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Square Cash square.com
411 points by rjsamson  8 hours ago   199 comments top 6
meritt 8 hours ago 9 replies      
Seems to work amazingly although I'm a bit concerned about the security. A friend sent me $1. I get an email from square, link to website where I entered my debit #, expiry and postal. It deposited directly to my debit card (I didnt even know you could do that). The deposit already arrived!

"Checking Card Adjustment POS Pin (Credit) $1.00"

So I sent him $1 back (to: my friend, cc: cash@square.com, subject: $1). And it instantly sent it to him. I didn't have to verify my details or anything.

I'd feel a lot more comfortable if there was a security blog explaining how they are validating that I indeed sent the email and it wasn't simply spoofed.

Edit - I did this from Gmail which I presume authenticates all of the emails via dkim? I'm guessing this won't work as automatic for other providers?

Edit2 - Just attempted with another friend and had to verify manually. The automatic-authorization appears to only apply when it's between two previously validated parties.

philfreo 8 hours ago 1 reply      
This is my favorite type of product. Here's why:

- Take an existing known medium (in this case email) and makes it way more useful.

- They didn't try to build a bunch of new UI for connecting your Facebook so you can find and invite and pay your friends, paying out to your card, etc.

- It magically hides the messiness of an enormously complex problem (fraud, different types of debit cards & banks all over the world) behind a very simple interface.

- Unlike every other P2P payment system, I can actually sign up and receive money (or convince my friend to) using only what's in my pocket (debit card)... not hunting down ACH/wire details.

abalone 2 hours ago 1 reply      
The most stunning part of this is the "free" part.

The Durbin amendment regulates the cost of debit transactions over the Visa/Mastercard network. It's $0.22 + 0.05%.

Mossberg reports that Square is planning to monetize via "premium options" like international transfers. But still, $0.22+ is a lot to lose every time someone uses your mass-market service.

Good thing they raised $341M of VC money.

Who said the dot com days aren't back??

Source: http://allthingsd.com/20131015/the-money-is-in-the-email/

Tomdarkness 8 hours ago 4 replies      
This is one area where the US seems to be behind compared to the UK. I am from the UK and that service would look quite poor if it launched over here. We have a system called faster payments service that offers instant (although in some cases up to 2 hours) bank transfers for payments up to 100,000 (can differ between banks). You can use this directly if you share bank account numbers and sort codes but there are also wrappers around FPS like Barclays PingIt that people can register with and use your mobile number instead. There is no fee associated with these services.
redthrowaway 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Do Interac email transfers not work in the US? They're pretty much the same thing: send money to an email recipient who then clicks a link to deposit it in their account. I'm surprised that this is big news, and that it seemingly doesn't exist down south.
MBCook 8 hours ago  replies      
Note that it takes 1-2 days for the deposit. They must be using ACH to do this. The 'free' part is great. Even with Square, I'd be hesitant to enter my debit card number.

Planet Money recently did a great episode all about the US's ACH system and why it works the way it does.


Union Square Ventures' new website usv.com
54 points by igul222  4 hours ago   30 comments top 21
buro9 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Saw that yesterday, and I find it weird.

Twitter login and author info, standalone posts (submitted links/stories), and Disqus comments.

It feels broken already, using a strange mix of identity from one communication tool and the interface from another .

What I like is that by connecting to Twitter and using the USV team's accounts as the source you get a great idea of the character and interests of the VC team and fund.

What I dislike is that by opening that up to anyone, the front-page just becomes a mini-HN and the insight into the character of the team is immediately diluted.

I also dislike that they use Twitter identity as the author for a conversation/debate, but then use Disqus as the medium for the debate. This has two effects:

1) It breaks the feel of the audience, people present themselves slightly differently to different groups, for example how many HN profile pages carry identical info on the individual's Twitter page?

2) It splits the debate across Twitter (where some will reply directly to the author) and Disqus.

I also find the blog post placement weird. All of the design hints on the blog posts (the grey squares to the right) make me think that they are stories, just "Hot" stories that are being featured. Not the case though, grey squares are blog posts that are masquerading as submitted stories (the design consistency of the block).

It's a weird experience overall. I liked the effect that was achieved early-on of gaining insight into what the team are following and debating, but it feels confusing. Ultimately I think the best thing to do is just to follow interesting people on Twitter to gain this insight, follow trends and interests.

Should probably be pointed out that Twitter and Disqus are both portfolio companies of USV, and perhaps that's why they chose to do this weird mashup. Makes me wonder about the comedy gold or real opportunities that might be achieved from mashups of other portfolio company offerings. Code academy lessons that start where you left off, every time you get a cab using Hailo?

ig1 50 minutes ago 0 replies      
HN has been going downhill for a long time; while I think the YC team know this it's not something that they have had time to try and improve.

Voting rigging is the norm, companies flag posts about their competitors, there's zero transparency about moderation or flagging. The community has become a lot more negative, less supportive and less startupy.

There have been a number of attempts to build HN clones/rivals but generally the people creating them have focused on the technology rather than the community which is the important thing. USV is someone who could potentially build a great community and we should applaud them for trying.

codezero 4 hours ago 0 replies      
None of the links off the main page seem to work.

Honestly, the page looks pretty decent. It seems less of a clone of HN, than just a page where you can comment and vote on links, which frankly, wasn't a concept created by Hacker News.

abcd_f 1 hour ago 1 reply      

Who edited the title? You just took a discussion of how this was a clone of HN website and half way through turned into... into what exactly?

The submission was about USV and HN designs being similar, not that USV got new design. You just nuked the context. Seriously, mods, get your shit together.

codexon 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I don't see this as an HN clone. If anything is a clone, HN is a clone of Slashdot->Digg->Reddit. Not that I think any of these sites have an exclusive claim to a threaded discussion board.
k-mcgrady 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I wouldn't call it a HN clone. It's not like HN was an original idea - it's just a news voting site (Reddit, Digg etc.) with a specific niche. The important part of each of these sites is the community, not the idea.
thejosh 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Pretty sure it's a digg/reddit/hn/whatever clone.
joshdotsmith 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I think it's okay to be an HN "clone". They're taking a clearly successful model and using it for a community. And it's an existing community, which makes it all the more workable. Kudos!

Disclaimer: I "cloned" HN when making http://lifestyle.io. I didn't have a preexisting community, but a small handful of people find it useful. Is there a lot of overlap in content? Sure. Do I discover stuff I might have missed on HN? Yep.

I just wish I were a better community organizer.

downandout 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Ironically, this post is currently #1 on there.


minimaxir 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I just registered using Twitter and submitted a post of my own content. Seems to work, although I'm curious if it will get deleted since I'm not cool enough to associate up-and-center with the venture crowd.

Unlike HN, you must submit text in the body of a submission. Which is somewhat redundant.

beingpractical 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I loved their 404 page - http://www.usv.com/404
igul222 3 hours ago 1 reply      
niico 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Wow. I just hope their EIR didn't come up with this. Otherwise I would feel very disappointed. What surprise me is the lack of identity. Why? Why would they even want to do this? They are USfuckingV. One of the most aspirational and important funds and yet they do this. Meh.Instead of us posting stuff on their WhateverTheyCallNewsSite we should be reading them and learning how to do stuff.
yeukhon 3 hours ago 0 replies      
"What's going on?!

Not your fault, we're experiencing a server error. Try again in a moment!Fail-Fred "

face plam thats all I get when I click on comment.

90002 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Very weird approach by one of the most recognized and respected venture firms in the industry.

Other than connecting people to unique content, I don't really get what's going with the whole redesign and HackerNews-esque feel.

briandear 2 hours ago 0 replies      
At least the USV site looks good on mobile unlike the pinch to zoom nonsense needed for HN.
gailees 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I think we'll see a trend of VCs creating HN clones. Wouldn't be surprised if they are already working on them.
conradfr 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Well, what do you think of this French site : http://news.humancoders.com/ ?

(not mine)

anigbrowl 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Amusingly, this thread is the top story.
kripy 2 hours ago 0 replies      
At least it's responsive aka mobile friendly.
gailees 3 hours ago 0 replies      
HN clone without any real userbase at all.
Cockroach farms multiplying in China latimes.com
83 points by darkchyld  6 hours ago   54 comments top 8
spodek 5 hours ago 4 replies      
Capitalism is stronger than customs.

If growing them feeds people efficiently, we'll see it here soon enough.

Potatoes didn't exist outside the Americas until after 1492. Then many cultures viewed them as lowly and not worth eating. But you can feed more people per area than any other food and they grow in more types of land than many other edible plants. Cultures would reject them until a famine struck. Then the ruler would eat them out of necessity. Then everyone would eat them. Now potatoes are in more cuisines of the world than any other food.

If cockroaches are efficient, I would expect a few shocks in some commodity markets to put them on a few cultures' dinner plates, then to spread. Like roaches, if you'll pardon the pun.

pkfrank 5 hours ago 3 replies      
I'm more excited by cricket farming for protein flour (here in the US).

There's a Brooklyn company called Exo (Exo.co) which is doing just that after a kickstarter campaign + media blitz. Cricket flour is super high in protein, and also very sustainable. Could see it becoming the next acai, chia seed, quinoa, etc.

thaumasiotes 6 hours ago 2 replies      
> "With cockroaches, you can invest 20 yuan and get back 150 yuan," or $3.25 for a return of $11.


As I see it, 150 is seven and a half times as much as 20. I didn't use any exchange rate of any sort to compute that.

Seven and a half times $3.25 is $24.375 . Using the most charitable interpretation I can think of, that's a return of $21.12 on an investment of $3.25, but put in the same terms as the original quote, I'd call it investing $3.25 and getting back $24.38. What happened there?

clarkdave 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I set up a mini cockroach farm to feed my lizard (a bearded dragon). They're easy to look after, very low maintenance, never bite and don't make much noise. I can't say I've ever wanted to eat one, but I can see why they'd be an excellent creature to farm if people are willing.
dwaltrip 5 hours ago 3 replies      
I find it interesting how blatantly those quoted in the article talk about the pursuit of wealth. One of the local Chinese governments even has an award for "expert in getting wealthy"! I guess it isn't as reprehensible coming from a country with so many rural poor, but I still find it depressing.
shaneofalltrad 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I read Hacker News on a daily now and never in my life thought a topic from my previous daily reads (Gecko and Reptile forums) would ever make it here! I once bred roaches for reptile food and the lizards did prefer them over anything else, so I would guess they are tasty!
mmagin 6 hours ago 1 reply      
I see loads of those outside at night in warm weather here. Maybe there's some kind of reverse-aliexpress I can use to sell them? :)
taigeair 6 hours ago 1 reply      
woah it works for regrowing hair?
GoDaddy, Media Temple, and the Horrible World of Web Hosting marco.org
259 points by mh_  12 hours ago   120 comments top 22
smacktoward 10 hours ago 8 replies      
As long as we're sharing hosting anecdotes/recommendations, I'll throw in my two cents: I've dealt with umpty gazillion hosting companies over the last 15+ years, and the only one that has consistently impressed me to the point where I recommend them to clients without any reservations is Rackspace. Both in their dedicated server offerings and the newer Rackspace Cloud stuff. (Rackspace Cloud doesn't have as much bleeding-edge whiz-bang stuff as AWS, but they make up for it IMO with excellent tech support/customer service.)

They're generally more expensive than the competition, but you get what you pay for, you know? I'm sitting here trying to think of a time when Rackspace has ever let me down, and I can't. Being able to have that kind of confidence in your hosting environment is nice.

Marco is correct that shared hosting is a disaster area, so much so that Rackspace doesn't really compete there, so I'm always hesitant when people ask me to recommend a shared host. I generally end up recommending Dreamhost too; it's not great, but it's better than what you'd get for the same money anywhere else.

seldo 10 hours ago 1 reply      
I think Marco is overly dismissive of shared hosting; the web should be inclusive and easy to use, and for lots of people with uncomplicated hosting needs shared hosting is a fine choice. See also: Heroku, AWS, any other level of abstraction you care to pick. Many developers outgrow shared hosting, but that doesn't mean the category is intrinsically bad.

(My personal site has been on Site5 for over a decade; they have mostly been pretty good)

larrys 10 hours ago 1 reply      
"But its also highly commoditized: hosts cant differentiate their products very much, theres effectively no barrier to entry, switching at any time is fairly cheap and easy, and most customers buy primarily on price."

I don't agree at all that for many website hosting customers the process is "easy".

A typical web hosting customer is not tech saavy they either have it being handled by their "tech guy" or they can't even remember how their files got onto the server in the first place with their static site and sometimes they don't even know who is hosting their site [1].

[1] Source: We're a registrar and we get the calls and emails of confused customers who have no clue where they are hosted. They don't even know enough to look at the whois and see the dns to give them a hint. Actually you'd be suprised how many times someone will access our whois and think we are their registrar.

lelandbatey 11 hours ago 4 replies      
Web hosting customers are nomads. If your host hasnt been ruined yet, just wait.

This line right here is absolutely sage wisdom. Here are some of the companies I've bought services from, as well as what I remember happening to them:

    ClubUptime        Closed in a disastrous closure due to basically being conned.    DirectSpace        Still around, haven't changed much    VolumeDrive        Very sketchy, I don't really know how they're still in business    Fazewire        Local Seattle hosting/colocation company. Originally founded by a guy        when he was 15, he sold the company when he went to college.    URPad.net        Still around, only used them for a short period of time.        OVH    Amazon    Digital Ocean

coderdude 11 hours ago 5 replies      
I've been a Media Temple customer since 2007 and a GoDaddy customer since 2004 [edit: I say 2004 but I don't think that's possible. I must have switched to them sometime after 2006 but I can't recall who my previous registrar was.]. I like both companies just fine though apparently not everyone has been as lucky. I don't know if GD is going to be a good home for mt since GD specializes in cheaper hosting. But...

GoDaddy does a lot to support their customers. Friendly people over the phone. They've walked my dad through some hosting issues he had when he was trying to set a site up. They call me every couple of months to make sure I'm satisfied with everything (and probably try to sell me on that bundled registration). Making them out to be The Devil is too dramatic. And transparent too when he could have linked to the #Philanthropy[1] heading on their Wikipedia page but chose to focus on #Controversies to support a position.

mbesto 39 minutes ago 0 replies      
My experience is the following: not everyone has the same consistent experience with every host, but some are definitely better than others.

That being said, the companies I've had good experiences with, have heard others, and will continue to use/pay are: AWS, Linode, DigitalOcean, and Webfaction (webfaction is amazing for a small cheap shared hosting environment). Other ones that cross my mind are OVH and Hetzner.

noir_lord 1 hour ago 0 replies      
If I need to host multiple simple sites they go onto one of my linode instances that is set up for multiple sites.

If I need to host a more complex or demanding web application it goes onto a dedicated linode (or may share one).

Dedicated servers that are reliable are very very expensive (Hetzner in my direct experience is nowhere near reliable) where with linode across 3-8 linodes at various times I've had no down time in coming up for 5 years.

Fantastic support, they don't oversell their machines.

Sure if I shop around I can get a similar spec (whether it delivers who knows) for half the price but is it really worth saving 20 bucks if I don't sleep at night worrying about my vps provider going down.

I also like DO, I still won't host anything important with them but for a quick dev/test box they are pretty good.

I've never really gotten why the VPS market is quite so price conscious the difference between 5 a month and 20 a month is so meaningless in the grand scheme of things (I suspect I spend a lot more than 15 a month on coffee on the way to work).

cylinder 11 hours ago 4 replies      
Hosting is like commercial airlines. Everyone wants excellent service, but they shop on price, and expect it to be low. Those who can actually spend a lot, do it themselves anyways (private jets). This could be the beginning of a consolidation phase in the hosting industry just like what took place with airlines.
DigitalSea 11 hours ago 1 reply      
This news could not make me happier after moving from Mediatemple completely about 6 months ago. I would say I got out just in time. My experience with Media Temple (I was with them since the beginning and all of the teething problems they had with their hosting in the early days) was fairly good. Support was great, but if you soon find you hit the limit of their hosting pretty quickly. They used to market their Grid Server (gS) plans as being "Digg Proof" and it was once upon a time but then eventually the Grid Server plan lacked behind and getting Slashdotted/Digged meant you had to scale up with burst addons.

I would argue that Mediatemple kind of killed themselves in many ways, I can't see how GoDaddy will do much worse to be honest. People put them up on such a high pedestal as they got bigger, they just couldn't live up to their glowing reputation because of how big they were growing which is a problem not many companies can say they have, Support stayed timely until the end, but Media Temple lost out to Digital Ocean and Linode big time and just couldn't keep up in the end.

I wish GoDaddy all the best, but for the moment I am very happy with my Linode 1024 virtual server plan which never buckles under anything I've thrown at it thus far. Even hitting the front-page of HN once upon a time didn't cause it to break a sweat.

unclebucknasty 8 hours ago 1 reply      
And before it was Ev1Servers, what is now IBM, was RackShack. So, it was RackShack, ev1, ThePlanet, SoftLayer, IBM. We started as a dedicated customer with RackShack, then on to a managed customer on ThePlanet. FWIW, we are on the same dedicated rack as when with ThePlanet, though SoftLayer tried to sell us on their "pod" solution (i.e. VPS).

So, we are overpaying for our current hardware, but haven't had the stomach for another migration. Contrary to what the article states, small companies with already limited resources don't want to spend time moving a moderately complex infrastructure around, on top of the considerable work already on the table.

But, yeah, GoDaddy engages in questionable practices. Automatically adding stuff to your cart (and/or making it confusingly easy for you to do so), bumping renewals to 5 years by default, and otherwise making their UI "consistently inconsistent" in ways that miraculously always seem to benefit them are part of the equation. To be pushy with upsells is one thing, but they take it a step further.

These are kind of ingrained business practices and part of the same ethos that says selling IT services with sex is OK. It is hard to imagine them acquiring a company without that company getting at least a little of that stink on them.

wonderyak 11 hours ago 5 replies      
My least horrible experiences have all been with DreamHost as well.

Our company did reseller hosting for about 5 years and went through all of the acquisition stuff Marco mentions. We had to exit SoftLayer because they were horrible, only to be brought right back.

Hosting is a horrible business. To be good at it and have marketplace success you need to deliver over the top support; which is just unsustainable at scale.

naiyt 6 hours ago 1 reply      
I worked in webhosting for about two years, and can attest to the fact that it's a horrible world. We were pretty good at our jobs, but the company was experiencing some really nasty growing pains, and the product was pretty bad as a result.

One of the big pains in the webhosting world is maintaining legacy systems...we had about 15,000 clients on ancient servers running RHEL4, under a proprietary VPS platform. (And as far as I know, a big chunk of them are still there.) Needless to say, this resulted in a really crappy service for the clients on those servers, and there never seemed to be a big push to get everybody migrated off of them and onto our newer servers running cPanel. We were working towards it, but it was a big endeavor that would leave a lot of clients extremely upset when things invariably went awry. So rather then putting some good development time towards automating the process as much as possible and hiring more support for those accounts that didn't migrate properly, the problem just sat there for years.

davidedicillo 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I remember in 2001 when it was almost a badge of honor to be hosted on (MT), especially if you were one of those website that got the free hosting in exchange of their logo on the page.
SteveGerencser 11 hours ago 1 reply      
In the late 90s i was a partner in a hosting company. To this day every time someone asks me to host a small site on my personal server I get flashbacks and the shakes. Never again. Hosting is not a game for people without very strong nerves. I won't even resell hosting.
programminggeek 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Is it me or is there a place in the market for higher quality, less commodity type hosting services. Right now things are segmented by type of hosting in very technical ways, but we're now seeing more value added hosting for things like rails (heroku), wordpress (wp engine), etc.

I think people will always pay for service, quality, and experience. Whoever can deliver that consistently will make money in hosting.

k1m 37 minutes ago 0 replies      
For shared hosting I've had a great experience with https://www.nearlyfreespeech.net
nsoonhui 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I subscribed to a tmdhosting VPS package, and the IO throughput was simply horrible. I collected the IO statistics, and I emailed the support team and asked it to move me to another hardware node which was less overloaded.

The support person refused to do so, but instead, asked me to subscribe to a dedicated server. I explained that I didn't need a dedicated server, as it was clear from my statistic that all faults were on their IO throughput side. He just won't listen and still insisted on up-selling me a dedicated server.

What a horrible experience! Anyone encountered the same thing as I do? Is IO throughput a PITA for your hosting experience?

arikrak 6 hours ago 1 reply      
What's interesting about standard shared web hosting (mainly used by small PHP-based sites) is how most of them are secretly owned by one company: EIG


Many people spend time comparing the different services, but in truth they're all the same!

Also, you get much better specs with the free tier of OpenShift, but I guess that will change once enough people switch to it (just like AppFog changed their free tier).

jacques_chester 11 hours ago 0 replies      
A nitpick: he's saying "high profits" when I think he means "high gross profits". It's an important distinction. The low cost-of-goods-sold (COGS) is offset first by the competition and later by the cost of hiring people the manage it and deal with customers.
NKCSS 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Hmm, the recommendations at the end of the article still seem pretty pricey to me. I'm personally a fan of LeaseWeb; been renting servers with them for 5 years now and still very happy, at a good price (~100 for 100MBit unmetered, quadcore xenon x3440, 16GB ram, 2x2TB HDD and ESXi 5.1)
wyck 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I always considered MT to be a marketing company so this seems to be a perfect fit. I mean that literally because I always joke that they are the designer jeans of hosting.
dctoedt 8 hours ago  replies      
I've been happy with server289.com for my personal site for several years now. The one time I had an issue (which turned out to be pilot error on my part) they were quite responsive and very helpful.
New Delicious delicious.com
32 points by jetboyz23  3 hours ago   30 comments top 20
jasonkester 11 minutes ago 0 replies      
It's been a year since last I was there, and it looks like they're halfway back to where they were when they bought it.

I can find links to a website by typing its name into a search box now. I can see a list of my own links now. Those are nice improvements (or dis-catastropic-mistakes) over the last version.

I still can't sort search results by anything other than, well, randomness it seems. Certainly not by number of points. Maybe by date of the last save?

So yeah, halfway there. Even the font is halfway between the terribly oversized font from the redesign and where it belongs. I once got 20 links to a page. Then I got 4. Now I'm back to 9, which at least looks like a list.

I'll check back in a couple years to see where they're at. But I'm not going to start using them again. Fool me once, and all that.

arocks 9 minutes ago 0 replies      
Don't understand why they are trying to fix what was not broken. Delicious was a fast and easy-to-use UI for social bookmarking.

Over the last 3 or 4 years they made their UI progressively worse: replacing spaces for keyword separators by commas, slower autocomplete and now barely visible input boxes. Delicious has been extremely unkind to it's longtime users.

jaysonelliot 3 hours ago 1 reply      
I logged in (for the first time in at least a year) and snapped a screenshot: http://www.clipular.com/posts/5191729086988288?k=JiS8gdhlAch...

On first blush, it's underwhelming. A lot of monotone flatness, which I'm sure hit some kind of trend that got it greenlit, but doesn't make for good UX.

The interface is a solid wall of text that makes it very hard to distinguish one link from the next. There's no signposts to make it easy to tell where you are, or what you're able to do.

I ran through the bookmarking process, and it's clunky. Still asks you to tag things, only now things like the suggested tags are gone, meaning you have to think even more about what you're doing as you save bookmarks.

There's nothing really new that I can see, just a coat of paint and a lot of gratuitous flatness. Flat for flat's sake is definitely this year's skeuomorphism.

Full disclosure: I work with a clipping service that might be considered a Delicious competitor. (But I'd have the same critiques even if I didn't).

AndrewDucker 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Delicious was _awful_ for a while - slow, clunky, intermittent service.

But since the redesign it's all been working incredibly smoothly for me. I'm happier with it than I've ever been.

nl 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Delicious: Coulda been Pinterest. Coulda been a contender.

(I didn't actually realize Yahoo sold Delicious. Interesting..)

adrianhoward 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Too late a change for me. Completely lost my trust when they lost about 1000 bookmarks during the move/reimplementation post-Yahoo. Happy(ish) pinboard user.
whalesalad 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Wow the UI feels like an exact clone of the Microsoft account management area // outlook.com
pearjuice 27 minutes ago 0 replies      
Loading screen for a static web page. Is that really necessary?
acjacobson 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I don't think the problem is UX at this point - or even features as many others have pointed out. The issue for me is that the community left, or certainly isn't close to being the same. I used to go to Delicious for the same reason I currently visit HN - to see what's interesting today. Without a strong group of people posting interesting things on a regular basis, I am just not incentivized to keep coming back.
est 3 hours ago 4 replies      
we need so..oo more than saving "links" now. We need full text searchable full page archived. Maybe including the audio/video as well.

Think the last time you saved a page on twitter/facebook but just few hours later the OP decided to delete or hide the post.

And perhaps facebook-like graph search based on metadata extracted from page. E.g. search a archived page talking about presents published before 2013 Christmas, author's name is vaguely start with letter J, from website XYZ

kamakazizuru 2 hours ago 3 replies      
too late - already moved to pinboard. its clean and works.
vlad 3 hours ago 0 replies      
There's a video on the blog about the redesign -- maybe it should be on the home page:


Singletoned 58 minutes ago 0 replies      
Nothing happens for me using Opera. It just has a small logo in the centre of the page that moves slightly forever.
ojbyrne 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I'd like to see one site that relaunches without using the words "super-clean" or "beautiful." Just for a change.
dancecodes 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Unlimited scroll? Nope, thank you. Dont mention it. Not at all.

So who needs in unlimited scroll?

benguild 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I like it. But, what am I going to use it for this time?
ababab 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Years ago, Delicious used to have the killer feature. Nowadays, Google's Chrome Sync and Pocket adequately keep my bookmarks alive.
tuxracer 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Awesome Chaplin.js http://chaplinjs.org/ app btw
justined 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Too late for the game, but the new UI is sleek.

Some front-end libraries i found:

- chapin.js

- backbone.js

- handlebars.js

- lodash

- moment.js

- r.js

- store.js

- mousetrap

debugger87 2 hours ago 0 replies      
clean and fast, i love it again!
Y Combinator applicant advice medium.com
62 points by MIT_Hacker  6 hours ago   16 comments top 6
TheMakeA 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Thousands of groups applied for S13. Only 255 groups were selected for interviews. Only 53 companies ended up getting funded.

My advice: Stop worrying about perfecting your application or trying to game it. Stop worrying about trying to get into YC. Submit it, forget it. Go build a company. You don't need their validation, and you certainly don't need their permission.

Just go freaking make something people want.

Darmani 3 hours ago 0 replies      
> dont say if we capture 10% of this 100 billion dollar market, well be making 10 billion dollars!

> From this, based on the volume of repairs in San Francisco...we could be operating at about $70k per day in just SF.

A bottom-up story can just be a top-down one in disguise. Capturing 10% of a market doesn't sound too hard until the word "billion" appears. Instead, we can capture 114% of one region. And $20 million per year is too big, so let's give it per day.

Just saying "the average dishwasher needs a $200 repair once every two years" tells me more than that entire paragraph.

beambot 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Personally, I think one of the best ways to prepare is to look for common trends in other successful applications. I helped write a VentureBeat article on this very subject [1]. As part of that article, we (Lollipuff, YC W13) released our entire application [2], and of course YC provides plenty of application advice too [3].

[1] http://venturebeat.com/2013/09/20/how-to-write-a-winning-y-c...

[2] https://www.lollipuff.com/blog/102/lollipuffs-ycombinator-ex...

[3] http://ycombinator.com/howtoapply.html

throwthrowthrow 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm so tired of the billion dollar bullshit. No one believes it. No one can predict it. But everyone seems to have to say it.

Spare me.

YC is investing $18k. If you build a $10 or $25 million business off that springboard, even with an angel round, that's awesome for all.

As software fills out the niches of the world, that's where the real wins are going to be.

So in short, saying your company will be worth a billion dollars isn't cool. It's just douchey.

physcab 5 hours ago 4 replies      
> Although, they also want to see how quickly you can execute. 2 years to build an iPhone app is too long.

Why would they care about how quickly you can build something? If you took 2 years to build an iPhone app in your spare time, but that iPhone app ended up being Candy Crush, wouldn't that make that metric pretty meaningless?

chaitanyapandit 1 hour ago 0 replies      
There should be a question in there "Did you continue building your company after getting rejected by YC? Which?"
New effort to fully audit TrueCrypt raises $16,000+ in a few short weeks arstechnica.com
116 points by laurent123456  8 hours ago   68 comments top 8
thex86 7 hours ago 2 replies      
Cool! Maybe, finally, as a result of public scrutiny, TrueCrypt will have a public repository. You know, it's 2013. I cannot think of any reason why the software you will possibly trust with your life does not have code in a public repository.

Till then time, we will and we should doubt it.

kevinpet 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Apparently TrueCrypt still has the crazy license which no one can quite figure out if it's an amateur attempt to write an open source license, or an extremely subtle trap to lure people into thinking it's an open source license so that they can later sue.
dmix 7 hours ago 3 replies      
I've abandoned truecrypt for Tomb in the meantime http://www.dyne.org/software/tomb/
laurent123456 7 hours ago 2 replies      
> Theres just one problem: no one knows who created the software.

What do they mean by this? Do we literally don't know who created Truecrypt?

rdl 4 hours ago 1 reply      
The best thing someone could do for TrueCrypt security is to very publicly release a version with a backdoor, easily exploited, and difficult to detect, for anyone else to distribute. By making that a real threat, users will end up checking their source/compilation/results, protecting them against the same threat from real attackers.
devx 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I hope they've taken a snapshot of the software before announcing the crowdfunding campaign. If there has been any update since then, and it had any backdoor, it may have already been removed.
dmishe 7 hours ago 3 replies      
So um how do we know that none of the people conducting this audit are secretly working for NSA?

Somewhat james bond-y idea but you get the point.

mynameishere 7 hours ago 2 replies      
Here's the thing...if any government organization actually goes through a truecrypt backdoor or flaw, the odds are very good that the news will get out. Yeah, if they seize a computer, crack it and never provide the unencrypted information to a court or other public forum (and somehow shut-up the perpetrator), they could keep it secret. But what's the point?
Introducing government.github.com github.com
374 points by _pius  15 hours ago   68 comments top 19
aroman 15 hours ago 1 reply      
Great to see Philadelphia front and center with this project.

In Mayor Nutter's keynote at PennApps last month, he talked a lot about how Philly is really pushing for open data/open government. It's great to see those initiatives coming to fruition.

guynamedloren 14 hours ago 6 replies      
This is awesome. I respect GitHub more and more every day. However, despite how much I love the GitHub model and think it's a great way to collaborate, it's still (mostly) inaccessible for non-developers. Shameless plug: I think there is still some room for innovation here, so I'm building a GitHub for everyone else:


bfirsh 15 hours ago 2 replies      
Seems pretty US-centric. Governments outside the US are doing great things with open source too. The entire UK government website is open source, for example:


clienthunter 15 hours ago 2 replies      
I saw a TED talk about using GH as a form of collaborative democracy once. I am so shocked (in the best way) that momentum is building this quickly.
robbfitzsimmons 15 hours ago 1 reply      
Admitting it's totally beside the point, what is the deal with the "trademark" Campfire emoji at the end of the post? Soon(tm)? In-joke?
Siecje 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Here is the Changlelog episode of Civic Hacking


pizza 15 hours ago 0 replies      
And so, github claims this space.
stevewilber 15 hours ago 0 replies      
This is really cool. I sent a request to my City to join. I'd be happy to donate some time improving their website if the source were public.
count 13 hours ago 1 reply      
How are all those civilian agencies using GitHub without a FISMA or FedRAMP approval (or does GitHub have one and just not advertise it)?

I see at least NASA on there (who just got in trouble with their IG for improper use of un-accredited cloud services).

Or does this include GitHub Enterprise users?

pouzy 12 hours ago 1 reply      
This is a pretty ironic timing considering the fact that there's no government in the US for now :)
agumonkey 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Funny a while ago a friend suggested we should version law texts and publish it, this is even better.
bitwize 11 hours ago 1 reply      
Now can we use it to collaboratively fix Healthcare.gov?
Kinnard 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Does this mean we know longer need Congress because we can legislate through version control? Cuz that would be awesome.
niels_olson 11 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm on a DoD network and can't even access github.
bachback 15 hours ago 2 replies      
amazing potential. but in the end - out of scope. If you go through the least each org has only few repos with little interest. One of the more interesting ones is: https://github.com/opengovplatform
cheshire137 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Woo, just submitted a pull request to get openlexington of Lexington, KY on there.
AstroChimpHam 9 hours ago 0 replies      
So... github wants to be wikileaks?
Joe_Quincy 13 hours ago 3 replies      
I wish github would work on some features that help developers write better code rather then this, which looks like it was put together by some intern.
yeukhon 15 hours ago 2 replies      
Before we go on, please have someone fix this bug. We are making a lot of suggestion, but no WhiteHouse developers are interested in this. This is not how you do an open source project.


MathGifs mathgifs.blogspot.co.uk
220 points by co_pl_te  14 hours ago   25 comments top 8
susi22 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Ah Mathematica:

    $ curl -s http://4.bp.blogspot.com/-MPv_CwvvwKQ/Ulrw3TfdgyI/AAAAAAAAAEw/YsRPmU6C5xM/s1600/trefoil_rotate_white.gif |strings|grep -i created    UCreated by Wolfram Mathematica 9.0 for Students - Personal Use Only : www.wolfram.com
Would love to see the source for them.

B-Con 9 hours ago 0 replies      
When I opened the first page I thought that it would be a page of unrelated GIFs. I saw the first one, read the accompanying paragraph, and stopped to think about it. I thought for a while before proceeding on, at which point I noticed that I had just thought through the next several GIFs of explanation.

That's why math is fun. You can always participate in the analysis.

icambron 4 hours ago 3 replies      
These are really neat, but one thing I don't understand is the animation they linked to (i.e. the post that inspired the OP) [1]. Unlike the animations in mathgifs, my brain isn't interpreting anything there as rotational motion. Am I missing something?

[1] http://beautyandthemaths.tumblr.com/post/62281036101/the-ave...

BHSPitMonkey 11 hours ago 0 replies      
That simple parabolic reflection animation explained the concept more elegantly than words ever could, I think.
011011100 13 hours ago 9 replies      
Cool. Anything else like it?
XaspR8d 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Excellent! I'll have to spend a while exploring the archives. I just happened to have "proved" to myself the linearity of a very similar animation a few weeks ago. :)


rohitv 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Interesting, but I still have a headache since I looked at the gifs about an hour ago. Maybe it's just me but I would advice putting a warning somewhere.
Shumway - Mozilla mozilla.github.io
106 points by nsmalch  9 hours ago   19 comments top 6
bdg 8 hours ago 1 reply      
It's a very cool project I've thought about gettinng involved with. My company has a number of complex flash games that will not initialize in shumway, but for toys and small apps it works about half the time -- and that's cool! So far, when it works, performance is about 3x slower.
nthitz 8 hours ago 2 replies      
Fun fact: Shumway, was originally based on similar software called Gordon... And who is Gordon Shumway? https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/ALF_(TV_series)
ryen 8 hours ago 0 replies      
This was discussed on HN a few weeks ago:https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=6481319
eridius 8 hours ago 4 replies      
I assume the extension is Firefox-only? It would be really cool to have Safari support for this.
dethstar 6 hours ago 2 replies      
I actually just turned off Flash and am going to try this for a while, youtube works pretty good so far.
dave809 8 hours ago 0 replies      
WOW, those demos run super smooth. This is really cool, I'll be trying the extension out
CloudFront Uploads via POST and PUT aws.typepad.com
30 points by jeffbarr  4 hours ago   11 comments top 6
thwarted 2 hours ago 0 replies      
First and foremost, you can now place a single CloudFront distribution in front of your site, including the dynamic or interactive portions that make use of HTML forms or accept user data in some other way. You no longer have to create and manage multiple distributions or domain names in order to accept POST or PUT requests.

Second, your users can now benefit from accelerated content uploads. After you enable the additional HTTP methods for your application's distribution, PUT and POST operations will be sent to the origin (e.g. Amazon S3) via the CloudFront edge location, improving efficiency, reducing latency, and allowing the application to benefit from the monitored, persistent connections that CloudFront maintains from the edge locations to the origin servers.

So you get to save on having to configure and serve multiple domain names (which isn't all that hard), but you have to add logic to your server side code and user exposed uploading UX to check and display to the user if content is finished being uploaded by the user to cloudfront and by cloudfront to the origin/backing store before using/processing/displaying it.

necro 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Some more details herehttp://docs.aws.amazon.com/AmazonCloudFront/latest/Developer...

I'm curious if the edge receives the full POST/PUT first and then does a complete PUT/POST to the origin, or does it forward as it's receiving.

gfodor 3 hours ago 1 reply      
as someone who has an iPhone app that requires asynchronous high-resolution images uploads, hooray.
mpetrov 3 hours ago 0 replies      
This will be awesome for terminating SSL closer to the user and should make a big impact on latency in mobile apps on high-latency connections.

Combine that with a custom SSL certificate at all the edge nodes ($600/month) and this is a pretty compelling dynamic CDN offering.

Can't wait to try it out for our API.

cstigler 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Interesting, this definitely positions them as a competitor to CloudFlare. But the CDN-as-full-proxy has some distinct disadvantages: every POST to CloudFront will have to make an extra round-trip to retrieve the data before returning to the user. We ditched CloudFlare because of this -- simple requests would take 500ms longer via CloudFlare. Presumably CloudFront will run into the same issues...
bradleyg_ 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Does this mean I can basically use Cloudfront at the root of my site, la Cloudflare?
Manager.io Free accounting software for small businesses manager.io
245 points by Heliosmaster  15 hours ago   118 comments top 27
breckinloggins 13 hours ago 11 replies      
"Enter bank transactions."

Nope. Customer lost.

Look, I hate Quickbooks and Quickbooks Online. I really, really do, but I will not use a financial product that doesn't connect to my financial institutions. Period.

Do you want to know what MY startup dream is? I want someone to give me money, and then I want to go create a service that kicks the crap out of Yodlee and Intuit's own bank connection system. I want it to use REST APIs when it can, OFX when it should, and intelligent screen scraping when it must.

I want to build a startup based on an open core of specifications for how to connect to every financial system in the world. I want that spec to be executable and available as a simple library with bindings to every language you can think of. If you have a new institution or your bank changes and you can fix it, I want you to be able to fork the library and send us a pull request.

I want end users to be able to go through a "guided login process". "OK, log in now", "OK, click on the accounts list", "OK click on a transaction". "You're done! We've autogenerated a basic scraper for your bank. Thanks for helping us out."

I want to make money off this library by providing a simple, unified REST API behind all this mess that provides the computational resources to handle millions of customers connecting with thousands of institutions.

I want this company to provide push notifications so your app can do clever things when people spend money.

I don't want you to have to sign an NDA and pay thousands of dollars just to get permission to play with it.

I want it to be the Twilio of Banks.

But if you want to take the code and go your own way, you can.

I really don't know why we've let just a few companies keep our collective financial data locked up for so long. Is it because it's so expensive to get it working? Well why not spend it on people who will create an open, scalable system that can still make money?

Instead, we have Mint.com and mvelopes. That's it, really. Have an idea for a personal finance tool that lets you create "virtual subaccounts" for your checking and savings accounts so you can leverage double-entry bookkeeping in your personal finances through a clear metaphor? Great! Now have fun spending 10 minutes every two days copying and pasting stuff from 10 websites into 1.

It's just madness.

You know that "one weird thing" you're passionate about that's not really related to anything else you're passionate about? This is it for me.

P.S.: lubos - this isn't really about you or manager.io. I commend you for making something and getting it out there. This is about the thing that makes every one of these attempts inevitably fail, and it's sad that we're all being held hostage to crappy software because of it. I wish you success, I hope that I'm completely wrong.

lubos 15 hours ago 7 replies      
Wow. I'm founder of Manager.io and long-time member of HN but I was always afraid to submit on HN link to my own startup thinking it won't ever get any upvotes. There are hundreds of people on www.manager.io right now. I'm amazed and completely humbled by the interest right now.
brass9 3 hours ago 0 replies      
A nice piece of work!

But I'm curious about a few architectural decisions. What made you to decide to build each HTML page by hand?

Code like this[1] makes my eyes bleed... reminds me of the faux-OOP HTML builder classes that used to be a fad among PHP programmers (or ISAPI & Delphi web developers of old) a while ago.. No offence, but much of your Manager.HttpHandlers.* codebase feels like messy, ugly PHP4 code ported to C#...

What made you decide against template-based output rendering (Razor, NVelocity, NHaml, .liquid to name a few)? With template-generated output, the business logic layer could be decoupled from the UI. I had only a cursory glance at your code (and thus could be wrong), but it seems manager.io's DAL/BLL layer is intermingled within the GUI parts.

The protobuf DLL was named protobufnet.dll in the MSI. But the proper filename should be protobuf-net.dll

I think user input validation and error handling could be made more robust.

Additionally, spawning 5 HTTP worker threads to serve a single user seems a little overkill.

These are few of the issues I've noticed during the 5 minute tinkering with your assemblies. But don't let this critique discourage you. The app looks good - I guess end users won't care how it's built so long as it provides real value...

PS: Thanks for the heads up about Eto forms! I'll give it a spin and see how it fares against Xamarin's XWT.

[1] https://gist.github.com/anonymous/7003337

quarterto 15 hours ago 1 reply      
Interesting. My immediate question was "is this US-specific", but it seems not: http://www.manager.io/about, section "First-class support for every country".
gregd 5 hours ago 0 replies      
When I try to email an invoice, I get an "Error", which isn't very helpful. I can't find anywhere to setup the emailing functionality, so I assume that that part isn't ready yet?
arbuge 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Looks interesting. My main concern with something like this is that my accountant won't be able to work with the file it generates, or will charge me more to do so. My accountant, like most others, speaks Quickbooks.
NKCSS 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I like the creditcard form, where you ask your customers to send their creditcard details + CVV to be sent via mail... is that secure?


tobeportable 13 hours ago 1 reply      
I wished this would be based on http://www.ledger-cli.org/
free652 14 hours ago 1 reply      
Sadly I got an exception right after trying to add a company:

System.FormatException: Guid should contain 32 digits with 4 dashes (xxxxxxxx-xxxx-xxxx-xxxx-xxxxxxxxxxxx). at System.Guid.GuidResult.SetFailure(ParseFailureKind failure, String failureMessageID, Object failureMessageFormatArgument, String failureArgumentName, Exception innerException) at System.Guid.TryParseGuidWithNoStyle(String guidString, GuidResult& result) at System.Guid.TryParseGuid(String g, GuidStyles flags, GuidResult& result) at System.Guid..ctor(String g) at Manager.Objects.Get(String entityId) at Manager.HttpHandlers.File.Upgrade.Get() at HttpFramework.HttpModule.ProcessRequest(HttpRequest request) at Manager.HttpModule.ProcessRequest(HttpRequest request)

jaboutboul 10 hours ago 1 reply      
I use wave (www.waveapps.com) for this and its been absolutely fantastic. absolutely fantastic. (yes it had to be said twice.
elwell 13 hours ago 3 replies      
Will check this out. Have been using Wave Accounting rather happily.
rexreed 15 hours ago 2 replies      
Any interest in making personal accounting software as well? On the Mac, there are few good low-cost options if you want desktop software and not cloud-based.
deweller 15 hours ago 1 reply      
What is the business model? Will they charge for upgrades? Or will they use your data to send you targeted ads?
rfnslyr 15 hours ago 0 replies      
I am so jealous of any product or startup with a perfect domain name. I'll definitely use this.
maheart 7 hours ago 0 replies      
This looks really good. I'm kind of concerned (wondering?) about the long-term viability of this product:

1. It's free (how does the company backing it plan to stay in business?).

2. It's free (as in beer), so I/the community cannot take over in case the product/company ever goes under.

Thanks for your work.

krmmalik 14 hours ago 0 replies      
This is brilliant. I'm referring to the execution, the landing page, design, pricing model etc.

One question, can bank accounts be linked for realtime importing or is it based on importing csv's only etc?

pbreit 14 hours ago 0 replies      
If this works, it could be a new model for software. There's something about accounting that seems more appropriate as desktop software. I like avoiding the monthly fees and it's probably more comforting to the developer not to be serving the app (I realize they are offering cloud storage).
cmalpeli 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Very nice! Does this pull in transactions from your bank accounts automatically? I'm using Xero right now (awesome BTW) and that is a killer feature for me.
joebo 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Good work. The install process was very smooth. I like that it doesn't require admin. Also a neat architecture. Looks like it's a .NET app running an in process web server.
mixmixmix 15 hours ago 1 reply      
Just curious, but what is the app written in? Is it something like Adobe Air?
jonathanmarcus 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Downloading now. Based on the screenshots, this looks pretty damn solid.
chatman 6 hours ago 0 replies      
GNUCash just rocks. And it is more trustworthy.
madao 11 hours ago 0 replies      
Thanks for this, I am starting a small side business and this looks like a nice solution for what I need.
mcescalante 14 hours ago 1 reply      
Seems like you could put the *.manager file into dropbox or another "sync service" and put a symlink into the Users/... folder to point it to the dropbox file, which would probably allow multiple users to all access the same data. I feel like this would sort of be bypassing your cloud service
lukashed 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Really looking great! If you could attach files to bills (i.e. a PDF scan) it would fit all our needs perfectly! :)
mbostleman 8 hours ago 0 replies      
This is awesome. I have rental properties and I am so sick of Quickbooks. This is everything Intuit is not.
ckdarby 15 hours ago  replies      
I thought this was open source ;_;
Steve Ballmer is right, and I was wrong betanews.com
16 points by rajeemcariazo  3 hours ago   10 comments top 5
r0h1n 19 minutes ago 0 replies      
> In less than five years, Google did what seemed impossible: Launch and succeed with three new platforms, in categories Microsoft dominated: Browser, mobile OS and PC OS.

It's disingenuous to say Google has "launched and succeeded" against Microsoft in the PC OS space.

shin_lao 1 hour ago 2 replies      
Looked at differently, though, the third-is-right adage is wrong. More typically version 4 crosses the good enough threshold -- Windows 95 as the fourth from 1.0 and XP as the fourth from Windows NT 3.51, for example. By that reckoning, Windows 9 promises much, as v. 4 from Vista.

Windows XP is version 5.1 of Windows NT. I think it is really dumb to try to see "laws" in product versions.

gushie 37 minutes ago 0 replies      
Microsoft had Windows CE, Tablet PC's, Hotmail long before Google had Android/Nexus, Chrome, Gmail. If they had developed / polished what they had, they wouldn't be chasing now. Microsoft just need to hope Chrome OS and Google Docs don't start eating into Windows and Office 365 and they need to be prepared to take whatever actions are necessary to prevent it (even if it is to give away a Microsoft Works type app for Android/iOS to entice people away from Quickoffice.)

The next CEO needs to find the right balance between focusing on the assets they have as well as picking the right fights with emerging technologies. That said, hindsight is a wonderful thing.

RyanZAG 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Running a company is not just about grand strategy, regardless of how big that company is. As they say, execution is more important than the idea. It doesn't only apply to startups.
Snapchat admits to handing unopened 'snaps' to US law enforcement theguardian.com
54 points by teamgb  7 hours ago   10 comments top 5
codex 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Yep, society cooperates with law enforcement. It's been that way for about six or seven thousand years. In this case it was in response to search warrants. If you're not outraged, you've been paying enough attention.
smsm42 57 minutes ago 0 replies      
If the law enforcement has a proper warrants signed by court, no wonder they are complying with it, there's nothing to "admit". It's like "admitting" if the police stops you on the road, you'd show your driver's license to them. What else could they do? The fact they continue to function makes it obvious they comply with court orders - we all know what happens to those who don't.
dingaling 2 hours ago 1 reply      
I hadn't heard of the app before now, but I'm not finding much sympathy for users of a system built on the premise that they should not have access to data on their own device.

Anyway, a clarification of the headline: not only 'unopened' snaps, but also those that have not yet been opened by all nominated recipients. So if a law enforcement agent can have themselves invited into a Snapchat circle they can take advantage of that fact to persist the image on the server until it is legally demanded.

Apocryphax64 4 hours ago 0 replies      
That's kind of expected. And 12 since May? Of the many snaps that's a tiny, tiny number.

I'm glad they don't actually store for longer than is necessary tbh.

tadeegan 4 hours ago 2 replies      
Okay, seriously, what could someone possibly send over snapchat that is important to national security?
How to Make a $19 Police Scanner sites.google.com
84 points by rbcoffee  9 hours ago   40 comments top 7
blhack 7 hours ago 1 reply      
These are really fun. I have one sitting in my Jeep with me right now.

Obviously you can do a lot more with it than just listen to cops, and even this tutorial makes it look a LOT more complicated than it is.

Plug the device in, and select a frequency. It's pretty much that easy.

I use it for listening to everything from ham radio operators to airplanes. Seriously have had every penny worth of fun playing with this.

Here is everything you need, available on amazon prime: http://www.amazon.com/Receiver-RTL2832U-Compatible-Packages-...

(Although I recommend a better antenna. Dig one out of your garage, that is what I did.)

coin 9 hours ago 3 replies      
How fast can the tuner change frequencies? This will impact its ability to scan.

Can the same USB receiver function simultaneously as the signal and control receiver? If not then the HW cost is $19*2.

jaredstenquist 8 hours ago 2 replies      
Is there a Mac alternative? Otherwise i'll have to stick with my Bearcat.
nsmalch 9 hours ago 7 replies      
Now to commit the whole NATO Phonetic Alphabet to memory. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NATO_phonetic_alphabet
jevinskie 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Nifty! I just got two tuners so I can listen to local analog trunk systems. Any tips or recommendations for doing this on Linux?
makomk 9 hours ago 3 replies      
Plus $25 for the software to actually use it.
granfular 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Sure, a $19 police scanner.

As long as you have a $25 software package.

That runs on your $100+ Windows installation.

On your multi-hundred-dollar laptop.


Greenwald exits Guardian for new Omidyar media venture reuters.com
80 points by NonEUCitizen  9 hours ago   20 comments top 5
balabaster 7 hours ago 3 replies      
Hopefully this will see integrity return to real, good quality investigative journalism in the media in general instead of "news" being used as fodder for political and commercial interests. It becomes tiring having to scroll through Fox, CNN, CBC, BBC, Al Jazeera, The Guardian, The Times and other news agencies trying to piece some form of the truth based on reading between the lines of half truths and unchecked "facts" put in place to suit the story rather than the other way around.

Perhaps I've romanticized journalism in my mind and see the past through rose coloured glasses as we all tend to from time to time, but I feel like journalists used to have integrity and that we could once trust that when they put pen to paper, we could believe in what they wrote... or perhaps we never could and its only as age removes our naivety that we see the world's media for what it is, a sham designed to further political and commercial interests.

I for one should like to see a news agency that spends their time chasing down the facts like CSIs to present the cold hard truth rather than some dumbed down version of events designed to have some political sway. Lets hope the vision for whatever venture this may be is that. Perhaps I can dream.

redthrowaway 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm interested to see what the financing model will be. One of the biggest structural problems with the MSM is their reliance on advertising and the editorial constraints that inevitably imposes. While I respect and admire Greenwald, a key takeaway from the NSA leaks is that a system that relies on the beneficence of its key actors is a system that will be abused. If the only defence against editorial degradation is the personal ethics of Greenwald and Omidyar, then it's only a matter of time before the venture's editorial oversight is captured by its financial interests.

As much as I dislike paying for news, I'd far rather see them model themselves after the Economist than CNN.

brymaster 4 hours ago 1 reply      
> Beat aimed to create a new online journalism model with paid subscriptions and respectful comment threads

Well good luck with that. To lose faith in humanity, one has to look no further than comment threads on news sites. The current comments on the Reuters article are already facepalm-inducing.

matthewbadeau 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Civil Beat is a really incredible news source that has done some really deep reporting on Honolulu's local politics. If Glenn Greenwald will be joining CB then it's likely the website will grow out of its regional roots into a more national news site. I'd love to see the same investigative reporting done at a national level.
judk 7 hours ago 3 replies      
Does this mean that he is done with the "first wave" the of Snowden revelations, and or that he doesn't trust me The Guardian, and or that he wants to to capitalize at his peak popularity moment? Was this planned before the Snowden story?
Ireland is to close a tax loophole used by Apple bbc.co.uk
4 points by gadders  47 minutes ago   2 comments top 2
sjwright 10 minutes ago 0 replies      
A loophole used by Apple.

And Google, and Microsoft, and Adobe, and Facebook, and Oracle, and Pfizer, and Starbucks, and General Electric.

But Apple makes the headline. Normally this would be headline whoring by the predictable media, except that this is the BBC, and I thought Starbucks was made the whipping boy for tax evasion in the UK.

sjwright 8 minutes ago 0 replies      
More information about the underlying tax loophole:http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Double_Irish_arrangement
VirtualBox 4.3 released virtualbox.org
132 points by conductor  13 hours ago   43 comments top 10
mitchellh 12 hours ago 8 replies      
A couple important notes about this:

* Vagrant is being updated to work with 4.3 now. A release should be out today or at the latest tomorrow. (UPDATE: Vagrant 1.3.5 is now out and supports VirtualBox 4.3)

* VirtualBox 4.3 doesn't run at all on Mavericks (10.9) because their kernel extensions aren't signed. OS X 10.9 requires signed kexts now. So the changelog where they said "limited" Mavericks support they actually should've said "no support". (UPDATE: Some people are reporting it is working for them on Mavericks. I can't get it to work. YMMV)

Based on these two bullet points, I would stick with VirtualBox 4.2 for the time being. The bullet point that says "rewritten VT-x and AMD-V code" is especially vague and could be "super unstable virtual machine manager" just as easily as it can mean "slight performance improvements." So be careful.

Other than that, it is good to see VirtualBox have some sort of big release. This is their first major ("4.x") release in over a year.

I also want to note that if you are on Mavericks, VMware Fusion works perfectly. As a disclaimer to this sentence though: I make money from Vagrant + VMware users. I'm not trying to advertise that, I just want to state that Vagrant _itself_ is fine. VirtualBox 4.3 doesn't work. VirtualBox 4.2 does. VMware Fusion 5 and 6 does.

thex86 9 hours ago 4 replies      
VirtualBox is one of those projects that is a very important part of my daily use. But somehow I feel that it doesn't get much love from the open source community. Is it just me?
mathrawka 11 hours ago 1 reply      
If you rely on VirtualBox, I would recommend to hold off on upgrading until you are sure that it will not break your workflow.

The big releases tend to have a way of introducing bugs, that although get fixed, can wreck your day if you depend on it.

stevenleeg 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Congrats to the virtualbox team!

I still wish they'd consider adding retina support on OS X; that's the one thing keeping me from using it 24/7 :(.

riobard 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Networking improvements: A new Network Address Translation (NAT) option allows virtual machines to talk to each other on the same host, and communicate with the outside world.

This feature alone is worth the upgrade.

rcarmo 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Nice, but a couple of months too late for me.

I've switched over to Parallels 9 on the Mac, and it is _much_ faster overall (not to mention better USB support).

Also, I highly recommend Vagrant users to look into the vagrant-LXC plugin - that, too, is one heck of a lot faster than using either VirtualBox or VMware providers.

I've documented my setup here: http://the.taoofmac.com/space/HOWTO/Vagrant

codexon 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I just installed 4.3 and tried running a directx9 program on XP with 3d acceleration and it caused the VM screen to flicker and not display any content.

I hope Vbox will catch up with VMware player on 3d acceleration soon.

chum 7 hours ago 1 reply      
I used virtualbox a lot for work and play, always with a debian guest. While my overall experience was good, there were two gotchas that really annoyed me:

1. When cloning VMs I would always have networking issues. The fix was known and simple (https://www.virtualbox.org/ticket/660) but not intuitive to a casual user.

2. Installing the guest additions (drag-and-drop file support, shared clipboard, basically stuff you really want) as a kernel module can be a huge pain in the ass depending on what kernel you run. I never had any issues with a "stable" 2.x kernel, but with 3.x I had a difficult time finding the correct kernel headers and putting them in the correct place.

walid 10 hours ago 0 replies      
It is worth noting that if you don't use the new features and running VirtualBox on old hardware there probably is no good reason to upgrade at the moment.
icn2 11 hours ago 3 replies      
I have used virtualbox and vmware player (free for non commercial user ). vmware player gave me much better experience.
A Court Order is an Insider Attack freedom-to-tinker.com
111 points by Amadou  11 hours ago   37 comments top 8
iandanforth 10 hours ago 5 replies      
This article begins by giving away the moral high-ground.

"They ask: If court orders are legitimate, why should we allow engineers to design services that protect users against court-ordered access?"

Why on earth would you allow that a court order is legitimate? Both the tactic and the execution are of questionable legality, and critically that legality is flexible.

Remember that the clearly illegal complicit acts of telecommunication companies were made retroactively legal through a grant of immunity. The idea that you would begin your article by allowing the emperor to retain the assumption of clothes undermines the credibility of your remaining contentions. Courts having the right to demand things from citizens that they do not wish to divulge is not some force of nature, it has not always existed, does not exist in all systems, and need not exist in the way it currently does.

So cut the crap trying to justify the moral, conscientious, and brave action of a small company and force them to justify their existence.

shalmanese 33 minutes ago 0 replies      
There are two huge differences that make court orders completely different from inside attacks:

1. Court orders can be freely targeted.

It's incredibly hard and costly to make a system resistant to inside attacks from everyone. Not just costly from a technical implementation perspective, but from a business operations perspective. For example, software engineers might occasionally want to look at some user data in order to diagnose a bug. Not having access to the data would make their lives much harder. Certain analytics might not be able to be generated which leaves the business flying blind.

Instead, an acceptable tradeoff is that access is restricted and managed to mitigate risk. For example, access is only granted when necessary and sensitive operations might require two separate people to sign off. This makes it significantly more difficult for a malicious actor to bribe the right people but makes it no more difficult for law enforcement. Law enforcement can legally compel bypasses around all the safeguards.

2. Court Orders don't care about being detected.

Instead of making it technically impossible, it's often far more effective to deter inside attacks through robust detection. Audit logs, clear policies and dire consequences are usually enough to shift the calculus of inside attacks into "not being worth it". Such a calculus does not apply to court orders because they don't care about being detected, because they're not doing anything "wrong".

On the surface, court orders and inside attacks might seem very similar technically viewed from an overall business perspective, they are vastly different and the comparison between the two is unhelpful.

pudquick 9 hours ago 3 replies      
I do have one problem with part of this article.

> From a purely technological standpoint, these two scenarios are exactly the same [...] Neither of these differences is visible to the companys technology - it cant read the employees mind to learn the motivation[...]. Technical measures that prevent one access scenario will unavoidably prevent the other one.

Emphasis on the last sentence - since this is only due to implementation in the chosen example.

As a counterpoint example, a system that allows for user data access only after a request has been made to access that data, the request is recorded in a request log system of some sort, and approval for the request goes through the appropriate checks (legal and procedurally) at which point it's signed off on and data access can occur.

(The counter-counter-argument is that technology isn't perfect and someone with the right access could potentially get around it ... but enterprise key management is a real thing, folks)

In this sort of system, the "intent of the employee" piece is encoded in the checks/approval piece as long as you make sure the same employee making the request is not the one with approval rights and that legal representation gets included in the loop for these types of accesses.

In this situation the hypothetical criminal syndicate would have to mount a larger and larger attack involving more people and greatly reducing the chance of it happening.

A government, however, would just pile on the legal requests and increase the number of employees involved until the request could be potentially be satisfied. By doing it this way, you make it unlikely for the government to il/legally pressure a single individual and instead involve your company's legal representation and a larger portion of the government's legal apparatus in determining if the request is valid - and in the meantime create some sort of documentation about the event (even if you can't publish / talk about the documentation while you're going through the courts).

The only advantage in defensive design where you literally cannot access your customer's information is that it absolves you of knowledge of what any one specific customer is doing. However, you increase your risk exposure to your services being used for illicit purposes (as defined by whoever is bringing a lawsuit against you), potentially being shut down, and potentially losing money as a result.

Some companies are ok with accepting that cost (in return for something that you can't put a price on) - most aren't.

There is a big difference between no employee can access the data and no single employee can access the data.

malandrew 4 hours ago 1 reply      

    Had Lavabit had in place measures to prevent disclosure of     its master key, it would have been unable to comply with     the ultimate court order
Is this possible? Can you have a system that allows you access, but doesn't allow you to give access to others? Or is it possible to make a system that not even you have access to and still be maintainable?

Edit: Upon thinking about this further, couldn't a solution to the byzantine general's problem like how bitcoin works solve this?

e.g. Thinking outside the box here, what if every person who uses the mail system has to collectively solve some hashing problem based on the source code or system change where the solution allows the software patch or upgrade to be applied. If 50% of more of the users solve the hashing problem after inspecting the code, the patch would be applied.

codex 8 hours ago 3 replies      
Designing a system to resist law enforcement is not the only way to make a system that resists insider attacks. In fact, it's a terrible way. Banks have figured out how to comply with the law, allowing law enforcement to seize bank assets, without letting employees abscond with deposits; it's not difficult. The two problems are not the same.
colinbartlett 9 hours ago 3 replies      
Isn't this the concept of "host proof hosting"? The idea is that the encryption secret is never even transmitted to the host so they have no way of decrypting it.

Why wasn't Lavabit setup in a similar fashion? Why isn't this more widely practiced?

kefka 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Since fending off legal hackers and inside jobbers is too difficult...

What is the current state of the art on homomorphic encryption? Does it still cost an 'ARM and a leg' of CPU cycles?

devx 4 hours ago 0 replies      
That's why companies like Google and Microsoft should provide as much end to end encryption for their users as possible. So the government doesn't even bother asking them about the data.
The True Story of How Amazon Went from Bedlam to Behemoth linkedin.com
15 points by brandonb  3 hours ago   1 comment top
johnyzee 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Sounds great, just bought it (on Amazon, for my Kindle, with one click).

For another great read about a would-be Amazon that didn't turn out quite the same way, and an entertaining look into the internet business environment at the turn of the millenium, I recommend Dot Bomb by J. David Kuo.

Wabi-sabi wikipedia.org
51 points by wslh  8 hours ago   21 comments top 11
mturmon 5 hours ago 0 replies      
This concept is useful, but I believe the wikipedia page is inaccurate in its description. For instance, I don't think that Ryan-ji (the famous rock garden) illustrates wabi-sabi at all, and the teahouse is marginal. The teacup, on the other hand, is excellent.

The long narrative history of older meanings of the two words is also not very helpful. Here's a much better summary (http://www.nobleharbor.com/tea/chado/WhatIsWabi-Sabi.htm) that reads in part:

"So now we have wabi, which is humble and simple, and sabi, which is rusty and weathered. And we've thrown these terms together into a phrase that rolls off the tongue like Ping-Pong. Does that mean, then, that the wabi-sabi house is full of things that are humble, plain, rusty, and weathered? That's the easy answer. The amalgamation of wabi and sabi in practice, however, takes on much more depth."

And I don't think ikebana (floral arrangement) is generally a reflection of wabi-sabi, much less haiku (section entitled "Wabi-sabi in Japanese arts").

Anyway, kind of a mess. Someone should fix that ;-)

twelvechairs 5 hours ago 0 replies      
"Wabi sabi" is a not a commonly used (or known) term in contemporary Japan, although it has been popularised in western art circles to exemplify a Japanese art. A more used term in Japan (as far as I have been told - I am not Japanese myself) which has a related meaning is 'mono no aware' ( http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Mono_no_aware ).

[edit] to plug a book on Japanese culture (as it was, rather than as it is now) to anyone with the time or interest, I highly recommend Bernard Rudofsky's 1965 book 'The Kimono Mind'.

jmduke 4 hours ago 1 reply      
See also, an Italian analogue: sprezzatura. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sprezzatura
davesims 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Reminds me of one of my favorite bits of rock criticism from the early oughts, Farm Report Wabi Sabi:


'Then my favorite fellow Bubba, Jesse Gutierrez, came by to swallow some beers. He told me that hes been studying Japanese esthetics, and that what I was talking about was "wabi-sabi," the beauty of the humble and the imperfect. Wabi-sabi, declaimed Jesse, his thumbs hooked into the straps of his overalls, was developed to its height by 15th-century tea masters who found that the finish of Chinese Ming porcelain began to cloy. They started buying and exalting absolutely plain Korean peasant ware, stuff that was cracked, distressed, flawed. It reminded them of the beauty of nature, autumn leaves on a stone path.'

swatkat 4 hours ago 0 replies      
This reminds me of BMW's asymmetric design concept car X-Coupe [0]. I remember reading something like "a little bit of asymmetry is more beautiful than perfect symmetry" in an auto mag back in 2001.


skunkworks 5 hours ago 0 replies      
When I first head of wabi-sabi, it was to describe the aesthetic appeal of raw denim made on heirloom equipment -- the uneven weave caused by loom chatter, how dye gets everywhere, the uneven fade patterns, the leg twist caused by the skewed direction of the twill weave.
alexdevkar 6 hours ago 0 replies      
This is an excellent term to throw around carelessly with your designer friends.
dccoolgai 6 hours ago 2 replies      
I love how the East codifies aesthetics like this. My favorite is shibui which loosely translated (i'm told) means that every single detail of the object is simultaneously both useful and beautiful.
Tichy 1 hour ago 0 replies      
It sounds too much like Wasabi for my taste :-/
easytiger 48 minutes ago 0 replies      
wozniacki 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I just read this yesterday in the New Yorker piece about JD.[1]

  When he was a teen-ager, Dorsey told me, he read a book about tea  ceremonies and was impressed by the Japanese precept of wabi-sabi,  which holds that the greatest beauty comes from organization with a  dash of disorder. The monks rake up leaves, then they sprinkle a few  leaves back, he explained.

Nginx Inc. raises $10M in Series B round nginx.com
112 points by shad42  13 hours ago   41 comments top 8
staunch 10 hours ago 1 reply      
I've been using nginx for a very long time, but I am getting a bit nervous about it. As an example, the nginx Plus feature of "Application health checks" has me concerned. This is the feature that performs an HTTP request on a backend server to determine if it is healthy.

That's such a simple and necessary feature of any reverse proxy that it should obviously be included in the free version.

So, are they going to avoid ever implementing it in the free version? Would they turn away patches to add that functionality? I know there was an open source patch that never made it in, but I don't know why.

And what about staging/dev environments? Do you really have to pay full price to get basic features for internal testing servers?

batgaijin 39 minutes ago 0 replies      
If you are looking for the future of http server stuff look no further than:http://mew.org/~kazu/proj/mighttpd/en/
jakozaur 13 hours ago 2 replies      
I wonder how this impact open source nginx... I guess they will rather keep adding new things to Plus.

Seems less open source friendly business model than Trolltech (Qt), Red Hat, MySQL...

Touche 13 hours ago 2 replies      
Recently switched to Apache largely because of Nginx Plus. I do wish them luck with that project though.
yeukhon 13 hours ago 4 replies      
"NGINX is now used by 16% of all Web sites"

I wonder how much traffic are generated by this 16%? I would assume the traffic will be more than 16%, probably above 50%.

gmjosack 6 hours ago 1 reply      
I know that they plan to add dynamically loaded module support in a future release. As long as they don't plan to keep that feature as an Nginx Plus feature then I don't see much to be concerned about.

As it stands right now, a lot of users aren't able to make use of 3rd party modules because of the overhead (recompiling). Once dynamic modules are supported the community should be able to fill in the most desired features.

logicallee 12 hours ago 2 replies      
this is getting ridiculous, first mongo.db next nginx.


cat raises $750M at valuation of $25B

The venerable gnu shell program 'cat', which is an integral part of 70 million developers' toolchains and helps power shell scripts on 70% of the world's Internet servers, has completed raising a seed round of $750M at a valuation of $25B.

"We could have raised more", said Richard Stallman, "but by only parting with 3.3% we are leaving ourselves room to grow. More and more people are starting to use Gnu/GNU utilities, and our eventual market base is 7 billion people. We have no plans to monetize."

dschiptsov 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Nginx Inc without mr. Sysoev is just a support company.)

There were rumors that he had plans to rewrite big parts of the server, so-called nginx2. If this Nginx Plus is what they would do instead, that is pity.

In my humble opinion, while nginx/core is brilliant the module system is over-engineered and too complicated, and there are lot of room for improvements.

Beliefs that helped us build a $270 million company in 5 years mkatz0630.tumblr.com
9 points by jejune06  2 hours ago   5 comments top 3
drum 50 minutes ago 2 replies      
I liked the article but didn't see any mention of the company name. Also, what do they sell?
ivanbrussik 51 minutes ago 0 replies      
literally one of the best posts I've read all year.
jinbom 37 minutes ago 0 replies      
good posting~!
Stack Exchange's monitoring system is now open source github.com
115 points by waffle_ss  13 hours ago   36 comments top 13
rdtsc 10 hours ago 0 replies      
It is so strange to look at that C# code.

I know they use it, it is just looks kind of odd compared to the rest of young (I mean less than 5 year old) web companies. No Ubuntu, nginx, node, jvm, but instead C#. I don't know, it just stands out.

stevepotter 5 hours ago 2 replies      
The anti .net kneejerk reactions on HN really disturbs me. You spend all day on stackoverflow then blindly bash their tech stack. Developing, deploying, and hosting .net apps is just fine. Many brilliant people choose .net and are plenty happy with it. Maybe rather than jumping to conclusions, you could give it a shot.
emillon 10 hours ago 2 replies      
I understand that it's not worth the cost to cleanup the history, but it's always frustrating to see such a project come with a 100kloc "initial" commit.
rsync 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Is it GUI based ?

If so, are there screenshots ?

toyg 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Looks nice, sadly it's just overkill for what I need.

Has anyone built a very simple solution to start/stop an arbitrary set of Windows services across several boxes, in a specific order? It'd be nice to have a simple GUI for this sort of thing. I've started working on it, but I suck at desktop programming (well, at programming in general, probably)...

grundprinzip 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Easy to deploy as it's written in C# :)
beck5 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Could someone please list the equivalent systems this is could replace? (linux or windows)
pyrox420 12 hours ago 0 replies      
There are a few issues with the GIT repo right now that I'm helping Nick Craver work through. I see this project maturing over time to be quite awesome.
AsymetricCom 11 hours ago 2 replies      
Looks like a tangled mess of a decision engine. Why would anyone want this? Surely, there are other solutions out there that are more mature? (nagios comes to mind but is a poor example)
pygy_ 11 hours ago 1 reply      
Wow... Nice one.

Does anybody know if it works with Mono?

jamesRaybould 12 hours ago 4 replies      
Having a quick poke around and I notice that they are storing all exceptions in an SQL database. I've been looking at storing all the errors we get in our various applications in a central repository and was wondering what the general consensus was?

Currently I'm going a centralised logstash server and using a logstash shipper on each of my servers to push the exceptions, from a standard logfile to it. I was toying with the idea of pushing all my errors at source to an SQL database but figured if I was having database problems I'd be missing all the exceptions that I could be using to trigger the alerts that I'm having database problems!

elwell 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Wow, they weren't kidding when they said .NET
saneshark 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Stackoverflow runs Microsoft?!? I feel like I was just punched in the gut by a best friend. Throwing up...
Apple cuts 5C orders due to weak demand cnbc.com
37 points by loso  1 hour ago   51 comments top 14
ma2rten 40 minutes ago 1 reply      
> At the time of the 5C's launch, tech-watchers said the handset was designed to beat off Apple's rivals in fast-growing emerging markets.

I am staying in Thailand, which may be one of those emerging markets. I will comment on the situation in Thailand, but the situation in other countries may be similar.

The average salary in Thailand is about $350. But that does not make Thailand a price-sensitive market for high-end smartphones. If you want a cheap phone, chinese iPhones copies are readily available starting from $40 on markets and even malls. The people who do buy a real iPhone don't generally buy it for it's features, hardware or apps. They buy because they have money and want to show it. You also see a lot of German luxury cars on street, despite the fact that these taxed at 200%. I heard that if you don't you don't have a Mercedes in Thailand, people don't want to do business with you because they think you are insolvent. A cheaper plastic version of the iPhone, isn't going to cut it in these markets. Rather a more expensive Gold version. Gold has a special meaning for Asians, especially Chinese, who form most of the elite in Thailand.

To a lesser extent I think that also applies Western countries. My former boss, who drove a Porsche, commented on the iPhone 4s launch, that it didn't matter what Apple's latest killer-feature would be. People (including himself) will always want to have the latest iPhone.

alecsmart1 1 hour ago 8 replies      
If someone can afford a $549 phone, they most probably can afford a $649 phone. At this price range, it's not really a rational decision. It's how desirable the product is (which Apple is very good at projecting). So the customer might as well go all the way and get the top of the line phone. Well I would. Imagine spending $549 and then your friends saying "Oh, but its not 5S".
antimagic 57 minutes ago 4 replies      
Good grief, talk about burying the lede. The 5C has lower-than-expected demand because the 5S has been wildly successful, even with it's higher price point (evidence for this: Apple announcing that they exceeded expected sales for all models of iPhone during the first month of sales, and that despite the fact that the 5S is still supply-constrained).
Theodores 2 minutes ago 0 replies      
The 5C does not have to sell. It purely has to be the 'other' choice instead of Android etc. being the 'other' choice. It is there to make the deluxe 5S seem a 'bargain', that is all. This makes purchasing the 5S a lot easier for the customer, psychologically.

As for Apple cutting orders due to weak demand, they simply placed a large initial order with their suppliers to get a better price. They probably told them it was going to sell like hot cakes when all along they only needed a modest quantity. They now go back to them and say 'sorry folks we won't be needing so many for the next order' and the suppliers walk away wishing they had charged more per unit with the first order.

Note this article is thin on sources and the angle implied - 'weak demand' is just interpretation.

Aardwolf 4 minutes ago 0 replies      
Can someone please explain me something that I don't understand?

I'm quite sure that Apple has smart economists. So why do they call something that costs 15% less than something expensive "low price"?


felixmar 33 minutes ago 0 replies      
Is Apple not concerned about losing developer momentum? Paid apps are on the way down. Market share is becoming more important than ever. Only in the US will a large share of the population pay $600+ for a phone. Strong iPad sales will buy Apple some time but i suspect that more and more developers outside the US will go Android first.
pearjuice 1 hour ago 2 replies      
If it were actually cheap and sold at a price with very little to no profit and was simply used as a tool by Apple to gain market share, it could have worked out very well. But no, they thought they could resell old components with little added extra but an increased version number to the masses. The reality distortion field has its limits.
helipad 44 minutes ago 1 reply      
"Apple began selling it's the new low-price option last month in 11 markets" low price?
antr 44 minutes ago 0 replies      
Apple's multi-million dollar trial and error pricing exercise.

The Monday morning quarterback in me will now say that "in order to differentiate an excellent product (5C) with a premium product (5S) is to at least sell the 5C under the 400 level. At a 100 price delta users are 'clearly' price elastic"

If margins of the 5C at a sub-400 price are not those Apple expects from its products don't build the 5C.

intelliot 1 hour ago 0 replies      
The 5c isn't hugely less expensive than the 5s (it only looks like half the price due to carrier subsidies). So this doesn't surprise me -- if you're going to locked into a contract, most people are better off ponying up the $100 -- much less than the cost of the cellular service. So consumers are rightly choosing the 5s.
piog342 1 hour ago 3 replies      
I kept reading before launch about the $100 phone Apple was launching and was excited. But to my disappoint I later realised it's $100 + ridiculous contract (apparently the notion of contract free phones doesn't exist in the US)

I think if Apple launched a "budget" phone it would destroy much of the Android market. Maybe it would damage their brand though, who knows.

jbverschoor 23 minutes ago 0 replies      
Well for $100 I'd rather get the 5S.It would be a whole different story if the difference was 200-250
ArekDymalski 31 minutes ago 0 replies      
I wonder if all of this was just a clever trick to provide bigger contrast and thus justification for buying the more expensive model.
xux 40 minutes ago 1 reply      
It's no surprise that Apple also announced that it's hiring Angela Ahrenditz, CEO of Burberry. She guided the company from a cheap image crisis to a successful luxury brand.

I think Tim Cook want her to do the same to Apple. The iPhone needs to be seen as a luxury brand.

Free Font: Norwester jamiewilson.io
231 points by benoitg  20 hours ago   58 comments top 18
bbx 17 hours ago 1 reply      
Great job. I saw this font on Designer News yesterday and downloaded it instantly.

I think creating a font from scratch could become a designer's rite of passage. It involves usability, aesthetics, and technical knowledge (kerning, weights, character encoding, horizontal and vertical metrics...). I always thought about creating one myself but usually ended up browsing the web for original and better designed fonts.

You got me questioning my behavior.

casca 19 hours ago 1 reply      
Thank you for putting the license in the zipfile. We've had to avoid using certain fonts because it wasn't possible to identify the license.

Can you please put another file with a link back to your website and the request to donate to the International Justice Mission if used?

jamiewilson 18 hours ago 7 replies      
Hey everybody. I'm the designer of Norwester. Thanks for the interest and feedback. Yea, the font is really limited right now. Please use it judiciously as there are a lot of glyphs not accounted for, as digitalengineer pointed out. Please let me know if you have any special requests or catch any thing not looking right. Thanks again!
digitalengineer 19 hours ago 3 replies      
Looks nice. It's Open Type so thats cool. However, no serious designer would choose this font for production as it is right now though. You dev's would call it 'Aplha' or 'Beta'. It contains only the 'Western' letters and even for that, not most variables. This makes it dangerous to use for your company's branding. Imagine if you want to write an , , or what not. You can not. So, nice to try a bit but be careful using it for production.

If you wish to compare it to something, have a look at these free fonts: http://www.exljbris.com/ They're free for the Roman, Bold, Heavy, Italic and small caps, but if you want more variables, say a Heavy Italic you pay a small fee.

narad 18 hours ago 0 replies      
This font will be great to use in headlines. Will this font be available in Google Fonts [1]? Because Google hosts many fonts under SIL Open Font License .

[1] http://www.google.com/fonts

noonespecial 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Looks a lot like "Bank Gothic". I almost expect to see it on a refrigerator... (S M E G)
asimov42 2 hours ago 0 replies      
The "R" and "5" are quite interesting, and the symbols look fun, specially that "@".
jdmitch 17 hours ago 0 replies      
I love the fact that you've asked people to donate to the International Justice Mission - they do great work! What made you choose them? Is the font somehow inspired by the work they do? (maybe you could convince them to incorporate it into a rebrand ;)!
patrickg 13 hours ago 3 replies      
Wow, an ASCII font. Useless in most part of the world (sorry for being dismissive. I actually like the font, but without any "funny" characters, it's use is very limited) Now, I'll probably get all the downvotes from today...
ChikkaChiChi 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Fantastic. I just wish more fonts used a slash zero :(
haddr 15 hours ago 2 replies      
It's a pity this font can't be used in many countries due to lack of any diacritics... :(
benoitg 19 hours ago 2 replies      
Just to be clear: I submitted this but I'm not related to the OP. I just found it on http://sidebar.io/ earlier today and liked both the open license and the fact that the author seems open to suggestions.
huntaub 19 hours ago 1 reply      
What license is this released under?
elwell 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Why did you use images of the font on your demo page (rather than using it as a web font)?
gondo 8 hours ago 2 replies      
is this font legit?it looks like it was build based on some other font, and there are still original/unchanged characters left.f.e. try to render A, and notice the difference in font-weight and also the char differences.or am i missing something?
DonPellegrino 17 hours ago 0 replies      
I love it. It has that cold war propaganda feel to it. Great for headlines.
arnley 19 hours ago 0 replies      
Very nice looking, thank you!
pagekicker 20 hours ago 0 replies      
Boxy! Downloaded it to play around, thx.
Explaining an astonishing slinky danielwalsh.tumblr.com
83 points by scott_s  13 hours ago   35 comments top 8
aqme28 11 hours ago 5 replies      
I think you're really overcomplicating this.

1. Since gravity acts on all points of the slinky equally, you can aggregate this by saying that gravity acts on the slinky's center of mass.

2. The slinky acts like a spring. Since it is being held stationary, the forces on the bottom part of the slinky equal out. There is a force of gravity going down which equals an upward spring force.

Therefore when it is dropped, the center of mass falls at g=9.8 m/s^2, while the bottom part initially experiences no net forces.

You can also show why the net forces on the bottom of the spring will remain 0 (0 = mg - F_spring) for a spring obeying Hooke's law (F = k*d), where d falls with gravity.

britta 12 hours ago 0 replies      
My friend writes this blog and I edit it, so if people have questions, feel free to ask.

More explorations of falling slinkys:

* http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2011/09/modeling-a-falling... - a different way to model it.

* http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b9-XgSYLxDk - video analysis.

* http://wamc.org/post/dr-mike-wheatland-university-sydney-phy... + http://www.physics.usyd.edu.au/~wheat/slinky/ - more experimenting and a formal paper.

afreak 10 hours ago 2 replies      
The way that a slinky moves also demonstrates the question that some ask about the giant stick and the speed of light.

To explain, if you had a button a light year away and had the option to press it via a remote hand, the fastest we could tell the remote hand to press it would be one light year.

However, there has been the question of whether a long stick that is one light year in distance in lieu of sending a signal to the remote hand could be faster. The way the slinky moves would demonstrate that the giant stick would not move faster than the speed of light as the motion exerted on one end would actually travel much slower.

The slinky is quite useful for demonstrating movement of objects. :)

danbmil99 1 hour ago 1 reply      
My granddad was an inventor. One time he had a long slinky (I think he must have joined a few together) that was hanging, stretched out parallel to the floor, on a number of closely spaced fishing lines, attached to a 4x4 overhead.

At one end he had a geared down variable-speed motor that pushed the slinky with a sine wave motion. I believe the other end was fixed. In between, he had painted various parts of the slinky blue. The blue parts seemed to be completely still, even as the areas between the blue pulsated back and forth.

He said it was a demonstration he built "to show my ninkompoop investors about standing waves".

colanderman 12 hours ago 4 replies      
This could make for a fun amusement park ride: hang from a tower a few feet off the ground using a bungee cord; detach bungee cord while simultaneously pushing horizonally; bam you're Superman until the bungee cord comes crashing on your head. Actually that last part needs work :)
nerfhammer 10 hours ago 0 replies      
simpler explanation?

when you hold the slinky in the air by the top, the weight of the bottom is equal to the force of the tension of the spring, otherwise the bottom wouldn't remain stationary.

once you let go, the force from the spring should decrease as the top falls downward. But the top gathers up more of the bottom as it falls, so the smaller bottom needs less force to hold it in place. Apparently the decrease in mass of the bottom and decrease in tension of the spring exactly cancel each other out.

elipsey 12 hours ago 0 replies      
Amazingly, the slinky can also time travel.
callesgg 11 hours ago 2 replies      
Does the people how think this is astonishing also think it is astonishing than one will not move forward when walking backwards on an Escalator?
An Argentinian in Stuttgart: Founding a Startup in Germany startup-stuttgart.de
3 points by derwildemomo  1 hour ago   discuss
Lavabit gets new crypto key, gives users 72 hours to recover e-mails arstechnica.com
90 points by shawndumas  14 hours ago   52 comments top 11
nullc 10 hours ago 3 replies      
This really makes little sense. The service was designed so that the data was encrypted.

He could just let people download their data and decrypt it locally. Instead the site is prompting you for a password which it could freely capture.

robhu 13 hours ago 4 replies      
The new certificate does not offer Forward Secrecy https://www.ssllabs.com/ssltest/analyze.html?d=liberty.lavab...

Does this not mean that the NSA could patiently log all the traffic going in and out of the site over the next few days, then get a court order for this new SSL private key, then decrypt the traffic they collected?

I may have misunderstood, but doesn't that make this something of a trojan horse? Many users will login and try to download all their email, and for everyone who does, when the NSA (very likely) get a court order for the new SSL key, they'll have that large amount of private email everyone tried to copy from the site?

FiloSottile 11 hours ago 1 reply      
> Since the SSL certificates formerly used to protect access to Lavabit have been compromised, we recommend manually validating the serial number and fingerprint your computer received before using this website. [https://liberty.lavabit.com/]

What? If an active attacker is changing certificates on the fly, he's also surely able to change the values in the HTML content of the page.

This will add absolutely no security for the users, only false sense of security via complex-looking measures, and he should know this.

drraoulduke 13 hours ago 2 replies      
I wouldn't trust this. The government could be running the site now. It's happened before.
junto 14 hours ago 3 replies      
So he hadn't deleted everything? I presumed he had not only shuttered the service, but also that he had deleted everything.
gonzo 10 hours ago 0 replies      
The original key was revoked by the CA. Lavabit couldn't operate with the original key even if they wanted to.
borplk 2 hours ago 0 replies      
It's a trap.
RRRA 12 hours ago 2 replies      
It's a trap?
rietta 12 hours ago 0 replies      
This has got to be an FBI orchestrated trap!
swalkergibson 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Hypothetically speaking, could you download the files over Tor from public wifi and be protected? Or, is Tor now considered insecure due to exit node monitoring?
glasz 5 hours ago 0 replies      
given the government is behind all this (which, after all, isn't too unlikely) at least some thug at some agency is now furious because of us here and commenters all over the web warning people. the question arising in their minds, and certainly meetings, is "what to do about people talking?".

now, you'll just wait what happens and be as surprised by the outcome as you've been with the surveillance revelations this year.

brave new world.

General Assembly launches Dash, a Codecademy-style site that teaches you to code thenextweb.com
17 points by coloneltcb  5 hours ago   4 comments top 4
gkoberger 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm not sure about Dash (haven't tried it yet), but General Assembly puts out incredibly high quality courses taught by people working at well-known companies. If you live in NY or SF, take a look at their course listings: https://generalassemb.ly/
britta 4 hours ago 0 replies      
In the context of code, "Dash" makes me think of the documentation browser: http://kapeli.com/dash

I hope that's not confusing enough to cause problems for either of them.

sczkid 4 hours ago 0 replies      
What new features does Dash offer? The only one OP mentions is viewing your code on a simulated mobile device. While that's useful, it's not particularly relevant to the target audience of beginning web developers.

Note: Learned the basics of web programming from Codecademy - extremely helpful service.

waitingkuo 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I think the pace of the course is too fast for the beginner. For beginners, trying Codecademy or Treehouse might be better.
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