Blog Entries

Evan’s blog.

Thursday March 30th, 2023

How to avoid the aCropalypse

It could have been prevented if only Google and Microsoft used our tools!

Monday August 1st, 2022


The Blathering

Thursday December 16th, 2021

What does your code use, and is it vulnerable?


Tuesday February 2nd, 2021

PDF is Broken: a justCTF Challenge

In which a PDF is a webserver, serving copies of itself

Wednesday April 8th, 2020

So, you’re thinking about getting a Ph.D.

What next?

Friday April 5th, 2019

Breaking into Google Headquarters

In which I tempt the criminal justice system while flaunting the California statute of limitations.

Friday December 8th, 2017

File Polyglottery

or, This Proof of Concept is Also a Picture of Cats

Friday June 30th, 2017

Has there been an increase in potential residency in Philadelphia?

Analyzing Zoning Density Changes, 2012–2017

Friday February 24th, 2017

Is Automation of Automation Going to Kill Off Computer Science Jobs?

An Essay in Polite Dissent to Mark Cuban

Wednesday June 17th, 2015

Service Discovery on Dynamic Peer-to-Peer Networks Using Mobile Agents

or, How Bumper Cars Relate to Computer Science

Monday May 18th, 2015

Positive Train Control

or, Jet Fuel Can’t Melt Train Tracks

Tuesday May 5th, 2015

Tracking Trains

Reverse Engineering and Hacking Text Messages for Great Good

Thursday April 30th, 2015

Musical Uncanny Valley (Continued)

In which I annoyingly and gratuitously riff on a theme.

Friday April 24th, 2015

Musical Uncanny Valley

In which I compare annoying music to artisanal ketchup.

Tuesday April 14th, 2015

Defending Cyberspace

or: No, I thought you were doing it.

Thursday April 2nd, 2015

Social Signals Part 2

The (gratuitous) math behind the magic.

Friday March 27th, 2015

Social Signals

or, the basis for an article that was nominated for best paper and subsequently rejected.

Wednesday March 4th, 2015

Success in OS X

10 easy steps (and lots of unnecessary prose) on how to set up a new PowerBook in 48 hours or more.

Monday February 23rd, 2015

Hashing Pointers

or: How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love C++11

Friday February 20th, 2015

Killing Programs Softly

A quick script to gently kill intermittently unresponsive programs on OS X.

Monday June 30th, 2014

粤式蒸鱼 (Steamed Fish with Hot Oil)

In which I adulterate a classic Cantonese dish.

Friday June 27th, 2014

Lenticrypt: a Provably Plausibly Deniable Cryptosystem

or, This Picture of Cats is Also a Picture of Dogs

Thursday February 13th, 2014

Random Solutions are Often Good Enough

Sometimes taking the easy way out isn’t nearly as bad as it might seem!

Thursday February 6th, 2014

Physical Security Followup

These Locks are Everywhere!

Friday January 31st, 2014

Exploiting Password Weaknesses in Physical Security

In which I channel the spirit of my eighth academic cousin thrice removed, Richard Feynman.

Tuesday January 14th, 2014

Unambiguous Encapsulation

Defending Against “Packet in Packet” Attacks

Friday August 23rd, 2013

Defending Your E-Mails from Surveillance … Conveniently

via Magiic!

Friday February 10th, 2012

Copyright Quandry

Ceci c’est ne pas une pirate.

Monday October 10th, 2011

Streams Data Processing Workshop

A Presentation Introducing Distributed Combinatorial Optimization

Monday October 3rd, 2011

Sushi Elitism

Three reasons why you’ve probably never had an authentic sushi experience.

Thursday September 22nd, 2011

Will eating late at night make you fat?

TL;DR: No.

Monday September 19th, 2011

The Economics of Eating Poorly

Is it cheaper to eat fast food than to cook a meal from scratch?

Saturday September 17th, 2011

Food Deserts

In which I argue that not only desserts but also deserts are corrolated with obesity.

Monday September 12th, 2011

Pronunciation of foreign words in American vs. British English

In which my etymological conjectures are repudiated by Peter Shor.

Tuesday September 6th, 2011

Are no two snowflakes alike?

A mathematical argument for the negative.

Thursday September 1st, 2011

Revisiting the Ballmer Peak

Might the Ballmer Peak be an actual phenomena?

Tuesday August 30th, 2011

Sir Robert Burnett

An investigation into the life of the patron saint of alcoholic graduate students.

Monday August 29th, 2011

Seven Degrees of Separation

In the year 2651 we will have to create the "Seven Degrees of Separation Game"!

Sunday August 28th, 2011

New website!

…for the fifth—and by no means last—time.

Sunday February 20th, 2011

Grading PDFs (a Workflow)

Annotation of multi-page PDFs using open-source tools.

Thursday February 17th, 2011

Gender Representation on the Internet

In which I discover that male names appear much more often than female names on the Internet.

Saturday January 22nd, 2011

鯖の味噌煮 (Saba no Misoni)

A Receipt for My Favorite Japanese Dish

Saturday August 14th, 2010

Azerbaijani Sous

A recipe for my wife’s favorite stew.

Wednesday June 16th, 2010


A solution for digital hoarding.

Monday May 24th, 2010

Ballmer Peak

A Generalization

Monday May 17th, 2010

AAMAS 2010

The Ninth International Conference on Autonomous Agents and Multiagent Systems

Thursday May 13th, 2010

Success in Linux

Linux: Simultaneously the source of and solution to all of my computing problems.

Saturday January 30th, 2010

Retirement Planning through Treasure Hunting

A metaphor for the process of earning a Ph.D.

Wednesday July 29th, 2009

iPhone Toolchain on Linux

A Tutorial

Wednesday July 1st, 2009

File Drop

Computer-to-Computer File Transfer for the Masses

Monday June 22nd, 2009

Mail Notifier

Gmail Notifications in Linux

Saturday June 6th, 2009

Awaiting Death

In which I coerce processes to email me as they die.

Sunday May 3rd, 2009

Vizualizing Twitter

Journey to the Center of the Twitterverse

Monday April 20th, 2009


In which Evan and Joe teach you how to make beautiful documents.

Wednesday April 15th, 2009

On the Economics of Higher Education

In which I apply flimsy math and hand-waving to justify the time I’ve wasted in school.

Wednesday February 25th, 2009

Computer Science

An Introduction

Monday January 26th, 2009

Hacking the Law

Thought Experiments Testing the Limits of the Law

Thursday January 22nd, 2009

Celebrating 200 Poetic Years

In which Rob and I embark on yet another crazy trip.

Wednesday January 21st, 2009

Walking to the Horizon

or, A Mathematical Argument for a Gastronomical Visit to Stockholm

Thursday January 1st, 2009

Cycle Junkie Shirt

An esoteric shirt inspired by a slightly less esoteric conference.

Friday November 14th, 2008

Leĝo de Sultanik pri Aaŭtoroj de Vikipedio

Rezultato: Troloj ĉiam superforti.

Wednesday October 29th, 2008

Only π more hours to go…

In which I am trolled by a software utility.

Tuesday October 28th, 2008


In which I blatantly offend yet another group of people.

Tuesday October 21st, 2008

Dictionary and Thesaurus Lookup in Emacs

Or, adding a feature to a piece of software that already has too many features.

Wednesday October 1st, 2008

Orþography for Dental Fricatives

A Proposal

Tuesday September 16th, 2008

Mr. Mint

Or, how I bought myself a US passport.

Thursday May 15th, 2008

AAMAS 2008

A Solo Trip to Spain and Portugal

Wednesday April 5th, 2006

Cycling from Philadelphia, PA to Reston, VA

In which I once again make poor life decisions fueled by stubbornness.

Tuesday March 14th, 2006

Nathan Fabian

In which an innocent cyclist is rudely introduced to the Internet.

Thursday March 9th, 2006

The Great Cat Massacre

or, More Evidence that the French are Bunch of Psychopaths

Tuesday July 26th, 2005

AAMAS 2005

This blog entry is a special case within the set of all possible blog entries.

Tuesday August 31st, 2004

Women, fast roadsters, and small computers!

Photoshop Failure

Monday August 30th, 2004

AAAI 2004

In which I provide evidence of my trespass onto Google’s new campus.

Monday August 23rd, 2004

Spammers are getting smart!

In which spammers finally realize that OCR has yet to pass the Turing Test.

Sunday August 8th, 2004

Canine Atkins

Because dogs deserve to have the chance to ruin their kidneys, too.

Monday August 2nd, 2004

National Television Debut

In which I boast about some inane metrics.

Sunday July 18th, 2004


(Presumably to destroy X10)

Tuesday June 15th, 2004

What a Commute!

Breaking stereotypes with bicycles and hot dogs.