Archive for February, 2004

Turning a Google News search into an RSS feed

While going through my RSS feeds oer the weekend, I came across a small script that someone wrote. In simple terms, it takes any search request you make to Google News and turns it into an RSS feed. The possibilities are endless! I’m thinking of using the script on this site allowing me to customize some feeds ofr news that interests me.

You can test the script yourself by going to

This would be a great asset to many researchers out there who have to rake through dozens of sites each day looking for information/articles related to a certain area. My friend Kirkhope of the Terrorism Research Center comes to mind. Everyday, he has to gather over 3 dozen articles related to terrorism and information security, etc. Using something like this, he could probably save himself quite a bit of time. All the “first layer” searching is done for him and he just has to review the hits for relevancy…

Pretty cool if you ask me…

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Will Real One Player make it off my Black List?

For over a year now, I have refused to install Real Player on ANY of my computers. I had reached the point where I just couldn’t justify the need for it, in return for the loads of other crap it installed, the way it slowed down the computer, etc.

Someone has finally taken the time to go through the whole install procedure and describe, step by step, how to install Real Player without having it take over everything, etc…

It’s an interesting read:

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Six tips for better RSS feeds

While reading through my ever-increasing list of RSS feed entries, I came across this great article. – Six tips for better RSS Feeds

RSS seems to be what everyone who runs a site is talking about these days, yet few people actually implement it correctly or effectively. My biggest pet-peeve is Slashdot‘s RSS implmentation. They only include the title of the story and about 20-40 words from the article itself. In many cases, it’s simply not enough information to get an idea of what the article is actually about! Such a frustrating waste… This article brings up this issue, as well as a few others.

A good read for everyone who runs a site and already has an RSS feed or is planning to implement one.

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What will I do without SamSpade.Org?

Many times a week, sometimes many times a day, I rely on being able to do some quick informational type lookups on one or more IP’s. Be it trying to find out who owns a particular server or what link between me and the box is causing me connection issues. Over the years, I have relied heavily on for all my IP related tools. It’s a great site, with all the tools I need to get all the information I’m looking for. The added benefit is that it’s not on my network, so the results provided give me an external view of the issue, as well as providing some level of anonymity.

SamSpade has been overloaded recently; not sure what’s going on, but during some periods of time, the site is barely accessible. This has led me to look at some alternative for those times when Sam is down. That’s when I came across

At first glance, it doesn’t look like much, but they do provide two of the tools I use the most; WHOIS and Traceroute. But here’s where things are different. You are given the choice of running your Traceroute from over a hundred sites scattered across the globe. This is great to see if an issue is a result of a down box somewhere, or a bad router.

While SamSpade still has a few extra nice tools (such as the anonymous URL browser and URL decrypter), Geektools adds that extra level of accessibility for those times when Sam isn’t available…