Autarchy of the Private Cave

Tiny bits of bioinformatics, [web-]programming etc

    Archive for the 'Misc' Category

    Do not use Hermes Paketversand for packages delivery in Germany

    2nd September 2014

    Note: this is a rant. Unless you are specifically interested in the subject (keywords: delivery, hermes, failure, amazon), you should not read this.

    I buy a lot on amazon.de – this is easy and convenient. Most of the time it also works good, with items arriving as promised or (mostly) earlier. Sometimes there are minor problems, but nothing worth remembering or mentioning. However, my latest order, “delivered” by Hermes Paketversand, was such a spectacular failure, that it deserves a blog post.

    My item was expected to arrive on Tuesday, the 5th of August. In the evening of that day we found an important message from Hermes in our mailbox, saying that We were unable to deliver your package, we come again tomorrow, on the 6th of August. Hmmm. That is strange. My wife was at home in the 1st half of the day, when Hermes, supposedly, was delivering my package (I learned about their delivery time later from delivery tracking page). This is what I would call a minor problem, not really an issue. Maybe, for some reason, the door bell wasn’t heard, and our delivery did not reach us. But it comes next day, right? Right?…

    There was absolutely nothing – not even a note – delivered in the following 4 days. On Saturday I started worrying. I checked Amazon package delivery status (detailed), which said that we have missed 3 (!) delivery attempts between 9:00 and 13:00 on August 5-7. I could have believed one miss, but three in a row, with my wife at home… that is extremely strange, to say the least. Anyway, I was ready to forgive this, as long as I get the package.
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    Posted in Misc, Rant | No Comments »

    The Mysteries of BitCoin

    24th November 2013

    BitCoin logoDid you know that the creator(s) of BitCoin is/are unknown?
    Did you know that the account which generated the Genesis Block is estimated to have up to 0.6-1 million BitCoins?
    Did you know that the creator(s) of BitCoin disappeared from any BitCoin-related discussion and development forums a long time ago?
    Did you know that 3 journalist investigations aiming to identify BitCoin creator(s) all ended up with different results?

    This information is not available in one piece, but there are some of the pieces at the following URLs:

    A mistery hidden in the Genesis Block
    Who is Satoshi Nakamoto?
    Four years and $100 million later, Bitcoin’s mysterious creator remains anonymous
    Ted Nelson Says That Bitcoin’s Satoshi Nakamoto Is Shinichi Mochizuki
    Where in the World is Satoshi Nakamoto?
    The Rise and Fall of Bitcoin

    Below is a huge graphical brief history of Bitcoin, including the continued growth of its exchange rates.
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    Posted in Links, Misc | No Comments »

    Outlook 2010: MAPI was unable to load the information service gwmsp1.dll

    24th November 2013

    If you try starting Outlook 2010 and get an error like this:
    “Outlook 2010 cannot open your default e-mail folders. An unexpected error has occurred. MAPI was unable to load the information service gwmsp1.dll”

    you can easily fix this problem by going to Control Panel, clicking on Mail, then Show Profiles button.
    Remove everything that’s there. Now start outlook again.

    Note: removing all the mail profiles will disable your Novell Groupwise client.
    If you still want to use non-Outlook email profiles, then the better solution is to manually create a new mail profile for Outlook.

    Source: CNET forums.

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    Posted in Misc, Notepad | No Comments »

    The list of spammers emails

    13th November 2013

    All sane people agree that spam is a blight of the internet, be it email spam or comments spam or forum spam or any other form of unsolicited, blatant, shameless, out-of-context advertising. Multiple spam-fighting and spam-stopping systems are being developed.

    With automated spam, automated spam-fighting systems might be the only choice. Sending rightfully angry emails to ISPs to notify about their customers violating service agreements is probably a waste of effort (something tells me most of these complaints end up in the trash folder, or even in the… spam folder). However, I get a feeling that some spam is not automated – it appears to have been actually prepared and sent by a human. (Alternatively, spammers behind those spams simply have better software.) Anyway, some spams seem to contain valid contact data of the advertized entity – like an email.

    The resulting idea is very simple and was probably already implemented somewhere by someone: simply publish online contact emails of the entities which, apparently, had chosen spam as the primary means of advertising. These emails will be sooner or later harvested by spammers, added to spam databases, and will start getting progressively more spam.

    There are a few drawbacks to this approach:

    • knowing spam-collection points enables “black PR”-like mass-mailings in the name of one’s competitor, double-hurting the innocents; I do not see a clear method of preventing this, other than by concealing spam collection methods;
    • human intelligence is required to identify if the contained email truly belongs to the advertised entity; this is fairly time-consuming, especially when scaled up; a possible solution (with its own problems) would be to build an online gateway for submitting curated spam samples, thus distributing the workload to all the participating volunteers;
    • the next logical step is actually harvesting and then publishing all the emails from the advertised website;
    • the biggest drawback, however, is low efficiency of this approach; increasing spam percentage will only be a mild nuisance, which isn’t likely to propagate high enough to affect spam-deciders; also, indirectly spamming someone’s mailbox will result in the loss of time, which could have been otherwise used for facebook and other important activities :)

    What do you think? Should such a method be used?

    Below I provide a few sample records from real spam comments, which had true-looking emails. I’m including some extra meta-data. Ideally, this should be stored in some kind of a database.

    Submitted on 2013/11/13 at 15:23 GMT
    Author : Виктор (IP: 95.134.110.37 , 37-110-134-95.pool.ukrtel.net)
    E-mail : aionind@yandex.ru
    E-mail : sale@aion-industry.ru
    E-mail : info@aion-industry.ru
    Submitted on 2013/11/26 at 8:53 GMT
    Author : Виктор (IP: 95.134.146.235 , 235-146-134-95.pool.ukrtel.net)
    E-mail : kvazargr@yandex.ru
    E-mail : info@kvazar-gr.ru
    Submitted on 2013/11/28 at 7:24 GMT
    Author : Виктор (IP: 95.134.117.155 , 155-117-134-95.pool.ukrtel.net)
    E-mail : relevater@yandex.ru
    E-mail : info@relevate.ru
    E-mail : support@relevate.ru
    E-mail : billing@relevate.ru

    There’s definitely a need for a public database, API keys, and quorum algorithms…

    Author : casinoworka (IP: 91.207.4.201 , 201.4.207.91.unknown.SteepHost.Net)
    E-mail : pharmacywork7777777@gmail.com
    E-mail : info@prowessmedical.com

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    Posted in Misc, Web | No Comments »

    Where are you going?

    21st June 2012

    This is just a “Go to” dialog of the really good Notepad++ editor.

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    Posted in Misc | No Comments »

    R functions for regression analysis cheat sheet

    29th May 2012

    Original PDF.
    My local copy.

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    Posted in Bioinformatics, Links, Misc | No Comments »

    The genetics of orchids and dandelions

    1st May 2012

    Quite an interesting article on the genetics of behavior.

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    Posted in Links, Misc | No Comments »