tindall's recent activity

  1. Comment on Diaries and Journalling, Oh My! in ~talk

    tindall
    Link Parent
    This is such a cool idea! I bet they'll really enjoy having that resource as they grow up :)

    This is such a cool idea! I bet they'll really enjoy having that resource as they grow up :)

    6 votes
  2. Comment on Moxie Marlinspike on decentralization in ~tech

    tindall
    Link Parent
    I think this is often a problem with protocol design. The example you give is a clear case of this; the blockchain protocol for Bitcoin was not well thought through at all, and was not designed...

    Yes I think that’s true, but it also seems like even a small team changing a single app is going to have an easier time than many teams agreeing to a protocol change and upgrading all their apps.

    I think this is often a problem with protocol design. The example you give is a clear case of this; the blockchain protocol for Bitcoin was not well thought through at all, and was not designed with extensibility or evolution in mind, as well as mandating some extremely disadvantageous technical decisions for clients. On the other hand, there are many problems with the ActivityPub protocol that Mastodon, Pleroma, etc use, but there are many diverse software platforms which use it, all sufficiently compatible to co-federate but with drastically different, and constantly evolving feature sets.

    Another great example is the BitTorrent protocol. It's kind of a mess, but it works well enough for everyone that we're only now, twenty years (!) later, looking at a version 2; and that's not really because of new features, but instead because cryptography has evolved in ways the original authors couldn't have anticipated.

  3. Diaries and Journalling, Oh My!

    Hi Tilderinos! Do any of you regularly journal, keep a diary, or otherwise record your thoughts and history, on a computer or on paper? I've been using the "bullet journal" algorithm (and yes,...

    Hi Tilderinos! Do any of you regularly journal, keep a diary, or otherwise record your thoughts and history, on a computer or on paper?

    I've been using the "bullet journal" algorithm (and yes, Ryder, it's a set of algorithms and data structures, no matter how much you say otherwise) for a while, slowly refining my personal practice over time - and sometimes making huge changes! Just this month, for my October journal prep, I switched from a list-style monthly log to a 7x5 grid of 3.5x3.5cm squares. It's very easy to make with my dotted notebook and a ruler, and it's easier to get an idea of my month at a glance!

    I've also decided to switch from a monthly braindump and check-in to doing smaller, mini-check-ins weekly, which I hope will help me keep better tabs on my fitness and mental health!

    So, what do you do? How do you feel about it? Share pictures if you're comfortable!

    9 votes
  4. Comment on Science hobbyists of Tildes in ~science

    tindall
    Link Parent
    That's so incredibly cool!

    That's so incredibly cool!

    2 votes
  5. Comment on Science hobbyists of Tildes in ~science

    tindall
    Link Parent
    Woah, you have a vectrex? So cool!

    Woah, you have a vectrex? So cool!

    2 votes
  6. Science hobbyists of Tildes

    Who here does science at home, for fun? I've been an electronics tinkerer for a while, but I've only recently gotten into reproducing some interesting physics phenomena, like accelerating small...

    Who here does science at home, for fun?

    I've been an electronics tinkerer for a while, but I've only recently gotten into reproducing some interesting physics phenomena, like accelerating small screws with electromagnets and varying the current, voltage, and substances involved to optimize the acceleration. It's fun stuff, but I'm looking to get a vacuum pump and some good vacuum equipment so that I can create a similar experiment on a higher level of energy: "cathode rays", or accelerating electrons produced by thermionic emission. This is like the mechanism powering old televisions and computer monitors, but I hope to set the system up so that it's easy enough to add additional electromagnets to focus or deflect the beam.

    What interesting phenomena have y'all replicated? How did it go? Do you feel that you learned something? Have you published anything on the topic?

    10 votes
  7. 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

    tindall
    Link Parent
    Of course not. I'm also not claiming modern buildings have no problems.

    Of course not. I'm also not claiming modern buildings have no problems.

  8. 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

    tindall
    Link Parent
    I think I'll take my word for it instead. I'm a software engineer who works in the healthcare field; certain kinds of bugs are an existential threat to the company I work for because we're so...

    Don't take my word for it, ask ANY software engineer what they think about the possibility of complex software without bugs. It'll at least be good for a laugh.

    I think I'll take my word for it instead. I'm a software engineer who works in the healthcare field; certain kinds of bugs are an existential threat to the company I work for because we're so heavily regulated. We seem to do okay somehow.

    5 votes
  9. Comment on ∞ Inbox Vs. Inbox Zero in ~tech

    tindall
    Link
    Maybe I'm just lucky, but I feel like it's uncommon to gen enough spam that checking email once a day and deleting or archiving everything is a burden.

    Maybe I'm just lucky, but I feel like it's uncommon to gen enough spam that checking email once a day and deleting or archiving everything is a burden.

  10. 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

    tindall
    Link Parent
    In principle, perhaps, but I brought up all of those examples because they are all people who have left or will soon leave the Apple ecosystem due to dissatisfaction with the Air models.

    In principle, perhaps, but I brought up all of those examples because they are all people who have left or will soon leave the Apple ecosystem due to dissatisfaction with the Air models.

    2 votes
  11. 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

    tindall
    Link Parent
    Ah, good point on the mini. I wonder if that's the solution to my build system woes.

    Ah, good point on the mini. I wonder if that's the solution to my build system woes.

    2 votes
  12. 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

    tindall
    Link Parent
    I (an engineer) am in none of these three camps. Neither are my parents (academics), my partner (a teacher), or my roommate (a stage actress, who is maybe arguably in group 3 but is broke as fuck).

    I (an engineer) am in none of these three camps. Neither are my parents (academics), my partner (a teacher), or my roommate (a stage actress, who is maybe arguably in group 3 but is broke as fuck).

    3 votes
  13. 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

    tindall
    Link Parent
    Of course. I'm not saying it's useless, just that I don't get why it's not optional.

    One, for content creators -- yes, it is important. If you edit videos or photos

    Of course. I'm not saying it's useless, just that I don't get why it's not optional.

    1 vote
  14. 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

    tindall
    Link Parent
    Personally, I don't understand the need for the (extremely expensive) 5k screen. I've used a 4k monitor before, and it's better than FHD for the work I do, but it's not really that much better...

    really not that far off from what it would cost to buy a 5k screen + computer

    Personally, I don't understand the need for the (extremely expensive) 5k screen. I've used a 4k monitor before, and it's better than FHD for the work I do, but it's not really that much better than 1440p. Is 5k really that much more amazing?

    2 votes
  15. 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

    tindall
    Link Parent
    Sort of, sure. Take my apartment building, for instance; several of the doors are just narrow enough that my friend's wheelchair can't make it through. But this building was built in 1920; we have...

    Sure, tech is full of bugs... but everything people create is full of bugs and annoyances. We've just had more time to get used to the imperfections in the analog world.

    Sort of, sure. Take my apartment building, for instance; several of the doors are just narrow enough that my friend's wheelchair can't make it through. But this building was built in 1920; we have significant legislation preventing this kind of mistake from new buildings, because we acknowledge, as a society, that it's important. We haven't done that with software yet.

    5 votes
  16. 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

    tindall
    Link Parent
    Yes, precisely this. If all or nearly all software was open source, we would have the best of both worlds; so much of open source exists only because proprietary solutions, which are the best or...

    Yes, precisely this. If all or nearly all software was open source, we would have the best of both worlds; so much of open source exists only because proprietary solutions, which are the best or only option in some space, have a fatal flaw that forces someone to build an alternative. Imagine if those people's free labor could be used to improve the original product, instead!

    4 votes
  17. Comment on What are you reading these days? in ~books

    tindall
    Link Parent
    I've never read that book in particular, but it's true that his style is a little obtuse. I say, pick up Railsea from the library and give it a shot!

    I've never read that book in particular, but it's true that his style is a little obtuse. I say, pick up Railsea from the library and give it a shot!

    2 votes
  18. Comment on Firefox usage is down 85% despite Mozilla's top exec pay going up 400% in ~tech

    tindall
    Link Parent
    That's a misunderstanding of anarchism on the level of saying "well, if you're a capitalist, how come you believe in regulation? If you're not a Randian Objectivist, you shouldn't really call...

    Either you let everyone do what they want or you don't, and if you don't, you're not an anarchist.

    That's a misunderstanding of anarchism on the level of saying "well, if you're a capitalist, how come you believe in regulation? If you're not a Randian Objectivist, you shouldn't really call yourself a capitalist." There is nuance in all things, and believing that the concept of the modern nation-state is inherently flawed does not require being a radical libertarian.

    1 vote
  19. Comment on Firefox usage is down 85% despite Mozilla's top exec pay going up 400% in ~tech

    tindall
    Link Parent
    This is what I fundamentally disagree with. I was able to go to a decent liberal arts college and emerge with little debt, due mostly to my circumstances: my parents had enough money to support...

    Nepotism and luck and all those things shouldn't get in someone's way of taking whatever path through life they want (or at least are capable of) but those things aren't the reason that higher level employees are paid more.

    This is what I fundamentally disagree with. I was able to go to a decent liberal arts college and emerge with little debt, due mostly to my circumstances: my parents had enough money to support me, I was able to get a job that many others applied for at the school, and I went to a high school that was fairly well funded due purely to where my parents lived. All of that is luck. Did I get good grades? Yes. But that's only part of the story.

    Now, I work at a software company in a professional role, making a good deal more money than if I had never gotten a degree. I have the opportunity to work there partly because I'm a good engineer, but partly because I happen to know several of the engineers and was able to get a recommendation. Again: partially skill and hard work, but mostly luck.

    All of this misses the luck of having parents that supported my hobbies of tinkering with computers, parents that didn't kick me out when I transitioned, and even smaller stuff like happening to attend CodeDay competitions in high school which weren't the same ones as other very talented people, which allowed me to win awards. Yet again: skill and hard work, yes, but it would have all been useless without a good deal of luck.

    So, yes, luck and nepotism are the reason that you and I are paid more than my uncle from New York who's a career civil servant, because he went to a shitty high school and didn't get lucky enough to enjoy or have talent in things that society likes to reward, and because of a million other reasons. We worked hard to get where we are, but denying the role of luck in that is just willful ignorance.

    I'm sure many people here have done both menial and professional jobs, I certainly have. The professional jobs I've had are all far more demanding.

    So, let me ask you: would you prefer not to do a professional job if the pay difference was only, say, 10% between the two? What about if the pay difference was inverse? Personally, I'd take a pay cut to work in software rather than do what I did before college, serving shitty food to schmoozing fat cats.

    This would have a lot of consequences, though. For instance, professionals wouldn't put up with bullshit from management - "I don't get paid enough" to the extreme. That's almost certainly a good thing. Would it mean that a small company like the one I work at would need more engineers, since we wouldn't work overtime or come in on the weekends if we weren't scheduled for it? Yes. But they already should be hiring more engineers, they just don't because they can get away with it.

    To take the "full communism" approach, as one argument, what if people were paid according to how much society needed them? Not like a free market, where people are paid roughly according to the product of their profitability and scarcity, but rather, if there was a shortage of doctors, the central planners would say "ah, let us increase the salary for doctors for the next 50 years, encouraging people to go to medical school and become doctors".

    Central planning is spooky, though - I'm an anarchist, I certainly am no fan of that. So, what if we would consider the jobs we think of as most "scarce" today, requiring the most training and experience. Lawyers and doctors are, perhaps, outliers in that the market, pushed along by insurance companies and the government, pays them well. Professors, teachers, and even engineers of things that are not electronics and computers, are really not paid that well. Professional airline pilots spend more time in training than nurses but aren't paid at all commensurately with their "value" as you propose to construct it. Many of these people do their jobs because they love that field, certainly not because they want to get rich. As long as it pays well enough to support a decent lifestyle, I don't see hundreds of academics picking up a mop and broom and never doing research again.

    To take the latter variable, it's not wrong we pay firefighters more than burger flippers, is it? One of those people are putting their lives on the line to save other people, the other goes home smelling slightly of beef.

    Except in places like California where they use literal slave labor to fight fires.

    The system already doesn't do what you're suggesting would be fair. It's important to consider possible futures that don't accept the lies that capital wants us to believe.

  20. Comment on What are you reading these days? in ~books

    tindall
    Link Parent
    If you enjoy it, check out Railsea. It's a great take on a classic story, and Mieville's writing makes it super fun to figure out the world and what's going on.

    If you enjoy it, check out Railsea. It's a great take on a classic story, and Mieville's writing makes it super fun to figure out the world and what's going on.

    3 votes