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For 2023 - we are now fully retired from IT training.
We have made many, many friends over 25 years of teaching about Python, Tcl, Perl, PHP, Lua, Java, C and C++ - and MySQL, Linux and Solaris/SunOS too. Our training notes are now very much out of date, but due to upward compatability most of our examples remain operational and even relevant ad you are welcome to make us if them "as seen" and at your own risk.

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I am also active in many other area and still look after a lot of web sites - you can find an index ((here))
detecting bots shoppers

Posted by mparker1113 (mparker1113), 9 October 2006
I have a freind whose site has unique items. so when an item is placed in a cart, that item is locked from other shoppers.

There are automatic shopping programs now (bot shoppers) that are a problem with this design. Since they can put items into a cart, and then not buy.

Do you know of anyway to identify or differentiate these automatic buyers from the human variety ?

Thank you much.

- Mike

Posted by admin (Graham Ellis), 9 October 2006
I don't know - but the user agent string may tell you.  Have you looked at that?    The other sugegstion on unique items is that you should only reserve them for (say) 15 minutes when they're added to a cart - "you have 15 minutes to complete your purchase".   I've seen it done very effectively for hotel rooms.

Posted by mparker1113 (mparker1113), 10 October 2006
Thank you for the input Graham. I was thinking of the timing out factor, too -- and will suggest that as a "quickest fix" solution.

-- Mike

Posted by mparker1113 (mparker1113), 16 October 2006
Sorry if this seems like a lame question. but regarding the timeout technique -- would you have a suggestion regarding how I might approach that. I am not a Perl expert by almost any rate.

Much thanks for input.

- Mike

Posted by admin (Graham Ellis), 16 October 2006
Well Mike - I'm not sure if you're using a database or what for your shopping cart items, but if you are I would suggest adding a column for "added to cart at" and a column for who's cart and then check the time when someone calls up for available products, only disallowing items added to anyone's cart in last 15 minutes.   Sorry if it sounds a bit vague - I don't know your code / application structure!

Posted by mparker1113 (mparker1113), 16 October 2006
Yes, thank you Graham.

My cust is hosted on the Web, the issue that I am contemplating is that I can check how long since their last action after any input from them, but how would i be able to get the server to do that, say every 15 minutes or so, other than haveing the session lenght be shortened to that time?

Looking for a SetTimeOut function like javascriopt has, but for Perl code.

thank you much

Posted by admin (Graham Ellis), 17 October 2006
on 10/16/06 at 19:46:27, mparker1113 wrote:
Looking for a SetTimeOut function like javascriopt has, but for Perl code.

I still don't know your code / application structure, but Perl's time() function returns a time in seconds from 1.1.1970; if you save that into your session and the compare with current time()s, you have the basis of a possible solution.

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