FluffyKittens's recent activity

  1. Comment on Etsy sellers are turning free fanfiction into printed and bound physical books [against the wishes of the authors], and listing them for sale for more than $100 per book in ~books

    FluffyKittens
    Link Parent
    Yeah, I'm completely with you on this strand of argument. There is undeniably a large percentage of online fanfic that doesn't meet fair use criteria, and the fact that losses or damages aren't...

    Yeah, I'm completely with you on this strand of argument. There is undeniably a large percentage of online fanfic that doesn't meet fair use criteria, and the fact that losses or damages aren't needed for standing makes for some odd enforcement dynamics, as these Etsy vendors are highlighting.

    I think the root comment only goes too far in that a majority of fanfic on the web does in fact meet the threshold of fair use, and would be ruled as such by >99% of judges. Specifically:

    Very little fanfic, were it to go to trial, has a realistic chance of successfully arguing it's transformative enough to quality as commentary or parody.

    It doesn't have to reach a standard of commentary or parody - the only threshold on that front is that it's "transformative", whatever that means to any given judge.

    9 votes
  2. Comment on What a bunch of A-list celebs taught me about how to use my phone in ~tech

    FluffyKittens
    Link Parent
    Here’s a guide for anyone that wants to try this out in a semi-practical way: https://inteltechniques.com/voip.suite.html

    The easiest way for an average person would be to use a VoIP service.

    Here’s a guide for anyone that wants to try this out in a semi-practical way:

    https://inteltechniques.com/voip.suite.html

    2 votes
  3. Comment on Etsy sellers are turning free fanfiction into printed and bound physical books [against the wishes of the authors], and listing them for sale for more than $100 per book in ~books

    FluffyKittens
    (edited )
    Link Parent
    This core thesis is directly contradicted by the "excellent summary" linked, which argues that "it all depends". Every single case mentioned in that summary was about a commercialized derivative...
    • Exemplary

    Fanfic is not fair use. It's a violation of copyright. Yes, even if they don't sell it. Yes, even if they make it available for free.

    This core thesis is directly contradicted by the "excellent summary" linked, which argues that "it all depends". Every single case mentioned in that summary was about a commercialized derivative work.

    Ok, I know what you are thinking. Doesn’t the fair use doctrine, a statutory defense to copyright infringement, clearly protect fan fiction authors? Well, first of all, the fair use doctrine doesn’t do anything clearly. The fair use defense is a complex balancing test comprised of four factors, any of which may have a big impact on whether the doctrine protects a piece of fan fiction from liability for infringement.

    The “purpose and character” factor is often described as a determination of whether a work is “transformative,” in other words, has it really added something new and different to the world or is it just a substitute for the original. This question creates all sorts of controversy and confusion when it comes to fan fiction. Of course fan fiction is adding something, but is it really something different, or just a continuation of the original? Like most legal questions, it depends.

    Read the statutory text on fair use. It also refutes that core thesis.

    To the people voting for this comment: Search "fan fiction fair use site:.edu" - see if you can find any good legal analysis (*not coming from an plaintiff-IP holder's attorney) that argues that non-commercial, reasonably-transformative fan fiction is automatically a copyright violation. You won't find it. No unbiased professional would ever back the assertion that fanfic is automatically infringement.

    Stop voting for comments just because they're long, if you're not willing to fucking read/evaluate/critically think about them, people.

    E: And to Dave (?), I sincerely don’t mean this as a polemic against what you wrote. Your comment was high-effort and thoughtful, and you make some valid points about issues of copyright enforcement asymmetry that still hold true. I’m mad at the audience nodding along without engaging thoughtfully in the substance of the message.

    27 votes
  4. Comment on Collapse comments? in ~tildes

    FluffyKittens
    Link
    This is a really good use case for a userscript. Here's a JS snippet that should do the legwork: document.querySelectorAll('div.comment-text').forEach(function(comment) { if...

    This is a really good use case for a userscript. Here's a JS snippet that should do the legwork:

    document.querySelectorAll('div.comment-text').forEach(function(comment) {
        if (comment.innerText.length > 2000) {
            // Store the original content in a data attribute
            comment.setAttribute('data-original-content', comment.innerHTML);
    
            // Create a new link element
            var expandLink = document.createElement('a');
            expandLink.href = '#';
            expandLink.innerHTML = 'Long comment - click to expand';
    
            // Set the onclick handler for the link
            expandLink.onclick = function() {
                // Restore the original content from the data attribute
                var originalContent = comment.getAttribute('data-original-content');
                comment.innerHTML = originalContent;
                return false; // Prevent the default link action
            };
    
            // Replace the comment's content with the link
            comment.innerHTML = '';
            comment.appendChild(expandLink);
        }
    });
    

    (Generated w/ ChatGPT, but I told it the explicit steps to use.)

    You should be able to copy and paste the above into your browser console on any Tildes thread, and it'll collapse any comments over 2000 characters for you. To make it automatic, you can use a browser extension like Tampermonkey. Said extensions will require a bit of templating around that code, but the exact details vary; read the docs or ask ChatGPT to convert that code to work with extension-of-your-choice.

    12 votes
  5. Comment on Fitness educational resources? in ~health

    FluffyKittens
    Link Parent
    Nothing wrong with an adjustable dumbbell - it'll do the job fine, but you'll probably want a bench and pullup bar to go with it. Some specific movements that kettlebells are better for would be...

    Why would kettlebells be better than dumbbells? What can you do with one that you can't do with the other? I bought my dumbbell because it was adjustable and didn't take much space; my husband actually owns some but they were too heavy for me.

    Nothing wrong with an adjustable dumbbell - it'll do the job fine, but you'll probably want a bench and pullup bar to go with it.

    Some specific movements that kettlebells are better for would be swings, getups, snatches, and arguably goblet squat. Getups/swings are more full-body exercises that have a bit of lat/chest coverage when done correctly and include cardio/aerobic elements.

    In short: compared to dumbbells you can get a full body workout without having to learn as many movements, and they're more general-purpose for any sort of fitness goal you might have.

    2 votes
  6. Comment on What is the "bible" of your hobby or activity? in ~hobbies

    FluffyKittens
    Link Parent
    Why should beginners never write a function that’s longer than four lines, includes more than one kind of control flow, or has a magic number or two? IMO that’s terrible advice that prevents...

    Why should beginners never write a function that’s longer than four lines, includes more than one kind of control flow, or has a magic number or two?

    IMO that’s terrible advice that prevents people from getting their feet wet. People gotta walk before they run.

    10 votes
  7. Comment on Fitness educational resources? in ~health

    FluffyKittens
    Link
    If you’re open to kettlebells, these are the gold standard: Enter the Kettlebell (video form) - Teaches fundamentals and philosophy. Fair warning that it’s intentionally very kitsch. Simple and...

    If you’re open to kettlebells, these are the gold standard:

    Other general options:

    • Rippetoe’s Practical Programming - Guide on how to DIY your own routine.
    • Schwarzenegger’s Encyclopedia of Modern Bodybuilding - Never picked up a copy myself, but it’s a well-respected visual reference for different movements.
    • Ramsay’s Anatomy of Stretching - Personal pick; great reference when trying to figure out how to get a particular muscle group loose.
    • Kubik’s Knife, Fork, Muscle - Another personal pick; would describe as an opinionated philosophy piece on general fitness.

    Obligatory reminder that you’ll 10x your progress if you spend a few months with a trainer, but don’t let it stop you if that’s not in the cards. Like most things, you gotta start somewhere - don’t be afraid to look a fool in order to grow (just keep the weight really light if you’re not sure about a motion).

    10 votes
  8. Comment on Datapoints: what Texas can teach San Francisco and London about building houses: it’s not a housing crisis — it’s a planning crisis in ~design

    FluffyKittens
    Link Parent
    Doritos/McDonald's and Houston housing have two common economic traits: they're inferior goods, and their relative prevalence in their markets is heavily driven by government subsidies. I'm not...

    Doritos/McDonald's and Houston housing have two common economic traits: they're inferior goods, and their relative prevalence in their markets is heavily driven by government subsidies.

    I'm not saying that just to dunk on Houston - what I mean is that you can buy any given tier of home (in terms of sqft, build quality, amenities) at a much lower price than you can in other cities of comparable size. Some of that is attributable to Houston's big housing supply, for sure, but a bigger factor is that Houston is a less-desirable place to live. People who move to Boston over Houston are either willing to pay a big premium to have the same-sized home, or willing to settle for lower-tier housing. Objectively, when making microeconomic decisions about where to live, the average American resettler routinely chooses to pay tens of thousands of dollars annually to not live in Houston.

    As for the subsidies, much like McDonald's is artificially cheap due to the billions in annual subsidies for soybean/corn/hay, Houston housing and urban sprawl have been made artificially cheap by tens of billions in annual subsidies + spending for car infrastructure. To be clear, my argument is not that we shouldn't be subsidizing infrastructure or agriculture; we absolutely should - but we shouldn't be spending more on corn and soybean that every other type of produce combined, and we shouldn't be subsidizing cars to the extent we are without proportionally investing in making walking/biking into viable choices for commuters.

    I do not see why you hate townhomes that are nicer and denser than the detached SFH on large lots they are replacing??

    You're putting words in my mouth. I have nothing against the increased density, but I think that increase is marginal compared to other factors and I fundamentally disagree that they're nice. My root-level comment on this thread called it out, but IMO Austin's policy of relaxing parking minimums alongside splitting up lots has had much better outcomes.

    US DoT 2024 Budget Highlights
    Cornography: Perverse Incentives and the United States Corn Subsidy

  9. Comment on Datapoints: what Texas can teach San Francisco and London about building houses: it’s not a housing crisis — it’s a planning crisis in ~design

    FluffyKittens
    Link Parent
    People move to Houston despite the negatives for the same reason people in food deserts buy McDonalds and Doritos from the corner store. The revealed preference doesn’t indicate that they’re...

    People move to Houston despite the negatives for the same reason people in food deserts buy McDonalds and Doritos from the corner store. The revealed preference doesn’t indicate that they’re eating that stuff because it’s good or healthy food; it’s because they’re desperate and don’t have better options.

    Doritos stop people from starving, but no one confuses them for good food. The long-term solution to fixing food deserts isn’t to subsidize McDonalds and Frito-Lay, but instead to make other affordable options available - e.g. root vegetables, rice and beans, lentils.

    Similarly for housing, we know good, affordable modes of living exist and are viable because we did them in the past in the US before regulation got in the way, and because other parts of the world still use them. The townhomes of the American Northeast, and surrounding mix of interconnected apartments/small storefronts (think Boston/Hoboken) are a prime example of dense, high-quality urban spaces that we should be incentivizing through public policy; the townhomes of Houston are not.

    1 vote
  10. Comment on Datapoints: what Texas can teach San Francisco and London about building houses: it’s not a housing crisis — it’s a planning crisis in ~design

    FluffyKittens
    (edited )
    Link Parent
    The majority of people don’t aspire to live in a cheap, ugly place. You’re welcome to like unwalkable/sprawl-based housing, if that floats your boat - but it’s not the goal of most neo-urbanist...

    The majority of people don’t aspire to live in a cheap, ugly place.

    You’re welcome to like unwalkable/sprawl-based housing, if that floats your boat - but it’s not the goal of most neo-urbanist policy. Unfortunately in the case of Houston, those low-quality homes aren’t taking the market pressure away to make nicer, midrange, high-density housing in a tight-nit community more affordable, since the new development is all ugly, unwalkable sprawl.

    Density isn’t the virtue - a pleasant, accessible place that a large population can harmoniously live in is what most of us care about.

    1 vote
  11. Comment on Datapoints: what Texas can teach San Francisco and London about building houses: it’s not a housing crisis — it’s a planning crisis in ~design

    FluffyKittens
    Link Parent
    This source is also from an author in England who has no real knowledge of the Texas cityscape. The Heights and Montrose are the two kinda-walkable neighborhoods where these townhomes are popular,...

    This source is also from an author in England who has no real knowledge of the Texas cityscape.

    The Heights and Montrose are the two kinda-walkable neighborhoods where these townhomes are popular, and as the “inner suburbs” label hints - people aren’t walking to work, they’re walking to strip malls and shopping center complexes.

    These townhomes are near-universally solid concrete lots fenced-off from the street with zero aesthetic appeal. I promise you: they’re not the cute, compact, walkable San Fran/New England homes you’re thinking of.

    9 votes
  12. Comment on Datapoints: what Texas can teach San Francisco and London about building houses: it’s not a housing crisis — it’s a planning crisis in ~design

    FluffyKittens
    (edited )
    Link
    I’ve lived in Texas my whole life. This is utterly off-the-rails nonsense from some Londoner with absolutely no anchoring in ground-truth reality. Just a blatant lie. The only driving force of...
    • Exemplary

    I’ve lived in Texas my whole life. This is utterly off-the-rails nonsense from some Londoner with absolutely no anchoring in ground-truth reality.

    It’s not just that Texas simply has more space to build on: its cities aren’t merely adding sprawl at the periphery, they’re densifying the existing city, and doing so by allowing existing homeowners to expand and subdivide their property.

    In Houston, a 1998 change to planning laws empowered landowners to turn one home into three — instantly creating space for new families in the heart of the city, while generating a tidy profit for themselves. A crucial detail was the inclusion of an opt-out for individual neighbourhoods whose residents wished to keep things as they were, increasing the scheme’s durability.

    Just a blatant lie. The only driving force of inner-city densification in Houston is luxury condos. I lived there for over two decades, knew people in all walks of life, and never met a single person living in a subdivided house as described. It is quite literally entirely suburbian sprawl being built.

    Austin has been much better at densification due to the city government being early ditchers of required parking minimums. But there’s still a huge housing crunch and in reality, most of the real new housing is coming from luxury apartments, and strings of identical cookie-cutter homes out in the suburbs. And Austin isn’t known for its “red-state virtues”.

    This isn’t even getting into the construction quality issues and absurd status of weatherproofing/insulation for new construction.

    Don’t take advice from some idiot who lives in Britain about why copying Texas’ building habits is a good idea.

    46 votes
  13. Comment on Is there an easy way or app to find songs based on bpm? For my workout playlist. in ~music

    FluffyKittens
    Link
    If you have a big music collection and you’re fine with scripting your own solution, librosa should do the trick with minimal fuss: https://librosa.org/ (Not the easiest route though; just trying...

    If you have a big music collection and you’re fine with scripting your own solution, librosa should do the trick with minimal fuss:

    https://librosa.org/

    (Not the easiest route though; just trying to give you a full suite of options.)

    2 votes
  14. Comment on How Google is killing independent sites like ours in ~tech

    FluffyKittens
    Link Parent
    To each their own, but I’m with Vlad on this one: they’re a team of three people and there are only so many indexing sources on the market. In fact, I think in utilitarian terms of net harm,...

    I understand that this has affected many of you in a negative way, creating a sense of betrayal that's against the very ethos of Kagi. I want to address this and be crystal-clear: any semblance of support for discrimination is completely against our principles. The rationale behind our choice was purely based on technological merits and business strategy, including the quality and cost-effectiveness of the service, as well as a critical need for redundancy and diversification in our data sources. The decision was treated the same as getting results from Google or Yandex (to which different groups of users in our userbase object to for various different reasons).

    To each their own, but I’m with Vlad on this one: they’re a team of three people and there are only so many indexing sources on the market.

    In fact, I think in utilitarian terms of net harm, giving revenue to Google is the less-moral option. Brendan Eich is a twat, but Kagi money in particular isn’t going to make or break him.

    34 votes
  15. Comment on How Google is killing independent sites like ours in ~tech

    FluffyKittens
    (edited )
    Link
    Yup, Google is actively hostile to small businesses, and every “update” to their search over the past decade has been a massive regression for product and info discovery for real-life users. I...

    Yup, Google is actively hostile to small businesses, and every “update” to their search over the past decade has been a massive regression for product and info discovery for real-life users.

    I highly recommend this Freakonomics interview with Google’s VP of Search from a year and a half ago: https://freakonomics.com/podcast/is-google-getting-worse/. They’ve got weak, inept leadership that’s completely detached from end-users - and the “our search us is fine; spammers have just gotten better!” cope vomited by Liz Reid Mayer is so transparently false when you look at cases like this article, where degradation is in search results is directly tied to a “core search update”.

    Fortunately, I think Kagi is the redeemer that’s been needed, and even if they don’t succeed themselves, they’re living proof that a team of 3 engineers is more capable of delivering practical value than the entire search team of Google, despite all its resources and payroll.

    38 votes
  16. Comment on Tildes Minecraft Survival Bi-Weekly Thread in ~games

    FluffyKittens
    Link Parent
    And in case anyone is wondering why Prism is technologically superior to other launchers, there’s a cat button on the main window’s top toolbar that toggles the background to a picture of a cat...

    And in case anyone is wondering why Prism is technologically superior to other launchers, there’s a cat button on the main window’s top toolbar that toggles the background to a picture of a cat playing with yarn.

    6 votes
  17. Comment on Downtime due to sign up spam in ~tech

    FluffyKittens
    Link Parent
    Yeah I can’t see this doing much useful. Spambots are typically fully automated, so unless you’re making new users wait >30 seconds to register, I don’t see how the computation cost is anything...

    Yeah I can’t see this doing much useful.

    Spambots are typically fully automated, so unless you’re making new users wait >30 seconds to register, I don’t see how the computation cost is anything more than a drop in the bucket from the POV of the spam operators - at least compared to a more traditional captcha-type fix.

  18. Comment on Self-hosted DnD 5e Charsheets in ~comp

    FluffyKittens
    (edited )
    Link
    I bit the bullet, and made a webapp for a small group to save/share character sheets for any game. It's really minimalist, but highly effective: the main editing UI is a base-64 encoded png of the...

    I bit the bullet, and made a webapp for a small group to save/share character sheets for any game. It's really minimalist, but highly effective: the main editing UI is a base-64 encoded png of the character sheet, with a user-provided JSON mapping to lay out text inputs in relative coordinates over that image.

    Game names and logos redacted to avoid Pinkerton scrutiny.

    I haven't implemented the "Save as new..." button yet, and the checkboxes are janky since I was laying out rectangles manually, but other than that, it's basically feature complete.

    3 votes
  19. Comment on How a Kalman filter works, in pictures in ~engineering

    FluffyKittens
    (edited )
    Link Parent
    Imagine you have a side-on camera view of a game of ping-pong, and you want to estimate the 3D coordinates of the ball at any given point in time using just this side view. To achieve this, you...

    Imagine you have a side-on camera view of a game of ping-pong, and you want to estimate the 3D coordinates of the ball at any given point in time using just this side view.

    To achieve this, you could feed the 2D image coordinates and bounding box size of the ball from your side-on view into a Kalman filter, and generate your prediction matrix by recording a few objective 3D ball-position measurements from other camera angles.

    Bounding box on its own wouldn’t give you an accurate measurement of the ball’s depth into the field of view (i.e. it’s a noisy signal), but you can use the bounding box to get a high-accuracy estimate of depth when you average over a few observations and correct for how the bounding box scales based on 2D coordinate position of the ball, as seen in the side-on camera view.

    1 vote
  20. Comment on “Wherever you get your podcasts” is a radical statement in ~tech

    FluffyKittens
    Link Parent
    Someone posted this on the HN thread for this article a few days back: https://podcastindex.org/ On the whole, I feel optimistic that the ecosystem could pivot pretty quickly if the Apple index...

    Someone posted this on the HN thread for this article a few days back: https://podcastindex.org/

    On the whole, I feel optimistic that the ecosystem could pivot pretty quickly if the Apple index turned sour.

    24 votes