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~ Archive for Life ~ hates spores



A weblog named “AntiSpore” was recently created to take offense to the game Spore, by EA, in which the player gets to create animals and watch them run around in their environments. If you don’t give them mouths, they will die of hunger. If you don’t give them meat, then they will become vegetarians.

It all seems to make sense.

AntiSpore doesn’t think so. Rather AntiSpore has decided that EA’s game is a direct attack on Christian views, based on the fact that the animals will change to their environments. Now, I am a devout Christian myself, but I don’t see how Spore, a game about creating, is an affont on Christian values.


its international free hug day. alan is stoked.


Free hugs

Free huggers: Remember to put on your deodorant!

best buy is evil.


Evil Best Buy

One day, Best Buy and Gamestop will take over the world with their tweaked, high prices. Best Buy workers will allow incompetence to proliferate in the community, and Gamestop will allow trade-ins of small children for 10% of their original worth. Gamestop will then sell the children to families in exchange for badly refurbished ones.

le petit overload. alan demonstrates public’s understanding of computer security.


I am constantly asked, “How quickly can you take down someone’s computer?” and am constantly told, “No one’s dumb enough these days to open a virus.” Well virus or not, contrary to standard belief, the public really doesn’t check any more in regards to security before opening a file.

In a recent talk I was asked to demonstrate how hard it would be to shutdown someone’s computer through overload. I opened a text editor, created a looping batch file, packaged it in an executable, and plugged a phony icon into it. The whole process took less than a minute, since it consisted of typing “start start start start start …” and then having the same process launch: painfully “Hello World.” level programming anyone can do.

I threw the file online as a torrent, said it was the crack to the upcoming Red Alert 3, and watched hundreds of computers freeze and crash despite putting “will cause computer to crash” and “fake” in the file name and description.


Download a similar looping batch file here

airport wifi bypass


Many people ask me, “Alan, how are you always mobile blogging from airports. Doesn’t that cost a lot of money?”

Well yes. It does. But there are three ways to get past the “airport required redirect”:

1. Most airports don’t block image extensions. Hence, add ?.gif, ?.jpg , etc., to the end of each URL you want to access.
2. This ones simple. Try out generic user names and passwords. Most of the time you’ll end up with a password being “default”.
3. Boingo, which seems to be everywhere offers free internet for mobile users. Just set your browser up to appear to be coming from an iPhone.

If you’re still stuck after this, benefit the economy and pay for the wi-fi. Otherwise simple packet decryption should let you easily bypass wep/wpa protection.

city tagging at harvard


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airtran is game over. alan suffers blunt trauma.



My flight to Boston was quite unpleasant. I blame the constant pestering of Male Flight Attendant.


alan mobile blogs from the atlanta airport



I think Burger King took over Atlanta’s airport, because I can’t find my classic good ol’ Mickey D goodness. I ended up grabbing an omlet at a sit-in place, because I’ll be here for a while. However, without the Golden Arches, I might just not make it through the day. How will I survive without high fat content intake? If this is my last blog entry, goodbye cruel world.

trillian astra is nice. but does the alpha release intentionally have no security? alan investigates.


Trillian Astra

I’m confused. Very confused. Poking around the Trillian website, I found a little link in the directory:

Clicking this, theoretically, would have caused direct download of the newest version of the closed Trillian Astra alpha release. Of course, I gave the downloading a try, only to be presented by a simple script based password prompt. I was too lazy, and not that interested in downloading Trillian in the first place, so I thought I would just let this little opportunity to explore go by. Little did I know, simply typing in “beta” and “beta” for both the username and the password would result in direct access to the download.

Is this intentionally easy? Maybe? Anyway, surprised at my success, I went ahead and downloaded the installer and booted up the new Trillian. I was greeted by an Alpha release login page.

“So it really isn’t that easy…” I thought. Well it was. Trying “beta” and “beta” again failed, but I got a port connection error. I changed my port, with a couple of guesses to 4444, and suddenly my password string was longer than “beta”. I thought this was just some sort of password protection, but I clicked login anyway.


Successful login. Honestly, I don’t believe Trillian intended to protect this alpha release, but just wanted to prevent overload of servers. If protection was intended though, I suggest Trillian get right on fixing it, or just release it to everyone. It’s pretty good, afterall.



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誰也沒想、大陸出的 Nintendo Wii盜錄強了吧。先打開時、看了也很可笑、但是想想、中國人是要有很好的電子工程系直覺才可能做出這樣超小的電動機。Vii的裡面就有兩個小東西、一種6×6小型電路板和一塊金屬加重量。

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