Category Archives: Technology and Society

DNS Culprit Found?

Could this explain all the DNS problems that I and others have been having?

One troublesome technique finding favor with spammers involves sending mass mailings in the middle of the night from a domain that has not yet been registered. After the mailings go out, the spammer registers the domain early the next morning.

By doing this, spammers hope to avoid stiff CAN-SPAM fines through minimal exposure and visibility with a given domain. The ruse, they hope, makes them more difficult to find and prosecute.

The scheme, however, has unintended consequences of its own. During the interval between mailing and registration, the SMTP servers on the recipients’ networks attempt Domain Name System look-ups on the nonexistent domain, causing delays and timeouts on the DNS servers and backups in SMTP message queues.

If so, it’s just one more reason to make spamming a capital offense.


For sounds going extinct. It’s an interesting article, and a little disconcerting that there are many sounds with which a certain generation (mine) is familiar that kids today may have never heard, except in the movies. It brings to mind this post from last summer, when I heard a sound that was familiar to me only from WW II movies, though my father heard much more of it than he ever imagined wanting to.

The Fox In Bill’s Henhouse

The New York Times has a story about the explosive growth of Firefox, and how Redmond’s screwed, at least in the short term. There may be only one way out, as Scott Ott amusingly points out.

But another article says that Thunderbird, its email client companion, won’t be able to make as many inroads against Outlook, no matter how insecurity-ridden that program is, because of the energy barrier necessary to change email clients.

Email and Usenet are the biggest things keeping me from switching to Linux for my desktop–I just have too much legacy data in Eudora and Agent, and no obvious way to transition over to things like Thunderbird and Pan. I use Mozilla for browsing, but I’m still using Eudora and Agent, until there’s an open-source solution for this problem.