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Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 6:09 pm UTC
by nycrdeary
This is really awesome. If nothing else, it makes a birthday gift entirely filled with random.

So let's do this.

The eBay APIs are pretty easy to use, so I threw together a little Flex app that searches for things under a dollar. Flex might not be the best platform for this, but at least it's reasonably cross platform. So I can search for items given some criteria, and place an offer on them in the final few seconds of the auction. The script can keep trying until it wins something.

However, I can't figure out how to automatically pay for the items. I don't see anything in the API.

Does anyone have any ideas on how to do this bit?

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 6:23 pm UTC
by Kyberely
PatrickRsGhost wrote:Day 8: Coat hanger
Day 9: cucumber
Day 10: 20 oz. bottle Diet Coke
Day 11: roll of Mentos
Day 12: kite
Day 13: Zeppelin!
Day 14: ninja costume
Day 15: katana
Day 16: beard
...


The ninja costume one made me choke on my drink.

I wonder how many days we'll get up to on this thread.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 7:25 pm UTC
by colovelo
L33tsaber wrote:The bobcat reference in the alt text reminds me of an old joke (or rather, a set of jokes) involving a brick.

Does that joke also involve a dog and a cigar? If so, that's one of my favorite jokes ever.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 7:39 pm UTC
by L33tsaber
colovelo wrote:
L33tsaber wrote:The bobcat reference in the alt text reminds me of an old joke (or rather, a set of jokes) involving a brick.

Does that joke also involve a dog and a cigar? If so, that's one of my favorite jokes ever.
That's the one!

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 8:33 pm UTC
by obituary
someone make me this so i can get things. i love getting packages.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 8:39 pm UTC
by Cpt.DaveyJones

Re: Packages

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 9:23 pm UTC
by dennisw
jcidiot wrote:try making a steel box, dump mercury into it, and then wield the top closed. rinse off all mercury left outside, and send. this should be around 80 90lbs, and costs a lot less than tungsten for a heavier weight than lead. though could violate federal no toxic substances laws...

Yeah, I don't want to be around while you're welding next to a big pool of mercury.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Fri May 01, 2009 11:45 pm UTC
by Geekoid
I would love this script.

Another alt tag:
"Who the hell mails Bobcat Goldthwiat."

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 12:56 am UTC
by guncow
Alt Text was golden. Goddamn I love xkcd.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 1:09 am UTC
by Eriksson
I laughed a long, high-pitched, stupid-sounding laugh. Imagine something like this, but without "Little Girls" playing in the background.

Edit: And disregard the clip at the start.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 2:05 am UTC
by PatrickRsGhost
Day 17: skateboard
Day 18: motor
Day 19: squeeze-trigger mechanism
Day 20: turtle shell, painted green
Day 21: another turtle shell, painted green
Day 22: yet another turtle shell, but painted blue...shit.
Day 23: busted wagon wheel
Day 24: bent-up wagon pull handle
Day 25: piece of orange-and-black-striped fabric?
Day 26: piece of red-and-black-striped fabric?
Day 27: computer keyboard with keys missing
Day 28: copy of "My Generation: The Best of The Who" CD
Day 29: piece of very long claw, about 8 inches long, curved. Oh fucking shit.
Day 30: can of Barbasol shaving foam, with rather suspiciously loose base
Day 31: tranquilizer darts. Like these will help any.
Day 32: it's about damn time. I ordered this office chair two years ago.
Day 33: rather tattered black hat
Day 34: rather tattered black journal
Day 35: gyroscope...why is it already spinning?
Day 36: box of sporks
Day 37: bag of tortilla chips
Day 38: chess board with pieces glued in play
Day 39: camera
Day 40: tickets to Six Flags Great American
Day 41: giant inflatable ball
Day 42: Amazon Kindle
Day 43: jar of salsa con queso
Day 44: red pills
Day 45: blue pills
Day 46: razor blades
Day 47: straw
Day 48: mirror

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 2:08 am UTC
by thret
I think this would be more fun the more money you put into it. $1 gifts would be boring. $100 gifts OTOH might be very interesting.

That's probably out of reach for most people but somewhere in the $10-$20 range could really work.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 2:59 am UTC
by Black ICE
I too love to get packages. This is the best strip in a while :D

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 3:27 am UTC
by HalfWayDownTheStairs
Ok, forget life-imitates-xkcd.

After reading this comic, I'm building a device to allow me to cross the fiction-reality barrier and climb into the world of xkcd. Because it's simply made of Awesome.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 3:31 am UTC
by Linux0s
Automated PayPal transactions. This outta be good.

Image

Script Testing Day 1: Won bid on lakefront estate. Check random sort routine.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 3:58 am UTC
by Rowan_of_Rin
This is probably one of my favourite comics here. Someone seriously needs to make this script! If you do, I will love you long time.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 4:52 am UTC
by AislinKageno
A bobcat for one dollar would be a pretty good deal, though.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 5:22 am UTC
by JustJohn
Comic: 8/10
Alt text: 10/10

Nice treat for xkcd readers

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 6:32 am UTC
by Batangutan
I think this kind of thing might be well-suited for some human intervention. I propose a simple system where all interested people would get together, be assigned someone and, once a day, buy an item <$1 and have it sent to them. I'd be willing to organize this - maybe a trial period doing it for 1 month - June? Anyone who's interested, message me.



Short summary, for those who browse:
Message me if you want to buy someone else a <$1 item every day in June, and receive the same in return.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 10:47 am UTC
by Splendid
Batangutan wrote:Message me if you want to buy someone else a <$1 item every day in June, and receive the same in return.

So really we wouldn't have to have a script or buy anything for one whole year, but we will have to buy something every day for someone else for a month, getting things in return? That doesn't sound like a bad idea; I have an extra thirty bucks (US $ I assume). If enough people volunteer, A buys for B who buys for C who buys for D ... who buys for A. Having your gift giver be anonymous should be the goal. Also, I think everyone should be buying for a total of thirty days at the same time, because if I had to wait until, say, December for my 'turn' I'd be sad.

EDIT: To be clearer, I was signing myself up for the experiment. Definitely try for more people, though. Perhaps make a separate thread dedicated strictly to this?

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 12:31 pm UTC
by Freiberg
L33tsaber wrote:
colovelo wrote:
L33tsaber wrote:The bobcat reference in the alt text reminds me of an old joke (or rather, a set of jokes) involving a brick.

Does that joke also involve a dog and a cigar? If so, that's one of my favorite jokes ever.
That's the one!


Oh no, not that joke again!

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 5:45 pm UTC
by Batangutan
Splendid wrote:Perhaps make a separate thread dedicated strictly to this?


So, here's a new thread for the "Month of Packages": http://echochamber.me/viewtopic.php?f=2&t=38745
And anybody who wants in, head here: http://sites.google.com/site/mop0609/

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 8:32 pm UTC
by Siguy
I can so relate to this comic. There's just something so wonderful about anticipating and then getting a package in the mail.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sat May 02, 2009 8:35 pm UTC
by knight2417
Last night I had a dream that you could set this up using some random option in Safari.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sun May 03, 2009 12:36 am UTC
by squig
knight2417 wrote:Last night I had a dream that you could set this up using some random option in Safari.

A firefox plugin would be the bomb.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sun May 03, 2009 1:53 am UTC
by fiveofoh
Linux0s wrote:Script Testing Day 1: Won bid on lakefront estate. Check random sort routine.

I might just work on this...but first I have things to do.
But mostly, Linux0s, you just stole half an hour of my time, because your avatar annoyed me sufficiently that I had to fix it:
Image
That with nothing but my bare hands and the GIMP, no less.
Love your sig quote, though. And the animation...it was good, don't get me wrong, it just needed to be fixed. :P

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sun May 03, 2009 4:46 am UTC
by Dogbert
squig wrote:
knight2417 wrote:Last night I had a dream that you could set this up using some random option in Safari.

A firefox plugin would be the bomb.


Holy cow. Instead of "Stumble", you press "Bag O' Crap" and three days later you have a random package waiting at your front door. WIN

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sun May 03, 2009 7:47 am UTC
by TheGreatfulLiving
That one line totally made my day. Thanks, Randall.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sun May 03, 2009 11:59 am UTC
by Nawaxo
Dogbert wrote:
squig wrote:
knight2417 wrote:Last night I had a dream that you could set this up using some random option in Safari.

A firefox plugin would be the bomb.


Holy cow. Instead of "Stumble", you press "Bag O' Crap" and three days later you have a random package waiting at your front door. WIN


Please someone do this.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sun May 03, 2009 4:03 pm UTC
by Draconova
I just tried searching for all categories, under this thing, I had to give at least some characters to search so I just put in the letter A.


If this experiment was really done you'd have about 50 E-books about how to sell stuff on ebay, 2 pictures of a tattoo, and a pinch of dryer lint.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sun May 03, 2009 4:30 pm UTC
by Nawaxo
It could also have some options like maximum and minimum value, with or without shipping costs, and words to filter to avoid ebooks and yugioh.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sun May 03, 2009 5:44 pm UTC
by MadKingSoupII
Or he could just buy one of these: http://www.asovision.com/periperi/movie.html...and open it as many times a day as desired.

Weird Japan FTW.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sun May 03, 2009 5:55 pm UTC
by Batangutan
Draconova wrote:I just tried searching for all categories, under this thing, I had to give at least some characters to search so I just put in the letter A.


If this experiment was really done you'd have about 50 E-books about how to sell stuff on ebay, 2 pictures of a tattoo, and a pinch of dryer lint.



I've been playing around, too. We'll come up with a good set of guidelines to find legit, desirable items. A script, not to actually buy, but to give you a list of possibilities, would be good.

Sign up here: http://sites.google.com/site/mop0609/

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sun May 03, 2009 5:57 pm UTC
by XbHW_TestEngr
Alt Text FTW!!!!

(Notes to self: #1 No food or liquid in mouth when reading xkcd. #2 Do not check xkcd while in a meeting.)

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Sun May 03, 2009 8:14 pm UTC
by Internetmeme
Day 23: A copy of Conspiracy: What THEY don't want you to know
Day 42: An actual copy of The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, as read in the book and an electronic thumb

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Mon May 04, 2009 12:45 am UTC
by emmamarion
You'd probably get The Book of Mormon at least 50% of the time.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Mon May 04, 2009 1:59 am UTC
by phlip
A thought: have the script save the item description pages from all of the items it's bought so far, and try to look through it for keywords to add to the "exclude" search... so you don't get the same thing twice, even if eBay is flooded with lots of the same item. Could be interesting trying to automatically figure out what the best keywords to use would be, perhaps something akin to Bayesian spam filtering could be useful?

As for the problem creidieki mentioned, that $1 bids won't always win... you could probably get away with focusing on items that're going to end within 10 minutes or so with no bids yet... and if you're outbid anyway, then just try again.

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Mon May 04, 2009 2:43 am UTC
by LarrySDonald
The problem isn't so much the script, but the lack of a tag for "this is a real, physical object rather then some lame link, work from home scheme, nuclear bomb plan, pi, etc". It would be polite of eBay to offer some sort of differential between "Free shipping" and "Free shipping* (*NOTE: this item doesn't actually involve anything possible to ship in the classic sense)".

I'm still going to pick up a prepaid VISA and fire up a PayPal. There's a lot of funky stuff in the $1-2 range. Actually, it gets more interesting if you do $1.01-$1.98 or $0.02-$0.98, all the.. people one might not want to buy from seem to congregate on $1, $.99, $1.99 and $0.01. Oh great, now you're buying it aren't you? BS, you know damn well which one I'm talking about!

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Mon May 04, 2009 10:45 am UTC
by Platypodes
LarrySDonald wrote:The problem isn't so much the script, but the lack of a tag for "this is a real, physical object rather then some lame link, work from home scheme, nuclear bomb plan, pi, etc". It would be polite of eBay to offer some sort of differential between "Free shipping" and "Free shipping* (*NOTE: this item doesn't actually involve anything possible to ship in the classic sense)".

Well, in the "Shipping and handling" section of an ebay auction page, there's the "service" column, so you could limit it to the ones that list actual shipping methods (USPS, UPS, etc.) instead of "electronic" or "other."

You'd still get a plethora of work from home schemes and the like mailed to you on CD, though.

LarrySDonald wrote:I'm still going to pick up a prepaid VISA and fire up a PayPal. There's a lot of funky stuff in the $1-2 range. Actually, it gets more interesting if you do $1.01-$1.98 or $0.02-$0.98, all the.. people one might not want to buy from seem to congregate on $1, $.99, $1.99 and $0.01. Oh great, now you're buying it aren't you? BS, you know damn well which one I'm talking about!
Actually, I have no idea what you're talking about... What am I missing?? :?

Re: "Packages" Duscussion

Posted: Tue Sep 01, 2009 5:25 pm UTC
by Whitedark
HalfWayDownTheStairs wrote:Ok, forget life-imitates-xkcd.

After reading this comic, I'm building a device to allow me to cross the fiction-reality barrier and climb into the world of xkcd. Because it's simply made of Awesome.


TAKE ME WITH YOU!!!