So, apparently wp-hashcash has this feature that depends on curl support in php, and breaks if it doesn’t have it. And, as far as I can tell, the feature is that it goes out and updates itself, or at least checks its version against the developer’s site.
This is a bad thing, because of two reasons.
(1) when php is built without curl support, it breaks the blog, eventually. But not right away.
(2) when php is built with curl support and the dev’s site is nonresponsive, php as a whole is pretty much nonresponsive. Maybe not if we were using php as a cgi, but we’re in mod-php territory, and that means lots of nastiness.
This is a bit annoying, because the dev’s site is apparently down right now. So I’ve disabled the plugin, and we’re back to just akismet. Which is sort of annoying, because it’s going to mean more spam hits the filters.
Hashcash was so close to a good solution, too :(.