Forum: Ruby [ANN] New Ruby Garden Wiki Trial Run

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10d4acbfdaccb4eee687a428ca00a5d8?d=identicon&s=25 Jim Weirich (weirich)
on 2006-05-10 06:01
== Spam by the Numbers

Anyone who visits the "RubyGarden
wiki":http://www.rubygarden.org/ruby regularly has probably run into
wiki spam.  You know what I mean, defaced pages with hundreds of links
to questionable web sites.  All done with the goal of increasing
Google page rank.

Just to give you an idea of the magnitude of this problem, make a
guess on how many time during the past 7 days someone tried to deface
the RubyGarden wiki with spam.

Got a number?  Its probably too low.

According to the logs, we had 18,139 attacks against our wiki.  In
just seven days!  Over the past few weeks we have been averaging
between 17,000 and 20,000 attacks in a 7 day period.

That's a lot of spam.

Fortunately most of the attacks went directly into the wiki tarpit
where only other spammers saw the results.  Only about 250 attacks
made it to the real wiki where they needed to be cleaned by hand.

(For those who aren't familiar with a wiki tarpit, it is a shawdow
wiki behind the real wiki where spammers are directed.  The spammers
spend all their time updating a virtual wiki that no one, except other
spammers, will ever see.  The goal is to have the spammers waste their
time instead of ours.)

Now the tarpit isn't perfect.  Sometimes legitimate users get sent to
the tarpit instead of the real wiki.  If you ever went to RubyGarden
and saw spam on almost every page, you were probably in the tarpit.

But, cleaning up 250 spams instead of 18000?  That is a pretty
good success story.

== But We Need Something Better

As good as the tarpit approach is, we still need something better.
The UseMod wiki software we are using makes it painful to clean up
spam.  The average page needs about four clicks to despam, with a lot
of hard to automate decision making in the process.  See "this
demo":http://onestepback.org/demos/tarpit.htm for a look at what I do
to clean up a UseMod wiki page.  Go ahead, click now.  I'll wait for
you.

That's a lot of work.  Despamming several hundred posts can take
hours.

== Ruse

Ruse is new wiki with built-in anti-spam features.  It supports UseMod
style markup, so all of the RubyGarden pages can be easily migrated
into it.  It has an integrated tarpit that makes despamming a page a
single button press.  In fact, Ruse can move all of an author's
pending posts into the tarpit with a single click.  Ruse can mark
edits as spam based on either content (e.g. linking to a known spam
site) or IP address (coming from a known spammer).

Best of all, Ruse makes it easy to distribute the job of detecting
and marking spam across the regular contributers to the wiki.

Watch "this demo":http://onestepback.org/demos/ruse.htm to see Ruse in
action.

== The Beta

Chad and I have setup a mirror of the RubyGarden wiki at
"http://rubygarden.org:3000/Ruby":http://rubygarden....
This is a trial run of the software before we commit to using it.
Feel free to check it out, kick the tires and beat on it a bit.
Shoot, if you have a secret desire to be a spam writter, go for it,
just to see what happens.

You can post anonymously, or sign up for a guest account.  After a
certain number of spam-free postings, guest accounts are upgraded to
full member accounts.

Oh, the account "spammer" with password "spammer" is already setup if
you to see how the wiki reacts to spammers.

But remember, this is a beta trial and content of the wiki will be
reset before it goes "live" for real.

Documentation is a bit skimpy right now, but we are working on that
too.

Enjoy.

--
-- Jim Weirich
E791e5345b9747826e42a1f684920282?d=identicon&s=25 Roy Sutton (Guest)
on 2006-05-10 06:48
(Received via mailing list)
Jim Weirich wrote:
>
Outstanding, Jim!  I've tried despamming RubyGarden before and it took
me over 5 minutes to despam a page the first time I tried.  Great work
on this.

Roy
4299e35bacef054df40583da2d51edea?d=identicon&s=25 James Gray (bbazzarrakk)
on 2006-05-10 15:08
(Received via mailing list)
On May 9, 2006, at 11:01 PM, Jim Weirich wrote:

> == Spam by the Numbers

[snip]

> According to the logs, we had 18,139 attacks against our wiki.  In
> just seven days!  Over the past few weeks we have been averaging
> between 17,000 and 20,000 attacks in a 7 day period.
>
> That's a lot of spam.

I think Jim Weirich is a hero!

I just turned comments off on my blog because I'm tired of the war,
so he's definitely a better man than me.

> == Ruse

Too cool.

James Edward Gray II
0276239ca57aee241d4b41379587fa20?d=identicon&s=25 Lyle Johnson (Guest)
on 2006-05-10 15:45
(Received via mailing list)
On 5/9/06, Jim Weirich <jim@weirichhouse.org> wrote:

> Best of all, Ruse makes it easy to distribute the job of detecting
> and marking spam across the regular contributers to the wiki.

Sounds promising, Jim! I hope that if this proves successful it can be
used for RubyForge Wikis as well.
D812408537ac3a0fa2fec96eb8811559?d=identicon&s=25 John Carter (Guest)
on 2006-05-12 07:07
(Received via mailing list)
On Wed, 10 May 2006, Jim Weirich wrote:

> == Spam by the Numbers
> of hard to automate decision making in the process.  See "this
> demo":http://onestepback.org/demos/tarpit.htm for a look at what I do
> to clean up a UseMod wiki page.  Go ahead, click now.  I'll wait for
> you.

Good Lord Man! I knew I hated spammers before I saw that, but that's
just awful!

> That's a lot of work.  Despamming several hundred posts can take
> hours.

Wow!

> == Ruse

Fantastic work! You're amazing.

Speaking of tar pits, are you also using the TCP/IP level tar pit?
   http://labrea.sourceforge.net/labrea-info.html

Is there a ruby version of the perl LaBrea module?
   http://scans.bizsystems.net/paged_report.plx




John Carter                             Phone : (64)(3) 358 6639
Tait Electronics                        Fax   : (64)(3) 359 4632
PO Box 1645 Christchurch                Email : john.carter@tait.co.nz
New Zealand

Carter's Clarification of Murphy's Law.

"Things only ever go right so that they may go more spectacularly wrong
later."

From this principle, all of life and physics may be deduced.
10d4acbfdaccb4eee687a428ca00a5d8?d=identicon&s=25 Jim Weirich (weirich)
on 2006-05-12 08:06
John Carter wrote:
> Speaking of tar pits, are you also using the TCP/IP level tar pit?
>    http://labrea.sourceforge.net/labrea-info.html

Hmmm, I hadn't seen this before.  Thanks for the link.

--
-- Jim Weirich
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