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Last updated 2018-03-22 00:50:10.587223+00


Dan Lyke:

Ugh. The amount of time I've wasted today because the project uses jQuery so I didn't just go to using XMLHttpRequest directly... sigh.

JWZ: A rare use of CV for good instead of evil
Dan Lyke:

New York Times: Bus Lane Blocked, He Trained His Computer to Catch Scofflaws

Now Mr. Bell is trying another tack — the 30-year-old computer scientist who lives in Harlem has created a prototype of a machine-learning algorithm that studies footage from a traffic camera and tracks precisely how often bike lanes are obstructed by delivery trucks, parked cars and waiting cabs, among other scofflaws. It is a piece of data that transportation advocates said is missing in the largely anecdotal discussion of how well the city’s bus and bike lanes do or do not work.

Source code at

Oh, and here's the author's version, just skip to this: Drivers Are Breaking the Law, Slowing Commutes and Endangering Lives. I Can Prove It — And Fix It.

Via JWZ: A rare use of CV for good instead of evil.

Dan Lyke:

"django.db.connections is a dictionary-like object...", but you can't call "keys()" on it, because that would be too easy. Grrr.

Log message of the day (so far)
Dan Lyke:

Log message of the day (so far): "your mercy for graceful operations on workers is 60 seconds"

Dan Lyke:

Death of the sampling theorem?

A team from Columbia University led by Ken Shepard and Rafa Yuste claims to beat the 100 year old Sampling Theorem [1,2]. Apparently anti-aliasing filters are superfluous now because one can reconstruct the aliased noise after sampling. Sounds crazy? Yes it is. I offer $1000 to the first person who proves otherwise. To collect your cool cash be sure to read to the end.

Trailer for Won't You Be My Neighbor?
Dan Lyke:

Trailer for Won't You Be My Neighbor?, the documentary from Focus Features on Fred Rogers and Mr. Roger's Neighborhood. "In select theaters June 8", which I think means we're gonna go down to see it at The Rafael...

the researchers wrote
Dan Lyke:

I've been thinking about what the successor to the web might look like, and I'm super excited by the possibilities of distributed filesystems, but I've wondered about the possibilities of denial of service attacks based in inserting illegal content, like child pornography, into such systems: If someone can convince you to browse to a link containing that content, it's then instantiated in your local copy and... issues, even more than ending up with something like that in your browser cache (which can also be done with images that aren't visible in the final web page) follow.

Looks like someone else has been thinking about this too: Child abuse imagery found within bitcoin's blockchain

“Our analysis shows that certain content, eg, illegal pornography, can render the mere possession of a blockchain illegal,” the researchers wrote. “Although court rulings do not yet exist, legislative texts from countries such as Germany, the UK, or the USA suggest that illegal content such as [child abuse imagery] can make the blockchain illegal to possess for all users.”

Guardian: Revealed: 50 million Facebook profiles harvested for Cambridge Analytica in major data breach
Dan Lyke:

Motherboard: Why We're Not Calling the Cambridge Analytica Story a 'Data Breach'

In 2014, a researcher collected the data through an app that asked users to take a personality test for academic research purposes. Around 270,000 people agreed to have their data collected through the test, which its creator, Aleksandr Kogan, defined as “a very standard vanilla Facebook app.” But thanks to Facebook’s terms of service and its API at the time, the app was also able to collect data of their friends. This gave the researcher, who later handed the data to Cambridge Analytica, the raw information of more than 50 million people, according to the reports, which were largely based on the account of a former Cambridge Analytica data scientist.

Basically, Facebook was operating as designed. The problem from Facebook's point of view is that a hostile foreign government used the data rather than, say, your average marketing department. Facebook's complaint here is essentially that they were disintermediated in the ad marketing process.

The New York Times: How Trump Consultants Exploited the Facebook Data of Millions, the Guardian: Revealed: 50 million Facebook profiles harvested for Cambridge Analytica in major data breach

Lawrence Kestaloot: Ten reasons why I don't like Golang
Dan Lyke:

Lawrence Kestaloot: Ten reasons why I don't like Golang.

I looked a little bit at Go, saw that its performance numbers weren't great and went back to C++ (personal projects) and Python (where I have to work collaboratively) and Java (legacy code). It still intrigues me, but I think these are some interesting critiques...

On the other hand, on the collaborative C++ project I've got going I have been bad about coding styles, need to do some refactoring, and am not sure I mind having coding styles dictated by the language.

Performance Issues
Dan Lyke:


time openssl s_client -CApath /etc/ssl/certs/ -connect - showcerts <<< ""

takes .1 seconds on my server, .577 seconds from home (weird? Maybe I don't have the CA chain on the home server?), but it takes ~1.7 seconds to serve the static index.html on both the server and from the home machine.

WTF is Apache doing with those extra 1.1+ seconds?

Nature: Molecular Psychiatry: Does playing violent video games cause aggression? A longitudinal intervention study
Dan Lyke:

Two months of daily GTA causes “no significant changes” in behavior:

To correct for the "priming" effects inherent in these other studies, researchers had 90 adult participants play either Grand Theft Auto V or The Sims 3 for at least 30 minutes every day over eight weeks (a control group played no games during the testing period). The adults chosen, who ranged from 18 to 45 years old, reported little to no video game play in the previous six months and were screened for pre-existing psychological problems before the tests.

Nature: Molecular Psychiatry: Does playing violent video games cause aggression? A longitudinal intervention study. doi:10.1038/s41380-018-0031-7