The Register interviews a link spammer

If you own a blog, you have probably experienced it: Spammers who fill your comment sections with ads for Viagra, porn and gambling. Its the new nuisance of the web: Link spammers.

The Register has gotten a hold of one of them, and bring us this informative interview:

Interview with a link spammer

So how and why do “link spammers” – as they generically call themselves – do it? Are they the same as the email spammers? What do they think of what they do, ethically? And what can stop them? If you’re affected by this spam, say because you run a blog, or a website, or like the other 99.9 per cent of Net users just come across the stuff, Sam explain the important thing to remember is it’s nothing personal. They’re not targeting you personally. They’re just exploiting a weakness in a system which blossomed just at the time that Google cracked down on the previous method that spammers used, where huge “link farms” of their own web sites pointed circularly to each other to boost each others’ ranking.

[Via Ann Elisabeth's blog]

Developing sites for users with Cognitive disabilities and learning difficulties

From Juicy Studio, although the article focuses on writing for people with “Cognitive disabilities and learning difficulties”, it could just as well have been for “the typical stressed web-user”. Many of the tips has to do with making your site as accessible as possible for anyone stressed out of their wits and trying to find some important information on your site.

Juicy Studio: Developing sites for users with Cognitive disabilities and learning difficulties

When people think about accessibility of web content, there’s a tendency to concentrate on people with visual impairments. People with cognitive impairments and learning difficulties are often overlooked.

Search TV with Google

This is an interesting announcement through the Google Blog:

Google Video is a new product that enables you to search an index of transcripts from recent TV programs. It’s just an early-stage beta product at this point; you’ll only see stills and text snippets from shows that match your search terms, and you can only search shows from a few channels, dating back to December, 2004, when we started compiling the index.

Google promises to keep improving this early version of “video search”. As far as I can tell all the major American TV-channels are represented with transcripts. The question is how much Google will be allowed to share though this system – will we see a video search that will give us access to video segments as well as transcripts and screen shots?

Jon Udells screencast of the life of a Wikipedia article

This one seems to be going the rounds on the blogs I read: Heavy metal umlaut: the movie

Its very interesting to see the evolution of this article through 2 years. To me it shows the power of Wikipedia as an encyclopaedia.

Being an old Flash developer, it was also nice to see him using a system that utilises Flash for presentation, its in my mind clearly the right choice on the web today.

Naturally I became curious to what tool he might have used. From what I can gather by my quick detective spree he is using a tool called Camtasia Studio. It records from the screen in full motion and also allows you to narrate with audio as it is recording. Camtasia outputs the resulting movie as Flash (swf or flv), Windows media (wmv), Quicktime, Realmedia, animated gif or as a projector file (exe).

With a price of US $299 its shouldn’t be out of reach for people that want to easily make guides for software or even for web sites and web applications.

Bush’s second inaugural speech

Scott Rosenberg says what I think much better than I can. But in essence, I am scared out of my whits.

Scott Rosenberg’s Links & Comment

The world is a simple place to Bush. For him, “the moral choice between oppression, which is always wrong, and freedom, which is eternally right” is one that involves no hard calls. And since America represents freedom and freedom is eternally right, it must still be right even when it locks hundreds of people away for life without trial or it tortures prisoners in a war launched on a lie. We are the forces of freedom; we can admit no wrong because we can do no wrong.

How to run a program as another user in Windows

Thank you Gisle, I knew there was support for “sudo” in Windows XP, but I have never used it.

As most of you know, most single users run their Windows setup as administrators, giving any program or script full access through your user at any time. Its one of the largest security problems facing Windows machines.

But there is a way to use Windows with a limited user and quickly change to administrator level when needed.

Opera vs Firefox

I have to admit, I am overjoyed that these kinds of topics are popping up. It means that we have finally come to a point where Internet Explorer has real competition. Well, lets be honest – Internet Explorer as we see it today is as antiquated as when we saw the first versions of Internet Explorer emerge from a Microsoft that had decided the Internet wouldn’t be a commercial success.

Roger Johansson has written up a list of his favourite Firefox extensions and Arve Bersvendsen answers with his Opera equivalents to Firefox extensions

Both articles are worth reading if you are using either of the two browsers. And if you aren’t, then you really should take the time to try either Firefox or Opera now.

RSS feeds and copyright

This dumb ass (also known as Martin Schwimmer of Trademark Blog, has a problem with Bloglines picking up his public RSS-feed and redistributing it. Because they might at some stage serve ads together with the content.

For those of you unfamiliar with Bloglines; its an online feedreader that you can use to read most any feeds from any news source or blog on the net that has its own feed.

Martin: I have the perfect solution: Stop publishing the feed. Its that simple. Crying about copyright problems when someone distributes your content is just plain stupid, especially when you go after a service such as Bloglines. You could just as well attack Radio for making feed available, or any internet provider for distributing your content without your consent.

This “clarification” doesn’t help either. More response can be found over at Scobles.