• 22 Posts
Joined rok temu
Cake day: lis 24, 2020


Someone on the internet said something bad about Matrix. They used “reverse engineering” so you know it’s legit. I suggest everyone uses scuttlebutt over GnuPG over Tor over freenet instead…

Nice to see more discussion of Jevons’ Paradox. I’m not convinced that the criticism of green hydrogen is so valid. The ERoEI is bad, no doubt, but hydrogen created through electrolysis has the benefit of being dense and portable. For those tasks where running a vehicle is the logical solution, converting the output of large-scale solar infrastructure to hydrogen might make sense. Will it affordably replace the current American lifestyle of burning 2 litres of petroleum to buy 1 litre of milk? Certainly not, but it has a place in the future energy mix.

The unavoidable fact is that supporting nice nimble native APIs for every OS is more work than targeting electron. The best thing any individual can do is help with that work - support software that compiles to native APIs, e.g. if you Matrix consider using/contributing to nheko instead of Element.

Bold move criticising the CCP on Lemmy. Closed source software = evil, forced labour camps = autonomy

@bluerabbittoPrivacy*Permananently Deleted*
7 miesięcy

This whole thread is a brilliant demonstration of the FOSS/privacy activist condition. Anyone who successfully scales an actual private service will be attacked and abandoned so that the activists can show off how uncompromising they are and say “contact me on <software you don’t use>” so they can seem aloof and cool on social media.

I was surprised that Matrix made it onto the list in this post. It’s already making inroads on the mainstream and the deranged hit pieces began a while ago (none linked in this thread yet). I give it another few years at most before the whinger crowd are treating it with the same disdain as Discord just because it built the features needed to retain XX million users.

Yes though it’s not really a symmetrical comparison. Let me make an analogy: suppose for transport I’ve been using a public diesel bus and I’m growing upset about the environmental impact of this vehicle. Instead I buy an ebike which is exclusively for my own use.

When I do this the bus is still operating. For some people an ebike is never going to be an acceptable substitute. There are many reasons including age/physical ability, baggage or distance requirements, or a need to travel during bad weather. By not taking the bus, all I’ve saved is the extra diesel that was burnt due to my body’s mass being aboard the vehicle, a small contribution to the overall system.

If my own traffic is very low - let’s take it to an extreme and say I travel only a short distance once per month - then in terms of carbon emissions it would have been better to burn slightly more diesel than to have my own ebike. As my level of use increases, at some point it becomes more environmentally friendly to have the ebike.

Scalability isn’t a completely linear thing - when you are meeting a lot of people’s requirements simultaneously you end up with resources which are going to be committed anyway, which gives savvy users the ability to “freeload” on incremental costs only.

I wonder how much traffic you have to get for the manufacturing and shipping costs of a battery, solar panel, own server, etc. to outweigh the carbon footprint of adding a small incremental load to a shared hosting provider which resides in a conventional datacenter?

If that’s the way you see it, fair enough. It’s been a pleasure.

I can’t see anything in the text that would disallow that other than “mod doesn’t like it” - if so, it’s rather similar to what Reddit’s being accused of in this post. So far my experience is that opinions on this Lemmy federation are even more homogeneous than they are on Reddit - the prevailing view is just different. Again, this post has been a good example. It’s all a little disappointing.

Just curious - I have no interest in giving QAnon conspiracies more oxygen - but on what basis were they banned? Being disastrously misinformed, on its own, does not appear to be against the Code of Conduct (and nor should it be).

I’ve been looking around for other sources to corroborate this and I’m not finding anything good. A sibling already pointed out a discussion of “NSFB” from 2018 (another one from that trusted source of quality journalism, Blogspot). The earlier article was discussed on HN and it looks like a fundamentally different use case - most likely an indicator of which subreddits are appropriate for displaying advertisements.

I’m not saying this article is false - it does link to this notabug thing which shows a “nsfb” flag (however that works). It is, however, literally the only case I’ve been able to find of “article removed and tagged nsfb”. Does anyone have any other information to confirm that this is really what’s happening, or more than a once-off?

Maybe related: after I log in (in Tor Browser) the UI still shows the login button in the top right. When I refresh the page it comes right.

The Early History of Usenet (2019)

Written on its 40th anniversary, a 10-part blog series by Steven M. Bellovin about the first designs and implementations of Usenet, which he co-invented…

Yes, those are the flaws I was referring to. My point was that it doesn’t make sense to judge Musk on the quality of his socialism because he isn’t a socialist and doesn’t act like one. To bring it back to the OP, one could certainly argue that supporting continued capitalism qualifies him as a bad person due to all these unwanted side effects, without further analysis. To me that would be unhelpfully reductive (although it would make answering future /c/asklemmy posts like these fairly easy).

However if you are willing to peer into the capitalist context and look for some shades of grey, it’s clear that he has been involved in improvements over the status quo. Of course he hasn’t personally designed rockets or dug the required rare earth magnets out of the ground. The people who did that matter very much but they aren’t the topic of this thread. Musk played a more abstract role in building companies which reduce the resources required to launch satellites and drive cars. It is not easy or trivial to go from having a bunch of money to having SpaceX. I give him credit for his ability to do that.

He is a capitalist applying capitalist solutions to problems. You don’t have to like capitalists but for all its flaws the system does function, and taking a profit is table stakes. The consumer who opts in to his way of doing things gets a car with a reduced dependency on fossil fuels, advanced safety features, and some level of self-driving capabilities. On the flip side they are deeply proprietary, in constant communication with the mothership and very expensive. For everyone else, Tesla is pushing the industry along so we will get more EVs to choose from sooner than we might otherwise have done. Can you really say his activities are anti-consumer? I don’t think so - it’s just that you and I are not his target consumer.

The real damage of Facebook is their monopoly created through network effects. I am not anticipating a monopoly on electric cars or internet access any time soon.

Yes, it’s fair to say he’s kind of a dick but it’s not the full story. His goals for electric vehicles and universal internet access are noble ones. Wanting to put people on Mars seems like a waste of time to me, but so are most human pursuits and this one’s at least interesting. His use of social media is juvenile. His attempt to help the kids trapped in the cave was ham-fisted attention-seeking. I don’t give a toss if he smokes weed, that’s not my business.

I’m not going to try to put him on a single-axis scale of good/bad. Doing so is a popular hobby among those who wish to have endless arguments with the “other” on social media. The guy’s useful for some things but not others.

It’s subjective of course but I didn’t get an asshole vibe. When there are so many other projects that do strive to give support and prompt attention for free, it’s worth pointing out clearly how many of those services are not implied by the four essential freedoms at all.

The History of Electronic Mail

Computer mail and messaging have probably been independently invented many times. I do not know who first invented these applications; I haven’t found any documented versions of computer mail that precede the one I helped create in 1965. This note describes my knowledge of the history of electroni…

Most of my GUI experience is with Cocoa/UIKit (Mac/iOS). ObjC and Swift will let you play fast and loose with concurrent access to state and this is extremely convenient, though leaving the potential for a crash.

A Window might conceptually own a Button1 and Button2. So far this makes sense - if the Window is destroyed, its buttons should also be destroyed. Now imagine we attach an action to Button1 that disables Button2. Perhaps this “action” is a closure. Now we have an independent code block that has a reference to perform a mutating action on Button2. In ObjC you can simply do this by having a pointer to it. Rust won’t have a bar of it unless you use explicitly use reference counting and mutexes. It’s not just UI actions either - scheduled timers, URL downloaders and all kinds of other components need to take ownership of UI at spontaneous times.

Explicit mutexes aren’t the only option - the UI library could abstract over the UI elements so the mutexes are hidden from you - but then you’ve just replaced Rust semantics with Java/ObjC synchronisation so why are you writing Rust? Alternatively you could replace this very convenient event-driven design with a single “processing” function where you temporarily have mutable access to everything - I read about that in the design for one library. I didn’t like the sound of it.

There are options. None of them feels as ergonomic as the dangerous status quo that I’m used to. As I suggested, I’m not yet convinced Rust is a bad choice for this, but any library will have to think carefully to make this not suck. For now I would rather use a battle-tested option.

For Qt and GTK it would be okay if the bindings were high quality and there was good documentation/examples. I am skilled in neither and wouldn’t want the extra hassle of “making it work in Rust” unless this was outweighed by other advantages.

I really like Rust but there are lots of situations I wouldn’t use it. Some examples:

  • If I want very strict control over dependencies, a very small number of dependencies, or dependencies with specific/trusted origin.
  • If I was building software that won’t be actively maintained for years but might need adjustments later. The Rust ecosystem is a fast-moving target and upgrading a library could cause a huge cascade of other changes.
  • For the most hassle-free integration with an important library like Qt, particularly if a Qt GUI is the main point of my application.
  • Most web front-end. Using WASM to control the DOM with glue code is using a sledgehammer to crack a nut.
  • (?) Probably most event-driven apps like GUIs. Rust’s lifetimes mostly stay out of your way but they only work on the stack. Synchronisation between potentially multiple threads is very in-your-face and explicit, compared with say Java’s “synchronized” methods. It’s only early days for Rust GUI frameworks so I will wait and see. Maybe they’ll come up with something great.

Last time I experimented with this you were able to look up arbitrary remote servers by URL even if your server does not explicitly follow them. Has that changed?

I don’t have a good handle on what “the community” welcomes yet but give it a go, by all means! Sounds interesting.

I’ve been trying to kick-start a community on a niche that I really enjoy - computer history with an emphasis on the people involved, computing culture, narratives and whimsy. It’s kind of hard to define concisely. It’s not news, it’s not retrocomputing, and it doesn’t have to be about really old st…

Would the “Extreme Centre” featured in The Social Dilemma be prevented from radicalising people if greater regulation was in place? Of course not, they should have used FOSS to get their message out!

…I’m being facetious, but honestly, FOSS-or-not is orthogonal to the issues set out in the documentary. The fact that most FOSS social networking doesn’t have ads has nothing to do with the source code being available under a particular licence. It happens because it’s run by idealistic volunteers who will use money they obtained elsewhere to promote both FOSS and services without ads, because they like both things. An AGPL social network could use exactly the same manipulations to fund itself and it would still be free software provided they shared the code.

The actual alternative was stated very clearly in the documentary - you have to pay, or else you are the product. There is a narrow window that exists in the small FOSS communities now where that isn’t true, but if you want to see an alternative that works at scale you’d better be ready to subscribe to that patreon or your providers are not going to make it. As usual, it’s about $.

A Disaster Foretold — And Ignored

A history of hacking group L0pht, their famous testimony to US Congress in 1998 where they claimed they could take down the internet in 30 minutes, and where the members ended up afterward. …