Raj Samani’s Christmas List And The IoTr

Last night Raj Samani, EMEA CTO at McAfee, considered his Christmas purchasing habits and asked the following question:

“What to buy @BrianHonan @Security_FAQs or @J4vv4D for Xmas”

A perfectly valid question, I’m sure you’ll agree, but his self-considered answer was somewhat out there.

For those of you who don’t already know, Samani has risen to the lofty heights of “InfoSec Rockstardom” in a very short time, based primarily upon his superior intellect, propensity to help others and seemingly unending availability to jump in front of a camera and chat about anything, ranging from unfortunate childhood tattoos to the likelihood of everyone in his vicinity tagging him as the most unpopular person in the room.

Despite his good points, of which there are many, he suffers the same fate as many other successful people – he has one severe personality defect.

I’m not talking about a narcissistic need to display his own photo next to his monitor, or even the need to live his life through video. No. His character flaw is far worse than that:

He supports Tottenham Hotspur Football Club.

Totally shocking I know, but it explains much about his character, including his interest in toilet humour that led him to suggest the following festive gift idea:

While the HAT project certainly has much to offer in terms of research and its findings, IoTr (Internet of Toilet roll) is certainly not one of them.

Why anyone would need a toilet roll dispenser that can monitor how many sheets of tissue they use and then make suggestions on how everyone in a household should schedule their bathroom time is beyond me –

though Brian Honan has his own ideas:

– and, yet again, highlights why we need far more careful consideration of the tech we are creating.

Innovation is a great human trait but we are getting carried away, increasingly developing new products without thinking about how they will really impact people’s lives in terms of security and privacy.

So while i’m touched by the fact that Samani has considered adding me to his Christmas list, I’ll have to pass.

And, if Brian and Javvad are similarly minded, perhaps I could suggest the following alternatives to Raj for 25 December 2014 –

  • For Brian Honan, a copy of the wonderful CSA Guide To Cloud Computing, personally signed by himself
  • For Javvad, an extension for his home gym that could accommodate the dual challeges of both his growing muscles and his growing ego
  • And, for myself, in no particular order, coffee, sweets or cash (DM me for my postal address Raj)

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