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JustiaGate: The Cover-Up Continues
Examiner.com ^ | 10-31-2011 | Dianna Cotter

Posted on 10/31/2011 11:58:08 AM PDT by Danae

On Friday October 21, 2011, this column exposed the scrubbing of Supreme Court Cases from legal research website Justia.com. On the following Monday October 24th, Justia founder and CEO Tim Stanley gave a very short response to Declan McCullagh at cnet.com about this scandal. (CNET is a tech heavy website dedicated to developers more so than the legal community.)

There Stanley asserted that citations in the 25 relevant cases (and more) were “mangled” due to a coding error. The code in question is called Regular Expressions, Regex for short. This code is essentially a filter. It is simple in that it will include or exclude specific characters from a result. A result would be what you see on an internet browser. Pure data is filtered through Regex code and put into its correct positions on a webpage in a template format.

The code error Stanley attributes the missing data to is a “ .* ” instead of a “ \s ”.

"In this case, Stanley said, what happened is that Justia's programmers typed in ".*" (which matches any character) when creating a regex. It's now an "\s" (which matches only spaces),".   - Declan McCullagh

This column investigates Tim Stanley’s statements to cnet with regard to the plausibility of them by consulting a professional familiar with Regex. Dr. David Hansen PhD. is a current University Professor in Computer Science and he explains what those two bits of code do.

(Excerpt) Read more at examiner.com ...


TOPICS: Crime/Corruption; Extended News; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: birthcertificate; certifigate; citizenship; eligibility; fraud; ineligible; justia; justiagate; minorvhappersett; naturalborncitizen; scotus
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This is Part 2 of JustiaGate.
1 posted on 10/31/2011 11:58:10 AM PDT by Danae
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To: Las Vegas Ron; little jeremiah; MestaMachine; STARWISE; rxsid; butterdezillion; Fred Nerks; ...

PING Justigate part two.


2 posted on 10/31/2011 12:17:32 PM PDT by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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To: Danae

I vote guilty.


3 posted on 10/31/2011 12:20:14 PM PDT by UCANSEE2 (Lame and ill-informed post)
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To: Danae
On Friday October 21, 2011, this column exposed the scrubbing of Supreme Court Cases from legal research website Justia.com. On the following Monday October 24th, Justia founder and CEO Tim Stanley gave a very short response to Declan McCullagh at cnet.com about this scandal. (CNET is a tech heavy website dedicated to developers more so than the legal community.)

There Stanley asserted that citations in the 25 relevant cases (and more) were “mangled” due to a coding error. The code in question is called Regular Expressions, Regex for short. This code is essentially a filter. It is simple in that it will include or exclude specific characters from a result. A result would be what you see on an internet browser. Pure data is filtered through Regex code and put into its correct positions on a webpage in a template format.

The code error Stanley attributes the missing data to is a “ .* ” instead of a “ \s ”.

"In this case, Stanley said, what happened is that Justia's programmers typed in ".*" (which matches any character) when creating a regex. It's now an "\s" (which matches only spaces),".   - Declan McCullagh

This column investigates Tim Stanley’s statements to cnet with regard to the plausibility of them by consulting a professional familiar with Regex. Dr. David Hansen PhD. is a current University Professor in Computer Science and he explains what those two bits of code do.

The “ .* “ means “match everything”, “ \s “ tells the code to “match white spaces” – the spaces between words for example. Dr. Hansen simplifies the concept for us:

“ "\s*" will only match a sequence of whitespace, stopping the match as soon as a non-whitespace character is found - so it's very specific and limited. The ".*" is exactly the opposite since it says match anything UNTIL the pattern that follows it is matched. So ".*foo" would match an entire file if "foo" were the last word in the file while "\s*foo" would only match foo and the little bit of whitespace ahead of it in the file. Point is that the patterns don't skip through the file, they match a section at a time,” - Dr. David Hansen PhD.

What Attorney Donofrio discovered in July 2011 and again in October 2011 were not blank pages or pages missing large generic chunks. Instead Donofrio found very specific things missing, including the following:

What is seen is a variety of words, names, sentences, and case numbers removed, which means they were deliberately chosen for removal. Regex code must have specific targets to look for to match precisely, down to the last period. If the code is to function predictably at all, it must be correct or the Regex code string it is in, would produce unpredictable results which is always to be avoided within the developer’s world. This lends significant credence to deliberate action being the culprit for the removal of such important citations in history.

“The effect would not have been as selective as what you’re identifying [the missing text and citations],” said Dr. Hansen in response to whether it was possible that an accidental placement of a “ .* ” could be responsible for the missing text, citations and case names.

Dr. Hansen stressed that code errors do happen, but more than likely such an error would cause problems on that page, or would have caused problems with other parts of the code which interact with the “broken” code phrase. Dr. Hansen also notes that this is something which would have been noticed and corrected relatively quickly. Yet in the 25 cases which cite Minor v Happersett, the missing text was gone for approximately 3 years.

The tampered cases had specific text removed, and only that text, leaving the rest. This pattern requires a deliberate effort to remove specific text and phrases while leaving the rest untouched. This again, leads to the conclusion these actions were deliberate.

“The bottom line is that the excuse, the plausibility that with a Regex, a “ .* ” could have been mistaken for a “ \s ”, that’s a reasonable thing. But, could you have a regex expression which is sophisticated enough and will fail in such a way that you would have these small exclusions in documents? I would say the odds against that are astronomical. And it would have required an absolutely unbelievably complex Regex that was insensitive to the replacement of the “ .* ” and the “ \s ”. So, can I say for certainty that that’s absolutely impossible? No. But I say the likelihood is so small it’s, it’s, if a student came to me with that excuse on their homework I would tell them you’re nuts.” - Dr. David Hansen PhD.

At his site, Donofrio points out that Tim Stanley stated in a previous interview from Jan. 2007, that his team did barely any programming to the Google Mini search engine and its results, further stating the simplicity of the set up and that "it just worked”:

"And for us, when we looked at some different alternatives, like doing some of our own programming, or using some of the other search technologies out there, the Google Mini, you know, from our standpoint was just a very simple to use easy solution.  We could just install it, index all the data, pull back the data, change the style sheets a little bit, and it just worked.  And so that was really one of the driving forces for us." - Tim Stanley via Ken Chan

Stanley indicates that there was nothing complex about the Justia setup, and the implementation team did not run into any problems integrating it.  Furthermore, we know from the Wayback Machine snapshots that at the time Stanley gave this candid interview in 2007, none of the 25 cases citing to Minor v. Happersett had been corrupted.  The cases only became "mangled" in the run up to the 2008 election.

Tim Stanley’s comments at CNET have been picked up by a few bloggers who state that the code errors Stanley speaks of could happen. In isolated cases this is true. Programmers do make mistakes, however, Regex is very brittle because it is so literal and so specific. One might be able to successfully make that argument if there had been just one instance of text being removed. This is not the case. 25 case names (that we know of) were subject to this treatment, along with full sentences over a broad spectrum of Supreme Court Cases.

With regard to Stanley's comments to CNET, Donofrio counters by illustrating that in multiple cases where the official citations were removed, new citations were added to the text that were not in the pre-corrupted versions: 

"For example, the Nov. 4, 2006 version of Justia's publication of Colgate v. Harvey, 296 U.S. 404 (1935), finished with a final footnote which contains the case names, Minor v. Happersett, The Slaughterhouse Cases, and In Re Lockwood, as well as the official citations thereto. 

But in the Nov. 18, 2008 version of Colgate v. Harvey published by Justia, all of those cases and their official citations are missing (along with a bunch of other cases).  Additionally, in the Nov. 18, 2008 version, the very same footnote begins, "83 U.S. 73", which is a citation to a specific page in The Slaughterhouse-Cases.  But that particular citation was not in the Nov. 4 2006 version, it's been newly added where the original citation (along with the case name), 16 Wall. 36, has been removed.”

“Therefore, Stanley's alleged innocent regex error had to have accomplished both the removal of data from the Court's opinion while at the same time inserting new data into the opinion.”

Donofrio also observes, "Tim Stanley's published comments at CNET do not address the addition of new data to the 25 cases identified as having been corrupted."    

CNET's Senior Political Correspondent, Declan McCullagh began his report as follows:

"Donofrio...discovered that citations to a 1875 case defining a 'natural-born citizen'--a phrase that has special resonance in discussions about President Obama's eligibility for the office--had been quietly removed before the 2008 elections." - Declan McCullagh

The key word being "removed". Then McCullagh attributes the following to Tim Stanley:

"...some citations were mangled because of a programmer's error, not an effort to rewrite history." - CNET

Donofrio points out, "That statement only refers to 'citations' which already existed.  It fails to address the insertion of new citations, missing case names, and the erasure of full sentences from opinions of the Court,".

McCullagh further discussed the removal of data, "The case in question, which Donofrio noticed had been removed from some citations, is Minor v. Happersett."  Again, the key word here is "removed".  Neither Stanley's comments, nor McCullagh's narrative address the new citations which were inserted into the altered versions.

Ultimately regardless of what code error is alleged by Stanley in the justification of removing SCOTUS text from the 25 cases which followed Minor V. Happersett, he has failed to address the insertion of new data. This anomaly was summed up simply by Dr. Hansen:

“If a regex was being used as some sort of filter or to help format output it wouldn't have added information to the later document that wasn't in the former…”

Stay Tuned, there’s more to come.

A sincere Hat-tip to Leo Donofrio, Esq. for his significant contributions to this article.

4 posted on 10/31/2011 12:22:06 PM PDT by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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To: Danae
from related thread

Conspiracies, Lies, and Justiagate

It just so happens that all of the affected cases are relevant to the "natural born" citizen debate, all of the changes relate to the especially important decision of Minor v. Happersett (which contains a definition of "natural born citizen"), and all of the noted revisions occurred during the period from mid-2008 to when Donofrio's discoveries were published.

5 posted on 10/31/2011 12:22:31 PM PDT by opentalk
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To: Danae

This makes a very strong argument that Justia’s founder and CEO Tim Stanley is lying about how the 25 references got removed. Not merely mistaken, but lying.

I don’t remember seeing the DATE that this was done. Very interesting.

“Yet in the 25 cases which cite Minor v Happersett, the missing text was gone for approximately 3 years.”

Things that make you go Hmmmmm. Just about the time that Obama sent in his agents to clean out his records at the State Department. And one of them got shot just as he was about to testify about it.


6 posted on 10/31/2011 12:22:40 PM PDT by Cicero (Marcus Tullius.)
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To: UCANSEE2

:)


7 posted on 10/31/2011 12:23:02 PM PDT by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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To: opentalk

Ms. Simpson gets the details right.


8 posted on 10/31/2011 12:24:23 PM PDT by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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To: Cicero

Yeah. It could make a person as jumpy as a long tailed cat in a room full of rockers...


9 posted on 10/31/2011 12:25:26 PM PDT by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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Uh Oh! Didn't Donate?


Click The Pic To Keep Your Forum

10 posted on 10/31/2011 12:33:40 PM PDT by DJ MacWoW (America! The wolves are here! What will you do?)
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To: Danae
Looks like the basis for a solid forensic investigation. I sure hope that this meets the elements of a federal crime (as Donofrio claims) and, if so, that a brave prosecutor in at least one jurisdiction can be found who will impanel a grand jury!
11 posted on 10/31/2011 12:44:41 PM PDT by Seizethecarp
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To: ShadowAce; Lazamataz

Ping to an interesting regular expressions discussion.


12 posted on 10/31/2011 12:52:36 PM PDT by BuckeyeTexan (Man is not free unless government is limited. ~Ronald Reagan)
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To: Seizethecarp

I would hate to see something like this just slide. It isn’t right for one. And the depth of the effects of this scrubbing during the 2008 elections will never be known. Justia wasn’t just a site for bloggers, its targeted at Lawyers, law firms, legal students and researchers. It was WIDELY used. By a LOT of people. It changed the national perception of what Minor v Happersett said, and what it meant to Obama and McCain.


13 posted on 10/31/2011 12:56:05 PM PDT by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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To: BuckeyeTexan

Regex can get pretty tricky if you are not careful. I always try to test the results with a online regex tester and a series of test data, of both desired includes and desired excludes. I’m often surprised of what sneaks through in both cases.....


14 posted on 10/31/2011 1:21:14 PM PDT by Lazamataz (I guess some Occupiers are more 99% than other Occupiers.)
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To: Danae

Very interesting. Thanks for posting.


15 posted on 10/31/2011 1:22:18 PM PDT by PGalt
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To: Danae
It was WIDELY used. By a LOT of people. It changed the national perception of what Minor v Happersett said, and what it meant to Obama and McCain.

How can we believe ANYTHING on the www? Yeah, I know, I use it just like everyone else, but really.....how do we KNOW any of it is true? Seems a little lame that we go just on faith until someone happens to spot something and then goes through the (I'm sure considerable) bother to get the word out.

For that matter, am I REALLY Roccus?.....does Roccus even EXIST?

16 posted on 10/31/2011 1:23:25 PM PDT by Roccus (Obama & Holder LLP, Procurers of fine arms to the most discerning drug lords (202) 456-1414)
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To: BuckeyeTexan; ShadowAce; Buckhead

Actually, this is a case where I might serve as a ‘Buckhead’. I know enough about this to test the theoretical explanation offered for the missing cases. If this pans out, cool; if not, I will raise the red flag. I will do so tonight.


17 posted on 10/31/2011 1:24:21 PM PDT by Lazamataz (I guess some Occupiers are more 99% than other Occupiers.)
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To: Lazamataz
Regex is for cheaters. Nested if loops are the way to go! If you don't have to scroll to the right to see the beginning of your indentation you're not trying hard enough!

j/k. Back when I programmed a lot of Perl (~8 years ago) I used a lot of regex. Not sure how any real programmer could mistake \s for .* unless it was just an oversight or mistype that wasn't checked. But noone would think, "whitespace" and type ".*" (aka anything and everything)

18 posted on 10/31/2011 1:32:42 PM PDT by douginthearmy
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To: Roccus

LOL

Trust but Verify.

Thats all we can do, and hold those who alter stuff responsible.


19 posted on 10/31/2011 1:36:17 PM PDT by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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To: Lazamataz

Thanks Laz! But no instance of Regex I know of will accidently remove some text and REPLACE it with something else on accident.

That was deliberate.


20 posted on 10/31/2011 1:38:32 PM PDT by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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To: PGalt

Thank you! It has been a very interesting journey so far!


21 posted on 10/31/2011 1:41:00 PM PDT by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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To: Danae
A few know what they are really hiding.. Photobucket Photobucket
22 posted on 10/31/2011 1:42:26 PM PDT by bushpilot1
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To: Danae
Thanks Laz! But no instance of Regex I know of will accidently remove some text and REPLACE it with something else on accident.

Um, actually, Regex is quite versatile and capable of doing substitution all day long......

http://www.java2s.com/Code/Java/Regular-Expressions/QuickdemoofRegularExpressionssubstitution.htm

23 posted on 10/31/2011 1:43:00 PM PDT by Lazamataz (I guess some Occupiers are more 99% than other Occupiers.)
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To: Danae
“If a regex was being used as some sort of filter or to help format output it wouldn't have added information to the later document that wasn't in the former…”

True. However, the regular expression used to process the text clearly changed between 11/6/2006 and 11/18/2008, perhaps multiple times. So, it is impossible to say with certainty whether or not the actual text 83 U.S. 73 was or wasn't in the 11/6/2006 file.

If the regular expression used to parse the 11/6/2006 file unintentionally filtered that text out, subsequent changes to the regular expression could have resulted in that text being included. That is the inherent nature of parsing text with regular expressions. It is unclear at this point whether or not that specific cite was "inserted."

That said, the odds are astronomical that a regular expression unintentionally filtered out the Minor v. Happersett and Slaughterhouse references. I'd have to know more about how they processed those case files to say anything with certainty, but their explanation thus far is laughable. I'm surprised CNET didn't immediately counter that answer with more questions. I would have.

24 posted on 10/31/2011 1:46:07 PM PDT by BuckeyeTexan (Man is not free unless government is limited. ~Ronald Reagan)
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To: BuckeyeTexan

Ask Weazie. The Obama political operative scouring natural born citizen from the internet.


25 posted on 10/31/2011 2:02:37 PM PDT by bushpilot1
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To: Lazamataz
When it was called an error? Why insert new data if it was an error. Of course Regex can replace information, that isn't the point. The point is that this was called an error, mistaking a .* for a \s. That would NOT have inserted new characters. Unless it was deliberate. That's my point.

Regex is brittle, you have to get it right or the results get unpredictable.

26 posted on 10/31/2011 2:06:22 PM PDT by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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To: BuckeyeTexan
Personally I think Stanley just wanted to cool the scandal if he could. Instead, he made it worse. Donofrio checked the cases in a law library - the actual SCOTUS reporter - to find out precisely what the original text should have been.
27 posted on 10/31/2011 2:09:33 PM PDT by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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To: BuckeyeTexan; Danae

“That said, the odds are astronomical that a regular expression unintentionally filtered out the Minor v. Happersett and Slaughterhouse references.”

I don’t know anything about coding, but I DO know that in every screenshot comparison that Leo or Danae have posted thus far, the changes have involved pre-1875 Supreme Court cases (like Minor and Slaughterhouse).

Before 1875, Supreme Court cases were assigned volume numbers based on the clerk of the court. Starting in 1875, they adopted the U.S. Reports numbering system, and retroactively assigned volume numbers to earlier cases.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reporter_of_Decisions_of_the_Supreme_Court_of_the_United_States

So whereas Minor had been 21 Wall. 162, it now became 88 U.S. 162. Slaughterhouse had been 16 Wall. 36, and it became 83 U.S. 36.

The pre-2006 Justia pages cited to all these older Supreme Court cases with their clerk volume numbers. Then they apparently used some bad code to try to change them to the U.S. Reports numbers.

So if you look at the screenshots from Luria (which show only a small portion of the case), you see several cases cited, three of which are pre-1875 cases. All three of those (Minor, Osborn, Babbitt) got affected (specifically, for all three the case name and pre-1875 citation were replaced by a hyperlink showing the US Reports citation), while all the post-1875 cases weren’t touched.

Leo and Danae have only posted images of, I think, 5 of their supposed 25 cases, and even then mostly just very narrowly cropped screenshots. I’ll go ahead and predict now that if they ever publish more thorough screenshots from those other 20, you’ll see that same pattern generally hold across all of them.


28 posted on 10/31/2011 2:30:27 PM PDT by Vickery2010
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To: Lazamataz

Agreed. I’ve been writing regex for 20 years and I still surprise myself with undesired results. It’s the nature of the beast.


29 posted on 10/31/2011 2:45:42 PM PDT by BuckeyeTexan (Man is not free unless government is limited. ~Ronald Reagan)
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To: Lazamataz; BuckeyeTexan; douginthearmy

Any of you guys ever have Regex insert new words that weren’t in the text originally?


30 posted on 10/31/2011 2:58:54 PM PDT by butterdezillion
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To: Vickery2010; Danae

If that’s the case, then this becomes more curious in my opinion. Why not simply say, “Oh, we were changing all of the pre-1875 case references and that’s likely what happened. Nothing sinister - just a batch program update gone wrong.”

And why remove the change history from Wayback?

If they were simply changing volume numbers on a batch of pre-1875 cases, Stanley could’ve immediately given a very direct, very sensible answer to put the accusations to rest. Why the horsesh*t?


31 posted on 10/31/2011 3:09:30 PM PDT by BuckeyeTexan (Man is not free unless government is limited. ~Ronald Reagan)
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To: butterdezillion; Lazamataz; douginthearmy
Any of you guys ever have Regex insert new words that weren’t in the text originally?

Sure, when I intentionally insert such text.

Now I have had weird stuff like that happen when I am reading from one file to update a second file. The regex processing engine is pretty complex. When you're reading from one file and writing to another, it's a bit like playing twister.

32 posted on 10/31/2011 3:16:31 PM PDT by BuckeyeTexan (Man is not free unless government is limited. ~Ronald Reagan)
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To: BuckeyeTexan

GREAT chatting with you; Thursday is pretty good for me as far as getting married. Surprised you proposed so quickly, though!


33 posted on 10/31/2011 3:45:22 PM PDT by Lazamataz (I guess some Occupiers are more 99% than other Occupiers.)
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To: Danae

I see what you are getting at.... I’m going to do some homework on this in the next 2-3 hours....


34 posted on 10/31/2011 3:46:40 PM PDT by Lazamataz (I guess some Occupiers are more 99% than other Occupiers.)
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To: Lazamataz

Ha! I move quickly. Can’t do Thursday though. I’m celebrating my 19th wedding anniversary on the 6th ... so I’ll be out of town for the weekend.

:)


35 posted on 10/31/2011 3:53:57 PM PDT by BuckeyeTexan (Man is not free unless government is limited. ~Ronald Reagan)
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To: BuckeyeTexan
Ha! I move quickly. Can’t do Thursday though. I’m celebrating my 19th wedding anniversary on the 6th ... so I’ll be out of town for the weekend.

Thank GOD we are both Mormons. It allows us such marital flexibility. :)

36 posted on 10/31/2011 3:57:50 PM PDT by Lazamataz (I guess some Occupiers are more 99% than other Occupiers.)
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To: BuckeyeTexan; Lazamataz

The SCOTUS text shouldn’t need any “updating” though. It hasn’t been changed since the decision was first issued so why would there be any “updating”?

If they were changing their format - to allow for clickable links, for instance, or if (as someone here as suggested) the references were in a different format for older cases than for newer ones and the programmers wanted to make the format uniform throughout - that might be “updating”, but why would that include language pretending that it’s part of the original text of the court’s reasoning?

I’m about as far from a techno-nerd as a person can get so details are lost on me in this regard, but I do hope Laz will look at the specifics and tell us if the Regex explanation is plausible.

The timing of the changes and their correction is a whole ‘nother subject as well.


37 posted on 10/31/2011 4:03:23 PM PDT by butterdezillion
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To: BuckeyeTexan; Vickery2010

Yep. Precisely. Not only that, but we predicted they WOULD do that, because they had done it in the past. The best indication of future behavior is past behavior.


38 posted on 10/31/2011 4:05:16 PM PDT by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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To: BuckeyeTexan

Happy anniversary, and congratulations! We just celebrated 20 in June; time flies.


39 posted on 10/31/2011 4:08:17 PM PDT by butterdezillion
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To: BuckeyeTexan
Yep, putting something in is not much harder than taking something out in a manner of speaking, they are each one side of the same coin. It takes deliberate action to accomplish.
40 posted on 10/31/2011 4:13:36 PM PDT by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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To: butterdezillion; BuckeyeTexan
Butter, you can tell by looking at the webpage HTML code. Justia uses dynamically rendered webpages. That means the cases do not exist as images, they exist as data. Justia gets their SCOTUS cases through Oyez, in PDF form. If you listen to the interview that Stanley gave in 2007 it tells a lot about how Justia created itself and used Google Mini and Google analytics to do it with. VERY interesting interview.

Anyway, dynamically generated code has to be rendered into a web page template. Rendering is more or less directing what data goes to which area, it filters what goes where. It makes some sense to believe that the “scrubbing” took place in that rendering layer, that way they would never need to change their database, just change the filter(s).

I have to ask, which Regex explanation are you wanting to hear? Everything I know of Regex says Stanley was..... incorrect.

41 posted on 10/31/2011 4:24:49 PM PDT by Danae (Anailnathrach ortha bhais beatha do cheal deanaimha)
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To: ShadowAce

So...
Can regex go renegade and do things it wasn’t told to do?


42 posted on 10/31/2011 4:37:35 PM PDT by tutstar
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To: Danae

Any UNIX programmer worth his/her salt would NEVER make such a mistake.


43 posted on 10/31/2011 5:57:46 PM PDT by thecodont
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To: BuckeyeTexan; butterdezillion; Lazamataz; douginthearmy; Buckhead; tutstar
Ok, in my professional opinion, the Doctor is correct. The likelihood of Regex removing such particular elements is, in this case, very small, and Regex CANNOT insert or replace new text without specific instructions to do so -- something a reference site would not do.

In terms of missing text, when presenting a whole page of information by finding it by Regex, the Regex would simply invariably return NOTHING (the pattern didn't match), not a corrupted page. Nor would one usually want to use Regex to return the opinion at all. One would locate the page with a search and a use of Regex, then simply present the raw text from the DB using an ordinary SQL or Linq2SQL conduit. There would be no need for Regex to return the actual record, and it would actually be cumbersome and VERY PRONE TO UNIVERSAL ERRORS to accomplish it that way. Regex finds, SQL returns, would be the sensible model, and the only model I would recommend.

VANISHINGLY Small chance of the missing-text-explanation, ZERO chance of the inserting-text-explanation.

Unless I am given the regex code outright, which I can analyze, and see if it is some sort of DB conduit -- which I doubt -- I am forced to call this a confirmed LIE.

To tutstar: Not really. If it goes at all renegade, it would usually be to return no results at all.

44 posted on 10/31/2011 5:58:23 PM PDT by Lazamataz (I guess some Occupiers are more 99% than other Occupiers.)
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To: Danae

please see above and add your concur, or disagree.


45 posted on 10/31/2011 6:02:19 PM PDT by Lazamataz (I guess some Occupiers are more 99% than other Occupiers.)
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To: BuckeyeTexan

First off, Stanley *did* say why they removed the history from Wayback. It was in the last two paragraphs of the CNET article.

As for why CNET doesn’t include Stanley giving the explanation I did, I can certainly speculate as to a few possibilities that are possible and consistent with what we know:

- He didn’t know. He asked his programmers what happened, but didn’t grill them on the WHY behind the changes. If it was the WND article that got CNET’s attention (which seems probable), that was only a day before the CNET article. It’s not like he had time to undertake an extensive investigation.
- He didn’t say because CNET didn’t ask.
- He didn’t say because he didn’t think CNET would care. CNET is a tech website, and its primary interest in the story was tech-related. It’s not like this was a story at a legal website.
- He *did* say, but CNET didn’t include it. Again, not CNET’s primary interest in the story.
- For what it’s worth, he also did pretty much say “Nothing sinister - just a batch program update gone wrong.” He just didn’t expand on that extensively.

He did expand on it a little, because one thing he *did* say that’s perfectly consistent with my analysis is “It was just the U.S. Supreme Court cases, not the state, federal appellate and district court cases.” Changing reporter citations would indeed only apply to Supreme Court cases.

One thing that’s handy about my analysis is that it should operate awfully well as a scientific hypothesis. Based on the evidence we’ve seen from selected portions of five cases, I’ve made a prediction about what we could expect to see in the rest of those cases, as well as in the 20 other cases that Leo and Danae haven’t even NAMED yet. That’s quite the testable data set. Once they publish those screenshots (and if they were thorough researchers, they ought to have full grabs of the entire decisions, not just selected samples), we’ll see if my hypothesis checks out. If we consistently find pre-1875 citations affected in the same way (name and old citation replaced by hyperlinked new citation) but post-1875 citations unaffected, my hypothesis is validated. On the other hand, my hypothesis could easily be defeated if they post full screengrabs showing Minor and Slaughterhouse being affected, but other pre-1875 cases in the same decisions NOT being affected.

If it was happening to ALL pre-1875 cases in those 25 decisions, then that certainly deflates the argument that they were singling out Minor and Slaughterhouse. On the other hand, if their screengrabs show Minor and Slaughterhouse being affected but other pre-1875 cases NOT being affected, then my hypothesis has a problem.

Meanwhile, as we wait for those screengrabs to appear, you might be able to use your coding experience to draw some conclusions of your own. The CNET article includes the code that went wrong:

http://i.i.com.com/cnwk.1d/i/tim/2011/10/24/justia.png

Now I don’t understand a lick of that, but I do see that the difference in the two codes immediately follows some code that includes ‘volume’ and ‘U’ and ‘S’ and ‘page.’

What would that change result in? And would it be consistent with my hypothesis?


46 posted on 10/31/2011 6:10:18 PM PDT by Vickery2010
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To: Danae

Thank you!!

“More to come”.

Keep ‘em on their toes.

Just checking in to the thread - any SPs? Or still crickets/wind whistling through the trees?


47 posted on 10/31/2011 6:24:04 PM PDT by little jeremiah (We will have to go through hell to get out of hell.)
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To: Danae

I notice on the Examiner site there is only one comment - the idiot Squeeky. Either really brain dead, or as I think, pretending stoopid.


48 posted on 10/31/2011 6:25:24 PM PDT by little jeremiah (We will have to go through hell to get out of hell.)
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To: Vickery2010; John Robinson

Interesting post on your part. One mistake my post made was to make an assumption about underlying codebase. I assumed a dotnet model; perl might be so dramatically different to render my analysis moot. In dotnet, you would index and find with Regex and deliver with a SQL or ODBC conduit (unless you loved way-overcomplicating things and making them prone to fail). I am still unconvinced that parsing would happen in the Regex, the code snippet does not show delivery of the found data; of course, I am not a Perl guru. Perhaps John Robinson, who runs Free Republic on Perl, can add something to this discussion, as he is a Perl guru.


49 posted on 10/31/2011 6:31:25 PM PDT by Lazamataz (I guess some Occupiers are more 99% than other Occupiers.)
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To: Lazamataz

>Regex can get pretty tricky if you are not careful. I always try to test the results with a online regex tester and a series of test data, of both desired includes and desired excludes. I’m often surprised of what sneaks through in both cases.....

I generally hate regex; there’s always some odd-case that totally breaks it, and they’ll break utterly if there’s a change in the structure and they’re anything more complex than “remove the whitespace” or “remove everything that’s not a digit.” Then there’s always the possibility that you’ll suddenly need (due to the client saying something) balanced parentheses...

I think I’d rather learn SNOBOL than spend the effort to gain any sort of ‘mastery’ over them.


50 posted on 10/31/2011 6:58:11 PM PDT by OneWingedShark (Q: Why am I here? A: To do Justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with my God.)
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