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    I am taking part in this test day. My hope is that Fedora adopting Btrfs will add a lot of development power into Btrfs to make it more mature and iron out the kinks.

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      do you reckon you will still be able to buy a non-smart fridge in the near future?

      i was quite dismayed last time i tried to find a new non-smart TV.

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        No, I don’t we will be able to. The margins on consumer electronics are so thin that the temptation to add “after market” sales in the form of DRM-protected consumables and ad-tracking is almost overwhelming.

        The products without these “features” will be priced at a premium.

        As Izabella Kaminski at the Financial Times speculated, in the future privacy will be reserved for the rich…

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          What made me giggle was this:

          freedom sucking, major appliance disabling, communist, 1984-esque idea

          More like peak capitalism.

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            Part of the problem is that people expects things to be as cheap as possible.

            I hear a lot of people complaining that their new washing machine doesn’t last as much as “the old ones” used to.

            But when you tell those same people to buy a washing machine from a reputable brand like Siemens or Miele, they’ll tell you that 400-600 EUR for a washing machine is way too much when they can buy one for 200.

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              In a way it’s almost like a rent-to-buy scheme; you pay less up front, but take it in the shorts in the long term. Some of the more obnoxious versions of this wind up with an actual cost hundreds of times the up-front purchase price.

              This seems like a self-correcting issue, though, provided all concerned are transparent about the real cost.

              And that’s the rub: people who buy the “cheap” DRM appliances aren’t being informed of the real costs.

              Perhaps that’s the solution? Make retailers and manufacturers disclose, in advance, whether they employ such practices.

              1. 3

                And that’s the rub: people who buy the “cheap” DRM appliances aren’t being informed of the real costs.

                Perhaps that’s the solution? Make retailers and manufacturers disclose, in advance, whether they employ such practices.

                But that doesn’t solve the other problem of planned obsolescence. To me the solution should just be mandatory minimum lengths of warranties on appliances. Appliances should last 20 years by law.

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                  I sure as hell wouldn’t want to keep any appliance I own for 20 years. Or pay for one that lasted that long.

                  Why not just make manufacturers and retailers disclose MTBF? (That said, you can make a pretty well-educated guess by looking at warranty periods).

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                    You don’t need to keep them for 20 years. You can sell them to someone else that will use them that doesn’t have the ability to be a frivolous consumer.

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                      But ultimately, I’m still paying for a gold-plated fridge, because you consider buying appliances at a rate of more than one per twenty years to be frivolous.

                      Why not leave the choice in the hands of the person spending their money, and merely require manufacturers and retailers to provide the information necessary to make that choice an informed one?

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                        Because you choosing to replace your fridge every couple of years (and no, I refuse to accept it’s ‘gold plated’ for something to last the reasonable amount of time they’ve been generally expected to last for decades upon decades upon decades) costs everyone environmentally.

                        Why not leave the choice in the hands of the person spending their money, and merely require manufacturers and retailers to provide the information necessary to make that choice an informed one?

                        Why would they give us the option if they have a choice, when they can just only offer ones that will break in 5 years like they do today?

                        1. 3

                          My current fridge is running very well, and is significantly older than five years. It did cost more than a cheap model, too. These things are as I’d expect.

                          Regarding the environmental cost, there are much better ways to achieve this than dictating how many years a given appliance should last for (and thus giving the shaft to poor people along the way). For instance, requiring the recycling / landfill / whatever costs of the appliance to be paid up-front and factored into the sale price.

                          1. 3

                            Requiring appliances to last 20 years does not shaft the poor. Quite the opposite in fact, because the cheapest appliances wouldn’t only last a couple of years. The current system means the poor buy crap and have to replace it constantly while the rich get to but stuff that lasts and spend much less in the long run.

                            1. 1

                              So how would you determine exactly how long is a reasonable MTBF?

                              (In other words, how would you avoid falling into this hole: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Economic_calculation_problem)

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                                1. 1

                                  Sure, but they base their expectations on typical lifetimes. And courts have (correctly) upheld implicit contracts, especially in the case of goods that are advertised as premium. In Australia, doing that will limit your ability to contract out of warranties.

                                  But what’s being proposed here is a massive market intervention, to increase the expected lifespans of certain goods (which ones? again, the same problem) by an order of magnitude.

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                                    I don’t think that a 20 year lifespan on appliances is actually an order of magnitude increase. When I was a child we had the same washing machine, dishwasher, clothes dryer, microwave etc. that my parents got as wedding presents or bought in their first couple of years together until my late teens or early 20s. That wasn’t unusual either, none of my friends were getting new dishwashers or washing machines every few years.

                                    1. 1

                                      But what’s being proposed here is a massive market intervention, to increase the expected lifespans of certain goods (which ones? again, the same problem) by an order of magnitude.

                                      yes… and what’s the problem with that? you don’t think it’s possible to come up with a common sense amount of time that certain types of appliances should last?

                                      1. 1

                                        No, I think that’s quite reasonable. In fact the courts do that on a regular basis, when deciding on warranty issues.

                                        What I think is unreasonable is for the State to enforce same. Price / quality should be a private matter between manufacturer, buyer, and seller.

                                        Right now, that ratio is often obfuscated, which I think is wrong.

                                        1. 1

                                          why is it unreasonable?

                                          1. 1

                                            Quick summary: I think the Austrian school is pretty much right about economics, and think that laissez-faire capitalism is the best model for trade. We may be operating from very different premises.

                                            Edited: “Austrians emphasize private property, entrepreneurship, free markets, and sound money as the key drivers of economic performance.” is a good summary, from https://mises.org/austrian-economics.

                                            Thus I think it’s entirely reasonable to pass laws requiring manufacturers to inform consumers of likely lifetimes, DRM costs, etc. But the ultimate choice should remain with manufactuers and their customers.

                              2. 2

                                Regarding the environmental cost, there are much better ways to achieve this than dictating how many years a given appliance should last for (and thus giving the shaft to poor people along the way). For instance, requiring the recycling / landfill / whatever costs of the appliance to be paid up-front and factored into the sale price.

                                I like the idea of forcing companies to pay the disposal costs of the products they sell. However, I don’t see how it would shaft poor people any less than the longevity idea. Supposing a fridge costs £100 to dispose of properly. Instead of offering (for example) fridges at £100, £400 and £800, which are built to last 2, 5 and 10 years respectively, you’re now offering fridges at £200, £500 and £900. If you are poor, you are still going to get the cheapest fridge, you just end up paying twice as much for 10 years of owning a fridge. The result is that while in theory we’ve now paid to dispose of the broken fridges safely, there’s no incentive to design or buy less wasteful fridges in the first place, and the cost has been shouldered by the poor, not the companies producing crap fridges.

                                1. 1

                                  Regarding the environmental cost, there are much better ways to achieve this than dictating how many years a given appliance should last for (and thus giving the shaft to poor people along the way). For instance, requiring the recycling / landfill / whatever costs of the appliance to be paid up-front and factored into the sale price.

                                  the danger there is that it is more complex, thus increasing the cost of enforcement and the likelihood that companies can find a way to game the system.

                              3. 2

                                Because this civilization won’t be around for much longer if you keep doing this, Karen. :-)

                                1. 1

                                  But ultimately, I’m still paying for a gold-plated fridge, because you consider buying appliances at a rate of more than one per twenty years to be frivolous.

                                  Why not leave the choice in the hands of the person spending their money, and merely require manufacturers and retailers to provide the information necessary to make that choice an informed one?

                                  it’s not /u/mrr’s decision vs. the consumer’s decision, it’s society’s somewhat-democratic decision vs. the decision of the appliance manufacturers.

                          2. 1

                            I’m not sure that strategy would work with the people that don’t already care (which unfortunately, I think it’s the vast majority):

                            See what’s happening with the GDPR banners. Most people will just press “accept” to get the annoying thing out of the way. The kind of people that are concerned in accepting those banners are the same people that were already aware of the malpractices of adware on the web.

                            I think that if appliance manufactures were forced to disclose those practices, most people will still buy that appliance because it’s cheaper than an equivalent one that doesn’t employ those practices.

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                              GDPR is no only a banner (btw. you are talking about cookie consent I think) It gives you rights that did not exist before. I utilised my new powers successfully to force companies to close my accounts, delete my data etc. This could not have been possible before GDPR. You can also check out how many companies got fined for GDPR violations. I think privacy mandating laws work and we need more. We have to force the surveillance capitalist companies to do reasonable things. I could not give two shits if they were using anonym data collection instead of identity based ones. The machine learning models do not care about who you actually are, so there is no point. Yet, this is exactly what Facebook/Google does.

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                                So … shouldn’t that be their choice?

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                                  See what’s happening with the GDPR banners. Most people will just press “accept” to get the annoying thing out of the way

                                  Pro tip: The banner goes away even faster if you close the tab.

                              2. 2

                                Another problem, i think, is the fact that many people have to make short-term decisions regarding to their money due to stagnating wages and general financial inequality. Sure, buying a washing machine for 400-600 EUR might be more sensible in the long run, but buying an appliance for 200 EUR also means to be able to put food on the table. Something that might be harder if you are buying the expensive stuff.

                              3. 3

                                You are assuming static market situation. A single privacy aware government can change that. Just like the great firewall in China you can have a great privacy firewall of the EU and disable connectivity to privacy invading surveillance capitalist companies. This would force the market back to reasonable directions. I hope that this is coming.

                                1. 1

                                  I hope so too. I also believe like you that legislation is needed to make the externalities of privacy visible to the private sector. In the meantime, posts like this can raise awareness. I hope trusted tech review sites also get in on the action and explicitely raise risks associated with these practices.

                                  1. 1

                                    Just like the great firewall in China you can have a great privacy firewall of the EU and disable connectivity to privacy invading surveillance capitalist companies.

                                    I often daydream about this but how could this be implemented in reality? Block Google and you block 90% of the EU’s email accounts. Block that one privacy-violating that is hosted on AWS/Cloudflare and you block 90% of the websites people are used to using. It doesn’t really seem to be feasible in real life.

                                    1. 1

                                      I often daydream about this

                                      Yes me too! :)

                                      I was thinking, gradually. First you introduce funding companies in the EU that offer alternatives, set up 1 click migrations. Business models are a big question. Many kind of services are impossible to implement an alternative to, because Google is funding the operation by the ad money. This is the hardest challenge. It is not a problem for the companies but for the individuals who are using @$googledomain emails.

                                      After that, 1% packet drop on Google/Facebook IP ranges which increases gradually to 100% over a year. No pain no gain! :)

                                      I think China proved that you can roll with your own services if you ban the US adtech companies. The EU should do the same.

                                      1. 1

                                        I think China proved that you can roll with your own services if you ban the US adtech companies.

                                        I believe this is only true if your population doesn’t depend on these services. The EU and US could easily ban WeChat tomorrow without a problem, because WeChat doesn’t have that many users in the EU/US. China couldn’t ban WeChat even if it was an american product as WeChat is so ingrained in every facet of the chinese population’s digital life.

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                                          Right. Isn’t there even more incentive to have an EU equivalent of service in that case?

                                2. 3

                                  Most of the profit in TVs is the advertising tie-in, but it’ll be a long time before you can’t plug in a 3rd party set-top-box.

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                                    yeah but i’m bugged by the delay in basic input functions as a result of running everything through a slow computer

                                    1. 1

                                      Smart TV interfaces are horrible, yes. We tried a Virgin Media box (even slower!), a ChromeCast (almost possible to live with) and an XBox One. Those have been left to gather dust / disposed of in favour of an Apple TV box, which is nippy and works well.

                                      1. 1

                                        so what do you do about the TV itself? it has a slow interface but don’t have to deal with it because you leave it set to the Apple TV?

                                        1. 1

                                          Yep. The TV takes about 30 seconds to switch on, but after that it’s just set to the Apple TV and it’s great. It even goes onto standby itself … and I press the Apple TV remote Home button to make it come back - which is pretty much instant. It means I can ignore the TV’s own useless stuff.

                                  2. 1

                                    We need a new to create a new brand of dump devices. The gist of the TVs are the screens which you can purchase from the vendors producing it directly. Once you have that we need a factory that can assemble + package a customer ready version. An average customer buys TVs every 5 years or so. You can calculate the price based on that. There is no need for any smart feature you can use your favourite platform and have a HDMI or similar port only. This is exactly how I use my dumb TV.

                                    https://www.philips.hu/c-p/55PUH4900_88/4900-series-4k-uhd-slim-led-tv-pixel-plus-ultra-hd-vel

                                    1. 2

                                      are you tellin me that Philips 55PUH4900/88 is non-smart?

                                      1. 1

                                        As dumb as I could get. There is certainly something running on it that lets you select the HDMI inputs but it has no built in smart features like Cromecast. It is also very low latency which makes me believe it does not have much running.

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                                          oh cool that’s good to know. any animations or semi-transparency in the volume and channel indicators?

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                                            No animations and I do not think there is semi-transparency for the volume indicator.

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                                              wow almost too good to be true. maybe i will stock up if i can find one for a good price.

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                                                Let me know if you need more I can check out the fw details

                                  1. 2

                                    So you set up your own hardware at your own place and then outsource your security, availability and parts of the setup to a third party?

                                    While I can imagine use cases for this, it might contradict the reason for self-hosting in first place. Depending on what your goal is running a VPN and self-host that as well on some publicly reachable machine might be more fitting to the goal of self-hosting something.

                                    One could for example use wireguard on openbsd, just because someone posted it recently. But that’s just one option. It’s very likely to have wireguard support in the base system and it already provides the means to terminate HTTPS using letsencrypt with solely base system tools (acme-client, httpd, relayd).

                                    1. 2

                                      I kinda understand both sides.The vps solution might be better but if you are using a vps as endpoint to tunnel to, why not slap a webserver on it and use it in the first place without hosting your stuff at home? Because that is the main selling point for solutions like argo or ngrok. You just connect your homeserver to an endpoint instead of connecting your homeserver to a remote server and thus rendering your homeserver obsolete.

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                                        Yeah, it’s true that it’s not a 100% self-hosted solution and from an ideological perspective that might sound like an oxymoron as mentioned in another comment. But, I like that I can run something like a Raspberry Pi or even an old laptop and use that compute power vs renting it all on a cloud provider. I can totally understand that this might not be a solution for every use case. If you have a lot of throughput for example, this may end up costing you more and give little benefit. I would argue however, that for a personal website or small side project, this can make for a very simple, fast, and effective solution. And you could totally build your own tunnel if you’re into that kind of thing but, it does take away some of the simplicity.

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                                        A long time ago i threw together a rather ugly shell script called microblog. Due to social distancing related boredem i currently picked it up again and started to refacture it. I think it has two neat advantages:

                                        • It can be distributed as a single file
                                        • It only depends on an external restructuredText parser

                                        Is it ready to be used elsewhere? Kinda. I am starting to blog again so i might refine the script further if new needs pop up.

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                                          I am currently tasked with integrating ngrx into an angular project. We got some working models today and now need to implement all the actions, selectors and effects. And hopefully everything is working after this.