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WordPress Vulnerability

The recent outage of was caused by a vulnerability in wordpress 2.8.4. Apparently, the “update” function in that version does not update wordpress beyond its current version. So despite making sure that it had downloaded the latest updates, the website remained stuck at version 2.8.4 for an extended period. More details on the exploit and repair work will be posted later.

History Time : Darwin

I found this a program on my computer that I wrote as a freshman years ago.  It is a simple artificial organism with the capability to evolve in order to better survive in its environment.  In this version (1.2)  the organisms have no intelligence to use to find the food; another green blob that jumps around the map.  Only by reproducing and dying can the organisms appear to follow the food.  The motion of each individual is simply a random walk.

The actions of the organism are randomly chosen each cycle with the likelihood of each action being determined by its DNA.  Each off-spring will vary one of these parameters by a preset value.  In the readout on the right several parameters are displayed to give the observer some insight into the organism.  The averages give insight into the DNA of the organisms.  The program will occasionally get stuck with one or more immortal cells, press the red button to restart the program.

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AUVSI SUAS 2010 Results

Overall Results
  1. North Carolina State University
  2. Mississippi State University
  3. Embry Riddle Aeronautical University (Blackbird)
  4. Sherbrooke University (VAMUdes)
  5. University of California at San Diego
Best Flight – North Carolina State University
Best Journal – University of California at San Diego
Best Oral Presentation – Embry-Riddle (Blackbird)
Safety Award – Sherbrooke (VAMUdes)

Prize Barrels
Automatic Target Identification
  • University of Texas at Austin
High Accuracy Target Finding
  • Rutgers University
  • Embry Riddle Aeronautical University (SOAR)
  • Florida International University
Pop-up Target
  • Embry Riddle Aeronautical University (Blackbird)
Actionable Intelligence
  • Utah State University
  • North Carolina State University


At long last I have found a URL worth having.  The new URL is which stands for Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Systems, or UAVs.

The processing of ordering a redirecting the URL to my server took a few hours.  Getting wordpress to play along was much more difficult.  Upon getting the URL forwarded to my server I tried to access wordpress the same way I had been accessing it and then at the new address:



While the old method still worked, the new address just gave me an error saying that

The config file for the specified host is not under an allowed path

It took me far too long to figure out a solution to this problem.  The root of the issue is that I use an Ubuntu based server and installed wordpress using apt-get.  The publisher of the package improved the software making the wp-config.php file “highly customized” according to one source.  In the end, the solution turned out to be that while I have a single file called “config-”, I needed a file to correspond to each of the addresses that might need to connect to wordpress. Thus I had to use the commands:

sudo cp config-

sudo cp config-

This fixed the issue for me.  The issue could also have been solved by editing the wp-config.php file such that it will only look for the one file.


An old picture I generated, posted using the repaired content upload

Having gotten wordpress up and running again I decided to also perform some server maintenance.  Now wordpress is the homepage for instead of being at /wordpress.  Finally, I fixed a back-end issue which fixed the mechanism for adding media to these posts.  The consequence is that I will have to repost all the old pictures, but in the future it will be much easier to add content.

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