mulander is a user on You can follow them or interact with them if you have an account anywhere in the fediverse. If you don't, you can sign up here.

I want a phone assistant that uses machine learning to distinguish a marketing call from someone that I might actually want to talk with and only rings my phone when the caller passes it.

Like a phone CAPTCHA... Yeah I hate CAPTCHAs but I just had a machine calling with a contract offer... I do want to whitelist my contact list though.

· Web · 3 · 6

@bea yeah it was really insulting to hear a machine saying. 'If you are interested in the offer - press one, if not - just hang up.' That was a soulless experience wasting my time in a smug way - and I thought human marketers were annoying.

@mulander I don't know if this is the difference between countries or that I haven't given my phone number to enough spammers. But anyways I'm so glad that I haven't ever got such calls.

@masoud I haven't given out mine. Most calls I get is my mobile provider reselling the number for marketing or machines calling numbers from a generated pool...

@mulander Oh, the carrier selling your number is really awful and dirty... I hope this kind of thing becomes illegal everywhere, because, why not?!

@masoud it's shady marketing. They list contract prices ie. 15 USD but that price includes a 5 USD opt-in by default agreement for re-marketing. If you sign that even once by mistake then it's too late - withdrawing the agreement increases your monthly price but the number is already in circulation by 3rd parties... Wife signed one by pro-longing a contract by phone :/ The only clear way out is to cycle numbers... and that sucks for obvious reasons.

@mulander Hmmm... Asterisk PBX into PocketSphinx into Tensorflow?

@mulander I was thinking of inventing some elaborate Terms and Conditions that I would present a marketer with such as "during the call you must not use the letter E", "all disputes regarding this call must proceed through a court in California"

@Michcioperz sadly it doesn't work both ways :( I am still dreaming of a 'by sending a marketing email to this address you agree to be hacked back in retaliation' posted on my blog with an 'opt-out URL' and just solving my SPAM problem one host at a time. Sadly I think it would not stand well in court...

@mulander Oh, but I was going to present the caller with the Terms at the time of call, it's obvious that just putting it on a website wouldn't work, because most marketing calls come from "random choice" a.k.a. MNO databases

@Michcioperz tbh, having some auto playback before the call that says:

'this call will be recorder by the phone owner' and
'the owner of this phone does not agree to this call being recorder by you or your employer' would end all marketing calls done by a human out of policy (great greylisting policy). Sadly it won't stop robots.

@Michcioperz I get them frequently as a pre-call (the robot dials and waits for someone to pick up then triggers the human to carry on).

Today I had a first call totally handled by automation presenting a support line like menu for the offer and telling you to hang up if not interested....

@mulander I guess I'm not adult enough for this, I don't even have a proper bank account just yet, and my phone's a pre-paid so they don't call me to offer junk Android phones a 3yo child would be disappointed with (they offer them to my mom though)

@Michcioperz it will get more intensive. Every entity that has your phone number will resell it almost by default (when you get to that bank account later in life - read the contract and withdraw your agreement before they do). It just gets more intensive over time and think about third parties that get your number from ie. Facebook having your number from a friend that just had you in his contact list...

@mulander Facebook has my number for two-factor auth, amongst other things. I've recently disabled contacts sync though.
Also I switched to an ancient Nokia E51 and Facebook doesn't even work on it. Pretty refreshing perspective.

@Michcioperz the only reason I still own a crapdroid is the 2 factor auth app. Nice choice with the Nokia phone!

@mulander It's the most recent phone of mine that's still working. After the Nokia came Huawei U8500 (Android 2.2, too slow to use after 2 years), Sony Xperia M (internal memory stopped working after 1.5 years), Asus Zenfone 2 (screen broken twice in 2 years, stopped working last week after I went to church in heavy rain).
I'm probably going to buy another Android (Moto G5 Plus is mediocre but relatively cheap for its specs) but I'd rather get a good featurephone.

@mulander My main issue with E51 is how the internet doesn't even work on it anymore, because it's an S60v3 FP1 so it doesn't support certificates with SHA-2 or something like this – the only thing I can use there at the time is non-SSL'd IRC.
A friend tried to install a patch for me but it requires at least FP2.

@Michcioperz I was swapping phones recently also, picked an Android phone by a Polish company and blogged about it:

It's OK but there are still things that piss me out about it (crappy audio, no security updates, internal storage filling up etc). Every Android phone is crap.

My next phone will either be a feature phone or back to an iPhone (my old iPhone 3g works better than any droid I had so far... 10 years later).

@mulander I'd love a new feature phone but new Nokias have the impaired Series 30+ system that doesn't have proper apps. I managed to snatch a copy of the SDK but it requires a paid ARM compiler, it's pretty much a heavily closed platform.
About myPhone, I don't mind mediocre audio, but aren't they still in direct violation of GPL by not providing the kernel?
I find postmarketOS pretty interesting, but I don't have any supported phone, and I'm not experienced enough in this stuff to port it.

@Michcioperz I have an allergy to GPL so didn't even check how clean they stand against it.

I hate phones, I just want something providing 2 factor auth for the services I need and basic text+calls. Having signal available is a bonus ofc but I still don't trust the device - any mobile phone is for me compromised by default so I don't put anything sensitive on it (like my gpg keys etc).

@mulander 2 factor auth compatible with Google Authenticator seems pretty simple in implementation, I guess with good enough NTP sync you could get a J2ME feature phone to provide you with tokens. Signal might be considerably more difficult

@mulander Forgot to attach link, Wikipedia has pseudocode for those one time passwords (not verified by me)

@Michcioperz yeah, but there is also steam and blizzard that insist on having their own authentication apps :/

@mulander I'm not saying it could possibly be reverse engineered but perhaps it could possibly be reverse engineered?

@Michcioperz that's risky. I was once banned by Blizzard and lost a legit license for Diablo 3 because playing under wine on Linux was classified as 'hacking'. 60 EURO down the drain with no way to contest the ban. I expect failed reversing attempts could result in something similar.

@mulander I mean, I even have my phone number out there in the public on my website, yet it didn't seem to affect the number of spam