Blog comments…

I moderate all comments. That surely stops any spam reaching ‘published’ state and to you, but I have to deal with them all. Most spam and inappropriate comments are not interesting at all. Here are two comments I received for my last post in succession:

Comment:
——–
Always enjoy reading this blog. Please keep up the good work.

Commenter name: jamie
Commenter email: anonymous@anonymous.com
IP address: xx.xxx.xxx.xxx

IP address shows this one’s from Florida. There’s no email, no pharmacy URL etc., nothing that would raise the red flag, but it doesn’t have any real content either. I guess this one might be from a spammer checking out if he can post a comment. I can even amuse myself thinking it’s from someone real who enjoys reading my blog…

The next one is a bit nasty:

Comment:
——–
Im sorry to hear that your quitting smoking Burak , if theyres anyone
who deserves lung cancer its you .

My new years resolution is to releace and promote as much copys of ASV
as i can . Poetic justice as far as im concerned now you know what it
feals like to have your work stolen

regards

Commenter name: Raymond
Commenter email: esdrftgyhuji@sedrftg.com
IP address: xx.xxx.xxx.xxx

Raymond is from Texas, as it seems by looking at his IP. Obviously he doesn’t know how to spell and he uses a QWERTY keyboard. I’d guess he’s rather young. He ends kindly with his ‘regards’. His email address really isn’t random. You can guess the QWERTY layout even when someone is just pressing random keys wildly to make up a fake address, his address is not random in that sense, he probably keyed the address in neatly one key at a time… He uses a capital for my name and for sentence starts, which I find quite rare for this kind of a comment. Is he really angry or is he working for a cigarette company, I cannot decide. He’s after ‘poetic justice’, hmm, I don’t hear that phrase frequently, maybe he’s a bit older than I first thought… What do you think?

Raymond, I’m sorry if someone stole your work, but your comment is very rude. (And I had my work stolen, cracked, key generator-ed, translated to obscure languages, many times. I assure you I know how it feels).

This entry was posted in Misc..

12 Responses to Blog comments…

  1. jamie says:

    If it helps, I really am a real person and have been a customer of Buraks since 2000. Always have been impressed with the customer service and the products – when we were on a deadline to launch a site at 6pm on a Friday if something went wrong we could use one of tools to either change a URL without recompiling a vendor’s swf or debug when Flash’s debug features were basic at best.
    I’m on vacation in Florida and still enjoying reading Buraks posts.
    I had included my email address on a post a made here a long time ago but I had to bug Burak to remove it since my email address was exposed to the world. Is there maybe a better way to make sure the post is legit and not display email addresses for spammers?

  2. Hi Jamie,
    Thanks! It feels good to know you’re real.
    To hide the email you’ve entered, you need to enter a URL.
    Thanks again.
    Best,
    Burak

  3. ubi de feo says:

    as much as I can be rude sometimes in conversations, I think wishing someone what raymond wished you (don’t even want to mention that) is the rudest thing I’ve heard of.
    in the netherlands (where I live) it’s a common (although rude anyway) form of cursing.
    Not having had any experience (luckily none in my family suffered from cancer), I sure can’t talk, but I assume anyone with that kind of experience would be quite offended by the use of it.
    I don’t like to put curses on other people sites, but raymond is really an *******
    ciao.ubi
    ps: raymond, you can comment on my blog as well.
    http://www.randomtype.com

  4. Raymond says:

    That’s funny no I’m not from Texas, I’m European actually. It’s interesting how you completely avoid mention that you have destroyed the swf format for people like myself, and instead focus on my age. I’m 21 a Mechatronics Engineer.
    I actually work in a laboratory that makes a generic form of xanax and antidepressants I like to think I’m improving the quality of life of those suffering with anxiety disorders and depression (Which may as well be a cigarette company in the eyes of some political organizations).and the reason why my messages seem to be emanating from Texas is because it’s just one in a long line of proxies that I use to protect my identity.
    I love your reaction though, you make an application that allows the theft of actionscript and then you’re mortified when someone steals your work. Well Burak get used to it I’m going to make sure you don’t make one penny from raping the swf format. I am after all member of the scene. That is poetic justice, an eye for an eye as they say.
    Every single one of your customers is just as bad as the warez organisations you hate so much.
    Regards, every single person you and your customers have f**ked

  5. Hi Raymond,
    > you have destroyed the swf format for people like myself
    SWF format had to be open to be successful and accepted, and so Macromedia opened it in 1998.
    We were the first to offer a decompiler, but today there are (too) many around.
    This was inevitable with an open format that runs in a VM. There were JAVA decompilers, and there are .Net decompilers, as well as obfuscators.
    > you make an application that allows the theft of actionscript
    Technically, that may be true. But ASV has many legit uses and those are the intended uses. Your generic Xanax may be used for killing people (I guess, with overdose), I don’t see any difference. (And computers can be used for crime, cameras can be used for child porn, the list goes on…)
    > Every single one of your customers is just as bad as the warez organisations you hate so much.
    You are so wrong about why I hate warez organizations. I’m reluctant to write about this… I hate them because a pirate copy of ASV is unfair for the paying customers of ASV. People who pay for software do not use warez. Every pirate copy of ASV actually makes ASV more known and increases our sales. But it’s not fair. Sounds like crazy? I wouldn’t have believed it, if it wasn’t my own experience.
    And about our customers… Now I wish my ethics would allow me to quote some of them. Just one example: Ad industry uses ASV and UAE for very legit purposes as you may guess, checking scripts in SWF ads we love to hate.
    Raymond, I think you are wrong, I know you are wrong. I hope you’ll see it in time, maybe 5 years later. You may not approve decompilers, and it’s OK. But the way you react and targeting me/us as the only one responsible is way too wrong. Anyway, that’s my opinion and probably expected.
    I wish you well.
    Burak

  6. Raymond says:

    Oh come on , Don’t give me that nonsense its a decompiler period and we all know what it’s used for theft of code you claim to have one customer who used it to check their own source . Great and why do you need to bypass SWF Encrypt for that? Don’t compare ASV to a legal application because it is not it has only one use to decompile and steal code.
    I represent the grass roots flash community which you make money from attacking. I believe that the only way to protect ourselves form decompiler’s is to attack their creators by making pirated copies easily available. Driving money away from future development. And that’s what we are going to do.
    But I will offer you a fair exchange. You agree to stay away from SWF Encrypt in future. Because If the intended use of your application is legitimate then stay away from SWF Encrypt. Because it is the only tool that we can use to prevent our code being viewable. Regardless of your beliefs in the product.
    To attack this again will only prove my point, and to be honest that’s the only reason why I haven’t released ASV to the public for free. You have an opportunity to prevent your application appearing on the most popular warez sites in the world, Please visit pha *** .com and see what has happened to the other decompiler’s do you want that to happen to ASV ?
    I have prevented this release going ahead for now, this is a rarity in our organisation. Don’t fuck it up.
    Make no mistake your talking to a member of one of the largest piracy groups in the world, Oh and just in case you think I’m some kiddie. http://rapidshare.com/files *** pdf.html
    I’m a big fan of Microsoft ;-)

  7. Raymond,
    You obviously haven’t read my reply.
    > we all know what it’s used for theft
    That’s not the case. But it seems it’s all you can think of.
    > Driving money away from future development.
    Raymond,
    I’m 37, been programming professionally since I was 16. My first crack -if you can call it as such – was getting myself 255 lives at Manic Miner on Amstrad CPC464 with Gena/Mona package using Z80 assembly in 1984. In 1990 I started working as an editor at PC World Turkey (parttime because there was also college) after submitting them a virus I wrote, again of course in assembly. (Actually it was a ‘good natured’ file virus, which could clean itself on request, thereby removing any later infections). In 1993, I started my own software company and released a few shareware apps. In the 90′s I could crack any app at will, generally took 30 minutes or so.
    I did use my share of warez. I was young, I had no way to pay and I’m not proud of it. (I tried to fix this by purchasing those apps later).
    In May 2000, we released ASV, with my brother, who, I’d say, is a better programmer than me. ASV has been cracked and distributed many times.
    I’ve written this to provide you a background, when I say “I’ve been there, I’ve done that, I’ve seen it”.
    You’ll regret all your piracy work when you get wiser. It takes time.
    Please answer this question: Has there been any version of Windows or Flash, that hasn’t been cracked and distributed illegally? And, which one of these distributions do you think “drove money away from future development”?
    The truth is, apart from organized piracy like publishing counterfeit Windows CDs, warez releases do not really hurt the software developer. (On the contrary, it helps sales, but you’re free to not believe this one).
    (The first time ASV was cracked and distributed, I was devastated. I thought it would end all sales and my little business would end. This was 6 years ago, and we are still here – though probably I should be coding rather than writing a long reply to you).
    Our software is portable, we don’t have activation stuff, we don’t call the mothership and we don’t tie our software to specific machines. The end result is that while we avoid inconvenience to the end-user, it’s easy to have casual copying with our software. Guess what? We still have multiple license sales to the same customer, months apart. Today, any software is available as “warez”. As a decompiler if I cannot find ASV easily, I can find another, and that will work 90% of the time for my purposes. People who pay for software respect the licensing process. When I buy a software, I know that I could get it for free if I wanted. But I don’t do it. Warez users and legal users are different people.
    So, your threat is in fact empty. Do it if you want, I will try to stop it only because I think it will not be fair to our paying customers if I don’t act. It won’t really hurt me or my business. It won’t drive funds away from further development.
    > But I will offer you a fair exchange. You agree to stay away from SWF Encrypt in future.
    Let me get this straight. If you had said “don’t bypass *any* encryption/obfuscation in the future”, it would have made sense. It’s ethically totally unacceptable to act this way for one product only. The fact is, we don’t even release an obfuscator ourselves, because we think it’s unethical to offer both a decompiler and an obfuscator.
    We’ll bypass obfuscations, as much as technically possible to the best of our ability, as long as our customers request so. However, we also have a policy not to bypass an obfuscation too soon, we wait 3 to 6 months.
    Again, don’t forget, there are many decompilers out there. Suppose we stopped bypassing obfuscations, another decompiler vendor will quickly fill in.
    > a member of one of the largest piracy groups in the world
    And you claim, ASV is used for theft. Why do you bother then?
    > Oh and just in case you think I’m some kiddie.
    Now that you say this, I think you may be one :) Or you may be +RaYmoNd… I don’t care. I know that you are wrong and I’m right. Lets assume you are the greatest pirate in the world and you release ASV as warez, and assume, as you think, it ruins my business. And, you do it for all decompilers, so they all disappear. Do you think that will be a stable state? Someone will write a new decompiler from scratch in no time, and you’ll be at square one. And what can you do for an Open Source and free decompiler?
    There’s legit need for decompilers (even if you don’t see it). As long as the need is there, there will be decompilers around. And there will be obfuscators around. That’s FOL (fact of life), get over with it.
    Burak

  8. Omar says:

    I am a frequent visitor of your blog and usually do not leave comments.
    Just wanted to let you know that I very much enjoy reading your blog.
    Keep it up.
    Thanks :)

  9. BNB says:

    Raymond,
    Your an idiot. I recently lost the source to a HUGE project of mine. All I have is my deployed SWF files. I know… I’m an idiot as well for not backing up a project of this size. I have been looking for a tool to help me re-write all my source. I’m currently looking through the byte code and translating it back to my source. ASV (once it will handle AS3) will be a HUGE help. I plan on purchasing it.
    You complain about a tool that allows someone to “steal” your code and then continue by stating your are part of some “BIG” pirate group. PLEASE. If this is the case, you deserve people stealing your code. You are offering other people stuff illegally.
    So stop crying, grow-up, and work on your spelling.

  10. I have used ASV for at least seven years for legitimate purposes, which are easy to come by. One time I was preparing my presentation slides the day before speaking at a conference. I had my template from a previous session, but a key font was missing because I was borrowing someone’s laptop. Thankfully, I remembered that ASV can generate a TrueType font file from a SWF. I had the previous presentation SWF with me, so I recovered the font with no problems.
    Speaking of “stealing”, a few times I’ve seen Flash movies that look suspiciously familiar. With ASV, I was able to verify whether the SWF in question was using some code of mine without permission (back before I went open-source). Nothing much I could do, but at least I knew who not to trust.
    But mostly I use ASV to look at my own SWFs as I create them. It’s the best way to see an inventory of every symbol, bitmap, and script, and to learn how SWF is structured. When AS2 introduced a new intermediate form of compilation, ASV was crucial for understanding how the compiler was representing AS2 as AS1 in the SWF. And the bytecode view is instructive for learning how the virtual machine works, and how to optimize for it.

  11. Dear Robert,
    Thanks! And I do appreciate your time for the comment.
    After your comment, a comment by Robert Penner, I don’t think there is much room left for a more qualified comment.
    Thanks again.
    Best,
    Burak

  12. Jensa says:

    Hi Raymond,
    I also like to consider myself part of the “grass roots flash community”. You totally fail to see the point that the SWF format is open (as in publicly available to anyone interested). There is no way you can protect a SWF. This is both good and bad.
    I’ve personally promoted ASV several times on my site Flashmagazine.com as it really is an indispensable tool if you’ve been in the business for some time. Once in a while a former client pops up and want you to fix something in an old application. The client is usually reluctant to pay you for locating the backup, so you can either spend half a day sifting through CDs, DVD and tapes for that file or just open ASV. It’s really that simple.
    And – there’s nothing done in Flash that’s so incredibly brilliant that nobody could do something similar (or even just the same). Anything done in Flash can be recreated by others – given enough time and money.
    J