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Google Takes on Uber with New Ride-Share Service wsj.com
368 points by coloneltcb  5 ago   267 comments top 37
mmanfrin 5 ago 27 replies      
Honestly I wish they wouldn't try to compete on price. Maybe I'm alone with this, but I'd rather not feel obligated to tip a driver because the ride is so cheap. Pay them a living wage, let me pay the exact fee, and let me not have to carry goddamn cash like I used to in the era of Taxis.

e: Addressing common replies:

"This is for people commuting already" -- okay, point taken; my point about Uber/Lyft still stands.

"Tipping isn't obligatory" -- yes, it kind of is. Uber used to bar drivers form asking, but they recently lost a lawsuit over that rule and so now Uber drivers will occasionally ask for tips (which will cause it to slowly become the norm). When tipping becomes the norm, the low-base-wage of the driver becomes less of an 'issue', and then tipping becomes even more of a necessity as that is where the drivers will make their actual margins.

segmondy 26 ago 0 replies      
This is not about taking on Uber. Google is testing AI for self driving cars. Once we have self driving cars, the idea is that you deploy these cars and the cars figure out who to pick up and who to drop off and possible doing group pick ups along the way. Waze is going to predict who to pick up based on their collected data thus far using ML, their data scientists are going to supervise it and correct it. Once we have self driving cars, Google will have the tech that can manage assigning cars and picking people up. This is what it is all about.
ChuckMcM 3 ago 2 replies      
Ok, not unexpected given that Drummond stepped back from being a board member, of course they got that seat by buying nearly 7% of the company[1]. Which if they had sold it to the other investors who came in on $62.5B round[2] they could have taken about $900M out which they could use to start their own ride sharing service. Sort of like drinking the Unicorn's blood to create a spell that will kill the Unicorn. The irony here, especially after Google did the same thing at Apple, big investment, board seat, oh wait you have a business that seems to be a winner (iPhone) lets step back and do that!

I wonder if this will make it harder for GV to participate in any sort of funding rounds.

[1] "Google Ventures invested $258M at $3.7B post-money valuation in 2013" -- https://www.quora.com/What-percentage-of-Uber-does-Google-ow...

[2] http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2015-12-03/uber-raise...

alkonaut 4 ago 6 replies      
Can we stop calling every new taxi service "ride sharing"? Are people "sharing" anything in any meaningful way? The drivers car isn't shared, he sells a ride, that's a Taxi. A medallion or other arbitrary system doesn't define what a taxi is.

Can I tell uber I want to share a ride to the airport with any stranger? (my taxi co will do that)?

ianamartin 2 ago 1 reply      
Am I the only one who laughs when I see, "Google, a unit of Alphabet Inc., . . . ."?

Umm, who reading this article doesn't know who Google is? That construction is almost always there to let you know who some no-name subsidiary or division of a much more well-known company is.

In this case it functions in the reverse if at all--reminding people that Alphabet is a thing, in case you didn't know.

Anyway, I just think that's funny.

iamcasen 5 ago 2 replies      
Uber and Lyft have had to tackle so many legal issues already. Drastically improving and modifying how they deal with drivers on a daily basis from both an operational and legal standpoint.

If what the article says is true about google vetting problem drivers with mere user reviews, they don't know what they are getting into.

I think the idea is great of course, and I imagine it would cut down on freeway traffic during commute hours. It just seems that the legal web of trust, insurance, safety, etc will be a lot to handle.

mintplant 3 ago 2 replies      
I've noticed Google Maps will sometimes give me Uber ads when I'm looking up directions ("this route only $N on Uber" or such). Idle speculation but I wonder if this was a mistake for Uber -- perhaps Google has seen a high rate of click-through on these and will now try to get in on that action themselves.
hyperbovine 4 ago 1 reply      
> Unlike Uber and its crosstown rival Lyft Inc., both of which largely operate as on-demand taxi businesses, Waze wants to connect riders with drivers who are already headed in the same direction.

Funny because that is Lyft's (n Zimride) original model. The more things change, the more they stay the same.

michaeldunworth 3 ago 0 replies      
Google is emphasizing for low prices and people not to make careers from this for one reason, automation. This is a pilot for them, and will be replaced by autonomous cars in a few years. They don't want to be on the hook for hundreds of thousands of jobs and fight that moral fight. Uber is about to have a huge amount of people displaced from the jobs they created, and Google doesn't want to share that reputational hazard imo. Good call for Google.
LordHumungous 3 ago 1 reply      
I was actually just thinking about this the other day- why doesn't a large tech company with lots of cash create a ride service which basically lets the driver keep everything? Uber can't possibly compete. Google can destroy them before they can become a threat in other tech spaces.
camiller 5 ago 0 replies      
Basically this is different from uber/lyft because it is trying to match you with someone already going to the same area, say on their normal commute. You are not just calling up a driver to get you from place to place.

I can't help but to think of Ford Prefect's Electronic Thumb from H2G2.

bluejekyll 3 ago 1 reply      
> Google, a unit of Alphabet Inc., began a pilot program around...

So, basic question, What is the difference between Alphabet and Google again? It seems like everything is still being branded as Google. I know it's slightly off topic, but I am honestly confused as to when something is not Google.

losteverything 4 ago 0 replies      
Great news. As a PT worker at one of the articles mentioned companies, I know there is considerable demand for rides to and from the retailer. This could be huge if employees shift from dial-taxis or uber to "co-workers" via waze.

Other night a pizza server at a shop next door said she was very slow. It's summer and nobody buys pizza. She added it costs her $10 one way cab ride and makes nothing for the day.

This is the type of news I would post on employee board when it comes to my area.

fma 4 ago 0 replies      
It's a good idea, and in Georgia there's a program to pay you to car pool (http://gacommuteoptions.com/Save-Your-Commute/Earn-Cash.-Win...).

I see this as something similar. But I was never able to find someone to car pool with.

dannylandau 4 ago 1 reply      
With so many competitors in the marketplace, such as Lyft, Gett, Via, Juno, and now Google, seems like Uber's leadership position is at risk. There appears to be very little differentiation between all of them, and while Google is starting out with carpooling, it is just a matter of time before they expand. Not sure how any investor could ever justify Uber's $60B valuation. In 10 years, will likely be 1/10 of that.
devy 4 ago 1 reply      
Waze carpooling has been around since May [1]

[1] http://www.wsj.com/articles/alphabet-unveils-program-for-car...

mahyarm 4 ago 0 replies      
There are a whole bunch of .54/mile commute carpool apps out there. Uber & Lyft have them / have had them too. Usually they don't pan out because it's not enough money for the hassle.
aristus 2 ago 1 reply      
Google likes to use software to eat the world. But sometimes their software-only approach just ends up slobbering all over it. The point of Uber isn't the "sharing" of a ride, but the availability and predictability of getting one.
yalogin 4 ago 0 replies      
Google had to get in at some point. They should have entered a year ago may be but I think this is a good enough time. Google can afford to not take a cut for their service and hurt Uber quite a bit. If they are not taking a cut they can also reduce the price for the rider.

However, how can it be viable to the driver. I understand if someone is already going in that direction they can make a little money but if I want to live on it (like Uber is pitching) will the price be enough?

symbolepro 1 ago 0 replies      
The best part of the interview is the way Sam has asked questions.
JohnMF 2 ago 1 reply      
Lyft recently shut down their commute share program due to lack of interest... and now Alphabet is restarting it.
yefim 5 ago 7 replies      
How are they vetting drivers? I wouldn't trust a driver if all they had to do to qualify is download the Waze app.
josh_carterPDX 3 ago 0 replies      
Wait, doesn't Lyft use Waze? So it's Lyft in a different interface?
sequoia_semper 2 ago 0 replies      
This is an actual ride sharing experiment instead of a taxi for hire business, quite nice to see this.
salomelunarojas 2 ago 0 replies      
We should stop calling this ride sharing. It's still taxi. Modern taxi.
jdauriemma 2 ago 0 replies      
swolchok 4 ago 3 replies      
Why would you pay to carpool to/from work instead of arranging carpool with a coworker, paying for your share of gas directly, and cutting out 1) the (future) middleman 2) the tax man?
hosh 1 ago 0 replies      
Back in the day, when Google opened up a 411 service, Microsoft did the same. It looked like a way to expand the search engine. After several years of operation, they shut it down. Why? They were collecting voice samples to feed into their voice recognition system, and they had collected enough.

I can't help but wonder if this ride sharing is a similar move. It sounds like a stepping stone for the kind of services that might be practical with self-driving cars. There might be some angle on collecting data that isn't obvious.

codecamper 3 ago 0 replies      
This is it? Ha. Uber must be letting out a collective sigh of relief.
youarewhite 3 ago 3 replies      
vegabook 5 ago 5 replies      
read: "Google ride-share is to Uber as Windows Phone is to Android". Late to the party, tragically deficient in first-mover network effect advantage, and on the decline in credibility since they're shutting down all moonshots, including, as we saw as recently as today, halving the staff at Google Fibre.

Talk about panic catch-up with no intrinsic advantage, nor vision. "Mountain View, start your photo-copiers". We know where that ends...

Larry and Sergei have shown in the past 3 years that they have no staying power on anything that isn't an obvious profit lay-up in short order. This thing will burn through cash at a rate that will make any of their other ill-fated ventures look like a bargain. I mean, UBER has already coughed 1.2 yards this year!

Smells like Google+ all over again. Isn't this the sort of sham that the Alphabet carve-out was supposed to avoid?

Myrmornis 4 ago 1 reply      
Has Waze quit using the childish cartoon stuff by default under Google?
MrZongle2 3 ago 0 replies      
I can't help but think that if Google is successful, the entire endeavor will end up like Reader: Google wipes out the competition, decides that they no longer want to run the service, end it, and there is no-one left to fill the void.
dirtyaura 5 ago 1 reply      
Larry finally got his way :D
ilostmykeys 4 ago 0 replies      
This is a hitchhiking service, not a "I want to get from my hotel to the airport" service. What are the chances that someome happens to be passing by my hotel on their way to the airport and happens to have room for an extra passenger. LOL. Retarded (to view it as competing with Uber/Lyft) Just part of the media that is itching to start a new drama.
readhn 3 ago 1 reply      
RIP Uber.8/29/2016.
durga 4 ago 0 replies      
Google is simply bored while making so much money so comfortably, with an absolutely dominant market position in search. So every few months they need to do these copycat things simply to entertain themselves ;-).
SEC awards $22M to Monsanto whistleblower reuters.com
102 points by rch  3 ago   51 comments top 6
josho 2 ago 5 replies      
A corporate whistleblower gets a payday (a good thing). While whistleblowers like Snowden that reveal illegal government programs risk the death penalty if they ever sit foot in US soil again.

This is progress, but we've got farther to go.

MereKatMoves 36 ago 2 replies      
"The SEC had said that Monsanto lacked sufficient internal controls to account for millions of dollars in rebates that it offered to retailers and distributors. It ultimately booked a sizeable amount of revenue, but then failed to recognize the costs of the rebate programs on its books."

This is what happens when you take glyphosate and multiply the cost/production price by well over 50x and package it as some miracle product. If your marketing strategy is to mislead every single purchaser then it is no surprise that you lose sight of how many strands of bullshit marketing you are running.

Roundup is a great example of one of those products that are cash cows for companies that market themselves as "the best solution"

Every.Single.One of the roundup products is glyphosate, and that stuff will kill anything and is very very cheap.

Dear readers be aware - glyphosate is a chemical that is present in all weedkillers (except the really shitty ones) so buying the brand name is a total waste of your money, and the amazing people at Roundup HQ know it. Buy the no-name, unbranded stuff.

I can understand Coca Cola etc selling sugar water for huge margins, but I pull my hair out when it comes to something like glyphosate. That's how I get my roots under control.

randyrand 2 ago 2 replies      
I have nothing against Monsanto and think they are a great company, but I'm glad to hear this. Whistleblower programs are important.
kiba 2 ago 5 replies      
So the shareholders in that company got screwed, along with the whistle-blower getting part of that settlement?

Doesn't that create bad incentive for whistleblowers not to do anything until it's too late?

curiousgal 2 ago 0 replies      
Excuse my language but holy shit!

This is more than enticing!

atjoslin 2 ago 1 reply      
Cool, he got paid and all, but keep in mind that's $22M of yours and my tax money.

EDIT: Nevermind, I did not read the article before commenting. My mistake.

Gonorrhea Is Becoming Untreatable, U.N. Health Officials Warn npr.org
64 points by bootload  3 ago   46 comments top 4
ChuckMcM 2 ago 3 replies      
And then there are these stories : http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/articles/287745.php talking about how there are all sorts of Antibiotics we don't even know about (yet). Or drugs that also kill bacteria (http://phys.org/news/2016-02-major-breakthrough-antibiotic-r...) or even this (https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/nov/20/antibi...)

Basically as we get to understand exactly how cells work and how bacteria do what they do, and how they change. We won't need to scrounge around in the dirt to find something, hopefully, that will kill bacteria. We'll engineer what ever we need to kill what ever cells we want to kill.

memracom 1 ago 4 replies      
Rather than weakening the attacker (killing the bacteria) we could look for ways to strengthen the organism (boost the body's own defense mechanisms). The health industry as a whole, has been weakened by the discovery of antibiotics and designer molecules, and as a result now spends too many resources on looking for killer chemicals (antibiotics and other drugs).

But there are other ways. One way is to follow the thread of research opened up by William B. Coley who developed Coley's Toxins, a cocktail of bacterial toxins that sparked the body's own defense mechanisms and in many cases, caused cancer tumors to turn to jelly within days and start being reabsorbed by the body. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1888599/ has more about him.

Or the way of genome therapy where researchers are studying the active genomes in both healthy and sick (or cancerous) cells to understand what knobs and buttons exist in the human organism that we might be able to adjust by means of various therapies, sometimes even benign ones. There is evidence that one of the many hundred subtypes of cancer will respond to everyday blood pressure medication. This is a relatively benign drug that, in the right conditions, will kill cancer cells. Of course, the right conditions include that the patient has certain specific genes. But genomic techniques ca discover these genomic markers and help us sort out the mechanisms by which cells resist attacks from hostile bacteria. The ultimate outcome for cancer would be that your doctor takes a biopsy of the cancer cells, their active genomes are analyzed and this information is used to build a molecular machine that manufacture a custom drug that will cure your cancer.

Look at the molecular machinery of the Polymerase Chain Reaction which makes copies of DNA molecules https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Polymerase_chain_reaction

And there is Reverse Transcription which converts RNA molecules to DNA molecules https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reverse_transcription_polymera...

Not to mention the Ribosome which is the molecular machine in your cells which manufactures protein molecules https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ribosome

Kenji 45 ago 0 replies      
If officials from the U.N. or from the WHO warn about something, I sleep particularly well at night, knowing that it's probably blown out of proportion by several orders or magnitude. Remember the bird flu? My employer at the time bought truckloads of sanitizers, plastic bins and related stuff. A complete waste of money. These people have lost every last shred of credibility for me.
milesf 58 ago 10 replies      
Here's a novel thought: Monogamy. Wait to have sex until you're married, then have only one sexual partner your entire life. That'll deal with the problem, and every other sexually transmitted disease out there.

It's almost too simple to work, but I've heard that over time - thousands of years in fact - it is a strategy humans have used to build not just safe sex, but many other benefits as well http://www.theglobeandmail.com/life/relationships/the-power-...

Jessica Livingston: How to Build the Future ycombinator.com
150 points by sama  4 ago   34 comments top 6
noodles23 3 ago 2 replies      
This is how you do great content marketing and branding.

This entire video series is about inspiring people with a side benefit of illustrating what makes YC special.

Compare this to content by other accelerators (of which there are many). It's not a lecture nor a recital of advice. It's a series of relatable and personable stories with a consistent theme. Start with "Why" you do something, not how or what.

bobbylox 3 ago 4 replies      
I think there needs to be a moratorium on that AirBnB political cereal box story. "The most important thing to do is to focus on your business, but also it's cool if you spend time on a random side business," is a big mixed message.
jedc 1 ago 0 replies      
"Y Combinator has funded 1,500 startups"


 http://www.ycombinator.com/press/ quotes 1297 startups http://www.seed-db.com/accelerators/view?acceleratorid=1011 has 1069 companies (+ ~100 from the S16 class) for ~1200 in total
Where do the extra companies come from?

HiroshiSan 10 ago 0 replies      
The way she looks at Sam is the way a mother would look at their child. Jessica seems very endearing.
elmar 4 ago 1 reply      
Great interview, I think Jessica was the secret sauce that made YC so good.
enraged_camel 4 ago 7 replies      
Jessica is awesome. That said, this part near the beginning, where Sam says...

>>Sometimes they create a small success, and sometimes they create these companies that really transform the world, and YC has been very fortunate to be involved in a lot of these, Airbnb, Dropbox, Stripe, the list goes on.

I mean... really? OK, I'll grant you Airbnb, but Dropbox "transformed" the world?

Victory for Net Neutrality in Europe juliareda.eu
436 points by jrepin  10 ago   143 comments top 15
soci 6 ago 5 replies      
As always, devil is in the details.

If you look at the fine print in the published "Guidelines for implementing Net Neutratily" [1] linked in the article you will see that there are 3 exceptions to the rule (a,b,c). Being "c" the one that should fear us most:


 a) "comply with Union legislative acts (...)
-> meaning that a court order can change Net Neutrality, hmmm ok.

 b) preserve the integrity and security of the network, of services provided via that network, and of the terminal equipment of end-users;
-> meaning that in order to guarantee the security of the network Net Neutrality may be avoided. I'm so-so on this one.

 c) prevent impending network congestion and mitigate the effects of exceptional or temporary network congestion, provided that equivalent categories of traffic are treated equally.
-> Meaning that ISPs can throttle specific categories of traffic at their own will.

This last one ruins the whole law. And this is not what me as European wanted. ISPs won :(


[EDIT] typos

tajen 8 ago 7 replies      
Next fight : That ISPs advertise the minimum guaranteed bandwidth and are banned from advertising the maximum theoretical number.

Then only we could measure that they do offer the same bandwidth with Netflix and Vimeo as they advertise. Net neutrality at its best.

Edit: Of course the number will be very low because they have to (God forbid!) provision their network to serve this bandwidth to all customers during peak hours. But what we're looking for is not a huge number - we're looking for a number that allows meaningful comparison with competitors.

smb06 9 ago 0 replies      
Facebook tried to introduce "Free Basics" in Angola after its failed attempts at doing so in India. Good to see similar efforts being made in Angola to educate about Net Neutrality as well. Maybe they can use some takeaway from the above ruling.

Source: http://motherboard.vice.com/read/wikipedia-zero-facebook-fre...

kleiba 7 ago 0 replies      
"It has to be noted with regret that it was not our digital Commissioner Gnther Oettinger who listened to the people and defended an internet not biased towards big corporate interests [...]"

That would hardly have been expected: in the first six months of being a Commissioner, Oettinger met with two NGO representatives but with 44 corporate lobbyists [1].

[1] http://www.spiegel.de/wirtschaft/soziales/guenther-oettinger...

headmelted 8 ago 6 replies      
It encourages me to see that the European court at least has some people on it that seem to understand that net neutrality is in fact a human rights issue.

And this is why Brexit is so heart-breaking. I'm surrounded by people in my personal life who think it's a fantastic idea, but they're not the most... informed? Likewise for local politicians.

(Side note to my rant: I have this theory that the rise of the iPhone, and the fact that it is such a big part of people's lives now, has fooled regular folks into believing that they're experts on technology. I have no more than anecdotal evidence for this).

I strongly suspect that local legislators will see no conflict whatsoever with scrapping these laws when the exit finally comes, and it saddens me that I'm surrounded by a lot of people that will be cheering when it happens.

This is from a real conversation I had this week:

"What it boils down to is do you want to have us control our own laws and decisions and borders, or have to take orders from some bureaucrat in Brussels that doesn't understand us?"

Yes, I would rather have decisions made by people in Brussels that understand what they're doing.

nothis 9 ago 5 replies      
Disappointingly little concrete information of what's in now, anyone knows how to read these things and skimmed the original text? I heard that EU "net neutrality" is disappointlngly vague. I see providers offering free data for things like Spotify, which, in my understanding, is exactly what net neutrality should prevent.
thr0waway1239 8 ago 6 replies      
I once heard an interview with the Economist digital editor Tom Standage where he claims (at 5:45 into the interview) that net neutrality is the wrong thing to focus on, and the important thing is just making sure there is more competition between the telcos. Can someone more familiar with this issue tell me if this argument is correct?


jkingsbery 8 ago 5 replies      
I don't understand how it's "progress" to move decisions from a small number of bureaucracies to a single, less accountable bureaucracy.
gourou 9 ago 1 reply      
These were the guidelines from November 2015


IMRelentless1 5 ago 0 replies      
Any thoughts on Obama handing over the DNS directory to the UN?
vegabook 5 ago 0 replies      
Bravo EU! Sure I see that there are plenty of commented caveats, but coming within 24 hours of a 14 billion dollar retroactive tax bill for one of the world's most opportunistic tax dodgers, I cannot help but have good faith towards this announcement. Here is the only bloc, globally, that actually seems to care about individuals versus corporations, with unequivocal and demonstrated evidence of said motivations. I've been fed a diet of "useless, corrupt, 'Brussels' bureaucrats" ever since I moved to Britain (which, as an aside, today disgracefully tried to woo AAPL with the anti-tax red carpet). But all I actually see, is a bunch of people, bureaucrats perhaps, but who are trying to look out for me . Today I say, Hurrah EU! Thank you Julia Reda.
IMRelentless1 5 ago 0 replies      
any thoughts on Obama handing over the DNS directory to the UN?
daveloyall 7 ago 0 replies      
For your convenience, here's just the text "in the boxes" (the Recitals), from http://berec.europa.eu/eng/document_register/subject_matter/...

These are the first 9, the other 10 are here: https://gist.github.com/daveloyall/a1112bb70412d77bebc809090...

Recital 1=========

This Regulation aims to establish common rules to safeguard equal andnon-discriminatory treatment of traffic in the provision of internetaccess services and related end-users rights. It aims to protectend-users and simultaneously to guarantee the continued functioning ofthe internet ecosystem as an engine of innovation.

Recital 2=========

The measures provided for in this Regulation respect the principle oftechnological neutrality, that is to say they neither impose nordiscriminate in favour of the use of a particular type of technology.

Recital 3=========

The internet has developed over the past decades as an open platformfor innovation with low access barriers for end-users, providers ofcontent, applications and services and providers of internet accessservices. The existing regulatory framework aims to promote theability of end-users to access and distribute information or runapplications and services of their choice. However, a significantnumber of end-users are affected by traffic management practices whichblock or slow down specific applications or services. Those tendenciesrequire common rules at the Union level to ensure the openness of theinternet and to avoid fragmentation of the internal market resultingfrom measures adopted by individual Member States.

Recital 4=========

An internet access service provides access to the internet, and inprinciple to all the end-points thereof, irrespective of the networktechnology and terminal equipment used by end-users. However, forreasons outside the control of providers of internet access services,certain end points of the internet may not always beaccessible. Therefore, such providers should be deemed to havecomplied with their obligations related to the provision of aninternet access service within the meaning of this Regulation whenthat service provides connectivity to virtually all end points of theinternet. Providers of internet access services should therefore notrestrict connectivity to any accessible end-points of the internet.

Recital 5=========

When accessing the internet, end-users should be free to choosebetween various types of terminal equipment as defined in CommissionDirective 2008/63/EC (1). Providers of internet access services shouldnot impose restrictions on the use of terminal equipment connecting tothe network in addition to those imposed by manufacturers ordistributors of terminal equipment in accordance with Union law.

Recital 6=========

End-users should have the right to access and distribute informationand content, and to use and provide applications and services withoutdiscrimination, via their internet access service. The exercise ofthis right should be without prejudice to Union law, or national lawthat complies with Union law, regarding the lawfulness of content,applications or services. This Regulation does not seek to regulatethe lawfulness of the content, applications or services, nor does itseek to regulate the procedures, requirements and safeguards relatedthereto. Those matters therefore remain subject to Union law, ornational law that complies with Union law.

Recital 7=========

In order to exercise their rights to access and distribute informationand content and to use and provide applications and services of theirchoice, end-users should be free to agree with providers of internetaccess services on tariffs for specific data volumes and speeds of theinternet access service. Such agreements, as well as any commercialpractices of providers of internet access services, should not limitthe exercise of those rights and thus circumvent provisions of thisRegulation safeguarding open internet access. National regulatory andother competent authorities should be empowered to intervene againstagreements or commercial practices which, by reason of their scale,lead to situations where end-users choice is materially reduced inpractice. To this end, the assessment of agreements and commercialpractices should, inter alia, take into account the respective marketpositions of those providers of internet access services, and of theproviders of content, applications and services, that areinvolved. National regulatory and other competent authorities shouldbe required, as part of their monitoring and enforcement function, tointervene when agreements or commercial practices would result in theundermining of the essence of the end-users rights.

Recital 8=========

When providing internet access services, providers of those servicesshould treat all traffic equally, without discrimination, restrictionor interference, independently of its sender or receiver, content,application or service, or terminal equipment. According to generalprinciples of Union law and settled case-law, comparable situationsshould not be treated differently and different situations should notbe treated in the same way unless such treatment is objectivelyjustified.

Recital 9=========

The objective of reasonable traffic management is to contribute to anefficient use of network resources and to an optimisation of overalltransmission quality responding to the objectively different technicalquality of service requirements of specific categories of traffic, andthus of the content, applications and services transmitted. Reasonabletraffic management measures applied by providers of internet accessservices should be transparent, non-discriminatory and proportionate,and should not be based on commercial considerations. The requirementfor traffic management measures to be non-discriminatory does notpreclude providers of internet access services from implementing, inorder to optimise the overall transmission quality, traffic managementmeasures which differentiate between objectively different categoriesof traffic. Any such differentiation should, in order to optimiseoverall quality and user experience, be permitted only on the basis ofobjectively different technical quality of service requirements (forexample, in terms of latency, jitter, packet loss, and bandwidth) ofthe specific categories of traffic, and not on the basis of commercialconsiderations. Such differentiating measures should be proportionatein relation to the purpose of overall quality optimisation and shouldtreat equivalent traffic equally. Such measures should not bemaintained for longer than necessary.

libman 7 ago 1 reply      
Record-Breaking Galaxy Cluster Discovered, 11.1B Light Years from Earth nasa.gov
35 points by okket  3 ago   9 comments top 2
bwang29 2 ago 3 replies      
NASA is making a lot of "record-breaking" news in the past few weeks and it is increasingly difficult for me to think how these news affect me and my relationship to the Galaxy. I understood many of these discoveries translated to "current science could be wrong". But if counting stars isn't my hobby, what am I supposed to take a way from this and digest the meaning of 11.1B light years distance?
ImTalking 1 ago 1 reply      
As our instruments get better, are we going to find these clusters further and further out until we hit the supposed age of the universe @ 13.7B years? Then what? When do we start thinking that maybe the models are potentially wrong?
FSU research team makes Zika drug breakthrough fsu.edu
92 points by nikunjk  5 ago   17 comments top 7
nonbel 3 ago 0 replies      
Strange, apparently they only blinded themselves for two western blots that didn't even deserve a place in the main paper. I have found this is an extremely common issue with virology studies:

>"The screening of two subsets of compounds for antiviral activity (Supplementary Fig. 2a and Supplementary Fig. 4b) was performed in a blinded manner, whereas all other experiments were performed in a nonblinded manner."http://www.nature.com/nm/index.html

Also, I searched for the virus strain they used and the first thing I clicked on claimed it has issues with relevance in vivo:

>"Anyone who is using viruses termed ZIKV MR766 needs to carefully examine the sequence composition of their stocks. Multiple viruses all termed MR766 may have different sequences and biological properties.In the case of the MR766 we are using in our studies, there is a deletion in the challenge stock that is strongly selected against quickly in vivo."https://zika.labkey.com/wiki/OConnor/ZIKV-002/page.view?name...

devy 4 ago 1 reply      
TL;DR, the identified/named drug that may be repuposed to prevent Zika virus is called Niclosamide, wikipedia has already been updated[1] with its side benefit :)

Nicolsamide is also listed as WHO's "one of the most important medications needed in a basic health system."[1]

There should be more drug repurposing researches to be done but it's probably profit-prohibiting for the big pharmas :(

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Niclosamide

nolepointer 4 ago 3 replies      
Yep, surprisingly, research is done here. We don't just have a football team.
dmritard96 4 ago 1 reply      
saw this on my fb feed this morning and tbh, was glad the fsu actually got some headline room. personally not connected to fsu but I see so many MIT... that some of these other institutions doing big things get lost in the shuffle.

also really liked the search strategy. first try all the things already approved by the fda to find something, even if not 100% ideal since its so much faster than seeking fda approval of something new. Curious how this will change in the near future given the prevalence of deep learning and with some of the opentrons type testing systems.

maxerickson 3 ago 0 replies      
If anyone else was surprised by the 584 pregnant women living in the US that are believed to have been infected, the CDC has the same number here:


iptables 18 ago 0 replies      
dmatthewson 3 ago 1 reply      
Sounds great. When will we see reputable validation of their extraordinary claims?
Infrastructure for Deep Learning openai.com
188 points by yigitdemirag  8 ago   50 comments top 7
programnature 7 ago 5 replies      
While its useful to have this kind of info, IMHO its still far from 'infrastructure for deep learning'. What about model versioning? What about deployment environments? We need to address the whole lifecycle, not just the 'training' bit. This is a huge and underserved part of the problem bc people tend to be satisfied with having 1 model thats good enough to publish.
ymt123 7 ago 0 replies      
It's great to see people talking about the infrastructure they use to manage their deep learning workloads.

One area where we've had trouble with other orchestration tools (e.g. Docker Swarm) was in managing resources at anything beyond whole boxes. They are all good at managing CPU/RAM/Disk but we've had trouble with give this task GPU2. We had planned to try Mesos (given that we already run it for other things) but it sounds like maybe we should take a harder look at Kubernetes first.

thr0waway1239 7 ago 4 replies      
I don't know much about deep learning. Just noticed that there are 40+ upvotes and 0 comments. I propose the HN Bikeshedding effect theory. Take the number of comments and divide it by the number of upvotes.

<0.1 = Too technical for even HN audience0.1-1.0 = At the right level for the HN audience>1 = The topic is similar to painting the bike shed.

freyr 2 ago 0 replies      
> Like much of the deep learning community, we use Python 2.7

It's unfortunate that so much effort has been spent on bringing tools up to speed with Python 3, but some groups still insist on dragging their feet. I understand the motivation when we're talking about an established company with a huge legacy code base, but within the research community it's kind of embarrassing.

vonnik 7 ago 4 replies      
Tensorflow is actually pretty slow and problematic on large clusters outside the Google Cloud. Probably because that's not what it was designed for.

For Java/Scala people, Deeplearning4j has a pretty sophisticated Spark + GPUs setup:




[Disclosure: I help create DL4J, and it's supported by my startup, Skymind.]

josh_carterPDX 6 ago 1 reply      
"Top performance thus requires top-of-the-line GPUs."

Would be curious to see the data around the economics of the different options.

cs702 6 ago 0 replies      
On a related note, I'm running a poll on deep learning frameworks: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12391744
In-Q-Tel The CIAs Venture-Capital Firm wsj.com
54 points by petethomas  4 ago   26 comments top 12
ryporter 8 ago 0 replies      
The author seems to want to unearth some scandal about conflicts of interest, but there's not much here. The final quote of the article pretty much nails it.

On the one hand, if you wanted really pristine independence, it means you are going to need people who dont have commercial ties to the industry, Mr. Gilson said. On the other hand, if you have people without any commercial ties to the industry, they are not much use.

If there were no conflicts of interest at all, then we'd be discussing an article about how horribly In-Q-Tel's investments performed, because they were made by bureaucrats in D.C. who had no idea how startups worked.

s_q_b 3 ago 3 replies      
In-Q-Tel is pretty explicit about their mission: to support the development of private sector technologies that are of immediate use (within 36 months) to their IC customers. Their investments are sometimes public and they invest in pretty much what you'd expect: D-Wave, Facebook, Keyhole. Even their name is taken straight out of the James Bond tech supplier branch/agent Q.

Nor do they have even particularly critical national security technology. In-Q-Tel probably has less dark tech knowledge than your average building at NBP.

One of my startups was contacted by one of their employees (it's almost always an employee, not the org directly), and they really just facilitated our data analysis processes, and made some connections. It never got to the stage where we accepted any money, and it was a lot less creepy than some of the government contractors cough Mitre cough.

Disclaimer: I have not, do not, and will not work on mass surveillance technology.

mindslight 3 ago 0 replies      
This article makes it sound secretive and corrupt, but really this is a surprising amount of transparency compared to other drug cartels.
unethical_ban 2 ago 1 reply      
Search for " we are all intelligence officers now" transcript by Dan Geer, CISO of the company, who refuses to get a clearance.

Fascinating insights.

advisedwang 3 ago 1 reply      
Most VCs put their own people on the boards of companies they invest in, and then continue to invest in those companies. Doesn't this imply that the "shares a board member" conflict of interest described is either rampant in the industry or not actually a conflict of interest?
drawkbox 2 ago 0 replies      
MongoDB and Apigee are on their list of investments that are known.
nickpsecurity 3 ago 0 replies      
Whether I like CIA or not, In-Q-Tel is one of their best achievements. The VC model in private sector had long been making better tech more cheaply and with faster improvements. There was also lots of overlap between enterprise and CIA needs. Funding dual-use tech through private sector is already win/win at this point. That revenue from sales to private sector could reduce taxpayer burden on any given tech is another win. Even if there was corruption, it's still better than most US Govt actions because they produced useful stuff that actually benefited Americans in some way.
ChuckMcM 3 ago 0 replies      
I suppose it would be a scandal if they tried to hide who they were.
sciguy77 4 ago 1 reply      
It's In-Q-Tel, not Q-Tel. I actually interviewed there a few years back. Very cool company.
vonnik 3 ago 0 replies      
We're missing the "In" on "In" Q Tel in the title.

And I have to add, IQT serves a ton of govt agencies, not just the CIA.

Zach_the_Lizard 4 ago 0 replies      
The title is misspelled; it's In-Q-Tel, not Q-Tel.
binarray2000 2 ago 1 reply      
I hope someone knowledgable will help me here.

Do I get this right: US taxpayers are giving their hard earned dollars so that a government agency CIA can take it and, throu their venture capital firm (!), invest it into something that might, but also might not, work?

Is this actually fiscally responsible? Is it in the job description of an intelligence agency to be a VC fund, not with private money, but with the money of the shrinking US middle class?

Paddle: Baidu's open source deep learning framework github.com
169 points by thinxer  8 ago   16 comments top 5
blackkettle 8 ago 0 replies      
Looks well put together, well documented. Quickstart tutorial was easy to follow.

Why should I think about using this instead of (or in combination with?) the plethora of other similar offerings out there?

ya3r 5 ago 1 reply      
One thing which is missing is a "model zoo", a place where people share models (usually well-known) pre-trained, which is very useful for starting to use a framework.

Although this repo https://github.com/baidu/paddle_paddle_model_zoo, suggests they might be working on one.

cs702 8 ago 6 replies      
Another deep learning framework, this time from Baidu.

Given TensorFlow's rising dominance with AI researchers and practitioners and the existence of other frameworks with large installed bases like Theano, Torch, and Caffe, I don't think this new framework has much chance of gaining wide adoption in the US or other markets in the West. In my opinion, TensorFlow's network effects are too large to overcome at this point.

However, Paddle could gain significant adoption in China, Baidu's home market.

EDIT: My opinion could be wrong. To find out, I've created an HN POLL so we can all see which deep learning frameworks the HN community would use to build new products and services today. Link to HN POLL: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12391744

yalogin 8 ago 2 replies      
hansjorg 4 ago 0 replies      
Interesting project name. The authors seem to be telling us something about their philosophy of education :)
A Brief History of the College Textbook Pricing Racket atlasobscura.com
56 points by yitchelle  5 ago   22 comments top 9
dougmccune 3 ago 3 replies      
One point that is often undiscussed: what defines a textbook has expanded greatly. It used to be that a textbook was just a book. But now a textbook is the book plus a huge collection of other resources, most of which the student never sees. A modern textbook includes tests with answer keys, a teaching guide that a grad student TA can use to teach an entire course, flash cards, supporting videos, handouts for class, online exercises, etc etc.

The dirty secret of modern textbooks is that there has been a huge arms race in developing material that makes it easier to teach a course with less work. I don't really think that truly benefits students, since most of this material isn't for the student, it's for the professor (or more cynically for the free labor of grad students used to do a lot of the teaching). But you can't sell a textbook these days without it. I wish there was a universe in which you could sell a simple Psych 101 textbook for $50 and have that be that. But the market won't adopt a simple book like that without the myriad of extras. And since the market here is wonky, meaning the person making the decision (the professor) doesn't bear any of the cost (and might in fact benefit if it's her book), we end up where we are.

This isn't to say that the whole new edition thing isn't worth criticism. Or that there aren't all sorts of things wrong with the industry. But the percentage increase you see in the cost of a textbook for students doesn't just equate to the same percentage increase in the profit margin of textbook publishers. They're not just making the same product from 40 years ago and jacking up the prices 1,000% as the article implies. The product is a whole different beast.

(source: I sit on the board of my family's textbook publishing company)

rdtsc 1 ago 1 reply      
I remember coming to US to go to High School then to University and noticed the books huge, heavy things. Full of pictures and shiny pages, yet content sucked and was spread out unnecessarily. Everything could have been condensed to a 1/3 or 1/4 size. Then when I got to University also happened to notice they cost an arm and a leg.

So I was thinking, I'll just sell them back when I am done and get the money back. Nope, it cost only a small fraction of original price I paid. Because a new version was out already.

Ever since I consider publishers of those books scam artists and crooks. In college I had a meager stipend, and only later got a job on campus for minimum wage -- I had work extra hours at night to make sure to have enough for next quarter when an unpredictable (but high) amount of money would be needed to pay for books.

diamondlovesyou 20 ago 0 replies      
As a student, I've been fortunate in that most of the time I can find pdfs of the books I need, saving me a dime and the pain of the weight of a normal textbook. The two books I had to buy this semester were books I still bought online, and I still hate them: they're slow, don't work without the internet, constantly log me out (b/c timeouts), and why the fuck can't I cntl-C? Chemistry nomenclature is a bitch. Give me a pdf for use in my favorite pdf reader damnit!

The other stuff I fucking hate is the free resources given to professors (yay, fiscal budgeting!), but shifts the revenue stream to the student. For example, iClicker, which provides the server for free to the professor but makes the students buy a physical clicker ($50); when this service could just use the fucking web-browser and make the professor/university I pay tuition purchase this REQUIRED part of the course. Or the online homework, which is also a purchased item (like $60-70 too). I don't pay for the organic chem lab equipment (and couldn't; that stuff is expensive!).

To be clear, I have not a problem with using these materials. I also don't mind paying for them. But I ONLY want to pay for it through tuition!

Also, why don't publishers work directly with universities so that every student is provided with a copy of textbook/homework? It seems to me that that would be a sure fire way to prevent lost sales due to the used textbook market/pirating. They could just get the university to purchase pdfs of the textbook for each student every year: it would drive down the incentive to pirate and would mean they didn't need to develop their own shitty-af reader. A win-win.

Anyway, to those still reading: sorry 'bout the language. This status quo drives me absolutely bonkers.

zeveb 1 ago 0 replies      
> The duo noted the picture-free material tended to be comprehended just as well as material with pictures, but students preferred the more vibrant option.

I wonder why students' preferences are even a consideration: if they learn just as well with older, pictureless books why not use those?

> But it's worth askingif professors know these textbooks are absurdly expensive, why assign them? Well, the answer involves a couple of factors, basically: Many professors simply don't know the prices of the textbooks, and, far less frequently, sometimes the professors themselves wrote the book.

FWIW, when I was in school I recall one professor doing his best to ensure that our bill for each of his classes was never more than $50. I think that all of our professors exercised some care in that regard but ours was a small liberal arts college, with every class taught by a professor or associate professor.

davejlsherwood 3 ago 1 reply      
The textbook price increases were once thought to be a genius way to increase profit margins. However like all goods and services, even those with the most inelastic demand curves have a point at which people will begin to substitute them for another good. Textbook piracy is at an all time high and publishers profits have fallen significantly. The long run solution is subscription - access to all the content required by the students at an affordable monthly price. I'm one of the co-founders of Bibliotech the Spotify for Textbooks (www.bibliotech.education). We are working with Oxford University Press, Taylor & Francis and Cambridge University Press to achieve exactly that. Our challenge is convincing publishers to provide the necessary content under a subscription model
DarkLinkXXXX 3 ago 0 replies      
I think it's a little disingenuous to call openstax "the Napster model", but it's still a good article nevertheless.
Mendenhall 2 ago 1 reply      
Pay a company to make the "book", dont print any copies, put it online for any school to use and charge like 50 cents a download. School requires to see your reciept so they know its legit, prices drop. Thing is they arent really serious about lowering the cost of education.
c517402 2 ago 1 reply      
I seem to remember that the IRS changed the tax law on book publishers in the late '70s. Before the change, publishers made large printing runs of well respected texts and kept the unsold and warehoused books on their ledgers as raw materials. The IRS changed the law and required the unsold books to be counted as assets at the wholesale price, and taxes paid on those assets. This started the current new-edition-every-year model of publishing textbooks that has spiraled into the current situation.
B1FF_PSUVM 3 ago 0 replies      
I wish it was only the college textbook market that was the victim of the racket.

I know of 12 year olds who have 10 kg of school books. No one cares.

The problem with San Francisco Opera ticket prices perfectprice.io
30 points by thegeneralist  3 ago   10 comments top 8
alexbeloi 1 ago 0 replies      
There was an interesting NPR episode on ticket resellers a while back: Planet Money (episode 468 - Kid Rock vs The Scalpers)http://www.npr.org/sections/money/2013/06/25/195641030/episo...

They talked about how it's more complex then resellers charging mark-ups to meet market demand. Often, venues have either social pressure or pressure from artists to keep prices low. The idea is that if the venue sells Katy Perry tickets at market price (say $2000/each), her fans are going to be upset with not only the venue but also her, so her management will make sure that doesn't happen.

However, simply lowering ticket prices means losing out on tons of money for both the venue and artist. One solution that is used is: the venue offloads large chunks of their ticket pool to ticket resellers (ticketmaster/stubhub) under the condition that they split a % of the markup with the venue and artist. The reseller absorbs the social blame for 'egregious' ticket prices, the venue/artist keep more of the profits than if they had kept prices below market price.

noahlt 1 ago 1 reply      
The fact that arbitrage is happening is obviously bad for the Opera, but I want to point out that every opera ticket is sold at a loss. Selling opera tickets just at break-even would drive down attendance significantly (and it's already low).

Opera companies run like VCs: most of the audience/startups are losses, but a few of them are donors/unicorns who keep the opera/VC afloat.

falsedan 54 ago 0 replies      
The author is suggesting yield management to mitigate price arbitrage. Airlines have been doing this for years (maximize butts in seats & profit)., and require entire teams of business analysts to monitor the supply & demand of tickets, and reclassify seats so they stay balanced.

Every flight/hotel-comparison website has its goal to make the yield management team as ineffective as possible. Being too effective means running your suppliers out-of-business!

babesh 49 ago 0 replies      
The Opera is partly a status indicator and a networking opportunity. Lowering the prices would drive off the donors. I get the feeling that for a vast majority of people the Opera is seen as a Richie Rich event off limits to them.
egypturnash 1 ago 0 replies      
> Clearly, the opera itself should price its tickets to more accurately reflect demand. And the great irony is that, by doing so, more often than not lower prices will bring new people into the opera, while high prices will capture demand from the price insensitive.

So let's untangle these two sentences near the end of this essay.

1. I believe that the San Francisco Opera should raise its prices to match - or exceed - what this ticket scalper site is asking.2. But lower ticket prices will usually result in more butts in seats.

The entire post is written from the perspective that the Opera should be making the absolute highest amount of money per ticket sale possible. But at the end of the post, the author very casually mentions that this is going to probably mean a lot fewer butts in seats watching opera. And then completely ignores it, going on to suggest ways the SFO could learn from TicketMiddleManThatHopesYouDon'tThinkVeryHard.Com.

I have not been to the San Francisco Opera; I do not know how much it's focused on the bottom line. But I would bet money that, if offered the choice between getting about twice as much per seat, and getting more viewers, the SFO would probably choose the latter. Because arts organizations don't just exist to make money; they exist to spread their art. You have to pay enough attention to the bottom line to be able to pay everyone involved enough to keep doing it, but it should never be an organization's only concern.

The author of this post also offers us no statistics on how many tickets to the SFO are actually bought though the scalper site that's selling them for about twice what they cost versus ones sold directly by the Opera. The fact that someone built a robot that automatically scrapes a ton of venues and offers their tickets at 200% markups, and did some SEO tricks to make it pop up higher than the actual site for people who don't block ads, doesn't mean they're automatically capturing the money of everyone who types "san francisco opera tickets" into Google. Without evidence of that, I seriously doubt his thesis that this is money the SFO is leaving on the table.

I am also pretty amazed by the fact that the closing paragraphs suggesting "dynamic pricing" and noting that it can be very complex to do don't casually link to any of the services provided by the company whose blog this is on, because they seem to be trying to do just that.


1. the existence of a bot that offers San Francisco Opera tickets at a crazy markup doesn't mean enough people actually buy through it to be worth chasing,

2. raising prices to match this bot probably runs counter to the part of an opera house focused of Getting More People Interested In Watching Opera Instead Of Playing Video Games Or Whatever.

3. geeze dude you write an essay this long that's a stealth ad for your company and you can't even slip a link into the concluding paragraph?

initram 1 ago 0 replies      
"Booking fees have long been something that consumers grumble aboutbut pay."

Not exactly. I mean yeah, I sometimes pay them, but I simply go out far less because of them. So choose wisely if you're going to go that route!

raldi 1 ago 0 replies      
Mods, a de-clickbaited headline suggestion: "A company might be arbitraging SF Opera tickets"
vacri 1 ago 0 replies      
> Not only does nobody benefit (except the broker)


> Nearly every major venue and sports team sells to brokers. This brings cash in the door and reduces the risk to the venue.

These two comments are in direct opposition to each other. I don't like scalping of tickets, but if a venue is knowingly and willingly selling to scalpers, then obviously they do get some net benefit.

Chinese CA WoSign faces revocation after possibly issuing fake certificates percya.com
229 points by tombrossman  12 ago   103 comments top 9
michaelt 11 ago 6 replies      
Traditionally it's difficult for browser vendors to revoke a root CA as they want to grandfather in old certificates, so existing sites don't have the rug pulled out from under their feet when their only crime is using a crap CA.

Partial solutions include blocking the CA's certs based on the issuance date or insisting they hand over a list of the certs they've issued - but if the CA is going down in flames anyway, they have no incentive to cooperate; they can backdate certs and destroy their own customer list.

My theory is [1] this is one of the side benefits of Certificate Transparency - CT will give browser vendors a list of certs to grandfather in if they decide to shut down a CA against its will.

[1] https://www.mjt.me.uk/posts/certificate-transparency/

jaas 9 ago 1 reply      
This is a pretty misleading title for a couple of reasons:

1) WoSign may face revocation (I doubt it but I don't know), but there is no evidence of that in this article. This is just one person not affiliated with a root program "calling for" it. People on the internet call for revocation of major CA roots all the time.

2) I don't really know what a "fake" cert is, it's a very strange choice of words. I would think a fake cert is not a real cert, and in that case issuing fake certs is fine because browsers won't trust them. It seems the problem here is that real certs were issued when they shouldn't have been. That's called "mis-issuance", not "fake certs."

koolba 10 ago 1 reply      
Too big to fail my ass. There's no such thing when it comes to security. If anything, that's more reason to cut them loose.

If a CA pulls shit like this they need to be revoked immediately and let the wrath of 1000s of businesses that are impacted by cert warnings rain down upon them. That will 1) Solve the security problem immediately and 2) Publicize what it means to get a cert from a crap CA that doesn't care about security.

Sure it will suck for the "little guy" who didn't know but, if you don't do this, he'll never know and never learn.

amluto 1 ago 0 replies      
Can't browsers at least restrict CAs like WoSign so that their roots are only accepted for .cn domains?

I realize that X.509 name constraints are utterly broken, but that doesn't mean that browsers can't manually restrict the domains that a given root is accepted for.

0x0 9 ago 4 replies      
So what's the relation to StartCom/StartSSL? I remember reading some comments about half a year ago mentioning that the startssl website suddenly was hosted on Chinese IP addresses, just around the time they redesigned the web page. This seemed fishy enough back then that I finally switched from startssl to letsencrypt for non-wildcard certs and actually started paying a different CA for wildcart certs...

Did the StartSSL root CA change hands / was it sold to a Chinese company (Wosign?)

I seem to remember the CEO used to be vocal in various ssl and ca forums and on bugzilla earlier.... But no comments lately?

guelo 10 ago 3 replies      
I just went to delete these roots from my Windows system but it's not listed. It was in Firefox's list but not in Window's. Anyone know why?
mtgx 11 ago 5 replies      
> Possible fake cert for Githubhttps://crt.sh/?id=29647048https://crt.sh/?id=29805567

> Possible fake cert for Alibaba, the largest commercial site in Chinahttps://crt.sh/?id=29884704

> Possible fake cert for Microsofthttps://crt.sh/?id=29805555

Yikes. If all of that is true, surely Google will permanently ban WoSign from Chrome? And I would hope Mozilla and Microsoft, too, but Google is usually the one to "play tough" with rogue CAs (and I hope they will strive to develop and maintain that reputation).

marcoperaza 10 ago 1 reply      
Is there an easy way for me to revoke trust from all Chinese CAs? Anyone in China is ultimately subject to being forced to do the dirty work of the Chinese Communist Party. Why are browser and OS vendors even trusting them in the first place?
Babili: An ES6+ aware minifier based on Babel babeljs.io
49 points by hzoo  4 ago   26 comments top 6
yladiz 4 ago 3 replies      
It may just be a paranoid delusion, but I'm worried that Babel is trying to become a more encompassing build tool ala Grunt/Gulp instead of just transpiling. I love Babel and plan to continue to use it in the future for my front-end development, but the "doing it all ourselves" is a little bit much.

I would much rather see a recommendation and efforts around Uglify than a brand new minimization tool, and I would rather see work on acorn[1] rather than around a new parser[2], because these things fragment the community rather than bring them together.

Edit: Yes, Uglify has taken a long time to get work done on ES2015, but note that the spec has changed a lot over that time. It does feel like they are dragging their feet or not getting much done in that front, but all the more reason to put one of the Babel devs who may have more free time on the project to get more things going.

1: https://github.com/marijnh/acorn

2: https://github.com/babel/babylon

okket 4 ago 0 replies      
There is currently a discussion going on about changing the name back to babel-minify (you can vote)


anotherthing 3 ago 3 replies      
Competition is great. The more minifiers the better.

At a usability level, babili has a 33M install footprint and must be installed locally in the directory in which you intend to use it.

uglify-js can be installed globally and has a 1.9M install size.

And I've never understood how to configure babel's preset and plugin files. Why is it necessary for a minifier to do this? Surely this can be greatly simplified.

killercup 2 ago 0 replies      
Interesting, but the only 'Pro' I can actually see here is ES6 support when you were previously using uglify. I think using Closure Compiler on TypeScript output with the right JSDoc comments can yield much better results as there is much more information the minifier can work with.
k__ 4 ago 1 reply      
Can this yield smaller bundles?
anonymousguy 3 ago 1 reply      
You don't need Babel or a build process to minify ES6. Pretty Diff has supported this for years http://prettydiff.com/?m=minify
Google+ Redesigned plus.google.com
138 points by uptown  8 ago   188 comments top 38
AStellersSeaCow 3 ago 2 replies      
There was this super weird club in my high school who went out to hospitals and gave long-term patients (mostly vegetables who were on indefinite life support) ghoulishly gaudy makeovers. They seemed to have no motivation in doing this "community service" beyond their own weird self-satisfaction. Didn't really seem worth challenging them over the utility/sanity of their efforts, but damned if anyone thought it was a good use of their time.

Anyhow, what's this thread about?

ChuckMcM 7 ago 9 replies      
And now we have come full circle. The new Google+ looks like crap in my web browser because literally over 50% of the page is useless grey pixels.

The reason is that the page design assumes its on a mobile phone which its somewhat unique tall portrait orientation. And sure enough, looking at the page on my phone it looks a bit flat but it works well.

So now we are in a place in the web where browser users get the crappy UX experience because someone spent all their time focused on the other community and really didn't bother to make their pages responsive to both.

cromwellian 1 ago 0 replies      
Lots of posts in this thread are trying to find a "reason" for why G+ isn't beating FB. I think they're overlooking the obvious: Good Enuf + Path Dependency = Inertia. Simply put, the most amazing social network the world has ever seen, that executed perfectly on every front, is not going to suddenly displace FB. It's like asking why no one disrupted Windows pre-Web/pre-Mobile. Was it because alternative operating systems sucked?

IMHO, the big chance anyone had to disrupt FB was a paradigm shift away from social news feeds. That paradigm shift arrived with photo sharing and messaging on mobile, where increasingly people were just sharing pictures and text messages privately. However, Zuckerberg saw that one coming and acquired Instagram and WhatsApp to head off any disruption.

That shouldn't stop people from trying to innovate. But we should not regard being smaller than the leader as a failure. I use G+, Twitter, and FB, but I have the best conversations on G+. Twitter discussions are an exercise in frustration, and I find the signal/noise on FB to be worse.

There's a benefit sometimes to having a smaller audience.

awesomerobot 8 ago 7 replies      
What's it like to work on the Google+ team? are they all kind of blindly into it, or is there any sort of "yeah yeah, we know" there? I guess it's an exciting challenge maybe?
probably_wrong 6 ago 5 replies      
I wish Google had stuck to their guns, called Google+ a social network, and earned users over time.

Instead, they decided that 2nd place was not enough, said "just kidding, it was actually an identity service, no, wait, a content discovery platform, yes!", and turned into... whatever it is they are doing today.

They could have been the Facebook that is not Facebook, or in Randall Munroe's words, "all I really wanted"[1]. Too bad.

[1] https://www.xkcd.com/918/

whatever_dude 2 ago 2 replies      
"Redesigned", and yet, this is what I see on my desktop:


Seems like an awful waste of space.

makecheck 1 ago 0 replies      
Hmmmmtheyve changed something so that if I log into Google+ in one tab, I must remain logged into Google in all other tabs. If not, when returning to the Google+ tab, it does the obnoxious Facebook thing of You must log in to continue.. And its not like I logged out of Google+; I logged out of some completely unrelated Google page (or at least, it sure should have been unrelated).

I want my context to be preserved in the tab that Im in. I didnt log out of Google+ so I should be logged-in still.

These are the basics. Before they Material-Design-the-hell-out-of everything, maybe they should create a foundation that works properly.

Queue29 7 ago 8 replies      
This looks absolutely horrible on a 4k monitor http://i.imgur.com/jSlw0St.png
znpy 8 ago 2 replies      
Google+ shows "hot on google+ right now", and it's basically stuff that has gone very famous in south korea but makes no sense to me. And it comes from a guy (i think, because the name is written in hangul characters) that I am NOT following.

I am writing some feedback hoping that some googler will read this and improve something..

HelloNurse 5 ago 0 replies      
I enabled two-column mode and I keep the menu open for company, so my screen is "only" about 1/3 to 1/4 empty and wasted. But this is the best case: if I click the post age (obvious...) I can switch to a single-post page. More exactly, I can make everything else disappear; on my 1600x900 screen the width of the post DIV increases from 475 to 530 pixels and text and comments are generously expanded.

But there's more! If I click inside the search bar, i get a 2 seconds pause to load "featured collections", "featured communities", "Suggested People & Pages" and "Suggested Posts" REPLACING THE PAGE I'M ON because Google clearly knows better.

dleslie 8 ago 4 replies      
Fullscreen on my 16x9 display wastes the clear majority of screen space. Is having a single, centered column considered superior to alternatives?
Rygu 7 ago 1 reply      
The goo.gl short URLs in (parentheses) are really annoying. They totally hide the content behind the links.
kin 7 ago 0 replies      
Home is like my Facebook feed, except with even less of my friends and even more ads (only because I follow companies).

Collections is like following random Pinterest boards created by other people. I don't know about others, but I like to follow official things, or things that have the most followers but none of that info seems to be surfaced. Featured really means nothing to me. Is it hand-picked? Randomly generated featured? Are they paid to be featured?

Communities are cool but it's really hard nowadays to beat the communities in subreddits. Anonymous users seem to give a lot more to the community in an unselfish manner vs. Google+ users seem to post in communities in a self-promoting manner. This could just be anecdotal and my subjective viewpoint but that's what I see.

I honestly don't know how Google can do social, but I'm glad they're trying different things. Hopefully they try something new.

Random thought: I find Slack very similar to Google Wave.

jeffehobbs 2 ago 0 replies      
LOL at all the janky looking shortened links (http://goo.gl/this) scattered throughout (http://goo.gl/that) the announcement. If theyre looking for a place to improve (http://goo.gl/othrthng), thats maybe a place to consider?
katpas 8 ago 9 replies      
I've always wondered why Google+ did so badly. I love google apps for everything but social. Seems like a missed opportunity to make something that moves away from Facebook as the norm.
nilved 7 ago 1 reply      
I'm disappointed to see that Google is still pushing +. I almost left the platform when they tried to jam it down my throat last time, and it seemed as though they'd come to their senses and shuttered that misguided project. I'm genuinely surprised to see that people are still working on it.
chrsstrm 38 ago 0 replies      
If anyone from Google is listening, this is probably a better place to vent than submitting a support ticket. I don't care what it looks like, +'s functionality has been broken for me for almost a year and it has killed how my entire family uses it. I went through great pains to teach my family to not send photos and videos over email. We all had Gmail accounts and we all used the Google Photos camera sync so it seemed like a great idea to teach them to share content within a Circle in +. It worked great for a while until out of nowhere I could no longer see any of my sister's posts. I went through both her and my account many times looking for permissions issues or errant blocks and found nothing. I submitted multiple support issues from both her account and mine and nothing. (And on a side note, I like the support feature that allows you to screenshot and annotate the issue you are having, but 90% of all issues I have in + are inside a modal window, which cannot be screenshot. You literally cannot report issues that happen inside a modal window, WTF?). My sister generated the majority of the content my family Circle consumed and now that she can't be seen, our entire usage of + has all but stopped. People have reverted back to emailing photos and videos and we're right back where we started...

I don't care what it looks like, if it doesn't work, I won't use it.

I also used the Hangouts on Air feature extensively and never understood why it had to be originated in + and why you _had_ to invite people. The best use case for this tool was to do screen recording that was automatically imported into YouTube but getting the right combination of + account and YouTube account and making sure you were authorized to use Hangouts on Air with YouTube was incredibly frustrating. Hopefully the new flow using YouTube Live will allow going on-air without forcing you to invite an audience.

And while I'm at it - suggesting people join Communities but hiding the fact that there are sub-topics in these communities was a huge dark pattern I hated. I joined the Linux community thinking I would see some interesting packages or hacks or discussions and all I found was perpetual posting of Wind0w$ is teh Suck memes and obvious spam. The _majority_ of my interactions on + was marking posts as spam and blocking users hoping content would improve, and it never did. It wasn't until much later that I figured out I could unsubscribe from sub-topics, if I could only find where they were listed.

runn1ng 6 ago 0 replies      
I literally cannot scroll the post itself down. It's stuck no matter what I do, so I will forever see just the first half of the article.

I usually hate one-note comments about the web platform of the postings, but since this is a blogpost about Google Plus webdesign, hosted on Google Plus... I guess it's telling.

No, I will not start using it again.

balls187 1 ago 0 replies      
What the heck. This looks terrible in firefox.


millstone 5 ago 0 replies      
When I click on the Search field to type something, it loads a completely different page. Very unexpected and confusing.
appleflaxen 1 ago 0 replies      
It makes me so sad that products like picasa, sketchup, wave, and google labs projects like google sets got decomissioned, but google plus lives on.

Meanwhile, they are trying to make the guber car service.

It's hard to understand from the outside.

fiveoak 8 ago 2 replies      
It's too bad that Google+ never really caught on, but I'm not sure if redesigning it is enough to fix that.
jonobird1 2 ago 0 replies      
They'd be better off pivoting rather than wasting time on redesigning something no one wants. /end brutality
neximo64 7 ago 0 replies      
Odd to see Google using a brute force strategy for this. They kill off their wonderful products and keep the bogus ones.
newscracker 7 ago 1 reply      
Several years on and we still have to deal with the fact that we cannot have good names for our URLs ("vanity URL" or "custom URL" or whatever else you'd want to call it). Want to share your profile with others? Here's a Google+ link with a long string of digits at the end. Want to share your Google+ community's link with others? Here's another Google+ link with a long string of digits at the end. Want to share your Google+ page's link? Here's yet another Google+ link with a long string of digits at the end. Want to shorten these links? Use the built-in shortener and get a shortened-yet-gibberish-like-link. Want to simplify these links for sharing using meaningful names in the URL so people can actually remember it? Oh, then just use bit.ly (or another better URL shortener) and create a custom one with whatever name you like (assuming it's available on bit.ly)! How hard is it to provide custom URLs? Does it cost Google millions of dollars to do this? Does it make maintenance of Google+ a lot more expensive? Facebook provides custom names to be used in URLs for one's profile, for pages, and for groups (first come first served and all that, of course). On Google+ you can do this for your profile (?) after you meet some primitive pre-conditions.

For something that's supposedly social, I'm deeply disappointed with how Google+ has been developed (read neglected) over time. I like some aspects of G+ (like the layout, font, font sizes, etc.), but two things that are grating are the lack of custom URLs and the unintuitive navigation scheme (compared to Facebook). I still post to G+ once in a while (although, there's really no audience there) and look for improvements with the hope that I can start nudging people away from Facebook and get more traction on an alternative platform (another walled garden, but at least not as evil, IMO). It's sad, for me, that even long wait times don't show much for progress. If the strategy seemed convoluted while Vic Gundotra was managing it, his departure left the platform languishing as if it were a part time project.

Anyone from the Google+ team reading this - firstly, please bring in basic stuff to the platform that's important for people to share, and secondly, please copy Facebook shamelessly in whatever it's doing well for user experience.

Lastly, thanks a lot for (reverting to and) retaining the freedom of users to use pseudonyms on the platform!

leshow 5 ago 1 reply      
Why is it only using 20% of my screen? the vast majority of the page is a grey background
msl09 3 ago 0 replies      
Am I the only one that's afraid of getting emotionally invested on any Google product(or product update) because of the fear that shortly after Google will announce that will discontinue development of that service?

By the way, the new design looks great I just wished the performance could be better for Firefox.

[Edited for clarification]

pbarnes_1 3 ago 0 replies      
If anyone from Google+ is reading this:

Please allow me to remove shit from my 'recommendations'.

In between Android developer things which I like, I'm getting weird-ass pro-Trump BS that looks like Stormfront. I guess this stuff is all that's left on G+, but still. Not interested.

electic 5 ago 0 replies      
Mobile and web aside, the amount of dead space in each of these pages is absurd. A lot of the pixels on the screen are just white or grey. One would argue, this is one of the major drawbacks of material design.
balls187 1 ago 0 replies      
What the heck. This looks terrible in firefox.
slackoverflower 3 ago 0 replies      
The Apps for Work integration is going to be interesting. Google should just clone Slack and make Slack Plus tier features free on their service. That would literally steal thousands of communities and companies.
wickedlogic 3 ago 0 replies      
/me loads page in full browser tab, notices google still limiting single column width to less than 1/4 of my screen, closed page. Still missing the basics.
wazoox 4 ago 0 replies      
The only social network I'm using is Google+. As long as the new version doesn't allow me to have 3 columns display on my PC, I'll stick with the old version.
ElijahLynn 4 ago 0 replies      
As a daily user of G+, this is great news! I am so tired of micromanaging characters on Twitter. I just want to express an idea sometimes without using extra CPU cycles. I only have so many of those available each day and I don't want to use them on Twitter.

It just needs more users. It is great to follow developers on.

Here is a seed list of active G+ users that may be relevant to you (remember how empty it was when you first signed up for Twitter? You had to follow some seed people...):

https://plus.google.com/+ElijahLynn (Elijah Lynn, myself, web developer)https://plus.google.com/110558071969009568835 (Koushik Dutta, Android dev)https://plus.google.com/+JonoBaconProfile (Jono Bacon, former community manager for Ubuntu)https://plus.google.com/+ChrisWeber (web developer)https://plus.google.com/110043970153071176315 (Chad McCullough, Linux/BSD guy)https://plus.google.com/+UrsHlzle (Sr. VP of Tech Infrastructure @ Google)https://plus.google.com/+DerekRoss (Phandroid)https://plus.google.com/+KirillGrouchnikov (User interface engineer on the Android project at Google)https://plus.google.com/+LukeWroblewski (Author of Mobile First, Product Director @ Google)https://plus.google.com/+BensonLeung (USB cable guy, Google)https://plus.google.com/+DaedTech (Software Engineer, Writer)https://plus.google.com/+IlyaGrigorik (Performance Engineer at Google)https://plus.google.com/+DanielleBuckley (G+ Team at Google)https://plus.google.com/+ChetHaase (Sr. Software Engineer at Google)https://plus.google.com/+GoogleChromeDevelopershttps://plus.google.com/+googlehttps://plus.google.com/+GoogleMapshttps://plus.google.com/+JonathanZacsh (Software Engineer)https://plus.google.com/+AddyOsmani (Engineer at Google)https://plus.google.com/+DonnaPeplinskie (Front end developer)https://plus.google.com/+NityaNarasimhan (Engineer, Consultant)https://plus.google.com/+IanHickson (author and maintainer of the Acid2 and Acid3 tests, Google)https://plus.google.com/+JeffreyZeldman (A List Apart)

Not active but still:https://plus.google.com/+LarryPagehttps://plus.google.com/+SergeyBrinhttps://plus.google.com/+EricSchmidt (former CEO at Google)https://plus.google.com/+SundarPichai (CEO at Google)

Raphmedia 6 ago 0 replies      
My main issue with G+ is that every time I get back on it (few time a year) the layout is so different that I get tired and leave after scratching the surface...
iza 3 ago 0 replies      
At least the navigation is sane now which is a huge improvement.
hackuser 7 ago 1 reply      
To use it, do I still need to share my real identity with Google? With the world? If so, is that just policy or is it enforced somehow?
XzetaU8 8 ago 1 reply      
"Rearranging the deck chairs on the Titanic" was never more apt than now.
Startup accused of scamming employees scrubs its online presence techcrunch.com
43 points by smb06  1 ago   7 comments top 6
cyberferret 1 ago 0 replies      
As much as I dislike 'trial by the internet & social media', in this case there seemed to be a long enough trail and corroborating evidence from others that outing the CEO involved was a necessary public service to the community.

He seems to be a serial abuser of his team and stakeholders, and the forging of payment receipts was just downright criminal. I hope there is enough evidence now for criminal action to be brought against him, and he is prevented from ever trying to run a company again in the foreseeable future.

danso 38 ago 0 replies      
Maybe I'm naive but I was struck at how empty this company's mission and vision was (nevermind its ethics, which were well-covered in the original Medium post), and yet the founder and his friend/CTO put in so much of their own money into it. Were they complete greedy fools, or is VC money that easy to glom on to? WrkRiot didn't even have a "soon-to-be parodied by Silicon Valley HBO", TEDdy nonsensical ring to it, e.g. "its like Airbnb, but for your 401K". It was just a straight up dull and stupid "Yeah, we're gonna beat Linkedin" pitch, just as if someone were to throw $1M of their money behind the claim "We'll take on Google by using advanced AI machine learning!"

According to their Crunchbase [0] (which could obviously be incomplete), there's no institutional investors listed in their initial or seed round. I mean it's one thing to waste other people's money on a dumb idea, but this seems masochistic.

[0] https://www.crunchbase.com/organization/1for-one#/entity

edit: Another befuddling thing besides the enormous headcount was the fact that the original whistleblower was brought in from Dallas and offered equity and a $135K salary and a signing bonus. That seems like a huge chunk of money for a marketing executive at a small tech startup. Again, ignoring the reality that he couldn't really afford her, what did the CEO imagine would be investors' reaction to such a pricey hire?

CM30 39 ago 0 replies      
This seems to happen a lot with companies and individuals caught doing dodgy stuff. Not sure why though, they do realise the internet doesn't just 'forget' about things, right? That the Streisand Effect will mean this information will be screenshotted and archived everywhere and that they won't be able to fool anyone else like this?

Or that it pretty much 'confirms' their guilt for a lot of people?

But yeah, not surprising this has happened already.

jmspring 37 ago 0 replies      
Honestly, one's record does eventually catch up with one. This is going to last for this individual for awhile (if not forever)...

I've encountered people who reported title inflation on their LinkedIn page, oversold what they did, and when starting their own venture, due diligence pointed out severe faults the individual papered over.

Good or bad, things will catch up with you eventually.

coldcode 1 ago 0 replies      
I doubt they can succeed given its on HN.
Born to Rest harvardmagazine.com
113 points by paulpauper  8 ago   119 comments top 18
helloworld 5 ago 6 replies      
Harvard "needs to reopen a discussion abouta physical-education requirement."

It's been said that "love is a better master than duty," and requiring college students to take a physical education course sounds like a duty.

If you want people to exercise without coercion for the rest of their lives, I think you have to tap into intrinsic motivation, i.e., the unique things that get you excited. Depending on your personality and life experience, that might be novelty, socializing, recognition, or competition.

Forcing college students to exercise will backfire, leading many of them to stop as soon as the course is over.

pnathan 23 ago 0 replies      

This thread is a good argument that many people don't choose effective health without coercion.

It's probably a good idea for public health for the government to sponsor to the point of "effectively free" adult sports such as running/soccer/swimming, along with requiring such each semester for state-sponsored schools.

It's probably past time for me to put on my running gear and take regular evening jogs, myself. :-)

justinator 6 ago 4 replies      
Is there actually any evidence that ancient hunter gatherer groups didn't do what we now call "exercise" on a voluntary basis? Some ideas come to mind: dancing, walkabouts, spirit quests, right of passage rituals, ?ancient forms of martial arts? I am compelled to believe that early man did things merely to do them, including exercise.
Jtsummers 7 ago 2 replies      
I'm a fan of bringing back physical education. It seems that more of my younger colleagues (~23-30 y.o.) are trying to be physically active/fit. But exercise is a habit. If you don't build it up when you're young, it can be hard to develop it later. And then there's the physical challenges of returning to a physically active life after years or decades of inactivity. Certain injuries are more likely (like back, knee, tendon injuries) which can be debilitating, leading to months of recovery and more sedentary behavior.

And schools can always give several options to accommodate different interests and capabilities.

rubidium 7 ago 3 replies      
Modern solution to campus exercise requirement: Put the dining hall 1 mile away from the dorms.
Fifer82 5 ago 3 replies      
Let me die in peace. For some reason, it is always assumed that everyone wants to live as long as possible. If you don't have a cola each day, you can dribble into a towel for another 3 years when you are older.... No thanks, Ill take the coke. put it on the reapers tab.
Floegipoky 4 ago 1 reply      
I was very frustrated by PE. At my college, you could take a class about making maple syrup for a wellness credit. It's a joke. But how many people can brace correctly, or squat, deadlift, and press with proper form? These are archetypal movement patterns that we repeat 100s of times a day without thinking about it, and most people don't even know what they're supposed to look like. How many people know how to use a foam roller? How to read a nutrition label? Forget about trying to impart healthy habits, most people don't know what healthy habits are and wellness classes, whether they're making maple syrup or playing soccer for 2 hours a week, aren't going to fix that.
BasLeijdekkers 7 ago 7 replies      
If we have always been lazy, why is there now an obesity epidemic? It seems to me that means the cause of obesity lies elsewhere.
Ganz7 7 ago 0 replies      
Delightful cause behind muscle atrophy. Annoys me on a daily basis because I have to keep working out to maintain my shape, but makes so much sense once you see why it is the way it is.
sliverstorm 7 ago 0 replies      
I've noticed that, at least in photos & videos, it seems cheetahs are exclusively either sprinting at 75mph, or lounging on the ground like a housecat.

It certainly makes sense for them, considering how much energy they expend to run that fast. So perhaps there's precedent.

themartorana 7 ago 4 replies      
"But humans also evolved with a very large stick: if you didnt exercise, you had nothing to eat. Exercise was mandatory. For many humans today, he points out, there are very few incentives and no penalties."

Not entirely true - in fact further down in the article:

"Furthermore, says HUHS director Paul Barreira, the same surveys show that students own sense of health and well-being tracks the amount of exercise they report getting. Those with the most depression and anxiety also get the least exercise. The happiest students get the most."

So the penalties include depression, anxiety, and in future, propensity for heart disease, diabetes, hypertension, etc., etc. So either we haven't evolved enough to consider the penalty of dying young and having a more miserable existence while alive, or is it just that evolution optimizes to the point of reproduction and then doesn't care about much after successfully handing down genes to the next generation?

(Edit: I might also ask, without putting forth a theory or guess, what statistics say about obesity and likelihood of reproduction? If health is poorer than non-obese humans, is there a lesser chance of successful reproduction? If so, shouldn't that be considered the ultimate penalty?)

revelation 2 ago 0 replies      
That debate is already extremely toxic due to the diet craze nutjobs, it really doesn't need any of the unscientific hunter-gatherer lore that extrapolate bits of data to romantic premedieval fantasy novels.
ars 6 ago 0 replies      
This explains why I am unable to bring myself to exercise without getting exhausted instantly.

But if I need to do something like fix a car, build something, whatever, I'll work myself to utter exhaustion and not even notice.

jessaustin 4 ago 0 replies      
It is odd for a piece like TFA to fail completely to mention the role of internal combustion engines. Harvard has many shuttle buses, which might make sense when the snow is deep but seem actively harmful while serious consideration is being given to a phys ed requirement. A less coercive and cheaper solution might be to scale back the shuttle buses and introduce some sort of bike-sharing scheme. They could make uphill rides like Mather to the Yard free, and charge a nominal fee on the fun downhill rides. (Otherwise all shared bikes would end up in the river forever.) I guess they'd want to subsidize both directions for those poor souls stuck in the Quad.

[EDIT:] It occurs to me that this is the sort of amenity that would be basically free for Harvard to provide. Because it would be a highly visible part of students' lives, hordes of donors will line up to sponsor individual bikes (with donor nameplates), pay stations (likewise), named chairs for bike mechanics, or even the whole program.

guard-of-terra 3 ago 1 reply      
Can we just turn off those "lazy/slacking" mechanisms on genome/cell level? A pill will be nice.

Make your organism always maintain optimal muscles and circulation system while burning a lot of calories? Seems like a win/win to me.

Some people are strong and healthy without excersice, I think we are all entitled to same package?

I had PE in University (and before that school), hated it and now I'm turned off from any excercise.

wahsd 7 ago 0 replies      
Quite interesting that Harvard Magazine would publish something like that. Doesn't that pretty much imply that Harvard is unnatural and abnormal
elliotec 7 ago 0 replies      
No shit.
mhurron 7 ago 0 replies      
It's been pretty normal for me.
AWS S3 open source alternative written in Go minio.io
287 points by krishnasrinivas  7 ago   93 comments top 18
Ixiaus 5 ago 5 replies      
Or, run Riak with their S3 compatibility layer. Riak is extremely stable and the work Basho has done to make a truly robust distributed database is significant.


andrewchambers 23 ago 1 reply      
I love the website. I'm a lone developer who doesn't know any HTML, how would I go about getting such a nice design for my own projects? (Or how much would it cost)
davidu 5 ago 2 replies      
Theory here is that people will build apps that talk to S3. But sometimes those apps might need to run inside the perimeter and can't talk to the cloud. So rather than rewrite an app to talk to a new internal datastore, you just point it at a locally hosted Minio and you're up and running.


bjoerns 5 ago 1 reply      
After evaluating a couple of options mentioned in the other comments here, we recently replaced our in-house built s3 clone with minio for our on-prem version of our app. Very robust and stable.
krishnasrinivas 4 ago 1 reply      
Minio will always be 100% free software / open source. We have no plans to add any proprietary extensions or hold back on features for paying customers only. -- Minio Team
fizzbatter 6 ago 3 replies      
Does this have the ability to mirror to an encrypted remote? I'm looking for something like this for a simple home storage server, but emphasis on being able to replicate to something like B2 Storage for cheap backup.

Currently Infinit.sh has my attention the most, but it's quite young still.

edit: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12125344 this thread seems to be talking about what i want. With that said, i'm not yet sure if `mc mirror` supports Backblaze, as that (per price point) is my prime need

cdnsteve 6 ago 3 replies      
Practical use case:

- Spin up a bunch of droplets on DigitalOcean, because I want reliability, etc.

- What's the best way to share drive space across these to create a single Minio storage volume, so if one DO node goes away I don't lose my stuff?

Keyframe 7 ago 3 replies      
Sorry for two posts (the other one was unrelated). If anyone has experience with this I have a few questions regarding a particular use case.

How does something like this behave with really large files. Video files in 100s of gigabytes, for example. I'm asking because if one could set up a resilient online (online as in available) storage with fat pipes like this it could be used as a platform to build a centralized video hub for editing. It's another question how much sense would it make over a filesystem though.

bryanlarsen 6 ago 0 replies      
minio works awesome for dev & test deployments. It's dead simple to set up, just a single executable. Hopefully it doesn't lose that simplicity as it grows up and gains features.
muminoff 50 ago 0 replies      
Do you guys have plans with multi-tenancy feature?
nulagrithom 5 ago 1 reply      
Is this just meant to emulate S3 for the sake of dev/test environments? Without clustering/HA I don't really see the point of using this over the plain old file system. Or am I missing something?
scoopr 2 ago 0 replies      
So, I can use midnight commander as the client? ;)(half joking, half serious)
Keyframe 7 ago 1 reply      
Unrelated question. What's the point of fullscreen button on those term session players (or whatever they are) if it doesn't stretch the playback to fullscreen? You only get a same-sized screen with black around it. It's not even centered to the screen.
helper 5 ago 2 replies      
How easy is it to embed this into go tests? Right now I use goamz/s3test for that, but it has a lot of limitations.
frugalmail 7 ago 5 replies      
The canonical open source alternative to S3 https://wiki.openstack.org/wiki/Swift
LoSboccacc 4 ago 0 replies      
couldn't find at a glance wheter it has the same read after write issue of s3, or in general what the consistency is.

also, failure and backup modes.

anonymous7777 4 ago 1 reply      
ok tired of people bragging about "Go". It underperforms than many GC based languages that are out there.
Facebook recommended that a psychiatrists patients friend each other fusion.net
255 points by deep_attention  13 ago   168 comments top 28
grandalf 2 ago 4 replies      
This is one of the many dark patterns that Facebook uses. It simply does not respect any boundaries the user might wish to have in place...

Install it on your phone? Anyone you have in your phone's address book gets to see your picture under "people you may know".

Someone in your family joins Facebook and friends you? Now everyone you are friends with gets prompted about whether or not they know your family member.

Want to delete some pictures you uploaded to Facebook? It's extremely difficult and they must be deleted one by one.

Other than LinkedIn, I'd say FB is the prime innovator of UI dark patterns that exploit users' unwitting behavior for profit.

The youngest generation of internet users gets this which is why they largely do not use Facebook. Soon they will realize that IG and Whatsapp are connected, and will avoid those too.

What's interesting to me is that the recommendations are fundamentally not useful. It's easy to look someone up by searching for their name without the privacy-invading helpful suggestions.

malz 0 ago 0 replies      
Ironically, before it lets me read this story the site pops up a "LIKE US ON FACEBOOK!" prompt.
huehehue 3 ago 3 replies      
So, I deactivated my account maybe 6 months ago, and uninstalled the app long ago. Since then, I moved halfway across the country and, using a brand new laptop, a fake name and number, and a throwaway email address, created another profile so I could use their API.

People You May Know still had old high school friends, my old real estate broker (??), and someone I starred on GitHub. I have absolutely no idea how they connected that account to my old one, considering Google Mail is the only other service I've used on that laptop.

thr0waway1239 11 ago 5 replies      
TLDR#1: The investigation still didn't reveal exactly how this happened.

TLDR#2: The recommendation to "prevent" these issues on the individuals side is, "Lisas medical community has started recommending that patients concerned about privacy not log into Facebook or other social media accounts at medical offices, or even leave their phones in their cars during appointments. "

This is about as practical as recommending people just figure out how to fly and occasionally levitate into the upper atmosphere to go out of the cell tower's range, move a few kilometers west, and then fly back down to earth to scramble all these tracking algorithms.

dunkelheit 11 ago 4 replies      
The phonebook hypothesis seems most plausible to me (especially considering that WhatsApp is owned by facebook). All those apps gaining access to a phonebook is a privacy disaster.
tacostakohashi 3 ago 2 replies      
Amazed that this 'feature' hasn't been killed yet. At this stage of Facebook's maturity, everybody finished adding their real friends about five years ago, and suggesting non-friends with tenuous connections to the user serves only to remind everyone what a privacy disaster Facebook is and generate bad press.
wtbob 10 ago 2 replies      
Note that everyone's favourite privacy-respecting app (mine too!), Signal, also does contacts-sharing, although it doesn't do friends discovery (so the server knows one's contacts, but one's contacts don't). If Open Whisper Systems wanted to be evil, though, they could do this form of analysis.

Back in March I laid out how they could use a private set intersection protocol to enable any pair of users to privately share their contacts: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=11289223 (I'm not posting this to shame them or something: March wasn't that long ago for developing a feature like this, and of course it's open source; I could develop it myself and submit it to them).

I think it's something they care about; they've just not found a solution they're comfortable with yet.

dcw303 56 ago 0 replies      
The funny thing is that this would be very easy for Facebook to fix - just a line of text under each friend request explaining the suggestion:

 * "You're both friends of Duffman McPartyDude" * "We found Psycho Ex Boss's phone number in your contacts" * "Location Services confirms you were both frequenting a dubious drinking establishment at 4am three Saturdays ago"
Would they do it though? Of course not. It would scare the hell out of their users if they knew how this algo actually worked.

tptacek 3 ago 0 replies      
This is a real problem. My sister is a legal clinic domestic violence attorney, and apparently there are concerns about DV clients unwittingly friending their legal clinic advisors, not realizing that by doing so they're outing themselves to their abusive partners.
woliveirajr 6 ago 1 reply      
> Facebook and the other companies in the Facebook family also may use information from us to improve your experiences within their services such as making product suggestions (for example, of friends or connections, or of interesting content) and showing relevant offers and ads.[whatsaap privacy policy]

Many possibilities here:

1 - whatsapp connection with messages exchanged

2 - contact list loaded by whatsapp

3 - psychiatrist secretary number in whatsapp

4 - friends in common

5 - places in common

0xmohit 6 ago 0 replies      
WhatsApp (now) shares data with Facebook. Now imagine if Facebook, Google, LinkedIn were also to share data with each other.

Imagine the possibilities [0]. What a wonderful world!

[0] If this were to come true, then the word "possibilities" would be replaced by "synergies" :)

throwanem 12 ago 3 replies      
"If you have something that you don't want anyone to know, maybe you shouldn't be doing it in the first place."

Granted, that's Schmidt, rather than Zuckerberg. The attitude seems to be the same, though.

watmough 3 ago 2 replies      
"People You May Know is based on a variety of factors, including mutual friends, work and education information, networks youre part of, contacts youve imported and many other factors, said the spokesperson by email. Without additional information from the people involved, were not able to explain why one person was recommended as a friend to another."

Facebook is full of shit. Of course they are using locations, why else would I get suggestion to friend the guy that cuts my Mother in Law's yard - he stops by for a check from my wife.

webosdude 6 ago 1 reply      
I think it's also quite likely that the psychiatrist's patients are searching for her profile just to checkout how's her personal life on FB which might give FB some clue as these people might know each other hence a friend suggestion. I do that sometimes to see some of my not-so-close friends.
kej 4 ago 1 reply      
I wonder if there is an open WiFi access point in the vicinity. I noticed that I had several coworkers suggested as friends shortly after I connected my phone to the office WiFi.

It makes sense that people using the same access point or connecting to Facebook from the same external IP would likely know each other.

tapatio 1 ago 0 replies      
And that's one of the reasons I stopped using Facebook. Fuck'em.
justinlardinois 2 ago 0 replies      
I regularly have people show up on my "People You May Know" that have no mutual friends with me, and I don't know them so they certainly don't have my email address or phone number. Oftentimes it's people who went to the same university as me, so I wonder if they base it on friends of friends of friends and other less direct connections.
maxxxxx 4 ago 0 replies      
That's why I am getting more and more reluctant to share anything. It's starting to be impossible to predict how your data will be used and what is private and what isn't.
WhitneyLand 10 ago 1 reply      
There should be a way to turn off "Peole you may know". I actually hate this feature.
S_Daedalus 6 ago 1 reply      
But I'm still a paranoid lunatic because I don't want to smear my picture all over the web and give my every scrap of data away for the dubious benefits of Facebook or Twitter...
gjolund 2 ago 0 replies      
This happened to me after attending NA.

I got friend recommendations from FB for other members of the support group.

blackflame7000 3 ago 0 replies      
Facebook is probably using geo-location to determine if two people are in the same vicinity for extended periods of time over time.
iamben 9 ago 2 replies      
I assume the connector is the doctor - why doesn't she have a work phone with the patient's numbers that she doesn't use Facebook on? Then the chance of patients being connected to one another is dramatically lower.
ensignavenger 5 ago 1 reply      
She lives in a small town, she specializes in treating a small subset of that population. It is quite possible the patients were recommended as friends as coincidence, not having anything to do with her.
cbsmith 4 ago 0 replies      
LinkedIn has had similar issues. Not news.
amaks 4 ago 0 replies      
Sounds like a solid ground for a class action suite.
untilHellbanned 11 ago 3 replies      
> Without additional information from the people involved, were not able to explain why one person was recommended as a friend to another.

Such a terrible excuse. FB you only have one job! Fail.

phn 12 ago 1 reply      
Talk about blowing something simple out of proportion.

All these people have one friend in common with this person, maybe they know each other as well? Being a psychiatrist or whatever has nothing to do with it.

EDIT: I stand corrected. Not so simple regarding where they get the "potential friendship" data from. Diagonal reading mistake on my part.

Former Sequoia partners: The Midwest is the future of startups venturebeat.com
116 points by vollmarj  9 ago   159 comments top 26
spo81rty 21 ago 0 replies      
My startup is in Kansas City. There are a lot of great developers here. Huge companies like Garmin, Cerner, Sprint and others do a good job of attracting a lot of talent from all over the US here out of college. Startups like mine can then hire them when they are ready for something new.

Cost of living here is low. Decent basic house is $150-200k in the burbs.

Awesome office space is cheap. Great tax incentives from KS and MO to start companies and create jobs.

I honestly would have no interest being in the valley trying to compete with the likes of Google, Facebook and others for top talent. In KC we can be the cool company everyone wants to work for!

We are Stackify, located in Leawood Kansas! :-)

le-mark 7 ago 5 replies      
I've been in the Kansas City developer market since 2002, and I can report that salaries for senior developers (java and .net) are going through the roof here. 110k to 120k is becoming common. At a very non coastal cost of living.It's a great time to be a developer in the midwest!
cableshaft 1 ago 0 replies      
I don't know. I live in Chicago, and while I do get recruiters representing Chicago firms pinging me on LinkedIn from time to time, the majority still seem to come from elsewhere. I also had a tough time finding my next job after I was laid off here, twice in the past three years.

I still love the area so I'm still sticking around for a bit longer, but I don't really see what this guy's seeing.

spitfire 7 ago 0 replies      
>what would we find when we looked in ....Pittsburgh (home of the leading computer science school in the world, Carnegie Mellon)

Wait, it was 2012 and the venture capitalists were /just then/ figuring out it would be a good idea to be close to the "best computer science school in the world"?

Not that I had any respect for VC's before, but my opinion just dropped even more.

> ... entrepreneurs are building more billion-dollar companies in the Midwest than in the last 50 years combined.

Yes it's called currency devaluation combined with ZIRP.

I do wonder if they'll write such a flowery article when entrepreneurs discover that their odds of success actually go UP if they pass on VC altogether.

pklausler 7 ago 3 replies      
Some of us are old enough to remember when the midwest (or more precisely, the Twin Cities area) was the nation's center for high-performance computing businesses. ERA, Univac, Honeywell, Control Data, Cray Research, ETA -- there was something in the water up there that laid a lot of groundwork for modern computing but is mostly now all forgotten.
sharemywin 8 ago 1 reply      
Columbus, OH is a big food test market. Why because it's got a large cross section of "middle america". If you can make something work here you can probably make it work anywhere. I think if more on demand companies were started here they could have adapted and/or blown up a lot faster. If you want a niche that caters to rich people go to NY and/or CA. If you want something the "average" american will buy try selling it here.
bryanh 7 ago 1 reply      
I definitely think there will be a gentle trend of tech moving away from Silicon Valley - perhaps not by people/organizations "leaving SV" - instead, people/organizations not "moving to SV". The center of mass will just disperse a bit even if the absolute numbers in SV remain more or less constant.

We've been building a 100% remote startup since late 2011 - it begun in the midwest (Missouri) and it has worked extremely well. We don't even have a location at this point and can't imagine a situation in which we'd elect to.

mark_l_watson 5 ago 3 replies      
Could they add Arizona to the list of good places for tech business, please :-)

Life is inexpensive and good in Arizona and occasional flights to Silicon Valley are short and affordable. I spent my life in California until we moved to Arizona 18 years ago. Benefits of Arizona: very friendly people (try chatting with people in California when you are in a grocery store check out line, at the gas pumps, etc. - a culture of unfriendliness), low population density, very affordable housing, clean air and nice climate (at least where I am in the mountains), our state government is not as badly in debt as California, etc.

bluetwo 6 ago 2 replies      
I am a software developer outside Philadelphia. I love what I do but I've never considered Silicon Valley as a place I would want to live.

I know many talented software developers and know multiple VCs in the area. This is a hub for top-noch universities, a hub for every major pharmaceutical company, most major financial firms have a large presence here, including the largest mutual fund company. Plus, it is a short trip to New York (media/Wall Street), and DC (government and military), which brings lots of subcontracting projects.

In short, there is a ton of opportunity, talent, and money.

b_emery 7 ago 3 replies      
Silicon Valley is, and will continue to be, to tech, what New York is to finance. Which means all these other startups will be like regional banks. Good businesses, yes, but not a 'threat' to the big Silicon Valley companies and the tech ecosystem there.
toephu2 7 ago 10 replies      
The midwest is not the future of startups and will not overtake Silicon Valley in the next 15 years. Yes you can find talent in the midwest but do you think top CS grads from CMU, UIUC, Purdue, etc. want to stay in the midwest after graduating? Think about it.. 22 years old, fresh out of college, after living in the midwest for 4 years...most of them want to come to San Francisco / Silicon Valley, the tech center of the world. Also home of all the other famous tech companies they heard of / interned for before.

Nitpicks from the article:

"California is the eighth largest economy in the world. The Midwest is the fifth"

really? source on that? What states exactly does that entail?

"The Midwest receives 25 percent of all research dollars in America and graduates more computer science degrees than any other region or country on planet earth."


"home of the leading computer science school in the world, Carnegie Mellon"

Not one of the leading, but THE leading CS school. Even better than MIT? Better than Berkeley? Better than Caltech? I'm not saying any one of those is THE best, but I would argue they are all top-notch.

egypturnash 2 ago 0 replies      
> With a modest amount of effort, we met Duo Security, Farmlogs, Notion, Deepfield, and Llama Soft.

I wonder if Llama Soft ever feels bad about stealing the name of the still-extant British indy game house Llamasoft for much more boring purposes.

PaulHoule 8 ago 1 reply      
At this point in time the advantage of SV is not for the "angel" sized company, but for scale-up from the $1M to $1B range. (i.e. Y Combinator would not have a huge advantage in being there except for the fact that the next round of funding is available there)
s_baby 5 ago 0 replies      
Any reason why midwest and not southeast? The outskirts of Raleigh and Atlanta have the same cost of living benefits while having access to a large talent pool and being close to the coast line/major cities.
Hydraulix989 8 ago 5 replies      
Great article, except Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania is not midwest, it's East Coast. (I'm from Pittsburgh, born and raised)
robterrin 5 ago 0 replies      
Finance and technical people both underrate the power of tribalism, a major force in making any area a hub for a particular industry.
eikenberry 3 ago 1 reply      
I read somewhere that the one thing all the startup hubs had in common was that they were a desirable place to live. This does not seem to describe just about anywhere in the mid-west with its bad climate and shrinking cities.
ArkyBeagle 7 ago 3 replies      
They tried that in N. Texas in the '90s. I'd say it didn't work out. The crash there meant you probably had to leave.

Austin? I dunno if it's really a startup hub or not.

Lagged2Death 7 ago 2 replies      
"Did you know it was possible to outfit an open-plan office with Ikea desks -- in the midwest? TIL."

This reads like a parody until it inexplicably turns out not to be.

Columbus and Ann Arbor both have big, important universities smack in the middle of town, and the demographics and culture that go with that. If you were choosing the least-surprising towns outside of the Bay Area and NYC to find software startups in, those would pretty much have to be on your list.

joezydeco 7 ago 1 reply      
"Why werent top-tier VC firms spending time in Ann Arbor, Indianapolis, Minneapolis, Columbus, Chicago, Detroit, Kansas City, Pittsburgh, and St. Louis?"

Because you want to sleep close to your money.

"The answer, we concluded, had everything to do with timing. In the first few decades of the Internet, you had to be physically close to your technology. That technology, the talent that built it, and the ecosystem that maintained it was in Silicon Valley."

C'mon. You didn't need to be close to your technology. PCs and servers and backbones can be installed anywhere.

You wanted to sleep close to your money. But now you're willing to loosen the leash a little if it gives you more bang for the buck.

20yrs_no_equity 7 ago 1 reply      
This topic has been coming up on this site for the past decade. Every time it does there are a lot of people who say Silicon Valley will never be beaten. I call this way of thinking "California exceptionalism".

Put another way:

"Nobody will ever need more than 640k."

Since the days of Fairchild, the bay area has had an advantage in finance, and of course VCs who didn't want to invest in anyone more than a bike ride away. The level of attitude is really kinda astounding.

California was the golden state... but that was 50 years ago when it had a pro-business government and was disrupting the US industrial base, and attracting high tech talent and companies in the process. Now it is eating itself, drowning in debt and getting ever more desperate due to decades of bad government.

In our industry things have changed. The need for VCs is dramatically less. You don't need to build servers and software from scratch, you can rent servers in the cloud and build on open source foundations.

There are always going to be more smart people outside of SV than there are in it. And TBH, I don't think the SV startups have been really innovative for the past couple decades. It's like after the dotcom boom everything became an "app" (instead of a "dot com" eg website).

For example you aren't building Intels and Apples anymore. you're building Googles (Which might become an Apple, if one of its moonshots turns into a product, but it isn't yet, it hasn't weaned itself from search and search's days are numbered.) You're building facebooks and ubers and airbnbs. It may not look like if if you've not been thru a couple bubbles but those companies are more flash in the pan than solid. Facebook could be more properly called a fad.

The difference is they aren't really technology companies. Google invented page rank, but almost nothing fundamental since. Facebook hasn't invented anything really. It's just a popular content site. Uber and AirBnB are business models, not technology inventions. Of course they all require and depend on technology investment, but they are not based on technological innovations like Intel and Apple are. (And don't even get me started on Amazon which is really a combo of Walmart and U-haul-for-computers. They actively oppose innovation.)

And for some high tech industries, Silicon Valley is not the center. The disdain upon which californians look at bitcoin is a good example. It's kinda a "not invented here" syndrome.

It's like we're the internet, you're AOL at its peak. You rule the roost right now, but you don't get it.

sailfast 8 ago 1 reply      
This article is hilarious. "Did you know that there are smart people in this place called the Midwest that can also code and find product / market fit? Who knew!?"

The tone, though positive, is quite patronizing to midwestern ears. If you're not investing here, you're missing a huge opportunity.

dang 8 ago 1 reply      
We changed the baity title, happily in time to preempt the unproductive argument it probably would have led to. If someone can suggest a better (more accurate and neutral) title, we can change it again.
pithic 7 ago 2 replies      
A one-word rebuttal: weather
jaxomlotus 7 ago 1 reply      
Given a choice for investing in a new firm that is a 15 minute drive from the VC's office, and with tons of existing talent to recruit into the company, and with lots of other VC's in the area to fund future rounds VS a startup that might get a better bang for the buck on pricing because it's in the boondocks, and I don't think MORE startups will appear in the midwest than SV.
SSL/TLS and PKI History feistyduck.com
41 points by okket  4 ago   7 comments top 4
wbond 6 ago 0 replies      
Note: I cant claim to write anything even close to this timeline about PKI!

Many of these items seem correct to include in "A comprehensive history of the most important events that shaped the SSL/TLS and PKI ecosystem, however it feels very inconsistent in inclusion.

Dates are given when browser implement protocol support, but not OpenSSL, NSS, etc. (Actually, nothing positive is said about OpenSSL at all.) Also no mention of Nginx, Apache or IIS and their TLS/SPDY support/features?

Brian Smith is mentioned by name working on a Rust crypto library, but no mention of DJB when discussing ChaCha20-Poly1305? (Is Ring actually used by any major projects so far?)

niftich 4 ago 1 reply      
I know this timeline prefers primary sources and tries to avoid blog posts, but Cloudflare's blog post 'Staying on top of TLS attacks' [1] dated July 11, 2013, was a milestone.

It came in the wake of 'Lucky 13' and the demonstration of RC4 biases exploitable in TLS, and showed the awkward situation that existed at the time: essentially all supported ciphersuites were vulnerable to something, and no mainstream browser supported TLSv1.2 yet in which non-vulnerable ciphersuites were present.

Even if a reference isn't made to the blog post, the timeline should somehow reference the aforementioned ciphersuite conundrum.

[1] https://blog.cloudflare.com/staying-on-top-of-tls-attacks/

yuhong 20 ago 0 replies      
The history is incorrect in that it was Netscape 3 that introduced SSLv3 (I actually tested it in a VM).
niftich 4 ago 0 replies      
Please add the changes that resulted from Brian Smith's (of Mozilla) blog post 'Proposal to Change the Default TLS Ciphersuites Offered by Browsers' [1] -- the post dates to August 2013.

This was a very impactful proposal that changed the way browsers preferred ciphersuites. But it also removed some lesser-used ciphersuites based off of telemetry [2], including the block cipher Camellia, which was the only other modern block cipher in TLS after AES.

[1] https://briansmith.org/browser-ciphersuites-01

[2] https://bugzilla.mozilla.org/show_bug.cgi?id=1036765

Doc2text Detect text blocks and OCR poorly scanned PDFs in bulk github.com
119 points by jlsutherland  10 ago   17 comments top 6
onetwotree 2 ago 0 replies      
I worked on a PDF text extraction project once, with scientific articles as the primary target.

That stuff is really hard, even when the text is ostensibly present in the PDF (as opposed to the PDF being an image of text). Thing is, it's all just "draw text" commands in the content streams (basically postscript programs). The text commands appear in no particular order and you generally have to compute the layout to see even where the spaces are (which is still a guessing game, because the PDF generator will vary the space width to achieve a visually pleasing format).

OCR is an approach that wasn't quite ready for prime time back then, so it's cool to see people working on it!

placeybordeaux 18 ago 0 replies      
Some examples would be really informative as to how well it works.
redwards510 7 ago 2 replies      
Can you please explain what makes this utility different than other OCR solutions? I've seen quite a few coming out recently. What is the secret sauce that makes this more than just a frontend for tesseract?
ldenoue 5 ago 1 reply      
Also look at Ocropy from Tom Breuel who has a page segmenter that identifies columns.https://github.com/tmbdev/ocropy
zaphar 9 ago 2 replies      
This looks awesome. I've got a ghetto full text search indexer I've written that uses OCR as a fallback if it can't extract text from a pdf but as you say many times the quality is so bad it's a lost cause. I wonder if I can leverage this to improve the indexing.
cpr 8 ago 1 reply      
Pretty impressive leverage here: only a few dozen lines of code in total, using other OSS libraries.
Free as in Health Care tive.org
31 points by akkartik  5 ago   35 comments top 7
micahbright 2 ago 3 replies      
The entire argument here seems to hinge on the idea that government regulation makes it easier to show liability, thus making an industry safer.

I think this is totally off base. It assumes that safety innovation is only achieved via regulation, and cannot be achieved in any other way.

It never ceases to amaze me that people still think roads wouldn't be built without the government, or that they would be sub-par. People think that without government, the world would be in complete anarchy, when the only examples we have close to that show the opposite(http://www.independent.org/publications/tir/article.asp?a=80...).

legulere 3 ago 1 reply      
So basically this article makes a Kant-ian argument that we need rules to actually get freedom. I think that there's nothing wrong with that argument, but the whole story to make open source about freedom is not the right way at all. I think if you release source code for other people to use is more akin to a present you make for the whole society of the world, which may be able to advance itself with it. Presents shouldn't be bound to conditions. We certainly need rules for our societies, but they need to be part of the law, not part of some conditions of presents. That's why I release the stuff I write under public domain/CC0.
stcredzero 4 ago 3 replies      
I think the critical insight here is that Stallmans vision of software freedom dates to a time when software was contained. You could walk away from that PDP-11 and the choices you made there didnt follow you home in your pocket or give a world full of bored assholes an attack surface for your entire life.

How practical could it be to have laws against trolling? There are online groups who have rules against doxxing, who seem to be able to enforce them. I don't think it would unduly contravene free speech, if public spaces on the internet assumed consent to communication between individuals, with the option of individuals revoking consent. This would be analogous to what people do in public spaces. Then the act of creating a throwaway account on Twitter to continue harassment would be analogous to continue to harass someone in real life. There would be exceptions, but generally, this would be definable and enforceable. (And I would also say, it would be more constructive than picking a figurehead like Milo Yiannopoulos and banning him as a scapegoat. Even if enforcement could only catch a few people.)

natmaster 2 ago 0 replies      
The problem with the concept of additive rights, is that they require unequal application to a populace. You cannot have an additive right that everyone gets. For every addition there must be a subtraction. If you think you have 'right' to a private jet; someone has to make that jet - and you don't have to give them anything back. This is the logic of the thugs that use their threats to take the apple in your hand.

Sorry, you are not better than any other human.

ilaksh 3 ago 0 replies      
Security standards should be better but software is not like roads or cars. And thank the stars for that. Filling up books full of laws just freezes systems or makes it so you need to be a large company to participate.

If anything, roads and cars should be more like software. Which is not to say no laws. But the laws should not be so many volumes as to be unapproachable and prescriptive and there should be automated systems for testing and validation.This is certainly doable for software.

camtarn 1 ago 0 replies      
Can anyone enlighten me: why is the article called "Free as in Health Care", but the word 'health' is never again mentioned in the article? I feel like I'm missing something...
jbmorgado 4 ago 3 replies      
Seriously, this is the XXI century. You are free to put those awful colors in your website if you choose so, but those white letters on a black background just burned my retinas and stopped me from reading the full text.
Ruminations on D: An Interview with Walter Bright dlang.org
136 points by Halienja  10 ago   62 comments top 7
jordigh 9 ago 4 replies      

 We nailed it with arrays (Jan Kneppers idea), the basic template design, compile-time function execution (CTFE)
One of my favourite things about D is that it has a full compile-time D interpreter. You can do "template metaprogramming", so to speak, in the same language as D itself (it's probably a bit more fair to compare it to how lisp macros are "compile-time").

It's a bit sad that Rust is getting all of the attention in the spotlight, because D is a great, modern, safe language. If you've only heard about D 15 years ago and never tried it again, give it another look. The current D is really a new language, which was briefly called "D2" for a while.

Now, if Symantec could just fix the stupid licence of the reference compiler...


jbb555 9 ago 0 replies      
I took a look again at D this last couple of weeks and it was a way better language than I remembered.

It seems like a very solid language. You can write low level C like code if you really want to, but it defaults to safer, higher level code without losing much efficiency.

I'm going to try it out with some bigger projects.I have some issues. Windows support seems a little flakey but it's ertainly usable (the default dmd compiler works very well on windows but the code it makes isn't the best it could be, and ldc makes much higher quality code, but isn't quite stable on windows. (Although it's certainly looking good enough to use).

I think it's well worth a look. I like it a great deal more than Rust

Keyframe 8 ago 2 replies      
You were 42 when you started working on D and I guess it is the first language you designed? Talk about why you started working on it so late...

What kind of question is that? Anders Hejlsberg was what, 39 when he started working on C# and 52 with Typescript? It's the same as with screenplays. You start writing when you have experience.

tree_of_item 9 ago 3 replies      
I like a lot of things about D, but I don't like the fact that it seems stuck in the OOP fad from 15 or so years ago. Go and Rust have both abandoned this whole idea of making "classes" in favor of constructs like structs, enums, traits and interfaces. I wish D had gone this route as well, but other than that it seems like a nice language.
grundprinzip 9 ago 2 replies      
What I found interesting is that the two high profile projects mentioned in the post written in D are no longer maintained, which is kind of weird.
zokier 3 ago 1 reply      
Hows the Dlang GC these days? A year ago andralex stated that he was going to work on it[1], but I haven't heard of that since.

[1] https://www.reddit.com/r/programming/comments/2g03af/ds_garb...

vram22 8 ago 1 reply      
This video of a panel discussion at a conf was interesting to me:

Video: C++, Rust, D and Go: Panel at LangNext '14:


Key team members or inventors of those languages, speak.

Show HN: Poor man's Google Docs github.com
78 points by marco1  7 ago   61 comments top 11
nattaylor 51 ago 1 reply      
It doesn't take away from this, but because of the title: Google Docs started much like this, but eventually they gave up on plain HTML and changed to the current model which still uses the DOM but is "complicated"(tm) HTML.

I can't find the link at the moment, but I think it's interesting because despite it being the simple solution, they eventually realized it was holding back adoption amongst business users.

Edit: Found the article: "Babe Ruth and Feature Lists" [0] where former Google PDM Ken Norton writes:

>We were relying on the browsers rich text surface, which used HTML as the underlying data format and caused browser compatibility nightmares. Youd bold a word and then be unable to un-bold it. Bulleted lists couldnt be edited or deleted without screwing up the whole page or turning everything into a bullet. Centering a line would often center-align the entire document. Formatting bugs had been an annoyance for Googlers, but they were fatal for groups of students who needed to print a term paper to a teachers exacting specifications.

0 - https://library.gv.com/babe-ruth-and-feature-lists-1818bb8c6...

cwkoss 7 ago 5 replies      
Looks pretty good.

For an even-poorer-man's google docs, I like to keep this bookmarked:

 data:text/html, <html contenteditable>
If you navigate to that string in your browser it gives you a blank, editable page. No saving or any fancy features, but it is pretty convenient to be able to quickly spin up a scratch pad sometimes.

BinaryIdiot 7 ago 0 replies      
No JavaScript? Nice. Don't see too many functional pages without it. I don't know that I would call it a poor man's Google Docs due to the lack of equivalent features but good work nonetheless.
rtcoms 6 ago 2 replies      
markwaldron 4 ago 0 replies      
I'm a big fan of Papier for chrome. It doesn't save to your Google account so my notes on my home computer are different than my work computer, which is just how I like it: https://chrome.google.com/webstore/detail/papier/hhjeaokafpl...
kowdermeister 6 ago 1 reply      
It's possible to generate PDF client side. You might consider adding that feature.
bryanrasmussen 5 ago 0 replies      
I believe Google Docs is actually the poor man's Google Docs.
elwell 6 ago 1 reply      
Might be nice to add "outline: none;" to .page
vtempest 6 ago 1 reply      
This contributes nothing more than <div contenteditable> and to present this a document editor is counter-productive to users searching for something reliable. The link below shows the many shortcommings of just calling the contenteditable browser API as an emulator. For example, Google Docs does not use contenteditable at all -- for the many reasons outlined below. Building a real doc editor that functions as a widget in blogs and forums sites requires a lot more support -- of the open source alternatives, Medium is one of the best.

Why ContentEditable Is Terrible, Or: How the Medium Editor Works (2014) (medium.com)https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=11487667

kevinwang 6 ago 2 replies      
>No skeuomorphic paper

But isn't it skeumorphic to have pages based off of real paper sizes?

a_lifters_life 5 ago 0 replies      
Pretty cool - thanks!
       cached 31 August 2016 01:02:01 GMT