Well, the first day of ACSAC 26 is history. We had a good first tutorial day, with no major SNAFUs. This is always good thing. The ACSAC Security Blankets seem to be going over well (this year’s conference good is a good size polartec fleece throw with the ACSAC logo).
Further, I’ve been good for meals. Went to Starbucks and got oatmeal for breakfast instead of conference pastries (as well as a nice travel mug—they say “cold only”, but it seemed to work OK for hot today). Didn’t eat all of the steak for lunch, and only part of the dessert. Worked out both last night and tonight as well!
Dinner was a chance to see a friend I haven’t seen in years: gyesika. We ended up going to a nice southern restaurant: Threadgill’s. Interesting place. Good food.
I’m getting ready to travel again. Tomorrow I head out to Austin TX for ACSAC. In some sense I’m looking forward to the conference: I love the people on the conference committee (you will never find a better or more talented bunch of volunteers), and the technical aspects of the conference are great. I even enjoy all the work I do there.
The conference is fun. The travel isn’t. In the old days, it used to be easy: you would pack a bag, check it, and not worry. Today, there’s the extra charge for checked luggage, so you’ve got to fit everything to carry on. Then there’s the TSA. ’nuff said there. So travel isn’t fun.
Still, the bags are packed. I’ve got the boarding pass. I’m loading up the iPod (found four great LPs today: “Blitz!” (1962 musical by Lionel Bart); “Illya Darling” (1967 OBC), “A Dolls Life” (a Comden-Green failure), and the last Weavers album… plus this morning I decided to rip a Margaret Whiting album, four Sinatra albums, and a Dean Martin album). I’m now over 22,000 songs on the iPod… so at least I should be entertained!
P.S. to gyesika: Please remember to send me contact info, so we can get together.
I’m going to a conference next week in Austin. I’ve currently got a rental car, but I’m rethinking it. There is parking at the hotel, but it is $27/day and valet only. Supposedly, there is parking in the area, but I don’t know its quality or cost. The taxi to the hotel from the airport is $25.
So… should I cancel the rental car? Opinions?
I’m improving the bandwidth on this request from my ACSAC colleague, Jeremy: Austin people, two requests: For ACSAC in December, I need ideas for an attendee gift ($10-20/person), and an outing on Friday afternoon (4-5 hours) to give some flavor of the local area. Looked into tours of Dell or Fresh Fields without any luck. Suggestions?
This year, ACSAC will be in Austin TX. They keep talking about having entertainment for the conference dinner, and I keep suggesting the same group: The Austin Lounge Lizards. While perusing the Lizard’s website, I discovered this recent video of theirs about the recent bailouts…
I’m back home. Suffice it to say it was a long day. For those who are interested, the report that was done on the conference by Hawaii Public Radio is now available as an MP3. For those that take the time to listen to it (it’s worth listening to…): How much should I razz Jeremy (mistakenly called Jeffrey in the report) for the line about us being geeks?
Today was the last day of ACSAC 25. For me, the last day of the conference is a business day. It started with a panic when we discovered the hotel had taken down our registration area — we had to scramble to get it set up again, and for them to find out power cords. That was followed by the committee breakfast (and me running upstairs to help Marshall find his notes, which triggers an asthma attack ). After that, I sat in part of Ron Ross’ session with the CIO from PACOM — yet another person to whom I’ll be sending my document! During the second session of the morning, I began packing up the conference office. Once I had the books mostly packed, I attended part of a session until the projectors were done. With those packed, it was off to FedEx Office to get them shipped. Interesting fact: it is cheaper to ship from Hawaii to California than from California to Hawaii: Five boxes going HI to CA were around $139; Three boxes going CA to HI were $213 (and the five going HI to CA included those same three that went from CA to HI).
Once those were off and I was back at the hotel, we were done with the conference. So what did I do? What I’ve been wanting to do all week: went downstairs to the pool, went into the infinity pool for a bit, and then went back to my chaise, put on a podcast of the IgNobel awards, and watched the beautiful Hawaiian scenery (and I’m not talking just about the ocean ). After a beautiful sunset, I grabbed a quick dinner because I want to get my evening stuff done quickly and get packed. I get picked up tomorrow morning at 4:15am Hawaiian time to go to the airport (I’m sharing a shuttle with Ron Ross — always a good thing).
So this is my last post from the isles for a while. Aloha to Hawaii. Perhaps we’ll be back for ACSAC 30!
Well, the fourth day of ACSAC in Hawaii is done. Today started off bad: I overslept after a bad headache night. But after that, things got better…
The morning started with a plenary session that featured a welcoming speech by the tallest mayor in the US, Mayor Mufi Hannemann of Honolulu, who actually discussed computer and physical security efforts in the city. This was followed by a talk from May Ann Davidson of Oracle on the importance of security metrics. I should note that the morning also featured a reporter from Hawaii Public Radio — I’ll link to the audio once we have it on the ACSAC website. Most of the day was spent in the FISMA training sessions, learning all about 800-53 rev 3 and 800-37. Although I know a lot of this stuff, it was actually useful to get the latest from Ron. We then had an interesting debate on the value of the Common Criteria with folks like Paul Karger, Wes from Symantec, Helmut from Atsec, and Chris Salter from CCEVS. I listened to a bit of the second Classic Papers session with Li Gong, which was followed by a poster session.
Dinner was the conference committee dinner at Chuck’s steakhouse. Fun dinner, but something on the walk back triggered more wheezing (which is getting damn annoying). So I think I’ll take another benedryl and go to bed. Goodnight all… and tomorrow is the last half day of the conference (and perhaps some beach time in the afternoon).