Would you believe the “More fixes for random test crashes” pull request itself has random test crashes? Oh, the humanity!

Futzing with HomeKit homebrew again had me realize the smart TVs I hate aren’t always lagging (sometimes they are!), but their awful remotes trick you into thinking they are. High-perf devices with low-perf input. My phone is already with me on my couch and is far higher quality.

“Platforms that use AIs often get biased by tiny groups of hyper-active users.” YouTube promising to change their AI not to. Wonder how much it helps victims who get really attached to specific channels. Good thread: threader.app/thread/10…

I think my morbid curiosity for plant burgers primarily stems from the belief that protein slurries, pink slime, and other substitution foods are going to be necessary sooner than any of us feel comfortable with.

There’s a certain relief in software to walking back “oh goodness oh gosh the whole thing is broken, isn’t it?!” to “only one small part of this is broken”. I always start at the first one. Maybe it’s quite simply in my nature to catastrophize.

Having grown up in the south, I’ve heard “we obtained the 13-year-old’s informed consent” and “don’t worry, I definitely asked her mom too” more times than I’m okay with. “I should be able to screw up my device however I want” advocates should try a different tack, just saying.

Empty Your Cup

Via a coworker.

A well known professorwent to visit a Zen master. As the master gracefully served tea, the professor described his ideas of Zen. The master remained quiet as the professor spoke, continuing to pour.

When the tea reached the brim of the cup, the Zen master kept pouring. The tea overflowed, spilling onto the tray, the table, and the carpet, until the professor could no longer stand it.

“Stop!” he said. “Can’t you see the cup is full?”

“This is you,” said the master, positing to the cup. “How can I show you Zen, until you first empty your cup?”

At a Human Scale

In working through a bug of inefficient I/O use the past few days, my mind keeps coming back to a blog post from a few years ago, Computer Latency at a Human Scale:

  • One CPU cycle: 0.4ns → 1s
  • Level 1 cache access: 0.9ns → 2s
  • Level 2 cache access: 2.8ns → 7s
  • Level 3 cache access: 28ns → 1min
  • Main memory access (DDR DIMM): ~100ns → 4min
  • Intel Optane memory access: <10 μs → 7 hrs
  • NVMe SSD I/O: ~25 μs → 17 hrs
  • SSD I/O: 50–150 μs → 1.5–4 days
  • Rotational disk I/O: 1–10 ms → 1–9 months
  • Internet call: San Francisco to New York City: 65ms → 5 years
  • Internet call: San Francisco to Hong Kong: 141ms → 11 years

Algorithmic thinking isn’t hard. At least, it’s not the hardest thing I do. Method naming and text layout are way harder. But I often find we lack the scale for figuring out what we’re doing wrong. You wouldn’t design a task that repeats 10,000 times if each iteration took 6 months. And yet it’s so trivially easy to write a naïve database operation that goes to disk for each of ten thousand iterations.

Tech and tech journalism should be ashamed for casting dispersions about what it means for a bug to be a duplicate, or for an action to signify “not caring enough”. It’s cruel to demand humanity and forgiveness for our mistakes, then turn the screws on an anonymous target.

In utter disbelief that it needs to be said, check that your luggage is yours before leaving the airport, you demons. I don’t care how inexperienced, tired, or breathtakingly stupid you may be, check! That! It’s! Yours!

“Facebook/Microsoft/Google made us this screencast about how to use their framework they’re going to throw away in a month!”

Community: 🤩🤩🤩

“It’s really easy, they show you how to do it in this WWDC session from…”

Same community: 😖😫🔫

Scenes from the Great British Code-Off: “Paul and Mary want the layers very clearly defined. Your intent has to come through right out the gate. And, of course, we’ve given you as few requirements as possible.”

How do people who live in places with real weather deal with layered pairs of underwear? This is awful.

“You know there’s a penalty if you take someone’s crème anglaise, you can be taken into ‘custardy.’”