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Happy Guy Fawkes Day!
Wednesday, 05 November 2008

What is Guy Fawkes day? Check Wikipedia.

Join the Guy Fawkes Day celebration here:

We shouldn't be bitter about the elections. We should be happy about the turnout, and should rejoice in knowing that God uses all things for good, and that He puts all leaders in power, good or bad, in order to fulfill his Divine plan.

If you want something to be concerned with, be concerned with the fact that OUR congress, our supposed "representatives" may do the same as they have for the last few decades, and not really represent us to the point they should be. It is very possible that these mostly careerist politicians will simply try to keep the right people happy in order to keep their cushy jobs and their lobbyist brib---erm I mean "gifts."

What can you do? Be a revolutionary. It doesn't require violence as Guy Fawkes attempted. In reality, it requires you to voice your concerns, convictions, thoughts, and oppositions to your representatives and senators, both state and national. Write letters/emails or make phonecalls on a daily basis. Tell likeminded others to do the same. Only when the populous does this will the majority truly have representation.

"No taxation without representation!"
When was the last time your reps accurately performed their duty according to their constiutents'? If it wasn't recently, we shouldn't have to pay our tax dollars in for their $160k a year + free health for life + pension benefits. Either kick them out in election, or try something bold and Guy Fawkes-like, like the following:

Petition to have the person(s) removed from office, or go all out and call for a constitutional convention (this would require a petition and a gigantic public outcry). When called, a constitutional convention can totally reshape the country through removing people office (even the president), amendment the constitution, totally rewrite a new constitution from scratch, or simply fire congress. Then, the states all have to vote. A 3/4 or more vote by the states in favor of any action makes it law, and it thus happens. Fired the bad representation one way or another? Time for an emergency election. Make sure to choose the right person for the job!

Happy Guy Fawkes Day! Be a revolutionary in your own right! God Bless the USA!
Blackhat SEO: Exploiting The Dumb Masses to Make A Profit (As Seen in 2600)
Thursday, 30 October 2008
If you are coming here from Stumbleupon, Digg, or Slashdot, please give me a comment, vote, and a good review if you like this article/howto!

This is an article I had in the latest 2600 magazine. I highly suggest you check it out for even more good hacking, cracking, and phreaking articles and guides. Please feel to quote or republish this article, but do not remove a link back to this original page, and please also include that the article is copyright 2008 by Matt Parnell. That said, read on below, and enjoy!

Blackhat SEO: Exploiting the Dumb Masses to Make A Profit

by ilikenwf
parwok-{AT NOSPAM }

A steady income is necessary these days, especially for geek/hacker types. With all the wonderful devices and hardware upgrades that come out every day, we tend to spend great deals of money to keep our technology addictions satisfied. That said, a supplement to the wallet is welcome, right? If you know your way around the Internet, there is a pretty simple way to make decent amounts of money online. The only things needed are PHP skills, a good host, some domains, and ignorant people lazily surfing to your sites. Combined, these can turn you into a Blackhat SEO.

What is it?

Blackhat SEO is the practice of putting up automated content rich websites. Once up and running, the goal is to get them indexed for a set of niche keywords. Once indexed in the search engines (SERPS) for these keywords, a Blackhat SEO will place advertisements or sneaky redirects to affiliate offers in strategic areas on the sites. The goal is to gain as many clicks and/or sales as possible from the unwitting users who visit. Some do this one at a time, site by site, by hand, to avoid footprints that Googlebot and the like are able to see. Footprints can get your sites de-indexed very quickly. I use Wordpress most of the time, as there are easily modifiable templates out there that help blend your sites into the blogosphere, and many plugins that provide SEO functions that get your sites indexed quickly. There are specialized products (which I won't name) that are available for purchase that allow automation on a gigantic scale. These usually have footprints, unless they are designed to mass install a product and not actually create the sites. Even then, sloppiness can leave footprints that end up getting all of your sites get removed from the indexes.

Set It Up

You will need a good webhost. If you click here and sign up at Dreamhost for a hosting account, and use the code ILIKENWF, you'll get 1 Free Domain Registration ($15 value!). Pay monthly, and get another $15 discount, sign up for one or more years and get a $30 discount!

Assuming you have a good webhost, the first step is to set up your content system on a domain. Pick a domain that fits the niche you want to aim your site at. You can use subdomains, as well as folders within a domain to serve as multiple sites, although one site per domain will keep your sites indexed for a longer period of time. Investigate keywords related to your site topic ,and try to find those that are searched for many times, with no to few results. Insert keywords into the content areas and meta tags on all of the site's pages. Once complete, totally tweak the look of your blackhat site. Modify an existing free template, or create one of your own. Photoshop together some semi-good graphics and slap them up there, while you're at it. Assuming you are using Wordpress, you should make sure to install WP-O-Matic, a plugin that converts RSS feeds into posts, and allows keyword rewriting. Other wordpress plugins are geared specifically toward SEO, such as the automatic meta tag generators, which are highly recomended.

Automatic Content

When your site is running live and looking good, find several RSS feeds off of sites related to your niche, and plug them into WP-O-Matic. Use the replace function on all of them as a precaution to swap out common keywords, so that your content appears to be unique. Make sure to set up a cron job to use one of the many free PHP ping scripts hourly, to publicize your pages, and get them indexed. Make sure to use a ping script that is on your server, that sends the RPC requests from your server. This keeps your site from being reported as spam to the search engines by services like Pingoat (do not ever use Pingoat!). Try to get backlinks to your sites by either outsourcing or manually submitting to a few hundred to a few thousand link directories. Be gradual when building links to make the accumulation of linking power appear natural. The more links to your site, the higher in the search engine rankings your pages will appear. If you feel like being extremely evil, you can find and use tools to mass spam links on forums, comments, or by using cross site scripting (be careful!). These programs and scripts are easy to find, and I assume that by reading 2600, you are quite capable of finding them on your own.

Get Indexed, Monetize

The only step left is to wait. There will always be a few of your sites that don't get indexed very quickly, or at all by one or more search engines. Sometimes it takes a long time in the slower crawling engines that aren't as popular as Google to add new sites. When you have a minimum of 100 results in at least one major search engine, put affiliate offers or pay per click advertisments on all the pages. For affiliates, either embedd the offers, or use cloaking scripts to send all non spider visitors to a sales page (use an IP filter coupled with a user agent checker script). For pay per click advertisments, make sure to place the ads strategically so that they are in places that users are likely to click. Around the right hand scroll bar, as well as in the dead center of the page (medium rectangles are best for the center of pages). Use multiple ad networks to avoid footprints search spiders can use to identify and remove your sites from their indexes. From there, repeat on more sites. If you feel brave, you can put a Google custom search up for each of your sites, as they allow you to plug in your AdSense ID for search result advertisements, and you can specify what sites your custom search includes. Remember that you can put more sites on subdomains, in folders, or buy 99 cent .info domains for each of your Blackhat sites. Once you get Blackhat SEO with Wordpress down to an art, you can graduate to more advanced methods that involve cron jobs galore, mass installers, markov engines, and other ways of scraping content, or just keep doing what works for you. Whatever happens, good luck, and be careful!


*A good way to get traffic is to participate in Stumbleupon exchanges on the DigitalPoint forums. This works for white and blackhat sites.

*DigitalPoint also has a free co-op advertising network going, in which one earns credits by displaying other people's advertisements, and in exchange can advertise their sites. This is great and can provide many hundreds of free backlinks, when the donor site (your site that displays other people's ads) gets significant traffic.

*This practice is currently not illegal anywhere that I am aware of. Spamming via email advertising is illegal, in many ways. Let's be careful so that this doesn't get outlawed as well.

*AdSense is really strict and will ban your websites if they determine them to be "spammy." Use PeakClick first, then use AdSense when you have several sites. If you wish to use one ad network, have a php script that only displays your advertisements (and their code) to real users, and not to the search engine bots.

*Another good way to make some money off of your sites is to install the Text-Link-Ads advertising script. This script (carefully hidden from search bots by design), can either display contextual links, or old fashioned links on your sites. They are also working on a pay per click network, among other new monetization methods.

*At the time of writing, new members are currently not allowed to join, but in the future, NetAudioAds provides another avenue in which you get paid for every real user by having audio-only advertisments play for five seconds when they visit. Annoying, but effective.

*I know many other methods, and tools, but I can't mention them by name, as I don't wish them to become useless in my efforts to turn a profit. Discover them for yourselves, it isn't that hard if you can find the right dark corner of the Internet.

*If you can add some form of usefulness to any of your sites, do, as it will attract traffic and dispel spam hunters from reporting you to the search engines.

Useful Sites:

Digital Point Coop ad network is great for getting backlinks when you have lots of sites.

Syndk8 is the definitive resource for Blackhat SEO. Register, and learn from the masters.

Bluehat SEO has many useful posts that describe linkbuilding, and a pay service to get indexed quickly.

DigitalPoint Forums are a whitehat site, but can be useful for our own twisted needs. 

PHP Ping Script
(Copy it to your server, get the RPC ping list from Syndk8, modify it to fit your purposes, and use a cron job to have curl visit the URL of the ping script every hour or so.)

YACG - Yet Another Content Generator is a great tool that builds sites automatically, pulling from various content sources and markoving them. Make sure to modify or build a new template! See the forums to learn about footprints and addons for further usefulness.

Copyright (C) 2008, Matt Parnell
Wootoff Bag of Crap Alarm - A bash Script
Thursday, 23 October 2008
This is an old version. Get the new one here.

I wrote this little puppy to wake me up if I'm asleep and the Bag of Crap comes up during a Wootoff (like the one going on now) at Woot. It's simple to use, it keeps looping, just outputting the current item. Feel free to mod it as you wish...I've really been meaning to make it look nice with color, but I figured it would'nt matter anyway.

That being the case, you can grab the tarball below. Otherwise, the source is below that. Just make sure to have an alarm.mp3 in the same directory as the script before your run it.


#!/bin/bash #Wootwatch Alarm
#Written by Matt Parnell/ilikenwf
#This is totally free, take it and mod it however you wish, under the GNU.
#This script goes every 5 sec to woot and checks for a bag of crap. If found, it sounds an alarm.

clear &

while [ $i -lt "1" ]
          r=`expr $r + 1`
          ITEM=`/usr/bin/curl -s -f`
          echo ""

         if echo $ITEM | grep "Crap"; then
            play -q alarm.mp3 &
            echo ""
            echo "BOC FOUND after $r runs."
            echo "No BOC found yet..."
            echo ""
            echo "Current item: "
            echo $ITEM
            echo ""
            echo "This script has run $r Times."
            sleep 3 && clear

School - After the Basics, What's The Point?
Thursday, 09 October 2008

I am a lifetime student of Christ, as well as the knowledge of man, but I want it all to be on my terms.

I'm starting to become more and more frustrated with the ridiculous nature of the education system.
If a person learns to read, write, do basic math, and depending on future job choice take more specialized classes, should any more classes be required of them? College and highschool in these ways are somewhat follies of society. If one learns these things and can think abstractly, should they really be forced through extra steps in order to achieve their dream career? Anything over and above should be their choice, and not compulsory.

In my case, independent study is much more conducive than having information forced down my throat at a specific rate decided by an "expert." What amount of the knowledge I've "learned" will I actually use in my future?

Let's talk about secondary/college education. 

Although I attend a liberal arts college, I find it ridiculous to pay what I have to in order to get a magic piece of paper that says I am qualified to do whatever task I major in. I don't really need such a thing to succeed, yet in a world filled with people who forgo any education at all, whether it be through the education system or independent study, some form of verification of skill and knowledge has to be there. Why not have a single test to allow one to show their skills in any given field and skill in order to speed things along?

I don't like putting effort into what I see as a nearly fruitless venture (college), as I feel I have better things to do with my time, such as learn about things that I actually care about, acquire vocational skills I want to know, and do it all my way. I would rather learn from mistakes of my own than be tested over what I have memorized in short term memory, soon lost a semester later, only for that magic piece of paper that makes people want to hire you. Life experience seems to me to provide better education in some circumstances than secondary education. If you can read, write, do math, and think abstractly, learning from your cohorts in life and from your own experiences, life is easier, yet more productive and satisfying.

For example, Why does somebody like me need to take 18+ credit hours of Bible classes if they aren't planning on being a minister. I learn what I really use in small groups, Bible studies, church, and discussion with those I look up to and am friends with. Specific terms like exegesis, hermanuetics, and pericope may be important if you plan on being in a theological field, but why do I need to know them in order to be a servant of Christ, sharing Him with those the Holy Spirit leads me to?

Why do I need to take an English class full of busywork and paper writing, as well as reading literature that generally sucks except for a few glaring omissions like Heart of Darkness every year after the fifth grade up to my sophomore year of college? I can understand the need for a writing proficiency test, but do I really need yet ANOTHER English or literature class?

I just feel like it's a waste of energy, money, resources, and my lifetime to constantly be in a classroom after a certain point, as all I'm doing is learning what I need to know to get good grades, and then I soon forget as I don't ever actually use much of what I learn again in "the real world."

It seems that much of our education system is a racket designed to control and program the population, while at the same time leeching as much money from it as possible.

Here I sit, cramming for a test in a class I don't care about, as I'm not really getting much out of it. I do put little as possible effort into my studies, after my gradeschool years where I gave my all. I do the least amount of work, yet my best work, and attempt the greatest possible grade. I still manage mostly A and B grades. How subjective this grading system is. It's very ridiculous to think that the opinion of teachers and professors that are supposedly (usually are, however it's all subjective and depends on their era as to whether they are actually teaching FACTS versus what is assumed or fabricated over the years) experts in any given subject and their opinions are what determines a person's future: frycook or businessman. (With few exceptions, ala Bill Gates the Harvard dropout).

I'm a free thinker. Just wait, the thought police are probably coming for me right now (sarcasm laced with exaggerated truth there). I want to chase my dreams, and not have to jump through pointless, useless hurdles to get there. I want to do what is necessary and proper to achieve my goals, nothing more, nothing less. Anything over and above should be my choice.

What do you think?

Me for President
Wednesday, 27 August 2008
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