Wednesday, December 24, 2014

[OT] U2: "We were pilgrims on our way"

"The Miracle (of Joey Ramone)" from the last U2 "Songs of Innocence" album is a refreshing song. The actual album's content is strong. Not necessarily easy to listen though but it is been played in my car's CD player more or less every time I go driving for the last few weeks. The trick is, after listening to it for the first time, do a few days pause, and then listen again with a volume much higher than last time. It's a blast.

I still do like U2 even though I've learned not all in Ireland are the fans of them for various reasons. I was surprised, the same as I was when I was working in Manchester many years back, loving Manchester United and hearing people mentioning some other team, Manchester City :-).
The reason I still like U2 is because they are a team. These are the people in their 50s who still talk to each other :-),  continue to support each other, still have the drive and ability to create something as strong and relevant as "Songs of Innocence". I disagree it is entirely down to the financial aspect.

It is an off-topic post but as usual a link to CXF is about to be explored :-). It is in the "The Miracle (of Joey Ramone)" text.

Some of CXF users might recognize they were "pilgrims on their way" before they settled on working with CXF :-). If you read it and say, yeah, this is relevant to me, then you know where CXF is. And as U2 conclude, "your voices will be heard".

Finally, here is a link to a New Year song you won't hear in a local shopping centre starting from early September: New Year's Day from U2.  

Happy Christmas and New Year !


Tuesday, December 23, 2014

No Data No Fun !

Continuing with the theme of T-shirts, I'd like to let you know "No Data No Fun" is a cool line printed on my T-shirt I got at a Talend R&D summit organized at a second-to-none level back in early October. I guess having a collection of good T-Shirts is one of the real perks of the developers involved into the open source development :-)

"No Data No Fun" is also one of the themes behind Talend's continued investment into the tooling which facilitates the interaction with Big Data ecosystems. Getting such a tooling done right is hard. I'm impressed seeing companies like Lenovo liking it.

From my point of view, I'm interested to see how an apparent gap between the world of a typical HTTP service application and that of a Big Data one can be bridged. Ultimately web applications are about exploring the data and feeding them back to the users. We've done the first baby step, provided a FIQL to HBase query client that can be used to query massive amounts of data from HBase databases. JAX-RS StreamingOutput would very neatly fit in there.

However, it is also interesting to see how CXF services can be run natively in Hadoop, to save on a data delivery from HBase or other Hadoop-bound database to a query client running in scope of the CXF server, much cheaper to get it straight from Hadoop and send it back immediately. This is something I'm hoping to find some time for investigating next year. Propagating Kerberos or OAuth2 tokens into Hadoop/etc is also of interest.

I hope CXF will help you get a lot of data from Hadoop and have a lot of fun along the way :-) 


Get into OAuth2 with Client Credentials Grant

One of the possible barriers toward OAuth2 going completely mainstream is the likely association of OAuth2 with what big social media providers do and the assumption OAuth2 is only suitable for their business, for the way their users interact with these providers.

In fact, OAuth2 is more embracing. Client Credentials grant, one of several standard OAuth2 grants,  provides the easy path for the traditional clients toward starting working with security tokens.

The client, instead of doing the authentication with a name and a password (or some other client credentials) against the target service endpoint on every request (and thus having to keep these secrets for a long time) does it only once, against OAuth2 AccessTokenService which accepts various grants and returns manageable tokens with a restricted lifetime. Such tokens can be obtained out-of-band, with the client applications initialized with the tokens. The client will use the token only when authenticating against the endpoint. It is still a secret in its own way but it is a transient one that can be revoked by the administrator or by the client itself.

The client credentials grant provides for an easy and fast way into the OAuth2 ecosystem. Consider experimenting with it sooner rather than waiting for another 5 years :-), discover the OAuth2 world along the way, find how OAuth2 can positively affect your applications, and never look back again !