February 12th, 2016
Posted by pftq

Hiraeia (Piano Improvisation)

A rather peaceful but bittersweet melody that I played out randomly a few nights ago.  It's the longest piano improvisation I've made ever and after almost a year's hiatus, but I think it's my favorite piano composition so far.  I forget how nice it feels to really just flush your thoughts out over piano, and it's been a long time.

730 unique view(s)
August 7th, 2015
Posted by pftq

pq Visitor Counter and Tracker - Improved Spam and Bot Detection

The pq Visitor Counter and Tracker is an old but useful script, which has been integral in helping me keep track of what users are seeing on the site and cutting out spam/bots who are being more of a nuisance.  Its primary functions are as a unique visitor and view counter, but because it is virtually part of every page on the site, it comes in very handy as well for controlling entry points to the site, seeing malicious activity as they happen, and creating filters to block less friendly users based on the pattern of their activity.  This filtering then subsequently lends itself to cleaner analytics and understanding of how many real users you have and what their activities are.

I've spent the last few days adding new methods to tracking spam and bots so as to shut them down early if they're malicious and track/filter them out from being treated as human (for visitor counting, comments, etc) if they're crawlers.  I've also improved the look of the tracker page, so it's easier to identify between human, bot, and spam.  Bots are highlighted in a light shade of green now, with their user agents or other identifying factors similarly highlighted.  Spam is struck out in red to indicate they are being shut down on your site and definitely counted into your hits.  See the below screenshot or go straight to the visitor counter's demo to play around with it yourself.
1148 unique view(s)
July 29th, 2015
Posted by pftq

Autodidactic I

The beginning of many things to come...

Autodidactic I (
1370 unique view(s)
July 8th, 2015
Posted by pftq

The Return of Tech Trader

Been keeping Tech Trader somewhat under wraps the last few years.  A lot of the discussions and open projects I used to have here pretty much went silent or offline.  I'm gradually dusting off a lot of things I previously had online.

Tech Trader
A Fully Autonomous System Taking on the Stock Market

If it's been too long to remember what Tech Trader is, it's basically a program I built that now trades the same way I used to (or arguably better now actually than I ever did).  It's not quant.  It's not stat-arb.  The closest way to picture it is taking the kind of AI scripts I used to make for computer games and making one to mimic my actions in the stock market.  It's been running for the last 3 years now fully automated.

Some cool updates:
- Tech Trader's home page is now
- The chat/discussion page for trading around Tech Trader is back, aka The Tech Trader Wall.
- Still trading on the Virtual Trading System (of course, that's just a toy compared to what it's been really doing behind the scenes)

I've had my share of hostility from being too open on these kinds of projects, so I'll play things by ear here to see how much I want to share again.
1136 unique view(s)
May 10th, 2015
Posted by pftq

Updates to Jeopardy Maker and Gameshow Maker

After about half a decade, Jeopardy Maker and Gameshow Makers finally started showing some compatibility issues with the newer computers and operating systems.  I've gone through and recompiled both programs to bring them up to speed, so they should be running fine again no matter what computer you're using.  I've also taken the opportunity to add HTML/images to the original Jeopardy Maker, as that was a long requested feature there.  And lastly, questions/answers files will automatically be trimmed to avoid issues where extra rows show up from blank lines.

I'm also looking to build a more stable community around these tools if there are any web/product developers out there willing to help with this.  I realize after the long hiatus in updates that I should probably be passing the torch on maintaining and supporting these programs.  Please contact me if you might be interested.
963 unique view(s)