Monday, January 31, 2005

Interview with a link spammer

The Register has an interesting interview with a link spammer. It is funny to think that he can make that much money from doing this link spamming, especially since most of the host names do not resolve.

I do have to say that I have been impressed with pLog's comment spam filter. All of the comment spams have been correctly been marked as spam. I am about to have pLog automatically delete these messages, instead of me manually deleting them, since it has not mis-categorized any of them.

Sunday, January 30, 2005

Pointless movie questions

Our son really likes Toy Story and Toy Story 2, so we watch them a lot. I have a few questions about the story-line of the Toy Story 2: What makes certain toys able to talk? Why did Woody save Wheezy and not the wooden car that the mom got from under the bed? Why wasn't the wooden car able to talk?

Saturday, January 29, 2005

G-PLAY Portable Media Player

GplayMac HTPC has a post that mentions the G-PLAY Portable Media Player. It is a standard Media player that plays the standard MPEG 1, MPEG 2 and MPEG 4 video files; MP3 and WAV audio files; and displays JPG graphic files. It will also have a 40Gb, 80Gb or 100Gb drive to store these files.

One of the coolest things about this player is that it will play standard iso images of DVDs, with all of the standard menus, so you don't have to transcode the DVD video to play it.

pLog 1.0

I have been using the development version of pLog 1.0 for a while, and I do have to say that I am impressed. I do like the new layout of the admin interface. Also, this version has better support for xmlrpc posting, with attachments. <plug>Which I helped out with</plug>

Here is the post where the developer announces the testing plan for this release, and how to get the software.

Thursday, January 27, 2005

Denon-Link approved

Home Theater Blog has an interesting post that states that Denon has won approval from Sony and Philips to use their 'Denon-Link' for SACD content. I hope other manufacturers support this interface, and it is extended to support video.

I would love to only have a single cable that goes between each of my components and my receiver.

Eyes on the Screen

Eyes on the Prize

Eyes on the Screen is a campaign that is organizing showings of "Eyes on the Prize".

The most important civil rights documentary of all time has been unavailable on video and television for 10 years because of copyright restrictions. Civil rights leader Lawrence Guyot said recently, This is analogous to stopping the circulation of all the books about Martin Luther King, stopping the circulation of all the books about Malcolm X, stopping the circulation of books about the founding of America.

On February 8th 2005, share "Eyes on the Prize" with your community.

Update: It appears that their lawyers have made them take down the BitTorrent tracker for the video.

Tuesday, January 25, 2005

Apple Commercial Archive

The Beyond the Obvious blog has an article where he posts 165 Apple commercials in QuickTime format. He has also made the archive available on BitTorrent.

I have liked a lot of the Apple commercials.

Monday, January 24, 2005

AppleScript to send Trackback pings

There is a new version of ecto that includes scripting support. This menu allows you to run different types of scripts directly from ecto.

Since I have started doing most of my blog writting directly from ecto, I have not been sending trackback pings for my blog entries. Before this was working because when I created posts directly from pLog's web interface, pings would be sent automatically. I wrote an AppleScript that performs trackback pings directly from ecto.

Thursday, January 20, 2005

Google and comment spam

Google and Yahoo have agreed to a new mechanism to help combat blog comment spam. They are going to respect rel="nofollow" attribute of links. When a link has this attribute these search engines will not follow the links.

I think that this will help to keep the rank of these websites down in the search results, but I don't think that this really solves the problem. These websites that have these urls in their comments will still be visible to users. I see these comments as a sort of graffiti on these web sites. I wouldn't want to leave a graffiti on a wall even if I have a note that says don't read this. (Which is what the nofollow attributes state.)

Back to DSL

I really liked as an ISP. When the connection was up, it was great. 1Mbs symmetric each way, great customer service. The problem was that they were having problems with the hardware in the tower. This has continued for several months. There were problems when the connection would just drop, or the latency got too bad to handle VoIP.

I have decided to go back to DSL. Instead of going with SBC, I decided to go with Speakeasy.

Tuesday, January 18, 2005

Mac Mini in a Colo

atmaspheric | endeavors has a post on They will colocate a Mac Mini for you and give you access through VNC or Apple Remote Desktop. This is great if you want to setup a server that can be easier to maintain than a Linux distribution.

I wonder if they would install Mac OS X Server on it for you if you asked?

Friday, January 14, 2005

Project Honey Pot

A while ago, I mentioned the Spam Poison web site. This site's purpose is to have the crawlers waste time crawling their pages, while getting bogus email address. The problem that I saw in their implementation was that once the crawlers stopped crawling pages from their domain, they would not be effective.

Project Honey Pot ButtonIt looks like Project Honey Pot has a better solution. Website administrators can include some script that runs on their web site that generates html code, that the crawlers crawl. Each of these crawling attempts are tracked by Project Honey Pot.

Spam links through

In my previous post, I mentioned This site has a great idea, unfortunately it has a lot of problems. The majority of people that are including my url in their blogLinker account are commercial sites. So it is free advertising for them because their links would appear on my site.

Video of Microsoft CES demo

This is pretty funny.

Thursday, January 13, 2005

Fixing sender address with sendmail

I have been trying to send email on one of my linux workstations, but the sender address has the host name of my machine. This causes problems because the host name is not a publicly resolvable name. I found the solution on this page.

Wednesday, January 12, 2005

HP's Linux Media Hub

atmaspheric | endeavors has a post that mentions HP's new media hub, and links to a demo video of it. This looks like a pretty cool product:

  • 2 HDTV tuner DVR

  • DVD reader and burner

  • Shows photos and plays music

  • Media card slots for adding photos

  • Port to allow adding of additional hard drive

Apple Keynote Stream

I just watched the Apple Keynote stream, and I do have to admit I am pretty impressed about some of the new features:

The new Mac and iPod really don't do much for me.

Sunday, January 9, 2005

Sling Media's slingbox

Sling-LogoPVRblog mentions that Sling Media just announced their slingbox at CES. They say that the slingbox is a "placeshifter", instead of the "timeshifter" like a PVR. It is a pretty interesting idea. Supposedly this will stream video anywhere that you want

Electronics on aircraft carrier

I finally got a chance to read the September 2004 issue of Sound & Vision. There is a pretty interesting article about A/V gear on the USS Truman aircraft carrier.


Paul And Morgan-4

Saturday, January 8, 2005

SIEVE Mail Filter plugin for squirrelmail

I just installed a new plugin for SquirrelMail that allows each user to modify their Sieve server side filtering rules. avelsieve will show the current active filtering rules in a nice graphical interface, instead of using sieveshell.

test post


Ichat Image(Zel)-8

Wednesday, January 5, 2005

New Harmony Remote

Harmony 880 Logitech has come out with a new Harmony Remote. The Harmony 880 has a color screen instead of the black and white ones in their previous remotes. Also it comes with a charging dock to keep the batteries charged.

Tuesday, January 4, 2005

pLog blocking spam comments

Last week, I got a spam comment that included a bunch of urls. I told pLog that this comment was spam, and it trained its Bayesian engine on it.

Today I got a couple more attempts to post spam comments, and they were all blocked.

.Mac worth the money?

I am trying to decide if I want to continue my .Mac subscription. My currrent subscription expires in 12 days. I have only actually used some of the .Mac feeatures:

  1. Sending iCards

  2. Downloading the free games

  3. Backup

Monday, January 3, 2005

New VoIP WiFi phone

Engadget has a post that says that Vonage hs formally announced their F-1000 802.11 VoIP phone. This phone will allow you to make and receive phone calls whenver you are connected to a 802.11 network. This phone is supposed to be available this spring or summer for about $100.


One of the features that I have think has been missing from iSync and .Mac is the ability to sync a subset of my address book with my wife's computer. She doesn't want to have everyone that is in my address book in hers, and I don't want a complete copy of hers either.

I would have hoped that with the .Mac syncing of the Address Book, I could specify only one group that should be sync'd to each computer. But it looks like Apple's implementation will only allows you to sync the whole address book between each computer and the .Mac servers.

address-o-sync is a solution for this problem. This application allows you to specify either your whole address book or one group that can be sync'd across the network.

Sunday, January 2, 2005

phpBB and PostNuke permissions

In this previous post, I described how I upgraded PostNuke and phpBB. I forgot a hack that I installed earlier, that I needed to install. By default phpBB does not use PostNuke's permission system. I wanted the PostNuke permissions system to control phpBB.

Here is a post that describes this hack.

Saturday, January 1, 2005

dateCreated support in pLog

I have just updated the xmlrpc_mw.php script to respect the dateCreated attriubute of the metaWeblog.newPost call, for pLog. Now the xmlrpc client can specify the date that the articles are created on, and pLog will recognize it.

Another benefit of Linksys WRT54GS router

Tonight something worked that hasn't worked in a while. While my wife was using iChat she got a invitation for a Audio chat, and it worked.

This is the first time that this has worked since we got Vonage. When the Vonage ATA was connected in between our broadband connection and the Netgear firewall, none of the Audio chats worked. I think that it was because the Motorola VT1000v was blocking all connections to port 5160 (SIP), but not rejecting them. Then iChat was timing out trying to start the connection.

Now with the new Linksys WRT54GS, these connections are being rejected. Then iChat uses the AIM connection to do the audio streaming.