Bonum Certa Men Certa

Links 02/10/2022: Debian on Firmware Policy and PostgreSQL 15 RC 1

  • GNU/Linux

    • Desktop/Laptop

      • LinuxiacTUXEDO Computers Released TUXEDO OS 1 to the Mass Public

        TUXEDO Computers, a Linux-focused computer manufacturer, has made its in-house operating system, TUXEDO OS, available to all Linux users.

        In the Linux community, TUXEDO Computers is a well-known name. The company has gained the attention of Linux supporters due to its strong focus on manufacturing notebooks and PCs specifically built and further tuned to work with Linux.

        Users can choose between Ubuntu and some of its flavors for the operating system or the in-house developed TUXEDO OS, with the latter being the company’s recommended choice.

    • Server

      • Toolbx — running the same host binary on Arch Linux, Fedora, Ubuntu, etc. containers | Debarshi’s den

        This is a deep dive into some of the technical details of Toolbx and is a continuation from the earlier post about bypassing the immutability of OCI containers.

      • Andre FrancaHow to self-host Vaultwarden with Podman on a VPS

        I would say that one of the most important things in our digital life is to have good passwords, then to have a proper way to secure and manage those passwords. Thankfully, we have different solutions.

        Today I'm going to show you how to self-host Vaultwarden with Podman.

      • EarthlyComparison: Flux vs Argo CD

        Since February we have been working on adopting Kubernetes and cloud-native technologies for our cell simulation platform at Part of my job entailed figuring out how to onboard developers who didn’t practice DevOps before.

      • EarthlyHow to use ReplicaSets in Kubernetes and Why You Should Know About Them - Earthly Blog

        Kubernetes is a container orchestration system. This means that it manages the lifecycle of containers and allows you to deploy applications in a scalable way, with high availability and fault tolerance. Kubernetes is also a cluster manager, which means that it can manage multiple hosts or VMs on your behalf so you don’t have to worry about them (or their resources) going down.

    • Audiocasts/Shows

      • VideoMy First Look At SpiralLinux (From the Creator of GeckoLinux) - Invidious

        SpiralLinux is a rather new Linux distro that is built from Debian, with a focus on simplicity and out-of-the-box usability across all the major desktop environments. SpiralLinux was created by the creator of GeckoLinux, and like GeckoLinux, SpiralLinux offers a number of different desktop editions.

      • Jon UdellCurating the Studs Terkel archive - Jon Udell

        I heard these words on an episode of Radio OpenSource about the Studs Terkel Radio Archive, an extraordinary compilation of (so far) about a third of his 5600 hours of interviews with nearly every notable person during the latter half of the twentieth century.

      • E54: Learn Open Source Tools - Frameworks on CoRise by Open Source Startup Podcast

        Sourabh Bajaj is Cofounder & CTO of CoRise, the technical up-skilling platform with courses taught by industry experts. They have courses focused on open source projects such as DBT that use real-world projects to teach industry skills.

        In this episode, we discuss how technical learners are different, the opportunity for education to be a third-party tool, why industry professionals can make the best teachers, assessing your own founder-market fit, and more!

      • E53: Bringing Data Science Projects to Production with Linea

        Doris Xin is Cofounder & CEO of Linea, the platform to bring data science projects to production. The company's open source project, LineaPy, helps remove engineering bottlenecks for data science teams.

    • Applications

      • DebugPoint5 Great GUI Apps for Visual Disk Usage in Linux, Ubuntu [With Bonus]

        Filelight, a GUI-based KDE app, provides a sunburst representation of disk usage. Instead of showing a tree view & list view of directories/files, it shows the usage in a concentric pie chart view representing each directory.

        You can mouse over to a specific colour/pie to get the information about that specific segment. It also provides a way to dive deep into a particular segment to a single file level to analyze! This feature is pretty neat.

    • Instructionals/Technical

      • LinuxTechiHow to Install HAProxy on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS (Focal Fossa)

        In this guide, we will cover how to install latest version of HAProxy on Ubuntu 20.04 LTS (Focal Fossa) step-by-step.

        HAProxy is a free & open source solution for High availability and load balancing, it can also be used for proxying TCP & HTTP based applications. HAProxy can be installed and configured on Linux, Solaris & FreeBSD. HAProxy is best recommended solution for the websites which has huge traffic as it improves performance & reliability of the server by means of load balancing the servers & using its high availability capabilities.

        HAProxy is used by a number of most popular websites including GitHub, Bitbucket, Stack Overflow, Reddit, Tumblr, Twitter and it is also used in the OpsWorks product from Amazon Web Services.

      • ID RootHow To Install Kate Text Editor on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS - idroot

        In this tutorial, we will show you how to install Kate Text Editor on Ubuntu 22.04 LTS. For those of you who didn’t know, Kate (KDE Advanced Text Editor) is a source code editor developed by the KDE-free software community. It comes with plugins that boast the Kate editor functionality. The clean interface of Kate editor helps the developer to maximize their productivity.

        This article assumes you have at least basic knowledge of Linux, know how to use the shell, and most importantly, you host your site on your own VPS. The installation is quite simple and assumes you are running in the root account, if not you may need to add ‘sudo‘ to the commands to get root privileges. I will show you the step-by-step installation of the KDE Kate Text Editor on Ubuntu 22.04 (Jammy Jellyfish). You can follow the same instructions for Ubuntu 22.04 and any other Debian-based distribution like Linux Mint, Elementary OS, Pop!_OS, and more as well.

      • DebugPointString Processing in LibreOffice Calc Macro with Examples

        This tutorial will show how to do various common string processing using macro in LibreOffice.

        We will use LibreOffice Calc cells to use the strings for this tutorial. These processes are essential for any macro development.

      • Make Use OfGet HDMI Audio Working on Ubuntu for Raspberry Pi

        On a Raspberry Pi, the Ubuntu Desktop and Ubuntu MATE operating systems output audio to the 3.5mm audio port by default. For the audio to be carried over an HDMI cable, the audio output device needs to be manually selected every time the Pi boots. The issue persists even in the latest version of the Ubuntu flavored OS for the Pi, 22.04.

        If your Raspberry Pi is connected to a television or a monitor with built-in speakers, it is wise to transmit the audio over HDMI. It reduces cable clutter and also the need for additional external speakers.

      • CitizixHow to Install and set up PHP and Nginx (LEMP) on Ubuntu 22.04
      • CitizixHow to install and configure NextCloud on Ubuntu 22.04 and LEMP
    • Games

      • Boiling SteamBest Steam Deck Games Released in the Past Week - 2022-10-02 Edition - Boiling Steam

        Between 2022-09-25 and 2022-10-02 there were 149 new games validated for the Steam Deck. We have developed a series of filters to help you find the Best Steam Deck Games in those, based on the available Steam Ratings, their respective popularity, and a few other criteria. We hope it can help you find games that you would have otherwise never known, so that you won’t be running out of games to play on your Steam Deck anytime soon!

    • Desktop Environments/WMs

      • K Desktop Environment/KDE SC/Qt

        • Jonathan RiddellAkademy 2022 in Barcelona Day 1 Talks - Jonathan Esk-Riddell’s Diary

          Niccolo and The Dawn of Consistency. He gives the example of KHamburgerMenu which should have a similar widget which is a panel, having a common component was something he kept talking of but it was never done. App redundancy, one part of the goal was removing multiple applications. This depends if KDE is an umbrella for any app or if it’s a brand that promotes a set of apps. For example Maui is very much doing the wrong thing with their own design with their own Kit and they have their own shell but MauiShel isn’t part of KDE even though MauiKit is. Maybe we should have a requirement for KDE look and feel as part of being KDE. Some apps are a bit stagnant, in general I’d like to move them to Kirigami because that helps consistency. Kate and KWrite use the same code so congratulations. Band consistency, many apps had their own website, there has been a lot of improvement for this. Consistency within applications has improved.

          Mevin talks about Wayland goal. In Plasma 5.24 we got the Overview Effect, improved NVidia support (where the distro uses the patches), improved stability too. In Plasma 5.25 we got touch mode for better tablet support and a tonne of stability improvements. In Plasma 5.26 we got improved virtual keyboard support, improved graphical tablet support, xwayland and DPI improvements and a lot of stability improvement. But showstoppers are still missing colour profiles, blurry rendering with fractional scaling and many more. Virtualisation and screen recording still needed before people can switch from X.

        • Akademy 2022 - Sunday 2nd October - Room 1 - Kockatoo Tube
        • Akademy 2022 - Sunday 2nd October - Room 2 - Kockatoo Tube
  • Distributions and Operating Systems

    • BSD

    • Arch Family

    • Debian Family

      • DebianResults for non-free firmware

        This message is an automated, unofficial publication of vote results. Official results shall follow, sent in by the vote taker, namely Debian Project Secretary

        This email is just a convenience for the impatient. I remain, gentle folks,

        Your humble servant, Devotee (on behalf of Debian Project Secretary)


        Starting results calculation at Sun Oct 2 06:33:53 2022

        Option 1 "Only one installer, including non-free firmware" Option 2 "Recommend installer containing non-free firmware" Option 3 "Allow presenting non-free installers alongside the free one" Option 4 "Installer with non-free software is not part of Debian" Option 5 "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, one installer" Option 6 "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, keep both installers" Option 7 "None of the above"

        In the following table, tally[row x][col y] represents the votes that option x received over option y.

        Option 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 === === === === === === === Option 1 158 206 270 72 129 264 Option 2 170 235 286 121 75 291 Option 3 144 99 294 127 84 306 Option 4 80 64 53 74 55 135 Option 5 229 219 229 279 169 289 Option 6 216 253 266 298 163 311 Option 7 91 63 51 197 63 42

        Looking at row 2, column 1, Recommend installer containing non-free firmware received 170 votes over Only one installer, including non-free firmware

        Looking at row 1, column 2, Only one installer, including non-free firmware received 158 votes over Recommend installer containing non-free firmware.

        Option 1 Reached quorum: 264 > 45.8911756223351 Option 2 Reached quorum: 291 > 45.8911756223351 Option 3 Reached quorum: 306 > 45.8911756223351 Option 4 Reached quorum: 135 > 45.8911756223351 Option 5 Reached quorum: 289 > 45.8911756223351 Option 6 Reached quorum: 311 > 45.8911756223351

        Option 1 passes Majority. 2.901 (264/91) >= 1 Option 2 passes Majority. 4.619 (291/63) >= 1 Option 3 passes Majority. 6.000 (306/51) >= 1 Dropping Option 4 because of Majority. (0.6852791878172588832487309644670050761421) 0.685 (135/197) < 1 Option 5 passes Majority. 4.587 (289/63) >= 3 Option 6 passes Majority. 7.405 (311/42) >= 3

        Option 2 defeats Option 1 by ( 170 - 158) = 12 votes. Option 1 defeats Option 3 by ( 206 - 144) = 62 votes. Option 5 defeats Option 1 by ( 229 - 72) = 157 votes. Option 6 defeats Option 1 by ( 216 - 129) = 87 votes. Option 1 defeats Option 7 by ( 264 - 91) = 173 votes. Option 2 defeats Option 3 by ( 235 - 99) = 136 votes. Option 5 defeats Option 2 by ( 219 - 121) = 98 votes. Option 6 defeats Option 2 by ( 253 - 75) = 178 votes. Option 2 defeats Option 7 by ( 291 - 63) = 228 votes. Option 5 defeats Option 3 by ( 229 - 127) = 102 votes. Option 6 defeats Option 3 by ( 266 - 84) = 182 votes. Option 3 defeats Option 7 by ( 306 - 51) = 255 votes. Option 5 defeats Option 6 by ( 169 - 163) = 6 votes. Option 5 defeats Option 7 by ( 289 - 63) = 226 votes. Option 6 defeats Option 7 by ( 311 - 42) = 269 votes.

        The Schwartz Set contains: Option 5 "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, one installer"

        -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

        The winners are: Option 5 "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, one installer"

        -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-= -=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=-=

        -- The voters have spoken, the bastards... --unknown DEbian VOTe EnginE digraph Results { ranksep=0.25; "Only one installer, including non-free firmware\n2.90" [ style="filled" , fontname="Helvetica", fontsize=10 ]; "Only one installer, including non-free firmware\n2.90" -> "Allow presenting non-free installers alongside the free one\n6.00" [ label="62" ]; "Only one installer, including non-free firmware\n2.90" -> "None of the above" [ label="173" ]; "Recommend installer containing non-free firmware\n4.62" [ style="filled" , fontname="Helvetica", fontsize=10 ]; "Recommend installer containing non-free firmware\n4.62" -> "Only one installer, including non-free firmware\n2.90" [ label="12" ]; "Recommend installer containing non-free firmware\n4.62" -> "Allow presenting non-free installers alongside the free one\n6.00" [ label="136" ]; "Recommend installer containing non-free firmware\n4.62" -> "None of the above" [ label="228" ]; "Allow presenting non-free installers alongside the free one\n6.00" [ style="filled" , fontname="Helvetica", fontsize=10 ]; "Allow presenting non-free installers alongside the free one\n6.00" -> "None of the above" [ label="255" ]; "Installer with non-free software is not part of Debian\n0.69" [ style="filled" , color="pink", shape=octagon, fontname="Helvetica", fontsize=10 ]; "None of the above" -> "Installer with non-free software is not part of Debian\n0.69" [ label="62" ]; "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, one installer\n4.59" [ style="filled" , color="powderblue", shape=egg, fontcolor="NavyBlue", fontname="Helvetica", fontsize=10 ]; "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, one installer\n4.59" -> "Only one installer, including non-free firmware\n2.90" [ label="157" ]; "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, one installer\n4.59" -> "Recommend installer containing non-free firmware\n4.62" [ label="98" ]; "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, one installer\n4.59" -> "Allow presenting non-free installers alongside the free one\n6.00" [ label="102" ]; "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, one installer\n4.59" -> "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, keep both installers\n7.40" [ label="6" ]; "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, one installer\n4.59" -> "None of the above" [ label="226" ]; "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, keep both installers\n7.40" [ style="filled" , fontname="Helvetica", fontsize=10 ]; "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, keep both installers\n7.40" -> "Only one installer, including non-free firmware\n2.90" [ label="87" ]; "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, keep both installers\n7.40" -> "Recommend installer containing non-free firmware\n4.62" [ label="178" ]; "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, keep both installers\n7.40" -> "Allow presenting non-free installers alongside the free one\n6.00" [ label="182" ]; "Change SC for non-free firmware in installer, keep both installers\n7.40" -> "None of the above" [ label="269" ]; "None of the above" [ style="filled" , shape=diamond, fontcolor="Red", fontname="Helvetica", fontsize=10 ]; }
      • Steve McIntyreSteve's blog: Firmware vote result - the people have spoken!

        It's time for another update on Debian's firmware GR. I wrote about the problem back in April and about the vote itself a few days back.

        Voting closed last night and we have a result! This is unofficial so far - the official result will follow shortly when the Project Secretary sends a signed mail to confirm it. But that's normally just a formality at this point.

      • LWNDebian's firmware vote results []

        The results are in on the Debian project's general-resolution vote regarding non-free firmware in the installer image.

    • Devices/Embedded

  • Free, Libre, and Open Source Software

    • Events

      • RlangLeading the Way for New R useRs with Strong Connections To Local Universities | R-bloggers

        The R Consortium recently spoke with Ryan Benz, one of the organizers for the Southern California R Users Group which covers Los Angeles and Orange County, CA. Ryan shares more about how the R Community in SoCal continues to grow by forming partnerships with local universities to offer students workshops. The SoCal R useR Group is also committed to offering a valuable learning environment and resources for those who are both new and have more experience with R.

    • SaaS/Back End/Databases

      • PostgreSQLPostgreSQL: PostgreSQL 15 RC 1 Released!

        The PostgreSQL Global Development Group announces that the first release candidate of PostgreSQL 15 is now available for download. As a release candidate, PostgreSQL 15 RC 1 will be mostly identical to the initial release of PostgreSQL 15, though some more fixes may be applied prior to the general availability of PostgreSQL 15.

        The planned date for the general availability of PostgreSQL 15 is October 13, 2022. Please see the "Release Schedule" section for more details.

      • PostgreSQLPostgreSQL: pg_dbms_job v1.5.0 released

        pg_dbms_job is a PostgreSQL extension to create, manage and use Oracle-style DBMS_JOB scheduled job. The use and behavior is just like with the DBMS_JOB Oracle package.

        It allows to manage scheduled jobs from a job queue or to execute immediately jobs asynchronously. A job definition consist on a code to execute, the next date of execution and how often the job is to be run. A job runs a SQL command, plpgsql code or an existing stored procedure.

    • Content Management Systems (CMS)

      • Kev QuirkMy Blogging Utopia - Kev Quirk

        I personally think the admin UI of WordPress is stuck firmly in 2004. It can also be slow and clunky to navigate around. Then there’s hosting. It’s not difficult to host a WordPress site, but I’d rather not have to put up with it.

    • Programming/Development

      • August 2022: "Top 40" New CRAN Packages - R Views

        One hundred ninety-four new package made it to CRAN in August. Here are my “Top 40” picks in thirteen categories: “Computational Methods, Data, Epidemiology, Genomics, Insurance, Machine Learning, Mathematics, Medicine, Pharmaceutical Applications, Statistics, Time Series, Utilities, and Visualization.

      • Recent challenges in model specification testing based on different data structures | YoungStatS

        Model specification testing is one of the essential methodological tasks in statistics. Recently, with the development of different data structures, envisioning concepts from classical data setups to other environments becomes very important.

      • R tips and tricks – get the gist

        In scientific programming speed is important. Functions written for general public use have a lot of control-flow checks which are not necessary if you are confident enough with your code.To quicken your code execution I suggest to strip run-of-the-mill functions to their bare bones. You can save serious wall-clock time by using only the laborers code lines. Below is a walk-through example of what I mean.

      • Dirk EddelbuettelDirk Eddelbuettel: RcppArmadillo on CRAN: Updates

        Armadillo is a powerful and expressive C++ template library for linear algebra and scientific computing. It aims towards a good balance between speed and ease of use, has a syntax deliberately close to Matlab, and is useful for algorithm development directly in C++, or quick conversion of research code into production environments. RcppArmadillo integrates this library with the R environment and language–and is widely used by (currently) 1023 packages other packages on CRAN, downloaded 26.4 million times (per the partial logs from the cloud mirrors of CRAN), and the CSDA paper (preprint / vignette) by Conrad and myself has been cited 497 times according to Google Scholar.

      • ButtondownSnippet Praxis ● Buttondown

        Oh no, it’s the dreaded Copy-and-paste programming! I regularly see old-timers complain about how modern programming isn’t about “understanding” things anymore, people just copy code from Stackoverflow. This is seen as a bad thing.

      • 5 New books added to Big Book of R

        The Big Book of R has just had 5 new additions to the collection! Thanks to Gary and Adejumo for some of them!

        PS for those who may be interested, I have posted my replies to some great questions about cleaning a messy dataset.

      • Housing Markets Down: Hierarchical Time Series

        For a long time, everybody in Turkey complains about how far the house and rent prices are up. It seems the same situation is true all over the world. This is called the pandemic housing boom in the USA. But this might’ve been coming to the end, according to some authorities.

      • age and Authenticated Encryption

        age is a file encryption format, tool, and library. It was made to replace one of the last remaining GnuPG use cases, but it was not made to replace GnuPG because in the last 20 years we learned that cryptographic tools work best when they are specialized and opinionated instead of flexible Swiss Army knives.

      • How to Use Italic Font in R - Data Science Tutorials

        How to Use Italic Font in R, to create an italic typeface in R plots, use the basic syntax shown below.

      • Frederic CambusToolchains adventures - Q3 2022 | Frederic Cambus

        This is the sixth post in my toolchains adventures series. Please check the previous posts in the toolchains category for more context about this journey.

        In Pkgsrc land, I updated binutils to the 2.39 version, mold to the 1.3.1, 1.4.0, 1.4.1, and 1.4.2 versions, patchelf to the 0.15.0 one, and finally pax-utils to the 1.3.5 one.

        Regarding OpenBSD, we imported llvm-profdata into the base system in early July, so I took the opportunity to propose importing llvm-cov as well. This was accepted and is now committed, which will allow producing reports from coverage data without having to install the devel/llvm port.

  • Leftovers

    • Nicholas Tietz-Sokolsky[Repost] I'm taking a sabbatical and attending Recurse Center! | nicholas@web

      It's been almost a decade since I graduated from college. In that time, I've worked at three startups, co-founded a non-profit immigration tech company, consulted for the United Nations, and noped out of grad school after one semester (twice!). I've also struggled with depression and anxiety, had three different therapists, and tried multiple different anxiety and depression medications. And I've adopted three cats, met and married my wife, and had two kids with her.

      During that decade, I've kept learning. On the job. On the weekends. In my evenings. I'm tired.

      During that decade, I've not had time to sit down and really dive deep into becoming a better programmer, a better software engineer. I've done a lot I'm proud of, but I haven't had the chance to dive deep since college. It's time to do that. I'm going to take a sabbatical from work to spend dedicated time becoming a better programmer and software engineer.

      This is a great privilege, and not one I'm taking lightly. Many people do not have this opportunity for myriad reasons, and I'm grateful.

    • Ruben SchadeBlander logos are good, via @NeilIreland

      Last year I wrote about MediaWiki’s new logo, and talked of the general trend among logo designers towards bland, dull, uninteresting, unoriginal, and largely interchangeable marks.

    • Tim Brayongoing by Tim Bray €· Luxury media

      Wait, am I saying that the Web was a mistake, that we should all go back to dead trees? Not at all. I couldn’t tap on the pretty-decent Jack White article and watch a YouTube of the songs. I couldn’t share a particularly tasty written morsel on Twitter. I had to go to a store to get it. I couldn’t read it in bed without turning a lamp on. I probably could have paid for a couple months’ online subscription to The Atlantic for the newsstand price.

      But on balance I was left thinking “This feels like a luxury product.” I can’t think of an obvious analogy… Perhaps the enveloping, focusing hands-on experience of putting a record on the turntable as opposed to a streaming service on the earbuds? Except for, magazines are more convenient, once you’ve gone to the trouble of going to the store for them. Hmmm, I hear rumors you can arrange to have them delivered to your home at regular intervals; must check that option out.

    • EngadgetAI is already better at lip reading than we are

      They Shall Not Grow Old, a 2018 documentary about the lives and aspirations of British and New Zealand soldiers living through World War I from acclaimed Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson, had its hundred-plus-year-old silent footage modernized through both colorization and the recording of new audio for previously non-existent dialog. To get an idea of what the folks featured in the archival footage were saying, Jackson hired a team of forensic lip readers to guesstimate their recorded utterances. Reportedly, “the lip readers were so precise they were even able to determine the dialect and accent of the people speaking.”

    • Matt RickardWhat's an MVP in 2022?

      One piece of advice I think still holds is picking one thing and executing flawlessly on it. Getting the core experience correct – you can rapidly iterate on the market, the customer, and the go-to-market strategy, but it's much more challenging to build a completely different product.

    • Ruben SchadeA great relationship with his garbage contractor

      Someone with a private account on Mastodon shared a lovely story about how he has the mobile number of his garbage collector, and could easily arrange to have his garbage bin replaced. He surmised this sort of relationship must be a rural Australian thing, because people in the city would be unlikely to know their collector by name and number.

      He’s right. I don’t know our garbage or recycling collectors. I’m even a step removed living in an apartment building; we also have sanitation workers who maintain the chutes and take out the skips, in addition to the people who operate the trucks and align the bins. But that’s not from avoiding them, I simply never see them.


      The old joke among New York City taxi drivers was that they could tell if an Australian was hailing them, because we get into the front seat to talk with them instead of the back. I did this all the time in Singapore too.

    • James Brownroguelazer's website: What's Next?

      In retrospect, seven years is probably too long to stay at a startup… We built a bunch of neat stuff, but at some point every startup either fails or lives to see itself become an enterprise. Anyhow, I'm off to another very small company where I can learn some new things and build some new products. I'm sure you'll hear about it here soon.

    • Science

      • ACMNeural Networks Predict Forces in Jammed Granular Solids

        A team of researchers from Germany's Göttingen University and Belgium's Ghent University used machine learning and computer simulations to create a tool for predicting force chains within granular solids.

        The researchers showed that graph neural networks can be trained in a supervised manner to anticipate the position of force chains that manifest while deforming a granular system, provided an undeformed static structure.

      • Preparing You with Future Skill Sets with EmpowerME - Chulalongkorn University

        Developed by lecturers of the Faculty of Education, Chulalongkorn University. EmpowerMe is a Chatbot-based career coach that enables learners to become digital citizens by developing future skill sets and suggests the right jobs needed by the market. The application has received a gold medal award in an innovation contest in South Korea.

      • Economic Development Administration Awards Georgia Tech $65 Million for AI Manufacturing Project | News Center

        The Georgia Institute of Technology has been awarded a $65 million grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) to support a statewide initiative that combines artificial intelligence and manufacturing innovations with transformational workforce and outreach programs. The grant will increase job and wage opportunities in distressed and rural communities, as well as among historically underrepresented and underserved groups.

      • Princeton Engineering - Why ’erasure' could be key to practical quantum computing

        A team led by Jeff Thompson, associate professor of electrical and computer engineering, pioneered an approach to more efficient error correction in quantum computers.

      • ForbesWhy Don’t You Have A Self-Driving Car Yet? This 2-Part Series Explains The Big Remaining Problems

        People often ask, “Where’s my self-driving car?” “Why don’t I have one and when will it come?” A lot of people feel they were promised a car by the late 20-teens and it’s late, and perhaps isn’t coming, like the flying cars talked about decades ago.

        In this two-article series (with accompanying videos) let’s look at the core reasons you probably aren’t riding in a robocar today, and when it might happen. What are the core technological, legal and social issues standing in the way, and, and what issues actually aren’t blockers?

      • The Wall Street JournalDeere Invests Billions in Self-Driving Tractors, Smart Crop Sprayers

        For decades, Deere & Co. has dominated the hardware that powers the American farm industry with tractors, harvesters and other machinery used to plant seeds and reap crops.

      • Sci Tech DailyUncovering Hidden Patterns: AI Reduces a 100,000-Equation Quantum Physics Problem to Only Four Equations
      • Interesting EngineeringIBM builds the world's largest dilution refrigerator for quantum computers

        IBM has built a super-fridge known as project Goldeneye that is capable of cooling future generations of quantum experiments and that surpasses the issues found in today’s dilution refrigerators, according to a blog published by the firm on Thursday.

      • Sabine Hossenfelder [Reposted] Sabine Hossenfelder: Backreaction: I've said it all before but here we go again

        For reasons I don’t fully understand, particle physicists have recently started picking on me again for allegedly being hostile, and have been coming at me with their usual ad homimen attacks.

        What’s going on? I spent years trying to understand why their field isn’t making progress, analyzing the problem, and putting forward a solution. It’s not that I hate particle physics, it’s rather to the contrary, I think it’s too important to let it die. But they don’t like to hear that their field urgently needs to change direction, so they attack me as the bearer of bad news.

    • Hardware

    • Health/Nutrition/Agriculture

      • A New Tool for Discovering Cancer-Driving Structural Variations | Newsroom | Weill Cornell Medicine

        An advanced software tool for analyzing DNA sequences from tumor samples has uncovered likely new cancer-driving genes, in a study led by Weill Cornell Medicine researchers.

      • How a Methodist Preacher Became a Champion for Black-Led Sustainable Agriculture - YES! Magazine

        In 1979, an idealistic 44-year-old Black woman named Nettie Mae Morrison moved with her husband to Allensworth, 75 miles south of Fresno, in California’s Central Valley.

        “She wanted to be a part of history,” said her son, Dennis Hutson, who was in his mid-20s at the time.

        The town had a distinctive past. It was founded in 1908 by Allen Allensworth, a man born into slavery who became the first African American to reach the rank of lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Army. About 3 square miles in size, Allensworth was the first town in California founded and governed by Black people—and it served as a beacon of possibility for Black people all over the nation, its population growing to around 1,200 people.

        But the community soon fell on hard times.

      • Lee Yingtong LiThe urea:creatinine ratio in SI units

        It is said that a high urea:creatinine ratio is an indicator of a pre-renal cause of acute kidney injury [1]. This is usually discussed in United States units, where urea is measured as blood urea nitrogen (BUN) in mg/dL, and creatinine in mg/dL. The cut-off for a high BUN:creatinine ratio is usually given as >20 (mg/mg) [1–3].

        Outside of the United States, urea is usually expressed in SI units mmol/L, and creatinine in μmol/L. The cut-off for a high urea:creatinine ratio is usually given in SI units as >100 (mmol/mmol) [1]. However, these cut-offs are not equivalent.

        The molar mass of (molecular) nitrogen is 28.014 g/mol [4], so a BUN of 1 mg/dL is equivalent to a urea of $\frac{1\ \text{mg/dL}}{28.014\ \text{g/mol}} = \frac{10\ \text{mg/L}}{28.014\ \text{mg/mmol}}$ = 0.357 mmol/L.

    • Proprietary

      • The VergeGoogle is shutting down Stadia

        Google is refunding all Stadia purchases — hardware, software, and DLC. Members of the Stadia team will be “carrying this work forward” in other departments at Google.

      • John GruberDaring Fireball: Shocker: Google Is Shutting Down Stadia

        A lot of the speculation around Stadia was focused on the technology — streaming. But put that aside, and what to me has seemed clear all along is that Google was never particularly invested in making Stadia a serious platform. If you’re committed to the platform, the underlying technology doesn’t matter.

        And there’s a “Boy Who Cried Wolf” factor — except instead of a little boy who lacks credibility, it’s one of the five largest corporations in the world. When Google next launches a platform, how much does this affect their credibility? Frankly, their credibility was already shit on this front.

    • Security

      • IT WireiTWire - O'Neil hammers Coalition over 'useless' cyber-security laws

        The Morrison Government has been raked over the coals for passing laws that claimed to be of little use in the area of cyber security, with Home Affairs Minister Clare O'Neil telling a media conference on Sunday that the laws in place were "absolutely useless to me when the Optus matter came on foot".

        She was referring to the data breach that Optus announced through the media on 22 September.

        O'Neil addressed the media along with Government Services Minister Bill Shorten. Asked about the possibility of reforming laws about data security, she did not hold back.

      • IT WireiTWire - Govt says Optus dragging its feet on providing data breach details

        The federal government has accused telco Singtel Optus of dragging its feet on providing full details of users whose data was compromised in a data breach which the telco reported on 22 September.

        Government Services Minister Bill Shorten told a media conference in Melbourne on Sunday morning that a request on 27 September had sought more details about the Medicare and Centrelink data that had been leaked in the data breach.

      • MandiantElevating Women in Cyber Security to Highest Positions of Impact

        Mandiant Cyber Defense Summit (CDS) 2019 in Washington, D.C. was a fantastic event, but like so many other cyber security events, only a small percentage of registrants were women.

      • MandiantBad VIB(E)s Part One: Investigating Novel Malware Persistence Within ESXi Hypervisors

        As endpoint detection and response (EDR) solutions improve malware detection efficacy on Windows systems, certain state-sponsored threat actors have shifted to developing and deploying malware on systems that do not generally support EDR such as network appliances, SAN arrays, and VMware ESXi servers.

      • MandiantBad VIB(E)s Part Two: Detection and Hardening within ESXi Hypervisors

        In part one, we covered attackers’ usage of malicious vSphere Installation Bundles (“VIBs”) to install multiple backdoors across ESXi hypervisors, focusing on the malware present within the VIB payloads. In this installment, we will continue to elaborate further on other attacker actions such as timestomping, describe ESXi detection methodologies to dump process memory and perform YARA scans, and discuss how to further harden hypervisors to minimize the attack surface of ESXi hosts. For more details, VMware has released additional information on protecting vSphere.

      • MandiantHardening the Electoral Process: Supply Chain, Zero Trust and Insider Threats

        Some people envision election-related cyber attacks as a threat actor sitting in front of a keyboard in a windowless room trying to infiltrate voting machines while elections are happening. But, the reality is that election security is much deeper and more complex than protecting voting infrastructure.

        Ensuring the integrity of our electoral system is not “questioned” is a tall order as it may come down to small details like verifying that enough paper ballots are printed and mailed out or that everyone working in our elections has been adequately trained and vetted.

        Regardless of the scale or type of election—local, state, or even national- local and state officials bear the responsibility to secure this democratic process, making it more challenging to implement and enforce standardized security measures and procedures. Despite the effort it entails, we understand the importance of protecting the integrity of our electoral process and how cybercriminals or state-sponsored actors can disrupt our way of life by discrediting our elections.

      • Integrity/Availability/Authenticity

        • Atlantic CouncilSecurity in the billions: Toward a multinational strategy to better secure the IoT ecosystem - Atlantic Council

          The explosion of Internet of Things (IoT) devices and services worldwide has contributed to an explosion in data processing and interconnectivity. Simultaneously, this interconnection and resulting interdependence have amplified a range of cybersecurity risks to individuals’ data, company networks, critical infrastructure, and the internet ecosystem writ large. Governments, companies, and civil society have proposed and implemented a range of IoT cybersecurity initiatives to meet this challenge, ranging from introducing voluntary standards and best practices to mandating the use of cybersecurity certifications and labels. However, issues like fragmentation among and between approaches, complex certification schemes, and placing the burden on buyers have left much to be desired in bolstering IoT cybersecurity. Ugly knock-on effects to states, the private sector, and users bring risks to individual privacy, physical safety, other parts of the internet ecosystem, and broader economic and national security.

        • ACMSecurity by Labeling

          Empowering consumers to make risk-informed purchasing decisions when buying Internet-of-Things (IoT) devices or using digital services is a principal thrust to advance consumer cybersecurity. Simple yet effective labels convey relevant cybersecurity information to buyers at the point of sale and encourage IoT vendors to up their cybersecurity game as they now can recoup their security investments from risk-aware buyers. These dynamics benefit consumers and the industry alike, resulting in better, more resilient cybersecurity for all.

          Consumers are insufficiently aware of risks emanating from IoT and are ill-equipped to manage them. For all the much-heralded benefits of consumer IoT to come true, the industry must ensure all the smart home appliances, connected thermostats, and digital services are secure and can be trusted. The industry has for long been criticized for not paying sufficient attention to the cybersecurity of its products. Concerns over security were pushed aside, yielding precedence to shorter time-to-market and higher corporate profits. Less time for testing translates into insecure products in residential homes.

        • ACMSecuring the Enterprise When Employees are Remote

          Permitting workers to split their time between their home and office can improve job satisfaction and, in some cases, productivity. However, hybrid work arrangements can introduce additional layers of complexity and risk to an organization's technology systems and data. As such, IT departments need to consider several security technologies, processes, and policies to guard against cybersecurity threats that can be more easily exploited by workers that are on the go, or are working in unsecure environments.

          For starters, security experts interviewed for this article highlight the importance of insisting that hybrid workers utilize virtual private networks (VPNs), which allow a direct, secure connection between their device and a corporate system, as well as virtual desktops (which ensures all activity and data remain within a corporate, secure environment) when accessing company information offsite.

        • Ruben

          See also: James T. Reason’s Swiss cheese model of accident causation. You can blame the human involved in the last slice, but you’re neglecting the rest of the stack that should never have let such a failure result in a catastrophe.

      • Privacy/Surveillance

        • Stacey on IoTWhat smoke alarm systems can send phone notifications?

          On a recent IoT Podcast episode, we took a question from Ryan on our Voicemail hotline. Ryan wants to get notifications from smart smoke alarms on his farm. He looked into these a few years back but only found limited options. So he wants to know what smoke alarm systems today can send phone notifications.

          Luckily, the number of available connected smoke detectors is much higher today than it was a handful of years ago. The challenge here is that Ryan needs phone alerts in case of a fire, given that he’s not just trying to protect his home, but his farm buildings too. We’re assuming that Ryan’s farm has network connectivity in all of the places he wants to install a smart smoke alarm system.

          Surprisingly, not every connected smoke detector sends mobile notifications. Some simply announce alerts throughout the home. This makes sense if you’re actually at home but if not, you may not be aware of a potential disaster. Some systems also require a subscription for advanced features such as notifications.

        • Stacey on IoTPodcast: Amazon’s turning Alexa into the brains of the home [Ed: Next-generation mass surveillance in people's private space; can they sell that as a "hip" thing?]

          This week’s show focuses on Amazon’s new devices and services launched Wednesday. Kevin and I talk about Amazon’s direction with Alexa as the manager of your life. We also gawp at the price iRobot is charging for its latest iteration of the Roomba robotic vacuum, although Kevin convinces me it’s not too crazy. Then we move into a discussion of the energy grid, sharing data from Itron on how utilities are thinking about the future electric grid, and how a partnership between Itron and Samsung SmartThings is an example of long-term thinking. Then I talk about the latest reporting from Forbes on Helium, and apologize for not being more wary about the chicanery that went on in the beginning by Helium’s executives. We then talk about my experience with the latest Yale lock. We end by answering a listener question about Ecobee thermostats that start heating or cooling before you intended.

    • Defence/Aggression

      • imetatronink: The Mostly Forgotten 1857 Utah War

        A scarcely remembered and yet very significant event that occurred in the years leading up to the US Civil War was the so-called "Utah War", which took place from the latter half of 1857 into the first half of 1858.

        Frequently referred to as "Buchanan's Blunder" (after then-US President James Buchanan), it was one of the most notorious examples in US history of a president ginning up a "rally 'round the flag" war to distract the populace from domestic strife.

        The so-called "Mormons" (members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints) had been driven from Missouri to Illinois, and following the assassination of their founding prophet Joseph Smith, were compelled to leave the United States altogether to escape persecution.

      • MediumRoger Waters added to Ukrainian Hit List

        “Pink Floyd” star declared “Enemy of Ukraine”

      • Michael West MediaAUKUS was a tough sell already, and now it seems local industry will miss out - Michael West

        When Australia signed up to the AUKUS pact, it committed to enormously expensive nuclear-powered submarines. And if rumours of the US taking over their construction are true, there will be little if any benefit to Australian workers, writes Rex Patrick. As for strategic benefits …

    • Transparency/Investigative Reporting

      • Michael West MediaNACC or SNACC? Labor delivers its anti-corruption body but will we get to hear about it? - Michael West

        The day has finally arrived: an Australian government today made good on its commitment to legislate an integrity watchdog, the National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC). But there is one major bone of contention … secrecy. Callum Foote reports on the spectre of a Secret National Anti-Corruption Commission (SNACC).

        The actual legislation is yet to be revealed; the devil in the detail if you like, and there will be much in that. Yet, Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus has unveiled the broad remit for Australia’s National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC). In a speech to parliament and follow-up media release Labor detailed the broad points of its proposed anti-corruption body and for a party that ran on an integrity campaign, the plans appear to tick all the boxes, save one.

    • Environment

      • TomDispatchThe Nightmare of Military Spending on an Overheating Planet -

        In so many ways, you still wouldn’t know it — not, that is, if you focused on the Pentagon budget or the economic growth paradigm that rules this country and our world — but this planet is in a crisis of a sort humanity has never before faced. Whether you’re considering heat in the American West, floods in Pakistan, the drying up of the Yangtze River in China, record drought in Europe, or the unparalleled warming of the Arctic, we are, as scientists have been pointing out (and ever more of us ordinary people have noted), in an increasingly “uncharted territory of destruction.” In the process, ever more climate “tipping points” stand in danger of being passed as the overheating of this planet becomes the stuff of everyday life.

      • Andre FrancaHurricane Ian

        This is one of those moments where we have to embrace ourselves and wish for hope for our fellows from Cuba and Florida.

      • Energy

        • New ScientistToo many electric cars charging at night may overload electrical grid

          The growth in electric car ownership could strain power grids if most drivers continue charging primarily at home overnight. Investment in daytime charging options will be crucial to help the western US power grid handle the demand with an estimated 50 per cent of drivers using electric vehicles by 2035.

          That finding comes from computer models looking at how driver charging behaviours and available charging station infrastructure at home and in public places could impact peak net electricity demand – the highest electrical power demand minus power provided by solar and wind power.

          If drivers primarily charge vehicles at home during the night, that could lead to a 25 per cent surge in peak net electricity demand when states reach 50 per cent electric vehicle ownership, and possibly surpass grid capacity at even higher levels of ownership. But expanding daytime charging opportunities could reduce that increase in peak net electricity demand to just 7.5 per cent and help reduce the costs of expanding grid capacity.

        • As drought dries up the Yangtze river, China loses hydropower | Grist

          A historic drought in the southwest of China is drying up rivers, intensifying forest fires, damaging crops, and severely curtailing electricity in a region highly dependent on hydropower.

          The Yangtze River, the third largest in the world, has dropped to half its average water levels, affecting shipping routes, limiting drinking water supplies, causing rolling blackouts, and even exposing long-submerged Buddhist statues. Some 66 rivers across 34 counties in Chongqing were dried up as of last week, Reuters reported. Also last week, the province of Sichuan, which gets more than 80 percent of its energy from hydropower, cut or limited electricity to thousands of factories in an effort to “leave power for the people.” Poyang Lake, the largest freshwater lake in China, is just a quarter of its normal size for this time of year.

      • Wildlife/Nature

    • Finance

      • Michael West MediaWorker Hit: fuel excise relief gone with low income tax breaks - atop rising rates and prices - Michael West

        It’s a grim time for ordinary workers. Tax cuts for high income earners are still in the pipeline but today the fuel excise cuts end, and that’s on top of vanishing (LAMITO) tax breaks for low income workers.

        Employers have probably decided by now whether to fork out for the rise in super to 10.5%, or take the super increase out of wages (see story below).

        It was missed by the media in the Coalition’s March Budget but most Australian workers are probably $50 a week worse off from July as the LAMITO tax offset was removed. That’s Low And Middle Income Tax Offset. Add to that the cost of living pressures from the removal of the temporary cut to petrol excise which cuts in this week. Then there’s the big one: rising interest rates.

      • Michael West MediaHigh income earners oppose tax cut plan - Michael West

        Australians, including those set to benefit most, overwhelmingly support scrapping tax cuts for high income earners, new research shows.

      • Project SyndicateTime to Blow Up Electricity Markets by Yanis Varoufakis - Project Syndicate

        The European Union’s power sector is a good example of what market fundamentalism has done to electricity networks the world over. With the end of cheap natural gas, retail consumers and businesses are paying the price for their governments’ embrace of a shoddy theory.

        ATHENS – The blades of the wind turbines on the mountain range opposite my window are turning especially energetically today. Last night’s storm has abated but high winds continue, contributing extra kilowatts to the electricity grid at precisely zero additional cost (or marginal cost, in the language of the economists). But the people struggling to make ends meet during a dreadful cost-of-living crisis must pay for these kilowatts as if they were produced by the most expensive liquefied natural gas transported to Greece’s shores from Texas. This absurdity, which prevails well beyond Greece and Europe, must end.

      • 9 Myths About Gentrification - YES! Magazine

        Gentrification is natural. Neighborhoods change over time. Different groups move in and out, businesses change hands, land uses shift. But just because change is normal doesn’t mean it’s natural. What drives middle-class residents into working-class and minority communities? What policies, economic forces, and cultural dynamics propel these changes? What makes it profitable and desirable? The answers lie everywhere from city zoning practices to historic redlining and racial segregation policies to a capitalist system of private property where housing is an investment and an asset. There may be a wide array of forces that encourage gentrification, but they are all human-made.

        Gentrification is good for the city. It’s hard to argue with some of the changes that come with gentrification: renovated housing, clean parks, cute local businesses. A darker reality lurks under the surface. Those renovations may have begun with reno-victions, booting people out of their homes to allow landlords to jack up rents. The clean park might have been home to unhoused people, who were rounded up with heavy-handed policing and forced into crowded, unsafe shelters or out of the city altogether. A charming new café may have displaced a low-cost diner where locals have gathered for decades. While many welcome the sanitized, homogeneous face of the gentrified city, this change comes with a tremendous cost paid by the city’s most vulnerable communities.

      • TomDispatchNo More Sacrifices -

        In today’s piece, TomDispatch regular Liz Theoharis, co-chair of the Poor People’s Campaign, explores the Biden administration’s recent surprising successes in passing the Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) and cancelling significant student loans. She also focuses on the deeper failure that underlies our American world, leaving it filled with “sacrifice zones” of the poor and underpaid.

        Thought of a certain way, all of us now live in sacrifice zones. In a sense, thanks to climate change, this whole country — in fact, our whole world from Europe to Africa, China to Pakistan — is now a sacrifice zone. After all, while I was writing this introduction, the Northeast was experiencing devastating flash floods and the West, already embroiled in years of a historic megadrought, was suffering through soaring temperatures, breaking hundreds of heat records, that don’t faintly fit this end-of-summer season. Some temperatures in California were expected to rise 20-30 degrees above the early September norm. And despite the way the IRA genuinely took us forward on the issue of climate change, as Theoharis suggests, the Biden administration also made painful — in the sense that, in the years to come, we’ll all feel the pain — concessions to fossil-fuel companies and Joe Manchin as well as Kyrsten Sinema, the two Democratic senators who have received such copious financial support from that industry.

      • The ConversationThe Queen has left her mark around the world. But not all see it as something to be celebrated

        From the very beginning, Queen Elizabeth II’s reign was deeply connected to Britain’s global empire and the long and bloody processes of decolonisation.

        Indeed, she became Queen while on a royal visit to Kenya in 1952. After she left, the colony descended into one of the worst conflicts of the British colonial period. Declaring a state of emergency in October 1952, the British would go on to kill tens of thousands of Kenyans before it was over.

        Is it possible to disentangle the personal attributes of a gentle and kindly woman from her role as the crowned head of a declining global empire that waged numerous wars and resisted those demanding independence across the globe?

        Even though she was a constitutional monarch who generally followed the lead of her parliament, many of Britain’s ex-subjects don’t think so, and some historians agree, with one commenting that “Elizabeth II helped obscure a bloody history of decolonisation whose legacies have yet to be adequately acknowledged”.

      • Caitlin JohnstoneOur Entire Civilization Is Fake And Stupid - Caitlin Johnstone

        That’s why the more you learn about the world, the more fake and stupid our civilization looks. It’s because it is fake and stupid. Our news, our entertainment, our jobs, our legal systems, our political systems, our education systems, our financial, monetary, economic and commercial systems; the way our entire civilization is structured and organized has nothing to do with what’s true and good and everything to do with keeping human organisms compliantly turning the gears of capitalism and empire.


        So mainstream culture presents a fraudulent image of reality. It’s written into the code of everything that’s mass produced — not just in Prager University lectures on the evils of socialism or propagandistic news stories about weapons of mass destruction, but in sitcoms, in advertisements, in clothing brands, in pop music, in textbooks, in trends. When it’s not constant messaging that capitalism is totally working and the world is ordered in a more or less sane and truth-based way, it’s manipulations designed to shape our values and measures of self-worth to make us into better gear-turners.

        If you’re noticing this ubiquitous fraudulence, it’s not because you’re becoming distant from the rest of society, it’s because you’re becoming more intimate with it. You’re getting in real close, so close you can see the nuts and bolts of it, see how the sausage is made.

      • Matt RickardStartup Ideas I've Considered

        After I graduated last year, I evaluated different startup ideas for a few months. Here's a list of ideas I ultimately didn't end up pursuing, with varying levels of research and prototyping.

      • CoryDoctorowBillionaire grifters hate her

        A billionaire's crime spree has come to an end: a federal judge held that Fleetcor was running a fraudulent, predatory business, and found that the company's billionaire owner, Ron Clarke, was personally responsible for the company's offenses.


        It was her careful, dogged reporting that unraveled Fleetcor's scam and established Clarke's personal culpability in it. She's a hero – and she's part of a glorious American tradition of muckraking women journalists who devoted their lives to bringing down the billionaires who preyed on them and their families.

        Reading about Epstein, I was immediately reminded of Ida B. Tarbell, who brought down John D. Rockefeller and triggered the breakup of his juggernaut, the Standard Oil Company. Rockefeller was the most powerful businessman in the world and Standard Oil was the most powerful company in the world, and Tarbell took them on – and won.

        It's an amazing story. Tarbell was the daughter of a small-time Pennsylvania oilman who had been crushed by Rockefeller's cartel.

      • Das U-Blog by Prashanth: Book Review: "From the War on Poverty to the War on Crime" by Elizabeth Hinton

        I've recently read the book From the War on Poverty to the War on Crime by Elizabeth Hinton. This book is a history of the progression through the titular subjects in the US, starting with the Kennedy presidency and ending with the Reagan presidency. It shows how while some problems associated with the war on poverty did come from good but conflicting intentions when implementing social welfare programs, many more problems came from halfhearted implementation of social welfare programs with the intent & through the lens of fighting crime leading ultimately to replacement of those programs with more explicit expansions of policing to fight crime especially in response to high-profile riots in large cities in the 1960s & 1970s.

      • AntipopeI can't even - Charlie's Diary

        The reason there was no new blog entry earlier this week is the same reason I've been unable to write (or edit) all week: my brain tends to freeze when the wrong kind of history is happening.

        And it is now very clear that the wrong kind of history is happening in the UK. Seriously, I had no idea it was possible to crash a G7 economy in less than a week! But it looks like only a Bank of England intervention in the gilts market averted a run—followed by the collapse of the nation's largest pension funds. 40% of mortgage products have been withdrawn by banks and lending institutions, the housing market is expected to fall 10% in the next six months, Sterling is heading below US dollar parity for the first time ever, the BoE is inevitably going to have to raise the base rate (crashing the finances of a huge proportion of the mortgage-holding public) ... it beggars belief.


        Fuck Around and Find Out time: as of Monday, Labour were polling 17 points ahead of the Conservative (per YouGov). That was bad enough, but by Thursday 29th, a new poll gave Labour a stunning 33 point lead in the polls as Conservative voter support imploded. It seems that tanking the currency, the pension system, the housing market, and the national debt in just one week is slightly unpopular. Who could possibly have seen that coming?


        Speculation: the Conservative Party conference begins on Monday 3rd, and is going to be an epic drama. Either the party will double down and drink the poisoned Kool-Aid or (I think this is more likely) they will go backstabby on La Trussterfuck, possibly lining up behind Rishi Sunak, who is currently pulling no punches (and who was absolutely right when he warned about the effects of her policies on the economy before he lost the leadership election).


        If Truss somehow survives, we're fucking doomed. When someone tells you who they are, you should generally believe them, and Truss has been shouting through a megaphone that she's a deeply stupid Thatcher cosplayer in the pocket of dogmatic libertarian ideologues who I assume were hired to felate billionaire oligarchs...


        What other options are there? Who knows. But I think we can say for certain that the crisis is not over, there is scope for it to get much worse ... and this is the sort of thing that breaks political parties, breaks nations, and if the UK was a developing world country I'd be getting worried about a military coup round about now.

      • Michael West MediaThe monster that ate hope: Robodebt was a tragedy 40 years in the making - Michael West

        Even by the miserable standards set during nine years of Coalition government, Robodebt was one of its worst scandals. #Mate examines the scheme’s genesis and its disastrous fallout.

        The royal commission into the illegal Robodebt scheme that ruined the lives of countless Australians opened in Brisbane this week. The commission is chaired by Catherine Holmes, a former Queensland Supreme Court chief justice.

        Inaugurated in 2015, the scheme falsely accused welfare recipients of owing money to the government and issued debt notices to people identified through a process called income averaging, which compared their reported income with Tax Office figures. More than $750 million was wrongfully recovered from 381,000 people.

      • Michael West MediaRun of Luck: systemic money-laundering, disgrace, then pay rises for Star casino directors - Michael West

        The directors of one of Sydney’s two Tweedledee and Tweedledum casinos are desperate to keep the roulette wheels spinning, the blackjack dice rolling, and the poker machines humming. In other words, to keep the money flowing to the decision-making tables of the discredited enterprise, writes Michael Sainsbury.

        Star Entertainment has this week prostrated itself. The company grovelled to maintain its licence to operate its Sydney casino and with it, official permission to keep inflicting untold misery on the families of gambling addicts. This was after it was found unfit to hold a licence and asked to show cause why it should by Adam Bell, SC. Yet its directors and executives appear to be getting off not just scot free – but with the bank balances enhanced.

      • BloombergNFT Trading Volumes Collapse 97 Percent From Peak Earlier This Year

        Trading volumes in nonfungible tokens — digital art and collectibles recorded on blockchains — have tumbled 97% from a record high in January this year. They slid to just $466 million in September from $17 billion at the start of 2022, according to data from Dune Analytics. The fading NFT mania is part of a wider, $2 trillion wipeout in the crypto sector as rapidly tightening monetary policy starves speculative assets of investment flows.

    • AstroTurf/Lobbying/Politics

      • Michael GeistThe Law Bytes Podcast, Episode 140: Anthony Housefather Reflects on the Fight Against Anti-Semitism Online and the Laith Marouf Incident - Michael Geist

        The Law Bytes podcast returns with a special episode focused on combatting online anti-semitism with a particular emphasis on an incident involving the department of Canadian Heritage and Laith Marouf, a well known anti-semite. As part of Heritage’s anti-hate program, the government had provided funding to the Community Media Advocacy Centre (CMAC), led by Marouf, to develop an anti-racism strategy for Canadian broadcasting. While there was years of evidence of Marouf’s anti-semitism, the department didn’t look or didn’t find it. The contract was cancelled after a public outcry, but even that led to concerns as it was left to Jewish MPs such as Anthony Housefather, Ya’ara Saks, and Melissa Lantsman to say something while many others remained silent.

        Anthony Housefather, a Liberal MP from Montreal, not only spoke out on the Marouf situation but also called on all MPs to become more vocal. Housefather has been working on the online anti-semitism issue with politicians from around the world as part of an Inter-Parliamentary Task Force on Online Antisemitism and he joins me on the Law Bytes podcast to talk about the work of the task force and its recent hearing in Washington, DC, the Marouf incident, and the urgency for all to speak out more aggressively against anti-semitism.

      • Michael West MediaLabor surprises nobody with first big diplomatic appointment - Michael West

        ”Mr Smith goes to Washington,” journalists mused with amusement when Labor’s foreign minister began his northern hemisphere wanderings as our chief diplomat under the first government of Kevin Rudd. Now Mr (Stephen) Smith, former Labor MP for Perth, has been tapped as our high commissioner to the UK. Labor fiercely rejects the notion this is a job for the boy, but it certainly is a job for a Labor mate. Smith, 66, spent 20 years in federal parliament, and certainly put up with the rough as well as smooth. In 2010 he was moved into the political graveyard of defence when Labor gave his job to Kevin Rudd. The thinking was that Rudd, a disgruntled deposed PM, would do the least damage if he was sent as far away as possible. If this pattern continues, the UK will eventually be rewarded with the appointment of Kevin 07 as high commissioner. Not soon, hopefully – they are suffering enough.

      • Andre FrancaBrazilian elections

        With elections in Brazil around the corner, my concerns about how the current President will behave in relation to the results becomes more latent.

        Jair Bolsonaro commits several atrocities daily, such as attacking the country's institutions, offending women, and accusing the same electoral system that elected him in 2018 as fraudulent, threatening with the use of military force not to surrender office in the event of defeat next Sunday.

      • Michael West Media"Massive achievement" but is the NACC anti-corruption commission missing some teeth? - Michael West

        A federal integrity body is finally to become a reality. While it’s a significant achievement, there are shortfalls and political hurdles. Callum Foote garners expert opinion on Australia’s National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC) draft legislation. Whistleblower protections and secret hearings are the two big issues.

        On Wednesday, Attorney-General Mark Dreyfus released the legislation which will power the promised National Anti-Corruption Commission (NACC). While a Labor government has carriage of the body, it has long been a policy plank of the expanding cross-bench of the Greens and Teal independents, particularly the MP for Indi, Helen Haines.

      • Michael West MediaPokies Thuggery: ClubsNSW lobbyists hammer critics, hide their own dirty laundry - Michael West

        ClubsNSW is dragging a dying man through the courts, and media identity Friendly Jordies too, but its own house is hardly in order. Michael West reports.

        The people from ClubsNSW are such sticklers for the law, at least in their own opinion, that they have anointed themselves public prosecutors to drag their critics through the courts.

        They are suing a whistleblower dying of cancer, Troy Stolz, and popular YouTube investigator and comedian Jordan Shanks. Not just suing but bringing private criminal prosecutions. Punishment? Gaol-time. They have anointed themselves as police and the Directors of Public Prosecution to boot.

      • Misinformation/Disinformation/Propaganda

        • Associated Press'Pre-bunking' shows promise in fight against misinformation | AP News

          Soon after the Russian invasion, the hoaxes began. Ukrainian refugees were taking jobs, committing crimes and abusing handouts. The misinformation spread rapidly online throughout Eastern Europe, sometimes pushed by Moscow in an effort to destabilize its neighbors.

        • Ruben SchadeRubenerd: The sham referendums in Ukraine

          These numbers look North Korean. They’re so ridiculous, and so divorced from reality, that no rational person would take them seriously. Even in the most unified and functional of democracies, a 60% win is seen as a landslide.

        • Russia declares annexation of 4 Ukrainian oblasts after staged referendums

          The announcement comes after Russia's proxies held sham referendums in the occupied parts of these regions and, on Sept. 27, declared nearly 100% of people living in the occupied territories of Ukraine "voted" to join Russia.

        • Positech GamesThis article is too long for you - Cliffski’s Blog

          I made the mistake today of reading some social media comments (twitter, reddit, arstechnica, slashdot) on a topic I know a bit about and have read a lot of the background on. As you might guess it was an IQ-barren tirade of abuse, uninformed hot-takes and absolutely baseless bullshit.


          The reason I take you on this tedious heroes journey about me learning C++ is this: Learning C and C++ on your own, with just one book and 3 floppy disks, and nobody to ask questions…is fucking hard. I remember struggling and getting very confused, and thinking it was all gibberish, but persevering, and persevering and struggling and trying again and again and again until finally I started to understand how it all works.

          30 years later and it turns out doing that made me millions and millions of dollars, financial freedom, my own business and lots of stuff to be proud of. In many ways, struggling alone with a seriously complex and hard task, and no distractions was the making of me. (In many ways…not just career. For someone like me who is clearly on the autistic spectrum developing expertise in an absolutely clear definite and logical language that isn’t English is very very comforting).

    • Censorship/Free Speech

      • CoryDoctorowBook-banning wingnuts are a tiny, vocal minority

        "The Moral Majority" is a stupendous marketing gimmick: it allowed a small minority of vicious, paranoid, hateful creeps to brand themselves as a "silent majority" who were all around us, afraid to speak their minds.

        The impact of this wasn't merely in convincing politicians and the press that the views of these unhinged, fringe conspiratorialists should be taken seriously – just as important is the zap it put on the heads of their enemies, the people who wanted to love whom they loved, take care of one another, and let folks be themselves.

        For these people, the Moral Majority created the impression that they themselves were the minority. These people were convinced that their broadly shared, commonsense values – entiirely compatible with the Christian gospels, as it happens – made them outliers.

    • Freedom of Information / Freedom of the Press

    • Civil Rights/Policing

      • Literary HubA Pig and a Locust Get Into Serious Trouble With the Law: On Justice in Medieval Europe ‹ Literary Hub

        Arran Lomas Details The Gruesome Methods of Proving Guilt or Innocence in the Middle Ages

        Curiously trial by jury was voluntary in medieval England. However, if you did refuse to stand trial, the authorities would crush you between two heavy stones until you either acquiesced or died. In despotic feudal kingdoms “voluntary” was often about as voluntary as Janice from work’s wedding invitation, whom ironically you also wish you could crush between two heavy stones. More serious crimes such as murder, assault and treason were dealt with in the king’s court. If you ended up here and were found guilty, you could be sure of severe punishment. Murderers were hanged or beheaded. Those convicted of treason were hung, drawn and quartered.

        So you don’t lose sleep over it, I should explain that being ‘hanged’ stipulated until dead, whereas to be “hung” meant you would be let down before death. As in “I hanged my cat; now it’s dead” compared to “I hung my cat on the wall, then fed it dinner.” However, being hung was usually far worse than a quick hanging, because the executioner would have a delightful basket of torture lined up for you. Starting with the next step, being “drawn.”

    • Internet Policy/Net Neutrality

      • Michael GeistBill C-11 Goes Off The Rails Amid Charges of Witness Intimidation and Bullying by Government MPs - Michael Geist

        The Senate Bill C-11 hearings have provided a model for the much-needed, engaged, non-partisan inquiry that was largely missing from the House committee’s theatrics in which the government cut off debate on over 150 amendments. But this week those hearings attracted attention for another reason: serious charges of witness intimidation and bullying by government MPs, most notably Canadian Heritage Parliamentary Secretary Chris Bittle (yes, the same Bittle who last month suggested I was a racist and a bully for raising concerns about Minister Pablo Rodriguez silence over Canadian Heritage funding of an anti-semite as part of its anti-hate program).

        The Globe and Mail reported late on Tuesday night that Bittle – together with his colleague, Liberal MP Lisa Hepfner – had sent a letter to the Lobbying Commissioner to seek an investigation into the funding of Digital First Canada, a group representing digital first creators. The letter may have been shopped around to other MPs as Liberal MP Anthony Housefather has told the Globe he did not sign it. DFC’s Executive Director, Scott Benzie, had appeared before the Heritage committee months ago and Bittle used his time to focus on the organization’s funding. Leaving aside the fact that government MPs reserve these kinds of questions only for critics of Bill C-11 (there were no similar questions this week from Ms. Hepfner to the Director of Digital Content Next, whose organization supports Bill C-18 and counts Fox News among its members), the timing of Globe story was incredibly troubling. The Lobbyist Commissioner letter was apparently filed nearly two months ago and Benzie had been assured that he was compliant with the law. Yet the story was presumably leaked to coincide with Benzie’s appearance before the Senate committee last night.

    • Digital Restrictions (DRM)

      • Das U-Blog by Prashanth: Technological Restrictions on E-Books and Culture Wars on Books in 2022

        Despite the long title, this post will be fairly short. This blog used to publish a lot more often (I had a lot more free time in high school & college) and focus a lot more on issues related to free software, free culture, and things like that, yet even after looking through posts on this blog from its early years (which, aligning with the stereotype of an adult looking through essays written in high school, made me cringe at the quality of writing even if I agreed with some of the basic opinions), I actually couldn't find any posts specifically about the effects of so-called digital rights management (DRM) on E-books.

  • Gemini* and Gopher

    • Personal

    • Technical

      • Comparing with the worst

        Often I see people comparing their situation with the worst possible situation in order to convince themselves they're fine and not change. This is usually the case with addictions.

        "I don't drink much because I only drink 2 beers a day, I know people that drink 5!" "I'm not a social media addict because I only spend 3 hours a day, others spend 8!"

      • Extending fail2ban on NixOS

        Fail2ban is a wonderful piece of software, it can analyze logs from daemons and ban them in the firewall. It's triggered by certain conditions like a single IP found in too many lines matching a pattern (such as a login failure) under a certain time.

        What's even cooler is that writing new filters is super easy! In this text, I'll share how to write new filters for NixOS.

      • Hello call center agent, I found a bug in your website

        The other night the wife was baby sitting for some friends of ours. The kid went to sleep and she turned on Apple TV and started watching Ted Lasso to see what all the hype was. After half a dozen episodes she was hooked and talked me into getting the service for a month so that we could watch the rest of the season (also I kind of want to see how badly Foundation ruins Asimov's masterpiece). So tonight she installs the app on our TV and it turns out Samsung gives you 3 months free of Apple TV. 3D barcode, sign up for an Apple account, give them my CC info and Bob's your uncle...


        I have a general aversion to installing new apps, and try to have as few onto my devices as possible. This is even more pronounced when the apps have not been developed well for the OS, leading to unintuitive keystroke shortcuts and other confusing behaviours.

      • Internet/Gemini

        • Hello, World!

          Hello, fellow capsuleers! I just discovered Gemini a couple days ago, and I finally got around to securing a domain and server so I could join in. I find the ideas behind Gemini pretty interesting (obviously, or why would I be here?), and I'd love to see the community grow and continue to play with what can be done over the protocol. I think if we put our minds to it, we can come up with some pretty interesting ideas that will work surprisingly well despite the limitations. I've looked around a little bit and seen some cool things so far, but there's definitely still some untapped potential.

        • colorOberon

          Since there are no colors in gemini markup, I can't quite do this topic justice. And also, it's a fairly vague idea to begin with. Let's see how it shakes out.

          Stacksmith kindly replied to some posts I've made about Oberon. He and I have some things in common, it turns out, such as having enjoyed other languages over time.

          In particular, I first encountered Forth in 1983 or thereabouts, having used an Osborne I computer to plot to an HP plotter over the parallel port. The language I used for that was Forth. I worked at an electronics store in West LA at the time, and we had that equipment for sale, and it was just sitting there, so when it was quiet in the store...

          Anyway, I've long enjoyed Forth, and was an avid reader of things Forth around the time that colorForth came out. Somehow or another the little 'Game of Life' app I wrote in colorForth made it into a later re-release of colorForth by a guy from England somewhere.

        • Decentralized Gemini

          I love decentralization: the freedom for individuals to establish a presence in a society, online or in the real world, on equal terms with everyone else, and to not be beholden to large corporations or government entities to provide a place and a space for them. It's one of the things I loved about the early days of the Internet, and it's one of the things I currently love about Gemini so much. To that end, I always want to encourage the adoption of decentralized tools as much as I can, from Mastodon to PeerTube to Tox, and even self-hosting on Gemini.


          The biggest problem with reversing this trend is that most people don't care about it. They say they're worried about privacy invasions and aren't comfortable with government surveillance, but they don't take any active steps to mitigate it. Why?


          One is the convenience of centralization: any content you could ever want to find is on YouTube, Amazon, Google, Reddit, and all the rest. One no longer has to keep a lost of bookmarks, as was so common twenty years ago; one of my friends recently commented that he hasn't used bookmarks outside of a work context in over a decade. Now, simply go to one page, type in what you want, and voilà! Everything is one click or tap away.


          In fairness, some security know-how is required to self-host Internet services safely. Most people don't understand what it takes, and most people don't care. But that apathy is a killer to decentralized projects in the long run.


          The problem with an approach like this is that it would require so many additions and extensions to a Gemini client that it would essentially no longer be running the Gemini protocol. Certainly a viable decentralized network could be built this way, but other tools already operate under this paradigm far more effectively, and they don't use Gemini either.

        • The top 10 things about blog and IT you should know

          1. clicking on click bait titles should be avoided at best, this gives credit to such titles and authors will continue to publish them

      • Announcements

        • plass(1) first public release

          Many many moons ago, so many that I don’t remember the details, I was trying to hack something with pass(1) and got really fed up with it. It was my second password manager, with keepassxc being the first, and I really loved the idea behind it but I started to hate the interface.

          I remember that I found the output of the various pass commands difficoult to parse programmatically; having to bypass it (for example by means of find(1) seems wrong.) When I’m using a CLI tool, I want a good output I can further hack on.


          I remember that I found the output of the various pass commands difficoult to parse programmatically; having to bypass it (for example by means of find(1) seems wrong.) When I’m using a CLI tool, I want a good output I can further hack on.

          For those who don’t know, pass(1) is a simple password manager. It stores passwords in a directory tree rooted at ‘~/.password-store’ where the passwords are files encrypted with GPG. How to organize things is up to you; for example if I have to save the password for the website ‘’ where my username is ‘foo’ I’d probably persist it as ‘www/’.

          So, dirven by my scriptability problem (and also the fact that I wanted to use got(1) instead of git(1)) I wrote mine. The name? It’s a “perl pass”, so “plass”! (God, I’m awful at picking names...)

* Gemini (Primer) links can be opened using Gemini software. It's like the World Wide Web but a lot lighter.

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