Feeds

Microsoft crowd-sources next Win Phone apps using Android

on{X} outsources dev to punters

Protecting against web application threats using SSL

The world just got stranger: not only is Microsoft trying to write cool software again, it’s decided that Android is the ideal beta platform, in spite of its bitter worldwide spat with Google over patents.

The app is called on{X}: users can set up custom recipes to get their Android phones responding to events, or if you want to fool around with your own triggers, there’s a JavaScript API. The name is designed to explain the capability: “on X, do Y”.

Triggers include, but aren’t limited to, time, location, news, weather, the availability of a WiFi network, battery condition, and so on. Some of the examples Microsoft provides are mundane enough – “When I leave work, text my wife” – others look worryingly exploitable. For example: “When my boyfriend asks me ‘where?’ respond with my location” offers any number of possibilities outside the intended “fun and cool” of on{X}.

According to TechCrunch, Microsoft says the “less strict security model of the Android platform is well suited for deploying early technology previews”.

So what’s the crowdsource angle? It’s this: to modify Microsoft’s existing recipes, or create your own, you configure the rules on the on{X} site and push them to the target device.

While the rules are tied to your account and therefore private, if on{X} takes off, Microsoft will assemble a large dataset of what users want their phones to do, before it tries to create a similar product for Windows Mobile. ®

The next step in data security

More from The Register

next story
New 'Cosmos' browser surfs the net by TXT alone
No data plan? No WiFi? No worries ... except sluggish download speed
'Windows 9' LEAK: Microsoft's playing catchup with Linux
Multiple desktops and live tiles in restored Start button star in new vids
iOS 8 release: WebGL now runs everywhere. Hurrah for 3D graphics!
HTML 5's pretty neat ... when your browser supports it
Mathematica hits the Web
Wolfram embraces the cloud, promies private cloud cut of its number-cruncher
Google extends app refund window to two hours
You now have 120 minutes to finish that game instead of 15
Intel: Hey, enterprises, drop everything and DO HADOOP
Big Data analytics projected to run on more servers than any other app
Mozilla shutters Labs, tells nobody it's been dead for five months
Staffer's blog reveals all as projects languish on GitHub
SUSE Linux owner Attachmate gobbled by Micro Focus for $2.3bn
Merger will lead to mainframe and COBOL powerhouse
prev story

Whitepapers

Providing a secure and efficient Helpdesk
A single remote control platform for user support is be key to providing an efficient helpdesk. Retain full control over the way in which screen and keystroke data is transmitted.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
Saudi Petroleum chooses Tegile storage solution
A storage solution that addresses company growth and performance for business-critical applications of caseware archive and search along with other key operational systems.
Protecting users from Firesheep and other Sidejacking attacks with SSL
Discussing the vulnerabilities inherent in Wi-Fi networks, and how using TLS/SSL for your entire site will assure security.
Security for virtualized datacentres
Legacy security solutions are inefficient due to the architectural differences between physical and virtual environments.