46: The Innumerable Things I Detest

Run Your Own Mail Server is at copyedit and live on Kickstarter, so I’m working on my TLS course for BSDCan. The course is stolen from the pages of TLS Mastery, of course, because I’d rather skip the conference than actually research a new topic for a talk, so that’s what you get this week.

Of the innumerable things I detest about information technology, first prize goes to the word “security.” Not the concepts behind it, the actual word. The definition of “security” wobbles drunkenly all about the dictionary depending on who’s speaking, who’s listening, the context, and the distance to the nearest brute squad. It’s a transcendental state where everyone is perfectly safe from everyone, but it’s not inconvenient or intimidating or incomprehensible in the slightest. Security is Happy Fun Land, where everybody eats hot fudge sundaes all day every day without developing diabetes or gaining so much as a gram.

The only way to make this word even slightly meaningful is to tightly define the context. That’s one advantage Transport Layer Security (TLS) has. What it secures is right in the name. And even then, it’s misunderstood.

Of the many things I had to do to perpetrate a TLS book, one of them was actually not malignant. Take a look, and reload the site a couple times.

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