Spam bots. I loathe you.

I added mailing functionality to an email form I had yesterday afternoon. No big deal. I almost immediately started to get spam email from it – nothing dangerous – but certainly annoying. They would come in waves – three or four at a time. Maybe only a dozen or so an hour. But it was happening as I was driving home from work… which means it was extra annoying as I couldn’t do anything about it until I got home and after the kids went to sleep.

I parried and battled with a spam bot last night. I’d make some changes – thinking they would work. And then another spam email came in. I’d do something else… thinking that might do it. And after some time I’d get another – as if the bot was adapting to my changes. I finally made a more drastic change and that seems to have cleared things up.

This all makes me scratch my head in bewilderment.

  1. Why that website domain? It gets nearly zero traffic – how was I found?
  2. The spam messages contained non-sensical links to basically nothing. They didn’t pitch Cialis or anything like that. Perhaps set ups for a different script?
  3. Why do some people suck enough to bother writing these bots?

Strange SA Flash Player behavior (solved)

In OS X Snow Leopard, for a long while now, every time I’d double-click a SWF, it would open an executable (projector) that I made over a year ago. Not the SWF I wanted, just that projector file. If I tried to change the file association for a SWF to the SA Flash Player (latest), it would change right back to the projector. A serious pain in the ass, especially if people are coming to visit often and you’re having to view different SWFs.

I tried all kinds of things, including Terminal tricks and flips. Still no go. I started to think I was forever banished to the GetInfo functionality of my local SWFs.

On my desktop is a folder of some of the projectors I’ve made. What I did was rename the default projector that wanted to launch every time I double-clicked a SWF. So what happend? It cascaded and found the next one and wanted to use that. Wha? So I renamed my folder instead that contained these projectors. Problem solved. It wouldn’t default to other projectors in any other location.

Freaking weird. So after a lot of frustration the problem is solved, but I’d love to know what caused it.

Tagged :

Photoshop CS5 – I thought I was losing my mind…

I use Photoshop on a nearly daily basis and I have been for many years. It’s awesome. However I was pulling my hair out for MONTHS because something in CS5 wasn’t working like I was used to before. Normally I’ll have many files open at the same time. And because I may drag items from one file to another, I’ll use the Arrange Documents feature.

Now, how it was setup before was that the layout would be setup with drag bars (split view) between the arranged documents… and I love this. However in CS5 every time I opened multiple documents and tried to arrange, each was in it’s own OS X window… arranged yes, but no split view. I looked all over the place to see how to properly set that up. Did I have some extra crap on my drive that broke this somehow? Nope. Some Preference? Nope. I even thought about re-installing the application.

After a lot of searching, I slapped myself in the forehead. Hard. But you might run into this too. Under Window is an option called Application Frame. Make sure that’s checked. It changes the behavior of how Arrange Documents works. And now things are back to normal in the Dolecki Design Haus. F***!

Rant: PHP forum failure

Today I spent hours setting up a local PHP forum on my Mac at work. The thing connected to a SQL database, and after modifications I built up some categories and forums. It worked great.

I sent out a blast email that it was up and running. I then checked it again before leaving work and upon trying to view a topic, bam! A swift kick to the onions… couldn’t find the database?

WTF?

I just packed up and went home anyway. Grr.

Rant: Organic Peanut Butter

We bought organic peanut butter for the kids since on the surface of it, it should be healthier I guess. Is it really? Who knows. I’ll tell you what though, it’s disgusting. It’s complete shit.

You open the jar and it’s a free-flowing oily mass of semi-transparent pond scum. The illustrations of peanuts on the label are the only indications that what’s in this vessel is actually supposed to be peanut-related.

So you spread it… you… kind of pour it… you put it on the bread and it half soaks into the bread and half needs manipulated around the surface of the bread. Disgusting. Should I give this to the kids? Alright… well… it says to refrigerate after opening. Okay.

A few days pass and the kids want peanut butter and jelly again. I don’t know why they love it so when we have so many great options, but why fight it? It’s easy to make.

The shit has congealed with the cold temperature of the refrigerator to an un-spreadable fecal mass.

I give up. This stuff is complete shit and I can’t believe this made it out of some food lab somewhere. Perhaps when it did they thought to themselves, “Hey, they already bought this stuff. Who cares if it’s total rubbish?”

Not again on my watch. No more organic peanut butter ever again. There, now I feel a little better. I think I’ll leave the jar out for awhile so it can turn back into Satan’s watery hinge grease and see if it can fix that squeak on one of the wheels on one of the garage door assemblies.