Let’s go for my web review for the week 2023-49.

Mobilizon V4: the maturity stage – Framablog

Tags: tech, framasoft, privacy, social-media, foss

Another important software release. Let’s wish luck to the new maintainers!

Introducing Wikifunctions: first Wikimedia project to launch in a decade creates new forms of knowledge – Wikimedia Foundation

Tags: tech, wikipedia, knowledge, programming

Interesting move, I’m wondering how far this will go. Reuse of those functions in other Wikimedia project will be critical to its success.

Toxic comments are associated with reduced activity of volunteer editors on Wikipedia | PNAS Nexus | Oxford Academic

Tags: tech, wikipedia, knowledge, community, sociology

Very interesting study, shows how toxic comments impact contributions. Gives a good idea of the probability for people to leave. In the case of Wikipedia this highlights reasons which contribute to the lack of diversity in the contributors. This is a complex community issue in general, this studies does a good thing by shedding some light on the dynamics in the case of Wikipedia.

An Open Letter to the Python Software Foundation

Tags: tech, python, community

The fact that they felt the need to write such a letter is troubling. What’s going on in the Python Software Foundation really? Something needs to be fixed it seems.

Firefox on the brink? |

Tags: tech, web, mozilla, google

Let’s hope it won’t get there… I wish people would abandon Chrome en masse. I unfortunately don’t see it happening and it’ll just weaken the Web.

Chrome’s next weapon in the War on Ad Blockers: Slower extension updates | Ars Technica

Tags: tech, google, browser, attention-economy

Still using Chrome? What are you waiting for to change for another browser which doesn’t play against your interests.

Automakers’ data privacy practices “are unacceptable,” says US senator | Ars Technica

Tags: tech, automotive, privacy

A senator is stepping up and rightfully pointing the finger at automakers. Let’s hope more will follow.

PlayStation keeps reminding us why digital ownership sucks - The Verge

Tags: tech, DRM, copyright

If you can’t download it without DRMs you just don’t own it, you’re renting it. This is completely different.

Just about every Windows and Linux device vulnerable to new LogoFAIL firmware attack

Tags: tech, security, bios

Fascinating vulnerability. When the BIOS is at fault with a crappy image parser… you can’t do much to prevent problems from happening.

AI and Mass Spying - Schneier on Security

Tags: tech, ai, gpt, surveillance, spy

Definitely one of the worrying aspects of reducing human labor needs for analyzing texts. Surveillance is on the brink of being increased thanks to it.

Google Researchers’ Attack Prompts ChatGPT to Reveal Its Training Data

Tags: tech, ai, machine-learning, gpt, copyright

A glimpse into how those generator models can present a real copyright problem… there should be more transparency on the training data sets.

Block the Bots that Feed “AI” Models by Scraping Your Website – Neil Clarke

Tags: tech, ai, machine-learning, gpt, copyright, criticism

This is clearly an uphill battle. And yes, this is because it’s broken by design, it should be opt-in and not opt-out.

Introducing Gemini: Google’s most capable AI model yet

Tags: tech, ai, machine-learning, gpt

The Large Language Model arm race is still going strong. Models are still mostly hidden behind APIs of course, and this is likely consuming lots of energy to run. Results seem interesting though, even though I suspect they’re over inflating the “safety” built in all this. Also be careful of the demo videos, they’ve been reported as heavily edited and misleading…

Multifaceted: the linguistic echo chambers of LLMs - by James Padolsey

Tags: tech, linguistics, ai, machine-learning, gpt

LLMs training had a bias from the start… and now we got a feedback loop since people are posting generated content online which is then used for training again. Expect idiosyncrasies to increase with time.

Seamless Communication - AI at Meta

Tags: tech, ai, machine-learning, gpt, translation, speech

Now this is a very interesting use of generator models. I find this more exciting than the glorified chatbots.

ChatGPT’s One-year Anniversary: Are Open-Source Large Language Models Catching up?

Tags: tech, ai, machine-learning, gpt, foss

Very interesting review, we can see some interesting strengths and weaknesses. Also gives a good idea of the different ways to evaluate such models.

reaction, in replacement of fail2ban

Tags: tech, security, server, self-hosting

Could indeed turn into a nice alternative to fail2ban.

Standard Webhooks

Tags: tech, web, services, webhooks

Interesting attempt at having webhooks implementation a bit more standardized. This is indeed needed, currently everyone does them in slightly different ways and sometimes the quality is debatable. If it gets adopted it’d give a good baseline.

You (probably) don’t need DateTime · Scorpil

Tags: tech, date, time, unix, complexity

Good reminder that the raw UNIX timestamps have interesting properties and often are enough not necessarily needing to rely on something more complex. Also gives nice criteria for picking between said timestamps and higher level types.

You don’t need JavaScript for that - HTMHell

Tags: tech, web, html, css, frontend

Nice examples showing JavaScript use can be reduced in the browser. HTML and CSS are gaining nice features.

Documentation unit tests

Tags: tech, tests, documentation

Interesting approach to reduce the amount of undocumented features because we simply forgot to update the documentation. Shows a few inspiring tricks to get there.

Struct initialization | Sandor Dargo’s Blog

Tags: tech, c++

Good walkthrough the finer points of members initialization in C++. Worth keeping in mind.

When static types make your code shorter

Tags: tech, programming, type-systems

Somehow unsurprising, this is often the case: less validation code, but also less automated tests. With types you can write unwanted states out of existence.

Profiling Rust programs the easy way | nicole@web

Tags: tech, rust, optimization, profiling

The Rust tooling makes it super easy to profile your programs. This is neat.

Topics in computer graphics

Tags: tech, graphics, 3d, learning

Very nice collection of tidbits of information for the main topics in computer graphics. A good way to get started or refresh the basics.

Nuclear Reactor Simulator

Tags: tech, web, game, 3d, simulation

Very cool simplified simulator. Gives a good idea of how this roughly works.

“Smartifying” my Hi-Fi system

Tags: tech, hacking, raspberry-pi, music, networking, usb

Alright, this is definitely a cool hack.

Deciphering Glyph :: Safer, Not Later

Tags: tech, quality, project-management, programming

An interesting interpretation of what was behind the “move fast and break things” motto which is nowadays blindly followed by some. A bit of a long piece but does the job and propose a more complete view and an alternative approach.

TDD Isn’t Design - by Kent Beck

Tags: tech, tdd, design

Definitely this. Again TDD helps to work on the design, but it’s not a silver bullet which will give you the right design on a platter.

A few words about Blameless culture

Tags: tech, culture, blameless, quality, trust

Shows why it’s important to go for a blameless culture, also outside of postmortem. This is definitely not easy but worth it.

How to do annual planning and strategy for an engineering organization — Lena Reinhard

Tags: tech, organization, strategy, planning

Good blueprint for building up and following up (the most important part really) of a strategy in your organization.

Return to office is dead, Stanford economist says. Here’s why

Tags: tech, remote-working

Looks like remote work is here to stay for good now.

RFC processes are a poor fit for most organizations - Jacob Kaplan-Moss

Tags: business, organization, decision-making

Good point on why you don’t want to drive your organization simply on RFCs. Yet another fad of “this worked for them, let’s do it as well”… per usual this fails to take into account the specificity of the context where it worked.

First decide how to decide: “one weird trick” for easier decisions - Jacob Kaplan-Moss

Tags: tech, management, decision-making

Nice ideas for decision making in larger groups.

Bye for now!