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Lock Box, Mark II

22 November 2017
tags: ,

So I built a little key lock box a while ago. I also have a kitchen safe acquired back when they first came out. But geek that I am, I wanted to go one better. In fact, I mentioned this in a thread about it:

It’s a pity the timer doesn’t have separately configurable “on” & “off” intervals. If I had a lot more time and money on my hands, I’d be thinking about using some kind of micro-controller or single-board computer to do the timing.

Well, I now have more time, a small stack of (now) obsolete single board computers, and, AliExpress wasn’t a thing eight years ago when I made that first box.

Read more…

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Why is ruru67 not on FetLife?

31 January 2016
tags: ,

Well, I was. Obviously. And I expect to be again, which is why I haven’t removed references to my user-id from here. But for those wondering where I’ve gone:

OK, I’m a geek. Small things interest me. Like, how since FetLife user-IDs (e.g., https://fetlife.com/users/337350) are sequentially assigned, one should be able to determine from a user number when the user first showed up, and therefore how experienced in the ways of Fet they possibly should be. I’ve long used this to indicate how I might respond to a post, especially if it’s one that breached group rules and was in need of moderation.

So I thought to myself, if I had a short, representative table of dates and user numbers, a quick glance will give me a fairly accurate idea of when they person first joined.

So what I did was pick a number, e.g. 5,600,000. Looked up that URL, and browsed to the oldest picture on the profile. If you hover the pointer over the “date” (e.g. “1 day ago”), it displays the actual date.

I’d do this for, 5,600,000, 5,600,001, 5,600,002 and so-on, moving on to the next profile if it was missing, if it had no pictures, or if the date was obviously more recent than the profile. I’d do this until I had two dates that looked plausible and agreed with each other. Typically, this took 10 or so profiles. Then I’d move on to a new base number some distance from the previous.

The table I collected looks like this. In fact it’s the entirety of what I collected from this exercise:

5600000 2/1/2016
5500000 7/12/2015
5400000 12/11/2015
5300000 15/10/2015
5200000 19/9/2015
5100000 28/8/2015
5000000 29/7/2015
4800000 9/6/2015
4500000 19/3/2015
4000000 3/11/2014
3500000 28/5/2014
3000000 11/12/2013
2500000 14/6/2013
2000000 8/12/2012
1500000 2/5/2012
1000000 9/7/2011
500000 8/6/2010

I was going to fill a few holes toward the bottom of the table, since those dates were getting a year or more apart. At this point, FetLife tossed a login box at me. I logged back in, and it tossed it back with,

Please contact support@fetlife.com so we can help you get back in.

Bugger, I thought. I’ve tripped over a bomb. Given the “meatlist” incidents, and the maymay stupidity (Google “maymay fetlife”), I’m not surprised there’s the odd landmine in Fet to prevent abuse. I work on web and mail systems, and have personally written such countermeasures, and in discussions on Fet about these, I’d even suggested them myself. But I wasn’t expecting one to go off from what I was doing. Nor was I expecting anything more than a temporary IP throttle or something.

Let’s just be clear. I can’t see any particular rule I’ve broken here. There are rules in the ToU that forbid automated searches, publishing personal data and so-on. All my queries were done manually. (I’m perfectly capable of writing an automated query; but this job didn’t need it.) There weren’t all that many queries – perhaps 150 or so profiles visited over half an hour or so. (I wasn’t counting.) And there is no personal information being collected, just a list of numbers and dates.

So I mailed support@fetlife.com. I told them what I was doing and why. Of course it also had to be the day they were having trouble with their support system. I also created a new account, ruru68, and posted to the FetLife Tech Support group. At least with the temp account I could see if there was any response.

The response came over a day later. And they banned ruru68! They didn’t tell me this of course; the response was just a low level, “we’ll look into it” and some copypasta questions. The sock was active for a while; its disappearance seemed to correspond with the human attention, including a response from Pairadox to the Tech Support post.

Which seems petty.

It was Friday in Vancouver when they finally and uselessly responded, it’s now Sunday here (Saturday in Vancouver) and I’m not expecting a reply until Tuesday. I’d like a reply before then, but, well, ’til then I’m not on Fet. I’m sure I could create a new sock account, but they’ve made clear they’re don’t want that to happen.

And that, dear reader, is why, despite being an active, vehement – and financial – supporter of FetLife, I’m currently offline. And why I’m more than slightly pissed off at the way they seem to automatically assume that I’m of the ilk of FatherJon and maymay, and don’t just turn the tap back on, but instead took additional action and delayed fixing the problem.

 

FetLife: Really?

15 August 2013

If you’re not on FetLife, or not interested in its politics, you might want to skip this one.

So a friend posts an image of a work of art – a painting, photograph, meme, whatever – to FetLife. You’d like to see if that artwork is reference anywhere else; maybe you think it’s by a famous artist, maybe you want to know more about the work, when it was done, what other works by the artist there are. You suspect that more information about it out there.

So here’s what you do. Read more…

When there’s trouble in Paradise

26 April 2013

So you’re enjoying being in your local kink community. Or you’ve recently started coming to events. Or maybe you’ve just joined FetLife and started interacting online. Most of the people you bump into are friendly and helpful, and great to be around.

But there’s a problem. You can’t walk in without one individual monopolising the conversation. Or they follow up every post you make. Perhaps they keep asking you to play with them.

Maybe the attention has become physical. Or when you try to rebuff them, they threaten to out you to your vanilla peers. Or worse.

Whatever the circumstances, you can’t interact properly with the community at large, because there’s this one person ruining the experience for you. What can you do?

I wrote this article to discuss how people should conduct themselves when there is a dispute. It’s aimed at the New Zealand cultural and legal environment, so please don’t post “but it’s not like that here” replies if “here” isn’t NZ. I know. (Not everybody can live here. Sorry.)

Good Faith Kink

30 December 2012

In my previous post, I stated that, “I get a bit tired of all the discussion of RACK or SSC.” Subsequent discussion on FetLife got me thinking about this a bit.

I’ll start by pulling these apart.

SSC, Safe, Sane & Consensual, has been a popular slogan for as long as I’ve been reading about kink, and then some. My main beef with this is the words “safe” and “sane”. They’re absolutes, something you do either is or isn’t “safe” and/or “sane”.

The world I live in isn’t like that. Your safe is my too risky to contemplate, and my sane is your stark raving bonkers. Cases in point: Read more…

The safest player in the room

30 December 2012

I just read this post of FetLife, and it resonates strongly with me.

At a play party a while ago, someone described me as, “the safest player in the room”. I took that as a complement (because the alternative interpretation is that I’m a complete wuss, and I’m just arrogant enough to dismiss that), but here’s the thing:

I fuck up in every scene. Read more…

Story: The Facility

23 September 2012

In several stories, I’ve explored the question of how to do permanent and semi-permanent bondage without turning my characters into monsters. For this story, I’ve dispensed with such inconvenient niceties.

If you want a human being to be your permanent work of art, you might be able to obtain it from The Facility…