Recent blog entries for dalke

19 May 2004 (updated 19 May 2004 at 06:43 UTC) »

About a week ago I started seeing much higher levels of spam on my main mail account. Someone connects and sends emails to multiple "$name@dalkescientific" email addresses, where $name is "lbeman", "lburley249", "lara403", "srd". I own the domain and am the only user; all emails to it get sent to me. That means I'm getting just under 50 spams an hour.

Looking at the emails, the "to" fields seem to repeat. Some of the names listed above occur three times. A cursory scan of the Received lines suggests it's coming from a large number of dial-up or DSL lines so I suspect these emails are sent from hijacked machines.

It's only a bit of a nusiance. Last fall I wrote a program called "sb_culler" which uses the SpamBayes library to detect spam vs. ham. It connects to my email accounts, gets all the emails, and discards the obvious spam (using a high threshold of 90%.)

What would I do if I wasn't a programmer? I wonder if my hosting provider has a way to /dev/null emails except those on a certain whitelist.

3 Oct 2003 (updated 3 Oct 2003 at 02:04 UTC) »
crhodes: Lisp is not big in bioinformatics. There's a whole bunch of C and Perl code, and some Java and Python code, and a bit of Ruby, but very little Lisp.

nymia: Yourdon's "Decline and Fall of the American Programmer" came out in 1993. In 1997, after the events he predicted didn't happen, he came out with "Rise & Resurrection of the American Programmer." Copying from the review:

In 1992, Yourdon wrote The Decline and Fall of the American Programmer, warning of impending loss of leadership by American software engineers. But a great deal has changed in three years, and Yourdon now sees a complete reversal of many of the trends he previously documented, as well as new trends such as the WWW, Java, "Good Enough" Software, and the enormous impact of Microsoft on the world of software and computing, that together signify the Resurrection of American software engineering.

You mention how the first book predates the internet, with the implication that that is more likely to cause a decline, but your argument goes contrary to his second book.

I've read a few of his books ("Decline", "Rise", "Death March"), and haven't been that impressed. Remember, this is a guy who moved from NY to New Mexico because of Y2K. He said something like "NM public infrastructure is the least dependent on high technology so the least likely to fail." (Oh, wait. I live in NM.)

So I now discount his ideas.

But that yes wasn't really a yes, and now it's no more.

2 Jul 2003 (updated 2 Jul 2003 at 23:15 UTC) »

After nine months of dating, and during a trip to Paris (after EuroPython), I proposed, and she said yes.


dyork: That Python vs. Scheme page is out of date with respect to Python. Python 2.1 (or 2.2?) added proper closures, with lexical scoping. Python 2.0 added support for collecting cyclical structures, with improvements to the gc API since then. (Eg, you can get a list of all uncollected references, since cycled with object which implement __del__ are not automatically gc'ed.)

In the meanwhile, working on documentation for one of my clients. Yawn, but it pays the mortage.

dyork? You can use Python-DSV but that effort is being merged with other projects to create the 'csv' module, which will be standard in Python 2.3. For more info, see PEP 305.

Thanks Cardinal! I just put a 'return false;' in the bit of code, so there is NO WAY to quit by accident. I'll just close each window one-by-one. See, I agree with Matthew Thomas on this -- there's no reason to even have a 'quit application'.

Anyone know how to disable "Quit" (Ctrl+Q) in Mozilla?

Here's how I work with Mozilla -- when something is interesting, I open it in a new window. When I finish, I close the window. I'm on a laptop and the mouse control is hard, so I press "Ctrl-W" to close the window. On the other hand, if I don't have time for it, I minimize the window, to read for later.

My laptop is up for days on end. Right now I've an uptime of 9 days. I'll leave windows iconified for several days, because I know I'll get back to them given time.

However, about once every 4 or 5 days I accidentally hit "Ctrl-Q" which is RIGHT SMACK DAB NEXT TO "Ctrl-W". This closes *everything*. All those pages (the ones I'm using for work and the ones I've saved) GO AWAY. There's no way to recover them. Plus, on restart I need to refix settings like "wrap-around search."

I can't find a way to disable Ctrl-Q to quit. I did find an essay by Matthew Thomas which says

It annoys people, because occasionally they choose ``Quit'' by accident, losing their careful arrangement of windows, documents, toolboxes, and the like with an instantaneity which is totally disproportionate to how difficult it was to open and arrange them all in the first place.

Elsewhere, he mentions Bugzilla thread on the topic.

Matthew is right. Quit sucks. I want it ripped out.

In the meanwhile, I'll try to switch to use Alt-F4 to close a window, so I won't accidentally his Ctrl-W. BLECH. The F4 keys on my laptop are too small, and if I hit it wrong I force my machine into suspend mode. At least that doesn't usually cause massive data loss.

19 Sep 2001 (updated 19 Sep 2001 at 01:21 UTC) »

Unbelievable. There are only two google hits for Kirby black beans. These are, IMO, the best canned, preseasoned ("Creole seasoning"), ready-to-eat ("listos para comer") black beans you can buy. I can't find them here in Santa Fe, so I restock when I'm visiting family in Florida. I'm out of beans and won't be back home for a while. Maybe I can get my Mom to send me a care package. Been years since that last happened :)

Mmmm.... Kirby black beans. Soul food for a Miami son.

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