screen-saver combats spam

The BBC reports that Internet portal Lycos has made a screen-saver that “endlessly requests data from sites that sell the goods and services mentioned in spam e-mail. Lycos hopes it will make the monthly bandwidth bills of spammers soar by keeping their servers running flat out.” The screen-saver is expected to be available in a Mac OS X version when it is released. More…

The screen-saver is available now, for Windows, OS X, and Mac Classic. It can be downloaded from I encourage everyone to download it. I hate spammers!

The screen-saver is pretty cool. It displays stats on how many screen-savers are running around the world, what your contribution is, and what site(s) are being targeted. You can also submit spam URLs to the site (above) for addition to the database.

One difference I have noticed between the Mac and PC version, is the Mac version draws lines on the map as spam servers are being zapped, kind of like the “missle” lines on the global map in the movie War Games. The PC version doesn’t seem to do that. It only displays the stats. Update: My PC version does seem to be drawing the lines now. Maybe it’s just a bit buggy.

I’ve only been using the screen-saver for a few minutes, and it is having trouble connecting to the Lycos servers. I’m sure this thing spread like wildfire, and they are having bandwidth troubles of their own. But don’t be discouraged, download the screen-saver and use it. It will connect eventually.

The site listed above, for downloading the screen-saver seems to be clogged up. They were probably overwhelmed with requests for the screen-saver. Keep trying, you’ll get through eventually. See this post for an update.

Yet another update:
From BBC News…
“A contentious campaign to bump up the bandwidth bills of spammers by flooding their sites with data has been dropped…” more…

Anna Nalick

Anna Nalick: Wreck of the Day

This weeks Free Download from the iTunes music store (requires iTunes) is a song by Anna Nalick. It is awesome. The entire album, Wreck of the Day, sounds great. You can hear samples from all the songs on the album on her site ( I want this album now, but it won’t be released until late January, 2005. You can pre-order it at Amazon now. I predict it’s going to be a big hit.

In South Korea, email is for old people

In South Korea, email is for old people: “Want to feel old? A survey of a middle, high school, and college students in South Korea found that over two-thirds of students there rarely or never use email and supposedly young people are starting to think of email as something overly formal that you use only for business purposes or to communicate with your less tech savvy parents or grandparents who are still stuck in the Nineties (when email was king). For them it’s all about text and instant messaging, and by comparison, even email seems like an incredibly slow way to communicate. Do they even have postal service in Korea anymore?”

[ Via Engadget ]

I ♥ Huckabees

I Love Huckabees

3.5 Stars

Last night we saw I ♥ Huckabees at parkway. anne marie didn’t seem to care much for it, but I thought it was great. It was very funny, and had some great performances. I did reduce its rating due to length though. It could have used some editing. Although it is less than two hours long, it did seem to drag in severl spots. I think the perfect length for this film would have been about an hour. I would recommend this film. If you don’t catch it in theaters, then you should put it on your rental list.

LightCatcher Studio at MAMA

LightCatcher Studio

LightCatcher Studio, co-founded by a good friend of ours, will be exibiting their fine art landscape / nature photography at the Fall Festival of the Arts (formerly known as the MAMA (Mill Avenue Merchants Association) festival) in Tempe, Arizona. The fest runs Friday (12/03) thru Sunday (12/05). I encourage everyone to visit the festival and stop at the LightCatcher booth, you’ll see some wonderful photographic work.

When you stop by the booth, tell them you read about ‘LightCatcher’ on ‘one digital life’. It won’t get you a discount, or anything like that, but it will be fun (for me) to know that someone actually read this and went by the booth.

Anne Marie and I will be down in Tempe for the weekend. If you stop by the LightCatcher booth, you may see us there.

Here is some booth location info I just received from LightCatcher… “Our booth is located on Mill Avenue, across from Cold Stone Creamery. A large banner on the booth bearing our company name, LightCatcher Studio, will help guide your way.”

Watson now available for free

Watson now available for free: Following Panic’s lead, Watson developer Dan Wood has released his popular Mac OS X application free of charge–sort of. Mac users who want a copy must find and download it off the Web (the latest version is currently available on the Yahoo! Watson Users Group) and then enter their name, in the e-mail field, and BNVQTTW 4P3SMC7 R7L8S3V 1XGKGG7A in the registration field. As previously reported, Wood sold the Watson technology to Sun in June. A Java version was supposed to be released for Mac OS X, but Sun has apparently put it on the back burner for the foreseeable future. It should also be noted that some of Watson’s tools are no longer functional, and Wood said he cannot update the program because of the deal with Sun.

[ Via MacMinute ]

The story above, from Mac Minute, states that the Watson installer is available on the Yahoo! Watson Users Group, but they have apparently been swamped with download requests because they have exceeded their bandwith limit. I was able to find a copy of Watson 1.7.5 (the current version) here. I’ve also made it available for download from my server by clicking below.


The fear: exploding cellphones

The fear: exploding cellphones: “You can officially stop worrying about brain cancer and start worrying about third-degree burns—the Associated Press has just done a story about exploding cellphones and how the Consumer Product Safety Commission keeps getting more and more complaints about cellphone batteries exploding or causing fires (they’ve received 83 such complaints over the past two years). There’s even the obligatory quote from the head of the Wireless Consumers Alliance (which we’ve never heard of, but sounds very impressive) about how basically making cellphone smaller and smaller is turning them into little bombs. Little bombs that we use to make phone calls, that is. The biggest source of the problem: sketchy third-party batteries.”

[ Via Engadget ]

Apple launches new student site with blog

Apple launches new student site with blog: ‘Apple has launched a new version of its student web site to promote its products to college students. The new site sports a completely new design, recommended solutions for certain college majors (Arts/Creative, Humanities, General Education, Sciences, and Professional Studies), integration with the online Apple Store, and a student blog–a first for the company.’

The home page of the student site uses Flash. That’s the first time I remember Apple doing that.

[ Via MacMinute ]