Monthly Archives: March 2007

Chiriquí Chatter Was Hacked

Chiriquí Chatter was hacked about 10:00 PM last night by a Russian hacker. If you accessed the site after that time it is possible that the hacked program downloaded a virus to your PC.

You should run a complete virus scan on your PC, if you accessed this site between 10:00 PM last night and 1:00 PM March 31.

Here is the Information on the hacker.

Whois Record
person: Ludmila M Samoletova
phone: +7 8442 787972
fax-no: +7 8442 787972
registrar: R01-REG-RIPN
created: 2006.05.04
paid-till: 2007.05.04
source: TC-RIPN

I found this information by googling on the URL I was seeing in the bottom of the browser where it displays the sites it is traversing to handle your request. Any time I see an address with a .ru suffix, I worry because it tells me I am accessing a site in Russia.

My first indication was that the site didn’t come up correctly. Some information was right, but the screen wasn’t formatted. I watched as the screen was coming up and saw the .ru address.

The hacker got into the Photo Album, Guestbook, and the Help Desk function. It also affected some management scripts (cPanel and Fantastico) as well.

The hacker put a line of code in all of the above programs directing them to go to the following location.

Obviously you do not want to go there because it gives the hacker access to your PC and a possible virus.

Have I told you how much I hate hackers

Forget Slacker!

Today I tried the use the Slacker website again and received the following message:

We’re Sorry
Slacker Personal Radio
Is not available in your area.

Slacker Personal Radio is currently available in the United States.

If you are getting this message and are in the United States please use the feedback form to tell us where you are located and the name of your ISP.

I have now written off Slacker. Bye Slacker. You are well named.

Pandora Meets Slacker

My friend Omar posted a piece about a new Internet Music service. Now if you have read Chiriquí Chatter for a while, then you know that I am a fan of Pandora. Omar has found another contender (Slacker).

I like Pandora because I can program the type of music I like and I never have listen to commercials. Slacker is similar but different. It also is commercial free, but it has categories of music where Pandora is based on its Genome Project.

Each of these sites has its plus and minuses. Sometimes you just want to try something different. For Omar’s review of Slacker go here.

The only negative I have found is that Slacker is sometimes aborting FireFox. I think it may be conflicting with some FireFox plug-in I have installed, because it seems to run fine under other browsers.

Nary A Drop

I woke up this morning to find that there is no water. I feel fortunate that yesterday was the day that the maid came and cleaned. If there had been no water yesterday then she would not have been able to work.

In this part of David, this is the first time we haven’t had water this year that I can remember. I keep a few containers of water for emergencies such as this to take care of the necessary items such as brushing the teeth etc. I also keep a container of baby wipes. If worse comes to worse one can bathe with baby wipes.

Hopefully this will only last a few hours. Water shortages are problems you have to live with and plan for in Panama.

Update: The water came back around 5:00 PM. That was about a 12 hour outage.

You May Obey The Signs, But Will They?

I don’t think many Panamanians observe the traffic signs too religiously. I have been telling myself that I should go to Plaza El Terronal and see how long it would take to get photos showing that the traffic signs were being ignored.

This sign is taken looking toward the InterAmericana Highway from the parking area next to the street. In this photo you can clearly see that it says NO RIGHT TURN.

Continue reading You May Obey The Signs, But Will They?

Sastreria Union

I had a few projects on my morning list today. One was to have the length on some shorts altered. I went to the Sastreria Union, which is diagonal to Banco Continental and on the same street as Oteima. I went in thinking I would just drop off the pants and come back later, but I got to talk to everyone in the shop and before I knew it my pants were ready. The cost for the alteration was $1.50.

This is the fellow that took care of me. Anytime I get the chance to talk to regular locals, I take advantage of it. It does wonders to help my Spanish both listening and speaking and I think it improves relations between the two cultures.

The shop has a barbershop on the right side and if I had not had a haircut recently, I could have killed two birds with one stone. Haircuts are $1.50, but the barber is not as cute as Yanie.

Learning To Drive In David

Several of you have asked how Natalie was doing on her TOEFL training. She is doing well. I found a formal TOEFL training center in David and she has been going there. I have been supplementing the training, but allowing the experts to do what they do.

As an extra project, I have been teaching Natalie to drive. Learning to drive in a populated area like David is a challenge. There are several things you don’t have to teach in the US that are important in Panama.

In the US, I never had to focus on potholes and paved roads that were constructed with drop-offs on the shoulder. You really have to be careful when you get too close to the shoulder.

Finding an area to practice with little traffic is no small task either. It has been interesting. The other day, we were just driving around the neighborhood when we came upon this situation.

This is something you wouldn’t think of talking about in a in a driver’s training classroom.