Let’s go for my web review for the week 2023-34. It’s bigger than usual since it’s a double issue.

Industry News and Opinions

Debian Celebrates 30 years! - Bits from Debian

Tags: tech, foss, debian

One of the most important projects out there in my opinion. Happy birthday!

Mozilla Foundation - Petition to stop France from forcing browsers to censor websites

Tags: tech, browser, censorship, france, politics

Please, even if you’re not French go and sign this. It can’t be allowed to pass, this would create a dangerous precedent.

Every Phone Should Be Able to Run Personal Website |

Tags: tech, web, self-hosting

I admit I’d love it if it made a come back. That’d be a big boost to self-hosting websites for people. Our infrastructures are not quite ready for it though.

We Call on FOSS Contributors to “Exit Zoom” - Software Freedom Conservancy

Tags: tech, zoom, licensing, foss, surveillance

Definitely this! There are awesome Free Software alternatives to Zoom. We need to get more people to use them

This Is What Happens When People Start Actually Reading Privacy Policies – The Markup

Tags: tech, machine-learning, zoom, law, licensing

Good explanations around the (deserved) complaints against Zoom and their not that new user license.

Web Environment Integrity has no standing at W3C; understanding new W3C work | 2023 | Blog | W3C

Tags: tech, web, google, privacy, surveillance

Good reminder on how the W3C works and what it evaluates. If Web Environment Integrity would become a “standard” it’d likely be more of a “de facto” thing because a major player shoved it everyone’s throat.

Windows feature that resets system clocks based on random data is wreaking havoc | Ars Technica

Tags: tech, microsoft, security

What a bad idea. From the information at hand I don’t see how this can go well.

An energy-efficient analog chip for AI inference | IBM Research Blog

Tags: tech, hardware, ai, machine-learning, neural-networks

Now this could turn out to be interesting. To be confirmed when this get closer to production (if it does), especially on the power consumption side. This will be the important factor to make this viable I think.

3D and Geometry

Solving the Point-in-Polygon Calculation Challenge: Tips From Top Engineers

Tags: tech, optimization, geospatial, geometry

Not as detailed as I would like on the proposed solution. A good starting point for inspiration though. Should help with geospatial and fleet management problems.

Magic Mirrorball

Tags: tech, 3d, mathematics

If you want to know more about how to use mirror balls to create environment maps, this is a good resource.

Rewriting wipEout - PhobosLab

Tags: tech, gaming, 3d, portability

Interesting rewrite attempt. Gives nice information on the original code and the PSX architecture as well.

Networking and Programming

mDNS Primer

Tags: tech, dns, networking

Doesn’t go much in depth, but this is a nice resource with interesting references to follow to dig deeper and learn mDNS.

The importance of verifying webhook signatures | Snyk

Tags: tech, web, api, security

Nicely explain how to secure your webhooks step by step.

The downsides of C++ Coroutines | reductor’s blog

Tags: tech, c++, coroutine, asynchronous

Beware of the problems coroutines might bring. Some are “obvious” and related to concurrency in general, but some are running deep in their design in C++.

Handles are the better pointers

Tags: tech, data-oriented, object-oriented, memory, gaming, 3d

A bit C++ and game engine focused (to be expected since this is were this kind of techniques originate from), bit very good explanation on how to have packed layouts for your objects and reduce pressure on memory allocation for data intensive tasks.

Making Illegal States Unrepresentable

Tags: tech, programming, rust, type-systems

Illustrated with Rust in this case, but definitely one of the big advantages of having type systems. Adding constraints (even runtime ones) to your types make it harder for bugs to hide.

Thinking about functional programming |

Tags: tech, programming, language

Very good points. Picking a particular language is likely not the right approach. Trying to apply the main principles of functional programming on the other hand is more likely to bear fruits.

Thoughts on Elixir, Phoenix and LiveView after 18 months of commercial use

Tags: tech, programming, elixir, backend, frontend

This is clearly getting more mature. Even the list of issues presented here actually makes me want to try it more as to evaluate the exact impacts.

Elixir for Humans Who Know Python · Joyyo

Tags: tech, elixir, phoenix, web, framework

Nice little primer about Elixir and Phoenix. Be careful though, I spotted a couple of mistakes in the code examples. That still gives a good idea of advantages and limitations of this stack.


Things you forgot (or never knew) because of React

Tags: tech, web, frontend, framework, react

Long post but worth the read in my opinion. It lays out good reasons for reducing the dominance of React and move beyond it. There are good reasons to do so, and they’re piling up with the time passing.

Use web components for what they’re good at | Read the Tea Leaves

Tags: tech, frontend, web, webcomponents

Good balanced view about Web Components. Interestingly it seems the adoption is already higher than I expected.

The ideal viewport doesn’t exist

Tags: tech, gui, design

Good reminder that we have no idea of the window size the user will have. It’s in the context of web frontends here, but really it applies to desktop applications as well (we have a bit more control on the minimal size there but that’s it).


JLA - Compatibility Checker

Tags: tech, licensing, foss

Looks like a handy tool for licenses compatibility checking.

Ansika: One-line Installer for Smoother Employee Onboarding

Tags: tech, tools

Looks like an interesting tool to manage user environment when they join a project.

Tags: tech, networking, tools, ssh, http

Looks like a very nice alternative to ngrok. It’s free, doesn’t require any particular command to download, just works through SSH.

Best Practices

Patterns for Managing Source Code Branches

Tags: tech, git, version-control

A good reference on most of the branching patterns you can find. From this you can derive your project wide policy. Also it’s spot on when it says that branching is easy but each time you branch you need to keep in mind how you’re going to merge.

Optimise the Expensive First

Tags: tech, optimization, performance

Obvious advice perhaps, but so easily forgotten somehow…

Root Cause is Plural

Tags: tech, system, safety, knowledge, risk

A good reminder on how the “five why” are just a starting pont. For proper investigation and risk management you need to go deeper.

Architecture and Complexity

How architecture diagrams enable better conversations - Unravelled Development

Tags: tech, architecture, communication, c4

Good reminder of the benefits of having a model of your architecture and keeping it up to date. It’s something too often forgotten in teams I think. Interesting to see C4 getting some traction, I think it strikes a good balance.

Squeeze the hell out of the system you have – Dan Slimmon

Tags: tech, databases, postgresql, architecture, complexity

Excellent points. Don’t be fooled by alluring architecture changes. Always keep the complexity in check and favor tuning what’s already here or changing your use patterns to meet the performance you need.

The cost of convenience —

Tags: tech, library, framework, web, architecture

Good thinking about abstraction levels on top of a platform. It’s very much focused on the Web platform but applies more generally. Good food for thought on the libraries vs framework debate, why escape hatches matter and why you want a layered architecture.

complex simple good bad code

Tags: tech, programming, complexity

To take with a pinch of salt, it conflates a few things in my opinion. Still it’s a good reminder that eliminating complexity shouldn’t be a goal. Managing said complexity and avoiding the undue one, this is what matters.

Management and Communication

Carrot Problems

Tags: business, fake

Very good advice. Don’t waste time believing false business claims and trying to replicate them. Easier said than done though, most people don’t have the privilege of insiders knowledge.

The Double-Blind Review Is What Makes Decisions Fair

Tags: business, management, decision-making

Clearly very much inspired by the science peer review system. Having experienced it, indeed I wish more business decisions would be made that way.

80% of bosses say they regret earlier return-to-office plans

Tags: tech, management, remote-working

Those who listen (not mandate) to their employees and hire whatever the location will come out on top. It’ll require planning real estate ahead of course but the writing is probably on the wall.

Hire for Floors, not Ceilings - Jacob Kaplan-Moss

Tags: hr, hiring

This advice makes sense. People performance fluctuate you need to know where the extremes are before hiring them. Easier said than done though.

Choose the Right Words in an Argument

Tags: management, communication, conflict

Lots of good advices for dealing with a conflict. Choosing the right words and the right time matter. Not easy to apply but worth trying.

How to Communicate When Trust Is Low (Without Digging Yourself Into A Deeper Hole) –

Tags: communication, trust

Interesting advices. As usual with this kind of topics it’s probably easier said than done though.


Ask vs guess culture - by Jean Hsu - Tech and Tea

Tags: life, work, culture

Very good points about cultural differences. Indeed some people directly ask and express their needs, others are more waiting and take into account everyone else’s needs when asked. Both have pros and cons, it’s important to know where you stand.

I Created the Nerdiest Game Ever | Pier-Luc Brault - Personal Website

Tags: tech, funny

Experience the gruesome work of being an operating system. Now show some respect!

Bye for now!