Ming the Mechanic:
Weblog Programming

The NewsLog of Flemming Funch
 Weblog Programming2002-12-15 23:59
by Flemming Funch

I follow a bunch of weblogs where techies are talking about technology related to weblogs. The kind of people I mostly pay attention to in that regard are those who speak in a language I understand, like Dave Winer or Jon Udell or many more. I'm an experienced programmer, but there are many discussions that are way over my head and that I couldn't catch up with without weeks of study, and they're often about standards that take years to evolve. But a guy like Dave Winer will come up with an idea, and a couple of days later it is written up as a standard, and a few days later several people have created implementations of it. RSS and XML-RPC are examples of that. That's a rhytm I like better. Really good ideas should be simple to explain and you should be able to see benefits from them really quickly. I'd like to play more in that field in the future. But for now there are still some more basic things I need to finish in this NewsLog program, and there's a major reorganization of the NCN site that I've left half done. But then I want to play more with inter-operability with other brands of weblog software, and cool features that are worth sharing.

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16 Dec 2002 @ 02:29 by jazzolog : How's This For A Programming Problem?
"As chief scientist of the Internet portal Yahoo, Dr. Udi Manber had a profound problem: how to differentiate human intelligence from that of a machine.

"His concern was more than academic. Rogue computer programs masquerading as teenagers were infiltrating Yahoo chat rooms, collecting personal information or posting links to Web sites promoting company products. Spam companies were creating havoc by writing programs that swiftly registered for hundreds of free Yahoo e-mail accounts then used them for bulk mailings.

"'What we needed,' said Dr. Manber, 'was a simple way of telling a human user from a computer program.'"


Free registration necessary.  

16 Dec 2002 @ 02:48 by ming : Who's a human
Yeah, that's a rather widespread problem. One thing they've settled down on is requiring people to interpret a graphic which shows some letters, but which shows them in an irregular pattern, covered with lines, which are hard for a computer to read. They use that when one creates a new Yahoo account.  

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