Is Twitter being attacked again?
Tags: security, twitter
I appriciate that Twitter is concerned of my security but this is a bit too much of the good stuff. Locking me out of my account does not help me at all, neither does it prevent any unauthorised usage of my account. On the contrary, it makes things worse because as long as I have no access to my account, I am unable to make sure that nobody else has that access.
What happened was that I temporarily granted access to my account to a third party application. As soon as that app had done what it was supposed to, I cancelled the access and changed my Twitter password, just to be on the safe side. What I failed to observe was that when I changed my password in the web interface I had TweetDeck running all the time and I did not come to think that I needed to change the password there as well. Hence, TweetDeck kept trying to access my account using the old password and naturally failed.
Twitter apparently took this as an unauthorized attempt to crack my account. But rather than letting me update the password in TweetDeck they chose to lock me out in both TweetDeck and web interface. Security is fine but I wonder what the point in this action might be and how exactly is it going to increase my security.
Edit: Looks like I have my access back. I still honestly do not understand why it was necessary to keep me out for a couple of hours.
I just made this silly test which suggests that I should be living in Dublin although the whole of Ireland has so far been spared from my presence. I am not sure whether to comply or not but I guess the good people of Dublin have herewith been fairly warned.
These boys seem to have a strong opinion about the matter, though:
You Belong in Dublin
Friendly and down to earth, you want to enjoy Europe without snobbery or pretensions.
You’re the perfect person to go wild on a pub crawl… or enjoy a quiet bike ride through the old part of town.
Tags: tweetstats, twitter
Just had a look at my tweet stats. All sort of interesting or trivial statistics about my Twitter behaviour since last September presented in graphics. I picked a couple of interesting details to share.
This confirms what I already knew: I do not tweet on Thursdays between 9 and 10 p.m. The sauna steam would not be healthy for my laptop.
This proves that my sleeping hours spread evenly throughout the day but I am most likely to be awake on afternoons.
All days of the week are equal but those in the middle of the week are slightly more equal than others.
Statistically, the web interface is still my prime option but TweetDeck will soon catch up and pass by.
You can check your own Twitter stats (or those of anybody else, for that matter) here.
Are you addicted to Twitter? Are you unable to keep your fingers off those keys and tweet? Do not worry! The Twitter cop is there to help you. Just tweet call them.
Twitter is once again greating its users with this frustrating notice: it is over capacity. The small print explanation says “too many tweets”.
No, dear Twitter people, it is not too many tweets. It is insuffiecient capacity. You had better frix it or lose users. There are limits to patience.
Tags: tweetdeck, twitter
I have been test using TweetDeck for some time now. It is a fantastic application with all those features that I am not spending time to describe in this post. Instead, I refer to Paul Boutin’s excellent summary in NYT.
This post is about TweetDeck’s nasty habbit to consume a lot of memory. Paul writes that the extended use of memory should not be a problem unless you try to “multitask among apps”. And there is my problem: that is exactly what I do.
My usage of Twitter, Facebook, blogs etc is very much based on sharing. While I can be connected to Twitter and Facebook, post photos and videos and so on without using a web browser, I still need to surf the web and read my feeds to have something to share in the first place. So while TweetDeck is an exellent way to access social networks, I still need to run multiple browser tabs simultaneously with TweetDeck.
Now, my laptop with 2 GB memory can handle my multitasking most of the time. It is just that its keyboard died unexpectedly and I have so far not managed to replace it. And it is kind of hard to write with a computer with a crippled keyboard.
As a temporary emergency effort, I started to use my old desktop for my writing. It is a bit annoying but you can only ask so much to be performed by a three year old computer with just 256 Mb of memory. It has other functions, though, that still makes it sensible to use at all. I like to have Skype meetings using the desktop which I then re-stream live on Ustream using the laptop for that purpose. In the process I also get a record of the meeting, which I am able to share.
The desktop is also handy for receiving video and audio streams. It can handle all of this but not much more. Running TweetDeck is definitely out of its league.
The last statement got confirmed a few moments ago when I was running TweetDeck simultaneously with for Firefox tabs. Something my laptop would clear in flying colors but it was an agony for the poor old desktop. It took about 15 minutes to post one single link to Twitter and after that I had no option than to reboot the computer.
So while I intend to fix the keyboard problem right after Easter holidays, could the good people of TweetDeck please do something with this excessive memory consumption? ASAP, please!
I just filed a support request ticket to my Twitter account. It is quite self explanatory:
How come am I supposed to have hit a following limit? Was not everybody supposed to be allowed to follow 2000 accounts? I am currently following only 90 accounts but I receive a following limit error message when trying to follow the 91st account.
Looking forward to hear from @twitter. And for those whom I am not following I can just say that it may not be because I would not like to. Hope to get this sorted out ASAP.
Edit: 56 hours later the problem seems to be partly fixed. I added this to the support request:
As it looks now, this problem seems to be connected to specific user accounts. I am able to add some accounts to be followed while others return this error:
You are unable to follow more people. Please read about our following limits.
I am currently following 92 accounts which is obviously much less than 2000.
The support ticket is still waiting assignment to a help desk operator.
Tags: Lutz Heilmann, stasi, wikipedia
German MP Lutz Heilmann has withrawn his complaint and the German court in Lübeck lifted the interim injunction against Wikimedia Deutschland. Alas, the German Wikipedia is now acessible via www.wikipedia.de after being blocked during the weekend.
While backfiring heavily on Mr. Heilmann and the Left Party, the incident seems to have had a happy end for Wikimedia Deutschland. Spiegel reports about extensive public outrage and support to the German Wiki foundation:
Shutting down the German portal seems to have backfired, drawing far more attention to the Schleswig-Holstein politician’s past than his Wikipedia entry alone ever did. The German Web site received €16,000 in donations over the weekend, more than quadruple its usual rate. Wikipedia users also flooded the Left Party with angry e-mails.
I just wonder how come so many prominent people only learn the hard way about how the Internet works. Then again, I suppose the web was not a common tool back when Lutz Heilmann worked for the STASI.
Tags: Lutz Heilmann, stasi, wikipedia
If you type www.wikipedia.de into the address bar of your browser you would normally find a search box for articles in the German Wikipedia which is hosted in a US based server belonging to Wikimedia Foundation. As from late Friday, the page looks like this (click for a full size view):
The reason for this provisional change of layout is an interim injunction issued by Landgericht Lübeck. The court injunction was sought by Left Party member of German Federal Parliament Lutz Heilmann. Wikipedia.de is ordered not to redirect to de.wikipedia.org, i.e. the German Wikipedia.
Mr Heilmann is apparently unhappy about an article in German Wikipedia about himself. I addition to regular CV there is a short passage about Lutz Heilmann’s alleged activities within the former East German Secret Police STASI. Referring to an article in Spiegel Online, Wikipedia writes:
Mitarbeiter des Ministeriums für Staatssicherheit
Im Oktober 2005 enthüllte Der Spiegel die von Heilmann bislang verschwiegene Stasi-Vergangenheit. Heilmann gibt bis heute öffentlich an, von 1985 bis 1990 einen „verlängerte[n] Wehrdienst (Personenschutz MfS)“ geleistet zu haben. Heilmann war nach Ableisten der allgemeinen Wehrpflicht von 18 Monaten für die Zeit bis 1990 als Berufssoldat beim MfS beschäftigt und verließ dieses erst, als es aufgelöst wurde.
Vor der Wahl hatte Heilmann den Mitgliedern des Landesverbandes seine Tätigkeit beim MfS verschwiegen. Dies stellte einen Verstoß gegen innerparteiliche Richtlinien dar. Auf dem Landesparteitag am 4. Dezember 2005 stimmten die Mitglieder des Landesverbandes Schleswig-Holstein über einen Misstrauensantrag gegen Heilmann ab. Das Ergebnis war 47 Stimmen für Heilmann zu 42 gegen ihn. Heilmann ist seitdem innerhalb der Linken in Schleswig-Holstein umstritten.
According to Mr Heilmann, he was enrolled in a “prolonged military service” from 1985 and 1990 but Spiegel says they are in possession of documents confirming that he was working full time for the STASI:
In den nach dem Fall der Mauer von Bürgerrechtlern gesicherten Gehaltslisten des Ministeriums für Staatssicherheit (MfS) ist Heilmann 1989 als hauptamtlicher Mitarbeiter des DDR-Geheimdienstes registriert. Nach Aktenlage war er in der Hauptabteilung Personenschutz tätig, die für die Sicherung und Versorgung der Partei- und Staatsführung zuständig war.
Wikimedia Deutschland are going to file a counter motion tomorrow but it may still take some time before things return to normal. This is not the first time Wikimedia Deutschland have been targetted by legal action. Hubertus Albers a.k.a Atze Schröder last year unsuccessfully intimidated took legal action against then CEO Arne Klempert.
The funny thing is that barely anybody took notice when Spiegel published the information about Mr Heilmann’s alleged STASI activities but it has become more than common knowledge now thanks to his own reactions. I call this a classical example of own goal 2.0.
Edit: There is a short article about Mr. Heilmann in the English Wikipedia.
Twitter seems to be down at the moment. This sort of error message is not what you would expect of such a highly hyped environment.
Tags: Tony Blair, web petitions
I almost never sign a web petition, no matter whether I like the idea behind a particular petition or not. Web petitions do not echo the opinion of the general public, they just reflect who is able to generate more web traffic for (or against) a cause than somebody else. Petitions are seldom written so that I could support every word in them: people can often reach same conclusions for totally different reasons.
Also, I do not believe that the intended recipients of web petitions take them as an expressed opinion of the exact number of persons that appear to have signed a petition. There is seldom any convincing authentication of signatures. Open-ID could be used more often than it is used but would the organizers of petitions really be interested in proving that the signatures in their petition are real?
I am not at all enthusiastic about the perspective of having Tony Blair as the president of EU. He made a long career as the PM of Britain but I think that most of his outstanding achievements happened during his first term. I also think that the best thing he could have done would have been to step down rather a year before than a year after the latest election in Britain.
If somebody wants to boost their web ego by collecting a million signatures to this web petition that is fine with me. Only, they will have to do it without my signature. I find that just stating that I am against Tony Blair as the president of EU makes more sense than signing that petition.
Besides, I do not even regard Blair’s ingagement for the Iraq war as the most important reason for having somebody else as the president.
via Margaret Marks
During my few weeks in Facebook I have received three nominations for a superlative. My own sister nominated me as most likely to be an alien. Maybe so but I just wonder what that would make her.
Mick granted me with an assumption that I would be most likely to party like a rock star. He may know something about it because we have been seen to party together on a couple of occasions but if you take a look at his profile and then mine (provided that you have a Facebook account) you may judge for yourself which one of us looks more like a rock star.
Last but not least, Indrek says I am most likely to google everything. I do a lot of googling, granted, but everything? Like my bookmarks or the contents of my feed reader?
Being a googling party alien is not so bad. Some people have called me worse than that and I did not mind. But that is another story.
I am in the middle of Gulf of Finland sailing for Tallinn where I am going to participate in a conference discussing the Estonian government’s program for fellow countrymen abroad. The current program is effective for the period 2004-2008 and the conference, organized by the Ministry of Education, will discuss the frameworks of the next program period. I am one of the three delegates representing the Association of Estonians in Finland.
I am planning to cover the conference on line in real time primarily in the association’s blog. There is also a Facebook event for the conference. I hope to get as much feedback from people both in Estonia and abroad in order to present suggestions received from readers to the conference.
While most of my coverage is naturally in Estonian, I am going to try to make a few summarizing posts in English as well. So if you want to learn about the issues discussed, keep an eye on this space and the Facebook event. The conference will open tomorrow morning and close on Tuesday afternoon.
By the way, I already received some good suggestions in comments added to my Estonian blog. Those will be discussed as soon as I meet my fellow delegates and we are going to present the ideas either in the floor or in committees.