skyfaller's recent activity

  1. Comment on Occlusion Grotesque. An experimental, organic typeface in ~design

    skyfaller
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    Is this under an open font license? I don't see a license on the web page, and I downloaded the font and I don't see a license in the zip file either. I'm happy to gleefully pirate stuff, but this...

    Is this under an open font license? I don't see a license on the web page, and I downloaded the font and I don't see a license in the zip file either.

    I'm happy to gleefully pirate stuff, but this would probably receive more attention and wider adoption if it were under an open license and institutions worried about copyright infringement could use it safely.

    4 votes
  2. Comment on A major quake in the Pacific Northwest, expected sooner or later, will most likely create waves big enough to wipe out entire towns. Evacuation towers may be the only hope, if they ever get built. in ~enviro

    skyfaller
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    Maybe this is just my depression talking, but it's hard for me to believe that our society will take the necessary steps to protect these people who are at risk from tsunamis. Our society has...

    Maybe this is just my depression talking, but it's hard for me to believe that our society will take the necessary steps to protect these people who are at risk from tsunamis.

    Our society has given up on taking meaningful action to address the clear and present danger of a pandemic that is killing 2,000-3,000 Americans each day. We are bored of mass death and choose to ignore it instead. That's people dying right now! How can our society possibly invest the effort required to prevent future deaths, even if they are very predictable future deaths?

    What is the purpose of warning people of death to come if they show no interest in the death that is already here?

    The article concludes:

    A comprehensive federal solution with accompanying funding is needed

    I don't know whether to laugh or cry. The federal gov't can't pass legislation to protect elections and democracy, i.e. its own existence. How will it protect the vulnerable people who rely on it?

    Before we can address the threat from tsunamis, we must rediscover our ability to deal with any threat at all.

    5 votes
  3. Comment on What's up with the NFT hate? in ~tech

    skyfaller
    (edited )
    Link Parent
    I'm not convinced that proof-of-stake actually works: https://yanmaani.github.io/proof-of-stake-is-a-scam-and-the-people-promoting-it-are-scammers/ Proof-of-work is an unconscionable waste of...

    I'm not convinced that proof-of-stake actually works: https://yanmaani.github.io/proof-of-stake-is-a-scam-and-the-people-promoting-it-are-scammers/

    Proof-of-work is an unconscionable waste of energy and hardware in a climate crisis, but you should be skeptical of people who claim that proof-of-stake will fix that.

    Even if proof-of-stake does work, it really amounts to the golden rule, "he who has the gold makes the rules". PoW and all of its alternatives will make the rich richer because they give inherent advantages to anyone who already has existing resources: https://scribe.rip/everestpipkin/but-the-environmental-issues-with-cryptoart-1128ef72e6a3

    Inequality itself is a major driver of the climate crisis, and cryptocurrency will only entrench and accelerate that inequality:

    8 votes
  4. Comment on Why do we use Tildes? in ~talk

    skyfaller
    Link Parent
    TL;DR: TLDR (and excessive brevity) reduces the quality of discussion, considered harmful ;-)

    TL;DR: TLDR (and excessive brevity) reduces the quality of discussion, considered harmful ;-)

    9 votes
  5. Comment on DuckDuckGo goes carbon negative in ~tech

    skyfaller
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    I have traveled the opposite direction. I previously was cautiously optimistic about carbon offsets, but now I think they are at best a distraction and at worst a way to funnel money to the worst...

    I have traveled the opposite direction. I previously was cautiously optimistic about carbon offsets, but now I think they are at best a distraction and at worst a way to funnel money to the worst polluters.

    Conventional approaches to carbon offsets like planting trees have been shown to be ephemeral by the increasingly out-of-control wildfires burning down offsets at an alarming rate. Also, tree monocultures are not nearly as resilient as actual forests, i.e. not something humans can quickly create. Your best bet is preserving existing forests, which can't scale up. New technology is unproven and I don't believe it can scale enough to matter before 2050. It's not that direct carbon capture couldn't be beneficial to humanity, it's that we'll have to solve the climate crisis without it, or we won't have a chance to deploy it.

    But before we can even address the practical problem of how one offsets carbon, we must solve the systemic problem of incentives. Offset markets are a market for lemons, where meaningless cheap offsets will drive out good meaningful offsets, because it is much cheaper to do nothing and play shell games than to actually offset emissions. I discovered a local eco-friendly shop was offsetting their emissions with the specific fraudulent offset covered in this article: https://bloomberg.com/features/2020-nature-conservancy-carbon-offsets-trees/ TL;DR: The Nature Conservancy has been corrupted to sell carbon offsets for forests on land that were already nature preserves and were never going to be logged. I told my local shop this. They are still offering the same fraudulent offset in their shopping cart today, perhaps because they do not have the time to research and find an offset that isn't a lemon, or perhaps because plausibly non-fraudulent offsets would be too expensive.

    It's too bad that the only sustainability strategy DuckDuckGo discusses in this announcement is carbon offsets. I'm sure they mean well, but I'm not convinced that this accomplishes anything at all in the absence of other efforts to dramatically reduce emissions. Everything about our society must change, carbon offsets aren't a silver bullet.

    11 votes
  6. Comment on <deleted topic> in ~comp

    skyfaller
    Link Parent
    I also aspire to support older, simpler browser engines, and I have to say... how do you test with Opera Presto? Do you have an ancient copy of it running somewhere? Is that... safe? Where did you...

    I also aspire to support older, simpler browser engines, and I have to say... how do you test with Opera Presto? Do you have an ancient copy of it running somewhere? Is that... safe? Where did you get it? How do you install it?

    I've been able to install and test with NetSurf and Pale Moon, and I've been using those as representatives of simpler browsers, but even if I wanted to support old proprietary browsers (and I'm not sure I do, seems like encouraging people to browse unsafely), I don't know how I would run a copy of IE4. At least NetSurf is maintained, and if I leave Javascript turned off, that has to reduce the security risk.

    Here's a crappy work-in-progress blog post about how I try to use progressive enhancement with CSS to support simpler browsers: https://www.maximumethics.dev/blog/2021/09/progressive-enhancement/

    3 votes
  7. Comment on <deleted topic> in ~movies

    skyfaller
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    Here's what's not clear to me: Do I need to watch 2 and 3 before watching this movie? (I didn't see 3 after being disappointed with 2.) Is this some sort of reboot or continuity shift, like how...

    Here's what's not clear to me: Do I need to watch 2 and 3 before watching this movie? (I didn't see 3 after being disappointed with 2.) Is this some sort of reboot or continuity shift, like how some Terminator properties ignore Terminator 3?

    Neo seems to be lost in the Matrix again, with this talking to a psychologist and having to take the red pill again... how did this happen? He's known about the Matrix since early in the first movie. Did his memory get wiped? I don't understand what the situation is supposed to be at the beginning of the new movie.

    1 vote
  8. Comment on Moderators of hundreds of popular subreddits sign open letter calling on Reddit founders to do more to combat COVID-19 disinformation in ~health.coronavirus

    skyfaller
    Link Parent
    Is Tildes not a Reddit alternative? I recognize it's tiny, but I put effort into seeking it out because of the many flaws of Reddit, and it seems to be doing a good job with moderation so far....

    Is Tildes not a Reddit alternative? I recognize it's tiny, but I put effort into seeking it out because of the many flaws of Reddit, and it seems to be doing a good job with moderation so far.

    Every time I see more stupid behavior like this from Reddit, I spend a little more time on Lobsters, Raddle, Lemmy, etc... Maybe they're no threat today, maybe the real competition to Reddit doesn't exist yet, but complacency has killed many powerful companies in the past.

    6 votes
  9. Comment on Climate change: IPCC report is 'code red for humanity' in ~enviro

    skyfaller
    Link Parent
    Similarly to purely direct solar heating vs. some electric hybrid, I think that a slow cooker like the instapot adds significant complexity to a thermal cooker that can be very simple and...

    Similarly to purely direct solar heating vs. some electric hybrid, I think that a slow cooker like the instapot adds significant complexity to a thermal cooker that can be very simple and long-lasting. It's not just a question of energy use while cooking, it's also a question of embodied emissions, maintenance, and eventually e-waste.

    2 votes
  10. Comment on Climate change: IPCC report is 'code red for humanity' in ~enviro

    skyfaller
    Link Parent
    Oh man, I really wanted the predecessor to that solar oven that was purely solar, the GoSun Grill. I recognize that adding electricity as an option makes it significantly more flexible, but I...

    Oh man, I really wanted the predecessor to that solar oven that was purely solar, the GoSun Grill. I recognize that adding electricity as an option makes it significantly more flexible, but I question its effect on simplicity/durability/repairability. I wish I had assembled the money to buy it before they stopped selling it.

    Would love to hear more about your experiences with that model.

    1 vote
  11. Comment on Climate change: IPCC report is 'code red for humanity' in ~enviro

    skyfaller
    (edited )
    Link Parent
    I mean, clearly the answer is no. In the developed world, even people living in energy poverty are currently living above the carrying capacity of the planet. The US and Europe will need to...

    I mean, clearly the answer is no. In the developed world, even people living in energy poverty are currently living above the carrying capacity of the planet. The US and Europe will need to dramatically change the way they live. It won't necessarily require them being less comfortable, so long as they are willing to learn new ways of doing things.

    My favorite example, because it's something I do regularly that has generally improved my life, is using thermal cookers / fireless cookers. You get your pot of food cooking, then throw it in an insulated container so that it continues cooking without further energy input.

    • You don't have to babysit the pot while it cooks, for fear of fire or children harming themselves
    • You can take it with you somewhere while it's cooking, e.g. to a picnic, it can be portable
    • It's especially great in the summer, because less cooking time means your kitchen heats up less
    • And of course it saves energy / reduces emissions

    All that's required is that you acquire one of these simple devices and learn to use it. I love the hi-tech Thermos Shuttle Chef because it's compact (yes, it's made by the same Thermos company you see in the USA, but for some reason only seems to be sold/marketed in Asia), but a simpler design like the Wonderbag is cheap enough the gov't could probably just give one to every household.

    It's not a sacrifice, it's a genuine life improvement. But it's not how the US or Europe currently lives (even though thermal cookers were popular until the 1970s in the US, after which they were thoroughly forgotten).

    4 votes
  12. Comment on Climate change: IPCC report is 'code red for humanity' in ~enviro

    skyfaller
    Link Parent
    I really think overpopulation is not something we should focus our attention on: https://www.vox.com/energy-and-environment/2017/9/26/16356524/the-population-question TL;DR: focus on womens'...

    What do you think about malthusianism and the idea that there are or will soon be too many people in the world to have appropriate living standards for all of them as it relates to climate change?

    I really think overpopulation is not something we should focus our attention on: https://www.vox.com/energy-and-environment/2017/9/26/16356524/the-population-question TL;DR: focus on womens' rights and economic inequality instead to get similar results without troubling eugenics overtones.

    12 votes
  13. Comment on PoW is efficient in ~finance

    skyfaller
    Link Parent
    POW will contribute to climate change even if it uses "green" energy, because some emissions are created even when manufacturing e.g. solar panels....

    POW will contribute to climate change even if it uses "green" energy, because some emissions are created even when manufacturing e.g. solar panels. https://solar.lowtechmagazine.com/2015/04/how-sustainable-is-pv-solar-power.html If we continue to increase our energy usage, we could spend our entire carbon budget simply building enough solar panels, wind turbines, etc. to meet our growing energy demands.

    To prevent climate apocalypse, we will have to reduce energy usage, as well as switching to green energy sources. There is no way POW will help with this process.

    13 votes
  14. Comment on Charm delivers Stripe's carbon removal purchase ahead-of-schedule in ~enviro

    skyfaller
    Link Parent
    I have a funny feeling that, if this becomes popular, then at some point in the future, some idiot is going to dig up this stuff and burn it.

    I have a funny feeling that, if this becomes popular, then at some point in the future, some idiot is going to dig up this stuff and burn it.

    1 vote
  15. Comment on <deleted topic> in ~life

    skyfaller
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    Responding only to your title, I think one major problem with wars is that you can't opt out of them. A lot of civilians would love to opt out of wars, but their choices are to live in a place...

    Responding only to your title, I think one major problem with wars is that you can't opt out of them. A lot of civilians would love to opt out of wars, but their choices are to live in a place fighting a war, or become a refugee fleeing to someplace else, which is far too disruptive to be considered "opting out" (will anyone even let you in?).

    The internet is a battleground in the "culture wars", with real effects in the physical world. Hate groups organize/recruit online and then kill people offline. Neutrality favors the oppressor, and ignoring these people won't make them go away (although deplatforming might, to some degree).

    Even civilians and soldiers on battlefields need downtime to try to escape the horrors of war in order to keep functioning. That's fine and good, and if you can find safe spaces online where you can catch your breath, excellent. Just don't confuse that with "opting out" of a war, the war continues to affect you regardless.

    11 votes
  16. Comment on Firefox 87 released in ~tech

    skyfaller
    Link Parent
    Thanks for mentioning LocalCDN, I wasn't aware of it. Unfortunate that Decentraleyes is still "Recommended" by Mozilla, but hasn't been updated in 5 months. If I always use Firefox with Strict...

    Thanks for mentioning LocalCDN, I wasn't aware of it. Unfortunate that Decentraleyes is still "Recommended" by Mozilla, but hasn't been updated in 5 months.

    If I always use Firefox with Strict Enhanced Tracking Protection, do you think I need LocalCDN? It's not that I don't want additional privacy if LocalCDN covers more stuff, it's that it adds another entity I need to trust, another icon in my browser, another extension to try disabling if a page isn't working...

    5 votes
  17. Comment on Firefox 87 released in ~tech

    skyfaller
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    Does anyone know how SmartBlock compares with the Decentraleyes add-on? Do they interfere with one another? Is Decentraleyes unnecessary now?

    Does anyone know how SmartBlock compares with the Decentraleyes add-on? Do they interfere with one another? Is Decentraleyes unnecessary now?

    5 votes
  18. Comment on The climate crisis is worse than you can imagine. Here’s what happens if you try. in ~enviro

    skyfaller
    Link Parent
    An alternate way of phrasing this is, an alarming number of people will oppose any attempt to save lives if it would inconvenience them personally, even if the life that might be saved is their...

    An alternate way of phrasing this is, an alarming number of people will oppose any attempt to save lives if it would inconvenience them personally, even if the life that might be saved is their own.

    I think it's important to remember that there are powerful forces encouraging that sort of short-sighted selfishness, that opposition to thought and expertise and facts, that denial of responsibility for others. Many of these people could be better people if they were not being brainwashed to be pawns for fascism. They are still responsible for their actions, and for falling for the con, but the context of right-wing media and culture needs to be remembered. Don't forget about who is benefiting from it all.

    7 votes
  19. Comment on The climate crisis is worse than you can imagine. Here’s what happens if you try. in ~enviro

    skyfaller
    Link Parent
    To be clear, while I think minimizing your carbon footprint can make you a more effective advocate for environmental policies, I don't think your individual lifestyle choices need to be a...

    To be clear, while I think minimizing your carbon footprint can make you a more effective advocate for environmental policies, I don't think your individual lifestyle choices need to be a priority. Do what you can when you can, and be kind to yourself. Without institutional and cultural support, many changes are too difficult for the average person.

    What is absolutely vital is to not give up on organizing with others to take action. You're right that governments will not do enough to stop this, unless we make them do so. The young people in Fridays for Future or Sunrise Movement will be suffering the effects of climate change after you are gone, and they are fighting tooth and nail. They haven't given up, and they need your help. Don't accept the casual murder of millions by those in power, hold them accountable.

    It may be hard to feel like you are part of a movement in the isolation of the pandemic, but I promise you, no matter what country you live in, if you join the movement for climate justice you will not be alone for long.

    13 votes
  20. Comment on The climate crisis is worse than you can imagine. Here’s what happens if you try. in ~enviro

    skyfaller
    (edited )
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    I think it's important and healthy to accept that some damage has already been done, and that we must begin efforts towards climate resilience and climate adaptation to deal with the inevitable...
    • Exemplary

    I think it's important and healthy to accept that some damage has already been done, and that we must begin efforts towards climate resilience and climate adaptation to deal with the inevitable effects of the emissions we've already produced.

    That said, I also worry about doomers encouraging society to give up and accept the continuing harm that our culture is doing now and in the future. Everything will change radically. The choice we face is whether to make intentional change to address the climate crisis and protect our children as best we can, or to abandon our descendants to their fate. A world with 4 degrees of warming would be very bad, but a world with 8 degrees of warming would be much worse. It could mean the difference between the collapse of civilization and human extinction, with no hope of doing better next time. Every little action we take matters... no matter how bad things get, we can try to prevent them from getting worse. (And never underestimate how much worse things could be.)

    17 votes