Thursday, February 28, 2008

BRAWNDO - The Thirst Mutilator

I can't remember how I stumbled across this stuff, but their ads are hilarious. If I see any, I'm buying some.

Thoughts on CAPTCHA

I really dislike those little CAPTCHA things that make you try to read the messed up letters and numbers and type them in a box in order to post something. I know, some people see them here, but I didn't write the blog software.

I imagine that few people actually enjoy filling out captcha boxes, but the alternative is horrible. No one wants to wade through lots of unconnected comments that are really just attempts to either game the search engines or lure you to some shopping website that will never actually ship you any product if you are foolish enough to buy something.

So, while looking around for some captcha alternatives, I had these thoughts

  1. Most of the alternatives seem to expose character based data. If they ever get popular at all, the bots will be all over them just like some of the early captchas.
  2. How easy would it be to defeat a comment submission page written in flex/flash? It seems like that might be hard to script a bot for, but could probably be defeated with a mouse/keystroke recorder of some sort if there were no challenge on the page.
  3. This one is my favorite. Why not do away with captcha all together, but run your comments moderation through your email spam/bayesian filters. Comments get deleted if they aren't approved in a month, and you could set up a rule to automatically accept any comment that made it through the spam filter. The spam filter on my gmail account works terriffic. I think I might be able to actually set that up here. Maybe I'll give it a whirl if I run out of things to do.
Any thoughts?

Thursday, February 21, 2008

Yay! McEwan's is back

Ok, I'm part of a dieing breed, but I was really disappointed when McEwan's Scotch Ale stopped being sold in liquor stores throughout Maryland. In fact, it was getting difficult to find ANY Scottish brew in the state. I'm glad to see it's back after about 6 months.

Here's to your good health!
Slainte Mhath!

ColdFusion dead? It sure doesn't sound like it

Take a peak at the Community Chronicles 0.2 put together by Jared Rypka-Hauer from his interview with Bruce Chizen. It's very uplifting to read an article like this when the "cf is dead" harpies are flapping their gums.

Maybe next year ColdFusion gets its own Super Bowl ad. Well, it's nice to dream, isn't it?

Monday, February 11, 2008

Yahoo Rejects Opening MS Bid

Link to the Guardian article

Generally all first bids are rejected because the company being purchased doesn't want to leave a lot of cash on the table. Personally, I see this merger as being less than inspiring. Yahoo is having trouble competing with the Google behemoth and Microsoft certainly knows how to dish out irrelevant search results. I'm very confident that Microsoft can push Yahoo into obscurity faster than just about anybody else.

I actually liked some of the open apis that Yahoo has delivered in the past year or two as well as their finance page being pretty solid. Unfortunately, that good work always seems to take a back seat to search which doesn't really get me too excited. I think it's difficult to create competitive advantage just with search. It's the SaaS model that continues to be interesting to me in terms of a way to deliver both value to the user and eyeballs to the advertisers.

Generally speaking I don't see this business combination providing much value to users and minimal value to existing shareholders of both companies.

Friday, February 08, 2008

OT:Feed the world from your desk

Help feed the World's hungry and improve your vocabulary at the same time. What a great idea.

Free Rice