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All the Perl that's Practical to Extract and Report

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  • Can you tell us when it will be? I'd love to listen in.

    • Oh yeah, sure. 8:30pm on Saturday 17th August. Apparently.

      I'll confirm with more details when I've actually spoken to the lady at the bbc. You can get a Real feed from here [] if you're not in the UK.
  • Any chance of an online streaming version? or have the beeb stopped doing oggs now?


  • Topics (Score:3, Insightful)

    by ziggy (25) on 2002.08.16 9:39 (#11837) Journal
    I'm not sure what standard topics you're going to be mentioning.

    When highlighting the differences between snail mail and email, it might be worth talking about how email is more like a direct link into your brain, while snail mail is not. (I first heard that from gnat, from his "be an advocate, not an asshole" talk at YAPC).

  • The "spammer" is one "Alan Ralsky" - from the US, claiming that he fully supports opt-out (hah!) and is a legitimate business mailer.

    The segment should be about 8:45pm Saturday.
  • The ever-sensible Paul Graham has a new article [] on accurately filtering out spam using Bayesian probabilities. He's claiming missing 5 out of 1000 spams, with zero false positives. The problem with his technique is that it needs to be trained to see what kind of messages and spam you receive. The benefit is that the probability model is finely tuned to the messages you receive.

    There's lots of analysis about spam in the article, including a few well-reasoned explanations on why spam exists and why spam

    • Bayes is very good if you can tune it to your type of email. By the looks of things, Paul Graham gets very little business-like emails. That's where we found our largest set of false positives with it. He's also right - doing bayes against word pairs is better than against single words, but your database does grow a lot larger.

      We're getting about 90% accuracy with it - on real customer emails.

  • If at all possibly, be sure to ask what the interviewers story is before it goes on. He or she will likely then tell you a bit about their story and you can make sure to prepare your thoughts related to that.

    -- ask bjoern hansen [], !try; do();

  • Repeating "I must remember to listen to this" again and again didn't have any effect and I completely forgot to tune in... How did it go? 8)
    • I think it went fine, but then I could have sounded like a complete twat and my wife wouldn't have told me ;-)

      It was a very short segment, especially due to all the news about Holly and Jessica that they were trying to squeeze us in between. But I'm sure my company will be pleased, since the closing words were from me and basically a big advert for our service ;-)
  • I suspect the amount of time got cut down dramatically - because of the tragic events elsewhere. I wasn't sure what point the Beeb were trying to get across... I think you performed very well - I guess you were a bit nervous and the slightly crackly phone line didn't help (oddly the spammer - from the US I assume - sounded a lot clearer). I think your estimate of the number of man years wasted deleting spam was a good one - of course the spammer made the usual points "we don't spam anyone who hasn't asked f
  • I only thought of this a few days after the show (which I didn't hear, BTW).

    The main reason we get spam, is because sending e-mail is free. If everybody charged a little bit of money of money for each e-mail received, say 1 cent (be it dollar, Euro or Pound) per recipient, then spamming would cease, simply because the costs would be far more greater than the generated income.

    This shouldn't be real money, in most cases. ISP's could allow a certain maximum of mails per month per user. Exchange of mails betw