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so i'm finally trying - specifically using patchwork.

i'm, uh, @lNKr4CmYglMOc9xr5/XVPvZdZxcx13bABb/jTIj/2Z8=.ed25519

i think?

brennen boosted

an image i asked a friend at my then-work to draw many years ago for our "oh shit we didn't catch that exception" failure message:

i think of it often these days.

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where are the alternative branches of processor architecture waiting in the wings to leap upon this very bad (yet still overblown) vulnerability in the dominant strain?

they were market losers, and we have built markets that kill losers dead.

lacks of diversity evidence themselves /everywhere/ in our technology industry, and lacks of diversity cause systemic fragility.

I encourage you to start looking for ways to make your life more diverse in every aspect. Me too.

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2017 me, emerging from DeLorean, to 1995 me:

So, this new 'Pentium' chip, turns out the whole 'speculative execution' road is a bit of a mistake. Yes it makes Doom faster but 22 years later all our computer systems are hacked each week by gangs of roaming cyber-criminals wearing vintage 80s micros as cosmetic jewellery on their leather jackets

1995 me (stuck in E1M2): Got it, Doom will get faster

2017 me: Did you even hear a word I said? I said the 80s are going to be fashionable again.

stay safe & warm, eastern USAians.

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On the plus side, if we're all in a simulation, looks increasingly likely we can break out.

the current x86 situation demonstrating at least three of the three hard problems in computer science:

naming things
cache invalidation
off-by-one errors
capitalism fucks everything up

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good luck hacking my abacus with a timing attack, I used a spray adhesive on the wires.

like, i'm pretty sure the most complex and recently-designed devices in my life that i don't expect to see some kind of hilariously terrible remotely-exploitable vulnerability in are at roughly the level of my 19 year old toyota or the digital watch that sets itself from the NIST signal.

& the business model of the software industry pretty much _is_ surveillance, except where it's enclosure of the commons, while software as a field is a towering disaster of hubris, leaky abstractions, and an intellectual & technical culture completely lacking the tools to render the hoarding of all that data anything remotely like safe, if such a thing is even theoretically possible (side note: it's not, it fucking can't be).

what's left? what would _actually surprise_ you at this point? (2/2

i was talking with some friends this evening about this latest intel clusterfuck, and none of us could even really come up with a _class_ of vulnerability or compromise that would fundamentally surprise us at this point.

the hardware's all fucked on purpose (IME, who knows what all other backdoors) and accidentally (this latest business, 10 thousand other things). intelligence & law enforcement are pretty well understood to be enacting the stuff of full-blown paranoiac fantasy at scale. (1/2)

jesus christ, now he has actually curled up and is sleeping peacefully on the open laptop while purring. i cannot click things and am relegated to external-keyboard-only interaction.

_why is your butt on my touchpad: the story of a cat_

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> Whenever I want to use the internet, I set up two timers to make sure I go no longer than 20 minutes, and I keep a post-it on my computer that says 'You are not broken'.

There's lots to like about this essay --

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@garbados @djsundog @amphetamine In the distance, you can see a trio of JavaScript build systems duelling to determine who gets to be JS Build System of 2018.

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@djsundog @amphetamine here, in the meadow of an empty project directory, the programmer paces on all fours, huffing and kicking at the dirt. they are asserting a build system. many programmers choose different build systems, and this one has chosen what appears to be a lovingly-crafted jumble of Perl and Python scripts. look at how they nudge it into place. majestic.

i just saw a uspol CW and didn't click it.

this must represent some kind of personal betterment.

happy new year (as temporally appropriate), everybody. i'm spending tonight writing letters and listening to extremely un-hip thrift-store records and drinking box wine. may go outside and bang on some pots at midnight. pretty excited we are not going to the bar.

i've been _mostly_ away from the internet since christmas eve, and the only parts i find myself missing are a couple of low-key IRC channels and mastodon. see y'all in 2018.