Posts Tagged ‘spam’

Hilarious comment spam

Posted: 28 January 2009 in Uncategorized
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The user’s website was a porn link, but the comment they tried to leave was priceless:

Hi, friends!
Thank you for this forum. I have underlied a lot of useful infomation for me.
I have a question: can i ssppaamm in this topic ny sites to ads they?
Sorry, if I made the mistake, when asked this question.

It wasn’t until I copied and pasted it did I see the hidden textarea and divs containing a link to his site. Sneaky!

Pernicious Spam

Posted: 4 December 2008 in Uncategorized
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The spammers have been working hard to infiltrate Facebook.  I just got this (below) today, and it tripped my mental spam alarm.  These sorts of messages were commonplace on Friendster.  I would get messages from girls with near-pornographic profile pictures wanting to chat or asking me inane questions like which was the better hair color.  This is more insidious.

Insidious Facebook spam.

Insidious Facebook spam.

And for the record, I went to USC 2 ½ years ago.

Cuil Fail

Posted: 28 July 2008 in Uncategorized
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The blagoblag is abuzz with word of cuil, a search engine launched by some former Google engineers.  After many hours of downtime, I was able to check it out a short while ago.  The unfortunate result:  it blows.  It’s so bad that it’s as bad as your brain can comprehend.  Supposedly there are three times as many sites indexed as Google.  Well, that’s because they have not filtered any of the spam sites out.  A search for “mendicant bug” yields multiple spam copies of my blog and some wordpress category pages on the first ten pages.  My blog is conspicuously missing.  A search for my name also yields pathetic garbage.  Multiple other searches all led to the same thing:  spam pages get the highest rankings.

If your goal is searching for spam, then try out cuil.  You might get lucky and get infected by some nasty spyware.  Otherwise, don’t waste your time.

Spam of the Day 2008-04-08

Posted: 8 April 2008 in Uncategorized
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Spam offering new cufflinks

Bah, more spa — wait just a second!  Cufflinks!  Sweet!

Science fiction author Arthur C. Clarke died yesterday.  He touched many lives through his writing and his ideas had an impact on me at an early age with short stories like “The Nine Billion Names of God” and movies based on his books like 2010 (which I saw in the theater) and later 2001 (which I saw as a young man).   His novel Rendezvous with Rama is being made into a movie and IMDB is quoting 2009 as the release date.  I thought it was interesting to find out he had been living in Sri Lanka for some time.

I visited my family in Ohio this past weekend and my uncle made a few interesting points.  He’s an old-school spring engineer, meaning he learned coming up through the trade rather than by going to school, and he supervises a number of employees at a relatively small spring company.  My grandfather used to own a spring company called, shockingly enough, Adams & Sons Spring Co.  That was later bought out and a number of the employees were moved to a different plant, including my dad and uncle.  So anyhow, my uncle was telling me a story, which I won’t go into, but the heart of it is that you should not wait for people to hand you “what you deserve.”  If you are a leader, regardless of your job title, then lead.  If you see someone who needs help, don’t wait for them to ask you.  Help.  Show that you have the initiative.  That’s probably fairly obvious, I mean we’ve all heard it before, but it came at a particularly important time for me.

I’ve been on twitter for a while now, though I don’t update it super-regularly like some people.  It’s fun and I hope more of my friends start using it, but I’ve noticed an interesting trend.  Just about anything is open to potential spam.  Friendster is sick with it.  MySpace is abominable.  LinkedIn seems fairly immune and I’ve gotten very few spam friend requests from Facebook.  Twitter has so far been very good about it, but there is a new trend that I’ve found interesting.  You can follow people and people can follow you on twitter.  So your status updates are public and potentially seen by thousands of people.  How do you increase the number of people who follow you?  Follow them, of course!  I’m having random people follow me left and right.  It only helps me, since I don’t follow them back, but it’s interesting to note.

Free IQ Tests

Posted: 22 February 2008 in Uncategorized
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It seems to me that the first question on any free online IQ test is whether to take the test. You automatically fail to achieve high marks if your answer is yes (take the test).

Spam of the Day 2008-02-10

Posted: 10 February 2008 in Uncategorized
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Definition: the state where a cell contains all polytene chromosomes. [source]

One common tactic in spamming is to use words whose frequencies in English are really low. Frequent spamming words are easily detected and so if an email contains the words “viagra” and “pharmacy,” the chances of it being spam are really high. Words like polyteny, if they appear in any email, are probably in conversations between specialists. The hope spammers have is that low frequency technojargon will not have been weighted as spam in whatever spam filter the message encounters. In fact, this particular spam was one of the first false negatives gmail has let slip through in days.

Also, the SOTD idea is becoming a little boring to me, so I may discontinue it and only mention things that are particularly amusing.

Spam of the Day 2008-02-08

Posted: 8 February 2008 in Uncategorized
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“Prestigious Christmas gifts for only the dearest people!”

Hey, I want a prestigious Christmas gift! I’m stuck with lousy, disreputable gifts. I guess I’m not one of the elite “dearest.”

Spam of the Day 2008-02-07

Posted: 7 February 2008 in Uncategorized
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I go through my spam everyday to make sure that false positives don’t get deleted. For whatever reason, stuff coming from the Help Desk at CMU gets labeled as spam a lot. I’m not saying it sounds like word salad (*cough*), but it trips off gmail’s spam sensors. The good thing about gmail is a low false negative rate, the bad thing is a fairly high false positive.  And if you weren’t already aware, word salad is the name given to the jumble of unrelated, often obscure words that appear in a spam email to throw off spam filters.

The various spam messages I get never fail to amuse me in some way, so why not share them with you, my innocent reader would rather never see another spam title again? Ages ago, I was especially amused by two bits of spam that actually had lines from Robert Jordan’s Wheel of Time series as subject lines. I captured an image of the second one, but the first is lost forever and I haven’t noticed one since (click on it if it’s too small to read).

Twice the Dragon, for the price he must pay.

So the inaugural Spam of the Day (SOTD, rhymes with sotted):

“Try the new manpower candy!”

Creative Commons

Posted: 14 December 2007 in Uncategorized
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D’Arcy Norman has a great post on the Creative Commons license and why to choose only CC:By rather than some of the stricter licenses. This blog has been using CC:By since I began it, so it was nice to see someone with similar sensibilities putting out a much clearer statement of why it’s a good idea than I could.

People are free to reuse anything I write on this blog or the pictures I take, may God help them, so long as they attribute what they have done to me.  So far the only ones who have used my stuff are spam blogs that mysteriously republish just about everything I write, often attributing it to some other author’s name but posting a link back to my site. Very bizarre.