Tuesday, January 21


Daily News Stuff 21 January 2020

Paper Panther Edition

Tech News

Disclaimer: It is not enough merely to be proven right; you must also be seen to rub the other guy's face in it.

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Monday, January 20


Daily News Stuff 20 January 2020

Foley Operator Of Life Edition

Tech News

  • So my washing machine is making a lot of noise on the spin cycle, clearly an unbalanced load, and I go into the laundry and shut it off before it can damage itself.  The clothes aren't quite done spinning but near enough, so into the dryer with them and in goes the next load.

    And I close the door and am rewarded with an almost comically perfect sound of something breaking off and falling down inside the machine, which no longer works.

  • Google search sucks.

    So does Google everything else, pretty much.  How the basically competent now are fallen.

  • Twitter no longer has tooltips for emojis.  Brought home sharply by this bit of nonsense:

    Quick, name the top five countries on that list.

  • I had a clever idea today.

    And when I say "clever" I mean "using a platform in a way it was never intended to be used and will likely horrify the developers of said platform".

  • Why build this blog on IPFS?  (Teetotality)

    No, not this blog, that blog.  While IPFS has its place, there is no magic.  There's no "serverless", there is just total dependence on things you cannot fix. 

    WordPress may be a dinosaur, but dinosaurs ruled the planet for 160 million years.  WordPress is also a piece of crap, but crap has ruled the planet for even longer.

  • No, you still can't solve the halting problem.  (Gizmodo)

    What you can now do - thanks to that mathematical breakthrough I mentioned yesterday - is determine, if you have a network of computers which can solve the halting problem, which isn't possible, whether they are telling the truth.

    Which is a rather useful trick when you have computers solving problems that they can solve but which you cannot.

  • Netgear put the private keys for the certificates included on their routers up on their support website.  (GitHub)

    Astoundingly, this doesn't look like a fuckup.  The keys and certificates are used only for providing HTTPS for your router's config page, and nowhere else.  Providing them like this is necessary if you're making a complete firmware bundle available for download.

    And you need HTTPS because browsers can't tell a LAN site from a public one and are increasingly freaked out about HTTP sites.

    As one person summed it up:
    It's better than HTTP because it requires active MitM
    It's worse than HTTP because it gives the user a false sense of security.
    It's better than TOFU/self signed because the user is not presented with a browser warning (and thus can use the device)
    It's worse than TOFU/self signed because the user is not presented with a browser warning (and thus does not know about attacks)
    It's a solution to an unsolved problem...

  • TerraMaster has a new 5-bay 10Gb NAS.  (AnandTech)

    Price $599, available soon.  It looks pretty good, but I don't have 10Gb Ethernet, so probably going to stick with USB for now.

  • I mentioned that DigitalOcean was laying off about 5% of their staff.  A co-founder of the company showed up on a Hacker News thread to explain things.

    It went well.

    Not being facetious.

    If you've ever seen the AWS platform dashboard you would know why.

  • Don't use Opera.  (Android Police)

    Yeah, based on that, time to uninstall Opera entirely.

  • A list of Telnet passwords for 500,000 devices has been published online.  (ZDNet)

    Internet of Insecure Pieces of Crap.

Other News

  • This is the most extraordinary thing, and will probably be deleted soon.

    Chants of "we will not comply” from gun rights protesters in Richmond.
    The audio isn't perfect, but it is clear enough.  The crowd is reciting the Pledge of Allegiance.

Video of the Day

See also: Why data anonymisation does not work.

Disclaimer: Click poink rattle rattle rattle clunk.  Welp, not going to be doing any more laundry today.

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Sunday, January 19


Daily News Stuff 19 January 2020

Dollars To Donuts Doesn't Work Anymore

Tech News

  • My supermarket now stocks gluten-free donuts.  Found them when I was looking for the lamingtons.



  • Hosting providers are starting to offer Ryzen servers.  (WebHostingTalk)

    In this case WebNX (who I haven't used before) but also ReliableSite (who I have).

    For example, a Ryzen 2600 with 32GB RAM, 2x256GB NVMe drives (or 1x1TB SATA SSD), and 30TB monthly bandwidth costs $59 per month.

    The 2600 isn't as fast as the models that came out a few months ago, but it is cheap, has the same single-threaded performance as the E3 Xeons you commonly find in budget servers, and has six cores rather than four.

    They offer a 3600X model for $79, and a 3800X with 64GB ECC RAM and 100TB monthly bandwidth for $99.

    At the higher end, they have Threadripper 3970X servers starting at $399 per month.  I was wondering when those would pop up.  Obviously Epyc is the safe choice for servers - it's explicitly a server CPU - but Threadripper has a clock speed advantage of around 50%.  I don't know if that model has a server motherboard; the others explicitly list IPMI but that one doesn't, and I haven't seen a server board for third-generation Threadripper so far.

  • Zotac's Inspire Studio is a double-height double-width double-depth NUC.

    Mini-ITX size but not a standard Mini-ITX board or case, but it looks pretty nice regardless.  Core i7-9700 and an RTX 3060 Super in a pretty compact case - 8" x 9" x 5".  6 USB 3.1 and two 1Gbit Ethernet ports.

    They also have a professional mini-workstation in the same case with a Xeon E CPU and Quadro graphics, and a gaming version with the 9700 CPU and a 2070 Super.  (Zotac)

    For some reason both those models have 2.5Gbit Ethernet but the Studio model doesn't.

  • The Radeon RX 5600 XT just got 11% faster.  (Tom's Hardware)

    With just a BIOS tweak and an extra 10W TDP allocation.

  • Write your own operating system kernel.  (GitHub)

    Admittedly all the project does so far is boot, print "my first kernel", and hang, but I've had pretty much that experience trying to boot with Grub on older hardware.  (For a while I had a server with 12 cores, 128GB RAM, and 12TB of SSD that could only boot using LILO.)

  • A poem.

  • That naughty list is a month late, guys.  (Slate)

    They compiled a list of the most evil and dangerous tech companies.  Though this being Slate (corporate motto: At least we're not Salon) their definition of evil ranges from sensible (arresting reporters for reporting the news) to nonsensical (securing the border from drug smugglers).

    Most of them are soft targets, but at least they put Baidu and Tencent on the list.

    Also Twitter.

    But Slate's gonna Slate:
    One evil thing: Last month, Dorsey announced a high-flying idea to decentralize social networks that evoked the ideals of an older, purer internet. But some critics saw the proposal as a convenient way for Twitter to eventually offload responsibility for what its users do.
    Yeah, that's the one thing they call Twitter out for.

  • And then there's the companion piece.  (Slate again, sorry)
    I worked at Gizmodo for about three years, a job I acquired by falsely claiming to know what Android is.  ...  I do firmly believe that Facebook and Amazon are both objectively evil, which is what brings us here today.
    These are your betters, peasant.

  • Speaking of those idiots, vile racist lunatic Louis Farrakhan finally got suspended.  Is Twitter coming to its corporate senses at long last?

    No, of course not.  It was all a dream.  (Washington Examiner)

  • MIP* = RE  (Arxiv.org)
    Here PSPACE is the set of problems solvable by a classical computer with a polynomial amount of space. Subsequent results showed that if one allowed a verifier able to interact with multiple provers, the verifier could be convinced of a solution of any problem in NEXPTIME, a class conjectured to be much larger than PSPACE. For a while, it was believed that in the quantum case, the set of problems might actually be smaller, since multiple quantum computers might be able to use their shared entangled qubits to "cheat" the verifier. However, this has turned out not just to not be the case, but the exact opposite: MIP* is not only large, it is about as large as a computable class can naturally be.
    Well, good.

    Also the Connes Embedding Conjecture is false.

  • Kids these days don't know where the term soap opera comes from.  (Digital Trends)

    They are shocked at the notion of "a TV show brought to you by a single advertiser".

  • Joe Biden came out against CDA section 230 and the usual suspects are in a complete meltdown.  (Ars Technica)

    Exploded heads everywhere.

    I particularly like their description of Josh Hawley as "far right" when the only thing of note that he has done is speak out against CDA section 230.

Video of the Day



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Saturday, January 18


Daily News Stuff 18 January 2020

Great Lamington Famine Edition

Tech News

Other News

  • First Rule of Online Publishing: A hate click is still a click.

    Don't click on that.  It doesn't get any better.

Picture of the Day

Disclaimer: Just because you can download a terabyte a day doesn't mean you have enough disk space to keep that up for very long.

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Friday, January 17


Daily News Stuff 17 January 2020

Faster Better Cheaper Edition

Tech News

Disclaimer: Or if you do, make sure you have it installed on another device so you can keep going while you wait for customer service to get back to you.

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Daily News Stuff 16 January 2020

Do The Sploot Edition

Tech News

  • Is Comet Lake better than Ice Lake, or vice versa?  What about Whiskey Lake?  And they were talking Tiger Lake at CES, what's up with that?

    If you're confused, read this article and you'll still be confused but at least if anyone asks you'll know exactly why you're confused.  (AnandTech)

    Intel presented a lot of charts showing off the performance of Comet Lake and Ice Lake, but in each case comparing against Ryzen 3000 APUs, and never against each other.  Plus of course AMD announced Ryzen 4000 APUs the very next day and stomped all over everything Intel has.

  • Intel has trimmed its Xeon lineup and in the process offered some price cuts.  (AnandTech)

    M-series large-memory versions are gone and L-series Optane-supporting really large memory versions have replaced them at M prices.  In the case of the Xeon Gold 5215L this means a price cut of more than 50% - which sounds great until you look closer and realise that Intel's 10 core processor still costs as much as a 64 core Epyc.

  • Microsoft's new Edge - now based on Chromium - is available on Windows and Mac.  (Tom's Hardware)

    This is good news for Chrome fans who want support from a company that is only traditionally predatory rather than batshit insane.

  • Speaking of batshit insane, what the hell have you done with your search results, Google?  That's close to unreadable.  I was actually using Bing today, that's how bad you are now.

  • Content moderation is impossible to do well at scale.  It's impossibler when your company is run by idiots.  (TechDirt)

    YouTube is always going to screw up content moderation, but it's their three strikes policy that actually ruins lives.  That has to die, right now.

  • How Sweden believed in gremlins.  (Medium)

    It's not that shocking.  People in the US talk about Myers-Brigg as though it were meaningful, and in Japan it's blood types.

  • The other side of AB5: Yes, the California gig economy bill is hot garbage, but the California companies leading the gig economy are also hot garbage.  (New Republic)

    Legislation is justified and perhaps even necessary.  The current legislation though will only make the situation worse.

  • Mozilla has laid off 70 staff - 7% of its total workforce - as it trims staff to match revenues rather than revenue projections.  (Tech Crunch)

    That's bad for the 70 people involved (though they reportedly receive generous severance packages) but Mozilla is one of the few players in the consumer internet that has both a substantial role and financial independence, and we need them to survive.

    Mozilla also has a VPN coming, and is probably one of the more trustworthy entities offering such services, given multiple recent public flameouts.  If you are in the US you can try the browser extension now, and the full-device option is due soon at $5 per month.

    The actual networking is offered by Cloudflare, yet another giant company that has all your data and can track you anywhere, but at least Cloudflare has shown some awareness of the impact of their actions.

  • Oracle just patched hundreds of security bugs across its product suite.  (ZDNet)

    Including 191 that could be exploited remotely without authentication.  If you're responsible for an Oracle deployment, my sympathies.

  • Apple bought Xnor making people invisible to Wyze cameras.  (The Verge)

    This is literally true.  It is the 21st century after all.

Disclaimer: You can't trick me, young man.  It's hot garbage all the way down.

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Wednesday, January 15


Daily News Stuff 15 January 2020

From The Middle Twice Edition

Tech News

  • How big is the Ryzen 4000 APU die?  150mm2.  (AnandTech)

    That's 30% smaller than the Ryzen 3000 APU despite doubling the number of CPU cores.  In fact, the CPU only takes up about one third of that area; the remainder is the GPU and I/O since this is a monolithic design without a separate I/O die.

    Early benchmarks indicate that it delivers about two thirds of the multi-threaded performance of the desktop Ryzen 3700X:

    Which means that a hypothetical 30W 300mm2 part could potentially deliver close to the performance of a 3900X, and have built-in graphics sufficient for 1080p gaming.  And on TSMC's 5nm process - which is in risk production right now, I believe - that would be a ~21W 165mm2 part.

  • Speaking of AMD notebooks, here's one with a Ryzen 3900.  (AnandTech)

    That's the 65W non-X version, which you can't buy, but don't need to since you can configure a 3900X to a 65W TDP in software anyway.

    Depending on configuration this laptop weighs up to 2.7kg and comes with a 230W power brick, so this is probably not one for the all-day-battery ultra-portable crowd.

  • A 600-series Ryzen chipset is expected this year.  (Tom's Hardware)

    Since desktop Ryzen 4000 is due this year and the high-end chipset is literally just a relabelled desktop Ryzen I/O die, this is not a surprise.

  • The NSA found a critical bug in Windows certificate management.  (Tech Crunch)

    They told Microsoft.

    Microsoft fixed it.

    And they all lived happily ever after, or until next Patch Tuesday, whichever comes first.

  • Would it not be simpler for the government to dissolve the people and elect another?  (Stack Exchange)

    Stack Exchange seems to have fired or otherwise lost their top community liaisons, and to also be mishandling to fallout of this, neither of which is helpful for a site that is entirely dependent on community goodwill.

  • If you want to get annoyed here's a garbage article about the alleged Russian hacking of Burisma.  (ZDNet)

    The author hamfistedly whitewashes Biden's role and tries to connect Russia to Trump as if the past three fucking years hadn't happened.

Disclaimer: The past three fucking years did happen.  Probably twice.

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Daily News Stuff 14 January 2020

There Is No Rule Six Edition

Tech News

Anime Music Video of the Day

Picture of the Day


Dragon's Lair by Varguy

Disclaimer: Turns out a lot of farmers buy computers.

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Tuesday, January 14


Daily News Stuff 13 January 2020

End Of Summer (Break) Edition

Tech News

Anime Music Video of the Day

Picture of the Day


Fishing Day by Linif-MUU

Disclaimer: Parity is for farmers.

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Monday, January 13


Daily News Stuff 12 January 2020

Now With Comments Edition

Tech News

Anime Music Video of the Day

Picture of the Day


Catgirl Artist by è²“臉@お仕事募集中

Disclaimer: The brain worms are strong with this one.

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