1. 1

    I am not sure the store is truly 100% available. Imagine storing hashes of large files along with the associated file names. I believe some regions will fail in at most a couple of years.

    1. 1

      Close to 100% would definitely be more appropriate here. I think focusing on the 100% misses the point of “super high availability” though.

    1. 5

      if I may lose my server and lose some important email

      This is the biggest problem I have with most of the “host your own {x}”. Yes, I have to do maintenance, yes things may break. I can probably even deal with spam. I ran my own email a few times. As a secondary server though.

      Because hosting means I need to have a looooong term backup&recovery strategy. Unless Google goes bust, I’m pretty certain I’ll be able to read an email from 2004 or 2005 or whenever it was I’ve switched to gmail.

      And some of my blog attempts I can’t even find on the internet archive, let alone mails film that server. Or photos. Or whatever. I don’t even know what will happen in 10 or 20 years.

      I’m curious as to how do people deal with that issue? Okay, having a newsletter from 2004 is probably my hoarding impulse problem and the inability to go back and clean it up now is just making it worse. Probably the same with the 100gb of photos I have (again, needs cleanup and only 30% are the everyday smartphone snaps).

      What’s your strategy? What are your ultra long term backup and recovery plans?

      What will you do if you give up on computers in 10 years?

      1. 9

        What’s your strategy? What are your ultra long term backup and recovery plans?

        ZFS. Mirroring. A pair of 4tb drives is not prohibitively expensive in this age.

        Periodic snapshots.

        One offsite backup, in case of earthquakes,fires,etc. Lots of ways to do this. Could be aws glacier or similar. Or a third drive hosted at a workplace (if allowed) or at a friend’s or relative’s house. In the latter case, zfs send/recv.

        What will you do if you give up on computers in 10 years?

        My drives will keep in a closet if I decide to run off and live in the woods for a few years. Google data will not, if you stop paying the google bill.

        1. 2

          A pair of 4tb drives is not prohibitively expensive in this age.

          As a reminder, SMR is still a problem, and even more so with a ZFS setup.

          It’s not possible to just buy a pair of a 4TB drive. Extra effort is needed to avoid SMR.

        2. 6

          What’s your strategy? What are your ultra long term backup and recovery plans?

          Tarsnap

          1. 4

            And upgrade plan. While setting everything up is fun as you learn some things, upgrading software and hardware will quickly become a chore. That’s why I avoid owning any server as much as I can.

            1. 1

              Oh yes I totally forgot to mention maintenance and upgrades. These days the things like that are commodity.

            2. 4

              just keeping up with the maintenance is too much hassle for me to host anything on my own if I think it’s somewhat important. Imagine going on vacation for two weeks without a notebook to fix your mail server because it went down for whatever reason.

              1. 3

                I’ve embraced the impermanence of everything. I delete most mail I get. Not archive, trash and it gets auto-cleaned there.

                1. 2

                  I use isync/mbsync. My personal email archive dating back to 2001 seems to be about 3.4GB, so I just download every mail I’ve ever received to all my devices. That’s mirroring taken care of. PCs and laptops need to be backed up anyway, so that’s backups taken care of. This strategy will work if your mail archive is 0.3, 30 or 300GB.

                  I’m pretty certain I’ll be able to read an email from 2004 or 2005 or whenever it was I’ve switched to gmail.

                  Mail is probably safe because the storage costs are negligable. But I wonder how long Google will allow people to store photos and video on their servers for free.

                1. 35

                  I don’t think anybody would have dared suggest this if the issue had been in any country other than the USA.

                  1. 11

                    It’s interesting that the language that’s dividing developers is not a programming language. It’s English.

                    The belief that social issues can be addressed by changing the language around them is one I’ve only seen among English speakers. Perhaps it’s time to drop this legacy language until they sort out a new standard.

                    1. 11

                      A lot of the concepts about the connections between language and social issues came out of Structuralism and Post-Structuralism, which were developed in France, and to a lesser degree Italy, by philosophers like Derrida, Foucault, Barthelme, and Eco before spreading to liberal-arts academics in most countries. There is a ton of this stuff in US progressive discourse (more than I’d like tbh), maybe more than in other English-speaking countries, but you may just see less of it from non-English-native people because they participate less in English-dominant forums.

                      1. 3

                        That’s quite possible. And I think that all languages have euphemisms and political correctness. (So, say, a politician might prefer jobseekers’ allowance over unemployment benefits to borrow an example from the UK). But at least over here it’s not considered desirable to talk like a politician.

                        And this kind of request, were it asked in my native language, would typically met with complete incredulity. And I think it would be the same for bbatsov’s native environment. And think of the recent example of antirez (a compatriot of Eco if I’m not mistaken), who completely misread the opposition to master/slave terminology in Redis.

                      2. 2

                        The green party in Germany just proposed to remove “race” from Germany’s constitution’s Article 3 which states “Nobody shall face face disadvantages or advantages due to their sex, family, race, language, home and origin, belief, religious or political views.” so that we “unlearn racism” that way. (If having that word in there perpetuates racism, we should probably drop all the other qualifiers as well to ensure equality on those ends, too?)

                        While that might be an Anglosaxon import (we have tons of those), from what I gather there’s more interest in the US in particular to keep the terms alive so that they can be used to reason about inequality (as in: without race, what’s “black” in “black lives matter”?).

                        So I’m not sure if it’s really an English-only phenomenon.

                        1. 1

                          Had this discussion a while ago, while the English version of the hacker ethics CCC version includes the word ‘race’, in the German version it was substituted with ‘Spezies’.

                        2. 2

                          well, it’s not english, it’s the anglo-saxon philosophical discourse that puts an emphasis on language as the tool we use to build realities and subjective experiences. It’s also spreading to the rest of the western world and part of the indian discourse is also entering the same sphere.

                          In many places though is divisive and seen as a result of American soft power and to be rejected (also because it didn’t really bring big wins for the American Left).

                          1. 2

                            language as the tool we use to build realities and subjective experiences

                            What are some alternatives for me to ponder and research here? I’ve always intuitively believed this, and have read some materials in the field of cognitive science and philosophy, but nothing beyond undergrad-level course material.

                            I’m curious as to what other models of cognition exist that posit language as a secondary or ancillary driver in our experiential self awareness. Have any suggestions?

                            1. 3

                              Well, all the essentialism , from Plato onward, states that reality exists regardless of perception. It’s not built but exists on its own with specific traits.

                              Same for realist philosophers like Popper, that take similar positions .

                              1. 3

                                In some eastern philosophy, particularly Buddhism, language is considered to be something along the lines of a cognitive pollutant. In order to understand the universe better it is often recommended to abstain from all forms of language completely for a period. I don’t want to put words into the mouth of a culture I don’t belong to and please someone correct me if I misrepresent anything, but that is my understanding of the take on language from that philosophical direction.

                                I certainly think that the question “What are some alternatives” does show something interesting: As someone immersed in language, no answer comes to mind. But I have a vague memory from the time I stopped using all language for 10 days (silent retreat), when language was not my main tool it did not really even seem like a useful tool for understanding. Only from within the language paradigm does it seem like language can really facilitate clear understanding. When language is not the main support of your entire ontology the feeling that some fundamental element of understanding is missing falls away too.

                                If you wish to research these ideas further I recommend spending a week or two working your way through the following reading list:

                                and not discussing it or anything else with anybody :-p

                                1. 1

                                  That’s a great question. I don’t know enough about the topic to answer you, but I can say that this is generally known as the Sapir-Whorf Hypothesis, and searching for that phrase should turn up years’ worth of reading material, pro and con.

                            2. 1

                              Yes, but it doesn’t matter, since the USA are culturally egemonic in the western IT space. The culture of IT is American culture. And I say as a person that doesn’t buy in the American political discourse (or tries to, at least). Nonetheless if the community is mostly american or sharing the american space of values and beliefs, this comment is irrelevant. You cannot claim something is less valid in the American discourse just because there’s a whole world outside that doesn’t care about these issues.

                            1. 3

                              I’m using nanoc, which I’m finding to be quite extensible, modular and powerful while remaining extremely easy to use.

                              1. 2

                                I definitely understand what the author is trying to say, and agree with it. I don’t think his examples really apply though.

                                When he mentions switching CRMs and reducing the number of processes at the same time for example, I’d bet he could have reduced that number of processes with no CRM changes. And their new system will keep accruing new processes and be in the same state in a few years. When left unchecked, all systems will accrue processes, that will require shrinking.

                                Similarly, he mentions folks leaving the company and nobody to own the systems in their place. This is not an issue of complexity. It’s an issue of organization. There should always be more than one person aware of how the system works so this shouldn’t happen.

                                Finally, I would argue that yes, more complexity can bring less downtime, but it has to be the right complexity. In the first image he links (the pigeon in the bottle), that’s not redundancy at all. In order to have redundancy done right, there should have been two pieces of paper. One in the bottle, and the other one with the pigeon, flying. That would have been an increased complexity done right (or at least better).

                                1. 7

                                  “More realistic approaches”:

                                  Touch ID with heart rate measurement

                                  What about when you’re paged in the middle of the night and need access? Your heart rate is probably going to be higher than normal because of the stress.

                                  Face ID with a crazy machine learning model

                                  Same here.

                                  Panic button

                                  Apple has that already.

                                  1. 2

                                    Also there’s medication to control heart rate. Coffee is enough to increase it, I guarantee you there’s stuff that has a side effect of “slows it down”

                                    1. 40

                                      I like how Edward Snowden phrases it in Permanent Record.

                                      I don’t have a quote easily available. But he basically says that you may think you have nothing to hide. But other folks may, and for good reasons (journalists, whistleblowers, minorities).
                                      By saying you don’t care about privacy because you have nothing to hide, you’re making it dangerous for those folks, who will therefore seem suspicious.
                                      Then, caring about privacy becomes an act of solidarity.

                                      I’ve found that argument to work quite well with folks who aren’t in tech.

                                      1. 17

                                        Lifted from Wikipedia:

                                        “Arguing that you don’t care about the right to privacy because you have nothing to hide is no different than saying you don’t care about free speech because you have nothing to say.”

                                        “When you say, ‘I have nothing to hide,’ you’re saying, ‘I don’t care about this right.’ You’re saying, ‘I don’t have this right, because I’ve got to the point where I have to justify it.’ The way rights work is, the government has to justify its intrusion into your rights.”

                                        I usually argue that if they have nothing to hide, then of course they would allow me to view their banking info, medical information, all their IMs, and allow me to setup cameras in all rooms in their home. This typically leads to “Oh no, I won’t allow YOU to see that, but it’s okay for the government, because they wouldn’t do anything bad to me.”

                                        And for that part of the argument, it’s taking a case of a government oppressing some group of people, and then either people gets it or gets bored of the discussion.

                                        1. 4

                                          I usually argue that if they have nothing to hide, then of course they would allow me to view their banking info, medical information, all their IMs, and allow me to setup cameras in all rooms in their home.

                                          I actually found cases when they even did not care about that and replied with screenshots of texts they’ve just sent.

                                          1. 7

                                            They still have the choice of which screenshots to send, in this scenario. That’s a lot different than having complete access where you’d be able to choose which you thought were important.

                                            1. 6

                                              Fair point. In my experience many won’t think that far or have the imagination. Maybe it could be simplified by asking them how much the earn a month or a year. If they refuse to answer they basically showed that they have something to hide.

                                            2. 4

                                              There’s a nice movie called “Perfect strangers” which plays exactly on this topic. People gather for dinner and decide to read all sms aloud and answer all calls on speakerphone.

                                          2. 6

                                            Also people fleeing spousal or parental abuse!

                                            Also even if someone doesn’t care about their privacy, they do still need integrity for their communications, i.e. they would probably prefer that randos with a copy of FireSheep can’t just steal access to their FaceSpacePinstagram account or mess with the content of the pages they’re reading or inject malware into the software they are downloading. The off the shelf solutions to integrity of data in transit also solve confidentiality of data in transit.

                                            1. 4

                                              While it might work on majority of adult people with common sense, I can’t imagine how teens or students who prefer comfort and “not caring” over anything would even take that as an argument at all. They’ll most likely say “it’s their own problem” or “i am not a journalist, I don’t care about them”. It’s quite sad they lack these bits of empathy, but it’s a bit larger topic on it’s own and I don’t want to derail this one too much. But it’s even more terrifying if you know they’re the future and with that attitude everything might get even worse than it is already, in privacy domain at least.

                                              1. 3

                                                Quite frankly, I don’t appreciate the ageism employed here.

                                                1. 1

                                                  Thankfully, young people learn, just like we did when we were young and stupid. The presence of stupidity is no reason to be terrified. Vigilant, perhaps. Active, involved, definitely. But not terrified. There’s hope for them yet.

                                                  1. 4

                                                    When I was 15 I was one of those “I have nothing to hide” people. Then I was 16 and started dating, and suddenly I didn’t want my parents reading my messages. So, there’s that argument too.

                                                    But yeah, don’t give up on youth just because they’re too immature to understand everything right now. They will grow and learn.

                                                1. 3

                                                  I use Nanoc. I wrote it, initially about 13 years ago, and is still maintained and semi-actively developed. It uses Ruby and does not hide that, and if that’s fine for you, Nanoc could be a good fit.

                                                  1. 1

                                                    I’m using nanoc too, and I really like it. Thank you for it, denis.

                                                  1. 2

                                                    This excellent talk brought a YAML realisation to me: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O8xLxNje30M

                                                    YAML is not terminated. So when we send it over HTTP, it’s hard to make sure we actually sent the entire content and the connection didn’t get closed midflight.

                                                    1. 7

                                                      CSS and JS files aren’t terminated either. HTTP has a content length header for a reason?

                                                      1. 1

                                                        YAML has document start “—” and document end “…”, but a single file/stream can contain multiple documents.

                                                      1. 2

                                                        How can this be spam when I’m not the author of this story?

                                                        1. 20

                                                          It reads like a marketing brag piece, and the product is apparently in “private alpha” so nobody here can test its claims.

                                                          1. 5

                                                            Spam is the closest thing to “this is a bad article”.

                                                            Alternatives:

                                                            • Off-topic -> clearly about IT/Technology/Sciences
                                                            • Already Posted -> not already posted (the link would appear at the bottom)
                                                            • Broken Link -> link works just fine

                                                            So, we are left with “Spam”: a catch all, which includes “Rubbish” but also “Marketing”, “Low Effort”, “Just Absolute Bollocks” and more.

                                                            1. 5

                                                              Spam is the closest thing to “this is a bad article”.

                                                              IMO off-topic is better used for this, e.g. when someone posts something that would fit in better on HN, even if it’s tech-related, it can be off topic for this site.

                                                              1. 0

                                                                Now this is interesting. You felt the need to “downvote” this story because you don’t like it, and you chose the only flag which could possibly be interpreted as “bad content”, under the assumption that on-topic “bad content” is something that you should be able to flag. I feel like you’re abusing the flag in doing so, but I also imagine that this form of abuse is quite common. In any case, it’s quite “low effort” on your part.

                                                                I suggest we would all be better served if you would instead articulate what you dislike about the story.

                                                                1. 2

                                                                  Oi dude, don’t assume things out in the wild and then feel like you should be the one preaching the solution.

                                                                  I just replied to OP’s comment, nothing else.

                                                              2. 5

                                                                I’m used to languages and development/orchestration tools being open source or at least something you can download an play with. Since I can’t do that, then or all practical purposes, as far as I’m concerned this Dark thing does not actually exist. And since it doesn’t exist, then reading about all of its impressive (and likely inflated) claims was a huge waste of my time.

                                                                (I didn’t flag, downvote, or upvote the story, however.)

                                                                1. 1

                                                                  Commenting on a story acts like upvoting it, so you should probably flag it (that’s what I’m doing right now to cancel out my comment).

                                                              1. 29

                                                                You’ve found a bug and reported it - there is no need to call them ‘incompetent’.

                                                                1. 8

                                                                  As far as I can determine, that particular bug has existed since November 2017. I’m a bit surprised that no one working there (or for) has found it in a year and a half. It appears to be a pretty basic parsing bug.

                                                                  1. 1

                                                                    Whatever the bug is, if somebody put me on public display like that I would still block them wherever possible. I assume that’s what’s happening already.

                                                                  2. 7

                                                                    Following a URL is the primary purpose of a bot, yet that feature is completely broken in a way which would have been obvious had they tested the bot on any web site.

                                                                    Whether you want to call that incompetence or not is up to you, but, well, it’s not a good look.

                                                                    1. 6

                                                                      If you find a bug and want it to get fixed, do you think that insulting maintainers is going to be helpful? I don’t think so.

                                                                      feature is completely broken in a way which would have been obvious had they tested the bot on any web site.

                                                                      And how do you know that? Maybe there is something special with the site/content in question that exposes bug that is not affecting 99% of other websites? Instead of assuming worst possible interpretation it might be better to just report the issue without judging project maintainers :)

                                                                      1. 5

                                                                        It can be helpful in making sure that nobody uses it. Not everyone has a vested interest in getting every bug fixed. Sometimes the best solution is encouraging people to use other software and not something completely broken. The article was pretty clear about the bug in question, and it would affect really any page with comments or discussion.

                                                                      2. 3

                                                                        I’ve seen pretty obvious bugs in code written by very competent programmers. These things slip through. It’s a bit like shouting “YOU ARE SUCH A FUCKING IDIOT” at a friend because he calls a wrong number.

                                                                        I agree, these things don’t make you look particularly good, but they do happen to anyone, and calling someone incompetent over something like this is just being a dick. The bad thing is that it hits the insecure people disproportionally hard. If you get an aggressive reply, then maybe it’s time to act like a dick.

                                                                      3. 2

                                                                        Definitely. The wording in this blog post is really too pedantic.

                                                                      1. 6

                                                                        11 services, 5 languages :-(

                                                                        1. 9

                                                                          Yeah, they’re really under doing it. They could’ve squeezed many of the programming paradigms into this one.

                                                                          1. 4

                                                                            I find it hard to not smile at this comment for some reason.

                                                                          2. 4

                                                                            You gotta pump those numbers up. Those are rookie numbers in this racket.

                                                                            1. 3

                                                                              Interesting:) I’ve been using a bullet journal for the past year, and I have no clue how I would’ve managed to do all I wanted/had to do without it! How’s the book so far?

                                                                              1. 1

                                                                                It’s pretty good so far. I’m still at about 20% though, not so much advanced.

                                                                              2. 2

                                                                                Is there really a books worth of content on the bullet journal method? I’ve been using it this year in combination with Agile Results and it’s probably the most effective I’ve been with task tracking (the combo makes it really easy for me to pick up again when i inevitably drop it, unlike GTD).

                                                                                1. 1

                                                                                  I’m a recent convert to the method (well, my own bastardization of it) but haven’t read the book.

                                                                                  1. 3

                                                                                    If I were working at Red Hat, I would resign right now. Don’t get me wrong, many acquisitions go well. But I wouldn’t work for a company that helped the holocaust happen.

                                                                                    1. 7

                                                                                      I’m not sure I understand this.

                                                                                      I’m not a big user of SQLite anyway, but even with the ‘anyone is free to use it’ statement, I find this to be quite unsettling.

                                                                                      It says, for instance:

                                                                                      expected to conduct themselves in a manner that honors the overarching spirit of the rule, even if they disagree with specific details

                                                                                      It mentions God 9 times and Christ 4 times. The overarching spirit, seems to be Christianity.

                                                                                      1. 18

                                                                                        I read this as “We didn’t want to do a Code of Conduct”, but we were told to do so, so we used one that’s unenforcable and entirely unrelated.

                                                                                        Note (because I see people downvoting this) that I absolutely didn’t submit this because I agree with this CoC.

                                                                                        1. 3

                                                                                          I think it may be getting downvoted because lobsters isn’t interested in any kind of CoC

                                                                                          1. 7

                                                                                            I won’t speak for others, but I flagged it because:

                                                                                            • It’s something very few people here (possibly none?) have direct control over.
                                                                                            • People can make the case that it is harmless satire, earnest belief, amazingly well-crafted trolling given the times, or some blend of the above and it isn’t easy to disprove any of those positions.
                                                                                            • People are going to get into ugly grumping over it.
                                                                                            • At the end of the day, sqlite is the bedrock of so many production systems and mobile apps that anybody possibly complaining about it here is still going to be running it in their personal lives despite how much they decry it here.

                                                                                            The submission thus, in my opinion, is just bait and should be cast out before the lobsters start clacking at each other over it.

                                                                                          2. 2

                                                                                            I think somehow that message is lost.

                                                                                            Point 1 is

                                                                                            love the Lord God with your whole heart, your whole soul, and your whole strength

                                                                                            If I didn’t already know what sqlite is, but saw that when attempting to say, join a discussion board or ask for help, I’d immediately find an alternative product.

                                                                                            Also, the original author’s website references an affiliation with an organisation that translates religious scriptures. I’m not convinced the reasoning is as you assume.

                                                                                            1. 1

                                                                                              Is the first thing you check when looking into a project the CoC?

                                                                                              1. 1

                                                                                                I don’t, but if a project has one presumably they make people aware of it when joining the community resources (e.g. issue tracker, first party discussion boards, mailing lists, etc), otherwise what’s the point.

                                                                                                If your general point is “people who look for a CoC are the problem”, then I have nothing to discuss with you. I don’t agree with this CoC but I also don’t agree that they are a reaction to imagined or unimportant events.

                                                                                                1. 1

                                                                                                  So you wouldn’t expect to see technical or technically relevant things in a CoC either. And every community has its own way it wants to be run, which is also fine, and has nothing to do with the quality of the software.

                                                                                            2. 1

                                                                                              This was also my impression. Not quite satire, kind of a code of conduct (in that being a total a**hole will be obviously a breach of the spirit of it), but also pretty beside the point as an actual code.

                                                                                          1. 5

                                                                                            GMail in the browser.

                                                                                            1. 1

                                                                                              thoughts on the new redesign?

                                                                                              1. 1

                                                                                                I was using Inbox until a few weeks ago. So my current thoughts are “this was so much better before” :-)

                                                                                                1. 1

                                                                                                  As every time they push a new version that we have no choice but to get used to. Or just use IMAP, still.

                                                                                            1. 9

                                                                                              I’m using this terraform script: https://github.com/dmathieu/byovpn When I need a VPN, I just apply the changes, and can destroy whenever I don’t need it anymore. That’s basically the same thing, but automated.

                                                                                              1. 5

                                                                                                That’s what I was thinking when reading the article. Even shorter when using sshuttle:

                                                                                                $ brew install sshuttle terraform
                                                                                                $ terraform apply
                                                                                                $ sshuttle --dns -r [user@]sshserver 0.0.0.0/0
                                                                                                
                                                                                                1. 4

                                                                                                  yeah exactly. I did the same to learn terraform and that’s definitely the way to go. Note that you need ssh access so if you’re on a public wifi such as in a cafe, it may fail if port 22 is blocked. I usually spin my vpn from an lte network, and once credentials are ready, I configure my vpn and then I use the public wifi.

                                                                                                  It’s much more efficient than doing all of this manually 👍

                                                                                                  1. 1

                                                                                                    I wanted to rewrite my vpn setup to improve my terraform skills. Here is the project: https://github.com/GabLeRoux/terraform-aws-vpn

                                                                                                    Key features:

                                                                                                    • Runs in its own VPC
                                                                                                    • Only a few commands to get started
                                                                                                    • Has start, stop and status scripts
                                                                                                    • Supports different regions
                                                                                                    • It’s well documented
                                                                                                    • It’s MIT

                                                                                                    Have fun 🎉

                                                                                                  2. 4

                                                                                                    I’ve been working on a similar project using terraform and ansible: bovarysme/infrastructure. It’s usable even if still a bit rough around the edges (e.g. I have to manually update the ansible inventory after each deploy). Running an OpenVPN server on port 443 TCP has been helping me bypass most port blocking and firewall shenanigans I’ve encountered so far.

                                                                                                    1. 2

                                                                                                      Your script looks very interesting. I just wanted a simple approach that anyone could follow without installing packages etc which is why I used TurnKey.