vili's recent activity

  1. Comment on RSS users - how do you use, organize and maximize your enjoyment of RSS? in ~tech

    vili
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    I try to keep the signal to noise ratio as high as possible. I stay away from generic, high volume feeds, and filter feeds if necessary. I use services like Reddit as curators, as they allow me to...

    I try to keep the signal to noise ratio as high as possible. I stay away from generic, high volume feeds, and filter feeds if necessary. I use services like Reddit as curators, as they allow me to filter feeds by vote counts.

    I don't follow breaking news through RSS. I just visit a handful of news websites daily for the bigger developing news. I do subscribe to news digests however, to get summaries of what has been going on in the world.

    With something like Ars Technica which you mentioned, I don't subscribe to their main feed, or necessarily even their main categories. Instead, I subscribe to their individual journalists who I know produce high quality content on a topic that I am interested in.

    I divide feeds into thematic categories as it makes it easier for me to process articles quicker and more accurately when I have that context as a reader. For instance, if I come across a headline about AI in my culture category, I instantly know that the article is likely very different than a similarly sounding article would be in my tech category, or in my LLM category.

    I sort articles within categories by publication date, oldest first. This again helps with context, as sometimes things build on top of earlier things.

    Most of my categories are intended to be read through like news feeds, but there are some which function a little differently. My music recommendations category, for instance, gathers album recommendations from a handful of sources. I only touch that category when I want to listen to something new, basically just picking whatever the next unread article recommends. As I work from home, I can and do listen to music throughout the day, but typically that category is never fully "read" as it always has unread articles (unchecked recommendations).

    3 votes
  2. Comment on Any tips for games for two or more players? in ~games.tabletop

    vili
    Link Parent
    If you like Jaipur, give Jambo a try! It's also a card driven trading game. My wife and I love Jaipur, and Jambo is probably our favourite two player game. The expansions are excellent as well.

    If you like Jaipur, give Jambo a try! It's also a card driven trading game. My wife and I love Jaipur, and Jambo is probably our favourite two player game. The expansions are excellent as well.

    2 votes
  3. Comment on Any tips for games for two or more players? in ~games.tabletop

    vili
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    If you like narrative games, co-operative games and puzzles, one of my favourites is the good old Sherlock Holmes: Consulting Detective series. Best enjoyed with a pot of English tea and some...

    If you like narrative games, co-operative games and puzzles, one of my favourites is the good old Sherlock Holmes: Consulting Detective series. Best enjoyed with a pot of English tea and some cookies. And lots of voice acting by the reader!

    4 votes
  4. Comment on Tips for Docker security on a NAS? in ~tech

    vili
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    This helpful reminder made me question whether I actually understand what I am doing. When I spin up a container with a docker compose file, I use PUID and PGID variables in the environment...

    This helpful reminder made me question whether I actually understand what I am doing. When I spin up a container with a docker compose file, I use PUID and PGID variables in the environment section, with PUID pointing to a special docker user that I have created, and PGID to its user group. This user has very limited access to the file system, among other things.

    But now that I read into it more, I see that not all containers support PUID and PGID. I had thought that it is a Docker standard, but it isn't? Additionally, I have no idea how to confirm what user a given container is actually running under. How can I do that?

    If I run "id" on the container itself, or if I run "docker exec mycontainer id" from the host machine, the response always notes root as the user. But, if I understand this correctly (and this may be a big if), this makes sense, as that just lists the container's internal user, which tends to be root, and is not the same as (but is mapped to?) the user that runs the container on the host machine?

    Are we even talking about the same thing when you say not to use root users?

    1 vote
  5. Comment on Tips for Docker security on a NAS? in ~tech

    vili
    Link Parent
    I generally do that when installing a new container, but I must confess that I don't really see myself doing that when updating containers. I have done some Node.js development in recent years and...

    If you don't have the ability to validate the code, you can at least go to the git repo, check the issues board, and look at the number of downloads there too.

    I generally do that when installing a new container, but I must confess that I don't really see myself doing that when updating containers. I have done some Node.js development in recent years and while the npm package manager is far from perfect, I have found its way to notify me about vulnerabilities in my installed packages helpful. I'll try to look for something like that for my Docker containers.

    PiHole

    This could indeed be helpful, and I have been considering setting it up for other (understandable) reasons anyway. Thanks for pointing out how it could help me with Docker monitoring as well. I've also seen Wireshark mentioned here and there, I think I'll need to take a closer look at that as well.

    1 vote
  6. Comment on Tips for Docker security on a NAS? in ~tech

    vili
    Link Parent
    Synology's Container Manager contains an image registry and handles the downloads. Basically, it's a slightly broken GUI for Docker Hub. I'll look into firewalls, thanks for the suggestion.

    Where are you getting containers?

    Synology's Container Manager contains an image registry and handles the downloads. Basically, it's a slightly broken GUI for Docker Hub.

    I'll look into firewalls, thanks for the suggestion.

    1 vote
  7. Comment on Tips for Docker security on a NAS? in ~tech

    vili
    Link Parent
    Thanks! What about a container that needs Internet access and secretly contains code that contributes to a bot network or something similar? Would there be any way for me to detect that?

    Thanks! What about a container that needs Internet access and secretly contains code that contributes to a bot network or something similar? Would there be any way for me to detect that?

  8. Tips for Docker security on a NAS?

    How do you make sure that your Docker containers don't go rogue and start snooping around or contacting external servers that they shouldn't be talking to? Is there a network traffic monitoring...

    How do you make sure that your Docker containers don't go rogue and start snooping around or contacting external servers that they shouldn't be talking to? Is there a network traffic monitoring program that I could use? Or a service that would notify me about vulnerabilities in containers that I have installed?

    Some background:

    Last year, I asked help setting up my new Synology NAS, and many of you wonderful people offered some really, really good advice. I have recently started to play around with Docker containers more, and I am a little uneasy about the idea that my NAS is home to my files, my own scripts, and Docker containers made by other people, and that it is always on and these containers have constant internet access. I don't have the time (or frankly the skills) to verify the contents of the containers beyond making sure that they come from reputable sources, but I would like to have a bit more peace of mind and make sure that things remain private and secure.

    My setup at the moment is the following: I have a Synology DS923+ and I manage Docker containers with Synology's Container Manager, using docker compose files. I have so far put all containers into the same virtual network (perhaps something I need to think about), which is a separate IP range from my other devices, and has internet access through my DNS. I use Synology's DNS Server (for everything in my home network) and Reverse Proxy so that I can use local domain names and HTTPS. For HTTPS, I have made myself a certificate authority and created the necessary certificates and installed them on my devices. No ports are opened on the router and things like UPnP are turned off. I use Tailscale to access my home network when not at home. And while I have not yet done so, I have been considering setting up some firewall rules, for instance to restrict access to the DSM. I use 2FA for the NAS and its SSH is turned on only when I need to use it.

    12 votes
  9. Comment on What's your favorite Wikipedia page and why? in ~talk

    vili
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    The current events page. It's often a pretty good summary of what's going on around the world. Doesn't replace my other news sources, but supplements them nicely. I get the previous day's events...

    The current events page.

    It's often a pretty good summary of what's going on around the world. Doesn't replace my other news sources, but supplements them nicely. I get the previous day's events as an RSS feed every morning.

    4 votes
  10. Comment on How do you keep up with smaller indie game news? in ~games

    vili
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    Not a news site, but for reviews, John Walker's Buried Treasure is worth checking out. It also has an RSS feed. If the name doesn't ring a bell, Walker has had a long history in games journalism...

    Not a news site, but for reviews, John Walker's Buried Treasure is worth checking out. It also has an RSS feed.

    If the name doesn't ring a bell, Walker has had a long history in games journalism and was one of the original founders of Rock Paper Shotgun. He only posts when he has come across something interesting, so there is very little noise. While he and I have very different tastes, I tend to find his observations and recommendations interesting, even when I don't necessarily agree with them.

    3 votes
  11. Comment on The Xmas music playlist at my job is awful; give me your best non-traditional holiday songs! in ~music

    vili
    Link Parent
    For a bigger set of Brown's Christmas songs, also check out the 37 track compilation The Complete James Brown Christmas!

    For a bigger set of Brown's Christmas songs, also check out the 37 track compilation The Complete James Brown Christmas!

    1 vote
  12. Comment on AlbumLove (November 2023): 1990-1994 in ~music

    vili
    Link Parent
    I love that album, too. In fact, as strange as it may sound, I think it's my favourite Genesis album. Not necessarily their best, but the one I like the most. And that actually makes it something...

    I love that album, too. In fact, as strange as it may sound, I think it's my favourite Genesis album. Not necessarily their best, but the one I like the most.

    And that actually makes it something of a conundrum to me. I tried to explain my love of the album to someone just a couple of weeks ago but I don't think I really managed to make my point. I can fully understand why many see it as something like a bland, unadventurous pop release, and perhaps it is that, but I think that it is not only well written, performed and produced, but it also has heart. Or maybe I'm just a sucker for the 90s sound in music? I don't know.

    You mention nostalgia and continued lyrical relevance. But I was wondering, is there also something else that made you pick the album? Maybe you can put it into words better than me.

    2 votes
  13. Comment on AlbumLove (November 2023): 1990-1994 in ~music

    vili
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    @SpruceWillis's post got me thinking about grunge and Neil Young's 1994 album Sleeps with Angels. The title track was a response to Kurt Cobain's suicide, an event that had personal meaning to...

    @SpruceWillis's post got me thinking about grunge and Neil Young's 1994 album Sleeps with Angels.

    The title track was a response to Kurt Cobain's suicide, an event that had personal meaning to Young. Not only had he by that point been labelled "the godfather of grunge", but Young had also been trying to get in touch with Cobain to offer his support just days before his death. Sadly, his message had never reached Cobain and instead, there was a message back. Well, sort of. Cobain's suicide note quoted Young's lyrics from Hey Hey, My My (Into the Black): "it's better to burn out than to fade away".

    While much of the album was already recorded by the time of Cobain's passing, the event affected song selection, and the mood is certainly mournful throughout. Beautifully, raggedly so. The lyrics talk about death, decay, longing, and the passing of time. Many of the vocals are almost spoken, whispered, or just buried under other lyrics or sounds. The prevailing mood is dark, bereft and foreboding.

    While it is actually a very melodic album, those melodies are constantly challenged and distorted by gloomy and murky guitars, a raw, slightly off-beat rhythm section, and deliberately slightly off-note performances. This is one of those albums that would be completely destroyed by a standard modern production approach with pitch correction and quantisation. These songs need to find those notes that exist between notes and beats that move between beats, that's how they come alive.

    Something similar is going on with the track listing. Two of the songs (Western Hero and Train of Love) share the same melody, but have different lyrics. Or so it seems on the surface. But instead of offering safety through familiarity, the slight differences between the two increase your unease and further distort your listening experience, as you think you know the song but then it suddenly goes ever so slightly differently than you expected. And while the album as a whole is a song cycle with a fairly unified mood and style, there is one song (Piece of Crap) that sticks out like a sore thumb and breaks that pattern completely.

    Sleeps with Angels is one of my personal favourites. You can't find it on Spotify as Neil pulled his music from there as a response to Joe Rogan's covid commentary. The album should be in other streaming services though, and in Neil Young Archives, a website and streaming service that looks just like the artist.

    3 votes
  14. Comment on Even the French are giving up on arthouse films. Is this the end of a cinematic era? in ~movies

    vili
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    A24 is reportedly* also changing their strategy to concentrate more on mainstream films. But maybe this will create a new opportunity for another studio to take its place in the indie space. *...

    There are studios that are still putting out arthouse films, A24 is the big one that comes to mind.

    A24 is reportedly* also changing their strategy to concentrate more on mainstream films. But maybe this will create a new opportunity for another studio to take its place in the indie space.

    * Paywall link, here's a Variety article discussing the same thing.

    7 votes
  15. Comment on What service are you using for domain names? in ~comp

    vili
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    I have used Namecheap for about 20 years and AWS's Route 53 for about ten. I have never had issues with either. Namecheap has a nicer UI while Route 53 is more powerful, especially when combined...

    I have used Namecheap for about 20 years and AWS's Route 53 for about ten. I have never had issues with either. Namecheap has a nicer UI while Route 53 is more powerful, especially when combined with other AWS services.

    And yes, Namecheap's name sounds like that of an early 2000s web-bizniss-company, but then again, that's what they were.

    7 votes
  16. Comment on SpaceX to the US FAA: The industry needs you to move faster in ~space

    vili
    Link Parent
    A small correction: the report actually suggests one fatality every two years. That said, SpaceX has refuted the claims and pointed out that the risk assessment is based on a two-decade-old study...

    they'll likely start causing at least one fatality per year

    A small correction: the report actually suggests one fatality every two years.

    That said, SpaceX has refuted the claims and pointed out that the risk assessment is based on a two-decade-old study of an unrelated satellite type.

    I don't personally really understand the full picture, so can't offer more clarity. But if FAA-commissioned reports can be fundamentally flawed in this way, it does sort of back SpaceX's argument that FAA might indeed need more funding as the industry that it is regulating is growing so quickly.

    15 votes
  17. Comment on People who manage small websites, how much does it cost you in time (and finances)? in ~comp

    vili
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    I run a handful of very low traffic static and WordPress websites, some of which are personal, some are communities, some brands and company websites that I'm part of. Currently, they are all...

    I run a handful of very low traffic static and WordPress websites, some of which are personal, some are communities, some brands and company websites that I'm part of. Currently, they are all running on AWS's Lightsail instances, which I have found simple and straightforward to deal with. Some of them are in their own individual $5 / month WordPress instances, while a bunch of my personal projects are together in a more generic $5 / month Linux instance. On top of that, there are the domain fees, in my case somewhere between $10 and $30 / year, depending on the domain and the registrar.

    The static websites require no real maintenance, and all backups are automated, but with the WordPress sites I do monthly manual updates that take me about 10 minutes / website, including running OS updates and rebooting the servers if necessary. One of the communities is also moderately targeted by spammers, so I log in every couple of days to remove a bunch of spam messages, none of which ever make it to the public website, but I like to keep things clean.

    All websites are constantly targeted by bot attacks, and one of the company websites in particular can get thousands of attempts a day. I started running websites towards the end of the 90s, and the amount of crap that you have to think about because of bots is one of the biggest changes that has happened in my time. It's worth reading into how to tighten website security. It's a time investment that will pay off in the long run.

    5 votes
  18. Comment on What's the big deal about running a half marathon? in ~life

    vili
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    You are very welcome. And I could add that I definitely understand how these kind of things can cause friction, you guys are certainly not alone with that. Just a couple of days ago my wife and I...

    You are very welcome. And I could add that I definitely understand how these kind of things can cause friction, you guys are certainly not alone with that. Just a couple of days ago my wife and I talked about how disappointed she was after a concert that we attended on Tuesday, as my reaction to it was so different from hers -- basically, for her the concert was a very emotional experience, while for me it remained an interesting intellectual curiosity. But again, talking about this not only deepened both of our experiences of the concert, but also our understanding of each other.

    Good luck with your hydroponic and baking projects!

    6 votes
  19. Comment on What's the big deal about running a half marathon? in ~life

    vili
    Link Parent
    Yes, these things can be very personal. My wife certainly didn't understand why I suddenly had to try to break the half-marathon distance, especially as it meant coming back from my failed...

    Yes, these things can be very personal. My wife certainly didn't understand why I suddenly had to try to break the half-marathon distance, especially as it meant coming back from my failed attempts nearly ready to throw up and hardly able to walk properly. Just like I don't for instance get why she often goes to see theatre productions that she has already seen a dozen times before.

    Or rather, on an intellectual level we both perfectly understand each other's crazinesses, but we can't always share in them emotionally. But for us that's fine. It would be boring if we were exactly the same, and this way we can learn from each other.

    10 votes
  20. Comment on What's the big deal about running a half marathon? in ~life

    vili
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    I can't speak for your wife, but I sort of went through the same thing this summer. I have always exercised regularly but never been a runner, just popping out for a jog in a nearby forest a...

    I can't speak for your wife, but I sort of went through the same thing this summer. I have always exercised regularly but never been a runner, just popping out for a jog in a nearby forest a couple of times a month, more for the nature than the running itself.

    But this spring I noticed that I was going out for runs more often, and finally it started to be something that I did every second day, a frequency that I have kept up since. With this increased practice, I soon noticed that my regular 10 km jogs no longer really challenged me, and naturally I started to push towards a half-marathon distance, while making a point to listen to my body. After a few attempts that I aborted around 18 km, usually in a particularly steep uphill part, I finally broke the half-marathon distance in August.

    It's hard to explain why, for a few weeks, this arbitrary distance became so important, or the feeling that I had when I finally broke it. But ultimately, I think it's just me creating my own meaning for life. Constructing my own narrative. Whether it's some arbitrary sports challenge, the goal of beating a video game, learning an instrument that I'll never play, building an indoor hydroponic farm that costs more than the produce that it produces, studying for an IT certificate that I will never need, perfecting that sourdough bread recipe that I've been tweaking for months although I could just buy bread from any shop, or whatever other ultimately meaningless task I decide to set up for myself, it's a nice little narrative for me to follow, and also an entertaining way to learn more about myself and the world around me. And if there are friends or family around me who share my temporary insanity, it's certainly even more fun.

    14 votes