What I don't get about Slack or any other 'chat as a service' system is why tech companies would willingly backdoor themselves with a surveillance system to harvest all their most private in-house discussions.

All those chat logs must be worth quite a bit to the right buyers.


but seriously, somewhere between 2000 and 2019 the IT industry seamlessly transitioned from

"we provide precision engineering tools, your data is yours, you should not need to trust us or anyone, mathematics is your guarantee, crypto 4 ever. "


"give us your data. all of it. give. no secrets. hold nothing back. in return we will... train AIs on it.. and provide unspecified 'services'... for someone, who may be you... that can change at any time... and we are funded by, uh. Look, a unicorn!"

I'm so old I remember when the entire tech industry FREAKED THE HECK OUT at the idea of 'Total Information Awareness' and now it's just 'yeah, that's literally our business plan, what's wrong with it'


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Of course 16 years have elapsed since TIA was first proposed and in tech, I guess that's an eternity; an entire generation have probably retired and the new kids don't even know who George W Bush was, the even newer ones probably don't even know about Edward Snowden, the really new ones haven't heard of Donald Trump

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@natecull The new kids probably grew up in a completely different culture, too -- probably one with fewer anti-authority and anti-establishment memes.

@natecull The problem was that literally the only reason they were freaking out was because it was the government talking about doing it. They never had any problem with private industry doing it for private ends.

@freakazoid @natecull Personally, I'd prefer for the government doing it. There I have, at least in theory, a vote.

@woland @natecull their logo that they made themselves is the illuminatti watching the whole world

it’s impossible to be paranoid after that

@natecull Yeah, but like… when the government does surveillance they hoard the data for themselves and that’s just like SOVIET RUSSIA and BAD but when private companies do it they sell it and that’s CAPITALISM and GOOD!

@natecull Turns out the reason they freaked the heck out was the government was keeping them out of the loop. They wanted to do it for high margins. The government was proposing cutting them out of the gravy train.

@natecull This pretty much simultaneously happened with:
2000 Customer: Great service, here's $$$$
2019 Customer: It's great service, but we can get Crappy service from the other guy for free.

Nobody likes to admit that you get what you pay for.

@natecull this happens because these days, everyone and their dog has gone into IT-related fields. It's not that there are fewer idealists around, it's just that IT has transitioned from a fringe phenomenon to a core pillar of business and industry and suddenly there are dozens of average joes for each traditional crypto nerd. This skews the narrative away from the deeper issues and waters down awareness. Add in economic forces and the result is ... depressing.

@natecull lots of sysadmins suddenly realised their jobs could get a lot easier if they said:

@paul @natecull I want to push our team at work to switch away from Slack.

We're on the free plan and used up the whole 5 GB (seriously) and I want to propose switching to Riot / Matrix / Synapse before buying a Slack plan. The Slack plans actually look more expensive than just slapping Synapse on a cheap VPS.

Anyone know how Riot compares? I've been running it at home but only for chat, not files.

@CharredStencil @natecull I've never used Matrix/Riot/Synapse so couldn't give you an answer on that. Have boosted for visibility in case anyone else knows

@CharredStencil @paul @natecull my limited experience with Matrix has been a bit of a nightmare. I understand Synapse is a huge resource hog, and the clients definitely are (of memory, processing cycles, and especially network throughput). If it's just going on a bunch of workstations in buildings with good networks, then it's probably fine, but anything off-site is gonna be rough.

@diodelass @paul @natecull I only use it within our office, but I don't know how the sales team uses it. Slack's client is offensively bad, I switched to Chromium to appease it and it's still slow.

The only thing that does worry me is Synapse's RAM use. I've been running it on my desktop for a while and it's around 112 MB "res" according to top.

@CharredStencil @paul @natecull I don't think Riot is likely to be a lot better than Slack's client?
The ""native"" app is still Electron and the code seems perennially excessively inefficient.

@diodelass @paul @natecull The newest Riot runs great for me in Firefox. Again, desktop with piles of RAM. Firefox says the Riot page is 83 MB. But at least it isn't Slack, which still runs poorly in Chromium.

If I can go back to Firefox at work I'd be happy.

I'm not gonna use Electron ever if I can help it

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