[x]Blackmoor Vituperative

Monday, 2022-05-16

Getting rid of Firefox’s “downloads” popup

Filed under: Software,The Internet — bblackmoor @ 15:12

Ever since Firefox 98 (I think), a popup appears every ten minutes or so, showing files that have been downloaded successfully (or not, I assume). Whether I have downloaded anything recently or not. It does not go away until I manually close it.

That is annoying. Here is how to fix it.

Go to about:config (accepting the warning along the way).

Change browser.download.alwaysOpenPanel to false.

Saturday, 2022-05-14

Claude Shannon

Filed under: Philosophy,Programming,Work — bblackmoor @ 23:53

“Shannon’s account of genius was a refreshingly unsentimental one. A genius is simply someone who is usefully irritated.”

One of the fathers of modern computing used this 6-step process to solve any problem

Friday, 2022-05-13

Story hook: the Post Office Saves The World

Filed under: History,Prose,Technology,The Internet,Writing — bblackmoor @ 10:06

Imagine a world where Amazon and Google and Microsoft and Apple had the combined wealth and power of Mailboxes, Etc. …

Proposal: some services must never be operated for profit. As in, if you want the license to operate, you operate as not-for-profit, with all of the oversight and regulation that entails. What kind of services?

  • Hospitals
  • Military
  • Police
  • Post Offices
  • Prisons
  • Roads
  • Schools
  • Trains

Story hook: a team of people from 2080 go back to the 1960s to attempt to prevent the end of Human civilization. How? By lobbying legislators to put civilian use of ARPANET under exclusive control of the US Post Office before Robert Kahn and Vinton Cerf develop TCP/IP.

Update: In case this was unclear: if you put “Contracting Company” after any of these services, it should make NO DIFFERENCE. NONE. If you want the license to operate, you operate as not-for-profit, with all of the oversight and regulation that entails. We are at least a generation past the point where the “contractor” loophole should have been legislatively closed. Human beings are not “resources” to be squeezed dry and discarded.

Thursday, 2022-05-12

Scaled Agile Framework – SAFe

Filed under: Programming,Software,Work — bblackmoor @ 11:02

Taking my Scaled Agile Framework – SAFe certifications off of my resume. If I am never forced to drink that snake oil again, it will be too soon.

Tuesday, 2022-05-03

Password expiration makes systems less secure

Filed under: Security,The Internet — bblackmoor @ 08:41

The consensus among security researchers has been consistent for about 15 years: forcing password expiration based on nothing but the date makes passwords less secure.


Also relevant…

Friday, 2022-04-29

Trimming trailing spaces in LibreOffice Calc

Filed under: Software,Windows — bblackmoor @ 13:39

I looked for ages before I found this advice, so I am preserving it here. Credit goes to Keyboard Playing for the original post, though.

In LibreOffice Writer, you can replace \s+(\r?(\n|$)) with $1 to remove all trailing spaces. A single execution should be efficient this time.

The regular expression (aka “regex”) can be decomposed this way:

\s+ matches one or more whitespaces;
(\r?(\n|$)) matches a carriage return (\r?\n) or the end of a paragraph (\r?$) ; \r? is there only to be compatible with Windows carriage return format;
$1 is the first captured group ((\r?(\n|$))) as it was found in the text (we put back what was found).

Friday, 2022-04-08

Lepton Firefox-UI-Fix update

Filed under: Software,The Internet,Windows — bblackmoor @ 12:38

If you have hacked Firefox to be less annoying, and if you have noticed icons in context menus overlapping the text, it may be time to update your Lepton modifications.

Don’t forget to go to URL “about:support” and clear the startup cache afterward.

I had no idea that Firefox’s user base had withered like this. Less than 5%? This makes me sad.

Wednesday, 2022-03-16

Rust and energy consumption

Filed under: Programming,Society — bblackmoor @ 16:41

I find this interesting. Go has been on my short list of “next things to play with” for a little while, but I am adding Rust above it.

A recent post on the AWS Open Source blog announced that AWS “is investing in the sustainability of Rust, a language we believe should be used to build sustainable and secure solutions.”

It was written by the chair of the Rust foundation (and leader of AWS’s Rust team) with a Principal Engineer at AWS, and reminds us that Rust “combines the performance and resource efficiency of systems programming languages like C with the memory safety of languages like Java.”

But there’s another reason they’re promoting Rust:


Sunday, 2022-03-13

Fun with voice recognition

Filed under: Music,Technology — bblackmoor @ 11:12

Fun with voice recognition…

I asked Google to play “Hello, it’s me” by Todd Rundgren, on YouTube, on my downstairs speakers. It played some weird song I had never heard before, but I liked it. Then it played another song I had never heard before, and I liked that one, too. The third one, too! (I have linked to that one below. I have since learned that it was a huge hit everywhere other than the USA.)

That was the first song I looked up as it was playing. After that, I just let it play for a while. Then I noticed there was a theme. Five or six sings songs in a row (at least) seemed to be about robots in a children’s amusement park, and they all seemed kind of sinister…

We’re not so scary if you see us in the daylight
You’ll be so happy just as long as you survive the night

“Survive The Night” — “Five Nights At Freddy’s”

I looked up a few of those songs, and they are all from a game called “Friday Night At Freddies”. I’ve heard of the game, but I’ve never played it or heard any of the songs from it. From what I have heard so far, it has a killer soundtrack.

Thursday, 2022-01-20

Passwords suck

Filed under: Security — bblackmoor @ 10:46

I think passwords are the “rotary telephones” of this century. They will have to go away, as soon as someone (probably in Europe, for various reasons) invents something better and then it gets adopted by several large companies and/or countries. But until then… long passwords, 2FA, and trying to get out-of-date security policies to be updated (obsolete policies such as requiring passwords to “expire”, which DECADES of security research have demonstrated make passwords less secure).

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