Category: "Net usage"

Trendspotting: mobile SPAM :(

It's already making me sick... and it's only the beginning :(

Mobile SPAM is coming in all flavours! First there is SMS spam. Your phone beeps in the middle of a meeting as if you just received an alert, you check what's going wrong... but no, it's just an ad from your carrier!

Then there is voicemail spam. This is even worse. You are driving and suddenly your phone beeps as if you just missed a call and got a message. You actually try and find a place to pull aside and listen to the message... but that was a worthless effort: you just got another f*ing ad from you carrier!

Right now, carriers can afford this because it's virtually free for them. But sooner or later, more companies will be willing to pay for that kind of mass messaging! And this is far worse than e-mail spam: it really interrupts you in whatever you are doing! (Something like instant messaging spam!)

I have called my carrier (Bouygues Telecom, France) numerous times demanding they stop it. Nah! Everytime, after a month or so, spam comes back! I am wondering what kind of bozo there just makes that stupid decision to reset the opt-out flags! So eventually I cancelled my contract! (With the added benefit of being able to get a new (smart)phone cheaper when I sign up for my new contract... but I would not have gone this way if those guys had been a "little" more customer respectful!)

Anyway, I guess we'll be able to install SMS/MMS spam filters on future "programmable" (smart)phones... but I wonder how we'll be able to handle the voicemail issue... :-/

Google & BlogNoise: a semantic approach

As Russel points out (original article gone), the quality of searches is dwindling at Google as the result of BlogNoise.

It seems to me that Google could easily cut out a lot of blogcrap of their search results if they performed their searches on a post by post basis (all words would have to be found in the same post) instead of a page by page basis (a weblog page contains an average of 15 very loosely related posts).

How would their indexer find out about the boundaries of each post on a page? Well... just let it take advantage of the RSS linked to any decent weblog!

Oh wait... Blogger blogs don't have RSS! They have a huge market share (i-e a huge blogcrap share) and if they still haven't implemented such a straightforward feature yet, they're not very likely to do so soon... That's a problem...

Semantic Web, where are thou?