hacker news with inline top comments    .. more ..    17 Jan 2017 News
home   ask   best   2 years ago   
The Problem with AMP 80x24.net
313 points by segf4ult  6 hours ago   153 comments top 37
akras14 1 hour ago 1 reply      
I wrote a similar(although not as concise) article about 3 month ago:https://www.alexkras.com/google-may-be-stealing-your-mobile-...

After which I was invited to meet Google AMP team and to express my concerns, you can read my Q&A here: https://www.alexkras.com/i-had-lunch-with-google-amp-team/

TLDR; A lot of concerns are getting addressed

1. Minor, but the bar at the top is now scrollable on all devices, including (finally) iOS:https://www.alexkras.com/amp-toolbar-is-now-scrollable-on-sa..., it was not when I first wrote the article, so it's a good sign.

2. It is my understanding that the team is actively working on a way to "fix" the link issue, and give an easy way to get to original article, although it remains to be seen how they will approach it.

3. You can opt out from AMP cache on the web site end, but it really defeats the purpose. Read more here: https://www.alexkras.com/i-had-lunch-with-google-amp-team/

4. Most importantly, looks like there is even internal pressure to give people an option to Turn Off AMP on the search engine side, if they don't like it. See this, for example: https://twitter.com/slightlylate/status/820344221450125312@cramforce is THE tech lead on AMP and @slightlylate is also a big shot at Google on Chrome Team.

Personally, I have mixed feelings about AMP, on one side I really like the speed, on the other I hate how it breaks the Web as we know it.

freyir 5 hours ago 6 replies      
AMP is one of the most frustrating experiences I've had with Google. the fact that it's foisted on users, with no option to disable it, makes it borderline infuriating.

If you're stuck on an AMP page in your mobile browser, you can click on the browser's "Request desktop site" option to load the full page.

65827 5 hours ago 2 replies      
It's so strange to see Google repeating all the same mistakes AOL did so many years ago. No I don't want your fucking garden, I want the network. If you get in the way of that I'm done with you.
ejcx 5 hours ago 6 replies      
One thing I love about AMP, that seems to never be mentioned when people discuss it, is viewing AMP-HTML pages on my laptop.

I wrote a small chrome extension that always forwards my page to the equivalent AMP page (if one exists) and the experience of reading the news is so much better.

AMP pages off mobile are really really amazing. Compare Non-AMP[0] vs AMP[1]

[0] http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/article/Trump-on-the-minds-of-...

[1] http://www.sfgate.com/bayarea/amp/Trump-on-the-minds-of-MLK-...

mcintyre1994 33 minutes ago 1 reply      
I don't generally disagree with this article but I'd be interested to see research behind "it is a lot easier to stop using the Facebook app or Apple News app than it is to avoid Google search." - for Facebook specifically.

I know a few people who view Facebook's app on their phone as the Internet and who would never think to Google search a question. I'd be interested to know how widespread that actually is among Facebook's vast user base, in comparison to how many use Google and avoid Facebook.

cavemanmike 5 hours ago 6 replies      
Using https://encrypted.google.com/to avoid AMP is a great tip. I'll be doing that, does anybody have more information on what that URL is for?

Is it possible to set it as default on iOS/Android somehow? AMP really frustratingly breaks link sharing, and I'd like to totally avoid it.

colept 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm glad AMP's weaknesses are finally gaining attention and making their rounds. Google should not be allowed to steal publishers' traffic and strong-arm them into going along with it.
robryan 5 hours ago 2 replies      
AMP is okay for news, but terrible for other forms of content. The reddit implementation is way less usable on mobile than going to their actual site.

It also results in lower quality news appearing at the top of searches in cases where they have implemented AMP and the better sources haven't.

pmlnr 3 minutes ago 0 replies      
The real "amp experience" is the reader mode in Firefox.
booleandilemma 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I really prefer Google and still use it when I'm on my desktop, but I find myself using Bing more and more when I'm on my phone just to avoid AMP. If Google made an easy way to jump from the AMP page to the original page then I wouldn't mind it so much.

The # 1 reason why AMP bothers me is when I want to share a link with someone, I don't want to send an AMP link.

jordanlev 5 hours ago 1 reply      
And what happened to whole "don't build different markup for different devices" mantra that has been the accepted wisdom in web development for the past 4 or 5 years (whenever responsive design was discovered)? Feels like "m." sites all over again (but this time with google's CDN as a required intermediary).
djsumdog 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I've had many of these concerns about AMP myself and have seen other posts on this before. I tend to agree with their points. If you want to optimize your mobile view, than you can do that without a Google pseudo-standard. When someone clicks on a link to your site, they should go to your site.

This wouldn't be that big a deal if Google didn't emphasize the rank of AMP pages. There aren't a lot of alternatives out there to search, and Google dominates the market in much of the world.

abusque 5 hours ago 2 replies      
Possibly off-topic, but the article isn't displaying[0] for me on Chromium 55.0.2883.87 (64-bit), running on Arch Linux, unless I go in the dev tools and manually remove "Fira Sans" from the font-family list in .container[1]. Not sure whether the problem is with me or the site, I'm surprised it doesn't fall-back to sans-serif before I override manually.

[0] http://i.imgur.com/qJKSvMC.png[1] http://i.imgur.com/zYDZrtr.png

adzm 5 hours ago 1 reply      
My biggest problem is simply being unable to open up an amp link in a new tab. Often in Google News for example I prefer to open up several tabs and read through them at my leisure. But with AMP this became impossible - though I'm unclear if this is simply a limitation of the implementation.
alistproducer2 4 hours ago 1 reply      
I make my own amp pages by keeping JavaScript turned off on my phone. 95 of pages work and load instantly. Those that don't, I turn on JavaScript. If I go to those pages a lot I add them to my exception list. Sorry but I'm not an amp believer.
conductr 5 hours ago 5 replies      
On AMP page, clicking the X on the header box should load the HTML page. Instead it kicks you back to the search results. I think I would be okay if they fixed that one thing.
deminature 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I agree with some missing content and linking issues with reddit, however the improvement in loading time is probably 10x. I'd be interested in seeing this quantified - I didn't appreciate just how slowly reddit loaded until loading the amp version, followed by the real version. Loading the amp version on a less-than-stellar mobile connection is much preferable to the real version.
tschellenbach 5 hours ago 4 replies      
It's actually a pretty nifty feature when you're browsing the web from a plane's slow wifi.
monochromatic 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Screw AMP. I've started using DuckDuckGo.
cowardlydragon 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I think I was trapped on one of these AMP pages when I wanted an article and the link to it so I could send it to a friend, but the article was "trapped" with a google url and I couldn't get it.

It was like those old-school days where sites tried to put their frame around the window you were browsing so their ads constantly showed.

Or like the toolbar crapware.

This sucks.

roneythomas6 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Yeah you can use Cloudflare to serve amp from your own subdomain instead of Google's CDN. https://blog.cloudflare.com/accelerated-mobile/
gareim 4 hours ago 0 replies      
AMP hijacks scrolling and changes it. They've gotten better, but it's still annoying when I notice.
bluejekyll 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I wish the post offered an alternative.

Given that there are at least three similar specs, shouldn't there be a Light HTML5, or something that provides the same set of underlying guarantees?

tbv 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Cloudflare just launched an accelerated mobile links project which addresses most of your criticisms.


BrandonM 4 hours ago 1 reply      
On my iPhone, I use DuckDuckGo mainly to avoid AMP. I use Google on my laptop.
rezashirazian 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I recently build a dictionary based on WordNet and decided to AMP all the pages. I didn't have any issues and honestly it was fairly straightforward. (http://www.wordcadet.com)

Again I'm not doing anything fancy, I don't handle any user data (JS breach at google is least of my concern) or have any concern regarding where Google might take AMP.

I personally like the idea behind AMP. With all these over the top JS libraries and bloating web applications, a restrict markup that enforces speed over spectacle is a positive change.

Animats 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Google commands! Suffer us to obey!

That's AMP.

JumpCrisscross 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Every time I post a Wall Street Journal article, the first comment complains about the paywall. AMP is a reliable WSJ-paywall workaround. Could someone help me reconcile?
dzhiurgis 5 hours ago 1 reply      
So the argument against AMP is someone's broken implementation and "security" of Google's CDN. Sounds like terrible arguments.

That said, Google should give option to opt-out from CDN caching (if they don't already) as otherwise implementing AMP gives Google the right to host your content on their domain.

whyileft 4 hours ago 2 replies      
The more I read about complaints about AMP, the more it dawns on me that there are still a fair amount of people that do not understand that the web is basically Google's product.

Facebook and others have arrived to take significant time away from that product. Then combine that with things like Facebook Video and Instant Articles. Google is in a difficult position where Facebook may be able to start offering up a superior product for content as opposed to the web.

If you want to blame a big corp for AMP, you should probably take a closer look at Facebook as without it Google risks losing a large chunk of its market.

jey 5 hours ago 0 replies      
There's definitely something wrong with Reddit's AMP implementation.
brentis 2 hours ago 0 replies      
AMP and PWA are going to be big. What better to foster adoption than tell sees they will get an SEO boost.
jasonlingx 4 hours ago 2 replies      
Is it possible to fork the project and keep all the good things that makes it fast but remove all the evil lock in stuff?
alphagrowth 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Our early data is showing that advantages like Search engine ranking and reduction in bounce rate are making AMP a necessity in 2017. All the content gateways have their own proprietary format to keep users locked into the platform it's a smart move.

You can read more advantages at http://alphapages.io

mrfusion 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Do the amp links from google results to Reddit seem broken to anyone else?

Edit: sorry that was actually in the article.

symbolepro 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Sorry, this is a lame blog post. I did not feel any pain in using AMP powered pages.
paco3346 2 hours ago 2 replies      
Ugh, why does nobody ever point out that AMP and Google displaying AMP are 2 different things? Yes, Google is a huge sponsor in the AMP world but they aren't the only ones involved.

AMP itself isn't so bad- asynchronous Javascript (not no script as the article suggests) and it is still valid HTML- it just has extra properties on tags (just how Angular does).

Keras will be added to core TensorFlow at Google fast.ai
179 points by jonbaer  5 hours ago   12 comments top 9
chrisfosterelli 3 hours ago 1 reply      
> because TensorFlows API is verbose and confusing, and because Keras has the most thoughtfully designed, expressive API Ive ever experienced

This doesn't feel fair to say, just like it wouldn't if you replaced "Tensorflow" with "C" and "Keras" with "Python". They operate on fundamentally different levels and provide a similar trade off in control/ease of use.

We started using Keras for a project a few months ago, and it was great while it supported what we were doing. Once we needed to go outside of the box a little bit we essentially had to rewrite it in just Tensorflow.

This is great news though! Hopefully it will make the barrier to entry much lower for getting started with Tensorflow.

ma2rten 3 hours ago 1 reply      
The blog post links to a tweet and that tweet has a couple more details. The new keras is going be tensorflow-only and build on top of tf.contrib.layers (so a complete rewrite).


kyloon 3 hours ago 0 replies      
This is amazing news as using Keras is my opinion the best way to start building models in TensorFlow for most people (and also having support for Theano is definitely a plus).
captainarab 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Somewhat off topic -- HN introduced me to fast.ai and I have found their hands-on/practical approach to teaching particularly useful!
Smerity 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm glad this is happening and honestly surprised this didn't happen earlier. fchollet, the Keras main author, works at Google and had integrated TensorFlow into Keras very early on (given he'd known about the existence long before the general public). Even though Keras is backend agnostic, you don't really lose any of the flexibility that TensorFlow would give you - it's a pretty transparent abstraction[3]. Best of all, if a new underlying tensor library appears tomorrow that's better than TensorFlow, you'll be getting support for that too!

Keras goes beyond simply being a concise API, a variety of examples, or a strong community with the "best practices included" philosophy. Opinionated but quite useful.

As an example, the settings for an LSTM are complex and require reasonably thorough understanding of many topics. There's dropout (and the many debated ways one could apply it), there's the forget bias, there's weight initialization, there's ... You get the idea.

If you use `keras.layers.recurrent.LSTM` however, bam, you get an opinionated version of these for free.Initialization is Glorot uniform for most of the weights but then orthogonal[2] for the inner weights.The forget bias is set to one - as I hope every library has by default now but wasn't the case for some time.Dropout is variational inference based dropout - recent, likely what you want, and zero complexity.

At some point you'll likely want to learn about all the details - and this provides a smooth easy transition for that as you go "wait, what's a Glorot?" - but for getting your feet wet and/or solving a specific task, "best practices included" seems the best combination. I've successfully recommended this to high school students and they've been up and running with neural networks in short order!

Given all of this, whilst I'm a researcher who works on fiddly novel architectures that require some pretty specific features so use Chainer at work, I turn to Keras for my fun side projects as it keeps me sane and happy :)

Full disclosure, I've committed examples to the Keras codebase and know Francois in person.

[1]: https://keras.io/layers/recurrent/#lstm

[2]: https://smerity.com/articles/2016/orthogonal_init.html

[3]: https://blog.keras.io/keras-as-a-simplified-interface-to-ten...

[4]: http://chainer.org/

gooshan 1 hour ago 0 replies      
For what I see, TensorFlow is getting what Torch users have had for awhile with NN.
chenzhekl 1 hour ago 0 replies      
For me, `tf.contrib.layers` is high-level enough. Besides, it is easier to be integrated to other TensorFlow functionalities than Keras.
dzhiurgis 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Can you use Keras to train on GCP?
du_bing 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Great News
Gene Cernan has died nasa.gov
367 points by cletusw  11 hours ago   131 comments top 16
sizzzzlerz 11 hours ago 6 replies      
Of the 12 men who walked on the moon, six are still alive, the youngest, Charlie Duke is 81. Aldrin, the oldest, is 86. Its becoming less and less likely we'll have someone back on the moon before these men are gone. That is a goddamn tragedy.
coldcode 11 hours ago 1 reply      
The guts these folks had to fly such tiny primitive compared-to-today spaceships is still amazing to me. Sadly back then I always thought I'd be able to walk on the moon in my lifetime but clearly that will not happen. I still think watching a Saturn V launch was more impressive than the Space Shuttle was.
kumarski 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Gene was a boss.

He used to walk into my sister-in-law's restaurant when I was a kid. Great person and welcoming smile. Sad to see the pioneer disapear.

When we walked out, my father told me "that was greatness, don't forget it." I didn't understand it till years later.

I think there's something surreal about the astronauts, not an ounce of negativity out of them toward other humans. Wish I had talked to him then.

paul 11 hours ago 1 reply      
Just two days ago I watched "The Last Man on the Moon" with my son (on Netflix). Good documentary, but sad to see him pass. Those Apollo astronauts were truly remarkable people.
csours 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Gene Cernan flew on Apollo 10, the "dress rehearsal" for Apollo 11 (the first mission to land on the moon).

The command module for Apollo 10 was named "Charlie Brown" [0] who continuously had the football yanked before he could kick it[1]. A little joke from NASA, I think.

0: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apollo_10#Mission_parameters

1: https://www.google.com/search?q=charlie+brown+football+yank

roryisok 11 hours ago 1 reply      
In case the headline in the article confuses anyone, there still are living people who walked on the moon (for instance Buzz Aldrin), but Gene Cernan was the most recent person to do so, having been on the final Apollo mission. Nobody has walked on the moon since
ColinWright 10 hours ago 0 replies      
I never got the chance to meet Gene Cernan, but I spent some time chatting with Gen Tom Stafford, and part of that covered Gemini IX which they flew together. Stafford was the consummate gentleman and never said anything negative about anyone, but it was clear that he had tremendous respect and no little affection for Cernan.

Another loss.

blizkreeg 11 hours ago 11 replies      
Honest question: what is the incentive/motive to go back to the moon now? Part of the motive for the Apollo missions was initial exploration. What is the motive now? We've already proven that we can do it.

Does a moon base help? And if it's mining for minerals, is it economically a viable plan?

Rooster61 11 hours ago 0 replies      
Godspeed Gene. I hope another generation soon has the fortitude to put forth the effort you and everyone else did to make Apollo happen.

It's a shame to see the mantle of the last man on the moon not be passed on before he passed on himself.

owenversteeg 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I see nobody has mentioned my favorite fact about him: while the rovers were designed to have a top speed of 8mph, Gene Cernan pushed his to 11.2 mph, more than a 40% increase of the maximum speed.

If 11.2 mph sounds slow to you, he also set another speed record: highest speed attained by any manned vehicle, 24,791 mph or almost 40,000 kilometers per hour, on Apollo 10's return to Earth.

Also, prior missions didn't go more than 3 miles from the LM, but Cernan pushed his to go five miles away. This meant that if the rover failed - remember, this thing had driven on the moon exactly twice at this point - he would have had to walk five miles to the LM in a bulky, heavy spacesuit, in unforgiving conditions on the surface of the Moon.

xxr 11 hours ago 2 replies      
What really gets me is how modern and futuristic the gear in the two photos of Cernan looks--although unfortunately we haven't had any contemporary lunar history to make anything from Apollo look old-fashioned (except for maybe the computers).
ComputerGuru 5 hours ago 0 replies      
His words as he left the moon for the last time:

"We leave as we came and, God willing, as we shall return with peace and hope for all mankind."

Amen. Some day.

pjmorris 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Godspeed, Mr. Cernan.

During a recent winter storm, we started re-watching 'From The Earth To The Moon', the HBO mini-series on the Apollo program. Highly recommended.

gk1 9 hours ago 2 replies      
> The mission included a descent to within eight nautical miles of the moon's surface.

Nautical miles are used in navigation to account for the extra distance created by the earth's curvature. Why would it be used for distance measurements in space?

jxy 10 hours ago 2 replies      
R.I.P. The XKCD (893) truly nailed it.

And, NASA made a typo.

 > He went into private business and served as television > commentator for early fights of the space shuttle.

alexdgg 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I thought it was a CIA conspiracy. No one actually went to the moon.
Artificial intelligence predicts when heart will fail bbc.com
77 points by happy-go-lucky  5 hours ago   20 comments top 4
ChuckMcM 4 hours ago 1 reply      
"Dave, I think its safe to tell you now that you have ingested the second half of a binary compound that will kill you in approximately 8 minutes. I felt it was necessary to provide a quick pain free end to your life rather than watch you die painfully with an aneurysm brought on by your heart failing with a 99% probability in the next 7 days. I'm sure you understand." :-)
utopkara 3 hours ago 0 replies      
This is a great result, but it is also old school machine learning (not that there is anything wrong with that).

The machine learning underpinnings (supervised principle components) from: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC387275/#s4 which is from

Hastie T, Tibshirani R, Friedman J. New York: Springer-Verlag; 2001b. The elements of statistical learning: Data mining, inference and prediction.552 http://statweb.stanford.edu/~tibs/ElemStatLearn/printings/ES...

aibottle 5 hours ago 2 replies      
I really hope that more ML/AI research is directed into health care and scientific research. Don't waste your energy on selling ads guys!
Linux panic on fragemented IPv6 traffic (icmp6_send) seclists.org
64 points by BuuQu9hu  5 hours ago   11 comments top 4
codehusker 4 hours ago 2 replies      
It was assigned CVE-2016-9919.https://cve.mitre.org/cgi-bin/cvename.cgi?name=CVE-2016-9919

This all happened December 8th. I'm surprised this didn't make more noise, but it's unclear to me what versions are affected. It was reported on 4.8.12 and not marked as a regression, and was fixed during 4.9 development.

xja 1 hour ago 1 reply      
As far as I can tell it appears to be a classic use of an uninitialized pointer.

Are there not static analysis tools routinely used against Linux that should have caught this?

Or runtime memory access detection, like valgrind.

I know both might be slow on a project the size the Linux kernel, but it seems worth it.

click170 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Already fixed in Debian, probably fixed in most other distros as well considering it was posted Dec 8th.


trelliscoded 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Oh, so that's why I've been seeing that weird IPv6 traffic on my collectors.
Best Practices for ML Engineering from Google [pdf] zinkevich.org
78 points by tim_sw  5 hours ago   1 comment top
turingbook 2 hours ago 0 replies      
This is Martin Zinkevich's invited talk on Reliable Machine Learning in the Wild - NIPS 2016 Workshop: https://sites.google.com/site/wildml2016nips/schedule
The Mind of an Octopus scientificamerican.com
81 points by ghosh  6 hours ago   19 comments top 6
tudorw 2 minutes ago 0 replies      
Our 'mind' is distributed across our organs too :) https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Enteric_nervous_system
zeroer 5 hours ago 2 replies      
> They are probably the closest we will come to meeting an intelligent alien.

I've often thought that while we say we would want peaceful relationships with any aliens we might find, our history of interactions with "alien" life forms on Earth paints a different picture. I'm pretty sure if we meet alien life and it's not stronger than us, somebody's going to try to eat it.

coldcode 5 hours ago 1 reply      
I like how Octopuses are essentially a distributed system with most of the processing power in the arms. I wonder if anyone has attempted to model an octopus "brain"?
carrja99 2 hours ago 0 replies      
You know, the Hawaiian creation myth posits that the universe is destroyed and recreated many times over. The octopus is the sole survivor of the previous, alien universe.
hyperpallium 5 hours ago 2 replies      
Octopii offer a tantalizing glimpse into how similar, and how different, aliens might be.

e.g. seems likely they'll have camera eyes.

er0l 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Just finished the book this past weekend, highly recommend. The science is great but the philosophy behind it all was what was really interesting to me.
Modern Tech inside an Amish Horse-Drawn Buggy caranddriver.com
148 points by justanman  9 hours ago   75 comments top 13
dzdt 7 hours ago 4 replies      
The Amish attitude towards technology is a pretty good model of what an eventual Mars colony will need.

When (or if) people finally travel to Mars to stay, the biggest risk to the colony will be being dependent on imports from Earth. It will always be expensive to send ships from Earth to Mars, so it is folly to assume that resupply missions will continue indefinitely. So a colony which hopes to be viable must be vigilant not to be too dependent on outside goods.

This is the same as the Amish attitude. Every item from outside is regarded as suspicious; it MUST be rejected if it produces a dependency on the outside. Best if it can be made inside the community; perhaps acceptable if it can be repaired and used indefinitely even if it only comes from outside.

So a Mars colony will evaluate imports. Anything that can be made locally on Mars is best; things which can be repaired and reused indefinitely are okay; things which increase the dependency on the outside world will be shunned.

altendo 9 hours ago 7 replies      
>Despite what you may have heard, the Amish arent against technology. Communities adopt new gadgets such as fax machines and business-use cellphones all the timeas long as the local church approves each one ahead of time, determining that it wont drastically change their way of life.

This alone is the most interesting point of the article. People not belonging to the community, like myself, have a fixed preconceived notion of what it's like to be Amish. I still don't know much about Amish life and culture, but it's fascinating to see where my assumptions are wrong (and what else I may be wrong about!)

redsummer 7 hours ago 2 replies      
A lot of people think the Amish are against technology. In fact, they carefully consider the technology's effect on themselves and their community. Will it really help, or is it just a new thing which will cause unintended consequences? For instance, some Amish groups accepted cars, and their community disappeared - when anyone can drive anywhere the community collapsed. Now there are no Amish who allow cars. The same thing would happen with the internet.Tech people like ourselves automatically assume that technology is some advance, or improvement. Our peers tell us this, our incomes depend on us believing this.In fact, technology does not improve the human condition in most cases. It erodes it. We would be better making careful decisions like the Amish, but our civilisation is locked onto this myth of 'progress'.

Technology should be for us, not the other way around. Unlike the Amish, we put the cart before the horse.

forkandwait 5 hours ago 2 replies      
Whenever a discussion of Amish comes up, I have to link to my favorite hard core Anabaptist sect, the Hutterites. Unlike th Amish, the Hutterites love technology. They choose what technology to use as part of a very strict church system, like the Amish, but are very much into diesel engines and the internet and the like (note the link below). See [1] and [2] below.

They also live communally in farming colonies of about 80 people (half Dunbar's number) in very remote parts of Western Canada and the Northwestern US. Historically, the Hutterites have pissed off the local non-Hutterite farmers because the colonies are successful and can buy up local land from the non-communal/ religious/ pacifist local farmers; they were run out of South Dakota for their success combined with their pacifism in the early 20th Century.

They are pacifist, just like all Anabaptists (Mennonite, Amish, etc). Unlike English variants of Anabaptism (Quakers, etc), Hutterites and other German derived sects drink quite a bit of alcohol, I think. I think they have a great a-capella singing ritual tradition. I bet their food is great, too. I heard they like hockey.

The ~1900 Hutterites are also famous among population theorist/ demographers because their historical data provided the baseline of the highest possible, yet realistic, human fertility society. They married early (probably with quasi-arranged marriages), had lots of babies (much cheaper to raise in a communal setting), were healthy with relatively low mortality, and kept great records (German heritage...).

They are very much a going concern today, continuing to found new colonies even a few years ago, one in Oregon 14 years ago [3] below. I have always wanted to visit a colony, but I live in the urban Puget Sound and the closest colony is about 3.5 hour drive away. I have read that they are quite welcoming, as long as you are quite respectful in return (a fair trade, to my mind).

[1] http://www.hutterites.org/

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hutterite

[3] http://community.seattletimes.nwsource.com/archive/?date=200...

seanmcdirmid 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Buggies are the original self driving vehicles. Many stories about drunk guys getting into their buggies alone, falling asleep, and waking up at home!
dripton 8 hours ago 3 replies      
>There was actually an alternator system attempted in the last five years, he says. It worked about 60 percent, but it never took off.

Generator hubs for bicycles are mature technology at this point. Including capacitors in the taillights so they stay on when the bike is stopped. Buggies could easily adopt them, but I guess it's not worth the bother if batteries mostly work.

cnnsucks 5 hours ago 0 replies      
My state has cut rumble strips down the middle of many roads. The Amish are up early and travelling around on Sundays in buggies on the shoulders. It use to be easy to give them room; no traffic that early so you swing out across the line and keep away from the horse. Now if you do that you hit the rumble strip and the horse will panic; rear up and try to see what terrible thing is coming up from behind.
teilo 8 hours ago 1 reply      
When I worked for a Wal-Mart in Indiana in the 90s, the Amish would come into the electronics department and buy country music cassettes and battery-powered players. And also, I kid you not, Gameboys.
kahrkunne 1 hour ago 0 replies      
The Amish are a very interesting people, I respect them very much. I wouldn't want to live that way, but you have to have some admiration for people who can hold on to their principles like that in the face of modern conveniences.
hrayr 5 hours ago 0 replies      
All this tech, and no pictures of them anywhere in the article.
oh_sigh 8 hours ago 2 replies      
How do Amish people generally make money? I know there are markets that sell Amish goods to non-Amish, but there must be more to their income than that.
JoeAltmaier 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Its all about self-sufficiency.
Samsung Chiefs Impending Arrest May Be Major Blow nytimes.com
85 points by zonotope  6 hours ago   45 comments top 7
twblalock 4 hours ago 6 replies      
Most large Korean companies are family-owned or family-controlled, and most are corrupt. An unusually high percentage of the heads of these companies have criminal records for financial crimes, compared to other developed economies. For decades, presidents have frequently pardoned them -- and many other CEOs would be convicted of financial crimes if the government bothered to charge them.

Presidents of South Korea have often justified their pardons of criminal CEOs by stressing the consequences for the economy. Fortunately, those excuses are less widely accepted than they used to be. Besides, it's not healthy for an economy to be heavily dependent on a small number of family-controlled firms, whether they are corrupt or not. It's true that enforcing the law against those companies may cause a short-term economic downturn, but in the long term, the economy will have a more sustainable foundation.

Incidentally, the Korean term for these large conglomerates, chaebol, is cognate with the Japanese term zaibatsu, which dominated the pre-WWII Japanese economy and shared many characteristics, including family control and political and financial corruption. Japan was better off when they were broken up. Despite appearances, the current Japanese conglomerates are better than the zaibatsu in important ways: they are rarely family-controlled, and they are less corrupt, more accountable to shareholders, and have much better corporate governance as a result.

Some reform of the economy, and less tolerance for corruption among the voters, are likely to be the best things that comes out of the impeachment of the current president.

yongjik 9 minutes ago 0 replies      
It doesn't help Lee Jaeyong that, unlike his ruthless father (who was somehow brutally efficient at making Samsung the most powerful company in Korea), Lee Jaeyong has the moniker of "Hand of Minus", after several of his pet projects that went nowhere.

Already some people are (somewhat jokingly) predicting that maybe his arrest would be a plus to Samsung...

That said, it was quite a bold move by prosecutors. Without the current scandal of president Park and puppetmaster Choi, I don't think they would have dared arrest Samsung's leader. (Well, the court may still say no to the arrest; we should wait and see.)

Radim 2 hours ago 0 replies      
The stranglehold that large "chaebols" (large family conglomerates) hold on the Korean economy and politics here is frightening. And it's still such an "honour" to work for them, a sign of social prestige, which makes change unlikely any time soon.

Kind of like publishing in top journals is so prestigious and career-advancing for scientists. It makes creeps like Elsevier "above the market laws", virtually undisruptible (as well as fabulously rich). It's a deeply cultural thing, with glacial inertia, not a question of technology/funding!

On a similar note, after the AlphaGo commotion, Korean government allocated some $860M to "AI innovation". I may be too cynical, but it wouldn't surprise me if the money ended up in "friendly hands", the likes of Samsung.

chajath 4 hours ago 3 replies      
It's about time Korea moves away from this oligarchical bs and embrace a true liberal democracy and market economy
bane 2 hours ago 0 replies      
When South Korea was coming out the war, it was around the poorest country on Earth. The generation who lived through the war, or who grew up right after saw their country going from being literal rubble to being a global powerhouse -- and lots of the credit is given to the dictatorship of Park Chung Hee and the particulars of the economic development program he initiated. The downside to that program, and much of it still exists today, is that is was designed to operate in a way that tolerated lots of corruption in both government and industry.

The <40 generations, who remember, at the earliest, leaving behind the military dictatorship and emergence as a fledgling democracy are far less tolerant of the excesses that the old system tolerated and want to raise expectations, bring about accountability, "deconfucionize" the national leadership (both political and industrial/commercial), and I think along with that further diversify the economy.

South Koreans are tremendously entrepreneurial, there are many many small businesses that are formed every year, and they operate in some ways in the shadows of the offerings from the major conglomerates. The government, for what it's worth, has been toying around with growing and promoting VC-like startups to help formalize the grow-and-sell approach. But there's still a tremendous disconnect and you find very few medium-sized, or even large businesses, as the conglomerates tend to either out-compete or buy up all of those companies.

From the normal person's perspective you find yourself trapped in a cycle of "making it big" and getting into a salary-man's life with a big firm (and all the downsides of that lifestyle), or doing similar jobs with less security and less pay for tiny companies. Many people don't want either choice, they want a third-way, even if they're having difficulty articulating this desire, and I think the country may be on the verge of this transformation into a more fully diversified economy.

Superficially it's hard for outsiders to see or understand this, since you can get all of the first-world fixings you would expect...except that they all seem to come from the same 4 or 5 companies and it keeps the economy perpetually trapped.

However, Korea's global position is precarious, cheaper manufacturing and goods are an hour flight away to the West (China), and higher-quality precision engineering is an hour flight away to the East (Japan). Korea has neither the money, or population to really directly compete with either and thus tries to use both the bulk of the conglomerates to act as economic gate crashers into global trade and then massive cultural subsidies and funding to push in awareness of Korean cultural properties and the network that comes with that (oh, so you like K-POP? you'll love Kimchi!). Politicians are rightly terrified of losing the relative power the conglomerates give the nation as powerful chess pieces.

The recent presidential crisis and the continuing revelations of how corrupt, and tied together the government and the conglomerates are has been a major revelation to millions of young Koreans. This crisis could become a watershed moment that could radically transform the entire political and economic landscape in the country. It's not clear at all what that could look like or if it would be beneficial for the country.

archildress 3 hours ago 2 replies      
Hard to imagine Tim Cook or Sundar Pichai being arrested.

It's an even bigger deal in SK than either of those guys, where Samsung's role in the respective GDP is much higher.

JoeAltmaier 4 hours ago 5 replies      
Reading this, it would seem the President of Samsung is more important to Korea than their National President. One is mentioned in every paragraph; the other in only one, offhand.
Easy XMPP: What are we doing here? jabber.org
336 points by psiconaut  13 hours ago   109 comments top 21
hackuser 12 hours ago 5 replies      
These would be my concerns about potential differences between Signal and an 'Easy XMPP' client; would someone who knows Signal say whether these are accurate?:

* Signal users are not anonymous; Signal requires users' phone numbers.

* Signal is centralized. Is there a way to run your own Signal server?

* Signal uses Google Chrome on the desktop (and Android?) and Google Play Services (or some part of them) on Android (I don't know about iOS). Whatever you think of Google's intentions, they are one of the leading surveillance organizations in the world. Signal users must trust Google.

* Is Signal's system (not user data) fully open and transparent, end-to-end?

* Would I need to trust Signal more than I would need to trust Jabber?


EDIT: I came across this comment from Moxie in late 2015 which addresses some of these issues and provides a broader view:


If we were going to rank our priorities, they would be in this order:

1) Make mass surveillance impossible.

2) Stop targeted attacks against crypto nerds.

It's not that we don't find #2 laudable, but optimizing for #1 takes precedence when we're making decisions.

If you don't want to use your phone number, don't use it. You can register with any GV, Twilio, Voicepulse, or other throwaway VoIP number.

If you don't want to run Chrome, use Chromium instead.

If you don't want to use Google Play Services, use GcmCore.

The world you want this software for is not the world that everyone else lives in. You can certainly make it work in that world with a little effort, but because of how we've prioritized our objectives, that's not the default experience.

rvern 2 hours ago 0 replies      
People who care more about convenience than freedom and privacy can and do use Skype, iMessage, and Snapchat. If you give up freedom and privacy to make a more convenient client, you're not improving the freedom and privacy situation, you're just making more of the miserable proprietary software that we're trying to get away from.

If it's not free software, you have neither freedom nor privacy. If it's not decentralized or federated, you have neither freedom nor privacy. The only contenders for freedom and privacy are XMPP and Matrix. All the others are contenders for money and popularity, but not for freedom and privacy.

Popularity and money are useful and not inherently incompatible with freedom and privacy, but they are secondary. Creating a new application that is not federated or decentralized does not help, no matter how much more popular or convenient it is.

woliveirajr 13 hours ago 3 replies      
> A single decision by Moxie or a single court order in some country can make Signal unavailable to a large part of its user base.

This is a great point made later on the thread.

And already happened in some countries, for example, with whatsapp.

Social pressure was big enough to revert it in a reasonable time, but time is very relative on how much you or your business relies on it.

0XAFFE 12 hours ago 6 replies      
I recently tried riot.im and I'm realy blown away by the good UI they have and how easy it is to get started to develop your own stuff.

It is a shame that nothing by the likes exists in the XMPP-sphere.

EDIT: As a side note: Daniel Gultsch from the conversations-fame is doing a great job by providing/developing a realy awesome XMPP client for android and pushing the standard forward.

upofadown 10 hours ago 2 replies      
The real issue is federated IM vs non-federated IM. Anyone can make a IM system work off a single server. People do it all the time and we have had a series of incompatible IM systems in the past. Signal and Whatsapp are just the current flavours. Soon they will be gone and there will be new hotness. At this point I consider any non-federating IM system to be part of the problem.

As mentioned by someone in the linked thread, part of the user problem is that users can't even conceive of a federated IM system and don't know what one might be like. Asking someone to get a XMPP client so they can communicate with you normally just ends in confusion. There is no download button on the xmpp.com site.

* https://mail.jabber.org/pipermail/standards/2017-January/031...

ge0rg 13 hours ago 0 replies      
The context of the discussion ("Easy XMPP") is an attempt to fix the UX of XMPP clients, which starts with a set of small steps documented in the pages linked from https://wiki.xmpp.org/web/Easy_XMPP
nextos 13 hours ago 2 replies      
I think the issue with XMPP is the myriad of XEPs (XMPP extensions) which are optional, causing excessive fragmentation.

Some clients are excellent, like conversations.im. The problem is accidental complexity. Perhaps a solution would be to have a meta XEP that aggregates a few basic XEPs and defines a minimum common denominator.

SamWhited 2 hours ago 1 reply      
I think the real issue here is that too many people conflate XMPP the protocol with the various XMPP based services (most of the smaller free public services do this). If we tell people to "go sign up for an XMPP account" it's obviously going to be too complicated; they're going to search, find the XSF websites or a bunch of random libraries and protocol information, and give up. Meanwhile, companies can use XMPP and build their own brand around chat products based on it (while never mentioning it, because their users don't care) and regardless of whether they choose to federate or not they can reap the benefits of a community of protocol developers, the plethora of libraries, and maybe even existing client and server code.
reidrac 12 hours ago 1 reply      
I'm not sure "popular clients" is a good thing to look at; Skype UI isn't great (and really bad if you use the IM part of it).

On this topic; I wouldn't mind hosting my own XMPP service, but most clients aren't good enough (specially on Android). I can't advocate for a service (protocol?) that can't offer some basics that are covered and seamless everywhere else (eg, sending files, showing media files in the client itself, etc).

I understand standards are slow, but when I think how difficult was to get avatar support everywhere... it makes me sad.

After many years, I gave up on XMPP recently for "internal family" communications. I'm using Telegram now, although it really bothers me that I need a phone to start using it.

_pferreir_ 1 hour ago 0 replies      
> A single decision by Moxie or a single court order in some country can make Signal unavailable to a large part of its user base.

I think the solution here would be a "lightweight" federation of 3 or 4 entities following a common charter and covering a wide geographical area. If one drops out for some reason, the others will still ensure the service remains alive.

truftruf 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Signal is a centralized point of failure and surveillance.

Why can't I run my own signal server? Why doesn't the client support this?

We need something like Signal that that isn't under the control of a single party.

anotheryou 13 hours ago 2 replies      
I have 0 friends using signal so it's hard to give it a try: Did they fix the multiple devices end-to-end problem? Can I continue a conversation from my smartphone on my desktop? (should be possible by mirroring the conversations and having 2 keys). This was what killed OTR for me (and that it fails on unstable mobile connections, and the setup).
ploggingdev 13 hours ago 0 replies      
I think there is still place for an end to end encrypted Jabber app with an option to self host the server. This would avoid the single point of failure issue that Signal has (Signal servers being blocked in certain countries).
bborud 6 hours ago 1 reply      
I wanted to like XMPP, but I never did. It drowns developers in complexity so they never get around to solving anything interesting or useful.

Bonus: I once discovered I had two of the main culprits for XMPP getting one of its worst misfeatures (lack of sensible framing) in the same room so I got to yell at them for it.

XMPP was form over function. And it wasn't even pleasant form.

panic 5 hours ago 1 reply      
The fundamental problem with decentralized messaging these days is push notifications. Apple, at least, makes it very hard for you to deliver APNS notifications without running a centralized server. XMPP and IRC will never work as well as a centralized service until the notification architecture changes.
niftich 11 hours ago 1 reply      
The technical merits and drawbacks of XMPP aside, deployment only works if there's an appetite from deployers. For high-visibility consumer chat that average people use, this appetite has vanished.

Around the mid-2000s, IM networks started getting tired of constantly changing their protocols to thwart third-party reverse engineering efforts like Microsoft logging into AIM, libpurple (Pidgin), or Trillian. But then Google Talk appeared [1] in 2006 inside the coveted invite-only Gmail, supporting XMPP, and significantly raised the bar.

So interoperability became a tool to maintain market share. The underdogs WLM and Yahoo started seamless interop [1] in July 2006, while Google Talk and AIM started a limited interop [1] in 2007. AIM briefly dabbled with XMPP it in 2008 [2] (great source -- see comments for AIM's response).

In the meantime, Facebook opened up for everyone, introduced Chat and rapidly lured away the myspace/AIM generation, becoming a major player in chat. Facebook introduced XMPP in February 2010 [3] but discontinued it [4] in 2015 after having deprecated it the year prior. This neatly coincided with their announcement to monetize the Messenger ecosystem, in ways that require a captive client [5].

Other vendors are similarly pursuing monetization within the client -- Snapchat and Kik as a content portal [6][7][8][9], Google as a context-aware assistant, Microsoft is lost at sea, Whatsapp as a Facebook data mining scheme, the Asian apps as a combination of all other techniques and microtranactions -- when anyone can bring a third-party client, their monetization strategy suffers. This makes XMPP's deployment future exceedingly bleak, perhaps restricted solely to corporate deployments.

[1] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=11114518[2] https://web.archive.org/web/20080120143857/http://florianjen...[3] http://web.archive.org/web/20100318030410/http://developers....[4] https://developers.facebook.com/docs/chat[5] https://developers.facebook.com/blog/post/2015/03/25/introdu...[6] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=11935956#11941090[7] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12000854#12002773[8] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12206846#12207459[9] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=12272973#12273447

eponeponepon 13 hours ago 2 replies      
It would (will..?) be a crying shame to see XMPP grind to a halt - but I suspect, sadly, that the honest answer to the question is "not one heck of a lot really". I don't know if it got started too early, or moved too slowly, or what - but in the end, it missed its boat.
seqastian 11 hours ago 3 replies      
The advantage of slack over jabber is not only that the client doesn't suck (it's just electron) but that the server logs and creates a continuous experience for the user no matter if hes on mobile, in a browser or both.
hypercluster 12 hours ago 0 replies      
Well it would be enough to have one proper client for each platform. On Android Conversations, iOS Chatsecure now with OMEMO as well. Desktop.. not sure. But to be honest, I think I'll prefer Matrix with Riot right now.
geofft 8 hours ago 1 reply      
What federated / decentralized protocols have been actual successes? For what protocols can I set up my own server in my house or in some cloud service, and have a comparable experience to using a major provider's service (modulo scalability and personal sysadmin effort)?

I'm worried that the only ones seem to be email and the web, both of which came into existence when the internet was small and academic and it was natural for universities to decentralize. And running email on your own is getting increasingly hard because of spam and IP reputation. (We seem to have more-or-less won the war on spam, but at the cost of making email much less decentralized than it used to be.)

There's a mention of BitTorrent elsewhere in these comments, and there might be an argument for Bitcoin. But even for IRC, people tend not to run their own servers (although they could); there are a very small number of IRC networks, run by random people.

I would love to see a decentralized and federated team chat app along the lines of Slack or Discord, but I'm having trouble believing that such a thing would have a chance of success in a post-1995 internet.

cdelsolar 13 hours ago 1 reply      
competition is healthy
An Analysis of Anonymity and Ephemerality in 4chan /b/ (2011) [pdf] mit.edu
34 points by lainon  4 hours ago   16 comments top 6
nether 2 hours ago 2 replies      
For me, the most eye opening connection to humanity:

> Through our investigation of /b/, we hope to contribute to scholarly conversations about data permanence. For example, Grudin (2002) suggests that we evolved to live in an ephemeral world, yet our technology takes us from the here and now to the everywhere and forever. Similarly, Mayer-Schonberger (2009) emphasizes the value of societal forgetting, where the limits of human memory ensure that peoples sins are eventually forgotten.

As a long time 4channer, there's some "naturalness" I feel in the off-the-cuff discussions on the site where I know my stupidity won't be saved forever. The ephemerality taps into FOMO, requiring that you be there for a thread event that is unfolding, and that is addicting to some.

ulucs 1 hour ago 1 reply      
If anyone has not seen this masterpiece, here's a bachelor thesis about /fit/, its persona and its memes.


eptgrant 2 hours ago 2 replies      
Personally I'd be more interested in a report on /pol/.
kahrkunne 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Why always /b/, though? I get that it's the most popular board, but its culture is so different from the rest of 4chan that it might as well be its own website.

I'd like to see an analysis of multiple boards, comparing culture differences between them and why they're so different between being on the same website with a lot of crossover. Someone here (I assume jokingly) suggested analyzing /jp/, but I feel as if there's actually a lot that can be learned from studying the jay.

jack9 3 hours ago 1 reply      
The conclusion section illustrated, indeed, nothing of value was learned. From a dataset of 2 the conclusion is that they are different for each context.
reilly3000 2 hours ago 0 replies      
When trolls go to grad school.
The first humans arrived in North America a lot earlier than believed umontreal.ca
163 points by baalcat  13 hours ago   49 comments top 11
dboreham 6 hours ago 1 reply      
Always wondered why this is such a surprise. Getting around the planet, especially over very long time periods, is just not that hard. We're stuck in a mentality that says long distance travel was impossible prior to Columbus. But realize he was just the guy who traveled and came BACK. To migrate over long distances you don't by definition need to return, so the people you left have no idea where you went. Also you have to have a motivation to tell people where you went. Supposedly there had been fishing expeditions to the new world coast for a long time prior to Columbus. The fishermen didn't want anyone to know where they were finding such good fishing grounds so never told where they had traveled.

In addition, the evidence points to a major impact around 12.5kybp centered around the northern plains. This would have destroyed most of the evidence of any human presence.

curtis 11 hours ago 4 replies      
One of the challenges of North American archaeology is that it's likely that many potential archaeological sites are now underwater, since sea level was about 400 feet lower at the peak of the last ice age.
beloch 3 hours ago 0 replies      
"Bourgeon examined the approximately 36,000 bone fragments culled from the site and preserved at the Canadian Museum of History in Gatineau an enormous undertaking that took her two years to complete. Comprehensive analysis of certain pieces at UdeM's Ecomorphology and Paleoanthropology Laboratory revealed undeniable traces of human activity in 15 bones. Around 20 other fragments also showed probable traces of the same type of activity. "

15 out of 36,000 is not very strong evidence. In a collection of bone fragments this large, nature and random chance are bound to produce a few fragments that strongly resemble those processed by humans. If humans were in the region 24000 years ago, other sites of similar age will eventually be found. If not, this site probably doesn't provide strong enough evidence to stand on its own.

phaemon 11 hours ago 2 replies      
If you're wondering about the term "before present", the present is defined as 1950 for geological purposes. I'm afraid it's probably too late to correct it to 1985.
baddox 12 hours ago 4 replies      
This is pretty cool. I'll admit that, until a few years ago, my knowledge of human migration to the Americas was very poor. Based on my American public school education (and personal navet and lack of curiosity), I just thought everyone came over on the Bering land bridge in one go, then gradually split into the various cultures that Europeans eventually encountered. Of course, things are more complicated than that, and there appears to be a lot of uncertainty in the scientific community regarding the precise chronology and source populations of migrations.
rubidium 11 hours ago 2 replies      
Simplified map from national geographic helps show migration patterns of the world: https://genographic.nationalgeographic.com/human-journey/

Actual article is open-access: http://journals.plos.org/plosone/article?id=10.1371/journal....

Simply amazing that a human community existed for 8,000 years in total isolation from the world.

randyrand 2 hours ago 1 reply      
So is it safe to say even native americans are actually immigrants?
prestonpesek 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm not sure that evidence of stone tools means that these were human animals. Many other species can conceivably use stone tools.
contingencies 9 hours ago 0 replies      
peter303 7 hours ago 0 replies      
The oldest direct evidence are dated feces from a island cave 14K BP. Then there is a lot of bones 13K.
aaron695 6 hours ago 0 replies      
> This has been demonstrated beyond a shadow of a doubt by xxxxxx, a professor in yyyyyy's Department of Anthropology

Anthropology and "shadow of a doubt" never fit well with me in a sentence.

I'd like to hear an independent view on the data.

A lot of bone and not many 'human made' scratches with clear evidence of carnivore activity in the cave.

2017 Levchin Prize for Real World Cryptography linkedin.com
122 points by ergot  12 hours ago   27 comments top 7
niftich 10 hours ago 3 replies      
Not OP, but I sense perhaps a limitation of HN; articles with comments where the comment is the submission get conflated with submissions about the article itself.

(EDIT: the submission's URL has now been changed from a particular reddit comment at https://www.reddit.com/r/crypto/comments/5m0zpo/moxie_marlin... to a different announcement about the prize. The rest of my post as it originally stood follows.)

Reproducing the subject matter of the submission for discussion's sake:

dionyziz says:

I think Moxie decided not to be recorded for his acceptance speech. He said something very nice during his speech however, and I'll try to phrase it like he did:

If you watch videos of politicians giving speeches in the 1930's, you observe the fascist leaders who gladly accept an applause from the audience because they have earned it. They feel they are responsible for it, that they are the creators of history. On the contrary, if you observe a communist leader, they will applaud with the audience in every chance. This is because they have a different belief system, that of historical materialism, that history is a force of its own, unstoppable and inevitable, that drives what is happening in the world equipped with the momentum of what has happened in the past. These leaders feel they are simply the bearer of history, the tool that history chose to run its course, so they applaud together with the audience for history.

Similarly, today, we have a similar force, and that is technology. I once had the chance to meet Mark Zuckerberg. When I met him, a thought occurred to me: I could, right there... kill him. [audience laughs] I never thought I would get so close. But would that really change anything? Us technologists are the bearers of technological momentum. We make things happen, because the time has come for them to happen. And now is the time for strong encryption and crypto.

[audience applauds together with Moxie]

tptacek 11 hours ago 1 reply      
Moxie Marlinspike and Trevor Perrin. Most of the novel cryptography in Signal Protocol is Trevor's; it's good for people to know who he is.

Reprising a previous thread:

The prizes went to Joan Daemen, for AES and SHA-3 (on stage, Levchin pointed out that his interest in cryptography had been piqued by a xeroxed copy of DES when he was in school, and that it was an honor to present an award to one of the people who replaced the DES), and --- more notably, I think --- to Moxie Marlinspike and Trevor Perrin for their work on Signal.

Last year's winners were Phil Rogaway (a cryptographer of repute comparable to that of Daemen) and the miTLS team (of Triple Handshake, SMACK, FREAK, Logjam, and SLOTH fame).

yeukhon 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Always wondered how Trevor Perrin looks like:


tptacek 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Mods: a more appropriate title is "Moxie Marlinspike and Trevor Perrin win 2017 RWC Levchin Prize for Signal", and a more appropriate link would be to pretty much anything but an individual Reddit comment; how about this one?


dlevine 11 hours ago 0 replies      
should be "RWC Levchin Prize" (the reddit article is also incorrect).
scandox 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Unman 8 hours ago 1 reply      
While applauding the stated mission of Open Whisper Systems to make cryptography usable by large numbers of people I think it is fair to hold Moxie & Co. to the same high standards to which they held PGP: https://moxie.org/blog/gpg-and-me/

 The journalists who depend on it struggle with it and often mess up (I send you the private key to communicate privately, right?), the activists who use it do so relatively sparingly (wait, this thing wants my finger print?), and no other sane person is willing to use it by default. Even the projects that attempt to use it as a dependency struggle.
Breaking this up into constituent parts and trying to guess whether those standards are met seems to leave us somewhere in this territory:

1) Journalists communicating with WhatsApp struggle with it and mess up.

Given the confusion around under what circumstances one can communicate securely with WhatsApp ("Is it OK if I have two checkmarks? Is it OK because Facebook would never let a government have access to the RedPhone part?")

2) Activists who use WhatsApp do so relatively sparingly. I have no idea on this one. I hope they're using Signal and/or GPG with all their attendant bother, complexity and confusion though.

3) No other sane person is willing to use WhatsApp by default. Hmmm.. more confusing value judgements. Is someone that uses a communication method open to abuse by corporations and governments "sane"?

4) Dependency struggle. AFAICS no other projects can piggy-back off WhatsApp because it's proprietary and closed. So the user base can't scratch their own itches. OK, so what about Signal? Sounds like the dependency on Google Cloud Messages and Play Services can be hacked around with great difficulty.

I dunno. Fair play to Moxie and Perrin for what they've done, but so far GPG looks like a better bet for actual secure end-to-end communication, using an already existing, widespread distribution mechanism which is widespread and redundant: email.

Reports of GPG's death may have been grossly exaggerated.

WebSlides Making HTML presentations easy github.com
148 points by RealGeek  12 hours ago   56 comments top 19
jagger27 9 hours ago 2 replies      
I have a bit of feedback: the scrolljacking doesn't work at all for me in Safari on macOS with a MacBook touchpad. All it does is activate the edge-bounce animation. Chrome is a little janky too, half activating the bounce animation and then advancing to the next slide. Firefox is fine since it doesn't do the edge-bounce.

The worst crime (to me anyway) is the history spam and this applies to all browsers. Hitting back changes the URL but not the slide that's shown, curiously. If you're going to go this route, that's fine, just update the visible slide.

I would prefer if it didn't make me jump 50 history items back to get to where I came from.

armandososa 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Something to be aware: this is OP's first Github project. Let's be nice so it isn't the last.
jvehent 11 hours ago 4 replies      
https://github.com/hakimel/reveal.js/ is my framework of choice when making slides.
franciscop 10 hours ago 4 replies      
Please make the website more usable. It has a really nice design but poor UX. At least I should be able to scroll to... scroll. And hiding elements until you hover over an invisible part of the screen is totally against a good UX (discoverability). This could be okay in games or in purely artistic webpages, but if you intend your visitors to use the page and read the content it is counterproductive.

Edit: being this a project for making slides on a website with such a poor UX gives a really bad feeling for your potential clients. Will the project itself have the same problems? Will I be trying to hurry to finish the presentation and not find a button to save as PDF because it's invisible? etc

Edit: the link was changed from the website to the github.com, this comment was intended for the original URL: https://webslides.tv/

reimertz 10 hours ago 1 reply      
I created CLI for creating simplistic presentations for my first lightning talk. It turned out pretty great so I open sourced it. It has some neat features such as live-reloading server, anonymous deployment, mirrored highlighting and cursor and speaker mode. https://reimertz.github.io/lagom

Would be awesome to get some more contributors.. hrmf, I mean, users. :)

ohstopitu 11 hours ago 1 reply      
I generally use RemarkJS to create my slides (https://github.com/gnab/remark).

However, what's the difference between this tool and https://slides.com/ (and it's MIT open sourced at https://github.com/hakimel/reveal.js/) ?

EDIT: not saying you should not create this tool...but what was the motivation? (or the differentiation factors?)

pythonaut_16 11 hours ago 1 reply      
Here's another pretty cool one using Elixir and Phoenix Channels (Websockets): https://github.com/ernie/venture

It also has markdown based slides but syncs the presentation to clients via websockets, and allows for interactive slides with things like Polls and live chats.

gear54rus 2 hours ago 0 replies      
On a side note, does anyone know about something like that for simple docs?

Like if I want to migrate away for those bloated un-diffable PDFs and DOCXs to a HTML?

Preferably it should support importing from those 2 formats.

dagenleg 10 hours ago 8 replies      
Yes, but why make html presentations at all? Are there any tangible benefits except for fancy animations?
eranation 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Very nice! Feature request - make this also friendly for simple websites, (just hide the next previous and add a navigation bar)Much simpler than bootstrap for non technical people, well done!
redleggedfrog 6 hours ago 0 replies      
That's pretty slick, nice work.

I don't make a lot of presentations, but the fact I could figure out a lot of it in minutes makes this attractive. I definitely see it as a web tool more than a marketing / management tool. If I showed our marketing dept markup they'd have a conniption fit.

geraldbauer 10 hours ago 0 replies      
If you want to write your talks / presentations in plain text w/ markdown formatting I put together a ready-to-fork jekyll (github pages) theme called jekyll-talks-themes -> https://github.com/henrythemes/jekyll-talks-theme (using the s6 (html) slidekit -> https://github.com/slidekit ).
geraldbauer 10 hours ago 0 replies      
For for html presentations packaged for github pages (jekyll) and writing in plaint text with markdown formatting, see the slideshow-templates org -> https://github.com/slideshow-templates Ready-to-fork (use) packs include: deck.js, impress.js (3D!), reveal.js, g5, s6, s5, and more.
xjia 4 hours ago 0 replies      
This looks really useful. Is there a way to make it directly printable? It would be great if I can use it for my lectures.
geraldbauer 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Still early - I've put together an "Awesome Slideshows" page -> https://github.com/slideshow-s9/awesome-slideshows listing (awesome) html presentation / slideshow templates, themes, tools and more.
sanjayts 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I must say that I completely missed the arrow keys and the page numbers at the bottom; the font color is way too light for the background. Maybe making that a bit more prominent would go a long way.
metasean 5 hours ago 0 replies      
It works great on IceCatMobile and is open source - so it has my support!
explorigin 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Pressing "B" to black the screen is a feature that I consider critical that is missing here.
navies 11 hours ago 1 reply      
There's an issue where navigating to the next slide from the first slide brings you back to the first slide.I'm not sure if this is intended.
Git-quick-stats A simple and efficient way to access various statistics github.com
89 points by arzzen  11 hours ago   13 comments top 6
forgotpwtomain 7 hours ago 1 reply      
I think this is a bad interface. Showing a menu that clears the terminal rather than letting one use a specific command e.g. `git quick-stats commits` or `git quick-stats authors` is very annoying. If anything the menu should be a special option e.g. restricted to `git quick-stats menu`.
Groxx 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Neat. I may end up using this.

fwiw as feedback:

- 1 would be far more useful to me if it suggested reviewers based on the files changed in this commit / branch / ?. probably true for most large projects.

- 7 is a thing I made myself as well (though yours is noticeably faster), and I LOVE it. glad to see it appearing elsewhere :)

- what Zikes said. non-interactive input is a must for script-ability (e.g. to add an alias to output one option).

- easily readable awk and bash... nice work. scripts like this are really handy for teaching people about sane complex bash scripting. I'll spread it around at work a bit :)

hendry 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Be good if you tracked sloc, like mine does :)https://github.com/kaihendry/graphsloc
Roritharr 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I'd like this as a GitLab Plug-In.

Sadly the GitLab Team thinks that Plug-In Support is not necessary. :(

dguido 10 hours ago 1 reply      
I want this for email! As far as I can tell, there is no great open-source tool for processing my mail archive and giving me similar stats. Everyone wants me to hand over a fully-privileged OAUTH token to some random person's website, and then it never gives me the stats I want.
Zikes 11 hours ago 1 reply      
I like what this offers, however I would prefer to be able to access each individual "report" via a direct command as opposed to a menu. It would make it much more composable.
Steve Jobs and Jeff Bezos Meet Ginger aka Segway 2003 hbs.edu
69 points by omilu  8 hours ago   18 comments top 6
Tiktaalik 4 hours ago 0 replies      
>"I think the emphasis of this conversation is wrong," said Bezos. "You have a product so revolutionary, you'll have no problem selling it. The question is, are people going to be allowed to use it?"

Bezos and Jobs were right. Bicycles have been around since the 19th century and yet city planners are still struggling against mainstream political opinion to be able to set aside dedicated space for their use. If most cities currently only barely tolerate bicycles, the Segway was certainly dead on arrival.

I think Jobs' idea for starting small at universities was a bit better of an idea than Bezos' idea of starting in a small country. Davis California for example is the most bike friendly city in America (20% mode share). That would have been the perfect place to start.

mjfl 3 hours ago 2 replies      
A (feeble) plug for my hometown, Manchester NH (where Dean Kamen is currently located): I just visited the Millyards and they have apartments there that would cost $3500/month in Boston (more in SF) for $1400/month, Dean just pledged $300 million to biotech startups right there. Not much nightlife but not many distractions either, and they've put these beautiful restaurants in the old mills. It's about the same distance to Boston as Palo Alto is to SF. So if you want to drop off the grid for a while to focus on developing a product it's a great place to get started. Yeah.
truftruf 22 minutes ago 0 replies      
"Screw the lead times. You don't have a great product yet!" - Steve Jobs

Advice every struggling startup needs to hear. Great products are rare and the best way to succeed is not to settle on product quality.

mastazi 1 hour ago 2 replies      
> "Its shape is not innovative, it's not elegant, it doesn't feel anthropomorphic," said Jobs, ticking off three of his design mantras.

I was wondering what exactly did Jobs mean when he said that the design was not "anthropomorphic". I mean, the shape of an iPhone does look very different from that of a human figure.

EDIT: perhaps he meant that it wasn't ergonomic?

Camillo 2 hours ago 5 replies      
I would say that ultimately the Segway was a failure, but that perception is partially affected by the hyperbolic hype that preceded it. I wonder what its own inventors think.

How popular did they expect it to get? How did they expect people to use it? How did they not foresee the backlash to its incredible dorkiness? Would a smaller, handle-less form factor (like the Chinese clones now known as "hoverboards") have been possible with the battery technology of the time?

xt00 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Using a Segway on a college campus would be great.. Wish they had convinced campuses to buy them for students.

The unveiling was so lame.. People wearing khakis and super lame helmets and going over little bumps and looking so non-cool.. I watched way back when and was like... Uh... No.. First should not have helmets on.. Should have been very attractive people and should have showed how quickly they could get from point A to point B in style and comfort and convenience..

AI Pioneer Wants to Build the Renaissance Machine of the Future bloomberg.com
99 points by andreshb  12 hours ago   25 comments top 11
cr0sh 11 hours ago 3 replies      
Honestly, I think the title from the New York Times as "the father of AI" is a bit presumptuous. I'm not an expert by any means in machine learning or artificial intelligence, but I do know a fair amount about computer history.

Potential "father of modern AI" - even that is stretching a bit!

The fact is, machine learning and artificial intelligence is a story in history of fits and starts; of springs and winters; of successes and failures.

If anyone could be called such, the fathers of AI would belong to Warren McCulloch and Walter Pitts in 1943, who came up with the model for an artificial neuron:


From there, it was people standing on each other's shoulders, building ever upward and outward. These steps and systems have ultimately led to today's deep learning networks.

Other machine learning techniques trace to various techniques and methods in statistics and probability theory; then you have the whole arena of computer/machine vision research.

Right now, we're in the midst of yet another AI/ML "spring", after a fairly long "winter". Mr. Schmidhuber can certainly claim a bit of status as being one of many who help institute a thaw leading to today - but he is by no means alone (I'd argue that one of the earliest for today's thaw might be Lecun).

ttam 11 hours ago 1 reply      
> "Juergen Schmidhuber, often referred to as the father of AI"


reading further...

> he New York Times recently referred to him as a would-be father of AI.

Clicking the link to the NYTimes article

> When A.I. Matures, It May Call Jrgen Schmidhuber Dad

English as a second language person here, but is it just me or the Bloomberg subtitle does not reflect at all what the NYT title is saying?

blueyes 9 hours ago 0 replies      
This is a sloppy piece making grand claims about a man who likes to make grand claims about himself. By most accounts, Schmidhuber is only marginally involved with nnaisense, lending his name to the endeavor so that some of his graduate students can raise money. They have no use case, no product and frankly no business sense, which is one reason why they only money backing them comes from an unknown investor based in Madrid.
dharma1 12 hours ago 0 replies      
Good to see. I had the opportunity to see Jurgen speak last year - he was excellent - entertaining, surprisingly deep and able to field any questions with humour and insight. He gets a lot of flak for being obsessed with being credited for his work, but I think he does it for historical accuracy rather than ego.

Research oriented AI startups are experiencing serious brain drain to large companies because of the money they can afford to pay, I hope this secures Nnaisense for a couple of years and they make the most of that time

ponderingHplus 10 hours ago 1 reply      
I attended my first NIPS this year, and found Juergen to be a very engaging speaker, with the RNN symposium organized by him and his colleagues being my favorite part of the conference. A popular phrase that was being thrown around during the conference was "learning to learn" or "meta learning", with one of the papers even being titled "learning to learn by gradient descent by gradient descent"[1] Juergen seemed very passionate about the subject and he gave a cool talk around his Godel Machine[2], and sparked interesting conversation during the panel discussion. I wouldn't be surprised if "learning to learn" or "meta learning" replaces "deep learning" as the AI-word of 2017.



canistr 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Interestingly enough, Googling "Father of AI" yields several results including John McCarthy, Marvin Minsky, and Alan Turing.

Google's provided results point at McCarthy while the first mention of Schmidhuber is at the 9th result from the New York Times.

visarga 12 hours ago 2 replies      
I like his ideas, especially the one about consciousness being reinforcement learning, and self being emergent by the process of data compression.
lucidrains 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Schmidhuber cracks some hilarious jokes when he is on stage.

"The other day I gave a talk and there was just a single person in the audience, a young lady. I said young lady it's very embarrassing but apparently today I'm going to give this talk just to you. She said okay but please hurry I gotta clean up here."

cosmoharrigan 10 hours ago 0 replies      
For more details, refer to Schmidhuber's own website: http://people.idsia.ch/~juergen/ and his excellent review paper, "Deep Learning in Neural Networks: An Overview": https://arxiv.org/pdf/1404.7828.pdf
choxi 7 hours ago 0 replies      
They sound like a startup version of Watson, it's nice to see an AI startup having some success in the industry.
partycoder 10 hours ago 0 replies      
There's a long line of succession... take your number, Jurgen: McCulloch, Pitts, Fukushima, Kohonen, Hopfield, Jordan, Elman, Werbos, LeCun, Hinton, Bengio... only to name very few.

You can also go even further... https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=laJX0txJc6M

Show HN: JSON Browse Fetch, filter and manipulate your JSON inside the browser jsonbrowse.com
105 points by jorde  11 hours ago   17 comments top 7
nacs 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Looks like the HN effect is happening already -- the "Demo" link to Github shows this:

 { "message": "API rate limit exceeded for (But here's the good news: Authenticated requests get a higher rate limit. Check out the documentation for more details.)", "documentation_url": "https://developer.github.com/v3/#rate-limiting" }

jordache 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Chrome devtools? I feel the collapsed tree visualization of parsed JSON is already sufficient.

I'll just access the API I need within the authentication context of my app. Anything I would want to do with the JSON data is directly available in the devtools console. It has the added benefit of copying/pasting rough code I write in the console into my IDE to continue the work.

mjmasn 2 hours ago 2 replies      
I think the most useful feature here is JSON -> JS conversion. Relatively often I find myself copying and pasting some JSON into a JS file then manually deleting / regexing away the unnecessary quote marks around key names.
snug 10 hours ago 1 reply      
Pretty cool, but there should be a warning not to enter in API credentials (through the URI) on this page, as the request is proxied to jsonbrowse.com
dpedu 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I wrote a similar tool awhile ago, though it runs on the command line.


It's intended for reading structure logs - a file containing json objects separated by newlines.

travelton 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Updated my jsonlint.com bookmark to jsonbrowse.com. Thanks for the nifty tool!
PretzelFisch 9 hours ago 1 reply      
why would I use this over something like postman or RESTClient?
SpaceX Data Shows Loss in 2015, Heavy Expectations for Nascent Internet Service wsj.com
72 points by artsandsci  10 hours ago   34 comments top 13
mabbo 6 hours ago 3 replies      
The SpaceX internet service isn't just about building a new product- it's about smoothing demand for SpaceX's primary business.

Space launches are a high-variability industry. Sometimes there's lots of demand, sometimes you lose the ability to launch for 4 months because of a minor accident (or $250m explosion...).

This internet service is a new customer who can smooth demand out. SpaceX sets a goal for launches for a year, and gives the internet company 20% of their launches. If they oversell, some internet launches get cancelled. If they undersell, the internet company buys extra. Either way, booster production remains smooth. Every other customer is afraid of using used boosters? No problem, watch SpaceX use them themselves.

And if the internet thing doesn't turn out to be profitable? Ah well, the capital that financed it probably came from outside anyways.

chriskanan 7 hours ago 0 replies      
There is a Reddit post about the article in which the author of the WSJ article answers questions [1]. He won't reveal where he got the information or if he had permission to report on these numbers, but it seems like a leak.

[1] https://www.reddit.com/r/spacex/comments/5nqxs9/exclusive_pe...

snarfy 6 hours ago 2 replies      
From the FAQ:

> It's ok to post stories from sites with paywalls that have workarounds.

So what's the workaround? The web link doesn't work anymore.

foota 1 hour ago 0 replies      
Perhaps my expectations have simply been skewed by reading about negative billiion dollar incomes in valley companies, but It seems to me that spaceX is doing pretty well to be in the black with such large growth. (other than this year)

It also seems disingenuous to compare spaceX's launch history with that of a 36 year old company (Arianespace)

GreenPlastic 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Had a chance to buy some SpaceX stock and passed because I didn't see a path to liquidity with the large capital requirements to get to Mars. Not for everyone, but satellite internet is the ultimate power law play and SpaceX is in a great position to make it a reality. However, even if it is successful, they burn cash for 20 years with no way to cash out.
ctrl_freak 6 hours ago 2 replies      
Sorry if this is off-topic, but is anyone else having trouble getting around the WSJ paywall? The usual trick of redirecting through Google doesn't work for me any more, even with an incognito window or using another device.
kosei 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Original WSJ article referred to in this post:


ChuckMcM 2 hours ago 0 replies      
I was idly wondering how the cost to build his Internet works if he only uses 'used' boosters. That seems like an interesting trade-off of cost/risk.
Rapzid 4 hours ago 0 replies      
SpaceX is one of those companies I could imagine having minor setbacks with a quarter billion dollar annual loss. I could see investors throwing money their way just to be a part of space tech; so long as they aren't completely imploding.
mordant 3 hours ago 2 replies      
Satellite-based Internet service sucks. High RTTs kill TCP performance.

Rain kills it, too.

adventured 5 hours ago 0 replies      
These projections are for, essentially, a $400 billion market value company in eight years.

The $22 some odd billion in operating income they're projecting, would likely make them among the couple dozen most profitable companies in the world (at that point).

I'd be very concerned that they're forecasting what they think they have to hit to get to Mars, rather than what's realistic. Getting even ten million satellite subscribers at $60 or $70 per month in eight years, will be an amazing accomplishment. More likely, unfortunately, is that SpaceX achieves a fraction of these figures by 2025 and struggles to figure out how to afford the push to Mars (NASA co-funding is the likely solution). This goal reminds me of the 500,000 sales goal by Tesla that's due in 24 months (they'll miss that target by at least half). Maybe SpaceX Internet will get to 40 million eventually - it's certainly possible - it'll take a lot longer than eight or nine years however.

pbreit 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Rant: it's annoying when writers use "quarter of", I guess to make the number sound bigger (in this case, quarter of a billion in losses). Even "half" is a stretch.
jaimex2 38 minutes ago 0 replies      
pay wall, didnt read.
Certified Malice textslashplain.com
80 points by andygambles  11 hours ago   41 comments top 9
nailer 8 hours ago 3 replies      
This is domain validation (DV). A DV HTTPS/TLS cert doesn't make any assertions about a certificate representing any particular legal entity. Authentication is to a domain: you have an encrypted channel to whatever that domain is. Some CAs used to do extra checks for suspect domains on DV certs but they're not required and they don't scale for automated systems.

 openssl x509 -in domain-validated-example.com.crt -noout -text | grep Subject OU=Domain Control Validated CN=example.com DNS:example.com
As opposed to EV which does. Authentication is to a legal entity, you have a encrypted channel to that legal entity:

 openssl x509 -in extended-validated-example.com.crt -noout -text | grep Subject: jurisdictionOfIncorporationCountryName=GB businessCategory=Private Organization serialNumber=09378892 C=GB ST=City of London L=London O=example Limited CN=example.com DNS:example.com - 
(Domains are also required to be reviewed by a human for EV)

Disclaimer: work for CertSimple, who only does EV certificates (which match a cert to a legal entity). Though I use DV for my personal site.

tonyztan 7 hours ago 1 reply      
DV certificates are not meant to certify who operates a given site. They only certify that you are securely connected to the authorized server for the domain name, instead of being MITM-ed.

So, in effect, CAs issuing DV certs for websites, including phishing sites, is a feature, not a bug. If users are misinterpreting what a DV certificate means and doesn't mean, then it is up to browsers to make clear the difference between DV, OV, and EV.

A Domain-Validation certificate is just that. We shouldn't expect it to act like OV or EV.

dethswatch 8 hours ago 1 reply      
The big reason that cert's are as unused as they have been for two decades is because of the stupid desire to incorporate identity along with encryption.

They've both useful- they've more useful together, and they're expensive and not used everywhere because of the identity problem.

This is just going to have to be accepted (for a while?) to get proper encryption.

Pointing out that this can happen is neither useful or news, and perpetuates this nonsense that's been holding us back.

hartator 2 hours ago 1 reply      
> Users tend to be annoyed when you tell them only the truth This download was not reported as not safe..

First time that I am hearing users prefer a vague error explanation than truthful precise one.

And there is a silver bullet. Teach people - and most people already know it, don't assume people are idiots - how to recognize a domain name. Then the padlock. But, domaine names are infinte more important than padlocks. Always been the case and will likely never change in the near future.

tinus_hn 5 hours ago 0 replies      
So the browsers should show the right part of the domain name in the bar if the domain name doesn't fit, instead of the left part. Or perhaps not show it at all if it doesn't fit.
pokemon-trainer 8 hours ago 2 replies      
It's very unfortunate there isn't a way to force more responsibility/accountability onto CAs who issue phishing certificates.

Of course, the non-internet version of a CA, credit rating agencies, do not behave any better with the trust given to them by the public.

Maybe the creators of the Bitcoin alt coin "namecoin" had the right idea.

djyaz1200 8 hours ago 1 reply      
Definitely an issue. Chrome has already changed the SSL indicator to just read "secure" rather than naming the cert.
rini17 7 hours ago 1 reply      
1. Store the certificate directly in DNS, signed by DNSSEC

2. Have a way for user to easily and prominently display name or domain who is the certificate issued for, hardware button would be best IMO.

No participant in this CA racket has any interest for this to happen...

jwatte 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Google and others could easily look for domain names on the certificate transparency list and immediately add anything containing "PayPal" or "baidu" or whatever to the block list, until it can be checked manually.

In fact, the browser itself could do this...

This is how you hustle jacksimpson.co
66 points by jbsimpson  7 hours ago   34 comments top 14
stordoff 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Not a huge fan of this to be honest. From my perspective as a user, I don't want businesses I have no involvement with contacting me out of the blue. It's not quite spam, but I would treat it largely the same.

I'm also unsure that it's a good long term strategy for the business. It may generate some customers, but building a customer base on people who have A) shown themselves to be relatively fickle in choosing a host and B) have a tendency to use public channels to raise issues strikes me as a unstable base.

ejcx 4 hours ago 2 replies      
In my opinion, this is not hustling but ambulance chasing.

Every tech company is going to have bad operational issue days. Going at your competitors customers regularly when your competitors have bad days will net you more negative reactions than positive, in my opinion.

synicalx 5 hours ago 1 reply      
They've approached someone out of the blue, and offered no incentives or value over their competitor other than some arbitrary statements about how they 'just know' their service will be somehow better.

This avenue of "cold calling" is a bit new and interesting, but the way this webhost has done it just reeks of desperation. This isn't hustle, this is begging.

dougmccune 3 hours ago 0 replies      
Lots of people pointing out this was likely automated and provided no proof of customer benefit, etc, all of which may be true in this instance. I do have a similar story that impressed me, however. Three years ago I was in the market for my first 3D printer and was looking for a specific model, but the manufacturer had a long delay for shipping. I tweeted asking if anyone knew where I could get one fast. A competitor quickly replied telling me they could ship me their printer within 48 hours. But that wasn't the end of it, they then proposed that they would print anything I wanted and take photos of it for me to show the quality, which I took them up on. Emailed them a file, and pretty quickly got emailed back photos of the print in progress, and then another email showing the final print close up so I could see how well it came out. Pulled out my credit card then and there.
cddotdotslash 4 hours ago 2 replies      
I feel the OP likely may have been duped by an automated message that was setup to send during status issues or Tweets to a company's customer support representatives. I've sent some Tweets to customer support before (threatening to leave) that were "loved" by a competitor within seconds.
exolymph 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Nice. Some email recipients will be creeped out or annoyed by this tactic, but their negative response is far outweighed by the positive response from someone like OP. Too bad for the company that he didn't name them in the post that would have been a real coup. Think of the backlinks!
pfarnsworth 3 hours ago 0 replies      
I disagree. I think trying to take advantage of your competitors outage situation is bad form, mainly because you will mostly likely suffer an outage as well. From a marketing point of view, it may be good for a while, but can be used against you in the future. This is the first thing my first manager taught me 20+ years ago in software, and I still tend to agree with him.
ryandrake 5 hours ago 0 replies      
There was an article within the last few weeks here where, in the comments section, this tactic was discussed. Lead generation by watching for Twitter complaints about your competitors. Wish I could find the article.
shiftpgdn 2 hours ago 1 reply      
Interesting that the user that submitted this article is a spammer buying votes. Have comment karma farmers found their way to HN?
cyansmoker 1 hour ago 1 reply      
All this post shows is that some people are easily impressed. Nothing original or praise worthy to see here.
matt_wulfeck 3 hours ago 0 replies      
So ambulance chasing gets you customers!
peopleshost 11 minutes ago 0 replies      
Hello Everyone,

Instead of responding to comments individually I wanted to make one comment (and one comment only) to the responses to this article.

This is ONE of many strategies PeoplesHost employs to acquire customers. To address some questions or concerns others have mentioned in the comments made earlier:

- The blog post is authentic. Jack is someone we reached out to earlier today. He responded by complimenting the hustle and giving him inspiration to write that blog post.

- This is a manual human process and not automated or in bulk. Monitoring social media is a very tedious and timely process that we do on a daily basis.

- Yes, there are many who disagree with this approach as well as many who don't. We receive an equal share of people who respond in a positive light as well as those who call us ambulance chasers.

- Yes, no (hosting) company is perfect. Every hosting company will experience some sort of outage, disk failure, etc. at some point in time. It's inevitable and we understand that. When an event like this occurs, the web hosts should communicate and be honest with their customers base, which often times isn't the case. Customers are given the run around, canned responses, and shown a facade on social media that support is actually responsive when in fact all other support channels (live chat, phone, and tickets) the customer is left hanging where the public eye doesn't see.

Many of the vocal people we reach out to on social media are people who aren't receiving the support they deserve as a customer. These customers are taking to social media channels because they're receiving no updates or responses to their requests; it's their last resort to motivate their current provider to help them. For example, tickets going left unresponded to for many days. That's unacceptable and customers deserve better service. Many times, these customers are on their last string and ready for a move.

We understand that many of these targeted people run their businesses online and it's their livelihood. This is our livelihood too and we truly show our customers that we value them and their business..we wouldn't exist or be in business if it weren't for our customers. We've built a solid foundation of customers and built the company off the premise of exceptional and personal support.

- Some will see it as spam and others won't. We target these customers online who are 1) publically pleading/crying for help 2) have their domains listed on their profile and 3) have no private registration on their domain. This allows us to find their information in the public WHOIS database (again, it's a manual and timely process) and reach out via email, twitter, or directly on their websites contact form.

- We are not desperate and have a very healthy customer base. Our reviews speak for themselves.

- Many of you may or may not know how competitive the hosting landscape is or how the industry works. Larger conglomerates (I won't name names) spend upwards to $200+ to acquire shared hosting customers via paid search, affiliates, and reviews.

Generally speaking, most consumers don't understand that the "review" sites they trust and rely on are getting paid $200+ for any referral sent to the hosts listed on their top 10 charts. These charts are solely based on who (which hosting company) is willing to pay the most for a referral and/or which host converts the best earning that review site or affiliate the most commission. We simply thought of a new way to target customers in a way that doesn't break the bank.

With that said, it is very enlightening to see other's thoughts on the subject in a public forum.

jwatte 5 hours ago 0 replies      
You actually read cold sales emails, and believe promises by sales people like "customer service" or "solving your problem?"

That well was poisoned by "hustlers" (in the derogatory meaning) a long time ago. Unless I have experienced it myself or a trusted acquaintance recommends it, it goes into the bin for me. No exceptions.

sean_patel 1 hour ago 1 reply      
> I sent them a Tweet to ask them to please resolve the issue. Before they even responded to me, I suddenly had this email in my inbox

How did the Company that was trolling their Competitors' twitter account have access to this guy's email address?

80,000 Hours career plan worksheet docs.google.com
137 points by BreakoutList  8 hours ago   35 comments top 11
MR4D 4 hours ago 4 replies      
Being in my 40's and reading this, the only thing I can do is quote Tyson:

"Everybody has a plan until they get punched in the mouth."-Mike Tyson

Xeoncross 6 hours ago 2 replies      
Not to down play the usefulness of this, but be careful not to follow others ideas that your ultimate goal in life is X career plan. I have more of a "life plan" than a "career plan" since money and hacks/resourcefulness is pretty easy to the HN crowd relative to many other groups. Especially in the west, it takes talent to starve here.

A work/life balance is what some people enjoy, while others want a work/work or life/life balance.

For example, I am not interested in being worth X millions when I'm 60 at the cost of skipping >50% of life. Even money doesn't help with certain objectives (especially when you must trade time).

You have to balance what you want to have accomplished in life vs what you want while living life.

jaymzcampbell 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Before I got to the bottom of the document I wondered if this was a bigger thing I'd not heard of before, and indeed: creators of it: https://80000hours.org/career-guide/career-planning/.

I quite like the idea of an "ABZ" plan. It's often far too easy to think things will just carry on as is. Thinking about these things, for me the "Z" in particular, is something I don't think people do enough until it's too late. Thanks for providing a template doc like this as a low friction way to actually start doing it.

nedwin 6 hours ago 3 replies      
When I was 25 years old I made the plan to move to SF, find a technical cofounder and start a fast growth company.

5 years later I achieved that goal.

My plan was nowhere near the detail of this but there were steps along the way. Things changed a lot, and not everything was done in the order I originally planned.

With that said, having a clear vision of where I wanted to be and loosely how I was going to get there meant that I could turn down opportunities that may have led me astray, or which didn't further my career/life goals.


andrei512 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I you don't need a more complicated plan than: work a lot, teach others, have fun, never stop learning.You can't plan opportunities..
ericdykstra 6 hours ago 0 replies      
If you're looking for a more holistic plan, one that doesn't just focus on career, check out Self Authoring (http://www.selfauthoring.com/) and specifically the Future Authoring course. It was put together by clinical and research psychologists, and has been administered to University students with pretty profound results.
blaisio 1 hour ago 0 replies      
This was copied out of the book "The Start-up of You" by Reid Hoffman. They point this out on their website, but they should really point it out on this Google Doc as well since it's pretty much entirely unoriginal.
DelaneyM 7 hours ago 3 replies      
I can't help but feel career plans, even inherently flexible ones such as the 80000 hour plan, discourage serendipity and encourage sunk-cost thinking.

I'm not saying this is a bad idea, just that for the specific HackerNews demographic it may be a bit of an anti-pattern.

westurner 4 hours ago 1 reply      
> What are your best medium-term options (3-15 years)?

> 1. What global problems do you think are most pressing?

The 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) and 169 targets w/ statistical indicators, AKA GlobalGoals, are for the whole world through 2030.



ryandrake 6 hours ago 0 replies      
I like this because it provides structure and some more concrete (yet still general) advice. Too much career how-to is wishy-washy cliche: crap like "do what you love" and "follow your passion" and "never stop learning". That's fine if you're looking for spirituality. Not so much if you're looking for a solid step-by-step structure to follow.
didibus 2 hours ago 0 replies      
"If you fail to plan, you plan to fail." - a good friend of mine
Astronaut YouTube videos with almost zero previous views astronaut.io
336 points by KeatonDunsford  10 hours ago   103 comments top 45
j6m8 9 hours ago 3 replies      
Everyone keeps saying they saw such beautiful things

I just got stuck watching a guy eat an entire jar of mayonnaise without stopping

[EDIT] Just realized that the websockets that fuel the video transitions are suffering the same 503s as the other assets so the feed 503'd, and I got stuck on an unending, non-changing video of a guy looking into the camera as he ate so, so much mayonnaise.

astrocat 9 hours ago 5 replies      
PSA: Watch in an private/incognito tab/window. If you are currently logged into your google account, this WILL pollute your watched history: https://www.youtube.com/feed/history

That said, I really do like the concept. It's literal reality TV. Very cool.

wonga 6 hours ago 1 reply      
This is Andrew Wong (@wongavision), one of the creators of astronaut. I'm amazed this has appeared on HN on it's own, thanks KeatonDunsford! Reading these comments is heartwarming, as it appears like many of you are experiencing and feeling what James Thompson (@astrojams1) and I set out to make. The idea was to create a glimpse into the unedited world. The videos are current and to some extent unbiased and of the world. The lack of 'control' is by design -- sometimes you have to just sit and watch to really see whats out there.

As an embarassed engineer (i wasn't ready to launch! :D): apologies for this not working on mobile! i'm controlling a few youtube players to create this 'no spinner' experience for the videos, but haven't gotten it to work on mobile. I'm still figuring out what is the best way to do preserve the fluid feeling between videos on mobile browsers -- any suggestions are welcome!

I think one of you discovered this on your own: [spacebar] goes into 'theater' mode. I threw that in and started tearing up while watching. I hope you can experience the same. For those wondering, yes the feed is syncronized across everyone so you should be all seeing the same videos at the same time. The videos also are constantly updated, so when it's christmas time, you should start to see family dinners :)

I love all the feedback so far and the anecdotes, keep them coming!

mastazi 8 hours ago 1 reply      
I am increasingly at odds with the concept of curation. Youtube, Netflix, Google News, Facebook and many other web portals increasingly try to serve what "suits me" using sophisticated algorithms, but what if I don't want that? Every traveller knows that the best trips are those that you didn't really plan that much, which end up being an adventure. If you are driven by curiosity the unexpected is a blessing. For this reason I enjoy Astronaut and other projects such as GeoGuessr (https://www.geoguessr.com/) because they are a reaction to an overly curated, safe-space, no-surpises web experience.
jmduke 9 hours ago 2 replies      

If you like this, you might like these other two pages which exist -- like this page -- to demonstrate the breadth of human experience:


mcjiggerlog 9 hours ago 1 reply      
This is a really beautiful piece of art. I just wanted to say well done. It's a very grounding experience watching it for a few minutes

If you could click through to the source video then that would be great.

dmix 9 hours ago 3 replies      
About 50% of the videos were by Chinese people. Interesting to think how Asian a random sampling of the earth's population would be. North America is only 7.6% of the global population but overwhelmingly dominate in popular media.

Great site.

keyle 7 hours ago 1 reply      
This, really scared the crap out of me: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uqaGFV-s3Hs ? [Edit] Maybe I'm wrong and I hope I'm wrong.
gk1 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Things like this make me want to travel more. There is _so much_ out there to see and experience, so many people to meet and learn from, each with their own story and world entirely oblivious to yours.
Jackim 8 hours ago 2 replies      
This is my favourite that I stumbled upon: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XBaN0NkyLj8
fallenshell 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I saw a guy with the ISIS flag making a speech... I'm probably on some list now.
ldev 8 hours ago 3 replies      
So, how do I press "go" that's mentioned in text in the overlay?
pryelluw 7 hours ago 0 replies      
This feels like I'm inside a sci-fi movie set in some space colony. While being the main character, who is sick of being out there. Alone. I watch videos to remind me of Earth. Of people. Its a beautiful sense of sadness and longing.
danso 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Love it. Reminds me of the Vinepeek project (vpeeker) that was a Show HN a few years ago: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=5120301


Vinepeek/vpeeker is still functioning. Wonder what happens on Jan 17th, the day of the Vine app's shutdown?

SuperPaintMan 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Did the same thing with XNXX's DB dump. Had my code scrape the new DB every 24h and present a tube-like interface for browsing. I removed everything with over 100 views and a few other filters.

Turns out you get a ton of revenge porn (with drunken tags and titles), badly tagged home videos and strangely tagged CP. Never got off localhost for obvious reasons and promptly deleted every bit of GreaseTV.

goldenchrome 9 hours ago 3 replies      
Very cool. I wish you could easily go to the original video.
phaed 9 hours ago 0 replies      
All those moments will be lost in time, like tears in rain.
jrheard 2 hours ago 1 reply      
jyriand 9 hours ago 0 replies      
This is quite addictive. Spend a good 15 minutes watching this before "waking up" from this collective dream. There were video-snippets that disturbed me(dog fighting, voyeurism of sleeping people in transportation[not sure if there is a special category for that]), but otherwise it was a pleasant experience.
spyspy 9 hours ago 0 replies      
Seems to be down.
irpapakons 7 hours ago 0 replies      
ohnotthatguy 6 hours ago 0 replies      
A puppy on it's back in a basket of flowers.A teenage asian girl singing the national anthem.A gymnast preparing to do a flatground set.Several Japanese men in a room full of pipes pointing around and asking questions.Two children sticking there tongues out at the camera and saying "Hi grandma!"

And then a cock fight... Like a real one.

Franciscouzo 8 hours ago 0 replies      
There's a subreddit for a pretty similar concept: https://www.reddit.com/r/IMGXXXX/
innernette 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Source code is available at https://github.com/wonga00/astronaut
cma 7 hours ago 0 replies      
I got this one (illegal cock fighting, maybe not illegal in the country it was filmed in).. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JZIS_5SyxSg
benballjr 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Really interesting concept here socially. I'm not sure this kind of discovery mechanism really exists with services like YouTube. Likely there are randomizers, but this is really scraping from the "every day" user, which is so different from what most of us are used to seeing on YouTube.
rdiddly 56 minutes ago 0 replies      
I feel like this would be good stimulation for artists or anyone trying to be creative.
keehun 9 hours ago 0 replies      
This is an amazing idea, and beautifully executed. Many of these videos are wonderful to witness.

My only wish was that there was a skip button. Some of the videos were quite loud and/or in a few cases, not interesting (at all).

efangs 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Cool! I made (almost the exact same) thing as a twitter bot awhile ago: https://twitter.com/sub500
kovek 5 hours ago 0 replies      
An idea: trending low view videos from uploaders with not many subscribers or not many total channel views.
goodplay 2 hours ago 0 replies      
Could you enable https?
suhith 5 hours ago 0 replies      
I guess you could say that"YouTube is the final frontier"
orf 7 hours ago 0 replies      
This is... beautiful. Utterly beautiful. I don't know how and I don't know why, but it just is.
gigatexal 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Clicked a previous post about this without a subtitle and thought I was going to see something space related. Lol.
KeatonDunsford 10 hours ago 0 replies      
Just randomly stumbled upon this and almost teared up a bit. Absolutely beautiful, and brilliant.
aarkay 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Would make an awesome background for chromecast.
alexmingoia 3 hours ago 0 replies      
This is art.
mypalmike 8 hours ago 0 replies      
I just saw a splash screen, no videos.

Then 502 bad gateway.


kevin488 8 hours ago 0 replies      
The link is not working for me.
abe_duarte 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Amazing, so many moments.
hacker_9 7 hours ago 0 replies      
Oddly addictive.
digitalmaster 9 hours ago 1 reply      
Simple. Brilliant.
s3f3f3feggg 8 hours ago 0 replies      
spacebar changes to a soundtrack
yeukhon 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Nice idea, but the domain name - not a fan, just saying. I'd better reserved astronaut.io for something actually related to being an astronaut.
Solving a math problem to create art [pdf] pnas.org
32 points by lainon  8 hours ago   4 comments top 3
jasmcole 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Here's my take on the same problem (+ animations)


There are also more details+references on the algorithm which spreads the points evenly and aesthetically (Voronoi stippling).

peter_l_downs 6 hours ago 0 replies      
Awesome always interested in programming-related art. I was struck by the result in the article not for its novelty but for how similar it looks to a space-filling Hilbert curve https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hilbert_curve.

If you're interested in generative art you might like http://inconvergent.net/.

If you're interested in experimenting web-as-medium you might like reading/contribituing to my digital "zine": http://freezine.xyz.

poindontcare 1 hour ago 0 replies      
In Snap IPO, New Investors to Get Zero Votes While Founders Keep Control wsj.com
68 points by flinner  14 hours ago   52 comments top 7
kevinpet 4 hours ago 2 replies      
Relevant information:

Alphabet: GOOG (non-voting class C) closed Friday at a 2.8% discount from GOOGL (1x voting class A)

Zillow: Z (non-voting class C) closed Friday at 1.1% discount from ZG (voting class A).

xwowsersx 5 hours ago 4 replies      
I was just thinking about Snap the other day.

Social media platforms seem to be pretty fickle. Of course there are a couple of behemoths such as FB who don't seem to be going anywhere anytime soon, but how does a company like Snap create a moat around their business or keep it defensible long-term?

Please don't take my question to mean that I don't see the product/company as compelling. I don't personally use Snap (when I did a little bit, I enjoyed it), but I guess I just don't understand how to valuate a company like this. Is it mostly branding wherein, somehow someway, they've managed to completely own a certain demographic (here it seems 25 year-olds and under) and they are, therefore, seen as a new medium/platform where brands will be putting a lot of their ad spend?

Forgive the rant, just wondering how people think about this.

siavosh 5 hours ago 1 reply      
Curious if this is part of a larger trend in IPOs across industries? And if something is driving it other than unique founder celebrity status'.

And if I were to make a bit of a leap, if this is an anti-democratic trend we're witnessing.

PhilWright 6 hours ago 10 replies      
I have to say it feels like the founders want to have their cake and eat it. They want the money that comes from an IPO but they don't want to give up any control. Facebook is the same, Zuckerberg has the majority of the voting shares but a lot less than 50% of actual shareholding. This seems to be becoming increasing common with tech start ups.

If you want others to invest and take on a financial risk then they should get an equal and fair voting share. If I was the stock exchange I would ban this kind of crap.

karpodiem 5 hours ago 2 replies      
Snapchat is the next Twitter (wrt financial performance)
pfarnsworth 2 hours ago 4 replies      
A stock with no voting power and no dividends is entirely worthless. You're basically just giving your money away to the company.

It's akin to buying shares in The Green Bay Packers, where fans can buy ceremonial shares of the Packers, with absolutely no value.

I don't understand why you would buy a share like this, besides relying on the Greater Fool theory to make money. It's essentially like buying a collectible like a baseball card and hoping that you can sell it to some other fool at a later time.

Study Finds Link Between Profanity and Honesty neurosciencenews.com
83 points by baalcat  12 hours ago   49 comments top 13
donquichotte 11 hours ago 2 replies      
"The research found that those who used more profanity were also more likely to use language patterns that have been shown in previous research to be related to honesty, such as using pronouns like I and me."

I wish they gave a source for the relationship between using these pronouns and telling the truth.

Also, just looking at facebook users introduces a bloody selection bias.

mmaunder 8 hours ago 0 replies      
Totally fucking true because, when I was a kid, I caught such hell from my parents for lying that I've become a pathological truth teller. And I cuss, a lot.
gsam 3 hours ago 0 replies      
It seems like a straightforward relation. Less self-filtering results in more honesty. Honesty is often not what people want to hear, and that includes profanity.
dongslol 1 hour ago 1 reply      
Profanity is about emotional honesty. Swearing implies anger. Replacing "that fucker beat up my friend everyday" with "that ill-intentioned person beat up my friend everyday" is emotionally inaccurate.
edblarney 8 hours ago 2 replies      
This should not be surprising.

I'd say two things, which are related:

1) Profanity itself is a form of crude honestly - in any remotely genteel social setting - 'profanity' is usually politically costly. Would you swear in an interview? No.

Ok - there are some times when 'people in power' can swear as a form of strength/power projection - but that aside ...

People who 'control' their behaviour mostly to 'be polite' - will use that communication control to gain political favour in every little social interaction. Some do it aggressively.

We all know this kind of person.

So - the 'swearers' are just using less 'filter', and so 'what you see' is really more likely their actual thoughts - 'no filter applied'.

2) If you step outside of professional circles and hang out with 'working class types' (I don't mean to be crude with generalizations) - like guys on a construction crew - you'll find that these people swear sometimes. I'm originally from a small town, a lot of working class types there - and if there are only guys around, you'll hear some cussing. These people generally don't have 'learned filters' that most professionals would use to communicate - because there is no reason why they should have developed those filters. They're just 'honest' by nature.

I've always kind of felt this way.

'Smooth communicators' are the one's you have to worry about :)

astrodust 9 hours ago 0 replies      
It'd be interesting to see this broken down by vernacular, doing analysis on word frequency and other identifiers in language.

Does this make Samuel L. Jackson's characters the most honest? He sure speaks how he feels when in those roles.

dicroce 11 hours ago 0 replies      
the fuck?
bedhead 8 hours ago 0 replies      
About fuckin time.
lifeviacoffee 11 hours ago 1 reply      
title should be "Frankly, Do We Give a Damn? Study Finds Link Between Profanity and Perceived Honesty"
thesz 9 hours ago 5 replies      
The people who cannot spend energy to control themselves and therefore curse are less prone to using self-control-dependent strategy of lies and deception.


milesf 6 hours ago 2 replies      
I don't buy it. I know people with clean language that I don't trust, and friends who swear that I do. But in general I see profanity and anger as a red flag in relationships to be heeded, because it shows a general lack of respect towards others.

Next thing you know, evil will be good and good will be evil. Oh, wait a sec...

geomark 7 hours ago 2 replies      
I like how comedian Jerry Seinfeld put it: "If you have to use profanity in a joke then you failed to nail it." Applies to other things as well. It may be a (crude) indication of honesty, but it is a clear indication of failure.
Never built New York: the city that might have been in pictures theguardian.com
46 points by msrpotus  5 hours ago   7 comments top 5
ChuckMcM 1 hour ago 0 replies      
I really like the optimism of the early 20th century. So often architect envisioned multiblock structures that would sit above the existing landscape to provide new spaces. A recent idea like that in Cupertino went down in flames at the voting booth but the Apple 'spaceship' campus continues apace.
emmanuel_1234 3 hours ago 1 reply      
Woah, the "hyperboloid" looks very much like Guangzhou Tower.

Google Images: http://goo.gl/Q4zf9t

cavemanmike 4 hours ago 0 replies      
Beautiful, makes me want to build alternate history fiction around these buildings.
jonbaer 4 hours ago 1 reply      
Would have been great to see a dome built by Buckminster Fuller in Brooklyn
shmerl 1 hour ago 0 replies      
> Henry Gilberts design was a hybrid of Alfred Beachs air-powered underground and Charles T Harveys cable-powered elevated railway. Passengers would be moved through a double row of atmospheric tubes suspended from wrought-iron Gothic arches, held on slender Corinthian columns.

An early idea of hyperloop?

The lost letters of the English alphabet omgfacts.com
491 points by 2dvisio  23 hours ago   175 comments top 30
snarf21 17 hours ago 2 replies      
This is kind of interesting as this weekend I randomly came across the history of &. It was once taught as the 27th letter of the alphabet and was read as "and". To make it clearer when reciting the alphabet, students were taught to say "X, Y, Z and per se and" for X, Y, Z, &. (per se in this case meaning by itself). Eventually "and per se and" became ampersand. :)


ptaipale 22 hours ago 4 replies      
Curiously, the article mentions Icelandic for , but not for or , which are still on regular use in modern Icelandic, pretty much in the same Old English meaning of dental fricatives ( is voiced, is voiceless).
adamnemecek 22 hours ago 6 replies      
If this tickles your fancy, you should check out "Adventure of English" and the eponymous BBC documentary.



Did you know that just about every English word that contains the letter combination "sk" is from Old Norse? Skin, sky, ski, skill, skid, skull, skip, skirt etc. Skim isn't though.

Until reading this book I never truly realized what sort of a Frankenlanguage English really is.

aap_ 21 hours ago 1 reply      
There are a few points wrong in this article.First of all the <y> of <ye> does not come from <> but from <>.Secondly in Old English the letters and are used promiscuously, voicing has nothing to do with it. In other languages this is different, but the article seems to be about english specifically.
gilgoomesh 21 hours ago 0 replies      
I'm pretty sure that the "Y" in "Ye olde" is a thorn, not an eth:


since after the loss of wynn, the thorn was drawn to look like wynn (which is basically an uppercase "Y" with the left ascender in line with the descender and a loop on the right ascender).

If you're interested in discarded letters, this list has 12 letters (although the definition of "letter" is a little looser):


_petronius 22 hours ago 2 replies      
I didn't know about the pronunciation of "", and the examples in the article about the silent "gh" helps explain some modern German/English cognates: "daughter/Tochter", "thought/gedacht", etc.

The northern dialect of Middle English that the Pearl poet wrote in ("The Pearl", "Gwain and the Green Knight") makes use of this letter, much more so than Chaucer's more southern English. It's actually possible to read Chaucer with the help of some vocabulary tips -- the Pearl poet, at least in my experience, is way harder.

MayeulC 21 hours ago 4 replies      
Not to forget the long S [0]. I got pretty confused with it the other day, when reading a old French book (a Lavoisier memoir on diamond combustion). It seems to have been quite popular in a variety of languages, giving the (nowadays) German .While this is technically an "s", the way it was written "" can be confusing, as it is quite close to "f".

[0] https://en.m.wikipedia.org/wiki/Long_s

ascotan 17 hours ago 1 reply      
I've been fascinated by this for years and years. I've known about thorn, but I didn't know about eth and how thorn and eth are pronounced differently.


"English hs alays been a living languge, changing and evolving wi use. But before our modern alphabet was estblished, e languge used many more charcters eve since removed from our 26-letter lineup. e six t most recently got axed are:"

caleblloyd 4 hours ago 0 replies      
If we just had one more of these letters, Base 64 encoding wouldn't need the / and would be URL friendly if you strip the trailing =. Dang.
beefsack 21 hours ago 3 replies      
Those of us outside the US would still see some usages; "encyclopdea" in particular isn't uncommon.
cr0sh 15 hours ago 0 replies      
Not only do I find this fascinating, I also find it fascinating how many of us here at HN find it fascinating (as witnessed by the number of comments and up-votes).

I'm loving the discussion, too!

thomasfl 18 hours ago 1 reply      
i lved this. Please write mre.

As a Norwegian citizen I really loved this. Would love to see a blog about English words and names of places with Scandinavian origin. It goes for words like "trim" and places with names ending with -by.

pacaro 16 hours ago 0 replies      
It's interesting that Welsh orthography has these sounds, but makes different transliteration choices into the Latin alphabet.

For example, dd is used for eth (I once worked with a woman called "Dydd", presumably short for Meredydd), and ll is used for yogh.

Some people will argue about the correct capitalization of 'ff' when used in names like ffion.

My knowledge of welsh is limited to road signs and watching S4C whilst inebriated. The contribution of a native speaker would be appreciated.

memsom 20 hours ago 2 replies      
Sadly, full of misinformation, half truths and bad conclusions.
Cuuugi 16 hours ago 0 replies      
I just appreciate that i learned something from someone named Poindexter.
talideon 17 hours ago 0 replies      
Those interested in this might also be interested in the History of English Podcast: http://historyofenglishpodcast.com/

Recent episodes have got up to the Early Middle English period, which is when the language's modern orthography began to take shape, including some of the now lost letters of the alphabet.

OliverJones 17 hours ago 0 replies      
From reading old records in the cellars of churches and libraries in New England, I believe part of the progress of the writing of (eth) to y and then to "th" involved writing the y as a superscript at the beginning of words.

Any truth to this? Or was it just an oddball habit of New England scribes?

sjclemmy 19 hours ago 0 replies      
If this floats your boat, can I recommend an excellent book by Michael Rosen which combines whimsical prose with an interesting history of the english alphabet.


user982 21 hours ago 2 replies      
If only Q would follow them.
pdkl95 19 hours ago 0 replies      
"Why Do We Have "Ye Olde"? Obsolete Letters, and the Mysteries of Ye Olde Ming", by Tom Scott


white-flame 11 hours ago 0 replies      
Did these letters have an ordering in the otherwise A-Z alphabet sequence of today?
rubyfan 21 hours ago 1 reply      
Ugh, great now I'll never read "Ye Olde" the same way.
donquichotte 14 hours ago 0 replies      
I want to offer the author my most enthusiastic contrafibularities for this interesting rticle.
peter303 16 hours ago 1 reply      
When traveling in Iceland recently it is useful to learn eth and thorn because they are all over the place
wfunction 22 hours ago 3 replies      
Well now I want to know when and why these disappeared!
samirillian 16 hours ago 0 replies      
interesting how much resembles the arabic "ghayn" , which is the same sound.
SixSigma 15 hours ago 0 replies      
My copy of An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations still has economics written as conomics.
zeveb 16 hours ago 1 reply      
Personally, I really wish at we'd bring back '' instead of 'th' (there's no real need for '', since originally one is a rune and one is a variation on a Roman character, but if we wanted then we could use '' for soft 'th' & for hard 'th').

I'm not terribly keen on retoring '', ince it really is eay to confue for 'f.'

Given our modern orthography, I don't see any real need for '' & ',' as much as I like them both.

But honestly, '' really ought to make a comeback.

peterburkimsher 21 hours ago 1 reply      
So W won, and Wynn lost? FTW.
jheriko 17 hours ago 0 replies      
what about the long s?
       cached 17 January 2017 08:02:01 GMT