Christopher Frenz

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Top Stories by Christopher Frenz

The security benefits and risks of Open Source code is one of the most debated topics in information security today. The views of proponents of the Open Source model are typified by Eric Raymond's argument that Open Source software is intrinsically more secure since its open nature lets a greater number of programmers view the source code and uncover potential security threats before they're released to the wild. Fewer people see closed source software, on the other hand, and so the odds of uncovering a potential security threat before a system cracker finds it is diminished. Opponents of this model argue that the source code availability of Open Source software lets crackers search the code for potential exploits and provides them a useful way to design attacks. They argue that this makes closed source software intrinsically more secure by way of the principle of ... (more)

Why 'LiveCD' Should Be a Part of Every Computer User's Vocabulary

Throughout the last decade, society has witnessed an explosion of network connectivity among PCs and mobile devices as well as a vast proliferation of networked applications, ranging from Web-based email to online banking. The end result of this is that network connectivity has become an almost indispensable resource for many individuals. Yet along with the convenience and flexibility of anytime, anywhere network access, society has also seen an increase in computer-related security and privacy concerns, with the most dreaded being the possibility of identity theft.  While numero... (more)

The Development of a Perl-based Password Complexity Filter

If you watch the news regularly, it is easy to notice that in almost any given week some company seems to have experienced an electronic break-in or in some other way experienced a form of computer or network compromise. While computer security professionals can help to mitigate such risks via the proper configuration of firewalls, careful crafting of Access Control Lists, the application of updates, and the judicious application of file permission, among other measures, it's important that one of the most fundamental ways of improving the security of a computer or network resour... (more)

Applicability of the .NET Platform to Bioinformatics Research

A current look at the field of bioinformatics will reveal that it is a field that is largely dominated by the Linux operating system, as well as by programming languages such as Perl, Python, and Java. Windows and its associated native application development platforms are not in widespread use among present-day bioinformatics practitioners. In fact, the usage of Linux and other open source technologies will likely remain the dominant platforms upon which most novel and/or large-scale bioinformatics research is conducted. Scientific computing of all types has deep-seated roots in... (more)

Demystifying Regular Expressions

The ability to perform pattern-matching operations on text is a skill that is highly useful to any programmer. Whether you are creating a routine to validate data entered into a form, performing parsing and mining on data sets, or searching for sequence similarities in the human genome, chances are that the ability to construct a regular expression will be of great value to you. A single regular expression can often be used to create the same pattern-matching functionality that would otherwise require a lengthy subroutine. Yet despite these apparent benefits, many .NET developer... (more)