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Schweb's Lounge Forum for general conversation, chit chat, or most topics that don't fit in another forum.

It's 3am. Do you know where your mouse clicks are going?


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cptkrf

 
Member Since: Dec 09, 2009
Location: The same as Sheldon Cooper - East Texas
Posts: 416
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Mac Specs: MacBook Air 2013, MacMini,2013, Intel Core i7, 16gb, 27" Thunderbolt display (Highly recommended!)

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This week I had the opportunity to see the really neat demo of a fellow student's program. Unfortunately, it was written in Ruby, in which I can just about program "Hello World," and since it is part of his thesis, I couldn't get a copy. But, I watched the command line program run.

It connects to a single web site of your choice and analyzes everything that happens - everything. Besides being a neat piece of coding, it throws the reality of today's Internet in your face. I.e...

For commercial web sites, most of the linkage is to ad-servers. They are not necessarily the bulk of the incoming data, but can be by far the most numerous of the links that get resolved in a single page load. Some ad-servers call another, then that one links to another and so on. Some sites seem to exist only for the ad links and without them, the page would load almost instantaneously.

But, the most... distressing, maybe?... part is the time for the ad link(s) to be resolved. I always assumed that a slow web site was just some place that was overloaded, or was on a connection with a low speed connection - that is, it was the fault of the URL that I was accessing. But, not so. Over and over, we could see that web sites hung up because an ad-server didn't respond for seconds and sometimes not at all. It has been a very long time since I did any web programming, but apparently web programmers still have no way, or don't bother, to check for a hung link on a page. Reload the same page and a totally different link is in la-la land rather than responding. Then, sometimes a whole series of them are out to lunch and the page totally stalls.

There is also the disturbing problem of links that have no visible means of support. They send nothing of any size, deposit no cookies and ask for none, but they have to resolve or the page stalls. Not sure what those are. Maybe some web guru can say.

That brought me to wondering just how many websites think they are making money from the ad-server payments, and not realizing how many people are probably giving up and going elsewhere. So instead of selling a product, they make a few cents from the link.
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TattooedMac

 
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Member Since: May 19, 2009
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Im not a Web Programmer so have no idea on what to do, but this is a great little write up into the workings on what goes on. Now i know if i do get a hung site, all i need to do is ⌘R and a new link for that ad will get me going faster (Thats how im reading this) ??

But that is true, i have had a hung site for maybe 12-17 seconds, and i hit refresh and it will load completely real quick. I always thought that this was Safari caching what it had already loaded, in visual via the progress bar, and then when i refresh it pulls that cached site then loads the rest that wasnt cached.

Very interesting, and hope your friend can get good marks for his thesis and we see something in the wild as a monitor type thing for those of us with the geek in them

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cradom

 
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Member Since: Feb 14, 2004
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And that is the second reason I use an ad-blocker. I've gone to pages and watched everything load, but the page stalls because of an ad link that just wont load. If I can catch the url in the status bar it goes into ad-block.

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osxx

 
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Member Since: Jan 19, 2008
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Not sure how affective it is but I have do not track me checked in Safari preferences.
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TattooedMac

 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cradom View Post
And that is the second reason I use an ad-blocker. I've gone to pages and watched everything load, but the page stalls because of an ad link that just wont load. If I can catch the url in the status bar it goes into ad-block.
As do I, but in all honesty i thought that AdBlocker, was stopping me see the Ads but the Ads where still doing there thing in the background, and as i said, if i get a hung page i refresh and its all good.
I also use Ultimate Status Bar so it stands out for me to see what comes up as well.

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cptkrf

 
Member Since: Dec 09, 2009
Location: The same as Sheldon Cooper - East Texas
Posts: 416
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Mac Specs: MacBook Air 2013, MacMini,2013, Intel Core i7, 16gb, 27" Thunderbolt display (Highly recommended!)

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Quote:
Originally Posted by cptkrf View Post
For commercial web sites, most of the linkage is to ad-servers. They are not necessarily the bulk of the incoming data, but can be by far the most numerous of the links that get resolved in a single page load. Some ad-servers call another, then that one links to another and so on. Some sites seem to exist only for the ad links and without them, the page would load almost instantaneously.

https://disconnect.me/

This appears to be a legitimate and very nice browser add-on that addresses the myriad of ad links that slow down a web site. I have been testing it for about two weeks and it works as advertised. It also will open your eyes as just how many ad and analytic servers touch your data on every mouse click. I assumed that the third party links in a page resolution would be a dozen or so, but some sites will stack up hundreds of servers per page. And, they have to resolve before you get the entire page loaded.

For your favorite sites, that you want to support, you can unblock the links.

This allows you to throw some sand in the gears of snoopers, but it also speeds up the page loading.
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vansmith

 
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Member Since: Oct 19, 2008
Location: Toronto
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Quote:
Originally Posted by osxx View Post
Not sure how affective it is but I have do not track me checked in Safari preferences.
At best, that may save you a tiny fraction of a second and more likely, it won't help since the ad servers are most likely polled. On top of that, the DNT headers have to be part of the page and people with loads of ad revenue are unlikely to build support in.

Quote:
Originally Posted by TattooedMac View Post
As do I, but in all honesty i thought that AdBlocker, was stopping me see the Ads but the Ads where still doing there thing in the background, and as i said, if i get a hung page i refresh and its all good.
I also use Ultimate Status Bar so it stands out for me to see what comes up as well.
I was under the same impression - the content is still loaded but just hidden. Methinks ad blockers are more like ad hiders.

Quote:
Originally Posted by cptkrf View Post
https://disconnect.me/

This appears to be a legitimate and very nice browser add-on that addresses the myriad of ad links that slow down a web site. I have been testing it for about two weeks and it works as advertised. It also will open your eyes as just how many ad and analytic servers touch your data on every mouse click. I assumed that the third party links in a page resolution would be a dozen or so, but some sites will stack up hundreds of servers per page. And, they have to resolve before you get the entire page loaded.

For your favorite sites, that you want to support, you can unblock the links.

This allows you to throw some sand in the gears of snoopers, but it also speeds up the page loading.
Open up the inspector in your browser of choice and just watch. It's amazing what gets called and loaded that is external to the domain you're interested in.

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bobtomay

 
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Member Since: Dec 22, 2006
Location: Texas, where else?
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One reason why I like checking some sites with Firefox - it has a popup at the bottom left of the window as the page loads that shows what is loading - almost all the slow downs I've seen in the past 2-3 years have been some stinking ad server.

I cannot be held responsible for the things that come out of my mouth.
In the Windows world, most everything folks don't understand is called a virus.
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vansmith

 
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If you open the inspector (right click something and go to Inspect Element (all browsers)), and look at the network resources, you can see how long it took to request each resources and whether or not it succeeded.

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