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I'm not a coder

 this started out as a mastodon post in this thread but i went way over the 500 char limit, so I just posted it here instead.

i develop whole products as does marco.

a funny thing happens when people think you do much less than what you actually do, they hire people to replace you.

that's what happened with adam curry and myself back in 2005. he had no idea what i do, he and his partner ron bloom thought they could save some stock and they thought i was being "difficult" (I guess) by not taking orders from bloom, so they hired a couple of programmers to replace me, and guess what happened. nothing. they wasted $100 million in vc money, and barked up the wrong tree. if they had worked with me they wouldn't have done that, but they would have had to listen to a mere coder.

same thing happened when RSS became a VC thing, none of them wanted to work with me, so they hired "software engineers" and they created products that somehow weren't up to the opportunity. all the companies failed. none of the VCs had the vision or just common sense to bet on the only developer who had proven he knew what was actually going on.

all my career people have been minimizing what we do with disastrous results. go back to my first silicon valley gig, with personal software in 1980. the ceo of the company told me to my face he could do a better job writing the software i was doing, but was too busy to do it. he was full of shit. you had to be really motivated in ways few "coders" are to get a 256K program to run in 48K. (which is what the app turned into when we ported it from the apple ii to the ibm pc) Not to mention invent a new freaking category of software. (To his credit the CEO did think of doing outliners before he met me, though his idea of an outliner didn't amount to much more than a start down the path.)

you can't make things better by giving into the bullshit money people and marketing people and people who took a few college classes in comp sci impose on our craft.

Scripting News

04 Feb 2023 at 18:16
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 I had to turn off drummer.scripting.com while I work on the new version that uses email for identity and is accessed through HTTPS.

It would take too much time to try to keep both versions running at the same time. So I have redirected it to a temporary placeholder site, and when the new site is ready, it will redirect to that site. We will then have to figure out how to have your data meet you on the other side. So this will happen in several steps, of which this is the first. And in doing this I will learn how to do it for other sites such as Radio3, BingeWorthy, etc. If you have questions, see this thread. Please don't ask when will it be ready. This is still seat-of-the-pants unfortunately due to the randomness of the changes at Twitter. Also, your data is safe.
Scripting News

04 Feb 2023 at 16:26
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I was getting "invalid token" errors from Radio3, from Twitter. I tried logging off and logging back on and am not being allowed to. I see in the log that other users are getting that error as well. It could be Twitter's system has failed, or they turned us off.
Scripting News

04 Feb 2023 at 15:54

A bit of weekend reading

 
man sitting on bench reading newspaper
Photo by Roman Kraft on Unsplash

…oftentimes you can see change on the horizon, assuming you’re looking for it, and there comes a day when the landscape flips. But the old entities attached to the old ways refuse to adjust, they believe in holding back the future, staying rooted in the past, to their detriment, because the public is not controlled by them. 

Bob Lefsetz

This simple insight is Silicon Valley (a proverbial proxy for post-industrial technology). Why it exists, why it eats itself, and why it finds the future. A more business version of this insight is Clay Christensen’s Innovator’s Dilemma. 

Top Read:

The Junkification of Amazon: Amazon might be the biggest store on the web, but it is also the shittiest place to shop on the web, says John Herrman. I couldn’t agree more — my overall experience with Amazon has deprecated, and I am always worried about what crap I will get in the box. I have shifted about a third of my dollars to Walmart — Amex underwrites the Walmart equivalent of Prime — and another third to Target or independent stores. Shopify has made it easier to shop with independents. Amazon’s great advantage is “returns.” You will see Amazon as just another web place when someone cracks that. (Ironically, New York magazine has no problem linking to Amazon for affiliate revenues.)

Notable 

So Many Podcasts, So Little Money: Spotify has thus far failed its big bet on podcasts. It has become the biggest podcast platform and has $200 million in podcasting-related ad revenues, but is that enough? Spotify and its CEO made the classic mistake all leaders make: they brought in big-ticket experts who know how to spend big bucks to attract talent. In reality, Spotify forgot it has the audience and the platform to turn anyone into a star. 

It could be verse: Mark Zuckerberg isn’t giving up on his Metaverse ambitions. Sure, they lost money in 2022 and will lose more in 2023. The real question is, will they ever make it work, or will Apple come and steal their thunder? For now, Zuck is all in on the hot new thing of today: Generative AI.

Is this the end of writing? 

What is the Internet? 

Why you should not buy iOT devices from Anker

Ephemera 

Now, this is a clever photography game!

Feb 4, 2023. San Francisco.

On my Om

04 Feb 2023 at 15:53
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Speaking of audiobooks, Amazon's service, audible.com, which I used to subscribe to, is a huge ripoff. You have to be an active member to listen to the books you bought. So you can't, if you have too many unread books, suspend the service so you can start to catch up. For the most part Amazon is pretty good at not keeping money it isn't entitled to. If something goes wrong and you jump through all the hoops, they give you your money back. They want a long-term relationship, it seems. But this policy of Audible's seems to be the exception. As if they don't give a shit what you think of them. How very un-Amazon.
Scripting News

04 Feb 2023 at 15:26
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 BTW, yesterday's problem with my Android phone was solved quickly by a number of readers. Thank you all very much. It was right there in the screen shot.

Somehow Do Not Disturb mode got turned on. I never would have done that on purpose. This is a phone I use mainly for listening to podcasts and audiobooks and for 2-factor identity. Why does it turn off media? What kind of sense does that make. And from a UI standpoint, there should be some clue somewhere near the slider as to why that it's disabled. I tried to find the answer on Google and ChatGPT before broadcasting the question. Neither had any good advice about this.
Scripting News

04 Feb 2023 at 15:19
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Thread: Twitter was sitting on an AWS-size opportunity. I tried to clue Jack into this, but he was always dreaming of really cool shit, and all we want is a simple package of services that work and have no patience for science experiments. Identity and storage that the user pays for and grants access to our apps. We'll do the creative stuff. Storage and identity has to be boring and reliable, and not subject to having the rug pulled out from us. It's something we need to build on, at the very lowest level of the stack.
Scripting News

04 Feb 2023 at 15:18
#

Slowly getting back to normal after a few days without power. Lights came back on last night, and it was like a luxury… Fast internet. Heater. Hot showers. The only reminder of what happened is a yard full of tree branches. Just hoping most of our live oaks survive this. ❄️

Manton Reece

04 Feb 2023 at 15:06

Yet another AI application

 

AI is currently finding its way more and more into various software. There is ChatGPT, which sometimes feels like an all-knowing human, DeepL uses artificial intelligence not only for its translator, but also for its new tool that improves written text, or Bunny.net provides an API to generate images “on the edge”.

But also Kagi, a paid search engine, has now published an experimental tool that can be used to summarize any article from the Internet. And I’m amazed at how well it works. Here is the summary of my last monthly review:

January was a busy month for the author, who split their time between two households. To stay fit, they opted for bodyweight exercises with Freeletics, and they also made progress on their AWS certification. They also found time to work on their blog software, implementing a plugin that displays the currently playing music via last.fm in the blog header. Despite the busy schedule, the author was able to give their girlfriend the time and space to study for her university exams.

And surprisingly, it can also summarize German articles in English. But this behavior doesn’t seem to be consistent, for example this post was summarized in German and the summary wasn’t as good as the other ones.

I bet Kagi uses the OpenAI API in the background.

For texts GPT-3 seems to be quite good, but I also used it for generating some code for me, with not so satisfying results. Simple programs it can do well, but for that you don’t need an AI to do it for you. It probably shows that AI in this context is just a “simulation of intelligence” (because it had such a large information base to learn from), as Nico Brünjes wrote in his (German) blog post.

Let’s see when Microsoft releases its new version of Bing.

Interactions & Comments

Jan-Lukas Else

04 Feb 2023 at 14:51
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