webshit weekly

An annotated digest of the top "Hacker" "News" posts for the last week of January, 2018.

Montana becomes first state to implement net neutrality after FCC repeal
January 22, 2018 (comments)
An unpopulated state has strong opinions about packet routing. Hackernews gets into an argument about whether artisanal locally-grown internet is worth the extra money, but the argument is just an excuse to getting back to what Hackernews does best: aggressively misunderstanding the law. The rest of the comments comprise a debate on whether a hypothetical Montana population would develop some sort of rudimentary cultural identity, just like the population of Iowa didn't.

Ursula Le Guin has died
January 23, 2018 (comments)
With a clamor of posts that set the swallows soaring, the remembrance of an author comes to Hackernews in the city Mountain View, bright-towered by the bay.

Curry spice turmeric boosts memory by nearly 30%, eases depression, study finds
January 24, 2018 (comments)
Some academics feed pills to a negligible number of old people. Hackernews erupts into trench warfare between those who learned about science from Wikipedia and those who learned about science from working in the web advertising industry. Every soldier in the battlefield dutifully loads and fires reference materials into the enemy, none of which are relevant to the article at hand. Inevitably, the fracas dissolves into extremely gullible Hackernews peddling nutritional supplements and superstitions about health care.

NASA’s IMAGE satellite, lost since 2005, is alive
January 25, 2018 (comments)
An Internet, looking for a lost satellite, finds a different lost satellite. NASA explains that the satellite in question experienced a malfunction whose only resolution was to restart the whole apparatus, which turns out to be how Hackernews deals with all their problems too.

How to Run Your Own Mail Server (2017)
January 26, 2018 (comments)
An Internet posts a short story about running a mail server based on four software packages, three of which are extraneous. Hackernews, as with all articles about doing anything for yourself, cries like tiny babies about how hard it is to send and receive email. The few Hackernews who express puzzlement at the wave of whining are derided by Hackernews who haven't used anything but GMail since 2006. A few spammers ask real human beings for tips on evading spam filters.

Strava heatmap can be used to locate military bases
January 27, 2018 (comments)
A surveillance concierge service produces mortar-targeting maps for free. Hackernews is flummoxed that soldiers are people -- and not just that, but people who apparently buy and use things just like other people! Consensus coalesces: none of this is the surveillance company's fault, and the government should just turn off the internet. Hackernews then spends several days LARPing as military information security agents.

Microsoft disables Spectre mitigations as Intel’s patches cause instability
January 28, 2018 (comments)
Intel continues to be a pack of incompetent morons. Hackernews veers off onto a tangent about how ALL updates for EVERYTHING are fucked, except when they're not, or it's the user's fault, or you should have picked a different product, but not that one either. At some point there is a hundred-comment-long thread about Ubuntu, which causes a spate of posts attempting to invent UNIX from first principles. The rest of the comments are Hackernews whining that nothing happens when they click "check for updates."

LinuxBoot: Linux as Firmware
January 29, 2018 (comments)
An Internet finds a new hole to shove Linux into. Hackernews agrees that Linux is a better choice than whatever Intel came up with, but gets distracted by an argument about whether it's better to replace a simple, well-understood tool with a slow, insecure, undocumented tool because someone said it was newer.

Amazon, Berkshire, JPMorgan to Create Healthcare Company
January 30, 2018 (comments)
Some rich people decide to get slightly richer in the near future. Hackernews invents a society in which indoor plumbing can be introduced to societies outside of the Bay Area, but realizes the plan is doomed to failure and settles in to argue about economics instead.

AMD Returns to Full-Year Profitability, Forecasts Strong 2018
January 31, 2018 (comments)
AMD accidentally made money last year, bringing its debt load all the way down to $1.3 billion. Every single Hackernews who has purchased an AMD product posts about purchasing an AMD product, and the rest argue about video games.