webshit weekly (2019/05/21)

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

I Charged $18k for a Static HTML Page
May 15, 2019 (comments)
A webshit is overpaid and underworked by morons. Hackernews considers this the best-case scenario for their industry, and comments that it's much easier to land such gigs if you stay quiet and let the morons forget about you. After some discussion, they decide that not working while getting paid is perilously close to boredom. Several Hackernews report that some companies actually keep track of what they spend money on, but all of these are determined to be safely disconnected from Silicon Valley.

Can we all stop using Medium now?
May 16, 2019 (comments)
A webshit is mad about medium dot com. Hackernews laments that there is no possible model for content distribution other than digital sharecropping, both because of the Hypothetical Idiot User and because everyone with the necessary training to implement an alternative (i.e. Hackernews) still believes ridiculous SEO urban legends circa the Bush administration. The idea that someone could just rent space in a colocation facility, install a web server, and start posting information onto the internet is, sadly, one hundred percent impossible, and can never happen.

Aldi, a brutally efficient grocery chain, is upending America's supermarkets
May 17, 2019 (comments)
CNN notices a seventy-three-year-old grocery chain. The article is too long, so Hackernews independently reports every single fact contained therein as a timesaving measure. The European division of Hackernews wanders into a corner to argue about which grocery store is best. American Hackernews note that they save money when they shop at stores that have lower prices.

Virtual DOM is pure overhead (2018)
May 18, 2019 (comments)
Some webshits have opinions about javascript. Specifically, the opinions are about which overengineered abstraction javascript victims should swear fealty to. Since the meat of the article is pointless microbenchmarks being used to justify sweeping generalizations regarding implementation details, Hackernews goes absolutely nuts. Three hundred comments appear, each one a graduate-level thesis explaining precisely the best way to reimplement basic web browser functionality using nothing but a programming language, several hundred megabytes of libraries, a virtual machine, a transpiler, and a web browser. Along the way, the Semantic Web people start throwing bombs, and a million unread thinkpieces die in the blast.

How to do hard things
May 19, 2019 (comments)
An Internet introduces the concept of 'practice' to a grateful world. Hackernews argues about whether a specific pottery class was offered. Other Hackernews report that some things are harder than other things.

DeleteFB: Selenium script to delete all of your Facebook wall posts
May 20, 2019 (comments)
A webshit ports rm(1) to Facebook. Hackernews wonders whether we can trust Facebook to delete something when we click on the delete button. All of the rest of the comments are people linking to their implementations of the same idea.

I don't know how CPUs work so I simulated one in code
May 21, 2019 (comments)
A webshit wins the prize for The Hackernewsest Article Title of 2019. By just switching one word, you can derive entire corporate histories of Silicon Valley:

Less entertainingly, the article itself is a mundane recounting of someone following textbook exercises to design a simple processor. Hackernews recounts the classes they took on the topic, and recommends several series of video lectures to play at work while you wait for your CircleCI pipelines to fail since you were too lazy to run them locally before you pushed.

webshit weekly (2019/05/14)

An annotated digest of the top "Hacker" "News" posts for the second week of May, 2019.

Amazon S3 Path Deprecation Plan – The Rest of the Story
May 08, 2019 (comments)
A tech company would like to stop doing a couple things the hard way. Hackernews considers the ramifications of minor changes in a service atop which they've spent over a decade building sandcastles. In the process, they reinvent the Internet from first principles. Many Hackernews are flummoxed that they cannot forever trust promises like "your data will last ten thousand years." Other Hackernews smugly point out that the data will be intact, merely inaccessible -- because the precise wording of an idiotic assurance is much more important than the idiocy of the assurance.

We got banned from PayPal after 12 years of business
May 09, 2019 (comments)
Some spammers are so vile that not even PayPal wants to do business with them. Hackernews is mostly okay with this, except for the ones who expect full accountability from a company whose business model is "we're a bank, but without all that pesky consumer protection" (2019 edition: "Uber for banking"). The rest of Hackernews drags out horror stories about all the times PayPal was mean to them, too, and hypothesizes the right set of money-transfer rituals to undertake so that they may continue to enrich companies who are actively hostile to them.

GitHub Package Registry
May 10, 2019 (comments)
Microsoft would like webshits to entrust even more of their shit unto GitHub. This news is hailed as a definitive win by the people who have encrusted their working lives with sufficient bureaucracy that they spend at least half their time untangling themselves from it. Some debate occurs over whether the incumbent services can withstand a frontal assault from Microsoft, but most of the discussion focuses on which webshit Microsoft will absorb next. The remaining comments consist of whining that someone else's favorite programming language got picked first.

Adults learn language to fluency nearly as well as children: study
May 11, 2019 (comments)
The owner of some language-teaching webshit would like people to learn languages, even if they are old. Hackernews suspects this might be a trick, but gets distracted by spouting wild-ass guesses about the nature of learning, cognition, linguistics, and human society. No technology is discussed.

How I Run a Company with ADHD
May 12, 2019 (comments)
An Internet has advice on how to overcome a tendency to get distracted: have someone give you thousands of dollars to focus, or else pay someone to tell you to focus. The result is a terrifying glimpse into the psyche of Hackernews; they catalog all of their personality traits they've determined to be abnormal, the methods through which they discovered the apparent abnormality, and the rituals they undertake to ensure they can still click emoji reaction buttons on GitHub issues for a living. Nothing, however, is quite as disturbing as the Hackernews who reports having played "handball at an elite level," which caused me to search the Internet for "semi-professional macaroni necklaciers." It turns out there is only one: Gavin Hazelwood, of Australia.

WhatsApp voice calls were used to inject spyware on phones
May 13, 2019 (comments)
In a bid to evade European anti-trust investigations, Facebook now bundles third-party spyware with some products. Hackernews argues over who the good guys are, then spends six hours refreshing their phones' app store to try to get the version without the malware conduit.

ZombieLoad: Cross Privilege-Boundary Data Leakage on Intel CPUs
May 14, 2019 (comments)
Intel continues the war against its own users. The news of an Intel hardware security flaw is by now so unsurprising that Hackernews spends most of its time complaining that the academics who identified the latest batch of failures did not get a sufficiently artistic shout-out in the GReeTZ section of Intel's mitigation .nfo. If Intel spent as much money on hardware engineering as they do on convincing shareholders their core product is not a Matroyshka doll of bad decisions, at the very least they wouldn't be a full generation behind on PCIe. The rest of the field day sees Hackernews select among several now-traditional Intel Flaw Thread Activities: reminiscing about architectures gone by, incorrecting one another about how computers work, fretting about Intel stock prices, and pretending they're going to buy anything else ever.

webshit weekly (2019/05/07)

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

A Conspiracy to Kill IE6
May 01, 2019 (comments)
The last remaining Svbtle user recounts the time Google started the war against its own users. Hackernews discusses when is the correct time to sidestep your entire business model in order to force your meaningless software preferences upon strangers. (The answer, apparently, is "always.") The rest of the comments are people reminiscing about how hard it used to be to execute bad ideas in HTML.

Self Studying the MIT Applied Math Curriculum
May 02, 2019 (comments)
Some rando intends to read some books. Hackernews has also read books. The upvotes come in an avalanche, since talking about learning things is something Hackernews strongly approves of, even if actually learning things isn't something they tend to get around to. All of the comments are Hackernews competing for first prize in the Talking About Learning Math contest.

All extensions disabled due to expiration of intermediate signing cert
May 03, 2019 (comments)
Mozilla opens a new front in the war against its own users. Instead of wasting money on useless side projects nobody wants, they decide to torpedo their own primary product. The only mechanism Mozilla has to restore functionality is to repurpose user-spying malware-distribution pipelines. In the process of trying to unfuck the only program any of them run on their computers, Hackernews is startled to discover that the configuration window in Firefox does not have any predictable correlation to the configuration of Firefox. Many of them declare they are giving up and switching to alternative software from Google, a company widely regarded for respecting the privacy of anyone at all.

Negotiations Failed: How Oracle Killed Java EE
May 04, 2019 (comments)
An Internet learns a hard lesson about nailing someone else's colors to your mast. Hackernews thinks the answer, as in all things, is to switch to javascript. The tattered remnants of the Knights of Enterprise Java Middleware arrive to namedrop some development projects that nobody has cared or thought about since 2003. Every other language partisan with a "Hacker" "News" account gathers in the town square to throw fruit at the die-hards.

Canada Border Services seizes lawyer's phone, laptop for not sharing passwords
May 05, 2019 (comments)
Some Canadian cops emulate their better-armed and less-accountable neighbors to the south. Hackernews unleashes days' worth of pent-up armchair legal theory, eager to explore edge cases in a topic whose common cases they don't understand. Multiple technical solutions are offered (offloading private data, regularly wiping devices, etc) to a problem which is not technical in nature (police can just take your shit). Several Hackernews appear convinced that the cops will leave them alone if they can recite relevant statutes, like magical wizards casting warding spells. I look forward to their outraged thinkpieces after they test their theories.

.NET 5
May 06, 2019 (comments)
Microsoft shovels some more platform garbage out the door. In the process, they've managed to make a pointlessly-confusing marketing scheme even less understandable, with the result that Hackernews gets to drag out the easels and bikeshed Microsoft project management practices ad infinitum. Those Hackernews not in on the project management hijinks choose instead to whine about Linux. Microsoft claims the new platform garbage will work across several operating systems, but does not disclose how they intend to pop up a dialog box demanding yet another redistributable runtime installation for each program the user attempts to launch.

Css-only-chat: A truly monstrous async web chat using no JS on the front end
May 07, 2019 (comments)
A webshit demonstrates the hubris and folly of cascading style sheets. Hackernews is only interested in how to make their spam campaigns report more information about their victims.