[Pmwiki-users] Hashcash ... an interesting idea for preventing span

Nathan Jones pmwiki
Thu Dec 2 20:18:51 CST 2004

John Feezell wrote:
>I'm wondering about the possibility of combining a small swf file
>(estimates are that about 98% of browsers can handle this
>type of file without any additional download) with the
>hashcash concept and relating them to the edit process in PmWiki.

How are you expecting it to work, or rather, what do you expect it should
do? Prevent a machine/bot from editing pages? Make it difficult for
people (but only naughty people) to edit pages?

http://www.hashcash.org/faq/ has a good section on how Hascash works
(see section 2), but I can't quite picture how it would work outside of
an email context.

However, it does remind me of a scheme used on web sites to prevent use
by bots - captchas:


If combined with a wiki engine, it would ensure that a human is editing
the page by asking him/her to enter the text displayed in an obscured
image. It doesn't prevent a spammer from manually editing a page, but it
prevents spammers from creating automated processes that crawl the web to
find wikis and automatically alter them.

Nathan Jones

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