Trackbacks and Pingbacks and Blog Spam, Oh My!

A.K.A. Let's see how difficult it is to write a script that programmatically solves one of the most popular WordPress Captcha plugins. [tl;dr: It's not very hard at all.]

So, I stepped away from this blog for a brief period of time and, upon return, noticed an aggregation of spam comments throughout many of my posts. Blog spam is an ongoing epidemic but one that I didn't put much consideration into when creating this blog. In fact, I did nothing more than install the #1 ranked plugin when searching "WordPress Captcha" on Google.   This plugin, developed by BestWebSoft, calls on users to complete rudimentary math problems before registering or submitting comments.  At first glance, I applauded its simplicity when compared to the much more infuriating image deciphering ploys common with captcha services. Read Full Article

Apple Muncher Project Postmortem: Developing for Panasonic VIERA Connect SmartTV (Part 1)

This is the first of a four-part story documenting my somewhat excruciating and wholly uncharted experience developing an indie game for Panasonic's obscure VIERA Connect television app market.

...and So It Began

In 2011, I purchased my first SmartTV—a Panasonic TC-P42ST30 Plasma 1080p HDTV. This was the period of time when smart televisions were just starting to take off, with most manufacturers offering integrated WiFi support and a handful of apps from top media companies including Netflix and Amazon. Each brand was doing all that it could to stand out in the crowd of high-definition televisions. Some HDTVs, for instance, came bundled with remote controllers that included slide-out keyboards for easy online interaction. Panasonic observed the app phenomena that was taking the mobile world by storm and evidently wanted a piece of that pie. Read Full Article