From: Mike on
In message
<b7e7e11f-dc16-4864-8ff1-9b9e8d3ebc0e(a)a5g2000yqi.googlegroups.com>
at 17:51:24 on Sat, 13 Feb 2010, pcb1962 <peter(a)pandasys.co.uk> wrote
>On 13 Feb, 01:27, Grimly Curmudgeon <grimly4REM...(a)REMOVEgmail.com>
>wrote:
>
>> The format a*****5, v*****t bears no resemblance to the real bidders'
>> identities.
>
>Actually it does. If you go to item 130364626110 you'll see the first
>bid is from me. There's no indication of the number of characters
>represented by the stars, but the first and last characters are
>correct.
>
This isn't always true. Sometimes it's the 4th character of your
username. I guess there is some algorithm, but I've not bothered working
out what the 0*****0 ones mean
--
Mike News
From: Grimly Curmudgeon on
We were somewhere around Barstow, on the edge of the desert, when the
drugs began to take hold. I remember pcb1962 <peter(a)pandasys.co.uk>
saying something like:

>On 13 Feb, 01:27, Grimly Curmudgeon <grimly4REM...(a)REMOVEgmail.com>
>wrote:
>
>> The format a*****5, v*****t bears no resemblance to the real bidders'
>> identities.
>
>Actually it does. If you go to item 130364626110 you'll see the first
>bid is from me. There's no indication of the number of characters
>represented by the stars, but the first and last characters are
>correct.


What you've observed there is an older anonymising algorithm they were
using in which, true, the first and last characters were 'real' -
recently they were using a totally randomised set of first and last
characters; perhaps the older one has been re-introduced. Who knows why
they do things the way they do.
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