hacker news with inline top comments    .. more ..    29 Sep 2016 News
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Why you should avoid using document.write, specifically for scripts injection dareboost.com
40 points by dareboost  1 hour ago   4 comments top 3
wanda 26 minutes ago 1 reply      
About time. Just do as Google/Facebook do:

 var _script = document.createElement('script'); _script.src = '//blablabla.bla/bla.js'; /* _script.async = '' */ (document.body || document.getElementsByTagName('body')[0]) .appendChild(_script);
You could append to the head instead (a la Google Analytics universal snippet) with the async attribute set to '' or 'async' or true or !0 or whatever you fancy.

Works for CSS too, though it'd be better to append your link element to the head despite what Google says.

Handy for asynchronously loading fonts without link rel="preload" which is poorly supported.

You could also do this with a single style element in the body containing your @font-face, but that's a crap idea if you want to use Google Fonts, for instance.

Obviously with CSS, it's worth including a regular link element in a noscript in the head.

mcrider 2 minutes ago 0 replies      
Google Chrome is now blocking this* by default on 'slow' (though in my tests, also not so slow) network connections. I'm generally okay with this, but it broke one of my sites and is the second time in recent months that Chrome has made a sweeping, possibly breaking change with its browser with basically zero warning.


kijin 2 minutes ago 0 replies      
Script injection via document.write is bad practice of course, but I'm not sure what Google's rationale is for making this backwards-incompatible move.

"Your site is slow, so we'll break your functionality. There you go, isn't it faster?"

It's not the browser's fault that a badly written page loads slowly. Has the speed competition become so important that browser vendors would rather load a non-functional page than a slow page?

An AWS Region is coming to France allthingsdistributed.com
75 points by noplay  4 hours ago   23 comments top 6
dazbradbury 2 hours ago 4 replies      
For those in London wondering where is best for UK based customers, it seems, for London at least, this could be an improvement over Dublin (where Frankfurt is slower), as Paris is roughly 70 miles closer. Of course, depending on where / when [1] a UK-based data centre is released, I'd imagine that would be faster still.

Currently Ireland vs. Frankfurt is (more data needed of course)[2]:

 Europe (Ireland): 25 ms 27 ms 24 ms Europe (Frankfurt): 39 ms 39 ms 42 ms
And Frankfurt is about 100 miles further than Dublin.

But for a quick test, this looks like a good tool: http://www.cloudping.info/

Will be interested to test this once released to see UK / Paris vs. Dublin.

[1] Article states UK region "due in coming months". No location announced?

[2] Hitting ec2.eu-west-1.amazonaws.com vs. ec2.eu-central-1.amazonaws.com.

rloc 3 hours ago 1 reply      
This is great. I operate a French website targeted to French customers, this will improve latency compared to Ireland.

This might also allow for mixing critical server roles hosted in other Paris data centers with AWS.

I'm thinking about connecting a web server (in AWS) with a DB server (in another Paris DC) while keeping the latency at a low level.

widforss 1 hour ago 3 replies      
What is the state of the temporary spy laws in France?

Shouldn't it at least be mentioned in the announcement that the french government can pretty much ask Amazon for any of your data without a warrant. Or is the situation better than a year ago?

EDIT: Warrant is apparently needed as noplay said.

5h 2 hours ago 2 replies      
Still no further info on the London region since their announcement post[1] said:

> Today, I am excited to add the United Kingdom to that list! The AWS UK region will be our third in the European Union (EU), and we're shooting to have it ready by the end of 2016 (or early 2017). This region will provide even lower latency and strong data sovereignty to local users.

[1] http://www.allthingsdistributed.com/2015/11/aws-announces-uk...

grif-fin 2 hours ago 1 reply      
I do sincerely wished Amazon would have consider changing their AWS service management UI and workflow as well as epanding their servers around the globe.

Currently it is an incredibly inefficient design of a service management trying to do everything yet many are dependent for using it.

Qubes OS 3.2 has been released qubes-os.org
46 points by andrewdavidwong  1 hour ago   7 comments top 2
andyjohnson0 37 minutes ago 2 replies      
If anyone here uses Qubes then I'd be interested in learning about your experience.
fulafel 27 minutes ago 0 replies      
USB passthrough, good stuff. This is starting to sound very usable for everyday use.
How Anxiety Warps Your Perception bbc.com
52 points by nedsma  5 hours ago   27 comments top 6
apatters 1 hour ago 3 replies      
The most interesting and useful piece of information in this story is buried towards the end: there is an app which implements a gamified version of ABMT therapy.

The BBC didn't even mention its name! From searching around it appears to be Personal Zen (iOS only): http://www.personalzen.com/

Don't know what kind of twisted priorities in the newsroom would focus a story like this on using anxiety to make a political point, versus putting the focus on a way people can treat their anxiety, but hey, that's probably just my anxiety speaking.

etiene 29 minutes ago 0 replies      
As a radical leftist with crippling anxiety, the political part of this article was rather unexpected
watermoose 1 hour ago 4 replies      
This is an article essentially about how anxiety affects political views, so here's my experience on that matter.

I'm an independent that leans conservative especially on fiscal but also somewhat on social issues, and I know that my worry plays a part in it.

I've voted for independents, Libertarians, Republicans, and Democrats in past presidential elections, and plan to vote Democrat this year, and I will do so because of my worry about the Republican candidate. This candidate is unpredictable, and is focused on the wrong side of issues that I care about. I'm a compassionate person, and the candidate is not. I'm also a Christian, and the candidate is the antithesis of the behavior and goals I would hope to have in my country's leader. And of course, I think that a woman should have a chance at leading our country, even if she's not the one that I'd chose typically. So, my anxiety will play a part in the election, but not in the way this article would suggest.

amelius 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Here's a better article which describes how anxiety can change your perception: [1]

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Depersonalization

degenerate 2 hours ago 2 replies      
>> "... know that youre in good company. Actors like Jennifer Lawrence and Emma Stone, musicians such as The Beach Boys Brian Wilson and Taylor Swift ..."

Not quite the 'company' I had in mind when thinking about anxiety. If the article started out with 'medical residents' or other jobs that are stressful and anxiety-inducing because your ability to do your job correctly and quickly might mean someone else dies, or the success of the company rests on your performance, perhaps I'd take the article seriously. But actors and musicians? Sure, messing up means failure, and failure might mean lost contracts, disappointed fans, and having to let go of the great team of people that got you to success. But anxiety driven by success is not the 'company' that most people can relate to. It's having to perform duties that are put upon you by your job, society, and family that are hardest to deal with. If you're good at these things, you will be successful. But the long road to success is the hard part which causes most people anxiety. Not already achieving it like musicians and actors have. That's a different type of anxiety that most people can't relate to.

sundvor 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Poisonous spiders? Interesting article though.
The Effect of State Marijuana Legalizations cato.org
292 points by prostoalex  14 hours ago   198 comments top 20
runesoerensen 13 hours ago 2 replies      
> The absence of significant adverse consequences is especially striking given the sometimes dire predictions made by legalization opponents.

No kidding - let me just quote Kofi Annan's excellent essay on the subject (published a couple of months before the UN failed to course correct at UNGASS 2016):

"Nowhere is this divorce between rhetoric and reality more evident than in the formulation of global drug policies, where too often emotions and ideology rather than evidence have prevailed."


zkhalique 10 hours ago 11 replies      
I would express the same sentiment about illegal immigrants. This is to all the people who support Donald Trump's rhetoric about deporting all 11 million undocumented immigrants. These people fled the drug gangs and violence that our war on drugs helped create (think fleeing ISIS) and came to work jobs no one else would take and make a better life for their family. Yes technically they broke a law.

If you're going to argue that we as a country of laws should deport them all back, then I hope you and your family never smoked pot because you broke a law. And since we are a nation of laws - including minimum sentencing laws which the prison industrial complex loves - how would you like it if they looked for you and put you in jail for a victimless crime? Drop your double standard. The Mexican immigrant is better than the potsmoker because they fled violence, wanted to make a better life for their family AND helped do the jobs no one else would. The potsmoker chose to smoke and helped no one except the drug dealers.

Plus we did that already, and it was a disaster: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mexican_Repatriation -- an estimated 1.2 million US citizens were deported. Plus until 1965, immigration was unrestricted from Mexico and Canada so many of the 11 million broke a law by staying, but not by coming.

You have heard all these myths. The fact is, immigrants have higher labor participation, lower crime rate than the native born population. Especially the illegal immigrants who are afraid of being caught by police and deported. Illegal immigrants do NOT get money from the federal government - if your city pays them take it up with your city. But they pay taxes like everyone else, including sales tax and property taxes. So they pay into the system and get nothing back. You want to deport them all and break up their families so you will end up picking crops, and think this is the way to bring jobs to USA?

gregschlom 12 hours ago 2 replies      
This is really interesting in light of the current political discussions:

"Until 1913 marijuana was legal throughout the United States under both state and federal law. Beginning with California in 1913 and Utah in 1914, however, states began outlawing marijuana, and by 1930, 30 states had adopted marijuana prohibition. Those state-level prohibitions stemmed largely from anti-immigrant sentiment and in particular racial prejudice against Mexican migrant workers, who were often associated with use of the drug. Prohibition advocates attributed terrible crimes to marijuana and the Mexicans who smoked it, creating a stigma around marijuana and its purported vices."

One century later, the prejudices haven't changed.

tim333 2 hours ago 3 replies      
Hooray for the scientific type approach of trying drug policies and studying the results. I'm ambivalent about marijuana legalisation and the results look fairly neutral but there are other policies like prescribing heroin like drugs to addicts so as to cut out the pushers, thefts and deaths through bad drugs that could probably save thousands of lives. I hope those get some experimentation and testing too.

There's a small scale experiment here http://health.spectator.co.uk/the-case-for-prescription-hero...


>Inspector Michael Lofts studied 142 heroin and cocaine addicts in the area, and he found there was a 93 per cent drop in theft and burglary. You could see them transform in front of your own eyes, Lofts told a newspaper, amazed. They came in in outrageous condition, stealing daily to pay for illegal drugs; and became, most of them, very amiable, reasonable law-abiding people. He said elsewhere: Since the clinics opened, the street heroin dealer has slowly but surely abandoned the streets of Warrington and Widnes.

Mathnerd314 5 hours ago 2 replies      
A contrasting report:http://www.rmhidta.org/html/2016%20FINAL%20Legalization%20of...

There are indeed significant changes in some marijuana-related statistics. The Cato institute report has selected indicators that are relatively stable and do not show these effects. It does not discuss the limitations of the data, discuss data sources that were considered but not used, or include illustrative anecdotes. It can be summarized as "we carefully picked these graphs that didn't show anything, and we still can't rule out any effects of legalization".

jonah 11 hours ago 0 replies      
The medical community in California is supportive of legalization:

California doctors lobbying group formally backs marijuana legalization


After backing Gavin Newsom, California nurses group gets behind pot legalization


greggman 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Maybe it was buried in there but what I didn't see is a graph showing the amount of money spent on dealing with marijuana related crimes that is now going to other crimes.

They pointed out crime didn't go down. Fine. All that could mean is that the police etc focused on other crimes instead of the mostly victim-less marijuana crimes from when it used to be illegal.

Even if expenditures on crime don't change the fact that whatever money that was being spent catching, processing, and incarcerating marijuana users and dealers can now be spent on something else seems like a huge win

Nursie 1 hour ago 1 reply      
I like this, an honest analysis.

One major argument about crime I didn't see addressed was the revenues going to organised criminal gangs before and after.

I'm also not sure about the paper's claim that advocates claim a fall in crime, in general, from Cannabis legalisation. I can see the argument that decriminalising and medicalising heroin addiction may decrease various forms of crime, particulary acquisitive crime. But with cannabis?

kstenerud 11 hours ago 0 replies      
So, half the hn crowd see this report as a partisan biased attempt to push legalization, and the other half see it as a partisan biased attempt to suppress legalization...
mSparks 3 hours ago 1 reply      
it would of been nice is they contrasted the "no rise in serious crime" with the number of drug related arrests.

for me the biggest reason to have gange legal is it frees policing resources up from processing fairly ridiculous prosecutions of people dealing in what is basically just plant material.

so while it is nice to see there is no real impact on "other crime" the fact they missed the impact of freeing up resources directly related to weed is a major ommission.

and also.

god damn you americans pay a lot for it. $250 an ounce. that's ridiculous. like more than three times the price I used to pay as a teenager for prime amsterdam skunk.

sitharus 12 hours ago 0 replies      
I would have been nice to see the trends compared to states without any legalisation, but other than that it's a good analysis.
datashovel 13 hours ago 2 replies      
tldr; "The data so far provide little support for the strong claims about legalization made by either opponents or supporters."
mirimir 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I don't see any statistics on arrests for marijuana possession and sale. Of course, legalization must reduce arrests for possession. But comparison with property crime would be interesting. And I presume that there will be long-term social and economic benefits of keeping people out of the criminal-justice system.
aorth 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Interesting! I'm from California but haven't lived there in ten years and I thought marijuana was already legal there. Turns out that it's only medicinal use of marijuana that is legal (2010), but there is a ballot proposition for wider legalization on the upcoming November, 2016 elections.


delbel 8 hours ago 0 replies      
The effect on local businesses has been very positive in my area (southern Oregon). I'm not sure about the government. Honestly I don't think they would allocate the money in the best way. We have a state employee retirement program that is in the red billions of dollars, I suspect that is where the money will go to first.
0verD0ses 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Turns out both sides were right, but also wrong, so they basically cancel each other out.
thecrow1213 13 hours ago 1 reply      
Thanks for sharing, very interesting stuff. The more unbiased studies we have like this the better.
hackuser 13 hours ago 8 replies      
Know your source: Cato is an advocate for libertarianism, at least as envisioned by its funders, founded in part by Charles Koch, and still heavily funded and controlled by him (and I think by his brother).

I don't mean that in a partisan way; you might love them, hate them, or not care one way or the other, but it's always useful to know who is talking.

s_m_t 13 hours ago 6 replies      
New rule suggestion. You must argue at least one flaw in the study or article before pointing out the source may be biased.
jxramos 11 hours ago 6 replies      
Someone was telling me recently that all the cheap heroin influx into the country from Mexico was the result of drug cartels losing market to marijuana and needing to come up with a cheap competitor substitute. Not sure if that was accurate or not but sort of sounds intuitive in an economic sense.

I'm still surprised how marijuana posts are so frequently pushed in HN. My take is that the effect is negative, I've seen just a ton more brazen usage out in public once this thing hit with a bunch of phony Dr prescriptions given to perfectly healthy people. It's all a ruse in my book, you're either growing in virtue or backsliding. At best drug use is suboptimal for a thriving philo-generative culture to borrow Daniel Hannan's phrase.

One in 10 children has 'Aids defence' bbc.com
14 points by dest  3 hours ago   1 comment top
JumpCrisscross 17 minutes ago 0 replies      
"The researchers analysed the blood of 170 children from South Africa who had HIV, had never had antiretroviral therapy and yet had not developed Aids.

Tests showed they had tens of thousands of human immunodeficiency viruses in every millilitre of their blood.


Prof Philip Goulder, one of the researchers from the University of Oxford, told the BBC: 'Essentially, their immune system is ignoring the virus as far as possible.'

'Waging war against the virus is in most cases the wrong thing to do.'"

A Commodore 64 Is Still Being Used to Run an Auto Shop in Poland gizmodo.com
44 points by Insanity  1 hour ago   28 comments top 12
toomanybeersies 51 minutes ago 0 replies      

McLaren needs a 20-year-old Compaq laptop to maintain its F1 supercar


jerf 21 minutes ago 2 replies      
Somebody in the area should offer to help them out. Someone who knew what they were doing could pretty easily suck the whole thing into an emulator, and that would keep them going probably for the next several decades, if they like, without having to worry that the hardware going out will cause them problems, or that the disks will crap out.

(I'd consider it myself but I'm about 2400 miles away.)

wiredfool 26 minutes ago 0 replies      
There's a liquor store in Washington that was still using C128s for their POS system as recently as a year or so back. They had a couple of spares stashed on the top shelf.
maze-le 29 minutes ago 0 replies      
A lot of banks still use COBOL systems from the 70ies in their backend stack[0]. It might be the same issue with this small C64 for business: "Never touch a running system"

[0]: http://www.bankingtech.com/375941/cobol-bank-it/

jug 44 minutes ago 0 replies      
Funny thing with the quote from Commodore USA's Facebook page. These guys are irrelevant to Commodore 64's other than having bought rights to use the name... :P Weird also how their Facebook page is still active, but their website and forum is defunct with no effort made to clarify their situation with their founder deceased since 2012.
icantdrive55 1 hour ago 1 reply      
So many auto shops/machine shops would be lost without access to older computers. So much equipment needs to be plugged into parallel ports.

"If it works, why muck with it?"

dcminter 1 hour ago 3 replies      
Commodore 64C rather than the plain old 64 I think. Still very impressive! How on earth is that disk drive still working!?
dgreenlieber 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I love this, here is a straightforward technology getting the job done! Too many sophisticated and advanced solution are being built for no reason.
Pharylon 41 minutes ago 1 reply      
Probably a lot of spaghetti code doing those calculations. Time for a rewrite! ;)
yitchelle 54 minutes ago 0 replies      
Don't change a working system.
nathell 53 minutes ago 0 replies      
grej 53 minutes ago 0 replies      
Facebook, Amazon, Google, IBM and Microsoft Create Partnership on AI techcrunch.com
500 points by monsieurpng  15 hours ago   196 comments top 30
thr0waway1239 8 hours ago 7 replies      
I was starting to get worried about the data collection already happening individually at these big companies. Now that they have announced a partnership which potentially combines all this data together, I feel so much better!

The funny thing is, the companies are ALWAYS going to put a positive spin on this. Not very different from the WhatsApp "we won't show ads, ever" messaging. Now I am in the camp which says "Fool me once, shame on you. Fool me twice, shame on me". Almost none of these companies can be trusted at this point. [1] Their refusal to ask OpenAI to be at the table really does not reflect well on them [2]. And the less said about the tenured professors who are now becoming company mouthpieces saying things like "we create products which cannot make profit but which is meant purely for data collection" the better [3]. And lastly, if these companies had such a sincere desire to "improve AI for the sake of humanity", how about they start by letting OpenAI (or a similar company) do a data audit of all the information they share so that we can actually be certain it is not just a data brokerage masquerading as a public service?

I wanted to say that I wish the AI community will boycott this effort completely. I find it a bit worrying that this community now resides almost entirely within the walls of corporate America.

[1] Interestingly, the only company which is even making noises about user privacy is Apple. Is it possible they saw something in this partnership that they didn't like?

[2] https://twitter.com/OpenAI/status/781243032582578177

[3] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12428883

icantdrive55 1 hour ago 1 reply      
1. These companies have been collecting our information for years now. Some have acces to what we write in are emails, but of course, they never read them, they just scan them for marketing purposes?

2. Why do I feel certain people's information has been looked at, scrutinized, cross checked, collated, etc. by certain savvy insiders. Warren buffet, George Sorrows, any of the financial movers and shakers, information is sitting on a server somewhere, unless you're a Clinton. If I had access, I could help but look at it.

Before you made an investment, bought a stock, bought realeste, took over a company; wouldn't you be tempted to peak at some of that information?.

3. I feel certain individual information has been used as research for financial gain.

3. I belive it's basically insider trading without the other guy knowing he/she gave away any information.

4. I believe it will be exposed, and will be the next huge Financial scandal.

5. I believe this move might be a smoke screen. "We know some of us have already abused private information for personal/financial gain. Let's combine the data. It might put some reigns on what we all know some of our insiders have been doing. Let the people think we are doing this to better society.

6. I don't have any evidence, I just have a hard time believing no one is looking at juicy date pouring in from some high profile people.

7. I believe it will be on the front page of Forbes in less than a year.

tmalsburg2 4 hours ago 0 replies      
What's the purpose of this initiative? Sharing technology? Hardly. The goal is probably to shape the discourse on AI and its implications on society and the individual in a way that's favorable for these companies. In other words, they will try to preempt, counter, and suppress criticism of their business models, i.e. the AI exploitation of user data in the service of advertisers and others. It's pretty obvious why Apple is not on board. They have previously taken the position that user data should be left alone and therefore pose a threat to Google, Facebook et al. whose financial success is solely built on the extraction of information from users. This has nothing to do with Apple falling behind technologically.
gavman 13 hours ago 10 replies      
>>"As of todays launch, companies like Apple, Twitter, Intel and Baidu are missing from the group. Though Apple is said to be enthusiastic about the project, their absence is still notable because the company has fallen behind in artificial intelligence when compared to its rivals many of which are part of this new group."

It seems Apple's lack of engagement in the community [1] is really starting to hurt it. Did anyone else take away from this that the other big players are not including them at the table/considering them real competition?

[1] http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-10-29/apple-s-se...

ioeu 1 hour ago 0 replies      
To quote Pedro Domingos in "The Master Algorithm" [1]:

> But everyone has only a sliver of it [information about you]. Google sees your searches, Amazon your online purchases, AT&T your phone calls, Apple your music downloads, Safeway your groceries, Capital One your credit-card transactions. Companies like Acxiom collate and sell infor- mation about you, but if you inspect it (which in Acxioms case you can, at aboutthedata.com), its not much, and some of it is wrong. No one has anything even approaching a complete picture of you. Thats both good and bad. Good because if someone did, theyd have far too much power. Bad because as long as thats the case there can be no 360-degree model of you. What you really want is a digital you that youre the sole owner of and that others can access only on your terms.

Does this mean that effectively all of Facebook, Amazon, Google, IBM and Microsoft will have the whole picture? That makes me worried.

[1]: https://www.amazon.com/Master-Algorithm-Ultimate-Learning-Ma...

apsec112 15 hours ago 3 replies      
Are LeCun, Corrado, etc. actually running this? They're pretty busy, and the website doesn't sound like them:

"We believe that by taking a multi-party stakeholder approach to identifying and addressing challenges and opportunities in an open and inclusive manner, we can have the greatest benefit and positive impact for the users of AI technologies. While the Partnership on AI was founded by five major IT companies, the organization will be overseen and directed by a diverse board that balances members from the founding companies with leaders in academia, policy, law, and representatives from the non-profit sector. By bringing together these different groups, we will also seek to bring open dialogue internationally, bringing parties from around the world to discuss these topics."

This sounds like it was written by some PR person. Google and Facebook are "IT companies"?

ladzoppelin 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Who gives a sh!t that Apple was not at the meeting. I think the main takeaway is that 4-5 companies might control one of the most powerful technologies/ideas of the last 5 years. Its already hard enough competing with these companies how is this good for everybody else?
GrinningFool 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Five companies that collectively have more data on US residents' online behaviours than all the world's governments, working in partnership on AI.

What could possibly go wrong ?

meira 14 hours ago 1 reply      
> We want to involve people impacted by AI as well, said Mustafa Suleyman, co-founder and head of applied AI at DeepMind, a subsidiary of Alphabet.

Who believes that this is to favor users, believes in everything.

antocv 3 hours ago 0 replies      
If you are working for any of these companies, you should really consider if it is worth it, and possibly stop or switch to more meaningful and less evil endevours.
radicaldreamer 14 hours ago 1 reply      
Seems like it's oriented toward lobbying and keeping AI from being regulated.
asimuvPR 15 hours ago 0 replies      
The organizational structure has been designed to allow non-corporate groups to have equal leadership side-by-side with large tech companies.

Anybody know more details? As non-corporate entity the opportunity is very interesting due to the potential of having access to their infrastructure. The cost of running AI projects on the cloud is currently prohibitive and am forced to run on performance limited machines.

throwaway6497 13 hours ago 1 reply      
As usual Apple is missing. Pleasantly surprised to find Amazon on the list of collaborators. They usually take from open source/communities and rarely give back. This is a good change.
runesoerensen 14 hours ago 0 replies      
There's more information on their website: http://www.partnershiponai.org/
jlas 14 hours ago 1 reply      
Is OpenAI planning to be a part of this?
dmead 9 hours ago 0 replies      
should read

"Facebook, Amazon, Google, IBM and Microsoft Create Partnership on marketing"

ionwake 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Which is the best way to invest in the field of AI ? Can anyone recommend any specific companies / branches ? Thank you.
keeran 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Sad to not see Baidu on there.
ghostbunnies 5 hours ago 0 replies      
What could go wrong?
sidcool 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Would be great if OpenAI joins them.
acronymftw 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Hope they do not use that as an acronym.
pron 14 hours ago 2 replies      
Calling simple statistical clustering algorithms that are tweaked by lots of trial-and-error heuristics "AI" feels like calling those slow two-wheeled electric self-balancing skateboards "hoverboards". Sometimes marketing can be too dramatic.
phodo 14 hours ago 8 replies      
At the risk of ad hominem, this is typical techcrunch reporting:

>> "Though Apple is said to be enthusiastic about the project, their absence is still notable because the company has fallen behind in artificial intelligence when compared to its rivals many of whom are part of this new group."

How exactly is it that TC knows that Apple has indeed fallen behind? Are they privy to the Apple ML roadmap? Are they using lack of open source activity as a metric to make this claim? Is there an unidentified source who can objectively measure the ML progress across these organizations, and using this objective metric, conclude that Apple is behind?

It's a claim without much substance, and paints Apple in a negative light. You could say that this is a marketing failure on the part of Apple, and you might be correct. For example, see the article floating a few weeks ago on Medium (I think) on how Apple was embedding ML in everything.

In the days of price performance wars in CPUs (and GPUs), there were more or less objective (err, almost objective) benchmarks that people could point to. This is not the case with ML/DL. It would be great if we could say: "Across image classification, the precision / recall is X, vs. Facebook's Y. Clearly, Apple has more work todo in image classification. But in Machine Translation, Apple is ahead, with metrics A vs. B from Facebook..

What is happening with ML/DL/AI/whatever is that all companies are using the same bag of words to describe what they do, but the popular press is not discerning enough to make heads or tales out of what they report on, and they end up mis-educating the public.


Bud 14 hours ago 1 reply      
Oh, great. So all the companies that have recently had the most problems with ethics issues and user privacy issues are now collaborating in order to more effectively address those issues? Pardon me if my scoffing is audible.
andrewclunn 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Okay, which AI are they talking about? The term can mean various things. I mean if this were merely heuristic neural networks, one would think that Tesla would be included.
bitJericho 14 hours ago 1 reply      
Tc needs to be banned on hn
smoyer 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Sounds like an alienate means for Skynet to become sentient.
rbc 13 hours ago 1 reply      
Does all this fuss about AI mean the Lisp machines will come back? ;)
cheriot 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Apple wants to be on the right side of the anti-trust lawsuit this time. /s
newscracker 3 hours ago 1 reply      
The moment I saw the headline, I noticed Apple missing from the list, and it felt right! Facebook, Amazon, Google...Microsoft...IBM...all coming together to promote (sell) AI? This sounds like the coming together of the evil powers.

Apple, however successful it may continue to be financially, needs to focus on a wider penetration of its devices and services if there is to be any meaningful dent on the privacy front around the world. Being a market leader in one country (or a few) doesn't help much when billions of people around the world use Android phones where the default is "ask for any permission and it shall be given." For this to change, I believe Apple must go lower on the price front, even if that means lower margins. It also needs to push forward quicker on things that other companies don't consider, like differential privacy, and look for markedly different ways of doing things compared to the personal data hungry parasites like the ones in the title.

Introducing Armor Simple HTTP server, supports HTTP/2 and auto TLS github.com
78 points by vishr  10 hours ago   33 comments top 4
e12e 4 hours ago 6 replies      
Eh...: "Armor accepts configuration in JSON format, command-line option -c can be used to specify a config file, e.g. armor -c config.json."

Ok, it might be better than Apache's mongrel mix of not-quite and SGML/XML dialect -- but I'd much rather see something like YAML than having to write JSON by hand. I suppose I should just write a compiler (or use one, I'm sure simple YAML maps pretty well 1:1 to simple JSON).

jwcrux 9 hours ago 3 replies      
Why would I want to use this over something like Caddy?
mostafah 2 hours ago 0 replies      
+1 for not saying written in Go in the title.
ofiner2 9 hours ago 1 reply      
can it be used as a library? for a go web app which already uses built-in http server?
D-Wave Systems Previews 2000-Qubit Quantum System dwavesys.com
86 points by jonbaer  12 hours ago   63 comments top 11
RangerScience 10 hours ago 3 replies      
This is a good overview: http://www.dwavesys.com/tutorials/background-reading-series/...

Inside is also a link to the whitepaper on how to program the DWave, which has a lot more detail on "ok, but what does that mean I can do with it, and how?". More or less, you need to map your problem space to the functioning of the DWave (a series of weights), and then you need to map the answer space of the DWave (out-state of each qubit) back to your problem space. The DWave doesn't actually return a canonical answer, but rather a bundle of statistics for each qubit, from which you then determine your answer (say, by taking the average).

Some things to remember, aside from the debate about whether it's actually a QC and actually uses entanglement to produce answers:

1) All 2k qubits are NOT entangled with each otherThe qubits are grouped into cells, and the cells have a coupling between them, but each qubit does not (directly) interact with all other qubits. This is a large part of why it's not a "general" quantum computer; it's more like an ASIC.

2) You program in "similarity" and "dissimilarity" to neighboring qubits, and an initial weighting.Each qubit in the dwave has some programmed possibility of being 1 or 0, and of being the same or different from each neighbor. "Running" the calculation more or less applies all these weights, and then you look at the resulting state.

3) The "answer" is actually the statistics on multiple measurements.After programming the weights, you run the machine, and get out an answer. You do this 50, 100, whatever, times, and now you have statistics on the state of each qubit. From this you determine your answer; AFAIK, usually you just take the average.

mroll 11 hours ago 0 replies      
I'll be looking forward to reading Aaronson on this
CoryG89 11 hours ago 3 replies      
Does anyone know if anyone actually uses these D-Wave systems in production for practical applications? Are there any applications for which these are already faster/cheaper than traditonal computers?
M_Grey 11 hours ago 2 replies      
Has D-Wave's systems ever actually been shown to be "quantum systems?"
mathgenius 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Here is an article from the google quantum team: https://research.googleblog.com/2015/12/when-can-quantum-ann...

From my understanding, these things do beat classical computers, but no one cares because the problems they are solving is not useful for anything.

mastazi 11 hours ago 1 reply      
From the article:

> D-Waves quantum system runs a quantum annealing algorithm to find the lowest points in a virtual energy landscape representing a computational problem to be solved.

In statistics and machine learning, this is great for finding optima in cost functions.

The ideas in this paper are related: https://arxiv.org/abs/1412.3489v2

iplaw 7 minutes ago 0 replies      
Has anyone shown that this isn't simply a hollow black box with a slightly outdated conventional computer inside? Based on performance metrics alone, this would seem likely.
atemerev 4 hours ago 0 replies      
adamnemecek 11 hours ago 3 replies      
I'm surprised that none of the quantum computing companies I've seen are talking about moving from copper wires to optical wires. It feels a bit like putting a Ferrari engine into a VW Bug.
djrjfndnfhf 11 hours ago 3 replies      
Now this is starting to get interesting. 2000 qubits is where it starts being applicable to meaningful real-world combinatoric optimization problems. I would kill to have access to one of these machines for my research...

Edit: What's the beef?

dmfdmf 11 hours ago 3 replies      
I get the feeling (and its more likely) that D-Wave has solved the P=NP question in the affirmative and have polynomial equations to solve NP problems. As far as I know, getting qubits to stay coherent is a difficult, unsolved problem as the number of qubits increases. Of the QC research that I have read about they are using a handful of qubits to factor really small numbers like 15. Nobody, at least publicly, is even working with 100's of qubits let alone 2K.

To avoid public disclosure that P=NP (and losing out on any way to monetize their discovery) they are hiding their work behind a "quantum computer" which is a vague and sophisticated enough cover (nobody really understands quantum physics) to dupe some customers while the P equations run in ring-zero of a normal CPU. What would be interesting is to read the sales contracts for these machines. My guess is they are written in such a way that D-Wave makes no promises or guarantee that they are actually using qubits to solve customer's problems, just that they promise to solve customer's NP problems with D-Wave computers, regardless of the method. Moreover, I'd bet that the language states that the machines sold are "equivalent" to a 2000 qubit computer and not necessarily a 2KQbit processors. In this way D-wave is off the legal hook if/when the NP=P solution is revealed by D-Wave or others. My second guess is that these sales contracts are protected by NDA's.

Urban heat islands and street trees in Philadelphia urbanspatialanalysis.com
70 points by profquail  13 hours ago   15 comments top 4
URSpider94 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Hooray for GIS! It's truly amazing that in this day and age, this quality of data, and the computing power to crunch it, is available to the average user sitting on their couch with a laptop.

Some things I'd like to see:1. I've generally seen heat islands referring to not so much getting hotter on a hot day, but staying warmer on a cold day, or at night -- this is one reason why cities get rain when the suburbs get snow, especially in the mid-Atlantic. Would like to test whether trees impact that.

2. I'm concerned from a statistical perspective that trees vs. no trees could be strongly correlated with other variables that might be more causative, like building type and density. Would like to see a paired comparison of areas in the city that are otherwise very similar, with the only difference being more vs. less trees.

Not complaining at all; the author is laying out the tools. Time for me or someone else to pick them up and investigate further ...

oneplane 48 minutes ago 1 reply      
According to this data, I don't want to live in such cities. I get that for some people those pools of houses and people in a small area are nice, but for me, in the information age, it doesn't make much sense anymore to live in a crowded area with all the amplified problems people have when stacked on top of each other.
tedunangst 11 hours ago 3 replies      
I'm a little confused. The image that's captioned "Land surface temperature, Philadelphia" (top label: "Landsat 8 derived land temperature") is that estimated or measured? Because it sounds like the hot spots were detected by taking a satellite image and looking for places that "looked" hot, but then it's presented like those places really were hotter?

A little later, he says the black warehouses were located under the really hot spots. But weren't the really hot spots determined by finding all the black spots in the image?

vanderZwan 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Forests create their own microclimate that stabilises temperatures during the day and night - meaning it doesn't cool down as quickly as an open field. So I would expect trees to also make a city more pleasant during nighttime.
A third of the homeless people in America are over 50 and Im one of them vox.com
11 points by dwaxe  58 minutes ago   1 comment top
known 9 minutes ago 0 replies      
45% of USA is uninhabited :)
Deep learning startup Skymind (YC W16) raises $3M, launches enterprise AI distro venturebeat.com
78 points by vonnik  14 hours ago   32 comments top 2
vonnik 12 hours ago 4 replies      
Hey folks - one of Skymind'a co-founders here. My co-founder Adam Gibson has been answering some questions I see. If you want to know anything about deep learning in production, please let us know and we'll share what we've seen.
paulsutter 13 hours ago 4 replies      
> After launching in 2014, Skymind now has half a dozen customers...

Umm, is that a misprint?

Resolving Web Application Resource Bottlenecks with Concurrency phusion.nl
44 points by petercooper  11 hours ago   3 comments top
Animats 6 hours ago 1 reply      
This seems to be an ad for "Phusion Passenger", which seems to be a re-invention of an FCGI server.
Building an $80k/month business with a software testing community indiehackers.com
275 points by rosiesherry  15 hours ago   46 comments top 14
luckystrike 6 hours ago 4 replies      
@rosiesherry - Congratulations for building up a good business along with what I assume a very hectic personal life (4 kids!). :-)

You've discontinued testing services, but I think there is a big market out there. We've been looking for a platform where we can list our website & its high level use cases, and then 1 or more testers can test it out thoroughly. We've tried sites like MyCrowd in the past, but didn't get a great result from them. Most testers just submitted cosmetic bugs and weren't as detail oriented as we'd like.

I'm sure there would be other startups who have similar needs for getting their sites/apps tested and can easily pay for such a service.

Are you (or anyone else here on HN) aware of any good testing services out there or a place where we can find good freelance testers?

quirkafleeg 11 hours ago 5 replies      
Interesting post, but I would suggest coming up with an original logo, rather than using another company's world famous logo and slapping a ninja icon on it.

Ministry of Sound logo:


The logo this company (Ministry of Testing) is using:


obihill 36 minutes ago 0 replies      
@rosiesherry Thanks for this, and congrats on the business. I wish you all the best going forward in your industry (which I had never heard much of before now).

It's incredible looking at the revenue breakdown just how much 'training courses and events' were bringing in compared to the actual 'testing services'.

I'm launching 2 free and open-source toolkits for Web designers/developers next month and your revenue breakdown has convinced me that my initial plan of monetizing on training is probably the way to go.

Do you have any specific tips on how you built up that initial community (besides setting up the forum)? What were some of the specific tactics you used to draw those initial users in?

mperham 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Congrats, Rosie, always nice to hear about these 6 year "overnight success" stories.
drawnwren 6 hours ago 4 replies      
Wasn't indehackers the domain that posted about the domain squatters who made '$xxx in a month' just the other day? Is this a real site that people go to or a thinly veiled marketing service?
ryandrake 8 hours ago 1 reply      
$80K/month in revenue, not profit. Didn't see any mention of costs, so it's hard to tell if this is a success or not. Can't criticize though, nice story.
wott 42 minutes ago 0 replies      
Ah! Rosiesherry the spammer. Wonderful...
Zelmor 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Are there any remote testing job sites? There are so many for developers, but I scarcely see any remote posts that would look for dedicated application testers. I suppose this is due to startups cutting costs and leaving developers to test the product. In my experience, such structures are not good either for the developers, nor the company's products.
sfbay 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Awesome, inspiring story. Congrats.
abysmallyideal 11 hours ago 0 replies      
Didn't SV and Redmond outsource all these jobs to Indian houses? Microsoft basically killed their STE workforce and just use Indian shops.
NicoJuicy 6 hours ago 0 replies      
What would they all do for marketing ?
hackits 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Nice article, couldn't really bring myself to reading it all. Just wish it was a bit more shorter and concise, was more of a marketing spill.

Update: For the down votes are you serious?

sjclemmy 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Nice to see someone use the word 'interwebs'
ilaksh 9 hours ago 1 reply      
If you are making 80k per month then your developer should get a real salary and benefits.
Ask HN: When are you considered a senior programmer?
92 points by lollipop25  8 hours ago   74 comments top 39
misframer 1 hour ago 1 reply      
I really liked this comment by @stray [0] from a similar Ask HN from a few months ago. That thread was titled "Ask HN: What makes a Senior Dev".

 Mistakes, rewrites, late nights, firefights, and deadlines. Core dumps, memory leaks, hardware faults, and plain bad luck. Big O, data flow, always learning -- or out you go. Manager metrics, schedules hectic, methodology hegelian dialectic. Taking the heat, feature creep, open office, uncomfortable seat. Holy wars, revolving doors, carpal tunnel, all you can take? There's always more. Fucking suits, random reboots, and the ever present "thousand language stare". Oh yeah, pressure -- lots of pressure. And time, time, time. Metric shitloads of time. Time, man. You gotta do your fucking time.
[0] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=11341567

lmilcin 41 minutes ago 0 replies      
I think that people emphasize knowledge too much. I think knowledge is a by-product of making senior developer.

Senior developer is about wisdom as opposed to knowledge. Juniors may learn things quickly, but what distinguishes senior is that you can trust them to do the right thing which is not always technical problem.

I like to compare this to asking children a question that they don't know the answer to. Some children will feel they have to come up with some answer and some will say that they don't know.

Junior developers too frequently feel pressured to produce a result and they don't see how saying that they don't know something is making them closer to producing anything. Senior developers know from their experience that this is just as important to know when you don't know something as it is important to know things. They will not feel too bad about not knowing something because they know the alternative is even worse.

intellectronica 23 minutes ago 0 replies      
A "senior" is a someone who provides about 10X in value and earns about 2X in salary :)

More seriously, except for very big and very hierarchical orgs where tenure is overly important, people will tend to give you the senior title when your work is indispensable. To be indispensable you don't need to know by heart this technology or the other - you need to identify what are the things that bring the most value and work hard at delivering them.

TurboHaskal 5 hours ago 3 replies      
When you are valuable and ask for a raise but they cannot give the amount expected because it's already Q4 so they give you the senior title instead.

It can happen even with two years of experience.

astdb 6 hours ago 2 replies      
One aspect that would separate a 'senior' engineer from the rest would be initiative, leadership and mentoring ability. These are the engineers who go the extra mile to ensure that the team gets stuff done, and assistance and guidance is provided where required. A senior developer isn't just someone who knows a lot of stuff, but has a time-honed wisdom as well, which they can parlay into their leadership and mentoring duties.
captn3m0 2 hours ago 0 replies      
>The final stage of programmer evolution is the Finder. These folks are considered experts in their chosen domain (and are prudent about others). Writing Finder job descriptions is an exercise in futility. As my boss put it: I cant tell you the specifics of what youll be doing here because your first task will be to figure that out. A Finder will be able to anticipate problems before they happen, usually because theyve been in that situation before.

From https://rkoutnik.com/2016/04/21/implementers-solvers-and-fin..., which is a really great read.

edw519 39 minutes ago 0 replies      
Whatever it takes to best satisfy your customer. That's it.

No, I'm not being snarky, so hear me out...

I've met and worked with many developers over the years and lots of them have become very good with technology and user domains, but still have struggled to "crack the digital ceiling". These are brilliant people who have achieved serious things, but are still not recognized by the big decision makers as "senior", whatever that means.

Then there are a select few who always get the big gigs, big money, and big reputations. Why? Because they best satisfy their customers. There are lots of non-technical skills that help them, but I think the biggest is their ability to separate the signal from the noise and zero in of the most important things to work on and to get them done. It's almost like they have "satisfiability radar". And this rarely requires any special technical or people skills. All they really have to learn is a good grasp of the technology, a deep understanding of the customer's domain and business, and the ability to get things done through others. And how did they develop them? By good old fashioned grunt work, whether digging into the bowels of the system or getting up off their butts and relentlessly going around finding out whatever they needed to know.

Once you've figured out the best thing(s) to work on to best satisfy your customers, got them onto the decision makers' radar, and found a way to get them done one way or the other, you are no longer a dev or even a senior dev. You're now a digital rainmaker, the most senior dev of all.

jobvandervoort 45 minutes ago 0 replies      
At GitLab we have a formal definition for senior engineers [0] (where we accept merge requests, of course).

1. Technical Skills a. Great programmers: are able to write modular, well-tested, and maintainable code b. Know a domain really well and radiate that knowledge

2. Leadership a. Begins to show architectural perspective b. Leads the design for medium to large projects with feedback from other engineers

3. Code quality a. Leaves code in substantially beter shape than before b. Fixes bugs/regressions quickly c. Monitors overall code quality/build failures d. Creates test plans

4. Communication a. Provides thorough and timely code feedback for peers b. Able to communicate clearly on technical topics c. Keeps issues up-to-date with progress d. Helps guide other merge requests to completion e. Helps with recruiting

[0]: https://about.gitlab.com/jobs/developer/#senior-developers

peterkelly 6 hours ago 2 replies      
It's a pretty arbitrary term, but based on what you've said, especially "I don't fancy the new and shiny. I just get things done fast and done properly", would be enough for me to label you a senior programmer.

Our industry is way too obsessed with fashion... sooner or later you realise that most of the "new" stuff is largely existing ideas re-hashed in a slightly different form. Senior programmers realise this and can pattern match to understand the role of various new technologies, and learn the details if and when necessary.

How do you get there? You already are, you just don't realise it yet.

Steeeve 5 hours ago 1 reply      
My personal definitions:

Junior: Can do it with guidance and/or clear and non-transitional specs

Developer: Takes the ball and runs with it. Can walk a customer through requirements gathering and make recommendations. Will help guide junior developers.

Senior Developer: Can architect a system well. Can communicate equally well between executives, salespeople, management, and end users. Can and will mentor lower level developers. Can explain concepts on the fly to lower level developers and walk them through the development process in terms they understand. Takes initiative at learning new technologies.

scotty79 6 hours ago 0 replies      
I became a "senior" when my financial expectation were higher than the maximum salary of non-senior developer at a company that tried to hire me.

They were forced to offer me position of senior developer and no other company after that dared to offer me lower position.

fowlerpower 58 minutes ago 0 replies      
I think a senior engineer has to know a few things.

They have to have the basics we all need as engineers simply to pass the interview process. The data structures and algorithms, Big O and be able to walk through systems they have worked on in the past and the trade offs they made and why.

Then on top of the basics I look for a few more things. Usually the understanding of multi threading, multi process, asynchronous programming is very different between junior and senior folks. I dive into distributed systems and see if they have any exposure. I dive into multi paradigms and how deep their knowledge is in their respective toolset they have listed on their resume.

I don't necessarily think you need to know multi threading in and out, or distributed systems in and out, or your tool set in and out. You certainly need to know one or two of those though. You need to have some body of work you can speak very well to, this is a huge indicator of seniority. Mentorship and all the other things that go with that help differentiate as well between junior and senior.

I don't think there is a hard rule anywhere. Different folks will look for different things and at least where I work those things I listed are very important differentiators.

jakecarpenter 6 hours ago 2 replies      
To me, it is about what they are able to create independently, and the value of the end product.

Senior people have made the right mistakes, wasted weeks of time, and know what to avoid, what to embrace, and what to ignore. A senior dev can understand the requirements and figure out what is important and deliver something without a lot of external input.

philbo 3 hours ago 0 replies      
This is kind of tangential, but a couple of jobs ago I decided to actively purge all job titles from my CV/resum. Officially, I'm currently a senior and have been in the past, but there have also been jobs in between where there was no "Senior" prefix in the title.

My main problem with thinking about developer roles in this way is that there's obviously no standard for what constitutes seniority. It varies between and sometimes within organisations. Advertising it, glorifying it, striving to achieve it, all take the focus away from far more interesting things that you can say about yourself and aim for.

Are you working on interesting projects? Are you learning new stuff? Are you being challenged technically? Are the other people on your team good developers? Do you enjoy what you do?

Seniority as an end in itself seems like a hollow objective to me. And making a big deal about it in a recruitment context takes the focus away from more meaningful topics.

aburry 42 minutes ago 0 replies      
I would say it is about sphere of influence. Are you inward looking and focused on developing your own competencies? Junior. Are you mentoring people on your team? Intermediate. Are you providing direction for the company or the industry at large? Senior.
amcrouch 5 hours ago 0 replies      
To me the senior title should be applied depending on the way you approach your role and not how you code.

As others have mentioned as a senior you can be left to implement changes without guidance, you will clean up issues as you come across them instead of leaving it to others, you suggest improvements, you make time to mentor and guide more junior members of the team, you know how to relate to muggles and you act like a team captain.

Knowing lots of different hosting environments and languages comes with experience. The approach you take to your role show's your all rounded skill set.

SpendBig 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Being a senior developer is not just having a great skillset. You need to be able to manage your work in a way the business values it. You need to interact with all sorts of people in the company you work for and help other teammembers rwaching the same level as you.

Our senior developer is always thinking about the business value when estimates are made vs quality. He even does not do alot of softwae development, but is always asked to help out other developers, system engineers and even management to give advice.

To be able to do that in a professional way, your vision plus skillset makes you a senior imo. Not just the years of experience and amount of skills you have.

chx 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Sr can tell to jr: I have already made the mistake you are about to make.
jkot 6 hours ago 0 replies      
In my experience:

- you are technically competent

- can handle design aspects of full stack (backend, persistence, frontend)

- have enough credibility and confidence to say NO to business people

- you can lead a small team of developers (2 to 5 people)

source99 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Check out this recent thread: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12557149
mmirza984 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Well usually companies have their own view on seniority, and it could include how many years you have been there, but for what its worth for me a senior developer is a person who has experience with all stages of application development, which should imply that she/he can: - design and understand client/server architecture, - write code using best practices that is clean and maintainable, - knows database design and programming - understands design patterns and knows how to not abuse them, - knows how to deploy application and has experience with CI. - knows how to write proper unit test.

To sum it up I will use .NET as an example, in my eyes when someone says I am a senior .NET developer I assume that she/he has: - used UMLs, - knows how to write proper OOP and understands SOLID, - can use MS SQL and some kind of ORM, - uses some of the testing frameworks (e.g. NUnit), - knows how to deploy application whether on IIS, or install it with ClickOnce for example. - know how to handle source versioning (TFS or whatever is your poison)

I probably missed a few things, but that's about it for me. If a senor doesn't have these skills I assume first that she/he has great knowledge of company business which would make her/him a valuable asset, or that she/he got lucky, or it's a crappy company :)

z3t4 6 hours ago 1 reply      
I would consider you a senior programmer? Mainly because you know that you do not know much. While a junior or intermediate programmer think they know everything.There are of course more to it, like when you are stuck on something; you ask the senior programmer, that will probably have solved it ten times in the past. Or if you want to know what the best method is to do this, you ask the senior programmer, that have done it hundreds of times and thus found out the optimal way, with all edge cases included. So I would say it's mostly about experience, and then expertise.Also, a senior programmer should have gone though at least two paradigm shifts.
known 10 minutes ago 0 replies      
Depends on % of code you reuse.
supercoder 6 hours ago 0 replies      
When someone gives you the title.
Nursie 1 hour ago 0 replies      
When you have to talk to a customer.

Seriously, I worked for a place where thay was the rule.

Titles are somewhat meaningless. Apparently I'm a consultant these days...

BurningFrog 6 hours ago 0 replies      
It's mostly just a title on a business card and/or org chart.

Some times it's given to people instead of money.

Don't worry about the title. Worry about getting good at what you do, and an asset to your team and organization.

dvcrn 6 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm also agreeing with leadership and mentoring. Be able to make unbiased technical decisions, troubleshoot systems / apps and get up to speed on new projets independently fairly fast. Have confidence in what you do and don't ask about everything.

A solid general code understanding is also needed in my opinion. This includes things like using documentation over googling everything. If I pair with a senior and he types "golang how to do x" on every problem, I probably wouldn't consider him senior. (Not saying googling is bad. Just don't be a copy-paste-from-stackoverflow engineer)

With that, I also hate the term "senior engineer". I got friends with 3 years of work experience that are now "senior" because a company hired them under a senior position (basically more salary) and the companies after that just did the same because "well he already is a senior, right"? This also generates a strong in-balance inside the team with a hierarchy that shouldn't be there. I am usually advocating for getting rid of job titles and calling everyone just "Software Engineer"

I am now 6-7 years into my career and don't consider myself senior. When people in interviews ask me what my career goal is, I usually mention I want to be able to consider myself senior as the next step.

k__ 3 hours ago 0 replies      
In Germany this isn't a thing, but when applying for a few jobs in the UK most employers considered me senior after that interview. Still didn't get the jobs, because I failed their programming tests.

Since I started programming my work-behaviour changed from asking people all the time when I don't know what's happening to reading their code.

I think developers are considered senior if they can work on their own.

Like, if you get all the engineering practices of designing, implementing and maintenance done without much help.

mping 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Depends if its senior with a specific technology (ex: senior rails programmer) or generally senior programmer.

I consider senior someone who:- knows how to mentor juniors- knows his way around tech, even if he never used a particular product- most important, can communicate effectively with stakeholders and devs.

The best "senior" is the one who nags everyone to get stuff moving forward. Doesnt mind getting his hands dirty and going by people's desks to make sure the team delivers.

You may need to brush up your marketing skills in order to promote yourself as senior. Don't get impressed by people that know stuff.

ghuntley 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Leadership and mentoring. When they can write great documentation (without prompting) and http://softwareleadweekly.com/ becomes their favourite weekly read. When they come to you with improvements outside of the technical domain on how to improve shop and even better when it's just a side chat about what they have already improved and what went well, what didn't and what they learned (self-awareness). When they stop treating promotions like mechanical checkboxes.
_Codemonkeyism 4 hours ago 0 replies      
As a CTO or team lead senior programmers to me were those who understood the business and the businesss side of things and could make trade offs (beside the technical experience).

Another aspect that seperates seniors is their ability to talk and present to senior or top management.

noonespecial 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Skill is knowing how to operate Amazon, "senior" is knowing when you probably shouldn't.
sakopov 5 hours ago 0 replies      
In my experience a senior developer is someone with 10+ years of experience in architecture and development and a pretty vast amount of accumulated knowledge. There are exceptions of course, but this seems to be fairly standard in my market in the Midwest.
vassilevsky 5 hours ago 0 replies      
When you learn Erlang.
sigi45 4 hours ago 0 replies      
You have seen a few projects and different teams. A few years of practical experience is necessary.
gambiting 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I work at a major games company. For us, a "senior" is someone who can, on their own, design, implement, document and maintain a feature. An "intermediate" is someone who can do the above but with mentor help from a senior.

Above that, it depends what you want to do. If you fancy managing people, you can be a team/tech lead, or if you don't, then there is the title of "expert"(only a handful of programmers who worked here 10+ years have those).

ilaksh 5 hours ago 0 replies      
When they have to pay you more than the junior devs. Note that isn't necessarily because of skills or knowledge.
partycoder 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Engineer seniority has a lot of variance.Some do it based on years of experience, ranging from 5 to 10 years and that would differ from company to company.

In my understanding, a senior engineer is an engineer that can contribute without the need for technical supervision.

Now, not requiring supervision is different to leadership. A senior engineer is often an individual contributor, not necessarily a team technical leader.

navyad 6 hours ago 1 reply      
sometimes these title can be dangerous.
Google, Red Hat Work on a Way for Kubernetes to Run Containers Without Docker thenewstack.io
35 points by bdimcheff  11 hours ago   9 comments top 6
redwood 49 minutes ago 1 reply      
Is anyone here running Docker or Kubernetes in production?If so, what parts of your stack are running inside of it, versus what parts are running elsewhere in VMs or bare metal?
_ix 17 minutes ago 1 reply      
Containerization gives me a lot of anxiety. When will a clear winner emerge?
SEJeff 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Reminds me of the Mesos Unified Containerizer. Very good stuff. The docker client is wonderful for developers, but the docker engine is the bane of operations. The bugs in it are not fun. My favorite one was in docker 1.6.0. When you did:

 docker exec -it $container bash
It caused a Nil pointer dereference and crashed the daemon. All of the other running containers then would die as a result.


gtirloni 10 hours ago 1 reply      
I've a hard time positioning this along side the effort to support rkt in Kubernetes. Would OCID be necessary because there's too much Docker-only code to interface with the container runtime in Kubernetes?

I think I expected rkt to be fully OCI compatible in the future but it looks like Kubernetes itself needs to be able to interface with OCI runtimes and there's work to be done in that area? The Docker integration cuts too deep currently?

smegel 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Google should just fork Docker and make it part of Kubernetes.
ridruejo 9 hours ago 0 replies      
The content is ripped off from http://thenewstack.io/oci-building-way-kubernetes-run-contai...Somebody please point to the original article
Amazons Ambition to Compete Directly with UPS and FedEx wsj.com
275 points by cosmoharrigan  18 hours ago   260 comments top 44
phodo 16 hours ago 8 replies      
I've been a prime member for a while, and ordering from amazon is part of our regular routine for acquiring stuff. I've never had much of a problem, until recently. And UPS was entirely to blame. They (UPS) forgot the AC on the dock, and it ended up being delayed by a week. When it arrived, there were broken parts in the box. Amazon took responsibility and sent me a new one (with a $50 cash back due to inconvenience). I had them file a complaint w UPS. The replacement unit ended up being late as well... it was sent to the wrong address and signed by the recipient. UPS left the package at the wrong address! Amazon was very apologetic and told me they would escalate the complaint to their shipping logistics dept. I could tell they were super frustrated at the lack of control they had over UPS. So they sent me a _third_ AC unit. This one arrived, but there was water damage in the box. I, for one, am for Amazon owning the full experience and removing UPS from the chain.
Declanomous 17 hours ago 3 replies      
Why would Amazon care if they damaged their reputation with Fedex and UPS? They can just do what UPS and Fedex do when it is too expensive to deliver a package somewhere -- turn it over to the USPS. Amazon is already using USPS to deliver packages on Sundays, which is win-win-win. Amazon wins, USPS wins, and the consumers win. Amazon's home delivery seems to work well where it's been rolled out, and I don't see competitive barriers to rolling it out elsewhere.

I think the article fails to cover a lot of areas where Amazon will have a competitive advantage over UPS and Fedex. First of all, Amazon will be vertically integrated. They can control the packaging. They can control which warehouses are used to store items. This could lead to better packing efficiency in delivery vehicles, and could make automated loading of vehicles easier. If you have a particular route that is usually 110% full or 40% full, you could either move more items to that warehouse or take some away. Plus, Amazon can incentivize cheaper shipping options dynamically. Will the marginal cost of this order be incredibly high because you'll need a second truck for a particular route? Discount one day shipping, or offer two day shipping to their work instead.

On top of all that, Amazon doesn't have unionized employees. That's a huge advantage when you are trying to reduce costs. Not only are their employees wages probably less, but they also don't have contracts that reduce planning ability, like fixed routes, etc.

(The above is my comment on this post yesterday, though the post failed to get traction. I think it's probably still relevant 24 hours later)

sunshiney 35 minutes ago 0 replies      
I read this with interest as I live on the edge of a rural town where I am building a business that spurs the use of tech and net in rural areas of my 3 state region. We have fiber access but lag in net commerce skills and tech hubs. I was at the PO recently. Mail here is delivered direct to farms but townies must go to the PO. I was told by the PO Master that any large volume mailings would require the sender to drive some 25 miles to the next PO as she could not handle themm She was annoyed that I had received 7 Amazon boxes. They had filled up the small space in her office and I had to cone get them immedistely. This caused me to begin thinking of the clash between growing rural commerce and an unexpected pest..the Post Office! Amazon may provide a partial solution but still pondering how to completely solve.
hackermailman 15 hours ago 1 reply      
Mailman and software developer here. Of course all these problems can be fixed with a simple db that tells the delivery agent upon scanning any customer specifics like no safe dropping, go to rear door, ect. Weird individual access problems like gates or hidden doors could also be entered by agents to keep an up to date personalized delivery schedule. Right now the process is a bunch of cards that get lost and are outdated and take a lot of time to check for every delivery.

Agents should be able to see a complete overview of delivery that day, in order of route, and consistent metrics taken to better the service over time. Staffing could get weekly info of inbound parcels for each route and determine staff levels needed as compared to now which is just fly by seat of your pants. Of course CanPost who I work for don't do any of this, don't talk to any employees and make all these decisions far away from the people who have to implement them. The routes they design are ridiculous and nobody follows the official version. It seems trivial to solve since it's just a plaintext database and updates, plus talking to the agents to average time values and build efficient routes but for whatever reasons they don't even try. The DbaaS startup I work for remotely is constantly asking me ways they can improve, nobody at CPC has ever done so.

I was surprised when Amazon delivery appeared on the streets and they were run just as poorly as us, assumed they would 'disrupt' delivery instead of carbon copying an already bad service with UPS/Post/DHL ect.

dingaling 18 hours ago 1 reply      
An interesting condition of the Amazon deal with Atlas, for 767 freighters:

but [Amazon] may cancel the CMI deal with just 180 days notice merely for the sake of convenience, which can be implemented from January 1, 2018.

CMI is (air)crew, maintenance and insurance and they then combine that with a dry-lease of the airframes from an Atlas subsidiary.


So it looks as if 2017 will be the proving-year for Amazon to determine whether they want to take the plunge into self-managed logistics, and they have an escape clause if not.

oliwarner 16 hours ago 2 replies      
Amazon Logistics is awful locally in the UK. I mean it. Terrible.

I'm currently waiting for a package "guaranteed" before midday. I've had a couple of emails since then, the last pushing it back to "before 9pm". It's 9.25 now.

They've delivered stuff to the wrong place. They've said they knocked and nobody answered (I work from home, wife is on maternity).

And their vans are rentals.

All in all it feels unprofessional. It makes me questions not only the value of Prime but Amazon as a whole. I've started shopping around a lot more.

WheelsAtLarge 13 hours ago 1 reply      
This is nothing but a win for Amazon. They have themselves as customers plus all the other online retailers. Also, they can better optimize to fit the online business environment with the latest tech. UPS and fedex have to deal with the old ways of doing shipping plus the unions. If they fail, at the very least, they force the other delivery companies to be better competitors.

But ultimately this is a loss for the everyday worker. The loss of the unions means the standard of living will fall for those that work in the delivery business. Walmart has always been seen as the enemy because of their never ending fight to lower prices which means lower salaries for their workers. I think Amazon is done a good job in not only lowering workers pay but destroying jobs. Why has Amazon escaped the same criticism? Not only that, but they are admired by many as the future of doing business and in effect employee treatment. What gives?

sanj 17 hours ago 5 replies      
Amazon doesn't need to compete directly with UPS and Fedex to win. Instead, I'd argue that they need to take over deliveries to easy deliveries (eg, cities) and continue to outsource the harder deliveries.

I'd suggest that this would remove the profit-producing deliveries for UPS/FedEx and leave them with those that they do at a loss.

It also explains the code name: "Consume the City"

saosebastiao 17 hours ago 0 replies      
Knowing nothing about this specific project, but knowing quite a bit about the cultures of their Transportation, Operations, and Supply Chain orgs, I would:

1) Say this is not news but PR. Congrats to Carney.

2) Expect actual technology to lag behind the vision communicated by 3+ years while the dev teams try to find remotely suitable heuristics for the NP-SweetMotherOfGod problems that the executives think are just a matter of throwing enough servers at. Several entire orgs will be eliminated or repurposed while this happens.

3) Expect costs to be an order of magnitude higher than the competition for a good 3-5 years due to really stupid and trivially fixable mistakes/inanities that are obvious to anybody on the ground floor. These inanities will eventually be addressed by some level 4 or level 5 analyst that will eventually (but not today) get fired for pointing out the wrong person's mistakes...or worse, endlessly moved around orgs with no advancement potential.

4) Expect it to be rolled out to countless cities mindlessly by some executive that thinks they can predict results for Kansas City based on actuals from New York City. These program rollouts will eventually extremely costly and will be neutered to mean nothing, delicately handling the PR hits as they come in, while the program will still exist on the record. The programs will never be shut down.

5) Expect it will eventually (5-10 years out) become cost-neutral, but never profitable. Right as this happens, some other crazy idea will be announced, pushing everybody back in the red.

Rinse and repeat.

tedunangst 18 hours ago 20 replies      
They're pretty terrible at it. Whenever I get something shipped by amazon courier, I know it's down to about 50% chance of delivery. "Package was handed to a resident." Yeah, so where is it? "Ask a neighbor." Yeah, right, in a building with 100 residents I'm going to go door to door asking about my package. The "good" days are when they leave it on the sidewalk outside (in a city!) and I notice it's there before anybody else does.
badgers 17 hours ago 0 replies      
Amazon has been doing this for years now, and they'll never completely abandon using the USPS, UPS or FedEx for the foreseeable future. Their line haul network has always been solid, and they've been using other carriers to do the most expensive portion of the package life cycle, the last mile delivery. The article touched on the fact that they've been doing trials of deliveries in large cities that have the package density to make it profitable. Amazon certainly has volume to fill delivery trucks, and I expect them to continue this trend by identifying profitable delivery routes. However I don't see them competing with a nationwide network on the scale of UPS or FedEx anywhere in the near future. Amazon will continue to be a customer alongside a competitor of them.
paulcole 17 hours ago 1 reply      
If you're having problems with the Amazon Couriers just chat with Amazon support online. Explain the problems (give examples) and ask them to always ship using a different service. There's definitely an account setting for this that's not visible to the end user, because I went from 100% courier deliveries (with many issues) to 0% courier deliveries.
xutopia 18 hours ago 5 replies      
Is anyone concerned with Amazon taking over too many things? It's already killing smaller shops... I understand why but it's now trying to take over content and all forms of shipping? I'm worried we'll have a single mega store one day from which we buy all our things.
sfRattan 17 hours ago 3 replies      
Am I the only one bothered by the use of the term "sortation?"

I had a roommate in college from London who pointed out that Americans tend to add "-ation" onto words where it isn't necessary or doesn't further elaborate the meaning (e.g. transportation where transport is sufficient). I haven't been able to un-notice our rather pointless addition of letters to nouns. What is wrong with Sort Center or Sorting Center?

I did, before writing this post, find "sortation" in some unabridged dictionaries referring to a mechanized or automated sorting process, but the word still just sounds off to me...

wvh 4 hours ago 1 reply      
This might provide a good incentive to the postal infrastructure to improve their prices and service offerings. In lots of European countries the postal system is semi-privatised but still in a state of semi-monopoly. End-user logistics as provided by companies like DHL, PostNord and UPS are trying to get a foothold in the market, but at least here in Northern Europe we're still far from having a free market situation with different delivery options and competitive pricing. Sending packages especially out of the country, like in the case of Amazon returns can be prohibitively expensive.

If large companies like Amazon would threaten or effectively start to handle their own logistics, it just might force the market to open up a bit more.

akhatri_aus 6 hours ago 0 replies      
I think this is silly. Simply having that last mile communication with USPS/Fedex solves the issue entirely.

E.g 'just left your parcel on the side of the porch, behind the tree, no one was home'. Or requesting them to do that if you're not home. With the other issues of wrong deliveries and the like Amazon is just as likely to get it wrong.

koolba 18 hours ago 1 reply      
More competition is a win for all of us (consumers).

Plus anything is better than the rag tag set of local shippers they use for same/next day orders (or 2-day orders that were late getting out). I'm not going to name and shame, but I've had bad experiences with all of the non-majors (i.e. not UPS, FedEX, USPS) they use from coast to coast.

elchief 18 hours ago 6 replies      
I don't see how Amazon can do it cheaper (cost-wise)/better than UPS or Fedex, who have been optimizing for 50 years.

If they can't do it better/cheaper then the reason to do it is because UPS or Fedex are rent-seeking, and doing it themselves would bring Amazon's cost close to the actual cost of delivering

daxfohl 17 hours ago 1 reply      
I wonder if UPS and FedEx will ever want to run their business on top of Amazon's platform even though it's a direct competitor now, like Netflix does.
tylerruby 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Links to WSJ should be replaced with a link to Google with the query being the title of the article. That way we can easily navigate to the article without hitting paywall. I can't be the first one to mention this! :)
curiousDog 18 hours ago 1 reply      
I was thinking they'd be competing with Uber, Lyft as well in the not too distant future. They're building out a sizable network through Amazon local and fresh (maybe I have a distorted view of this because I live in Seattle though)
cosmoharrigan 18 hours ago 0 replies      
"Amazons goal, these people say, is to one day haul and deliver packages for itself as well as other retailers and consumers"

They could choose to offer parcel shipping services to any retailer as part of the Amazon Marketplace Web Services API, just as they currently offer the Multi-Channel Fulfillment API[1], which allows a retailer to fulfill orders from any sales channel using the Fulfillment by Amazon network.

[1] http://docs.developer.amazonservices.com/en_US/fba_outbound/...

generj 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I'd be interested to see if any collusion between the duopoly occurs in the next interval. All UPS and FedEx would have to do is put a cap on Amazon's packages for the holiday season at the last second to hobble them.
KennyCason 7 hours ago 0 replies      
It's interesting that the CFO of FedEx claims this is unreasonable. Given that Amazon has at least two major other products (AWS + The core store), it seems that they could potentially operate their delivery/logistics operations at cost and undercut UPS/FedEx. Given that delivery/logistics is UPS/FedEx is their core business, they can't.
hakanensari 16 hours ago 0 replies      
I suppose this way they could start learning when you're (likelier to be) home and tweak delivery times to happen then. Just reading comments here, you can anecdotally see there's a lot of inefficiency caused by courier attempting to deliver when no one's home and/or leaving with a neighbour/on the porch/etc. and things getting lost.
macjohnmcc 12 hours ago 0 replies      
I've had delivery problems when Amazon itself was doing the delivery. My wife and I were both home for the entire day (as usual) and we were expecting a package. About 2pm I got an e-mail saying "there was no answer at the door" and "no safe place to put the package". I was sitting 10 feet from the door. As far as a safe place the entry way to our house is a fully covered 8 foot deep area. The package was not exceptionally big. I called Amazon and said frankly that the driver was lying. He finally sheepishly delivered the package a few hours later. He ran up and dropped off the box then ran back to his car.
davidf18 12 hours ago 0 replies      
I was at a conference in NYC and I was met an AWS person and yesterday I mentioned to him that Amazon was a logistics company with the Amazon Robotics subsidiary running their warehouses and leasing of airplanes for airfreight and how it would compete with UPS.

I have had problems with Fedex delivering for Amazon and with Same Day Service in Manhattan twice.

Amazon also has these pickup boxes in the local drug store -- they do think of things.

A lot of the stores seem to run out of items in NYC and I'm hoping Amazon would run the warehouses/logistics for these stores chains (e.g., CVS, Duane Reed).

RE: USPS. I don't like it when they delivery last mile.

lettergram 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Yeah... Amazon, the delivery service delivered some mason jars for me. They literally dropped them and half were broken. I had a massive box of broken glass.

By contrast I've never had an issue with FedEx or UPS (USPS is bad, and so is onTrac).

sobinator 17 hours ago 0 replies      
While taking on this challenge will be something like building their own private Appalachian Trail, ambitious in its own right, I'll be interested in something more subtle that this article touched on, "upending the traditional relationship between seller and sender."--will we begin to see widespread shipping arbitrage[1]?


yakster 16 hours ago 0 replies      
I have had some terrible luck with Amazon shipment lately. Keep in mind that it goes both for their in-house shipments as well as UPS and Fedex. On one item, it got to the absurd point of them telling me that they didn't know where the item was. They had to overnight me another one. Of course, the original one showed up 5 days later. Before they can compete on something new, they need to iron out their current systems.
dmritard96 6 hours ago 1 reply      
who is amazon's biggest competitor in the e-commerce space? its a little scary that they seem to have a winner takes all effect and both create their own products, get all data from products sold, invest in companies etc etc. I just worry that they don't have adequare competition to keep them in check...
jxramos 14 hours ago 0 replies      
If they go that route would anyone have any recourse to like antitrust suits? Any precedent close to something growing all encompassing like this? I'm all for them taking an end to end approach, its like with any third party delegation where quality issues arise, you end up being stuck with the reputation hit.
faragon 18 hours ago 0 replies      
Logical move, in my opinion: it is easier to scale delivery at Amazon scale by doing it by themselves in cities/areas with enough critical mass.
djyaz1200 16 hours ago 0 replies      
I suspect their goal is to have enough logistics capability that they have pricing leverage over traditional carriers.
dstainer 13 hours ago 0 replies      
One area to keep an eye on with this is the Fulfillment By Amazon (FBA) program. If they do indeed take on UPS/FedEx, the FBA program will now be able to store, sell, fulfill and deliver your product without leaving Amazon.
losteverything 17 hours ago 1 reply      
$1.50 is what USPS charges (but I can't find the redacted document) and that IMO is quite a deal.They will use less humans.

Why would FedEx ups change when it makes a pile now. I recall hearing how letters would never be sorted automatically.

It will take an outsider like Zon to get to the future.

rambos 18 hours ago 0 replies      
I thought this was already a known thing?
cosmoharrigan 18 hours ago 0 replies      
In addition to the program to run their own parcel shipping network, referred to as "Consume the City", it also mentions an interesting experiment called "I Have Space", which allows Amazon to utilize excess capacity in warehouses owned by third parties. Note that Amazon has already launched "Seller Fulfilled Prime" for third party sellers which meet certain metrics.
smilekzs 14 hours ago 0 replies      
FYI: jd.com (used to be Chinese clone of Amazon) did the same a few years ago.
wAllDueRespect 17 hours ago 2 replies      
my guess is that UPS will eat their lunch. this is UPS's core business. they prob weren't doing what Amazon needed them to do partially because they have other customers and partially because Amazon likely wanted too much from them based on what Amazon was willing to pay. Amazon will likely place onerous requirements on sellers to squeeze pennies out of the shipping process. and then, eventually, when more of commerce has converted to the mail-delivered model, and UPS is making a profit, and Amazon realizes that they're throwing good resources after bad in an experiment gone wrong, they'll get back to focusing on selling stuff and out of the business of delivering stuff.
hiphopyo 16 hours ago 0 replies      
Anybody else wishing they would set up shop in the Scandinavian countries so poor people there could earn money off their affiliate program as well?
Zigurd 12 hours ago 0 replies      
I had a monitor that needed you be delivered on time for a project falsely marked as an attempted delivery by ups. I was persistent and obtained the phone number if the local ups depot. I called them and made it clear that I knew they were bullshiting. The driver was sent out to make the delivery and, thinking i wasn't home, threw the monitor on the ground, stomped it, and drop kicked it onto my front steps. Yay for well designed packaging.

The real lesson here is that Amazon's SLA should have given them the positioning data it takes to catch ups in a lie like this. I should not have had to pursue it. Amazon should have been penalizing then by an amount that stings AND having the driver out late.

hourislate 14 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm curious whether they could save a substantial amount of money by moving Full Trailers instead of LTL or having UPS/FedEx do it. A full trailer can cost them as much as $1200 from CA to TX where as UPS or FedEx would charge much more. So by distributing between distribution centers they would probably save some money. I also think having planes will greatly reduce the time it takes to bring items from China. ATM it can take 10-14 days on the water via container ship. They could probably load the equivalent of 2-3 40' Containers in a plane and fly it to CA for the same price a cargo company would charge.

It's not necessary to replace UPS or FedEx, just the parts that cost Amazon the most money and are easily replaceable.

a_lifters_life 16 hours ago 0 replies      
You're horrible at this Amazon stick with retail instead.
Overhead of Gos Generic Sort github.com
42 points by nieksand  12 hours ago   7 comments top 4
praptak 12 minutes ago 0 replies      
I can imagine the overhead for ints is large. But how often do you sort pure ints? A more realistic test would be some objects sorted on a field value.
JulianMorrison 2 hours ago 1 reply      
What I take away from this, is that unless you are spending a lot of run-time sorting things, or you are sorting a lot of things, you might as well not bother to micro-optimize.
willvarfar 1 hour ago 1 reply      
C's qsort() has a similar overhead vs C++ STL's std::sort() for much the same reason - the C version calls a comparator function but the C++ compiler can inline the comparator.
JulienSchmidt 59 minutes ago 0 replies      
The problem is that it operates on an abstract interface but it is NOT generic.With any Generics implementation that generates code for the specific type under the hood (e.g. at compile-time like C++ Templates or Rust Traits, or just-in-time), there would be no overhead.
Gosl Go scientific library github.com
110 points by wener  10 hours ago   22 comments top 4
joelthelion 5 hours ago 5 replies      
Not sure Go is such a great fit for scientific computing. On the one hand, with garbage collection and other things, it won't be as fast as C++. On the other hand, it's less flexible than Python.

That said, it's always useful to have a good scientific library in every language.

howeman 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Wow! That's a ton of stuff. I wish you were working with us at gonum. Can we work together?
gtani 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Wow, that's a lot of good work.

I asked recently about go wrappers for the Cuda Runtime or Driver API's and didn't get much response, I don't see a lot happening with openCL either, is there anything like that in the prospects?


IndianAstronaut 6 hours ago 1 reply      
The excitement and libraries around Go remind me of Python around 2009.
Making Humans a Multiplanetary Species [video] spacex.com
2006 points by tilt  1 day ago   1016 comments top 106
mikeash 1 day ago 36 replies      
Some of the comments here make me think of crabs in a pot pulling down the ones who try to climb out.

Nobody's making you participate in this venture. If you don't like it, then you're free to go do whatever it is you do like.

You might think Musk could better direct his efforts and resources elsewhere, but most other billionaires don't do anything all that interesting, they just invest their money in mundane stuff, outsource jobs, build hotels, run for President, etc. So why are you upset with this one and not all those others?

anexprogrammer 1 day ago 8 replies      
I'd really like to see us taking space seriously. While I'm still here.

One of my earliest strong memories was the last moon landing. This was followed by years of "Tomorrow's World" and "Horizon" telling us about the Moon bases, Mars bases and orbital platforms that would soon follow. We got Skylab and some very interesting probes. I'm a tiny bit disappointed in that. We were meant to be en route to Starfleet Command and global cooperation (which always seemed a big ask as we were at the height of the cold war).

However, I can't help thinking if we do become a multiplanetary species before resolving the issues of this one a few things are just a matter of time. That some politician claims we don't need to care about emissions as we now have a spare, so he's going to build loads of new coal. That Esso wants to know if there's oil. That we have an interplanetary falling out (OK that's probably a while away). That we start littering and buggering up the rest of the solar system.

MarcScott 1 day ago 3 replies      
We set sail on this new sea because there is new knowledge to be gained, and new rights to be won, and they must be won and used for the progress of all people. For space science, like nuclear science and all technology, has no conscience of its own. Whether it will become a force for good or ill depends on man, and only if the United States occupies a position of pre-eminence can we help decide whether this new ocean will be a sea of peace or a new terrifying theater of war. I do not say that we should or will go unprotected against the hostile misuse of space any more than we go unprotected against the hostile use of land or sea, but I do say that space can be explored and mastered without feeding the fires of war, without repeating the mistakes that man has made in extending his writ around this globe of ours.

There is no strife, no prejudice, no national conflict in outer space as yet. Its hazards are hostile to us all. Its conquest deserves the best of all mankind, and its opportunity for peaceful cooperation may never come again. But why, some say, the Moon? Why choose this as our goal? And they may well ask, why climb the highest mountain? Why, 35 years ago, fly the Atlantic? Why does Rice play Texas?

We choose to go to the Moon! ...We choose to go to the Moon in this decade and do the other things, not because they are easy, but because they are hard; because that goal will serve to organize and measure the best of our energies and skills, because that challenge is one that we are willing to accept, one we are unwilling to postpone, and one we intend to win.

dudus 1 day ago 28 replies      
Watching live the announcement and presentation by Elon on https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A1YxNYiyALg

Where the hell did they get this audience from? Is this hosted on a frat house with some academic invites?

There's a dude jokingly saying that burning man felt like mars with a lot of shit and no water, there's a guy plugging his comic book, there's a guy making a joke on how we should send Michael Cera to Mars, a girl complaining about Space X not hiring people from other countries, a girl asking to go on stage and give him a kiss, a guy that identified himself as a local idiot that I'm pretty sure is completely drunk, ....

There are some good questions too, but I just can't understand it.

Elon just went on stage and delivered a plan so ambitious you couldn't even imagine. I have thousands of questions, and astonished these people couldn't think of anything else.

davidw 1 day ago 4 replies      
This is so pleasant to see after being bombarded with US presidential politics. Science, hope and progress!
beloch 1 day ago 4 replies      
This new launch vehicle has a realistic chance of getting people and materials to Mars in sufficient quantities to build an outpost. I'd like to hear more about how they plan to build a self-sustaining colony on Mars though. There are some pretty big challenges to overcome, such as the relative lack of Nitrogen. A colony is going to have to grow plants but, to do that on Mars, we're going to need a way of fixing Nitrogen for those plants from an Atmosphere where it's just not very plentiful.

Please note that this isn't an argument against going to Mars now. There's a lot we can learn by building an outpost on Mars that is supported heavily by Earth, including how to build a self-supporting Mars colony. I'm just asking what the current state-of-the-art opinion is on the challenges of building a self-supporting Mars colony.

robertocarlos 1 day ago 4 replies      
I created an account just to post this.

The Q&A was the worst Q&A I have ever seen. Truly awful. I usually am a pretty calm person but watching that made my blood boil. This venture could well be one of the most important things to happen to humanity, and those were the questions that people asked. The questions were awful at all levels. Featured self promotion, ignorance and plain stupidity.

I just needed to get this out there. Seriously, what the actual f.

Rezo 1 day ago 5 replies      
SpaceX Interplanetary Transport System: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0qo78R_yYFA
kumarski 1 day ago 3 replies      
I wrote a brief blog post on some of the major challenges to get this going. Musk's hesitancy to a deadline is great. :) It makes sense, hard to predict the future.


There's a ton of cool problems lurking around the corner. I hope humanity backs the public part of this public-private partnership.

1. Cargo CapacityScaling is Hard.

2. Proper MaintenanceAccessibility is Important

3. MTBF Expectations are too high.

4. Jet Fuel is Corrosive and Methalox engines are a tough design proposition.

5. Cosmic RadiationImpedes human interoperability.

6. Solar Panels Mars Dust Storms impede sunlight.

7. Living Module7 month duration for a living module.

8. Microbial RealitiesWe rely on microbes to live.

9. Parachute DesignSize vs. Thrust vs. Jettisoning Fuel

10. Electronic ProtectionShielding is Resource/Weight Intensive.

11. Eye SightYour ability to see diminishes in space and we dont quite know how this works fully. (This one is huge)

12. Muscle Loss- you lose muscle mass as you stay longer in space.

To give some context around how difficult it is to build mega engineering projects in the hey day of innovation, just think about Steel. There's over 3K different types of steel and 70%+ were invented in the last 20 years.

Timing, sequence, funding, and focus are going to be such a huge part of this.

5,8,11,12 are really tough. I think the other ones are solvable in some way right now, but will take some configuration/tinkering/experimentation for sure. Plenty of engineers are motivated to work on this kind of thing though, so that's a good signal.

bsdetector 1 day ago 5 replies      
We won't really be an interplanetary species until we can get back from Mars.

Imagine being colonists on Mars without the ability to be totally self-sustaining without technology and supplies from Earth and nuclear war breaks out. It's going to be a long time before any Mars colony can survive on its own.

tw04 1 day ago 1 reply      
This Q&A is painful... it's a combination of people shamelessly plugging their own products (Funny or Die you just lost a viewer with that stunt) and people who sound like they may be (literally) mentally unstable.

There are scattered in somewhat normal questions... but not by anyone I would consider qualified to even be asking questions.

thght 1 day ago 0 replies      
I might be wrong, but I expect Elon Musk to become one of the most exceptional hero's of our times. No other billionaire is creating sustainable businesses like Tesla and Power Wall for the good of as many people as possible. He risks pretty much all he has for his ultimate dream to enable humans to start exploring the universe, and by doing so preventing the looming extinction of our species.

The amount of talent and power this guy has while being so humble is just very rare. As soon as I can afford a Tesla I will definitely buy one, not only because it's a great car, but even more to support these kind of people.

jpm_sd 1 day ago 4 replies      
I'd like to see humans establish self-sustaining colonies in the Gobi Desert, the Laurentian Plateau, and the equatorial Pacific first. All much easier environments.
amgin3 1 day ago 1 reply      
They really need to screen people for the Q/A. Half these people are idiots just trying to promote their own BS and trying to tell stupid irrelevant stories.
mixermf 1 day ago 0 replies      
"The argument [for building a civilization on Mars] that I actually find most compelling is that it would be an incredible adventure. I think it would be the most inspiring thing that I can possibly imagine. And life needs to be more than just solving problems every day. You need to wakeup and be excited about the future, and be inspired, and want to live." -- Elon Musk

(1 hour 31 minutes)

artursapek 1 day ago 2 replies      
God, my lifetime would be so boring if it wasn't for people like Elon.
bluebeard 1 day ago 0 replies      
Paraphrasing: "I see two paths for the human species, extinction event or multi-planetary species." Then Elon shows the picture of the O2 tank: "and this is the size of the payload we could deliver to anywhere on Earth in 45 minutes, please fund us." Well played Musk, well played.
oli5679 20 hours ago 0 replies      
Why is the plan to start off with so many fragile, resource-greedy people before the planet is improved? Wouldn't it be better to send a robot factory capable of building more robot factories using materials available on Mars and minimal operating oversight (possibly combined with some plants and bacteria)? People could possibly move there much later after we've mastered the really complicated mining, geoengineering and farming problems needed to sustain people there.
whothunkdit 1 day ago 3 replies      
Seems great for all the basic research it will require.

But I'm unsure about the morality of it. I think the drive to expand and discover new things is perhaps a direct cause of the deeper problems we have on Earth. Would humanity be better off just becoming a sustainable population of monks? Or are we morally equivalent to a virus, reduced to survival of the fittest and always seeking out the next host to reap?

hinkley 1 day ago 0 replies      
A number of years ago, around or shortly after the time I read the Mars Trilogy, I remember seeing an article about how the three largest populations of high altitude humans (Peru, Nepal, Ethiopia) all use a different biological process to deal with the effects of hypoxia.

The lower the pressure, the safer the structure, so one imagines you could have a colony where many of the workers from these three population groups, nature taking its course and we end up with legitimate Martians. People who could live in cheap structures or deep canyons with no suits for generations before the rest of us.

dasmoth 1 day ago 1 reply      
While this remains a paper rocket for now, its engine (which looks to be a pretty big deal in its own right) was test-fired for the first time yesterday:


sssparkkk 1 day ago 0 replies      
I'm not sure whether it's a good thing or a bad thing that Elon's presentation ends with requests to throw comics onto the stage and ask him to allow receiving a good luck kiss from a girl in the audience.

To be honest I think it's a really bad fit to have these kind of questions during such an event; but hey, because of them I'm pretty sure this is all really honest and not at all orchestrated... Which is good, I suppose.

edem 1 day ago 0 replies      
If you are interested there is an article series on Wait but Why here: http://waitbutwhy.com/2015/05/elon-musk-the-worlds-raddest-m... about Elon Musk and his goals with SpaceX (and much more).
phodo 1 day ago 0 replies      
The quality of the Q&A seems grossly sub-par compared to the incredible quality of the vision / content / presentation.
TheShadowRunner 1 day ago 1 reply      
Someone more knowledgeable then me can probably answer this, but under ITAR, can SpaceX contract a Mars launch with another nation on friendly terms with the USA?
danilocesar 1 day ago 0 replies      
OMFG. I guess that mr Musk won't have any problems in finding manpower to execute his plans. HN is full of experienced deep space and terraforming specialists. =)
shurcooL 1 day ago 1 reply      
Did anyone else notice the title of the presentation PDF [0]? It is:

 NINA_5_ FINAL_draft_MarsTalkRevised_v4_17_nm_112716 copy 12
I just thought that was an interesting bit of meta information. Looks like they're not using VCS for it, hehe.


jimjimjim 1 day ago 1 reply      
Hope! To be honest I don't think it matters if mars will be any better but at least it's progress.

and in a totalitarian sort of way, which would be better for the human race, getting off this rock or having the world upgrade from an iphone 11 to an iphone 12?

devy 1 day ago 2 replies      
Can someone with expertise to compare Musk's plan vs. Robert Zubrin's Mars Direct plan proposed in the early 90s?
syntex 1 day ago 2 replies      
I wonder what would be people's daily routine on mars. How colony with of thousands people will be organised? Would they have as much freedom as we have on earth, or the whole colony needs to be organized from bottom to top as the anthill colony.
giarc 1 day ago 0 replies      
I wish someone would have screened these people asking questions for personal/commercial interests.
zerooneinfinity 1 day ago 2 replies      
I wish there was local groups or meetups with people to talk about and maybe even potentially contribute to this effort. I kind of feel this way in general about science. I'd love to go somewhere after work and experiment in labs.
ender7 1 day ago 4 replies      
I'm all for colonizing Mars, but is it possible to do large-scale terraforming of the surface without a magnetosphere to protect it?
40acres 1 day ago 3 replies      
Elon mentioned that there is no physical frontier left to explore on Earth, what about deep water exploration?
giarc 1 day ago 1 reply      
I've never listened/watched the Q/A session from any of his talks, are the questions from the audience usually better?
mvrilo 1 day ago 0 replies      
"Waiting for everyone to reach their seats and get settled. Starting in 5 to 10."


nappy-doo 1 day ago 7 replies      
It looks from the videos that the boosters return to land using strictly thrust from the rocket. Can someone explain why it's done that way and a parachute isn't used for at least part of the descent? Seems like an awful waste of fuel.
sickbeard 1 day ago 0 replies      
I'm not convinced there's some urgent need to be multiplanetary in 6 years. There's so much we can do to make this planet better and it is by far the best planet in our solar system.
mtrn 1 day ago 0 replies      
Impressive. I just wished some engineers could take at least a single day off to regenerate - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=A1YxNYiyALg&feature=youtu.be... - especially when they are on a world changing mission.
EdSharkey 1 day ago 0 replies      
I think Musk must be a founding member of the Human Admiration Society. He's so positive on the achievements, adventures, survival of our species. And, he's on the watch too, warning us about possible looming threats like extinction events or AI run amok.

I want to join Musk's society! Let's keep humankind going!

banach 1 day ago 0 replies      
Finally, colonization without genocide. Maybe humanity is making progress after all?
gauto 1 day ago 1 reply      
It's really starting to feel like we "live in the future" more and more everyday. The stuff we used to dream about as kids is becoming reality. Amid all the doom and gloom that seems to pervade the news cycle, stories like this are so refreshing. Simply amazing.

It seems like in the longer term, it would be more efficient to take a shuttle to orbit, and then dock with at a space station to get on the interplanetary ship. Cruise ships and military ships use this method in places where docking is infeasible. It would be a much higher initial cost, however.

Six months on ship isn't so bad. Six months is the length of a WESTPAC, though you get to leave the ship periodically. I think the longest we went without docking was a month, and the guys in the submarines often go for even longer stretches.

banach 1 day ago 4 replies      
The SpaceXes of the age of colonization, such as the East India Company, used to sell shares to fund their voyages. I was a bit surprised not to hear Musk mention this as a funding option, since he just delivered the greatest Kickstarter pitch of all time...
watermoose 1 day ago 0 replies      
I'm incredibly excited about this.

I would actually like to hear more about what happens on Mars: the steps to generate oxygen, food, energy, water, and the fuel for the return trip. What are the various ways that Mars could be terraformed, and what are the ethical and practical considerations?

I know that this comes on the heels of an unfortunate accident, but I'm in the camp that accidents and mistakes can lead to better process with less risk, and sometimes simpler solutions.

And, I'd like to invest in SpaceX. Whether it's in stocks or bonds, I just want to help.

simonh 1 day ago 1 reply      
I'd expect the first rocket, or several rockets to actually stay on Mars at least for a while.

1. It means you have somewhere to live and even if you set up habitats it acts as a fallback habitat.

2. You'll need a return to Earth option if things go potato shaped.

3. It can manufacture fuel in advance for future visiting ships so acts as a backup to their Sabatier reactor and other important systems.

4. Once you have several, you can afford to risk using one to travel to other parts of Mars and back to get science from other biome... er.. I mean prospect for resources.

I wonder if these will be capable of operating automatically. It would be nice to be able to prove out the system by sending an automated cargo only mission there and back, or maybe with a skeleton crew. It's fascinating that they're aiming to go directly to this without any less ambitious manned vehicles and missions first.

jotato 1 day ago 1 reply      
Any reason why you couldn't put a tanker in geo-sync orbit connected to a very (very) long fuel pipe somewhere on earth? The idea being you can pump fuel up instead of launching it?

Kind of like a space elevator for fuel! :)

codeulike 1 day ago 1 reply      
The Mars colonial fleet would depart en-masse - about 1000 ships
jimmcslim 1 day ago 1 reply      
I thought the plans might include a Mars-Earth cycler [1] but possibly that's a science-fiction pipedream for the near future?

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mars_cycler

nixos 1 day ago 2 replies      
Did he talk about the future land ownership/governmentship of his colony?

Will it be a personal dictatorship of Elon?

Unlike Earth, once you're there, there's nowhere to go without his blessing.

You can't just "move next door".

And knowing how "locked down" his Tesla cars are, it'll be interesting to see how he'll deal with a rebellious colony.

norea-armozel 1 day ago 3 replies      
My greatest fear is that space will become the playground for the rich and powerful where the rest of humankind is left to suffer on an overpopulated, polluted Earth. We as a society can't live on the kindness of individuals to achieve a better future and that goes double for leaning on SpaceX and Elon Musk. They are a for profit venture and that means unless you're rich enough to pay your way then you have to pay with labor which may or may not be pleasant. I know it seems silly to imagine the future like that but the way the rich and powerful have been running the world so far I can't see them giving a flip when they can have safe, sanitary habitats in space which separate them from the existential threats on Earth. At that point they could just say "fuck it" and cut the rest of humankind off from space easily with threats of asteroid bombardments or worse.
DiabloD3 23 hours ago 0 replies      
After having read all several trillion comments in this, I can summarize: everyone shits on Elon because he's doing new shit, and they either misunderstand the gravity (ha ha) of the situation or are just salty as fuck, and almost everyone here in the HN community is essentially repeating this ad infinium.

In short, King Elon for World Emperor 2016.

marvindanig 1 day ago 0 replies      
Can't believe we're in that moment here.
stevebmark 1 day ago 2 replies      
I don't mean to nitpick but is Elon always this bad of a presenter? He sounds sickly and hungover and unpracticed. A strange performance for probably one of the most important ventures in recent human history.
icc97 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Just a minor mention for the novel use of a ? in the URL, amused me at least.


intrasight 1 day ago 0 replies      
I've considered the question before, and I considered it again while watching this - would I go? I've decided that I would, if given the opportunity. I'm an engineer. I'm in excellent physical health. I have a family, but they are at a point where they can get along without me. But then I consider that there are or will be hundreds of thousands of others who are in the same situation and also wish to join the queue.
erikb 1 day ago 0 replies      
Since I've read more about Elon Musk I'm not sure any more that he really is the person who will bring humankind one step further. However, I really like that slogan "making humans a multiplanetary species". It really hits the spot for me. Something I also want to work towards.
z3t4 18 hours ago 0 replies      
If you are going to have a gigantic ship able to carry a hundred people there will be exponential costs. And 90% of the cost would be getting it into orbit. And then there will be maintenance costs.

I think it would be better to just launch many small and cheap ships, then just leave them in space or let them crash into mars after dropping cargo by parachute with some air cushions. They could be carried into low orbit by a jet airplane, then use "dumb" rockets like water under high pressure in cheap lightweight tanks. And heat it up to vapor temperature using then sun.

DrNuke 1 day ago 0 replies      
Miserable sods are not an exception in the human history but, until now, doers have always had the last laugh. Steps may be faster without them but, you know, the higher the target, the more substantial the effort to get rid of miserable sods. It must be noted that it often happened that miserable sods' arguments helped improve the process overall, so I'm pretty sure SpaceX is taking note of the most intelligent arguments over here to improve their products.
tim333 20 hours ago 0 replies      
While it would be good fun going to Mars you wonder if we want to concrete over a fair portion, ship 1000s of people over and change the climate a opposed to preserving it as it is.
opiuse 1 day ago 1 reply      
Does anyone know what the music is during the first 20 minutes?
perilunar 7 hours ago 1 reply      
1000 comments! Is that a record?
jlebrech 1 day ago 0 replies      
Elon needs to build this first https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cloudbase
cs702 1 day ago 1 reply      
To the US Federal Government:


Loan the money to SpaceX, or partner with private investors, or increase NASA's budget and have NASA pay for it. Just make it happen.

Even if this project fails, the benefits from having a lot of smart people trying to get to and establish a colony on Mars will pay dividends for a long time.

Please make it happen!

XCSme 1 day ago 0 replies      
Musk for President! Make Mars great again! :D ... (sorry)
encoderer 1 day ago 2 replies      
I expect the "no children" rule to apply for roughly 9.25 months. What then I wonder?
orky56 1 day ago 1 reply      
I'm excited with Musk's grand vision. However I want to know why this can't happen even sooner. Here's a breakdown of what was discussed that may lead to a faster timeline:

1) Funding: Current SpaceX resources are tied up in creating the basic infrastructure that will lead to interplanetary travel. SpaceX is still private leading to Musk prioritizing these awesome ventures but still tied to revenue from contracts and limited funding. Going public will destroy the vision but give him the cash reserves to pull in the timeline.

2) Competition: NASA, other government space organization, and the private sector have or will have plans for interplanetary travel. Healthy competition often leads to more innovation and constant motivation. At the same time, it leads to competition for shared resources such as...

3) Talent: Musk mentioned in the Q&A that he can only hire green cards and up. The international talent pool is and will remain untapped unless something drastic changes. Assuming this talent goes to the competition and capitalizes into the positive effects, then it will be worth it. Unfortunately, we have yet to see another private sector company like SpaceX push the envelope as much so I'm not as hopeful that someone has the ability to utilize talent like Musk has. At the same time, SpaceX is known to drive employees into the ground. 7 days a week, tough hours, and impossible timelines is not sustainable for employees. The allure of SpaceX, similar to gaming, keeps talented individuals in line to get a shot at working for SpaceX. As mentioned due to the limited talent due to immigration issues, SpaceX may run into the talent shortage sooner than later.

4) Non-Transport Issues: Transportation is necessary but not sufficient for interplanetary travel & habitation. We don't have a SpaceX/Musk for the other non-transportation related issues. The political/cultural/international issues will be big and then there's terraforming and everything involved with that. Musk may get ahead of schedule but these other issues may push the timeline further and further out.

5) Public Interest: Space travel is not as sexy as it used to be for the public as compared to the Moon landing with the backdrop of the Cold War and arms race. Yes, this is not using direct public funding (if/until NASA decides to pitch in) but the public needs to make this objective be top of mind for it to become a reality. Musk and the science enthusiasts will not be enough. We need to develop a few "X Prize" equivalents for the non-science community to progress on the non-transport issues and show why it matters for the rest of the world.

oli5679 1 day ago 0 replies      
MrBra 1 day ago 0 replies      
Witnessing the future, chill bumps!
randomsearch 1 day ago 1 reply      
Can we start again here, please.

How has this announcement and Elon's dream in general excited or inspired you?

Any ideas for how the plan could be developed, improved, augmented?

partycoder 1 day ago 1 reply      
Due to a lower atmospheric pressure (0.087 psi compared to Earth's 14.69 psi), water in mars begins to boil at 10 degrees Celsius, or 50 Fahrenheit.

Gravity in Mars is 3.7 m/s, compared to 9.8 m/s. In a way, it's convenient since it would take less effort to reach Martian escape velocity.

Mars does not have a magnetosphere, and therefore little protection from radiation. The technology to induce a planetary magnetosphere does not exist. If Mars does form an atmosphere, it can be lost to space during increased solar activity.

What I think is that our best chance is to send robots to prepare an habitat for the first manned visits.

wwarner 1 day ago 2 replies      
I'm skeptical for two reasons. Living on Mars won't be like living in California at all. And two, building a colony there will be very, very, even catastrophically costly, so yes it will hurt everyone else who chooses not to participate. There are only so many platinum mines. Resources should be focused here. Think about it: how much water and air have left Earth to date? A miniscule amount, all due to space exploration. This project would change that, and for the worse.
LeanderK 1 day ago 0 replies      
i was wondering if we want to permanently inhabit mars, can we create an magnetic field to reduce radiation? Can they be scaled down to a local one just spanning the habitat?
k__ 1 day ago 1 reply      
Cost of a medium sized house? I see Red Faction happening here.
beardicus 1 day ago 1 reply      
Is SpaceX trying to simulate the long, tedious trip to Mars with this scheduling delay and "endless space" intro graphic?
tdaltonc 19 hours ago 0 replies      
He can have Mars. I want Ceries.

Mars will be nothing more then a research station for 500 years. Ceries and the space stations at L1-5 will be economic powerhouses before 2100.

staticelf 1 day ago 0 replies      
Elon Musk is clearly the greatest man in my lifetime. What he does and has done for the world is insane. I really admire him for his work and sacrifices.

I really wish him to succeed and if he asked me to donate money I would.

syntex 1 day ago 0 replies      
The sociological difficulty is as big as technical one. He hired one of the best engineers available to solve technical problems. Probably the same work should be done on the sociological part of the project. Otherwise, we may see bad events unfolding on mars. Would be interesting to see open source project taking sociological issues as target.
dba7dba 1 day ago 1 reply      
45:25Elon says he will leave detailed technical questions to QA after his presentation. Lol. His presentation was far more technical than any of the questions.

I think I would prefer more presentation from him than any QA.

JabavuAdams 1 day ago 0 replies      
I love the "questions, not essays" shut-down. It's not rude, but it quashes this tendency people have to try and impress rather than to ask a question.

Next time I'm giving a talk: one question per person (want to ask more, go to end of line), and ask your damn question.

damaru 1 day ago 1 reply      
Talk about going on Mars, Can't get proper light for the conference...
MrZongle2 1 day ago 0 replies      
Enjoyed Elon's presentation.

The Q&A, however, seemed to be straight from a second-rate Comic-Con panel.

Clearly, we've already identified some of the folks who should be left on Earth.

boznz 1 day ago 0 replies      
Better get the popcorn out for this thread...
Animats 1 day ago 1 reply      
Great video. Is the plan really a one-way trip?
ommunist 17 hours ago 0 replies      
Well, technically its a one-way ticket, right? And no FRS is going to check your spendings in outer space, right? I'd like to see whether this guy has some vested interest in VR. Just paranoid.
ryanSrich 1 day ago 0 replies      
Hm. It either hasn't started yet or its not working for me. I just see the logo and hear music.
_audakel 1 day ago 0 replies      
cool part starts at about 31m:30s from the end of the clip
macawfish 1 day ago 0 replies      
elon musk debuts his foray into electronic music
mtgx 1 day ago 0 replies      
I missed most of the livestream. Why did they just close it? I thought it was possible to simply go back on it. Did they not want people to do that before editing it first?
davidw 1 day ago 6 replies      
Jeez, they should have done some vetting of the people asking questions. Some of these are horrible and a waste of time.
lucb1e 1 day ago 7 replies      
"Livestream starting soon". Does anyone know what time they're starting? (And please use a numeric timezone, I'm not a walking timezone database.)
40acres 1 day ago 2 replies      
I'm surprised Elon has not improved his public speaking abilities.
savagej 1 day ago 2 replies      
astazangasta 1 day ago 6 replies      
astazangasta 1 day ago 5 replies      
drcross 1 day ago 1 reply      
As much as I love everything about what Elon is doing I wish there was a way to remove all the "um"s and "eh"s from his diction.
btcboss 1 day ago 0 replies      
dom96 1 day ago 0 replies      
Thank you for posting this. Have been excited about this all week!
Esau 1 day ago 0 replies      
Yup, time to move to other planets - the virus has almost killed its current host.
novalis78 1 day ago 0 replies      
Expect a job application as soon as I receive my Greencard, Elon :-)
callmeatroll 1 day ago 2 replies      
This is either:

A) the most revolutionary venture of this century

B) the largest Ponzi scheme ever

dsabanin 1 day ago 4 replies      
What are we going to do on Mars? Live in a plastic box? Send in a bunch of slaves to mine minerals in insufferable conditions? I don't get it.
daveheq 1 day ago 0 replies      
Why are we thinking about going to other planets when we can't even take care of our own?

How many industry leaders see planets as merely resources to be exploited like they do people?

suyash 1 day ago 0 replies      
We should not be colonizing foreign lands instead making our own planet better in all sense. Elon Musk and company are well known for big promises, I'm still waiting for 35K Tesla that was supposed to come out last year.
Your_Creator 1 day ago 0 replies      
Forgive me but I love this stuff, thinking about how much quantum mechanics has taught us about the universe makes me absolutely giddy. I haven't even watched this yet and I can tell you this:

To achieve multi-planetary status, we need to make ourselves less fragile than we currently tend to be. What I mean by that is that if we devoted half as much time, money and resources as we do to wage endless wars and collectively shifted our focus to medical advancements such as the technology we need to keep ourselves alive in the hostile environments we'll encounter in space, our astronauts very likely could be traveling in self contained, iron man-like suits by now.

Aside from that, we may have to upgrade our own physiology so;

We NEED nanotech that can repair us, keep us healthy and help us adapt OURSELVES to new environments that have enough of the proper elements. Can you imagine being able to Evolve On Demand so that you can breathe a different atmosphere and derive whatever your body needed from it? I can.

If relativity holds then planets that are either bigger or moving faster might have a very different local space-time from what we're used to, so imagine if jet lag was so severe it hospitalized you.

We need artificial intelligence capable of both supervised and unsupervised learning to run and monitor our environments, our medical conditions - both physical and mental. The 'quantified self movement' actually has a very, very useful purpose here.

We need to be able to repair a ship while it's in space. We need to be able to repair an environmental suit while standing or perhaps trapped in a volcano that ejects molten Dihydrogen Monoxide on Titan.

We need real, functioning, scanning, recording, data-analyzing Tricorders. Yes, if if weren't obvious by now, I AM a total Star Trek nerd and if we want to explore space, we need those mobile forensic labs that will allow us to truly see the universe and ALL of its wonderful colors. I could go on, but then someones' R&D department is gonna have to pay me.

ravenstine 1 day ago 3 replies      
I have a better idea:

Let's focus all the money and effort we would spend on getting to Mars and living on its wasteland, and use it to understand the human mind and digitize it into a realm not individually constrained by physics? I actually think that may be a more realistic and practical goal, and our quality of lives could be much better. I mean, what do we really get from living somewhere like Mars? A storage compartment for excess humans? To what end? What will happen to it when we cure aging?

The idea of terraforming Mars cracks me up. Maybe when Musk completes his hyperloop will also be when I start taking him more seriously.

Announcing YouTube-8M: A Large and Diverse Labeled Video Dataset for Research googleblog.com
285 points by runesoerensen  19 hours ago   26 comments top 8
JosephRedfern 13 hours ago 1 reply      
If, for some reason, you wanted a list of all of the video IDs (I couldn't easily find such a list), then I wrote a crappy scraper to pull them out: https://gist.github.com/JosephRedfern/d60bdc584d84b1451cc605....

I can post a URL to the output once it's finished running, if it'd be of any use to anyone. Oh, and be warned, there's a strong chance that it's buggy. It's certainly not optimised (no threads).

EDIT: The script has now run. I've scraped ~10,000,000 Video IDs, but only ~5.5m of these IDs are unique, so there's probably a bug in my script somewhere (but I need sleep now). Files containing IDs for various categories are listed here: https://redfern.me/public/yt8m/, some notes are here: https://redfern.me/public/yt8m/README.md, and .tar.gz'd archive is available here: https://redfern.me/public/yt8m/yt8m-ids-probably-incomplete.....

edent 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I don't see anything about the rights of video owners? Have people (inadvertently) licensed their content to be used in this way?
chirau 16 hours ago 2 replies      
This is wonderful. Though I was wish i could just specify columns that I need and download those. Or limit number of rows. 1.5 TB is quite a bit. Regardless, this is wonderful.

Would I be violating any law, copyright if I formatted it and put it on my server for that kind of consumption or via JSON?

iverjo 15 hours ago 1 reply      
This is nice :) Kudos to the Youtube guys for releasing this. I'm a data scientist in a startup where one of the things I do is create multi-label models for classifying YouTube videos. My current model has 90 % precision and 69 % recall, while Youtube-8M has 78 % precision and 14 % recall, with respect to the human raters. I guess one of the reasons is that my model only has around 100 categories, while Youtube-8M has 4800. It's like comparing apples with pears, but still interesting.
tdaltonc 14 hours ago 0 replies      
How good do labels need to be for you to be able to get good results on something like this? There's a lot of data, so that's great, but the labels seem a bit spotty.
lolive 16 hours ago 0 replies      
Did someone make a RDF dump of that? (Aligned with dbPedia ;)
lifeisstillgood 16 hours ago 2 replies      
Oh man.

I am searching (thrashing) around for my next "big" project. i have been thinking of drones measuring roof / building quality and the CV/ML requirements are fairly high - getting my teeth stuck into these would really give me a better feel for training my own system.

The problem is, how do I feed my family while taking the six months to do it all?

kelvin0 16 hours ago 1 reply      
An expensive line of code: scaling Node.js on Heroku (2013) micheljansen.org
71 points by diegorbaquero  9 hours ago   18 comments top 7
brendangregg 8 hours ago 1 reply      
"And then it hit me"... ok, a great story, but you have to wonder what people would do if they didn't just guess the answer.

That much slowness may be disk I/O bound, which would show up in the USE method, or even just my Linux performance checklist[1]. It'd also show up by tracing blocking events, even an off-CPU flame graph, but that's overkill.

[1] http://techblog.netflix.com/2015/11/linux-performance-analys...

daurnimator 7 hours ago 1 reply      
eyelidlessness 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Without digging into sources, since Node is single-threaded, that drastic a performance difference for an IO-bound task would have me looking at whether logging is synchronous. Node's APIs discourage synchronous IO, but don't prevent it.
josteink 7 hours ago 1 reply      
I know this is an old piece but this line here struck me as odd:

> Furthermore, as each request needs to be stored in a database, it was not a matter that can easily be solved using caching. I needed a backend that could deal with 100+ requests per second without breaking a sweat.

I thought this was why we had databases in the first place. They've been able to deliver this performance without any issues for decades now.

What's the issue?

> Im a bit surprised that a bit of logging has such a severe impact on performance on Heroku and even more surprised that they recommend you to enable logging in their Express tutorial.

While I agree that was certainly a surprise to me too, I'm not surprised by the advice. Not all apps need to scale massively, and how else are you going to debug your app deployed in Heroku when strange things start to happen?

strictfp 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I got a x1000 performance degradation in node from using a simple JSONPath expression. That was an eye opener!
0xmohit 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Just curious: is the blog running on nodejs?
partycoder 8 hours ago 2 replies      
node is meant to be used in scenarios when you give most of the work to libuv. However, if you to CPU intensive work in JavaScript itself, such as:

- serialization

- encoding

- cryptography

- compression

- etc.... then, you are better off doing it on a lower level language. express logger counts as a form of serialization, and therefore it is slow.

If you absolutely have to do CPU intensive work... then: limit per-tick execution time and break it down into multiple ticks, otherwise you will block the node event loop and your system will degrade until it stops processing requests.

Now, you can find this faster by profiling. Just use a profiler, like nodegrind or flame graphs or whatever, you will find those bottlenecks very quickly.

What I Wish I Had Known Before Scaling Uber [video] youtube.com
441 points by kiyanwang  23 hours ago   242 comments top 19
iamleppert 10 hours ago 2 replies      
It amazes me they have 1,700 services. It would be hilarious satire to actually see the description of each. And the debugging scenarios he listed make it sound like they have very poor engineers working for them. Who on earth lets an application get to prod that iterates through a list of items and makes a request for each thing?

When did we loose our heads and think such an architecture is sane? The UNIX philosophy is do one thing and do it well, but that doesn't mean be foolish about the size of one said thing. Doing one thing means solving a problem, and limited the scope of said problem so as to have a cap on cognitive overhead, not having a notch in your "I have a service belt".

We don't see the LS command divided into 50 separate commands and git repo's.....

kowdermeister 23 hours ago 6 replies      
"Uber is most reliable over the weekends when engineers don't change it" :)
paukiatwee 22 hours ago 3 replies      
Just to confirm, 1000 microservices in this case is 1000 different apps (e.g.different docker images) running simultaneously? 1000 microservices in this case not 1000 microservice instances (e.g. docker instances)?

If it is 1000 microservices as in different apps, then they must have at least 2000 running apps (at least 2 instances per app for HA).

Maybe uber only have 200 "active" microservice app running at the same time where each microservices have N running instances.

I just cant imagine running 1000 different microservices (e.g different docker images, not docker instances) at the same time.

eternalban 17 hours ago 1 reply      
I think these "alarming trends" are highlighting that operational complexity is an easier pill to take than conceptual complexity, for most workers in the field.

Microservices address that gap.

And in the process the field is transformed from one of software developers to software operators. This generation is witnessing the transfer of the IT crew from the "back office" to the "boiler room".

nichochar 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Honestly I don't think the problem is microservices. I mean everything he brings up is true, but it's more of a "how you do microservices" issue.

I used to work in startups, and overall was impressed with velocity. Then I joined a big valley tech company, and now I understand.

It's because they hire smart and ambitious people, but give them a tiny vertical to work on. On a personal level, you WANT to build something, so you force it.

I think you solve this by designing your stack and then hiring meticulously with rules (like templates for each micro service), instead of HIRE ALL THE ENGINEERS and then figure it out (which is quite obviously uber's problem)

fitzwatermellow 23 hours ago 1 reply      
Link to Slides here:


Any speculation as to why Uber doesn't just want to use something like Netflix Eureka / Hystrix instead?

Roritharr 21 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm not a big green-IT guy, but always pushing your systems close to its load maxima and then backing off with the test traffic as real traffic comes in feels like an enormous waste of electricity.
dorianm 21 hours ago 0 replies      
I got told by an Uber engineer that's because of their hyper-hyper growth their tech is basically the biggest mess possible.

That's also why that makes it an interesting place to work at and helped them achieve this growth.

Personnaly I think this should be made into a global app with no geo-fencing (e.g. Available everywhere basically).

StreamBright 21 hours ago 0 replies      
Absolutely amazing to watch. I think most of the big companies (Amazon, Google) already have solutions for these issues like: limited number of languages, SLAs between services, detailed performance metrics and the ability to trace microservices.
andrewvijay 21 hours ago 1 reply      
Highly recommended video. Lots of stuff he spoke are very relatable. Like having many repos , storing configs as a separate repo, politics by people, having a tracking system
mstade 15 hours ago 0 replies      
I quite enjoyed watching this. My takeaway isn't so much that this is a critique or endorsement of microservices, but rather just a series of observations. Not even lessons learned in many cases, just honest pragmatic observations. I like how he doesn't seem to judge very much he obviously has his own opinion of several of these topics, but seem to let that more or less slide in order to not get in the way of these observations.

Good talk, will likely watch again.

inthewoods 11 hours ago 2 replies      
I found this video so super interesting and yet frustrating for completely personal reasons: the company I work for used to sell a tracing product that was specifically designed for the distributed tracing problem and handled all of the issues he highlighted - trace sampling, cross-language/framework support built in, etc. It was/is based on the same tech as Zipkin but is production ready. Sadly, he and his team must have spent a huge amount of time rolling their own rather than ever learning about our product. Now, it still might not have been a good match, but man, the problems he mentions were right in the sweet spot of what our product did really, really well.
buzzdenver 22 hours ago 1 reply      
Did I miss what WIWIK stands for ?
agentultra 18 hours ago 3 replies      
What I Wish Small Startups Had Known Before Implementing A Microservices Architecture:

Know your data. Are you serving ~1000 requests per second peak and have room to grow? You're not going to gain much efficiency by introducing engineering complexity, latency, and failure modes.

Best case scenario and your business performs better than expected... does that mean you have a theoretical upper bound in 100k rps? Still not going to gain much.

There are so many well-known strategies for coping with scale that I think the main take-away here for non-Uber companies is to start up-front with some performance characteristics to design for. Set the upper bound on your response times to X ms, over-fill data in order to keep the bound on API queries to 1-2 requests, etc.

Know your data and the program will reveal itself is the rule of thumb I use.

admiralhack_ 18 hours ago 0 replies      
Great video. I went in expecting it to cover mostly the technical side of things. Instead Matt gave a great overview of the team / engineering organization dynamics to watch out for when adopting microservices. (I particularly liked that he pointed out how developers may write new code / services instead of dealing with team politics.)
petetnt 19 hours ago 0 replies      
Really enjoyed this talk. Our services don't quite (yet :)) run at that scale, but many of the issues mentioned have already peaked at some point. It's also good to have (more) validation to some choices we have made in the past, are currently making or are thinking about making in short term future.
gb123 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Hey, Matt Ranney, I used your node-pcap library to learn how to parse PCAP :) Did not know you worked for Uber, thanks!
amelius 23 hours ago 5 replies      
I didn't see the video. But given that a cab-service has a natural sharding point (i.e., per city), I don't get why scaling is such an issue.
gtrubetskoy 21 hours ago 18 replies      
I think the world of service architecture is roughly divided in two camps: (1) people who still naively think that Rest/JSON is cool and schemas and databases should be flexible and "NoSQL" is nice and (2) people who (having gone through pains of (1)) realized that strong schemas, things like Thrift, Protobufs, Avro are a good thing, as is SQL and relational databases, because rigid is good. (Camp 1 is more likely to be using high level dynamic languages like Python and Ruby, and camp 2 will be more on the strongly typed side e.g. C/C++, Go, Java).
A 14,000-year-old campsite in Argentina arstechnica.com
94 points by tambourine_man  9 hours ago   8 comments top 4
curtis 6 hours ago 0 replies      
For more than a decade, evidence has been piling up that humans colonized the Americas thousands of years before the Clovis people.

It's actually been longer than that. The site at Monte Verde [1] in Chile seems to have been widely accepted as a pre-Clovis site nearly 20 years ago (1997 according to Wikipedia [2]). Awareness of the site, at least among the archaeological community predates that (1989 [3]). The first radiocarbon dates indicating a pre-Clovis origin for the site go back to 1982[4].

The idea that Clovis was not the earliest culture in the Americas, and the commensurate theory that the earliest colonists must have been traveling by boat [5] goes back decades. I know I've been reading about it (in the popular press no less) since the 1990s. It seems like every article I read about it makes it seem like some new and revolutionary idea. The only conclusion I can draw is that archaeological science operates on time scales only slightly shorter than those the archaeologists study.

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monte_Verde

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monte_Verde#Acceptance

[3] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monte_Verde#Diffusion

[4] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Monte_Verde#Discovery (third paragraph)

[5] I'd like to give you a citation for this, but this theory, as far as I can tell has no official name.

r0muald 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Adds up very well with almost contemporary evidence from Monte Verde in Chile http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal.... so "mystery" is a non sequitur. But that's the headline.

The original research paper is worth a read (open access FTW).

Steko 7 hours ago 0 replies      
> The Clovis, who are the early ancestors of today's Native Americans,

Emphasis added. One badly chosen word in an otherwise decent article. What we know of pre-Clovis people clearly supports the idea of them also being 'early ancestors to today's Native Americans.'

sandworm101 7 hours ago 2 replies      
When I was at university (UBC) "pre-Clovis" was an almost forbidden word in some classes. I saw a very heated debate in a geology class discussing land bridges. Many First Nations students took issue with any suggestion that their nations, their cultures, were not "first". Why that matters I don't know (politics) but they were adamant supporters of the Clovis First hypothesis. It has taken many years to etch away at the underlying land bridge assumptions and properly credit the resourcefulness of ancient peoples.


HP Apologizes for Bricking Third-Party Cartridges, Will Restore Functionality hothardware.com
49 points by defenestration  7 hours ago   30 comments top 14
rspeer 4 hours ago 3 replies      
This article promised a "sincere apology", but what followed instead was

> We updated a cartridge authentication procedure in select models of HP office inkjet printers to ensure the best consumer experience and protect them from counterfeit and third-party ink cartridges [...]

That's insincere as hell. It all paraphrases to "We did this for your own good and we're sorry you got upset".

blakesterz 58 minutes ago 1 reply      
"When ink cartridges are cloned or counterfeited, the customer is exposed to quality and potential security risks, compromising the printing experience." [1]

I know there's security risks in the printer and in any other thing plugged into a network, but what's the security risk in a cartridge? A cartridge can be hacked and then...? Can a cartridge really be owned? What can possibly be done then?

[1] http://www8.hp.com/us/en/hp-news/blog/Small-Business-Printin...

bambax 5 hours ago 2 replies      
I was recently in the market for a label printer. Dymo is the leader on this kind of products and as I was about to buy one I read this review


as well as many like it, that explain how the printer will only accept original, overpriced Dymo labels.

I bought a Brother QL-700 instead, with ordinary labels that cost 1/5 of the price of the Dymo ones, and couldn't be happier.

Let's hope those practices hurt the businesses instead of helping their bottom line, that's the only way we will get rid of them.

amiga-workbench 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Spend a bit more and get yourself a Brother monochrome laser printer, you won't have to deal with it squirting half of its ink down the drain every time it needs to unclog.
yomly 4 hours ago 1 reply      
If I squint my eyes (or brain) really hard I can just about believe that zero day exploits could exist for a printer cartridge.

But then I just arrive at the conclusion that if you didn't add DRM and try to make cartridges "smart" there wouldn't even be a security vector...

ourmandave 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I thought I'd had the inkjet game beat when I saw Epson color printers at Walmart for < $50.

Since it cost $50+ for new color and black cartridges I figured I'd just buy a new printer every time the old one ran out.

Sadly new printers come with super small cartridges.

vasanthagneshk 15 minutes ago 0 replies      
Good luck the customers will be very happy with your apology. /s
gushie 3 hours ago 1 reply      
My first inkjet printer was a HP Deskjet 500. It was fantastic (for its day and my requirements), robust and seemingly lasted forever. I eventually upgraded to something that did colour, but no printer I've had since, HP or otherwise has ever been as reliable as that old printer.

It is sad that I'm now in a position where I won't buy another HP printer while the cloud of them restricting my ink choices lingers.

ChoHag 3 hours ago 0 replies      
This headline lacks the words "getting" and "caught".
ChrisNorstrom 5 hours ago 3 replies      
Why bother, just go with the new Epson Eco-Tank printer ET-3600 and you get the ink tanks on the side, basically a continuous ink system. You can buy a gallon off non-epson ink (like Nano Digital brand ink) and literally print color for fractions of a penny per page. Cartridges seem so outdated.
ensiferum 5 hours ago 1 reply      
This is normal. I'd expect the sales of ink cartridges to be a bigger business than the sale of printers itself.
corbet 6 hours ago 0 replies      
So now will they stop bricking "Genuine HP" cartridges every time I look away from the printer for a few days?
raverbashing 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Yes, I want a better user experience. That's why I'm not buying any more HP Inkjets
sandworm101 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Don't care. HP is on my no-buy list until they promise to not do this again. Ever. I don't own an HP printer today and I probably now won't for a while. DRM stunts like this, the surprise bricking of working hardware, are not forgiven overnight.
Cloud History, Cloud Thinking cloudindx.com
17 points by interweb  10 hours ago   4 comments top 4
nfixx 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Like most metaphors, this one is likely to be easily misunderstood or at worst, taken for granted. That a potent message is delivered in a long narrative worthy of careful, contemplative reading, might make many miss the nuggets within (if not abandon this all-together).

That we are part of the enigma we are hoping to master makes things the more cloudy - is total abstraction possible?

The article is a huge open question too. Nice reading, very startling too. I did get inspired to try an idea or two... perhaps to add to an already increasing plethora of tweaks to our cloudy reality. It's in our nature too.

Animats 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Derrida and weather control in one article.

Back before Silicon Valley was Silicon Valley and had extensive agriculture, Santa Clara County had a weather control program. When water-laden cloud formations were about to pass over without rain, silver iodide generators would be fired up across the Valley. This would generate a little extra rain.

pmoriarty 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm looking forward to the day the cloud fades away.
Artemix 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Either way, we still mock airheads
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