News archive December 2006 - Koos van den Hout

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2006-12-31 (#)
"Paid" wardriving does exist, when you gather data that has value to for example cell phone companies: NYC Taxicabs to Test Cell Signal Strength an AP news item about Ericsson installing small receivers in taxicabs in New York to do measurements of cell phone signal strength. I have been thinking about this, if you gather enough data about radio signals and other location-dependent measurements in one go maybe it could be commercially viable to just drive (or let a unit be driven) around the country. I can imagine radio and television reception data (especially with the change to digital services) is also interesting.

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2006-12-23 (#)
Peter Gutmann has written a good article A Cost Analysis of Windows Vista Content Protection where he analyzes the impact (in cost and negative consumer experience) that microsoft windows vista will have on the computer industry. A scary future for PC hardware?

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2006-12-20 (#)
Wardriving results 7 December - 18 December: 738 new networks with GPS locations. And then the keyboard connector on my laptop broke, so I can't power the GPS puck. Only with the usb cable, and the usb connector on the laptop has always been flaky (usb hotplug manager makes interesting beeping noises when I touch the cables).

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2006-12-13 (#)
Doing the rounds: an article in the Toronto Globe and Mail: Why online should be off limits in the bedroom. Strange to me as I have stacks of books to read which I usually read before bedtime. The article looks like it is written from the perspective of a woman with her own hangups about this subject. The wired article 'You and Me and Laptop Makes Three' has a great comment by 'The PeopleGeek': Even Eve had an Apple in her hand when she went to lay down. Adam took a byte or two with her..

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2006-12-12 (#)
Ik volg de laatste dagen het nieuws over de omschakeling van analoge tv zenders in Nederland naar digitale (DVB-T). Veel informatie hierover op Radio en TV Zenders in Nederland. Het aparte aan de overschakeling was dat de frequenties voor het standaard DVB-T pakket (publieke omroepen) pas beschikbaar kwamen toen de analoge zenders uitgeschakeld waren. Er zijn (buiten de Randstad) geen extra frequenties beschikbaar omdat alles aan buurlanden grenst. Ik had eigenlijk na de omschakeling nog wat berichtgeving verwacht over problemen met de beschikbaarheid maar tot nog toe geen woord in de media.

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2006-12-08 (#)
While checking the logs of The Virtual Bookcase to see if I made any errors in the pages, I noticed another webbot requesting loads of pages, the bot related to I looked at their site and noticed that they are no search engine, they just scour the web looking for people having opinions about their paying customers. Which means: those requests by their spider will never result in visitors to The Virtual Bookcase. I only want to allow webbots that result in visitors to the site. So, I wanted to know what to put in robots.txt to stop them.. couldn't find that on their website so I asked via e-mail. The answer is (paraphrased): "We decide on our own which sites to visit.". My answer is to block them.

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2006-12-07 (#)
Wardriving results 27 November - 6 December: 1240 new networks with GPS. A tour through Lunetten (part of Utrecht) got me quite a number of new networks. Otherwise no real purpose wardriving, just bringing the laptop along on visits.

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2006-12-06 (#)
I finally redid a lot of the page design on The Virtual Bookcase. All is done with stylesheets now (no more crummy html 3.2 with tables in tables for making borders) and I created a bunch of new graphics for the site. I learned new stuff about graphic design, photographing and working with The Gimp in the process. For example, the bookcase-image in the background of the header took me about an hour to set up, photograph and adjust to get the result I wanted. I do like the current result although I am pondering some more changes. Time also goes into testing whether a neat stylesheet or image trick also works in other popular browsers (not everybody uses Firefox).

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2006-12-05 (#)
Een popup die zelfs door firefox weet heen te komen (Grrrr! geen nedstat meer gebruiken!) komt met een advertentie voor een sms ringtone dienst met de mooie tekst:
De eerste ringtone is gratis. Dit is een abonnementsdienst. De kosten bedragen EUR 3,00 per ringtone (+ sms download kosten), 3 ringtones per week.
.. enge bedragen en ik vraag me af of er nog een verificatieslag achter zit of de eigenaar van het telefoontoestel het er wel mee eens is. Zoiets als dit verstoort natuurlijk enorm het gebruik van de originele site.

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Meningen zijn die van mezelf, wat ik schrijf is beschermd door auteursrecht. Sommige publicaties bevatten een expliciete vermelding dat ze ongevraagd gedeeld mogen worden.
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