Just bought a new (used) desktop. Budgeted $800, but quickly realized the glut of used off-lease workstations means you can get a real beast of a machine for cheap. Ended up with a 12-core, 24GB Xeon for $250. And honestly, it's probably overkill.

Apparently everyone wants laptops and SFF desktops right now; if you can tolerate a big box under your desk, it's a great time.

Was about to buy a moderately-expensive doohickey from a website, right up until it wanted me to create an account to buy it. NOPE. I've got better things to do than go through an account-creation process so I can give someone money.

If your site requires users to create an account to complete a sale, you are telling customers to go elsewhere. (Create an account on the backend if you want to, I don't care, I just can't be bothered to dick around doing it for you.)

Continuing the theme of Web 1.0 knowledge-drops…

TIL that in the 1960s-70s, many pen inks had chemical tracers added to them, to allow investigators to tell what year the ink was from. (It seemed to die out as a practice in the 80s with ballpoints.)

From: 4n6.com/ink-dating-expert-witn

I love super-specialized Web 1.0 pages done by people really passionate about a niche subject.

Exhibit 1 is this page about USPS postage rates, which is better than the USPS's own documentation in many respects:
nerdylorrin.net/jerry/postages

If you need some good news to brighten up your day, the assholes are going to prison. And in doing so, gave us a great real-life example of the Non-Iterated Prisoner's Dilemma at work. (Spoiler: one guy cooperated and got 5 years, the other guy got 14.)

Shameful that it took the legal system this long to get to this point, but as slow as it is, sometimes it does produce the right result.

arstechnica.com/tech-policy/20

And more to the point, what's the next-best (or better?) alternative to ?

Apparently there's some controversy involving as well?

On iOS, and seem to be the top choices? Anyone want to recommend one versus the other?

So...what's the deal with ? Their site says they're shutting the app down due to revenue/business model issues, but it also seems like they got caught routing data to their server that they had no business collecting? Suspicious.

Bummer because I really did like the app. Pity they don't seem inclined to open-source it rather than just kill it off.

Good article on . No news, really, though. Still have yet to hear a coherent explanation of what the hell Google is thinking.
droid-life.com/2019/07/02/i-fe
RCS is garbage, and they kneecapped the only messaging platform that could have competed with iMessage. Infuriating.

Kadin boosted

"We build our computer systems the way we build our cities: over time, without a plan, on top of ruins."
— Ellen Ullman twitter.com/devonzuegel/status

Put in my two weeks notice to my job today. New job doesn't start until the end of the month. If all goes well I should have a little down time in between. Trying to decide what I should do... Thinking it's going to involve a motorcycle and riding somewhere.

Always a good sign (not) when your code is so bad, auditors can't really say whether it's malice or incompetence:
theregister.co.uk/2019/06/27/h

I'll be honest, I had kinda forgotten about HP notebooks as something someone not in a corporate IT department would buy... but this makes me legit interested in one:
ifixit.com/News/hp-makes-the-m

After getting my PiDP-11 set up and working, I'm now very disappointed that my (modern) computer doesn't have any blinkenlights to tell me what it's doing. Since we've done away with mechanical HDDs and their associated noises as feedback, I want some clues as to what's going on in there.

Love to know what they're smoking at Google HQ that makes RCS seem like a good idea in 2019. Totally insecure, dependent on carrier support, feature-poor... what's not to hate?

Here's an idea: carriers do *nothing* but pass IP packets, and all messaging is via over-the-top services. You know, like Hangouts.

arstechnica.com/gadgets/2019/0

O/H at work:
Person 1: "I heard you can make like $200k working as a SharePoint admin at Bagram in Afghanistan..."
Person 2: "Yeah, but morally, I have to draw a line somewhere... And I just don't know about SharePoint."
Person 1: "Yeah. Gotta be able to sleep at night."

Got the quadcopter flying this week. Took an assist from someone who knows (unlike me) what they're doing, but we got it to take off and hover autonomously.

Pity it has the aerodynamics of a flying brick and a flight time of about five minutes. Oh, well.

Kadin boosted

Disney killed the public domain and all of you should be extremely mad about it

In Arizona and surprised at how few buildings have solar panels. I seriously saw more rooftop solar in Montpelier, Vermont, where there have to be a fraction of the sunny days there are here. Missed opportunities...

The PDP 11 replica project is going along nicely. Soldering up through hole components is so satisfying compared to surface mount stuff.

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