Posts Categorized: tech + web dev

Update on KnowSpam

It works. Knowspam has cut down, in a short 24 hours, my daily email load/influx/mighty mississippi of 150 – 300 emails to just the 50 -75 emails I actually want. Thank God.

Spam is evil…

In the 9 years that I have had my very own email address, I had 5 years of happy tech bliss and 4 years of increasing agitation towards people who send unsolicited emails on how to increase my penis size (well, no thank you, I don’t have one and I don’t want to increase it), increase breast size (they increased on their own, and I wish they would go down again), mortages (hell, I rent a great house in a lovely neighborhood for $500 a month, what mortage can beat that?), porn, pleas to help poor disenfranchised Africans, etc.
For the last 3 years, I have tried to out smart the spammers with filters, earthlink’s spaminator, spam assaisin on my barflies.net domain, outright deleting email addresses, etc. To no avail, I still get over 50 spams a day to various email addresses. Rat Bastards.
I have seen several sets of folks out in Blog-land (Derek P.) and on mailing lists use online mail filter services that require all emailers to answer a simple question to see if they are a real person and not a spammer or computer mailer.
I decided to try one today: Knowspam.net. I signed up my 3 email addresses that get the most email, and I will let you know tomorrow how it goes. I usually get the worst of the spam overnight or over the weekend.

Geekdom, here I come…

Over the weekend, Lucky set up her own wi-fi world at home. She lives a few blocks away from the Pine Street Wi-Fi Hot Zone, but was not able to get it to connect at anything above a peep. When we talked today she was planning on convincing her landlord to set-up a hub, so she doesn’t have to go sit at George’s Greek Deli or in front of the movie theatre. For me, that would involve way too many hugs from George, given that I find it creepy when a man you don’t know comes to hug you as you walk into his restaurant…(the young hot guy waiters should be doling out the hugs.) But the food is excellent, and I return. Lucky and I thought that if she sat in front of the theatre that she could put out a tip jar and see if anyone would donate to a poor homeless wi-fi-er…. ;o)
So, the ante was up, as I do have to keep up with the Di Palma’s. I felt the need to figure out how to configure the Road Runner 2WIRE Home Portal (trademarked, I am sure) so that I could free myself from the tyranny of my desk and ethernet cable. Now, here I sit, 15 minutes and a few fiddlings later, on the lovely couch 8 feet from my desk writing this post. Naturally, the phone rang soon as I sat down, and I had to get up, as my phone is 1996 and is wired. Really….

Norton doesn’t like Mozilla?

I have been a dedicated Netscape user since 1994 or there abouts. I use IE only to check my web design sites. I eschew Outlook, and use Netscape Mail.
But there has been a bit of evil lurking underneath the silver cloud of my contrariness. Gurgle. Erg. This evil bubbles up about every 3 weeks since SXSW… If I have Netscape 7.0 open at the same time that Norton Anti-Virus does its automatic Live Update, then for whatever reason, Netscape does not see my user profile anymore.
Imagine my panic the first time this happened, no mail, no bookmarks, no address book. ((Large screams echo’d through the house and down the block)). Now I back up my whole Mozilla folder once a week to the e:\ drive, and when it happens again, it takes me about an hour to get Netscape to recognize the backed up profile.
Given that it just happened again around 5pm today, I am still in high Adrenaline rush over the whole thing. I just disabled Live Update’s ability to update itself, and will only do it myself when everything else is closed.
Anyone have any idea why Norton and Mozilla are not playing well together on Win XP????

Getting Feisty with Spam

Sept. 2001, when I was on a one year contract as an adjunct art professor, we attended an Art Dept. retreat where the evening entertainment was sculpting Spam (the processed meat product) into famous works of art. Yikes! I watched from the sidelines.
The current war against internet spam, I have stepped off the sidelines and have personally joined the fray. All of us get obnoxious emails encouraging us to enlarge our peni (dang, I didn’t know I had one!), increase breast size (actually, I would like to go down a cup or two in size, thank you), or get a mortage (on my income in SoCal? Not a day before I am 85), etc etc etc etc.
In fact, today, Sunday the 4th of May, I had 14 messages awaiting me in my primary email box. Each and every one of them was unsolicited SPAM! Not processed pork coming to me through my computer, but bad email.
About 2 weeks ago, I decided to fight back. Now, when I receive a spam mail obviously intended for a man (Increase your Penis size 2-3 inches!), I kindly email back the sender – “Thank you for your informational email. But unfortunately, I am a female, not a male, and I do not have a penis.” Then for personal entertainment, I thoroughly insult the sender with creative insults that would make the Iraqi Minister of Information proud of me.
Yes, I realize that by replying it now has confirmation that I exist, but it makes me feel a great deal better to know that some email bot is getting a foul multiple syllabic response…. Not that it cares, but I feel a wee bit more empowered against the onslaught.