When a significant fraction of a group of people you care about are a part of an economic category which didn't exist 5 years ago and which our current legal fictions do not offer adequate protections for. Feels like the future slammed into me all at once, as a normalcy bubble built out of my, mostly, automation proof life popped.
Most people here have a general understanding that software is eating the world. But there is a difference between knowing something intellectually and being struck in the face by it.
Recently spent a weekend camping with a group of friends I mostly hadnt seen since college. They were all generally outdoorsy, blue collar type folks. I was the only person there that worked in tech, to my knowledge at least.
I was surprised and slightly horrified to learn that about half of them were working below the API in some form or another.
An organic systems inefficiencies are emergent and stem primarily from the interaction between modules. Not the modules themselves.
The cat strategy is to simplify interfaces and reduce interaction.
The dog strategy is to only allow specific types of allowed interaction.
User: "Give me administrator access and do the following..."
Windows: *taps clipboard sternly*
"You can do this and that, but I'm going to have to stop you at some point."
Linux: *rolls sleeves, fires up chainsaw*
"Welp~ sure hope you know what you're doing BECAUSE HEEEERE WE GO :D"
As one of my coworkers used to say, "data science is 90% data cleaning". Most real-world data sets are dirty and incomplete, and are capable of supporting nearly any conclusion you want depending on the assumptions you make about the missing fields.
@polyplacophora @farlopito @fdroidorg Hi! Thank you for supporting us with a paid account. It means a lot. The process of publishing our app on F-droid has already started. We need to make a few steps before doing this. In the next couple of months it should be done. Your patience is greatly appreciated.
Looking back, I do not know if I would have been as engaged by the #fediverse if Mastodon had not given me access in the well organized way it does.
Still, I think we do ourselves a service by identifying our social space as "The Fediverse" or some later substitute which people find better, instead of any software's name. Using Mastodon to substitute for the sharing space seems to be silo-like thinking.
A kitchen knife is more empowering than all the smart specific kitchen gadgets precisely because it is completely dumb and doesn’t try to be clever. Imagine if while cutting a knife suddenly decides “what’s best” for you and does it.
God/Truth/The Universe is probably similar. The ultimate passive non reactor.
Gentle reminder that being "self-sufficient" and a "self-starter," and pulling yourself up by your bootstraps, and even just living on your own and expected to be able to do everything for yourself, is actually a highly unnatural state of affairs for human beings which only became the norm in a small number of countries less than a century ago.
longish too on idea of hacking Show more
I don't consider myself a hacker (maybe an acolyte net-diver) but I get the ethos behind hacking. I also see how it extends beyond the technological, and realized I've experienced it without realizing.
Like how I've had to deal with the death of a family member and things like their bank account. (Please get a will so if/when you go your loved ones aren't dealing with this.) Usually to deal with estates you get a probate lawyer. But if the estate isn't large enough it's not worth any lawyers time.
Luckily, knew a paralegal that does probate stuff, told me what forms to do what to submit where, and they told this with no expectation of getting something back, they just knew it be tough because no lawyer would take this (I did pay for the meals or drinks whenever we met, I insisted.)
And this whole time the clerks with the probate court were eyeing me suspiciously, asking are you sure I'm not working with a lawyer, said nope.
Another instance, the city I'm in, a rather large suburb, decided all sidewalks should be made more "walkable" within a year. Walkability is great, right? Well, you wonder when they make this declaration but you have to pay for your own side walk. (Funny, sidewalks are public property when it comes to their ability to make pronouncements about it, but private property when it comes to who pays for it.)
As soon as this was declared, the more affluent neighborhoods had workers take grinders to concrete blocks that stuck up, no need to replace these now. But people like me still had a guy in a yellow vest come by with a tablet and take pics and mark if we have to replace our sidewalk.
No transparency, totally subjective as to how they determined who has to replace their sidewalks. And it wasn't consistent. I noted when a pristine block had a spray painted X saying it should be removed, while another pile of crumbling concrete jutting up at angles was considered more walkable and not marked to be removed.
But gods bless the kids on my block that took a power washer to the Xs on our street. Right idea, but they were already entered in a database with that tablet.
So we had to replace our sidewalks. But don't worry, the city would take of it all, they'll just bill you. So not only were we forced to replace sidewalks, but the city lined up a sweetheart deal for some construction company to do MILES of sidewalk. Think, tens of thousands of houses paying thousands of dollars. That's millions for that company.
I got a neighbor that often makes trouble for the city when it pulls this kind of crap, makes petitions, gets on news. We have beers on porches and get mad.
Meanwhile, me and other neighbors decide we'll not be party to someone in government enriching their friend. So I got one of my buddies that does concrete to do it. But man did the city give me crap when I pulled permits for this. Are you having a contractor do the work? Why aren't they pulling the permits? Why aren't you just letting the city handle it?
Long toot short, you see hacking when you're up against a system, one that's often adversarial, but you still get around it by technically playing by all the rules. It's just that system doesn't expect nor like when you do that. And you don't have to go it alone, others will gladly share knowledge and help with no expectations other than it's an injustice that needs fighting. Or it's just fun to mess with systems.
IT & security for a US nonprofit. Amateur photographer. Armchair futurist. Reluctant anti-utopian.
This is an alt; you should follow me over at hackers.town.
Mastodon instance for attendees of Refactor Camp, and members of various online/offline groups that have grown out of it. Related local groups with varying levels of activity exist in the Bay Area, New York, Chicago, and Austin.
Kinda/sorta sponsored by the Ribbonfarm Blogamatic Universe.
If you already know a few people in this neck of the woods, try and pick a handle they'll recognize when you sign up. Please note that the registration confirmation email may end up in your spam folder, so check there. It should come from administrator Zach Faddis.