A Taste of Insecurity by Paulo Fierro

This weekend marks the 25th Taste of Cayman — a food and wine festival put on by the Cayman Islands Tourism Association (CITA).

This year you can buy the tickets online on their site built by Netclues. However, the purchase process is entirely insecure. Taking customers' credit card details in this manner is both irresponsible and unprofessional and it also violates the Payment Card Industry's (PCI) Data Security Standard requirements to protect cardholder data (point #4). I'm no lawyer but I believe if the card details were to fall into the wrong hands they would also be financially liable.

I tweeted at CITA and Netclues but they didn't reply.

When we help clients build anything, be it a site or an app it falls on us as the designers and developers to educate and inform them about issues like this. I am appalled that the people in charge of developing this site would roll out a payment solution without something as basic as an SSL certificate in place — trying to visit the tickets page over HTTPS results in a 404 error (page not found).

If a relatively inexpensive SSL certificate is not installed then I do wonder how much care and attention has been put in place behind the scenes to store credit card details in a safe and secure manner. 

Its 2013 — we should know better. We should expect better.

In any case, we are looking forward to attending the event but purchased our tickets the old-fashioned way.

In person.

Learning to kitesurf by Paulo Fierro

At the end of November last year we had our good friend Chris Ross come over and visit us. His visit had a caveat, he had to do the PADI e-Learning course online first so we could go diving while he was here.

On the flip side, we would learn how to kitesurf — I for one had no idea you could actually do that on the island... So we took a few lessons and kind of got there but not really. Turns out learning to dive is much, much, much easier.

In any case, I've now had five lessons and found that was enough to go out and try some riding on my own, slowly building up confidence and lets call it technique.

This first video is the drive to Barkers Beach, sped up 20x, shot with a GoPro Hero 3 Black attached to the windshield with a suction-cup mount.

Next up is some shots taken while riding using CamRig's Universal Strut Mount and a standard board mount.

As its the "windy season" I look forward to getting better, and maybe even learning how to turn without stopping.

iOS6 Maps and the Cayman Islands by Paulo Fierro

So iOS6 is now officially released so we can talk about it. We've been using it since WWDC in June and in general there's so much to like in this release. The one thing that is still lacking is mapping data.

Having used the beta while we were in California I know first hand how great the maps can be. Turn by turn navigation when driving from San Francisco to Las Vegas worked well and the maps were pretty detailed showing local businesses, restaurants, etc. Once you leave the US however, the mapping data is substantially worse, with the exception of a few 3D flyovers.

There's been a lot of noise on Twitter and people holding out on buying a new phone or upgrading until this is fixed. The good news is that this is all on the backend so Apple can roll out improvements behind the scenes and most likely not require us to do anything.

Most of the complaints I've seen however still have some data visible to them. Maybe not all that accurate, but something.

However here on Grand Cayman the Maps app has gone from useful to completely useless. On the left is a screenshot of iOS5 that has roads and place marks – directions work too. On the right is iOS6 that shows a place mark for the airport and otherwise a lot of sand. Directions do not work.

They replaced our roads with sand. Thankfully we got to keep the airport.

The satellite view isn't as bad, but quite cloudy and the more you zoom out the more the clouds appear.

Satellite view

There is also something weird that happens to the shape of the island around the middle right.

Strange shape morph

This appears to be because they draw the outline based on existing data. As you get closer you get to that location in satellite view you can see a bad stitch job between what I assume are two different data providers. The image on the right is basically black and white.

Weird stitch job

In any case, I look forward to the day when the maps here are as gorgeous as they are in San Francisco. No doubt the Maps team in Cupertino are quite busy and we're not very high on the list of priorities but hopefully we'll see something soon.

Update: Haha! My buddy Peeks just let me know that the image I submitted to "The Amazing iOS6 Maps" Tumblr made it onto :)

Update #2: And TechnoBuffalo. And CNET. And Jest. And Broadband Reports. And Droid Life. And Huffington Post.

Update #3 (June 24, 2013): I just had a look and to my surprise we now have a road!



Update #4 (April 18, 2016): Not sure when this happened, but Maps seems to have been updated and looks like we now have all our roads and directions seem to work too! Amazing! And all it took was 4 years 😎

So this happened... First Liquid Image test. by Paulo Fierro

First test taking the Liquid Image Scuba Series HD 1080p out for a swim off Eden Rock to get used to it.

After a short swim, ran into the fourth shark I have ever seen in Cayman waters and the first while snorkelling. Just a baby nurse shark, but still counts :)

A bit cloudy so not super clear but a good start. Currently awaiting a set of filters and a couple of strobes to improve the lighting conditions. Look forward to testing this out on a proper dive next week.

Thank you Niqui!