Posts by lprent

  • Hard News: Together Alone,

    Good to see PA winding a bit more up again. I just finished yesterday running around having a look at why the TS RSS/Atom feeds were breaking (updated libcurl issue). So while I was at it and because I was blocked on a unittest, I did a health check through all of the attached blogs. There are quite a few that look like they're waking up.

    Just have to figure out the systematic issue about how to collect some of the feedburner RSS like RealClimate. Feedburner neither serve a atom or RSS feed any more. Might have to annoy google with writing a flexible scraper.

    Anyone have any suggestions for someone else with an existing solution?

    Since May 2008 • 15 posts Report

  • OnPoint: The Whaledump Saga: Scooby-Doo Edition,

    Nice article Keith.

    Cameron Slater is one of the stupid and trusting malicious douchebags I have ever run across. He seems to believe anything that someone tells him if it fits his pre-existing delusions about him at the centre of his paranoid wee universe. Rachinger was quite clearly scamming him by telling him what he wanted to hear. I still have difficulty understanding why in the hell Slater took so damn long and expended so much of someone else’s cash figuring that out.

    Those who chased the story were wary as hell,

    Indeed, as was everyone at TS especially me when this started popping up on twitter.

    But for all the reasons not to believe Ben, he had hard evidence to back him up: Screenshots of messages and emails between him and Slater.

    Which was what finally convinced me that it looked like Slater had entered a conspiracy to commission the crime of illegally accessing my servers without permission. It caused me to expend a number of days laboriously scanning local and remote log files to see if anyone had actually managed to break into the backend of our site or my servers .

    But what is more concerning is that the police appear to have treated an email asking for information by Rangi Kemara to Nicky Hager as if it was probative evidence. Those requests for confirmation of identity float around between people in the local social media all of the time. We do it specifically to identify people doing identity theft and to find out if proffered information is worth pursuing.

    In the 8 years of being the sysop at TS, I can’t think of an instance from people that I have contacted/been contacted where I have ever been refused confirmation or where I have denied confirmation. Not even from people that I actively disagree with or been in conflict with at the time. It is just something to do to deal with phishing of all kinds. That the police apparently don’t understand that social dynamic on the local nets is rather appalling.

    Since May 2008 • 15 posts Report

  • Hard News: Not yet standing upright, in reply to Matthew Poole,

    It’s a useless protest because it demonstrates nothing when reported as part of the final count.

    The 'Informal' votes are usually just couple of percent even in the most casual local body STV elections. With a good strong campaign behind it, I suspect that an informal vote in this idiotic referendum and with these mundane and mindless flags, we'll get close to or above the highest first count flag. All of those things are usually reported by

    Having a high informal count will probably send a pretty good signal about this silly process, and more importantly it'd stop more people just not voting. Intentionally or unintentionally, this first referendum with these flags seems to designed to do exactly that - get people used to not voting.

    Are you against voting?

    Since May 2008 • 15 posts Report

  • Hard News: Members of the Press, in reply to Steve Curtis,

    I thought they were all wholly owned subsidaries of National Inc?

    Since May 2008 • 15 posts Report

  • Speaker: TPP: This is a fight worth joining, in reply to Kumara Republic,

    Generally the tech sector views it with trepidation. A agreement designed to make it easier to sell milk powder trading off our fastest growing export sectors? Haven't found a tech manager/investor yet who views it with anything apart from disquiet.

    Doesn't offer us anything and gives us the negative creativity of US style patent/copyright system. Personally I didn't spend a lot of time and effort becoming a greenfield programmer so I could start acting as a lawyer.

    Since May 2008 • 15 posts Report

  • Speaker: TPP: This is a fight worth joining,

    Should be an interesting debate about the TPPA between Wayne Mapp and Jane Kelsey on opposite sides tonight in Auckland.

    As far as I’m aware it s about the first time that one of the supporters of the TPPA has fronted up. Personally I suspect that Jane Kelsey will cream him.

    Since May 2008 • 15 posts Report

  • Hard News: First, admit it's broken, in reply to Sacha,

    I reckon addressing another example like that would have strengthened your post.

    Entirely likely, however writing posts is not like writing code for me. That I'm rather disciplined at, quite analytical about, and feels entirely natural to be working on (in fact it is usually hard to stop me prior to an exhausted collapse).

    Writing text is a whole different game. I write when I'm annoyed and about whatever I am annoyed about at the time. The irritation usually comes through in the post. But really if you have a look around the world at the non-professional non-media bloggers then you'll find that is often what blogging is all about.

    I could be writing about the pain of trying to get a dual boot between android and ubuntu on my new nexus7 (what I'm doing at present), and between the technical instructions about how to do it, you'll find a whole lot of detail on "why did they make this so freaking HARD!!!!". Or why Orcon's customer support has gone totally down the toilet and who knows of a good alternate supplier...

    However since I'm writing about a technique most widely used in blogging I wrote about a blogger lying by omission..

    Since May 2008 • 15 posts Report

  • Hard News: First, admit it's broken,

    Russell: It was pretty damn depressing writing in detail about another idiot slagging off authors at TS using the same tired tactics of selective omission yet again. I'd finally finished my project at work after nearly three years, wandered off home determined to start writing text again rather than just code, and found Pete George acting as a parrot for Whaleoil. It was a far more depressing way to end the day digging out the relevant rebuttal than it probably was for you to read it.

    Afterll I can remember doing a interview with you on exactly the same topic two projects ago - that was what? 5 years ago

    Moreover he was having a go at a named blogger (Mike Smith) because of their part-time employment that they took up after they became a blogger. This from someone who has pontificated that there was nothing to fear for people writing under their own names. Yeah right!

    That particulaly annoyed me. It is no wonder that younger bloggers with professions outside of the media (where waving your name around is a professional requirement, like charm is for a politician) virtually always write under psuedonyms. It isn't what they say is usually any less valid. It is because there is always another fuckwit around trying to attack bloggers through their professions rather than dealing with what they said.

    The Daily Blog? It just happened that I read the post from Pete on the 31st and wrote a response (on my first untasked day in months). I'd promised bomber a early post and that kind of used up my available time since I was scheduled to be drifting around the country for the next few days. So I sent it to them since they were starting the next day. I also figured that since Pete is banned at TS, he'd be able to respond to my criticism there. Looks like they toned down my title, corrected some grammar and typos and put it up.

    I guess they put it up in the media section because there wasn't a post to go there and it was about an endemic problem (making a story work via omission) displayed across much of our local media. Patrick Gower springs to mind after watching his performance at the Labour conference. It is worse in the blogs, but watching the media it is quite evident that they frequently do the same

    But really, what do you expect me to do? Let any half-arsed writer inaccurately besmirch people and the site I am responsible for without responding? To let that same behaviour to deter other people from wanting to write in blogs unless that a safely ensconced in retirement, secure jobs, or journalism in some shape or form?

    So I corrected the inaccuracies and expressed my opinions in public. Exactly the same way that I have done for other bloggers and journalists in the past. For that matter with politicians of almost every hue. As I intend to do when required in the future (now that I have some more time after product release). I'm only interested in affecting people's appalling behaviour and have no particular interest in being liked by them...

    So if you don't want to see this kind of post from me again, then just keep beavering away in your way commenting on the media. I will do it my way which derives more from the net than the media.

    BTW: I will probably repost at The Standard later to make sure that the SEO pops it up high against Pete George's name and to allow further commentary.

    Since May 2008 • 15 posts Report

  • Hard News: How to make more awesome use…,

    Nice upgrade.. I will have to borrow a few ideas when we release my current work project and I have a few spare weeks for doing site refurbishment.

    Also good to see on the waffling rankings that TS is rated in the rankings along with all of the gamers. But where is kiwiblog? I guess I should have a look over there to find out.

    Since May 2008 • 15 posts Report

  • Hard News: How to make more awesome use…, in reply to Lilith __,

    Re search: as a suggestion.

    We're using Sphinx search at the standard. Runs as a cron service doing delta updates every 15 minutes or so. Does a full recalc of the entire site sometime in the morning. Reads directly from the SQL server. You can pretty well custom fit it to any data source.

    I used a plugin from Percona that I hacked to fit our needs. Mostly because I didn't want multiple instances of sphinx running directly from apache.

    Searches are lightning fast and there are a few badly documented features like @author name to search for comments by a particular commentator or poster. Currently on my fix list to upgrade and document.

    Since May 2008 • 15 posts Report

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