able soft­ware dis­tri­b­u­tion on Windows and there’s a great op­por­tu­nity (well I would say that would­n’t I?) to help de­fine the fu­ture of Windows and app dis­tri­b­u­tion through­out Azure/Microsoft 365.

With that in mind have you con­sid­ered spend­ing more time ded­i­cated to appget and po­ten­tially at Microsoft?

Initially, I was a bit hes­i­tant; I did­n’t want to go to Microsoft to work on Windows Store, MSI en­gine or some other app de­ploy­ment-re­lated stuff. Shortly af­ter, I was as­sured that I would spend all my time on AppGet. After about a month of pro­longed email back and forth, we came to the con­clu­sion that the arrange­ment will be very sim­i­lar to an ac­qui-hire; Microsoft would hire me, AppGet would come with me, and they would de­cide if they wanted to re­name it some­thing else, or it would be­come Microsoft AppGet.Throughout the whole process, I was very un­clear on what my role would be at Microsoft. What would my re­spon­si­bil­i­ties be? Who would I re­port to? Who/anyone would re­port to me? I tried clear­ing some of these an­swers through­out those slow con­ver­sa­tions but never got a clear an­swer.Af­ter an­other few months of again very slow email con­ver­sa­tions, I was told that the ac­qui-hire process through BizDev would take a very long time. An al­ter­na­tive to speed up the process would be just to hire me with a ” and then work on mi­grat­ing the code own­er­ship af­ter the fact. I did­n’t have any ob­jec­tions, so we sched­uled some meet­ings/​in­ter­views in Redmond.I flew to Seattle on December 5th to have a full day of in­ter­views/​meet­ings at Microsoft HQ. I met with four dif­fer­ent peo­ple; three of the meet­ings were more like your typ­i­cal in­ter­views; the meet­ing with Andrew was more about what we should do once this is all over and how we would mi­grate AppGet’s process and in­fra­struc­ture to be able to han­dle Microsoft’s scale. We talked about some of our op­tions, but in gen­eral, I thought every­thing went well.My last meet­ing ended at around 6 pm. I took an Uber to the air­port and was back in Vancouver.And then, I did­n’t hear any­thing back from any­one at Microsoft for six months.Un­til ear­lier this week when I was given heads up about WinGet’s launch the next day,

Hi Keivan, I hope you and your fam­ily are do­ing well — BC seems to have a good han­dle on covid com­pared to the us.

I’m sorry that the pm po­si­tion did­n’t work out. I wanted to take the time to tell you how much we ap­pre­ci­ated your in­put and in­sights. We have been build­ing the win­dows pack­age man­ager and the first pre­view will go live to­mor­row at build. We give appget a call out in our blog post too since we be­lieve there will be space for dif­fer­ent pack­age man­agers on win­dows. You will see our pack­age man­ager is based on GitHub too but ob­vi­ously with our own im­ple­men­ta­tion etc. our pack­age man­ager will be open source too so ob­vi­ously we would wel­come any con­tri­bu­tion from you.

I look for­ward to talk­ing to you about our pack­age man­ager once we go live to­mor­row. Obviously this is con­fi­den­tial un­til to­mor­row morn­ing so please keep this to your­self. You and choco­latey are the only folks we have told about this in ad­vance.

I was­n’t too sur­prised; I had fig­ured out months ago that the Microsoft thing” is­n’t hap­pen­ing.I waited un­til the next day to see what this new pack­age man­ager was go­ing to be like. When I fi­nally saw the an­nounce­ment and the GitHub repos­i­to­ries, I was shocked? Upset? I was­n’t even sure what I was look­ing at.When I showed it to my wife, the first thing she said was, They Called it WinGet? are you se­ri­ous!?” I did­n’t even have to ex­plain to her how the core me­chan­ics, ter­mi­nol­ogy, the man­i­fest for­mat and struc­ture, even the pack­age repos­i­to­ry’s folder struc­ture, are very by AppGet.Am I up­set they did­n’t hire me? Not re­ally, af­ter vis­it­ing the cam­pus, I was­n’t too sure I wanted to work for such a big com­pany, also mov­ing from Canada to the U.S. was­n’t some­thing I was too ex­cited about. Also, through­out the process, at no time I as­sumed this was done deal.Am I up­set that Microsoft, a 1.4 tril­lion-dol­lar com­pany, fi­nally got their act to­gether and re­leased a de­cent pack­age man­ager for their flag­ship prod­uct? No, they should’ve done it years ago. They should­n’t have screwed Windows Store as badly as they did.Re­al­is­ti­cally, no mat­ter how hard I tried to pro­mote AppGet, it would never grow at the rate a so­lu­tion would. I did­n’t cre­ate AppGet to get rich or to be­come fa­mous or get hired by Microsoft. I cre­ated AppGet be­cause I thought us Windows users de­served a de­cent app man­age­ment ex­pe­ri­ence too.What both­ers me is how the whole thing was han­dled. The slow and dread­ful com­mu­ni­ca­tion speed. The to­tal ra­dio si­lence at the end. But the part that hurts the most was the an­nounce­ment. AppGet, which is ob­jec­tively where most ideas for WinGet came from, was only men­tioned as an­other pack­age man­ager that just hap­pened to ex­ist; While other pack­age man­agers that WinGet shares very lit­tle with were men­tioned and ex­plained much more de­lib­er­ately.There is a sil­ver lin­ing. WinGet will be built on a solid foun­da­tion and has the po­ten­tial to suc­ceed. And we ne­glected Windows users might fi­nally have a de­cent pack­age man­ager. —Code be­ing copied is­n’t an is­sue. I knew full well what it meant to re­lease some­thing open­source and I don’t re­gret it one bit. What was copied with no credit is the foun­da­tion of the pro­ject. How it ac­tu­ally works. If I were the patent­ing type, this would be the thing you would patent. ps. I don’t re­gret not patent­ing any­thing. And I don’t mean the gen­eral con­cept of pack­age/​app man­agers, they have been done a hun­dred times. If you look at sim­i­lar pro­jects across OSes, Homebrew, Chocolaty, Scoop, ni­nite etc; you’ll see they all do it in their own way. However, WinGet works pretty much iden­ti­cal to the way AppGet works. Do you want to know how Microsoft WinGet works? go read the ar­ti­cle I wrote 2 years ago about how AppGet works.I’m not even up­set they copied me. To me, that’s a val­i­da­tion of how sound my idea was. What up­sets me is how no credit was given.You should’ve fol­lowed up.I did, There was an is­sue with my travel re­im­burse­ment, So I con­tacted the HR con­tact and at the same time asked about the Interviews, She told me some­one will get back to me about that and they never did. This was on Feb 14th, 2020.

Why Chocolatey is Broken Beyond Any Hope

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Read the original on keivan.io »

4 1,478 shares, 59 trendiness, 1254 words and 10 minutes reading time

Amazon Web Services

Posted on 20 May 2020

Tagged with:

[ aws ]

[ ama­zon ]

More of­ten than not, I’m us­ing Amazon Web Services (AWS) as my cloud”. Not only for my own pro­jects, but al­most all cus­tomers I’m work­ing for use Amazon for host­ing their ap­pli­ca­tions. So over time you build up a lot of ex­pe­ri­ence on AWS ser­vice: you know how to (correctly) setup VPCs, know when to you ECS, EC2 or lambda to host code and even ser­vices like S3, SNS and SQS pose no chal­lenges any­more.

But there are a lot of AWS ser­vices avail­able. And I do mean: a LOT. Currently, there are 163 (!) dif­fer­ent ser­vices that are avail­able from the Amazon Dashboard, each with their own way of work­ing, dif­fi­cul­ties, catches and best prac­tises.

You might re­alise that it’s prob­a­bly near im­pos­si­ble to dive into each ser­vice and com­pletely un­der­stand how they work and most likely, you don’t re­ally need to know the ex­act ins and outs. But, hav­ing a ba­sic un­der­stand­ing on each ser­vice can be a ma­jor ben­e­fit as a de­vel­oper, ar­chi­tect or ad­min­is­tra­tor. It makes it eas­ier to see if there is an al­ready ex­ist­ing so­lu­tion for your prob­lem at hand.

So, I dove into each and every ser­vice to fig­ure out what it ex­actly was for and how it works in the ba­sics. I tried to ex­per­i­ment with as many com­po­nents as pos­si­ble (time and money per­mit­ting, I did­n’t want to spend 15.000$ on AWS Data Exchange). I tried to cap­ture what the ser­vice does in a sin­gle one-liner to give you a global overview.

I think most of them are cor­rect enough but if you have any sug­ges­tions or cor­rec­tions, please tell me!

Functions you can run, writ­ten in Python, NodeJS, Go etc. Can run many in par­al­lel.

Repository of server­less ap­pli­ca­tions that you can de­ploy (on lambda)

Run Amazon ser­vices in your own data cen­ter

File stor­age. Not di­rectly used for mount­ing, but you can di­rectly down­load files from HTTP.

Windows / Lustre filesys­tems you can con­nect to your ec2 ma­chines

Low cost stor­age sys­tem for back­ups and archives and such

iSCSI so you can con­nect s3 to your own (remote) ma­chine.

Warehousing. Store lots of data that can be processed through streams.

MongoDB clone (but not re­ally com­pat­i­ble any­more)

Migrate things from your DC to AWS

Migrate data­bases to RDS while stay­ing on­line (can con­vert struc­tures as well)

(s)FTP ser­vice with S3 back­end. Upload to FTP, di­rectly store on S3 bucket.

Get a ma­chine from AWS, plug in your DC, trans­fer data fast to AWS, re­turn ma­chine

Sync data be­tween your dat­a­cen­ter and AWS

Create your own vir­tual pri­vate net­work within AWS.

Create HTTP APIs and let them con­nect to dif­fer­ent back­ends.

Create a (physical) con­nec­tion be­tween you (or DC) to AWS.

Automatically run Envoy as a side­car for your con­tain­ers (ECS or EKS).

Run your app on edge lo­ca­tions so they are closer to your cus­tomers (CDN for apps).

Quickly de­velop ap­pli­ca­tions by us­ing tem­plate code and code­com­mit, code­build etc

Allows trac­ing in your ap­pli­ca­tions, sup­ports Python, NodeJs, Go etc.

Cloud so­lu­tion for ro­botic de­vel­op­ers to sim­u­late, test and se­curely de­ploy ro­botic ap­pli­ca­tions

Job board: Hire AWS ex­perts for what­ever you need.

Let AWS han­dle your AWS ser­vices for you.

Some quan­tum thing. It’s in pre­view so I have no idea what it is.

Scale re­sources based on your cus­tom in­puts and rules

Templates to cre­ate and con­fig­ure AWS com­po­nents (think ter­raform/​sls)

Figure out who did what in your AWS ser­vices

Audit the con­fig­u­ra­tions of your AWS re­sources

Manage list of items/​codes etc you have in the cloud

View data from your re­sources grouped in ways you like (like ap­pli­ca­tion spe­cific etc)

Generate ques­tion­naires about your ar­chi­tec­ture to see if you fol­low best prac­tices

Finds your re­sources and ad­vices on how to save costs

Encode files from S3 into dif­fer­ent other for­mats and store back at S3

cre­ate videos on-premise. Basically a mix of all of the above ser­vices. Seems ex­pen­sive. Probably is.

in pre­view so no idea.

Search ser­vice where you can ask ques­tions

Convert text to speech in dif­fer­ent lan­guages

Translates text from one lan­guage to an­other

Some kind of game where you pro­gram a race­car to race against oth­ers.

Let hu­mans in the loop to make AI learn things bet­ter

Computer gen­er­ated mu­sic. It’s as hor­ri­ble as it sounds.

Collect mas­sive amount of data so you can do an­a­lyt­ics (like ELK?)

Find APIs which data you can con­sume, which can be very ex­pen­sive

AWSs per­mis­sion sys­tem that can con­trol users and AWS ser­vices.

Share cer­tain AWS re­sources like Route53, li­censes, ec2 with other ac­counts.

User and pass­word man­age­ment sys­tem. Useful for man­ag­ing users for your ap­pli­ca­tions.

Automatically find (security) is­sues in your net­work and ma­chines.

Analyzes data in your S3 buck­ets and check for PII data.

Allow sin­gle-sign on to your ap­pli­ca­tions.

Hardware se­cu­rity mod­ules. Allows you to gen­er­ate and op­er­ate on cryp­to­graphic keys.

Web Application Firewall (for load­bal­ancers, cloud­front, api gate­way). Can setup your own rules or use pre­de­fined ones

Firewall man­ager for dif­fer­ent ac­counts in your or­gan­i­sa­tion

Overall se­cu­rity checker that uses guard­duty, in­spec­tor, ma­cie etc

Let AWS au­to­mat­i­cally gen­er­ate fron­tend & back­end apps and de­ploy them au­to­mat­i­cally.

Create API back­ends that you can con­nect to. Can be cre­ated through AWS Amplify as well.

AWS BrowserStack. Automatically test apps on many dif­fer­ent mo­bile de­vices and browsers.

No idea. The dash­board crashes in my browsers

Automatically con­nects apps to­gether (zapier?). For in­stance: slack to s3 buck­ets.

Notification sys­tem that can no­tify through email, api end­points, sms etc.

Gives an overview and pro­jec­tion of your bud­gets

Connect Alexa to your busi­ness needs.

Store your doc­u­ments and man­age them on­line.

RTOS op­er­at­ing sys­tem for mi­cro­con­trollers to au­to­mat­i­cally con­nect to IOT-Core or green­grass.

Manage 1-click but­tons that can be con­nected to other sys­tems like Lambda

Clean up and save mes­sages from top­ics into a data-store for an­a­lyt­ics

Detect un­wanted is­sues on your de­vices and take ac­tions

Organize IoT de­vices into groups, sched­ule jobs on the de­vices and con­fig­ure re­mote ac­cess

Monitor teleme­try from de­vices and then trig­ger other AWS ser­vices or jobs on the de­vices them­selves

A mes­sage bro­ker can buffer mes­sages for groups of up to 200 de­vices which can com­mu­ni­cate and process data lo­cally if con­nec­tiv­ity to IoT Core is in­ter­mit­tent.

Collect, or­ga­nize, an­a­lyze and vi­su­al­ize data from in­dus­trial equip­ment at scale

Cloudformation-like de­signer for graph­ing how de­vices should com­mu­ni­cate with other AWS ser­vices

Run con­tain­ers, ei­ther on your own EC2 ma­chines, or on man­aged ma­chines called Fargate.

Thanks to Brian Thomas Smith for fill­ing in the blanks on IoT. Thanks to all the oth­ers from #HN who sug­gested changes and up­dates on the dif­fer­ent ser­vices.

With over 150 ser­vices run­ning on Amazon AWS, it’s near im­pos­si­ble to be an ex­pert on all of them. And that’s ok: when you deal with large EKS or ECS clus­ters, changes are you never will touch the IOT ser­vices for in­stances. I found that most ser­vices are pretty well ex­plained and easy to start with.

One of the biggest is­sues are the IOT ser­vices: since I have no ex­pe­ri­ence with smart de­vices, MQTT or IOT in gen­eral, i fi­nally man­aged to get a sim­ple GO ap­pli­ca­tion to con­nect to IOT-core, and con­nect dif­fer­ent rules, pipelines, an­a­lyt­ics etc to it. But even still it’s very un­clear what the dif­fer­ent ser­vices ac­tu­ally do. Hopefully there will be AWS IOT ex­perts out there that can en­lighten me.

...

Read the original on adayinthelifeof.nl »

5 1,303 shares, 54 trendiness, 433 words and 3 minutes reading time

Zenexer on Twitter

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Google ap­pears to be phas­ing out the abil­ity to visit the orig­i­nal URL from an AMP page. Tapping the info icon in the top left used to pro­vide the op­tion to visit the real URL. Currently only an is­sue in Image Search.pic.twitter.com/slWgaqvEi4

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6 1,186 shares, 49 trendiness, 68 words and 1 minutes reading time

Facebook Executives Shut Down Efforts to Make the Site Less Divisive

A Facebook Inc. team had a blunt mes­sage for se­nior ex­ec­u­tives. The com­pa­ny’s al­go­rithms weren’t bring­ing peo­ple to­gether. They were dri­ving peo­ple apart.

Our al­go­rithms ex­ploit the hu­man brain’s at­trac­tion to di­vi­sive­ness,” read a slide from a 2018 pre­sen­ta­tion. If left unchecked,” it warned, Facebook would feed users more and more di­vi­sive con­tent in an ef­fort to gain user at­ten­tion & in­crease time on the plat­form.”

...

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7 1,013 shares, 42 trendiness, 432 words and 4 minutes reading time

Zero-day in Sign in with Apple

What if I say, your Email ID is all I need to takeover your ac­count on your fa­vorite web­site or an app. Sounds scary, right? This is what a bug in Sign in with Apple al­lowed me to do.

In the month of April, I found a zero-day in Sign in with Apple that af­fected third-party ap­pli­ca­tions which were us­ing it and did­n’t im­ple­ment their own ad­di­tional se­cu­rity mea­sures. This bug could have re­sulted in a full ac­count takeover of user ac­counts on that third party ap­pli­ca­tion ir­re­spec­tive of a vic­tim hav­ing a valid Apple ID or not.

For this vul­ner­a­bil­ity, I was paid $100,000 by Apple un­der their Apple Security Bounty pro­gram.

The Sign in with Apple works sim­i­larly to OAuth 2.0. There are two pos­si­ble ways to au­then­ti­cate a user by ei­ther us­ing a JWT (JSON Web Token) or a code gen­er­ated by the Apple server. The code is then used to gen­er­ate a JWT. The be­low di­a­gram rep­re­sents how the JWT cre­ation and val­i­da­tion works.

In the 2nd step, while au­tho­riz­ing, Apple gives an op­tion to a user to ei­ther share the Apple Email ID with the 3rd party app or not. If the user de­cides to hide the Email ID, Apple gen­er­ates its own user-spe­cific Apple re­lay Email ID. Depending upon the user se­lec­tion, af­ter suc­cess­ful au­tho­riza­tion, Apple cre­ates a JWT which con­tains this Email ID which is then used by the 3rd party app to lo­gin a user.

A de­coded JWTs pay­load looks like this:

I found I could re­quest JWTs for any Email ID from Apple and when the sig­na­ture of these to­kens was ver­i­fied us­ing Apple’s pub­lic key, they showed as valid. This means an at­tacker could forge a JWT by link­ing any Email ID to it and gain­ing ac­cess to the vic­tim’s ac­count.

Here on pass­ing any email, Apple gen­er­ated a valid JWT (id_token) for that par­tic­u­lar Email ID.

The im­pact of this vul­ner­a­bil­ity was quite crit­i­cal as it could have al­lowed full ac­count takeover. A lot of de­vel­op­ers have in­te­grated Sign in with Apple since it is manda­tory for ap­pli­ca­tions that sup­port other so­cial lo­gins. To name a few that use Sign in with Apple - Dropbox, Spotify, Airbnb, Giphy (Now ac­quired by Facebook). These ap­pli­ca­tions were not tested but could have been vul­ner­a­ble to a full ac­count takeover if there weren’t any other se­cu­rity mea­sures in place while ver­i­fy­ing a user.

Apple also did an in­ves­ti­ga­tion of their logs and de­ter­mined there was no mis­use or ac­count com­pro­mise due to this vul­ner­a­bil­ity.

A huge thanks to the Apple Security Team.

Thanks for the read, see you in next ar­ti­cle :)

...

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8 993 shares, 38 trendiness, 422 words and 3 minutes reading time

Brandon Wolf on Twitter

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9 948 shares, 39 trendiness, 0 words and 0 minutes reading time

Supabase

Follow us on GitHub. Watch the re­leases of each repo to get no­ti­fied when we are ready for Beta launch.

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10 948 shares, 37 trendiness, 228 words and 2 minutes reading time

A knowledge base that works on local Markdown files.

Obsidian is a pow­er­ful knowl­edge base that works on top of

a lo­cal folder of plain text Markdown files.

Also avail­able for macOS, Linux (AppImage), and Linux (Snap).

The hu­man brain is non-lin­ear: we jump from idea to idea, all the time. Your second brain should work the same.

In Obsidian, mak­ing and fol­low­ing [[connections]]

is fric­tion­less. Tend to your notes like a gar­dener; at the end of the day, sit back and mar­vel at your own knowl­edge graph.

Note-taking is in­cred­i­bly per­sonal. Tried every app, but there’s al­ways something not quite right? You de­serve bet­ter.

Obsidian is built to be ex­ten­si­ble. With 18 core plu­g­ins

and count­ing, set up your own toolkit and get run­ning in min­utes.

You’ll even be able to in­stall third party plu­g­ins or build your own once Obsidian reaches v1.0. Sky’s the limit.

In our age when cloud ser­vices can shut

down, get

bought, or change

pri­vacy pol­icy any day, the last thing you want is pro­pri­etary for­mats and data lock-in.

With Obsidian, your data sits in a lo­cal folder. Never leave your life’s work held hostage in the cloud again.

Plain text Markdown also gives you the un­par­al­leled interoperability to use any kind of sync, en­cryp­tion, or data pro­cess­ing that works with plain text files.

Also avail­able for macOS, Linux (AppImage), and Linux (Snap).

...

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