Thursday, September 23, 2010

Note to self, how to install apc

Want to install apc on CENTOS or RHEL?
REad this:

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Note to self, want stats on nfs usage, try this

I thought I'd put this in as well, since I had to google for it, using -n will make iostat provide you with stats for nfs shares too.

iostat -nh 5
You can also use nfsstat

nfsstat -cvn -o nfs

Friday, September 17, 2010

e = internet (a logo for IE9)

I found this fascinating blog post on MSDN's IEBlog about the logo for IE9, thanks to Sam Ruby's wonderful Planet Intertwingly.
You should read it too.

CAPTCHA for CASH - The end is nigh for the CAPTCHA

I  thought you may like to know (unless I'm the last one to cotton on!) that a scenario we've theorised about on the ASRG mailing list for years is finally here, there's now at least one commercial service that will translate CAPTCHA's for cash.

I found the link (shown below) to a service that will decode captcha's for you for $2 per 1000 successes. (Ironically it was in an ad served to me by gmail.)

So to anyone who ever proposed a spam "solution" that relied on differentiating between people and machines, and doubted us when we told them that the commercial imperative would be its downfall, read this: 

We told you so, and it only costs two bucks for a thousand!
I predict much more of this in time, with costs falling as more competition enters the market, and I honestly think it presages the end of the useful life of the captcha.

That link:

-- correction: Kevin H. politely pointed out, in a comment, that I hadn't read it properly
That isn't $2 per success - it's $2 per 1000 successes. Minimum purchase is $10 = 5,000 spam, er, advertising opportunities
Thanks Kevin, I've updated the post to reflect this.

-- updates:  According to ASRG folks

a) This site has been known about since Oct, '09, so yes I am last to the party as ever!

b) Chris Lewis kindly point this out:
... found sweatshops in India quoting some small number of rupees per thousand, claiming to be able to supply up to 250,000 per day.  At _least_ three years ago.
Incidentally, some of the spam filter companies, as part of their technology for trying to figure out whether the jpeg is naughty or not, _claim_ they can solve >90% of all captchas on the fly.
c) More intriguingly Steve Atkins said:
There's even a neural net implemented in javascript as a greasemonkey plugin that'll solve some simple captchas in the browser.
 I had a Googlearound and found this, that may interest you

I found that particularly fascinating, because last year Nikki was telling me all about cognitive psychology and various theories of word and character recognition in humans. I still have all that to look forward to, in my OU degree, but I'm beginning to get an idea of the kind of things I could do for my project if I ever get that far!

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

note to self, how to change the definer of a mysql stored procedure

This is a useful one if, like us, you find that the account used to create the procedure doesn't have the privileges required to execute it, or perhaps you've revoked the original definers grant. (DoH!)

ALTER PROCEDURE procedure_name SQL SECURITY DEFINER;javascript:void(0)

Facebook, you make me want to cry!

It seems that the way in which facebook chooses an image to show alongside a posted link differs for links posted in different ways.

Oh how fucking hilarious. Not.

On our product page if you "attach" the link, or share it using facebook sharer ( it picks the big product image as the first image in the list for you to choose from. This is a Good Thing, and exactly what we want to achieve.

However if you click the like button, its picking up a random image from sets of smaller images elsewhere on the page.

e.g. Share this dress' page through the sharer, or by "attaching" and you see this image:

but if you use the like button it shows us this image,

which is for this dress.

Arrgghh that's annoying. Get a damn grip facebook, at the very least you could try to be consistent. Read about the principle of least surprise.

I know nothing, I'm not a fortune teller, and you'd be insane to think that I am. This disclaimer was cribbed from an email footer I once received. It is so ridiculous I had to have it for myself.

Statements in this blog that are not purely historical are forward-looking statements including, without limitation, statements regarding my expectations, objectives, anticipations, plans, hopes, beliefs, intentions or strategies regarding the future. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from the forward looking statements include risks and uncertainties such as any unforeseen event or any unforeseen system failures, and other risks. It is important to note that actual outcomes could differ materially from those in such forward-looking statements.

Danny Angus Copyright © 2006-2013 (OMG that's seven years of this nonsense)