jik's home page
You've reached the home page of Jonathan Kamens. If you're looking
for my blog, you want to go here.
You can contact me at email@example.com.
My public GPG key can be found here.
I am currently employed as Vice President of Operations at
Holidays and Event Scheduling page will tell you everything you
need to know to avoid scheduling events on dates that will conflict
with Jewish holidays.
Free software that I maintain or dabble in includes:
- todoist-fetch.pl, a
simple script for backing up and restoring todoist data, as
- crateify.pl, a simple cloud
backup mechanism described here.
- Send Later 3, a
Thunderbird add-on for scheduling emails for later delivery.
a Thunderbird add-on for splitting RFC 1153 digest messages.
a Perl script for deleting Amazon S3 buckets.
- A tweaked Wonder Shaper script
for making Vonage work better on slow / heavy utilized Internet
connections (see my blog
for more info).
a tool for using mimedefang to
move Mailman message footers from a
separate body part into the text and HTML body parts of messages, so
that all users see them.
- close-books.pl, a Perl
script for archiving old transactions from a GnuCash XML file
(hopefully this will become moot at some point when GnuCash finally
switches over to a real database backend!).
- Geneal2gedcom.pl, a
McBeath's genealogy data file format (used by jimmc.roots and
- An enhanced resource usage
monitor for OpenHosting.com VPSes, so that you don't go way
over your commit level without realizing it.
- How to use a Dell 3000cn color laser printer
- XRN, a NNTP News reader for the
X Window System
a Sendmail::Milter script for integrating bogofilter into
a script to emulate in the Perforce Software Configuration Management System the functionality of "cvs annotate".
VC mode support for Perforce, an integration between GNU Emacs
and Perforce which allows you to use the native Emacs SCM commands
on files controlled by Perforce.
- The move-newsrc
package, which helps transfer a .newsrc file from
one NNTP server to another
- The MIT Athena delete/undelete
package, a set of utilities to replace rm and
protect the user from accidental file deletion
- xscreensaver, yet another
UNIX/X screen-lock program (but probably not the
“xscreensaver” you're familiar with!)
- clean-mqueue.pl, a short but sweet
Perl script for interactively scanning the messages in the sendmail
queue and deleting or quarantining unwanted ones.
I belong to:
Some of the projects I've worked on in the past are:
- An attempt to get King
discriminating against people whose disabilities or religious
observance prevent them from eating the food sold at the
- An ongoing battle with the U.S. Social
Security Administration to get them to admit that their
software for “fixing” mailing addresses when sending
out social security cards is buggy, and to get them to issue a
replacement for my daughter's card, which was lost in the mail
because their buggy software threw away my correct ZIP code and
replaced it with an incorrect one.
- A somewhat surreal battle with
Staples over a $10 rebate which they failed to handle
properly, to say the least. Read my story and e-mail me if you've
had similar experiences!
- My crusade to make Peoples Federal
Savings Bank own up to, and correct, various screw-ups they
committed in the process of upgrading their computer systems in
- I created the news.answers
newsgroup and most of the other "*.answers" groups and
moderated them for several years before recruiting a
team of moderators and handing over the task to them (I'm the
"moderator emeritus" of the group now).
- I created the rtfm.mit.edu Usenet FAQ
archive, as well as the mail server
interface to it, and maintained them for several years (now,
they're maintained by the MIT SIPB).
- I was the first person to volunteer to act as a neutral
third-party vote collector for any Usenet newsgroup creation
vote whose proponent couldn't or didn't want to run the vote,
using vote-collection code built into
mail server, long before the Usenet Volunteer Votetakers
organization was created.
- After Cancelmoose[tm] started
cancelling spam on a large scale, I was the first News
administrator to do so under my own name (as opposed to
anonymously). The software used by many of the current spam
cancellers is based on software I wrote.
Some of the publications I've worked on are:
While working for
Athena when it still had "Project" in its name, I wrote a
parody of Arlo Guthrie's "Alice's Restaurant" called
"Atlas' HDA". Be
warned: If you never worked for Athena, you'll probably miss
many of the jokes.
Of course, I was inspired by the parodies that came before
Lab". It seems that parodying this song is a
long-standing tradition at MIT.
- I wrote the
How to find people's E-mail addresses" Usenet FAQ and
maintained it for several years; it was then maintained
by David Alex
Lamb for a while, who greatly updated and improved it. I
believe it's currently unmaintained and hasn't been updated in
- I wrote the "Mail
Archive Server software list" Usenet FAQ and maintained it
for several years; it is now maintained quite well by Piero Serini.
- I wrote the "How
to find sources" Usenet FAQ and maintained it for several
years; it is now being maintained by Kent Landfield
(he hasn't posted it in a while, but according to E-mail from
him on 9/27/96, he'll be starting up again soon).
- I wrote the "Welcome
to alt.sources!" Usenet FAQ and maintained it for several
years; it is now being maintained and posted by Olivier
- I wrote the "How
to become a Usenet site" Usenet FAQ and maintained it for
several years. It is now being maintained and posted by Chris
- I wrote the "Welcome
to news.newusers.questions!" Usenet FAQ and maintained it
for several years. It is now being maintained and posted by
network security to third-party applications -- the SecureBase
experience", UNIX Security IV Symposium, Santa Clara, CA,
- I worked on the MIT Course Evaluation Guide (CEG) for a couple of
years. Just when I got to know the system they were using to
store all of their data, they decided to change it, so that's
when I decided to pursue other interests. The CEG is defunct
and has been replaced by The MIT Office of Academic Services'
Check out this glossary for
definitions of some of the Jewish terms I use in these pages.
Click here for a brief history of my
efforts to keep spam out of my inbox.
I use bogofilter
to filter my email. It does a very good job (except when it
doesn't; see that brief history I just
mentioned for details). This graph shows the volume of spam I receive
per day and how much of it bogofilter blocks automatically:
This shows the percentage of spam blocked each day:
I also filter incoming email using
the Spamhaus ZEN blocklist.
Here's some history of how much email it blocks:
Note that a blocklist blocks SMTP connections, whether or
not those connections would have actually tried to send email to valid
local accounts, whereas bogofilter blocks email messages to
real users. This is why the number of messages blocked by Spamhaus is
so much higher than the number blocked by bogofilter — most
attempts to send spam are sent to invalid email addresses.
This document was last modified on $Date: 2013/04/11 03:02:08 $.