hacker news with inline top comments    .. more ..    26 Nov 2012 News
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1
The YC VC Program ycombinator.com
180 points by pg  1 hour ago   61 comments top 21
1
jedberg 1 hour ago 1 reply      
This is great! I always thought the $150k was too much of a runway. It allowed the poor startups to limp along for too long.

And besides, the real value from these investments isn't the money, it is the mindshare you get with the VCs. This will help make that mindshare greater.

2
evansolomon 1 hour ago 2 replies      
Is there any significance to Ron Conway not being in the group anymore?
3
dreamdu5t 1 minute ago 0 replies      
I think, "$80k or $150k are pithy amounts of money to fund any sort of company," and wonder what I'm missing?
4
debacle 1 hour ago 5 replies      
What kind of messy things happen with 150k that don't happen with 80k?
5
dmmalam 1 hour ago 5 replies      
80k may be a little tight for international founders, as flights and legal fees for visas can be very expensive. Also silly things like paying extra for deposits on rent/bills as you have no US credit history. But otherwise seems reasonable.
6
khangtoh 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Not everything scales horizontally and shouldn't have to. YC should just stick to a lower number of startups for each cycle.

1) Maintains the prestige of a team being selected.

2) Keeps investment level at previous level.

3) Spend quality time with each team.

7
rdl 1 hour ago 1 reply      
I've never heard of Maverick Capital -- are they the hedge fund? They seem to be med-tech focused, if that's them.
8
rdl 1 hour ago 0 replies      
It's sad to see SV Angel isn't part of the W13 VC program.
9
josh2600 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I think YC has more of a problem dealing with the bad startups than it does dealing with the successful ones. My opinion from Paul's writing is that his goal is to find the AIRbnb's as quickly as possible while relegating things that aren't going to be mammoth. It makes sense when you're playing a volume/numbers game like YC has been doing.

Quite the investor lineup; I think they had their choice of anyone in the world to be honest.

I like reading PG's stuff because these sort of decisions are counterintuitive, but very fun academic/didactic examples.

10
johnrgrace 26 minutes ago 0 replies      
Good call, guaranteeing $150K plus the seed money for the given inputs was far in excess of what you could raise elsewhere for comparable inputs. Simply the seed money, social capital, and demo day was attractive enough for me to apply.
11
metra 43 minutes ago 0 replies      
Off topic: did Yuri Milner lose money on his Zynga and Groupon investments?
12
ssebro 1 hour ago 1 reply      
What stops other investment firms from making identical blanket investments, or how do you guys plan to stop that?
13
andrewhillman 19 minutes ago 0 replies      
YC is treated just like software. Time to scale back and move forward. Those bottlenecks were obviously causing a problem.
14
realrocker 22 minutes ago 0 replies      
So it has become easier to fail fast. The inertia to prevent death has been halved. Good or Bad?
15
polshaw 29 minutes ago 1 reply      
What equity is given for this (/how has it changed?) and is this pre defined or 'negotiated' ?
16
thinkdevcode 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Does this mean that the outside investment of 150k is no longer available? I don't see whats to stop them from investing (150k) anyway, considering it wasn't part of YC in the first place.
In my opinion 80k is a little too low, especially for international founders or those with international teams. I agree, though, that advice from VC would be better in terms of building a business versus just throwing cash at the startup.
17
philwelch 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Is this in addition to the $12k-20k invested by YC itself, for a total of $92k-100k?
18
namank 42 minutes ago 0 replies      
I'm not sure if one amount will fit all startups.

Because categorization is important for organization, how about having startup brackets?

base: 80k
international: 100k
hardware:120k
...

19
bmohlenhoff 1 hour ago 0 replies      
My first thought at seeing the submission title was that YC was offering a program teaching people about how to be VCs. Then I realized that this was simultaneously awesome and nonsensical, since Joe Random probably isn't going to have the scratch necessary to fund much of anything. Still, it would probably be fascinating from an academic perspective.
20
cyphersanctus 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Pg, are there really many ugly ducklings on demo day, despite the rigorous selection and the subsequent teaching/incubation process?
21
kevingibbon 58 minutes ago 0 replies      
love this move. I've seen first hand the 150k let's startups limp around for far to long.
2
Apple's Module proposal to replace headers for C-based languages [pdf] llvm.org
203 points by _djo_  3 hours ago   94 comments top 23
1
haberman 1 hour ago 3 replies      
Overall I like it. I like how they are treating both C and C++ as first-class citizens of this new feature (instead of, for example, inextricably tying its design to classes and namespaces). I like that they have a plausible migration story for how to interoperate with existing header files. And the overall design really looks like something that would fit into all of the C and C++ work that I do without getting in the way.

Sure it's non-standard and no one who cares about portability will use this (yet). But this is exactly the way that good ideas get refined and eventually standardized. You surely wouldn't want to standardize a module system that hadn't been already implemented and tested -- that would just leave you with surprises when theory meets reality.

C and C++ are here to stay -- we should be open to improvements in them.

They don't explicitly mention this, but I'm sure that they have no plans to remove existing #include functionality -- it is a near certainty that someone, somewhere depends on having the preprocessor state affect how an include file is processed. There are probably even cases where you can look at the design rationale for this choice and say "yep, that really is the best solution for what you are trying to do."

2
_djo_ 3 hours ago 2 replies      
This looks promising, aside from being long overdue. Header files have always been one of the more annoying parts of C/C++/Obj-C development.

The important bit is that the proposal's ideas for making the transition easier are good and make it seem like this may get traction where similar efforts have failed before. That Doug Gregor and other LLVM/Clang/LLDB developers are already working on the Clang implementation is even better. At the very least we may see this in Objective-C.

3
nkurz 2 hours ago 6 replies      
While LLVM authors probably know best, I don't understand some of his criticisms on the "Inherently Non-Scalable" slide.

  • M headers with N source files ->  M x N build cost

It's only MxN if there is no use of the "#ifndef _HEADER_H" workaround that he mentioned earlier. Wouldn't adding a preprocessor directive like "#include_once <header.h>" solve this? Alternatively, these guards could be added to the headers themselves without changing the preprocessor. This probably should be a parallel set of headers (#include <std/stdio.h>) to avoid breaking the rare cases that depend on multiple inclusions, but creating that set would be a simple mechanical translation.

  • C++ templates exacerbate the problem

I'm mostly a C programmer, so I have no argument here.

  • Precompiled headers are a terrible solution

Why is this? It likely would break the ability of headers to be conditional on previous #define statement, but since the proposal does this anyway it doesn't seem insurmountable. Along that lines, how does this proposal handle cases where one needs/wants conditional behavior in the header such as "#ifdef WINDOWS" or the like? And is caching headers during the same compilation also "terrible"?

4
meaty 2 hours ago 3 replies      
It the risk of starting a fight, I really don't want this. I'm quite happy with headers and know how to effectively manage them without shooting myself.

Granted there is some compiler overhead for importing large header files but I don't really notice it at all.

Also, we already have an Apple/Next non-standard C extension (objective-C). I don't think we want anything else added without proper standardisation regardless of the motivation. I'd rather they forked the language.

5
vilya 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Anyone know where I can read more detail about this proposal? It looks really interesting, but there are a couple of things I'm not clear on from the pdf:

How do you get away from creating a header file for a closed source module? Without a header, how would users of your module know what they can call? Can you perform reflection on a module to inspect it? Is there some kind of tool proposed, like javadoc or pydoc, to generate documentation for a module?

How does this work with C++ templates? If you don't know in advance what types the template will be instantiated with, how can you pre-compile the code?

I'm sure the authors have thought through all these issues and more; I'd love to read about their solutions.

6
cperciva 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I don't buy the performance argument: NxM -> N + M only works if every one of the N .c files is including every one of the M .h files.

If you're spamming #includes like that, you need to fix your #includes, not redefine the language.

7
thwest 2 hours ago 2 replies      
"Apple's Module proposal..." Is Apple really who deserves credit here? Is there something I missed about Apple's management driving this, and not Gregor or the C++ standards committee?
8
jfaucett 8 minutes ago 0 replies      
He's basically just describing a clunkier version of the Go package model
9
pubby 3 hours ago 2 replies      
Everyone wants modules but nobody can agree on how they should behave. This is why they weren't included in C(++)11.
10
optymizer 25 minutes ago 0 replies      
I hear D is backwards compatible with C (and C++?). They already have modules: http://dlang.org/module.html . I should use D more often.
11
crncosta 3 hours ago 2 replies      
Almost like the way D programming language handle it

http://dlang.org/module.html

12
cjensen 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I didn't see any mention of the recursive-usage problem. How do they plan on handling co-dependant files?

For example, class A's code makes use of class B. Class B's code makes use of class A.

a.h looks like:

  class B;
class A {
public: void foo (B *);
}

a.cc looks like:

  #include "a.h"
#include "b.h"
void A::foo (B *) { b->narf (); }

and b.h and b.cc use A in the same way.

13
jonhohle 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I like the idea, but hopefully they'll shorten the std submodules to `std.io`, `std.lib`, etc.
14
rjzzleep 3 hours ago 3 replies      
long overdue indeed, reminds me a lot of google go?
15
rootedbox 41 minutes ago 0 replies      
Maybe all the things they figured out in pascal aren't that bad.
16
sev 1 hour ago 0 replies      
They mention:

> "‘import' ignores preprocessor state within the
source file"

I wonder if that would remove specific use-cases where you wouldn't want the import to ignore the state of the pre-processor within the source file?

Overall, I like it!

17
mtdev 2 hours ago 2 replies      
Looks like the core issue is a poor preprocessor implication. It's a good idea in principle, however, we would be adding new features to address shortcomings in existing features instead of fixing the problems in the existing code.
18
jeremyx 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Since these are not in C++11, we'll have to wait 10 years...
19
acomjean 2 hours ago 1 reply      
I thought one of the points of headers system was you could use the code without having to slog through all the source.

Thinking about my trips to /usr/include, those headers weren't that useful for coding with but you could get constants and function names at least.

20
zopticity 49 minutes ago 0 replies      
Looks like they are trying to rewrite Python.
21
georgeg 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Is D not doing this sort of thing already or am I wrong?
22
msbarnett 2 hours ago 0 replies      
> The article is disingenuous. Alongside its oh-so-sassy table of file sizes for helloworld, it needs a table of runtimes for helloworld. Turning stdio into an API instead of preprocessor soup is going to blow that up, unless the guy means something very unusual by "API".

You seem to be deeply confused here. This is simply a proposal for persisting the AST for eg) stdio across compiler invocations instead of reparsing it on every textual substitution of a #include, and isolating source AST changes from erroneously corrupting header ASTs. It has no runtime implications because the outputs of the linking stage will be identical.

stdio's preprocessor soup is its API. You seem to be the one with an unusual and much narrower meaning of "API".

23
jheriko 2 hours ago 1 reply      
the one problem i agree with him on is performance - from what i can see his proposal does something to potentially improve that, but its not clear. i worry that caching pre-processed files is a red herring - its it really faster than re-including? what about preprocessor states? what about macros in include files? etc.

i feel that the preprocessor ultimately ends up with the same amount of work, just an extra pass for each included header to build a version to be cached… not to mention the complexity required to handle the multiplicity of pre-processor states required for this. maybe i am being dim and missing the obvious.

tbh, i'd rather they made their compiler work properly, like respecting alignment on copies with optimisation turned on, or implementing the full C++ 11, before adding language features to fix problems that nobody really has.

3
Testing for Beginners enoughtobedanger.us
26 points by brycecolquitt  38 minutes ago   1 comment top
1
gailees 14 minutes ago 0 replies      
Thank you. I've used Codeacademy, Coursera, Udacity, edX, and while all of them do a somewhat decent job teaching me how to program, I've totally missed the boat on testing.
4
Bank of America Telephone Access Security Hole privateinternetaccess.com
25 points by rasengan  1 hour ago   4 comments top 3
1
georgeorwell 45 minutes ago 1 reply      
The responsible thing to do in this situation is to keep escalating at the bank until somebody listens. "Bank of America supervisor" implies a manager at a call centre. A few more escalations and you reach some pretty senior people with actual authority to change things.

A zero-day involving actual dollars (BoA) is a lot different than a zero-day involving email addresses (AT&T, recently). If this exploit makes withdrawals possible, and it sounds like it does, then you're making it easy to seriously mess up someone's life before it's fixed.

2
chayesfss 43 minutes ago 0 replies      
Hate to pile on but security & boa don't go together too well http://www.gosecureauth.com/blog/easily-bypass-bank-of-ameri...
3
csmatt 41 minutes ago 0 replies      
It's not just BofA. I know of at least one other popular bank that uses the last four of one's SSN as the default password. They may also require a DOB, but that's simple enough.
6
Using Erlang, C And Lisp To Fight The Tsunami Of Mobile Data highscalability.com
36 points by bugsense  1 hour ago   7 comments top 4
1
bsaul 14 minutes ago 0 replies      
Why using a self-made lisp here ? Why not using an existing one ? Is it because regular lisps use a VM ? But then what's the tradeoff ?

On a side note, i really don't know if the savings will be worth it once the company starts growing and hiring. They'll spend a lot of time maintaining very custom code, running on a custom implementation of a language, alongside erlang codebase... Unless they open source everything to get a community to grow the user base for their tool.

2
nnq 8 minutes ago 0 replies      
It would be nice to know how many man-hours it took them to get this system from 0/idea to production and how many people were in the team...
3
martinced 1 hour ago 2 replies      
Self-made Lisp, in-memory database and hacking the Linux kernel: what's not to like about it ; )

I'm wondering: how does one decide to change the TCP_TIMEWAIT_LEN from 60 seconds to 20 seconds? 20 seems an arbitrary picked value: I understand that by doing so they can drastically cut down on the number of open connections after the last FIN is received, but why 20 instead of, say, 17 or, say, 9?

4
dschiptsov 58 minutes ago 0 replies      
Should we call this example code a Spaghetti Scheme?)
7
Poll: What databases does your company use?
26 points by smilliken  1 hour ago   18 comments top 17
1
kami8845 7 minutes ago 0 replies      
2
martinp 18 minutes ago 1 reply      
Most companies usually use more than one.

At my current job we use PostgreSQL and MySQL in production, and H2 in development. At my previous job we used Sybase SQL Anywhere (horrible, wouldn't recommend it), Microsoft SQL server, MySQL, Amazon RDS and H2.

3
tgrass 31 minutes ago 0 replies      
Excel.

Someone save me.

4
trebor 14 minutes ago 0 replies      
We use MySQL exclusively, unless a client forces us into MsSQL/IIS.

I am trying to convert us to PostgresQL over time, but I still have to get a good guide on how to use it.

5
natehark 11 minutes ago 0 replies      
We use PostgreSQL and Cassandra. We're also using MongoDB for an internal reporting application, but don't use it for our service offering.
6
adelevie 15 minutes ago 0 replies      
Do backend-as-a-service databases count?
7
pelle 35 minutes ago 0 replies      
We use Datomic
8
MichaelGG 10 minutes ago 0 replies      
VoltDB
9
tadruj 8 minutes ago 0 replies      
Firebase is missing
10
theltrj 3 minutes ago 0 replies      
SAP Hana
11
WALoeIII 19 minutes ago 0 replies      
MySQL + Percona.
12
VaedaStrike 35 minutes ago 0 replies      
Datomic
13
illegalsmile 29 minutes ago 0 replies      
Access.

Built a database to do basic inventory of instruments and calibrations.

14
tfleischer 28 minutes ago 0 replies      
Amazon SimpleDB
15
kt9 37 minutes ago 0 replies      
Amazon DynamoDB
16
gullfaraz 18 minutes ago 0 replies      
17
nessus42 21 minutes ago 0 replies      
H2
8
Dimsum is like head or tail, but pulls randomly from the entire file or stream noblemail.ca
9 points by snoble  25 minutes ago   5 comments top 2
1
nullc 2 minutes ago 0 replies      
uhhh. You mean like shuf -n NNNN ?
2
andrewcooke 11 minutes ago 2 replies      
uses reservoir sampling -http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reservoir_sampling

(so it presumably consumes the entire stream before giving any results; any alternative i can think of would not be "really random" unless you knew the length of the stream in advance).

9
Why play when you can code? MakeGamesWithUs helps the new generation make games venturebeat.com
31 points by jvrossb  2 hours ago   10 comments top 3
1
evo_9 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Link to game making website: http://www.makegameswith.us/

Unfortunately it's Facebook login only to sign-up and use this currently.

Does anyone from makegameswith.us know if they'll be changing this anytime soon?

2
Munksgaard 1 hour ago 2 replies      
Slightly off topic, but the title intrigued me.

I love coding. For me, there is nothing more satisfying than sitting down with a project, identifying problems and trying to solve them, and emerging victorious some time later. It can be something as small as writing a parser for a fictive language (with the hopes of writing a compiler eventually): The rush when I can finally run "parse sampleProgram.prog" and I get the desired AST is amazing.

However, coding is something that takes considerable time, not to mention the large amounts of mental energy needed to work on even small projects, and sometimes I simply don't feel like I would be able to complete anything of significance. How many times haven't I sat in front of my computer at 10pm, knowing that I should head to bed in an hour or two, with plenty of coding projects I want to work on, but knowing that starting probably wouldn't lead very far, simply because of the investment of time and energy needed to produce anything.

Those are the times where I resort to games, movies, TV-shows, books or similar. Lately I've been trying to focus more on reading books, since they almost always leave me with a more lasting feeling of satisfaction, but in the past most of this time has been spent playing games.

I want to get better at coding and I want to work more on some of my projects (I am notoriously bad at finishing stuff, something else grabs me and I lose interest, or maybe it's because I get demotivated every time I encounter something hard), so I wish that I could get more stuff done in those late hours.

Have others experienced the same, and how have you dealt with it? I realize that sometimes your brain needs to unwind, but I feel like I'm not getting enough out of my evenings. Does anyone have any suggestions for cool programming projects or exercises that could be worked on when you're a little bit tired at the end of the day? How do you motivate yourself to work on those little pet projects when all you want is to kick back and watch a silly movie?

3
allsystemsgo 37 minutes ago 1 reply      
I haven't looked too closely at their tutorials. Last I looked they seemed pretty simplistic. Do they actually teach you objective-c? I saw maybe 3 or 4 pages of actual teaching, and then saw a link to some example, at that was it really... Maybe I'm wrong?
10
SpaceX founder Elon Musk wants to start a Mars colony slashgear.com
26 points by ytNumbers  2 hours ago   25 comments top 8
1
a-priori 46 minutes ago 7 replies      
I have full confidence that, given enough time, Musk can create the technology necessary to ferry people to Mars and establish a colony. That's an engineering problem, and as we've seen he's very adept at building companies to tackle those.

But the key problem then becomes: why would people want to spend $0.5m to deal with all the inconveniences of being a first settler on Mars? It takes months to go there, and once you're there you'll be stuck in cramped quarters with only basic amenities. Plus the health risks of radiation and equipment failure.

So people need to be compensated for these inconveniences and risks with a salary greater than they could make on Earth. This means that you need a functioning Martian economy. People won't go en masse without it making economic sense for them to do so. But in order for that to develop, the colony needs to produce something of value.

To draw an analogy to the European settlement of North America, the first permanent European settlements were port towns for exporting resources like furs and minerals back to Europe. In this way, the North American economy was bootstrapped off of the European economy.

The same thing needs to happen here where we need to bootstrap a Martian economy off of the Earth economy by exporting resources back to Earth.

2
drd 29 minutes ago 3 replies      
Normally, settlers leave their home land because they don't have anything to lose. So they look for new things that may improve their lives; just look at the history. Why on earth, rich people want to go to Mars? They cannot drive a Ferrari; they cannot build a mansion either. Just to prove that they are cool people?

Paul Graham said: “Live in the future, and then build what's missing.” Probably Elon Mask is trying to apply this rule. Well, at least I don't get it.

3
mtgx 1 hour ago 0 replies      
We're probably 5-10 years away until they can even send a rocket to Mars with humans, and another 10 years until the idea of a colony can begin to take shape. It's all very exciting, though.
4
VMG 28 minutes ago 1 reply      
I wonder if he is a believer in the technological singularity.
5
truncate 44 minutes ago 2 replies      
Isn't Mars atmosphere and climate unsuitable for humans? I don't think technology to "hack atmosphere" will be ready in this century.
6
throwaway5426 38 minutes ago 0 replies      
People on HN are for the most part in awe of this vision(colonizing Mars). I find interesting to confront this vision with a mystic's opinion.
Why?
Because both scientists and mystics seek to acquire knowledge, although the path undertaken is of a significantly different nature. One seeks outside himself, the other inside.

Here is a rephrasing of a quote of Meher Baba (a respected spiritual master):
What will man find on mars? nothing but himself. (He said it about the moon)

I am genuinely curious to know the opinion of the HN crowd about the fundamental disagreement between these two visions?

7
agracey 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Where do I sign up? I can take out a loan
8
notdrunkatall 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Elon Musk is my hero.
11
On 81st birthday, Oregon man gives company to employees (2010) seattletimes.com
179 points by cfontes  8 hours ago   23 comments top 12
1
decode 6 hours ago 1 reply      
This reminds me of a similar story told by E.F. Schumacher in his 1979 book "Good Work." Quoting from the chapter "A viable future visible in the present":

  The second link of my little chain is this company called Scott Bader,
a plastics company founded by Ernest Bader, a Swiss Quaker immigrant to
England before the First World War. He's now about eighty-five. Ernest
Bader was penniless when he started in England. He said, All my life I
will have to work for others. What a dreadful system. Well, it didn't
work out like that. He was an entrepreneur and he had a business and in
1951 he suddenly woke up and said, I am now doing to all these people what
I suffered from when it was done to me. I am not going to go out of this
life with this feeling. No, I must do something. So he got in touch with
various people, including myself, and said, I want to put this on a basis
that I as a Quaker and a pacifist believe in. I don't believe in what I
am doing. And so we worked very hard and hammered out a constitution for
this firm. Ernest Bader said, No, I don't want to have ownership of this
company, and so all the capital, except 10 percent, was vested in the
commonwealth, which was set up for this purpose as a limited company. The
equity doesn't lie anymore with Ernest Bader, it lies with that
commonwealth, and everybody who works for a certain length of time becomes
a member of the commonwealth. Legally speaking, the commonwealth is the
owner of the operating company. At first the family retained 10 percent
founder's share, so arranged that they had a majority, not with the
intention of using it but as a last resort. Because it is jolly difficult
to build something up but it is very easy to ruin it.

[...]

It was not until 1963, that is, twelve years later, that we felt it worked.
The founder's shares were also put into the general pocket of the
commonwealth, so it is the administration of the commonwealth that owns
the thing.

Schumacher goes on to describe how this created a radical realignment of incentives for the company and to list some of the effects created by this realignment. For example, they put a cap on the maximum spread between the highest paid and lowest paid employees, committed to staying small (spinning off new companies when they needed to grow), and required that a significant portion of all profits be invested in the local community.

Scott Bader still exists and is still owned and run by the employees:

http://www.scottbader.com/governance.html

2
neilkelty 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Reminds me of Chuck Feeney - who made billions and then gave it all away/set up a foundation, including giving $26 million to long term employees.

Great book on him called `The Billionaire Who Wasn't`

3
refurb 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Not to sound like a cynic here, but: http://www2.gtlaw.com/pub/alerts/2003/kahnj_03.asp

What Are the Tax Advantages of an ESOP to the Shareholder?

If the corporation is a C corporation and the shareholder sells 30% percent or more of his or her stock, the owner can defer indefinitely the taxation of his or her gains on the sale of the stock. The additional liquidity for the shareholder presents vast investment opportunities and increases his or her estate and charitable planning options.

4
Akharin 4 hours ago 0 replies      
The article is from 2010...
5
robodale 5 hours ago 1 reply      
This is awesome. I buy his grains all the time.
6
jacquesm 6 hours ago 0 replies      
That's a really neat birthday present! Awesome.
7
patja 3 hours ago 0 replies      
It is a great story but it happened almost 3 years ago.
8
Beltiras 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I've used his product which I would rate as phenomenally good. Especially their Guar Gum.
9
n_coats 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Sounds like a great guy and boss! Bravo!
10
shaaaaawn 2 hours ago 0 replies      
This is amazing
11
cyphersanctus 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Beautiful.
12
sdfasdfa 1 hour ago 0 replies      
This is so unamerican. Giving stuff away for free is really bad. Teach a man to fish instead. Or rather, the man should be trying to learn to fish. It just feels so bad. Like spoiling a child.

If you really want to help somebody you must really make them work for it with blood and sweat. Otherwise they will not appreciate it. And they will teach their children (sub-consciously) to just wait for the next billionaire to give them something.

12
Show HN: A souped-up HTML-based table github.com
18 points by mmurph211  1 hour ago   9 comments top 4
1
TazeTSchnitzel 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Why the special grid/row/cell tags and special data inpits? Why not just use a vanilla HTML table, then you would at least have graceful degradation?
2
gbadman 18 minutes ago 0 replies      
3
hayksaakian 44 minutes ago 2 replies      
I'm wondering what the checkboxes are for in the demo.
4
gullfaraz 15 minutes ago 0 replies      
13
Cosmo: A free Metro-inspired theme for Bootstrap bootswatch.com
113 points by thomaspark  6 hours ago   34 comments top 24
1
drivebyacct2 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Not all that Metroy, as someone who spent all summer straight immersed in Metro.

Also, I wish Foundation would get 1% of the attention Bootstrap does. Once you figure out how to get past their docs-light into the full docs, I've found it to be FAR faster to work with than Bootstrap.

2
nlh 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Say what you will about Windows 8 / MSFT, but this is a damn fine-looking theme.
3
irahul 2 hours ago 0 replies      
There is a link to demo in there http://bootswatch.com/cosmo/

I like the look, and will definitely be using it in internal projects and prototypes.

I found it a bit hard to read super light gray on somewhat light gray or plain white background(quotations, dropdown). I think a little more contrast is required. The default button, especially when used on similar colored background(forms), has the same issue.

I understand they are going for the metro look, but adding a drop shadow to actionable items(buttons) while the not-clickable items remain flat(alert; element not clickable but the cross) will help mitigate some end-user confusion.

4
thehodge 2 hours ago 1 reply      
I love bootswatch and would happily pay $5-$10 a month for regular swatches like this uploaded every few days / week, I'm not a designer nor do I want to spend time trying to be, bootstrap + bootswatch give me the ability to get something up ,running and looking pretty damn good very quickly.
5
zoop 5 hours ago 2 replies      
It is a nice looking theme but it has the same problem that Metro has: there isn't anything indicating what is clickable and what is not.
6
RobAley 5 hours ago 2 replies      
Is it just me, or do elements of it remind anyone of the latest gmail / google groups etc. interface?
7
codewright 57 minutes ago 0 replies      
I like Metro but for one thing...

...the buttons aren't apparently clickable. I embrace the shift away from excessive skeuomorphism as much as anybody but failing to provide affordances is inexcusable.

8
fkaminski 28 minutes ago 1 reply      
Its only me? or i´m the only one here to think that Metro UI is corny like the 80´s ?
i think that as time goes by, people will be ashamed of using this as they were ashamed about their hair style in their pictures from the 80´s :)
9
eungyu 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Sweet, going flat will reduce the gradient bloat that's currently in the default Bootstrap css.
10
fredsted 4 hours ago 1 reply      

   * { border-radius: 0 !important; }

11
kmfrk 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Probably the best Bootstrap theme yet. This is also why Bootswatch some kind of "favourite" button so people can store the best themes for later use.
12
digitalmerc 1 hour ago 0 replies      
You know when we built [PDFzen](https://pdfzen.com), we used Bootstrap and made it Metro-esque. I wish we'd have had something like this for the homepage. It certainly would've sped things up.
13
DrinkWater 5 hours ago 0 replies      
One of the fewer beautiful Bootstrap Themes.
14
dnyanesh 1 hour ago 0 replies      
It's good but It doesn't look like Metro. Infact, it looks similar to Google's Web apps UI (Gmail, Gcal, etc).
15
evv 2 hours ago 0 replies      
It's beautiful. For better readability on the demo page, I recommend the following:

section { margin-top: 60px; }

16
Avalaxy 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Very nice! I've been waiting for something like this. There are other metro themes for bootstrap, but they're a bit over the top and try to replicate the metro GUI on the PC/tablet.
17
indiecore 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I like it. I like it a lot, very stylish work.
18
RaphiePS 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I like it, but the dropdown menus look strangely out of place.
19
jtreminio 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Funny enough, the form elements look better on Win8/IE10
20
mikegioia 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Info is a purple button and a blue alert/badge/label.
21
mmhd 2 hours ago 0 replies      
This style is what Bootstrap should have been from the start. Well done.
22
newsreader 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Nice. I been looking for something like this: clean and simple...
23
jesusj 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Looking good! :-)
24
viciousplant 3 hours ago 0 replies      
color not bold enough, anyway, it's good.
14
Federal officials take down 132 websites in 'Cyber Monday' crackdown thehill.com
16 points by billyarzt  1 hour ago   12 comments top 7
1
lancewiggs 4 minutes ago 0 replies      
Why not take down eBay then? I'm sure officers could easily fulfil the same criteria of being able to buy "counterfeit" goods from there. Amazon too no doubt.
Letting authorities get away with this sort of shoot-first approach is a very slippery slope. The Dot Com debacle is simply a bigger version.

Sure - these may be bad actors, but we don't really know that do we. Where is the due process? Where is the investigation uncovering a warehouse full of goods? Can any of us trust our business to a .com domain name any more?

2
usea 43 minutes ago 2 replies      
As part of the operation, federal law enforcement officers made undercover purchases of products such as sports jerseys, DVD players, clothing and jewelry from websites suspected of selling counterfeit products. If the copyright holders confirmed that the products were unauthorized, ICE obtained a court order to shut down the sites.

I am confused due to the way this is worded. Does this mean that sites selling second-hand, authentic goods (not counterfeit) could be taken down if the copyright-holder did not "authorize" the site to sell their goods?

3
rwmj 42 minutes ago 0 replies      
Be nice if they could pay a bit more attention to the things that matter to the little people, like fraud and spam.
4
nekojima 1 hour ago 1 reply      
What about those folks who bought from these sites in the preceding days and weeks before this action was taken? Shouldn't sites be taken down as found, instead of waiting for a "special" day, if they allegedly violate laws.
5
city41 23 minutes ago 0 replies      
If they have the ability to do this, then what would SOPA have bought them?
6
benhebert 15 minutes ago 0 replies      
Do the websites allegedly selling counterfeit products have any way to defend themselves? Or does the copyright holder just say, this is mine and they get shut down without any verification.
7
pav3l 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Not sure what they achieved. Tomorrow the same people will register another 132 domain names and continue operating as usual.
15
ICOA Wasn't Acquired by Google, Executive Says wsj.com
30 points by obeone  2 hours ago   8 comments top 4
1
aresant 2 hours ago 2 replies      
I get it that TechCrunch etc all need to push news at breakneck speed, but not even bothering to fact-check a PRWeb.com story is kind of ridiculous.

PRWeb is a penny-stock / SEO favorite because essentially you can pay PRWeb $499 and your story goes onto Yahoo Finance, Bloomberg, WSJ, etc in their "Press Releases" sections (which in some cases appear directly next to the stock information).

Brands like the SF Chronicle have entire sections dedicated to PRWeb where anybody can borrow the SFGate credibility / wrapper and publish just about anything they like, like say a slip & fall attorney:

http://www.sfgate.com/business/prweb/article/Boston-Slip-and...

So yah, we all know that editorial standards are slipping but that was just a face plant by reporting agencies.

2
jpdoctor 1 hour ago 1 reply      
I assume this was the reason? http://finance.yahoo.com/q/bc?s=ICOA+Basic+Chart&t=5d

I don't see how they'd even make their money back on the $500 press release at those prices, but whatever.

3
huhtenberg 1 hour ago 0 replies      
They must've been a target stock in a pump-n-dump scam.
4
w1ntermute 1 hour ago 0 replies      
People are calling this a pump and dump scheme.
16
Tips for Push Notifications parse.com
7 points by depoll  26 minutes ago   3 comments top 3
1
lucb1e 8 minutes ago 0 replies      
The perfect example of how you shouldn't do it. This is exactly what I would consider pushy and very annoying.
2
lnanek2 12 minutes ago 0 replies      
The Android Design guide on notifications is quite good as well, with tips like prefer ones that are time sensitive and have to do with other people:
http://developer.android.com/design/patterns/notifications.h...

Android notifications can be triggered by push messages, but also just system alarms that trigger the app at certain times and other events the app listens for.

3
radley 14 minutes ago 0 replies      
While the tone of the post is nice, I'd pretty much delete and one-star apps that use these practices (aren't push ads banned on iOS?). Push ads are not welcome even if you're just saying Happy Birthday.
17
Publishers shouldn't be app developers 37signals.com
9 points by ph0rque  47 minutes ago   discuss
18
On “Hacking” Y Combinator Interviews and Successful Startups menez.es
22 points by timr  2 hours ago   5 comments top 2
1
t0nyh0 1 hour ago 1 reply      
I have strong reservations against the word "hacking" in of itself. From an engineering perspective, "hacking" is a quick-n-dirty fix, like "hacking" it together with duct tape. It seems so subversive and manipulative, especially in the context of "hacking" these interviews.

I'd rather not say that I "hacked" together anything. What about diligently and properly planning, designing, researching, and implementing?

Where are the "How I planned for my YCombinator interviews" articles?

2
tyang 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Great read.

You all need to relax on this hacking hate.

Hacking is often just a way of saying tips.

Just like "Fail Fast" means launch, measure and iterate quickly.

Eric Ries isn't the only one who can change the meaning of words. :)

19
Want to create a new habit? Get ready to break it. joel.is
64 points by peterkchen  5 hours ago   26 comments top 11
1
kirse 2 hours ago 2 replies      
Building/breaking habits became far easier to me when I started to understand the true importance and power of choice in the present moment. If you can cultivate the ability to fight with yourself in the moment - when you do (or don't) want to execute - a habit is really just reduced to a single choice during the day. I still have to do it every night when I'm tired and don't feel like brushing my teeth... but I've had no problem running/lifting regularly since I was 18.

If you think about it, character is really just the additive (or multiplicative?) result of thousands of tiny choices we've made along the way in each present moment, for better or for worse. The only time you can be the person you want to be is right now -- including building or breaking habits. A choice promised to the future has no power or worth, the only time it matters is in the present, when it's time to put words and dreams into action.

In the case of habits, the long-term will take care of itself by focusing on the short term. Win the small daily battles and you'll be on your way to winning the war. And don't forget to manage expectations and give yourself grace when you lose a few of those battles. Something is always better than nothing.

2
rwhitman 3 hours ago 3 replies      
This article seems to be more of an excuse to brag about a morning workout routine than the self help article its masquerading as.
3
c0riander 3 hours ago 1 reply      
More than just expecting to break your habit, I think the crucial piece is planning what you will do once you have.

The most dangerous moment in building a new habit is the moment when you realize that the best case scenario (aka sticking with the awesome new habit) is just not going to happen. For me, unless I have my Plan B ready to go, I tend to just revert to the status quo or worse (since I already failed, why not go all out). Having the Plan B - a glorified "if failure to complete Plan A, then do B" - already articulated lets me immediately move on to the next thing without beating myself up.

This was really helpful for me when I was getting going with a regular early morning jog. If I didn't get it in before work, plan B was a quick run after work before I drove home. The latter wasn't the habit I wanted to stick, but it helped me forgive myself the lapses until morning running became a habit.

4
wcchandler 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Sometimes I like to think about the "why" for these sort of posts. Why are you building the habit? Is it like an addiction? Are you getting a sense of euphoria? While it's a good mantra I don't think it's a traditional habit you're creating.

If I approach this from a CBT perspective then you're not building a habit. Instead you're retraining your mind to place a higher importance on health or physical attractiveness. We can break personal aspirations into different categories ranging from mind, body, spirit... or more specifically -- intellectualism, mental acquity, empathy/compassion, love, friendships, family relationships, spirit, tranquility, peace, relaxtion, etc... We can generally rank these in order of importance from 1-3. 1 being very important, 3 being not important at all.

Prior to this experiment, if he assessed his importance on health and wellbeing, he probably placed it low. Easily a 3. Maybe a 2. After a month or so it may have transitioned to a 2. Either by constant reinforcement of his necessity to go to the gym, or because of an actual change of mind.

Or I'm talking out my ass... I don't know.

5
rickdale 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Expecting and planning for failure is definitely a good system to use for losing weight and exercise. Tim Ferris's famous slow carb diet (which has me down 50lbs this year) is based on one day a week breaking the habit and allowing yourself to not feel guilty about it. That was a big factor for me being consistent on the diet plan. I knew if I eat bad today, guilt, but if I eat bad in 3 days, pleasure.

Exercise is a great habit building tool because when you start off, you can really only get better. 30 minutes working out can turn into an hour can turn into 2 hours. And you start to enjoy it more as you go along and learn new things.

Reading is also a good habit to build on. I had an english teacher in high school that would assign 5-10 pages of reading every night. It made the class discussions meaningful because instead of expecting people to be in the habit of reading 50 pages of a book/night he knew he had to build the habit to read. The rest of my teachers expected us to be readers, and didn't focus at all on the habit building side of it.

6
bonaldi 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I love that his examples of starting with simple+easy (gym three times a week at 7.30am) are what are for other people the end goal!
7
kfk 1 hour ago 0 replies      
It seems people here don't travel much. If you travel a lot for work, the hell you manage to wake up at 5 am and go running.

Just saying, not everybody stays in the same place long enough to build those habits.

8
AutoCorrect 1 hour ago 0 replies      
One other thing: it's much much much easier to start a new, good habit than it is to change an old habit.

I experimented with this a while back - I figured I would change a small habit (no effect on me either way). For as long as I could remember, I put my wallet in my left back pocket, and my keys in my front left pocket (I'm left-handed). I decided to put them in the corresponding right-hand pocket - I know, very small change, right? Took me a couple of years before I would do it without thinking. Even now, I sometimes put them in the wrong pocket without thinking. For me, this was a big eye-opener.

10
psycho 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Very interesting. I'm not that big fan of healthy habbits (I go to bed late at night and get up in the afternoon, for example), though I do some running occasionally.
But what I liked in the post is that it's not only about habbits in fact. It's about human's psychology that's involved in doing anything. So we can say: "Don't cease working on your startup if you fail at some point - you should be ready to overcome the failure and pivot or start another project".
11
supersaiyan 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I know this wasn't really discussed, but is there a recover fast technique to help you get back on track once a habit breaks; I've noticed that if I break a long standing habit (3 months+) a few days in a row (exercising, flossing) it spirals down to non existence, and takes considerable amount of effort to re-establish
28
When It Comes to Security, We're Back to Feudalism wired.com
55 points by dsr12  6 hours ago   30 comments top 6
1
digitalengineer 5 hours ago 5 replies      
He had me convinced until the last paragraph: it's time we step in in our role as governments... to create the regulatory environments that protect us vassals (and the lords as well). Otherwise, we really are just serfs.
We won't be serfs if Big Government is running the show?

Edit: With regards to his choice of words: The Road to Serfdom, a Comic by Hayek: http://mises.org/books/TRTS/

2
Cherian_Abraham 5 hours ago 2 replies      
The main feudal lords map to the Four internet giants - Apple, Google, Facebook and Amazon. Each has a dislocated jaw and a growing appetite to consume entire industries.

As they grow, our implicit trust in our Feudal lords, without any kind of Transparency in return is a dangerous thing.

3
netcan 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm not sure why this is about security rather than any other aspect of the devices and software services we use. I agree though that power is accumulating into too few hands.

This is also the case in other industries and none of the solutions are very attractive.

4
bornhuetter 3 hours ago 0 replies      
That page doesn't work on vanilla IE 9 - there's flashing boxes that pop up over the text and artifacts all over the place. Is it really that hard to support the browser that millions of people in offices are forced to use?

Partial screenshot - http://i.imgur.com/8kP0b.png

5
jiggy2011 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I wonder if technology is in fact a natural monopoly?

If what we are heading towards is a sci-fi future where every single device integrates seemlessly with everything else, can we do that with so many "kingdoms" not to mention the chaos of independent developers doing their own things.

6
bernardom 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Irony:

Mr. Schneier links to MobileScope in his story, a company making an app to help you track which applications are sending your data out.

If you go on their site and sign up to learn more, your confirmation screen proudly displays "Powered by Google Documents."

29
Wifi performance and the new iPad workstuff.tumblr.com
47 points by fields  5 hours ago   17 comments top 4
1
calinet6 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Read to the end of the article, folks.

This is what happened: he tweaked settings galore, hoping to squeeze out more performance somehow. Nerds tend to do this; it's natural.

However by removing the automatic settings and forcing it into one or more configurations that may have been suboptimal, performance actually decreased.

When he returned the settings to "fully automatic" everything was fine and dandy and maximal.

Moral of the story (and I quote): "Resist the urge to tinker with these settings."

You can basically ignore everything except that last line"and if you're familiar with the excellent AirPort Extreme, you probably already knew that.

2
weiran 3 hours ago 2 replies      
I don't get this behaviour with my (latest-gen) Airport Extreme. I have a separate 5GHz network and get consistently 360Mbps to 450Mbps connection to it. Are you sure your Airport isn't faulty?

Changing it to a single name for both networks leaves my iMac always connected via 2.4GHz and no obvious way to switch to 5GHz.

3
svachalek 1 hour ago 1 reply      
When it comes to any mass-market consumer product, 99% of the users (I'm exaggerating, no, probably not) will leave all settings at the default. Therefore the default settings have orders of magnitude more real-world testing than all non-default setting combinations COMBINED. Nearly any mature product is therefore bound to behave dramatically better on its default settings than in any other configuration in sheer defiance of what "should" happen.
4
eddieroger 3 hours ago 1 reply      
I'd like to know a little more about the network setup. Are the Expresses bridging via Ethernet, or acting as repeaters? I don't know if that could be part of what he's seeing, but I'm still interested.
30
The Founder's Lie About Comfort Zones klinger.io
103 points by andreasklinger  9 hours ago   23 comments top 11
1
andreasklinger 9 hours ago 4 replies      
Guys - OP here.

I know the article sounds like blunt rant but it's a topic very dear to me as i regularly mentor startups. Many of them hide in the mentioned patterns.

If you know good articles / links on how to prioritise your work and assess missing skills in your founding team please be so kind and share them here. I will add them to the article afterwards.

Thanks!

2
forgottenpaswrd 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I think the article starts great, "people will fill their time with what they love to do if you let them", but does not provide a solution.

In general the work of a manager is precisely that, find the people that will love to do what is required(know about people), understand what is required(know about the needs of people and your customers) and remove all the blocks they could find doing it(know about execution).

Not as easy at it sounds, they are also "naturals" at it.

Doing 90% of your best time in live before dying something you can't be great at because you don't appreciate it is not sustainable in the middle and long term.

3
redguava 8 hours ago 2 replies      
Great article but I think it's a fine line. I am so much more productive when I am doing something I enjoy.

Let's say I am 5 times faster working on what I love to do, but it's only 50% as effective for my business as what I should do. Well it's still better than being 5 times slower to do something that's only twice as important.

The hard part is working out those numbers and knowing what wins, but being aware of the concept is a great start.

4
GBKS 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Personally, I try to balance this by dedicating Monday mornings to the things I don't like doing - to get them out of the way for the week. I also try to have weekly "themes". So one week might be dedicated to a new feature, the next to marketing/support, the next to optimization, etc. That way you have a defined range of activities to focus on each week and you're less likely to stray off into the comfort zone.
5
hansc 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Actually it might be good to focus on what you do best (up to a point): If your a good coder, make an awesome product. If you are an awesome marketeer, use marketing to your advantage.

I think that the problem lies in busywork instead of creating value, not in doing what you do best (and if you do that, good chance that you can find people who are good in waht you need that will join you).

6
mittermayr 8 hours ago 1 reply      
as others have mentioned, you have absolutely identified a core issue that can be validated everywhere, everyday. people love adding features instead of improving/validating the core (guilty) and they sure love chatting with other founders/the "scene" about their startups and where they're headed instead of spending their time with finding/growing actual customers. and yes, I even believe most spend too much time at hackathons and events getting feedback from peer entrepreneurs instead of actual customers.

the flip-side of this is important though. I totally agree that most people involved in startups are way too busy 'living the startup-life' and forgetting about the essence and true face of it all, namely that it still is "hardcore business". it still requires picking up the phone, ramping up customer after customer, smart investment of resources and selling 'to the person' and not just tweet about it, and so forth. but, as said, flip-side: if all startups were to face the most traditional form of doing business every day, most would simply not find it fun enough to dedicate their passion to this. so we get a little leeway so we can move around our actual duties and it's all good. there's just this super-fine-line that most of us overlook eventually, where people forget about the essence of what they're supposed to do and just enjoy the lifestyle a tad more than it might be healthy to the mission.

great article, definitely one i'll be coming back to for a refreshing read every once in a while in the future.

7
lnanek2 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Very true. It's always funny seeing someone super busy and rushed...because they are taking fun classes they don't actually need to land the business deals the company needs, etc.. Even easier for coders, though, I suppose, to just go do one more feature or tweak or whatever. People go on for years that way sometimes, just to find out they wrote something no one will use.
8
hef19898 4 hours ago 0 replies      
The OP discribes what is one of the more crucial skills needed in critical sicumstances: take yourself out of the quotation, take a step back and decide after having seen the whole picture and not just a smal aspect of it that fits your personal preferences best. And then doing it, especially if it's just one big shlep.

What is actually the most dangerous thing to happen, simply because it's so convenient, is that by doing what you can do best all the time keeps you busy, in your eyes and the eyes of others. So when you fail, it was not because you didn't do anything. You're creating your own bubble.

That's why it's better to have a co-founder who is not a carboncopy of yourself and to have a not-awfully-bad board, because both can help to pop that bubble before it is too late.

Very sound advice, and not only for start-ups / founders but for everybody who has a certain responsibility.

9
psycho 3 hours ago 1 reply      
I think that working outside comfort zone is not necessarily doing the stuff you don't like. You should do the stuff you like and the stuff you're good at - going out of the comfort zone is trying to break working routine and finding new solutions for old problems, it's, in fact, changing the state of mind and constantly learing new things about stuff you like and stuff you're good at.

Of course, there's still need for objective look and understanding of what should be done first. I guess, balanced team of technical and non-technical cofounders should be the way to have it.

10
dcfindlay 8 hours ago 0 replies      
You don't need to be a founder to lie to yourself about this. I manage a not-for-profit and I've found it very easy to hide amongst the work I'm naturally gifted for (figures, bookwork, projections) instead of dealing with the stuff that really needs doing AND that I need to be the one to do (refining processes, setting the tone & direction for the team and working out how exactly to accomplish the objectives set by our board).

You're right about the way it affects our choices when we pick our daily work. I think the real work, whether it's a startup or not, is to clarify what's important. You startup folks just get the fun of having to really think deeply about that, because there's nobody above you to tell you what the most important thing is right now.

11
subnet 9 hours ago 1 reply      
while I agree & have experienced this myself very often (-> tax-report, accounting, micro-managing :)), I think you could have gotten to the point quicker & more precisely in this blog-post :)
       cached 26 November 2012 20:02:01 GMT