emdash's recent activity

  1. Comment on People expect technology to suck because it actually sucks: so much of our usage involves dealing with a constant stream of minor annoyances in ~tech

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    There’s a difference between “unintuitive” and just plain old “different”. I grew up on Windows—my very first computer being some crappy Dell with an Intel Celeron processor with an 80GB SCSI...

    There’s a difference between “unintuitive” and just plain old “different”. I grew up on Windows—my very first computer being some crappy Dell with an Intel Celeron processor with an 80GB SCSI disk, and 768MB of RAM running Windows XP. It was fine. Good enough for an 8 year old kid in school.

    I purchased my first real Mac in 2013—the recently released 15” MacBook Pro with Retina Display—after having experienced two iPhones and being pulled into the halo effect.

    It took me a while to get used to macOS too. As a Windows user, it did feel frustrating that there wasn’t a Ctrl-X to cut, or how difficult it was to grasp finder, wait, you mean I have to drag things to use the OS properly?

    Over the years, you come to appreciate the small touches of macOS though. Unified design on every window, great terminal access, polish in places where you don’t expect polish, no registry, apps keep to their own .app package (for the most part), better designed third party apps too.

    Now, when there’s times I’m relegated back to Windows briefly, I’m forced to confront a feeling that Windows just... lacks in taste completely. The people designing it do not care. Management doesn’t care. It’s held down by decades of forced backwards compatibility that they have to push forward with every release, like a boulder up a hill. It’s truly a horrendously-designed pile of junk.

    5 votes
  2. Comment on The NASA team that kills spacecraft in ~space

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    (This article was written just before Cassini entered Saturn, but I found it interesting nonetheless).

    (This article was written just before Cassini entered Saturn, but I found it interesting nonetheless).

  3. Comment on Bots on Tildes in ~tildes

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    If you're looking for a bot to perform a task or function (and not just the shits and giggles bots that Reddit has), then IMO that's basically a smell that you need that feature integrated into...

    If you're looking for a bot to perform a task or function (and not just the shits and giggles bots that Reddit has), then IMO that's basically a smell that you need that feature integrated into the site—and given Tildes is open source, contributions to the source would probably be welcome and accepted. The RemindMe! one is a good example. Bots on reddit are used as an almost quasi-monkeypatch for missing functionality.

    Semantically, in my mind, comments are for humans and discussion. Not filling in for missing features.

    32 votes
  4. Comment on What are some good informative or educational shows? in ~tv

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    Nailed it. There's something so aesthetically simple and pure about Julian's videos—his subject matter, his speech cadence and intonations, and how he deftly explains his process to the viewer....

    Nailed it. There's something so aesthetically simple and pure about Julian's videos—his subject matter, his speech cadence and intonations, and how he deftly explains his process to the viewer. It's also always pleasing how Julian sweats the small details, the things no one will ever see, yet still matter to him—his desire to strive for perfection appeals to me greatly.

    I'm not even that interested in art—but Julian captures my attention every time. I definitely now have a much greater appreciation for art and the appropriate stewardship of it.

    2 votes
  5. Comment on Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, champion of gender equality, dies at eighty-seven in ~news

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    Just FYI, as an "outside observer", while her passing is obviously a great sadness, this sort of American pseudo-exceptionalism is becoming increasingly-misguided—no sane country has been looking...

    I believe this is possibly the most impactful thing, worldwide, to happen this year. And yes, I am well aware of what is competing with that particular event.

    Just FYI, as an "outside observer", while her passing is obviously a great sadness, this sort of American pseudo-exceptionalism is becoming increasingly-misguided—no sane country has been looking to the United States for "leadership" for a long time, as the overall politics of the U.S. has become increasingly detached from reality. The U.S. has become that weird regressive super-power that supports many of its principles in name only. I can't begin to describe just how damaging the Trump presidency and the overall hyper-partisan politics of the States has wounded its worldwide reputation—it's going to take decades of goodwill and meaningful change to repair that tear in the fabric.

    Stated in plain English: "We"—as in, the majority of the international community—do not aspire, nor look up to the United States anymore.

    I don't want to start a pissing contest, and I hope no one takes my comment here as such, but COVID-19 has honestly devastated the global economy, and while no country is perfect and we all have our own problems, this really isn't on the same scale. My condolences to her family and the American people—I hope you can use this moment to honour her desires and elect someone just as fitting to your highest court.

    32 votes
  6. Comment on Post editing etiquette in ~tildes

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    I don't know I necessarily agree with much of this. As weird as it sounds, text formatting is an incredibly personal thing, and to some extent represents someone's personality online. I don't know...

    I don't know I necessarily agree with much of this. As weird as it sounds, text formatting is an incredibly personal thing, and to some extent represents someone's personality online. I don't know if it's a good idea to take that away so we can introduce standards that are likely solvable via other mechanisms. For example, I heavily use em-dashes as a form of pause and aside—and frankly striking text surrounded by em-dashes is æsthetically very displeasing to me—because of the way the tracking of the typeface in combination with the strikethrough interferes with the paragraph's readability.

    I'm also not a big fan of the whole EDIT: paradigm in most cases. In fact I try very hard to not use it in all but exceptional cases, and usually reserve it for long-term followup (weeks+) if I've significantly changed my opinion or have an extreme urge to clarify something. My frustration with this style of writing is that it introduces fragmentation in the train of thought of what the author is trying to convey.

    Most of the issues you raise can be addressed through the existing ruleset Tildes has. If someone is editing their comment to make replies appear as bad-faith responses, that in itself is a bad-faith action and I'd probably report that to Deimos. In general most of the "problems" forums and discussion platforms have shouldn't be a problem here because there's a strong intolerance for those who repeatedly rock the boat—that's not to say that Tildes is a safe space, but it's hard to be a dick for very long here.

    My view: let people type how they'd like to type, and use the existing rules to address bad faith commentary with existing mechanisms :)

    7 votes
  7. Comment on Apple unveils new iPad and Apple Watch models; a new Fitness+ service; and Apple One, which bundles its key services for one monthly price in ~tech

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    Touch ID in the power button is definitely a new interaction model for iOS—granted, not fundamentally new overall. This is what you get with Tim Cook's Apple. The supply chain genius optimises the...

    Touch ID in the power button is definitely a new interaction model for iOS—granted, not fundamentally new overall. This is what you get with Tim Cook's Apple. The supply chain genius optimises the supply chain, but unfortunately, that seems to be resulting in a lot of reused hardware and components being conjured into different configurations to create new iterations on existing products.

    3 votes
  8. Comment on When you browse Instagram and find former Australian Prime Minister Tony Abbott's passport number in ~tech

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    Ah, aviation booking management portals and Amadeus I/O codes. Given how terribly strict security tries to be physically at airports, it's remarkable just how comparatively the aviation web is a...

    Ah, aviation booking management portals and Amadeus I/O codes. Given how terribly strict security tries to be physically at airports, it's remarkable just how comparatively the aviation web is a wild west of leaky colanders and trivial access to "private" information. Loved this blog post though, Alex did a great job and the prose of this article is humorous and enjoyable.

    5 votes
  9. Comment on Phosphine discovered in Venus' atmosphere, which could be evidence of microbial life in ~space

  10. Comment on Phosphine discovered in Venus' atmosphere, which could be evidence of microbial life in ~space

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    This exact spacecraft architecture has been mooted for Mars, and was part of the Mars-Scout program back in the early 2000's. Basically a high-speed flyby via an aerodynamic probe that skims the...
    • Exemplary

    This exact spacecraft architecture has been mooted for Mars, and was part of the Mars-Scout program back in the early 2000's. Basically a high-speed flyby via an aerodynamic probe that skims the high atmosphere, collects a small amount of gas, and is sent back on a return trajectory to Earth.

    The modifications for Venus wouldn't need to be particularly major either, the paper authors showed a graphic where they conclude some of the microbes get kicked up into the high atmosphere—so a sufficient sample size might just be lucky enough to capture some of this in frozen form, without needing to dip into very thick portions of the atmosphere.

    Definitely warrants further investigation.

    16 votes
  11. Comment on Phosphine discovered in Venus' atmosphere, which could be evidence of microbial life in ~space

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    This hasn't technically been announced yet. My understanding is that MIT have a press embargo out until tomorrow, but somehow something leaked and it got picked up for a little bit. TL;DR:...

    This hasn't technically been announced yet. My understanding is that MIT have a press embargo out until tomorrow, but somehow something leaked and it got picked up for a little bit.

    TL;DR: Microbial life my exist in the temperate portion of Venus' atmosphere based on the detection of the biosignature phosphine, which to our knowledge, can only be produced by living organisms.

    14 votes
  12. Comment on Thoughts in ~talk

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    You're a good person. Thank you for doing this.

    I've been volunteering with Crisis Text Line for a while

    You're a good person. Thank you for doing this.

    7 votes
  13. Comment on Changes to Apple's in-app purchase rules in ~tech

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    Except Apple's App Store guidelines have never been written by lawyers. Famously, Jobs was rumoured to have penned notable sections of it, including this gem, which as of recently, was still in...

    Except Apple's App Store guidelines have never been written by lawyers. Famously, Jobs was rumoured to have penned notable sections of it, including this gem, which as of recently, was still in there:

    If your app is rejected, we have a Review Board that you can appeal to. If you run to the press and trash us, it never helps.

    I don't think Marco literally considers his alternative solution a verbatim sentence they'd genuinely use in the document, but is intended as a communication device to the reader to convey what he would consider a more appropriate ethos the company should adopt.

    2 votes
  14. Comment on New Zealand Maori carver Twitch streamer gets a visit from Prime Minister "Auntie" Jacinda Ardern in ~misc

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    It is very bizarre seeing the term "auntie" being used as a positive phrasing in this context. Out of the last three elected PM's we've had, two have been women, and "aunt" has usually become a...

    It is very bizarre seeing the term "auntie" being used as a positive phrasing in this context. Out of the last three elected PM's we've had, two have been women, and "aunt" has usually become a disparaging sexist term referencing the women leader of the centre-left party who is keen to increase regulation and lead us towards a "nanny state" in New Zealand politics—Helen Clark received this profusely during her role as PM.

    Of course, such arguments are of course nonsensical bollocks, but it's interesting to see an International use of the word with no clear link to being a deprecating term.

    3 votes
  15. Comment on New Zealand Maori carver Twitch streamer gets a visit from Prime Minister "Auntie" Jacinda Ardern in ~misc

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    Never understood the population argument, other than as a good indicator that having more people isn't always a positive. A prime minister of a country by necessity usually has to deal with a lot...

    Never understood the population argument, other than as a good indicator that having more people isn't always a positive. A prime minister of a country by necessity usually has to deal with a lot of the same issues as any other global leader.

    Personally, I'm glad I live in a country with only 5 million people. It's much nicer.

    8 votes
  16. Comment on Maybe we should talk about the weather in ~talk

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    There's a certain Simpsons-ice-cube-in-the-ocean-esque irony about ameliorating record-breaking heat with more fossil-fuel-powered electricity consumption.

    There's a certain Simpsons-ice-cube-in-the-ocean-esque irony about ameliorating record-breaking heat with more fossil-fuel-powered electricity consumption.

    15 votes