webshit weekly

An annotated digest of the top "Hacker" "News" posts for the last week of October, 2017.

After the end of the startup era
October 22, 2017 (comments)
A spam blog has nothing interesting to say. Hackernews argues about desktop operating systems, smartphone apps, the feasibility of augmented reality, and which startup ideas are "obviously" going to succeed. None of this, however, is as important as being appalled that the author of the spam blog failed to worship Y Combinator.

Try quickly typing 1+ 2 + 3 into the iOS 11 Calculator
October 23, 2017 (comments)
Apple's calculator sucks. Fixing it would require an update on the order of a full operating system release, because Apple employs the finest software engineers on Earth. Hackernews arrives to reassure everyone that this is a Simple Matter of Programming, which will require rearchitecting the core of the software in question. Some time is spent rediscovering buffered input. Hackernews divides into two camps: those who think Steve Jobs would have prevented this, and those who think Steve Jobs would not be a fun boss. The rest of the comments alternate between "Apple is dying because I'm not as enthusiastic about their products" and "Apple will live forever because I like whatever gadget I most recently bought."

Why We Must Fight for the Right to Repair Our Electronics
October 24, 2017 (comments)
Some internets are angry that Apple isn't doing what they want. Hackernews isn't as concerned about fixing phone hardware, since just about all available phone software is carefully and thoroughly fucked by the OEM, complete with ongoing programs to ensure the software cannot in the future become unfucked. Some Stallmanites arrive to explain that the obvious solution is to never speak to another human being except via SMTP ever again. Hackernews is unable to come up with a viable alternative.

Saying Goodbye to Firebug
October 24, 2017 (comments)
Mozilla continues the tradition of shitcanning tools people use, in the process of deprecating APIs that are insufficiently Chrome-like. Hackernews will miss the shitcanned tool in question, but dislikes its almost-identical replacement, because it is insufficiently Chrome-like. Several threads cozy up to the fire and tell nostalgic stories of horrific DOM abuse. Several more bicker about whether Firebug was the greatest debugger of all time.

I have no side code projects to show you
October 25, 2017 (comments)
An internet experiments with the idea of having a life outside of the internet, or "offline." Hackernews regrets to inform the author that they have decided not to proceed with this job application, but has a shitload of tips about which cameras the applicant may dance for. Many hours are spent comparing programming to other professions; usually, the target of comparison is an actual profession whose practitioners are held responsible for their work.

“Startup” asks internship applicant to build their app before phone screen
October 26, 2017 (comments)
Fresh off the declarations that all job applicants must have unpaid side projects to trot out, an internet finds a startup with a novel platform: unpaid side projects as your day job. Suddenly Hackernews is furious at the idea that someone could be expected to program computers for free. Clear consensus is reached: it's only okay for companies to demand to see free work if it doesn't do anyone any good.

The New York Times Is Now Available as a Tor Onion Service
October 27, 2017 (comments)
The New York Times pursues the lucrative "internet drug dealers and pedos" market. Hackernews spends some time incorrecting each other about how certificate validation works. Several hours of myths are exchanged.

Orchid: a new surveillance-free layer on top of the existing Internet
October 28, 2017 (comments)
Bitcoin Idiots, LLC tries to open a virtual ISP. The proprietors of this shitshow arrive in Hackernews comments to directly participate in the bikeshedding. Close examination of the information presented throughout leads to the conclusion you reached by reading the headline: this is a gigantic waste of time and resources, and it will be gone very soon.

Near Future of Programming Languages [pdf]
October 29, 2017 (comments)
A Haskell posts some unconnected rambling about programming languages. It is to be regarded as authoritative, because it contains unitless charts and vague math-like figures. Hackernews argues that Javascript is all anyone could ever need, and that it has improved markedly in the past five years, as demonstrated by the explosion of javascript programmers on the market. Clearly this is a function of language quality, and not of the fact that it is the only programming language available in a web browser. The rest of the comments are comprised of Hackernews bickering about which implementation details best reflect the innate superiority of their chosen abstractions.

Do you need a VPN?
October 30, 2017 (comments)
Mozilla asks a question, then completely fails to even almost answer it. This is part of their new push to generate blog articles in the same way they generate code. Hackernews spends some time marveling that the nation with the second-highest GDP on earth can somehow figure out how to control their own telecommunications infrastructure. Meanwhile, the answer Hackernews seems to be taking for granted is "yes, you do need a VPN," because they spend most of their time trading advice on which privacy services can best protect the tracking data their browsers are sending back to Google.

Reaching $10k monthly revenue with WakaTime, my SaaS side project
October 31, 2017 (comments)
An internet posts an interview with some other internet, who made a program or something, and spends most of the interview telling people to stop reading. Hackernews administrators arrive to explain that there's some kind of pseudo-legal drama occurring with the interviewee, who immediately shows up to shit talk the other parties. One Hackernews expresses concern at the amount of data the program sends back to some rando's servers, and is shouted down because clearly the only way to measure anything is by uploading it to the internet. The rest of the comments are idiots arguing about hosting costs.