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The eye of hurricane Matthew passes directly over a weather buoy noaa.gov
48 points by matt2000  1 hour ago   19 comments top 8
gilgoomesh 21 minutes ago 4 replies      
That's a beautiful graph but NOAA's insistence on non-metric units frustrates me endlessly. Knots for speed are bad enough but "inches" for pressure is multiple levels of wrong.
dluan 7 minutes ago 0 replies      
If anyone wants to see where it is, the hurricane's moved further up north away from the buoy's location.


sathackr 2 minutes ago 0 replies      
Wonder why we don't see winds at the reported speeds(130mph+) in the data?

Maybe it's a limit of the measuring device?

isomorphic 8 minutes ago 0 replies      
One of the things I take away from this graph isn't just the peak wind speed, but the amount of time you'd be under hurricane-force winds.

A couple minutes of 90mph winds is one thing... hours of 90mph winds is entirely another thing.

sp527 18 minutes ago 0 replies      
It's biuriful tears up

And now back to our regularly scheduled React component.

avs733 20 minutes ago 0 replies      
I would be immensely curious to see the raw data given how the point spacing changes (assuming those aren't actual data measurements). The drop and recovery around the eye are so staggeringly smooth.
webkike 22 minutes ago 0 replies      
I love this graph
dandelany 23 minutes ago 1 reply      
Call me a cynic, but my first thought on looking at this was "we can't do any better than a datum per hour?!" Must be a bandwidth constraint.
Yahoo scanned customer emails for US intelligence trust.org
892 points by tshtf  10 hours ago   294 comments top 44
DubiousPusher 10 hours ago 16 replies      
I think the attitude here that most tech companies are rolling over and just complying without a single ethical consideration is misplaced.

The government has been doing an excellent job of basically extorting these companies into compliance. They threaten the full weight of the US government's wraith and then tie every order up with classifications and gag orders.

You aren't legally allowed to talk to other companies in the same position. Most your legal team probably doesn't get to know what's going on. You can't take your case to the public without being held in contempt.

I'm not giving these companies a complete pass for being complicit in the erosion of individual's civil liberties but treating this as if the decision is easy is vastly unfair.

cJ0th 7 hours ago 3 replies      
Anyone remembers this?

> Barack Obama: NSA is not rifling through ordinary people's emails. US president is confident intelligence services have 'struck appropriate balance', he tells journalists in Berlin

edit: link fixedhttps://www.theguardian.com/world/2013/jun/19/barack-obama-n...

rdl 9 hours ago 3 replies      
I was honestly a bit unhappy when Stamos left Yahoo in the middle of a bunch of (what seemed like) cool projects for users -- seemed like he was just jumping ship from an objectively pretty crappy company to a continuing-to-accelerate rocketship, presumably for career reasons.

However, if it went down like this -- he did probably the least destructive thing possible. I probably would have gone public or done something stupider, but at the very least not being a party to ongoing abuse of users' trust is necessary.

I'd like to see what other senior execs at Yahoo! were aware of the program and supported or at least tolerated it, so I can avoid ever working with any of them.

yladiz 8 hours ago 4 replies      
While it is damning that Mayer didn't go to Stamos about this and went straight to the email team, it's hard to say whether she felt it was necessary to tell him, or was even allowed to, since we don't see the court orders and what they entail. It's really easy to be against this and play armchair preacher but this is something she probably had no choice in, in many ways.

Also, I'm wondering if this story is bigger because people love to hate on Mayer. I am certain this kind of thing happened/happens at Facebook, Google, Twitter, WhatsApp, etc., so it's confusing why this is so newsworthy. It's not really newsworthy that data from an email provider is sent to NSA under secret court orders and NSA can search the full text of it. Is the newsworthy part that she asked the team to do it without consulting the security team? My question would be, why wouldn't a manager from the email team consult the security team if they had the power to?

kefka 10 hours ago 4 replies      
Lets take it a different way:

You're knowingly sending your data to a 3rd party. You're not encrypting. It's not through the USPS (special protections).

It seems bloody evident that, of course, your email provider can read your emails! Unless you're encrypting with GPG, then they can (and they can still read the signing keys).

Yahoo, Google, and friends all scan, dedup, and all sorts of tricks to determine marketing and quality content (spamming). If you're worried, run your own mailserver. It's what I do, along with using gmail. But I know that, at any time, people/scripts/ai are reading everything sent and received.

edit: I'd much prefer to hear commentary/how wrong/how right/how crazy I am, rather than -1's.I'd like to hear a discussion about the "Secrecy of text written on postcards"....

jonknee 10 hours ago 1 reply      
It sounds like Yahoo will fit right in at Verizon... It also sounds like another leak designed to damage Marissa Mayer:

> According to the two former employees, Yahoo Chief Executive Marissa Mayer's decision to obey the directive roiled some senior executives and led to the June 2015 departure of Chief Information Security Officer Alex Stamos, who now holds the top security job at Facebook Inc.

zmanian 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Secret URL for deleting your Yahoo account.


suprgeek 8 hours ago 0 replies      
The scariest part of the whole piece answers this question:Why are back doors with secret keys a BAD idea?

"... he had been left out of a decision that hurt users' security, the sources said. Due to a programming flaw, he told them hackers could have accessed the stored emails...."

The CEO of Yahoo must have known that this kind of scanning and storage puts their users at risk. She choose to do it anyway as being the path of least resistance against a more powerful adversary (US govt.). Bad judgement compounded by zero spine... Verizon looks like the perfect fit.

josh2600 9 hours ago 0 replies      
I mean, think about the threats from .gov, right?

$250k per day doubling every week that can come with a gag order sounds like the sort of thing that could damage a business to the point of extinction, no?


JustSomeNobody 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Let's see a show of hands for those who think Yahoo was the only one?
taivare 4 hours ago 0 replies      
This reminds me of what happened to my grandfather in the early 30's. He was employed by a small glassworks in PA, a factory town that owned his home, the town store, post office everything. They opened his mail and fired him for trying to start a union. Three kids under five and a wife thrown out on the street. Seems like the Oligarchs are still reading the spues mail all of these years later.
pkaeding 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Yahoo was attributing its recently announced data breach to state-sponsored attackers.... Maybe that wasn't so far off the mark after all.
Floegipoky 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Ignoring fiduciary responsibility for a minute, what would happen if a publicly-traded company refused to comply with such a court order until they were required to release a financial statement? Wouldn't they be legally required to disclose that multi-million dollar fine?

How would a company under such a gag order announce bankruptcy? "Sorry, we lost all the money and we can't tell you why"?

ChicagoDave 9 hours ago 1 reply      
I find this hilarious since the only thing I use my yahoo address for is retailer sign-ups and things I know will land me a boat load of junk mail. It is my email landfill.
lasermike026 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Distribute, encrypt, and anonymize. The only way forward doesn't include them.

Congress is up for grabs. You can really change who is in congress this round. If you don't like the guy you have vote in another. Vote for people that want to cut surveillance programs and agencies that request them. We could save or reallocate mountains of money.

Esau 9 hours ago 6 replies      
The lesson from this is to not trust corporations with out privacy. Sadly, it seems many of us are not learning it.
markpapadakis 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I imagine Yahoo! Mail engineers being royally pissed about this. Well, I suppose that includes all Yahoo! folks who are still putting real effort into improving Y!'s services. Every odd day something surfaces about Y!'s execs questionable practices and decisions, every even day problems, leaks, bad press. Moral must have hit rock bottom.

Maybe the Yahoo! Board should have surveyed the startups scene, looking for founders who bootstrapped successfully and proven their worth, and recruit the best they could get. I am not very familiar with management of people and aspects of running a business, but I believe there is a lot more to it than being a smart person with computers.

zmanian 8 hours ago 0 replies      
This is substantially worse than PRISM which operates on individual targeted persons and the upstream Verizon, AT&T program which collects plaintext over the public Internet.

This involved bulk search of data past the decryption layer.

cornchips 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Any large company should openly defy such an order.

What will they do??? Fine, court, shut down the company? If that happened would the public not outcry?

jmadsen 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm sorry, but have you used Yahoo Mail?

I don't believe they are capable of writing the "siphon" they are accused of. To be honest, I don't think they actually have engineers. I think they just use summer interns.

En_gr_Student 8 hours ago 0 replies      
It was part of carnivore and AT&T also supported that. I'm pretty sure all major vendors had hooks into their systems for carnivore.
tkinom 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Since all these companies (Yahoo, Google, FB, MSFT, etc) all operate and with users in other countries, what happen when other countries/governments demand the same "search/access" of info?
_audakel 6 hours ago 1 reply      
If she had wanted to this to get out, I wonder if she could have ordered the email team to go ahead and build out the sniffer so she is not in contempt of the court, but let her security team openly blog about it, without informing her, when they found it - which could lead to an inadvertent release of the info? If the sec team was not under the gag order maybe they would not have gotten in trouble.

Or take her to a super boss level, she could have used whisper to talk to guccifer and let him know about some vuln that would allow access to the legal directory.... which would have to gag order. #wikileakitup

hackuser 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Note the attitude toward encryption:

Former NSA General Counsel Stewart Baker said email providers "have the power to encrypt it all, and with that comes added responsibility to do some of the work that had been done by the intelligence agencies."

feefie 3 hours ago 2 replies      
Is this is the best solution?https://emailselfdefense.fsf.org/en/

Getting anyone else I know to do this seems like a long shot. Is there something simpler?

0xmohit 10 hours ago 0 replies      

 Yahoo Inc last year secretly built a custom software program to search all of its customers' incoming emails for specific information provided by U.S. intelligence officials, according to people familiar with the matter.
Wonder how much of the 4.8 billion can be attributed this custom software program?

turc1656 7 hours ago 0 replies      
This shit needs to stop. Immediately.

Like most people, I have no problem with the government using probable cause to get warrants that are in search of something specific (none of these grab-all bullshit orders). If you have a legitimate reason to be looking at someone, then there should be no problem getting a warrant.

These secret FISA court orders are a serious violation to the rights of Americans in many cases. At minimum, if we really do need these secret courts to prevent people from finding out they are the subject of surveillance, then there needs to be an expiration on those gag orders. This crap about never being able to mention it FOREVER has to go. There should be a limit, say 5 years, which is well beyond the length of time most investigations take. At that time, those orders should expire so that these government actions can be brought to light if there is any question of wrong-doing on the part of our overzealous law enforcement.

"Former NSA General Counsel Stewart Baker said email providers 'have the power to encrypt it all, and with that comes added responsibility to do some of the work that had been done by the intelligence agencies.'" Sorry, but no. That's not how it works. There is no obligation to do the work of government unless it is actually written into law (i.e. record-keeping laws). And it currently is not. This is precisely why everyone should be encrypting all communications on the CLIENT side themselves. It should never leave your device (PC, phone, whatever) unencrypted. That way, if the government wants to go on a fishing expedition or has an actual legitimate reason to look at you, they will have to get a warrant for the device itself, which will at least give you a head's up that they are trying to put you in the clink with a bunkmate named Bubba.

The NSA, and the government in general, has completely blown any goodwill they once had with the public. Under no circumstance will I ever advocate for anything that makes their job easier. And it is for no other reason than simply because they have proven time and again they cannot be trusted.

Honestly, I'm still not even clear why every employee of project PRISM isn't rotting a jail cell right now after Snowden shed some light on the program for the rest of us peasants. Every single employee of that program had to know the clear violations of the constitution they were helping to partake in. Keep in mind the constitution protects against unreasonable SEIZURE as well as search. Gobbling up communications in the manner they did clearly counts as seizure because they would not have had them otherwise - whether or not they actually search the records is immaterial.

I'm not an Apple fan, but when they told the government to go pound sand regarding that terrorist phone encryption case, that was the first time that I can recall I actually approved of Apple's political position on something.

gjolund 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Good riddance. I don't understand what is worth scavanging from the carcas.
Taek 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Another reason for users and enterprises alike to avoid US companies and services. And another reason for entrepreneurs to start companies outside the US - escape the stigma, escape the potential clash with secret courts.
vermontdevil 10 hours ago 4 replies      
Now gotta wonder if Google has succumbed to government pressure to do the same.

I'm really hoping and trusting they haven't.

jameshart 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Any chance that this, and the recently announced historical account breach, are coming out as artifacts of Verizon's due diligence?
honyock 8 hours ago 0 replies      
This is not at all surprising! BTW, I don't know a single person that has an email account with yahoo, who is not older than 60!
ezoe 3 hours ago 0 replies      
So, when do Americans exercise the right of the Second and liberate from this totalitarian government?
AnimalMuppet 10 hours ago 0 replies      
From the article: "Some surveillance experts said this represents the first case to surface of a U.S. Internet company agreeing to a spy agency's demand by searching all arriving messages, as opposed to examining stored messages or scanning a small number of accounts in real time."

The first case to surface. Anybody else could have been doing it for just as long, but we don't know yet.

ChoHag 9 hours ago 0 replies      
But continue to find themselves stumped?
Zigurd 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Some people here laud some companies for being good about user privacy and security. This shows they have not yet reached table stakes for privacy and security.

This is why no provider can be trusted. Every routine communication should be e2e encrypted. Otherwise this WILL happen.

awt 6 hours ago 0 replies      
That the usg attempted this is a sign of deeply seated incompetence at a philosophical level.
exabrial 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Thanks Obama!
lifeisstillgood 8 hours ago 0 replies      
And it did not find any :-) !!!
johansch 9 hours ago 2 replies      
So, is this correct, in this context?

Pass: Apple, Google

Fail: Microsoft, Yahoo

Unknown: Facebook, Twitter

cheeze 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Can we merge https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12637302 into this? Same exact headline
floor__ 9 hours ago 1 reply      
singularity2001 10 hours ago 2 replies      
Google overtly scans your emails for anything.
thwee 8 hours ago 0 replies      
It should read "...Yahoo Chief Executive Marissa Mayer's decision to indulge the directive..." indulge, not obey.
There's no easy way to say this reddit.com
332 points by bexcite  6 hours ago   135 comments top 20
sulam 5 hours ago 2 replies      
At the risk of repeating a comment I made further down in a thread, the average QA Engineer salary in Mexico is literally 10X more than one of these devs was making. Anyone trying to justify this in terms of the Mexican minimum wage is trying to sell you ocean front property in Arizona.
jewbacca 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Interesting. I didn't realize, before trying to figure out what this means for KSP just now, that Squad is not first and foremost a game developer: they're basically a marketing company, for which KSP was originally a 20%-style project.

I hope this development is not so much a product of internal company bullshit, but now I'm very worried it is. KSP is one of the most genuinely important games out there right now. I would be surprised if many less than 100% of the next generation of spacetravel-involved scientists and engineers counted KSP as part of their journey.

dtparr 6 hours ago 3 replies      
Can someone give me a little background here? What exactly is 'Squad'? Is this just some of the devs leaving? A particular subgroup? They're true KSP devs and not mod devs?
SilasX 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Could you make the title more informative? And can someone give the background on Kerbal and why this is significant?
brokentone 4 hours ago 2 replies      
Can we change the headline to something less clickbaity? "Kerbal Space Program: There's no easy way to say this" etc...
Paul_S 6 hours ago 3 replies      
Ah, it's a pretty awesome game - the right amount of complexity and fun. If it was open source it could continue forever like OpenTTD. Then maybe career mode could be completed.

Honestly, this is one of the very few games I've enjoyed in the last 10 years.

technion 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Some incredible open source projects came out of KSP.

This one: https://alexmoon.github.io/ksp/

Is a great example. This is the one game I've spent hours on as an adult. I wish the team the best.

orbitingpluto 4 hours ago 0 replies      
For those that have purchased it on Steam, I'd archive your current version. Have a feeling the quality is going to go downhill from here.

Wow, just wow. The company must be run by absolute sociopaths.

fma 3 hours ago 0 replies      
At those wages, they can get work off elance, odesk, etc and make a heck lot more money. I guess that's the gaming industry for you. Treat people poorly because they are passionate about what they do and can't find that kind of work elsewhere.
erikb 6 hours ago 2 replies      
I spent less than 5 hours playing this game. But I think it is very, very important for gaming, for space travel simulation, flight simulation, and space exploration. Would buy it again and feel sad that development stops.
qwertyuiop924 6 hours ago 4 replies      
First the lead, now half the team. What is it with people jumping ship on KSP?
Animats 6 hours ago 2 replies      
The devs should apply to the PR side of NASA or Space-X.
jcrites 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Kerbal Space Program is a really fantastic game that rekindled my love of flight (and space) simulation.

For those who don't know about it, it's a spaceflight simulation game. You design a spacecraft from parts, assembling rocket engines, fuel tanks, thrusters, command modules, etc. into a design, and then test it and try to get it into orbit; or from there, to other planetary bodies. Multiple spacecraft if you want: you can dock and coordinate them, or build space stations or moon bases.

It's got an incredible amount of detail, modeling a whole solar system with various planets and moons and asteroids. Remember how the staff working on "No Man's Sky" made claims about how "all other video games are fake, they have a skybox, the planets and sun in our sky are real real and you can fly to them" (claims which turned out to be largely false)? Well, Kerbal Space Program actually delivers on that experience. You can rocket into space, dock in orbit with something you've put up there previously, gravity-slingshot yourself to another planet, parachute a lander down to the surface and roam around, etc.

The game has realistic space flight physics and orbital mechanics (though tuned to be very generous to players compared to real life). You can learn a lot about the basic mechanics of spaceflight just by playing it; you begin to intuitively understand delta-v, apoapsis and when to apply thrust, etc. If you want to dock with with something then you need to plan an appropriate launch window. Maneuvering in orbit is very interesting and initially counter-intuitive (if a spacecraft is "ahead" of you in orbit, in which direction should you boost to "catch up" to it? If you boost directly toward it, you'll increase your orbital speed and thus the shape of your orbit, taking you away from it in a different dimension!). Getting to other astral bodies is tricky and requires more planning. KSP manages to make all of this challenging but fun.

If you'd like to learn more about it, or are even just curious what the fuss is about (the game itself, not the drama), I'd direct you to videos by Scott Manley [1]. Here's a video of a fairly sophisticated mission starting with liftoff from the launch pad, made by another YouTuber [2] (skip to 13:00 to see him planning orbital maneuvers like circularizing his orbit). Manley's "Interstellar Quest" mission has even more complex orbital planning (5:00) [3].

The depth of KSP is astonishing and there's not much else out there like it. It's in the same ballpark as Minecraft in terms of the amazing creative sandbox it provides, with a world that has a ton of depth to explore. There's a wonderful atmospheric feel with the music and artwork that happens when you successfully lift off into space, going from the thrill of launch to the serenity of orbit. It's a beautiful feeling and one that isn't easily captured by recordings.

So it's sad to hear that the company and/or developers who made the game aren't carrying on. The game may not be a commercial success on the scale of Minecraft but the artistic and conceptual achievement are on par or greater.

[1] https://www.youtube.com/user/szyzyg [2] https://youtu.be/RzbDyx4Tpdc?t=10m7s [3] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FSzj_uk1fRQ

phil248 5 hours ago 1 reply      
As a casual fan of KSP, I'm not up to date on all the haps. Can someone tell me what to expect in the future? Will there be more development work done?
Waterluvian 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Being able to end development is really important. You don't want it to just putter out.
JoeDaDude 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Will have any impact on the educational version of KSP[1]?[1] http://kerbaledu.com/
JoeDaDude 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Sad and unfortunate, but I expect KSP has left an influential mark on space related games for years to come. For example, see the orbital mechanics segment of Children of a Dead Earth [1].[1] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tiIh4Xw2bnQ
whybroke 4 hours ago 1 reply      
So the main team that made KSP is now all available on the job market?

Who dose not immediately hire that team en masse has missed a huge opportunity.

hoodoof 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I would have thought some wealthy game company would want to buy the company behind a game this popular.
Grand jury subpoena for Signal user data whispersystems.org
680 points by blfr  13 hours ago   198 comments top 24
zeveb 13 hours ago 10 replies      
It'd be better, of course, if we didn't rely on Signal not storing all that metadata and instead used a protocol which made it impossible for anyone to be in a position to choose whether or not to store it. Unfortunately, the protocols that enable truly trafficanalysis-resistant messaging (I believe the Pynchon Gate[1] is currently the best-of-breed) tend to have increased latency and consume greatly-increased bandwidth.

I don't really know what the solution is, but I'm very uneasy about the central point of failure Open Whisper Systems is. Moxie's previous points about the difficulty of upgrading a federated protocol[2] are correct, but I think that despite the difficulty it's important to do.

[1] http://freehaven.net/anonbib/cache/sassaman:wpes2005.pdf

[2] https://whispersystems.org/blog/the-ecosystem-is-moving/

joncp 11 hours ago 2 replies      
So, when is it going to be considered misconduct for Dana Boente and the (not so) honorable Theresa Buchanan to tack on gag orders for no good reason? How do we change that? Calling our representatives in Congress won't help. Signing petitions is laughable. I'm at a loss for how to change this as a regular citizen.
CiPHPerCoder 13 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm not too surprised to see an attempted overreach by federal investigators. Too bad there's no measure of meaningful accountability here.

Outside the usual "let's ask for more than we're legally entitled" shtick, there's nothing particularly alarming about this subpoena; it was narrowly focused on two phone numbers, for which only one was a Signal user.

It's good on OWS to fight so hard for transparency.

rurban 11 hours ago 2 replies      
Funny that Open Whisper Systems wrote in the last chapter that they essentially should come back with a court order or search warrant to get more data, but forgot to include the critical information, that even then the FBI will not get more information, because Open Whisper Systems has no technical ability to provide that data at all.

It's volatile data exchanged between the clients only, but not centrally stored anywhere (contrary to all other secure chat systems out there).The FBI has probably no idea how Signal works, what is stored and what not.

Even a grand-jury subpoena has no chance to produce more data. But maybe they can force them to re-implement Signal with a government backdoor (because it's a police state after all), and that's what Open Whisper Systems is really objecting to?Or just logging the metadata? (Which btw. duckduckgo does, even if it slows down their webserver by at least 20%).

Or did they just try to mess with the FBI lawyers?

Keverw 21 minutes ago 0 replies      
Why do they mean by "upstream and downstream providers"? I would think it'd mean the ISP associated with the IP address from the logs if they had it? Not sure why they worded it that way or if they meant somthing else?
kyledrake 11 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm really happy they provided documentation on how to fight an unconstitutional gag order on a subpoena. They put gag orders on subpoenas they're not supposed to all the time, and it's good to show people an "easy" way to fight them.
woah 13 hours ago 5 replies      
FYI, Signal has access to all metadata about messages and calls (but not the content of course). They claim not to store it and I believe them for now but someone else could be storing it.

They don't have access to group message membership directly. A group appears as a bunch of one to one messages between the participants, so they might still be able to infer it.

ajdlinux 1 hour ago 0 replies      
"In the "first half of 2016" (the most specific we're permitted to be)"

I note that the documents use a proportional width font, and there's been previous research into using the width of blacked-out sections of redacted documents along with information about the font to work out possible character combinations that fit appropriately...

ejcx 12 hours ago 2 replies      
That's very neat and really glad to see privacy enhancing technologies working.

I'm curious what type of metadata Facebook would have from the signal integrations with Whatsapp and Messenger. Is there more, less, or same? Has anyone looked in to this?

gagabity 10 hours ago 2 replies      
I really hate that every messaging app nowadays requires a phone number to use, sure it makes some things easier but its very difficult to get a phone number anonymously. They should include an email signup option or even better just a username/password option although that would cause some issues with spammers, which can probably be mitigated in other more creative ways.
Fej 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I actually trust OWS in this case. They have taken every precaution to make data seizure (all but) impossible.

Signal is the best shot we have at widespread, usable private communications at this point. It's about time we get around to supporting it. Be pragmatic.

jimktrains2 12 hours ago 1 reply      
I love that they gave them the info in unix millis.

A serious question though, how do gag orders work? How do I notify an attorney?

1024core 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Is there any country where you can set up your servers, so you can be out of reach of the various US agencies hell bent on undermining our privacy?
secfirstmd 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Good stuff Moxie and OWS!
mastazi 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Same story as covered by the ACLU website: https://www.aclu.org/blog/free-future/new-documents-reveal-g...
fatdog 7 hours ago 1 reply      
It might be worth considering why authorities think banning or regulating encryption is tractable.

- 100+ years of business telecommunications without significant strong encryption. - Robust wiretapping and law enforcement access laws and practices that mean there is NO place or piece of information within US sovereign territory that is inaccessible to an authorized agent of the state. - they have the expectation of total control. Hell, beat cops can shoot you over minor "comply or die" orders. - Crypto isn't about your email or even evidence in a particular case, it is about the completeness and totality of their authority. - States around the world routinely decimate their populations in civil wars and massacres to ensure the same people remain in power. From the LE perspective, anyone who threatens the sovereignty of the state is a terrist they would complete for the opportunity to shoot.

Hackers don't get it. If the crypto debate ever gets real, you cannot imagine how real it will get.

jwtadvice 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Great, that explains the warrant canary disappearance. I hope they put it back up so they can take it down again.
ComodoHacker 12 hours ago 0 replies      
The good news here is people are using Signal for important things.
Jarwain 7 hours ago 1 reply      
> All message contents are end to end encrypted, so we don't have that information either.

The way I'm reading/understanding this is that they have the encrypted messages, but don't specify whether they are stored. However, since the messages are encrypted, they don't have the message contents/that information. Concluding, they may have all the messages saved, albeit in an encrypted format and with minimal metadata.

Did I come to the right conclusion? Or does Signal not store the encrypted message data either?

jweir 11 hours ago 6 replies      
If I had $100 to donate - ACLU or EFF or a 50/50 split?
MyMan1 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Is it safe to assume then that WhatsApp is not secure? Unless their data has been subpoena'd as well?
throw2016 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Can a privacy service really be built in the US and that too in SFO which is ground zero for the fantastic new surveillance economy being imagined and built.

We know freedom loving software engineers after decades of posturing have long folded and left Snowden holding the baby.

We also know companies here are either closely linked to intelligence agencies or bending over backwards.

We know the executive branch is in the middle of a full blown identity crisis of whether they are the good guys or bad guys of the world. Closesly followed by a legal system that has developed a third world regime like affinity for blanket gag orders and rubber stamping with 100% approval rates. This is a bit like tasking the fox to protect the hens.

What stops a goverment friendly company from acquiring whispersystems, or whisper itself being some sort of a release valve operation?

tomjen3 11 hours ago 1 reply      
In the future please don't blank out the officer's email address, especially when they (as explained in the reply) overstep their bounds in terms of what they are allowed to request, thus essentially abusing their position and the trust we as citizens have provided to them.
throwawayIndian 12 hours ago 1 reply      
Worry not, 'Murica! Hillary is considering to drone this guy as well. So that you can be safe. :-)
Daydream Google VR vr.google.com
400 points by madmax108  11 hours ago   292 comments top 45
markingram 0 minutes ago 0 replies      
Boring... They are just trying to sell their pixel phone... Seriously, haven't seen one great hardware product from Google.
NathanKP 11 hours ago 8 replies      
I think the approach of giving it a fabric look and feel will be huge for the non techy consumer market appeal. This device looks like something that I can put on and relax on the couch with. The other VR headsets I've seen are much more of a "strap this hard plastic gadget to your head" feel.
1_2__3 9 hours ago 9 replies      
So a slightly more production-ready version of cardboard, but requires a specific phone that not one customer has yet.

When do we stop buying into the Google product hype? How many other chase-the-rabbit approaches to products is Google going to shove in front of our faces before we realize it's almost all smoke and mirrors? It seems completely laughable to me that this "product" will even exist past 2017, let alone be any kind of leader in anything (innovation, market share, creating a new market space, etc.).

I know jaded cynicism is never attractive, but it's honestly baffling to me how these threads aren't peppered with what I would think to be well-justified skepticism when it comes to Google and their ambitious hardware products. They almost never succeed, period! You never even hear about them most of the time a few months after they get launched, and the only time when you do is when the PR machine is working fast and furious to prop it up (see: Glass).

So sure, let's all pretend that wearing a pair of underwear on your face stuffed with a cell phone is going to advance VR. Yeah. That seems totally plausible.

Sir_Cmpwn 9 hours ago 11 replies      
I'm sick of phones as the basis for VR. I tried Cardboard, it has real problems. The battery life is bad when you're doing 3D things, the phone gets very hot on your face, and the GPU is underpowered for pretty much every purpose including rendering a realistic enough scene for VR immersion.
erikpukinskis 10 hours ago 1 reply      
All I want for Christmas is mobile positional tracking. Leap Motion. John Carmack. Google Tango. ZED. Who will be The One? Who will get positional tracking into a phone or headset?

Edit: In my fantasy world Carmack is teaching himself chip design and will put a low power positional tracking computer vision ASIC in the next GearVR. Why Oculus isn't putting the full force of their company behind that National Treasure of a man I have no idea.

kmonad 9 hours ago 1 reply      
This could be straight out of the show 'silicon valley'. Gorgeous polar lights as the background of a sleek landing page, a strange but appealing geometric structure hovering between dark outlines of trees --> scrolling down, a pair of diving goggles are revealed that you can use to stick your phone into. Don't get me wrong, I'm excited and it's probably going to be cool, it's just hilariously stereotypical.
pitchups 7 hours ago 1 reply      
Really disappointed that it does not support the current line of Google phones - in particular the Nexus 6P. At least it is not listed as officially supported on the website - which only lists the Pixel:


eridius 10 hours ago 6 replies      
So if I'm understanding this correctly, this is basically a productized Google Cardboard?
bmacauley 9 hours ago 5 replies      
Would it be possible to use Google Pixel as a personal high resolution monitor? 2560 x 1440 is the equivalent of a 27 inch monitor...if you wore it as a headset, how big would the monitor equivalent be? 50"?

If I could attach this to my Mac and use the headset instead of hunching over a 15" laptop, I'd be very happy!

jimrandomh 10 hours ago 5 replies      
Does this offer any advancements over the Oculus/Samsung GearVR? Given that they're launching a full year after Oculus, I would hope for something more than a direct clone.
6stringmerc 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I do like the notion of comfort the fabric provides. Seems portable.

I used to commute by bus, approx 45 minutes each way. I don't think I would've used this on that trip. Extending that, I don't think I'd be particularly interested in using this at home, as infrequently as I genuinely plop down for an immersive HDTV (or 3D) experience (ex. football games & films are my draw, not very often). I just giggle a bit to myself thinking what I'd look like wearing one and bobbing my head around in public or at home. Heh.

gberger 11 hours ago 3 replies      
The Harry Potter exclusive is gonna be huge.
ececconi 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm on an airplane twice a week. It would be awesome to have this and watch movies on it. A personal isolation device.
Eliezer 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Will there ever be a VR option for those of us who still wear glasses?
hoodoof 9 hours ago 0 replies      
The "phone on the face" approach to VR is a solid one, but it's going to be Apple that makes it work and owns it because they control the ecosystem.

VR needs low end alternatives and "phone on the face" is it. From what I have read, Samsung's POTF device actually works quite well.

Manufacturers such as Apple will see it as appealing because it gives incentive to buy new and more powerful phones.

Google's POTF likely won't succeed (mind you it might have if they had more control over the fragmented Android ecosystem), but Apple's POTF, when it is announced, will be the winner in this category.

Were you wondering why the new audio port on the iPhone 7? That's the VR POTF port.

jtl999 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I hope the Pixel phone screens don't have PWM flicker, because of being AMOLED.

I wish flicker free VR existed.

asenna 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Does anyone know if the headset is supported by the Nexus 6P?

The 6P is a very capable device and I don't see a reason to upgrade mine. But I am thinking of trying out some Daydream VR development.

I know that till now, 6P was the only device to develop for Daydream, but I'm wondering how well would it work with the actual headset released today. Maybe just run at some low fps but not too bad for trying it out? Or is the headset locked for only "Daydream certified" phones (I doubt they'll lock out the 6P though).

metafunctor 10 hours ago 2 replies      
There is very little information on the page. Am I missing something, or is there more information somewhere else?
fjabre 3 hours ago 0 replies      
VR is the future but still distant IMHO when the headsets are this big. As it turns out it's not that comfortable wearing a screen on your face.

This looks more like lipstick on a pig than the future of VR.

kyledrake 11 hours ago 4 replies      
A proprietary VR framework for a specific flavor of mobile phone with inadequate displays that will make people want to vomit if they try to use it for any serious amount of time. Wonderful.

God forbid we come together on WebVR instead of turning the VR space into yet another "monopolies punching eachother" not-invented-here pit fight.

fudged71 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I hate to say it but... this would really be great with a set of wireless earbuds.
davesque 10 hours ago 3 replies      
I like how Google is trying to bring VR into everyone's home. However, how accurate can the head movement tracking actually be without some kind of external tracker? I'm sure there must be some perceptible drift between the actual position of your head and the tracked position.
locusm 3 hours ago 0 replies      
That carpeted look reminds me of my carpeted Holden VR Commodore dashboard. Is there an Aussie on the team?
noonespecial 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Off topic, but e-gads Google, 3mb and 13 seconds to load? Glad I didn't do that on my phone.
spullara 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Mobile VR makes little sense to me except potentially on airplanes. AR on the other hand...
altonzheng 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I wonder if there's specific hardware needed to make a phone Daydream enabled or if it's just to draw people to the Pixel/future Android phones.
wehadfun 8 hours ago 1 reply      
For most people the best use for these googles is being able to a watch 60 inch TV when other wise you couldn't. Headphones have a similar use of letting you play a stereo when other wise you couldn't.
pmontra 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Strange that weight is missing from the spec. You want the lightest phone stuck to your head.
halite 11 hours ago 0 replies      
This somehow remind me of Playstation home (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PlayStation_Home) which was a neat concept but never quite gained the momentum.
Animats 8 hours ago 2 replies      
Is there position tracking? Or is this just for watching 3D movies?
chadlavi 10 hours ago 3 replies      
so you have to buy their new phone to use this?

cross this off my list then.

SonicSoul 9 hours ago 0 replies      
its interesting how wildly different these big companies are when it comes to product delivery. Apple will not say a word until they are ready to ship. Google will announce way in advance so their developers don't have much choice but to ship. "done but buggy > perfect". I suppose release dates get delayed often. Not sure which approach is better.
ucaetano 9 hours ago 0 replies      
I like the inspiration for it: not a hard game controller, but a sleeping mask. That's actually a good insight.
miles_matthias 9 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm excited about VR, but strapping your phone to your face doesn't seem like the best approach.
ftrflyr 9 hours ago 3 replies      
Bring back the View-Master! I personally would never buy something that I have to strap around my head. Remember those things called helmets? Even today, it is a struggle to get both kids and adults to where them. I think these companies are completely missing the mark about VR. I would use a View Master over Oculus, Google, etc.
fbreduc 5 hours ago 0 replies      
its called going outside, people developing this stuff should try it sometime
knodi123 9 hours ago 0 replies      
They should make a shorter list of just exactly how it's different from cardboard.
pasbesoin 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Prediction: Someone's going to put two cameras into a phone and do pupil tracking. Or, can programmatic analysis get by with one?

P.S. For bonus points, add pupil dilation measurement for emotional analysis. And bloodflow including respiration (perhaps in conjunction with periodic micro-movement).

Maybe three cameras? More?

johansch 10 hours ago 0 replies      
So, just to set expectations:

All of the big SV companies need to have a VR play and this is Google's.

Personally I believe in the long-term viability of VR, but in this case it just seems like an expendable just-in-case-it-takes-off thing.

/ Feeling slightly burned from them more or less abandoning the last Google hardware I bought; the Nexus Player tv set-top-box.

flippyhead 9 hours ago 0 replies      
I like the name anyhow.
nickysielicki 10 hours ago 0 replies      
When they say, "take a look at the devices designed and built for virtual reality", and the only device is the new Pixel, I have to wonder if this means that the Pixel has a display with an unusually high refresh rate or resolution, or if Google just really wants to kill the ecosystem before it begins with needless exclusivity.
rnernento 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Just what VR needs, another slightly different platform...
macandcheese 9 hours ago 5 replies      
Is nobody concerned about basically staring into a cell phone 2 inches in front of their eyeballs?
siavosh 9 hours ago 2 replies      
Have either Google or Oculus addressed any health risks due to cell/wifi as a result of holding a phone close to your face for extended periods?
fredliu 9 hours ago 2 replies      
Sigh, kinda disappointed given all the hype and secrecy around this, and makes me doubt the near future of VR (I have a Vive, and was a believer until this point). For VR to really take off, we do need a "good enough" experience for the mass while letting the Vives driving the leading edge. Cardboard was clearly not good enough (otherwise it would have taken off by itself already), Daydream (with Pixel phone) just seems like a polished version of cardboard, but still not good enough: actually, is it in anyway better than cardboard towards the direction of Vive? Slightly higher resolution? A little bit more comfortable, maybe easier to setup, and that's it? How about 6 degree of freedom, more precise controller tracking? at least 1K per eye resolution? Just wish Daydream won't kill VR by over-marketing it and fails to deliver. If that happens, it may take another decade for VR to come back.
Behind the Pixel: Googles First Real Threat to Apples iPhone bloomberg.com
323 points by devhxinc  11 hours ago   657 comments top 87
mikestew 11 hours ago 20 replies      
And yet not a single hard detail in the article as to why the headline might be true. For going on ten years we've seen the "iPhone killers" come and go, and this article does nothing to tell me why this time it will be different. Perhaps because it won't be.

Of what very few details the article outlines, they just go on about nifty hardware. Have we not learned by now that cool hardware still sucks when hamstrung by crappy software? (A Samsung logo popped in my head while writing that, don't know why.) Now, Google is no Samsung, but they're a long way from Apple or even Microsoft on the UX front.

(EDIT: the Pixel phones could be all that, but I wouldn't know it because I'm currently content with iPhones and have paid no attention to Pixel. Point is, this article does nothing to relieve my ignorance, which is why I clicked on the thing to begin with.)

Fej 10 hours ago 8 replies      
What is the draw here?

I have been running my Nexus 5 into the ground (soldered on a new power button when the original broke) in anticipation of the next Nexus phone. Pixel is no Nexus.

Seriously, what does this have that the year-old Nexus 6P and 5X don't, other than incremental hardware improvements? And a massive price hike? Why should I buy this?

(Seriously, Google? You want $650 for a phone with a 1080p screen? I know there's benefits to a lower resolution but then why not drop the price? It's ridiculous.)

My perception is that Google no longer knows what it's doing. Reference Allo for an even better example. The company can coast on their existing products but only for so long.

geodel 10 hours ago 9 replies      
I think it is just me but I find this 'book me a concert and fancy dinner' schtick rather boring. May be well off people are so busy and book these things so often that these virtual assistant really save time if price is of no concern to them.
neals 10 hours ago 14 replies      
I don't like Google because they're gonna use my data against me.

I don't like Apple because it's a walled garden and millions other reasons.

I don't like Samsung because they bloat Android.

I don't like Huawei because I don't trust the Chinese government to not do stuff to it.

I don't like LG and HTC because the smartphone market is slipping away from them.

Am I just getting old?

j_m_b 18 minutes ago 0 replies      
One thing I like about the iPhone is the strong emphasis on security. Many features in the iPhone are built around it such as password inputs eventually stop working after a certain amount of tries, plane tickets show up on home screen without needing to unlock the phone and default encryption. I like knowing that if I lock my phone, not even the FBI can get into it. This gives me confidence to use services such as Apple pay. How does the Google Pixel compare in security?
julianpye 8 hours ago 5 replies      
Last week we tried to launch an Android-first app at a major startup conference with 5000 visitors.

95% of the visitors (startups, entrepreneurs, investors, executives) had iPhones. We later confirmed this by looking at the network stats and couldn't believe it. In a country where Android statistically has 80% marketshare. The Android users loved the product, but we failed because we couldn't generate word-of-mouth.

For the target audience of the Pixel, this is an uphill battle.

snowwrestler 10 hours ago 1 reply      
The corporate structure of Alphabet does not make sense to me.

Nest was broken out as a peer to Google, but now apparently hardware is using Nest staff and expertise, but hardware is part of Google.

And apparently this new hardware team is going whole-hog after the smartphone market, which is WAY larger than thermostats and web cams. But Nest is an Alphabet sub, and hardware is under Google.

And Android needs a "firewall" to protect existing hardware vendor relationships from the new hardware team. But both Android and hardware remain under Google, with YouTube and Search.

And there are 2 separate Alphabet subs for biosciences, and 2 separate subs for finance.

It doesn't look like it's implementing any sort of coherent strategy. Aside from company politics, why are some programs peers to Google, and others are subsidiaries of Google?

czhiddy 11 hours ago 5 replies      
The difference with this device is that we started from the beginning, says Dave Burke, who runs Android engineering.

Started from scratch, yet the end result looks like a iPhone knockoff from a random Chinese shanzhai company?


djhworld 10 hours ago 5 replies      
The price makes me a bit sad tbh

One of the best things about the Nexus range was they offered the Google vision of android at a reasonable price. The Nexus 4, 5 and 6 were affordable.

I purchased my Nexus 5 for a shade below 300 when it came out, which I thought was excellent value for money in comparison to how much I had paid for a Samsung previously.

This Pixel line seems to have abandoned that ideal to compete directly with the iPhone.

Personally I'd feel very uncomfortable walking around with a 600+ phone.

lumenwrites 8 hours ago 5 replies      
It blows my mind that there's not a single positive top level comment yet. Seriously, guys, what's up with the culture of entitlement and complaining?

We're hackers, let's get fucking excited about the new cool gadgets! This phone is awesome.

How about, before nitpicking and criticizing, we take a moment to appreciate and celebrate the new technology developed by our colleagues?

mmanfrin 9 hours ago 1 reply      
"Their debut signals Googles push into the $400 billion smartphone hardware business and shows that the company is willing to risk alienating partners like Samsung Electronics Co. and LG Electronics Inc. that sell Android-based phones."

You mean not including the time they bought Motorola?

AaronFriel 6 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm saddened by the continued fragmentation.

"Google Assistant" replaces the Google search bar... but only on the Pixel? So this is yet another Android device that behaves differently from every other.

The exclusive carrier is Verizon. Why not Google Fi?

The default video app is Duo. Why not Hangouts?

Does "Google Now On Tap" get replaced by the assistant for the Pixel? Is that just for the Pixel?

I don't get it. I don't understand how Google can think this produces a cohesive, meaningful experience for their users when they keep changing things or fragmenting their platforms.

Edit: Full disclosure, my only smartphone is a Nexus 5X. I like it, I don't like Google's platform chaos.

johnward 10 hours ago 2 replies      
The camera doesn't stick out the back of the phone and become the main contact point for all surfaces. This is true innovation :)
joezydeco 10 hours ago 5 replies      
Google is now the seller of record of this phone,

And who is the servicer of broken phones? Is there a warranty? Can I get a customer service agent on a real voice line?

Given Google's track record of hardware they could have answers for all of this and I still wouldn't own one.

LeifCarrotson 11 hours ago 3 replies      
> Burke says the company will eventually be able to ship its own custom silicon, a buzzword for customized processors that make devices work better.

Silicon is not a buzzword. It is the element with which the processors are built. Perhaps it's colloquial or jargonistic to refer to processors as silicon, but it's not a buzzword.

sorenjan 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I think the most unfortunate thing about this being so expensive and underwhelming is that now there's no good alternative for people that don't want to spend that kind of money on a phone to have an Android phone without an OEM skin and with quick updates to new Android versions. This premium phone is only guaranteed updates for two years, and the update situation in Android land is still appalling. Why isn't anyone working on a better driver model for smart phones like for the PC? I want the latest version of Android without any kind of skin, but I don't see any real alternative for me anymore. How can the company behind Android be satisfied with this situation?
Unklejoe 10 hours ago 2 replies      
Sorry if this isn't the right place to ask, but has there been any information released regarding whether the bootloader can be unlocked or not?

I guess what I'm really asking is if I will be able to flash a custom "ROM" and kernel to this. I've heard rumors of Google taking a more aggressive stance on locking down their hardware, so I'd like to know if there's been any new information regarding this.

If I can't flash custom software to this, I may get the iPhone or HTC 10 instead. The main attraction to Android phones to me was the fact that you can flash modified kernels to do things like force fast charge on USB data links, etc

wmeredith 11 hours ago 6 replies      
I'd like someone to save me from Apple's garbage cloud services, but I just can't get away from their hardware. It's just too good.

So... Can anyone convince me that this thing is going to be different from the iPhone killers that are reported on every year in these regurgitated press releases?

RRRA 2 hours ago 1 reply      
They both locked enough people in an ecosystem where they control the competition well enough that they can justify asking twice as much as their device is worth...

I was hoping to upgrade a nexus 5 I paid 399 CAD and this year they want to charge 899 CAD for the base model!

This is insane and I just ordered a OnePlus 3 (519CAD) hoping that we'll see more competition instead of reliving the 90s desktop OS situation...

baggachipz 10 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm sorry, I just don't trust Google hardware efforts anymore. Nothing they've done indicates that they won't completely abandon this in a year and a half. It would probably end up in my Google Graveyard sooner rather than later, right next to my Google TV and Galaxy Nexus with Google Voice.
Nursie 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Why, in 2016, is anyone still talking about "iPhone killers" or threats to the iPhone?

Outside the US it is not the dominant platform. Sure, it has a good share of the market, but it's not like Apple even outsell Samsung's Galaxy range.

guelo 10 hours ago 0 replies      
joshstrange 8 hours ago 1 reply      
The graphic showing rating of camera's is super disingenuous [0]

The gap from 88-92 is actually shorter than the gap between 86-89.

[0] https://www.dropbox.com/s/ehp0sn8w04fpf2q/Screenshot%202016-...

buro9 11 hours ago 3 replies      
So far, aside from the camera (apparently excellent), everything I've heard about why the Pixel is so great comes down to software.

So far, of everything software that people have enthused about with the Pixel... none of that software shines if you only have Google Apps accounts.

Aside from the camera, why would anyone with a Google Apps account buy this?

(I'm referring to the Allo AI assistent, etc which only has limited functionality for Google Apps users, as does Now, Trips, Spaces, App Sharing, Play Music Family, etc.)

hocuspocus 10 hours ago 1 reply      
The pricing has been copied 1:1 from that of the iPhone 7. Whether in USD, CAD, GBP or EUR: exact same figures.
lmedinas 10 hours ago 3 replies      
The interesting part will be for how long will the Phone + Software be supported. Now that the price is the same I think it's fair the support should be the same as the iPhone.
anilgulecha 11 hours ago 1 reply      
The camera on pixel is the killer. The low-light photos + the image stabilization is amazing.
kentosi 11 hours ago 2 replies      
With the trend of bigger smartphones I'm really surprised by the sizes of 5" and 5.5".
Animats 9 hours ago 0 replies      
It's a real threat to handset makers who use Android. Their OS supplier is now competing with them.

Look for a third ecosystem to come out of China.

Someone 10 hours ago 2 replies      
"The Pixel phones will also be the first to run the next version of Android, Nougat 7.1[]Everyone is treated the same, including Ricks team"

Treated the same, to a limit, I guess. If everyone is treated the same, they wouldn't be able to guarantee to be the first ones out with Nougat.

Let's see how short or long the lead start is they will give their own phones.

HugoDaniel 10 hours ago 3 replies      
Now that the nexus is gone what alternatives exist for developer friendly phones ?
krzyk 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Biggest problem with this phone is how it looks, and it looks like an iPhone, which for me is not a good looking phone.Why the bottom is so big? Why does it have all those rounded corners?
kneel 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Features on phones seem to have plateaued.

I can't justify spending $650 on the newest phone for a slightly better camera.

My current iphone 6 is just fine, the battery is waning but not unbearably so.

Does the pixel offer anything that justifies the price? Or would a consumer be better off just purchasing an older generation smartphone?

satysin 10 hours ago 1 reply      
All sounds good on paper (or video) but 599 entry price?! Now that is courage.
wdeasy 2 hours ago 0 replies      
This is such BS. Android fanboy here and this phone is junk. Everything they showed off can be done on every Android phone out there
richardboegli 9 hours ago 2 replies      
You cannot be serious Google?$1079AUD for Google Pixel when it's $650US....At current conversion would be $853AUD. Of course there is shipping, projected volume of sales in Australia etc... but $226 in shipping is a bit much...https://store.google.com/config/pixel_phone
akshayB 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Is the new phone water resistant? I can't find anything in the details
okket 11 hours ago 0 replies      
For a "threat to Apple's iPhone" article the content is pretty low on camera specs. Not to mention a comparison to the rest of Apple's extremely integrated and streamlined hardware/software.
Touche 10 hours ago 2 replies      
lewisl9029 3 hours ago 0 replies      
No wireless charging is rather disappointing for me. Other than those from Samsung, are there any options left for a recent flagship with built-in wireless charging?

Maybe I'll just hold out on my Nexus 5 for a couple more years...

gjolund 11 hours ago 0 replies      
All it needs to have in order to be a threat is a 3.5mm port.
laktak 9 hours ago 0 replies      
What kind of privacy features can you expect from a Google phone?
delegate 9 hours ago 0 replies      
The reference to Nest isn't a big plus in my book.

I've only heard bad things about it - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BpsMkLaEiOY

This phone isn't going to kill the iPhone - in fact it would take a big screwup on the part of Apple for people to start migrating away from its products. Not that Apple is incapable of screwing up, but so far they've sailed their ship pretty well.

Apart from the hardware, there's the whole ecosystem of app developers, programming environments, cloud services.. Ultimately it's about who can attract the more talented developers - and that is a lot more difficult than snapping a faster CPU or better camera in your phone.

gstn 10 hours ago 4 replies      
Whether it's a nice phone or not, I'm not tempted. I left Android due to an inability to get o/s updates. Android depends on the cell carrier (Bell Canada, in my case) for o/s updates, a model that doesn't work well, in my opinion. With Apple the o/s is always up to date.
6stringmerc 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Hm, same price as iPhone7, according to Wired (will have to see). I'm interested in leaving iOS but on a more mid-tier smart phone level. Very compelling design and size though in my opinion, would definitely be in the market if budget was available. Well, pending some reviews.
pmcollins 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Anything to put more competitive pressure on Apple to release a VR implementation is good IMO.
guelo 10 hours ago 1 reply      
glenndebacker 9 hours ago 0 replies      
So does this come without tracking and more privacy because for that price you can't play the "they need to recoup the costs through user data" card.

Apple it seems can do it for devices in those price range.

speeder 10 hours ago 2 replies      
Still sad it doesn't have a hardware keyboard.

I really, really, really want a good phone with hardware keyboard.

Even better if the dialer is not a common app, and is something you can access immediately even if the "user OS" crash.

stronglikedan 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Besides the obvious economic benefits to the companies that make these phones, is there any real benefit to the user of not having a user replaceable battery? I feel really comfortable keeping an extra battery on standby for emergencies, especially since their charge capacity usually greatly diminishes in about a year or so.
Lorin 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I am just hoping for a smaller phone like the iPhone SE. I never understood the drive towards huge screens that prevent proper single handed usage. I'm still using a Blackberry Q10 because it's a productivity monster - no time for games.
mdasen 10 hours ago 0 replies      
It looks like a good device, but is it that special?

At $649, it's in iPhone 7 and Galaxy S7 territory.

It doesn't have an impressive curved display like the Galaxy S7 Edge so the 5.5" Pixel is likely to be larger than a 5.5" Galaxy S7 Edge.

The Snapdragon 821 is probably the best processor they could get, but it doesn't stand up well against an iPhone 7 (or even older iPhones on common tasks like web browsing). So, that doesn't bring anything impressive to the table that I couldn't get before.

Google has just said that the display is "Hi-Definition" in their presentation slide. Looking at one of their videos, it looks like 441ppi on the 5" which means 1080p and 534ppi on the 5.5" so the 5.5" matches the S7 Edge, but the 5" is a lesser display than the Galaxy S7. Not sure it makes much of a difference, but it doesn't best a competitor at the same price.

The Galaxy S7 and many other devices come with 4GB of RAM.

There doesn't seem to be anything in this device that's so exciting with the possible exception of the camera. But how much of that is software? The DxOMark review notes that "Pixels biggest innovation is an enhanced version of Googles HDR+ multi-image capability. . .the Pixel pushes the capability further than weve seen before". So, is this simply software that Google is going to keep proprietary in order to sell its device? That's certainly fair game, but it points to exclusive software, not hardware being the draw.

Unlimited photo and video storage is nice, but that really doesn't have anything to do with the device. That's just google offering an exclusive service with purchase.

To me, it mostly looks like what I can get in competitive phones, maybe with some exclusive software. It's not faster (constrained by the best Qualcomm can muster). The camera is marginally better than an iPhone 7 (though no word on the iPhone 7 Plus). The display is competitive with or worse than a Galaxy S7 [Edge].

I think Google has a better chance if they start developing their own chips as the article alludes to. Apple has a large single-code speed advantage that's particularly noticeable on the web (https://twitter.com/codinghorror/status/775777790494846976).

The Pixel looks fine, but it doesn't have something amazingly impressive. It's good, but nothing that truly makes me think that Google has outdone itself. If I were in the market for a new Android phone, I'd consider it. But the OnePlus 3 seems to have most of the same in a much cheaper package. The Galaxy S7 Edge seems to have a cooler package for much the same equipment. Plus, I guess my concern is whether Google is going to care about the Pixel phone 9 months from now. Maybe this is a huge new push. But OnHub seems to be abandoned for this new Made By Google thing after a very short time and generally Google has a bit of a history of not caring about things that don't immediately gain traction. So, maybe a couple years from now it'll look more attractive.

EDIT: looking at the specs, it's 8.5mm thick at the thickest which is how they avoid the camera bump compared to an iPhone 7 at 7.1mm thick.

EDIT 2: I'm very glad that Google is getting into the hardware game. I think they can create great devices and help push the industry forward. I think competition will be great for consumers. I think there are lots of areas (like WiFi) which need to be made better. But it's hard to beat the best smartphones with your first model. I'm glad Google is creating a phone, but smartphones aren't low-hanging fruit to create something remarkably better.

pbz 9 hours ago 2 replies      
After using a phone with stereo speakers ( http://cdn01.androidauthority.net/wp-content/uploads/2015/08... ) there's no way I'm going back to mono. What's frustrating is that the bottom part looks perfect for a second speaker.
wodenokoto 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Given that Samsung, LG and others are now competing with Google directly, maybe Firefox OS was too early.

Maybe we'll actually start seeing Tizen headsets from Samsung.

chx 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Apple manufactures fashion items which also facilitate communication. You can't threaten a fashion item. It doesn't work that way. Technological comparisons also don't apply. Only some truly epic fail on Apple's end would threaten them.
samfisher83 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I think this doesn't make sense from a business perspective. The cell phone like the PC will become a commodity item. Why get into a business with a lot of competitors. No real differentiation. Google should be trying to get google search into every phone which they are already doing. That is where they make their crazy margins and strength.
losteverything 8 hours ago 3 replies      
Probably the wrong time to say but.

Is or has there been any way I could purchase a new phone assign it my number and have 2 phones ringing at same time? I would have a side by side comparison in each pocket?

Like I buy pants. But 4 at the store and return 3

newman314 6 hours ago 0 replies      
My killer feature for the iPhone is seamless upgrades. Until Android has this (Play Services don't count), it's not going to be a real threat IMO.

Vertical integration FTW.

binthere 7 hours ago 0 replies      
The hardware isn't really that impressive. iPhone still has the best hardware in my opinion. I'm not even talking about performance, battery, etc, I'm talking about usability.
HalfwayToDice 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Snapdragon 821 means it's slower than grandmother's iPhone 6 from a few years ago.
loeg 11 hours ago 2 replies      
So will it come with non-removable carrier crapware or not? That's the main selling point of the iphone for me.
jordache 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Why do they presume there is a risk of alienating other Android device makers? Those non Apple device makers are too deep in the Android universe with no viable alternative.
m-p-3 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I don't think Google is a threat to anyone but themselves with these prices.
agumonkey 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Can't find any info about Google Assistant requirements (Android version, Phone model). I hope it won't require Nougat or even Android M.
fail2fail2ban 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm liking my Nexus 6 but it feels a bit big at times so I think the trend towards 5 or 5.5 is a good thing. Not sure about the price though, my 6 would have to completely croak before I upgrade from it.
satysin 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Camera doesn't have OIS. That is a disappointment considering the price.
dnprock 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Google CEO: At the heart of these efforts is the goal to build a Google assistant. Yes, an assistant!
xpose2000 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I would get this phone for the fast charging and automatic OS updates alone.
HugoDaniel 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Now that the nexus is gone what alternatives are for developer friendly phones ?
grandalf 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I've been using a BLU R1 HD with Amazon lock screen ads and if I were Apple I'd be very worried. It's a very nice, fast phone with a solid camera.

After using Android for a few weeks I would be pretty happy using it instead of IOS. Among top tier apps and Google provided apps it's definitely now on par with IOS. $59 for a phone is unbelievable.

I just got my iPhone 7 and while it's a great phone and has a slightly higher build quality, it's more than 10x the price.

HugoDaniel 11 hours ago 1 reply      
Are they keeping the nexus line or is this a replacement ?
NetStrikeForce 10 hours ago 1 reply      
From: https://blog.google/products/pixel/introducing-pixel-our-new...

> Pixel comes in two sizes, 5 or 5.5, and three colors: Very Silver, Quite Black and our limited edition for the U.S. only, Really Blue.

What's your problem Google? You keep being the only big company still pulling this "U.S. only" stuff.

gthtjtkt 11 hours ago 1 reply      
No unlockable bootloader for Verizon. Dang...
joshmn 5 hours ago 0 replies      

Sorry I'm so absolutely excited.

tf2manu994 11 hours ago 5 replies      
I realise that not everyone is in the US, but Verizon Exclusive, really?

Edit: Ah, I was mistaken. Contract exclusive, still outright.


coolspot 7 hours ago 0 replies      
That basement conference room tho...
tn13 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Android has already won. It is the hardware that has not managed to challenge hardware. But then Android's key selling point has always been about "choice". Blackberry like Android phones ? check. Android phones that feel like Windows UI ? Check, $30 phones? check, phones that look more like gaming devices ? check.
draw_down 10 hours ago 0 replies      
> Googles First Real Threat to Apples iPhone

That's funny, I thought all the ones before it were "iPhone killers". Hmmmmm.

mtgx 11 hours ago 0 replies      
They have a live presentation now:


dudul 11 hours ago 1 reply      
Anyone knows if this is gonna be the "prime" phone of choice for Project Fi in replacement of the Nexus 6P and 5X?
Ologn 11 hours ago 1 reply      
The bottom of the article says the phone is assembled by HTC. I suppose the difference between this and the Google Nexus phones is that Google is no longer doing hardware design in collaboration with outside manufacturers. However, collaboration in hardware assembly continues.
amyjess 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm seriously disappointed in this.

Fortunately, I'm not feeling the need to replace my Nexus 5X yet. Maybe next summer when the Moto G5 comes out, I'll see if it's worth switching -- or maybe I'll wait until 2018 and get a Moto G6, but I'm not getting a Pixel.

And if some key apps I use ever end up getting ported to Windows 10 Mobile, I'll consider Microsoft for my next device. But that'll be a ways off: I rely on Lyft to get around, so I can't use a phone that has no Lyft app.

ljf 11 hours ago 4 replies      
<vaguely off topic rant about Android 7.1 - but relevant as they control the hardware and specs here>

Why is Google still insisting (with 7.1) that the 3 navigation keys (menu, home and back) need to be on screen - either wasting real-estate or annoyingly hidden - requiring a swipe to expose them?

Old Android phones used to have hardware or software keys that were off the bottom of the screen - and in fact my Xiaomi Mi Note Pro still does - it frees the entire screen for content. If the '3 keys' regularly changed meaning I could see the need to have them 'on screen' but they don't.

chirau 10 hours ago 2 replies      
I'd have thought that with innovation and greater availability of components, smartphones would become cheaper. Instead, I experience quite the opposite with all these new devices.
vamur 9 hours ago 1 reply      
No threat to either iPhone or Note 7 and incredibly overpriced. Pixel is basically a mid-range phone for high-end price. OnePlus 3 for $400 in mid-range or Meizu M3 Note for $140 in lower end are much better deals.
esotericsean 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Apple innovates while other companies imitate. This looks exactly like an iPhone without a home button. I'm sure the hardware is fast and it's probably a very good phone. But what does it do better than iPhone? Unless it runs iOS, there's no way Android will ever catch up to iPhone.
stuxnet79 11 hours ago 1 reply      
The new Raspian update is also called Pixel, I wonder if Google cares enough to sue the hell out of whoever decided on that name.
Introducing HTTP Tracing golang.org
101 points by JepZ  6 hours ago   40 comments top 4
buckhx 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I haven't explicitly needed HTTP tracing yet, but am glad to see it's added to the tool set specifically for debugging DNS which can be tough.

On another note, it's pretty f*cking lame that the only discussion in this post is a tangent about error checking and not even remotely related to the content.

Karupan 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Great to see this as part of the core language! Say what you will about Go, the core libs and tools are well designed and really useful.
tpl 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I wonder if this will help any of the opentracing work? Cool to see this added as a first class citizen.
fbreduc 5 hours ago 2 replies      
every time err != nil take a drink
Drakon: a visual language for specifications from the Russian space program sourceforge.net
175 points by GuiA  9 hours ago   22 comments top 14
hbt 7 hours ago 0 replies      
This is great work. FYI spacex uses LabView http://www.ni.com/labview/ (amongst other stuff)

I wonder if you could use annotations to manage the visuals e.g http://drakon-editor.sourceforge.net/folder-night.pngYou'd have an inline annotation to separate the code blocks and generate the visuals so you don't have to maintain/update two places.Any tool that does that?

Also, integrating different level of complexity using system 1,2,3 (from https://www.amazon.ca/Software-Requirements-3rd-Karl-Wiegers...) to represent user flow diagram in addition to flow charts.

Flow charts get confusing after some complexity. Useless if you want to represent multiple actors + messages. Systems/sub-systems view.

There is a tendency to think of visual programming as an all or nothing. Either we have all text or all visual. As long as it is "Write once, update everywhere", visual tools can be useful in navigating new code bases, obtaining insights and quickly understanding a piece of code.

The problem though is they often require maitenance and get out of date with reality (even if it is comments/annotations)

buskila 9 minutes ago 0 replies      
Is there something similar to mermaid or graphviz, a DSL of sorts, to generate similar diagrams?
aaawow 5 hours ago 0 replies      
The whole Buran spacecraft https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Buran_(spacecraft) was designed using Drakon
ivan_ah 7 hours ago 0 replies      
This is very cool. I like this example which uses diagram for general logic flow, but mixes raw code for details: http://drakon-editor.sourceforge.net/folder-night.png
denfromufa 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Blockly developed by Google is adopted by many educational projects:


Go to "Built with Blockly" which includes BBC MicroBit, MIT App Inventor, code.org, LEGO (3rd party), PBS, Minecraft (3rd party), etc.

snerbles 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Visual languages are also often used in industrial applications, usually in the form of ladder logic instead of flow diagrams.
smaili 7 hours ago 1 reply      
This is the first time in a while I've seen an active project on SourceForge.
kelvin0 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Humm, this looks and awful like flow charts? What am I missing (apart from the 'Insertion' of macro charts)? All the rules about not 'breaking' visual cohesiveness seem like a plus, although not groundbreaking either. Don't want to sound negative, maybe someone can correct me?
qwertyuiop924 3 hours ago 2 replies      
I'm really confused as to what exactly this is, but it looks cool. It seems to be some kind of visual programming environment, which I'm usually against on principle (BOO non-standard binary formats! ASCII text is the closest we can get to future-proof, and thus what we should be storing our source code! Down with journald! you should know the drill by now...) But interesting ideas are always interesting, so I'm willing to look into it, even if I don't like the look of it.
asciihacker 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Also see PlantUML, which also has experimental code generation tech.
hulahoof 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Can anyone explain the advantage of a specification like this over something like UML?
asciihacker 7 hours ago 1 reply      
I fought like hell to install all the deps before throwing in the towel.
javajosh 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Pretty cool, but one nitpick: when you save as SVG it embeds the font as a base64 encoded url(). Neat trick, but it bloats the file a lot. A simple chart with a few elements ends up being 250kB. Hand-written SVG would be two orders-of-magnitude less than that.
ilaksh 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Is there some overlap between these types of tools and http://martinfowler.com/bliki/ProjectionalEditing.html
Linux Kernel Use-After-Free Remote Code Execution Vulnerability securityfocus.com
47 points by DiabloD3  4 hours ago   33 comments top 6
micaksica 4 hours ago 1 reply      
What happened to make this updated? This was patched in March upstream, and it appears it made it into an Android patch release a couple of days ago.

[1] http://git.kernel.org/cgit/linux/kernel/git/torvalds/linux.g...

[2] https://source.android.com/security/bulletin/2016-10-01.html

IgorPartola 4 hours ago 7 replies      
Obligatory comment so nobody else has to: C is a terrible language for security and we must abandon it immediately. Anyone that uses it has clearly not heard of Go/Rust/Haskell. We should just abandon the Linux kernel and start from scratch. And we can unit test the shit out of it to avoid security vulnerabilities. Hasn't Heartbleed taught us anything? MongoDB is web scale. Ron Paul 2012.
mkj 2 hours ago 1 reply      
What circumstances are needed for this to be exploitable? Wondering if iptables could mitigate for systems where upgrading the kernel is non-trivial.
Animats 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Isn't the Linux kernel tested with a zeroing storage allocator?
qwertyuiop924 3 hours ago 3 replies      
No. Stop it. I don't want to hear that we should be re-writing all of our systems code in Rust, or that Oberon and the Wirth family should have won, or that C is crap, and Linux should die, and be re-written, or that this wouldn't have happened if we had all just adopted the Lisp Machine.

We've all heard it already, we all know what you'll say. So skip the smug post, and go do something productive. Like writing a really cool piece of new code, or fixing a use-after-free, or posting something more insightful, or inventing a new type of shoelace that doesn't come untied until you want it to.

astrodust 2 hours ago 1 reply      
So what can one do about this? What amount of panic is appropriate?
Why Podcasting Still Needs RSS radiopublic.com
178 points by chrisrhoden  10 hours ago   86 comments top 11
jasonkostempski 8 hours ago 6 replies      
Everything still needs RSS! There is no better way of getting notifications. I don't have to create an account, I don't have to give out my email and I don't have to re-search through everything I've already read or decided not to read. I canceled my YouTube account a while ago, realized I sort of missed a few channels and found myself just trying to remember to check their pages every now and then. Then I realized YouTube channels actually have hidden RSS feeds. The experience is better than what you get with a YouTube account. The number you see next to the channel actually indicates the number of videos uploaded to that channel that you haven't seen yet. I still have no clue what the numbers next to subscribed channels meant when I had an account.
tracker1 10 hours ago 13 replies      
For that matter, I think RSS is still needed for blog aggregation and reading... Since google killed reader and iGoogle, I find myself only reading a handful of sites regularly.
gkya 7 hours ago 0 replies      
RSS/Atom are second to e-mail in being called obsolete every other day with a million contender technologies (Flipboard, Google Currents, whatever else came out this morning...) yet still surviving and indeed being as relevant as what you're gonna have for the dinner today. So logical it's natural.
smagch 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm using feedly.com for reading tech blogs. For long articles, I use getpocket.com to read it later instead of Feedly's 'Read it later' feature.

Both service give me the hints of popularity of the article. Pocket adds 'Best Of' label for popular articles. Feedly adds a number of 'Read it later'.

I'm currently using Feedly for subscribing podcasts. But it's not handy to use. If RadioPublic give me the same feature that feedly and pocket provide for the sake of podcast listening, I'll definitely use the service.

erikrothoff 6 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm one of the thousand who run an RSS service (feeder.co), and we're still growing! From speaking with our users, it's evident that the uses for RSS and similar open standards are endless.

It can make you feel really small at times when the product you are creating is standing on the shoulder of not-so-benevolent giants. For example, Craigslist apparently hates when somebody actually uses their feeds. They IP ban anyone doing a pretty regular amount of requests per hour, and are completely impossible to get ahold of. (have you seen their forum?) When our spiders are blocked by Craigslist, our users suffer. And then they come to us asking why feeder doesn't work...

lkrubner 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Those of you who want the history of RSS (and why Atom seemed necessary) might be interested by a long article I wrote in 2006:

RSS has been damaged by in-fighting among those who advocate for it


firasd 8 hours ago 3 replies      
I'm making a podcast discovery app (info in profile). My plan is, if I (hopefully!) get enough critical mass to get podcast publishers' attention, to switch over to preferring Atom feeds. Just because Apple made a decision in 2005 doesn't mean we have to be stuck with it.

I hope, given the combined efforts of people in this space, we can break podcasts out of the grip of the iTunes store (e.g. Why do podcasts need reviews? Have you ever seen a Youtube video where someone urged you to leave a review? It's because reviews catch the attention of iTunes store curators, but Youtube does more automated personalization.)

chrisrhoden 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Author of the post here, happy to provide any clarification or answer questions!
Dowwie 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Of course podcasting still needs RSS. I don't use itunes, stitcher, nor any app for a specific platform (soundcloud).
PretzelFisch 9 hours ago 3 replies      
Why would you need a GUID? When you have a URL?
monksy 8 hours ago 3 replies      
This seems like an easy problem to resolve. Revive the standards body for this protocol. Create a new group that will define the spec and schema, convince others to use this and you're good to go. Unless you need to remove elements, it should be pretty simple to expand on what's already there.

To me it doesn't make any sense to bemoan that it is in XML.. so what. It includes a schema and can be validated. That's a good thing. Don't throw json into this.

When Roman Barbarians Met the Asian Enlightenment medium.com
118 points by diodorus  9 hours ago   74 comments top 14
Chathamization 2 hours ago 1 reply      
As others have pointed out, this article is riddled with errors. To give just one example, the picture he posts of a supposed "temple of the Qin dynasty, circa 200 BCE" appears to actually be the Nanqiao (south bridge) in Chengdu, which seems to have been built in 1878 AD. I can give a list of some of the other errors I noticed if anyone likes (and there are probably many I missed); either way, I wouldn't recommend anyone take any of this as fact.

Beyond the factual errors, there are numerous unsubstantiated claims. I don't know how one would come up with an objective way to measure philosophy and poetry. How much philosophy and poetry from (for example) the Kushan Empire has survived? What's the background for the claim that its philosophy and poetry dwarfed the Roman Empire's?

The idea that we should pay more attention to many of the other polities in history is a valid one. But I don't think an article filled with errors and baseless claims is terribly useful.

woodruffw 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I greatly enjoyed reading this, although the author takes (more than) a few liberties when comparing the Roman and the various Asian empires:

> Imperial Rome was a dim backwater by comparison

This is a slippery claim, especially when you consider how long the Roman Empire lasted and how widely its relevance and regional dominance swayed over its lifetime. During its peak, Rome spanned dozens of cultures on two separate continents and liberally imported other peoples and norms into their own. That's not to say that the contemporaneous Chinese empires didn't do the same, only that the distinction between the two in this aspect is less stark than the author would have us believe.

> Romes legions were fighting fiercely for control of Gaul (modern France and Germany), Britain, Egypt, and various parts of the Balkans; while a succession of (often unfairly maligned) emperors scrambled to hold Rome together through an endless series of famines, wars with the East, coups dtat, refugee crises, and revolts.

This is not strictly false, but it's again muddied by the extreme duration of the Roman Empire. The Pax Romana lasted for two centuries, spanned three major political dynasties, and is generally the period people think of when they think of the Roman Empire (or Rome in general). By the time the Chinese Empire(s) had begun trading silk with the Roman Empire, peace was already the norm in the Roman world.

The author is correct in his characterization of Rome as less artistically and creatively inclined than it perhaps ought to have been, considering its size and wealth during its peak. That being said, Rome's accomplishments in architecture and culture are visible (and audible) everywhere in the Western world. I don't think that any one Eastern power of the same period can claim such cultural permanence to any comparable degree.

platz 29 minutes ago 0 replies      
Author admits he wrote a spin-piece

"So why, then, would I write such an anti-Roman article? Because Im trying to give people whove received a eurocentric education a different set of goggles to try on: the lenses of Romas Asian contemporaries, some of whom genuinely did believe the Romans were primitive and unclean. This is a perspective we almost never hear about in the West, and I think its an interesting one to ponder.I do my best to keep my facts straightbut all the historical stories I write are colored heavily by my own interpretations and blind spots. My favorite history writers are Will Durant and Pierre Briant. I realize that this kind of interpretive historical writing is now considered obsoletemaybe even dangerously slanted and over-simplisticbut its the stuff I enjoy reading, so its what I write."

bhritchie 6 hours ago 5 replies      
> Romes Asian contemporaries completely dwarfed Rome in almost every respect: heritage, population, cultural diversity, technology, architecture, medicine, philosophy, poetry

> its always made me sad to think of the Romans being largely cut off from the main action on the world stage.

This is incorrect because the Romans knew about Greece - in fact they ran the place.

The Romans were barbarians, in a sense, I suppose, just compared to Greece. They didn't do anything that could compare to the Greeks in math or philosophy, for example. And by, say, the fall of the Roman Empire, India had far more interesting philosophy (sadly little known because not very accessible) than Rome, so sure, "Asia" had better philosophy than Rome (really India specifically). But it turns out that Indian philosophy was heavily inspired by Greek philosophy (highly recommend The Shape of Ancient Thought for anyone interested in Greek-Indian intellectual exchange), and I wouldn't say it was better (though I wouldn't say it was worse either). Rome wasn't cut off from the best of philosophy - they were just too practical to care much about it - and they knew it and said as much.

Philosophy I know something about - I dropped out of the PhD program at Harvard after studying quite a bit of it. But some of the other parts seem dubious or of questionable importance. Architecture? The Romans look pretty good to me there, and I mean they even used concrete. Medicine? Let's be serious: almost all medicine before the 1800's was placebo. Population? So what?

danblick 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I've been enjoying the "History of the Ancient World" lecture series on Amazon streaming. (I also really enjoyed the "Decisive Battles" series by the same professor Greg Aldrete.)

The article claims that China dwarfed Rome, but the course actually claims that Rome and China under the Han dynasty were about equal in many ways (geographic size and population). There are several lectures comparing the two.


diodorus 9 hours ago 3 replies      
Disclaimer: yes, there is some annoying, borderline clickbait-y language in this article, including in the title. And yes, it is badly overstating things to claim, as the author does, that the Roman empire was not a "dim backwater by comparison" to Asia. That said, lots of interesting information and imagery here that seemed worth a share.
gmarx 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Many of the items the author claims China dwarfed Rome on seem pretty subjective. Philosophy and poetry?

I didn't read very far past this. I am under the impression that Rome was pretty technologically sophisticated, even beyond what we normally picture. Does the author go on to compare tech sophistication with examples?

jond3k 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I'm suspicious of any article that's widely slated by a community yet still trending.

I feel there's a market need for a browser plugin that lets you filter out clickbait factories like his employers and all the dirty tricks they use to hijack our attention. There's no way we can keep up with them without computer assistance.

arcanus 5 hours ago 0 replies      
> The Palace of Versailles is, in its way, one of the last dim shadows of the Han court

Lots of arguments are a pretty big stretch in this article.

Retric 6 hours ago 0 replies      
This really overstates things, there was regular contact between Europe and China back several thousand years before Rome. It's not actually that far on foot, and rumor can easially travel both ways even if few people make the trip.
jordanlev 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Dear Medium engineers (if any of you happen to see this): why must localStorage and/or cookies be enabled in my browser for images to be displayed on your site?
kmicklas 7 hours ago 3 replies      
> Imagine if you could visit Rome today, and find it still populated by Latin-speaking, toga-wearing Romans.

Maybe no more togas, but isn't this basically true? While for example Spanish is Basquified and French is Germanicified, modern Italian is basically the direct descendant of classical Latin just as Mandarin is a direct descendant of classical Chinese.

vacri 6 hours ago 0 replies      
> During the Roman period, the Asian continent was by far the wealthiest, most advanced, most culturally diverse place on earth.

'The Asian continent' is not a nation, and as a bonus, it also includes Rome. How much does it include Rome? Well, the last thousand-odd years of Rome's run were basically in Asia (who we call the Byzantines, they called themselves Romans).

It's also weird to proclaim 'cultural diversity' as a symbol of power in that period, when it was those who could spread their core culture that were the most powerful. Weirdly, the article later expounds on the cultural homogeneity of the Chinese as their strength. So Rome is weak because of lack of cultural diversity, and China is strong because of lack of cultural diversity?

Ultimately the article doesn't even discuss what it suggests in the title - it expounds upon those wonderous exotic peoples, and then sadly shakes its head on how two travelers must have felt dying in the 'backwater' of the Roman empire (of course, we'll neatly ignore that they were also found in a Roman backwater to begin with - Britannia wasn't exactly paved with marble). No real discussion on the meeting of the cultures.

China's historical culture and power is often overlooked by us westerners, sure, but the article is too much "gosh, those exotics!" for me.

Ericson2314 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I would have enjoyed this more had it more nuance. Even if you don't know squat about history, its important to get of this single-dimension "who was greatest" + Western self-loathing (and ironic combo too).


From what I learned in school and remember off the top of my head:

- Rome was an ugly place, but they kind of knew it hence upper classes went Greek and the eastern empire became more prominent. Romans were great for trade, but their empire could only be held together by growth (plunder) and that's not sustainable

- Greeks were more civilized, but clearly sucked at empire building (Alexander is Macedon). Hellenization shows that even if he messed up Persia, the culture was influential.

- China couldn't really expand because it is so isolated geographically, so it is harder to for it to influence other places. But this had an effect that arguably they were less interested in conquest and influence (outside of uniting accessible areas) - Confucianism raggin' on merchants, artisans, and whatever else might form a middle class - Ming treasure fleet might have reached Africa, but no fucks given.

- Mesopotamia did do great things back in the day, but by 1000 was past its peak (as was the Levant). Interesting how ethnic identity, especially among Semitic groups, seems quiet fluid, though invading armies + Islam explains a lot of that.

- Persions were not at all taught (before college). Seriously wtf, we covered everybody else said to be skipped in American education. But I later learned in college that perhaps they were more rural/feudal than eastern Mediterranean, (the article says more Urban than Rome, but then makes a bunch of medieval comparisons, so who knows?)

- While we didn't cover it. I read about Kush/Bactria on Wikipedia (and the other Kush hah (south of Egypt not what you were thinking hah)). I can kind of understand that as an influenCED rather than influencING kingdom it was easy to gloss over (oh we talked about the silk road, but usually in the abstract). But I do like covering it as concrete evidence that those things which were said to be influential actually were.

Basically, even in fairly leftist history curricula, it was all about who does the most trade, most urbanization, and most interaction with neighbors. Any overly courtly civilization was suspect.

Arguably then the same things that made China so dominant early on and steady thereafter also lead to its eventual falling behind. Central Eurasia might have become the dominant world culture except the Europeans got a huge steroid injection with easiest access a humongous place you could depopulate by coughing.


Author asked in a caption about better timelines. I inherited some company's Hammond's "Graphic History of Mankind" from the 1950s. Some things there should definitely be revised (though they kept on extending and publishing the timeline until at least 2000) but the concept is great.

Somebody should make some crazy SVG thing where as you zoom in more details would appear. Make it procedural generated and open source so non-technical history buffs can send you PRs (or figure out how to scrape Wikipedia). I'll be forever grateful.

Show HN: Dijkstras algorithm in the web browser with OpenStreetMap christophercliff.com
67 points by ctcliff  6 hours ago   18 comments top 9
teraflop 5 hours ago 3 replies      
Anyone who's interested in this might want to check out the OSRM project, which uses a much more complex routing algorithm to efficiently find paths through the entire OSM graph, instead of just a tiny subset: http://map.project-osrm.org/

(Also, it's open-source.)

kevan 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Related: A few friends and I built a similar visualization for pathfinding algorithms with OSM data for an AI class:


It shows how nodes are explored on the map with different search algorithms and the optimal path once the search is completed.

maxerickson 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Small discussion of a previous routing algorithm implemented in a similar way:


mgalka 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Very cool project. Great presentation.
ddlutz 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Have you tried this with A* and seen any performance differences? This is very fast in the browser with a small map, but I imagine with a much larger map the difference would be noticeable.
_RPM 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Interesting. It'd be pretty cooler if this was free software though.
d33 6 hours ago 0 replies      
How about an open source version?
soperj 6 hours ago 1 reply      
this is unbelievably relevant for me right now, because this is exactly what I was looking to implement. Any gotchas? Lessons learned?
jlarocco 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Bug report: if I open this in a background tab the map is zoomed in very close at a weird spot near the middle and it's confusing what is being demonstrated.
How to Think Like a Computer Scientist: Interactive Edition interactivepython.org
71 points by ics  7 hours ago   5 comments top 5
aclimatt 1 hour ago 0 replies      
This was my first book on learning how to program (the original edition) and I couldn't recommend a better resource for beginners. I tried for a long time to learn how actual programming worked instead of just wiring together HTML (before CSS was even a thing) and this really helped.

It taught me how /programming/ worked as told through Python, instead of how Python worked. Even for new engineers looking to learn JavaScript or something else first, I highly recommend starting here, because with this as your foundation, you're set.

z4chj 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I have found this resource to be extremely useful in going over data structures and algorithms to prepare for interviews. Although the author doesn't always conform to the standard implementations of certain data structures and often is overly verbose in his code, it is a pretty robust treatment of the basics
miobrien 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Nice! This looks really cool. Anyone familiar with the other titles on the site?


zoom6628 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Brilliant! This will be a huge help to aspiring programmers. The PDF link i used to send to people and now i can point them to this. Oh and i might spend a few hours doing some of it myself - old dog learning new tricks.
mden 3 hours ago 0 replies      
This is incredibly cool! I wonder how useful it really is for people not familiar with the subject already. Anyone new to Python care to chime in?
An Introduction to Machine Learning in Julia juliacomputing.com
106 points by one-more-minute  9 hours ago   9 comments top 3
shoyer 7 hours ago 1 reply      
This is a cute example, but it misses the mark. The efficient way to do fast nearest neighbor search is with a search tree (e.g., KDTree or BallTree), which brings down query time from linear to logarithmic in the number of items.
ovis 6 hours ago 0 replies      
I was a bit disappointed that there wasn't much detail given about the problem being attacked, and no information about the results other than some timings. Sure, Julia's nice, but what are we looking at here?

Also, there's talk about how slick this is when using IJulia notebooks. It would be cool to provide a link to an actual notebook.

MrQuincle 6 hours ago 3 replies      
It would be great to see the difference with other languages. So why Julia and not R, or Matlab, or Python? Is it more elegant, more concise, does it have more libraries, can it be run in parallel better? That would be great to know!
Ask HN: What's your favorite tech talk?
576 points by mngutterman  10 hours ago   202 comments top 132
Malic 9 hours ago 6 replies      
grin Here we go...

For "laughing at ourselves" and oddities of computer languages, there is "Wat" by Gary Bernhardt:https://www.destroyallsoftware.com/talks/wat

For an opinion on the Sun to Oracle transition, there is "Fork Yeah! The Rise and Development of illumos" by Bryan M. Cantrill, Joyent. His Larry Ellison rant makes me smile:https://youtu.be/-zRN7XLCRhc?t=33m00s

peterkelly 9 hours ago 3 replies      
"The Last Lecture", by Randy Pausch. While it's by a well-known CS professor (who was dying of cancer at the time), it's not a technical talk, but about life and work, and how to make the most of it. One of the most inspiring things I've ever seen.


Another fantastic one is Steve Jobs' 2005 commencement address at Stanford:


azeirah 10 hours ago 4 replies      
By far my favorite talk is and has been for a very long time Bret Victor's inventing on principle, for me, nothing comes close, except for some of his other work I suppose.


pacomerh 7 hours ago 2 replies      
arjunnarayan 10 hours ago 2 replies      
> what's that one talk that changed the way you think and you feel everyone needs to see?

Growing a Language by Guy Steele.


krsna 7 minutes ago 0 replies      
"When We Build" by Wilson Miner: https://vimeo.com/34017777

It completely changed my perspective on how design shapes our world.

qwertyuiop924 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Linus Torvalds on Git. It's funny, and it really does tell you a lot about why Git is the way it is.

Bryan Cantrill's 2011(?) Lightning talk on ta(1). It's fascinating, but it also shows you just long-lived software can be.

Randall Munroe's Talk on the JoCo cruise. Because it's effing hilarious, and teaches everybody the important art of building a ball pit inside your house.

Finally, an honorable mention to three papers that don't qualify, but which I think you should read anyway.

Reflections on Trusting Trust: This is required reading for... Everybody. It describes a particularly insidious hack, and discusses its ramifications for security.

In the Beginning Was The Command Line: If you want get into interface design, programming, or ever work with computers, this is required. It's a snapshot of the 90's, a discussion of operating systems, corporations, and society as we know it. But more importantly, it's a crash course in abstractions. Before you can contribute to the infinite stack of turtles we programmers work with, you should probably understand why it's there, and what it is.

Finally, The Lambda Papers. If you've ever wondered how abstractions work, and how they're modeled... This won't really tell you, not totally, but they'll give you something cool to think about, and give you the start of an answer.

rdtsc 8 hours ago 2 replies      
Pretty much anything by David Beazley or Bryan Cantrill

Discovering Python (David Beazley)


David finds himself in a dark vault, stuck for months sifting through deliberately obfuscated pile of old code and manuals. All seems lost, but then he finds Python on a vanilla Windows box.

Fork Yeah! The Rise and Development of Illumos (Bryan Cantrill)


History of Illumos, SunOS, Solaris, the horribleness of Oracle

These are not technical, but they are entertaining.

madmax108 9 hours ago 1 reply      
I see a couple of Bret Victor videos here, but the one I loved the most was "The Future of Programming":https://vimeo.com/71278954

Really set me on a path of re-examining older ideas (and research papers), for applications that are much more contemporary. Absolute stunner of a talk (and the whole 70's gag was really great).

"What would be really sad is if in 40 years we were still writing code in procedures in text files" :(

ChicagoBoy11 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Peter Norvig on the "Unreasonable Effectiveness of Data"https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yvDCzhbjYWs

I think it is so easy for us to discuss the impact of big data and quickly get into the weeds, but I think in this talk Norvig does an especially great job in making you truly appreciate the seismic impact that the availability of massive quantities of data can have on your way to think about problems. This is one of the first things I ever saw of him, and I've been in love ever since.

KhalilK 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Bret Victor - Inventing on Principle https://vimeo.com/36579366

We can argue on some of the points he makes but we can all agree that the demos are very impressive.

cgag 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Simple made easy is my favorite but I'd also just generally recommend everything by Rich Hickey, Gary Bernhardt, and Jonathan Blow.
sebg 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Some previous posts:

"Ask HN: What are your favorite videos relevant to entrepreneurs or startups?" -> https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=7656003

"Ask HN: Favorite talks [video] on software development?" -> https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=8105732

jonbaer 43 minutes ago 0 replies      
Richard Feynman: Fun to Imagine (BBC Series, 1983) - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v3pYRn5j7oI&list=PL04B3F5636...
pdkl95 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Y Not - Adventures in Functional Programming by Jim Weirich https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FITJMJjASUs

The Coming Civil War over General Purpose Computing by Cory Doctorow http://boingboing.net/2012/08/23/civilwar.html

Cybersecurity as Realpolitik by Dan Geer https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nT-TGvYOBpIhttp://geer.tinho.net/geer.blackhat.6viii14.txt

jjp 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Hans Rosling's original Ted talk, which has so much passion about data visualisation and making information accessible - http://www.ted.com/talks/hans_rosling_shows_the_best_stats_y...
wyldfire 33 minutes ago 0 replies      
corysama 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Alan Kay is my favorite tech curmudgeon.

1) Alan Kay: Is it really "Complex"? Or did we just make it "Complicated"https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ubaX1Smg6pY

Take note that he is not giving the talk using Window & PowerPoint, or even Linux & OpenOffice. 100% of the software on his laptop are original products of his group. Including the productivity suite, the OS, the compilers and the languages being compiled.

2) Bret Victor: The Future of Programminghttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IGMiCo2Ntsc

kethinov 9 hours ago 2 replies      
My current favorite is Jake Archibald's offline-first progressive web apps talk at Google I/O 2016: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cmGr0RszHc8

It's a terrific window into the future of web application development.

dcre 9 hours ago 0 replies      
I already see a bunch of people posting and upvoting Bret Victor's "Inventing on Principle", but I think his "Media for Thinking the Unthinkable" is better.


grose 8 hours ago 2 replies      
Lexical Scanning in Go by Rob Pike


I love everything about this talk. It walks you through building a lexer from scratch in a simple and elegant way, through a very interesting use of coroutines. I appreciate the bits of humor in the talk as well.

okket 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Linus Torvalds talk about git


sssilver 9 hours ago 2 replies      
Raymond Hettinger's talk about good code reviews -- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wf-BqAjZb8M

Carmack's talk about functional programming and Haskell -- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1PhArSujR_A

Jack Diederich's "Stop Writing Classes" -- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o9pEzgHorH0

All with a good sense of humor.

myth_buster 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Richard Hamming's You and your research.


SonOfLilit 2 hours ago 0 replies      
"The Birth and Death of Javascript" by Gary Bernhardt (probably the most talented speaker on tech) at https://www.destroyallsoftware.com/talks/the-birth-and-death...

I'd mention Bret Victor's work before (maybe Drawing Dynamic Visualizations?), but Bret cheats by writing a lot of amazing code for each of his talks, and most of the awesome comes from the code, not his (great nonetheless) ability as a speaker.

Then you have John Carmack's QuakeCon keynotes, which are just hours and hours of him talking about things that interest him in random order, and it still beats most well prepared talks because of how good he is at what he does. HN will probably like best the one where he talks about his experiments in VR, a bit before he joined Oculus (stuff like when he tried shining a laser into his eyes to project an image, against the recommendations of... well, everyone): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wt-iVFxgFWk

kornish 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Right now it's Boundaries, by Gary Bernhardt. He details the importance of separating out pure business logic from the plumbing code that brings it input and directs its output ("functional core, imperative shell").


raglof 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Bret Victor's "Inventing on Principle" [1] or Rob Pike's "Concurrency Is Not Parallelism" [2].

[1] https://vimeo.com/36579366[2] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cN_DpYBzKso

petr_tik 6 hours ago 1 reply      
1Martin Thompson busting myths about hardware and explaining why it's important to know. Mechanical sympathy makes you better, because you know how the code actually runs on the machine and interacts with different layers of memory


2Matt Godbolt (the man behind GCC explorer) - Emulating a 6502 system in Javascript

Great talk about BBC micro and much more


3Matt Adereth - Clojure/typing

History of keyboards and a custom keyboard written in Clojure


I like the 3 for their content and how each speaker presented the background and their project/hack/ideas.

Highly recommend

johnhenry 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Douglass Crockford's series of 8 videos, "Crockford on JavaScript" really helped me gain a understanding of the language and a better understanding of programming in general. If you don't like or understand JavaScript, this will definitely change that. He's an excellent speaker and the talks are quite enjoyable. Here is the first video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AoB2r1QxIAY. If you like it, the other 7 are available in the suggested section.
anondon 10 hours ago 0 replies      

This was the first time I watched pg give a talk. It was the talk that brought about the biggest change in the way I think about the world, my ambitions. The talk was the beginning, reading more about pg, I came across his essays and then HN.

danblick 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I think Alan Kay's "Doing with Images makes Symbols" talk from 1987 might make my list:


It's mostly about the history of HCI up to that point.

lukewrites 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Mine is "The Internet With A Human Face", by Maciej Cegowskihttp://idlewords.com/talks/internet_with_a_human_face.htm

It's what I direct non-technical people to when they ask what the big deal about internet privacy is.

bajsejohannes 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Jon Blow's "How to program independent games": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JjDsP5n2kSM

It's about much more than games. To me, it's about identifying and not doing unnecessary work.

The second half of this video is a Q&A session, which I would skip.

intelekshual 9 hours ago 0 replies      
indexerror 8 hours ago 0 replies      
My favourite talk is:

"What the heck is the event loop anyway?" by Philip Roberts


runT1ME 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Propositions as Types: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IOiZatlZtGU

I think this can really really change how we look at everyday programming tasks everywhere from the type of tooling we choose to how we approach problems.

monksy 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Agile Is Dead: By Dave Thomas https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a-BOSpxYJ9M

I love his talks for a few reasons:

Often times...

 1. He's anti-hype 2. He's contriversal 3. He's right.

cconroy 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Doing with Images Makes Symbols, Alan Kay.https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=p2LZLYcu_JY

The title says it all. It's really a summary of several software systems with good ideas abound. I believe all the software is 80s or prior.

Edit: I also forgot to mention some psychology and math.

philbo 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Joshua Bloch: How to design a good API and why it matters


archagon 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I don't really have a favorite, but recently I really enjoyed "8 Bit & '8 Bitish' Graphics-Outside the Box"[1]. The name didn't catch my eye, but then I learned that it was a lecture by the very same Mark Ferrari who made these[2] unbelievably beautiful color-cycling pixel art animations. Master of his art definitely worth listening to!

[1]: http://www.gdcvault.com/play/1023586/8-Bit-8-Bitish-Graphics

[2]: http://www.effectgames.com/demos/canvascycle/

recmend 2 hours ago 0 replies      
People don't buy what you do, they buy why you do it by Simon Sinekhttps://www.ted.com/talks/simon_sinek_how_great_leaders_insp...
nommm-nommm 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Elevator hacking (seriously) https://youtu.be/oHf1vD5_b5I
jack9 6 hours ago 0 replies      
What We Actually Know About Software Development, and Why We Believe Its True


Keyframe 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Too many great talks to mention, but if I had to pick one it would be Ted Nelson's few minutes of demonstration of Xanadu. Demonstration is lacking, but what he said about the concept/idea is what stuck with me. Deep and referential(?) content. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=En_2T7KH6RA
VLM 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Aside from the typical, I watched Damian Conway "Standing on the shoulders of giants" from YAPC 2016 last week and found it interesting. Always fun to see a modern feature full language collide with history and algorithms.


agumonkey 10 hours ago 4 replies      
After lots of talks I started going to the library and found out it's a lot more effective to grow knowledge. Maybe I'm too ADHD-able when watching videos.
shahar2k 6 hours ago 0 replies      
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sI1C9DyIi_8 "the greatest shortcoming of the human race is our inability to understand the exponential function"

not a high tech talk, or particularly technically complex, but it shows a common blindspot in a way that is both clear, enlightening and frightening.

IntelMiner 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Not quite as low-level as some of the other talks, but I love watching LazyGameReviews "Tech Tales" series when ever a new one comes out

It's fairly high level, but he really burrows into computer history and it's simply fascinating to watch, helped by the fact the person is extremely passionate about what he does https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gB1vrRFJI1Q&list=PLbBZM9aUMs...

mwcampbell 7 hours ago 1 reply      
A few of Bryan Cantrill's talks have already been mentioned here, but this one about DTrace, from 2007, is a gem:


I especially like the part in the middle where he tells the story of how a an awful GNOME applet was killing a Sun Ray server, and how he tracked down the culprit with DTrace.

taeric 7 hours ago 0 replies      
https://www.infoq.com/presentations/We-Really-Dont-Know-How-... is by far my favorite technical talk right now.

Sussman goes over some interesting ideas on the provenance of calculations and asserts that "exact" computation is possibly not worth the cost.

utefan001 10 hours ago 0 replies      

InfoSec talk. Best lines from talk..

"Basic lessons are not learned such as know thy network"

"You have to learn your network, you have to have skin in the game"

"Defense is hard, breaking stuff is easy"

"If you serve the God's of compliance you will fail"

"Compliance is not security"

"Perfect solution fallacy"

"People are falling over themselves not to change, shooting great ideas down."

"Perfect attacker fallacy, they don't exist, they are a myth!"

"Attackers are not that good because they don't need to be that good."

Speaker is Eric Conrad

jordanlev 8 hours ago 0 replies      
As a web developer, my favorite recent talk is "Modern Layouts: Getting Out of Our Ruts" by Jen Simmons


...very inspiring if you're bored with the way websites have been looking for the past few years.

evilgeneralist 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Can I just say anything with Bryan Cantrill?
thegeekpirate 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Black Hat USA 2015 - The Memory Sinkhole Unleashing An X86 Design Flaw Allowing Universal Privilege


pradeepchhetri 8 hours ago 2 replies      
One of my favourite talks is by James Mickens at Monitorama 2015: https://vimeo.com/95066828
JoshTriplett 9 hours ago 1 reply      
For reasons completely unrelated to the content, Identity 2.0: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RrpajcAgR1E

Watching that talk brought me over to the "a picture or a few words per slide" style of presentation, rather than the "wall of bullet points" style. It also helped me move from "stop talking, change slides, start talking again", to smooth transitions while talking.

lewisl9029 3 hours ago 0 replies      
The Front-end Architecture Revolution by David Nolen: http://www.ustream.tv/recorded/61483785

It completely changed the way I approach front-end development (Not that talk in particular though. I saw an earlier, similar talk on Youtube but this one has much higher quality).

raspasov 5 hours ago 0 replies      
mrob 6 hours ago 0 replies      
CppCon 2014: Mike Acton "Data-Oriented Design and C++"


Detailed discussion of how to get the most out of your memory cache and memory bandwidth, focusing on games development. It's full of examples of how understanding both the problem and the hardware, and working in a straightforward way, can give you huge performance gains over using poorly suited abstractions. It shows how low level thinking is still important even with modern compilers. I recommend people interested in performance optimization watch it.

jacques_chester 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Stop Building Products by David Edwards.

A deeply thoughtful discussion of the impact of metaphors on how we think about software development.

Skip to 0:40 if you don't want to hear the MC.


ciroduran 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I love Kevlin Henney's talks, he's very entertaining and informative at the same time, here's one called "Seven Ineffective Coding Habits of Many Java Programmers", very useful even if you don't use Java - https://vimeo.com/101084305

The rest of his channel is full of his talks https://vimeo.com/channels/761265

makmanalp 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Aside from a lot of the classics here, one that stands out is this AMAZING live demo at pycon by David Beazley:


The simple and followable progression to more and more complex ideas blows my mind every time.

agconti 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Mike Bostock's talk on visualizing algorithms is one of my favorites: https://vimeo.com/112319901

> Visualizing Algorithms A look at the use of visualization and animation to understand, explain and debug algorithms.

andycroll 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Slightly self-serving as the organiser but Sarah Mei's talk at Brighton Ruby this year was terrific.


akkartik 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Moxie Marlinspike at Blackhat 2010 on how we lost the war for privacy in spite of winning the Crypto Wars of the 1990's-early 2000's: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=unZZCykRa5w
antouank 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Rich Hickey - Simplicity Mattershttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rI8tNMsozo0
ebcode 3 hours ago 0 replies      
John Holland is always worth watching, and not very many people have seen this one: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a_u_d-KLEsE#t=1183.549186
cvwright 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Gary McGraw: Cyber War, Cyber Peace, Stones, and Glass Houses https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LCULzMa7iqs

I like how this talk cuts through a lot of the BS in security. One of his points is that the US and other rich Western countries have a lot more to lose from a possible "cyber war" than our potential adversaries do.

Another key point is that we'll never make much progress unless we can somehow start building better systems in the first place, with fewer vulnerabilities for an adversary to exploit.

I think the second point has become a lot more widely accepted in recent years since McGraw started giving this talk. Unfortunately it sounds like a lot of government folks still haven't got the memo on point #1.

daveguy 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Geoffrey Hinton "The Next Generation of Neural Networks". A google tech talk from 2007 about this newfangled "deep neural network" thing:


djfdev 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I always enjoyed Ryan Dahl's casual at-home talk on the history of Node.JS: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SAc0vQCC6UQ
1057x31337 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Therapeutic Refactoring by Katrina Owen https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=J4dlF0kcThQ
drizze 9 hours ago 0 replies      
David Beazley's, "Discovering Python": https://youtu.be/RZ4Sn-Y7AP8

A fascinating tale about using python during the discovery phase of a trial. Very fun watch. Anything by David Beazley is great!

dorianm 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Aaron Patterson talks (aka @tenderlove): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B3gYklsN9uc
teamhappy 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Keith Winstein presenting mosh at USENIX 2012 is easily the most entertaining tech talk I've ever seen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XsIxNYl0oyU

Scott Meyers' talks are fun to watch too.

samcal 9 hours ago 0 replies      
James Mickens at Monitorama: https://vimeo.com/95066828

Aside from the comedic aspect (which makes the talk incredible), Mickens is a genuinely brilliant thinker and has a marvelous way with words.

vvanders 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Herb Sutter, Modern C++ - https://channel9.msdn.com/Events/Build/2014/2-661

Great overview of value types, performance and how hardware that runs things still matters.

geichel 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Zed Shaw's presentation, it's Not You, It's Them: Why Programming Languages Are Hard To Teach -- https://vimeo.com/53062800
jboynyc 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I like all of Carin Meier's talks, but I think the one that made the most lasting impression was "The Joy of Flying Robots with Clojure."


sedachv 8 hours ago 0 replies      
QueueTard's Manufacturing Modern Computer Chips at HOPE number nine: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NGFhc8R_uO4

Guy Steele's How to Think about Parallel Programming: Not! at Strange Loop 2011: https://www.infoq.com/presentations/Thinking-Parallel-Progra...

rimantas 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Anything by Sandi Metz.
Veratyr 9 hours ago 0 replies      

How Google backs up the internet.

At the time it changed how I thought about backups/reliability.

dudul 10 hours ago 4 replies      
Big fan of Rich Hickey. I found most of his talks really great, and applicable beyond the Clojure universe. My favorites: "Are we there yet?" and "Simple made Easy".
glitcher 9 hours ago 0 replies      
One in particular comes to mind that really changed the way I think about the larger problem of security in computer science and what a mess our current state of affairs seems to be in:

"The Science of Insecurity" by Meredith L. Patterson and Sergey Gordeychik (2011)


Warning: speaker likes to use profanity (which I enjoy :) but possibly NSFW if you're not on headphones

mtmail 10 hours ago 0 replies      
"Avoiding Burnout, and other essentials of Open Source Self-Care" https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RbeHBnWfXUc
EvanAnderson 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I very much enjoyed the talk John Graham-Cumming gave "The Great Railway Caper: Big Data in 1955": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pcBJfkE5UwU

Any of Jason Scott's talks given at various hacker cons are usually historically informative and always a lot of laughs (but they're decidedly not "technical").

oleksiyp 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Google I/O 2009 - The Myth of the Genius Programmer

One of the best talks about code reviews and similiar things


davur 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Cal Henderson "Why I Hate Django" DjangoCon 2008 Keynote - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i6Fr65PFqfk. Not that it is the most educational talk, but it's really funny (edit: added youtube link).
nicwest 5 hours ago 0 replies      
The Clean Code Talks - "Global State and Singletons": https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-FRm3VPhseI
michaelmcmillan 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Fast test, slow test by Gary Bernhardt: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RAxiiRPHS9k
ericssmith 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Not at all high-brow, but I revisit the in-the-trenches case study of "Scaling Pinterest" on Infoq from time to time because I find their fighting through the pain inspirational for my own scaling troubles.


sideb0ard 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I love the Ted Nelson "Computers For Cynics" series - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KdnGPQaICjk

He is kinda awesome in Herzog's recent 'Lo and Behold' too.

peoplee 6 hours ago 0 replies      
The Pixel Factory by Steven Wittenshttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4NkjLWAkYZ8

For those how likes computer graphics (or want to learn), this is a gold piece.

lukego 6 hours ago 0 replies      
lumannnn 10 hours ago 0 replies      
by Dave Thomas (PragDave)

"LoneStarRuby 2015 - My Dog Taught Me to Code by Dave Thomas" - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yCBUsd52a3s


"GOTO 2015 Agile is Dead Pragmatic Dave Thomas" - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=a-BOSpxYJ9M

ruairidhwm 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Hacking with Words and Smiles by James Lyne https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KrNo0XpQxBk

He was a co-speaker at TEDxGlasgow with me and I thought his talk was brilliant. Cyber-crime is a really interesting area.

agentultra 8 hours ago 0 replies      
We Really Don't Know How To Compute! [0] is probably my top... next to the christmas tree lectures.

[0] https://www.infoq.com/presentations/We-Really-Dont-Know-How-...

andrey_utkin 5 hours ago 0 replies      
exawsthrowaway 4 hours ago 0 replies      
It's not publicly available, but it was an internal AWS talk and very-deep-dive on the design & implementation of S3. A real eye opener for what it meant to build at global scale.

It's worth joining a global-scale tech company (AWS, Google, Azure, Facebook) just to have your mind blown by some of the internal materials.

anoother 8 hours ago 0 replies      
"How to Speed up a Python Program 114,000 times." - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e08kOj2kISU

Humour, serious technical insight and a good reminder of why being a generalist is an advantage.

vinkelhake 8 hours ago 0 replies      
"Desktop on the Linux" by Wolfgang Draxinger (guest appearance by Lennart Poettering):https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZTdUmlGxVo0
ajankovic 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I like this one because it's a good reality check:Opening Keynote: Greg Young - Stop Over-Engenering https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GRr4xeMn1uU
beyondcompute 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Bret Victor is pretty interesting though a bit philosophical.

The best practical talk is of course this:

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=asLUTiJJqdE - Robert "Uncle Bob" Martin, Clean Architecture and Design

Philipp__ 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Everything by Mr. Bryan Cantrill! This one is special:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=l6XQUciI-Sc
tehwebguy 8 hours ago 0 replies      
That guy fat from the Bootstrap team - What Is Open Source & Why Do I Feel So Guilty?


rhgraysonii 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Closure, by @steveklabnik


So many lessons in short, beautiful piece.

simscitizen 10 hours ago 0 replies      
"An Introduction to SQLite" by Richard Hipp (who wrote the library) is actually a pretty good intro on to how to build your own DB engine.


amelius 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Rupert Sheldrake, "The Extended Mind, Experimental Evidence", Google Talks 2008, https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hic18Xyk9is

If you are in for something out of the ordinary.

superplussed 9 hours ago 0 replies      
React-motion, the react animation package that boils all of the animations down to one concept, a spring.


c0l0 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Artur Bergman, creator of the Fastly CDN, at Velocity 2011 - giving a (very) short talk about SSDs: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H7PJ1oeEyGg
samblr 8 hours ago 0 replies      
There is a sort of palpable energy in (Ryan Dahl) node.js original presentation.


edit: +Ryan Dahl

unkoman 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Eric Brandwine at AWS talking about how they solved the networking part of the cloud: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3qln2u1Vr2E
augustk 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Edsger Dijkstra's Turing Award Speech:


jpetitto 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Deconstructing Functional Programming by Gilad Bracha:


danpalmer 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I find Simon Peyton Jones to be an excellent educator. He talks mostly about Haskell and the GHC compiler, but his talks are very accessible to a wide audience of programmers.
sunils34 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Resilience in Complex Adaptive systems by Richard Cook at Velocity Conf 2013:


bluefox 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Dynamic Languages Wizards Series - Panel on Runtime: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4LG-RtcSYUQ
miiiiiike 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Chuck Rossi - How Facebook releases software: https://vimeo.com/56362484 I remember thinking "Dr. Cox as release manager."
verandaguy 9 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm a fan of "Knocking my neighbors kids cruddy drone offline" by Robinson and Mithcell from DEFCON 23.

 [0] https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5CzURm7OpAA

tboyd47 10 hours ago 0 replies      
"Being Awesome By Being Boring"https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iheymi5QFEY
exarne 8 hours ago 0 replies      
It's an old talk but I really enjoyed it at the time, Paul Graham on Great Hackers: http://web.archive.org/web/20130729231533id_/http://itc.conv...
dragonbonheur 9 hours ago 0 replies      
The mother of all demos by Douglas Engelbart https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yJDv-zdhzMY

How I met your girlfriend: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O5xRRF5GfQs&t=66s

romper 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Secret history of silicon valley: https://youtu.be/hFSPHfZQpIQ
kruhft 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Growing a Language by Guy Steele (video and transcription):


fitzwatermellow 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Well. There's enough quality content in this thread to start a dedicated cable television channel, a la Viceland ;)

Not sure if it's my favorite. And the subject is more technology than "tech". But the talk that keeps haunting me is Michael Dearing's lecture from the Reid Hoffman "Blitzscaling" class at Stanford:

Heroes of Capitalism From Beyond The Grave


Dearing draws upon an obscure letter by Daniel McCallum, superintendant of the New York and Erie Railroad, written to his bosses in the 1850s. In the report, McCallum bemoans the stress and frustration of operating a railroad system spanning thousands of miles. All of the joy and magic he used to revel in whilst running a fifty mile stretch back in his home town has long since dissipated. Furthermore, the unit cost per mile seems to be exploding rather counter-intuitively!

Dearing goes on to elucidate the absolute necessity of the railroads ("the thing to know about the railroads is: they were startups once") themselves. As guarantors of civilization and progress. Beacons bringing light and reason to the dark swamps of ignorance and inhumanity. And not just in the physical transport of goods, people and ideas across the continent. But as the wealth created from that creative destruction remains the best cure for all of our other inimical maladies: poverty, injustice, disease and stagnation.

So, no pressure. But civilization depends upon you!

Links to References in the Talk:

Estimates of World GDP: From One Million BC to the Present


The Process of Creative Destruction by Joseph Schumpeter


The Visible Hand: The Managerial Revolution in American Business by Alfred D. Chandler, Jr.


Report of D. C. McCallum to the stockholders of the New York and Erie Railroad


Things As They Are In America by William Chambers


vonklaus 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Ashton Kutcher--Startup School

I like it because it is the intersection of so many things. He starts slow, is very intimidated by the audience. The audience, obviously super skeptical of the clown from that 70s show giving any useful information, they could learn from. He finds his footing with a great morivational story (albeit laden with a few cliches) about a forgotten entrepreneur and how he built some lasting value.

For me, this is a great talk. The story is extremely motivational and has some interesting bits of history & entrepreneurial genius-- but the entire experience is extremely educational. About bias, drive & success.

I liked it for what it wasnt.

x0x0 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Cliff Click was the jvm architect at sun then spent a decade at azul systems as their jvm architect. The talk is "A JVM Does That?"

It's well worth watching if you are interested in vms at all.


RodericDay 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I really liked "The Life and Death of Javascript" by Gary Bernhardt
hackaflocka 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Paul Buchheit - Startup School Europe 2014


Anjana Vakil: Learning Functional Programming with JavaScript - JSUnconf 2016


Bret Victor - Inventing on Principle


Philip Roberts: What the heck is the event loop anyway? | JSConf EU 2014


nickysielicki 8 hours ago 0 replies      
DEFCON 20: Owning Bad Guys {And Mafia} With Javascript Botnets https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0QT4YJn7oVI

This guy is just too funny.

Introducing a new kind of Wi-Fi system blog.google
108 points by rmanalan  10 hours ago   161 comments top 21
mikecb 4 hours ago 4 replies      
Just for everyone focusing on gimmicky features, this is an OnHub, which are intended to just work.

Under the hood, they run ChromiumOS, including things like trusted boot (yes, this home router has a tpm), and the A/B partitions so when you get an automatic update, (which happens during a time of low bandwidth usage), it reboots into the new version in about 6 seconds. The security team is awesome: they pushed an update to all onhubs within 48 hours of public disclosure of a critical RCE earlier this year.

There has been some slowness to expected features, like ipv6, but the PMs have been clear about their goal: they won't include a feature that's buggy. It's exactly what you want in a piece of infrastructure.

Animats 8 hours ago 5 replies      
Lots of vendors already offer this. It's pretty standard for commercial WiFi units. It's just slightly more expensive than dumb routers.

* Eero: https://eero.com/

* Ubuquiti: https://www.ubnt.com

* Cisco: http://www.cisco.com (sized for larger buildings)

Does this new Google device come with the Google Fi feature which backhauls all your traffic to Google via a VPN?

calinet6 9 hours ago 19 replies      
Serious question: whose WiFi is not working, to the degree that they think, "I really need to get a modern router to make this Internet thing actually work."

I'm seeing about a dozen fancy modern wifi routers all trying to solve a problem I'm not sure exists.

biot 9 hours ago 3 replies      
Despite their claims of being designed for user privacy, I'm wary of anything Google puts out. What information does it report back to the mothership?
spullara 2 hours ago 0 replies      
My Airports work just fine and have worked for years. I think that the WiFi issues are mostly that people are only willing to pay like $50 for their WiFi router. At this price point I'm not sure it changes anything.
eridius 7 hours ago 2 replies      
I'm surprised nobody here has yet questioned the wisdom of allowing Google access to literally all of your internet traffic. This is actually a commercial product that you pay money for, so maybe they're all aboveboard here, but with Google's history of trying to get as much personal data as possible about everybody makes me unwilling to trust them with something like this.

On a different note, is there any reason why someone should prefer this to Ubiquiti's AmpliFi? Unlike Google, Ubiquiti has a long history of making networking gear. The only obvious benefit I see right now is Google Wifi starts at $129 for one unit whereas AmpliFi starts at $199, but that $199 includes 2 "mesh points" and presumably to get the same effect with Google Wifi you'd have to shell out $299 for the 3-pack.

millstone 37 minutes ago 0 replies      
I've used my Airport Express to extend my Airport Base Station for years. Is this "mesh networking?" How is Google WiFi different?
bakman329 1 hour ago 1 reply      
The problems with this are the same as the rest of the things announced today(except the pixel, in my opinion): Too expensive, and not much to set it apart.
rmanalan 10 hours ago 5 replies      
I just bought an OnHub last year. WTF Google?!
vikiomega9 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I guess the lay persons question at this point is why not just publish the software and dispel any notion of privacy infringement?
mariusz79 8 hours ago 2 replies      
The list of features is missing one important item- Using these we will be better able to monitor your indoor whereabouts.
dorianm 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I actually just got a "Wi-Fi booster"[1] for my place to have good Wi-Fi upstairs and it's amazing (it even has an ethernet port)

[1]: https://www.amazon.fr/Netgear-WN3000RP-200FRS-R%C3%A9p%C3%A9...

cynix 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Why are all these mesh Wi-Fi products (Google Wifi, Eero, UBNT AmpliFi, ...) only available in the US?
andrewpe 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Anyone notice they are using their new TLD?
throw7 7 hours ago 2 replies      
I'm a little concerned that an android device is listed as _required_... i would hope all functions of the wifi devices can be configured/administrated from the web or just an internal browser pointed to the device(s).
obrienmd 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Anyone know if this is going to make use of modern AQM (fq_codel or cake) like OnHub did? OnHub used the Qualcomm brand name for it: "Streamboost".
SamuelAdams 8 hours ago 1 reply      
How is Mesh networking different from a wireless repeater? Yes, there's a nicer UI for this, but are there any technical advantages?
ebf6 8 hours ago 1 reply      
> The system uses a technology called mesh Wi-Fi (something usually only seen in expensive commercial installations).

This is misleading. You can create your own mesh networks with several off-the-shelf routers / access points using open source software like batman-advanced [0].

[0] https://www.open-mesh.org/projects/batman-adv/wiki

spynxic 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Mesh-based Device Triangulation
bikamonki 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Introducing a new way to spy on you? A WiFi repeater will do the trick...
Apreche 9 hours ago 8 replies      
You can tell this product is made by people who live in suburban McMansions. In a 1 BR NYC apartment, you have no problems with wifi coverage.
What New York Can Learn from Barcelonas Superblocks nytimes.com
106 points by prostoalex  11 hours ago   111 comments top 20
johnnyforeigner 8 hours ago 2 replies      
I live and work in Poble Nou and I checked out the Superille. It was marvellous.

It is (I believe) a temporary project to explore how it all might work. In that sense, it's prototype and that's in fact really cool too. Basically they did an MVP of a Superille - low cost and very fast - in order to validate their hypotheses.

They mocked up the place to give people a feel of how living in this way could be. And they spent as little as possible - using old tyres and paint and recycled plywood to mark out spaces and make them feel "owned" by the people. Placing large lots of (quite big) trees and plants in pots on the car-free streets to see how it felt to walk down a street that was leafy and spacious and open.

The amount of extra space feels inspiring and liberating. Walking is faster if you want it to be - you can cut across streets and don't need to wait at stop signals. A lot of people riding bikes. A lot of smiles.

They definitely could have done a better job explaining it though. I have friends who support the idea but felt they could have been better informed. It felt like they didn't give enough warning.

However, what is interesting and cool is that once it was in place they did their best to engage residents in a dialogue about the proposal - they painted markings on the tarmac of the streets to lay out spaces for people to assemble and discuss. They had a soapbox platform for people to rant from, and a bunch of chairs scattered around the street for people to sit and discuss. They had walls for comments to be posted.

I certainly hope they go ahead with making it permanent and making more of them.

Cities without care are very different and much more humane places to live. Scale matters and cars warp the scale of a city in ways that are counterproductive to vibrant urban life.

I'm pretty sure we can overcome the technical issues that restrain us from our inevitable transition away from routine private car use in cities. Problems like what to do about parking are a legacy of the current broken system, not a fact of nature. The economic incentives to car ownership and the infrastructure that supports it are baked into cities right now. But this can change - but not by solving parking but by solving the underlying system and that includes pressuring the system to change through initiatives like this.

grassclip 10 hours ago 5 replies      
I'm actually in Barcelona at the moment, and it's definitely been easy to walk around, but that could also be because the touristy areas near the ocean are very dense, and day to day living north or west of that hub might be different. Besides the giant blocks for walking (I'm not sure I've found a "superblock", but the blocks I've walked on are huge), there are an incredible amount of mopeds. That seems to be a default way of getting around town for locals. That's a big difference than bikers who have to worry about bikes getting stolen, mopeds are probably going to be safe where you leave them, and people here are able to leave them pretty much everywhere. Movement in the city seems very easy for sure.

Side note, anyone here work at or know about Pier 01 down near the water? I just walked by there and was wondering what kind of companies were located there.

Symmetry 9 hours ago 4 replies      
They can learn a lot more from Barcelona's $39m/km subway construction costs, compared to something like $1b/km in New York. Some of that is NY's density but worldwide averages are still around $300m/km and Barcelona is a stellar outlier.

Also their way of having dedicated bus lanes.

westbywest 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm surprised the NYT article didn't mention anything about Barcelona's existing legacy in novel and pedestrian-friendly urban layout. The "superilles" likely reference part of the city's existing street grid composed of "illes," where blocks are chamfered to create large intersections and provide space for walkways, green strips, even expand sunlight penetration somewhat. https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Eixample
specialp 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I live in NY and I spent time living in the UK. In the UK most city centers had blocked off pedestrian areas that were only open in the morning for truck deliveries. This was possible because there was a commercial core where people did not reside, and there was plenty of outlying roads to park and drive around.

NYC has a LOT of people living in every area of the city. There is a lot of construction and residential deliveries, and emergency traffic. Certain areas have become pedestrian plazas, and some are closed off during the weekend but it is simply not possible to close off a significant amount of space. Anyone driving to Manhattan especially during peak times is not doing it out of convenience as it is extremely inconvenient to drive there. Often people have tools and equipment, and parking in garages in Midtown can easily cost you $40-$60.

If you live or are visiting NYC it is a nice thought to have pedestrian only roads. But we have to remember that the trades people that make city life possible really need roads to work.

santialbo 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Here's a nice video explaining what superblocks are


rayiner 10 hours ago 2 replies      
This would be harder to do in New York because the blocks are very long east-to-west. It's a third of a mile from 6th avenue to 8th avenue. It'd be easy to shut down a bunch of the east-to-west streets (which are often pretty quiet anyway), but you'd lose a lot of the utility of the superblock without an internal north-south pedestrian route connecting them.
erjjones 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Indianapolis has a similar hybrid approach to this.


A street that has pedestrian/event space in the center and one lane roads on the outside. This street connects the Convention Center to the Bankers Life Field House (where the Pacers play).

sotojuan 10 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm not sure how this might work considering the fact that trucks are taking stuff to and from Manhattan businesses and homes almost 24/7. Barcelona might be a city, but it's scale and density is nowhere near that of New York.

Perhaps I can see this being tested in another borough in an area with lower density.

cagataygurturk 7 hours ago 0 replies      
The first two photos given are from el born and poblenou, which is out of the famous neighborhood l'exiample. Only l'exaimple is famous with their blocks. El born is a part of the historical center of Barcelona but now pedestrian area while poblenou was the industrial area before 1992 olympic games.

If you are looking for an example in Barcelona, it should only be l'eixample, which is one of architectural and engineering successes of 20th century.

And many times a very big fact is overseen: Barcelona is a village comparing to other big cities of the world. It is famous, popular, a great touristic destination in the summer but in the winter it is a village. A small city where people has normal, calm life. You can't compare it to any metropolitan city.

mxuribe 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I wonder if big cities eventually incorporate more of these superblocks, whether the need for rapid transit through some of these areas - as well as accommodating transit for the elderly - will spawn more use of "vehicles" like the Segway [https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Segway_PT]? Maybe not the single-rider segway, but i mean some smaller-scale, non-gas-powered vehicles which allow comfy and safer travel for a few people?
maxsilver 9 hours ago 4 replies      
There's no such thing as a space "just for automobiles". People are in those cars. People who are trying to go to/from somewhere. If you want to get rid of cars, you have to provide some alternative (preferably better) mode of transportation for the people and stuff within them.

But that part rarely happens. Everyone loves doing the easy part (ban cars!). No one wants to do the hard part of still letting people and stuff get around somehow.

It's like saying "sewers smell gross, we should ban them", while conveniently ignoring the fact that thousands of people are still going to generate wastewater, and it's has to go somewhere.

nerdponx 10 hours ago 7 replies      
My question is whether this will help or hurt access by the elderly and disabled to supermarkets and other big-box stores like Home Depot.
akamaka 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Is there a list or map of all the superblocks that have already been built in Barcelona? I've tried Googling for more info, but all I find are articles praising the urban planning concepts.
xchaotic 4 hours ago 0 replies      
It's not the first time I read about Barcelona but it is more than just street layout that makes a city tick.It's the people, culture, history, weather, waste and delivery trucks.So you can't just do the exact same thing to other cities and hope that it works.
mjevans 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I was hoping for something closer to an arcology, society assimilating disperse buildings in to a more cohesive urban /plan/ that services their transportation needs and encourages high quality space within the middle.

This is more like the budget version of that. Don't really solve the big issues, don't really improve the central areas.

What would make this better is consolidation; actually moving the parking to the interlink point of the node, making it faster for a pedestrian to get from there to their home, or another point within the node. Improving the center so that it's more of an actual park, possibly with the shopping at level around it. Raising the standard of integration, interaction, and building codes for noise/fire suppression.

GunboatDiplomat 5 hours ago 2 replies      
Wait, aren't these superblocks doing exactly what all the hip urbanists complain about the suburban culdesacs do?
Samantha1989 8 hours ago 2 replies      
Seems like a utopia until you factor in the winter climate.
parennoob 8 hours ago 0 replies      
As a relatively infrequent HN user, what is the time limit up to which stories can be re-posted and end up as new stories?

I posted this yesterday on HN, and am glad to see some discussion around it. Just curious that the new submission didn't get mapped back to the old one I've usually get linked back to an already posted article if I repost it after a short time.

pdog 10 hours ago 4 replies      
> Imagine if streets were for strolling, intersections were for playing and cars were almost never allowed.

Why is it considered progress to go back to how urban life was several centuries ago? Peter Thiel is right; we used to be optimistic about the future being better than today.

Scoop gets Bay Area cities to pick up the tab for carpooling techcrunch.com
34 points by jsadow  5 hours ago   6 comments top 3
pasiaj 2 hours ago 2 replies      
I was commuting between SF & Sunnyvale a year ago for a couple of months. For the whole time I tried to find a service connecting people for carpooling. Found several but none of them had a meaningful number of active users.

It was mind boggling to sit, day after day, in stalled traffic on the 101 with two empty carpool lanes on my left and four lanes filled with lone drivers all the way between San Jose and San Francisco.

jusben1369 4 hours ago 1 reply      
It's interesting. Lyft originally was 100% focused on car pooling. I wonder if the time is better now for this type of offering.
santaclaus 38 minutes ago 0 replies      
Scoop has salespeople out in force in Oakland -- waiting in line at the DMV some lady from Scoop was lobbying all the bored people in line hard.
Bill Gross warns financial markets have become 'a Vegas casino' reuters.com
69 points by endswapper  10 hours ago   48 comments top 9
justinlardinois 6 hours ago 7 replies      
> Gross, who oversees the $1.5 billion Janus Global Unconstrained Bond Fund, recommended Bitcoin and gold for investors who are looking for places to preserve capital.

Because wild Bitcoin fluctuations are somehow less akin to gambling than the securities market?

Glad he also threw in some "buy gold" scaremongering too.

Does Janus benefit somehow from this kind of talk?

qwrusz 34 minutes ago 0 replies      
Financial markets have always been casinos.

I think what Bill means is that central banks have now taken a seat at the casino's table.

If a whale sits down next to you at the casino and starts playing unorthodox strategies and betting crazy and distracting the dealer - well some old folks don't like that.

Side note: Read Bill's bio, he is a very good gambler, especially blackjack.

tedunangst 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Sooo, uh, do zero interest rates make life easier or harder for a bond trader?
WallWextra 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I bet PIMCO is really happy they kicked him out, now that he's promoting Bitcoin.
danblick 6 hours ago 2 replies      
Reminds me of "the ludic fallacy":


Which points out... Casinos are sometimes a bad model for randomness in the real world. In a casino you have only "known unknowns", but in the real world it's "unknown unknowns" that often cause problems.

kaycebasques 4 hours ago 2 replies      
Has anyone looked into his argument that zero percent interest rates destroy business models that underpin our economy (I.e. insurance)?
throwaway98237 5 hours ago 0 replies      
"have become"...

Lmao here. Any cursory study into the history of financial markets will show that they've always been "casinos".

ry4n413 5 hours ago 0 replies      
gross is a living legend
kelvin0 5 hours ago 0 replies      
Well HFT is going to fix all that ... * cricket chirps
Show HN: Cypht Unique Open Source Webmail cypht.org
18 points by jasonmunro  3 hours ago   4 comments top 2
jasonmunro 2 hours ago 0 replies      
This project has been a labor of love for me over the last 2.5 years. I'm interested in any feedback you have, and happy to answer any questions!
luck87 2 hours ago 2 replies      
mmh. what about Security? If they download locally via imap all your email for all your accounts or there is something more. anyway it is nice to read on Security page "Oauth2 over IMAP/SMTP "
Why do private military contractors stay in politically-unstable places? stackexchange.com
130 points by IsaacL  5 hours ago   22 comments top 8
Animats 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Read "Manual of the Mercenary Soldier" (1988), by Paul Baylor. Serious book for real-world mercs. It covers this issue. One well-known player had written something like "xxx happened. I was there" (and could thus get in on the war). Baylor writes "He didn't spend a lot of time hanging around Vancouver or Helsinki."

(Baylor was writing pre-9/11. The rules are different now for US citizens.)

kasey_junk 1 hour ago 0 replies      
One thing I think people ought to know is that there is also a community of mercenaries that don't have anywhere near the professionalism expressed in this post.

See "The Road To Raqqa" (http://m.youtube.com/watch?v=MzPiuwzEtuY) for examples of bikers, homemakers & software dev mercenary outfits organized just on Facebook, operating in combat zones currently.

feklar 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Soldiers of fortune do go home afterwards and wait around for another job these days (unfortunately a short wait) https://www.theguardian.com/world/2015/apr/14/south-africas-...
buckbova 4 hours ago 2 replies      
Accepted answer.


> Why do programmers looking for easy cash from VCs they can blindside with a storm of buzzwords migrate to San Francisco? Its one of the absolute worse places to run a company, but its one of the best for starting a company simply because the community is there.

Makes sense. I always considered myself a tech mercenary.

JumpCrisscross 4 hours ago 6 replies      
Suppose an American contracting for the Angolan government shoots a Canadian in Angola. Would the latter have civil or criminal claims on the former in a Western court? How do mercenaries manage this legal risk?
bitwize 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Why do techies hang around in SF? Why do aspiring actors hang around in LA?
kaonashi 2 hours ago 2 replies      
Because those are the areas they want to destabilize to drum up work.
basicplus2 4 hours ago 0 replies      
I would have thought they enjoy the feeling of power and control as they engage in violence and there is more chance for it
Sourcegraph launches a new semantic code search and browsing interface sourcegraph.com
59 points by beliu  9 hours ago   9 comments top 3
wasd 7 hours ago 2 replies      
Congratulations to the Sourcegraph team on shipping this new update. It looks great.

Back when Sourcegraph supported Ruby, I found myself reaching it for all the time. It was slightly half baked (semantic analysis of Ruby is challenging) but still incredibly useful. I look forward to the day Ruby support returns and it being better than ever.

Slightly unrelated, if you're based in the Bay Area, you should go to their meetup. I don't like going to meetups because the content is usually a bit fluffy but they've constantly had strong technical speakers. Here's one with the creator of Raft (https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2dfSOFqOhOU).

georgewfraser 4 hours ago 1 reply      
This appears to be based on the stellar open-source code-editor used by VSCode. Looking at the network traffic, it looks like you are also using the language server protocol [1] to provide context-aware code intelligence.

As far as I know this is the only use of the language server protocol in a web browser. Have you documented anywhere how you made this work?

[1] https://github.com/Microsoft/language-server-protocol

tim_l 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Awesome to see the improvements here. Unfortunately, it still looks like they only support Go :( Hope they support JavaScript soon.
Challenges for Artificial Intelligence in Medicine cardiogr.am
90 points by brandonb  13 hours ago   41 comments top 7
brandonb 12 hours ago 14 replies      
(OP here)

We spend a lot of time thinking about how to make AI succeed in medicine. Given that so many efforts, including MYCIN, have been tried and failed before, one of the key questions to answer is "Why now?" In other words, what has changed in the world which will let AI succeed where it has failed before?

I'm curious: is anybody else here applying deep learning, or any other subfield of AI, to healthcare?

If so... do the challenges listed in this post resonate? Do you believe the shifts identified are the right ones to focus on?

aabajian 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I work for a company that does machine learning on clinical notes. The challenges the author introduces are real, but he misses the mark on the last point "Only Partially a Problem: Regulation and Fear."

Actually, regulation and fear are the main reasons that machine learning hasn't taken off in clinical medicine. More precisely, the provider's fear of getting sued and the regulations that require a licensed practitioner to "have the final say." There is one more problem as well --> machine learning doesn't solve a problem that providers think they have. It's lesson #1 from The Lean Startup or The Startup Owner's Manual. You may have the best EKG-reading software in the world (I have no doubt computers could surpass providers on this task), but if the providers don't feel they need it, it simply won't be adopted. This is the Watson situation at heart.

Conversely, here are some areas in medicine where machine learning has been adopted:

1. Medical billing code generation: Several companies have systems for reading notes using natural language processing and predicting billing codes using market-basket analysis.

2. Identifying bacterial cultures: Inpatient bacterial cultures are placed in a big incubator and constantly scanned for growth. When growth is suspected, there are emerging algorithms to automatically classify the bacteria. Similar work is being applied to other areas of pathology (see: http://www.nature.com/articles/ncomms12474)

3. Image-analysis in radiology: There are a few radiology companies that are demonstrating superior results by applying novel algorithms. While not "machine learning" per se, the existence of such algorithms is encouraging for future advancements in radiology, since it's a step beyond just viewing the image. Here's one such company that has gained FDA approval for their blood flow mapping technology: http://www.ischemaview.com/

northern_lights 5 hours ago 2 replies      
Many people might not understand just how busy physicians are, and how difficult it can be to integrate a new product into the clinical workflow.

The most pressing thing to understand is that clinicians spend the VAST majority of their time gathering all of the necessary information to make a diagnosis. In other words, they aren't puzzling over how to diagnose about 85% (made that up) of their patients.

Once the necessary information is gathered, an experienced doc doesn't usually spend more than about 10-15 seconds debating different diagnoses. Therefore, if your tool takes more than 10-15 seconds to launch, enter any necessary data, and get a result, you are slowing the clinician down and they won't use it. This is why automated EKG interpretations (which are very much a real thing used at hospitals across the country) print directly on the EKG printout - it doesn't cost the clinician more than about 2 seconds to read what the machine thinks and adjust their interpretation accordingly[1].

One of the major problems limiting adoption of "expert" computer systems is the amount of (very expensive) integration it takes to get them under that 10-15 second limit. One of the big reasons radiology is seeing a lot of buzz around machine learning and automated interpretation is that integration becomes a lot easier when you can just feed in an image and maybe 5 words about the indication for the study.

I would love to go on for a while about this stuff, but I'll stop there for now :)

[1] Some people here might be interested to learn that non-cardiologists generally don't have negative views about automated EKG interpretations. But we are also very well-aware that when we make decisions about a patient, those decisions have to be anchored to something a lot more substantial than "the machine told me to do it."

dharma1 9 hours ago 2 replies      
I'm working with a few people on ML applications for medical image segmentation, in Finland and south east Asia. I think ML aided diagnosis will be commonplace pretty soon.

Here in the UK, DeepMind has been doing interesting work on retinal and radiology images with NHS.

While I agree that large enough quantities of labeled data and legal access to it can be hard to get, interestingly, there are many more low hanging fruit in medtech space that don't necessarily have anything to do with machine learning.

Take hospital IT software for instance. Doctors literally waste double digit percentage of their time wrestling with really bad legacy software.

Even the really expensive solutions, like Epic Systems, is horrible. I am hopeful that better options will become available and future public health budgets don't get wasted on the kind of systems that exists now

stewbrew 8 hours ago 1 reply      
AI again? Expert systems are around to support medical doctors' decision making for 2+ decades. Studies demonstrated that doctors can use them to improve their decisions. Hardly anybody uses them in practice.

In real life, medical information often is stored as PDF or similar in the hospital information system. An interesting challenge for AI would be to encode these PDFs.

vonnik 6 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm a bit disappointed in the straw man assumptions in the first paragraph about AI + cats. There's an enormous amount of work being done applying AI and Deep learning to healthcare. Enlitic is one example. The MLHC conference is entirely devoted to the topic. Deepmind's work with the NIH is also well known.
Cromatico 3 hours ago 1 reply      
The real disruption is in giving power to the patient not the doctor. I want that power. I check online resources all the time about every sign and symptom I get, about every drug and medicine and about all procedures in order to avoid visits at all cost, only for surgery, only as last resource.

Yes, self-medication is wrong, right now is wrong, and there exactly is the disruption. Give information to the patients as a first line of defense, then let doctors handle the special cases.

When Science Fiction Becomes Real: Octavia E. Butler's Legacy jstor.org
39 points by Hooke  8 hours ago   5 comments top 2
SwellJoe 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I was very late coming to Octavia Butler's writing, despite being a huge scifi nerd from a very young age.

I wish I'd discovered her sooner...she's easily in my top five favorite scifi authors, today. Parable of the Sower (and its sequel) is beautiful and thought-provoking; the Lilith's Brood series (starting with Dawn) was way ahead of its time, tackling gender, race, sexuality, and xenophobia, in a really thoughtful and nuanced way (in a genre that is not renowned for nuance on any of these subjects). Even her early Patternist series is awesome. It's like she sprung up fully formed as one of the great scifi writers (though, apparently, she had several years of rejection, so I guess she honed her craft in relative obscurity).

I suspect I was slow to read her because her best known work, Kindred, just didn't sound like something I would like (I did end up reading it, and liking it, though it's not my favorite of her work, and I don't really get excited about alternate histories or time travel stories). But, most of her other stuff is right up my alley. She's got dystopia covered with the Parable series, she's got weird aliens in Lilith's Brood, and she's got creepy evolutionary speculation in the Patternist series.

I really just can't say enough good things about Butler, and strongly recommend every scifi fan check her out. I wish she'd written more, as I've read most of her novels a couple of times, and loved nearly all of them. It's disappointing to have discovered someone so good, and then run out of books by them to read, knowing there will never be another. (Similarly, I never "got" Asimov as a kid, but then read Foundation as a young adult and finally understood it and loved it, only to find he'd died a couple months before...but, at least Asimov wrote enough books to keep one busy for years.)

robinsloan 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Thanks for sharing this here.

FYI for those who haven't read it, Butler's "Parable of the Sower" is one of the most crucial novels of the last century. It mixes a future so dark and plausible it makes other dystopias look sweet and cartoonish with -- incredibly -- a cosmic optimism so deep and hopeful it makes you proud to be human. It's really an amazing book.

How I added 6 characters to Unicode (and you can too) righto.com
118 points by deafcalculus  13 hours ago   52 comments top 13
1wd 10 hours ago 0 replies      
The rationale given for including mirrored half-stars as separate codepoints is right-to-left languages. I wondered why this was needed, since Unicode already has the a right-to-left mark (RLM)[1].

I found the answer in a comment on "Explain XKCD".[2] The RLM usually only reorders characters, but does not mirror their glyphs. The exception are glyphs with the "Bidi_Mirrored=Yes" property, which are mapped to a mirrored codepoint.[3]

The half-stars proposal includes a note on that property: "Existing stars are in the Other Neutrals class, so half stars should probably use the ON bidirectional class. The half stars have the obvious mirrored counterparts, so they can be Bidi mirrored. However, similar characters such as LEFT HALF BLACK CIRCLE are not marked as mirrored. I'll leave it up to the Unicode experts to determine if Bidi Mirrored would be appropriate or not."

[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Right-to-left_mark

[2] https://www.explainxkcd.com/wiki/index.php/1137:_RTL

[3] http://www.unicode.org/Public/UNIDATA/BidiMirroring.txt

syphilis2 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I also enjoyed this Hacker News article about adding the electrical on, off sleep, standby symbols to Unicode.http://unicodepowersymbol.com/we-did-it-how-a-comment-on-hac...https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=11958682
treve 11 hours ago 2 replies      
The one I'm surprised about is not the stars, but actually the bitcoin character. It's just a form of branding to me, and while I think there's interesting uses for blockchain technology, public interest seems to be a bit inflated. Plus that blockchain tech will likely outlive bitcoin itself.
edent 5 hours ago 0 replies      
So glad the unicodepowersymbol.com stuff was helpful! We had a lot of fun getting the proposal together.

If anyone wants to submit some new characters, all of our documents are on GitHub https://github.com/jloughry/Unicode

nacc 11 hours ago 2 replies      
It is great to see Unicode being able to encode almost every symbol people can think of, however I am still struggling to make them appear on my screen - is there a good font that has great coverage for unicode? Many times there are clever use of unicode yet I can only see empty rectangles.
markbao 11 hours ago 2 replies      
I love this but does it bother anyone else that the outlined and filled stars have different sizes? What's the reason behind that?

HN strips the characters out from comments, but they're displayed in the beginning of the article.

amelius 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Perhaps we should have an escape code for SVG in Unicode, so we can describe any missing character.
Animats 8 hours ago 2 replies      
We need to hold the line somewhere. Preferably before corporate logos get into Unicode. I've seen Facebook and Twitter icons as Unicode characters in the user-definable space. This currently requires a downloaded font, but there's probably some lobbyist somewhere trying to get them into Unicode.

It's getting really complicated. There are now skin-tone modifiers for emoji.

WalterBright 7 hours ago 3 replies      
Unicode is a brilliant idea, but it went off the rails with combining characters, especially when there is both a code point for a character and a combining set of characters that semantically are the same thing.
gjasny 8 hours ago 0 replies      
It would be cool to see the powerline symbols to be added to Unicode. The necessary user base should be already there.

See: https://github.com/powerline/fonts/blob/master/README.rst

A zsh theme with those characters in use: https://gist.github.com/agnoster/3712874

hf 7 hours ago 4 replies      
I simply cannot wrap my head around the direction of the Unicode discourse.

We're discussing the appropriate code-point for different smiley faces,obscure electrical symbols[0] or, in the present case, half stars to expressfilm or book ratings, yet we have no complete set of sub- and superscripts!

Am I mistaken in thinking it odd, that there's a complete Klingon alphabet but norepresentation whatsoever for most Greek or Latin subscripts? Or what if, heaven forbid,I'd want to use a 'b' index/subscript? Tough! Not even the "phonetic extensions",where subscript-i comes from, provides it.

Refer tohttps://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unicode_subscripts_and_supersc...or look for SUBSCRIPT in http://ftp.unicode.org/Public/UNIDATA/UnicodeData.txt

Surely there's the one or two actual scientists on the Unicode consortium?Or even the one odd soul still sporting a notion of consistency who finds itonly logical to provide a "subscript b" if there's a "subscript a"?

How am I wrong?

[0] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=11958682

tantalor 10 hours ago 3 replies      
What about 1/4, 3/4, 1/5, etc...?
koltaggar 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Best part is where you swap Andrew West's first name for Adam
Practical and ethical implications of memory enhancement arxiv.org
34 points by benbreen  8 hours ago   11 comments top 5
aisofteng 5 minutes ago 0 replies      
Vaguely related by topic and somewhat obsoleted if we take the linked article's conclusions as fact -

I've had in mind for a long time the idea for a short story (or perhaps novel) set in a future where one is able to purchase an "intelligence upgrade", given enough money, which bestows upon the customer a stronger reasoning ability and an overall more capable intelligence.

If we accept that particularly capable people (disregarding why they are particularly capable, when adults) then imagine a world where already successful people are able to purchase neural upgrades that enhance the cognitive aspects that let them become as successful as they already were able to become.

On the one hand, this might create an exponentially larger social inequality, if it is true that most successfully people are selfish and take advantage of others. On the other hand (and if you believe that at least 51% of the human race is "good"), it might not. Which one would it be, and would it depend on how and why society got to the point of developing those sorts of neural upgrades? I don't know.

I think that the premise could make for an interesting thought experiment expressed in literary form, even if it would depend on its author's personal beliefs. Alas, I am not a creative writer by any stretch of the imagination.

kbaker 22 minutes ago 0 replies      
If you have Netflix, I highly suggest watching Black Mirror S1E3 'The Entire History of You', as it is a pretty great dramatization of a total memory record and replay future...


beautifulfreak 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I was reminded of this recent news.

Normal mice put inside a watery maze took more than a minute to locate the submerged platform that would let them escape. But these mice which had been injected with a curious new molecule found it in an average of just 16 seconds.


pmoriarty 3 hours ago 0 replies      
There's a lot of good information on how to improve one's memory on the Mentat Wiki:


Cozumel 8 hours ago 3 replies      
The paper is concentrating on a technological approach.

Memory is a 'muscle', it can be trained, it's possible to train yourself to have 100% recall and I think people should concentrate on that as much as physically working out.

I actually think that's the approach schools should take, instead of cramming children full of facts they'll never remember, take a couple of years, train everyone to have a photographic memory, then teach them, no more cramming, no more panicking, no more not understanding, you just absorb everything!

Google 'memory palace' for learning resources on memory etc.

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