adorable, definition of..

09/20/04 | by david2 [mail] | Categories: General

Gypsy Lovers

09/20/04 | by david2 [mail] | Categories: General

Stopping spam with qgreylist

09/19/04 | by david2 [mail] | Categories: General, Geek
The theory is this: most spammers use software which is intent on getting as much mail out as quickly as possible. This means that if the receiving end has a temporary error, and temporarily rejects the email, the spamming computer ignores it and moves on to the next computer, whereas normal email servers will make a second attempt.

So, this software takes advantage of that: email from unknown servers is temporarily rejected. Spammers move on, and real email servers resend.

In effect, this is raising the cost of sending an email to someone with this program running. It's not a great cost, but for now it's a cost that the spammer is not spending, and therefore can be used to block the mass of spam. I imagine that the spammers will eventually add some sort of workaround, but for now, it's a simple and very effective service.

Email purists will say that this intentionally breaks the email protocols, which is debatable: issuance of a temporary error is allowed, but presumably only when there actually IS a temporary error. So this may be best viewed as skirting the intent of the email protocols.

In any event, it works. And by that, I mean it works really well .

If you're running qmail, then this script by jon atkins is the thing.

However, if you're running Solaris, it won't work because it makes use of the Sys::Syslog module in perl, which is notoriously broken in many stock versions of Solaris. So, instead, you can use this code here which I modified to use Unix::Syslog . You'll need to install that module by either downloading it from, or downloading it with the cpan module. An example of doing this would be:

unixprompt> perl -MCPAN -e install Unix::Syslog <enter>

invoking a perl module

09/18/04 | by david2 [mail] | Categories: Geek
perl -MCPAN -e shell

Turtles all the way down

09/15/04 | by david2 [mail] | Categories: General
Turtles all the way down

Stephen Hawking in A Brief History Of Time starts with the anecdote.
A well-known scientist (some say it was Bertrand Russell) once gave a
public lecture on astronomy. He described how the earth orbits around the
sun and how the sun, in turn, orbits around the centre of a vast collection
of stars called our galaxy.

At the end of the lecture, a little old lady at
the back of the room got up and said: "What you have told us is rubbish.
The world is really a flat plate supported on the back of a giant

The scientist gave a superior smile before replying, "What is
the tortoise standing on?"

"You're very clever, young man, very clever,"
said the old lady. "But it's turtles all the way down."

Well, it isn't turtles all the way down.

In a phrase, "A people acquire and retain well being in proportion to the knowledge they possess – and the use to which they put it."

404 error

09/01/04 | by david2 [mail] | Categories: General
From 404 error

The example of a 404 error is given as:

disabling stop-a and ctrl-break on sparc

09/01/04 | by david2 [mail] | Categories: Geek
Three ways to do it:

1) Enter the following line in /etc/default/kbd (2.6 and up)

2) type the command: kbd -a disable (works for 2.6)

3) Enter the following line into /etc/system (2.4 and up)
set abort_enable = 0

and, if your hardware supports it:

4) turn your key to 'secure'. This overrides all software settings.

Jimmy Doohan says goodbye

08/31/04 | by david2 [mail] | Categories: General
Jimmy Doohan, Scotty from the original Star Trek series was at his last convention. He was recently diagnosed with Alzheimers and expects not to be attending any more.

From here

Just one indication of "Star Trek's" intersection with real life came at the convention on Saturday night, when the featured speaker at the banquet honoring Mr. Doohan was Neil Armstrong, the first human to walk on the moon.

Ending a talk full of "Star Trek" references, including a wish for a Federation starship for his next command, Mr. Armstrong addressed Mr. Doohan: "From one old engineer to another: thanks, mate."

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