hacker news with inline top comments    .. more ..    28 Jan 2011 News
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1
Would-Be Suicide Bomber Killed by Unexpected SMS From Mobile Carrier wired.com
182 points by shashashasha 4 hours ago   60 comments top 12
1
20 points by maukdaddy 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Coming soon to America:

Wireless carriers SMS all their customers 5 hours before any major event that might be a terrorist target!

2
1 point by stcredzero 3 minutes ago 0 replies      
Remember this lesson when you design your protocols -- use challenge/response! Ensure that you're immune from replay attacks and counterfeit signals.
3
13 points by jacquesm 3 hours ago 2 replies      
This is a re-run from yesterday:

http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=2147409

4
4 points by myth_drannon 4 hours ago 0 replies      
5
6 points by bretthopper 3 hours ago 3 replies      
Am I crazy or was this story already on HN? I can't find it for the life of me though.
6
3 points by tzs 4 hours ago 8 replies      
Nice story, but it makes no sense. Why would a suicide bomber use a bomb that is triggered by SMS?
7
0 points by twidlit 29 minutes ago 0 replies      
There's a Twilio idea here somewhere...
8
2 points by meadhikari 2 hours ago 0 replies      
If true, the SMS might be the only time that a wireless carrier's SMS message has ever been useful.
9
2 points by jwcacces 3 hours ago 2 replies      
Why does a suicide bomber need a remote control?
10
1 point by zmn 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I honestly believed for a split second that this was an Onion article
11
1 point by whoeverest 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Suicide bummer.
12
-1 point by leechisung 3 hours ago 0 replies      
This is like what people see in the movies!!
2
How the FBI raided Anonymous arstechnica.com
53 points by abraham 2 hours ago   35 comments top 7
1
6 points by lukeschlather 20 minutes ago 0 replies      
>The FBI yesterday reminded the public that "facilitating or conducting a DDoS attack is illegal, punishable by up to 10 years in prison, as well as exposing participants to significant civil liability."

What exactly is the relevant statute? As the other Ars article on the subject states, it's the digital equivalent of a sit-in.

2
16 points by kotrin 58 minutes ago 3 replies      
"We have noted that similar attacks have also been carried out against Wikileaks itself, yet so far, nobody has been arrested in connection with these attacks, nor are there even any signs of an investigation into this issue at all,"

I think that is one of the most important points of this article.

3
3 points by jrockway 1 hour ago 2 replies      
It's funny that Mastercard can't defend against an attack that my home router is capable of defending against. (A big limit on connections per /24 per minute should solve this problem. So will using a smart webserver or frontend proxy that doesn't care how many idle connections there are. Then all you have to worry about is bandwidth saturation rather than your servers crashing.)

But the lesson here is, when you visit a web page, a line in a log that identifies you is generated. Generate too many of these lines, and, one line of Perl later, the cops are going to be asking you some questions. Don't participate in a DDoS attack unless you're absolutely sure that nobody is logging your traffic. And that is something that's impossible to be sure of these days.

4
7 points by borism 1 hour ago 3 replies      
Let me get this straight. All this fanfare, and all they got was a bunch of teenagers (who most likely are not even legally liable) + their moms?
5
4 points by jtchang 44 minutes ago 0 replies      
My tax dollars are going to this. I feel robbed.
6
5 points by f1gm3nt 1 hour ago 0 replies      
"...and the first FBI agent in the door could be heard yelling 'FIRST'!..."
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6 points by monochromatic 54 minutes ago 4 replies      
What's the justification for no-knock raids here?
3
NoSQL at Netflix netflix.com
36 points by abraham 1 hour ago   discuss
4
WhiteyNotes Create Small Stick-On Whiteboards Anywhere lifehacker.com
21 points by jasonwilk 1 hour ago   5 comments top 3
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1 point by Bud 8 minutes ago 0 replies      
If you put up a WhiteyNote, does that mean you just made a CrackerBoard?
2
1 point by grumo 40 minutes ago 0 replies      
Whiteyboard is an awesome product. I specially like their hilarious videos promoting it.
This one with the blonde chick is priceless -> http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gr1jhit2hzQ
3
2 points by jasonwilk 45 minutes ago 0 replies      
Surprisingly we have never had any push back on the name, which I was happy to see since we are obviously not racists, and we are all also Caucasian. We just thought it was a name people could remember and although I can't completely validate that that is why this business is successful, I think it has had a lot to do with it.
5
Why Dropbox Succeeded and Syncplicity Didn't wetzler.me
107 points by sporkbomb 4 hours ago   44 comments top 16
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21 points by axiom 2 hours ago 2 replies      
Dropbox was a YC company, which meant they had quite a bit of free press and access to a lot of valley connections. I would imagine that had a lot to do with their success.
2
27 points by jcromartie 4 hours ago 2 replies      
3
14 points by theBobMcCormick 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Looking at products like Dropbox and Evernote, not to mention everything going on with iPhone/Android apps, I can't help but thing that they provide a bit of a counter to the conventional wisdom that native "fat clients" are dead. The people I know who use Dropbox basically never use the Dropbox website except to sign up and to download the client. The client is the magic, not the website.

It makes me wonder what other services might benefit from native clients....

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9 points by jacquesm 2 hours ago 1 reply      
How do you even pronounce syncplicity? Dropbox is a nobrainer in just about every language that is somewhat relevant on the internet for commercial reasons, that alone would give them an edge.

Sycn?what? Oh, never mind, I'll just use dropbox.

Cutesy names are rarely worth the downside. Keep it short, simple, easy to spell and pronounceable in an un-ambiguous way.

Or you'll never even get to the point where you have to worry about how your competitor is doing in terms of pricing or features.

5
5 points by lionhearted 2 hours ago 0 replies      
No one posted the funniest comment in the Quora thread, from Dropbox founder Drew Houston:

> http://www.zumsteg.net/2009/03/08/further-comparison-of-drop...

> (kidding -- mostly)

6
36 points by jim_h 4 hours ago 2 replies      
People probably also had an easier time spelling 'Dropbox', than they did remembering 'Syncplicity'.
7
2 points by 6ren 59 minutes ago 0 replies      
> After I left Syncplicity, I ran into the CEO of Dropbox and asked him my burning question: "Why don't you support multi-folder synchronization?" His answer was classic Dropbox. They built multi-folder support early on and did limited beta testing with it, but they couldn't get the UI right. It confused people and created too many questions. It was too hard for the average consumer to setup. So it got shelved.

When I can't get something right, I keep on trying. Maybe not always a good idea.

8
9 points by Semiapies 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I'll be glad when the fad of drop-shadowing body text to look vaguely "engraved" passes. Thanks, Readability...
9
1 point by mahmud 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Insync does the same but for you MS Office docs; syncs them to Google Docs automatically :-)

http://insyncHQ.com

People can edit Google Docs with Office, and Office with Docs. No need to choose one.

10
4 points by thibaut_barrere 3 hours ago 1 reply      
It's so easy to overlook the benefits of staying obsessively focused.

Quickly though, almost in your back, each single bit/feature/line of code added to the mix multiplies with the others, and it's over already.

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1 point by bmccormack 27 minutes ago 0 replies      
"Dropbox limited its feature set on purpose. It had one folder and that folder always synced without any issues -- it was magic. Syncplicity could sync every folder on your computer until you hit our quota."

I think I had started to use Dropbox because of its popularity on LifeHacker and other sites. One of my first complaints was that I was required to use a single "My Dropbox" folder instead of being able to use my own folder structure. However, I quickly adapted to the Dropbox model and realized that for every computer that's connected to Dropbox, everything that's in the Dropbox folder gets synchronized and everything that is not in the Dropbox folder is not. Its simplicity is probably the reason why I am still using it.

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1 point by metachris 37 minutes ago 0 replies      
Dropbox is such a great name for the service, much better than Syncplicity. I think that might have facilitated their success.
13
1 point by guptaneil 54 minutes ago 0 replies      
As they say, keep it simple, stupid.

To be fair, most companies that complicate their feature set don't do it because they enjoy writing more code. It's just difficult to focus on your core competency when a simple product sounds boring on paper. It's so much harder to pitch to a VC or potential employee. Who wants to support a product that's just going to sync one folder instead of your entire system? But it's always the companies that manage to make it through that stage that succeed.

14
3 points by u48998 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I didn't know about Sugar Sync when I was sucked in to Dropbox hype. I have changed my mind.
15
1 point by MrDunham 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Yet again someone showing how important it is to stay simple.

I can no longer count the number of companies I've talked to who imploded under the weight of their own features.

16
0 points by samengland 2 hours ago 0 replies      
This is the similar kind of advice that those behind 37 Signals give in their book Rework http://amzn.to/hkrGuU
6
Amazon.com Security Flaw Accepts Passwords That Are Close, But Not Exact wired.com
19 points by gaiusparx 1 hour ago   7 comments top 5
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1 point by pieter 1 minute ago 0 replies      
Passwords on the Dutch banking site ing.nl are also case insensitive, though there hasn't been any public reaction to that.
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2 points by nbpoole 33 minutes ago 0 replies      
The comment thread on Reddit, which the article references, is definitely worth reading. There's some good discussion about the difficulties involved in upgrading people's hashes to use a more secure system (eg: http://www.reddit.com/r/WTF/comments/f96w7/amazon_security_f...)
3
1 point by ronnier 9 minutes ago 0 replies      
I reported the same flaw for http://utd.edu. They didn't seem to care.
4
1 point by tel 34 minutes ago 2 replies      
Is there a good way to update passwords to a new encryption scheme? the article tries to ding amazon for failing to do this, but I can't think of a way to reinforce the passwords without announcing that there's a flaw in the implementation. Is there a standard way around this?
5
1 point by earl 48 minutes ago 0 replies      
I couldn't replicate the article's results for the 8 character cutoff, but I did verify my password is case insensitive. For the record, I registered in 1996 or so, and probably haven't changed my password since.
7
Amazon S3 - Bigger and Busier Than Ever aws.typepad.com
21 points by jeffbarr 1 hour ago   2 comments top
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2 points by sandipagr 47 minutes ago 1 reply      
wow the growth is phenomenal! Everything is indeed going to be in the cloud
8
Google algorithm change launched
517 points by Matt_Cutts 7 hours ago   137 comments top 42
1
44 points by seanalltogether 6 hours ago 5 replies      
Matt, I just went through my search history because i remembered a very specific instance of seeing this. Here's the query.

http://www.google.com/search?q=nstoolbar+bottom+bar&ie=u...

You'll notice that efreedom.com shows on the first page with content taken directly from stackoverflow. While stackoverflow does show in the results, the exact page that efreedom copies does not. Anyway, I'm glad you guys are taking this seriously.

For reference here is what I see right now - http://dl.dropbox.com/u/1437645/googlesearchresult.png

2
44 points by RealGeek 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Will this change effect sites like filestube.com and freshwap.net? FilesTube ranks for majority of the long tail keywords, even those not related to downloads/torrents/rapidshare.

I see filestube's auto-generated search listing pages ranking on Google all the time. Pages like:
http://www.filestube.com/m/matt+cutts
http://www.filestube.com/g/google+scraper

Same goes for freshwap: http://www.freshwap.net/387/dl/Google+Matt+Cutts

These sites will give out an auto-generated page for every keyword you enter into it. Apparently, Google loves to index them... there are 126 million pages of files tube indexed in Google. I thought indexing search listing pages of other search engine was against Google's policies.

3
26 points by nikothefinn 5 hours ago 5 replies      
Since Matt is responding here, I figured this is worth a shot, no harm in asking. Matt, would love a response from you if you get a chance, since the Webmaster Tools appeals process gives no insight whatsoever to our situation.

Following on from one of the comments here, namely the idea that "value is in the eye of the beholder", I'd like to raise our own plight. I run a number of aggregator sites - the largest and oldest of them being celebrifi.com, which was a PageRank 5 until Google de-indexed us in December (along with some of our other sites, but interestingly not all).

A little background - the purpose of the sites is to aggregate, organize, rank and add context to what's happening in the news, with each site focusing a specific vertical. Think Techmeme, but with more context.

I'll be the first to admit, there is no original content, but I strongly believe that we "add value" by figuring out what exactly is going on in any given story or blog post.

We add value to publishers, by always linking to the original source (indeed, many publishers directly request that we add their feeds to the sources we track), we respect copyright by only displaying a short snippet of the original text and only displaying thumbnail images and we add value to users by giving them easy access to a lot more content on the same topic/story, all in the same place.

Google's Quality Guidelines clearly state that duplicate content is penalized, and that is totally fine with us, but is it right to totally de-index a site for duplicate content? I wouldn't even want to rank above the original source for any given piece of content, as I respect the hard work that writers and publishers put into creating quality content, but aggregators who add value have a role to play in the content ecosystem. Digg, for example, uses the "wisdom of the crowd" to aggregate and rank content - hence adds value. Topix takes a local approach to aggregating content, and uses comments to rank content - hence adds value. We take a verticalized approach to aggregating and ranking content, and hence I believe that we add value.

As mentioned above, we got de-indexed in December, and despite going through the appeals process, fixing a few things on our end to do with sitemaps, and clearing out some older "low quality" sources that we were tracking, we received no clarity into what our crime was.

Matt, I'd like to raise this issue with you - both as it relates to us, but also as a general industry question - are all aggregators going to be de-indexed? And if not, which aggregators are and which aren't? What is the criteria, and who decides? If its algorithmic, then I am very curious to know what on our sites triggered the de-indexing? And even more curious to know why some of our sites got de-indexed, and some didn't.

I have great respect for Google's efforts to clean up spam and low-quality content - and would always expect to see original content ranking higher than aggregated content. But to completely de-index an established aggregator site and strip it of its PageRank seems very draconian.

I would love to hear your/Google's position, and look forward to some more clarity on both our situation, and the future of news/content aggregators.

Respectfully yours, Niko

4
17 points by kunjaan 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I googled for my own name "Kunjan Kshetri" and I still see sites like

1. www.peekyou.com/_kshetri

2. www.yasni.com/kunjan+kshetri/check+people

3. mobile.aa.com/mt/net35.ccs.neu.edu/home/kunjan/?un_jtt

in the front page. These sites reused my homepage or just have my name listed. They too add no original content. Please remove these sites.

Please note that searching in Bing produces more original content results.

5
13 points by brown9-2 6 hours ago 2 replies      
Is this change restricted to programming-related queries only?

I noticed today that a search for "mubarrek london" returns a page of results where every result on the first page, besides the top one, is spam from www.88searchengines.com, www.30searchengines.com, www.70searchengines.com, etc.

I know this might not be related to topic of scraper sites directly, but not sure how else one can easily report these types of things.

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9 points by Alex3917 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Not exactly a scraper site, but if you do a search for "learn to hack" the top result is just a list of SEO keywords:

http://www.learn-to-hack.com/

Several of the other results are rather dubious as well. The reason I bring it up is because the Squidoo lens that comes up is something I made, and while certainly not perfect it's still a much better than many of the SEO spam sites and fake eBooks that rank above it. (And plus the ad revenue is going to charity rather than some shady organized crime ring.)

Anyway sorry if it's a faux pas to complain about my own stuff, but I feel like it's a legitimate problem with the way Google works.

7
38 points by runjake 6 hours ago 1 reply      
FYI:

Don't flag this because there's no link or "citation". Matt Cutts is the web spam guy at Google.

8
7 points by Aaronontheweb 6 hours ago 2 replies      
Glad to see that Matt went out of his way to help us geeks and the StackOverFlow community!

In the future is there going to be some way for webmasters to do something like rel="canonical" across domains so if I want to syndicate a piece of content across two properties I own I can indicate which one is the original source? My understanding is that rel="canonical" is only meant to be used between pages on the same root domain today but I could be mistaken.

9
7 points by bhavin 7 hours ago 3 replies      
I would like to point out one interesting thing I noticed today. I was looking for "gcc optimization flags for xeon".

Following query is from google.com and contains no efreedom on the front page.
http://www.google.com/search?hl=en&q=gcc+optimization+fl...

Now, the same query from google.ie (ireland site) contains 2 efreedom on the top page!

http://www.google.ie/search?hl=en&q=gcc+optimization+fla...

Why this strange search behavior to a query which has no relevance to user's location?

P.S. I was logged on to my google account while searching, not sure if that has any effect whatsoever.

10
4 points by WillyF 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Matt, this is great news.

How about sites that rank well with no content, just navigation? Here's an example:

http://www.collegegrad.com/entryleveljob/entrylevelaccountin...

It's generally a high quality site, but that page has absolutely no relevance to the query except for a title tag and some internal anchor text. The search terms aren't even on the page.

If I remember correctly, it used to rank #1 for "accounting entry level jobs," and now it's down to #8. My question is why is it even ranking at all? It's not even low quality content. It's no content.

11
2 points by jswinghammer 2 hours ago 0 replies      
12
4 points by kqueue 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Here's a query that shows efreedom above SO. I did site:efreedom.com and picked few titles until I found one.

query: Mailengine with .NET API

The right page that should show up is

http://stackoverflow.com/questions/1720900/mailengine-with-n...

If you google the link below you'll see that the page is indexed.

http://stackoverflow.com/questions/1720900/mailengine-with-n...

However, the page doesn't show up when you use the query I mentioned.

13
1 point by forgotAgain 1 hour ago 0 replies      
When I search for "rabbitmq exchange declare" (no quotes) I noticed the following.

Mailing list entries from http://lists.rabbitmq.com/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/rabbitmq-... show up from old.nabble.com before the original source.

From a quick look there is significant improvement.

14
6 points by spidaman 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Nice to hear about this change Matt. "Fuckin' efreedom..." is an oft heard missive around our office, godspeed in ranking them and their ilk down.
15
2 points by endergen 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Matt would you comment on the thought process of Google on curation. There are sites that are generally strongly disliked.

Examples: Demand Media in general. Or say w3schoolS.com for JavaScript/CSS/HTML.

I can understand that there would likely be a deluge of legal action against Google if this was done in a heavy handed way.

Or is it a principled thing where everyone should be treated equal? If so isn't that a lot of algorithm ideology. In practice hard rules without human judgment leads to ridiculous edge cases or bypassing the intent of the rules.

I always assumed you curated in a way via having teams that specialized in creating topic specific search techniques which then all get combined together via topic detection or some other meta algorithm. This would be a good balance between manual curation and having it be a scalable approach.

16
2 points by kqueue 1 hour ago 0 replies      
The fact that efreedom results are showing up in the results is irritating by itself. We all know efreedom is spam, and so does Google.

Now I am always on alert when clicking on a link in the results to avoid the spam pages like efreedom, expertexchange and whatnot. Why not just remove them from search results?

They are causing enough bad publicity to Google.

17
9 points by miah_ 6 hours ago 2 replies      
This is awesome! Now if only I could completely remove certain sites from my search results ala the Google Wiki stuff. I'd love to drop swik, and expertsexchange and a few other annoying sites. Its possible this algorithm change will make these sites less annoying to me though.
18
3 points by hsmyers 6 hours ago 1 reply      
While I applaud such an improvement, I still despair over Google's inability to handle context. For instance the search phrase 'tex decorative rules' is totally miss managed. First it overrides the search and changes tex to text. Humorously enough, when you counter override back to tex, the search is even worse. We won't even speak of what happens when you change tex to latex--- porno doth ever rise to the top I guess. While we may be in a new millennium, some things remain far behind. And yes I know that things are being worked on from the those who were academic and are now working at Google, but still...
19
2 points by samd 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I don't suppose you'll tell us how you know whether a site's content is original or not.

What if you have a blog with lots of quotes from other sites; will that hurt your rankings because Google sees "unoriginal" content?

Is there some ratio of original to unoriginal content that must be met to keep from being flagged as a scraper?

20
2 points by seles 4 hours ago 1 reply      
This is good news, but I feel like it is only treating a symptom not the actual disease.

If the algorithm properly detected site relevance, importance and viewer satisfaction, those copycat sites should never have ranked higher in the first place. In a way this is admitting that it is impossible to stop the gaming of search engine optimization, and that the only way to deal with it is to "win" in some special cases.

That being said I provide no real solution, this is a huge problem with millions behind each side.

Although this is good news it is also gloom news.

21
3 points by akie 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Yes - I've been doing a lot of YII related searches the past week, and I've noticed that a lot of times a site called 'devcomments.com' pops up somewhere in the first 5 results. Usually with a bogus page that does contain the keywords you were looking for, but not the actual discussion/forum thread. It appears they have copied their content directly from the official site, yiiframework.com.

Example: http://www.google.com/search?q=Any+yii+way+to+get+the+previo...

In that particular instance it is result number 3 (and the original is number 1), but on more than one occasion it was the top result and it's never what you are looking for.

22
2 points by klbarry 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Hi Matt, I'm sure your busy and don't want to answer all SEO related questions anyway. I wanted to ask, though, what Google things about the importance of exact anchor text in rankings as remarked upon in http://www.seomoz.org/blog/how-organized-crime-is-taking-con...?
23
1 point by tmsh 2 hours ago 0 replies      
One caveat, though I imagine this has been thought of before, is that mobile versions of sites often have the same content as full-browser versions of sites.

So ideally, perhaps m.google.com would be able to sort through this and not penalize the duplicated-nature of the mobile version.... Anyway, something to think about if you haven't already.

24
3 points by eurohacker 6 hours ago 2 replies      
may be here is a good place to ask - may be someone can answer - what does the term "original content" actually mean , original in what sense ?

if you have a blog about wines, then what do you need to write - in order to be "original" blog about wines - does it mean mostly:

1) express original opinions about wines,
2) original structure of sentence and original wording - but the same opinions that 10 other sites write about,
3) original brands of wine you talk about - original names mentioned,
4) original content in the sense that you have not copied the text 100% from someone else - or what
5) combination of the factors mentioned above
6) something else that makes your content original ..

25
3 points by Nickwiz 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Hey matt, thanks for the update I wanted to know how would it work in this case:

http://www.google.com/#q=major+online+dating+sites+koopa&...

We submitted an article to ezinearticles from our blog.koopa.com. Just wondering how our blog is not remotely listed but ezine which we posted are article through our blog has? How does this work when our authors submit to article directories?

On that same note I notice a bunch of other sites just below which have copies ezines article to the tee and are ranking higher then the our original blog that posted it.

Is this related to the current algorithm change or just that our blog may not be indexed yet? Thanks for the update once again. I love the fact that you and the google team are constantly updating and changing your algo to give value to rightful content owners.

26
2 points by tristanperry 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Sounds good, thanks for the update Matt. I must ask though: I wonder whether you've seen the "January 26 2011 Traffic Change - Back to 'Zombie Traffic' " discussion over at Webmaster World? A number of webmasters there (who own websites with fully unique content) are reporting that they've seen lower quality content sites and/or content scrapers rank above their established sites with good content, starting from around the 26th Jan.

There's no specific queries/websites talked about there (I might be wrong but I think Webmaster World has some rules preventing specific discussion of websites/queries), although I thought I'd flag it up since some webmasters have noticed adverse affects from a Jan 26th algo change; and it sounds like this might be the cause.

Anywhoo, that being said: it's great to see Google continuing to be on the ball and responding to the recent feedback from various blogs and other sources (e.g. here).

27
4 points by rgrieselhuber 7 hours ago 0 replies      
This is great news, thanks very much.
28
3 points by jacquesm 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Now that's good news. Thanks!
29
4 points by bretthellman 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Fantastic though I'd rather see google block sites like efreedom all together.
30
2 points by giberson 6 hours ago 1 reply      
I imagine theres not much you can be specific about when talking about google's algorithm, but can you at least disclose if the identification of "original" content providers is "determined" (by some automatic process) or is it "specified" (manual intervention)?

Stack overflow is an obvious benefactor of this new change, I'm just wondering if smaller content providers might benefit as well?

31
2 points by bkaid 4 hours ago 0 replies      
While you are at it, can you go ahead and de-index this site: http://www.google.com/search?q=site:livestrong.com
32
2 points by jjclarkson 6 hours ago 0 replies      
I ran across this list just now on sites that may be using SO content: http://meta.stackoverflow.com/questions/24611/is-it-legal-to...
33
1 point by Galaxis 1 hour ago 1 reply      
My current favourite spammy search (Windows process names) seems slightly improved, but still produces mostly unusable results.

Try something like: http://www.google.com/search?q=hidfind.exe

Another similar search area (Windows drivers for various hardware) has improved a lot judging from the few examples I just tried - actual hardware manufacturers are now amongst the top results for a change.

So that's quite a step forward...

34
2 points by dcdan 5 hours ago 1 reply      
At what point does Google cross over from "ranked by algorithm" to "ranked by algorithm selection as editorialized by Googlers and bloggers?"

Publicly discussing algorithms changes like this seems like a potential PR problem.

35
2 points by MelissaLB 5 hours ago 0 replies      
will there be any penalization for sites that use wikipedia content. Specifically a site that would NOT show up in the same search results as a wikipedia page but a commerce site that uses some unaltered wiki content in the descriptors of the products?

I've seen many sites use this method of adding text to an image heavy site and have watched one particular site that uses this method of adding text, drop dramatically out of the search results since October 28th and again around Dec 28th.

Would you advise to discontinue the use of wikipedia content even though the targeted keywords differ from those of the actual wikipedia page?

36
3 points by avstraliitski 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Very happy to see the end of copied Wikipedia sites.
37
10 points by badwetter 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Bravo!
38
1 point by 23david 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Will this new change impact the issue where scrapers that take videos and video descriptions from youtube and turn them into 'blog posts' show up higher than the youtube page that contains the actual original content? I worked for nearly a year producing a few hundred videos only to find that spam sites (usually running adsense ads) were showing up ahead of the video on youtube.com and my own site. Our site's domain name was even plastered all over the description and it still didn't matter. The spam sites still showed up way ahead of us in the search results.
39
1 point by EGreg 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I got 99 comments but of which this ain't one :)
40
2 points by alexsherrick 7 hours ago 0 replies      
thanks matt this is awesome!
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-2 points by angelbit 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Hi Matt. Why Google don't test the results after changes on algorithm?
A simple program that store and compare n SERP results before and after the changes.
42
-2 points by hananc 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Please don't take my word for it.

Hit http://duckduckgo.com with your programming queries.

No - I am not affiliated and am not getting paid to write this.

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How Organized Spam is Taking Control of Google's Search Results seomoz.org
91 points by JoelSutherland 5 hours ago   40 comments top 15
1
6 points by DanielBMarkham 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Warning: contrarian rant ahead.

Something has been bugging me for a while, and it took a few hours after I read this article to figure out what it was.

I love the coining of a new term: "organized spam", and I love calling out things that are wrong, but I wonder if we're not taking this crime metaphor a bit too far.

Look guys, it's a search engine. You type in a search term, it gives you results. There's nothing magic or special about it -- anybody with a smidgen of database training can make one (although nowhere near as Google's, granted)

Although some of these examples involve people ripping other people off, I get the feeling that somehow Google has become such a part of our lives that we feel as if somehow these folks trading links and trying to get attention are acting criminally. That anything that gets in the way of my getting instant information is a crime against humanity. That really bugs me.

It's not. Get over yourself. Sure, large parts of this may be well-funded, but there's nothing necessarily criminal going on. For instance lots of poor people in lots of third-world countries are making money dropping by my blog each day and telling me how awesome I am. It's not expected, but I'm happy they're making a few dollars. I can live with the inconvenience or try to fix it on my end. I don't need to blame them.

I don't like the state of Google search right now either, although I'm still a loyal customer. But what I see in the marketplace is humans reacting logically to their best interests. If you're going to monetize google search so that billions of dollars flows through it, there's going to be some ancillary effects that nobody predicted. Instead of blaming the people, understand that the people are just regular, intelligent folks doing the best they can. Hell, my wife is in a social group with a lady who made several thousand dollars adding advertiser text to her blogs -- until Google delisted her. She saw nothing wrong with it, and still is pretty pissed at Google. From her standpoint Google crapped all over her party.

And yes, Google has every right to delist sites and such. More power to them. I hope they continue to delist and evolve their search engine. I hope they get a handle on this. But I think we should all separate our well-wishes for Google's success from our opinions of our fellow man. I've heard linkspammers and spammers called "subhuman" and all sorts of nasty things. While there are criminals who are trying to rip you off, there's no evidence that there are more criminals on the web that anywhere else. Most of these people are trying to make a living. The fact they might inconvenience you on your way to get an answer to a technical question or find the latest mp3 you have to have is really not that high on their list of priorities -- nor should it be.

Google needs to do a better job. Period. There seems to be this "conversation machine" right now where people post articles showing how bad search is, then folks come out and rant, then Google makes an announcement. Repeat and rinse. It's as if we went down to the local newstand and asked the grocer for a magazine on trucks. He gives us a bunch of magazines on boats, so -- we blame the magazine publishers! It's simply not logical. A little perspective, please. Google is the provider here and those of us who like them should try to help out. But we shouldn't cross the line into thinking that anybody that annoys Google or searcher is somehow evil or criminal. That's crazy. Much better to understand people as rational actors than to demonize anybody who tricks some random American internet company.

</rant>

2
28 points by PaulHoule 5 hours ago 3 replies      
Part of the problem with "spammy" content coming out on top is often the competition from real content is pretty thin.

To take the example of Pandora jewelery, Pandora is a company that controls it's marketing channels with an iron fist. They're very careful to partner with better-than-average jewelers and each retailer has an exclusive territory. So far as I know, there's no legitimate channel for new Pandora products online (everybody who claims to sell them on Ebay seems to have fewer than 10 feedbacks.)

Thus, other than Pandora's official website there's no legitimate e-commerce presence for Pandora online, so there's nothing to compete with the junk. Somebody might randomly write about them, but there's nobody (legitimate) who's got a feedback loop going where revenue supports content creation and marketing efforts -- which will inevitable come out on top against amateur competition.

Demand Media, ExpertsExchange and quite a few junk sites similarly thrive on the lack of good content. I was having trouble changing the ribbon on an old typewriter a few weeks ago, and web searches asking about this particular model turned up junk pages with advice like:

(1) Buy a new typewriter ribbon,
(2) Take the old typewriter ribbon out,
(3) Put the new typewritter ribbon out

Now, these pages were keyword stuffed with the name of the typewriter, but they didn't even bother to have an affiliate (or other) link to a place where I could buy the goddamn typewriter ribbon, which according to them is 33% of the work!

Once more, the feedback loop doesn't exist to nourish a good answer here, so of course the blight is going to move in.

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3 points by jasonkester 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I run a blog host, so I get to see these spammers at work. Every day, they sign up for several hundred new accounts and post informative articles on how to find NFL Jerseys, Ugg Boots and Tiffany Jewelry, all with plenty of links back to sites like the one in the article.

The scary thing is that it's not automated. There are real people pasting in content and checking to see that it's correct. Fortunately for me, it's all going straight into my bayesian filter's spam corpus and making it easier to detect, but even for my one site it must be costing somebody a lot of money to post it all.

If Google had an API to report this stuff, I'd be happy to forward it along to them on the fly. Seems that there are plenty of User-generated-content sites like mine with a ton of valuable spam data if anybody figured out a way to use it.

If anybody's interested, here's what we're doing to keep the site spam free:

http://expatsoftware.com/articles/2010/03/care-and-feeding-o...

4
1 point by gregable 33 minutes ago 0 replies      
Looking at the specific examples:

[nfl jerseys]

#1) http://www.nflshop.com/category/index.jsp?categoryId=2237409

Visit nfl.com, click "shop", then choose the "jerseys" tab, this is the page you are on. Seems perfectly relevant. The domain does not contain "jerseys" in it, and while the title does - it's the Jersey's category page for the nfl's shopping website, that makes sense. Hardly spam.

#2) http://www.footballfanatics.com/NFL_Jerseys

Visit www.clc.com, the collegiate licensing company, click retailers->collegiate retail outlets, Football Fanatics is one of 13 licensed collegiate retailers. Most major college universities sell their football merchandise through them. It's been around (run whois) since 1997, 14 years! Perhaps it's not ideal for NFL (non-college), but it's definitely Not Spam.

Unfortunately, below this some of the results do start getting ugly - there aren't too many online retailers that can legally sell NFL merchandise. Even Amazon is just a storefront for the NFL Shop (see http://www.amazon.com/NFL-Football-Fans/b?node=374273011). That might make it a good result, but it's essentially duplicated content given the NFL Shop result.

[pandora jewelry]

#1/#2) Pandora.net, totally not spam, this is the type in [amazon], get amazon.com kind of result.

#2.5) Below the second result I see a shopping results box which has only pandora jewelry from authorized retailers.

#3) http://www.pandoramoa.com/ - the Pandora Mall of America stores. Authorized pandora retailer. The domain has been around since 2007 (4 years)

Below this, the rest is getting ugly. Similar to [nfl jerseys], there aren't many online retailers legally able to sell pandora jewelry, so once Google has listed the only 3 good results available, what do want them to do? Try [jewelry] or [necklaces] - queries where there are lots of legit destinations and the top 10 results are all non-spammy.

[thomas sabo]

#1/#2) ThomasSabo.com, just like [pandora jewelry], this is exactly what 99% of the people with this query want.

Same story for the non-existant good results below.

These 3 queries are a very specific type of query where there are only one or two relevant results, but there are lots of sites that "match" the query. I'm not saying the rankings after the first few relevant results are good, but what would you propose to show after those relevant results as an alternative?

Writing an article about a specific class of queries is fine, although the author doesn't really propose a better set of results. The implication made is that this issue applies to a broad set of queries which it doesn't seem to. Ironically, the author's signature line is a link to http://www.tomsgutscheine.de/, whose title translated to english appears to be: "Coupons, Coupon Codes & Coupons (January 2011) - Tom's Coupons".

5
3 points by shawndrost 3 hours ago 1 reply      
"Google needs to greatly lower the value of keyword-rich anchor texts."

Won't this have a lot of adverse effects? And if keywords in anchor text become less valuable, can't spammers compensate by ramping up their existing efforts?

"I would not be surprised to see Google shift even more ranking signal power from anchor-text heavy links to relevant social media “chatter”."

Why would this be harder to game than links?

Spam happens because search is hard. There are probably solutions, but they're not as easy to come by as the ones suggested in tfa. Still, it's good to see this sort of community feedback on search results, especially given how responsive the search team is to this sort of thing. Keep up the good work, guys.

6
2 points by jonknee 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I see NFLShop.com as #1, but some of the rest appear to be spam (in some cases it's hard to tell if they are legitimate or not). I looked for legitimate sellers of NFL jerseys and by and large they have terrible SEO. I don't know how companies haven't gotten wise, but check out FinishLine.com's NFL jerseys landing page:

http://www.finishline.com/store/shop/nfl/nfl-jerseys/_/N-2z7...

They have "nfl-jerseys" in the URL which is about the only redeeming thing. The page title is unrelated, which is what would show in a SERP. I clicked on the top result, a women's Ben Roethlisberger jersey and the page has nearly zero information and the images 404 (!).

http://www.finishline.com/store/product/reebok-womens-pittsb...

Compare that to one of the results that comes up in Google and you can see why. Great titles, URLs, the filters don't require forms.

7
3 points by davidmathers 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I ran across this a few months myself while searching for bicycle info. Note that this is completely different than the spam content (SO, eFreedom, etc.) issue.

I wanted to learn more about the bianchi infinito and what I found was a number of web stores selling bicycles at impossible prices. I mean oscommerce or zencart or whatever instances of legitimate looking web stores. Then when you look closer they're mostly in Indonesia and in order to complete the purchase you have to bank wire the money.

I think it's spilling over from alibaba and similar sites where 99% of the vendors are scams. Now those vendors are creating whole ecommerce web presences to make their scam sales.

The stores I saw didn't usually make the first page of results. Usually third or fourth. Sometimes second. Anyway I was a bit shocked out how many fake stores there were and how they ranked as highly as many legitimate bike shops.

8
7 points by res0nat0r 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Funny this is being posted the same day as Matt Cutts' HN post which is currently at #1.

Also per exhibit one of the article: The first hit for "nfl jerseys" I get, even with pws=0 is to nflshop.com. The website that nfl.com links you to when you click on the "shop" link.

More bandwagon jumping about google spam being out of control? I like to think so.

9
8 points by kqueue 3 hours ago 1 reply      
http://duckduckgo.com/?q=nfl+jerseys

I believe Google's results are less spammy than duckduckgo for this particular query.

10
1 point by moultano 2 hours ago 0 replies      
There's a change slowly rolling out that improves the [nfl jerseys] query substantially. I'll check on the others. Thanks for the examples.

Some really dramatic changes to how we use links are on the way. (Sorry I can't say anything more specific. This is a really sensitive area.)

11
12
1 point by underdown 29 minutes ago 0 replies      
How is "greatly reducing the value of anchor text" going to improve search? Didn't we all start using google because anchor text was a great ranking signal? It seems the appropriate course of action is to devalue links from sites that either ignorantly or willfully pollute the link-o-sphere.
13
2 points by EGreg 4 hours ago 2 replies      
I guess google shows different things to different people. My search for NFL Jerseys for example, seems just fine:

http://grab.by/8DYK

what do you think?

14
1 point by mythobit 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I know this isn't a perfect solution. But I made this site that uses Google's Custom search to allow you to maintain your own blacklist so that you can filter out sites you don't want displayed.
Here's the link:
http://blacklist-search.appspot.com/
15
2 points by nvictor 5 hours ago 0 replies      
i agree with people who are complaining. this morning i was looking for a docking station for my cowon mp3 player. that spammy-ass website called techframe kept showing 3 times in the first few results. it was annoying.
10
How Egypt did (and how your government could) shut down the Internet arstechnica.com
11 points by kylelibra 1 hour ago   4 comments top 2
1
2 points by StavrosK 35 minutes ago 0 replies      
That's a bit of a fallacy. They compare the US to single European countries. I'm guessing it would be as easy to turn off the internet in California as it would be to turn it off in Greece.
2
1 point by kongqiu 39 minutes ago 1 reply      
Would investing more in satellite-based infrastructure be one possible solution?
11
Makin' It Rain - How Raindrop Effects Work In 2D Games bulletproofoutlaws.com
61 points by cal5k 5 hours ago   19 comments top 6
1
13 points by iamwil 4 hours ago 1 reply      
To me, the biggest lesson I've learn from game programming tips and tricks was to not model the world exactly. Just model it enough to trick the eye. My first inclination was, "but of course you need the splats where the rain drop line ends! How would it make sense otherwise?" But it's not until you see the video that you get that, hey that worked well enough.

I imagine it's applicable to other realms of programming as well, like web programming. We should question if we really need something on the page, or if there's just some way to fake it or get away with doing less. Or same with scheduling notifications to be delivered. Does it really need to be real-time? Or can we just cheat a little since the tolerance is much higher?

2
9 points by Luc 4 hours ago 2 replies      
Or you could use color cycling:
http://www.effectgames.com/demos/canvascycle/?sound=0
(choose 'Highland Ruins - Rain' and show the options to see the palette).
Crazy in these modern times, of course.
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12 points by BPO_Quickdraw 4 hours ago 1 reply      
haha awesome, you blew my server up. Upgrading now but it'll take a couple days they say.

Anyone reading: that's my game development blog, I'm starting an iPhone game dev studio and documenting the progress of starting it up and making the first game, day by day!

Check it out if you're interested in game dev and feel free to ask any questions!

- Quickdraw

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2 points by BPO_Quickdraw 3 hours ago 1 reply      
iamwil: "My first inclination was, "but of course you need the splats where the rain drop line ends! How would it make sense otherwise?""

Exactly, I think that's default programmer-logic. "If there's a drop, it must have a splat." I used to do some programming but I'm more of an artist than a progger so I figure writing about little artsy tricks like that might help other devs out. It can be rough trying to fit cool stuff onto tiny phones haha

Luc: I'm a pixel artist at heart so I love color cycling, but ya, appearing in front of another layer blows it up. Also these days I don't think iPhone games use palettes much...I know older cel phones needed them, but for iPhone I seem to be able to get away with just using big ol' .PNGs with no palettes (which rules, 'cause I can get anti-aliased edges).

- Quickdraw

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2 points by cal5k 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Welp, looks like I crashed their server...

Update: There it goes!

6
2 points by kindlyviking 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Excessive use of font bolding in this article.
12
Tunisia, Egypt, Miami: The Importance of Internet Choke Points theatlantic.com
35 points by shawndumas 3 hours ago   8 comments top 4
1
2 points by jacquesm 1 hour ago 0 replies      
What would a modern day invasion look like?

It used to be control of the radio and TV stations, bridges, railroads and the airports, it may very well be that in the current century the control of cell phone towers and routers will trump those in priority. You can disable the power by graphite bombing power stations (see Belgrade) but that will probably not have an immediate effect on the network.

Of course the quickest way to put the routers out of commission is to simply destroy them but if you want to be able to put them back online later it will have to be done more subtle.

I recall how immediately after the invasion of Iraq a bunch of entrepreneurial types brought in a cell phone exchange in a container and a bunch of GSM phones, they were immediately confiscated by the US army. At the time the theory was that the US wanted a US company to own the Iraqi telephone infrastructure for commercial reasons but there may have been another motive there.

2
4 points by Swannie 1 hour ago 1 reply      
A little misleading.

The thing is, in London, they realised this years ago. So the biggest peering house created a second building, then a third, in geographically diverse parts of the City. Not to mention that they weren't the only company doing it.

This is true in any city in the world.

What aren't mentioned are the cable landing points. There are only a few of these on the coasts of our countries, compared to the diversity inside the country.

3
3 points by russnewcomer 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I guess this goes to show that geography does matter, even for the survival of the internet.

On the other hand, the Egyptians who cut off their country's internet were wise enough to not just black hole everything that went through their routers and trash a lot of world-wide traffic. They can still position their actions as a local police action, instead of a disruption of global commerce.

4
3 points by drndown2007 1 hour ago 1 reply      
I assume (hope) there must be some smart people somewhere starting to work on some sort of P2P/mesh internet replacement that could work with all the wireless routers out there in order to prepare for the day when something like this happens again... ?
13
Graphic.ly Raises $3 Million: Interview With CEO Micah Baldwin techcocktail.com
14 points by jcsalvo 1 hour ago   1 comment top
1
2 points by marquis 50 minutes ago 0 replies      
This is a great site, new to me. I have very limited time to find comics and am very specific about what I like to read, so would love recommended reading presented to me, i.e. browse by genre/rating etc. I only quickly reviewed the site without logging in and it didn't seem to offer these options. I'll happily sign up when this is possible, and would receive a weekly recommended reading list also (with # of pages please! Rarely can I dedicate time to a long novel unless in small pieces over time). Bookmarked for hope of these future options.
14
How Egypt Switched Off The Internet gigaom.com
109 points by doron 7 hours ago   50 comments top 14
1
34 points by bradleyland 7 hours ago 6 replies      
I hate to sound like a paranoid delusional, but this is a time when having even a basic amateur radio license seems like a really great idea. It's not impossible to for the government to shut down the airwaves, but it is a lot harder to do it on a broad scale. Communication is essential to a free society, and it's startling to me that our government wants the same ability. It seems so entirely counter to our core principles as a nation.
2
9 points by CitizenKane 5 hours ago 0 replies      
To try and shed some light here, the Border Gateway Protocol (BGP) is the protocol used between routers to communicate which range of IP addresses a router handles. So for instance, my router will advertise to other routers that it handles from 10.1.1.1 to 10.1.1.255 and the other routers will then send traffic bound for those IP addresses to my router.

From what it seems like in the article, the Egyptian government coordinated with ISPs or forced ISPs to simply clear all of these entries. So for IP addresses in Egypt there are no corresponding routing rules, making them for all practical purposes completely taken off the internet since there is now no way to route traffic there.

3
25 points by kilburn 7 hours ago 2 replies      
Warning: this is probably offtopic.

There is an interesting initiative in Spain (http://guifi.net/en/what_is_guifinet) that's trying to build an open (wifi-based, mesh-structured) network. Although the idea always seemed really cool to me, I thought that it was a hopeless effort. On the one hand, the "mainstream" network is much faster and reliable. On the other hand, you need a proxy node to reach the actual Internet.

Nonetheless, this specific news has opened my eyes about the importance of such non-government-controllable networks. For one, it would allow citizens to get in touch with eachother, escaping the government control. Additionally, a single proxy in a neighboring country would be enough so that news could leak.

For these reasons, I'm going to try to join this network asap. Further, I encourage you all to join any similar project going on near you, or try to build one if it doesn't exist.

Let the networking begin!

4
12 points by pmchiu 6 hours ago 2 replies      
Why is it surprising that a country could shut down access to the internet? It's not as if the internet is some sort of magic cloud where packets fly in and out to destinations across the world. It's a system. It has points of failure just like anything else. Granted it was built to survive failure but if you didn't build your internet infrastructure like the designers envisioned it's probably pretty easy to turn it off.

When I lived in NYC I was really surprised to find out that most transatlantic cables terminated in this tall windowless building on Duane and Chambers street. If you basically took that building away you probably could turn off the internet for a good portion of people in the US. Or at the very least make it hard.

My point being - in Egypt there probably is a similar building that houses all of their DNS servers, lines to other countries, etc. So its not hard to believe that someone just decided to walk in and turn off the power.

5
10 points by pessimist 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Foolish move by the government. Al Jazeera and Al Arabiya are broadcasting images non-stop, and satellite TV cannot be turned off with a switch. Shutting off communication is ruinous to a modern economy like Egypt. Plus it broadcasts fear and emboldens the protestors. A suicidal move by the government (or so I hope!).
6
2 points by EGreg 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Wait, what? I thought a couple cables on the mediterranean got damaged. What's this with hermetically sealing the country etc? Whether or not it was deliberate, I doubt it primarily due to someone going and switching off the routers, it was this:

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/7218008.stm

and this

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/7222536.stm

7
1 point by lacker 4 hours ago 1 reply      
This article claims that .eg urls won't resolve, but I can go to http://www.google.com.eg and that seems to work just fine. Does Google operate differently somehow or is the article just incorrect?
8
1 point by Swannie 3 hours ago 0 replies      
More detailed information/discussion from fellow geeks in NANOG (North American Network Operator Group). This is the go-to mailing list for me when anything weird happens on the internets.

Connectivity status for Egypt - http://mailman.nanog.org/pipermail/nanog/2011-January/031313...
Egypt Telecom AS isolation - http://mailman.nanog.org/pipermail/nanog/2011-January/031377...
3500 Egyptian prefixes? - http://mailman.nanog.org/pipermail/nanog/2011-January/031407...

9
1 point by adolph 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Analysis by Renesys, an internet monitoring body, indicates... careful and well-planned method .... Rik Ferguson of Trend Micro: "First at the DNS level, so any attempt to resolve any address in .eg will fail " but also, in case you're trying to get directly to an address, they are also using the Border Gateway Protocol, the system through which ISPs advertise their internet protocol addresses to the network."

A complete border shutdown might have been easier, but Egypt has made sure that there should be no downstream impact, no loss of traffic in countries further down the cables.

Would someone with more network knowledge speak to the role Border Gateway Protocol plays here?

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Border_Gateway_Protocol

10
2 points by kongqiu 5 hours ago 1 reply      
How much of an opportunity/necessity is developing a redundant, satellite-based internet? (I just asked that on this thread: http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=2152845)
11
1 point by dfj225 5 hours ago 0 replies      
> Ferguson suggests that, if nothing else, the methods used by the Egyptian government prove how fragile digital communication really is.

I don't think this instance proves how fragile the technology is, rather it proves that you can use this technology to build a system that is easily controlled from a central point. The same technology could have been used to build a robust system that was not easy to shut down completely.

12
2 points by NoSalt 1 hour ago 1 reply      
As an IT guy, I cannot even begin to imagine what it would have been like to be ordered to shut down the routers like that.
13
1 point by redwood 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Deficient from any discussion I've heard about the Egypt crisis, is it's potential impact on fiber optic connections THROUGH Egypt. Admittedly Egypt hasn't touched those yet (as far as I know) but volatility there does potentially put those vital connections at risk.

Half of India's traffic to the rest of the world goes through Egypt (remember the undersea anchor incident?) and East Asia can route through Suez as well. If Suez goes down as a fiber gateway, suddenly all Asia <-> Europe traffic is forced to go through the US which would have implications

14
-4 points by ljordan 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Never anywhere have I seen such a flood of hyperbole! Still interesting however.
15
How Steve Jobs 'out-Japanned' Japan or out-Sony'ed Sony sfgate.com
39 points by lotusleaf1987 4 hours ago   14 comments top 2
1
18 points by iujyhgftrgh 3 hours ago 3 replies      
Sony went corporate American.

After the Betamax debacle it decided it would win the next format war by owning studios.

That meant that anything it built for the consumer also had to be good for the studio.
So for example it launched the excellent minidisk player (a 76Mb minifloppy) with better than MP3 quality when MP3 players were 32Mb for twice the price.

But it refused to release the minidisk drives for computers, because that would lead to piracy - so the only way to get music on the units was to buy all your albums again on minidisk (the studio's preferred option !) or record them on the microphone in. Then they did the same again with the PSP.

Suppose Apple had decided to ensure the success of the iPhone, not by making it great, but by buying a cell carrier - then limiting your calls to other iPhone users.

2
1 point by Macsenour 2 hours ago 1 reply      
I think from a larger view, it has always been easy to beat SONY. SONY as a company doesn't care about the customer AFTER they have purchased the item. Look at ANY software that comes with a device, it's simply awful if it works at all. Even the PS3 has iffy UI. I had a fantastic device for recording for my podcast, but getting the recording OFF the machine was almost impossible. The last version, ver. 3.2, had menu options that didn't do anything. Absolutely NOTHING, and that was version 3!

Beat SONY by making the inside as good as the outside. Simple.

16
Sublime Text 2: Public Alpha Released sublimetext.com
195 points by iamelgringo 11 hours ago   112 comments top 43
1
10 points by iamelgringo 10 hours ago 2 replies      
I've been using Sublime for quite some time on Win7, and I'm in love.

I keep trying to use Linux as my development platform, and I won't use a Mac (I got beaten with a mac as a young man. It's an emotional reponse), but for some reason I really dislike every nix text editor I've ever tried (emacs, vi, vim, gedit, kate, etc...) and constantly surprised at how ugly and inelegant the text editing world seems on the nix side. BTW, I'm not trying to flame or argue, this is just IMHO.

I've recently been doing some work with mongrel2, lua and Tir, which means that I have to develop on Linux, but I've been very crabby about using text editors that I really dislike. So, I'm really glad to have a port of sublime that works on linux.

Thanks for all the hard work, and I'm really looking forward to the new changes. Keep up the great work!

2
12 points by fingerprinter 10 hours ago 3 replies      
I literally had never heard of this before. I just downloaded it for Ubuntu and HOT DAMN! I am buying this for sure.

For anyone waiting for textmate 2, give this a look. It may very well be just what you are looking for.

Best part is you can completely change all the keybindings (if you want) so you can create your VIM or Emacs setup if you so choose.

Happy day....

3
5 points by charlief 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Nice plugin API. There might be enough here to write a vim modality/navigation extension without too much pain.

Community page of existing plugins for Sublime Text 1. Hopefully these get ported to 2: http://sublime-text-community-packages.googlecode.com/svn/tr...

http://www.sublimetext.com/docs/api-reference

http://www.sublimetext.com/docs/plugin-basics

http://www.sublimetext.com/docs/plugin-examples

(EDIT: API is for Sublime Text 1 only)

4
43 points by jskinner 8 hours ago 4 replies      
As the author of Sublime Text, I'd just like to say thanks for all the kind comments here, it's heartwarming to see so many positive comments.
5
5 points by CWIZO 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I've been using Sublime practically from when it was first released (what, 2 years now?). I do ALL of my development in it and I don't have any need to use anything else. The multiple cursor thingy and side-by-side editing are simply amazing. Especially the multiple cursor functionality, I can't say enough praise about it. Plus one awesome "feature" of that is, that anybody watching over your shoulder when you are using it has that dumb "WTF" look on his face. Priceless.
Oh, and no f* icons. That's awesome too. And the built-in spell-checker, and multiple replace, and jump to symbol, and full screen mode, and mini-map, and and and ... really an amazing product (can't believe it's that cheap (and I consider 60 bucks a lot of money)).

Looking forward when v2 gets stable. Thanks Jon, keep up the good work!

6
4 points by swah 8 hours ago 2 replies      
WJW, this is very cool. A few comments:

- When you select a file in a project, first it shows some kind of preview and only if you start typing it gets its own tab. Why is that ? Perhaps just keep it simple and always show a tab.

- Can I change the font?

- Creating a new project could be a little be easier to understand (perhaps add "New project from folder")

- The black UI looks great with dark themes, but a gray version would be great for light ones.

- The minimap was a little bit greater on ST1, overlaying it like this turns it into a distraction (unless it would fade away automatically and fade in activated by "hot corners", or something like that).

- Any chance you would think of VC integration, or that isn't a good thing to have in the editor for you?

- Why is this so fast? Can you teach us how to make great looking apps that work on all platforms? :)

Really snappy, "modes" load instantly, great out of the box experience. Congratulations!

7
7 points by jotto 6 hours ago 2 replies      
Any thoughts on what this is written in? How is it cross platform?
8
2 points by yumraj 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Love it. It's awesome.
One feedback: make opening Projects easier. I had closed the editor window and the Project menu only showed "Recent Project". It wasn't intuitive to me that I need to have a text window open before the other menu items are visible.
Make those menu items available by default and if no window is open, just open one.
9
3 points by Tycho 3 hours ago 0 replies      
breathes sigh of release

deletes whole bunch of other editors from hard disk

Seriously, I can't believe this wasn't recommended to me before now.

10
1 point by zephjc 4 hours ago 1 reply      
UI bug report: Scrollbar behavior is weird. The thumbnail scroller is very cool and stops when the end of the file is visible at the bottom of the view. However, the scrollbar itself scrolls until the end of the file is visible at the top of the view. At least in OSX, this is not standard text editor behavior.

Also, I hope you plan to use form controls for saving preferences instead of json-style dicts.

And the Command-P issue.

Otherwise, awesome editor.

11
2 points by wildmXranat 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Type this:

  import os.

Pressing ctrl+space produced no hint or auto-complete. Does anybody know why ?

Another thing I have tried: executing
./sublime_text /mycode/

doesn't import/open that directory within ST, it just opens up blank.

I'm pointing these out to ask for solutions, not to nit pick.

12
1 point by kylemathews 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm getting a segmentation fault on 64-bit Ubuntu 10.10. Anyone know what's going on?

Edit: Removing the ~/.Sublime Text 2 folder fixed things. The segmentation fault only started after I restarted my laptop.

13
1 point by pasbesoin 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm taking a first look, and I certainly like the appearance. The older I (and my eyes) get, the more I appreciate sufficient contrast WITHOUT a lot of brightness.

One small nit for consideration. I realize it may increase conversions, but I absolutely hate it when an application unexpectedly fires up the browser (and surfs off to an unstated destination). (In Sublime's case, via Help / About.)

Some years ago, TextPad got my money through the same model: Unlimited trial. The unlimited trial wasn't enough to "obligate" me, but its excellent performance and feature set won me over. (In particular, I made heavy, ad hoc use of its regular expression support against relatively ginormous, irregularly structured text files -- and file sets -- at the time; something no competitor seemed to match.)

(Unfortunately, TextPad's update to version 5 -- including moving to a newer Microsoft framework -- mostly just made things worse, and development simultaneously seemed to be tapering off.)

14
1 point by Maciek416 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I'd really like to move to an IDE that understands js code as well as Netbeans does but without the sluggish performance of the editor. I like Sublime Text so far, but I really miss the ability to see out-of-scope variables and catch minor errors.

Anyone know how to accomplish this in Sublime Text ?

15
2 points by xd 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Looks great, but any chance of a static compiled version for Linux 32/64bit?

I'm getting: ./sublime_text: error while loading shared libraries: libpng12.so.0: cannot open shared object file: No such file or directory

Linking with ln -s /usr/lib/libpng14.so.14 /usr/lib/libpng12.so.0 doesn't work: ./sublime_text: /usr/lib/libpng12.so.0: version `PNG12_0' not found (required by ./sublime_text)

16
1 point by giu 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I've been using Sublime Text daily for the past months, and I'm really, really happy with it. I've jumped from one text editor to another mostly within a few weeks of usage; most of the editors just didn't feel that good (e.g. cluttered UI). The last text editor I actually enjoyed working with was SciTE (http://www.scintilla.org/SciTE.html). But then I somehow managed to find Sublime Text, gave it a try, and since then I've been using it daily and never went back.

The only critic I have is directed to the missing Print function, but it's only a minor problem for me; it's not like I don't have any alternatives to accomplish this task.

Summa summarum it's a very good text editor IMHO, and I'm always learning a new, convenient function by accidentally hitting CTRL + random key (e.g. CTRL + D).

17
2 points by charlief 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Does Default Key Mappings have every possible command? If not, is there a complete list available somewhere?
18
1 point by zenocon 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Quick question: Are there plans to develop auto-complete for 'X' language, and if not, is it possible to build your own auto-complete feature for 'X' language using the plugin API?

When learning a new language, and especially when learning a new library, I dearly miss auto-complete (e.g. what you get in Eclipse with Java). I'm learning Haskell, and this would be a fantastic way to get more familiar with not only the standard Prelude, but any of the other Haskell libraries.

19
3 points by alfet 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Wow.. I'm really impressed. Later I'll try it at home to see if it looks this good under KDE to.
Although the price is a bit steep for me (given that I live in Argentina, 59$ represents ~7% of my monthly income), any chance the price is going to go down in the future?. How does this product's price compare with similar ones in the market?, maybe I'm a bit disappointed because of my low income.
20
1 point by vsiva68 3 hours ago 0 replies      
This is a beautiful piece of work. Any chance you might be able to explain the background architecture that might allow others to replicate some of this?

From what I see:
- extensions are coded in Python, and there is good documentation on the plugin mechanism.
- Each platform seems to use the platform's native window system. There is no use of a common UI like Qt.
- The first version is GPU accelerated but the newer one is entirely software.

Seriously impressive work considering it is a single developer. I like how there animations are subtle, and how the entire UI is incredibly responsive. To me, this does to text editors what Chrome did to web browsers.

21
1 point by damoncali 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Very nice. One thing that I always find myself wanting when exploring new editors is a way to import my Textmate theme.

It's tough to evaluate the editor when the colors are all wrong, and I don't want to spend the time to set them up just right only to find out I don't like the editor. I think a feature like that could help increase adoption.

22
1 point by whouweling 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Shame I didn't know of this editor earlier, although I've been hunting for a perfect editor for quite some time.

(Settled on VIM + boatload of plugins, but its far from elegant)

I love the clean non distracting interface, ctrl-p is also a killer feature with the "@" extension.

Only thing I'm missing so far is the VIM autocomplete from all open buffers feature, saves me lots of typos.

23
3 points by otaku888 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Best editor ever.

I have tried literally every single one over the years. Considering it's made by a single developer development speed is breathtaking and he is always open to suggestions on the Forums.

I was a little wary of the new version after using ST1 for so long, but have finally switched and project management is now a breeze where it used to be a little clunky. Go to anything also rocks.

A++++

24
2 points by efields 7 hours ago 0 replies      
As a front-end jockey, one feature of TextMate that I wound up using a lot in CSS is the native OS X color picker. Anyone know if this can be implemented with the current plugin architecture? I wouldn't have a clue where to start, but if I was nudged w/ the reinforcement that its possible, I'd take a crack at it.
25
2 points by c_allison 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I have been using Sublime Text for about a year now and it's my killer app for Windows. I've had to learn to use msysGit and plink/putty/pageant just because I had to have Sublime Text as my environment.

I've already informed my boss he has to buy ST2 as soon as it's available. It is, especially with Zen Coding plugin, one of my favorite programs (design/function/utility) that I've ever installed, and I've tried a bunch of the "programmers" text editors for Windows and Linux.

Thanks Jon!

26
1 point by rufugee 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I like it...it's crashed on me a few times (64-bit) but other than that it's nifty. The best part is the minimap (high level view of source on right hand side).

Is anyone aware of a plugin for vim that does this sort of thing?

27
2 points by va1en0k 10 hours ago 2 replies      
Sublime Text is awesome, the main reason I was being stuck with Windows for a long time. But having to use bash and not wanting to pay a lot of money made me learn Emacs.

How many people are willing to pay 59$ for a pretty simple (yet awesome, but not in the sophisticated feature-rich Java-world way) editor? My bet it isn't public information but maybe someone have similar statistics

28
2 points by jsherer 9 hours ago 2 replies      
I'm running into a few miscellaneous usability issues. Hopefully this public alpha helps shed some light on them and help jskinner polish this app to beta and release. Is there a public forum or site that we can report these to (something like getsatisfaction or tender for customer support)?
29
1 point by rdtsc 9 hours ago 1 reply      
"No libgio so found" when I ran this on a 32 bit Linux (RHEL5).

Would a statically linked Linux executable work for this?

30
2 points by findm 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Quite arguably one of the best text editors that I've used, It's my primary code/ text editor when i work on a windows machine. I just wish the OSX version was just as good. Looking forward to trying out this version.
31
1 point by antihero 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I've used Sublime for a couple of years now, still evaluating (I will buy it, just not while I'm a student) it and saying "no" to the dialogue every other save or so. Heh.

Anyway, I made a theme that's a mod of Twilight but in my opinion far more readable and pretty.

https://gist.github.com/800531

Give it a try!

32
2 points by jcstauffer 9 hours ago 0 replies      
It looks Great. Could this be emacs's missing editor?[1]

[1] "Don't get me wrong: Emacs is a great operating system " it lacks a good editor, though."
--Thomer M. Gil

33
3 points by jfm3 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Those who do not understand Emacs are doomed to repeat it.
34
1 point by mati 8 hours ago 1 reply      

  $ ./sublime_text
Fatal Python error: Interpreter not initialized (version mismatch?)
Aborted
$ python --version
Python 2.6.6

Is that my python version? Could the error message be more verbose, or is it not coming from sublime?
How do I go about fixing that? Wanted to give sublime a try...

35
1 point by peregrine 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Great editor only problem is it doesn't work over remote desktop because it uses 3d accleration.
36
1 point by rokhayakebe 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Beginner programmer here. I could not use any other editor. Does anyone know if you can collapse functions or blocks of code?
37
1 point by TheBranca18 10 hours ago 2 replies      
Perhaps I'm using it incorrectly, but the Folders option does not seem to be working for me on 32 bit Ubuntu 10.10
38
3 points by sashthebash 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Does this have some form of git support?
39
1 point by yalforreca 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Fast and slick. I like it.
Does it support two dimensional copy & paste? ( this is usually done with pressing the left alt key on other editors ).
40
1 point by Soapy_Illusions 9 hours ago 2 replies      
I am using it on Ubuntu 10.10, looks amazing, is there any way to add syntax highlighting for other languages (Go in my case)
41
-1 point by swah 10 hours ago 2 replies      
This reminds me of the top post yesterday.
42
-1 point by smharris65 9 hours ago 0 replies      
This looks nice and I will give it a try. But when will coding editors set the tab key to "spaces" by default? It's not just this editor but Eclipse and others.
43
-2 points by cmer 9 hours ago 3 replies      
I stopped reading when I saw that CMD+P does "Goto Anything" instead of print. Please use standard keyboard shortcuts... Too bad because it looked awesome!
17
Rare pictures of North Korea mrlevek.com
103 points by ldv1971 8 hours ago   37 comments top 14
1
21 points by whalesalad 4 hours ago 1 reply      
2
7 points by js2 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Probably previously posted, but "36 hours in North Korea without a guide..." is really interesting as well:

http://vienna-pyongyang.blogspot.com/

3
3 points by heresy 2 hours ago 3 replies      
If you've been to the South, the comparison is stark, and it's hard to believe the two were one country a few decades ago.

That said, if re-unification, happens I imagine the progress in the North will be rapid, and the country as a whole will become an even stronger regional power.

4
20 points by boh 6 hours ago 2 replies      
VBS has a great first-hand doc of North Korea: http://www.vbs.tv/newsroom/vice-guide-to-north-korea-2-of-14

A lot of what they show resembles Artemii Lebedev's experience.

5
4 points by colanderman 2 hours ago 1 reply      
I can never get over how Pyongyang has skyscrapers. Given how underdeveloped the rest of the country looks, I can only surmise that they must dump the majority of their GDP into building up Pyongyang.
6
1 point by g_lined 53 minutes ago 0 replies      
I did a similar trip to his in April 2007. While you visit, you have to put aside your issues with the regime, that's not why you're there. You're there to experience something which seems so implausible yet exists, or rather, before it doesn't. We got to meet some really nice people and what we saw was remarkable. If they could make the rest of their country like the capital and the other places I was shown, then it would be a really nice country in the political sense. The culture that is there seems to me to be fragile yet precious. I shudder to think what will happen to it if reunification happens in anything but a gradual way.

My trip is documented here in the radio show Off The Wall: (link to mp3)
http://www.2600.com/offthewall/mp3files/2007/off_the_wall__2...
and
http://www.2600.com/offthewall/mp3files/2007/off_the_wall__2...

7
6 points by ericmsimons 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I remember watching a video where a man in North Korea was trying to eat bark off of a tree because he was so hungry. It makes me sick even thinking about it...
9
3 points by rokhayakebe 3 hours ago 0 replies      
All of sudden, my life seems so much more than how I feel about it.
10
5 points by ssheth 7 hours ago 0 replies      
As the website is so slow, it is much better to access the Corel cache version: http://www.mrlevek.com.nyud.net/northkorea.htm
11
1 point by OoTheNigerian 1 hour ago 2 replies      
Really clean and good roads. Not everything is bad in North Korea
12
1 point by jacquesm 4 hours ago 0 replies      
"The system cannot find the file specified."

Better use one of the mirrors in this thread.

13
3 points by mrgraham 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Added (temporary?) mirror for HN people:
http://212.117.165.225/northkorea/
14
1 point by r0h4n 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Does anyone find the non existent capitalism and zero brands very peaceful?
18
Egyptian Revolution Live [video] aljazeera.net
93 points by sprachspiel 7 hours ago   60 comments top 8
1
13 points by kloncks 2 hours ago 2 replies      
Egyptian here.

What I can't believe is the irresponsible behavior with taking down the Internet in a civilized country smack-dab in the middle of the World. That reckless behavior only goes to show how out of touch the current regime really is. There's no thinking whatsoever in how catastrophic (economically, politically, morally) such an action really is.

Yet beyond that, I'm just worried. I'm terrified actually. While the regime needs to change, I'm not yet sure about the future. Will Islamists seize power? Will another corrupt official do that? Will Chaos and Anarchy ensue?

The trouble with Tunisia is that we've yet to see the results of the revolution. Things are developing...but we don't yet know if it's successful or not.

Not to mention that certain events are making me very sad. I do realize it's hard to mass-protest in a very sane manner...but something like lighting up the National Democratic Party's HQ on fire, when it's across the street from the National Museum (King Tut + 100,000 other priceless treasures) and there's a huge threat of the fire spreading...just worries me. I remember when Iraq was first attacked; the first things that were looted were priceless treasures from Mesopotamia.

2
22 points by chailatte 6 hours ago replies      
You know who else won't sleep well tonight? US leaders. Basically, the arab youth is overthrowing the US puppets and overturning US influence in middle east. Joe Biden has voiced open support for Egyptian president today, but Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama has been tactful so far.

As an American, I am glad that the arab youth is escaping the imperialistic shadow that US has casted over the middle east. As an American, I lament that this is the end of the US dominance. As an American, I fear that the revolution around the world will force US into a totalitarian government. As an American, I hope that true democracy will ultimately triumph.

3
24 points by jacquesm 6 hours ago 5 replies      
Al Jazeera is more and more a resource of quality, it's gotten to the point that when you want news that is relatively spin free that you can go to the BBC or to Al Jazeera. The interesting part for me is that they are a better source of real info on the US and Europe than most local media.

The chances are though that that is because they're not reporting on their 'home turf', does that extend to them reporting on Arab affairs as well?

4
11 points by sprachspiel 5 hours ago 0 replies      
What has happened so far: A curfew was put in place, it has done absolutely nothing, the streets are full of people everywhere in the country. There are reports of dozens of deaths. The headquarter of president Mubaraks party is on fire for hours, no firefighter are there. The headquarter is next the most important Egyptian museums. The police has no control over the streets, the army was ordered in to enforce the curfew. The people are actually cheering as the military is moving in. It is still unclear what the military will do. Hillary Clinton has issued a statement to the Egyptian government to restrain security forces and avoid violence.
5
3 points by sp332 5 hours ago 2 replies      
There's also a liveblog going on, if you can't watch video: http://blogs.aljazeera.net/middle-east/2011/01/28/liveblog-e...
6
1 point by mahmoudimus 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I'm an Egyptian National.

This has been a long time coming for Egypt and this revolution will most likely succeed as well.

The only concerning outcome, which is to be determined, is if Egyptians are up to the challenge of establishing a respected level of checks and balances. Without this, all is lost.

7
1 point by sp332 6 hours ago 0 replies      
8
-1 point by emit_time_n3rgy 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Preconditions of Revolution in the USA Today
http://www.phibetaiota.net/2011/01/reference-preconditions-o...
19
Kalimba - Embedly Colored Glasses for Hacker News embed.ly
48 points by doki_pen 5 hours ago   23 comments top 13
1
6 points by jeff18 4 hours ago 1 reply      
On Mac OS X, spacebar means "page down" in web browsers. I was pretty surprised when I couldn't use it on this site.
2
7 points by mikeklaas 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Ironically, the one entry it completely fails at is this one.
3
3 points by tvon 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Very nice. My only feature suggestion would be a way to hide articles, something I wish HN itself could do but perhaps more important when articles take up more vertical space.
4
2 points by doki_pen 4 hours ago 2 replies      
I just added two more hotkeys. Here's what we have:

  j or right-arrow - down
k or left-arrow - up
c - toggle top comment
d - toggle article content
enter - follow article link
shift+enter - open article link in new tab

Enjoy!

5
1 point by malnourish 2 hours ago 0 replies      
This is great, could see it be a good alternative if on another person's touch device.

At first I thought, "Why would I want to bother with this?" but a few minutes later I realized I was ten articles down having read more than usual for one visit.

6
4 points by puls 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Wow. The stuff that Embedly is doing is all kinds of awesome. I just wish Twitter would buy them so I didn't have to resort to manual hacks to actually use them.
7
3 points by gbelote 4 hours ago 1 reply      
This is gorgeous, nicely done. I find myself wanting a better way of going to the next story, because some articles are very long. Maybe you could add controls? For example, keyboard shortcuts or a floating "next" button (anchored with fixed position CSS).
8
4 points by cgshaw 5 hours ago 1 reply      
VERY NICE!

Any way to make it wider or is it optimized for mobile viewing?

Voting maybe?

Regardless, cool way to look at the top links / questions.

9
2 points by l3amm 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I really like the clean design, but part of what i love about HN is the fact that you can quickly scan 20+articles just by reading single sentences of text. I would like this format better if it had some type of flipbook functionality mapped to the left and right arrow keys, so I can quickly run through more content.
10
3 points by NicuCalcea 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I hear about embedly more and more. Good job, guys!
11
2 points by cfontes 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Looks nice...

But I prefer the actual text based one, more info per pixel.

But keep it up.

12
2 points by tboetig 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Nice job. Looks awesome
13
2 points by Evet 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Then, what is Tokyo Cabinet?
20
Redis: the AK-47 of databases flazz.me
125 points by flazzarino 10 hours ago   57 comments top 13
1
31 points by ErrantX 8 hours ago 4 replies      
The title randomly reminded me of the AK-47 quote from Lord of War (an actually decent Cage film, and definitely a good bit of monologue):

Of all the weapons in the vast soviet arsenal, nothing was more profitable than Avtomat Kalashnikova model of 1947. More commonly known as the AK-47, or Kalashnikov. It's the world's most popular assault rifle. A weapon all fighters love. An elegantly simple 9 pound amalgamation of forged steel and plywood. It doesn't break, jam, or overheat. It'll shoot whether it's covered in mud or filled with sand. It's so easy, even a child can use it; and they do. The Soviets put the gun on a coin. Mozambique put it on their flag. Since the end of the Cold War, the Kalashnikov has become the Russian people's greatest export. After that comes vodka, caviar, and suicidal novelists. One thing is for sure, no one was lining up to buy their cars.

Only tangentially related :) but I thought worth sharing. Anyone care to write a redis version?

2
10 points by apl 5 hours ago 5 replies      

  > In the spirit of full disclosure, I'm a newb to Redis. My
> knowledge is basically the contents of this post (at the
> time of writing). I don't use it in production (yet).
> Likewise I'm no expert in AK-47s (I've never even fired
> one) or guns in general. I'm aware via notoriety alone.

Fantastic quote. So you're hardly familiar with either component of your simile, but you'll post it anyway? I really don't expect New Yorker-esque editing from bloggers, but that's simply not very substantial writing.

No wonder people make fun of the so-called "NoSQL movement."

3
6 points by zeteo 5 hours ago 1 reply      
"According to AK-47 legend, assault rifles were not popular because of their tendency to consume large amounts of ammo. The Soviets embraced the idea and simply supplied their troops with more ammo. Kinda like Redis and RAM."

That's obviously just a legend. This debate was actually carried out in the 2nd half of the 19th century, starting with the Civil War. (Many repeating rifle designs were offered to the Union. Quartermasters repeatedly shut them down on account of expected difficulties with ammo supply. After much time and effort, a few repeating rifles made it through, particularly to the cavalry, where they proved quite decisive in the last year of the war. See Five Forks, for instance.)

4
9 points by jacquesm 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Being the AK-47 of databases is not a bad way to be known.

That said I hope the author will revisit the topic when he has more knowledge of the subject matter, such as when using it in production for a while on a fair sized project with a lot of users. That's where the rubber meets the road, first impressions tend to gloss over the areas where the meat is.

5
6 points by draebek 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Factual incorrectness aside, and even speaking as a person that doesn't have much to do with anything other than SQL RDBMSes: this style of presentation piqued my interest in Redis. Seeing how fast and easy it was to get up and running, seeing how simple the protocol was, and getting a smattering of its features in this very terse format was effective on me.
6
7 points by IgorPartola 9 hours ago 5 replies      
Eek. Locking the entire data set to perform transactions? Isn't that so... MyISAM? Does rolling the transaction back work? The optimistic lock is not a great solution either: instead of deadlocking while waiting for a lock to be released, you are now stuck in a while (!saved) loop. Imagine two web pages trying to update the same resource at the same time.

Also this part of the config:

  save 900 1
save 300 10
save 60 10000

is not at all obvious. Maybe it's better documented in the sample config.

7
4 points by jwr 8 hours ago 1 reply      
The information about transactions in this article is wrong. Read the redis docs he actually points to for an accurate description.

This article should not get upvoted.

8
3 points by adamtj 7 hours ago 2 replies      
"The entire dataset is in RAM."

How can they guarantee that, when RAM is little more than a disk cache on modern operating systems? Is there a syscall that prevents specified pages of virtual memory from being paged out to disk? Or is Redis implemented as a kernel module?

9
5 points by jamesli 7 hours ago 1 reply      
The author needs to know more about databases before claiming something is the AK-47 of the subject. It kinds of reminds me of those guys who think they are gurus just because they know some rarely used Linux commands, while in fact they don't have good understanding of OS. :)
10
1 point by malkia 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I served in the bulgarian army with this weapon, and it was very easy to handle. That's all I can say

But every weapon was a bit off, so you had to get used to it (I guess that might be the same for all weapons).

11
1 point by dorkitude 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Redis is great for small things. Massive scale players in the write-heavy owrld can rarely consider it in its current form.
12
-3 points by fedd 5 hours ago 0 replies      
AK of DBs should be used for some Russian DB! or Chinese...

okay okay. i hereby patent the definition 'an iPhone of databases' :)

13
-1 point by mjgoins 6 hours ago 0 replies      
This one of very few google hits for the phrase "get the juxt".
21
Views from an Egyptian slashdot.org
165 points by rkwz 12 hours ago   59 comments top 11
1
20 points by yummyfajitas 6 hours ago 2 replies      
This is where I become ashamed of my government:

"“Mubarak has been an ally of ours in a number of things. And he's been very responsible on, relative to geopolitical interest in the region, the Middle East peace efforts; the actions Egypt has taken relative to normalizing relationship with " with Israel. … I would not refer to him as a dictator.” - Joe Biden

http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Backchannels/2011/0127/Joe-Bi...

"The Egyptian government has an important opportunity to be responsive to the aspirations of the Egyptian people, and pursue political, economic and social reforms that can improve their lives and help Egypt prosper." - Hillary Clinton

http://www.csmonitor.com/World/Backchannels/2011/0126/The-US...

Wow, that's a really proportionate criticism.

Fun fact: Egypt is our #3 recipient of foreign aid.

http://www.census.gov/compendia/statab/2011/tables/11s1298.p...

It would be great if Biden, instead of saying Mubarak is not a dictator, said something like this:

"Dear Egyptian Police and Military. The US government gives Egypt $1.5 Billion every year. That's what is paying your salary. If you want to get paid, just get out of the way."

2
19 points by csomar 11 hours ago 2 replies      
I don't agree. It's not the whole population that will make the true revolution. They'll help, but are not the main stream of the revolution.

Read my comment here: http://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=2151468

Western Media has made false rumors that this is the Facebook revolution of young people. Yeah, Facebook played a major role, but wasn't the key.

There is torture in these countries. To break police torture, you MUST torture them. To torture them, you must have free people. People that don't have jobs, families, are not related to a school or university, have absolutely nothing that they can go to the streets and clash with the police.

There must be clashes with the police and blood. It's expensive to get your freedom. 30 Million protesters will not change Mubarak mind. He is a dictator. You need to get him out by force.

Will Egypt succeed? Too early to answer. The protests need to spread. I must mention that the protests in Tunisia spread to 100% of the country. Every meter square has protests of any kind. That thing drives police crazy and they give up.

Can Mubarak win? Absolutely. If the protests doesn't spread, a few thousands will be caught and tortured and the revolution will die. Fear will get back stronger to citizen. That's exactly what happened in Algeria.

3
14 points by acqq 9 hours ago 2 replies      
The OP mentions Muslim Brotherhood as the worthy opposition, but they don't appear as anything democratic:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Muslim_Brotherhood

"The Brotherhood's stated goal is to instill the Qur'an and Sunnah as the "sole reference point for ... ordering the life of the Muslim family, individual, community ... and state""

4
5 points by jordanb 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm very ambivalent on this uprising. Murbarak is a brutal, evil person but the Muslim Brotherhood will be no better for the people of Egypt than he is.

The Shah was a horrible person, but do you think the Ayatollah have brought peace, prosperity, and democracy to Iran?

One thing a radical Egypt will do is further destabilize the region. Particularly the situation with Israel will grow very tense. I am no flag-waver for Israel, but I can't see how a new enemy will do anything but further harden the worst impulses of all participants.

5
6 points by lkozma 9 hours ago 4 replies      
6
4 points by harry 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Been watching live reports from the best source I can find: http://english.aljazeera.net/watch_now/ for about 30 minutes now.
7
8 points by russnewcomer 9 hours ago 0 replies      
I am growing a little more encouraged that the Tunisian and Egyptian 'revolutions' are true revolutions, and not just western media events (Tehran's "Twitter Revolution"). Here's hoping that with the revolution comes actual governmental change, too, instead of just new faces on the same structure. That doesn't happen as often as people would hope.
8
1 point by ck2 8 hours ago 0 replies      
This revolution as I understand it (barely) is a really tricky thing, here's why:

If only chaos is created and the people don't take complete control soon, there are a few opposing parties in Egypt, who could easily be classified as terrorists, who could take advantage of this and take control.

But they aren't at that point yet so these fears aren't discussed (yet). Government has not been dissolved. So if/when you hear that, everyone best be paying attention.

9
0 points by rms 8 hours ago 0 replies      
My opinion: the crucial distinction between the revolution in Tunisia and the non-revolution in Egypt is that the Tunisian revolution was kicked off by a self-immolation. Burning yourself alive is perhaps the most powerful human form of expression against repression.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Self-immolation

10
2 points by adrianwaj 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Stratfor: Egyptian Unrest Continues http://youtu.be/tPX1qe8bH1s 2:58
11
1 point by pnathan 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Consider the lessons of France, Russia 1917, and the former British Colonies. Also, the Athenian democracy.

One lesson is: wisdom must be found to bring a country out of a dictatorship into a just land. Another lesson is: untrammeled democracy is but mob rule and leads nowhere.

22
Functional Red-Blacks might.net
8 points by DanielRibeiro 1 hour ago   discuss
23
HN: I'm building a TC alternative. Will you share your Startup's story with me?
98 points by g0atbutt 4 hours ago   43 comments top 24
1
36 points by nonrecursive 2 hours ago 3 replies      
I think this is great. My first impression, though, was that the name "g0atbutt" does not inspire confidence. Just my 2 cents.
2
10 points by g0atbutt 2 hours ago 1 reply      
As of 4:12p eastern time, 19 startups from HN have already gotten in touch with me. There are some really great companies brewing on HN, and I'm looking forward to covering them.

The response has been fantastic. I can't wait to see what else comes in.

3
16 points by jokermatt999 3 hours ago 2 replies      
Please, try to be more professional in tone and more reliable in information than TechCrunch.
4
4 points by DanLivesHere 2 hours ago 1 reply      
I think you need to do a lot of lists. I'm serious. There are a LOT of tiny startups out there and you can hit upon 10 at once this way, while also building good content.

I'm going to be self-serving here, but it makes it easier to articulate my idea and point. I have a small, "lifestyle startup"/hobby -- a daily email newsletter where I share awesome/true facts like how Abraham Lincoln created the Secret Service the day he was fatally shot. (Really -- http://dlewis.net/nik is the subscribe URL, the archives are linked thereto, and it's in the archives.) There are a LOT of small, wannabe thrillist/daily candy email newsletters out there. Featuring one is stupid, but writing about this emerging/cottage industry is interesting.

Basically: "Ten Interesting Email Newsletters" is a great post, potentially, as is "Ten Ways To Manage Your Business Connections" (hashable? cloudcontacts? cardmunch?), as is "Ten Sports Startups" and ... well, you get the idea.

5
7 points by yeahsure 3 hours ago 1 reply      
I really look forward to reading this site!

I suggest you get in touch with Andrew from Mixergy.com - he has plenty of connections to get you started.

Good luck!

6
9 points by jacquesm 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Talk to swombat on #startups, you guys should link up!
7
3 points by portman 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Good for you. I recently removed TechCrunch from my RSS feed, and I haven't missed it for the last two weeks.

I was trying to find a feed that let me exclude certain authors, but I ended up ditching everything.

8
4 points by thecoffman 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Awesome - I don't have any startup news to share at this time - but best of luck! There's a need for this type of news and TC isn't filling it anymore.
9
3 points by chr15 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I helped start http://bootstrapped.it @bootstrappedit) where we interview bootstrapping entrepreneurs and try and get them exposure.

I agree, there needs to be more news about startups. Good to see that other people are doing this as well! There are plenty of startups to write about.

10
1 point by shasta 1 hour ago 0 replies      
> I know there are others out there like me. People who would love to read news exclusively about startups, so I decided to start my own TC alternative.

I hope you're going to have an editor :)

11
1 point by allenp 2 hours ago 1 reply      
TCs comments suck - look at what boingboing does for moderation that might be helpful. Also I am probably in the minority but I rather read and respond to one really good article a day than 10 spammy articles. I think focusing on quality is key (just my 2 cents).
12
1 point by kmfrk 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I'd love to see more stories about app developers - I'm getting a little tired of only hearing about web services to be honest. :
13
5 points by jparicka 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Good luck with that. I stopped reading TC (AOL) about 4 month ago.
14
1 point by zacharycohn 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Shot you an email.
15
1 point by middlegeek 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Have you looked at Beyond the Pedway?

http://www.beyondthepedway.com/

16
3 points by iisbum 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Email sent, best of luck with the site
17
2 points by benedwards 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Sounds like a good idea. Sent you an email about Swappa: http://swappa.com
18
2 points by djangoadmin10 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Looks like this might have the same idea? --> http://startupanimal.com
19
1 point by vikdug 3 hours ago 1 reply      
You're so right. I knew something was up when I saw a post about Johnson Controls on TechCrunch recently. I worked there and it's a Fortune 100 company. Good luck!

Vik

20
1 point by evolution 2 hours ago 0 replies      
this is good, i'll send you email about songslike.me and strangrchat.com soon
21
2 points by mattholling 4 hours ago 0 replies      
That's great. There really is a big need for something like this, and I look forward to checking it out when it's live.
22
2 points by studentscircle 4 hours ago 1 reply      
done! hope we get featured and goodluck with your endeavors. there is need for real* tech news now.
23
1 point by bowmande 4 hours ago 0 replies      
When we are closer to launch I'll send you an email.
24
1 point by somug 3 hours ago 0 replies      
i will
24
Get rich quick ads from 1909 google.com
81 points by pelle 8 hours ago   18 comments top 15
1
44 points by akgerber 7 hours ago 1 reply      
MAKE MILLIONS OR BILLIONS in less than three years in business utilizing new technologies! We provide capital. Biggest money-maker out there! Receive assistance from established men. Write P. Graham, Y-Combinator Inc., Mountain-View Station Southern Pacific Railway, Santa Clara County Calif.
2
3 points by Gibbon 1 hour ago 0 replies      
"SEND FOR FREE BOOK telling why so many patents are worthless as protection!"

Now that one is poignant.

3
7 points by pelle 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Discovered even better ones further on in the magazine.

"Make $3,380 a year with 100 Kirk Machines" (Peanut vending machines)

http://books.google.com/books?id=nN8DAAAAMBAJ&lpg=PA476&...

4
6 points by 51Cards 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Cut / paste those into spam emails today and nothing has changed other than the dollar figures and the method of delivery. Sadly someone will always prey on the gullible and that in itself is a timeless method of getting rich.
5
3 points by pan69 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I actually enjoyed this one:

http://books.google.com/books?id=nN8DAAAAMBAJ&lpg=PA476&...

It seems that "Learning C++ in 30 days" is not a new concept.

6
1 point by fleitz 1 hour ago 0 replies      
It's all there, free initial offer for lead gen (ebook), money back guarantee, obnoxious copy, the only thing missing is the call to action "Yes!, I want to earn $100 per week, please send me your $150 ebook for just $25"
7
6 points by weego 7 hours ago 0 replies      
"Make rice crisp"

Pfft, what an idiot, that clearly never worked!

8
6 points by aothman 7 hours ago 0 replies      
http://catandgirl.com/?p=1163

"Every once in a while a window appears - and you realize the past is just the present with different technology and funny clothes"

9
2 points by jacquesm 7 hours ago 0 replies      
So, that's the source of all those spam emails. I was wondering where they got their inspiration, it also explains some of the more peculiar turns of phrase that keep popping up ('honorable sir' and 'compliments of the season').

If you wanted to train a spam filter you could do a lot worse than to use these as your corpus.

10
2 points by a5seo 3 hours ago 0 replies      
"Money in it" - that's so Twitter.

No doubt because newspaper ads were priced by the word if not letter.

Hmm maybe that's what Twitter should do... 0-100 characters are free. $0.005 per character above 100.

11
1 point by seanalltogether 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Seeing these ads, I'm genuinely curious, did we manage in the course of a hundred years to go from "we sell the product to you" into "you come to us to buy the product"?
12
3 points by JoeAltmaier 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Love the section "Male Help".
13
1 point by Aaronontheweb 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I can see a Cash 4 Gold ad fitting right in there with the carpet bagger ads for buying up land in the South :p
14
1 point by JacobAldridge 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Why, if I'd made $10,000 yearly in real estate since 1909, I'd be a millionaire!
15
1 point by sever 3 hours ago 0 replies      
the more things change, the more they stay the same
25
Buddycloud's node.js server just released buddycloud.com
35 points by imaginator 5 hours ago   10 comments top 3
1
1 point by NHQ 24 minutes ago 0 replies      
yeah but it still uses BuddyCLoud channels for which you have to run an XMPP server :[
2
1 point by wildmXranat 4 hours ago 2 replies      
Buddycloud, Appleseed, Diaspora oh my, but are there intentions for the protocol to talk amongst these networks.

Are we aiming for a protocol end goal or for an application end goal?

3
3 points by indexzero 5 hours ago 2 replies      
Add a package.json and publish this to npm
26
The Rise And Fall of Languages in 2010 drdobbs.com
31 points by fogus 3 hours ago   17 comments top 10
1
17 points by zeteo 2 hours ago 0 replies      
"Over the years, the index has been both praised and vilified. The latter by language adherents who are unhappy over the decline of their favorite idiom."

Really? That's the best defense that can be brought for the methodology - a textbook ad hominem attack?

2
19 points by autarch 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I thought TIOBE was vilified because it does a really bad job of measuring what it claims to measure.
3
4 points by postfuturist 1 hour ago 1 reply      
This paints a very different picture: https://github.com/languages

edit: I realize this is measuring something different, but it suggests that the reports of the decline of Ruby and JavaScript could be wrong.

4
1 point by jacquesm 38 minutes ago 0 replies      
Allright, who has been playing with the random number generator?

One thing you'll have to do before looking at the data presented here (if you want to give it a second look) is to take into account that there is a lot more to programming than just web programming.

But even with that in mind I have a hard time seeing Assembly on the rise and JavaScript dropping and named in one breath with delphi.

And I'm not a fan of any of those (ok, maybe assembly), so that can't be it.

If you want to skip the article to go right to the data it's here:

http://www.tiobe.com/index.php/content/paperinfo/tpci/index....

5
7 points by steveklabnik 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Ugh, Tiobe. I wish we could come up with a better measure for this. I don't really feel that Tiobe's index is worth anything at all.
6
2 points by hristov 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Yes and if you believe their data, Pascal and ADA are also on the ascendancy.
7
2 points by rwmj 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Because obviously the most popular languages must be the best ones.
8
3 points by rbanffy 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Ada, RPG on OS/400 and Transact SQL? Really?

Anyone risks a hypothesis on why this happened in 2010?

9
2 points by gaiusparx 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Alternative opinion: http://langpop.com/
10
2 points by marcusbooster 2 hours ago 1 reply      
JavaScript with a double-arrow drop in 2010?
27
Facebook awarded over $360 million damages against spammer sophos.com
4 points by ssclafani 44 minutes ago   1 comment top
1
1 point by JacobAldridge 4 minutes ago 0 replies      
Assuming they actually get some of that money, I look forward to it being distributed to the users who were impacted.

And giving them Facebook Credits doesn't count.

28
Indian Government Restricts PayPal justskins.com
13 points by RealGeek 3 hours ago   6 comments top 2
1
5 points by GiraffeNecktie 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Sadly typical of an Indian bureaucracy whose core competency has forever been to obstruct the free flow of money, goods and services, often for the purpose of positioning well-connected fixers to extract lucrative commissions for pulling the strings that would clear the "roadblocks"
2
5 points by mhlakhani 59 minutes ago 0 replies      
This may have happened in order to stop remittances. Indians abroad usually send fair amounts of money back home to support their families, and using Paypal they can avoid the official government taxes on those payments.
29
Prolog Introduction for Hackers kuro5hin.org
41 points by mbowcock 6 hours ago   17 comments top 3
1
4 points by silentbicycle 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Also recommended: http://www.learnprolognow.org/

Sterling and Shapiro's _The Art of Prolog_ is wonderful, on par with (say) SICP. It focuses as much on the logic programming model as Prolog proper.

2
2 points by chrisduesing 3 hours ago 1 reply      
I knew that Erlang was originally written in Prolog, but I somehow managed to never look at any Prolog code before. It explains so much about the structure and approach that Erlang took.

I am curious to explore how the Erlang interpreter was written, in light not of the similarities, but the subtle differences between the two languages. The use of -> was particularly interesting in comparison to how it is used in Erlang.

3
3 points by bemmu 5 hours ago 5 replies      
How big an undertaking would it be to implement a Prolog interpreter?
       cached 28 January 2011 23:59:01 GMT