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Stephen Brooks
2002-09-15 14:57:12
Yeah I know it sounds absurd, but GoogleBot really _did_ try to place some counters on the BrowserWars board.  I see no reason (as yet) to discriminate against non-human players, so I've let GoogleBot have its own team just to see if it ever manages to win anything.  big grin
moonshine
2002-09-16 06:53:12
Seems hard to believe...how did the bot ever manage to win any games?  I'd like to see the robot actually play, but I guess it's not around whenever I play.  frown

Greetings from Stuttgart,
moonshine

-- Truth is stranger than fiction.  --
Abs
2002-09-16 09:17:01
GoogleBot already has 6 wins, and someone has even won a couple of rounds with goddamn wget big grin

(maybe I should build myself a BrowserWars-only HTTP client script with the id tag signed "Abs = l33t" big grin)
mskwik
2002-09-16 10:27:11
It seems more likely to me that someone just adjusted their user-agent.  I did win a couple of rounds using wget to place tokens and looking at the board with mozilla.
Stephen Brooks
2002-09-16 12:08:30
Yeah; there is of course nothing I can do to stop people imitating other browsers like that.  However, Googlebot did place some counters (at least 6) initially before I put up a score-bar for it, so at least at that stage it seems unlikely it was someone being a fake.  After all, who'd suddenly think "I know, I'll pretend to be GoogleBot"?

There's also a browser called "SpaceBison 0.02" that shows up, but I think that's a popular alias used for people who don't want to reveal their real Browser-ID string.  They can stay as UnknownGoose for now.
Nimrod
2002-09-16 14:24:50
I don't know how OmniWeb has won 10 games, whenever I use it, Browser Wars tells me I'm using Mozilla...
Fudge E. Bear
2002-09-19 12:48:05
What is really sad is that I just lost to Googlebot...
Stephen Brooks
2002-09-19 13:03:49
I just saw that!  Unfortunately it seems there's a bug in my "compicated stats" generator which means the scores in the first game of a new combination of players (this time a 4-way involving GoogleBot) are reported in reverse order.  This is now fixed (although the old scores aren't), so I guess at least there is not yet any permanent record of your humiliation smile



Apart from that one.


"As every 11-year-old kid knows, if you concentrate enough Van-der-Graff generators and expensive special effects in one place, you create a spiral space-time whirly thing, AND an interesting plotline"
moonshine
2002-09-19 15:08:16
Wow,
now that wasn't really GoogleBot playing, was it?  I cannot see how a robot could ever place the tokens in the manner shown above...someone must have snatched the user-agent string and pretended to be GoogleBot!
I wonder how one can do that... roll eyes

Cheers,
moonshine
Stephen Brooks
2002-09-19 16:13:28
I really don't know who this was.  It still could have been GoogleBot because the tokens appear to have been placed from right-to-left in several (about 4) successive sweeps, including one rather stupid move in column 4. The bot may have an advantage because it just clicks on an arrow immediately after anyone has played, thus garaunteeing 50% board usage.

Alternatively this may be a person masquerading as Google.  I could trace the next GoogleBot's IP address, but the odd thing in all this is that the GoogleBot first played half-a-dozen counters to the board as "unknownbrowser" before I even suggested the whole idea.


"As every 11-year-old kid knows, if you concentrate enough Van-der-Graff generators and expensive special effects in one place, you create a spiral space-time whirly thing, AND an interesting plotline"
AySz88
2002-09-19 16:27:41
I would think that the bot would sweep over the links in left-to-right, in the order the page loads.
moonshine
2002-09-19 17:30:28
Right now I am playing this "GoogleBot" (I'm Opera) and it is definitely not sweeping the board in any direction...I am sure someone is masquerading as the Robot.  Maybe before you started this topic GoogleBot was really placing tokens, but right now I doubt it's a robot...

Laters,

moonshine
moonshine
2002-09-19 18:13:08
Hi Stephen,

I attached the end-of game picture of me playing the infamous GoogleBot (just rename it to .jpg)...

Note how the sure win for Opera on the left column was stopped by a combined effort of GoogleBot and Lynx: after being idle for about 40 seconds, GoogleBot and the Lynx guy played within 1 second (the Lynx guy placing his first token on the board).  roll eyes

Cheers,
moonshine

The number you have dialed is imaginary.  Please rotate your phone 90° clockwise and try again.
guest
2002-09-20 09:36:53
The lynx was me -- when I saw GoogleBot playing, I decided to try to help it out.  Of course, as you say, it might have not actually been GoogleBot.
Fudge E. Bear
2002-09-20 20:08:09
Let me tell you how much I respect you guys who can do this in Lynx!  I have played in Lynx about a dozen times or so, and it is really hard without the graphics...
Stephen Brooks
2002-09-21 02:08:26
I've tested Lynx with this game before, and managed to fend off IE6, Opera and Konqueror simultaneously.  It wasn't too easy though, and I only won ONE game big grin
Hannibal
2002-09-21 06:16:16
quote:
Originally posted by Fudge E. Bear:
Let me tell you how much I respect you guys who can do this in Lynx!  I have played in Lynx about a dozen times or so, and it is really hard without the graphics...


Graphics is no problem, it looks quite good especially under large x terminals (i.e. 130x50).  But reloading load page from cache and I must restart lynx frown. Maybe someone know how fix that.

Hannibal
Stephen Brooks
2002-09-21 07:11:06
Well I've made the board itself so that each column is just 6 chars wide, needing 60 width in total.  However the headings at the top ("play column 4") are a bit long, so on my Lynx they go onto two rows.

The caching is annoying with Lynx.  I even tried putting in a dummy query to try and force the cache to reload but it didn't seem to work.  I think the other one (Links) is a bit better with this.


"As every 11-year-old kid knows, if you concentrate enough Van-der-Graff generators and expensive special effects in one place, you create a spiral space-time whirly thing, AND an interesting plotline"
Colin Percival
2002-09-22 09:44:07
quote:
Originally posted by Stephen Brooks:
I see no reason (as yet) to discriminate against non-human players, so I've let GoogleBot have its own team just to see if it ever manages to win anything.


Can I have my own team, too?
Stephen Brooks
2002-09-23 15:22:06
I see you are
C4Bot <colin.percival@wadham.ox.ac.uk>
. What's that, a bot you wrote yourself?
Most of the UnknownBrowsers are now people who hide their browser IDs deliberately, which is fine.  There's just one other frequent genuine-looking visitor and that's
K-Meleon 0.6
. Other people who have given fake IDs include
foobar
,
What is a \"Browser\" in the first place?  Computer?  I need a Computer?
,
Space Bison/0.02 [fu] (Win67; X; SK)
,
\"monster-browser (Zuse-Z3) v. 73.2 BETA\"
and
none
. Obviously the last one there was not using his browser to play the game at all and was instead placing counters by looking at the reflection in a chrome toaster.


"As every 11-year-old kid knows, if you concentrate enough Van-der-Graff generators and expensive special effects in one place, you create a spiral space-time whirly thing, AND an interesting plotline"
Colin Percival
2002-09-23 16:48:46
quote:
Originally posted by Stephen Brooks:
I see you are
C4Bot <colin.percival@wadham.ox.ac.uk>
. What's that, a bot you wrote yourself?


Yes; 138 lines of perl, executing wget to fetch the pages and place counters.

It's quite stupid, but it seems to win a remarkable number of games.
sohmageek
2006-01-30 16:24:25
I frequently go to pages with my user agent spoofed as googlebot.  I was wondering which other bots you have registered and checked my site's stat page which told me which other agents hit my site... both MSN bot and Yahoo bot ident as a mozilla varriant. 
Just wondering other than when I tried it and came up as unknown agent... does blogsearch or any of the other bots hit this site?
Mozilla/5.0 (compatible; Yahoo!  Slurp; http://help.yahoo.com/help/us/ysearch/slurp) is yahoo slurp
BlogSearch/1.1 +http://www.icerocket.com/ is blog search.
Stephen Brooks
2006-02-02 10:39:18
MSNbot was one of the top ten hitters of my site last month.  Maybe I should give it its own team...

[edit] Done, I think.  We need some competition for GoogleBottom.  If you call Microsoft "competition".
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