Say Weeeeeee!
Ahhhhhh!

Monday, January 31

Geek

Daily News Stuff 31 January 2022

Thirteen Thousand Bottles Of Beer On The Wall Edition

Top Story

  • Still no gluten-free chicken nuggets, but gluten-free chicken tenders are inbound.  Guess I'll live another week.


  • The Royal Society says stop trying to censor scientific disagreements online.  (Royal Society)

    Even if one side is wrong, even if one side is obviously, blatantly wrong, censorship doesn't serve the truth.

    The comment thread at Hacker News is interesting.

    There's certainly a range of opinions but most of the comments agree that  (a) censorship has no place in scientific debate or outreach and (b) science has enough problems with the Replication Crisis that it can't afford to be pointing fingers at anyone else.


Tech News

  • Memory leaks: The forgotten side of web performance.  (Read the Tea Leaves)

    Somebody needs to wrap this around a brick and toss it through the window of the YouTube web client team.  Try watching a busy Hololive livestream on a computer with less than 32GB of RAM to find out why.


  • Americans lost $770 million to social media scams in 2021.  (Bleeping Computer)

    That's about a tenth of blockchain fraud or civil asset forfeiture, never mind the real wealth killers like inflation and government waste.

    The FTC shared useful tips on how to avoid getting scammed on social media:
    Stay off social media.


  • PCs are back again.  But for how long?  (ZDNet)

    For as long as people actually need to get work done, you latte-swilling weenie.


  • Went ahead and got a PinePhone to break free of the Apple/Google diarchy?  Wondering what operating system to run on it? Here's an easy way to test the 15 current options.  (Liliputing)

    That's quite a difference from Apple, or even from Android, where if you are really determined you often can install some alternative OS that is only fully functional on hardware that you can no longer buy.


  • Ohio promised Intel $2 billion in incentives to attract the $20 billion chip factories recently announced.  (AP)

    A combination of new infrastructure (roads and water supply upgrades), tax breaks, and some sort of rebate to defray the relative expense of local construction against, um, places Intel had no intention of building a fab anyway.

    Still, of all the ways governments find to waste our money, this is one of the least destructive.



Party Like It's 1980-ish Video of the Day






Disclaimer: No, shaddap you face.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 06:31 PM | Comments (6) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
Post contains 397 words, total size 4 kb.

Sunday, January 30

Geek

Daily News Stuff 30 January 2022

This Is How You Get Fire Ants Edition

Top Story

  • Investors in the DeFi protocol Wonderland are wondering if their money is safe after the co-founder of Wonderland was revealed to have been the co-founder of collapsed crypto exchange QuadrigaCX.  (Motherboard)

    DeFi is decentralized finance - financial transactions that don't go through a bank or other centrally controlled choke point.

    QuadrigaCX made the news two years ago when its other co-founder, Gerald Cotten, suddenly died in rural India - of Crohn's disease, not something that commonly causes sudden death - leaving hundreds of millions in investor funds locked securely in a hardware wallet that no-one else had the keys to unlock.

    And if you buy that, I have a DeFi protocol to sell you.

    Most of the fuss that time focused on Cotten's sudden disappearance, assuming that he was responsible.  The remaining founder, Michael Patryn, had his funds conveniently separate from that hardware wallet and didn't lose a dime.

    But who is Michael Patryn, and should his association in what can be charitably described as an unmitigated disaster be disqualifying for a brand new DeFi protocol?

    Continued on page A2.


Tech News

  • Who is Michael Patryn?




    But one mistake, even a huge one like-




    Oh.


  • Classy guy.  With the infamy of QuadrigaCX, how did he slip under the radar of the other founders of Wonderland?



    There's something of a difference between blocking ex-cons from opening bank accounts and putting them in charge of the fucking bank.  You idiots control a billion dollars of other people's money.



    Okay, to be fair some of those other people deserve to lose all their money.



    Which doesn't sound at all like a Ponzi scheme, from a convicted criminal with a long history of Ponzi schemes.

    Do you people want draconian regulations?  Because this is how you get draconian regulations.


  • Meanwhile Minecraft-based NFT game Blockverse just disappeared with a million dollars of users' money. (Tom's Hardware)

    Over three thousand blockchain projects disappeared with all their users' money in 2021 alone.


  • Ugh.  Where was I?


  • The WD Black SN750 SE is okay.  (Tom's Hardware)

    It's a DRAMless PCIe 4 SSD.  It performs similarly, is priced similarly, and uses similar power consumption to PCIe 3 SSDs with DRAM such as Samsung's 970 Evo Plus, though models with DRAM are less likely to have weird slowdowns in edge cases.


  • Micron has some new PCIe 4 SSDs too.  (Serve the Home)

    Micron SSDs are all enterprise models - they use the Crucial brand for consumer products.  So these deliver slightly slower performance than desktop drives but endurance of up to 35PBW - 3 drive writes per day for five years.


  • The IRS is reconsidering their requirement for all taxpayers to go through a vtuber audition before being permitted to, uh,  pay their taxes.  (Washington Post / MSN)

    This particularly idiotic program outsourced all your personal information including live video chat to a startup called ID.me.  Government agencies are controlled by federal privacy laws; private companies even when operating under government contract are not.

    The scheme is so outrageous that even Ted Lieu was able to criticise it without putting his foot in his mouth:
    Rep. Ted Lieu (D-Calif.) called it "a very, very bad idea by the IRS" that would "further weaken Americans’ privacy."


  • Ongoing chip shortages are due in part to misplaced investment.  (The Register)

    Most of the hundreds of billions pouring into new semiconductor fabs are pouring into new semiconductor fabs - 7nm and smaller - but the most critical crunch is with older nodes - 40nm and larger.

    Samsung's new 17nm node is a step in the right direction - it's an update of the old, reliable 28nm node, keeping element sizes the same but with the vertical transistors (FinFETs) used on all modern process nodes.  I'm not sure I've seen any other stories on companies deploying new resources for older nodes.


Party Like It's 1980-ish Video of the Day





Disclaimer: DAILY NEWS STUFF NEW IMPROVED FORMULA AND BANNED IN GREENLAND!

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 03:14 PM | Comments (1) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
Post contains 670 words, total size 7 kb.

Saturday, January 29

Geek

Daily News Stuff 29 January 2022

RFNA Creek Edition

Top Story


Tech News


Party Like It's 1980-ish Video of the Day





Disclaimer: Not that there's anything wrong with that.  Much.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 06:24 PM | Comments (3) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
Post contains 375 words, total size 4 kb.

Friday, January 28

Geek

Daily News Stuff 28 January 2022

Tax But Verify Edition

Top Story

  • Facebook's venture into the blockchain space is apparently an ex-parrot.  (The Register)

    Called Libra, it's a multi-purpose payment processing, cryptocurrency, and NFT platform.  The plan was to have a core stablecoin and and easy way of implementing third-party cryptocurrencies and NFTs.  

    Creating a cryptocurrency on Libra is very easy - no blockchain code required - and an NFT apparently not too much harder.  Certainly better in that respect than Ethereum.

    But Facebook's plans ran head-first into disapproving regulators because they made the mistake of announcing their plans rather than just launching the platform and leaving regulators scrambling to catch up.


  • Russia meanwhile is not intending to ban cryptocurrency mining as previously rumoured.  (Tom's Hardware)

    Just going to track it and tax the hell out of it.

    Fine.  Whatever.


Tech News

Party Like It's 1980-ish Video of the Day




Disclaimer: It's not just you.  I speak all 37 dialects of Strine at a native level and I still don't know what he's saying.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 06:29 PM | Comments (2) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
Post contains 378 words, total size 4 kb.

Thursday, January 27

Geek

Daily News Stuff 27 January 2022

As The Supply Chain Sinks Slowly In The West Edition

Top Story

  • Gluten-free breakfast cereal is available again.  I also stockpiled a couple of months worth of gluten-free snacks.

    Gluten-free bread and chicken nuggets have gone AWOL though, as have most brands of toilet paper.  Two years in and they still haven't figured this out.  And we don't have Joe Biden to blame, at least not directly.  This is a home-grown debacle.


  • Another country has been DDoSed off the internet.  This time it's North Korea in the hotseat.  (Reuters)

    Oh no.

    Anyway...


Tech News

  • What's worse than NFTs?  Bankrupt cities using NFTs to raise funds.  (New York Times)

    On the upside this suggest that the entire blockchain ecosystem is due to collapse at any moment.


  • Fanhouse is a payment platform for SFW photos and videos.  It takes a 10% commission and passes 90% to content creators.  Apple of course famously takes 30% of everything.  So Fanhouse simply increased all prices in their iOS app by 50%.  (9to5Mac)
    On the platform’s website, users are urged not to buy tokens in-app, where they cost more than on the web. According to the site, 2,000 coins costs $30 on the app and $20 on the web. On Twitter, Nguyen wrote, "If the app wants you to enter payment information, don't. It means 'give Apple 30% of your money.'" Purchase coins on web, and you can freely use them in app after."
    Yes.  Everyone should do this.


  • Intel's Alder Lake Core i9 is faster than Apple's M1 Max*.  (Macworld)

    * The author wears a mask in his profile photo so you can probably just skip the article.


  • Nvidia's RTX 3050 sucks less than AMD's Radeon 6500 XT.  (AnandTech)

    It's a decent low-end gaming card.  We'll have to see what price it actually sells for because the $249 MSRP is a joke and everyone knows it.  But if it retails for 25% over the 6500 XT and you don't need to save every last penny it's an easy win for Nvidia.


Party Like It's 1980-ish Video of the Day





Disclaimer: If you leave me, take the cat with you.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 06:20 PM | Comments (1) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
Post contains 358 words, total size 3 kb.

Wednesday, January 26

Geek

Daily News Stuff 26 January 2022

Unexpected Australia Day Edition

Top Story

  • The new mobile chips from AMD have started showing up in benchmarks.

    The Ryzen 6900HX is reportedly 11% faster on single-threaded tests and 28% faster multi-threaded than the 5900HX.  (Tom's Hardware)

    Which is interesting because it's basically the same Zen 3 core, just built using TSMC's 6nm process, which is really just a tweaked version of 7nm.  The performance gains seem to be efficiency gains - the older chip was limited by the heat and power constraints of a laptop, and the newer chip less so.

    If this benchmark bears out, it puts Zen 3+ laptop chips on par with current Zen 3 desktop chips, at less than half the power consumption.


  • Intel's Core i9 12900HK is even faster.  (Tom's Hardware)

    But it takes the opposite approach.  If you read past the shiny benchmark scores and get to the battery life test, when comparing the same Alienware laptop with 11th and 12th generation Intel CPUs, the battery life has dropped from 4h31m to 2h58m.

    A huge 17" laptop is going to spend most of its time parked on a desk anyway so that might not matter to you, though you should expect 12th gen laptops to run hotter and louder as well as faster.

Tech News

Obscene Armenian Pigeon Video of the Day




Ladies and Gentlemen, Please Stand for the National Anthem Video of the Day




Ladies and Gentlemen, Please Stand for the Other National Anthem Video of the Day



Party Like It's 1980-ish Video of the Day





Disclaimer: Too many times I've seen the sun come up through bloodshot eyes this week.  No matter what I do these server patches leave no time for sleep.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 04:35 PM | Comments (4) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
Post contains 579 words, total size 6 kb.

Tuesday, January 25

Geek

Daily News Stuff 25 January 2022

Late Breaking Extra Edition

Top Story

  • Just want to make it clear that the crew of The Incomparable network are definitely probably not communists and their D&D podcast Total Party Kill in particular is great fun.

    Unless they've switched to 5e in which case I will be duty bound to declare it anathema.  Honestly it's been all downhill since they removed level names.


  • Also, Tucows is still not dead.


  • This way to the egress: Save 99% on your Amazon Cloudfront bill with this one simple trick!  (Fleet)

    Don't use Cloudfront.

    In this case Fleet reduced their monthly bandwidth expenses from $2457 to $41 by delivering content from German hosting platform Hetzner rather than directly from AWS.  Amazon - and Google and Microsoft and IBM - charge absurd rates for bandwidth.

    I posted an item not long ago about Amazon reducing their bandwidth charges except that I couldn't find the price reductions listed anywhere.  Turns out the reason is that there was no reduction.

    The increased the limit of the free tier, but all the paid tiers remained exactly the same.  Instead of the first dose being free, now the first two doses are free.


Tech News

Hololive EN Gets Five New Members or Does It Video of the Day



Friendly Neighbourhood Spider Spider Video of the Day




Party Like It's 1980-ish Video of the Day




Disclaimer: So I'm a Marvel superhero, so what?

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 02:49 PM | Comments (1) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
Post contains 776 words, total size 7 kb.

Monday, January 24

Geek

Daily News Stuff 24 January 2022

Stacked Forksheet Edition

Top Story



Tech News

  • You can't get there from here.  (Hacker news)

    Try to log in to Gmail from a device or browser they don't recognise, and it will tell you to try again from one that they do.  Got a security code?  Tough shit, you're not getting in.

    Now, if you have a device they recognise, the way it works isn't bad at all - it will pop up an alert on the other device and say "is that you?" and you just press the button and you're in.

    If you don't, though, you're kind of screwed.

    In the comments, people complaining about Apple, Facebook, and Amazon pulling the same crap.


  • Medium was a promising, um, medium.  Then it turned to shit.  (etcetera)

    I mean legitimately worse than Twitter, which is a pretty impressive achievement.  Not because of the content, but because of the platform.


  • What are NFTs, how do they work, and why do they suck?  (Absolucy)
    The ultimate goal of NFTs is kind of awful when you look at it - people want to reintroduce scarcity to the internet, a landscape where scarcity doesn't really exist.
    Yes.  Well, mostly yes.  NFTs have valid purposes, but for those purposes there is no artificial scarcity.


  • Businesses are banking on cryptocurrency. But there are two big challenges ahead.  (ZDNet)

    1. Cryptocurrencies suck.
    2. Governments suck.

    Though #2 is hardly a new discovery.



Wakeup Call Video of the Day




Party Like It's 1980-ish Video of the Day




Disclaimer: It's not what you think.  Okay, it is what you think, but I can explain.  Okay, I can't explain, but I can run away.  Byeeeeeee!

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 06:31 PM | Comments (1) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
Post contains 315 words, total size 3 kb.

Sunday, January 23

Geek

Daily News Stuff 23 January 2022

I Can See The Fnords Edition

Top Story

  • Far-right hate group the Patriot Front was hacked and 500GB of data has leaked onto the internet.



    In this video where they accidentally leave the camera running, several members of the Front remove their masks and out themselves, leading them to being tracked down by the Twitter mob and losing their jobs, homes, bank accounts, pet wombats, and so on.

    Not.

    Because they very carefully keep their masks in place while they swear allegiance to Hydra and then pretend to fumble with their glasses.  They supposedly believe the camera is off but strangely you never get a good look at any of them.

    It's not so much that they're feds, as that they are incompetent feds.  They trust in the fact that the mainstream media is even more incompetent and corrupt than they are, and for the most part, they're right.


Questions and Answers

  • From Peter the Not-so-Great:
    I have an older Apple Mac Mini (bought in 2015, IIRC) with an Intel Core I5 1.4 GHz processor, 4 GB of 1600 MHz DDR3 Ram, and an Intel HD Graphics 5000 graphics processor. The Mac is still running the OS it came with from the factory (OS X El Capitan v10.11.6). I use it almost exclusively for Web surfing, and I'm finding the browser (Safari v11.1.2) is starting to hiccup from time to time, especially if I have lots of tabs open with Youtube videos or other resource hogs (e.g. tabs closing on their own, prolonged freezes with the Spinning Beach-Ball of Doom).

    What can I do to upgrade/fix the OS and browser so that things run more reliably? In particular, what are the latest versions of OS X and Safari I can install that (a) are still available, (b) will run on my Mac, and (c) have as few of Apple's more Orwellian innovations as possible? Would you recommend a different browser? Or, to turn an old phrase on it's head, should I just buy a PC?
    I have an iMac from 2015 running 10.14 and it mostly copes fine with web browsing.  I also have a dual-core Windows laptop from that year with a similar CPU to that Mac Mini.  What I suspect is happening is you're running out of RAM thanks to years of web page bloat, which means that nothing you do to the OS or browser is likely to help much.

    Unfortunately, the model you have probably has the RAM soldered in place, so yeah, time to just buy a PC.


  • From Fred Z:
    Where did the code formatting "rule" for brace bracket indentation come from?  I hate it and wont use it.
    Ah, stories from the Indentation Wars.

    My advice is use Python.


  • From gourmand du jour:
    I have a number of external HD devices, they have a lot of audio, pictures, etc.

    While the devices still work my older computer, they don't work with my newer one (MacBook Air with the M1 chip running Monterey OS). The manufacturer of the external device (Western Digital) says they no longer make drivers to support older devices (which are about a decade old).

    Is there any work-around?
    I'd heard of Western Digital abandoning their older low-end NAS devices, but that just means you don't get updates, they should continue working without new drivers as long as they're already configured.  Same goes for USB hard drives.

    Rafal Gan Ganowicz suggests they may be formatted with the (very) old HFS, which is possible and would explain why they won't work with a new Mac.


  • From Zho Bai-den:
    I'm looking for a laptop that doesn't have an oversensitive touchpad; I've bought a couple that seem to open links with the slightest, unintentional touch. I have adjusted all software settings.The Apple Mac works for me, but I won't have one. Is there a brand or model line that has the "right touch"?
    That's a good question, but I stay as far away from the touchpad as I can - partly for exactly that reason.

    The newer Dell Inspiron models seem to be decent on this, but I mostly use mine via a wireless keyboard and mouse and an external monitor, so I'm not the best person to ask.


  • From Wingnutt:
    since retiring a number of years ago, my computer skills have atrophied. Have a Thinkpad that's still operating fine on Win10 ... but never gets used unless my Surface bites the dust. Thinking of converting the Thinkpad to linux. a) workable for a laptop? b) best distro to use? and c) wipe the hd and start from scratch, or go with dual boot?
    Linux generally works well on laptops these days as long as you don't have brand new hardware that hasn't received a Linux driver yet.  For a Thinkpad a few years old you should be fine.

    I'd suggest giving Ubuntu a try.  Mint is also popular for desktop/laptop use for normal humans.


  • From Rafal Gan Ganowicz:
    What is a great external SSD for a boot drive? Thunderbolt 3 is available, and from what I hear if you get a Thunderbolt SSD your speeds are about double of what a USB-C drive can offer.
    Basically there's three ways to go here: Samsung has a pretty nice range of USB-C SSDs which are really tiny and reasonably fast.  OWC makes their own Thunderbolt SSDs including models that let you install up to four of your own M.2 drives and run up to 3x faster than the Samsung drives.  Or you can get a USB-C drive case off Amazon and make your own.

    A good Thunderbolt case with a good drive inside it will be up to twice as fast as a USB-C drive.  USB 4 is as fast as Thunderbolt but I haven't seen any devices supporting its full speed yet - and in any case it doesn't help you because if you found a USB 4 device it would fall back to USB 3 speeds when plugged into Thunderbolt.


  • From Braenyard:
    Pine Phone, you did a review on the Pine Phone and its cousins and provided links. I didn't save the address to that post.

    Do you have an updated opinion?
    Can you provide a link to that old post?
    This is my most recent mention of the PinePhone.

    I haven't used one, but the specs on the current model are at least functional.  It's around 50% faster than the little Lenovo tablet I just got and that runs fine most of the time.

    It's expensive for the hardware specs, but if you want to break free from the Google / Apple diarchy, there aren't many other options.


  • From Fox2!:
    Do you have any idea when Apple is going to release a 27 inch iMac with the A series chip? The 27 is still being offered with an Intel chipset, which means immediate obsolescence when they finally release the A chip version.
    I've seen the usual rumours but nothing more than that.  When it does finally show up remember that it won't be upgradeable at all - everything will be soldered in place.

    I would be surprised if they don't announce something this year, but my guess would be later rather than sooner.


  • From WillowViney:
    You say that Node and npm suck. I don't disagree with that opinion, so what do you consider to be the best alternative to Node for new web projects? Deno? Something else?
    Python.  Ruby if you prefer it.  Nim or Crystal if your development cycle allows for compile times.  Or Go, or Java.

    JavaScript has no place on servers.


  • From Nimrod:
    There are several problematic issues with modern consumer tech (more or less related), and everyone would weight them differently. What would your hw/sw/service recommendations to minimize concerns for each of these:
    1) concerned about surveillance capitalism
    2) concerned that China is asshoe
    3) concerned about hostility to conservative/traditional/non-elitist worldviews
    That's not a small question!

    1. Don't use cloud components.  Software as a service can work.  Cloud servers - bare instances of Linux running in a huge datacenter somewhere - can work.  Cloud databases, cloud message queues, cloud search engines - those are anathema to any sort of freedom.

    2. For the most part China doesn't seem to go asshoe on consumer devices, probably because they know it could cost them a trillion dollars a year.  Huawei was banned for putting backdoors into 5G mobile networks, not into their phones.  The biggest story I've seen was Bloomberg's coverage of a hardware hack put into Supermicro servers at the Chinese factory - and that story was bullshit.

    3. If you go with cloud servers and back up to an entirely separate cloud, and avoid anything that locks you into one provider (cloud databases are particularly bad) then you can pick up and move anytime.  For years this blog was hosted with a Texas company that was solid on free speech issues, but they got bought up by a larger corporation.

    Main thing is don't lock yourself in.


  • From buddhaha:
    Is there an 8" tablet (or thereabouts - smaller can't read, bigger gets awkward), that runs a privacy oriented os, ie: something non-apple other than android.
    Not that I know of.  You could try updating a Lenovo or Samsung tablet with something like LineageOS, but support for tablets is patchy at best.


  • From Aetius451AD:
    I was going to ask whether anyone had seen anything about new rare earth mines being opened in addition to the chip manufacturing plants. Then I thought: do they just dig rare earth material out of the ground and send it straight to the chip plant? It would have to be refined at some level, right? Are there separate refineries or are they done at the mining end (or the chip end?)
    One thing to note is that rare earth elements aren't actually rare; several countries including Russia, Canada, the US, Australia, and Brazil each have proven reserves sufficient to provide the entire planet.  On a recent discovery in Brazil:
    The price of neodymium is now U.S. $300,000 a tonne, and we have 28 million tons* of it.
    The problem with rare earth elements is that refining them is an environmental nightmare and everyone is perfectly happy to leave China to poison their own countryside.

    Also, rare earths aren't used much in chip production; it's mostly very very pure silicon and very very nasty solvents.

    * I think that's actually 28 million kilograms.  28 million tons of neodymium would be a lot.


  • From Bitblt:
    I'd been thinking of trying to acquire a new desktop after the new year to replace my aging i7-950 / currently GTX 970 build. (Not liking change, I like to buy sweet-spot high-end and then ride it for a very long time with occasional upgrades.) Originally I was thinking of trying for an AMD 5950x / RTX 3080 system. But the AMD 7950x announcement and rumors of RTX 4000 later this year have me wondering if I should wait. Especially with the new mobo chipset with updated PCI and RAM support, and the sweet IPC bump on the CPU arch. Thoughts?
    Zen 4 looks like it will be a really great upgrade.  It's a shame it's taking so long to arrive - two whole years, how dreadful - but it brings a new core plus PCIe 5 and DDR5.

    Intel already has all that and their platform is honestly not bad if you avoid the highest-end chips that use 50kw of power at idle.  The problem biting Intel is that DDR5 right now is very expensive without actually being any faster than DDR4 in most applications.  That might be resolved in nine months or so when AMD's new chips and motherboards appear.

    AMD has also announced that the new Socket AM5 will be a long-lived design just like the current AM4, which first appeared in 2016.  Intel sockets generally change every couple of years.  


  • From Bitblt again:
    You keep mentioning and linking this Hololive and related stuff. I'm out of the loop. What is that, and what's the background on it?
    Some background from my personal perspective might help.  I spend long hours alone at home at my desk, sometimes late at night, and I find that having something playing on the second monitor can help prevent me from getting even more distracted and wasting time on Twitter or wherever.

    For a few years I was a dedicated listener to a long list of podcasts, including networks like This Week in Tech and The Incomparable.  But as we moved into 2020 a lot of the stuff I was listening to on ostensibly tech or geek culture topics was becoming unpleasantly political, and by "unpleasantly political" I mean batshit crazy communism.  The same stuff that had wrecked Twitter by 2018.

    But around that time, this surfaced in my recommendations on YouTube, the only time Google has gotten anything right since about 2013.



    It's only a 20 second clip but it was enough to make me say What the heck? and take a closer look.  And then I found there's no escaping the rabbit hole.

    This is Hololive:



    Yes, there's a lot of them.  (That's seven videos edited together by a fan, which explains why some of the transitions aren't perfect.)

    Basically Hololive is a 24/7 international all-girl improv comedy channel.  Unwoke, unpolitically correct, irreverent and chaotic.  They even have their own Bugs Bunny character - you see her for a couple of seconds in that video, her name is Usada Pekora and she has 1.8 million YouTube subscribers.

    They sing, they dance - they have live concerts using full motion tracking and 3D models, they draw - at least two are successful commercial artists, they play an awful lot of Minecraft, and they don't take any shit from anyone.



    Hololive's own background is also interesting.  Parent company Cover Corp was working on a new AR device, that replaced expensive motion tracking with a regular iPhone and clever software, but they weren't having a lot of success breaking into the market.

    Then in 2017 two Japanese girls fresh out of high school approached them and said what they needed was their own virtual spokeswoman.  One of them is now Tokino Sora with 900,000 subscribers, and the other is referred to as A-chan, and is a senior manager overseeing activity across the entire company.



    The pivot was spectacularly successful, and Hololive is basically a money factory.  Their smallest channel - and they have dozens - has close to 300,000 subscribers, and the largest is approaching 4 million.

    I think a lot of people are sick of hypocritical woke crap and are looking for entertainers who will simply tell it like it is.  The 2D characters they use and the stage names (and a very strict corporate policy protecting their privacy) give them enough distance that they don't need to maintain a pretense in their opinions.

    They don't get explicitly political but in this benighted age that itself is a profound political statement.

    And beyond the official content - and there's so much of that that it's impossible to watch it all - there's an absolute avalanche of fan content, from cute video clips:



    To entire virtual worlds:



    So forget Hollywood, forget Netflix, forget podcasts, I really don't care anymore.  I'll be over here in the corner juggling hedgehogs.

    Also, Hololive is the main reason I bothered to get back on Twitter.  They post their stream announcements there.

    This is Gawr Gura of Hololive EN, the most successful virtual YouTube of all time:



    Okay, yeah, she's a bit of a ditz on some things. But she can maintain both sides of a conversation for four hours at a time, every day, without ever repeating herself, and for the most part while doing three other things at the same time, and that's a rare talent.


Tech News

  • Australia's Secretary for Home Affairs has made comments on the surveillance state that are almost sensible.  (ZDNet)
    Pezzullo wants "everyday Australians" to have the confidnce that it would be "highly unusual for any of their data, any of their devices, or indeeed any of their engagement through their devices with data, to be the subject of surveillance or interception".
    ...

    "I think the more immediate pressing problem for the citizenry is to actually understand what companies are doing with that personal and sometimes intimate data," he said.
    Yes.
    "Everything that government will do will always be purposely designed by the parliament to be much more restricted than that."
    Forgive me if I don't trust you fuckers the width of a single electron.


  • If you want an 8k resin-based 3D printer the Phrozen Sonic Mini is one.  (Tom's Hardware)

    I don't know that much about resin-based 3D printing, but the models this turns out looks pretty nice.  You do need specially formulated resin to get that 8k detail but if you use that the results are impressive.


  • Everything has two prices.  (Raptitude)

    The first in dollars, the second in time.  

    Since I got two pay increases last year I'm pretty much at saturation point on the second price.  I was planning to use my holiday time over Christmas and New Year to rebuild my home office, but then the blockchain we use blew up and I ended up working an 80 hour week instead of a zero hour one.


  • Why are skyscrapers so short?  (Works in Progress)

    Short answer: Elevators.

    Long answer: Still elevators.


  • 90 WordPress themes and plugins had backdoors added to them in a supply chain attack.  (Bleeping Computer)

    This is novel in that the plugins didn't already contain backdoors.


  • McAfee Enterprise Agent on the other hand, did.  (Bleeping Computer)

    Installing the security software had the neat effect of making systems dramatically less secure.

    It's now been fixed.



Party Like It's 1980-ish Video of the Day


It's Australia Day week here so yes, you're going to get 7 days straight of the best 1981 Australia has to offer.

Yes, 1982 was better - stellar year for Aussie music - but we're not up to 1982 yet.

And in case you're wondering, yes, it's about Errol Flynn.



Disclaimer: I'm Elvis Presley!

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 04:16 PM | Comments (5) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
Post contains 2994 words, total size 22 kb.

Saturday, January 22

Geek

Daily News Stuff 22 January 2022

This Is Hololive Edition

Top Story

  • Intel is spending $20 billion on a new manufacturing facility in Ohio.  (AnandTech)

    The new facility will initially include two factories on 1000 acres, with room to expand to eight factories.

    These won't come online until 2025, so they're not going to help you buy that video card you want, but they are in addition to the $20 billion expansion Intel already has under way in Arizona, $3.5 billion in New Mexico, $3 billion in Oregon, and $7 billion in Malaysia.

    Almost as if chip making was big business these days.


  • Weekends are question and answer time.  Drop your questions in the comments today and I'll attempt to answer them tomorrow.  If you left a question during the week I'll try to answer those too but I might miss seeing some of them.


Tech News

  • Google's inclusive language police are working tirelessly to prevent offense to inanimate objects.  (Wall Street Journal)

    Not a surprise to see stories like this; we all know the lunatics have taken over the asylum at Google.  Bit of a surprise to see the story being written by eminent theoretical physicist Lawrence Krauss.


  • Athletes competing in the 2022 Winter Olympics should keep their mouths shut if they want to get out of China alive.  (South China Morning Post)

    Interesting to see this article not quite directly accusing the Chinese government of genocide but liberally citing others who do level those accusations.  The SCMP is owned by the Alibaba Group, which is not exactly on cordial terms with the Xi dictatorship.

    It also puts he boot squarely into the International Olympic Committee, which has entirely earned this kicking.


  • The Raden 6500 XT is a crap desktop graphics card because AMD never intended it to be a desktop graphics card.  (Hot Hardware)

    The design choices are focused on reducing power consumption, not cost, for a laptop graphics solution.  And it works fine...  Works acceptably in that scenario.

    So for example it only has 4 lanes of PCIe.  That's fine - acceptable - if you have PCIe 4, but slows things down significantly in older systems with PCIe 3.  But in laptops that's irrelevant, because nobody is going to produce a laptop with a four year old CPU and the latest graphics chip.

    The only reason it's shown up on the desktop at all is the ongoing shortage of graphics cards - better to have something out there than nothing at all.

    That explains all the shortcomings of the card - the limited I/O and memory bandwidth, the missing video compression codecs, the lack of VRAM - they grabbed some spare mobile chips to try to keep up with desktop demand.

    It's still a bad card and you shouldn't buy one, but it's not malice aforethought.


Party Like It's 1980-ish Video of the Day





Disclaimer: Tried to start it up, tried to start it up but it don't pop.  It's been running hot, think the carburetor might be shot.

Posted by: Pixy Misa at 01:56 PM | Comments (5) | Add Comment | Trackbacks (Suck)
Post contains 502 words, total size 4 kb.

<< Page 1 of 4 >>
136kb generated in CPU 0.14, elapsed 0.3624 seconds.
60 queries taking 0.2575 seconds, 356 records returned.
Powered by Minx 1.1.6c-pink.
Using https / https://ai.mee.nu / 354