12.28.22

What Happens When Flunkies Who Really Work for Google and Microsoft End Up Working ‘for’ (at the Expense of) Universities’ IT Departments

Posted in Free/Libre Software, GNU/Linux, Google, Microsoft, Site News at 11:35 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link | md5sum ebac88a1014e13df9980a23c925b196a
Universities Gone Astray
Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0

Summary: When institutions of higher education (colleges/universities) are occupied by people who cannot build and maintain systems the whole institutions are likely to be hijacked by ‘surveillance capitalism’ companies that work for the American government

EARLIER today we published part one (of four parts) from 'Digital Vegan' Andy Farnell (visiting professor specialising in sound and security), who bemoans the situation at universities’ IT departments. These used to be specialised and well-trained/highly-skilled departments, but nowadays they’re dumbed-down bureaucracy which became increasingly about selecting vendors to outsource to, i.e. not about technology at all. This is getting worse really fast, owing in part to the exodus of geeks and the influx of buzzword slingers (e.g. “Clown Computing”).

“Today’s universities seem to attract the very worst sysadmins, maybe those who could not find employment elsewhere.”“FOSS is useful in mitigating or even reversing the dystopian trends,” an associate has said to us after we published part one, adding that the culprits are “corporate flunkies working against the university, and double handful of resellers too.”

In the video above I tell my personal experiences, dealing with IT departments at universities from 2000 until 2012. I can still recall (from a decade back) some truly embarrassing stories. Today’s universities seem to attract the very worst sysadmins, maybe those who could not find employment elsewhere.

[Meme] What’s Worse? Monopoly or Polygamy?

Posted in Site News at 1:06 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Quite the “living arrangement”…

Friend brings a friend at Sirius

Summary: Sirius ‘Open Source’ has a polygamy problem and people aren’t allowed to speak about the professional and technical issues that leads to

Three's Company

12.03.22

A December Series About the Demise of Sirius ‘Open Source’

Posted in Deception, Free/Libre Software, Site News at 12:07 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link | md5sum 5fc22241d0ba2771d8eb8d960d4e13de
Start of Sirius Series
Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0

Summary: Sirius has not been functioning properly for years, but this year it got a lot worse and the story ought to be told; there are many aspects in it that may be applicable to other companies, including those that engage in openwashing for marketing purposes (opportunism)

THIS is the second video regarding the company I left yesterday. It was not a pleasant departure; it was the result of a weeks-long conflict. It started a month ago after I had done just one single (yes, just one!) shift in November.

Someone’s feelings were hurt, so a vendetta began, never mind why those feelings were hurt in the first place (context matters). More details will be supplied later, but today we start the release of a detailed report.

“…nobody took the bait, so a campaign of witch-hunts (vendetta) began.”For a number of months already the managers were looking to downsize (disguised euphemistically as reorganisation) with an external HR firm advising them against staff’s interests, as one might expect. There were attempts to deny severance/compensation and these attempts were rather obvious right from the start. But nobody took the bait, so a campaign of witch-hunts (vendetta) began.

The vendetta cannot be understated. This wasn’t done to some opportunists or some “tourists” in the company but to devoted, long-serving staff. To put it in context, in almost 12 years never — not even once — did I take sick leave (not ever!), but that does not seem to matter. These was a bogus “scoring” exercise and a divide-and-conquer effort, orchestrated by a company that became incompetent and unethical because it was running out of money (or losing the ability to borrow more money). All those things are of course connected; they’re connected by institutional demise.

“These was a bogus “scoring” exercise and a divide-and-conquer effort, orchestrated by a company that became incompetent and unethical because it was running out of money (or losing the ability to borrow more money).”So this month I get to tell my story, starting in early 2011 when I joined. As a long-term worker, I would be entitled to compensation, but abusive management is using fake nonsense to avoid paying severance, knowing that if it gets sued the company is already registered (partly) in another country and is too broke to even fight in court. The managers know this, but they’re fakers and posers at this point. They’ve evaded liabilities in other areas too. Clients are being misled about it. Clients deserve to know.

11.27.22

2023 Will be a Pivotal Year for Techrights

Posted in Site News at 7:34 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: As we quickly approach the last month of the year, here’s a look back at a wonderful year for Techrights (but not for the world in general) and a look at the year ahead

WE recently published the 35,000th blog post and celebrated 16 years.

This long weekend (owing to Thanksgiving) has given plenty of time for reflection and planning. It’s not a secret that there are many changes afoot, but overall those are positive changes and they will make this site better. Not just a Web site, but so much more…

In-Depth Investigations

Site migrations are already underway, but it takes time as we still focus on publication of material too (we don’t want to halt that). The GitHub/Microsoft series will go on next year; there’s plenty of material we’re eager to publish. There are several other “big stories” (or series) in the making, but they take time to properly prepare and fact-check. Stay tuned.

Tor, GNUnet, and More

If all goes according to plan, Tor/Onion will be supported next year. IPFS and Gemini have good resilience already and are robust to downtime (with spare nodes and hardware). GNUnet is still being considered. It’s a promising project. It seems like Mumble too is gaining adoption (it’s mentioned a lot online this year) and at the time of writing there are “514 known IRC networks” of significant size with a third of a million people online (counted across those networks).

Personal Life

As a researcher by training (and profession too; I was a postdoc for a few years) I like to examine the facts for myself and properly assess the evidence rather than blindly rely on what corporate press keeps saying. The media gets a lot of things wrong, but it tends to get away with it.

The way things are looking right now, this post-Brexit economy in a state of pandemic (that many are already in denial of) won’t recover any time soon. Maybe there will be an upswing — however small — rather than ongoing downturn some time in the next 5 years. Maybe. In the meantime, for a lot of people there’s a daily fight over necessities; it’s about survival. The national health service (NHS) is under perpetual attacks (aside from privatisation), the press is rapidly collapsing (not many people are still willing to pay for news; some cannot afford such a “luxury”), so we’re left with tabloids and oligarchs-owned “news” (sometimes the same as those tabloids).

Then there’s the health crisis, aside from mental health crisis.

How Deaths Have Soared This Year (Compared to Pre-COVID-19 Levels)

A topic I typically write about in my personal site is worth echoing here, at least in passing. There’s a mortality and morbidity crisis, which many are aware of while the media is suppressing or stonewalling or vainly gaslighting.

The relevant data is available from official (government) sources:

ONS data download

Recent weeks’ total deaths in England and Wales:

Recent weeks

These numbers are very high, especially so in recent months.

This affects ALL age groups and has come to the point where some weeks have have more than 2,000 additional deaths compared to the 2015-2019 average (in week 20 it was more than 2,500 higher).

Here’s 2022 (the unit in the X grid is week number):

Difference in deaths in 2022: 2022 deaths (England & Wales):  Above 2015-2019 average; Below 2015-2019 average

The high numbers (or very tall vertical bars) are number of deaths higher than pre-COVID-19 average number of deaths (for any given week).

Data: All deaths by week 45 versus pre-COVID-19 average (ODF)

That’s just based on the data. No need to argue with the data, unlike interpretations of it. Stay cautious regardless.

With more time spent indoors, and with more time available in general, Techrights will grow and thrive.

11.25.22

Geminispace Can Graduate at 3,000 Capsules Quite Soon (2,900 This Week)

Posted in Protocol, Site News at 6:36 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link | md5sum c4347cecba35ade34aa83ed01c9608b2
Gemini Growth in 2022
Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0

Summary: From less than 500 capsules to 2,900 capsules in 24 months? That’s how quickly Gemini is spreading.

THE end of November is fast approaching and the shortest day (in the northern hemisphere at least) is 4 weeks away. People may use the holidays to explore Gemini, not just as surfers but also as hosts.

“Techrights will have been on Gemini for two years some time later this winter.”Gemini is still growing in terms of the number of unique hosts (it was 2878 at the middle of this month and now touching 2900), though it seems not so likely to exceed 3,000 (known to Lupa) capsules by the end of this year.

Techrights will have been on Gemini for two years some time later this winter. Back then there were only hundreds — not thousands — of known Gemino capsules.

There are 2893 capsules. We successfully connected recently to 2207 of them.

11.18.22

35,000+ Posts

Posted in Site News at 6:39 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Summary: Yesterday another milestone was reached; we have 35,000 blog posts and soon 43,500 Gemini pages

11.11.22

Techrights: How It Started in 2006

Posted in Site News at 10:12 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Video download link | md5sum abac32879945bec39b30d1d37d9ce05b
16 Years Ago…
Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 4.0

Summary: Now that we’re entering our 17th year it’s worth looking back at why we’re called Techrights (for 12.5 years already) and how it all started (in Digg.com)

TELLING the story over and over again may seem pointless, but readers deserve to know how the site started now that we’re 16 and growing (very promising changes soon, including a new CMS we develop). I’m way beyond certain we’ll exceed 20 years and maybe 25 years, too. We don’t need to sell out.

“We’ll probably add more protocols in the next few years; the World Wide Web is waning.”Techrights has occupied nearly half my life and more importantly it gave a voice to countless people who wrote both/either anonymously or with full attribution by name. With 34,962 blog posts at this time we’re only days away from the coveted 35,000 milestone. It’s the labour of love and collaboration, I’m just the faithful editor. We research topics meticulously to ensure what we publish is accurate. Our track record is perfect when it comes to source protection and we rarely publish errors (if we do, we correct them as soon as possible).

Our IRC channel started in early 2008, i.e. 14.5 years ago, and our Gemini capsule turns 2 later this winter. Our text bulletin started just over 2 years ago; the same goes for IPFS. We’ll probably add more protocols in the next few years; the World Wide Web is waning.

Our Sixteenth Anniversary

Posted in Site News at 12:48 am by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

BN's registry

BN's first post

Summary: This coming Sunday our first post turns 16; this coming year should be an exciting one

This coming weekend (assuming we count first post rather than domain registration; details above) we’ll turn 16. There’s only good news, not bad news, for the site. We gradually continue our migration to an Alpine server (Git was successfully migrated this week) and we expect to have even more time to devote to this site, likely meaning more output (articles, IRC and so on).

“The demise of Social Control Media has had no impact of us; we never participated in such stuff.”There’s no major celebration, even though in prior anniversaries we had cakes and stuff [1, 2, 3]. Last night we opened a couple of small cakes here (chocolate and carrot cakes), but due to pandemic (still lots of deaths here in the UK) we stay home.

Our upcoming (seventeenth) year will bring many changes as we strive to simplify the site from an engineering perspective. We have our own (custom-made) CMS now and we’re seeing a healthy level of interest in the site and the Gemini capsule. The demise of Social Control Media has had no impact of us; we never participated in such stuff. Social Control Networks were a waste of time all along — a temporary bubble of sorts.

« Previous Page« Previous entries « Previous Page · Next Page » Next entries »Next Page »

RSS 64x64RSS Feed: subscribe to the RSS feed for regular updates

Home iconSite Wiki: You can improve this site by helping the extension of the site's content

Home iconSite Home: Background about the site and some key features in the front page

Chat iconIRC Channels: Come and chat with us in real time

New to This Site? Here Are Some Introductory Resources

No

Mono

ODF

Samba logo






We support

End software patents

GPLv3

GNU project

BLAG

EFF bloggers

Comcast is Blocktastic? SavetheInternet.com



Recent Posts