Archive for November, 2004

Nov 30 2004

Screensaver tackles spam websites

Published by under General

In this BBC article: BBC NEWS | Technology | Screensaver tackles spam websites, Lycos is reported releasing a screensaver that “allows users to fight back” against the spammers. The screensaver, whilst running, continuously requests data from known “Spam” sites, effectively increasing their bandwidth costs and driving them out of business.

Correct me if I’m wrong but that sounds pretty much like a distributed denial of service (DDOS) attack.

If the screensavers were directed at Amazon or Microsoft I’m pretty sure that Lycos would be hauled up in court before anyone had the chance to download it…. so why can they get away with directing the attack at a site that someone has dubbed as being a “spam” site?

One response so far

Nov 26 2004

Earth Observatory

Published by under Photography

Recently I’ve really been getting into the NASA Earth Observatory website. Since subscribing to their RSS feed I’ve been keeping up to date with the latest images that they have been releasing.

Today however I dicided to see what the had in the way of images of Guernsey and the rest of the Channel Islands. I had to dig around a bit, but I finally found this image. The image is mainly supposed to be of a cloud of blooming Phytoplankton off the french coast but it also includes the Channel Islands.

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Nov 26 2004

4x4s ‘should carry health warning’

Published by under Current Affairs

Let battle commence!!!

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Nov 26 2004

Amazon finds VAT loophole

Published by under Current Affairs

From this blog it would appear that Amazon has finally got fed-up with Play.com taking all their UK DVD sales and have decided that if you can’t bet them, join them. So now Amazon has opened up an office in Jersey.

Now people purchasing goods from Amazon.co.uk will have the opportunity to purchase their goods from the Jersey branch.

Amazon and Play are able to take advantage of a taxation loophole that allows goods to be purchased tax-free from the Channel Islands, so long as the cost of the goods is less than (I believe) £18. Which is perfect for people selling DVDs, videos and (cheaper) computer games. The question is, how many companies will be able to do this before the loophole of closed?

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Nov 25 2004

Funniest American Quote!

Published by under Current Affairs

I was listening to the news on the radio this morning and heard the funniest quote from the American Secretary of State, Colin Powell. He was speaking on the current state of affairs in Ukraine re: their disputed government elections.

Colin Powell said that the US cannot accept the result as they had not investigated the allegations of fraud in the voting.

Err…. how did George W. Bush get into presidency in America? Wasn’t that election fraud? And how many U.N. election investigators did he allow to check the results? Wasn’t it a big echoing ZERO?

But then the guy that lost in the Ukrainian elections was pro-American, so you can’t really expect America to stand by and do nothing…. is that the sound of B-52 engines I can hear warming up?

If only the Americans were as pasionate about election fraud as the Ukrainians the world might be a safer place right about now.

One response so far

Nov 24 2004

ImageManager plugin for WordPress is INSECURE!!!

Published by under PHP

I have just been playing around with my own website to see what I can and can’t do as a general “Joe Public” user. It turns out that with the basic installation of the ImageManager plugin that is available for the WordPress blogging system it is possible for anyone to upload, edit or even delete pictures from the server.

I haven’t played enough to see if it is possible to run malicious code on the server yet… but I’m sure it wouldn’t be that difficult.

Needless to say I have disabled the plugin on this blog, so don’t even try it!!!!

One response so far

Nov 22 2004

Theory Test Under My Belt

Published by under GSX-R750

This morning I attended the Guernsey College of Further Education to take my Motorcycle Theory Test. I had 15 minutes for the practice/introduction to the test and 40 minutes for the actual test. I think I managed to make the practice stretch as far as 5 minutes, and that really was getting boring. The actual test I think I managed to read the questions three times and sat there for a while pondering the answers and still only managed to make it last 15 minutes.

The results… a disappointing 33 out of 35 (30 needed to pass). One of the questions I got wrong was for Hazard awareness and the other was Guernsey specific. So I now have a theory test pass certificate, all I need to do is pass my practical test and I’ll be able to ride where ever I like in the world (personal safety considerations allowing).

7 responses so far

Nov 22 2004

plotMe by Phrixus

Published by under PHP

My friend Phrixus is currently working on a weblog system that is based around the world. No, not the physical world, but an image of the world.

The idea is that he will be able to graphically represent his blog on the map when travelling the world.

A preview of the system to date is available at http://www.phrixus.co.uk/pxs and he’s got some interesting demo data at http://www.phrixus.co.uk/pxs/multiplotter.php.

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Nov 22 2004

Single DVD+-RW into Dual DVD+-RW

Published by under Technology

On saturday night I set about the task of finding out if my recently purchased Sony DVD rewritable drive was a single layer (4.3Gb) or double layer (8.6Gb) burner. As it turns out my DVD drive is only a single layer burner. However, I came across an interesting article that demonstrated how this drive could be upgraded to a dual layer drive simply by upgrading the firmware in the drive from Sony firmware to Lite-on firmware.

The located and downloaded all the required software and firmware binaries and followed the instructions to the letter. The result is that M$ Windows XP and Nero both now think that my drive is a Lite-On dual layer dvd burner. Now I just need to get my hands on some discs to test it out.

I haven’t got the links to the files and articles on me at the moment but as soon as I get home this evening I’ll post them here.

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Nov 17 2004

Trouble at Google

Published by under General

I’ve been having intermitent problems over the past few days whilst trying to access Googles GMail service. At first I thought it was just a problem with my internet connection or DNS but now it seems that the GMail servers have collapsed.

2 responses so far

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