DawnPaladin's recent activity

  1. Comment on OpenAssistant - ChatGPT's Open Alternative in ~tech

    DawnPaladin
    Link
    This is a cool idea. Anyone with machine learning expertise care to comment on whether it's likely to work?

    This is a cool idea. Anyone with machine learning expertise care to comment on whether it's likely to work?

    3 votes
  2. Comment on Why does it feel like Amazon is making itself worse? in ~tech

    DawnPaladin
    (edited )
    Link
    Cory Doctorow has a term for this: Enshittification. In this post he shows how Amazon has walked the same path as Facebook, Twitter, and most recently TikTok. Enshittification works like this:...

    Cory Doctorow has a term for this: Enshittification. In this post he shows how Amazon has walked the same path as Facebook, Twitter, and most recently TikTok. Enshittification works like this:

    • Step 1: A new company creates a powerful innovation, and consumers flock to it. For Amazon, this was the ability to buy basically anything over the internet in one place with a great customer experience. For Facebook, it was the ability to get status updates from all your friends. At this stage, everything is wonderful and the product is a joy to use because the company re-invests all the money and hype from its customers into making itself even better so it can attract even more customers.

    • Step 2: Once the consumers have become loyal and using the product has become habitual, the company uses its large, loyal customer base to entice business partners by giving them the surpluses it's gotten from its customers. For Amazon, this was third-party sellers; for Facebook, it was advertisers.

    • Step 3: Once the consumers and the business partners are sufficiently locked in, the company takes the surpluses from both groups and reallocates them to its shareholders. You Are Here. At this stage the company is horribly unpleasant for both its customers and its business partners, but it's become such an institution that it's very difficult to get rid of. With the resources its investors provide, it can continue leeching off consumers and other businesses indefinitely, reshaping the legal and competitive landscape to cement its market dominance.

    At this stage, the only two ways I can think of to bring down such a behemoth are antitrust law (which is rarely enforced these days, and the companies work to keep it that way) and a new innovation that renders older business models obsolete. Of course, innovations are usually bought out by the big companies, which brings us back to antitrust law.

    But Google is currently being threatened with a breakup from the DoJ and with obsolescence from ChatGPT. All this right after shareholders demanded a wave of layoffs. We'll see how that plays out. Maybe even the giants are not invulnerable.

    3 votes
  3. Comment on Which web browser do you use? in ~tech

    DawnPaladin
    Link Parent
    I'm also enjoying Arc. They made tab management fun! I didn't think that was possible.

    I'm also enjoying Arc. They made tab management fun! I didn't think that was possible.

    2 votes
  4. Comment on How artificial intelligence is helping us decode animal languages in ~enviro

    DawnPaladin
    Link
    I recently bought a FluentPet kit. It's a set of buttons; you record a word into each button, and then teach your pet to associate each button with a concept or activity. Essentially you teach...

    I recently bought a FluentPet kit. It's a set of buttons; you record a word into each button, and then teach your pet to associate each button with a concept or activity. Essentially you teach your pet to talk to you (with a very small vocabulary) by pressing buttons. It's fun to see someone working the problem from the other direction.

    There are already smartphone apps that claim to be able to translate what your pet is saying; I assume those are scams. Has anyone tried one?

    2 votes
  5. Comment on Five days in class with ChatGPT in ~tech

    DawnPaladin
    Link Parent
    Check out Perplexity AI. It does something like what you're talking about.

    Check out Perplexity AI. It does something like what you're talking about.

    2 votes
  6. Comment on Five days in class with ChatGPT in ~tech

    DawnPaladin
    Link
    Good article.

    Good article.

    Last week brought two related features of artificial intelligence in education into sharp relief: the first is that all that talk about plagiarism and cheating and abuse is uninspiring and counterproductive. Yes, some unambitious students will use this new tool to cover subpar performance, and yes, we could talk about how to detect or disincentivize such behavior. The far more inspiring conversation is a different one: how can the most creative, the most ambitious, and the most brilliant students achieve even better results faster? How can educators help them along the way? And how can we both use machines that learn, and help learn, to push out the edge of human knowledge through cutting-edge research faster and in new ways?

    5 votes
  7. Comment on Unpopular opinion: Wikipedia's old look was much better than the new one in ~talk

    DawnPaladin
    Link
    I was a MinervaNeue user until this launched. The sticky table of contents alone won me over. I wish every site on the internet had one of those. (I have a Firefox extension installed to generate...

    I was a MinervaNeue user until this launched. The sticky table of contents alone won me over. I wish every site on the internet had one of those. (I have a Firefox extension installed to generate them in a sidebar, but it's not nearly as good as having them natively as part of the layout.)

    2 votes
  8. Comment on We need a library economy in ~humanities

    DawnPaladin
    Link
    It's pretty clear that capitalism isn't working great, but concrete proposals for alternatives are thin on the ground. I liked this video because it proposes a practical starting point. We can...

    It's pretty clear that capitalism isn't working great, but concrete proposals for alternatives are thin on the ground. I liked this video because it proposes a practical starting point. We can start building libraries now, without waiting for an electoral majority or a revolution that may never happen. We can start making mistakes and learning from them now, figuring out what problems make this difficult and how to solve them.

    This proposal won't fix everything that capitalism is screwing up, but it seems like a promising place to start. What kind of work is already being done in this area? My local university has a library for common household items and it's a big boost to everyone's quality of life.

    5 votes
  9. Comment on Mastodon question in ~comp

    DawnPaladin
    Link
    I've seen a number of instances go down because maintaining and upgrading the server was too much of a hassle. I have no personal experience in this area, however.

    I've seen a number of instances go down because maintaining and upgrading the server was too much of a hassle. I have no personal experience in this area, however.

    1 vote
  10. Comment on Timasomo 2022: Week 2 Update Thread in ~creative.timasomo

    DawnPaladin
    Link
    I'm struggling with my 3D printer a bit. I invited over a knowledgeable friend and he recommended I replace the extruder, so that's in the mail. In the meantime, he's printing the parts I need....

    I'm struggling with my 3D printer a bit. I invited over a knowledgeable friend and he recommended I replace the extruder, so that's in the mail. In the meantime, he's printing the parts I need.

    The basic design of the dice tray works, but there's lots of room for improvement. We'll see how the version that's currently printing works out.

    2 votes
  11. Comment on Let’s talk visual novels in ~games

    DawnPaladin
    Link Parent
    I had no idea Joiplay was a thing! I'm gonna try that out.

    I had no idea Joiplay was a thing! I'm gonna try that out.

    2 votes
  12. Comment on Timasomo 2022: Roll Call in ~creative.timasomo

    DawnPaladin
    Link Parent
    That's really fun! I'll send him these links and maybe they'll come in handy.

    That's really fun! I'll send him these links and maybe they'll come in handy.

    1 vote
  13. Comment on Defective altruism - the repugnant philosophy of “Effective Altruism” offers nothing to movements for global justice in ~humanities

    DawnPaladin
    Link Parent
    The idea you're talking about is called "earning to give", and the EA movement has actually backed away from it a lot in recent years. Their more recent career guides focus much more on finding an...

    The idea you're talking about is called "earning to give", and the EA movement has actually backed away from it a lot in recent years. Their more recent career guides focus much more on finding an important problem to work on, joining a group focused on working on that problem, and maximizing your effectiveness working on that problem.

    3 votes
  14. Comment on Timasomo 2022: Roll Call in ~creative.timasomo

    DawnPaladin
    Link Parent
    I have a friend who's teaching himself hydroponic farming in his bathtub. I bet he'd really like a humidity sensor. Are those off-the-rack, or are you designing one?

    I have a friend who's teaching himself hydroponic farming in his bathtub. I bet he'd really like a humidity sensor. Are those off-the-rack, or are you designing one?

    5 votes
  15. Comment on Timasomo 2022: Roll Call in ~creative.timasomo

    DawnPaladin
    Link
    I'm going to make a dice box! My D&D sorcerer/paladin needs a bunch of d6s for Fireball and d8s for Divine Smite, so I'm going to make a dice box that will hold just the dice I need. The lid will...

    I'm going to make a dice box! My D&D sorcerer/paladin needs a bunch of d6s for Fireball and d8s for Divine Smite, so I'm going to make a dice box that will hold just the dice I need.

    The lid will be a dice-rolling surface with some sort of fabric inlay--my wife recently got me some fancy dice that I want to take good care of.

    I've made an initial design in OpenSCAD and I'm printing it now. I think I may have already found my first bug--there's a 90-degree corner that probably won't print correctly (overhang) and will need to be chamfered. I also need to decide on and source a fabric for the dice-rolling surface.

    7 votes
  16. Comment on What have you learned from moving to a new place? in ~talk

    DawnPaladin
    Link
    About a decade ago, I was in a really miserable situation. My boss was abusive, I was living alone and struggling to make friends. I just felt miserable all the time. If I hadn't been able to find...

    About a decade ago, I was in a really miserable situation. My boss was abusive, I was living alone and struggling to make friends. I just felt miserable all the time.

    If I hadn't been able to find a way out of that situation, I think I might have done something self-destructive. The reason I was able to escape was because I knew that state of misery wasn't my natural state. I'd been happy before, living in other places with other jobs. So I knew happiness was possible for me. The hope of being happy again was the lifeline I used to climb out of there.

    Getting away from that town and that job was really difficult, because it meant coming home exhausted from work and putting in more work toward my exit plan. But (with help from my parents and encouragement from an online friend) I got out of there, and after a while I was happy again.

    Not every problem can be solved by running away from it. But some of them can! If your problems seem utterly insoluble, I highly recommend moving to another city and reinventing yourself. It beats turning to drink.

    8 votes
  17. Comment on One month with Kagi search in ~tech

    DawnPaladin
    Link
    Interesting. I'm in the market for a new search engine because Google is so often choked with SEO junk. Sometimes DuckDuckGo is fine, but in my experience, when I'm searching for the answer to a...

    Interesting. I'm in the market for a new search engine because Google is so often choked with SEO junk. Sometimes DuckDuckGo is fine, but in my experience, when I'm searching for the answer to a specific programming bug, Google is much better than DDG. As a programmer, quality of search results matters a lot to me - the right link can save me hours of wasted effort. I'd be curious whether any programmers have tried using Kagi or Neeva.

    I could just get into the habit of trying multiple search engines. You.com is a search engine that does that for you; I found their layout annoying last time I was there, but it looks like they've changed it since then, so maybe I should give it another try.

    8 votes