hacker news with inline top comments    .. more ..    29 Sep 2012 News
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Fog of World fogofworld.com
83 points by olliwang  2 hours ago   32 comments top 20
kristofferR 20 minutes ago 0 replies      
This looks really nice. I recently switched to Android (which, in my mind, with version 4.1 finally is able to compete with iOS in smoothness/stability while vastly surpassing it in features and usability), so I'm hopeful for an Android version.

An Android version would also bring added benefits of smarter/less battery intensive background operation which could make this run all the time. Constant GPS-monitoring like Latitude or this seems to run way better on Android for some reason.

timsally 18 minutes ago 1 reply      
Thank God this costs $5 dollars. I might have even gone as high as $10. To all those that think 5 bucks is too much: for you to actually get any value out of this app you have to use it over a non-significant portion of your life. We're talking on the timescale of years; I find it hilarious that 1 dollar is fine but 5 whole dollars is outrageous.
FaceKicker 20 minutes ago 0 replies      
This is neat, I wish Google Latitude had it. For that matter, I wish Google Latitude had any useful visual representation of the 2+ years' worth of location data I've been feeding it. =|
smilliken 1 hour ago 0 replies      
This is a wonderful idea. It would be really interesting if you could "ally" someone else to combine mini-maps. With this feature, you wouldn't just know where everyone has been, but you can also map their social graph!
Dramatize 39 minutes ago 3 replies      
I would love to pay $.99 for this, but at $5.49 it's too expensive for me recommend to all my friends.
mcantelon 45 minutes ago 3 replies      
What is this thing? Achievement badges for going places? I don't know the "Fog of War" strategy game reference which would likely contextualize it.
obituary_latte 28 minutes ago 0 replies      
In case the dev is reading these: typo in bullet 6 at bottom

>It is recommended to use a separate GPS device to record your tracks. This would save beattery life of your iOS device and avoid GPS signal loss when Internet connection is unavailable.

Otherwise, looks batteful.

Androsynth 20 minutes ago 1 reply      
When I used to live in SF, I would always go on walks and explore the city. I found that it would take several visits before I could fully remember the details of a new route or area, but once I knew that place I would move onto a new area. This was enjoyable and I got to see the innards of a beautiful city.

Now this? Congratulations, you have turned a peaceful and enjoyable experience into a slot machine. Now rather than enjoying where I am, I can enjoy hearing my phone go DING! You will lose all connection to the places you go. Rather than rely on my own memory, which takes a few trips, I will just go to a neighborhood once, cross it off my checklist and probably never go back. Because going back wont give me the exp I need to level up and release endorphins.

Gamifaction is the public relations term for addiction.

Anyway, get off my lawn, yada yada...

drawkbox 1 hour ago 1 reply      
This is truly one of those simple great ideas that we all should have come up with.
kolinko 15 minutes ago 0 replies      
Looks great, although I'm to worried of my iPhone's battery to install..
Shenglong 19 minutes ago 0 replies      
Time to go for 100% map completion...
malandrew 43 minutes ago 0 replies      
This is totally going to be cool for use while riding my bike to work. I've been toying with the idea of exploring new paths on my 11 mile commute and this gives me a way to map them all out and the incentive to do so.
whouweling 13 minutes ago 0 replies      
Nice concept.

Some feedback on the site itself: I'm having trouble reading the text due to the low contrast. (Maybe my monitor isn't setup properly?)

Aardwolf 32 minutes ago 0 replies      
Cool idea, but I think my life will be way longer than the lifetime of this app.

I think I could do something similar in an open format that will still be accessible in 50 years: an image of the world map, with an alpha channel that has pixels where I've been made opaque.

jcfrei 40 minutes ago 0 replies      
very cool, though that Explored Area status bar is probably going to be stuck at 0.001% (or less) for a while... I wonder what surface you "discover" when you're standing in place - I'm guessing around 300 m^2?
klausjensen 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Great idea! Please do android next. And make the data open and exportable.
daedalus_j 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I love this concept, I already think about maps this way in my head, I'd love a way to externalize it!

Unfortunately though I don't want it on game center, I want it in some sort of open exportable data that I can access, perhaps make a widget for my website out of, or update from other devices.

scoremotive 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I like this idea a lot. I remember there used to be apps on Facebook that listed the states someone had been to. They were fairly popular for a while.

If this can tap into that same urge, I think it could do pretty well.

flavien_bessede 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Love the idea, now I hope they made sure to not eat all my battery :)
BklynJay 1 hour ago 1 reply      
I love the concept but $4.99 is a bit much.
Python 3.3.0 released python.org
242 points by cx01  8 hours ago   85 comments top 4
po 6 hours ago 2 replies      
The real advantage here is the release of Armin's u'' syntax addition proposal:


In a nutshell, the 2.x version of declaring a unicode string is now valid (although redundant). From the PEP:

In many cases, Python 2 offered two ways of doing things for historical reasons. For example, inequality could be tested with both != and <> and integer literals could be specified with an optional L suffix. Such redundancies have been eliminated in Python 3, which reduces the overall size of the language and improves consistency across developers.

In the original Python 3 design (up to and including Python 3.2), the explicit prefix syntax for unicode literals was deemed to fall into this category, as it is completely unnecessary in Python 3. However, the difference between those other cases and unicode literals is that the unicode literal prefix is not redundant in Python 2 code: it is a programmatically significant distinction that needs to be preserved in some fashion to avoid losing information.

This version of python should see more uptake by 2.x developers as it is now easier to port.

masklinn 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Exciting. Python 3.3 is the first release of the Python 3 series which makes me go from "I'll have to come around to use Python 3" to "dammit, why isn't my codebase under Python 3 yet?". There's a bunch of neat stuff, minor and not so minor.
tisme 5 hours ago 8 replies      
I've done quite a bit of python development. One of the things that really bugs me about python is how they keep breaking older stuff. Other languages have been much more careful about maintaining backwards compatibility and I think that is a big factor in the retention of users.

Having to re-do any part of your code from one release of a language to another became a real deal breaker for me.

For an interpreted language that problem is even worse because you don't know you have a problem until that bit of code gets hit.

vph 7 hours ago  replies      
There are two significant factions in the Python community: the scientific group and the web-dev group. The scientific group is pretty much on board with Python 3. Perhaps due to unicode handling intricacies, that the web-dev group ain't exactly on board with Python 3 yet. But this needs to change and it takes leadership. Fortunately, bit and pieces such as webob are Python 3 compatible. And personally, I feel the Python web frameworks need a fresh redesign.
How does SSL work? stackexchange.com
27 points by lucb1e  2 hours ago   12 comments top 3
mitchellh 32 minutes ago 0 replies      
I just finished reading this book: "SSL and TLS: Designing and Building Secure Systems"[1] and I now have a _much_ better understanding of how SSL works, what security it provides, how it provides it, and when and where to use it.

It is a thorough read and not the easiest, but you can always pick and choose what chapters you're interested in. I highly recommend it. You can buy it from Amazon here (not an affiliate link):


[1]: http://www.amazon.com/gp/product/0201615983/

tptacek 51 minutes ago 1 reply      

1. C & S exchange messages to agree on versions, ciphersuites, and nonces.

2. S->C certificate, which includes an RSA public key.

3. C verifies certificate against its local cache of CA roots.

4. C->S random secret encrypted under the RSA key (the "pre-master secret").

5. C & S derive (the same) set of MAC keys, crypto keys, and crypto parameters.

6. C & S verify every message of the handshake with the MAC keys.

Other useful things to know:

* SSL/TLS operates over a "record layer" of TLV-style messages. The TLS record layer itself supports fragmentation, which is a little crazy.

* The server can ask the client to send a certificate too; this is common on backend connections and unfortunately not common with browsers, because the UI is terrible.

* Less commonly, C & S can opt for a "DHE" (ephemeral Diffie-Hellman) key exchange, in which the RSA key from the certificate is used to sign a DH key exchange (DH allows both sides to use random public keys instead of long-term fixed keys, but suffers from exposure to MITM attacks --- the RSA key from the cert "breaks the tie" in a MITM situation, making the exchange secure). This has the advantage of ensuring that even if an attacker has been recording all your traffic for years, she can't compromise a server's private key and then decrypt older connections. This is called "forward secrecy".

* The two common cipher suites used on most connections are AES in CBC mode and RC4. AES-CBC chunks plaintext into 16 byte blocks, padding the last block if there are insufficient bytes to fill it. Until TLS 1.1, TLS ran CBC in a continuous stream over the whole connection, using the last block of the most recent message as the IV for the next, which gave rise to the BEAST flaw. RC4 is a stream cipher that encrypts byte-at-a-time --- but nobody trusts RC4 much.

* TLS 1.2 (IIRC) introduces AES-CTR, which runs AES as a stream cipher.

AndrewNCarr 1 hour ago 1 reply      
It doesn't, according to Moxie Marlinspike and others.


If you haven't seen any of Marlinspikes presentations, you are missing out on some fascinating stuff.

Moxie @ Defcon 19: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xIiklPyS8MU

Does Apple have a Scott Forstall problem? cnn.com
90 points by olivercameron  5 hours ago   61 comments top 13
robomartin 1 hour ago 2 replies      
Nah. I don't agree with the premise of this article. This was not one person's decision. Many actors had to be involved in the decision making process. For some reason Apple decided that kicking Google off the platform was worth the abuse they'd have to endure with Maps.

Those who keep saying "Maps is great" need to leave an egocentric view and realize that there are millions of users all around the world with different experiences.

According to the apology letter they serve about 500 million searches in one week. That means two billion searches per month. What does this mean in therms of customer experience?


According to this either 60% of the locations either incorrect or missing altogether. I'll be generous and propose that Maps, world-wide, might have an average of 5% incorrect or missing locations. I don't know if this is too low or too high. It's just a number that I pulled out of my imagination in order to get a sense of proportion.

If only 5% of the data is wrong and we have two billion searches per month, that means 100 million bad searches per month. I'll let the reader guess as to how many users that affects. It certainly is in the millions.

If data errors are larger than that the situation is far worst. Again, I'll leave it up to the reader to guess as to how much user anger would trigger Apple to post an apology letter on the front page of their site.

If you live here in California, and, in particular, the Bay Area, please refrain from posting how "Maps is great and it is beautiful". You do not represent the experience of the vast majority of users who had almost no issues whatsoever with Google Maps.

Oh, yes, on the whole "Maps is beautiful" mantra. Who the f* cares? 3D view? Who the f* cares? First make them dead accurate, then add eye candy if it makes sense. Accuracy is far more important than bling when it comes to maps. Nobody is going to want to use a beautiful map that takes you to the wrong place. And 3D view. Really? Get it right first. Then play.

pkamb 3 hours ago 1 reply      
> Inside Apple, tension has brewed for years over the [skeuomorphism] issue. Apple iOS SVP Scott Forstall is said to push for skeuomorphic design, while industrial designer Jony Ive and other Apple higher-ups are said to oppose the direction. "You could tell who did the product based on how much glitz was in the UI," says one source intimately familiar with Apple's design process.


w1ntermute 4 hours ago 2 replies      
Forstall has been called "Apple's chief asshole"[0] - he channels Steve Jobs's approach of being a douchebag, but doesn't seem to have acquired the same level of perfectionism as Jobs.

0: http://www.dailytech.com/Apples+chief+Ahole+Forstall+Keeps+S...

stevenleeg 3 hours ago 6 replies      
Since when has Siri been "an embarrassment for Apple?"
Bud 2 hours ago 5 replies      
Who at Fortune deserves to be fired for its recent long string of incredibly idiotic articles about Apple, which have been panned here and elsewhere, then?

I think the new Maps app is fantastic; the data accuracy leaves a bit to be desired, but I notice that those doing the most high-profile complaining point to errors in rural England, rural Ontario, etc. Here in the Bay Area, the data is working fine for me as well.

It is not shocking to me that a map database that is a few months old is less mature than one like Google's, which is the product of a decade's effort, and also the product of 5 years' worth of improvements riding the back of iOS users' crowd-sourced data. Now Apple has that data coming into its database, instead of flying out the door to Google's.

Maps is likely to improve, and fast.

In any case, blaming Forstall is idiotic and talking about firing him is Fortune-level idiotic. He made great things at NeXT, Mac OS X is great, Siri is great, and Maps is a work in progress that shows great promise.

Have you tried reloading map data and zooming in and out on maps in Google Maps vs. Apple Maps in an area with EDGE or otherwise bad internet coverage? Apple's app wins hands-down versus reloading non-vector map tiles.

X-Istence 3 hours ago 2 replies      
I don't understand why someone needs to be fired just because they had one or two bad products. Why would you throw away the rest of the knowledge that this person has? Demote them, put them on new projects, place them where they are stronger and have them work on another project, but outright removing someone seems like it is throwing the baby out with the bathwater.
martythemaniak 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Well, I guess the knives are coming out. These kinds of distractions won't help Apple with a pack of hungry companies wanting to take it down.
contextfree 4 hours ago 0 replies      
It sounds more like they have a services/big data problem, + maybe a Windows XP-like "good enough" problem (leading to new features and changes being viewed more skeptically)
dantiberian 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Does Fortune have an interest in creating pageview's by making this Scott Forstall's problem?
stretchwithme 31 minutes ago 0 replies      
I have a TomTom. And the first error I see in their data is 200 feet from my house.

Gargade in, garbage out.

rhizome 2 hours ago 0 replies      
fleitz 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Another way to look at the accumulation of power during Jobs absence is other members of the executive team stepping up to the plate while another is absent...
Fjslfj 2 hours ago  replies      
Actually, it's an Eddy Cue problem.
Is a resume relevant in the age of online courses and open source projects? arstechnica.com
20 points by dbh937  2 hours ago   23 comments top 13
droithomme 1 hour ago 5 replies      
These arguments that the only worthy developers have tons of public facing open source projects are tiresome.

Probably less than 1% of developers have GitHub repos and there's no correlation between skill level and having a GitHub repo.

If you have extensive and current open source contributions, for most people it means you're unemployed, or you're violating your employer's contract terms.

Evaluating a GitHub repo for a summary of skills in not a trivial task, as scanning a resume is.

When all of your work is online, it suggests you are not spending much time contributing value to whoever is employing you.

Companies that can't find developers often have bizarre and useless criteria such as "must have GitHub repository" or "must have LinkedIn" or "must have FaceBook", none of which is correlated with ability.

We hire lots of capable people without GitHub repositories.

spitfire 25 minutes ago 0 replies      
Some of the most interesting developers can't talk about what they've done.

You'll never see the flight computer system of an F-16, but it's probably a much cooler project to work on than an iPhone app. Or nuclear reactor engineering.

Is a resume relevant in this day and age? As a device to portray the best of what you've accomplished yes. For a few people, the answer will be no, that's best done through portfolios like github and open source projects.

In the end, everything old will be new again but with a twist.

ismarc 24 minutes ago 0 replies      
I am actually a fan of well written resumes. The problem is that a resume is not a CV or even a listing of all skills/qualifications of an applicant. A resume should be a highlight reel of the skills/experience/qualifications of the applicant THAT PERTAIN TO THE JOB BEING APPLIED FOR. The cover letter then explains how those skills go together and what the applicant is looking for. Github, open source projects, web sites, examples, etc. are supporting evidence once they've gone from an unqualified lead to a qualified lead. But that's the difference that people seem to forget, a large majority of job positions are filled from unqualified leads and spending 20 minutes per applicant with nothing indicating they even have the minimal skills necessary.
nsxwolf 1 hour ago 1 reply      
All my work is on code I don't own and isn't public facing. I can't take our proprietary code, wrap it up, and put it on GitHub. I also can't provide logins to our proprietary systems for employers to look at.

I certainly hope a resume remains relevant for people in my position, because it's really all I have.

dfc 27 minutes ago 0 replies      
"The problem is that I have no idea how to tell employers that those (SO, GH, etc) are the places to look if they want an accurate description of what I can do."

So you are looking for a concise and centralized resource for listing your qualifications for a job. And you are asking if a resume is still relevant? It seems like the way to tell employers about your github, SO, udacity, etc, profiles is to list them on your resume.

coliveira 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Employers will not retire resumes because they know better than anyone else that online activity is classified as marketing rather than individual achievement. If you generate this kind of online activity, good for you, it makes it easier to find a job or to sell a product. It may even replace a traditional job. But having a degree from a top university, having a position in a well know company, receiving a prize recognized in the industry, these are things that really count as achievement. Unless you're talking about internet marketing positions, these are the things that really matter to an employer.
tluyben2 27 minutes ago 0 replies      
As someone who screens a lot of resumes; it's a good short overview and it's relevant. Github/open source projects/online qualifications don't show all there is to experience. Sure if someone started a bunch of projects to try to right the wrongs in the software world then this is a good sign. But if that person doesn't have or believes he/she doesn't need a resume then that's not a good sign. A resume is often a first line of defense; there will be a stack of them and those are screened pretty quickly at most companies. Something needs to attract enough attention to even check out your github and online qualifications. Your github account right there in your list mobile/email/skype/github is a pre, even if it's empty though :)
sebastianmarr 1 hour ago 0 replies      
A resume is a listing of what you have done in your life that could be relevant to the job you are applying for. If that is an online course and a couple of open source projects, then this can be just as helpful to your future employer as a list of companies you have worked for.

To resume means to summarize. Your GitHub profile is not a summary, it is a raw dump of everything that you have done without weighting.

So, of course a resume is still relevant today. And it is still up to the applicant to present himself to the employer, because most of the time the applicant is looking for a specific job when the company is not looking for a specific employee.

_red 1 hour ago 0 replies      
For what its worth, one of the last hardware devs we hired happened exclusively online. We were adding some biometric hardware to our current software stack and came across a small project online of someone who wrote a java library for the hardware in question.

After a series of emails, we proposed that we should pay him a few months consulting fee - to help us integrate. As a bonus of course, he could take the improvements and fold them back into his his open-source project.

Things continued like this and eventually he proved useful in other ways, so he is permanent hire now.

In this day and age, there really is no excuse for having "no experience" (in the software world at least). Moreover, who really cares about what university you went to if you can prove your immediate usefulness in other ways?

gorbachev 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I work for a company that makes recruiting products to fortune 500 companies. They don't offer online courses to cashiers working for big retailers, or to truck drivers working for transportation companies.

Jobs at technology companies might be what ArsTechnica and Hacker News readers go for, but those jobs are such a small percentage of the jobs filled every day in the US.

janardanyri 1 hour ago 0 replies      
As one data point: a resume has never been relevant to my career. I've never gotten a job or a contract through a resume.

Completed live projects instantly visible on any browser or smartphone with a quick technical explanation have always been far more valuable for me.

You don't need to ask anyone's permission to build amazing software.

(Unfortunately, you continue to need permission to build many other things.)

jonbischke 1 hour ago 0 replies      
This is exactly why we started Entelo. We felt that online sources are quickly becoming the "new resume" and that if you draw the trend lines on the data, if it's not obvious now, it will be very soon. Remember, none of the sites referenced in the post (Github, Stack, Coursera, etc.) existed five years ago. What will exist five years from now?

Also, an emerging trend is "Github for X". You have sites like Grabcad (Github for Mechanical Engineers), Dribbble and Behance (Github for Designers), Benchling (Github for Biology), Proformative (Github for Accountants), etc. As these professional communities grow they'll increasingly be looking at by employers.

It's early for this trend but we believe deeply in it.

rayhano 1 hour ago 0 replies      
A London-based start-up is working on future-facing CVs. The premise is you say what you're going to do, and then do it. Over time you build up something stronger, with social proof. It's called WikiCV: http://WikiCV.me
Persona - Mozilla's decentralized and secure authentication system mozilla.org
115 points by 00joe  8 hours ago   32 comments top 8
natch 3 hours ago 2 replies      
Authentication mechanisms and they way they are implemented can have bleedover into the ability of a user to maintain control of their anonymity and privacy.

Has there been any writeup that explains the potential impact of Persona on privacy? Not just the impact when used as intended, but also any unintended effects?

y0ghur7_xxx 5 hours ago 0 replies      
eslaught 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Are there any good descriptions for how Persona works? I can find plenty of developer documentation on this site, but I can't seem to find a good, concise description of what parties are involved and what the protocol is, etc.

(Maybe I'm not looking deep enough? Anyway, thanks in advance.)

jpxxx 3 hours ago 1 reply      
I can't come up with any reason why this isn't going to be massive. The password problem is the single most frustrating and alienating issue I can think of for normal users.
StavrosK 5 hours ago 0 replies      
There was a post about this yesterday, but I'll upvote it because it needs all the exposure it can get.
lukev 5 hours ago 2 replies      
Other than the benefit of using strong crypto under the hood, I'm not sure what benefits this has over a system like openid. It has about the same level of interactional complexity, and at the additional cost of requiring browser support.

If we're going to have browser support anyway, I'd rather just use standard two-way SSL and put the work into developing better UI and private key distribution systems for it. It's even more secure and has a great user experience once you've set up the key in the browser and authorized it to the site.

wgd 2 hours ago 1 reply      
I really like the overall result of Persona when used for logging into a web site, but has anyone come up with a good way of integrating Persona login with mobile apps or APIs?

I suppose mobile apps would ideally use some sort of Persona login service provided by the underlying OS, and until such a thing exists I guess an app could reimplement all the user-agent logic and load the user's login page in a webview. But I have no idea how at all I would go about designing an API for a website which uses Persona for logins.

Nux 3 hours ago 3 replies      
How would I log in from a friend's computer with Persona? How about from an Internet cafe; how safe would it be?
Persona looks like something that lock's you into a certain device or at least makes it harder to log in on device's that are not your own.

I'd rather they made OpenID less scarry (to average Joe) instead.

Slate: Tiling window management for OS X github.com
85 points by jrajav  7 hours ago   13 comments top 7
zdw 4 hours ago 0 replies      
This is, bar none, the best automated window manager I've used in OS X.

I cribbed these from one of the examples, but my favorite "beyond just resizing" commands are:

    bind ;:cmd;ctrl throw previous

Which sends the active window to my second display, and

    bind /:cmd;ctrl hint ASDFGHJKL

Which overlays all windows on screen with qwerty home row letters, so I can foreground any of them with one more keystroke.

metaguri 2 hours ago 3 replies      
If you prefer something a little more simple, Spectacle is a free program similar to ShiftIt and SizeUp. Basically it's shortcuts to put windows in any half or quarter of your screen, centered, maximized, or send to other monitors.

On the app store: http://itunes.apple.com/us/app/spectacle/id487069743?mt=12

(I have no affiliation with this program. But I like it.)

tom_usher 4 hours ago 0 replies      
This is by far my favourite window manager for OSX - one of my favourite uses for it is 'layouts'. I define a layout for different 'modes' of a typical workday and switch between them with keyboard shortcuts:

- WebDev, push Chrome to the left, iTerm to the right

- Dev - fullscreen iTerm, and inversely, Web - fullscreen Chrome.

- Support - Mail on one side, browser on another

One thing I wish it had was Spaces support; so I could set up a layout across multiple spaces.

Another great feature is 'default' - I switch between a standing desk setup and my laptop (seated) a couple of times during the day by enabling/disabling my second monitor. Slate is set up to rearrange my windows how I like them for both setups automatically when a change of monitors is detected.

nuttendorfer 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Nice to see such thorough documentation like in this project!
hinathan 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I paid for Divvy.app but may switch to this - love the configurability.
mtklein 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Amazing. I've always wanted exactly this, and now I have it:

  bind right:alt push right bar-resize:screenSizeX/2
bind left:alt push left bar-resize:screenSizeX/2
bind up:alt push left bar-resize:screenSizeX*2/3
bind down:alt push right bar-resize:screenSizeX/3

cabbeer 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Any windows alternative?
Flowplayer 5.0.0 flowplayer.org
111 points by AntonTrollback  9 hours ago   41 comments top 8
dysoco 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Well, that was fast.
However, I don't think deleting the pause button is a good idea, yeah: you can click in the screen, but some people might not realize that.
seiji 7 hours ago 4 replies      
How does this stack up to http://videojs.com?
TazeTSchnitzel 8 hours ago 2 replies      
Really sleek, very nice minimal UI. More "fast and fluid" than Windows 8!

Love it, certainly going to use it when I need a video player. It even has full screen!

Edit: Even better, it's responsive to browser width changes!

erikano 2 hours ago 1 reply      
I tried to play the demo videos on my Samsung Galaxy S II (Android 2.3.5), both with Dolphin Browser v8.8.2 and the stock web browser, but it doesn't seem to work in either of them.
acdha 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Looks nice but I was really hoping for <track> support - based on some recent testing, it appears that currently only mediaelement.js supports both the Flash fallback and support for subtitles / captions.
denzil_correa 3 hours ago 1 reply      
I like the clean design but for some reason by browser hangs up while scrolling through your site.

Safari 5.1.7 on Snow Leopard

supjeff 6 hours ago 3 replies      
safari 6.0.1 on mountain lion: http://cl.ly/image/0d0V1B1C3V28
anssip 6 hours ago 0 replies      
It forks flawlessly on iPad too, using the same controls as in desktop browsers.
Online News is Broken caseyaccidental.com
17 points by sandimac  2 hours ago   13 comments top 7
jeremymims 2 hours ago 3 replies      
None of these are the reasons that online news is broken.

Online news is broken for one fundamental reason: It's currently hard to generate enough revenue from online ads to pay for the creation of high quality content.

This is the only problem that needs fixing and anything else is polishing brass on the Titanic. Fancy news reading systems (Instapaper, Flipboard, Pulse, etc.) are nice because they strip out all the ads. "Wow, look how much nicer it looks! We're totally saving journalism." They aren't. They don't have to pay to produce content, so they can repackage it inexpensively or for free.

The truth is more people are reading the news now than ever before. 16 million people read The New York Times online last month. The print publication peaks at just over 2,000,000 on Sundays.

We don't need better social crowdsourcing of stories. We need more ways to pay for great content.

brador 1 minute ago 0 replies      
Firstly, I run http://skimfeed.com, a news aggregator that's proving popular.

Second, I suggest the next step is crowd sourced expert curation. Some of the most popular posts on Reddit are where an expert enters the comments and lays the article bare for the masses. This is valuable. I'd pay for this.

But, and it's a big one, experts aren't cheap and their time is scarce. They're not going to curate content for free all day like Reddits 12 year olds and the granularity of expertise means you'll never cover everything with a small number of experts.

Two solutions: volume through scale to fund expert curation or find a way to gather and have them work for free. Maybe the research journal system be used here to provide non-financial incentives?

crazygringo 20 minutes ago 0 replies      
> "news is ... at a fast and furious pace, without a lot of context, and largely filled with what companies want to get out instead of what they don't want to get out."

High-quality news with high-quality context and interpretation can only really be generated by highly-paid, extremely educated and learned journalists. And it takes time to research and write -- you can't get quality analysis and context 2 hours after an event.

The best example of quality reporting that comes to mind for weekly news is The Economist. Although there is also some excellent long-form journalism in the New Yorker, The Atlantic, Rolling Stone, Vanity Fair, etc. And if we're talking about online, for me the whole point of Instapaper is to bookmark these articles to read later.

And I really don't see how crowd-sourced content is the future for news. Most good Wikipedia articles take months if not years to build up. I just don't see how approaching the quality level of The Economist is possible with crowd-sourcing. The kind of people who have the kind of extreme skills and education to write at that level, do it for a living, not for fun on the Internet.

JumpCrisscross 34 minutes ago 0 replies      
The Financial Times has great journalism. It costs me $300+/year. I also love The Economist. It costs $100+/year. They could both probably hike rates without a noticeable attrition is readers.

Luckily for me there is a market for premium financial journalism (the recognisable sources cited poll at the lower end of the spectrum in terms of annual cost). For other types of news, however, my willingness to pay for quality is too small a market. In the space left behind we get people cribbing about news aggregators and paywalls.

benologist 1 hour ago 0 replies      
This conflates two issues. Online news being broken which I agree with emphatically, and online news discovery being broken and solved by limiting your sharing to a specific group of people which I'm skeptical about since I'm not sure how that's different to what existing giants in that space do.

Online news need a whole new revenue model that can support and encourage quality journalism instead of chasing ad impressions that encourages or perhaps demands the AOL-ification / Demand Media-ization that makes "news" a byproduct of an SEO and link bait game.

joeconway 2 hours ago 1 reply      
It really feels like this person has never gone on Reddit, despite it seemingly being a large competitor. The problems that plagued Digg do not apply as much to Reddit as there is less gaming the algorithms or superusers. Not to say they don't exist, but they are less of a problem. With regards to the inability to 'make it' as a normal user, look at the front page at any time and see how many posts mention their surprise at making it to the front page.
lutusp 2 hours ago 2 replies      
The black text on a dark gray background pretty much told me all I needed to know about the site's designer, but when I got to the first gray text on a dark grey background, I bailed.

What, pray tell, is wrong with black text on a white background? Or at the very least, personal tastes being what they are, any significant contrast between text and background?

The Next Big E-Commerce Wave techcrunch.com
9 points by bwertz  1 hour ago   3 comments top
jfarmer 55 minutes ago 2 replies      
This was almost our exact line of thinking when Michael and I started Everlane (http://everlane.com) in early 2010.

You must be able to answer the "Amazon question" if you're starting an online commerce company. If your product category makes sense on Amazon, they'll obliterate your margins the second you're successful by using revenues from high-margin categories (think: AWS, e-books, etc.) to subsidize low prices for products in your category.

That's when the acquisition offer comes. Just ask Zappos or Quidsi. Who has the leverage in that situation?

It's harder, but if you sell something nobody else does† and successfully brand it, Amazon won't ever be able to compete. If J.Crew, GAP, LVMH, Hermès, etc. ever go out of business it won't be because of Amazon.

†: Vertical integration, i.e., "making your own stuff," is just one way to satisfy this condition.

So far it's the only to really work, but companies like Shoptiques are trying to satisfy it other ways.

Lessons From The Dramatic Slow-Motion Death Of Wikitravel techcrunch.com
39 points by uladzislau  5 hours ago   14 comments top 4
haberman 4 hours ago 5 replies      
I spent a few weeks in Europe last month and was really struck by how much room for improvement there is in travel guides. The #1 thing you want to know about travel information is where everything is. If you read a blurb about some attraction and decide it sounds cool, are we talking a five-minute detour from your existing plans or a day-trip? Something that only mildly interests you might be worth a quick stop if it's on the way to something else. Planning a travel itinerary is all about clustering attractions so that you see lots of cool stuff without wasting too much time in transit.

Given this, it amazes me how primitive the location features of travel guides are. When I buy a Lonely Planet guide, even as an eBook, at best I get a small, low-res map with numbers that cross-reference a list of labels that cross-reference the actual blurbs about these places! This is very slow and labor-intensive to scan. What I really want is a way to overlay the travel guide on top of my phone's Google Maps, so I can easily see my current location, any markers I've added like my hotel, and travel guides all in a single map. I want to be able to click a location marker to get the travel guide's blurb. Bonus points if I can easily combine different travel guides onto a single map (Lonely Planet, Wikitravel, etc.)

One awesome thing this would allow is for people to create and curate special-interest travel guides. For example, the Puget Sound Business Journal maintains a list of attractions called "The Geek's Guide to Seattle" (http://www.bizjournals.com/seattle/blog/techflash/2009/08/Th...). I would love to be able to search for these kinds of guides when I visit a new city and combine all of them into a single map. Sort of like Amazon Listmania lists, it would give you an opportunity to find like-minded people and what they think is cool.

This is a lot like what KML allows in Google Earth (and maybe Google Maps too?) but very few people use this format and the workflows for using KML in this way don't seem to be very streamlined (for example, it appears you can "import" a KML file into maps, but you can't subscribe to one by URL).

Established content providers for travel guides might not like this approach because it commoditizes them, but I think it would help the best content to ultimately win out.

_delirium 4 hours ago 3 replies      
I tend to be wary of contributing to crowdsourced projects run by for-profit companies for this reason, because they seem to have a tendency to go rogue once the benevolent management gets changed out, or it's sold to someone else.

Many of us in the '90s were burned by the CDDB/Gracenote debacle, which was my first unpleasant encounter with the problem. My experience contributing lyrics to songmeanings.net, which used to be a community-run/crowdsourced lyrics repository, not full of pop-up ringtone ads, was similarly negative.

Since then, I contribute only to nonprofits that seem to have some long-term credibility with their data licensing and governance, such as Wikipedia, Musicbrainz, and OpenStreetMap. In principle I'd contribute to a for-profit if it were really convincing about its long-term good faith (and provided data export), but the bar is high.

pault 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Hmm, good to know. I work remotely and travel quite a bit, and wikitravel has always been the first place I check when I land in a new place. Updating bookmarks to http://en.wikivoyage.org
zachalexander 2 hours ago 0 replies      
This is great news. I've always appreciated Wikitravel, and only wished it caught on a bit more. With Wikimedia behind it I'm sure it will.

Incidentally, my favorite use of Wikitravel has nothing to do with travel -- using it for a more candid or colorful take on a place than the drier treatment you'll find on its Wikipedia page. A Wikitravel page often leads with facts and images that IMHO are more interesting than stats, rankings, etymology, and history (which is how most Wikipedia place articles start).

freeSoC and freeSoC Mini kickstarter.com
60 points by ippisl  7 hours ago   22 comments top 6
tibbon 6 hours ago 0 replies      
To sum up the pain points that this is fixing:

- More pins, enabling more input/output. While there are some projects that only need a few pins, larger ones like big interactive light installations benefit from more

- Almost all pins are analog or digital compatible, with a few high current digital ones

- Compatible with Arduino header boards

- Better IDE

- Included ADC (two types, one can drive CD-quality audio), DACs, comparators, op-amps for bufferring, capacitive sensiving. These remove the need for a lot of external stuff to make simple and common things.

As someone who already has a stack of Arduinos, a PIC programmer, and a handful of Raspberry Pi's... this is still something that is unique and relevant. Pretty awesome and I hope it makes its funding goal.

forgottenpaswrd 6 hours ago 3 replies      
The best Microcontroller?

Does it works on Linux or mac?.


It that software opensource?


Why then I should choose this thing instead of more powerful and closed micros like this?:

revelation 4 hours ago 2 replies      
Is there stable support for this architecture in GCC and related projects? That is, is there a standard-conforming open toolchain?

Otherwise I wouldn't even bother.

cocoflunchy 5 hours ago 0 replies      
The projects of this guy are really cool (http://moeller.io)!
jgrahamc 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Seems like a powerful device. Did I miss it or is there no information on power consumption?
Zenst 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Best pair of odd sock(sic) I've seen in ages.

What is interesting is the ability to program them via a graphical drag and drop style visual programming language and that is something for people learning that will appeal strongly. As for the specs and abilities I shall leave that to those more vested in this microcontroller.

Letting Employees Work Remotely Pays Off inc.com
38 points by czue  5 hours ago   12 comments top 6
crazygringo 12 minutes ago 0 replies      
Wait a minute, they went to Brazil and chose... São Paulo?

They chose a crowded traffic-clogged endless concrete jungle, over the airy, green, lush beachside tropical paradise of Rio?

At least it says they went to Rio on long weekends.

moocow01 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Can we please not make programming with your shirt off in the workplace a trend? I've heard of brogrammers but this takes it to another level.
bruce511 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Sounds like a cool idea. But frankly, for me, I hate programming on a laptop (which I have to do when I travel.) I much prefer the 3 * 22" monitor setup I have in the office. Not to mention the comfy chair, office-with-a-door and so on.

I can see how it kinda makes sense, a bit of fun, and a bit of holiday, good team building and so on, but its not something that appeals to me. Maybe, probably, I'm just too old....

Edit - it also probably helps that I live in a town with good weather all year round.

mmastrac 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Whatever script inc.com uses for its bizarre mobile frame doesn't work well on Chrome Mobile. I can't get more than halfway through the story.
atomical 1 hour ago 0 replies      
What kind of hours do these guys work? If it's 60 hour weeks it sounds like a hellish lifestyle to have to deal with culture shock and long work weeks at the same time.
mikaelcho 2 hours ago 2 replies      
Our startup is thinking of doing this in a few months to get away from the Canadian winter for a few weeks. It also helps that our designer lives in Mexico, so that would be our first location choice. Any affordable location recommendations for a travelling startup?
Forget the last one. Do the next one. zackshapiro.com
13 points by kine  2 hours ago   4 comments top 3
kiba 59 minutes ago 1 reply      
I am not sure if it is related to "the next one" idea, but I do have continuous goal for writing: writes 500 word a day(This is a bit oversimplified, as my software actually do not calculate how many words I added, but how many words I added or deleted). Do it everyday and write whatever interests you. It could be a novel, essay, a story, an idea, a list of things, a blueprint for invention, an interesting really fact or anything really. So long as you write 500 word changes a day.

Well, I didn't keep have a specific goal at first, actually. I just know that I gotta write something. So I did, and eventually got a specific goal later. The fruit of labor thus far is one essay an a page full of half completed random essays that are constantly evolving.

These are the result:

1. http://kibabase.com/articles/notes-and-thoughts The page of random essays totaling to 7.5 K words)

2. http://kibabase.com/articles/self-quantification (A 2K words essay)

Well, I didn't produce much, but that's only for about two months. It just mean that I need to keep writing constantly.

Apocryphon 2 hours ago 0 replies      
"I think if you do something and it turns out pretty good, then you should go do something else wonderful, not dwell on it for too long. Just figure out what's next." - Steve Jobs
bowlofnoodles 2 hours ago 0 replies      
In my experience this also applies to failures and other things that don't turn out so well. If you make a mistake, don't spend more time thinking about it than is necessary to figure out what went wrong and fix those mistakes. Learn from it and keep going.
European entrepreneurs: Les misérables economist.com
87 points by keiferski  10 hours ago   65 comments top 13
_delirium 7 hours ago 4 replies      
Isn't talking about "European" entrepreneurs a bit generalizing? There are some similarities, but many more differences. The article itself even seems to hint at it, but not note it explicitly: in a graph labeled "life sentences", purporting to show how long it takes for "European" entrepreneurs to be free of debt, the bar for Denmark is so small that you can barely see it. Maybe they mean primarily French & German entrepreneurs?

As an American living in Denmark, I would personally prefer to bootstrap a business here rather than in the U.S., though it does depend on what kind of business. The main advantage to doing it here, imo, is that the healthcare story is solved, though maybe that'll be better in the U.S. after PPACA comes into effect in 2014. Another plus is better government support for small businesses: grants are available, and you can get some cheap early part-time employees by participating in subsidized internship programs intended to "upskill" people on unemployment. The main downside is high wages (though that matters less in tech, where wages are very high in the US, too), less access to venture capital if you're going the non-bootstrapping route, and some general problems from not being in the U.S. (less media visibility, problems with payment gateways, etc.).

pg 3 hours ago 3 replies      
This chart makes it clear how big the difference is: http://bit.ly/Qcrv3R
raverbashing 8 hours ago 2 replies      
Well, it's a lot of factors (I am currently in an European country, YMMV between them)

- Lack of "drive". Young people mostly want to find a nice job and that's it. In my perception this is less in France, where people may want to "kick ass" more (historical pride maybe) and maybe in the UK or Germany

- People are 'naive', and by that I mean the sentiment "this is the way it is, don't bother changing". Since everything pretty much works, it's difficult to see faults (or maybe faults enough to motivate a change)

- People in Europe need more hand-holding. They are usually more theoretical as well instead of "go there and do it", something is much stronger in the American continent (which goes from Canada all the way to Uruguai/Argentina/Chile in the south)

- Labor laws, difficulty in getting talent outside of the EU (depends on the country really - still, usually easier than getting an H1B)

Also, every country has its quirks: French cannot speak english to save their lives (usually)

In the end, Europe has a lot of opportunities, they have only to think outside of the box. But don't be so quick to count them out, they have literally thousands of years of experience.

tluyben2 9 hours ago 2 replies      
The Economist is overly gloomy about the EU I feel; every week you get pounded by more and more 'this will end badly' stories about the EU.

That said, I do really feel the 'good enough' vibe here in the EU; most people I talk to who have companies (just started or older) have the 'it's good enough this way' attitude. 'We' generally don't want to be billionaires or even have billion Euro companies. Once you are making insane profit margins and have a fat company bank account, all employees are happy, growth is stopped and the goal becomes to sustain that situation. I know great entrepreneurs here who started out with crazy plans; once hitting that point (and that can be any revenue mind you; for some companies it's E10 million/year, for others it's E100 million/year, but rarely more than that) they find it good enough. I think a lot stems from that feeling of not actually wanting to be 'the biggest', just wanting a stable, sustainable company producing profit margins year after year to lick your fingers by.

Edit: read the comments; 500 biggest companies in the world, 132 US, 166 EU and France has more than the UK. Didn't check those things, just copying here for completeness.

flexie 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I don't know about all this Euro bashing. I believe America is dominant in entrepreneurship mainly because of the language. Other factors are the huge home market and the few public sector jobs.

I've been starting businesses in two very different European countries, and lived in a third, just like I've been living in America. And I certainly don't believe America is equipped with better laws for entrepreneurs or with a more risk encouraging mentality.

lifeisstillgood 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Ok, this is my favourite rant subject (pace wonga.com).

It's the welfare state and related systems. But not a Ron Paul style get rid of the lot, we should recognise that unemployment and welfare payments make a huge amount of short term sense. We do not want a skilled worker made redundant to lose house and family becaause it takes three months to find a job.

But we should look carefully at long term welfare payments (long term unemployment, chronic disability and especially retirement). Just when we should change the expectation from how many jobs did you apply for, to how many customers did you advertise to is important not only for an entrepreneurial society, but a sane and fair one.

Look for work for three months, then look to create a company, and welfare will support you.

Most importantly I would change the focus for those under 24, whose first encounter with welfare (pretty much all school leavers and graduates in this climate it seems) should be a positive creative experience, not a dismal on the scrap heap one

lifeisstillgood 7 hours ago 1 reply      
On a slight tangent, but the Economist ought to know better than to lump spotify, Skype and wonga.com together. Wonga lends short-term cash to desperate families at an APR of 4,500 % (yes, four thousand).

Come on Economist, money lending at rates the Kray twins used to do is not an indicator of a functioning entrepreneurial society

Other than that usual Economist quality

martinced 6 hours ago 2 replies      
/rant on

I don't agree that the various EU governments are starting to "get it". It's the entire contrary for a lot of countries.

There are very, very few, say, EU success software stories (SAP! Yeah. German. Not french). And it's not just software and that is for a very good reason.

In some countries like France and all the other socialo-communist EU countries people are not just looking with a very bad eye entrepreneurs who failed: they're also and, most importantly, developing a hatred of people who work hard and a hatred for the fruit of hardwork (they hate both success and money, success and money being related but not identical).

So there's this entire mindset which is ruining, for example, the France economy and it's ruining it fast. Rich people are leaving the country (Belgium, Switzerland and the U.S. all being destinations now seeing more and more rich french persons coming).

The unions here are way too strong and SMEs and independents are seen as people you should milk as much as you can.

And for those who "succeed", don't you dare to buy a Porsche because you'll then be seen as an "ennemy of the (socialo-communist) state".

Honestly it is sad but France is deserving what it is getting now: recession, SMEs going bankrupt, big companies delocalizing, rich people fleeing, they're debt skyrocketing (91% of the GDP), the GDP that shall fall (0% Q2 growth and now a recession that shall start), the loss of its status as the world's fifth biggest power (should be in 6th place by the end of Hollande's mandate).

Socialo-communist countries spreading the hate of succesful people can only go one way: mediocrity.

France and it's crazy wellfare system is going the way Greece and Spain went. This is only the beginning of the eurocrisis and it shall get uglier by the day. Unemployment is going to skyrocket. In the end debt shall need to be monetized and we'll see a massive drop in the value of the euro.

Because what we're seeing now is a joke compared to what is coming: how is France going to save its sinking economy without investors, without entrepreneurs and without people willing to work?

Want an example as to how crazy the socialo-communists are in a lot of European countries? In Spain in 5 years 210 000 SMEs went bankrupt. Unemployment is sky-high and Spain is probably going to default (it's debt is "low" compared to its GDP but its GDP is falling and its debt is taking +9% per year... It's only a matter of time before Spain becomes the new Greece). So 210 000 SMEs bankrupt: can you imagine how many people previously unemployed are now without a job? And you know what the public servants do? Public servants who have a friggin' job working for the state do protest in the street because they had a 3% cut on their salary.

A 3% cut and they protest in the street. While a lot of people who previously had job working in the private sector don't even have a job anymore.

That is why all these socialo-communist state are fcked. It's over for them. The "sense of entitlement" of the people working for the state is way too important and the part of the state in the economy of these socialo-communist countries is way too important too. There is no way out.

And that is just today... What about tomorrow?

Well, entrepreneurs are way less prone to create a gig in France (or in Spain). They're moving to greener pasture. I've got friends who created companies in the U.S. (SoCal) and in Asia (Tokyo). Why would they stay here in France?

Why would I* stay? You see, now I may be pitching soon: I'm frequenting the local "startup" scene but I already have contacts outside Europe. I'm (of course) willing to move: should I succeed in France I'd be not only milked like a cow to pay for the 56% of the french economy that is directly directed by the state (that number only went up and up: France shall soon default, just like Greece, it's only a matter of time) but I'd also be regarded as a greedy rich bastard responsible for some perceived slavery (which, ironically, is of course the fault of the socialo-communist state and the way-too-greedy state system).

If you live in the U.S. I'd seriously have you consider to not vote for Obama: the public debt of your country never exploded as much than after five years of Obama. That wellfare system and the sense of entitlement it creates shall lead to a socialist country. This has always been the plan of leftists: create a gigantic number of state jobs and promise more and more wellfare, to make sure to get reelected. Once you're too entrenched into socialism the only way out is default.

And then once the nany state defaults you'll get tyranny.

Oh, sure, for a few years your shiny healthcare system shall look nice. And then the discfonctional system shall be hidden under more and more debt.

And then you'll default, just like Greece. Just like Spain is going to. Just like France is going to.

It's not that I'm not a good person. It's not that I wouldn't want everybody to get a good healthcare system. But the only thing socialism leads to is poverty for everyone, besides the leaders. Don't forget where you're coming from and what made your country so great.

F*ck socialism.

/rant off

qwertzlcoatl 8 hours ago 2 replies      
2011 growth rates for the US: 1.5% UK: 1.1% EU: 1.6%.[1] Now the EU is more than the eurozone, but with the UK dragging down the non eurozone component, I can only imagine that euro-nations averaged above the 1.6% EU wide average and so outperformed the UK and US by a large margin (more than the 0.2%ppt margin of error anyway).

[1] http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_real_GDP_g...

VeejayRampay 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Europe provides more of a safety net for poor and lower middle-class people than more dynamic economies.

It's all a matter of choice: do you want REALLY good conditions for the top 10% or decent conditions for everyone?

Economies like China, the USA or Canada favor the former, lots of European countries the latter.

davedx 2 hours ago 0 replies      
"For the €1.5m-4m that firms need to work an idea up into a real business model, though, money is in desperately short supply."

I stopped reading there. I must be living on another planet entirely from whoever wrote this article.

ExpiredLink 6 hours ago 1 reply      
USD:EUR = 1:1,2859 (today)

I laugh at the media-fabricated 'Euro crisis' and the 'Economist'.

hdivider 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Interesting article, especially the part about the maximum time it takes for bankruptees to be freed from debt (makes you feel sorry for entrepreneurs in France who have to go into debt to start their business).

I think a lot of this stuff is due to the attitude of the general population towards entrepreneurs. If the only question that matters to people is "Have you made any revenue yet?" there's probably not much hope for Europe ever catching up with the US in terms of new fast-growing tech businesses.

(I'm hoping the UK is something of an exception, but I'm not really sure. Lots of people here are still very sceptical or pessimistic about new tech companies, especially very small, innovative ones.)

Weekend hack: A little tiled window manager for OS X github.com
60 points by fyolnish  8 hours ago   29 comments top 12
pufuwozu 7 hours ago 2 replies      
I've been using Spectacle for a while and I am working on a port of Xmonad to OSX:


So I was really interested in trying out this fork. A couple of problems:

* Doesn't look like tiling is automatic, you still have to tell each window which side of the screen to tile on (by using Command+Option)

* I was using it for a minute before it crashed - which I didn't even notice

If those two little problems were fixed I think I could definitely use this until I get my version of Xmonad working properly.

richtaur 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Looks similar to [Divvy](http://mizage.com/divvy/), which I bought a while ago and now use about every 30 seconds ;
dfc 7 hours ago 2 replies      
"This is a fork that turns Spectacles into a tiled window manager, that means that if you move a window to the left/right and one already occupies that space, both are resized to fit."

Is this the new definition of a tiling window manager?

bradendouglass 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Tyler came so close to Xmonad on OS X but for some reason there is a stall in development. The explicit nature of this doesn't quite make it a tiling window manager; however, it is definitely one of the best options I have found for the Mac platform so far. Kudos for the fork and I hope it grows!
s00pcan 5 hours ago 2 replies      
I've been using xmonad on arch linux for five months now and it's been amazing. Rock solid stability and no wasted space on the screen, no wasted time arranging windows. Multi-monitor support is second to none. I can't go back.
chriseidhof 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Dude, you keep churning out awesome things. I was just looking at the tiny lua cocoa bridge, really well done.
flexd 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Exactly what I've been needing! Downloading it.

I've felt so useless on OSX after having started using a dynamic tiling wm at work.

tom_usher 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Looks great; been looking for something like this.
I've really enjoyed using Slate[1] for OSX window management - it has great file based configuration and lots of options - often wish it had something a bit more straightforward like automatic tiling window layouts.

[1] https://github.com/jigish/slate

lukeholder 8 hours ago 2 replies      
Is there a binary available? App store?

Ah, just saw the link to http://spectacleapp.com/

lewisflude 8 hours ago 0 replies      
As an avid Spectacle user, I look forward to giving this fork a try!
Create 4 hours ago 1 reply      
port search shiftit

ShiftIt @1.5 (aqua)
Managing windows size and position in OS X

Bootstrap Maintainers Leave Twitter getbootstrap.com
356 points by pearkes  23 hours ago   82 comments top 4
markdotto 20 hours ago  replies      
Bootstrap creator here.

tl;dr: <3, Jacob and I quit Twitter, he's going to Obvious, I'm going to GitHub, it's been amazing, nothing but love, Twitter is great, no ill will, Bootstrap is going to keep going, <3.

First, thanks for the love everyone! Jacob and I love seeing people as excited about the future of Bootstrap as us. We're hopeful that this is just the beginning of it. And now, onto answering some of the questions/comments folks have brought up here thus far.

Jacob left over a month ago and my last day is next Friday (10/5). He's going to Obvious, and (announcing it here for the first time) I'm going to GitHub.

The timing has nothing to do with a disagreement about Bootstrap (seriously, none what so ever), and more to do with us both wanting a change in our own lives for what we do day-to-day. Twitter, the company and product, are both amazing and Jacob and I have worked there for 2.5 years. We're stoked for our next things and we both want to keep working on Bootstrap no matter what. We have an obligation to the community and know it could go much further. (Oh, and yes, I screwed up the date on the post. My bad, yo.)

Bootstrap was created by me at Twitter as a means to make better looking internal tools (I wrote about this on A List Apart awhile back: http://www.alistapart.com/articles/building-twitter-bootstra...). It started off as a simple HTML/CSS thing, then Jacob built plugins on top of it, and we open sourced it together. We made it at Twitter, so when we wanted to open source it, we went to Twitter to ensure it was good to go. Thus, it was named Twitter Bootstrap (originally, "Bootstrap, from Twitter" actually). Now, it's back to just "Bootstrap".

We don't really think of it as the next jQuery, Django, or Drupal. But you can't deny there is something to front-end frameworks like Bootstrap, and that's what we're excited about. HTML and CSS are the two easiest and most basic building blocks of websites. Everyone knows and uses them, and that's a big part of why Bootstrap has grown so much, and can continue to grow more.

No, we weren't "given time" to work on Bootstrap, but that's because it was a project I started on my own to help other engineers. Jacob came in to shape it into a proper open source project and then wrote all the JavaScript plugins (Fun fact: before the jQuery plugins, he wrote a MooTools library on top of it called Tit, which is a type of bird). Anyway, we weren't given time because it wasn't a company priority, naturally, and we're okay with that. We worked on it, at the office or at home, whenever we wanted and folks were generally okay with that as well.

The move to making Bootstrap its own project and organization is a joint one, between myself, Jacob, and Twitter's Open Source team (@cra). The transition will take time, but we need to grow Bootstrap beyond the two of us and Twitter, and into something more. There is really sooooo much potential for making better things on the Web, and we're hoping we can keep that up with the help of the community.

Anyway, we're both stoked to keep working on Bootstrap. It's a great project that can be so much better, and that's pretty damned awesome to us. Twitter has been amazing for both of us and will continue to down the road. We wish nothing but the best for everyone we've worked with.


coderdude 22 hours ago 5 replies      
Wow, big news for Bootstrap. I think Matt and Jacob realize the huge impact they've made on the web development community and the potential Bootstrap has to become the jQuery of HTML. New developers may begin to ask, "should I learn HTML or Bootstrap?" It's not a far-fetched idea because the same question is sometimes asked by beginners when "deciding between" jQuery and (vanilla) JavaScript. jQuery plugins are ubiquitous and are a large part its success. Bootsnipp (http://bootsnipp.com/) could be the start of a "markup plugin" community. Bootstrap has an impressive ecosystem for a front-end HTML framework and I think that is what sets them apart from the rest. Good luck, guys!
jpadvo 23 hours ago 0 replies      
This is great -- an open source project started within a company, then spun off into its own independent entity. It's really great to see that.

Major kudos to the team and to Twitter for having the generosity to acknowledge a responsibility to the community that extends past their ownership of the project they've created. Thanks. :)

dguaraglia 21 hours ago  replies      
Hm, I'll be the asshole and point out something that to me is kind of obvious: Bootstrap isn't mainstream enough to warrant it's own foundation/organization.

Just looking at the caliber of other projects that have gone this way (at the top of my head: Apache, Drupal, Django, Zope...) and looking at Boostrap I don't think it's even close to the userbase/clout needed to pull this off. Even the maintainers of those other projects, successful as they are, tend to have a day job.

I don't know, maybe I'm reading too much into this, but I think it might be a little to early to make this move. Just my 2c.

Pre-flight cracks in 787 engine ntsb.gov
52 points by kghose  8 hours ago   14 comments top 6
eduardordm 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I experienced such failure on a plane I was flying (CFM56). I don't remember what the exact problem was, but it had something to do with a batch of materials they used in the construction of some blades. A whole lot had to be replaced. It was my 138th hour flying as capt.

This is a new engine, without figuring what causes those fractures, NTBS should ground them. I bet they already know what it is.

My father (37 year of flying) always tell me stories where engines in the industry had vibration resonance problems that caused fractures in the whole airplane those engines never ended up flying.

andrewcooke 8 hours ago 1 reply      
more info - http://www.flightglobal.com/news/articles/ntsb-urges-groundi...

(this is serious because - as far as i can tell - this engine has a 330 minute ETOPS rating http://www.geaviation.com/press/genx/genx_20120308.html http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ETOPS which means that a twin engine plane (like the dreamliner) can fly 5.5 hours (the number in the report above) from "safety" (eg over the atlantic), so if one engine fails the other must continue working for that time. if the problem is common then that is not so reasonable an assumption...)

(not all dreamliners are affected; rolls royce also provide engines)

omegant 7 hours ago 0 replies      
That's a big failure for engines that have been ground tested only. I can't understand how they didn't check (I mean fresh engines just off reasembly line for inspection) them before. This is more or less normal with new models but maybe not this way.
jjm 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Sounds kind of crazy to not test engines under real world conditions. What I mean is not be able to test it under conditions found during actual work (found in the air) prior to release.
photorized 3 hours ago 0 replies      
What's unsettling is that the failure is in the inherently reliable component (shaft).
lmg643 5 hours ago 1 reply      
another reason not to fly on the 787 until it's been in use for several years...
Bit Twiddling Hacks stanford.edu
18 points by rguldener  5 hours ago   3 comments top 3
simias 2 hours ago 0 replies      
An oldie but a goodie.

Mandatory warning: please don't use those unless you really know what you're doing. Most modern CPUs have instructions for computing all of that stuff and the compiler will try to use them. Those clever hacks might actually hurt both readability and performance if they're misused.

Typically on PC architectures (and even on most modern embedded systems) you shouldn't have to use those hacks.

pandaman 1 hour ago 0 replies      
It's a little known fact that >> in C++ (and I suspect in C as well) on a signed type is not guaranteed to be an arithmetical shift. It's up to the implementation and most implementation choose arithmetical shift for signed and logical shift for unsigned but this does not mean that all the implementations do this.
So some of this tricks are contingent on the particular implementation specific behavior.
csmatt 23 minutes ago 0 replies      
Strange, I was using this the other day for the TI Launchpad-based project I'm working on.
Are hackers heroes? nybooks.com
17 points by _feda_  4 hours ago   8 comments top 4
bpatrianakos 3 hours ago 1 reply      
No, hackers in general are not heroes though they (or I should say we) seem to have huge egos and would like to think they are heroes. There's nothing heroic about jail breaking phones and tablets. There's nothing about being a hacker that is in itself heroic. There are however a number of hackers whose work is based on idealistic beliefs and/or for what they believe is for the good of the public and what they do could be considered heroic and so they may be labelled heroes but are hackers heroes? No. I don't like the the fact that someone would try to say they're heroes and the fact that this article landed on the front page here smacks of hacker egotism. Are doctors, school teachers, stock brokers, entrepreneurs, or barbers heroes? Of course not! You could certainly twist your reasoning like a pretzel to argue they are but the truth is these are just people and not all people are heroic and your profession doesn't make you a hero. There are doctors who are in it for the money and there are doctors who want to make a difference. Neither type is heroic in and of itself. To simply go against the grain, question the status quo, and work against the current state of things is not necessarily heroic.

Hackers are not heroes. Certain individuals out there are heroes. They aren't all hackers. They're people from all walks of life and professions, at varying skill levels who do something at great risk, who often sacrifice something, and do something for the good of one or many people. The term hero can be very subjective and I am not comfortable labeling a group of people or even a subset of a group of people as heroes. The fact that someone wrote an article like this just leaves a bad taste in my mouth. Hackers, you're not heroes. Only heroes are heroes.

dfc 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Confront and Conceal is an odd choice given the other three titles. There is only one or two chapters in C&C that are relevant and they add very little to the debate other than providing some "ripped from the headlines" context. The reviewer should have gone with "This Machine Kills Secrets."
Zenst 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Hacker are not heroes as a rule, no sterotype is. A hacker and were talking non-tabloid version of the term I presume are people who question the anwears as much as the initial question and have the tenacity to seek out those answears to the questions nobody else bothers to ask.

A hero is somebody who goes further than others even imagined, it is always a label bestowed upon somebody by others. Hacker is a mindset and when it is bestowed by others is generaly refering to some electronic vandalism.

Using a bic pen to perform a trachyotomy so somebody can breath, that would be a hero hacker if such a definition was needed.

nancyhua 3 hours ago 2 replies      
This discussion is framed very weirdly, almost to the extent of meaninglessness because the language is so imprecise. Asking "is hacking good" is like asking "is evolution good for people when it produces everything from terrible worms that blind people by living and eating their eyes to fantastic bacteria that allows us to digest all kinds of crazy foods?"

Systems always have weaknesses and systems always change. Sometimes we improve the weaknesses for fun or profit or usefulness, sometimes we attack them for fun or profit or malice.

A Letter from Tim Cook on Maps apple.com
587 points by j4mie  1 day ago   475 comments top
robomartin 1 day ago  replies      
What to say? The fact that such a public letter had to be issued means that there's a lot of push-back. Apple just doesn't do that. In fact, I don't remember any software company doing this. I could be wrong. This feels unprecedented.

Not one person posting on HN and the many blogs really knows what happened behind the scenes. Apple engineers are not known for being dumb. Someone had to know that Maps was a bad idea. A huge step backwards. They had to know.

So the question might very well be: Why did they do it?

This couldn't have been out of spite. Just to kick Google off the platform. One just doesn't do that. Maintaining a complex code-base such as iOS is difficult enough. Adding to that the friction of delivering a substandard product is not something one does without very good reasons.

Conjecture is all we have from the outside. My humble guess is that it had to come down to a business deal they did not want to make. The details of the deal are not important. Who was right and who was wrong isn't important. What is important is that whatever they had in front of them convinced Apple management that it they had no choice but to, effectively, downgrade the next release with Maps.

I already know of a lot of non-tech people, particularly outside the US, who are livid about Maps. After dutifully upgrading their devices to iOS 6 they discover that Maps are, in their words, "crap", "useless", "unreliable", "a joke", "not accurate", "una mierda" (shit), etc. The reason for the strong feelings is that, let's face it, if a good tool such as Google Maps is available to you, you might tend to use it.

And a lot of people would use it all the time. My own wife relies on Google Maps all the time. Thankfully she was wise enough to marry a geek who promptly told her not to upgrade her iPhone 4S to iOS 6 and not to swap it out for an iPhone 5. In fact, not one person in my family will do either of those things. And that is the case --that has to be the case-- for millions of people at this point.

This is the data we are not getting and that Apple will probably never release. I own eight iOS devices. Not one of them will be upgraded to iOS 6. In fact, the upgrades stop here until either Maps starts to get really good marks. And, of course, we probably would have purchased at least three iPhone 5's. Not happening. I'll get one for development but it will not be activated.

How many millions are in this boat? If someone is a heavy Google Maps user it makes no sense to get an iPhone 5. What's wrong with a 4S? Nothing. Use their website you say? Not the same, most would say.

As a developer there's a lesson that needs reinforcing every-so-often. What better way to reinforce it than to see a tech giant make some of the mistakes lesser companies make: If you can at all help it, don't base your product on someone else's technology. Don't make someone else's technology such an important part of your offering that not having them will hurt you. Of course, sometimes you have no choice.

As a user and a developer I view iOS 6 as a significant, if not huge, step backwards. Between Maps and the eviscerated app store one has to ask that cliche-ish question: What were they thinking?

Wouldn't we like to know.

Male DNA Commonly Found in Women's Brains sciencedaily.com
29 points by daegloe  7 hours ago   8 comments top 4
alexholehouse 4 hours ago 1 reply      
This story already made the rounds on wednesday

I'm yet to read the paper, but the comment highlighted in the thread from Wednesday raises some points[1]. For ease of access I'll re-replicate it here;

"This is just a PCR study. No evidence that the foreign human DNA even entered host cells, much less that it was expressed. Probably shows only that minute quantities of foreign human DNA can hang around a host body for a while. Most likely explanation is that it gets bound up in the extracellular matrix. Being that the DNA is of human origin, it would not trigger an immune response, but rather, it would just be slowly degraded like the host's own DNA when it is released from dead cells (part of the normal, perpetual turnover of cells). DNA is hardy stuff; people have sequenced DNA from Neanderthal bones.
Study co-author J. Lee Nelson's comments are ridiculous hype. He should be ashamed of himself. That those comments were published in this newspaper uncritically is also an embarrassment.
This work was published in PLoS ONE. PLoS ONE articles are peer reviewed only for the validity of the methods used, not for the importance of the subject matter or the validity of the conclusions drawn. This is where you can publish all sorts of meaningless crap."

I disagree with the extremity of the commentor's view on PLoS ONE articles, and feel they should perhaps have noticed that Dr. Nelson is a lady, not a dude, but still something worth considering.

[1] - http://www.latimes.com/health/boostershots/la-heb-women-brai... , comment 2

lkrubner 5 hours ago 3 replies      
Considering that everyone of us, without exception, gets 50% of our DNA from our father, the phrase "male DNA" deserves some definition. One assumes that perhaps they are talking about DNA that is normally only found on the g Y-chromosome, but they don't say that, and in this case, that is an unfortunate oversight. A science publication should not leave readers guessing about what exactly is being discussed.

They do use the phrase "male cells of fetal origin" but they don't explain why these are male cells. There are several possible explanations, and I am curious which one is true here. Again, they could be talking about a type of expression that relates to Y chromosome. But there was last year the interesting study that suggested end-stage cells know their sex through a process we do not yet fully understand. So what is this study actually saying? I wish they had clarified what "male DNA" means in this context.

brianpan 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Similar earlier stories:

Fetus donates stem cells to heal mother's heart: http://www.newscientist.com/article/dn21185-fetus-donates-st...

Baby/mother cell exchange:

EGreg 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I wonder if mothers also similarly have DNA from female babies, but we just haven't detected it yet because it was easier to distinguish the male DNA.
Apple Apologizes for Misstep on Maps nytimes.com
4 points by brackin  1 hour ago   3 comments top 2
oofabz 1 hour ago 1 reply      
The original iPhone Maps app was only a client. It relied on Google's servers for its data, which already had years of polishing.

The iOS 6 Maps app is an excellent client. Its only problem is with the data it fetches from Apple. Their maps data is very new and rather less polished.

It is silly to compare the two. Building a worldwide database of map data is orders of magnitude more difficult than writing an iPhone app.

Edit: This comment was a response to OP's headline, which was "Apple built original Maps app in three weeks". He has since changed the headline.

nilium 57 minutes ago 0 replies      
I like Apple's response, but I don't think we need to be reminded of it with every new article repeating their message (or in this case, not even bothering to share the message). It was nice seeing the link to Apple's site here the first time. The TechCrunch link didn't really contribute anything, though that's typical of TechCrunch. Far as I can tell, the only thing the NYT does here is summarize what led up to it and relate it to MobileMe and so on.

They also refer to Tim Cook as "Timothy D. Cook, Apple's chief executive," which honestly baffles me for some reason. I suppose it's just strange seeing an article not refer to him as just Tim Cook (which is what everyone else would use, including Apple). They also seem unable to spell "iPhone" correctly when it begins an article.

At any rate, I think the Apple's own page is sufficient unless something unique is added, and I just don't get the impression that the NYT is doing that. If anything, they're actually ignoring aspects of the message: there's no mention of the alternatives Apple suggested, including Bing. I personally found that interesting, and to ignore it seems a little strange.

A group of Finnish math teachers write an open textbook in a weekend hackathon linja-aho.blogspot.fi
88 points by jerguismi  14 hours ago   16 comments top 9
BenoitEssiambre 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I hope their effort bears fruit. Writing textbooks is long and tedious, more so than one would expect before actually sitting down and trying it. I had hoped to help it happen with a web app I launched this year:


I however, haven't been able to attract any serious content creator.

jpalomaki 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Maybe the value is that you get quickly something that others can then start improving in small steps.

I believe this kind of approach is good at solving the two main problems we usually face in projects:
1) Getting started
2) Delivering at least something

merlinsbrain 5 hours ago 0 replies      
"Programs must be written for people to read, and only incidentally for machines to execute."
- Abelson & Sussman, SICP, preface to the first edition
We know as a fact this is not followed. Code in a hackathon is usually proof of concept for an idea, not launch ready code. Who needs a kernel/proof-of-concept math book with all the existing content out there? Do more harm than good IMO.
Big plus point for the collaboration effort though, which probably would not have happened otherwise.
norswap 12 hours ago 4 replies      
Somehow, I don't think a textbook should be something you write in a hurry.
danielharan 9 hours ago 1 reply      
How long until some of the translation startups get this in just about every language?

(If you have contacts with one, please forward the idea. Come on HN, let's make this happen)

navs 3 hours ago 0 replies      
This is great! I've been telling my father to try something similar for Geology since textbooks are incredibly expensive in Fiji.
brackin 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Much better than what I saw at a Hackathon earlier in the week. It was Tech and Art (Dev's and artists collaborating) which was a great event. Though one project was a 'Pastebin magazine' and consisted of them finding tweeted pastebin links, putting them in Word/Indesign and printing them out.
perfunctory 9 hours ago 1 reply      
How long before we see "a group of doctors produces an open cancer cure in a weekend hackathon".
protolif 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Y U NO i18n?
Apple's Safari Tech Evangelist you've never heard of adactio.com
27 points by cwebbdesign  7 hours ago   7 comments top 5
alwillis 1 minute ago 0 replies      
Any web developer who's ever attended WWDC or has an Apple Developer Connection account knows who Vicki Murley is.

Another way to look at the issue: who's fault is it that you don't know the key people behind the browse engine that powers Safari and Chrome and is dominating the mobile web?

ecopoesis 5 hours ago 1 reply      
https://www.webkit.org/blog/ isn't good enough? These guys go into great detail about what they're working on and have always helped me out quickly when I've run into bugs with Safari.
timothya 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I had heard of her before, but only because I've watched the Safari videos from Apple's WWDC. This is the only place I've encountered her online, and if you're going to call yourself an "evangelist", then I should be seeing you more often than once a year. Compare that with Google Chrome's Developer Relations people - I see their posts online all the time, plus a ton of articles by them, plus they hold office hours on Google+ all the time. That's how to be an evangelist.
masklinn 3 hours ago 1 reply      
> The Safari Technologies Evangelist actually does speak at one conference: WWDC. And the videos from that conference are available online …if you sign on the dotted line.

What dotted line? A free developer account lets you access all WWDC videos since 2010.

nilium 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I think it'd be nice to see more communication, but what kind of communication? As ecopoesis mentioned, https://webkit.org already exists, so I think what this post fails to do is actually say what it's looking for specifically. Is it conferences? A mailing list? Email addresses that are publicly available? The post itself is very flowery towards the end but mostly meaningless. Be specific.

Also not sure what you mean by "sign on the dotted line." The Safari developer program only requires you to create an Apple dev account and is otherwise free. So are all WWDC videos if you simply have an account, regardless of whether you're in any program.

Modern Web Application Development with Perl modernperl.net
25 points by rfreytag  7 hours ago   14 comments top 5
DASD 5 hours ago 0 replies      
For those looking at Dancer as a framework, be aware that there is a Dancer 2 "rewrite" project. The purpose of the new project is to "fix" the use of globals and also to have a consistent core API.


Cieplak 1 hour ago 1 reply      
A Python programmer recently told me that Perl is a Write-Only language.
dysoco 5 hours ago 1 reply      
May I ask.. Is there anything similar to Rails or Django for Perl ?
laurentoget 4 hours ago 0 replies      
this sounds like a very steampunk idea
softbuilder 5 hours ago 1 reply      
s/modern/playing catch-up/g
       cached 29 September 2012 22:02:01 GMT