Privacy on the Internet is becoming more and more important, as an increasing part of everyday life takes place over the Internet. Internet users lose the ability to control which information they give away about themselves or are even not aware that they do so. Privacy-enhancing technologies help control private information on the Internet, for example, by anonymizing Internet communication. Up to now, work on privacy-enhancing technologies has mainly focused on privacy of users requesting public services. This thesis introduces a new privacy risk that occurs when private persons run their own services. One example are instant messaging systems which allow users to exchange presence information and text messages in real time. These systems usually do not provide protection of presence information which is stored on central servers. As an alternative, decentralized instant messaging system designs mitigate this problem by having private persons provide instant messaging services to each other. However, providing a service as a private person causes new security problems as compared to providing a service as an organization or enterprise: First, the presence of such a service reveals information about the availability of the service provider. Second, the server location needs to be concealed in order to hide the whereabouts of a person. Third, the server needs to be specifically protected from unauthorized access attempts. This thesis proposes to use pseudonymous services as a building block for private services. Pseudonymous services conceal the location of a server that provides a specific service. The contribution made here is to analyze what parts of pseudonymous services, in particular Tor hidden services, are missing in order to apply them for private services. This analysis leads to three main problems for which solutions are proposed: First, known pseudonymous service designs do not scale to the expected number of private services which might be provided in the future. This thesis proposes a new approach to store hidden service descriptors in a distributed data structure rather than on central servers. A particular focus lies on the support of private entries which are required for private services. Second, pseudonymous services leak too much information about service identity during advertisement in the network and connection establishment by clients. The approach taken in this thesis is to reduce the information that a service publishes in the network to a minimum and prevent unauthorized clients from accessing a service already during connection establishment. These changes protect service activity and usage patterns from non-authorized entities. Third, pseudonymous services exhibit worse performance than direct service access. The contribution of this thesis is to measure performance, identify possible problems, and propose improvements.
During the last decades, information technology has been characterized by constantly increasing performance of available hardware resources. This development allows the assignment of more and more complex tasks to software systems while at the same time leading to a massive increase of inherent complexity of applied systems. The expected further increase of complexity in the future demands for an explicit addressing of complexity. The concept of Component Orientation represents an approach for complexity reduction during the development and configuration of software through functional decomposition. With the vision of Autonomic Computing there does exist an approach for addressing complexity during the operation and maintenance of software systems. In this context, the approach is based on the idea of assigning low level-management tasks to the managed system itself. The concept of Component Orientation leads to the establishment of system architectures out of clearly distinguishable building blocks. Therefore, Component Orientation seems to provide a promising foundation for realizing the vision of Autonomic Computing. This thesis presents a realistic infrastructure for the autonomic management of component-based enterprise systems. The application area of such systems leads to special requirements for managed systems and is highly affected by the complexity problem. As a foundation for the proposed approach, a well established component standard was chosen to guarantee the practical relevance of applied concepts and techniques. The applied standard is Enterprise JavaBeans, version 3.0. The proposed infrastructure is designed and realized in a generic fashion. It provides a platform upon which solutions for different application areas of Autonomic Computing can be realized. Autonomic entities are supported through a programming interface which represents a system on three interrelated levels and allows its management: On the top-level, the underlying software of a managed system is considered. The middle layer addresses the system architecture. Runtime interactions within the system are represented on the lowest layer. On this foundation, a system can be managed in a holistic, model-based way. The runtime management of a system is enabled through a specially developed component which must be integrated into the affected environment. This component is compliant with the applied component standard and does not require any adjustment of the underlying component platform. Finally, a tool is provided which supports the establishment of manageability through the automated execution of required adjustments of components. The management of a system is realized transparently for its constituent elements during runtime. On the whole, the development of enterprise software is not affected by a potential application of the presented infrastructure.
This volume opens the series BiAS. Bible in Context is a collection of 9 essays discussing how biblical texts are read and interpreted in different contexts. The book discusses such contexts as Bible translation, HIV and AIDS, urban feminist Christology, denominationalism, conversion in African Christianity, environmental crisis, political conflict, land reform and women dress code. It analyses the ways in which context determines the reading processes and interpretations given to specific biblical texts. The book basically demonstrates that biblical interpretation is influenced by the contexts of the readers and the interpreters.
The importance of JAVA as a programming and execution environment has grown steadily over the past decade. Furthermore, the IT industry has adapted JAVA as a major building block for the creation of new middleware as well as a technology facilitating the migration of existing applications towards web-driven environments. Parallel in time, the role of security in distributed environments has gained attention, as a large amount of middleware applications has replaced enterprise-level mainframe systems. The protection of confidentiality, integrity and availability are therefore critical for the market success of a product. The vulnerability level of every product is determined by the weakest embedded component, and selling vulnerable products can cause enormous economic damage to software vendors. An important goal of this work is to create the awareness that the usage of a programming language, which is designed as being secure, is not sufficient to create secure and trustworthy distributed applications. Moreover, the incorporation of the threat model of the programming language improves the risk analysis by allowing a better definition of the attack surface of the application. The evolution of a programming language leads towards common patterns for solutions for recurring quality aspects. Suboptimal solutions, also known as ´antipatterns´, are typical causes for quality weaknesses such as security vulnerabilities. Moreover, the exposure to a specific environment is an important parameter for threat analysis, as code considered secure in a specific scenario can cause unexpected risks when switching the environment. Antipatterns are a well-established means on the abstractional level of system modeling to inform about the effects of incomplete solutions, which are also important in the later stages of the software development process. Especially on the implementation level, we see a deficit of helpful examples, that would give programmers a better and holistic understanding. In our basic assumption, we link the missing experience of programmers regarding the security properties of patterns within their code to the creation of software vulnerabilities. Traditional software development models focus on security properties only on the meta layer. To transfer these efficiently to the practical level, we provide a three-stage approach: First, we focus on typical security problems within JAVA applications, and develop a standardized catalogue of ´antipatterns´ with examples from standard software products. Detecting and avoiding these antipatterns positively influences software quality. We therefore focus, as second element of our methodology, on possible enhancements to common models for the software development process. These help to control and identify the occurrence of antipatterns during development activities, i. e. during the coding phase and during the phase of component assembly, integrating one´s own and third party code. Within the third part, and emphasizing the practical focus of this research, we implement prototypical tools for support of the software development phase. The practical findings of this research helped to enhance the security of the standard JAVA platforms and JEE frameworks. We verified the relevance of our methods and tools by applying these to standard software products leading to a measurable reduction of vulnerabilities and an information exchange with middleware vendors (Sun Microsystems, JBoss) targeting runtime security. Our goal is to enable software architects and software developers developing end-user applications to apply our findings with embedded standard components on their environments. From a high-level perspective, software architects profit from this work through the projection of the quality-of-service goals to protection details. This supports their task of deriving security requirements when selecting standard components. In order to give implementation-near practitioners a helpful starting point to benefit from our research we provide tools and case-studies to achieve security improvements within their own code base.
This volume is a monograph which was submitted at the University of Zimbabwe in Harare as a PhD thesis. It deals with the subject of millenarianism, a movement which the author sees as developing from biblical times. He draws lines of connection between contemporary Jehovah’s Witnesses and Johane Masowe movements with prophetic and apocalyptic movements in the Bible. This volume presents vast amounts of data on prophecy, apocalypticism and millenarianism for students and scholars of the Bible alike. Further, ordinary readers of the Bible will find this volume fascinating to read. There is also detailed information on the development of the two contemporary movements Jehovah’s Witnesses and Johane Masowe in Zimbabwe.
BiAS 3 is a monograph which was submitted and passed as PhD thesis at the University of Bayreuth, Germany. The author revisits the subject of homosexuality in Zimbabwe, a subject that attracted the attention of the international community from 1995 when Robert Gabriel Mugabe, the President of Zimbabwe described homosexual persons as “worse than dogs and pigs”. The President’s position was widely supported by Christians and Traditionalists alike, and the Bible was used as the final arbiter, as it is the “Word of God”. The Bible was also used by homosexual persons and those sympathetic to them, such that the Bible fought against the Bible. The book highlights the interconnection between homosexuality, religion and the socio-economic and political challenges from the 1990s, and raises critical questions about the widespread selective-literal appropriation of the Bible, a practice that ignores the socio-historical context of the Bible. This is a book for biblical students, scholars and ordinary readers of the Bible who want to engage with contemporary socio-theological challenges.
The focus of this dissertation lies on the brand personality (BP) and the brand relationship concept. They represent two particularly important measures of brand equity. And more importantly, both concepts still lack a comprehensive understanding. Hence, this dissertation provides deeper insight in how two manage and measure BP and how to build strong consumer-brand relationships. Thus, the purpose of this dissertation is twofold: In particular, the first objective is to discuss consumer’s perception of brand personality. In particular, the first goal is to gain an understanding of the way consumers perceive brands. The aim is to explore the amount of variance in consumer perception of brand personality. Do all customers perceive the same intended BP or do customers perceive the same intended BP differently? Reviewing the extant literature on BP reveals that there is much criticism on the existing BP scale (Aaker 1997). In order to address this issue, the research objective is to introduce an alternative conceptualization of BP by drawing upon social psychology. The aim is to analyze the role of emotions linking BP perceptions, brand attitude and purchase intentions. The second purpose of this dissertation is to illustrate how customers form relationships towards brands. Hence, in a first step, this dissertation pursues a thorough literature review. The aim is to scrutinize past research on consumer-brand relationships. This literature review will portray how the concept of consumer-brand relationships has been used in the marketing literature. The aim of this state-of-the-art review is to precisely identify the variables and concepts that deserve more attention. Subsequently, these variables will be investigated in an empirically tested model. So, the fourth aim is to identify the relevant antecedent and mediating variables of consumer-brand relationships. In doing so, this thesis seeks to provide a clear picture of the current state of BP and consumer-brand relationship research. Moreover, it aims at promoting research in these two research fields by addressing current issues in marketing. The first study (chapter 2) applies the existing BP scale. It develops a taxonomy which fills a gap in empirical knowledge about consumer perceptions of brand personalities. To the author’s knowledge, this is the first study that empirically derives a taxonomy from dimensions drawn from academic research (Aaker 1997). Overall, the results reveal that customers who perceive a strong BP perceive higher levels of performance in terms of brand attitude, preference and satisfaction. The second study (chapter 3) is the first to empirically investigate the applicability of the stereotype content model in the context of consumer goods brands. The review of extant research on BP shows a growing concern about the appropriateness of the Aaker scale. In order to address this issue, the study draws upon social psychology and the stereotype content model. The empirical study suggests that the stereotype content model is a viable alternative conceptualization of the BP concept. This study contributes to current research in two ways. First, it helps reducing complexity in BP measurement. Second, the results provide evidence that the consumer’s behavioral intention results from his stereotypes towards the brand, his emotions and his brand attitude. By providing a current state-of-the-art review, chapter 4 serves as a valuable source of information to enhance research concerning consumer-brand relationships. First, the overview shows that consumer-brand relationship research still is in its infancy. Second, it reveals that current research on consumer-brand relationships focuses on the interpersonal context. Chapter 5 proposes an alternative conceptualization of the brand relationship quality construct by integrating current knowledge from the relationship marketing literature. The results show that brand relationship quality is well captured by the dimensions relationship commitment, trust, and relationship satisfaction. Second, this study is the first to apply the Relational Exchange Theory by Macneil (1980) to the consumer goods brand context. It introduces the norm concept from a business perspective and shows that relational norms play a mediating role in actual relationships between consumers and brands. Hence, the present study approves the question by Johar (2005) whether norms are attached to brand behavior. Furthermore, this chapter advances the current knowledge on consumer-brand relationships by empirically testing a comprehensive framework of consumer-brand relationships. This framework includes not only consumer and brand characteristics, but also brand relationship characteristics as relevant drivers of the consumer-brand dyad. The findings indicate that consumer characteristics are especially related to relational norms and that brand relationship characteristics rather influence the degree of perceived brand relationship quality and brand loyalty. Brand characteristics on the other hand can be linked to both mediators and the out-come variable brand loyalty. Overall, this dissertation advances the understanding of the two key brand equity measures BP and brand relationship by reducing complexity: Whereas the first study develops a taxonomy of brand constellations, the remaining two empirical studies transfer existing knowledge originating from marketing or related disciplines to the brand context. As such, this thesis reduces complexity and enriches research in the two fields by adding knowledge which has proven of value in related contexts.
That the Bible is a manual for daily living is attested in almost all Christian denominations, how this role is transformed into practice is clearly an area that remains a contested terrain among Christians. This volume is our modest contribution to looking at the relationship between the Bible and our practices. The central question that the articles in this volume respond to is: how is the Bible related to our daily life? This question is especially important on the African continent where religion appears to be gaining influence. Without taking anything away from western biblical scholars, African biblical scholars must also engage with the question: how do we put into practice the teachings of the Bible? This volume contains papers presented at the International Bible Symposium 2009 in Bamberg (Germany) and additional contributions.
Globalization and rapid technological change elevates the role of the Internet in terms of business service offering and procurement. At the same time, companies specialize on core competencies on the one hand, and on the other hand, integrate with other firms into “service ecosystems” in order to serve market needs in a flexible manner. One challenge in this setting is how to develop and describe novel business services within service ecosystems for efficient trade in services over the Internet. This work proposes a method for describing business services that integrates into business service development processes. The development of such a method leads to three major challenges: Firstly, it is necessary to determine which properties are appropriate for describing business services. This work analyzes existing approaches in the marketing, information systems, and computer science domain and develops a model for a formal description that facilitates offering and discovering of business services. Secondly, business service description elicitation, documentation, and communication must be provided for the whole business service development process. This work’s approach includes the development of an appropriate modeling notation as an extension of the Unified Modeling Notation (UML). Thirdly, there is a need for transforming business service descriptions into software realization languages that are suitable for the Internet. This contribution offers an automatic transformation of business service descriptions into Web Services Description Language (WSDL) documents using model-to-model transformation scripts. The method for describing business services was evaluated by implementing an integrated modeling environment along with related transformation scripts as well as by two case studies in the insurance and IT outsourcing industry.
In recent years a steady increase of information produced in organizations can be noticed. In order to stay competitive, companies have a growing interest in reusing existing knowledge from past projects. Furthermore, a complete picture of the available information is necessary to be able to make informed decisions. The variety and complexity of information in modern organizations often exceeds the capabilities of the currently deployed enterprise search solutions. The reasons for that are manifold and range from non-linked information from multiple software systems to missing functionality to support users during search tasks. Existing search engines often do not support the search paradigms necessary in these environments. On many occasions, users are not aware of the results they will find during the formulation of the search queries. Additionally, the aspect of knowledge building and the identification of new insights into the available data is a priority for the users. Therefore, search paradigms are useful to provide users with tools that support exploratory navigation in a data set and help them to recognize relationships between search results. The goal of this publication is the introduction of a framework that supports exploratory searches in an organizational setting. The described LFRP-framework is built on top of four pillars. 1. The multi-layer functionality allows users to formulate complex search queries referring to more than one result type. Therewith, it enables search queries that - starting from a set of relevant projects - allow selections of documents that are linked to these projects. 2. The search paradigm of faceted searching supports users in formulating search queries incrementally by offering dynamic and valid filter criteria that avoid empty result sets. 3. By combining the concept of faceted search with the capability to influence the search result order based on filter criteria, users can define in a fine-grained way which criteria values shall be weighted stronger or weaker in the search results. The interaction with the ranking is conducted transparently by the so-called user preference functions. 4. The last pillar consists of the visualization type of parallel coordinates covering two tasks in the search user interface of the LFRP-Framework. On the one hand, users formulate their search queries solely graphically in the parallel coordinates and on the other hand they obtain a visual representation of the search results and are able to discover relationships between search results and their facets. The framework is introduced formally from a query model point of view as well as a prototypical implementation. It enables users to access large linked data sets by navigation and constitutes a contribution to a comprehensive information strategy for organizations.