1.  

    I’ve always wanted to try NixOS, but I don’t want to taint my computer with systemd.

    I’ll try it whenever somebody forks it and removes the systemd dependency or they release a systemd-free version.

    /shrug

    1.  

      I don’t think that will happen, as NixOS uses several good features from systemd. You can also just try Nix, for handling packages and dependencies for your projects.

      1. 6

        There was a talk at NixCon about abstracting out services in NixOS:

        https://cfp.nixcon.org/nixcon2020/talk/TW79FU/

        Allowing us to reuse the service configuration for launchd on macOS or various alternatives like supervisord.

        1.  

          I might try the Nix sometime. But for now it looks like I can safely cross NixOS off the list of distros to try.

          1. 13

            If blind hatred of systemd here is what is holding you back, maybe try broadening your horizons a bit.

            NixOS uses it to good effect.

            1.  

              Did you really just assume that my hatred of systemd is blind?

              That I, in no way, have a rational disgust for this software?

              systemd is a horrible piece of software for many reasons:

              1. The undeniable feature creep. While some people actually enjoy the features brought in from it (boot manager, network manager, login manager, home manager, etc), I find them to be nothing but bloat. An init system should be just that. An init system. Not <insert an exaggerated amount of functions here>.

              2. It is slow. Slow to shutdown, slow to boot up, etc. Here are actual timed reboots from my machine using 3 init systems. systemd (2m3s), OpenRC (11s), Runit (7s). 2m3s vs 7s, which would you choose?

              3. Due to the feature creep, there is a larger attack service for bugs and security vulnerabilities. And there are security issues with systemd.

              4. This is the one that bothers me the most. It’s almost as if the dev(s) are completely oblivious or at least ignorant to the feature creep and security issues.

              5. A lot of the time, we don’t even get the choice to not use systemd. There a lot of packages (and the list grows every day) of packages with a hard dependency of systemd, So unless you modify that program yourself, you literally won’t be able to use it unless you succumb to using systemd.

              6. There are privacy issues with it. For example the hardcoding of Google’s DNS. “It’s a fallback”, that’s no excuse. At some point someone will be using that and their privacy will be ruined.

              Now, some of these you could call nitpicks (like the reboot times). However I find issues 1, 4, 5, and 6 just unacceptable. Those are what absolutely keep me from using it.


              This is my abridged list of issues, but I can make an even larger wall of text if you want me to.


              And I really don’t appreciate your tone. You sound very stuck up and pretentious telling me to “broaden my horizons”.

              On top of the fact that you just assumed that I had no reason to hate systemd. Honestly.

              All you had to do was ask, “hey, may I know what about systemd you hate? why is it bad?”.

              But no, you decide to insult me with your stupid response.

              1. 8

                You don’t have to use it forever, or even agree with its implementation! You don’t have to trash your daily driver!

                But my dude, not even giving it a shot because of your issues with systemd (quite aside from whether or not those are valid, which I mostly think they are…I rather despise it for other reasons) is cutting off the nose to spite the face–especially since you also don’t want to try Guix.

                I meant broadening your horizons in the literal sense: there is some really interesting stuff happening in those ecosystems, and even a brief foray into them may be really useful and neat–or it might not. But, like, if you refuse to even try because of NixOS’s use of systemd, you’re letting those developers harm you twice.

                1.  

                  I apologize for my rudeness. At the time I had literally just woken up, haven’t had any coffee or cigarettes, and the first thing I saw was someone telling me that I have a blind hatred and that I need to broaden my horizons.

                  Surely you can admit that from my perspective, that would be at least a little irritating.

                  I can agree with what you’re saying, but personally I can’t do it. Using an OS which uses systemd would be justifying it. And I can’t allow that. That would be hypocritical and unjust.

                  “Be the change you want to see”: By refusing to use anything with systemd, I as an individual am giving less power to it and it’s devs.

        2.  

          What about Guix?

          1.  

            No thank you. Guix is a rant for another time, but trust me when I say I hold a disain for it.

            1.  

              I’d like to hear that rant some time, out of curiosity.

              1.  

                Maybe sometime.

                When I rant, it messes my whole day up. I’m still seething about the “blind hatred of systemd” thing.

                1.  

                  I second this, even just a rought draft would do.

                  1.  

                    Seconded. This person seems to have interesting opinions.

              2.  

                You can use Nix and nix packages without systemd… nix is a package management system, and does not itself run any services.

                1.  

                  I was mainly interested in the OS, not the package manager.

                  But at some point I plan on trying Nix. If I like it enough, I might run NixOS in a VM.

                2.  

                  You can use systemD free version PKGSRC

                  1. 6

                    pkgsrc completely lacks the desired-state, functional language, and system management components of nix. It’s an apples and oranges comparison.

                    1.  

                      Can you demonstrate how I can install multiple different versions of the same package without breaking the system install via pkgsrc?

                      As well as defining everything in a declarative way? I already use the “systemd free version” known as macos nix package manager. And I can do the same on any linux.

                      Also will need a way to do things like nix overlays which let me add custom patches to package builds.

                      Drive by comments like this without explaining how PKGSRC replaces or can be an alternative aren’t very useful. And as a note, I’ve set a super high bar for PKGSRC here but thats due to I get all of the above (and more) for free from the nix package manager. Nixos adds some more neat bits but ultimately its all on top of nix.

                  1.  

                    I just updated a few minutes ago, and it was very smooth. I have a tricky setup with Wayland + GNOME Classic, so I had to manually reconfigure that, and for some reason Bluetooth was turned off in the BIOS, but otherwise very nice. GNOME 3.38 seems faster, but I can’t say for sure.

                    1.  

                      I’ve finally finished working on my essays for a philosophy course I took, so I’ll have a shame-free week of programming ahead, hopefully finishing:

                      • A little survey server, that should generate HTML and mail forms
                      • A custom configuration DSL for Emacs, that’s inspired by Common Lisp’s iterate

                      And I hope to continue reading The Art of Prolog.

                      1.  

                        Is it a remote course, and if it is, is it good?

                        1.  

                          It’s a regular university course, but becaue of Corona, everything is remote, so yes, I guess?

                          And it was fine, but not easy. We were reading Kant’s “Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals”, in German, and that’s not something you can just skim over.

                      1.  

                        I’ve been using second-hand laptops for a long time now, but usually, the main problem is battery-life or power supply. I once bought a Thinkpad x41, and it would still work, if the power suply hadn’t started melting. And buying a new battery for my x230 cost me nearly half as much as I paied for the device in the first place, even though the battery is actually worse.

                        1.  

                          This is why I finally caved and bought an MNT Reform as my first new hardware purchase in over a decade. I’d rather buy used, but the ability to toss in off-the-shelf LiFe cells should extend the lifespan significantly.

                          Otherwise I probably would have took the plunge on buying from 51nb, that Shenzhen hacker collective that upgrades the CPU and LCD of classic Thinkpads: https://geoff.greer.fm/2017/07/16/thinkpad-x62/

                        1. 5

                          As much as I like Org and the redesign of its website, I don’t think that it’s on-topic without at least an article relating the work done.

                          1.  

                            This is the closes I could find for that: https://orgmode.org/list/87ft61l19p.fsf@bzg.fr/T/#mb63281a4a4fcc120742484caa5b6c9276fbf0e91

                            Is it possible to replace the link?

                            1.  

                              “Hi Everyone, just a quick note from me: Regarding the intermediate state, there are a few teething issues that have appeared when deploying the site on orgmode.org.* If we could hold off from announcing this on some of the more high-traffic forums till these get sorted out that would be appreciated :) We want people to get the best possible first impression of the revamp after all. Timothy.”

                              1.  

                                Further down the page:

                                These issues have now been fixed! Go wild :P

                                Also, you probably meant to reply to @zge’s comment, not its parent.

                            1.  

                              i recently redesigned my website https://bkkaggle.github.io to be a lot more minimal. lmk what you think!

                              1.  

                                I like it because it has a very distinctive design language, that reminds me of the Pebble Time smartwatch, and the duck is a nice touch! I was just disapointed to see that the blog didn’t share the same style.

                              1. 18

                                Here’s the aforementioned “worst website ever”: https://ruzkuku.com/

                                I try to keep the styling minimal, and generate the site using pandoc and a few scripts (was thinking of re-writing it in Scheme some day). My explicit intention is to strike a balance between readability on different platforms (anything from mobile, to desktop over to obsure web browsers), while keeping the code simple enough and respecting web standards. I have experimented with increasing the line-height and changing the default text color, but I usually tend to just let the users browser decide what’s best.

                                1. 12

                                  I expect they decided it was the “worst website ever” because it didn’t have anything horrible and flashy going on, and was instead as boring, functional and useful as reference book’s table of contents.

                                  I like it.

                                  1. 4

                                    It loads instantly and I can read it on mobile just fine. People are used to modern over-engineered and over-designed websites, so they might find yours odd. But the thing is it does what it’s supposed to do quite well.

                                    1. 2

                                      Definitely not something I would put in a “worst” category.

                                      Font size and line-height could be slightly increased, IMHO

                                      1. 1

                                        Can you recommend any values? I know that it’s small, but I can’t manage to find the right proportion that doesn’t make the site look too empty.

                                        1.  

                                          In print, the optimal point size for body text is 10–12 point. On the web, the optimal size is 15–25 pixels.

                                          Check out Matthew Butterick’s Practical Typography . Matthew’s writing is super clear and thorough, so your answers around optimal text sizing should be answered from a ~10 minute read.

                                          (It helps that he’s designed an extremely robust screen-first serif typeface, so he knows what he’s talking about.)

                                          Relevant links:

                                          1. 2

                                            Consider the values on my site: https://peter.bourgon.org

                                            1.  

                                              It looks good on your site, but I I can’t manage to get it work for me :/

                                        2. 2

                                          I think your website has excellent design.

                                          My presumption is that whoever said that was just put off because your website doesn’t look like the stereotypical modern website but personal sites never do (and I think shouldn’t). I don’t know that I can think of a way to improve your website except that perhaps the “Index” link the navbar should instead be a link on the name of your site in the top left. This seems to be more intuitive to people and while I know what “Index” probably refers to I also thought it might be a traditional (HTML) sitemap.

                                          1. 1

                                            I used to do that, but then I only had two elements on the right side, which didn’t seem like enough. Maybe if I add another section like “About”, I could re-locate the “Index” link. Then again, I use index.html as my sitemap.

                                            1. 1

                                              An about section might be a nice section to have anyway. I feel like it can help people understand who the website author is (but I’m much too shy to put anything actually personal on my own website’s about page so not one to talk).

                                              1. 1

                                                but I’m much too shy to put anything actually personal on my own website’s about page so not one to talk

                                                I can relate to that, I never know what to write without sounding arogant.

                                          2.  

                                            The design is fine and works well on this mobile browser (Firefox, android), but you have quite a few grammar mistakes and places where you have picked a word you didn’t mean to (e.g. and Vs an). You could add a grammar and spellchecker to your build scripts or writing flow, perhaps.

                                            1.  

                                              Can you recommend any good (free/libre) software? I’ve tried looking into Languagetool, but building it seems to be a mess.

                                              1.  

                                                I wouldn’t bother with languagetool. I just tried that, proselint, diction, and hunspell on a sentence from your site and none of them found the error. They were all fairly easy to install with Nix, tho.

                                                The sample was:

                                                If you want to send my an email, send it to philipk on the mail server posteo.net.

                                                The error is that “my” should be “me”.

                                                It’s not a huge deal but it stuck out to me. Maybe you could just ask a friend to proof-read your stuff?

                                            2.  

                                              I don’t like the color of the header, but that’s a personal impression. It’s not garish, mismatched, or anything - it’s fine.

                                              It’s basic, maybe a bit bland. But there is nothing “bad” about it, and surely not worst. (Designers might disagree, but I’m just a software developer.)

                                              1. 1

                                                Its not terrible, but for me the white is blinding. I would maybe soften the background color for the Body, and maybe add left and right border to the body in some other color

                                                1. 11

                                                  I would suggest you lower your screen’s brightness. No amount of white in your screen should appear blinding.

                                                  1. 1

                                                    Do you use dark-mode? I’m used to black-on-white software (terminal, editor, this page, etc.), so I it doesn’t irritate me, but I can imagine that if someone is used to a darker color-scheme, that the contrast can be straining.

                                                  2. 1

                                                    Load time: 127 ms, page size: 5.2 KB, requests: 3, performance grade: A99! Nice ;)

                                                    1. 1

                                                      It’s brutalist. I like brutalism. 10/10 would website again.

                                                      1.  

                                                        That is far from the worst website ever. In fact, I find it to be fantastic.

                                                        Reminds me of this.

                                                        1. 1

                                                          To me it’s definitely not the worst. But some of the text looks a bit messy. In particular (talking about “On our Abusive Relationship with Mozilla’s Firefox”) - I think that too many things are somehow emphasised: 3 different indentation levels, italic text, hyperlinks are both underlined and colored (some are also in italic) yellow box, bold list elements. I would decide on what is really important and pick one style of emphasis. Also a lot of short paragraphs that might be better merged into one.

                                                          1. 1

                                                            I get what you mean with indentation and italics, but what is the issue with hyperlinks that are both underlined and colored? That’s just how browsers render links, underline to indicate that it’s not regular text and color to indicate if it has been visited yet.

                                                            1. 1

                                                              Yeah we can cross that one out… I was thinking about the principle of “picking one way to distinguish elements”. I think I read it on “Practical Typography”.

                                                              I know it’s the default, but for example here on lobste.rs only underline is used. If you want to separate visited from unvisited - color is enough for both. I also don’t think visited vs unvisited is that meaningful, many people clear cookies and history, use different machines, read things both on desktop and on mobile.

                                                              Just an opinion thou.

                                                        1.  

                                                          Here’s mine: https://zakaria.org
                                                          It’s pretty bare, I welcome any advice. I should probably list some of my projects there for a start.

                                                          1.  

                                                            Isn’t your main page very simular to the “about” page? Personally, I think the “Around the Web” section doesn’t have to be a list, but could just as well be regular prose (“I host my projects on GitHub, and am also to be found on Lobsters and the Fediverse”, or something like that).

                                                            1.  

                                                              The main page is exactly the same as the about page besides the h1, yes. I think I’ll maybe leave the about page as it is for the most part and revamp the index completely.
                                                              Also good call, I think I will change that to a regular prose.

                                                              Thanks for the feedback!

                                                          1. 1

                                                            Recently did a design overhaul. Almost afraid to share it, but here it goes: https://animesh.blog

                                                            1. 4

                                                              Two points that strike me:

                                                              1. The proportions between various elements of the page seem off. There’s almost no space between the top of the page and it’s first line, while further down (and towards the left and right edge) there seems to be more blank space.
                                                              2. “Posts” is renderd too lighly, at least on my machine. Removing the “font-weight” property made it look better.
                                                              1. 1
                                                                1. Agree about the spacing and sizing of the various elements. Spacing, I can see how to fix it. Sizing is where I am struggling, but I will spend some time on it in the next milestone.
                                                                2. Posts heading was definitely supposed to resized to be a bit smaller, but I couldn’t reach a conclusion during the redesign and left it. Will think about it too in the next milestone. The font-weight I have deliberately made it to be this way. I am now understanding that it might be bad on different browsers and devices. Will fix.

                                                                Thanks for the honest feedback.

                                                                1. 2

                                                                  For the sake of compleness, this is how the light text renders on my end: https://0x0.st/ikBD.png

                                                                  1. 1

                                                                    Wow, that’s indeed bad. Is this on a Mac/Chrome or Mac/Safari?

                                                                    The other thing that stands out is the post dates and post titles don’t align, while they do for me. Firefox on Windows/Linux here.

                                                                    1. 1

                                                                      No, Fedora and Chrome. Apparently the font is Cantarell.

                                                                      1. 1

                                                                        Cantarell

                                                                        Yeah, Cantarell is a font in my system fonts list. I will remove it and evaluate more Linux system fonts. Thanks for the feedback.

                                                              2. 2

                                                                What @zge said, but otherwise, really nice and clean!

                                                                1. 1

                                                                  Thank you very much, it means a lot. Tried a bunch to come up with design design, then I decided the minimalistic route and worked on it.

                                                                2. 2

                                                                  It loads very fast. I love this.

                                                                  I suggest working on typography and spacing.

                                                                  Varying type size and style can help emphasize importance and guide the eye across the page.

                                                                  I would add more left/right margin to the content body to help make it easier to read.

                                                                  1. 1

                                                                    Agree on all points, thanks for the feedback. I planned to implement a lightweight TOC widget, that stays fixed and expands sub headings as we scroll on posts. Just to make it easier to navigate posts, especially long ones. It is a long pending and in-progress feature.

                                                                    Also, I experimented a lot with putting post meta information on the left column, but somehow remained with a single column layout. Again good points. Thank you.

                                                                    Edit: /s/posts/headings

                                                                    1. 2

                                                                      I’ve toyed with where to put post Metadata.

                                                                      I settled on putting in below the main post content. I figure if someone makes it through the post then they are more likely to surf to other pages. And it moves the clutter from before the content that might distract them.

                                                                      1. 1

                                                                        I have just gone through your blog and your comment now makes lot of sense to me. Will try to think of it in this way about metadata.

                                                                        1. 1

                                                                          I really struggled with what to do with the metadata. I wanted it to be useful but also not distracting. I’m mostly happy with the way it is, but the footer still feels a little cluttered to me.

                                                                  2. 1

                                                                    I like it.

                                                                    But a few nit picks: I would try to make the spaces between dates and links consistent, and, if it were up to me, would remove the “next article” and “previous article” links, as your articles doesn’t seem to go in parts.

                                                                    1.  

                                                                      Could you please clarify what exactly you mean by doesn’t seem to go in parts? Do you mean in sub posts or something else?

                                                                  1. 32

                                                                    My site is at https://bernsteinbear.com. I get very polarized responses :)

                                                                    1. 12

                                                                      I think your site’s chill and classic!

                                                                      1. 2

                                                                        Thanks ^_^

                                                                      2. 6

                                                                        I love this! Its theme is very similar to the Oil shell site. Super clean.

                                                                        1. 3

                                                                          There’s a little comment in the CSS that says that the navbar was heavily “inspired” by oilshell :)

                                                                        2. 3

                                                                          Linux/Desktop (1920x1080, 16:9)/Chromium with uBlock

                                                                          I really like this one. After reading a few of the “Compiling a Lisp” articles, I also copied a few design cues to my personal site. I’m sorry I cannot say more, it’s just easy to read and easy to navigate. If I had to try to say something it would be that the entire site is a bit too narrow, and that it might be better to use more semantic HTML5 tags instead of custom div classes?

                                                                          1. 1

                                                                            Is your current website the one everyone is complaining about? I think it’s great.

                                                                            1. 2

                                                                              Everybody is exaggerated, it was just one comment that caught my attention. But other than that, I don’t think it’s to surprising considering it’s inspiration ^^.

                                                                            2. 1

                                                                              Hm, interesting. Do you have any reading on this that you recommend? My HTML knowledge is at least 10, if not more, years out of date.

                                                                              1. 2

                                                                                I’m not expert either, I just check if I can use a semantic tag, when applicable. AFAIK the main advantage is that web readers /scrapers can properly parse what’s the site and what’s is just the header/footer (if you enable lobste.rs “article preview” feature, you’ll notice the difference).

                                                                                1. 1

                                                                                  Oh, neat – thank you. I have some open graph data and some other metadata, but this might help.

                                                                            3. 3

                                                                              Your site has no bells or whistles. It is a site. It has text. The text is the main focus. There is no fluff. It loads instantly. It is glorious.

                                                                              1. 1

                                                                                Glad you like it :)

                                                                              2. 2

                                                                                I love it! Looks great on both my desktop and phone, and it isn’t weighed down by big images or fonts.

                                                                                1. 1

                                                                                  Oh, that is good to hear. I do not regularly check up on how it looks on a phone, despite half my visitors using phones.

                                                                                2.  

                                                                                  For me it’s missing only one thing, which is to support dark mode via a CSS media query. I’d love to see just how brief a dark mode implementation can be, and your site is the perfect test subject.

                                                                                  1.  

                                                                                    I brought back dark mode, new and improved. Can you let me know what you think?

                                                                                    Re: brevity: the longest part is the syntax highlighting.

                                                                                    1.  

                                                                                      Functionally it looks nice and readable, and should be pleasant in a dark room. Warm fireplace colors were a good choice for syntax.

                                                                                      You could stop there; it’s a nice upgrade! If you want more critique:

                                                                                      If any of the colors are off, it’s the links in dark mode. In light mode visited links stand out a little less than unvisited, which is desirable. In dark mode, the unvisited links are diminished against black and the visited stand out. I might try brightening the blue and dimming the purple a bit.

                                                                                      Finally, check the link colors on the same dark screen as the syntax colors. The syntax colors give a cozy character to the site, but the link colors establish a different kind of environment, such that when you first reach a syntax block, the warmth is a surprise. I think the link colors would need more saturation to fit in.

                                                                                      1.  

                                                                                        Thanks for the in depth reply! When I next find the energy to CSS I’ll take a look.

                                                                                    2.  

                                                                                      Someone made one but there was something slightly wrong about pre tags in headers that weren’t legible (?), so I reverted it. It was pretty simple so if you’re interested you’re welcome to revive that patch.

                                                                                    3. 2

                                                                                      Academic style - I like it. Loads in 106ms from Frankfurt which is pretty nice :)

                                                                                      1. 1

                                                                                        Grüße aus den Staaten!

                                                                                        1.  

                                                                                          I don’t really live in Germany (or understand german for that matter), but when I run https://tools.pingdom.com/ , I use Frankfurt since it has the best ping to Norway :)

                                                                                          1.  

                                                                                            Oh, lol. That’s “greetings from the US”

                                                                                      2.  

                                                                                        Nothing wrong with your site. It is a perfect example of what the web was originally created for: Sharing information.

                                                                                        1. 2

                                                                                          I really like it. Text-heavy instead of the modern white peace overload with big images that everything leans towards now.

                                                                                          1. 1

                                                                                            Kinda like your website, eh? And you are a cyclist too! :D

                                                                                          2. 2

                                                                                            Clean, elegant styling, simple design, focus on the content (text). Clear links to different parts and an rss feed. Couldn’t make me happier.

                                                                                            1. 1

                                                                                              Glad you enjoy!

                                                                                            2. 2

                                                                                              The way you separated the series on the /blog is something I want to steal.

                                                                                              1. 2

                                                                                                Oh man the implementation is such a hack. If you use Jekyll, please don’t look! :P

                                                                                                1. 2

                                                                                                  I am in Python land, so I could not get it even if I looked. :)

                                                                                                  1. 1

                                                                                                    What do you use to generate your blog? I am considering moving off Jekyll.

                                                                                                    1. 2

                                                                                                      I use Lektor. It is based on python, so slower to generate the pages locally, but my reasons are listed in this post - why I chose Lektor. See the Why Lektor section.

                                                                                              2. 2
                                                                                                1.  

                                                                                                  The bulleted list under “I like making things” is a little crowded, but otherwise, I love it!

                                                                                                  1.  

                                                                                                    And to think I just removed some things :P Do you mean the length? Or the density of links? Or…?

                                                                                                    1.  

                                                                                                      I should have mentioned that I’m on mobile. The density of the links is part of it. I think inserting an empty line between list entries would make a world of difference. You could take it further by increasing font size and line spacing. The bullets also make it look like the text is being physically squished into the right side of the screen so it may help to replace them with faux bullets (e.g. asterisks)?

                                                                                                      I don’t know, this feels like such a small point, and it’s all about highly personal preferences. Your site is great!

                                                                                                  2. 2

                                                                                                    I really like this one; it’s clean and simple, and it works great with me.

                                                                                                    1. 1

                                                                                                      Glad you like it!

                                                                                                  1. 1

                                                                                                    Mine sorely needs an update, as I last redid it in 2011. It was a bit ahead of its time for that epoch of the web, as I experimented with some novel layout stuff that is now just common and how things are done.

                                                                                                    I used lifestream.js to pull in feeds from a variety of sites to show my latest activity: GitHub, GitLab, Twitter, reddit, etc. It relied almost solely on Yahoo’s YQL service. When that died a few years ago, all of the feeds died except reddit.

                                                                                                    https://www.cad.cx/

                                                                                                    I’ve been really liking the layouts of some personal sites and blogs frequently posted on Lobste.rs, such as https://kevq.uk, https://christine.website, https://chriskrycho.com, https://joshwcomeau.com, and some others, and will probably keep my new layout – whenever it happens – similarly lightweight. I come from a newspaper layout background and understand the vital importance of readability.

                                                                                                    Now, I just need to set aside the time.

                                                                                                    1. 2

                                                                                                      It seems fine, for the most part. The only things I find wierd are the outdates icons for facebook, twitter, github, etc. and the gradient in the title.

                                                                                                      1. 1

                                                                                                        Thanks! The icons are really outdated: they’re from the 2007 design, last captured by Wayback Machine in 2010. I’ve always really liked Mac OS X dock’s magnification effect, so I cloned it.

                                                                                                        I could probably slide some SVG or FA icons in there now for a quick visual upgrade.

                                                                                                        1. 1

                                                                                                          The icons with dock effect are a nice throwback.

                                                                                                      2. 2

                                                                                                        I miss that 2011-esque vibe. Your site looks nice.

                                                                                                        1. 2

                                                                                                          Thank you so much!

                                                                                                      1. 1

                                                                                                        Mine is at https://secluded.site. I’d love to get some suggestions for improvements!

                                                                                                        I recently started with Emacs and fell in love with Org mode; I’m seriously considering ditching Hugo and going much more minimal with a small, handwritten stylesheet and HTML pages generated from Org.

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                                                                                                          Just as a heads up, you can also write your blog posts in orgmode and have hugo render it (if you weren’t aware).

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                                                                                                            On Firefox android, the pages always start in dark mode and then pop to light mode after remembering my preference (set by tapping the icon once on the home page).

                                                                                                            Seems too low contrast in dark mode.

                                                                                                            I also read Butterick and like the circle links and gradients, I think they’re fun though I don’t know how many people would miss them.

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                                                                                                              It is pleasant to read.

                                                                                                              A few nitpicks not liking the gradients when the circle links expand; seems like “home” and “about” could be merged into one page - nothing much is going on at “home”. Also not a fan of how code blocks look in both light and dark themes.

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                                                                                                                Also not a fan of how code blocks look in both light and dark themes.

                                                                                                                You don’t like the colours of the highlighting or something else?

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                                                                                                                  I think they are too dark. The background is black and the text itself is quite dark within. For me it stands out too much from your otherwise light theme. They do look considerably better in darkmode, now that I took a second look at it.

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                                                                                                                Clean, and loads quickly, but the contrats seem a bit too low for my taste. I’m not sure if this even qualifies as an oppinion, but I was expecting more on the front-page, and tried to scroll. The blinking cursor animation is actually calming!

                                                                                                                I’m seriously considering ditching Hugo and going much more minimal with a small, handwritten stylesheet and HTML pages generated from Org.

                                                                                                                On that topic, there is ox-hugo that can convert a org-document into a hugo-compatible site, and then render it.

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                                                                                                                  the contrats seem a bit too low for my taste

                                                                                                                  Yeah, I’ve been meaning to increase it a bit haha. Thank you for reminding me!

                                                                                                                  there is ox-hugo that can convert a org-document into a hugo-compatible site

                                                                                                                  I’m actually working on a blog post that will be exported with ox-hugo but there’s still the whole “Hugo workflow” as well as dependency on Hugo itself. Simply using Emacs and nothing else is pretty attractive.

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                                                                                                                  I enjoy your theme. The site is fast, which is really good.

                                                                                                                  I really like the way your blog posts are organized on the blog page. I like the tags at the top.

                                                                                                                  Overall the content is well formatted, with good margins.

                                                                                                                  If I had to suggest anything it would be to do something with the homepage. Use it as an opportunity to shepherd the user to relevant content, and or give them roads to walk down.

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                                                                                                                    Others have mentioned the all-but-blank homepage as well so I will very likely make some changes there.

                                                                                                                    I appreciate the suggestion and kind words!

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                                                                                                                    Reviewed on iPhone X.

                                                                                                                    To me, the low contrast and short line-length makes reading uncomfortable. I suggest a slightly smaller font so more words fit on a line on portrait mobile, and increasing the line-height and text contrast to compensate for the smaller size.

                                                                                                                    The link treatment was surprising, but delightful. A great touch for a personal site.

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                                                                                                                      Beautiful. I like the theme and the fonts. There is one annoyance though: the system fonts are displayed momentarily, before it’s swapped out to use your fonts, but I think that’s an unsolved problem today.

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                                                                                                                        I came back to this thread specially to say I love the pipe section on your site. I hope you get around to reviewing the pipes and tobacco, I’m now reading your pipe origin articles.

                                                                                                                        I see you do rss feeds per category, I like that a lot. I do it myself on my site for each and every tag, but had never seen it elsewhere.

                                                                                                                        1.  

                                                                                                                          Hugo is what I currently generate the site with and it actually has feeds for every taxonomy, not just categories

                                                                                                                          I hope you get around to reviewing the pipes and tobacco

                                                                                                                          Once I’m finished documenting my email setup, I’ll get to work on some of those!

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                                                                                                                        Fun thread! I’m at https://icyphox.sh. I spent a lot of time on the typography and colors for maximum readability. Any suggestions are welcome.

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                                                                                                                          I think it needs a little bit of contrast on the links, otherwise looks pretty good.

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                                                                                                                            The initial load was very fast. I like it.

                                                                                                                            I like the simplicity of the blog post list.

                                                                                                                            I would add a little bit of left/right padding on mobile. The text is too close to the curved edge of my screen.

                                                                                                                            Also the images took forever to load compared to the pages. Maybe use smaller sized images or a lazy-loader.

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                                                                                                                              I’d suggest you trim the unicode ranges in the font files (subsetting, I think I used https://rsms.me/fonttools-docs/subset.html on my site) and make sure the images are resized to the dimension they will be viewed in. For reference, loading https://icyphox.sh/blog/pi/ with a clean cache, it can take over to 2s for the fonts to pop up, and part of the blame is on the 2MB image: https://u.teknik.io/TTM9s.png. Still I guess the main problem is how low the download speed seems to be (is the europe-india pipe that small?).

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                                                                                                                                I like it, but the right-hand column distracts a bit from the text IMO. Also, the <-- Back link at the top of articles confused me; I thought it was a link to a previous article, as is common in blogs. Instead it led me back to the index. Not what I expected! :-)

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                                                                                                                                  I see. I shall rework that, thanks!

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                                                                                                                                  It certainly is readable, and the contrasts are nice, but it takes a bit to load at first. I’m not sure, but I think that might be because the fonts delay the rendering?

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                                                                                                                                    cc @cosarara

                                                                                                                                    Yeah, I think it’s slow because I’m serving this off my RPi at home, through a tunnel to a VPS. I should probably use some kind of static hosting again, just for the sake of performance. Thanks.

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                                                                                                                                    I like the minimal, serif approach. Reading on my iPhone X, I would prefer slightly more words per line, implying a smaller font size. Unlike some other commenters, I like that the margins are narrow (on mobile).

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                                                                                                                                      Smaller font seems to be a common suggestion; I’ll knock it down a few pts, thanks!

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                                                                                                                                      I’m currently almost done with a redesign on my site and it looks pretty similar to your’s. I’m definitely a big fan :)

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                                                                                                                                        Thanks! Do you mind sharing yours?

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                                                                                                                                          Just finished it! https://3fx.ch

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                                                                                                                                        The only thing I don’t like here is the look of code blocks. All of them have the scroll bar at the bottom because they don’t fit the width.

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                                                                                                                                          Hmm, there’s nothing much I can do about that. Wrapping code is uglier, IMO.

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                                                                                                                                        My site’s at https://jacky.wtf - definitely curious.

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                                                                                                                                          Linux/Desktop (1920x1080, 16:9)/Chromium with uBlock

                                                                                                                                          When I first open the site, I find it a bit hard to orient myself. Parts of the site fill the entire screen (“I stand in solidarity with …”), others are centerd (the header, the second and third paragraph), while the bottom is right-aligned. And the footer is a bit hard to identify. The varying font-sizes is hard to follow.

                                                                                                                                          Also, at least on my screen, the picture of you (I assume) is cut in the middle, but that’s unavoidable.

                                                                                                                                          The Blog and Posts pages are easer to grasp, but appear a bit too narrow on my screen. Maybe just using 1/4-1/5 of the horizontal screen space.

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                                                                                                                                            I dislike political stuff so I closed the tab right after the font loaded, which took about five seconds (4g, Netherlands).

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                                                                                                                                              Since you brought it up, this seems appropriate.

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                                                                                                                                                I can think of plenty of valid reasons besides this to avoid politics, from it being a trigger to just unpleasant for other reasons, and assuming this of the commenter is just uncharitable.

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                                                                                                                                                  just unpleasant

                                                                                                                                                  That’s pretty much the same reason as called out by the tweet, it’s “just” unpleasant and not something that affects your life.

                                                                                                                                                  assuming this of the commenter is just uncharitable

                                                                                                                                                  It’s fine to not get involved in things (because it eats away at your attention span or distracts you from the good you could actually do over doomscrolling, something about mental/personal health, or a million other reasons) but what I usually found missing in people who invoke this “I don’t try to get involved” phrase is earnest reflection over the why (Is it protection or just laziness?) and the consequences of them not getting involved (what if the majority of people try to stay away from politics?)

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                                                                                                                                                    The first blog-post of the person is “I enforced the AGPL on my code, here’s how it went”. So it’s more of a “I don’t care about your politics, but F/OSS politics is completely fine!”. I think it’s a completely charitable interpretation of the comment.

                                                                                                                                                  2.  

                                                                                                                                                    In the context of user-generated online content like comments sections, forums, or social media, “politics” is a euphemism for unproductive arguments about controversial subjects. In communities dedicated to a specific topic or purpose, political discussion tends to distract, disrupt, and divide the community. Which is why any healthy online community typically has rules against off-topic content.

                                                                                                                                                    I completely understand the desire to get one’s own beliefs across to a larger audience but no one has ever been swayed by a flame war, which is what 99% of all political discussions devolve into. Politics are usually a waste of everyone’s time–the participants, the readers, and the community moderators.

                                                                                                                                                    I would posit that those who seem to be the most passionate about their chosen political cause online are being the least effective at making whatever change they wish to see in society. Whatever time you spend proselytizing your beliefs online is time not being spent taking real-world action. (And no, “spreading awareness” is not taking real-world action. And neither does retweeting, while we’re at it.) This may include volunteering for (or starting) a non-profit, donating your money to organizations supporting your cause, writing a book with good science and well-reasoned points, or speaking directly with political leaders who have the power to change whatever it is you want to change.

                                                                                                                                                    It is fine to have strong personal beliefs. But habitually arguing against others is very bad for mental health in a variety of ways. The more time you spend espousing and defending your personal views, the less receptive you become to any potential evidence that your beliefs may not have as much merit as you thought. You become less in tune to the subtleties of reality–nearly all social problems are shades of gray, we only see them in black and white because it feels cleaner that way, even though it creates a useless mental model of the world. Even worse, you start to categorize others around you as either with you or against you and your relationships with friends and family who may (or even may not) agree with your beliefs will suffer. Ask me how I know.

                                                                                                                                                    Source: I have been a member of varied and numerous Internet communities since 1996.

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                                                                                                                                                      Nah.

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                                                                                                                                                  I like the simplicity of the design.

                                                                                                                                                  I like the call to action items at the bottom.

                                                                                                                                                  In mobile Firefox Android there is a left/right scroll which seems unintentional.

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                                                                                                                                                    I like yours a lot. I think on mobile the blog posts page looks a little bit funny because of relative font sizing though.

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                                                                                                                                                      Yeah, I definitely need to fix that - thank you!

                                                                                                                                                    2. 2

                                                                                                                                                      I think your main page would benefit from some margins around the center. Activism seems to be a main theme (which is fine, but probably not what tech enthusiasts and prospective employers are interested in – it might be a problem for some but you probably realized this and decided that if it is a problem you probably don’t want them on your site anyway). The ‘posts’ link doesn’t work for me, it links to https://v2.jacky.wtf/stream. High contrast is a bit much.

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                                                                                                                                                        I’m curious, do you usually/often/at all have browsers open in fullscreen?

                                                                                                                                                        I often have and while lobste.rs has too much whitespace on the sides on this 27”, it’s fine. But when I open your website, it’s very much flowing across the whole screen - and when the fold goes from black to white background.. that’s a little stark. When I 50/50 split (which I often do, it’s completely fine)

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                                                                                                                                                          I actually never put any Web browser window explicitly in fullscreen (a productivity hack for me). I can def make that color change!

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                                                                                                                                                            I feel it depends a little on which machine I am on, interestingly - but I often have JIRA open in fullscreen and I happened to stumble upon this thread in my lunch break, so the browser was in work mode.

                                                                                                                                                            I don’t think it’s a huge thing because most people probably don’t run a website fullscreen on 2560x - but I sometimes do…

                                                                                                                                                        2.  

                                                                                                                                                          It’s a bit weird on mobile. Generally looks pretty nice though.

                                                                                                                                                          Bit of a style clash between the top half of the page and the bottom half though.

                                                                                                                                                          P.S. I just gotta say I appreciate the banner at the top. But it seemed a little odd it required me to enable JS for it to show up.

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                                                                                                                                                            Yeah, I have to switch it up for mobile.

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                                                                                                                                                            The blue on black links at the top (“Streaming Schedule – Blog – Posts – Library”) are rather hard to read for me; actually I missed them first time ‘round. Personally I’d make them a different colour and/or larger.

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                                                                                                                                                              I have useless horizontal screen on safari/iOS 13.

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                                                                                                                                                                s/screen/scroll

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                                                                                                                                                                Scroll is a bit broken on iOS/Safari but a lot of websites are also affected by this minor issue. Users can deal with it.

                                                                                                                                                                (In fact the issue comes from the PGP key in the footer: it doesn’t break on narrow displays)

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                                                                                                                                                                  I swear I saw your site posted somewhere else within the last week.

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                                                                                                                                                                    That’s wild, lol.

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                                                                                                                                                                    Too many style shifts?

                                                                                                                                                                    I opened your link and saw really big font. Then I clicked on “blog” which led to small font and grey background. Then pressed on one of the titles and saw a “medium” style article.

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                                                                                                                                                                      I think that it might be more helpful if you explain to visitors who you are first and the things you support second. It will help support your political views and endorsements that way round better too I think.

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                                                                                                                                                                      It’s really expensive and time-consuming to implement modern web standards, which are growing even more from day to day. Mozilla is not all-powerful or exempt from this rule just because it’s non-profit, it still has to pay developers and follow certain corporate “rules”.

                                                                                                                                                                      I will continue recommending Firefox, and if we want to see Mozilla improve its stance, we must make it more independent by supporting it financially so it doesn’t have to rely on corporate sponsors that much, and we have to push more against unnecessary web standards.

                                                                                                                                                                      It’s despicable to see people ditch Firefox and switching to Chrome and derivatives because of some “puristic” reasons against Mozilla, while Alphabet Inc. is magnitudes worse. The large crowd relies on us tech-affine people to give them good recommendations, so please, recommend Firefox, because it makes a difference at scale.

                                                                                                                                                                      Everything is better than a web that is more or less 100% controlled by Alphabet Inc.

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                                                                                                                                                                        I will continue recommending Firefox, and if we want to see Mozilla improve its stance, we must make it more independent by supporting it financially so it doesn’t have to rely on corporate sponsors that much, and we have to push more against unnecessary web standards.

                                                                                                                                                                        Me too, but I won’t donate to them as long as they are Google’s lap dog and pay the CEO millions. See also https://blog.mozilla.org/blog/2020/10/20/mozilla-reaction-to-u-s-v-google/. This makes me very sad.

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                                                                                                                                                                          And Mozilla won’t become way less dependent on default search engine deals unless people start donating a lot en masse. Vicious cycle!

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                                                                                                                                                                            Unfortunately true! But I don’t trust them right now, at all. I don’t want to support them for blindly implementing Google’s ideas of what the web should be like. The user needs to be put first, not Google, nor Mozilla’s CEO.

                                                                                                                                                                            They could organize a crowdfunding, for example, with a list of explicit promises of what they’ll do with the money next to showing Google, Cloudflare and maybe Mullvad (Mozilla VPN) the door. This would help us (people who care) fight surveillance capitalism and have a “last stand” for the “free web” and again recommend our friends and family to use Firefox and tell them: “If a site doesn’t work in Firefox, you are being screwed over, try to use a different site instead”. I really don’t mind paying $100/yr or even more for a browser/company that has my back and don’t even mind indirectly paying for interesting “distractions” like Rust and perhaps good ideas like Servo. I’m sure I am not the only one!

                                                                                                                                                                            But yeah…maybe it is already too late.

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                                                                                                                                                                              I really don’t mind paying $100/yr or even more for a browser/company that has my back and don’t even mind indirectly paying for interesting “distractions” like Rust and perhaps good ideas like Servo. I’m sure I am not the only one!

                                                                                                                                                                              I would be interested in that too, but there are probably not enough of us. Perhaps the situation would be better with some kind of an incentive program, but with free software, I don’t know what “advantages” you could hold back for people who pay more?

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                                                                                                                                                                                It’d probably have to be more ideological.

                                                                                                                                                                                Publish the company’s/foundation’s monthly burn rate, and the income streams, and ask for the money required to restart MDN or Servo or get rid of the Google ties or whatever.

                                                                                                                                                                                I don’t think this Patreon-style system would allow for funding specific projects because that would give power to people who don’t know what to do with it.

                                                                                                                                                                                Strawman troll example could be all the donations going to keeping the old add-on system alive, and the invisible second-order money pit being fixing its security vulnerabilities.

                                                                                                                                                                                But Mozilla would still have to make some promises and deliver on them or at least some donations would surely cease.

                                                                                                                                                                              2. 1

                                                                                                                                                                                Same for me.

                                                                                                                                                                                I’d love to pay for Firefox, but giving them money currently would appear as if I supported their current strategy/management.

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                                                                                                                                                                                  I’d love to pay for Firefox, but giving them money currently would appear as if I supported their current strategy/management

                                                                                                                                                                                  I’d be onboard with something crowdfunded, and I think that would definitely not be their current strategy, thus it would be supportable.

                                                                                                                                                                          2. 2

                                                                                                                                                                            I agree that it would be better, but I don’t believe it’s sustainable. My main message is that people shouldn’t make themselves use Firefox, just the the sake of saving a standardized web. I by no means am trying to tell people to use Chrome!

                                                                                                                                                                            1. 7

                                                                                                                                                                              What exactly are you telling people to use then? What alternatives are there besides Firefox and Blink-based browsers? Or are you just saying, use whatever you like best, because it doesn’t matter?

                                                                                                                                                                              1. 3

                                                                                                                                                                                I’m not telling anyone to use anything, just that you don’t have to use Firefox even if you don’t agree with Google’s position. As I say in the last sentence:

                                                                                                                                                                                I implore everyone to think about this, and make a conscious decision. Continue using Firefox if you want to, but don’t fool yourself that it means anything.

                                                                                                                                                                          1. 20

                                                                                                                                                                            Okay, rant? So let me rant back.

                                                                                                                                                                            There’s a cardinal mistake in this article: It never defines “us” and does not try to make a case why this “us” is actually a primary audience of Mozilla. (Hint: it isn’t. The primary audience of Mozilla is Hans-Jürgen from Unterwittighausen, who has never heard of free software, but has heard of Netflix and those nice Warez sites out there and their security. To that end, Mozilla has - for a long time - supported Firefox on Windows XP while there was still substantial use out there, even though Windows XP was discontinued, to keep their users secure)

                                                                                                                                                                            It doesn’t even make a case for those opinions being the majority in the target audience of developers. (I would go as far as saying that this is not the case)

                                                                                                                                                                            Note: I have no issue with individual opinions, but those that claim to speak for a group should argue for why they speak for a group and why this group must be heard.

                                                                                                                                                                            It also makes no good case why an organisation producing a product of high security concern should maintain additional code paths just because of displeasure in a bugzilla ticket.

                                                                                                                                                                            It also constructs things: The example taken for “unpredictability” (Change of the Addon API) was coming for years and the reason was that addons where and attack vector and addons often badly optimised, leading to a bad browser experience, especially for users that do not understand details of browser performance.

                                                                                                                                                                            The article does not even make an attempt give any positive feedback or appreciate positive thing which Mozilla has done or even try to engage with underlying and communicated reasons. The author does not even give a hint that they consider the engineers making decisions at Mozilla competent engineers.

                                                                                                                                                                            There’s a lot of things to criticise in Mozilla and Firefox, but this angle is not it and has to be refused. It constructs and audience without arguing for it and just grabs issues left-and-right, with not coherence.

                                                                                                                                                                            It remains to be said that “Why wasn’t I consulted” still is the central question of the internet. (https://www.ftrain.com/wwic)

                                                                                                                                                                            1. 3

                                                                                                                                                                              It doesn’t even make a case for those opinions being the majority in the target audience of developers.

                                                                                                                                                                              Agree. In fact I suspect that the… (for lack of a better word) “conservative power-users” (the ones who like the endless customization of the old addon API yet aren’t willing to just modify the code and maintain local patches; those who get angry at any optional feature they don’t like even existing; and so on) are a very small but loud minority.

                                                                                                                                                                              They are the ones who have a reason to post all these rants. Happy users are more likely to stay quiet. I’m a developer who has contributed a few Firefox patches. I generally 100% agree with the direction of Firefox and every UI update has only made me even happier. Literally the only complaint I have is that in the updated Android UI it’s too easy to accidentally swipe the tab list down. What am I going to rant about? I can only rant about the haters and whiners themselves, but that’s not great content, that doesn’t really deserve its own posts.

                                                                                                                                                                              the reason was that addons where and attack vector and addons often badly optimised

                                                                                                                                                                              Also the most important reason: the old API not a well-defined public API but basically direct access to all the internal objects, which meant that doing any internal interface change would break addons, making codebase evolution ridiculously difficult and slow.

                                                                                                                                                                              And the change that really forced the issue was, of course, multiprocess — which is fundamentally important for both security and reliability (anyone remember when the whole browser would crash instead of what would be “tab crashes” today?) — and was a significant booster for the early adoption of Chrome, who had it first.


                                                                                                                                                                              Fun fact, around the time Safari introduced extensions (2012 ish or so??) I was really interested in the “one extension API for all browsers” concept and was considering writing an abstraction that would call into different browser APIs to make this possible. Fast forward to today, everything (even Safari now) does have the same API natively. But I don’t want to publish extensions anywhere other than addons.mozilla.org anymore, I want to support Firefox with the exclusivity of the addons :)

                                                                                                                                                                              1. 3

                                                                                                                                                                                Why does “us” have to be the primary audience? I only use the word in the title, but main group I focus on are the people interested preventing Google from becoming a monopoly/preserving open web standards. Furthermore, I don’t claim there aren’t any reasons for the changes. (that being said: I’m still annoyed by the megabar, and that it’s apparently a useless change just to look different).

                                                                                                                                                                                There is too much annoying positivity, and I don’t intend to contribute to it. My apologies if my point wasn’t clear.

                                                                                                                                                                                1. 3

                                                                                                                                                                                  There is too much annoying positivity

                                                                                                                                                                                  Really??? Where? Please show me, I would love to read more positivity!

                                                                                                                                                                                  Our culture (yes especially in tech) seems very much biased in favor of ranting, cynicism and contempt. Positivity is usually read as “cringe” and suspected of being insincere, of being paid marketing even.

                                                                                                                                                                                  1. 1

                                                                                                                                                                                    Certainly it’s a subjective impression, and I guess it’s my mistake that I impled this was objective.

                                                                                                                                                                                  2. 1

                                                                                                                                                                                    You know, to Mozilla apologists the rules are simple:

                                                                                                                                                                                    Every single criticism is irrelevant and can safely be discarded, because anyone having an opinion about Firefox is too technical to be Mozilla’s target demographic.

                                                                                                                                                                                    1. 8

                                                                                                                                                                                      Mozilla apologists

                                                                                                                                                                                      Ha, thanks, that’s the first time someone called me that. I assume you have never met me talking about Mozilla. Mozilla is an organisation that I would never work for. (But for none of the reasons quoted here)

                                                                                                                                                                                      I do not trust Mozilla for many things, especially not that they can follow through with the organisational change they have announced. None of that has to do with Firefox.

                                                                                                                                                                                      No, I disagree with the angle of the post. I personally find it petty and clouding a conversation that should be had (and is being had between Mozilla and its community volunteers).

                                                                                                                                                                                  3. 2

                                                                                                                                                                                    does not try to make a case why this “us” is actually a primary audience of Mozilla. (Hint: it isn’t.

                                                                                                                                                                                    To me, this is the strange thing with Mozilla. There’s this idea that if somebody has a view that isn’t part of the “primary” view, then it must be invalid, and through this mechanism, feedback is routinely ignored.

                                                                                                                                                                                    Frankly, I don’t see other software projects think this way. Open source projects that are more community driven tend to incorporate feedback fairly effectively, because somebody’s going to submit a patch to change the behavior that annoys them, even if it annoys a tiny number of people. Mozilla seems to have been brushing off feedback to the point where people just don’t even try to submit this type of patch anymore.

                                                                                                                                                                                    Even in commercial environments this thinking seems strange. I work at Microsoft and never hear people talk this way. Obviously there’s a diverse set of users, with a diverse set of opinions, and it’s impossible to please everyone. But if MS only tried to please a “primary” group, it’d be an awful lot smaller. Being mainstream implies accepting that the user base is absurdly diverse, and still trying to please as many people as possible.

                                                                                                                                                                                    It may be that accepting every piece of feedback doesn’t result in pleasing many people, but it does mean that feedback is a helpful tool in understanding the factors that push people away from a product.

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                                                                                                                                                                                      Open source projects that are more community driven tend to incorporate feedback fairly effectively, because somebody’s going to submit a patch to change the behavior that annoys them, even if it annoys a tiny number of people.

                                                                                                                                                                                      Every open-source project that survives more than a few years and/or grows to be used by enough people eventually accumulates enough of a backlog of rejected or just plain “nobody had time to look at that patch and now it’s out of date” feature requests to spawn endless threads of people asserting that the maintainers are evil hateful people whose anti-user stance exemplifies everything that could ever be wrong with both a person and a project. And the justification for that claim is nearly always something like “I submitted this feature request and/or patch $LONG_TIME ago, and they still haven’t accepted it, which makes their software utterly unusable by anyone, for any use case, in any logically-possible universe, and therefore all good people everywhere must shun the software and its developers”.

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                                                                                                                                                                                        I think you misunderstood me there: I don’t even agree that the group described here is even “a primary”, out of multiple potential primaries. Or even a secondary. You need to make a case for it. It’s okay for small groups of users to complain. It’s good to listen to them. Going nuclear and not engaging with and understanding of your own place and the other parties place? Not so much.

                                                                                                                                                                                        MS is definitely no stranger to only pleasing certain groups. For example, for a long time: only Windows users. MS legal is famous for insisting on distribution control, which is why you couldn’t install common programming language packages like Ruby, Python or even Rust without manual install instructions for VS for years.

                                                                                                                                                                                        I give you another example: I own 2 companies, which, for legal and business reasons, must have separate infrastructure. I use Office 365. But I would love to do calendaring over all my orgs (and this does not involve my FOSS project, which does calendaring as well). Would you think Office 365 supports this use-case? Very badly. On the browser, I can use containers. In windows, with Desktop office? Log in and log out every time I switch contexts. Can I get this fixed somehow? Somehowish. Can I write ranty blog posts about it? Probably could. And just to clear: this is not unusual, people owning businesses for years are no strangers to working on multiple. It’s a daily pain if I don’t want to attach a third party service collecting all my calendering and feeding it back in (which, in the end, happens to be my iPad).

                                                                                                                                                                                        Point being: given finite resources, cuts need to be made. It’s an orgs choice to deal with that. MS chooses backwards-compatibility everywhere. Others choose support of web standards, how annoying they may be. Others choose software freedom over all. Framing any of this as abuse is a tall order.

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                                                                                                                                                                                          MS is definitely no stranger to only pleasing certain groups.

                                                                                                                                                                                          That’s definitely true. My comment is referring to the thought process. (Personally I’d argue that MS has the opposite problem of trying so hard to please everyone that the result is sub-optimal for common cases.)

                                                                                                                                                                                          which is why you couldn’t install common programming language packages like Ruby, Python or even Rust without manual install instructions for VS for years.

                                                                                                                                                                                          I’m not very familiar with the situation you’re describing, although it looks to me like the VS team are frantically trying to improve their story with respect to things like Python. So in terms of thought process, I’d be shocked if anyone there is saying, “Ruby/Python/Rust integration isn’t a primary part of our current crop of users so we shouldn’t do this.” Actually, (and I have no knowledge of anything here so you should take it with a grain of salt), I’d guess the reason they’re pushing distribution control is to try to make these scenarios as simple as a Linux package manager in order to reduce the need for manual install instructions.

                                                                                                                                                                                          Can I write ranty blog posts about it?

                                                                                                                                                                                          If you do, I’d be shocked if anyone in Office comes out and says, “the situation in this post isn’t part of a primary audience.” Actually, I’ll bet the link will get passed around, a few people will read it, and discuss how to do better. It might not happen overnight due to priorities, but it won’t be dismissed. People will read on the assumption that for everyone who writes a ranty blog post, there must be more people hitting similar situations who moved to a purely browser based calendar quietly out of frustration.

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                                                                                                                                                                                        Thank you for the wwic link.

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                                                                                                                                                                                          yeah that link is really worth a read, would’ve missed it without your reply (am I WWIC’ing now ? now I feel kinda busted with my thoughts about also starting a personal blog about stuff)

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                                                                                                                                                                                        Could financial situations like these have been avoided? Maybe if the Mozilla CEO wasn’t paid over 2 million dollars a year,

                                                                                                                                                                                        I see this every time Mozilla is discussed here. Serious question - what do you think a top-class, capable, experienced Mozilla CEO should be paid?

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                                                                                                                                                                                          As with exchange rates, the actual salary is less important than the change: The CEO’s salery has increased by ~1.8 million dollars over just 6 years (or quadruppeled). And if the excuse is, you have the increase it so that they don’t switch to some other company, it seems like the CEO isn’t commited to Mozilla’s ideals.

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                                                                                                                                                                                            Do you know how the CEO-to-salary of the median engineer has moved in that period?

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                                                                                                                                                                                              I have to admit that I don’t know that, but I’m also not sure how that’s related?

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                                                                                                                                                                                                If the ratio stays the same, then I’m fine with that - that means the median employee of also getting paid more.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                  Overpay and run out of money, underpay and run out of people.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  I did check that inflation is “only” about 10% in six years, so a quadrupled salary does sound a bit ill.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Whatever the size of the workforce may have been, having a proportionally increasing salary (that’s way beyond the money-printing press) for everyone sounds desperate or worse.

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Is something like the real-estate market in San Francisco and thereabouts to blame?

                                                                                                                                                                                                  Still needs more data and focus on the financials to take the bad feeling out.

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                                                                                                                                                                                            How open are the books? Anyone have a link or knowledge?

                                                                                                                                                                                            If they burn a mill a month, that salary might not save any jobs, even though the optics without context don’t look too good.

                                                                                                                                                                                            Contrary to a lot of anti-business Zeitgeist, C-level people do carry a heavy burden and wield the kind of power that has to be compensated monetarily. It’s up to the board to get rid of incompetents, meaning if a CEO is running the company to the ground for short-term personal profits, they should be fired. Anything else is corruption or fraud or otherwise bad business ethics.

                                                                                                                                                                                            It kinda looks like Mozilla the Company isn’t very well run, and my emotional knee-jerk says theres “like maybe” a zero too many in the salary, but I admit it’s an emotional response with nothing factual to stand on.

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                                                                                                                                                                                            I think the issue here is the word “Save”, it implies not doing so is a danger. I personally think the referenced article and the discussion was interesting, especially because my perfered practice is what’s less harmful to the environment, even if this difference is practically negligable.

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                                                                                                                                                                                              I just can’t take this serious. It already starts with the linked website for firefox and it’s privacy, which is already questionable. Complaining about portal detection ? Malicious Website Detection ? Trying to prevent abusive Plugins? Giving People the possibility to use Netflix & co ? (You may also say “yeah no, use windows+chrome for netflix, can’t have nice things because of people screaming against anything DRM in firefox”) Oh and of course the old “plugin API change is bad” argument coupled with “they’re evil for doing that”. And complaining about mozilla taking money from google for their search bar (which you can change btw), while giving literally no realistic replacement.

                                                                                                                                                                                              I can also start searching the evil in literally everything while following a zero tolerance policy regarding anything I don’t like..

                                                                                                                                                                                              Oh and about them not caring about your configuration opinions: Have you tried getting the Developers of any other free software to change it the way you want ? Did you go to the gnome people and told them that you dislike their new apple-ish bar and you want an options to disable it, make it look more like windows ? Did you go to anyone’s software and told them “I don’t like this, you have to change this and maintain this or you’re evil” ?

                                                                                                                                                                                              The only valid claim for me is that firefox/mozilla does not give you every possible configuration option you may want while pushing forward their ideas, which may be totally ignorant and/or wrong. And that they may be taking their “david vs goliath” stance to pressure you into using firefox.(I really liked this idea/view.) But otherwise I just can’t think of anything else than grumpy ol’ grandpa with his shotgun going “you dare to take a step on my land”.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                I absolutely agree. XUL add-ons were unsustainable and had to be removed. It also is not wrong for Mozilla to do what they think is best for users. Preferences have costs and Mozilla can’t make everything under the sun configurable. If you want to disagree with them then that’s fine, but the idea that they can’t take a stance on what they think is the best user experience and ship only that is silly. This is my least favorite meme in free software: “the maintainer said no to the feature I wanted so they’re evil.” (Or alternatively: “we have to add every feature that any user requests, ever.”)

                                                                                                                                                                                                See also: Is Linux About Choice?

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                                                                                                                                                                                                  I don’t think that everything should be configurable, just that subsequent versions should make less things less configurable. The problem is that Firefox looks poor when compared to itself (or rather older versions).

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                                                                                                                                                                                                    This would sound way better if they weren’t losing users each and every month …

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                                                                                                                                                                                                    To elaborate a little bit more: I strongly agree that some of mozillas decisions are very questionable and that some of firefox additions are pretty uncalled for. I think the voices criticizing firefox are valid. But this article just feels like a negative rant that gives no room for other opinions*, while promoting chrome of all things and saying everything is lost. Well then please just stay silent ?! You won’t get anywhere by verbally shitting on other peoples work with very questionable arguments. (Who don’t owe you anything by the way.)

                                                                                                                                                                                                    *I LIKE the new URL bar, I don’t care at all about the plugin change. And yes, I was a heavy user of things like “tabmixplus” and whatnot. Still I just can’t see the benefit anymore. Things change, people change.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                      Did you go to the gnome people and told them that you dislike their new apple-ish bar and you want an options to disable it, make it look more like windows?

                                                                                                                                                                                                      The power differential is completely different:

                                                                                                                                                                                                      Gnome people don’t care about having users, while Mozilla is constantly guilt-tripping people to use them.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                        Gnome people don’t care about having users….

                                                                                                                                                                                                        This is actually not the case and not a claim to make off-handed.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                          I interpreted it as “Gnome people won’t sacrifice their principles to get more users” which … dunno if that was the intent, but it makes a lot more sense.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                            I disagree strongly: I think the ascribed principles (or at least their prioritization) to Mozilla are wrong and both Gnome and Mozilla act quite strongly in the same direction. They both got their mind on the end user. Through that lens, Gnome is even often struggling, e.g. if you check the state of their software distribution. It’s not fair to play out those to orgs against each other and certainly not something they want to see themselves in.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                              Last I checked the Gnome Web browser doesn’t support DRM.

                                                                                                                                                                                                              My understanding is that the big difference between these orgs is that Mozilla consists of primarily paid staff all under a single reporting hierarchy. Gnome has a mix of paid and unpaid contributors, but most of the paid contributors are not being told what to do by the people who are paying their salary. It shouldn’t be surprising that these different organizational structures result in different kinds of decisions being made.

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                                                                                                                                                                                                          Fair enough

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                                                                                                                                                                                                        Thanks for writing your post. I don’t like how much power Google has over the web. And you make a good point that Mozilla’s rhetoric “use our browser if you love freedom” is kind of abusive! I also agree that it was a tragedy to fire the MDN and Servo team. I love MDN and use it just about every day at work. I consider it the “Gold Standard” of technical documentation and I worry that it will now be withering away.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        But I do agree that we are long past the point-of-no-return with Google/Alphabet “taking over the web”. I’m going to keep using Firefox as a habit for now, but I don’t think anything Mozilla could do - even if they ran a tigher ship - could help. Web Standards are just huge and to build a browser to support it would require serious investment that no entity is likely to make.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        And even if someone does make that investment in a new implementation, Google/Alphabet/Microsoft/Mozilla would all notice quickly and probably not be excited about anyone coming to ‘eat their lunch’.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        But you also mentioned making ‘toy’ things like gopher servers. I think that has some potential to make things nice where there’s the ‘mainstream’ WWW that Google owns and then there’s a decentralized web where users can put up a resistance against the monopoly.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        Again I think your post is great, thanks for writing.

                                                                                                                                                                                                        P.S. I think brutalism on the web is pretty fun!

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                                                                                                                                                                                                          Thanks for the kind words – I’m actually surprised how vehemently some people agree or disagree with the post.

                                                                                                                                                                                                          P.S. I think brutalism on the web is pretty fun!

                                                                                                                                                                                                          I agree, the “playful” or “hobbyist” web, that contains the web-brutalism movement, is one of the nicest, most refreshing and creative parts of the web.