by Fritz

Round one went to the Ukrainian Spammers…

November 22, 2013 in Uncategorized by Fritz

Despite the captcha, I’ve gotten something over a thousand spam comments in the last month or two. Usually something to do with Tramadol, or Xanax, but with links to what appeared to be legitimate websites. They were coming in at such a rate and I was busy making tents, so I couldn’t really take the time to figure it out.

Today I took a couple of hours to look it over. Turns out that all but a handful of the spam was coming through just two ISPs in the Ukraine. A look at my we stats showed that the Ukraine had grown to be my biggest viewer, countrywise, in just a few months. More hits were coming from Ukraine than from the U.S.

I just blocked the ranges of IP addresses belonging to those two ISPs. I suppose it’s not inconceivable that I could have a legit customer who will now be unable to view my website, but frankly, it seems the risk is acceptable. Despite the flood of Ukrainian traffic, I have yet to receive a single real query from there, and anyway, I’m not blocking the whole country, just two ISPs.

If you left a comment in the last month or two, my apologies for not responding. They got hidden in the flood. I’m working on catching up now.

by Fritz

Round pavilion Indoors

November 20, 2013 in Tents by Fritz

I fit the poles to each tent I make. This consists of making the poles a little bit too long to start with and trying to set-up the tent. Trim a bit off, set the tent up again. Rinse, repeat, until the the poles fit perfectly. I’ve slowly gotten better at it; I can start closer to the right size and trim more each time, getting to just right a lot faster, but one thing I have not been able to control is the weather and Mister Murphy’s effects there on.

Invariably, as soon as you start setting up tent (whose poles do not fit and is therefore not particularly weather resistant) the weather gets blustery. Rain/snow clouds will show up in a previously clear sky within an hour of starting this endeavor.

There is a large space in the building my shop is in. It’s not my space, but I can use it occasionally. The only problem is that it’s really hard to drive stakes into a concrete floor. So, I came up with a sandbag arrangement to replace the stakes and viola. The first run was yesterday and today. Just a little tweaking and it worked like a charm. I was able to fit two tents, indoors. The weather outside was, predictably, beautiful.