webshit weekly (2019/12/07)

An annotated digest of the top "Hacker" "News" posts for the first week of December, 2019.

PIA VPN to be acquired by malware company founded by former Israeli spy
December 01, 2019 (comments)
An Internet warns us that our network security vendor is at risk of being turned into a profitable business. The VPN provider named in the article arrives in the comments and is immediately subject to dozens of lectures about ethics from Hackernews. The central thrust of the lectures is the unacceptability of running a business centered around advertising and user tracking. The fact that advertising and user tracking is all of Hackernews' day jobs is not mentioned.

December 02, 2019 (comments)
Hackernews notices a website from 2017, because it was updated to add one line. No new information is discussed.

Sundar will be the CEO of both Google and Alphabet
December 03, 2019 (comments)
Google takes a few steps towards admitting their byzantine corporate structure is irrelevant. Hackernews tries to get to the bottom of What It All Means, and they focus on the most important facet of that investigation: what will Larry Page and Sergey Brin do now? The obvious answer, "it doesn't matter," is disregarded. The rest of the comments are people trying to convince each other how important Google executives are to us on a personal level and why we should track and emulate their every move.

Fight back against Google AMP (2018)
December 04, 2019 (comments)
A webshit who gets paid to ratfuck Google's search results is angry that Google is taking over the entire web. Hackernews is torn: some are glad that there is finally a way to quickly display static content, which the web has never been able to do before, while the others are angry that Google doesn't seem to give a shit about anything but Google. The rest of the comments are reverse-engineering possible ways to get similar page-loading speeds, but no consensus is reached. The publishers of N-Gate are investigating switching the content entirely to AMP in order to mitigate the miserably plodding pace of page loads on this site.

How to fight back against Google AMP as a web user and a web developer
December 05, 2019 (comments)
Another webshit posts a "Hacker" "News" comment on a different website, where it's possible to add advertising links. No new information is presented. Hackernews continues the bickering from the previous day, with a noticeable increase in astroturfing from the "Google is here to protect us from ourselves" camp.

The Great Cannon has been deployed again
December 06, 2019 (comments)
AT&T chooses to use the passive voice, because they are cowards. A more accurate headline is "The Chinese government attacks websites which support a free Hong Kong," but a better headline would include some information regarding the Chinese government being comprised of despicable filth. Hackernews catalogues technical solutions to societal problems, then hunkers down to discuss the really important question: do people deserve to use the internet? Lots of whining about web protocols follows, with nobody pointing out the obvious solution here: the Chinese government must be overthrown. This would also solve several other ongoing problems, save thousands of innocent lives per year, and provide the opportunity for the Chinese people to select a less ridiculous national anthem.

The Lesson to Unlearn
December 07, 2019 (comments)
Notably useless asshole Paul Graham whines about school testing, then relates a story in which Paul Graham turned out to be even smarter than Paul Graham thought Paul Graham was, which was extremely smart to begin with. Hackernews catalogues all the times they were almost as smart as Paul Graham. There is no content in either the article or the comments about the article. After a while even Hackernews gets bored, and starts trading Facebook interview tips. Paul Graham.

webshit weekly (2019/11/30)

An annotated digest of the top "Hacker" "News" posts for the last week of November, 2019.

Disclaimer: This week sucks. It's like Hackernews went on vacation and wasn't trapped in a FAANG cube forced to clockwatch their way through the day. No refunds.

Save .org
November 22, 2019 (comments)
Some Internets decide to Make a Difference. Hackernews is convinced they could rebuild DNS from first principles, but get bogged down deciding whether it's most appropriately implemented at the browser layer or the United Nations layer. Other Hackernews are convinced they already have rebuilt DNS from first principles, but they can't seem to get any traction with people who don't give a shit about Bitcoin. Most of the rest of Hackernews are outraged that someone is rat-fucking the internet to make a ton of money and nobody invited Hackernews.

The Bus Ticket Theory of Genius
November 23, 2019 (comments)
A delusional asshole rambles into a text editor. No coherent thoughts are expressed, but we are treated to ringside seats as a dimwit attempts to understand intelligence. Hackernews tries to figure out what life might be like for people who are not completely consumed by whatever topic happens to impose itself upon their lives. Later, the conversation turns to a search for methods to prevent human life from interfering with obssessive behavior. The most common answers involve paying other people to do things so you can spend more time with your derangement. Finally, the conversation arrives at the natural terminus for the topic: can Hackernews get rich playing video games? Why not?

Beating C with one line of Brainfuck
November 24, 2019 (comments)
An Internet plays with computers. Hackernews votes for the link because they enjoy the hipster flex involved, but they don't post comments because there's nothing interesting to discuss. Since anyone mentioned C, most of the comments are people whining about C.

Interactive Linear Algebra
November 25, 2019 (comments)
Some academics learned javascript. There is a shitload of javascript present, so Hackernews votes for the link, but it's all about math, so there are roughly half as many comments as about the previous story, which discussed a programming language called Brainfuck. The few comments which are not recommendations for other books are from Hackernews desperate to demonstrate that they know at least one more Math Thing than the authors.

Psilocybin for major depression granted Breakthrough Therapy by FDA
November 26, 2019 (comments)
The Food and Drug Association declares war on the Drug Enforcement Administration. Because this story is about drugs instead of mathematics, it recieves ten times more comments, most of which are from Hackernews effusing about the Life-Changing Experience they underwent at a Phish concert. The rest of the comments are just your typical day of rich people publicly discussing the best ways to break federal law because it's faster than meditating. Half of all United States Federal prison inmates are there on drug convictions.

Lessons learned building an ML trading system
November 27, 2019 (comments)
A machine learning charlatan has a hammer. Hackernews also has that hammer, and has spent a lot of time listening to podcasts about nails. No technology is discussed, except for literally one comment that ballparks the colocation cost for an entry-level high-frequency trading system.

Firefox Replay
November 28, 2019 (comments)
Mozilla continues its war against Mozilla. Hackernews stumbles upon an upcoming feature for webshit programmers, which Mozilla immediately hides. The resulting comment threads are people trading links to the Internet Archive and trying to deduce what this feature does and why they don't need it. Most of the comments are asking why people would use a Mac or else rushing to the defense of Mac users.

ISOC sold the .org registry to Ethos Capital for $1.1B
November 29, 2019 (comments)
The Internet Society continues its war against the Internet. Hackernews has no new information since the last time this got discussed, so they just post all the same comments again (or, in some cases, they just link to their previous comments instead).

Calculus Explained with GIFs and Pics (2014)
November 30, 2019 (comments)
An Internet posts some math. There's an image macro with Will Ferrell in it, which I assume makes it different enough from "some rando's high school notebook" that Hackernews finds it voteworthy. I'm not sure any of them are even paying attention any more. There are even fewer comments than there were about the last math story, and half of them are a discussion of how wrong the article is. The author shows up and asks for tips on making Chinese people care.

webshit weekly (2019/11/21)

An annotated digest of the top "Hacker" "News" posts for the third week of November, 2019.

Jimmy Wales has quietly launched a Facebook rival
November 15, 2019 (comments)
Some blogspammers write a clickbait headline. The actual situation is that a Wikipedia-related news business failed, so Wales fired all the actual journalists and now charges idiots money for the privilege of Speedy Deleting each other's posts. Hackernews debates what the ideal discussion website might look like. No conclusions are reached, so they start arguing about whether this Wikitwitter costs too much, how important it is to keep poors out of your website, and what the correct amount of money is to make that happen.

Joplin – a note taking and to-do application with synchronization capabilities
November 16, 2019 (comments)
Some webshits invent the text editor. Hackernews lists all of the other webshit text editors. The Cult of Org-mode hands out pamphlets.

Writing userspace USB drivers for abandoned devices
November 17, 2019 (comments)
An Internet uses some computer hardware. Hackernews is impressed with this demonstration of technical effort, but doesn't have much use for the results (or intentions of replicating the results) so there aren't many comments. Most of them are complaints that some device Hackernews bought in 1997 does not work well with the Macbook they bought fifteen minutes ago.

Hacker Publishes 2TB of Data from Cayman National Bank
November 18, 2019 (comments)
An Internet dumps a bank's purse on the table. Hackernews is extremely interested in this news, because if they can find common threads between the breached software and their work product they may have a shot at convincing management to let them fix some of the more egregious bugs they have to live near. The vast majority of the comments are solemn predicitons of the new and unrecognizable world which will be heralded by the enormity of the released data, or else the speed with which the world will ignore all of it.

How to recognize AI snake oil [pdf]
November 19, 2019 (comments)
An academic points out that Tensorflow might not immediately solve all our problems. Hackernews does not have time to read all twenty slides, but has time to tell us a story about a bad ML product. This story is the springboard from which we hear about every time Hackernews was smarter than a machine learning program. Eventually, some Hackernews directly address the talk in questions, and the author arrives in the comments to thank them.

Slack’s new WYSIWYG input box is terrible
November 20, 2019 (comments)
An Internet doesn't like the new version of a webshit IRC client. Hackernews, and I am not exaggerating here, posts an actual thousand comments about the input field of a webshit IRC client. Most of them appear to be angry at the management of the company, pictured here. The bulk of the complaints appear to be whining that specific keystrokes which worked last week do not work this week. At first, Hackernews reports that the company refused to reverse course on the matter. After some time goes by, the company decides that alienating the only cadre of people who give a shit about their product might not be a foolproof business plan.

1000fps image projection on deforming non-rigid surface
November 21, 2019 (comments)
Some academics finally deliver the decades-old dream of humanity: animated GIFs on t-shirts. The effect is striking, but the technology is difficult, so Hackernews has about one-tenth as much to say as they had for the slightly-different chat window the day before. Most of the comments are suggestions for applications of the technology based almost entirely on a complete misunderstanding of how it works. Those Hackernews who do understand how it works have nothing substantive to say, so they stick with polysyllabic variants of "wow!"