Author Archives: dailylinks

Links for 2018-08-10

Anatomy of a tabloid Fortnite front page story Interesting writeup of how the UK tabloids concoct their scare stories, rustling up “victims” and paying them and their agents fees of thousands of pounds (tags: fortnite pokemon-go gaming tabloids uk newspapers truth the-sun games) Hacker Finds Hidden ‘God Mode’ on Old VIA C3 x86 CPUs Domas […]

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Links for 2018-08-09

How I gained commit access to Homebrew in 30 minutes If I were a malicious actor, I could have made a small, likely unnoticed change to the openssl formulae, placing a backdoor on any machine that installed it. If I can gain access to commit in 30 minutes, what could a nation state with dedicated […]

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Links for 2018-07-17

Why JSON isn’t a good configuration language solid +1s on these points (tags: json configuration languages coding formats) Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team | Fast, Powerful, and Practical: New Technology for Aerial Imagery in Disaster Response Aerial imagery can play an important role in disaster response operations, enabling response teams to identify and prioritize hardest-hit areas, conduct […]

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Links for 2018-07-16

Labour HQ used Facebook ads to deceive Jeremy Corbyn during election campaign | News | The Times Campaign chiefs at Labour HQ hoodwinked their own leader because they disapproved of some of Corbyn’s left-wing messages. They convinced him they were following his campaign plans by spending just £5,000 on adverts solely designed to be seen […]

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Links for 2018-07-13

Facebook’s new rules for moderators on dealing with far-right pages are awful This is a total shitshow. Facebook needs to sort this out, it is not remotely desirable. Facebook: “We allow to call for the creation of white ethno-states.” In other words, Facebook is officially ok with people calling for ethnic cleansing and genocide. The […]

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Links for 2018-07-12

Using Kindle Fire’s Parental Controls time to set this up I think (tags: kindle fire parental-controls devices kids) The problems with DynamoDB Auto Scaling and how it might be improved ‘Based on these observations, we hypothesize that you can make two modifications to the system to improve its effectiveness: trigger scaling up after 1 threshold […]

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Links for 2018-07-11

Goodbye Microservices: From 100s of problem children to 1 superstar · Segment Blog Super-happy we resisted many of the microservices gospels and dodged this bullet (tags: architecture microservices monolith git monorepo) Centrifuge: a reliable system for delivering billions of events per day Nice scale-up service to solve the multi-tenant, multi-target queueing problem with good customer […]

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Links for 2018-07-10

Basho investor to pay up $20m in damages for campaign that put biz on ‘greased slide to failure’ • The Register This is disappointing. Basho was very promising. An investment fund and its manager have been ordered to pay up $20.3m after “misinformation, threats and combative behaviour” helped put NoSQL database biz Basho on a […]

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Links for 2018-07-09

Saving a non-profit six figures a year using Squarespace, Airtable and Glitch.com Airtable in particular sounds like a lovely tool for small-scale users (tags: serverless airtable google squarespace glitch tools web ops)

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Links for 2018-07-06

Wifi Design Tips PDF with a few good tips on wifi layout, AP placement etc. Also recommended: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Adep0SeOjAE&feature=youtu.be&t=17m22s (via irldexter) (tags: via:irldexter wifi 802.11 wireless ops networking) What I’ve learned from nearly three years of enterprise Wi-Fi at home I am happy to note that I’ve grown out of this kind of pain (I think)…. […]

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Links for 2018-07-05

Large breweries ‘pay publicans not to stock smaller companies’ beer, cider’ Good on Alan Kelly TD for raising the issue — it is clearly happening and is clearly anti-competitive market manipulation by the big brewers. He said a pub in Cork he was in recently had 21 taps of which 19 were from one brewing […]

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Links for 2018-07-03

‘Nothing to worry about. The water is fine’: how Flint poisoned its people | News | The Guardian The anxiety reverberated all the way to the state capital, Lansing, where Governor Rick Snyder was weeks away from winning reelection. His chief legal counsel, Michael Gadola, wrote in an email: “To anyone who grew up in […]

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Links for 2018-07-02

Dormio: Interfacing with Dreams to Augment Human Creativity — MIT Media Lab Using Dormio you fall asleep as you normally would, but the transition into stage 2 sleep is tracked and interrupted. This suspends you in a semi-lucid state where microdreams are inceptable, allowing direction of your dreams.  (tags: dreaming dreams science neuroscience brain sleep […]

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Links for 2018-06-26

Facial recognition software is not ready for use by law enforcement | TechCrunch This is a pretty amazing op-ed from the CEO of a facial recognition software development company: Facial recognition technologies, used in the identification of suspects, negatively affects people of color. To deny this fact would be a lie. And clearly, facial recognition-powered […]

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Links for 2018-06-20

Visa admits 5m payments failed over a broken switch “We operate two redundant data centres in the UK, meaning that either one can independently handle 100% of the transactions for Visa in Europe. In normal circumstances, the systems are synchronised and either centre can take over from the other immediately … in this instance, a […]

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Links for 2018-06-19

Save on your AWS bill with Kubernetes Ingress decent into to Kubernetes Ingress and the Ambassador microservices API gateway built on Envoy Proxy (tags: envoy proxying kubernetes aws elb load-balancing ingress ambassador ops) Is America Ready for a Global Pandemic? – The Atlantic The egg-based [vaccine manufacture] system depends on chickens, which are themselves vulnerable […]

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Links for 2018-06-18

A few observations on the bikesharing systems in China Mindblowing Twitter thread. The variety of systems, most of which are barely impinging on our systems over here in Ireland! (tags: china bikesharing cycling bikes transit public-transit commuting) Fibonacci Hashing: The Optimization that the World Forgot (or: a Better Alternative to Integer Modulo) Turns out I was […]

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Links for 2018-06-15

The best Mario Kart character according to data science Unless you’re going all-in on acceleration, it looks like a heavy character is the way to go; the two heaviest character classes (Wario and Donkey Kong) account for 11/15 of the Pareto-optimal configurations. Wario/Sports Bike/Slick or Wario/Gold Standard/Slick get the top billing! (tags: wario nintendo mario-kart […]

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Links for 2018-06-14

Taming the Beast: How Scylla Leverages Control Theory to Keep Compactions Under Control – ScyllaDB This is a really nice illustration of the use of control theory to set tunable thresholds automatically in a complex storage system. Nice work Scylla: At any given moment, a database like ScyllaDB has to juggle the admission of foreground […]

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Links for 2018-06-13

Trans kids & the people who hate them Research (Mental Health of Transgender Children Who Are Supported in Their Identities, Olson et al. 2016) has shown that children whose preferred gender identity is accepted by family and friends have no worse mental health outcomes than other children. But those who are not accepted are much […]

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Links for 2018-06-11

Woman’s Tongue Gets Inseminated By Squid After Eating Undercooked Seafood | IFLScience As documented in a 2012 edition of the Journal of Parasitology, the foreign bodies were identified as squid spermatophores (sperm-containing capsules) belonging to a Japanese flying squid (Todarodes pacificus). Rather foolishly, the woman had not removed the internal organs of the squid and proceeded […]

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Links for 2018-06-08

Amazon EKS is now GA – Official Discussion Thread and Ask the Experts r/aws discussion thread on EKS now that it’s GA (tags: eks ga aws kubernetes ops architecture clustering docker) NTSB: Autopilot steered Tesla car toward traffic barrier before deadly crash This is the Tesla self-crashing car in action. Remember how it works. It […]

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Links for 2018-06-06

AWS Region Table what products are available where (tags: amazon aws regions azs services architecture ops) How to change JVM arguments at runtime to avoid application restart This is a super nifty feature of the JVM: turn on and off heap class histogram dumps at runtime, for instance. java -XX:+PrintFlagsFinal -version|grep manageable (tags: jvm ops […]

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Links for 2018-06-05

How Ireland’s Abortion Referendum Became a Test Case for Democracy in the Social Media Age Exploring the “fake news” merchants attempting to subvert the Irish abortion referendum. On 4chan, a number of users who identified as Irish attempted to infiltrate the online conversation and tarnish the pro-repeal campaign. Operation Zyklon encouraged users to spread awareness […]

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Links for 2018-06-02

How Ireland Beat Dark Ads – Foreign Policy In practice, while these recognizable attempts to disrupt the democratic debate with microtargeted ads, bot activity, and misinformation were active, they appear to have been relatively ineffective and may even have turned voters away from those employing them. Given the battleground online discourse has become in democracies […]

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Links for 2018-06-01

‘Abroad For Yes’ Helped Irish Voters Get Home for Abortion Referendum This was one of the most amazing things I saw during the referendum campaign, alright! I had the pleasure of helping to fund several journeys home to vote: Rebecca Wilson, one of the Abroad for Yes co-founders, said she and two other women, her […]

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Links for 2018-05-31

How to revoke all ad permissions from Oath GDPR pages in summary: document.querySelectorAll(‘input[type=checkbox]’).forEach(val => val.checked = false) (via stx) (tags: via:stx oath gdpr privacy tracking ads) A first draft of history For journalists it is always easier to point to the politician with the pearly-white smile and the pithy sound-byte as the harbinger of change […]

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Links for 2018-05-30

How the #repealshield Twitter Blocklist is legal under GDPR a long and gif-heavy Twitter thread from @hazel_ok (tags: repealthe8th repealshield twitter blocklists gdpr law ireland eu abuse) If only Brexit had been run like Ireland’s referendum | Fintan O’Toole | Opinion | The Guardian Good postmortem review on how the abortion referendum evaded Trumpian “fake […]

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Links for 2018-05-29

_Random Slicing: Efficient and Scalable Data Placement for Large-Scale Storage Systems_, ACM Transactions on Storage, July 2014 ‘The ever-growing amount of data requires highly scalable storage solutions. The most flexible approach is to use storage pools that can be expanded and scaled down by adding or removing storage devices. To make this approach usable, it […]

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Links for 2018-05-28

antisemitism in the Irish “NO” prolife campaign against repeal of the 8th amendment Good twitter thread documenting some specific examples (tags: twitter antisemitism george-soros nazis alt-right ireland prolife repealthe8th)

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Links for 2018-05-24

This is why you’re still seeing referendum ads online summary: Google can’t block ads placed via their own exchanges (tags: advertising adtech google ireland ads repealthe8th)

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Links for 2018-05-23

ACLU to Amazon: Get out of the surveillance business This is a fair point from the ACLU: Already, Rekognition is in use in Florida and Oregon. Government agencies in California and Arizona have sought information about it, too. And Amazon didn’t just sell Rekognition to law enforcement, it’s actively partnering with them to ensure that […]

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Links for 2018-05-21

schibsted/strongbox: A secret manager for AWS Strongbox is a CLI/GUI and SDK to manage, store, and retrieve secrets (access tokens, encryption keys, private certificates, etc). Strongbox is a client-side convenience layer on top of AWS KMS, DynamoDB and IAM. It manages the AWS resources for you and configure them in a secure way. Strongbox has […]

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Links for 2018-05-18

EC2 Instance Update – C5 Instances with Local NVMe Storage (C5d) With a 25% to 50% improvement in price-performance over the C4 instances, the C5 instances are designed for applications like batch and log processing, distributed and or real-time analytics, high-performance computing (HPC), ad serving, highly scalable multiplayer gaming, and video encoding. Some of these […]

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Links for 2018-05-17

Canaries As Poisonous Gas Detectors n the late 1890s, [John] Haldane began experimenting on small animals like white mice and canaries [to detect carbon monoxide]. Small animals have faster metabolism rate, and hence show the effects of carbon monoxide poisoning much earlier even in the presence of small quantities of the noxious gas. Canaries are […]

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Links for 2018-05-16

Face recognition police tools ‘staggeringly inaccurate’ – BBC News “In figures given to Big Brother Watch, South Wales Police said its facial recognition technology had made 2,685 “matches” between May 2017 and March 2018 – but 2,451 were false alarms.” This is going to be a disaster. (tags: surveillance bbc wales facial-recognition privacy false-positives ml) […]

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Links for 2018-05-15

GDPR will pop the adtech bubble Without adtech, the EU’s GDPR (General Data Protection Regulation) would never have happened. But the GDPR did happen, and as a result websites all over the world are suddenly posting notices about their changed privacy policies, use of cookies, and opt-in choices for “relevant” or “interest-based” (translation: tracking-based) advertising. Email […]

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Links for 2018-05-08

The Tidelift Subscription The core idea of the Tidelift Subscription is to pay for “promises about the future” of your software components.   When you incorporate an open source library into your application, you need to know not just that you can use it as-is today, but that it will be kept secure, properly licensed, and […]

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Links for 2018-05-03

DNA databases: biology stripped bare Unlike other biometrics, [DNA] also provides revealing [data regarding] thousands of other related individuals; even to an entire ethnic group. Such markers may reveal a genetic predisposition towards cancer, or early onset dementia. Mining that data and linking it to family trees and thus, individuals, might interest insurance companies, or […]

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Links for 2018-05-02

An Algorithmic Investigation of the Highfalutin ‘Poet Voice’ – Atlas Obscura ‘It’s easy to make fun of Poet Voice. But its proliferation across the space of academic poetry may have more serious implications as well. In a 2014 essay, “Poet Voice and Flock Mentality,” the poet Lisa Marie Basile connects it to an overall lack […]

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