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Daily Dose - GAE 1.3.4; Authentication Additions

05.16.2010
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The Google App Engine 1.3.4 prerelease went live this weekend with authentication capabilities for apps.  Applications will be able to authenticate with Open ID by selecting the OpenID option when generating an application in the admin console.  A new API also allows App Engine applications to act as OAuth service providers.  The prerelease also includes a Python client-side bulkloader with new configuration syntax and a new wizard for import and export with the datastore.  The version update check for the JDK now uses HTTPs and there is full access to javax.el.*.  Support for Java 1.5 is being depreciated.  

Jobs vs. Gizmodo
The documents regarding Apple's dealings with the police were unsealed this weekend.  The document shows that Apple reported what they believed to be a crime when the iPhone 4G was taken from the Redwood City Bar a few months ago and sold to Gizmodo (so my theory about Apple losing it on purpose was wrong).  Apple also told detectives that the story would hurt business because people who were planning on buying current iPhones might decide to wait for the next version (probably true since Android phone sales beat iPhone sales for the first time last month).  So while Apple won't have as many iPhone sales until they release the iPhone 4G, I'm sure the release will garner even more sales now, but I guess people won't unsuspectingly buy an iPhone 3 and then have to buy an iPhone 4 in the next few months like Apple wanted.  Steve Jobs personally asked Gizmodo to give the iPhone back, but they said Apple's PR had been "cold" and wouldn't give it back without some kind of official confirmation of authenticity for a story.  Jobs also had some aggressive responses to a Gawker media blogger this weekend, who was equally aggressive.

Oracle Reveals its MySQL Holes
The upcoming MySQL 5.1.47 release is going to fix several security holes which Oracle describes in detail.  However, now that the holes have been made public in such a detailed fashion, there's a significant risk for MySQL users from hackers that would exploit those holes before the patch arrives.  The holes allow attackers to cause server crashes, inject code and execute it on the server, and obtain access to the database.

Long Overdue Facebook Security Features
Facebook is introducing an email notification system if someone tries to log into an account from a device that hasn't been registered on the profile.  However, many will not take advantage of this feature because it must be manually enabled.  There's also an option to receive SMS text messages, but The H says this hasn't worked in Germany or the UK.  The device is identified by a cookie stored in the browser, so users will have to register for each different browser they use as well.  Facebook is planning to add features that request further information (date of birth, or identifying a friend in a photo) during a "suspicious login".  However, some security analysts may find these measures error prone.

Switching to Chrome? Download these Extensions
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