Weekend Reading — May the fourth

Weekend Reading — May the fourth

MostlyHarmless “Whoever wrote this headline is not paid enough.”

Tech Stuff

valhalla_dev (Mitch) “Okay hear me out....... we make it a Minecraft server”

Jason Gorman

Contrary to what I read on social media and in the mainstream press, when I think of the average software developer, I don't think of someone "moving fast and breaking things" in a cutting-edge tech start-up. I think of someone working in an established business on legacy systems that end users have come to rely on. Because that's what the vast majority of us actually do. Most software developers are in the distinctly not-cutting-edge business of keeping the proverbial lights on.

How an empty S3 bucket can make your AWS bill explode What???

So, a horde of misconfigured systems is attempting to store their data in my private S3 bucket. But why should I be the one paying for this mistake? Here’s why:

S3 charges you for unauthorized incoming requests

Josh Collinsworth 💪

The question of whether CSS is a programming language serves only one purpose: to demote those who write it.

There is no confusion that needs to be clarified, and no other purpose in asking, beyond the most trivial kind of pedantry.

The debate itself is an act of gatekeeping, whether intentional or not. Its only significant effect is to elevate some work over other work, despite their essentially identical nature.

The only meaningful function of the question is segregation. #css

gyf304/dotenv Prefix any command with dotenv to load environment variables from a file named .env in the current directory.


holy shit. they actually called it "reply guy". seeing the Torment Nexus and copying it for profit is one thing, but seeing a reply guy and being like "I can monetize that" is a whole new type of evil.

Kevlin Henney

As a human I want to be required to enter a default value in a field that shouldn't be present on an input form so that a developer doesn't have to change any code

Spacewar! - video games 60s style Play "Spacewar", the earliest known digital video game, on this DEC PDP-1 emulator!


Eight Hard-Earned Lessons from Repeat Founders on Starting Over Again

There's plenty of advice for first-time founders, but fewer resources for those embarking on their second or subsequent venture. To help navigate these, we gathered insights from experienced serial founders, distilling eight tactical lessons they applied differently the second time around.

Burnout - When does work start feeling pointless? It’s a long documentary, but it’s a good documentary, very interesting to watch and listen to. And if you’re feeling burned out right now … well … you might enjoy taking a break and watching this documentary.

Business Side

Acquisition Translator

Heat Death of the Internet Brilliant!

You want to order from a local restaurant, but you need to download a third-party delivery app, even though you plan to pick it up yourself. The prices and menu on the app are different to what you saw in the window. When you download a second app the prices are different again. You ring …

Martin Hamilton How is this even remotely legal?

"If a worker scans the QR code and clicks the link, Amazon’s software automatically generates a letter from the worker and then emails it to the trade union, ending their membership."

The innovation will continue until morale improves :goose_bonk:

[This from the very excellent Foxglove Legal's latest newsletter. Foxglove aren't on Fedi (yet?), but are on the web at]

The Airchat hype: but wait, what happened to Clubhouse? A brief read on the rise, fall and attempted comeback of the once viral voice-only social media app - Clubhouse.

Machine Intelligence

Former Amazon exec alleges she was told to ignore the law while developing an AI model In case you’re wondering whether AI is running foul of copyright law or …

Excessive use of words like ‘commendable’ and ‘meticulous’ suggests ChatGPT has been used in thousands of scientific studies

Librarian Andrew Gray has made a “very surprising” discovery. He analyzed five million scientific studies published last year and detected a sudden rise in the use of certain words, such as meticulously (up 137%), intricate (117%), commendable (83%) and meticulous (59%). [...] The explanation for this rise: tens of thousands of researchers are using [...] LLMs tools to write their studies or at least “polish” them.

Facebook’s AI Spam Isn’t the ‘Dead Internet’: It’s the Zombie Internet

Facebook is the zombie internet, where a mix of bots, humans, and accounts that were once humans but aren’t anymore interact to form a disastrous website where there is little social connection at all.


Passkeys: A Shattered Dream Just a reminder that passkeys, which are now supported by Apple, Google, Microsoft, et al, still have that feeling of experimental technology. My advise: don't use them on any accounts that you need to keep around.

Terence Eden In-app notifications are not as secure as they once claimed to be:

You receive a call on your phone.
The caller says they're from your bank and they're calling about a suspected fraud.

"Oh yeah," you think. Obvious scam, right?

The caller says "I'll send you an in-app notification to prove I'm calling from your bank."

Your phone buzzes. You tap the notification This is what you see.

Still think it is a scam?

BrianKrebs 🤯

It's always amazed me that, which you have to use in order to interact w/ the IRS online these days, has a top level domain from the country of Montenegro. Ublock Origin says they're injecting tracking links from Italy's TLD when you login at the website.

What's next? Cookies from Colombia? AI from Anguilla?

Everything Else

Meanwhile in Canada “May the 4th be with you.”

Michal Měchura

Don't let anyone talk you out of starting a PhD. It's only 3 years, and those 6 years will be the happiest 9 years of your life.


It’s a beautiful day, so I guess instead of sitting inside and worrying about everything, I’ll sit outside and worry about everything.

Meanwhile in Canada


My advice?
Embrace the Muppet lifestyle.
Tell bad jokes. Sing off key. Dance for no reason.
And most importantly, pants are always optional.

Kate Lister Man or bear? If you heard about this question but not sure what I’m referring to:

Since writing this article, I have received messages from angry men, calling me names, telling I’m wrong, & that I’d be begging a man to save me if I was lost in the woods. To recap, there are men are sending me abusive emails to prove they are the safe choice.

So far, no bears have written in.

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Bison “Platypeace was never an option”

Chris Petrilli

I'm not saying Boeing murdered the whistleblowers. I'm saying try not to run a company such that people think you MIGHT have.

Dare Obasanjo

This story is a great example of how journalists act like they have amnesia. After 1.5 years of watching Elon run Twitter based on whims and fits of rage, there’s no secret genius reason why he fired the entire supercharger team.

An exec challenged layoffs now everyone’s gone.

Active self-treatment of a facial wound with a biologically active plant by a male Sumatran orangutan

We observed a male Sumatran orangutan (Pongo abelii) who sustained a facial wound. Three days after the injury he selectively ripped off leaves of a liana with the common name Akar Kuning (Fibraurea tinctoria), chewed on them, and then repeatedly applied the resulting juice onto the facial wound. As a last step, he fully covered the wound with the chewed leaves. … This possibly innovative behavior presents the first systematically documented case of active wound treatment with a plant species know to contain biologically active substances by a wild animal and provides new insights into the origins of human wound care.

Tolkien’s Middle-Earth wasn't a place. It was a time in (English) history. The fellowship's journey through Middle-Earth mirrors the modernization and industrialization of the English countryside.

Elevator or stairs? Your choice could boost longevity, study finds A new study shows people who are in the habit of climbing stairs are less likely to die from heart disease compared to those who don't. Stair climbers also had a slight boost in longevity.

elle “oh but I will”

The Myth of Drug Expiration Dates That drug you keep around in your cabinet that “expired” last year is probably going to be just as potent 40 years from now:

Hospitals and pharmacies are required to toss expired drugs, no matter how expensive or vital. Meanwhile the FDA has long known that many remain safe and potent for years longer.

GayDeceiver “If I fits … I sits”

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