Brad’s flying out Friday to keep Super Monkey (aka whitaker) awake on the road as he drives to Portland from Ohio. Whitaker really is a super monkey, he’s gonna dance around for us and bust out some mad code.
Since our status post from last month we’ve worked quite a bit on profiling our codebase, and we started putting together a regression test suite to help us review development changes as we make them. As for new hardware, we’ve recently installed 4 new web servers, and we have another set of database servers that we’re getting ready to put live.
Another thing we’ve worked on throughout March was how we handle spam comments some of you receive in your journals. We’ve written a new spam report tool for us that works when you check the “Mark this comment as spam” box while deleting a single comment. The comment is deleted as normal but logged separately, which helps us to identify and eliminate spam trends and repeat spam offenders. Also, anonymous people who make more than a few comments during a brief amount of time are required to prove that they’re human by completing a captcha. bradfitz recently summarized the spam issues on LiveJournal in the community lj_biz.
On the topic of spam, just today we’ve started using the real-time black lists (SBL & XBL) published from Spamhaus.org to filter spam on our mail servers. Most of the time legitimate email will not be blocked by these lists, but in the unlikely event you are having problems receiving mail at your @livejournal.com address, you may want to have the sender’s internet service provider check the SBL & XBL to determine if they are listed. Our point is not to block any legitimate e-mail but rather to prevent abusers from flooding our servers and causing mail delays for you.
We’ve been working a lot on splitting up friends lists between people you trust and journals you read, and with our new Goatvote system it’s a lot easier to field public opinion and shape our policies appropriately. Recently we made a decision to allow you to ban accounts so they won’t show up on the “friends of” list on your user information page.
In paidmembers news, we recently rewrote and brought back the “Popular Users Amongst Your Friends” tool. This month we’ll be working on bringing back other features we’ve disabled in the past, as well as working with our VoIP service providers to provide Post by Phone Access Numbers in west coast & midwest states.
The big goal for April is continuing work on our photo hosting service. You can take a peek at the new site by going to http://pics.livejournal.com/. Note: this is running on Brad’s personal server, so be aware that this news post will probably flood it with traffic. When we make the service public it’ll be running on tons of machines.
Have a good month folks!