Category Archives: Uncategorized

Links for 2019-09-18

Why hard disks are/were called Winchester some ancient history. I’d forgotten about this nomenclature (tags: winchester history ibm disks hard-disks hardware) Use of an opaque binary class in a public iOS API causes problems “Apple changing the behavior of `NSData -description` in iOS 13 could break push notification registration for thousands of apps. Beyond the […]

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Links for 2019-09-16

Replacing Eir’s FTTH WiFi router with a NetGear Orbi Great writeup from Padraig Brady. sounds like solid hardware — I’d get one if I needed to replace my current setup based on this (tags: orbi netgear han lan home networking wifi ops)

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Links for 2019-09-13

Facing the Great Reckoning Head-On – danah boyd – Medium “Move fast and break things” is an abomination if your goal is to create a healthy society. Taking short-cuts may be financially profitable in the short-term, but the cost to society is too great to be justified. In a healthy society, we accommodate differently abled […]

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Links for 2019-09-12

Fairphone 3 Teardown – iFixit ‘We tear down the modular Fairphone 3 with a giant grin on our faces! It’s not perfect, but this is just about all we can ask for from a smartphone in 2019.’ Quite nice — modular, reminiscent of the Samsung S5 a little. specs are not stellar, but the ethical […]

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Links for 2019-09-11

Millennium Challenge 2002 – Wikipedia omg I never knew about this. Post 9/11, the Bush administration ran a war game scenario which resulted in a massive fail for the US forces, and had to be re-run to ensure they won: ‘At this point, the exercise was suspended, Blue’s ships were “re-floated”, and the rules of […]

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Links for 2019-09-10

ericflo/mediasummon: Summon your photos and videos back to you Mediasummon is an open source application that fetches a copy of all your photos and videos, and keeps them continuously backed up into one organized directory either on your computer or on a cloud storage provider. Currently supports reading from Instagram, Google Photos, and Facebook, and […]

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Links for 2019-09-09

TIL: bananas contain the primary compound in the honeybee’s “alarm” pheromone Science helps us explain the phenomena. Turns out bananas contain a compound called isoamyl acetate (also known as isopentyl acetate) – the very same as that which is in honeybees’ alarm pheromone. Pure banana oil (used in emollients, perfumes, and to broaden the flavored […]

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Links for 2019-09-06

Google Code Review Practices how Google do code reviews. pretty basic stuff but it’s good to have it written down from an authoritative source (tags: google code-review prs pull-requests best-practices coding collaboration) TERFs: the rise of “trans-exclusionary radical feminists,” explained – Vox Good long-read on TERFism, its history, and its ties to conservatism (tags: terfs […]

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Links for 2019-09-05

Study of the Therapeutic Effects of Intercessory Prayer (STEP) in cardiac bypass patients: A multicenter randomized trial of uncertainty and certainty of receiving intercessory prayer – ScienceDirect hee hee: Intercessory prayer itself had no effect on complication-free recovery from [coronary artery bypass graft surgery], but certainty of receiving intercessory prayer was associated with a higher […]

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Links for 2019-09-04

cable internet is IP over MPEG DOCSIS sends downstream data in MPEG frames because that’s what the cable networks are optimized for and what all the switching equipment understood when cable broadband took off. :facepalm: (via:jwz) (tags: history hysterical-raisins docsis protocols bizarre mpeg via:jwz) It’s later than you think This is one heartbreaking blog post: […]

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Links for 2019-09-03

Trees on the Land a cross-border initiative working to establish young native trees across the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland. We run an annual tree planting event where landowners across the 32 counties turn out to plant their trees on a selected Saturday in February.  Our next planting day is Saturday 15th February 2020. […]

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Links for 2019-09-02

AWS Post-Event Summaries ‘A list of post-event summaries from major service events that impacted AWS service availability’ (tags: postmortems post-mortems aws ops outages availability) The Plan to Use Fitbit Data to Stop Mass Shootings Is One of the Scariest Proposals Yet “The proposed data collection goes beyond absurdity when they mention the desire to collect […]

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Links for 2019-08-29

Does Kafka really guarantee the order of messages? – SoftwareMill Tech Blog tl;dr: nope — It is worth to know that default configuration can lead to producing messages in the wrong order when a failure happens, and if message order is important for your application you can have a lot of trouble because someone told […]

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Links for 2019-08-22

Irish firm’s device to detect IBS triggers praised by researchers The FoodMarble device is quite cool: Aire uses breath analysis to enable users to measure how well they absorb different types of foods, so they can identify what foods they can eat without discomfort. Researchers from the University of Auckland found that FoodMarble’s device successfully […]

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Links for 2019-08-21

Roadside Picnic: Artifacts left by Visitors in the Zones Rattling napkins, so-sos, empties and Dick The Tramp (tags: roadside-picnic sf strugatsky-brothers the-zones stalker fiction)

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Links for 2019-08-19

Daring Fireball: Siri, Privacy, and Trust My reading of this is that until last week, if you used Siri in any way, your recordings might be used in this “grading” process. If I graded Apple on the privacy and trust implications of this, I’d give them an F. (tags: siri grading privacy data voice ml […]

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Links for 2019-08-16

“Trees in early Ireland” – Augustine Henry Memorial Lecture, Royal Dublin Society ‘In this article an attempt is made to identify all the twenty-eight trees and shrubs which are listed in Old Irish law-text of about the eight century AD. There is also an account of trees which are mentioned in early Irish poetry and […]

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Links for 2019-08-15

What the Heck Is Crab Rangoon Anyway? – Gastro Obscura this is great. Crab Rangoon (which I’ve never heard of on this side of the pond!) is a wholly concocted “preposterous dish”: Crab rangoon is a pure distillation of tiki fusion weirdness. There was a strange, circular movement between tiki food and American Chinese food. […]

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Links for 2019-08-14

How YouTube Radicalized Brazil YouTube’s search and recommendation system appears to have systematically diverted users to far-right and conspiracy channels in Brazil. A New York Times investigation in Brazil found that, time and again, videos promoted by the site have upended central elements of daily life. Teachers describe classrooms made unruly by students who quote […]

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Links for 2019-08-12

Panel: The Promises and Perils of Eschewing Distributed Coordination good panel chat (tags: distcomp coordination distributed-systems distributed coding algorithms)

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Links for 2019-08-11

Adversarial Fashion The patterns on the goods in this shop are designed to trigger Automated License Plate Readers, injecting junk data in to the systems used by the State and its contractors to monitor and track civilians and their locations. (tags: anpr alpr adversarial-classification privacy)

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Links for 2019-08-09

Google Employee Alleges Discrimination Against Pregnant Women in Viral Memo – VICE “During one conversation with my new manager in which I reiterated an early leave and upcoming bedrest, she told me that she had just listened to an NPR segment that debunked the benefits of bedrest,” she wrote. “She also shared that her doctor […]

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Links for 2019-08-08

Baseline EBS performance for AWS I/O optimized instance types. This is vital info to understand how I/O performance on AWS will degrade and what it’ll drop down to, for production workloads (tags: aws ebs performance planning ops baselines) Why Won’t Twitter Treat White Supremacy Like ISIS? Because It Would Mean Banning Some Republican Politicians Too. […]

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Links for 2019-08-06

Why I Turned Down an AWS Job Offer – Last Week in AWS Amazon have filed a non-compete case against one of their sales execs who left and moved to Google. ouch (tags: aws amazing noncompetes jobs work legal non-competes) We Already Have the World’s Most Efficient Carbon Capture Technology it’s the empress tree, which […]

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Links for 2019-08-01

Coal Ash Is More Radioactive Than Nuclear Waste – Scientific American I didn’t know this: At issue is coal’s content of uranium and thorium, both radioactive elements. They occur in such trace amounts in natural, or “whole,” coal that they aren’t a problem. But when coal is burned into fly ash, uranium and thorium are […]

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Links for 2019-07-31

Fast and flexible observability with canonical log lines Interesting — basically crossing the line between service metrics and logging, with a simple, readable structured logging format, and a well-defined structure (tags: stripe logging metrics canonical-logs structured-logs ops operability observability)

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Links for 2019-07-30

How To Talk To Older People In Your Life About Fake News Caulfield said it’s common for older people to unwittingly share things that have extremist messages or iconography. “It’s very hard to see people posting stuff that may come from a kind of a dark place that they don’t realize is dark,” Caulfield said. […]

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Links for 2019-07-29

AWS S3 Event Notifications have “probably once” delivery you get the following Messages that are delivered once; Messages that are delivered multiple times; Messages that are not delivered This is in fact equivalent to “no guarantees at all” but the phrase “probably once” has a certain appeal to it. In my case I have an […]

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Links for 2019-07-25

Latacora – How (not) to sign a JSON object good notes on authentication of API consumers using a HMAC. colmmacc also noted that using a constant-time comparison function of the expected and sent values, is important to avoid timing attacks. “A standard strcmp/memcmp isn’t secure and I still see this error in 2019 :(“ (tags: […]

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Links for 2019-07-24

Estimating the success of re-identifications in incomplete datasets using generative models | Nature Communications Using our model, we find that 99.98% of Americans would be correctly re-identified in any dataset using 15 demographic attributes. Our results suggest that even heavily sampled anonymized datasets are unlikely to satisfy the modern standards for anonymization set forth by […]

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Links for 2019-07-23

Aurora Postgres – Disastrous experience : aws wow. absolute car crash of a thread regarding Postgres-on-Aurora (tags: aws postgresql rds scale aurora ops car-crash)

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Links for 2019-07-22

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Links for 2019-07-19

Bulgarian tax authority hacked, majority of population’s tax details leaked Well this is pretty much the worst-case scenario for a tax authority: A 20-year-old man was arrested in Sofia, Bulgaria, on Tuesday afternoon and charged with an unprecedented hack of the country’s tax authority, ending with the theft of sensitive personal records from nearly every […]

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Links for 2019-07-18

When Non-Jews Wield Anti-Semitism as Political Shield | GQ a spate of ultra-Christian would-be spokespeople have demonstrated outrage against congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez for daring to use the term “concentration camps” to describe the camps in which thousands of migrants are concentrated in squalor, and have died, on the Southern border. Wyoming representative Liz Cheney and […]

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Links for 2019-07-17

The Codeless Code: Case 234 Ozymandias Love this: I chanced upon an ancient cache of code: a stack of printouts, tall as any man, that in decaying boxes had been stowed. Ten thousand crumbling pages long it ran. Abandoned in the blackness to erode, what steered a ship through blackness to the moon. The language […]

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Links for 2019-07-16

Modeling the Mythical Man-Month using the Universal Scalability Law turns out the USL can apply (tags: usl scalability scaling brooks teams mythical-man-month estimation)

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Links for 2019-07-15

Reviewbot posts GitHub pull requests that are ready to be reviewed into Slack. How does it know when a pull request is ready? We have a special label in our repositories, aptly named READY TO REVIEW (all caps so it’s easier to spot). When a pull request is ready for review, the author adds this […]

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Links for 2019-07-14

Terrifying thread of Google Maps fails ‘This takes you over Hayden Pass Rd. “It’s a real challenging road and a true test of your vehicle and your stamina because the road abounds in twists and turns with wheels sometimes hanging above the precipice.” “There is a very narrow section of shelf road before you get […]

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Links for 2019-06-27

Moving From Apache Thrift to gRPC: A Perspective From Alluxio Good advice here: Thrift served well as a fast and reliable RPC framework powering the metadata operations in Alluxio 1.x. Its limitation in handling streamed data has led us to a journey in search of better alternatives. gRPC provides some nice features that help us in […]

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Links for 2019-06-25

Guidance for Drivers on use of “Dash Cams” guidance note from the Irish Data Protection Commissioner on GDPR implications of dashcams. (tags: dpc data-protection privacy dashcams driving gdpr) Chernobyl True Story: What The HBO Miniseries Gets Right (& Changes) A much more reasonable writeup of what the HBO series changed from what really happened — […]

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