Wednesday, September 30


Daily News Stuff 30 September 2020

Never Ever Edition

Tech News

  • Never update your operating system, Mac edition.  (Mr Macintosh)

    Thanks to Brickmuppet and J Greely for finding this one.  It's conspicuously absent from the two Apple-focused blogs I follow.

  • Never update your operating system, ChromeOS edition.  (Bleeping Computer)

    I guess Google didn't want to feel left out.  Pretty much the same situation: Run the normal update, and your CPU is left running at 100% forever.

  • There's someone who's even worse at extending SQL than the Postgres people.  (

    Vespa is an AI-oriented search engine with a SQL-like query language, so that you can say:
    select * from music where title contains "madonna";
    And it will do exactly what you expect.

    Unfortunately it's all downhill from there.  If you want to match a phrase, you can't just provide a phrase, you need to use the phrase function:
    where text contains phrase("st", "louis", "blues");
    Okay, that's a minor hassle but not overly egregious.  What about stemming?  Is there a simple keyword to control stemming in matches?  Well, there's this:
    where text contains ([{"stem": false}]"blues");
    Why is it JSON?  Why is it a list?  Why does a nearest neighbour query turn into this:
    where [{"targetHits": 10}] nearestNeighbor(doc_vector, query_vector);&ranking.features.query(query_vector)=[3,5,7]
    I'm annoyed enough with Elasticsearch that I'm tempted to try it anyway.


  • Neo4j supports Lucene queries, doesn't it?  Yes, it does.  Now why...  Oh, right.

    I looked at using Neo4j at my day job before, but it didn't support multiple databases, which would have made it a massive pain to deploy.  Now we have our own little cloud platform of Threadripper servers, and I can spin up a new node in about three seconds.  Might be worth taking another look.

  • Gigabyte has a new range of Brix Pro mini-PCs with Tiger Lake CPUs.  (AnandTech)

    On the one hand, they max out at four cores.  On the other hand, they support 64GB of RAM, two M.2 NVMe drives, six USB Type A 10Gbit ports, four HDMI ports, 2.5Gbit and 1Gbit Ethernet, and one Thunderbolt 4 port.

  • This house.

    Keep clicking through the photos until you get to the good bit.  You'll know it when you see it.  No, not the pipe organ in the pirate-themed dining hall.  No, not the very fully-stocked bar.  No, not the lookout over the swimming pool, or the observatory, or the bunker below the observatory.

    If you hit the pirate cave wine cellar you've gone too far and need to back up.

Disclaimer: And seven times never buy a Mac.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 11:29 PM | Comments (8) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
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1 Well, I have an old used mac I use to run the software I had from back when I could afford a new mac eleven years ago. I bought it in January when things were more normal than now.
I also have a windows machine from that time period, I have windows 10 on it, it won't complete an update because it has an old amd chip, but it won't let me turn updating off. If I could I could then give it to my Mom...

Posted by: Phil Fraering at Thursday, October 01 2020 12:11 AM (Clxcy)

2 What, the 0-scale drinks choo choo?  Or is it bigger than that?

Posted by: normal at Thursday, October 01 2020 02:02 PM (obo9H)

3 That's the one.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at Friday, October 02 2020 12:22 AM (PiXy!)

4 I think it's a little bigger than that though - probably G scale.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at Friday, October 02 2020 12:25 AM (PiXy!)

5 Well, H0 is enough to carry sushi and booze.  My first guess was 0, because it's about all I know that isn't H0 or N, but then I read a wikipedia article about model railroad scales and now I can't tell if I know anything at all anymore.  The rusty ol' "observatory" is where I would happily live out my last few weeks, honestly, except that the whole mess is in California, and I ain't about to move there with what's been going on ever since those idiots reelected Jerry Brown.

Posted by: normal at Friday, October 02 2020 03:34 AM (LADmw)

6 Yeah, this house goes back to a time when California was crazy rather than insane.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at Friday, October 02 2020 03:47 AM (PiXy!)

7 It's vaugely tempting to send a bunch of sincere-sounding foamer-type questions: "Could you run a micrometer down the tracks and tell me how much variance there is?"  "What kind of rolling stock do you have, and how accurate is it?"  "I have an F7A-B combo in 1955 ATSF livery that I would like to run on that, but it doens't look like it would be period correct (1890s?).  Pls respond, $1.8M is a lot to spend on the wrong era of model railroad, TBH."

Posted by: normal at Friday, October 02 2020 08:16 AM (obo9H)

8 See everybody?  Drug running really does pay!

Posted by: Wonderduck at Saturday, October 03 2020 01:05 PM (vNkOW)

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Apple pies are delicious. But never mind apple pies. What colour is a green orange?

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