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Cake day: Jul 18, 2021

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In general, I watch the very last couple of games because that’s usually when lots of people around me are excited about it and watching it.

With this year’s one, I’m so grossed out by its ecological and social insanity that I don’t really want to.


Unless I’m missing something, I believe both WebP and AVIF have lossless compression as options. Of course, choosing that results on heavier files, but at least there’s the option.


Thanks for the recommendation. I didn’t know such little reduction in quality meant so much savings with JPGs and PNGs!

Yeah. Avif gave me some nasty artifacts on some pictures that I wanted to save long term. Not using it anytime soon… or at least until those issues are fixed.

Why do you dislike WebP? I can see that it isn’t widely used, so if longevity is my goal JPGs and PNGs are a better bet. But am I missing something about WebP?


The Snowden leaks show that the government programs rely on unencrypted data and data that companies are forced to give. Neither method relies on exploits of memory unsafety.

Memory safety refers to the software that is used internally.

Here’s an analogy. Imagine I sit in a park, and have a squad of friends who go out to listen to other people’s conversations. They may write down and pass me what they hear or they may simply tell me what they remember. That doesn’t matter. What matters is what I do afterwards.

Let’s say I want to write down what they said. I could write it down with a permanent marker on the palm of my hand. If I make a mistake, I’ll have to cross it and waste precious space.

Imagine I learn I could use pencil and paper, or a computer. Mistakes would stop costing me dearly. I would also have more space.

This change from ‘permanent marker on a hand’ to ‘paper and pencil’ or ‘computer’ is the equivalent to the NSA recommending memory safety. This doesn’t change the fact that my squad is out there spying on people. It just changes how I deal with the evidence they hand me over.




Good point. I understand you’re saying it’s better to use Ubuntu than more locked-down and less libre alternatives. Fortunately, I daily-drive a GNU/Linux distro that I believe is less invasive than other alternatives.




Echo chambers are responsible for polarization if we define them broadly as groups that orient themselves towards similar values by listening to each other and not to other groups. This happens with friend groups over dinner, family reunions, and (for those who are religious) at religious events.

However, if we define it as necessarily something that happens in social media, I disagree with the notion that those echo chambers are responsible for radicalization. Notice I said “radicalization” rather than ‘polarization’.

Before, you’d simply gather around with your friends or family and discuss how the world is becoming more progressive. If your family happens to have regressive values, you’d complain about marginalized groups no longer being as marginalized. “Oh, the gays, they want to destroy the country by normalizing homosexuality”. The impulse to retain the values of a marginalized group (such as religious and racist zealots) motivates further cloistering and clustering.

Now, social media amplifies polemical voices that fiddle with your insecurities. If you’re a shy teenage girl, this might mean that you’re exposed to messages about how you’re ugly and poor. But if you’re not, it can be about anything. An effective technique is showing you your political enemy doing something threatening. “Democrats steal the election”, " Republicans burn a library because of LGBT books". This makes you want to engage with the content and watch more ads from the social media platform (Facebook, Twitter, YouTube). As a result, you spend more time reading about or watching videos about this threat (the insecurity-fiddling threat) and radicalize. These are the flat-earth YouTube rabbit holes. Or the toxic-masculinity red pill ideology rabbit holes. Or the fucked up terrorist rabbit holes. Or the hyper-religious and anti-democratic zealot rabbit holes. Or the racist rabbit holes. There are plenty. You can tell me which ones I’m missing. You probably know what I am talking about.

In other words, it’s not echo chambers that worry me. It is algorithmic manipulation to maximize engagement. That is a source of big trouble for the world. That is what we will have to deal with if we, as a world, pretend to live democratically.


If you’re not too anxious, reading Learned Optimism by Martin Seligman and applying it. If you’re too anxious, reading The Happiness Trap and applying it. Those are both books on proven ways to deal with many mental health issues.


I imagine part of the story is the amount of ads and tracking. Also, if you go to the front page, you will see plenty of videos. Your personal subreddits may be primarily text-based, but it seems most people use image or video-based subreddits.


Oh wow, the browser-OS comparison seems big! Do you have a favorite browser? Or are they all equally bad? I hope browser security and size can change for the better in the future!


Thanks for pointing it out. I’m also aware of their reliance on surveillance capitalism services. Maybe I should’ve pointed that out, in case someone mistakenly looked at the site uncritically. I just liked the fact that they were the first to point me towards how to maintain a change log. But, in any case, thanks for making the public service announcement!



[SOLVED] HELP: Do you remember a website made by hackers who teach about privacy and security? It was beautiful, it had emojis, all-white, a single site? [more details in body]
There was a version number at the very bottom, and a link to how to maintain versioned documents. There was the mention of opening PDFs in browsers or with some apps that sandbox the PDF. They were like a hacker collective or a couple of hackers. I *believe* they were dutch, but this could be wrong.

I tried finding the GitHub issue that asks for Signal to stop relying on phone numbers. I can’t find it. Do you [whoever is reading this] know where the issue is at?


Interesting question. It both spurs discussion and shows you’ve thought about this topic. What do you think? :)



Most anarchists believe in the marketplace of ideas, meaning that multiple systems can co-exist in parallel and that over time the ones providing the best conditions will attract the most participants.

This is interesting because it means both that some of the current social arrangements have endured because of their attractiveness and some of them are being tested.

I wonder about the relationship between reflective social truths and broader methodologically valid truths.

For example, a reflective social truth is capitalism’s profit incentive: the social arrangement creates the phenomenon. In other words, people make it true. Conversely, people make it false by not acting out that social arrangement. An example of a broader methodologically valid truth is the existence of Neptune, or the abundance of hydrogen in the universe. These are truths regardless of social arrangements. Of course, broader truths can be changed by social arrangements, as in the case of the capitalocene.

My question, then, is how the marketplace of ideas and their attractiveness relate to reflective social truths and broader truths. Should these two types of truths be dealt with differently? Or are they fundamentally the same? What does methodological validity mean in this marketplace of ideas, if anything? Are there things such as mass delusions?

I like that the view of the marketplace broadly aligns with neoinstitutional views regarding the struggle between groups. It is this struggle that determines social arrangements.



I have a smartphone. My friend has a fliphone. How to easily encrypt-decrypt our SMSs?
I am aware this is a meta-data disaster on par with Whatsapp. Such is life.

As in feeling comfortable with others noticing the parts that you’d like to show of yourself? As in being able to share with the recurrent experience of being heard? What do you mean?





The [release post](https://matrix.org/blog/2022/06/16/matrix-v-1-3-release) specifies the spec changes. I'm not entirely sure what the entirety of the change regarding metadata reduction is, but this MSC seems relevant: - Deprecate the sender_key and device_id on m.megolm.v1.aes-sha2 events, and the sender_key on m.room_key_request to-device messages, as per MSC3700. (#1101)