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EFF Wins Battle Over Secret Legal Opinions on Government Spying
points by declan  2 hours ago   4 comments top 3
1
rayiner 57 minutes ago 1 reply      
This is really wonderful work by the EFF. Legal opinions are not dangerous. They don't disclose the locations of undercover agents or anything like that. It's a contempt to the legal profession to keep them secret so that their reasoning cannot be scrutinized by courts. A lawyer's job is to make the best possible argument for her client's position, but if the court says she's wrong--and it's within the court's sole provenance to say what the law is--then she must acquiesce.
2
jriordan 3 minutes ago 0 replies      
Here's why census data is relevant: If you receive an extended survey from the U.S. census, you are legally required to fill it out with all sorts of personal data. If you don't return it, a census rep will hound you until you do.

The "Privacy Policy" for this data is on the U.S. Census website here:

http://www.census.gov/about/policies/privacy/data_protection...

Note the statement that "the statistics we release do not identify individuals or businesses".

During the last census, it became pretty obvious that this would be an effective way for the U.S. Government to compel information from people who were suspected of something. Section 215 of the Patriot Act, after all, gives the government carte blanche to obtain any "tangible" thing.

IMHO... the interesting questions to ask when this legal opinion is released are:

1. Was there ever any accuracy to the U.S. Census "Privacy Policy"? Were the privacy policies of the U.S. Census misrepresented to the public, and in particular to those who were required to complete an extended survey?

2. Does the legal opinion address the "third-party doctrine" when the information provided is provided under legal compulsion, and in particular with potential (if commonly unused) penalties for non-cooperation?

A very interesting test case would be for someone to sue the government, in light of the upcoming 2020 census, to test the constitutionality of the criminal liability for not completing the extended survey in light of the government using the information provided for potential law enforcement purposes. It should be easier than usual to establish standing since anyone can be forced to complete one of these extended surveys.

3
Quanticles 11 minutes ago 0 replies      
The ability of the public to challenge the government in court and win on an issue like this is a large part of why America is so successful - the citizens are what removes government rot and keeps the system running well.
Microsoft to invest in Cyanogen
points by pluc  7 hours ago   148 comments top 24
1
chambo622 5 hours ago 2 replies      
I've been a fan of CyanogenMod for years. My brother and I ported ICS [1] and Jelly Bean [2] versions of CM back to the original HTC G1. I've run it on every phone I've ever owned, and even had my parents running it for a time.

But it's hard to reconcile some of the public blunders that Cyanogen has made since becoming a company. Their OEM relationships with Oppo, OnePlus and Micromax seem haphazard and volatile, and it's not clear they present any real advantages to the consumer. As far as I know, the Oppo N1 isn't supported anymore, and while the OnePlus One is theoretically still supported at least in some markets, Jelly Bean is nowhere to be found, and OnePlus is off doing their own ROMs now.

Distractions like Nextbit's "Baton"[3] (a risky bet on an idea that doesn't appear to work with the majority of apps) leave me wondering what Cyanogen's real value proposition is.

It will be interesting to see where this is headed, and I hope CM remains faithful to their core community and support the maintainers that keep bringing to CM to the masses.

[1] http://www.theverge.com/2011/11/24/2584340/android-4-0-aosp-...[2] http://www.theverge.com/2012/8/9/3229163/android-4-1-ported-...[3] https://nextbit.com/about/

2
felixrieseberg 2 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm an Open Source Engineer, working for Microsoft, living in Cyanogen Inc's former hq/office.

I don't know anything about this deal, but I adore how small Silicon Valley sometimes is.

3
jhou2 5 hours ago 4 replies      
I scrolled through the comments looking for the obligatory hell freezing over snark remark.

Cyanogen is arguably the only creditable opposition to the Google Android hegemony. It's nice to see MS recognize that and support it. Too bad MS shut down the Nokia Android fork in its nascency.

It would be interesting to see if they can get more windows and windows phone compatibility into Android.

4
eeeeeeeeeeeee 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Maybe this is cynical, but this feels more like Microsoft trying to further disrupt Google's control over Android. MS knows that Cyanogen is ultimately bad for Google's Android progress. Cyanogen is an attempt to regain complete control over the devices we own, away from Google.

Google wants standardization and consistency, Cyanogen wants an "anything goes" environment. I'm not saying Cyanogen's goals are not admirable, but Google wants control over the Android ecosystem and they definitely don't want someone else with that control.

This would be like Microsoft funding companies that make it easier to jailbreak iOS.

5
drcube 5 hours ago 2 replies      
At this point MS hates Google more than Linux/Android. This doesn't surprise me at all.
6
Pxtl 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm surprised it took this long for a big phone player to pick up Cyanogen, but disappointed it's MS - I mean, obviously they could have use for Cyanogen, but it will never be part of their core business. Lenovo should have thought of it first.
7
debacle 5 hours ago 1 reply      
This is a very minor investment, and won't give MS any sort of controlling stake. It's very likely that they want to use this to keep a better feel for the pulse of the direction the Android ecosystem is going in than any sort of power play or to adapt technologies.
8
jackgavigan 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Coincidentally, Microsoft released the final versions of Word, Excel and Powerpoint for Android tablets today: http://www.cnet.com/news/microsoft-office-apps-for-android-t...
9
joelthelion 6 hours ago 0 replies      
If only they could get Nokia to make phones with cyanogenmod pre-installed...
10
memnips 6 hours ago 0 replies      
I look forward to seeing Android devices powered by Microsoft apps/services in the future just so Google has a wee bit of competition!

We (at SweetLabs) have been proponents of this "Windroid" concept for some time, and I think Cyanogen is a very smart way for Microsoft to move forward. Our "Windroid" thoughts were written up last year if anyone is interested: http://venturebeat.com/2014/01/01/windroid-what-if-microsoft...

11
fnordfnordfnord 6 hours ago 1 reply      
If Microsoft can stop themselves from another Sidekick episode, they might actually manage to make a phone for once. (Assuming they're trying for a phone) But having lived through the Ballmer years (WRT Linux/FOSS), I remain skeptical of any Microsoft participation in Android.
12
parktheredcar 1 hour ago 1 reply      
So, can someone address the Nexus 4 no call audio issue? Because right now I can't make emergency calls.
13
DAddYE 5 hours ago 2 replies      
I think the new Microsoft is becoming really cool. Now there is one step more to do.

Windows, I would like to see something like the project Spartan, a Windows based on unix.

I'm a dreamer I know but at this point I will not be surprised.

14
markolschesky 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Hopefully this means that CyanogenMod will get more bug fixes and resources so that it feels like a truly native Android experience. I didn't even know there were two different types of headphone microphone jacks (CTIA vs. OMTP) until I hit this fun limitation on my new OnePlus: https://jira.cyanogenmod.org/browse/BACON-133
15
Yhippa 6 hours ago 5 replies      
I wish they would take the money they're investing in this and figure out how to bring more apps to Windows Phone.
16
Lewisham 5 hours ago 3 replies      
I can't help but think that between this and the Android Visual Studio integration, we might see Android app compatibility on Windows Phone, much like the Blackberry app play a couple years ago.

It would certainly put the jumper cables on Windows Phone.

17
Danieru 5 hours ago 3 replies      
Microsoft just bought part of a linux company. Wow, things are not as I remember them.
18
Zigurd 6 hours ago 2 replies      
For a brief shining moment, Microsoft sold an Android with a Nokia/Microsoft ecosystem behind it. It wasn't a bad idea. It could have sold better than Windows Phone handsets because it would have apps.

As Amazon knows, it's owning the ecosystem that matters.

19
shmerl 5 hours ago 1 reply      
May be instead of investing they could stop shaking down Android manufacturers with patent trolling? That would be way more useful.
20
programminggeek 6 hours ago 0 replies      
This makes sense. I can see Microsoft offering Cyanogen and other OEM's a suite of Office apps as a way to sell more Office 365 subscriptions. It's really, really smart.
21
alexggordon 6 hours ago 1 reply      
This article title is incorrect. The correction at the bottom of the article reads:

  Correction: This post originally said Microsoft would be investing $70 million in Cyanogen, but the company will be taking part in a $70 million investment round. It's unknown how much Microsoft is investing.

22
higherpurpose 5 hours ago 0 replies      
This leaves a bad taste in my mouth. Yesterday, all sites reported it as Cyanogen wanting to take Android away from Google "to make it more open", as in Google has too much control over it.

And today we learn that it's actually Microsoft pulling the strings and "taking Android away from Google". That changes things quite a bit.

Microsoft will only keep it "open" as long as it benefits them (yes, kind of Google - which is precisely why I don't see any benefit in this for the user, just the major downside that will come with such a fork - Fragmentation).

23
drikerf 5 hours ago 2 replies      
Android is heading in the wrong direction. Not much open source left in a couple of years. Too bad!
Nike+ FuelBand SE BLE Protocol Reversed
points by daw___  3 hours ago   12 comments top 8
1
spydum 28 minutes ago 0 replies      
So I'm confused.. was author just not able to follow thru code path to find that the auth token was just spamming 1's? or was it a bit more cryptic than that?

the real code in the APK for computing the auth_token was probably some developers some pride and joy, worked weeks on it.. but when it came time to ship, damn thing wouldnt work with the shipped hardware.. so they buried a small assignment which overwrote the original computed auth token just to make the thing work? where is THAT code, i'd like to see it! If so, that is one of those great snippets where you can visually see the developer gave up. We should have a name for that sort of thing (I'm guilty of the same.. in my.. older works).

2
Dylan16807 7 minutes ago 0 replies      
I'm baffled by the intended authentication path not using the entire 4 bytes of the CRC after bothering with such a big random number.
3
eyeareque 1 hour ago 1 reply      
This might be helpful for anyone wanting to play with low level BT traffic: http://ubertooth.sourceforge.net/
4
eyeareque 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Imagine how much fun you could have with sending messages to runner's bands at Nike branded half and full marathons! :) Not that I would do that.
5
yonran 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Fun stuff. I would also recommend using some kind of packet sniffer to collect sample data which can make your static analysis easier. To do this, buy the CC2541 development kit with packet sniffer for about $25. Alternatively, you can write a BLE proxy (using two Bluetooth adapters). To Apples credit, the CoreBluetooth API on iOS does not let the app know the MAC address of the peripheral, so the app will never know that it is talking to your proxy vs the actual device.
6
fredkelly 54 minutes ago 0 replies      
This is awesome!

For what it's worth, I spent a little time playing with their Fuel API when the first band was released: http://fredkelly.net/articles/2012/12/21/nike_fuel.html

7
ta33 1 hour ago 1 reply      
on a related note, is the act of decompiling jars legal if the software was obtained legally, ie bought?
8
revelation 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Hardware reverse engineering has gotten so much easier since everyone is obligated to deliver some useless Android (preferred) or iPhone app with their consumer junk. No one seems to bother with obfuscation.
From Node.js to Go
points by francesca  5 hours ago   91 comments top 15
1
wiremine 4 hours ago 3 replies      
I'e been writing my first production-sized Go app over the last few months, and really enjoy it. Some observations:

- The standard library is solid, and I was surprised how well-rounded and mature the third-party library support it. Coming from a Python/Ruby background, that was nice to see.

- I totally agree with the comments on this thread about dependency management. Godep [1] is nice, but it would be great to see a canonical dep management tool for go.

- The tooling for Go is excellent: More languages need something like "go fmt".

- In general the document is solid, but I've found the usability of the generated docs to be poor. You think they could bribe a few Google designers to spend some time fixing that...

- I've noticed a lot of Rust lovers commenting about how great Rust's type system is. It probably is, but I haven't run into any problems with Go's type system. I've found it to be practical and easy to use. The only issue is parsing JSON when you're not marshalling it to struct. They need to fix that (although there are some nice third-party tools to make it easier).

- Go is a minimal language and has been called boring. [2] I don't claim to be an expert yet, but I don't think I've reached this level of productivity with a language this quickly before.

[1] https://github.com/tools/godep

[2] http://stevebate.silvrback.com/go-is-boring

2
sshillo 3 hours ago 1 reply      
This is just another generic Go vs Node post. Do we really need another post telling us about Go's concurrency/built-in features/compile benefits.

This post sadly doesn't really go into much details that bowery.io is trying to solve, how Go fits that and why Node was so bad.

A basic crud webapp would probably be better suited towards node and it's larger list of libraries supporting that kind of stuff.

On the other hand, building you own messaging queue or doing heavy mathematical processing might be better suited for Go.

3
20kleagues 13 minutes ago 0 replies      
It is frustrating to see how many Go vs Node posts are happening here. I have been implementing a bluetooth LE module in Go, and due to lack of some robust libraries, had to go back to Node. This is primarily a question of maturity, but I also realised that my use-case didn't really need the thing which Go is most useful for - namely really really good concurrency primitives. I am quite sceptical about Node's future because of that forking fiasco, but at this point in time, both Node and Go provide enough distinct functionality that both will be used for a long time.
4
balls187 4 hours ago 3 replies      
> Go is a compiled language so distributing applications for use on multiple platforms is just easier.

How is this a true statement? Ease of distribution isn't a function of a language's runtime environment (native vs interpreter).

5
akhilcacharya 46 minutes ago 0 replies      
I'm primarily a mobile dev, so the biggest impediment to me adopting Go over Node is the fact that converting and manipulating my data models to send as JSON documents is considerably harder on Go - there's no Go equivalent to Gson yet, nor will there likely ever be due to the nature of the language.
6
eknkc 4 hours ago 4 replies      
For me the single biggest disadvantage of Go against Node.JS is the lack of a decent dependency management solution. NPM is awesome and Go doesn't even have a "meh" answer to that.
7
enahs-sf 4 hours ago 6 replies      
Go does lack quite a bit of the web pizzazz you'd find in rails, but I learned a lot more by writing web things in go than I did in rails because so much less of the magic is hidden away from you.
8
nawitus 3 hours ago 3 replies      
>In Go, you can define different files for different operating systems that implement functionality depending on the operating system.

That sounds like it's actually very difficult to support multiple operating systems. As a developer I never, ever want to write any OS-specific code. Sure, that's sometimes required, but saying that the solution is to have multiple files, each for a single OS, doesn't sound good. It's a lot better to abstract the OS away. Node.js does this quite well. Seemingly a lot better than Go.

Besides, Node.js doesn't need to be compiled for each system. This alone makes Node.js better for writing code for multiple operating systems.

>Go is a compiled language so distributing applications for use on multiple platforms is just easier.

I disagree. You need to compile to code for every single platform, making code distribution costly. With Node.js you can simply distribute the code as it is and it probably works in any platform. (The probability is as high as it is for Go assuming no extra work for a new platform). Sure, each platform needs to have Node.js, but Node.js is supported in most platforms.

9
drikerf 5 hours ago 4 replies      
Go is definitely promising but the last time I checked the problem with web development with Go was that there is no mature libraries for User authentication etc(Please correct me if I'm wrong). This makes going with Node or something like Rails more tempting.
10
gsastry 4 hours ago 5 replies      
I wish a language with advanced types like Haskell or OCaml would have the same tooling and ease of distribution around it that Go does. I haven't built anything in Haskell/ML in a while, so if anyone has any updates on this please chime in.
11
izolate 3 hours ago 1 reply      
So is this is a growing sentiment? Recall that TJ famously left Node.js in favor of Go.

I find Node downright amazing for web development. npm has everything you could ask for. And the whole community takes the unix philosophy and runs with it. Also love that there's no single best way to create something, you as the architect, gets to decide.

And io.js/ecma6 makes node even more appealing.

12
htilford 2 hours ago 0 replies      
They left out the most obvious reason for them to switch. Their business is based on docker, coreOS etc . . . aka the Go ecosystem. In that context developing Go expertise just makes business sense regardless of technical merits.
13
emehrkay 4 hours ago 1 reply      
"but he didnt learn his lesson there"

This set me up for a negative article about Go, but, like other Go-related materials, it makes me want to use it. I should use it.

14
u84six 3 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm having a hard time enjoying Go. It just reminds me a little too much of Java, and I programmed in that language for way too long. After I finished my test program, I uninstalled the toolkit from my system. Right now, I feel that there's no perfect language for me. I do love JavaScript, but there are some things I wish they'd fix. And it takes browser makers way too long to support the latest features. Been messing around with Erlang. Kind of an interesting language.
15
timClicks 4 hours ago 0 replies      
It's interesting the switch was prompted very few things that are JS vs Go, perhaps concurrency. The main factors were tooling related, enabling stable workflows and easy deployment.
Long Live Grim Fandango
points by aaronbrethorst  7 hours ago   22 comments top 7
1
Nursie 2 hours ago 5 replies      
>> "The game was built for Intels 386 processor; one year later, the 486 arrived. Computer games rely on a web of interlocking code that resembles more a cityscape of cards as opposed to a single, measly house. These new chips were too fast, and the difference in speed made this towering game tumble down."

Errrr..... This seems wrong. I played the original on a Pentium 2 box back in the day

Damned awesome game though, been meaning to replay it.

2
ShaneWilton 1 hour ago 4 replies      
The game was recently remastered and released on Steam. It's an incredible game, with some of the wittiest writing I've seen, and I couldn't recommend it more highly.

http://store.steampowered.com/app/316790/

3
daurnimator 42 minutes ago 0 replies      
A significant portion of Grim Fandango was written in Lua 2.5!Here is a followup talk from the developer in 2005: http://www.lua.org/wshop05/Mogul.pdf
4
exch 1 hour ago 0 replies      
This is definitely one of my all time favourite games.The atmosphere and story are top notch. Good to see it being revitalized.
5
shmerl 33 minutes ago 0 replies      
Interesting to note that remastered version requires OpenGL 3.3, which makes it unsuitable for Intel GPUs older than Sandy Bridge.
6
shmerl 59 minutes ago 0 replies      
I'm playing it now for the first time (GOG release). It's a great game.

If you have a large XFS partition however (1+TB) it will fail to run. For a workaround see:https://www.gog.com/forum/grim_fandango_remastered/grim_fand...

7
blt 1 hour ago 0 replies      
one of the best games ever. play it.
Capital One Fraud Researchers May Also Have Done Some Fraud
points by sirteno  10 hours ago   156 comments top 24
1
ScottBurson 7 hours ago 9 replies      
I'm starting to agree with the editorial linked from the article [0] that laws against insider trading are pointless. People find ways to do it anyway, but because the laws exist, the general public thinks it's rare. It might be better for everyone to know what shark tank they're jumping into.

[0] http://www.wsj.com/articles/SB100014240527023042799045795161...

2
Zarathust 7 hours ago 4 replies      
This reminds me of a quote by Eric Schmidt : "One day we had a conversation where we figured we could just try and predict the stock market..." Eric Schmidt continues, "and then we decided it was illegal. So we stopped doing that."

They probably have thousands of employees who can access this information, I think it would be foolish to think that absolutely none of them does it for personal purposes.

3
tomp 9 hours ago 8 replies      
Interesting, as the article notes - if Capital One had terms and conditions that said, "we can use sales data for unrelated purposes", they would be able to trade on that information themselves. I wonder who else has information that they're willing to use/sell to third parties... Facebook? Google? I wonder how predictive e.g. the ratios of likes of McDonald's/Starbucks/Chipotle pages are. Or clicks on display ads for Puma/Adidas shoes.

> Surely lots of Wall Street firms -- Chipotle is followed by 31 analysts -- and asset managers are doing tons of research to try to estimate Chipotle's sales. They're visiting branches and calling investor relations and talking to pork suppliers and surveying consumers and generally getting paid a lot of money to build a robust estimate of how many burritos Chipotle is selling. One more piece of data -- one credit card company's charges at Chipotle -- would be helpful, but come on, not that helpful.

Could we get this data any other way? How about putting cameras in front of a few flagship Chipotle stores and using CV to track the number of people going in/out? That's legal, AFAIK.

4
wahsd 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Kind of highlights the true value of data that users are giving away with every single, in this case, transaction.

I am not quite sure how one would go about an alternate method for assessing the actual value of user data, but it has always seemed rather obvious to me that it is hugely downplayed by all the self-interested parties and their defenders.

Would it, in this case maybe be the change in market cap pre and post sales figures? But even that, as pointed out, has some increases baked in based on alternative research to estimate performance. I guess you would need to find a very specific company that really does not lend itself to outside, tangential research and that keeps its performance measures and metrics under wraps really well between announcements. Anyone have any idea of an industry or company that fits such a profile?

Does anyone else realize we are really in and moving deeply into an era that is going to add significant opportunities for corruption and economic capture.

5
joncp 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I see a lot of comments about how they could have figured out this data by just counting customers outside some Chipotle restaurants. This misses a key point: using their massive database, they were able to sift through thousands and thousands of businesses and actually figure out that Chipotle was one to watch. Without that data, they wouldn't know where to put their customer watcher.

If they were a little savvier, they could have used their data from CapitalOne to decide which businesses to research and then create shill research, much like the FBI's "parallel construction" of evidence. I wonder whether that would have put them in the clear; when the SEC came knocking, they could have pulled out their research, saying "Look, we figured this out fair and square."

6
jlev 8 hours ago 1 reply      
These guys should start their own credit card transaction aggregator (ala Mint), and gather user data that is expressly made available for market research. Make the analysis for privacy tradeoff more explicit and distribute profits.
7
kosei 59 minutes ago 0 replies      
I've always felt this would be a really interesting job to have. The ability to look at a CC company's data and be able to generalize market trends. There are so many questions I'd want to ask about socioeconomic status and impact on debt, fraud, specific types of purchases, etc. It'll never happen, but someone should give a big data firm unfettered access to answer some interesting societal and behavioral questions.
8
shawnee_ 7 hours ago 0 replies      
The implications are bigger than for public companies' insider trading.

Think about the success of the Oatmeal's Exploding Kittens card game on Kickstarter. Aside from the fact that KS's new payment processor Stripe is leeching an astounding amount of money from this campaign (where most pledges have probably been made with cash-like debit cards being charged at the rate of credit cards), there are also implications of aggregation inside that cartel.

How many playing card printing companies out there are eager to handle that order? What if you knew ahead of time who they were going to use, based on that "bank account" info you have to give out when you sign up for a campaign on KS? Private companies leverage this info all the time, and it's much easier for them to get away with it.

9
antr 9 hours ago 7 replies      
I genuinely think this is a grey area, and it's far from "insider" trading. Is it moral, I don't think so. Should Capital One sanction these employees, probably. But I think this is far from ilegal.

Huang and Huang had access to a db which is not open to everyone, granted, but they had to extrapolate the stock direction based on data from a subset (customers who buy Chipotle with a CC), of a subset (with a Capital One card)... and then compare that to analyst expectations, etc. but then, would it be insider trading if I stood outside a Chipotle polling customers who exited on the dollar amount spent? That is also proprietary information, and one I can use to trade stocks on. I'd like to know if they did any trades where the return went south. I know of sector investment funds which pretty much do this all day long, forecasting all sorts of industries, and it's not ilegal.

I'd like to know what others think.

10
ChuckMcM 7 hours ago 0 replies      
It reminds me of how search engines know about things like shopping cart exploits right away because all of a sudden there are thousands and thousands of queries for a particular shopping cart software package being used on a web page.

Personally I agree with Matt that this is a not the usual kind of thing. Clearly Chipotle could anonymize their sales with dummy purchases but the actual numbers would still be there. Like a search engine, for the data stream (credit card charges) to work you are forced to put enough information in the transaction to identify it.

This is also something I see happening with IoT type technologies, when it becomes possible for someone to collect data on their own at thousands of locations for relatively small numbers of $, like the helicopters trying to estimate oil availability, you'll have data streams that can inform economic activity. Imagine something like a cellphone sized thing with a camera that just counts customers using OCV to note blobs at the counter, in a restaurant and texts a tally once an hour. Seems ridiculous but its quite possible to do, and much more cheaply than just repurposing disposed cell phones (although that works too).

11
downandout 3 hours ago 2 replies      
This is a stretch of insider trading laws, which I assume is why they haven't been charged criminally (the SEC can only pursue civil sanctions). The data was in the possession of their employer, not of the publicly traded companies. They could probably be prosecuted under the CFAA for misusing a protected computer system, but I cannot imagine them being convicted criminally for insider trading here, or even losing at trial if they choose to fight the civil SEC case.

If I pay people to go count the number of customers in line at a representative sample of Chipotle restaurants during lunch every day, compare the results to the previous quarter where I was doing the same thing, and trade on that data, is that illegal? It's nonpublic information. Would my employees be prosecuted for this if they traded on it?

Prosecutors and the SEC attempt to stretch our laws every day. It doesn't mean that they are going to win these cases.

12
linuxhansl 2 hours ago 0 replies      
The point is not whether somebody does a lot of research or not. The point is whether he/she had data available that is not available to the public. That is simply not fair.

Now, using helicopters to track oil tankers - as described in the article - seems to be a blurry line, but in theory anybody could do that and then use that information, it is available to everybody... In principle at least.

This data was entirely private, so I would agree with being not fair.

That said, I hope these guys do not have to go to jail, but are simply forced to pay their gains (or a portion of those) back, maybe as a fine.

13
mahyarm 7 hours ago 0 replies      
So I wonder how much insider trading occurs via government spooks analyzing surveillance data that we don't know about. I doubt the SEC would be able to make a public lawsuit about this .
14
raincom 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Workaday co-CEO Dave Duffield said in some interview that he invests privately in the companies that buys Workaday cloud hr solution. If he can sees how many employees are added to a certain company that buys Workaday cloud product, he can use that an edge.
15
coob 9 hours ago 3 replies      
Wow. I'm actually quite impressed, in a 'that's impressively evil' kind of way.

Maybe anonymized CC trend data should be made public?

16
savanaly 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Just from reading the title I knew this would be a Matt Levine piece. Great, entertaining finance columnist.
17
unreal37 3 hours ago 1 reply      
I think they were primarily a victim of their massive success. If they had only made $500,000 instead of $2.8 million, they might still be going along fine.

How did they get caught? Did the SEC see this account has 1,800% return on investment over 3 years and investigate who owned it? Or did Capital One discover some odd queries on their production database and report them to the SEC?

18
aptimpropriety 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Have a look at 1010Data: https://www.1010data.com/solutions/by-industry/financial-ser... and https://www.1010data.com/partners/detail/data-providers

This stuff is already being done legally, with certain industries and within certain financial institutions. Just seems like these guys were just caught in an unfortunate legal snag - otherwise they just seem like good traders to me.

19
adrr 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Big question. If they setup a hedge fund and bought the data from the card issuer, and did the exact same thing. Would it be legal? Don't they use private satellites to take pictures of mall parking lots and crop fields to estimate holiday sales and crop yields? Hows is this different. Its data that public doesn't have access to.
20
jliptzin 8 hours ago 1 reply      
This is probably going on right now in lots of other companies that have access to such data. We only hear about the ones that get caught. Seems like they didn't try too hard to cover their tracks. Just think about all the companies that have access to credit card data and all the people that are connected to those companies who could either be selling the data to others or trading on it themselves. Best thing to do to prevent this unfair advantage is releasing publicly available CC spend data.
21
DevX101 5 hours ago 1 reply      
How did these guys get caught?
22
patcon 6 hours ago 1 reply      
for better or for worse, the establishment of decentralized prediction markets will essentially make insider trading laws moot. Who cares if you can't bet on the original market when you have another unregulated market where you can bet on the veracity of the first?

http://www.augur.net/#what-we-do

http://www.truthcoin.info/

23
fasteo 8 hours ago 0 replies      
metafraud, interesting concept
24
ForHackernews 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Couldn't this kind of thing be easily solved by having companies release sales data more frequently? It seems like the only reason this is profitable is because earnings are released quarterly, so there's opportunity for the stocks to become wildly mis-priced over those months.

What would the downside be for releasing earnings data daily, or even weekly or monthly?

Coming Soon AWS SDK for Go
points by urlgrey  7 hours ago   39 comments top 12
1
bgentry 5 hours ago 3 replies      
It's awesome that they reached out to the authors of a promising community project[1] and adopted that, rather than building their own project from scratch. AWS' first-party client libraries are generally awful, but I think this one stands a chance to be very good.

Also, the current situation with goamz is truly horrific. There are multiple independent forks of the original Canonical Launchpad-hosted version, each with their own subtle differences in usage, interfaces and feature support. None of them feel like idiomatic Go.

It really would be unlikely for this now AWS-supported project to end up doing worse than the status quo.

[1] mainly Coda Hale from Stripe, where the project originated: https://github.com/stripe/aws-go

2
sciurus 1 hour ago 0 replies      
If this has better coverage of AWS features than their goamz fork, I hope Hashicorp will switch to it in Terraform. I'd love to use Terraform but too much of what I use Cloudformation for isn't there.

https://github.com/hashicorp/terraform/issues/28

3
fideloper 3 hours ago 1 reply      
I'd love to see their CLI tool converted to Go - not because I have anything against Python, but because installing Go binaries is so easy.

(Would there need to be any dependencies to install?)

4
andrewstuart 8 minutes ago 0 replies      
How about a Rust SDK for AWS?
5
moorage 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I maintain https://github.com/AdRoll/goamz FKA https://github.com/crowdmob/goamz , if anyone has any questions.
6
bkeroack 5 hours ago 0 replies      
There exists a third party library called goamz which has been forked all over the place when people have needed to add random features not found in the original version. It works well but hopefully you don't need a set of features that require you to import multiple versions.

Hopefully Amazon's version will be comprehensive and idiomatic.

7
enahs-sf 6 hours ago 2 replies      
This is great! I can now unify a lot of my workflow and not have to use ruby as a glue layer between applications and operations. It's great to see the Go ecosystem improving! I think in a few years, it may become the defacto tool of systems programmers.
8
kid0m4n 6 hours ago 0 replies      
This is great news indeed. Why could this not have come 8 months ago? Back then, it was quite disheartening to see the replies from AWS team about Go support.
9
djhworld 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Wow that moved quick, I remember reading about this library a month or so back.

Glad to hear Amazon have formally adopted it as canonical!

10
marcosnils 5 hours ago 1 reply      
aws golang sdk's have been around for a while and I've found several other which are well tested and maintained such as https://github.com/goamz/goamz. It's awesome that aws finally decide which library they're officially adopting but I found frustrating that the library is poorly tested and it will take while until it becomes the official. It'd be great if all the other sdk's contributors start working on the same project.
11
namelezz 4 hours ago 2 replies      
Recently I have heard so many good stories about Go although my impression of Go gradually decreases due to unstable development tools and unfriendly debugging tools. FYI, I use IntelliJ to write Go.
12
mrKlin 4 hours ago 0 replies      
This is very promising for the Go future as more mature packages will be available from big companies
A Computer Scientist Tells Mathematicians How to Write Proofs
points by xhevahir  8 hours ago   62 comments top 19
1
mitko 3 hours ago 2 replies      
Pretty good read, but the OCD in me could avoid pointing out that the example they give has a wrong solution:

x2+10x=39. Find x2.

This actually has two solutions for x: 3 and -13, so x^2 is 9 or 169.

It is probably a good example of how referring to preconditions at every step of the proof would help catch errors. From my experience writing code, I'd also argue that this would also make proofs more beautiful, because discovering that some steps require a lot of previous references might prompt the mathematician to restructure/refactor the proof to make it simpler to write, thus making it simpler overall.

2
tr352 37 minutes ago 0 replies      
"His method, which you can read about in more detail on his website (pdf), is a hierarchical structure that doesnt seem entirely dissimilar from the two-column proofs that most of us learned in middle school or high school geometry class, although he points out that it can handle complex problems that would be unwieldy in that two-column format. Each line is numbered, and each assertion is justified with numbers referring to previous lines and assertions."

This is just too obvious. Every proof has this structure, though sometimes this structure is left implicit (which may or may not be a good ting).

3
vidarh 6 hours ago 3 replies      
The article starts with a false equivalence between archaic verbose language and mathematical notation.

For my part, I usually prefer the prose. Formulas are easier to read for people who are used to and have practice with mathematical notation, but even then they are easier to read for those people when they are sufficiently complete, and formulas seem to often come with huge leaps and unstated assumptions.

Especially in computer science papers I tend to see extensive use of formulas over prose or - preferably - code or pseudo-code as big warning signs: Often it turns out to mean the author is glossing over a massive amount of hugely important details. E.g. a common problem I saw when studying was papers that would describe processes, but omit any indications of sensible ranges for parameters that were essential to getting good results (I was working on techniques for image processing to improve OCR results), or greatly obscure details of algorithms that would have taken no more lines to write out in working code.

4
lomnakkus 7 hours ago 3 replies      
Could anyone with first-hand experience of TLA+ comment on how practical it actually is?

I've been toying with idea of trying this for a not-quite-trivial (programming!) project I'm working on, but the documentation and UX have so far kept me quite skeptical of using this "for real". The fact that I also can't turn the proof into a program in a semi-automated fashion also seems to indicate that there's at least some barrier where the "doubled" amount of work would be justified. (I'm more inclined towards something like Idris or LiquidHaskell which seem to support practical programming better and will probably let you get arbitrarily close to "proof" in any practical sense where proof will matter.)

I take it that this was mostly about mathematics and not implementations of programs, which may not quite have the same trade-offs. I still would like to hear from anyone with direct experience :).

5
enupten 4 hours ago 1 reply      
To be fair, Leslie Lamport is also a Mathematician (his PhD was in Math).
6
avodonosov 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Leslie Lamport is on this "how to write a proof" subject for long time. At least from 1995: http://research.microsoft.com/en-us/um/people/lamport/pubs/p...
7
putzdown 7 hours ago 2 replies      
"I think most of us, including my math-phobic Facebook friends, would find the second version easier to follow and understand." I guess I'm in the minority. I preferred the words (though the translation was a bit ungainly).
8
westoncb 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Since there seems to be some confusion: the article is not about prose vs. symbolic notation in proofs, or even degree of rigor in proofs; it introduces a potential way of evolving our presentation of proofs, so that their parts are hierarchically arranged. This better facilitates reading at variable levels of detail, promotes reuse of parts, and provides useful hints guiding comprehension generally.
9
kazinator 4 hours ago 1 reply      
> He says that once you have a hierarchical proof, you can use pieces of it in new proofs very easily. For example, if you want to change one assumption slightly or focus on solutions that have different properties, you will be able to tell very easily which parts of the proof can stay the same and which parts will need to change.

If only that were true of a piece of LaTeX moved from one place to another, haha!

10
thejaredhooper 7 hours ago 1 reply      
This could have been more precise. The example at the start was great, but there's no example of the lecturer's technique outside of the link to the actual lecture
11
tormeh 6 hours ago 1 reply      
The problem isn't notation in itself; it's rarely used and non-self-explanatory notation that's a problem. You can achieve the same with words by inventing your own words and demanding that everyone learn them to understand you.
12
madsravn 7 hours ago 2 replies      
I just finished a course in Coq - it was pretty fun. Seems like something of the same the guys paper is about.
13
kriro 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I think the "you should try it either way since it may clarify your thought process or reveal problems" is important. It's often good to check your discoveries with different methods.

Of topic but in a similar vain: in a completely different field I dabble in reconstructing existing theories in structuralism. There's some very valid criticism of the method and yet it still unearths issues with theories every now and then.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Structuralism_%28philosophy_of_...

14
seanstickle 4 hours ago 1 reply      
This is how I learned proofs:

http://i.imgur.com/omXqvos.png

Well, technically I learned proofs from Euclid first. But this book followed close behind.

Clear and comprehensible (once you learn the basic symbols). Very much structured. There's hardly any prose in the whole two volumes.

15
mraison 4 hours ago 1 reply      
As noted in some comments, writing a non-trivial proof by hand with TLA+ only seems possible if there exists a good repository of non-trivial propositions that one can start from.

Does anyone know of interesting initiatives out there to build an open repository of mathematical proofs?

16
Tloewald 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Basically, do it the way Spivak does. Funny thing is in freshman year we were taught to do just that, but then abandoned the formality pretty much immediately after.
17
nevergetenglish 4 hours ago 0 replies      
As any mathematician knows the difficult part is not to write the proof but to found it.
18
driven 5 hours ago 0 replies      
OK, try writing graph theory proofs algebraically.
19
ape4 6 hours ago 0 replies      
If this takes off Lamport's paper is going to get more citations than any other paper.
Show HN: Monthly earnings of 23 Twitch streamer
points by malahay  5 hours ago   36 comments top 11
1
SG- 3 hours ago 5 replies      
It's been mentioned before, but I feel a lot streamers (big or small) make more money off donations which isn't tracked at all.

From time to time, a streamer will accidentally show a tab that shows how much he's made. Here's a recent one (I have no idea how big he is):

https://i.imgur.com/OLyQNpk.png

Most of them also make really nice referable money from G2A for each sale:

https://www.g2a.com/goldmine

You can see the statistics for top earners at the bottom, obviously they're not all Twitch streamers but I've seen some in the top 10 before and the number is how much they've made as commission.

2
ianlevesque 4 hours ago 5 replies      
Very interesting but this part concerns me:

"Advertisement money was estimated by assuming that Twitch pays $2 per 1000 ad viewers every 30 seconds."

That sounds like an extremely high CPM, much higher than the ad revenues I've seen. Unless I'm mistaken this could be exaggerating revenue by a large percentage.

3
mmanfrin 1 hour ago 0 replies      
The subscriber count seems way off -- and subs don't appear in chat so I'm unsure how you're scraping from there. I know that imaqtpie has had single days where he got 700+ subs in a row (a 'sub train', where someone subscribes before a 5 minute timer counts down from the last subscription). 700 subs alone would be about 50% more than what you have his sub revenue at (e: *pre twitch cut) -- not counting existing subs which number (according to him) in the 5-7k.
4
giarc 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Your use of 3 decimal places is confusing.

$ 914.132

Looks like either nine hundred or nine hundred thousand.

5
kmnc 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I would be interested in seeing how this varies across different games and also for some of the larger general twitch streamers who play multiple games. There is a lot of money to be made but as you point out they do work very hard both in number of hours and all the extra community management they must do. I would also be curious to know how many of these full time profitable streamers also maintain high subscriber youtube channels.
6
chacham15 3 hours ago 1 reply      
I feel like there is a large room for error here:

* how many people who are watching a stream have some sort of adblock enabled?

* ads on twitch are not deterministic: some people (even without adblock) wont see ads

* how often do these streamers really play ads?

I assume that twitch (or at least the advertising partner) can tell that there wasnt a request to pull the ad (in the case of adblock), and so no ad was shown and thus not compensate the streamer. But given this possibility, the numbers could be off by a large margin especially because ads seem to be the primary source of income for these streamers.

7
DanBlake 4 hours ago 2 replies      
Is the fact that subscriptions are recurring accounted for? If you get 1k subscriptions a month at 2.50 each, on month 2 you make 5k, no 2500 (assuming no drop off)

Also, I would say that the vast amount of streamers revenue comes from donations- Its trivial to see this is the case, just watch a large stream in action like sodapopping or the like, and you will see "blah has just donated x$" show up on their stream every 30 seconds or so.

FWIW, I am fairly certain the top streamers make over 50k a month very easily. However, those numbers drop very rapidly. The top 20 streamers most likely make as much as the next 5000 combined. And those 5000 make more than the next 10,000.

8
tmpaccz 2 hours ago 0 replies      
imaqtpie have 7k subs = +$21k/m.trick2g, nightblue3 5.5k subs.forsen $18045 in 16days from donations +$35k/mhttps://i.imgur.com/OLyQNpk.png

Sodapoppin have $50,000, $35,000 single donations. 1961+ sub train record in 1 day (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LzHPWZWnEOM)http://www.twitch.tv/sodapoppin

9
markcerqueira 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Are you the original author?

If so, maybe change "Money Earned" to something that mentions monthly? There appears to be no mention of monthly anywhere in the area of your graphs, which is the first thing I jumped to (skipping over the introductory paragraph that says you are looking at monthly revenue).

10
brickmort 3 hours ago 0 replies      
the 3 decimal places made that number look very misleading...
11
Techbrunch 3 hours ago 1 reply      
It made me think of this tumbler :| http://lookimagirlgamerz.tumblr.com/
My hearing is shot. And Im hoping that chickens will help me
points by interkats  10 hours ago   7 comments top 5
1
sdrothrock 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I've always kept an eye on cochlea-related biomedical advances.

About 13 years ago, I opted to get a cochlear implant in my left ear and my left ear only because, on the recommendation of my hearing specialist at Hopkins, I wanted to save my right ear for future advances like this (thinking that a surgery-scarred cochlea might not be usable).

Since it's been 13 years and nothing has come, I've started regretting that decision a lot. Since I live in a city and work with a lot of people around me, I could really use implants on both sides to hear from all directions.

On the other hand, these things are EXPENSIVE to keep/maintain. So I suppose it's just as well that I only have one.

2
andrewtbham 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Reminds me of recent post on HN about amp. it's like a hearing aid for your phone.

https://medium.com/@Amp/cant-you-just-turn-up-the-volume-4ec...

3
politician 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Can they inject healthy cochlear cells into unhealthy ears? What about stem cells? Would it be possible to use chicken cells in human ears or would our immune response prevent that?
4
Mz 29 minutes ago 0 replies      
The article is light on medical details of a sort that would be meaningful to me and hearing has not been a real high priority of mine. I do know that magnesium supplements help some people with things like that issue where you hear buzzing all the time. (Edit: Tinnitus.) If the author of the piece reads this, I will suggest he look up a) which antibiotics are known to cause hearing loss b) if there is a commonality among them. I know, for example, that Zithromax promotes magnesium deficiency by competing with the same receptors.

So, this has not been a focus of mine but I make sure to eat magnesium rich foods when my medical condition does certain things to my hearing and I know my son suffers less from buzzing in his ears and that type thing and it was magnesium rich foods that helped.

Unfortunately, I don't have the background I need to know if that would be directly related to this man's issue. My focus has mostly been on other things.

5
exabrial 1 hour ago 1 reply      
"especially when the Republicans who control Congress seem to think that science is irrelevant"

I mean, way to look past differences, disband stereotypes, etc and unite people for your cause.

Reddit transparency report, 2014
points by soundsop  6 hours ago   40 comments top 4
1
ipsum2 6 hours ago 5 replies      
"As of January 29, 2015, reddit has never received a National Security Letter, an order under the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Act, or any other classified request for user information. If we ever receive such a request, we would seek to let the public know it existed."

Is this the warrant canary? Has this been around before?

2
baseten 3 hours ago 1 reply      
There is little need for government takedown requests when the moderators of many subreddits are paid shills of various stripes. There are a few subs like r/undelete and r/undeleteshadow and r/longtail dedicated to snapshotting this sort of thing. Among the duplicate submissions that are legitimately deleted you can find some real gems.
3
patrickfl 6 hours ago 5 replies      
awesome, would love to know what sub-reddits received the illegitimate takedown requests. Can anyone take a stab at which ones?
4
secfirstmd 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Glad to see they put up a fight as much as possible (or say they do atleast).
Inkscape 0.91 release
points by p4bl0  16 hours ago   108 comments top 28
1
khet 13 hours ago 6 replies      
Inkscape is a great piece of design software. I've been using it for a good 8 years now to design websites, complex application interfaces, prototype many projects and everything in between.The application has been designed with care and it shows. There is a sense of respect towards the user and you can really enjoy using it for long periods of time. It just fades away and lets you get to work. No fuss.

The interface and workflows are simple, yet extremely powerful if you spend some time understanding the tool. I have used Inkscape exclusively to do all my interface design work during my career.

After moving to OSX, I was put off by the lack of native support. So I tried moving to Sketch and Illustrator. I found Illustrator to be overly complicated and plain bloated. I've always had a distaste for Adobe software and Illustrator maintains that negative image for me.Sketch on the other hand was unstable when I tried it. It had some serious bugs that made it unusable.

I went back to Inkscape and am now used to the GTK quirks & the lack of Retina support. The software itself remains my favorite tool. And I'm excited to see this major update to Inkscape.

2
JonnieCache 15 hours ago 2 replies      
The notable thing here is that it has a whole new cairo-based renderer. Great job inkscape team! My go-to tool for svg editing once things get complicated.

EDIT: new binaries arent officially posted yet but here's an OSX nightly build from 10 hours ago: https://www.dropbox.com/sh/2n7aim2wcrn6l3h/AAC62qBMxM6317AZi...

3
exogen 15 hours ago 2 replies      
Inkscape is amazing. One of the only pieces of "big" software that I use without first fiddling around in the settings and changing a bunch of things. It just feels right to use.
4
tarball 12 hours ago 0 replies      
I am graphic designer, Inkscape made me realize that Free software could be also for designers. Now I work exclusively with F/loss on linux. I use Inkscape every day and I am really happy to see this release.
5
phaemon 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Excellent stuff! Inkscape really is a superb bit of software.

I still recall the first time I tried the included tutorials and realised that the tutorials themselves were just SVG docs. So it had things like, "Let's explore the handles of an ellipse. Select this one", and the shape is right there in the tutorial. Brilliant idea!

6
awjr 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Just loaded up a 17MB OpenStreetMap svg file (map of Bath, UK) which was unworkable on my Mac under 0.48. 0.91 is fast. Really fast. I'm sold. Well done.
7
tripzilch 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I never really could get the hang of InkScape (while I'm usually pretty good with graphics) until I followed the first few parts of this tutorial:

http://2dgameartforprogrammers.blogspot.nl/2011/10/lets-get-...

Now I love using InkScape. It was a matter of finding the proper workflow.

Just putting it out here, in case it might also help others.

8
jasonkostempski 12 hours ago 8 replies      
I'm not a designer but I do occasionally whip up my own images if the task is simple enough. One thing I've always wanted in a drawing program is the ability to create shapes by typing in dimensions. e.g. Dragging out a a rectangle to be exactly NxM units is so tedious and it comes up all the time. Does Inkscape or any other drawing program support anything like that?
9
Htsthbjig 13 hours ago 1 reply      
You have a native mac beta version here:

https://www.dropbox.com/sh/b7tyrnugif2ywqj/qpMx1ygywo

Much better than needing XQuartz.

10
calibwam 14 hours ago 3 replies      
Inkscape has been a project for 11 years, why the hesitance to have a version number above 1.0?
11
chops 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Inkscape is great. I've only recently started using it more heavily as a tool for building a board game with my wife. It gets the job done for me, and I don't have to unlearn anything, as I'm not coming from illustrator.

I'm very pleased to see it's under active development.

12
dcarmo 15 hours ago 3 replies      
I love Inkscape, but not having a native OSX build sucks.
13
follower 11 hours ago 1 reply      
This version of the release notes is properly formatted and includes the images referred to in the text: http://wiki.inkscape.org/wiki/index.php/Release_notes/0.91
14
fabian2k 15 hours ago 1 reply      
I like Inkscape a lot, but there are still cases where it just doesn't work well. The import of postscript or PDF produces some strange results sometimes, especially with text. That is something the commercial alternatives still do quite a bit better.

The speed increase is nice, Inkscape could be painfully slow on complex drawings with lots of paths.

15
wooptoo 15 hours ago 2 replies      
Great job. This release took quite a bit. I think 0.48 was released two years ago. They basically rewrote the whole software in OOP.
16
arocks 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Inkscape is a vastly underrated app. It makes simple things possible and for complex things, it has a great Python-based plugin system. The API is quite easy to understand. You would be building scripts in no time to automate your art pipeline.

Best of all, it has great single-key keyboard shortcuts for higher productivity :)

17
jhallenworld 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Has support for embedded drawings in Word improved? I remember it didn't work or there were bugs..

Anyway inkscape is otherwise good- it passes my figure drawing test: draw a ruler with tick marks and numbers. Corel can do it. Vizio can do it. Xfig can do it. Not too many others can (try this with the draw tool built into open office and you'll see).

18
pdknsk 7 hours ago 0 replies      
My only feature request is GUI-less builds, to match running it GUI-less. This would significantly cut down on dependencies and also reduce compile time.

I notice there was a discussion about this on inkspace-devel years ago, but it yielded no results from what I can tell.

http://sourceforge.net/p/inkscape/mailman/message/20403131/

19
cies 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I so wish they would have picked Qt of GTK back in the beginning. That said: I love the tool, use it all over the place, one of the apps i always install.
20
stefanix 11 hours ago 1 reply      
Does the "Support for real world document and page size units, e.g. millimeters" mean any mm dimensions are also stored in the file as mm?

For all the SVG-base CNC apps this would be great news.

21
ris 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Great news!

But my heart still yearns for CMYK and (to a lesser extent) spot colour support.

22
scardine 13 hours ago 0 replies      
I learned to create vector graphics on CorelDraw 3, Inkscape looks like an old friend for me.
23
aembleton 13 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm impressed that it isn't even at version 1.0 yet. Really good piece of software.
24
the_mitsuhiko 13 hours ago 1 reply      
I love Inkscape, I still use it, even though the Mac version is abysmal. It's such a shame that it does not have any proper OSX developers as I think it can more than compete with professional vector software.
25
spot 11 hours ago 6 replies      
Inkscape is really great but what I really need are Photoshop and After Effects. What are the best Linux equivalents? And don't say GIMP the UI is too different.
26
jestinjoy1 14 hours ago 0 replies      
Inkscape is very easy to use. We have used it for creating brochures, posters,.. for our Free Software conference. What I like most about Inkscape is, it is easy to use, learn and do.
27
gatesphere 12 hours ago 0 replies      
Finally, they're exporting slanted and italic font styles to PDF!

Seriously, that bug has been biting me since 2011. I'm glad to see it fixed.

28
nmeofthestate 11 hours ago 0 replies      
I tried using Inkscape recently to draw something with text along a path, but the support was too primitive so I gave up. Maybe it's been improved.
Cofounder management
points by akharris  8 hours ago   35 comments top 8
1
jtbigwoo 5 hours ago 2 replies      
High-achievers (and most people) are trained to simply put in more hours to get past problems. If I'm not doing well in a class, I study more or do extra credit work. If I'm not selling, I can make a hundred more calls. If I make a short-sighted technical decision, I can stay up all night and refactor my way out of it.

Part of the reason why management is so tough is that you can't always solve problems by simply working more. When it comes to team dynamics, a lot depends on catching problems in the moment and communicating clearly the first time. You can't just brute-force your way through problems like you can in most other areas. It takes intuition and understanding that is innate to a few folks and earned through experience by everybody else.

Think about this situation from the article: "We did, however, realize (a bit later than we should have) that disappearing from a tiny office too frequently during the day was a bad idea and hurt morale for the rest of the company." There was no way for them to fix this by working harder, they had to find an intuitive sense for how much time away from the office was too much.

Managing people is a fundamental skill for founders and one of the areas where intense effort often doesn't make a difference at all.

2
aberoham 6 hours ago 0 replies      
My cofounder is my brother and communication is far and away one of our biggest challenges. In our case the style familiarity and family connections actually compound the delicacy of how we go about growing and changing our routines. To say I've learned more about myself since cofounding a company than in any prior endeavor would be an understatement, and I've done some pretty whacky things in the past in an effort to test my limits. (reality tv, expat, changed my name, etc) Were we both not at points in our lives where we are receptive and careful with criticism there's no way we have made it this far. One of our clutch mentors ends up being another brother who knows us both very, very well. I can't imagine how we'd get through tough times without that well known second opinion, or how impossibly impenetrable a cofounder relationship is to outsiders who haven't done it before. Hat tip to Mr. Harris for calling this out!
3
krschultz 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Cofounders rarely have experience managing anyone or anything. They're learning at the same time as running a startup. There are a lot of good ways to manage, but they take time to learn and practice.

Boy is that scary.

4
flurie 6 hours ago 3 replies      
One could change some of the specifics of the language (less talk about management, change "cofounder" to "spouse"), and this could be information on how to have a successful marriage.

In addition, an important piece of advice on marriage that almost certainly applies to cofounders as well is not to contradict your partner or have disagreements in public.

5
amirmc 4 hours ago 0 replies      
One of the critical things about management (in my view) comes down to communication. If communication is open, honest and frequent, then mistakes or roadbumps become easier to deal with. If communication is lacking, vague or insincere then it begins to erode trust and people withdraw.

Learning to communicate (inc. listening) is a valuable skill that is often neglected.

6
balls187 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Apologies for being cynical but this is a nothing article that offers no real advice.

Open communication isn't just about checking in frequently, and talking doesn't guarantee that each person will feel listened to.

Communication is much more than just setting aside time to talk.

I would have much preferred if the author gave specific strategies for listening and being more effective at communication rather than high level generic advice.

My advice for co-founders that are serious about being better at communication: hire a marriage and/or relationship counselor to help you with your communication.

7
pskittle 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I was helping a close friend grow and build out his startup idea. i've known him for a while and we're still pretty tight. However along the way i realized that i wasn't into it as much as he was . the problem we were solving didn't bother me at a cellular level. Even though ive known him for a while it took me quite a bit of time to be upfront about it (i didn't wanto hurt his feelings)but as soon as we had a talk about it it was cool.
8
7Figures2Commas 7 hours ago 2 replies      
> Cofounders rarely have experience managing anyone or anything.

This might be true if you're talking about a startup run by a bunch of 20-somethings with no experience. These are certainly en vogue in Silicon Valley today, but hardly represent all startups.

> Cofounders often think they don't need management because they're all on the same team, working towards the same goals.

This is a sign of an inexperienced, naive founder. No entrepreneur worth teaming up with believes management is unnecessary.

> Startups are high pressure, and pressure makes people make bad decisions and lose their tempers.

Notwithstanding the fact that if your startup is a pressure cooker, you're doing it wrong, it's dangerous to believe that all people react the same way to pressure and stress. Pressure and stress lead some people to anger and poor decision making. Start a company with these people at your own risk.

> Deciding to start a company from scratch with the goal of building a billion dollar business takes ego.

Most successful businesses aren't started by people who are focused on building a billion-dollar company. If that's your overriding goal, clashing egos will hardly be your biggest problem.

Incidentally, while it obviously wasn't the intent, this post demonstrates some of the advantages of founding a company solo. It worked for Sam Walton, Ralph Lauren, Richard Branson, Sara Blakely, Jeff Bezos, Pierre Omidyar, Michael Dell, Ross Perot and countless others.

Investors like YC don't look on solo founders favorablyand have helped create a narrative that has deterred some entrepreneurs from taking this path (and created the inane "seeking co-founder" environment), but entrepreneurs should understand that investors have motives for wanting multiple founders that are not necessarily aligned with their interests.

For seed stage investors particularly, multiple founders is a derisking mechanism. For instance, there are a lot of smart, talented folks out there, but it's still hard to find exceptional founders capable of competently wearing multiple hats. On the flip side, hiring exceptional employees is expensive. A company with just $120,000 in funding can't hire a good developer, product manager and sales or bizdev person. This creates significant risks for seed stage investors. The solution: seek companies with multiple founders who split key roles. Since founders at this stage essentially work for ramen and equity, having multiple founders is like a cheap insurance policy for resource risk.

Silicon Valley ageism versus the productivity of famous inventors
points by dollar  4 hours ago   39 comments top 10
1
oillio 3 hours ago 7 replies      
The cynic in me says that this may not be the point of SV ageism.

Maybe young founders are preferred because they are cheap and they fail fast. They don't have the proverbial family to feed, and they don't have enough life experience to worry about going head first in a direction that may contain a blind corner.

If you want even more cynicism, it is also possible that less scrupulous VCs find younger founders easier to manipulate, over promise, over work, and under deliver.

2
jdawg77 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Interesting to see this and given I filed my first patent pending last month, thought I'd share my thoughts. I'm $100k+ in debt; I grew up poor. My parents live on a fixed income, I send them money every month and last year, in 2014, I made the least annual income I have made since 2003.

As a divorced father of two, who was fired from his last full time job, and can't disclose due to NDA prior work, I've been self employed the majority of my adult life since 2006. Since September, I'm a former alcoholic, which is news to many - I had drank regularly since I was 18 and only recently realized I could correlate a bit of my drinking to early communication issues that resulted in the "low end," classes in my first years of education.

I digress, though, as the first one in my family in three generations to receive a bachelor's degree, life in college and out is hard. In my family, during my "prime," my business expenses were over 100K per year in 2009 and 2010. However, things came crashing down and changed. It's a long, long story. Drinking helps zero.

Now, my software is free, I filed a patent pending because I need credibility. The world is flat, as Thomas Friedman said, and growing more so. Ten years ago I spent $50K on my own tools. If I had known then that I'd need them in 2013, and 2014 again, I would have done what I'm doing now.

Made them free. Open source. Given it away, hoping that with better tools, everybody benefits. That's the dream.

We got rejected by Ycombinator. I've worked with guys in the news way way more than I'll ever be, and I tell a lot of stories, incidentally, most are true.

Thanks for reading, I love this site and learn from it daily.

3
rayiner 3 hours ago 3 replies      
Relevant: http://www.livescience.com/16911-scientific-breakthroughs-ge... "By 2000, great work before age 30 almost never happened in any of the three fields. In physics, great achievements by age 40 occurred in only 19 percent of cases by the year 2000, and in chemistry, it almost never occurred."
4
ryandrake 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I'm not sure I get how "number of patents" qualifies as a measure of (or even a proxy for) productivity. In most companies I've worked, those quarterly patent award ceremonies were where they trotted out all those folks who either had nothing else to do besides filing patents, or managers who put their names on the vague ideas their directs were working on. The rest of us were busy actually making the products.

I guess this also means those of us who refuse to participate in the patent system on ethical grounds are the least productive people in the world?

5
Multiplayer 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I can see this a few ways. I'm almost 50. I've had a couple of exits. I've retired and unretired. Being young can have 2 critical advantages: 1. Unlimited time, minimal financial needs. No kids. No spouse. No commitments. You can GRIND away at a problem. You can live on almost nothing.2. Clean sheet perspective on technology, capabilities, costs, etc. My first T1 of bandwidth (1mbit roughly) to my colocated server cost me $3000 a month. It's hard for me to get my head around what's real now with the drag of so much accumulated experiential cruft. They are more likely to say, hey how about we do it this way, when I wouldn't bother because of outdated perspective on costs and capabilities.

Now, I have a ton of experience on how the world really works, which is great. Especially people knowledge. But it's really hard to relate to how my kids see the world, having always been connected at high speeds, etc.

6
gmarx 4 hours ago 2 replies      
For Edison and Ford at least I guess a lot of those later patents were done by underlings and the boss man put hsi name on it. I couldn't tell if the analysis accounted for that
7
mmm123 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Has there been any stats on the funding rates of applicants by age?It could be that there are more young people applying for funding in general, causing this skew.
8
peterwwillis 2 hours ago 0 replies      
What does filing patents have to do with productivity? Might as well title it "the smartest people in the entire world" and stack it next to lists of people who have filed the most patents. It does however follow that the older you are, the more time you have to file patents.
9
trhway 3 hours ago 2 replies      
the fact that at the age 42 i'd still need to be funded if i was doing startup tells a lot about my entrepreneurial abilities :)
10
empressplay 38 minutes ago 1 reply      
There isn't any ageism in Silicon Valley. Younger people are just more willing and capable of filling the required roles. Besides, there are plenty of older people in SV. I see them all the time! This article is just yet another slander to find controversy when there is none.

If you're older and you're not doing well in SV you should take a look at yourself. Maybe you just don't have good ideas anymore. Maybe you just don't cut it, and should find a place somewhere else. There are plenty of other careers you could switch to that happily accept older people.

But there is no ageism in Silicon Valley. Anyone who says there is is just trying to start trouble.

(Paraphrasing arguments made against the suggestion of sexism in SV on HN yesterday. Hurts when you're on the receiving end, no?)

Project Silk
points by trickz  7 hours ago   3 comments top
1
devindotcom 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I like this, but was Silk really the best name for a browser-related technology? Amazon got there a while back:

https://amazonsilk.wordpress.com/

Why not.... FluidFox, or Sleekzilla, or Project Smooth?

http://www.thesaurus.com/browse/smooth

Image Kernels Explained Visually
points by apetresc  10 hours ago   19 comments top 11
1
JosephRedfern 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I first learnt about Kernels and Convolution a few months ago during a Computer Vision module at University - was really insightful. The exact methods used to perform Gaussian blurring/edge detection etc was something I hadn't given much though to before.

A cool fact about the Gaussian filter is that it's separable - you can convolve in the X direction (using a 1 * n kernel), and then convolve the result again along the Y direction (using a m * 1 kernel) - the final result will be the same as convolving using a single m * n kernel, but can be done in O(N) time rather than O(N^2) (you only have m+n multiplications per pixel rather than m * n per pixel).

Not every filer is separable - it's only possible an n * m filter can be expressed as the product of a 1 * m and a n * 1 matrix.

Another cool fact is that you can perform convolution in as a point-wise multiplication in Fourier space (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Convolution_theorem).

2
choppaface 3 hours ago 1 reply      
A few other useful resources to play with convolutional kernels:

* The linked demo really focuses only on layer 1. See Layers >=2 plotted here: http://arxiv.org/pdf/1311.2901v3.pdf

* DeepViz is a nice tool: https://github.com/bruckner/deepViz

* Another tool one can use to play with convolutional kernels is ShaderToy ( https://www.shadertoy.com/ ). Here's a Gaussian blur: https://www.shadertoy.com/view/XdfGDH

* If you like playing with kernels in shaders, see also Brad Larson's GPUImage: ( https://github.com/BradLarson/GPUImage ) -- the demo app has a bunch of standard kernels.

Just for fun, convolutional shader porn: https://www.shadertoy.com/view/4d2Xzc

3
placebo 4 hours ago 0 replies      
The world needs more visual hands-on explanations :) Very nice work
4
blt 6 hours ago 2 replies      
> They're also used in machine learning for 'feature extraction'... In this context the process is referred to more generally as "convolution"

It's referred to as "convolution" in the image processing community too.

5
daniel-levin 6 hours ago 0 replies      
For interest's sake, note that the blur kernel used here is an approximation of the Gaussian [1]. Also, the vImage documentation includes a brief discussion on where the values in these kernels came from [2]

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

[2] https://developer.apple.com/library/ios/documentation/Perfor...

6
crux 7 hours ago 1 reply      
I made a custom one that I like:

   -.5 | 1.5 | -.5   1.5 | -3  | 1.5   -.5 | 1.5 | -.5
It produces a cool digital edge blurring effect. What's that called?

7
neaanopri 6 hours ago 0 replies      
For the custom, it would be great if there was an option to keep the matrix normalized.
8
lxe 6 hours ago 1 reply      
This is my favorite Explained Visually. Don't forget to try the live video!
9
JoshTriplett 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Interesting to try a directionally-biased blur filter, which produces an out-of-focus effect but only in that dimension. For instance, put 0.5 in the left and right cells, or the top and bottom cells, with 0 everywhere else.
10
leeoniya 6 hours ago 0 replies      
and if interested, error-diffusion dithering kernels:

http://www.tannerhelland.com/4660/dithering-eleven-algorithm...

11
vsbuffalo 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Really awesome stuff! I think there's a very minor bug in which missing pixels are treated as black, which is what adds a black border around the output image in the second example.
Why You Should Tell Your Children How Much You Make
points by mikek  5 hours ago   68 comments top 13
1
sdrothrock 3 hours ago 5 replies      
I agree that parents should tell their kids how much they make. Even better, bring them in on the budgeting process, explain how much of their paycheck goes to taxes, etc.

I was raised not knowing any of that -- my mother absolutely hated talking about her finances with me. So I never really had a clue what a reasonable wage or salary was, or how much I would actually lose to taxes, or what a reasonable budget was... and of course, none of that stuff was taught in high school, either.

Even with the FAFSA, etc., I remember being told to just sign it and my mother would insist on taking the form and going to fill in the blanks herself.

I think that parents talking to their children about this kind of thing provides them with a healthier financial barometer overall, which would be useful when they start getting pounded with credit card pre-approval letters out of the blue.

Edit: Even now, as a 29-year-old adult, I have no clue what my mother makes, what (if anything) she has for retirement, what she inherited from her father last year, the status of the house she lives in, etc. She just won't talk about that kind of thing because it "has nothing to do with me."

As a child, it can be a handicap, but as an adult, it can be massively stressful. I can understand the need to be independent (especially as a single mother), but money is just a sensitive topic when there isn't a lot.

2
ProAm 2 hours ago 3 replies      
I sort of feel like is a middle class/upper class problem or lesson to be learned. When you grow up poor none of this is really a mystery. You understand very early on the value of a penny, where it goes, and why it's spent. Still a valuable lesson.
3
nsxwolf 4 hours ago 9 replies      
"he decided to do something that many parents would consider radical: show them exactly what he earned."

Huh? Really? That's radical? I always knew how much my mom made. Do parents really keep this from their children, the same way they keep it from other coworkers?

4
MichaelGG 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Budgeting with older kids, as part of teaching about general responsibility, is probably a great idea. I'm also bewildered why anyone would hide their finances from their kids. Neat idea to dump it out in cash and divide it out, as an easier way to visualize.

But, some kids worry. Having to tell them we have to be careful with money, that we can't do something because of money... eh, that introduces an unnecessary thing for them to be concerned about when they're only 6, or 8 or so. They're already terrified about death, plus all the other "stresses" of whatever kids deal with (getting to the bathroom on time, not being made fun of, studying, etc.).

So my line to my kids is: I earn enough, and I always will find a way. You should never worry about this. Don't let money be the deciding factor in decisions. Even at one point when I was a kid and we were on food stamps, my father always tried to make it clear that money would not be a concern. Dealing with teen stuff, no matter how insignificant it now appears, plus worrying about my parents budgeting? What's for?

As far as "Why can't I get <newitem>?" -- I don't buy them every toy they want, but that's due to clutter and accumulating shit. I let them get any new toy they want, if they trade in several old toys (so that they'd approach only having a few, plus presents that don't require trade in). That's a separate discussion though.

5
jtwebman 3 hours ago 0 replies      
When I was 16 my dad made me balance the check book and pay all the bills for a year. It is why I feel I am successful now. He also taught me to ask how can I expand my means to afford something vs cutting. A great idea for sure!
6
pjungwir 4 hours ago 2 replies      
I was surprised to read so much concern about children learning what their parents make or what their home is worth, as well as concern they might share that with outsiders. I have three kids, aged 1, 3, and 5, and I don't worry about that. Maybe it's because I'm a freelancer so I think about income more often than someone with a stable paycheck. Do other people fear those things?

If so, and sorry to veer off into a different thread, but maybe salary and home value are good answers to "I have nothing to hide." :-)

7
jakejake 2 hours ago 0 replies      
My parents completely hid all finances from me and my sister growing up. My mother in particular would be horrified to think that their kids were stressing out over mortgage and utility bills. They didn't have to sit down and show us their pay-stubs for us to know roughly what types of things we could afford though. Perhaps if my parents had been really wealthy and could afford anything, then I would have grown up with no concept of money. But, as it were, I had a small allowance that I could spend as I pleased and I knew pretty well what price range we could afford for birthdays and such.

I would like to think I'm a moderately successful entrepreneur with a decent ability to manage personal and corporate finances. I'm thankful I didn't have that "adult" stress on my shoulders and was allowed to just be a kid.

8
twiss 2 hours ago 0 replies      
> [E]ven the youngest generally understand when budgets have become tighter and want to know why.

I don't think this is true for everyone. Children could write off a lack of stuff to any reason other than "budgets have become tighter", or give it no thought at all, or be proud that they are not spoiled. Also, "I never thought we were poor" stories are not uncommon. I don't know if that's a better way to go, but at least it's sometimes possible.

9
sheensleeves 4 hours ago 4 replies      
It's inescapable if they go to college. That's the only way I would have found out.

There's a line on the FAFSA form.

10
taeric 4 hours ago 1 reply      
The day when folks are in no way defined by their income can not come quickly enough. It saddens me to know that it will likely not be near my lifetime.
11
DigitalSea 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I wholeheartedly agree. Our consumer-led marketing manipulated society casts a massive shadow over the reality of just how much things cost and no sum of money is too big. When you're a child or teenager, you don't have the pressures of life on your shoulders, you don't realise just how hard things can be. You have no bills, little to no responsibilities and everything is so much easier.

I actually had this conversation with my wife the other day. We decided we would raise our child to be aware of just how much things cost and teach him from a young age to be successful in life and get the things you want, you have to work for them and that nothing is ever handed to you.

This is why I think it is important to instil good values into your children from a young age and teach them the importance of money, how it is earned and where it is spent. When they're old enough to do things for themselves, encourage them to earn money through chores but also ensure they do some chores for free. Maybe give them a few dollars for mowing the lawn, but make them do the washing up and clean their room for free.

When I was about 10, my father who is a small engine mechanic gave me a full can of fuel, a whipper snipper and a mower. He then suggested I go door-to-door and ask people in the street if they would like their lawn mowed for $15 (for a small yard). When the fuel ran out, I had to use my own earned money to buy more fuel, oil (for two stroke mixture) and whipper snipper cord. I remember one stage I had like $40, but I spent half of that on fuel, oil and cord.

Because of that experience my father taught me, I believe it actually made me grow up to be more conscious of money and taught me the basics of running a business and managing money. I have very little personal debt, I earn an okay salary and have some savings. Sadly, we're seeing the current generation getting into massive amounts of debt thanks to credit cards, expensive electronic items and even in-app purchases on our cellular phones.

I learned to be more budget conscious when I go shopping with my wife because I grew up going to the store with my mother who knew to go at a certain time of day to get discounted; fruit, meat and vegetables. The importance of buying in bulk, the importance of knowing what you want to buy by writing a shopping list before you even set foot in the store.

When I was growing up, money was a taboo subject that my parents didn't like discussing in-front of me and my siblings. I would see my parents sometimes argue about money, not very often, but I didn't really know first-hand some of the stresses until I got older and paid more attention. I wish my parents involved me and my sisters in the budgeting process so we could all be a little more grateful for what we had and the sacrifices my parents had to make raising us.

Honestly, I think the whole money subject should be taught in school. I know some schools do to an extent, but children need to be taught the honest basics and realities of everyday life financial responsibilities as an adult and the consequences of things like debt.

12
lolheheh 3 hours ago 0 replies      
You forgot that HN readers are cool bros who travel the world and code from cafes in Thailand while writing books about now to be cool. They don't have kids.
13
carlob 3 hours ago 3 replies      
> Some parents start with even larger line items. Trisha Jones, a stay-at-home mother in Norfolk, Va., sends her children, who are 6 and 8, to private school. Each month, she has them sit with her while she pays the tuition online, asking them to click the button. We jokingly say that it costs $92.50 to send them each to school every day, she said, adding that they know that the daily number is akin to a nice Lego set. But its a privilege to go to the school that they do, and we want them to know that we are making sacrifices to send them there.

This really made me cringe. Specifically why should you admit to your kids that what they have is a privilege. Isn't it the same as saying we're rigging the contest? We're making the world more unjust?

Your kids should know that is not really that good for them to be away from the poor/slow/racially inferior/wrong religion kids (or whatever your reason is), but it's actually really harmful for the public school kids not to have the kids who can afford private school in the same class.

Wisp A Scala library that offers interactivity for iterative development
points by AustinBGibbons  4 hours ago   2 comments top 2
2
benburton 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Excellent demo! I love how easy this is to use.
How a Blind Person Programs
points by am391  17 hours ago   112 comments top 33
1
Kenji 14 hours ago 7 replies      
Wow! Those screen readers are fast (his example https://soundcloud.com/freecodecamp)! I barely understood a word. I didn't know that.

It's a shame that so many programs don't follow the accessibility guidelines, but it's just too damn easy to forget about the disabled if you aren't. But this article was an eye-opener for me (no pun intended).

2
yaddayadda 9 hours ago 2 replies      
>Fortunately, some fellow campers at the Free Code Camp were sympathetic towards my plight and volunteered to transcribe all these slides for me. This offer left me 'flabbergasted', as our dear western neighbors across the sea would say.

Many ions ago, I volunteered for an organization called "Recordings for the Blind and Dyslexic" (now known as Learning Ally - http://www.learningally.org/). Groups of individuals (mostly retired professors and other students) would record textbooks for college students. It was all volunteer and donation based. It would typically take days to weeks from starting a book until the recording was ready.

I loved almost all of it. The one thing I didn't like was that we would read a book in shifts and you wouldn't always be working on the same book from shift to shift, so you might read scene three of a play one shift, then the next day read chapter seven of a calculus 2 textbook. Regardless, it was always interesting and we always knew that there were students benefiting from our effort. As an extremely nearsighted child, one of my fears growing up was that I would grow to be so nearsighted I would be functionally blind, so it was a little personal for me.

Since then, I've been in charge of 508 conformance on many different websights [1]. I have always appreciated the sensory-challenged sharing how they are, or are not, able to use websites. I never cease to be amazed at the human ability to adapt and overcome such challenges!

[1] Freudian slip that I noticed but decided was worth sharing ;-)

3
lovelearning 16 hours ago 1 reply      
Starting today, every time I feel like ignoring accessibility in my applications because "no blind person is likely to use them", I'll remember this blog and punch myself in the face.
4
Lrigikithumer 16 hours ago 6 replies      
Holy shit, I admire that guy so much. Being able to program whilst lacking sight astounds me. I wonder how he got into it.

Becoming blind is one of my biggest fears and I consider programming to be one of my favourite activities on the planet, I'm happy that if the worst were to ever happen to me, I wouldn't be completely screwed. However I gotta wonder how well he's able to hold all his code in his head just off hearing it, whenever I program I often go back and read and re-read parts I've already written, I imagine having to hear it over just glancing over it would slow the whole process down a lot. I know he mentioned that he's gotten very good at mentally conceptualising his code which no doubt takes a lot of training but damn, a really large codebase would throw me for a tizz.

5
nothrabannosir 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Hey guys a note from the author on Twitter:

Florian @zersiax 2 hours ago

mate, could you comment on there that I created a channel on freenode called #zersiax if peeps have questions?

Florian @zersiax 2 hours ago

seems I posted too many comments on HN , its blocking me from sending more :) and I do want to reply o all these

https://twitter.com/zersiax/status/560810466789044224https://twitter.com/zersiax/status/560810548263407617

---

There's something beautiful about a typo from a visually impaired person :)

6
cturner 16 hours ago 2 replies      
I'd like to know: what is the most comfortable posture for coding once you no longer have to look at a screen? I've wondered whether a syntax-sparse language like iolanguage might allow you to code entirely by voice and ear, with no need for keyboard. For those of us with vision, imagine having a lounge with a large screen on the wall. You can talk into your headset as you pace around, or lie on the couch.
7
madethemcry 16 hours ago 2 replies      
That blog post is very interesting. I really enjoyed the reading and must admit that I should spend more time on accessibility.

The speed of the screen reader Zersiax uses is unbelievable fast. I can't understand a single word:

https://soundcloud.com/freecodecamp/zersiaxs-screen-reader

8
dugmartin 6 hours ago 0 replies      
I helped rewrite Narrator, the Windows built in screen reader, for Vista. After we had a basic version working I tried turning off my monitor and using it to write code. I gave up quickly.
9
mickeyp 15 hours ago 0 replies      
A friend of mine, a programmer, lost his sight. He was an Emacs user and could more or less continue programming thanks to Emacspeak, a package for Emacs that alters the voice depending on the syntactic construct of the word it is reading. It goes without saying that without Emacs and Emacspeak he would have had an uphill struggle returning to his job.
10
ckuttruff 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Really curious about how a linux environment compares in terms of usability for the blind. zersiax, are you using windows primarily because of the toolchain you need for work / school, or did you find linux lacking in terms of its support for your needs?
11
fiatjaf 10 hours ago 0 replies      
This audio is the most unintelligible block of sound I've ever heard, but it made my day much happier to know you can understand it and use it nicely.

I will try to use the HTML5 accessibility tags and attributes whenever I can from now on (I currently don't even know what is there about accessibility to be implemented).

12
jrochkind1 9 hours ago 0 replies      
> I therefore have to keep looking for tutorials, programs and tools that are accessible, and cannot simply pick up any off-the-shelf IDE.

Another advantage of the ruby community's general commitment to produce a language that can be written in any old text editor. I think Java long past that point, you really need an effective IDE with certain features that it knows about Java to be effective in Java.

Making sure things are still doable with a plain text editor gives developers a lot more options (including for developing new editing environment improvements), instead of locking them in to certain IDEs. A lot more options for accessibility reasons or any reasons.

13
zersiax 11 hours ago 1 reply      
Wow ...so many questions ...I'm not sure where to begin answering all of these :) HN is throttling me, so please come find me on #zersiax on freenode to discuss this if you have more questions :) I hope this goes through ...
14
simi_ 14 hours ago 0 replies      
What a nice chap. I like and adhere to the opinion prevalent in this thread that we should pay more attention to Accessibility. I personally find I'm conditioned to ignore people with different needs than me when I design products, and this is an eye-opening example.

apologies for the horrible pun

15
queryly 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Thank you so much for your insightful post and prospective.

I have a question on how you imagine/think. People with eye sigh often think with pictures. Even thinking about abstract things like programming. I often visualize how a data structure looks and how it interacts with other code. I have found it tremendous useful as I can replay/test such scenario in my head.

Do you have similar experience when you think? Do you construct mental picture (such as circle, a binary tree) in your head? What is it like?

16
js2 11 hours ago 1 reply      
I turned on OS X's built-in screen reader, then set the rate to 100 (the fastest it goes). It's still not as fast NVDA.

It's interesting that he's using Windows 8 and I'd have liked if he'd talked about that briefly. I'd always thought that Apple was way ahead of the other vendors on this accessibility, but perhaps with third-party software available on the desktop for screen reading that's not the case.

17
waynecochran 5 hours ago 0 replies      
A blind student took my programming tools course last spring and together we wrote an accessible sudoku app for the Mac:

https://github.com/wcochran/accessiblesudoku

Apple usually has fantastic documentation, but we had to experiment a lot to figure out the accessibility API.

18
gcb0 3 hours ago 1 reply      
> If left paren x equals five

you have a bug there :)

also, why not use different sounds for ( [ { etc?

would a different beep for each instead of "left paren" make life easier?

19
mattmurdog 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Really cool. Thank you for sharing.
20
chinpokomon 15 hours ago 0 replies      
A decade ago, I got to visit one of the accessibility labs at Microsoft. I'm not terribly surprised that Visual Studio works well as there are ocularly impaired developers at the company. I had the opportunity to speak with those who ran the lab and observe how someone used these screen readers first hand.
21
neverartful 11 hours ago 1 reply      
Several years back I worked with a team that had a blind developer. The team was transitioning to Java. The blind developer told me in a meeting that she was having trouble doing something in Eclipse. I told her that I would go with her to her desk to help diagnose the problem. Watching a blind person use Eclipse with a screen reader was simultaneously awe-inspiring (the screen reader part) and horrifying (the Eclipse part). Needless to say, Eclipse was not well suited for the blind.
22
V-2 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Nice one! I can recommend this thread on StackOverflow as well: http://stackoverflow.com/questions/118984/how-can-you-progra...
23
r00nk 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I actually had an idea for this. What if blind users could wear little braille terminals? Like, braile is constructed of a series of dots, so why not have like a bracer that has a array of dots that poke the skin?
24
blackRust 11 hours ago 3 replies      
I imagine a purely text-based terminal set up running on a specially crafted host OS/VM that does the text-to-speech would be a fantastic solution. You can browse the web, email, twitter! I'm not sure how CLI browsers handle JS?

If this existed would there any good reason to be using a GUI at all (for a Visually Impaired Person)?

25
20kleagues 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Are there frameworks to automatically analyse html for accessibility and perhaps provide a certain rating based on set guidelines? I think that might be a very interesting project to work on if such a thing does not exist.
26
Throwaway1224 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I was in an ACM programming competition in 2004(?) where one of the competitors was blind. It was hosted by LSU.

I always wondered what happened to that dude.

27
darkFunction 15 hours ago 1 reply      
Wow, the audio example... It's like a solid wall of pure data.
28
lohengramm 12 hours ago 0 replies      
Really interesting, specially the audio. I can't understand a single word. In fact, im far from it!
29
bobosha 16 hours ago 0 replies      
Thanks for sharing, learned something valuable today
30
lsiebert 16 hours ago 0 replies      
Yeah, I will definitely try to do more to implement screen reader accessibility in web apps I build.
31
k__ 12 hours ago 0 replies      
I knew a blind programmer back in the days.

We always joked he did our UI.

32
4ad 14 hours ago 1 reply      
Related: BSDTalk episode with a blind BSD user[1]. It's about many things, not how blind people deal with computers, but it offers some great insights nevertheless. She finds VAXen much easier to deal with than PCs, and CLIs much more accessible than GUI screen readers.

http://bsdtalk.blogspot.co.at/2008/03/bsdtalk143-bsd-hobbies...

33
ruben94 16 hours ago 0 replies      
wow, respect.
Amish Hackers (2009)
points by edward  9 hours ago   3 comments top 3
1
VonGuard 4 hours ago 0 replies      
The term "hacker" actually originates from the farm. I have had trouble finding reference to this fact, but Woz says it's so, so I believe him. Back in the day, they had single steam engines they'd rig to run pumps, farm equipment, bailers, etc. The ultimate hacks.
2
ThomPete 5 hours ago 0 replies      
In his book What Technology Wants Kevin Kelly spends quite a deal time talking about the Amish. It's a good book asking an interesting question.
3
yellowapple 25 minutes ago 0 replies      
I suddenly want to create a pneumatic computer. Or at least pneumatically-powered. Just to see if it's possible.
Show HN: PolyGen App, turn gradients and photos into pretty low poly patterns
points by nbartlomiej  9 hours ago   45 comments top 22
1
KnightHawk3 9 hours ago 2 replies      
Why did you decide to make this mobile only?

Personally I would use it the most from my computer, considered a port ;)

2
WhitneyLand 8 hours ago 2 replies      
It's nice, good work. I wonder if you might be better off without the ads though. Not much revenue, and without them you can possibly build a bigger user base as a reputation point for your resume.
3
andrewrice 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Reminds me a bit of "trianglify", a low-poly background generator built on d3.js: https://github.com/qrohlf/trianglify
4
sunspeck 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Haven't tried it out yet, but looks nice.

Surprised to see that this wasn't authored by Mario Klingemann, creator of the very clever LowpolyBot:

http://lowpolybot.tumblr.com/

5
cordite 6 hours ago 1 reply      
This reminds me of voronoi diagrams, except the vertices seem to be applied as a best-fit around contrast and hue differences--then the cell being filled with the average color of such.
6
o0-0o 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Crashes constantly using a google galaxy Nexus. I would love to have it work though.
7
avmich 4 hours ago 1 reply      
8
rebel 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Pretty cool app! If you're interested in adding an option to sell prints, I'd love to help. You can reach me at interest at printdropper.com
9
k__ 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Crashes when choosing a picture on Ascend Mate.

The back-button gets hidden per default and when used he doesn't go back to the main menu but leaves the app.

10
kaoD 7 hours ago 1 reply      
I can't try the app (stuck on a Gingerbread phone) but it seems fun. I'm eager to try it.

As far as I can tell, the user chooses the location of triangle vertices, right? It would be interesting to try a genetic algorithm there though it probably fits best in a desktop version.

Also, did you experiment with Voronoi diagrams instead of triangulation?

11
ubercow 7 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm getting a force close when trying to choose a picture on a Sprint Samsung Galaxy Note II. I have no experience with android development and don't know how the force close reports work, but one was sent and I hope you can figure out the bug.

Really looking forward to trying this out! Will be great for wallpapers.

12
gravitronic 9 hours ago 1 reply      
my favorite bot in this gene is on twitter:

https://twitter.com/lowpolybot

13
ThomPete 8 hours ago 2 replies      
I am surprised nothing showed up on the mac app store for "low poly art"

I would pay for such an app.

14
coryl 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I've been paying an artist $15 per picture to do this for a project :O
15
ctdonath 7 hours ago 1 reply      
The regenerate button seems to cycle (inconsistently?) thru the grain sizes. Undesirable; if I pick a grain size and regenerate, I'm looking for a suitable arrangement at that size.

Otherwise, nifty!

16
btbuildem 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Crop seems constrained to the aspect ratio of the original image - is that a bug or a feature?
17
mcmancini 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Neat app. A cool feature would be the ability to extract colors from a photo (like Adobe Kuler) and use those in the Abstract Colors pattern.
18
nuclearghost 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Running on iPhone 5 with iOS7 seeing a weird issue where only about the top third of the photo is rendering.

Works fine when rendering with colors.

Anyone else seen something like this?

19
mbrock 9 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm curious about how well this works on videos...
20
sauravt 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Oh man I am working on a very similar app, you beat me to it. :)
21
davidrusu 7 hours ago 1 reply      
looks like it could be interesting but very obnoxious ads
22
robinhoodexe 9 hours ago 0 replies      
I like it
Understanding the ELF
points by LaSombra  9 hours ago   4 comments top 3
1
jmgrosen 3 hours ago 1 reply      
A little off-topic, but does anyone have any good resources on how ELF does TLS? The spec is pretty hard to read, but I need to implement it in a system I'm building. Thanks!
2
tomsthumb 4 hours ago 0 replies      
The following is also a really good resource, if perhaps somewhat less explicitly explanatory.

https://code.google.com/p/corkami/wiki/ELF101

He has similar diagrams for a few other things which are quite helpful if you are a visual person.

3
mml 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I must observe, this is a terrible attempt. No points, and may God bless your soul.
The Pomegranate Architect
points by Hooke  6 hours ago   2 comments top 2
1
stbullard 55 minutes ago 0 replies      
If anyone is as confused by the title as I was: googling "Bradbury Pomegranate" pulled up an interview[1] in which he explains the metaphor in the context of his writing:

Weller: Do you ever marvel at how much youve created? (Bradbury has published close to 600 short stories, over 30 books and numerous poems, essays, and plays.)

Bradbury: The simple fact is this: Im a pomegranate. Im a very big pomegranate that exploded and my seeds are all over the place. So there are 10,000 seeds of me all over the place. I am glad that I exploded and that I took root to become a pomegranate.

[1] http://www.capitalnewyork.com/article/culture/2010/07/237931...

2
nosuchthing 43 minutes ago 0 replies      
It's too bad the library with the star lit reading room night sky light would never be possible inside a major city what with all the light pollution.
Learning about art using JavaScript
points by of  12 hours ago   7 comments top 4
1
clay_to_n 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Jenn Schiffer also has an absolutely hilarious blog, CSS Perverts: https://medium.com/cool-code-pal
2
at_ 5 hours ago 0 replies      
This is cool. Most impressive thing for me is how wildly different the three works (& thus approaches/challenges posed) are. Curious how Cassatt will be tackled.
3
Raphmedia 6 hours ago 1 reply      
I learned a lot about front-end web dev. by making Mondrian art using HTML, CSS and/or JS.

I consider it worked very well.

4
pella 5 hours ago 1 reply      
my favorite - Kandinsky styled maps .. ( not javascript )

"Mapbox Studio, More Kandinsky than Matisse"

http://googlemapsmania.blogspot.com/2014/09/mapbox-studio-mo...

map: https://api.tiles.mapbox.com/v4/gmapsmania.6e688409/page.htm...

How to make a personal website, in 9001 easy steps
points by of  1 hour ago   discuss
Introducing React Native [video]
points by arasmussen  1 day ago   170 comments top 41
1
iLoch 17 hours ago 4 replies      
I'm part of the group that thought "what the hell?" when I first saw the React syntax - but seeing this has completely changed my mind and I'm really looking forward to picking up React as soon as possible.

If this delivers on its promises (no reason to assume it won't, seeing as it's already being used in large apps) then it's going to change the mobile development landscape.

It sounded like they may even be hinting at in-browser testing the way they were knocking on provisioning profiles and perhaps maybe even some sort of live-reload development tool? I'm really interested in seeing what kind of tools Facebook will make available along side the core React Native project. Mind you, this is a huge gift even if they don't have any fancy tools to go along with it.

Really excited, thanks FBOS team.

2
cromwellian 16 hours ago 2 replies      
We just demoed something similar at the GWTCreate conference, an Angular-like library called Singular (http://daniel-kurka.de/talks/gwtcreate15/singular.pdf)

It differs in that it uses the same techniques as Google Inbox to run native code. We cross compile to Objective-C with j2objc, and cross-compile to JS via GWT, the data binding, controllers, are shared code on all platforms that run full speed native, while the UI templating language on each platform is platform native (e.g. angular directives directly in Android XML files)

It produces completely platform-impedance matched apps on each platform (e.g. native on mobile, JS on Web) while allowing the continued use of the regular UI design toolchains people are used to (Android Studio/Xcode Interface Builder)

3
bobajeff 20 hours ago 7 replies      
I wish they'd go into more detail on why they can't make an app like paper in the browser environment. They mentioned something about Web Workers being crippled and later on explained how their framework puts JavaScript in it's own thread by default.

I'm also wondering why in their experience no one ever comes close to native widgets when imitating them in a Web apps.

4
themgt 19 hours ago 1 reply      
Well, my money is on this (concept if not implementation) being the future of client-side development. Absent horrific performance/robustness problems, which seem pretty unlikely from this team, this is sounding like the droids we were looking for, the holy grail ring to unite us all, web and native.

And did even Steve Yegge ever see this next big language coming?

5
jesalg 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Recruters: Looking for ReactJS Native developer with 5+ years of experience!
6
jessep 22 hours ago 2 replies      
Here's the moment in the video where it's announced: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KVZ-P-ZI6W4#t=1341
7
sheraz 13 hours ago 2 replies      
Wow. I've been struggling to teach myself objective-c, never getting beyond the simple tutorials. So I'm happy to try this out.

I currently have an MVP in ionic framework and would love to port this over to react. Though I should say that Ionic is amazing in its own right.

Also, I tend to agree with some of the comments in this thread -- regular Joe user can't really tell the difference. Ionic on an iPhone looks damn-near close to native. Android leaves a little to be desired.

Nice work React team

8
DAddYE 21 hours ago 1 reply      
I think this can be really amazing as is react js now.

--

I had to build a simple at first but very complex under the hood. I wrote that app in a weekend with react and was a ton fun and most important worked well since day one.

I have been out from the web development since like 1.5 year, but yeah IMO react is the best thing happened to javascript since ... ever.

Thanks again guys!

9
slashnull 21 hours ago 3 replies      
Sorry, dumb question, don't feel like watching the video:

What platforms are targetted? Out of, say, iOS, Android, Linux/X11 desktop, Windows desktop, WinRT, OSX?

10
Nilzor 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Can anyone please explain what a "declarative API" is, and why that is better than an imperative? He claims this is the best part of the framework, but I'm just left with a big "what?" since I don't understand what the hell that sentence means.

I mean he admits he had to build a bunch of products before he understood the concept, but didn't waste a single slide to explain it in the presentation.

11
rattray 20 hours ago 3 replies      
Just a minor quibble; I think the speaker is a bit too negative about faux-native apps, especially with React. For example, see this demo by Pete Hunt:

https://medium.com/@floydophone/building-a-real-time-frosted...

12
jordwalke 17 hours ago 6 replies      
I'm Jordan and I'm on the React (and React Native) team. There's been some great questions and insight on this thread. React Native offers a ton of benefits around productivity (and ability to use React of course), but since there are many questions about performance, I thought I'd share some of my own personal perspective on the matter.

React Native is very different than other approaches because:

1. We're not promising to give you One Weird Trick that allows you to change nothing about your development philosophy/practices and yet automatically create excellent mobile experiences. If you're developing for mobile, and you want an excellent user experience, you must care about performance and you must care about programming nuanced interactions. Behind any great mobile experience, is someone who cared. Don't believe anyone that tells you differently. However, I feel that the amount of work that React Native asks of developers in order to achieve it, is much less than any other alternative that I've seen.

2. React Native doesn't use the DOM at all. React naturally tames many of the performance issues that typically arise from unpredictable programming practices in the browser, but that can only get you so far. React Native takes it to the next level, beyond what can be done in the browser. React Native shows that ReactJS has always been more about "zero DOM" than "virtual DOM" (contrary to popular belief).

4. React Native is different because we want to keep some of the best parts about web development. Just because we want the performance and resource control of native views, that doesn't mean we should abandon the great things about the web. With React Native, you can use CSS FlexBox to lay out your native views, and many other familiar style attributes - but without the catastrophic CSS style reflows. The event system also works exactly as it does in your React apps today because it runs the same library code. By building in terms of the subset of web styles/layout that we know we can make fast native implementations for, it allows developers to build great apps today without setting back progress of the web in the future. I feel this is strictly better than encouraging developers to abandon anything remotely resembling web technology and instead learn a completely different toolchain (or two or three).

3. React Native is different because it makes high quality apps written in JS possible. With browsers, you will likely run up against a fundamental limitation and there's nothing you can do about it. Either you don't have access to a platform component (certain scroll view with physics/Maps), or the interaction that you're implementing keeps getting interrupted by image decoding and there's nothing you can do about it.

With React Native, you can do something about it. You can build ReactJS apps using native platform views that could never be implemented in JS (like Maps), and you can also build using higher performing granular building blocks (multi-threaded decoded <Image />) (<View/> blocks that don't use the DOM at all). The result is that this unlocks an unprecedented level of quality that feels great and matches the platform characteristics.

13
ceeK 12 hours ago 2 replies      
Can someone elaborate on how React Native would fit into the app development workflow (iOS)?

Having a brief look over the ReactJS webpage, it seems like it would replace view controllers and perhaps Storyboards?

Or are we talking about writing the entire application in Javascript, declaratively?

14
debacle 8 hours ago 0 replies      
What is the defacto best way to learn React? I like the architecture and the coding style, but there doesn't seem to be a lot of talk about best practices.
15
tinganho 17 hours ago 1 reply      
I wonder why it is such a big of a deal of not having DOM API:s on the WebWorker thread? I think the discussion from Browser vendors is that there is no use case or benefit of having them there.

And not having the "native feel" or performance. I think browser vendors are on the verge on closing this gap totally. If not browser vendors, hardware will do it.

16
izietto 17 hours ago 3 replies      
Please, could anyone write a tl;dw (too long; didn't watch)?
17
_pmf_ 20 hours ago 1 reply      
That's it. I'm finally going to port GridBagLayout to Javascript.
18
mwcampbell 11 hours ago 0 replies      
Sounds exciting. When is the source going to be released? Also, how much of the app logic can be implemented in cross-platform JS versus native code?
19
calebm 19 hours ago 1 reply      
Looks like React is reaching critical mass.
20
daemonk 15 hours ago 0 replies      
I wonder how they are handling persistent storage and multi-threading if at all.
21
rattray 21 hours ago 0 replies      
I had just started to think about switching to Mithril from React. This completely changed my mind. Incredibly exciting.
22
somethingreen 11 hours ago 1 reply      
When I tried similar solutions (running business logic in JS and abstracting native platform specific UI implementations), one of main problems I encountered was that JS was running in a clean VM while most libraries rely in some way on either browser or node.js environment. I wonder if React Native addresses this.
23
stanzheng 21 hours ago 0 replies      
From the video, Facebook mentions that they are using the React native for the Facebook iOS groups application. Theres a live demo to demonstrate. Video starts at 24:05.

[1] http://youtu.be/KVZ-P-ZI6W4?t=24m5s[2] https://itunes.apple.com/us/app/facebook-groups/id931735837?...

24
roccod 18 hours ago 1 reply      
I understood that the native react serializes the ui "DOM" to some format and sends it to the native process. Will the native rendering engine be open source and/or will the protocol be open/specified ? This could be handy for embedded targets.
25
uniclaude 19 hours ago 0 replies      
That sounds amazing. It's been a while since I haven't been that excited about a framework. Native wrappers are so hard to create and maintain that it's promising to have a company like Facebook behind one.

I can't wait to have access to this repo to see source code and examples.

26
themgt 7 hours ago 0 replies      
React Native, in retrospect ... the day the Berlin Wall fell?
27
rajington 17 hours ago 0 replies      
Will the talk dealing with Relay and GraphQL also be uploaded?
28
xngzng 18 hours ago 0 replies      
I bet someone is planning to write a Markdown editor using React Native. Maybe a text editor is a good test if React Native app can be as good as native app.
29
briandear 17 hours ago 0 replies      
So I have a simple question; how is this better than Swift or Objective C? It seems like Facebook has done everything in its power to avoid writing Objective C. I am also interested to know if this is what powers the current 1.7 star rated Facebook app. I am just having a hard time understanding how Facebook has earned much credibility with their mobile efforts. Also, how is this different or better than Ruby Motion? I just don't get it. We've had a lot of these fake native solutions but how does it work with existing Cocoa libraries, etc. I think the bigger question is why? Is Facebook allergic to actually writing Java ObC or Swift? Before the downvotes, consider the history and track record and quality of Facebook on mobile. I honestly don't know the answers to the above questions (they aren't completely rhetorical.)
30
owenwil 21 hours ago 0 replies      
This is amazing - wonder when we can get our hands on it.
31
potomushto 19 hours ago 1 reply      
Looks amazing. Is React Native supposed to be just a View lib for XCode project or it will be the platform like Titanium?
32
Toine 18 hours ago 1 reply      
What about native APIs like in-app purchases, push notifications, ads SDKs, GameCenter ?Will we be able to access those ?
33
gadders 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Basic question - does this make it easier for someone who knows (or can hack around in) JS to create a native android app? I'm thinking/hoping yes from the video and comments...
34
aceperry 18 hours ago 0 replies      
Sounds excellent. I need it today.
35
yuchi 16 hours ago 0 replies      
-- Attention -- Cross posting from the other thread --

Seasoned Appcelerators Titanium Mobile SDK dev here. Looks like that a lot of people here is comparing this announcement from the react team to the Titanium Mobile SDK. Id like to give some info to shed some light on the differences, and probably anticipate the challenges they have to (or had to) solve.

## Architecture

Both Titanium SDK and this Native React thing do have a JavaScript runtime behind the curtains.

Both frameworks will run the JS runtime on the background, on a different thread from the UI. This is incredibly important to remind.

Titanium SDK follows an OOP-ish, imperative approach. You create views using factories (`Titanium.UI.createScrollView({ })`) and you add those views to parent views (`parent.add(child)`). This is very similar to a browser DOM, and in fact its cumbersome to work with. They built an xml preprocessor called Alloy which does a better job at exposing the view hierarchy right in the source, but it just compiles down to JS, `create()` and `add()`.

This is important for the evaluation at least for the following reason: every time you update a property on a view (actually on a proxy object to the real view) youre crossing the bridge and you have to pay that penality. The bridge is the void between the JS runtimes thread and the main, UIs one. This is incredibly painful when trying to do JS animations, sometimes if youre not careful you can get hurt very badly. You can still do great things, but its way better to use the native `.animate()` methods, which cross the bridge only twice (at start, and at the end as a callback invoking).

On Native React you should not have this kind of problems because changes will be batched and updated on a update loop basis or at least debounced. Or at least optimized in some smart way. I believe.

## Layout

One big problem will be the layout. Given that they dont want the developers to understand every layout system every platform provides, they have to normalize it somehow. Titanium SDK has its own layout system, incredibly easy to understand even from a web-only dev experience:

a) by default everything is absolute positioned,

b) you can get a vertical flow layout by setting the 'layout' property on the parent view or

c) you can get a horizontal flow (inline-block-ish) by setting 'layout' to horizontal.

Native React will probably follow a more intimately web-ish approach, just look at this JS/C/Java implementation of the box-model and flex-box specification by Facebook itself [1]

[1]: https://github.com/facebook/css-layout

## Support and limits

Titanium SDK is always criticized for being to limited in what you can do with it. This actually comes from two different issues:

1) they have to (almost) manually implement every API you might need, by proxying from native-land to JS-land;

2) they have to follow every release of the platforms SDK;

3) you cannot just put native code along-side your JS code, so you cannot go where they didnt.

Lets see how Native React will solve this issue.

Titanium SDK is undergoing an heavy lifting refactoring to solve exactly this issues. The project is code-named Hyperloop and is already working behind the curtains for the Windows 8 version of the SDK.

## Conclusion

Because I shamelessy want to karma-drift this topic, Ill stop here.

Its interesting, but until they show us some (native) code... its just ideas.

Follow me on twitter (@_pier) and github (@yuchi [2]) for Titanium related stuff.

Also my company, SMC, does a lot of great opensource things for Titanium (on gh were @smclab)

[2]: https://github.com/yuchi

36
edygar 14 hours ago 0 replies      
A lot of people here feels offended by new ideas. I bet that many here commented even before the end of the video, and probably never used React on real apps. Could We avoid the tribalism and territorialism, please?
37
kas0 12 hours ago 0 replies      
Already done with Smartface App Studio.
38
bronz 18 hours ago 0 replies      
What is this and why is it a big deal?
39
solarexplorer 21 hours ago 1 reply      
Am I getting this right: they use something like Display Postscript[1] instead of the virtual DOM? Are we back in the 80ties?

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

40
digvan 21 hours ago 2 replies      
It fails like many other framework tried to create native apps with JavaScript
41
Touche 21 hours ago 7 replies      
If I'm one of Reacts competitors I'm ecstatic that they're abandoning the web. It reminds me of when Angular wastes energy on angular.dart because of a Google mandate. Didn't help them much.
Google says it fought gag orders in WikiLeaks investigation
points by coldcode  11 hours ago   56 comments top 11
1
bediger4000 11 hours ago 1 reply      
The reason for the gag orders: to keep the Federal Attorneys from getting a pile of bad publicity. This flies straight in the face of any kind of transparent government. If the Attorney's office gets a ton of criticism, then they're probably doing something extremely unpopular. It's good to do unpopular things in defense of minority opinions, given the USA's free speech tradition, but if the criticism is large in volume, and it stings, which apparently the twitter investigation criticism did, then the public outcry is correct. The Feds shouldn't be doing this stuff. I conclude that the gag orders are crap, and should be lifted. The Feds are doing stuff that might be legal, but is in a larger sense immoral.
2
dudus 9 hours ago 1 reply      

  > But the case represents an amazing Catch-22, he said.   > Google doesnt have the strongest right to challenge the   > scope or the reasonableness of the warrant. The only people   > who really have that are the targets of the warrant, and   > they dont know about it. So essentially the government has   > carte blanche to get whatever they want.
Shouldn't in cases like this the gag order go to the target of the warrant. I imagine it could go something like this. Google hands the information and inform only the target. The target can't publicize or inform anyone else, but now have the knowledge and right to defend himself.

Not informing the target would restrict his ability to defend himself.

In a similar note, why even involve Google at all. Why not require the target to hand the information.

Maybe the fact that the targets are in different countries a problem to this approach.

3
datashovel 9 hours ago 1 reply      
IMO governments need to learn how to adapt to this new "information age". That's not to say they need to try to find new ways to suppress information. They need to allow public discourse to help them define their limitations.
4
benlower 9 hours ago 1 reply      
(Any lawyers here who could weigh in?)

Could a company nullify gag orders if it was their policy to post ALL their correspondence on their website? For example, AcmeCo gets a request from the US Government to share information about one of AcmeCo's customers (e.g. WikiLeaks). AcmeCo scans and posts this letter (as it does for everything it receives including its electricity bill) on its website. Could they then circumvent the gag order this way? What would happen to AcmeCo?

5
noiv 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Lots of greyed comments here. What's going on? Google fan-boys vs. NSA fan-boys?
6
ForHackernews 8 hours ago 2 replies      
Really interesting to read this in the context of David Drummond's statements a few years ago: http://www.theguardian.com/technology/blog/2013/jun/19/googl...
7
doctorshady 6 hours ago 1 reply      
I like how any questioning of Google's integrity is being shamelessly downvoted here.
8
kwagmeyer 9 hours ago 2 replies      
Google was a premium partner in the Prysm NSA program. According to the first leaks, Google along with Facebook, Skype and Apple were the first to sign up to the NSA spying programs as partners.

All along they're trying to paint themselves as victims of the spying, which is ridiculous really...but I guess they can still fool a large population.

9
username223 7 hours ago 0 replies      
> In the fall of 2011, Google was able to tell Appelbaum that the government had sought data such as the IP addresses of the people he e-mailed with,

Google needs to store your plaintext email so it can make money by showing you ads, but its data retention policies are both unnecessary and outrageous.

10
antocv 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Google is good, not evil, they have fought for our rights, bravely and invented new genious technologies and social processes to protect our civil rights and society. Google is good, Google does what is in best interest for its users. Google stands up against an intrusive government. Being a user of Google services is supporting freedom and democracy. Google fights againt censorship and for open society.

Public announcment by Good Google.

11
mindslight 8 hours ago 0 replies      
No Google, "fighting" a restriction on speech isn't doing exactly what you're told and asking a corrupt court for permission to do otherwise. It involves loudly publicizing the corruption and giving the thugs an uphill battle. Until you do this (or radically change your products to be oblivious to users' information in the first place), you're a de facto arm of the surveillance state.
Firefox Hello
points by ajankovic  1 day ago   212 comments top 37
1
windlep 1 day ago 2 replies      
Since no one realizes that Mozilla actually develops stuff in the open (vs. code/project-dumps like Google after its 'done'), here's the Mozilla project page for Hello (previously called Loop):https://wiki.mozilla.org/Loop

A bunch of the hypothetical questions here on HN could be answered easily by skimming over this page and some of the pages linked in.

Edit: I'm not suggesting its bad or good to get a project to a more polished state before open-sourcing it, mainly just pointing out that for good/bad, Mozilla does happen to keep the entirety of the process very open.

2
Sir_Substance 1 day ago 3 replies      
It seems there is a lot of confusion going on here.

Firefox hello is a website that implements webRTC based video conferencing in a browser agnostic way.

The "firefox hello" button that has shown up in recent versions of the browser is a bit of UI magic over an API to this website. The video conferencing code is not implemented in the browser.

If you send a firefox hello link to a chrome user, it opens the webpage when they click on it instead of the UI element.

I actually think it's really neat, and have replaced skype with it since it works so widely and doesn't require everyone to have an account to use it.

3
BSousa 1 day ago 13 replies      
I saw the tag line, liked what I saw until "powered by Telefonica".

Seriously, I've lived in more than half of the European countries for a while, and never ever EVER saw such a shitty internet service as in Spain over their network. Lack of service for hours every day, substandard speeds... It made me anticipate a move to Portugal by one year because of their shitty service.

4
nothrabannosir 1 day ago 3 replies      
I hate being "that guy", but what about sites like https://appear.in/ that do this without (seemingly?) depending on browser support? Is this using some novel p2p technique that can't be implemented using just JS?

When you send a FF Hello invite to a Chrome user, it works fine.

I.o.w.: why is this not just a website?

5
AdmiralAsshat 1 day ago 3 replies      
Do they have the specs anywhere on their encryption?
6
suyash 1 day ago 3 replies      
Now the question is can you enable 'Screen sharing' utility to it? It could then be a killer app for meetings and conferences getting rid of all the expensive external software applications?

When I say screen share, I mean not just the browser's screen but the whole computer screen?

7
cjensen 1 day ago 10 replies      
A web browser should not include X functionality, but should allow a web page to implement X functionality. In my view, this is true for most values of X, including Skype, Mail, Word, Excel...

To add insult to injury, there is no simple way of disabling the functionality[1]. Firefox Hello is ludicrous.

[1] about:config is not a valid value of simple

8
nolok 1 day ago 1 reply      
> I somehow hoped Mozilla would never employ these kind of business models where is user is the product.

Then you must be naive, given that this has been Mozilla's main source of income for years.

9
jason46 12 hours ago 1 reply      
So this link is useful for new users. I had no idea how to open it.https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/where-firefox-hello-but...

Next issue, I'm using a docked laptop and it defaulted to the cam in the folded laptop instead of the cam pointed at me..

10
caractacus 1 day ago 4 replies      
Just what does the 'powered by Telefonica' bit mean?
11
Eleutheria 10 hours ago 2 replies      
Sending a link is stupid.

I want my browser to ring when there is an incoming call.

Firefox should have an open socket connection to Mozilla servers and deliver services thru that, just like android cloud messaging, like alerts, notifications, push apis, etc.

12
anon4 6 hours ago 0 replies      
I tried it. It works pretty well over the local lan, at least. What I really want to see is multi-user chats.
13
nikolak 18 hours ago 1 reply      
>Theres no account or sign-in required and nothing extra to download. Just start a conversation, send your friend a link and ask them to click it.

I don't think this is such a great idea, at least in my case, if I'm sending someone link for them to open instantly then I'm probably already using a platform that supports video conversations - for example Skype, which also has IM and some other stuff that FF Hello doesn't.

14
ffn 1 day ago 0 replies      
As an example of WebRTC this is pretty decent... but please work on getting navigator.getUserMedia to screen-capture into a stream more easily; right now, the browsers' screen-capturing apis are extremely wonky and difficult to build applications with.
15
aragot 17 hours ago 0 replies      
There's already an FAQ entry [1] on "Where is the Firefox Hello button?", and the answer is not an intuitive one. It would have been OK to display the button by default.

[1] https://support.mozilla.org/en-US/kb/where-firefox-hello-but...

16
sehr 1 day ago 1 reply      
17
fiatpandas 1 day ago 1 reply      
It's interesting, although struck me as weird to bundle/market it as part of the core Firefox experience, especially considering its closely tied to a third party. Seems more extension territory.
18
skyshine 16 hours ago 0 replies      
Does anyone know if they are planning on including an IM client with it. (I know it doesn't have one yet). Without that it is pretty useless to me.
19
dorfsmay 23 hours ago 1 reply      
Is the connection peer to peer once established?

Btw, I tried hello a couple of weeks ago and it felt like voice/video over the net 5 or 6 years ago, no proper echo cancelation, similar to the old video plugin in pidgin. Also, there is no text IM.

20
shmerl 23 hours ago 1 reply      
When is anyone going to make a pure WebRTC service for calling phone lines that would work in the browser? All existing ones require some native code plugins. Not sure why no one made such service yet.
21
Shivetya 1 day ago 2 replies      
and here I remember the day this all started because browsers had become bloated.
22
samvj 1 day ago 0 replies      
Since they're doing it at the browser level, it would have been nice if they provided screen sharing instead of this.

Google Hangouts-like screen sharing without the need for an account would be awesome.

23
songco 22 hours ago 2 replies      
Oh, when Mozilla add "Share Screen" feature to hello?
24
yxhuvud 19 hours ago 0 replies      
So I imported some contacts. How the hell do I remove some of them? Why wasn't I given a choice of which contacts to import?
25
monsterix 1 day ago 1 reply      
Super! Looks great works great too!

Lately I'd been bothered by poor quality experience and sometimes even spam requests on Skype. Hangouts was never my thing and Firefox Hello seems like a breath of fresh air just at the right time. Keep it up!

26
blueskin_ 13 hours ago 0 replies      
Oh great, more bloat and potential vulns.

Anyone got a way to disable it yet?

27
e0m 20 hours ago 2 replies      
Can this support multiple conversations at once? Group chat Sqwiggle / Hangout style?
28
dyeje 11 hours ago 0 replies      
The logo reminds me of HipChat.
29
mgkimsal 1 day ago 1 reply      
Guess I'm the odd duck out... Crashes every time I try it - 35.0.1 on Mavericks 10.9.4 :(
30
mikelbring 11 hours ago 0 replies      
Is it available for Chrome?
31
minusSeven 19 hours ago 0 replies      
All the negativity aside, anyone knows how this works ?
32
teabee89 1 day ago 0 replies      
I was using vline.com (also using WebRTC) works like a charm.
33
mp3geek 1 day ago 1 reply      
Does it include IM rather than just video/audio chat?
34
tobico 1 day ago 1 reply      
Mozilla are clearly becoming desperate to find any distinguishing factors to market Firefox. Sadly, this feels like the beginning of the end for this browser.
35
tn13 1 day ago 1 reply      
I am happy to see Firefox adding any sort of functionality as long as they dont break the web standards. For example it would be bad if Firefox Hello comes as "hello.firefox.com" but does not work in Chrome.

But if it comes as a Firefox only extension I am fine with it.

36
dionyziz 1 day ago 0 replies      
Why is this even a thing?
37
mkal_tsr 1 day ago 1 reply      
I've updated my user.js helper/repo to disable Hello/"codename Loop" - https://github.com/m-kal/PrivatePanda

-----

Dear Mozilla,

Firefox is a browser. Can you please stop with the feature creep? That'd be lovely. Remember, you're a browser, not an operating system. Oh, you'd like to be an operating system? Cool, then make an OS (o hai there Firefox OS) and keep that functionality there. Stop adding extra features that are not needed to browse the internet.

It seems only Lynx cares about an authentic node-to-node / client-to-server relationship without all the privacy concerns :-(

PlayStation 4 System Compiler Support Landing in LLVM
points by adamnemecek  9 hours ago   31 comments top 4
1
nickknw 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Well this is pretty exciting. This opens up the door for PS4 games to be written in any language that uses LLVM as a backend, right? So in the future, PS4 games could be written in D, Rust, Ada, ActionScript...

Especially with the indie focus Sony has had, this could make it much much easier for people used to creating games with ActionScript to get their game on a console.

Is there something I'm missing? This seems too good.

2
forgottenpass 8 hours ago 5 replies      
Is there anything interesting about this? It's not like end users will get any utility from this, do development studios? Or is this just a way to ease Sony's maintenance burden?

Yeah, it's probably a good idea in the grand scheme of things to get their patches back upstream. But is it worth reporting on? Worth posting/upvoting on social media? It doesn't actually mean anything does it?

3
scoopr 5 hours ago 0 replies      
While this is exciting, so far technically this seems fairly straightforward stuff, some defines and defaults (enable avx, disable exceptions) set for the ps4.

I bet the biggest upside is that sony has easier time keeping up with the current llvm, and so devs get recent compiler versions.

4
pantalaimon 8 hours ago 3 replies      
If the PS4 really runs FreeBSD, wouldn't it be possible to provide a compatible userspace on real FreeBSD/maybe even Linux and run PS4 binaries on a PC?
       cached 30 January 2015 02:02:02 GMT