3 months ago in Quotes
Apple values my blood sweat and tears at $0.99/user/lifetime - 30% Apple tax - government taxes.

I don't mean to compare it to a sweat shop, because I live in the first world and have opportunities, but this is a demeaning shakedown and devaluation of my pride, product, and work.


1. Shifted where generic computing happens

2. Downplayed the web as the end-all, be-all of application delivery. (It could have been amazing with WASM and sandboxing back in the 00's!)

3. Prevents generic apps from gaining distribution outside of Apple's control and tax

They took advantage of open source, the web, and the Internet. Then they shit on it and offered up the App Store protection racket as salvation.

It's only one of several themes where the giants of today crush the little guy. Computing is less free today than it was a decade ago.

Before Apple I had reach and distribution. Now I have less than 50% of that. And I don't have liberty and control over my own narrative anymore.
 3 months ago in Quotes

the web dies one corporate whimper and one consumer shrug at a time

In order to refocus the Firefox organization on core browser growth through differentiated userexperiences, we are reducing investment in some areas such as developer tools, internal tooling, and platform feature development
 3 months ago in Quotes
I don't think the user population is aware how disingenuous all of this tech crap is. It could be so awesome, and they don't even understand what's not awesome about it. It hurts in a deep, emotional space.

I have found so much inspiration in some of the great programmers of two generations ago. The writings of Chuck Moore and Alan Kay convince me that we somehow took two orders of magnitude of backwards steps in creating the present milieu of dysfunctional technology.

The worst part, IMO, is that it's all opaque. I don't control the device that I hold in my hand. I can't fix it because Google or Apple don't want me to. It is a tool of economic and social control, not a powerful technology that I can wield.
 3 months ago in Quotes
.. we're just writing too much code. Companies have hundreds of millions of lines of code in production right now and nobody who knows how it works, and what we're doing is a kind of runaway train where we're just hiring more and more people to write more and more code, and trying to ramp education up to be able to produce more and more people, and - I can only say this from the sidelines, as I don't have a degree - we seem to, at least as per these individuals, be cheapening computer science at the (possibly indirect) behest of these businesses who aren't willing or able to step back and try things differently.
 3 months ago in Quotes
Nothing fucking works. Nothing. Turning it off and back on again isn't a cute ritual, it's the cornerstone of all modern electronics. Everything ships with zero day patches. My $3000 TV crashes when you navigate an OSD menu the wrong way. Not the unnecessary smart features that it shipped with - that I of course augmented with a separate $300 purchase - but the actual 'treat me like a display' menu.

I work for a SaaS company and just as if not more work goes in to deciding how we measure uptime as goes in to designing for it. "Well, no customer incidents were reported, so that doesn't count as being down", "We have 1 hour of scheduled maintenance every week, but we still achieved 99.99 uptime" - it's creative, I'll give them that.

We talk about the network being unreliable as if a 200km 28ghz link and a trunk connection in a data center are the same thing. It's unqualified, and unhelpful, and nobody really knows what they are doing.

We "dismantle" waterfall as if it's not the same type of people who misunderstood the original publication doing the same thing with every other methodology and fad. (If you have not read "the leprechauns of software engineering" yet, it's an interesting read and worth a little bit of your time).

My house is full of devices, my history is full of purchases, that are a disappointment. I can't remember the last time I went a single. god. damn. day. without the things that are suppose to be helping me misbehaving in some way. And the worst part, is many of them can't even be fixed. They will putter along, the occasional patch, until they lose the attention of some swim lane on a plan of record somewhere and become e-waste.

I have been programing since I was eight. It was the most obvious passion I have ever found in life, but it feels like we're stuck. The arguments all feel the same boring old rehashed ones from over the last 20 years, probably longer. I'm bored. Is anybody else just tired of it all? Everything is amazing and crappy at the same time.
 3 months ago in Quotes
Isn't it weird that we have entire companies like Intercom or Rasa whose value add is pushing automated, AI-driven "assistants" onto websites, and then the companies that buy into that entire value add and codebases hacked on by ML experts find that none of it even works better than how it was in 1998?
 3 months ago in Quotes
As more and more domains centralize email in the handful of mega-corp hosted solutions the hosts have less and less reason to care about accepting mail from outside the walled gardens.
 4 months ago in Quotes

emphasis mine

So I'm from Newark, NJ, didn't really grow up around many good examples of work ethic nor wealth, really shit neighborhoods every time I moved. My brother discovered the "view page source" context menu item back in the day on myspace and decided to see what this is about, went to college, came back and I picked up some code skills now 8 years later, we both make the same amount. Now to be fair, of the two of us, I'm the better dev and he even says it to his friends and bosses often.
This is why I hate the layers of bloat and abstraction, and think all the big "web companies" today are basically trash. The results usually look terrible, are slow and riddled with spyware, AND you can't even learn from them... that is, if you do, you just learn some watered down walled garden bullshit that will be completely revamped in 3 years while the fundamentals (they try their best to keep you away from) haven't really changed.

Meanwhile, the Chrome developers ponder removing the address bar altogether, and Windows 10 brags during installation how you should "leave everything to us", and let's not even mention Apple or Facebook.
 4 months ago in Quotes
The worst programs are written by people who know how to plug a million and one things together, but can't drill down and analyse the algorithmic implications of what they're doing. Electron runs like shit and inhales RAM is because it was programmed by people who don't have solid understanding of fundamentals. They understand a huge number of horizontal abstractions but they have no concept of how it looks vertically.

Knowing how to maximally exploit a CPU is way more important than knowing eight different Javascript frameworks if good software is your objective. And frankly, learning Node is way easier than figuring out how to structure basic, bare-bones Javascript so that it leverages your L1 cache.

And therein lies the problem. How many interviewers dock marks for iterating over columns, instead of rows? Because that matters, a huge amount. How many interviewers would give credit for "how can you speed this up?" if the interviewee said, "write it in C, and simplify the datastructures you want me to use so we maximise sequential lookups over basic arrays, to maximise cache usage." They'll look at you like you have three heads.

"Don't you know Big N complexity is the only thing that really matters if you're looking for speed?" - then you get Electron.
 4 months ago in Things
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 4 months ago in Things
 5 months ago in Quotes
We do programmers a disservice when we act as if the conversation about the growing threat of legacy code begins and ends with COBOL. A whole generation of software engineers are spending their careers making the problem worse by outsourcing all but the most unique aspects of their applications to armies of libraries, plugins and modules that they are powerless to monitor let alone update.

The real horsemen of the legacy apocalypse is the depth of the dependency tree. Modern software development stacks abstraction on top of abstraction. If the left-pad incident of 2016 proved nothing else it demonstrated that even experienced engineers will YOLO dependencies on to their applications if given the infrastructure to make installing them easy. Modern developer environments are a veritable candy store of cheap and convenient dependencies.