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I recently talked about passwords at the ISSA 2011 Conference in Dublin. I had hoped to get this post online sooner, but it seems there’s a bit of a delay with regards the various conference presentations going online.

With that in mind, here are some random pictures from the event until I can do a roundup of the talks and rip some (hopefully) handy tips from my own presentation.

Let’s get the ball rolling with an event poster:


Presumably they’re watching Superman fly past as he rounds up the stragglers to get inside and listen to the talks asap. Good move for all concerned, really.

Below, you can see the greatest conference slide of the day / week / year.


I mean, look at it.

This is a system called Pico which is a sort of “work in progress” aimed at replacing the current system of passwords that we’ve all come to know and hate. You know how George Lucas ruined Star Wars with those midichlorians (actually he just ruined Star Wars full stop but whatever.) Well, replace “Star Wars” with “old guy smoking a pipe” and “midichlorians” with “specific items you use daily that sync up with your Pico Password device” and you have a really interesting setup for password shenanigans. You need a certain amount of these items on your person for the Pico device to work, so if your shoe falls off or your wig blows away via a strong gust of wind? Yeah, you won’t be logging into anything soon.

Actually, I lie – this isn’t the best slide. The best slide was a pictorial representation of the possibility of someone kidnapping and torturing you for your Pico login credentials. And I’m not even making this up (although sadly, my only photograph of this slide is a blurry mess).

Here’s another one for good measure that doesn’t feature torture but does feature a waving PC.


Whoever drew these things deserves a raise.

Anyway, it’s a pretty interesting device and certainly something to keep an eye on.


Another interesting talk was on the subject of all those data sharing / syncing websites with funny names, and how there were various pros and cons to using them in the workplace.


Apologies for taking the most boring photo in the history of conference photography. Allow me to make it up to you with a picture of the hotel dining area.


See the bar down below? The hotel guy made the fatal mistake of sitting me at a table next to this balcony, and while trying to grab my fork I accidentally sent it flying through the gap and into the void below. Half a second later and a faint “..aaaargh” I made my excuses and left.

Quickest checkout ever.

Thankfully nobody turned up at the conference with a fork sticking out of their head so I think I got away with it. I won’t horrify you any further with my terrible photography, but with any luck Part 2 will include links to most (if not all) of the presentations and also some of the content from my own ramble.

Thanks to everyone at ISSA for having us, it was a lot of fun to do. Next time I’ll even try to avoid head planting a fork although I’m not making any promises….

Christopher Boyd