Ad-blocking and the Regrettable URL Format
I use Adblock Plus to block advertisements and, more importantly, invisible privacy-breaking trackers (most people aren't even aware of these). I think ad-blocking is actually easier than ever, because ads are served from a relatively small number of domains, rather than from the websites themselves. Instead of patterns matching parts of a path, I can just block domains.
Adblock Plus emphasizes this by providing, by default, a pattern matching the server root. Example,
But sometimes advertising websites are trickier, and their sub-domain is a fairly unique string,
That pattern isn't very useful. I want something more like,
Unfortunately Adblock Plus doesn't provide this pattern automatically yet, so I have to do it manually. I think this pattern is less obvious because the URL format is actually broken. Notice have have two matching globs (*) rather than just one, even though I am simply blocking everything under a certain level.
regrets the format of the URL, and I agree with him. This is what
should look like,
It's a single coherent hierarchy with each level in order. This makes so much more sense! If I wanted to block example.com and all it's sub-domains, the pattern is much simpler and less error prone,
To anyone who ever reinvents the web: please get it right next time.
Update: There is significant further discussion in the comments.