What is that?
It's a duck pond.
Why aren't there any ducks?
I don't know. There's never any ducks.
Then how do you know it's a duck pond?

Sunday, November 21

Geek

Daily News Stuff 21 November 2021

Evil Dog God Edition

Top Story

  • That pointless 20TB torrent of NFTs?  Fake.  (Club NFT)

    99.95% of the 20TB file is zeroes.  They didn't even bother with the pointless scraping of already-public data.  They just lied.

    Which I must admit is a lot less effort.  If you're doing something with no identifiable value or purpose, might as well take the easy way.

Tech News


Party Like It's 1979 Video of the Day



I've never seen the video for this before.  Not sure how it managed to escape from 1959.  I expect Sam Beckett was involved.


Party Like It's 1959 Video of the Day





Disclaimer: Freeze!  I'm Korone Baker.  Put your money in the air and gimme all your hands.

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Saturday, November 20

Geek

Daily News Stuff 20 November 2021

Half Past Eleventy Edition

Top Story

  • Amazon doesn't rouse my ire as often as the other big tech companies.  I order stuff from them - though not gluten-free jelly beans, because those seem to be perpetually out of stock - and they drop it on my doorstep.  Quick, cheap, no fuss, and a life-changer during the lockdown when many smaller stores were closed (or closed to the unvaxed) and I needed something that I couldn't get in my weekly grocery delivery.

    It's only very recently that Amazon Australia has become useful.  When they first launched down under, they only sold digital goods - Kindle books and things like that - which was worse than useless because it required you to change your Kindle account which would lose all the content from the US store.  Still does, so far as I know, so I don't use it for that.

    But they are, quietly behind the scenes, amoral scumbags.  (Reuters)

    Amazon lobbyists have scuttled dozens of state privacy bills.
    In a statement, Amazon said: "The premise of this story is flawed and includes reporting that relies on early, incomplete drafts of documents to draw incorrect conclusions.” The company said it protects consumers’ privacy and doesn’t sell their data. "We know we must get privacy right in order to meet our customers’ high expectations.”
    Which is another way of saying, Yes, we did all those things, but we corrected some typos before the email went out.


  • Meanwhile, twelve ordinary men and women, picked at random and fed lies by their own government, once again showed more wisdom and courage than all the nation's self-appointed elites put together.

    Consider me grey-pilled for the rest of the day.



Tech News

  • Samsung is working on DDR6, GDDR6+, and GDDR7 RAM for PCs and video cards.  (WCCFTech)

    DDR6 has a planned speed of 12.8GHz, twice as fast as DDR5.  GDDR6+ will hit 24GHz - graphics RAM runs faster than motherboard RAM - and GDDR7 32GHz.


  • Speaking of DDR5, there isn't any.  (Tom's Hardware)

    I saw this story yesterday but wasn't sure if the source was reliable, though the details are plausible enough.  DDR5 memory modules are in short supply, yes, that's easy to confirm.  The detail here is that it's not because DDR5 memory chips are hard to get, but because the PMIC - the voltage controller used on each module - is sold out, with a lead time over eight months.  And it also costs ten times as much as the equivalent chip on DDR4 modules.

    Given that for most tasks DDR4 actually works out slightly faster than DDR5 - because early DDR5 modules have terrible latency settings - it makes sense to just pretend for now that it doesn't exist.

    In a year or so it will have all settled down and modules with better timings will show the benefits of DDR5, but for now, it's somewhere between a paper tiger and a white elephant.


  • China is probably lying about its supercomputers.  (Tom's Hardware)

    The specs and the benchmark numbers don't add up.


  • Amazon Ion is... Wait, I've done that one.  (GitHub)

    Yeah.  And since then I've come to the conclusion that any data serialisation format that supports comments should be taken out behind the barn and killed with an axe.


  • If you need to keep thousands of different versions of the same program, Elfshaker is for you.  (GitHub)

    Most of us don't need to do that, but if you're releasing prebuilt binaries of an application, it's really handy to keep every single version, including all the betas and debug builds.  Elfshaker can do that for you - and deliver 4000:1 compression by only storing the differences between the builds.


  • 500 Server Error Unable to unlock car.  (Bleeping Computer)

    If you unlock your Tesla with the mobile app and don't keep the key with you, you might want to reconsider that.


  • The ECS LIVA Mini Box QC710 Desktop is a tiny Arm-based Windows PC.  (Thurrott.com)

    You can buy it from the Microsoft store and you can see that the tech giant is behind this platform all the way by their strict no refunds policy.

    It runs the Qualcomm 7c processor, which while actually a good bit faster than my own phone - it's an A76 and my phone is the older A73 - is hopelessly slow at running Windows.

    It also has just 4GB of RAM - not user upgradeable - which is pretty woeful for Windows these days.  My phone, despite being an older budget model and Android being much lighter than Windows, has 8GB.


  • The FDA wants 55 years to deliver public information on the Pfizer Bat Flu vaccine.  (Substack)

    Snopes says "mostly false", which means of course it's entirely true.  As I've said before, Barbara was always the brains behind Snopes, and in recent years we've learned that she was also the integrity.  Since they split up the site has crashed, burned, and is currently tunneling straight for the Mohorovičić Discontinuity.


  • Do not rely on SMS-based 2FA.  (Engadget)

    It can rapidly devolve into 0FA if you're the victim of a SIM swap.  In this case costing the victim $36.5 million.


  • The CEO of Citadel outbid a group of crypto investors for a copy of the Constitution.  (WSJ)

    My immediate reaction was oh fuck not another $40 million NFT.

    As it turns out, no.  An extremely rare actual physical first edition.  Which given that people seem determined to burn it to ashes one way or another, may be a sound investment.

    It will be loaned and on display in an Arkansas art museum.  Don't know which one because the free part of the article cuts off there.

Party Like It's 1979 Video of the Day



Now that is some proper 70s music.  Not the 80s come early, not the 60s running late, pure unmistakeable 70s.



Disclaimer: Hand over the nugs and no-one gets hurt.

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Friday, November 19

Geek

Daily News Stuff 19 November 2021

One Of Those Days And A Half Edition

Top Story


Tech News



Party Like It's 1979 Video of the Day



It's just wrong that this came out in 1979.  It's distilled Essence of 80s.



Disclaimer: Nope, still ow.

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Geek

Argh

Me: Okay, I've been pushing back against this change request because we don't have the time to do it properly, but people insisted, so here's a simple version that will work unless something unprecedented happens.

Something Unprecedented: Well, hello there!

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Thursday, November 18

Geek

Daily News Stuff 18 November 2021

Kill -9 Them All And Pipe Them Through Sort -U Edition

Top Story

  • AMD and Qualcomm are looking to Samsung's 3nm process which is expected to start production next year.  (WCCFTech)

    TSMC currently has a technology lead over Samsung with its 5nm process, but that doesn't matter for anyone except Apple because no-one else has had a chance to buy it.

    Even if Samsung's 3nm node again lags behind TSMC's 3nm technically - it looks like it will ship sooner - if that situation repeats and customers like AMD can't get space on the 3nm production line, Samsung is likely to pick up their business.

    In this case Samsung may also have a better product, since it is using the new GAAFET design at 3nm where TSMC is holding of until 2nm before switching.

    One of the big advantages Apple has with its M1 chips is that they're at 5nm when AMD and Intel are at 7nm, so you can bet the latter companies are looking to level that playing field.


Tech News

  • What the hell is going on with that keyboard?  (ZDNet)

    Seriously, Asus?  The Amstrad CPC 464 was a nice computer for 1984 but I don't think there's any pressing need to reproduce it in 2021.


  • Blink if you're under duress.  (The Verge)

    One of the founders of YouTube has likened a recent video trying to put a positive spin on the removal of the dislike counter to Jeremiah Denton blinking out torture in Morse code.

    I don't think anyone currently working for YouTube is even aware that such a thing happened.


  • Live by the online subscription, die by the online cancellation.  (Nieman Lab)

    The FTC has ruled that if customers can sign up for a subscription by clicking a button, companies must allow them to cancel that subscription the same way.  


  • Miramax is suing Quentin Tarantino over NFTs.  (TorrentFreak)

    The director wants to cash in on the booming marketplace of rich idiots.  The movie company naturally wants its cut of the money, which is to say, all of it.


  • Minecraft 1.18 is due out on November 30.  (Windows Central / MSN)

    This is the second part of the Caves and Cliffs update, containing caves and cliffs.  The first part didn't have any caves or cliffs.

    It also apparently makes axolotls harder to find.  Since I only have one so far, I might need to look around for some more before I update.


Party Like It's 1979 Video of the Day




Party Like It's 1979 Bonus Video of the Day



I posted this on my blog previously but not in one of the regular daily updates, so here it is for everyone.



Disclaimer: Objects in the time mirror are later than you think.

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Wednesday, November 17

Geek

Daily News Stuff 17 November 2021

Old Lamps For New Edition

Top Story

  • I will pay you cash to delete your NPM module.  (Drew DeVault)

    NPM - the package manager for Node.js, which is the premier server-side solution for JavaScript programmers - is the single worst thing ever created by the human race.  It needs to be destroyed before it destroys us.

    Case in point: The isArray module, which is four lines of code that checks whether an arbitrary object is an array by converting it to a string and checking the contents of the string gets 51 million downloads per week.

    In any real programming language that would get you horsewhipped, if not dipped in honey and staked out on an anthill.  In Node.js this is considered best practices.

    Drew's solution is to pay people to delete their packages.  isArray disappears and millions of apps fail.  Repeat a few hundred times - because Node.js developers are fucking idiots and need to be bludgeoned over the head - and they might eventually stop doing this shit.


  • Oh, also, anyone could publish anything to NPM.  (GitHub)

    Wanted to upload your own code and overwrite a popular package with, basically, anything at all?  You could.  

    Because, GitHub helpfully explains, microservices.


Tech News



Party Like It's 1979 Video of the Day




Disclaimer: Sydney, Moscow, Detroit, Tokyo, everybody talk about, well, you know...

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Post contains 458 words, total size 5 kb.

Tuesday, November 16

Geek

Daily News Stuff 16 November 2021

Getting Too Old For This Shit Edition

Top Story

  • If the facts are on your side, pound on the facts.  If the law is on your side, pound on the law.  If neither is on your side, sweep the jury with an AR-15.


  • If you don't have an AR-15 just blow up one of your own satellites.  (Ars Technica)

    Russia appears to have tested an anti-satellite weapon and in the process created an entire cloud of anti-satellite weapons, with over 1500 pieces of high-velocity shrapnel being tracked and innumerable smaller pieces posing a hazard to everything in low Earth orbit. 

Tech News

  • New York City has passed a bill requiring bias audit of AI technology used in making hiring decisions.  (Protocol)

    This is actually a good move.  Most of this stuff is worthless, trivial algorithms dressed up as AI.  If all this does force people to stop claiming AI when there is none, good enough.


  • Perfecting the New York street.  (Curbed)

    By making absolutely every aspect of it worse.

    To be fair, they're not attempting to make the perfect street, or even a passable street, they want to make the perfect New York street, which is to say, Cthulhu in pavement.


  • Want to get a new Intel 12th generation CPU but don't want to move to Windows 11?  Wondering how much performance you will lose by sticking with Windows 10?  Turns out for gaming the answer is around -2%.  (Tech Powerup)

    That is, Windows 10 is on average slightly faster than Windows 11.  Also, DDR4 memory is - currently - slightly faster on average than DDR5 in gaming benchmarks.

    That will change over time, but for now the biggest advantage of DDR5 is that it provides lots of memory bandwidth for high-performance integrated graphics, which is not noticeably something Intel's desktop CPUs possess.  I'll take another look in January when the 12th gen laptop chips are expected to launch.


  • More leaked benchmarks show that the upcoming 12800H mobile chip is both faster and slower than the 12700H.  (WCCFTech)

    I think we should ignore these benchmarks until the parts actually ship.  They're garbage.


  • Hackers are taking over Alibaba cloud servers to mine cryptocurrencies.  (Bleeping Computer)

    Which is illegal in China in the first place.


  • Air is the new surface.  (American Shipper)

    Ocean freight is so screwed up at this point that air freight is looking attractive.  Costs are up 150% compared to before the Bat Flu, but costs for surface freight have increased as much as tenfold.  And air freight is much faster and bypasses the need for long-distance trucking or rail transfers to and from port locations.


  • Intel's 4004 turns 50.  (WCCFTech)

    The first microprocessor was designed for calculators and only supported 4 bit data.  It was followed by the 8008 in 1972, and the much more successful 8080 in 1974, which launched the microcomputer industry.

    It's been all downhill from there.


Party Like It's 1979 Video of the Day



This is practically the Hololive anthem, it comes up so often.





Disclaimer: Rocks will be provided.

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Monday, November 15

Geek

Daily News Stuff 15 November 2021

I Will Not Eat Bugs Dayo Edition

Top Story

  • PixyLab TNG: 24 cores, 176GB RAM, 10TB SSD, 100TB HDD, and 30 million pixels of glorious 95% DCI-P3 colour.

    Just... Not all in one system.


  • No qubits though. IBM has announced a new quantum computer with 127 qubits. (Bloomberg)

    This allows it to do, um, stuff. In theory the compute capacity of a quantum computer is exponential with the number of qubits, so this should be able to do almost anything - like find the password for your crypto wallet containing 50 Bitcoin. Or find the password for someone else's crypto wallet containing 50 Bitcoin.

    In practice, well, not a whole lot seems to be happening.


Tech News

  • yabai is a tiling window manager for macOS High Sierra 10.13.6, Mojave 10.14.4+, Catalina 10.15.0+ and Big Sur 11.0.1. (GitHub)
    It automatically modifies your window layout using a binary space partitioning algorithm to allow you to focus on the content of your windows without distractions.

    A flexible and easy-to-grok command line interface allows you to control and query windows, spaces and displays to enable powerful integration with tools like ↗ skhd to allow you to work more efficiently with macOS. Create custom keybindings to control windows, spaces and displays in practically no time and get your hands off the mouse and trackpad and back onto the keyboard where actual work gets done.
    Your scientists were so preoccupied with whether or not they could, they didn't stop to learn to speak English.


  • Why asynchronous Rust doesn't work. (eta)

    Rust is a systems programming language. Systems are not asynchronous, not in that sense. They just aren't; that's not how computers work. Use threads, or use a different language.


  • Used tractors are the new GPU. (Bloomberg)

    There aren't enough of them to go around and the price index is at a record high. The difference is that if there aren't enough tractors, that affects more than some kid's score in League of Apex.


  • Speaking of GPUs, Serve the Home tried out some GPU servers.

    Four cards - or rather, modules.
    Eight cards.
    Ten cards.

    And, uh, 3.5" drive bays. Why? Who is going to pair 500 TFLOPS of compute capacity with spinning rust?


Party Like It's 1979 Video of the Day



Video is from the following year, but the song charted in '79.



Speaking of Used Tractors Video of the Day



Nvidia's RTX 2060 - nearly three years old at this point - is back again, only now it has 12GB of RAM.

Why? Because what are you going to do, buy a new tractor? Good luck finding one!



Disclaimer: Twirls mustache, exits stage left, laughs all the way to the bank.

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Sunday, November 14

Geek

Daily News Stuff 14 November 2021

Hose Woes Edition

Top Story

  • Finally got my new pressure washer out of the box to clean the back deck as planned.  Last few weekends I've either been working or it's been pouring with rain, or both.

    Snap the connector in place for the hose to the cleaning wand.  Snap the connector in place at the wand end.  Connect up the garden hose.

    SNAP.

    Take a look.  It's the garden hose that's broken off.  It has no flex left to it at all - it's now stuck in a rigid coil - and it doesn't take much force to snap it into pieces.


  • Apropos of nothing, it turns out you can get a garden hose delivered in under an hour.


  • An FBI / DHS server got hacked and used in a phishing campaign targeting sysadmins.  (Bleeping Computer)

    Fortunately whoever did it was an idiot, and though the emails did legitimately come from an FBI server, it was easy to spot them as fakes.


  • It was a shallow hack, not a penetration of the FBI's network.  (Krebs On Security)

    Made possible because the FBI has an internet-accessible registration page for staff of law enforcement agencies, part of a system called LEEP.  And that registration system could easily be suborned to send any email you want to any address you want - while still being cryptographically signed by the FBI.

    Oops.

    While we are endangered by the fact that a lot of these systems are designed, built, and run by idiots, we are frequently saved by the fact that most hackers are also idiots.

    This could have been a used for a careful, long-term campaign to compromise all sorts of companies and services.  But instead it was so blatant it got shut down in a matter of hours.



Tech News



Party Like It's 1979 Video of the Day





Disclaimer: It really is something other than else.

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Post contains 688 words, total size 6 kb.

Saturday, November 13

Geek

Daily News Stuff 13 November 2021 Late Final Extra

Someone else is having a bad day, it appears:


The people in this related thread are insane.



A DHS/FBI server got breached, and their solution is to ban anonymous accounts from the internet and centralise everything.  Which will work great because there's no way a DHS/FBI server could ever get breached and spill everyone's details.


Meanwhile, Sana (from Hololive EN Gen 2) seems to have a sister, or maybe a cousin.  Sara from PRISM Gen 4 debuted today and unless I miss my bet, she's another Queenslander, and outright confirmed she's an Aussie.



They're going for a fractured fairy tale motif with this generation - today we got Little Red Riding Wolf and Arabian Nights Australian Snake Lady.

Araka Luto from PRISM Gen 2 is also an Aussie, but her accent is pure chaos (like Bae from Hololive) so I can't place where she's from.  Probably east coast but then that's 75% of the population anyway.


Party Like It's 1977 Bonus Video of the Day



There are a number of dances on YouTube set to Ma Baker, but most of them are edits.  This one is genuine; the girl in the pink top is the choreographer.


Disclaimer: Not everything about the 70s was bad.  My back didn't hurt all the time for a start.

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