webshit weekly

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

UnDraw: Open-source illustrations for every project you can imagine and create
December 22, 2019 (comments)
Some webshits invent clipart. Hackernews likes clipart, and has a list of sixteen thousand other clipart webshits. Most of the comments are whining about licensing.

Downsides to working at a tech giant
December 23, 2019 (comments)
Some rich fuck whines about not having more money, then pretends venture capital is the only way programmers can contribute to society. Hackernews, at first, is not entirely convinced this rich, well-connected asshole is fully engaged with reality, but before too long a huge pack of temporarily-embarrassed Bezoids arrive to proselytize the venture-funded road to glory. Hackernews mistakes pedantry for nuance and winds up spending all day bickering over whether it is better for one's corporate overlords to wear suits and drive Teslas or wear hoodies and be extremely into electric scooters. There are no other choices. No technology is discussed.

My Business Card Runs Linux
December 24, 2019 (comments)
An Internet manages to produce a single-board computer even less desirable than the Raspberry Pi. Hackernews is overwhelmed by the sheer technical content of the blog post, and votes for the story in droves, leading to this story being the top vote sponge for most of the following (Christmas) day. The specifications of the processor used are sufficiently slow to incite a minor nostalgia event. Most of the comments are vague enthusiasm, with the original author flitting from thread to thread to soak in the praise.

T * sin (t) ≈ Christmas tree (2013)
December 25, 2019 (comments)
A Reddit writes a couple hundred lines of javascript, then surrounds it in several thousand kilobytes of bureaucracy. Some Githubs open bug reports. Hackernews, unable to just look at a goddamn christmas tree and move on, bikesheds the code, the math, and the bug reports.

WiFi deauthentication attacks and home security
December 26, 2019 (comments)
A Google interferes with some personal surveillance furniture. There is nothing novel or interesting about the methods used, but it takes hundreds of words to convey a message that could have fit in the title; e.g. "wifi deauth attacks work on shitty doorbells." Due to the lack of interesting technical content, Hackernews sets about constructing a comparative analysis of various privacy laws around the world.

Sonos's “recycle mode” intentionally bricks devices so they can't be reused
December 27, 2019 (comments)
A Twitter is mad at a luxury electronics company. Hackernews thinks the luxury electronics company is behaving moderately poorly, but Hackernews is also tensely aware that we're basically talking about speakers with computers bolted to them, and software is generally better off with an expiration date. Fortunately, the luxury electronics company is in the audio business, and so Hackernews gleefully dives off the audiophile deep end, occasionally paddling over to the shallows to rant about software freedom.

Samsung TVs May Upload Screenshots for Automatic Content Recognition
December 28, 2019 (comments)
Samsung continues the war against their own users. Hackernews, fresh from a long day at the office shoving user data into Tensorflow, or else enjoying a vacation atop a stack of books about shoving user data into Tensorflow, takes a moment to express their sorrow and disgust at how common it has become for products to collect all possible user data, presumably to sell to Hackernews' employers. One Hackernews comes dangerously close to asking the correct question, but instead of asking how we can stop this shit, we are asked how to get paid to stop this shit.

What: A terminal tool to check what is taking up your bandwidth
December 29, 2019 (comments)
An Internet writes a program. At first glance, there is absolutely nothing new or unique about the program. It isn't until you get into the Hackernews comments that you are made aware this program is basically the Rust Evangelism Strike Force equivalent of a Chick tract. Nobody cares, so Hackernews bikesheds the program's name.

Fake “like” factories – how we reverse engineered facebooks user IDs [video]
December 30, 2019 (comments)
Some Euros (you can tell they're Euros because one of them is wearing a scarf inside a building) give money to the people shitting up mainstream social media services. Hackernews has too, and has also given advertising money directly to those same companies, and was unable to derive any meaningful opinions from the experience. Most Hackernews think the social media companies should Do Something, but nobody is sure what, and some Hackernews are adamant that everything is fine. No technology is discussed.

IRS Reforms Free File Program, Drops Agreement Not to Compete with TurboTax
December 31, 2019 (comments)
Some webshits would like the credit for a change in policy in the United States Government. It is far more likely that someone on K Street forgot to renew a Paypal subscription to someone in the Longworth Building. Hackernews votes for the story because it's mostly about webshit, but all of the comments come from one of three groups: Euros who would like you to know they are flummoxed and/or outraged about some American practice, liberals who would like you to know that this is all the Republicans' fault, and conservatives who would like you to know that no it isn't. There are no redeeming comments in the entire discussion.

Better luck next year.