I HAVE NO SHAME

Whenever I’m upset about the world, and where things are going, I can always find solace in Nine Inch Nails. Laugh at my gothic tragicness if you must, fools, but you’re the ones missing out. Leaving Hope is a brilliant, beautiful piece of work. My love is an unashamed love.

NIN.com has undergone renovations recently, including a fantastic low-tech redesign (read: I wish I had thought of it first), a near-complete discography, studio updates, and a suprisingly candid question and answer section.

What I’ve read about the new album is promising, if only because there seems to be a very real sense of direction with this work. Also, there are a lot of wires involved. And a cat.

I spent some time today pouring over various text-analysis papers and theories, trying to determine what the best solution was to my spam problem. It is a very large problem, and I fear that the best solution is to change my email address.

However, I did learn a lot about Apple’s mail.app functions, and how it handles spam.

I’m currently using a combination of methods to defeat The Spam, but mostly I’m using a form of bayesian filtering. Bayesian filtering works as such: Every word (or string) in every email is assigned a score, based on the probability of that word being used in spam mail. The score is totalled, and if it is larger than a predefined value, then the message is tagged as spam.

What mail.app does is this: The occurance of each word (or string) is counted, and stored in a table. Each message is assigned a point in N-dimensional space, where each axis is a word (or string) and an email’s position within the axis is how often a given string appears in an email. You can then do dimensionality reduction on this space, collapsing dimensions which are noisy, useless, or redundant.

By eliminating dimensions in this way, you can bypass a lot of spam trickery. Putting unique words in spam (amoral legendary chrysolite, anyone?) doesn’t help the message’s chances of passing through the filter, etc., etc. Just throw away the bigger common null subspace in the word matrices, do a little massaging, and, voila! Latent semantic analysis!

(Or, if you prefer: Magic!)

GMail appears to have (accidentally, I assume) upped my storage limit to one terabyte from one gigabyte. If anyone had any 1000000MB files they needed to email me, now’s the time.

19 thoughts on “I HAVE NO SHAME

  1. Should be interesting to hear the dub influence on the new album. The Mark Stewart reference is unexpected, though. Might be time to listen to Learning to Cope With Cowardice again.

  2. That isn’t an accident it seems. I was just reading abnout it this morning, via MSN of all things, but they’ve updated the headlines since then, it was in their technology section if you want to look for it.
    Still, yeah, you’re not alone.

  3. why are you happy with GMail scanning your email for keywords in order to give you targeted ads?

    (honest, non-accusing question)

  4. All major email services scan your mail for keywords. That’s how they know if mail is spam, personal, if a url should be highlighted or not, if it’s a virus, etc. The ads are dynamically generated each time an email is opened, which means there’s no database of keywords-to-users, or anything like that. In other words, there’s no ‘jairus’ file at Google that has a list of keywords or ads I usually get that can be used by Google or any third party company.

    I much prefer an automated textad on the side of my browser when I open one out of every five emails than an ad at the bottom of every email I send out saying “hotmail!” or “Yahoo!” or what-not. As a privacy advocate, I really don’t see that there’s any reason to be concerned by the ads. Google’s handling it in a very sensible fashion.

  5. My mother is one of the biggest NIN fans to ever live. I”ve been listening to them since I was little. I still remember the first time my mother heard “Head like a hole” we were sitting in her bedroom, on the bed listening to CFNY on a crappy am/fm radio.

    It was pure love at first listen for her.

    She has taken me to see them like 6 times, Montreal, Toronto, Detriot. She also went to San Fransico to see them, but I couldn’t go. Bascially when their on tour and we can drive there, we go.

    She has been waiting for NIN. com to finish there construction for a long time now, and we’re both impressed.

    I can not wait for the new album.

    Do you have the string quaret playing NIN hits. You’ve never heard closer until you’ve heard played on a full string quartet. The cd is freaking awesome, and totally worth the 30 bucks we payed for it, even though it only has like 10 songs.

  6. I’ve only managed to see them once, sadly, on the Fragility tour. I had tickets for the Toronto Bowie/NIN show, but the rental van was downsized, and there wasn’t room for me to go.

    I haven’t heard the string quartet doing NIN, though. What’s the album called?

  7. Ha! I knew you were a Nailshead, too!

    I remember the days on xvi when I got bashed for even saying the “T” word…

  8. It’s just called the string quartet does nine inch nails, I can’t really remember the name. They have a whole bunch of albums, the cure, johnny cash, radiohead….it’s wicked. I know that they sell it at HMV cause that’s where I bought it. They also have it on chapters online.

    I saw NIN twice with bowie, and twice on the fraglity tours, as for the other ones, i was like 11…I can’t recall…but every tour was wicked. But the Fragility tour took the cake for me, the background effects and visuals were breathtaking. the moving screens….the scenic water background to Le Mer it was awesome….plus he played the great below….and A warm Safe place….which is my fav NIN song.

    I’ve always had a greater fondness for his instrumental work it’s always so beauitful and haramonic. I want to have a warm safe place playing while I walk down the isle when/if I get married….it would kick so much.

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