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An annotated digest of the top "Hacker" "News" posts for the third week of April, 2018.

H&R Block and Intuit Lobbying Against Simpler Tax Filing (2017)
April 14, 2018 (comments)
The United States Congress continues the war against its own users. Hackernews can't decide if the politicians involved are liars or just idiots. A handful of Hackernews can't tell the difference between trade associations and individual companies. Most Hackernews seem to believe that bribery is fine when it's in small doses: say, a couple million here or there. Most don't believe that lobbying is bribery, since these miniscule amounts seem too sweet a deal to be true.

ReactOS releases 0.4.8 with experimental Vista/7/10 software compatibility
April 15, 2018 (comments)
Some Internets are still building a scale model of a pile of dogshit. After proclaiming a barely-functional Windows knockoff "one of the most important software projects in history," Hackernews settles in to bicker about which Windows releases were less terrible than others.

Vipassana for Hackers [pdf]
April 15, 2018 (comments)
An Internet satirizes college-student pseudomysticism mixed with terminal Dunning-Kruger exhibitions so well that the result is almost indistinguishable from the ramblings of a pompous nutcase. The document comes complete with meaningless charts and a "References" section half-full of Wikipedia links. Hackernews, renowned experts on pompous douchebaggery, spend several hours congratulating each other on paying money to nap while someone grunts at them over loudspeakers. Readers are cautioned that while paying attention exclusively to yourself comes naturally, shutting the fuck up for a while was a harrowing experience, not for the weak. The satirist arrives in the comment section to continue the jest, but takes it too far with lines like "very painful meditation" and claiming to have spent damn near two months on this shit. Nobody could be that ridiculous.

Teenager facing prison for downloading unsecured files from government website
April 16, 2018 (comments)
Some Canadian bureaucrats accidentally dumped everyone's purse on the table, and are lashing out at a teenage data hoarder. Hackernews debates whether the government fucked up because Canadians elected too many old people or if it's because Canadians elected too many stupid people. Several dozen shitty analogies are invented as the rest of Hackernews attempts to convince each other that manually typing in URLs should be punishable by death, because that's simpler to implement than proper access controls.

Facebook Container for Firefox
April 17, 2018 (comments)
Hackernews revisits Mozilla's efforts to cripple non-Google ad agencies. Comments complaining about the draconian measures taken by webshits to punish anyone who uses surveillance countermeasures are fielded by corporate representatives assuring everyone that such antisocial assholes deserve what they get. Hackernews then spends twelve hours whining about Reddit's user interface: all Hackernews are livid about how terrible it is, but not angry enough to find something else to do. One Hackernews snakes my joke from the last time this thing was discussed. I see you, fucker.

No boundaries for Facebook data: third-party trackers abuse Facebook Login
April 18, 2018 (comments)
Some webshits enumerate all the ways a surveillance company sells its reconnaissance. Hackernews can't decide whether this obvious betrayal is a problem; after all, Facebook documented the API, and they are rich, which are the only two things upon which Hackernews is capable of basing an ethical evaluation.

Apple open-sources FoundationDB
April 19, 2018 (comments)
Apple signs up for free labor. Hackernews is over the moon, since about 70% of them seem to have worked on this particular software for a living. Several are puzzled and disappointed that Apple only released the core component and not any of the parts that make it useful. Others keep showing up to brag about running "petabyte-scale clusters" on other people's computers ("all kinds of aws instances"). Dozens of comments enumerate all the amazing things you can do with this software, all of which involves recreating existing software. The project in question is distributed fault-tolerant key-value store #8,605, which uses SQLite to actually store the data.

Smugmug Acquires Flickr
April 20, 2018 (comments)
Some webshits loot Yahoo!'s corpse. Hackernews is happy that someone had enough money to keep their photo archive from falling off the internet. All of the comments are people asking the CEO for tech support and the CEO promising they'll get it.

A journalism student who found out she won a Pulitzer in class
April 21, 2018 (comments)
A newspaper accidentally put their interns on a byline, leading to the bizarre circumstance of a journalism grad student with a resume someone might notice. Hackernews' takeaway: programmers in the advertising industry should get more prizes. One of you linked this website in a comment on this story mere minutes ago. Please remember that this is a violation of the Prime Directive. Criticism of this policy may be directed to ombudsman at n-gate.com.

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mkalus
8 minutes ago
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Steam Censors MEGA.nz Links in Chats and Forum Posts (Updated)

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With more than 150 million registered accounts, Steam is much more than just a game distribution platform.

For many people, it’s also a social hangout and a communication channel.

Steam’s instant messaging tool, for example, is widely used for chats with friends. About games of course, but also to discuss lots of other stuff.

While Valve doesn’t mind people socializing on its platform, there are certain things the company doesn’t want Steam users to share. This includes links to the cloud hosting service Mega.

Users who’d like to show off some gaming footage, or even a collection of cat pictures they stored on Mega, are unable to do so. As it turns out, Steam actively censors these type of links from forum posts and chats.

In forum posts, these offending links are replaced by the text {LINK REMOVED} and private chats get the same treatment. Instead of the Mega link, people on the other end only get a mention that a link was removed.

Mega link removed from chat

While Mega operates as a regular company that offers cloud hosting services, Steam notes on their website that the website is “potentially malicious.”

“The site could contain malicious content or be known for stealing user credentials,” Steam’s link checker warns.

Potentially malicious…

It’s unclear what malicious means in this context. Mega has never been flagged by Google’s Safe Browsing program, which is regarded as one of the industry standards for malware and other unwanted software.

What’s more likely is that Mega’s piracy stigma has something to do with the censoring. As it turns out, Steam also censors 4shared.com, as well as Pirate Bay’s former .se domain name.

Other “malicious sites” which get the same treatment are more game oriented, such as cheathappens.com and the CSGO Skin Screenshot site metjm.net. While it’s understandable some game developers don’t like these, malicious is a rather broad term in this regard.

Mega clearly refutes that they are doing anything wrong. Mega Chairman Stephen Hall tells TorrentFreak that the company swiftly removes any malicious content, once it receives an abuse notice.

“It is crazy for sites to block Mega links as we respond very quickly to disable any links that are reported as malware, generally much quicker than our competitors,” Hall says.

Valve did not immediately reply to our request for clarification so the precise reason for the link censoring remains unknown.

That said, when something’s censored the public tends to work around any restrictions. Mega links are still being shared on Steam, with a slightly altered URL. In addition, Mega’s backup domain Mega.co.nz still works fine too.

Update April 22: After we published this article we noticed that Mega.nz links are no longer listed as malicious. Links in chats are reportedly no longer removed either. Perhaps Valve did get our message after all…
——

Thanks to Dariusz Jagielski, Who tipped us off

Source: TF, for the latest info on copyright, file-sharing, torrent sites and more. We also have VPN reviews, discounts, offers and coupons.

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mkalus
13 minutes ago
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Morning Run

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Michael Kalus posted a photo:

Morning Run

Processed with VSCO with kg2 preset



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14 minutes ago
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Morning Run

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Michael Kalus posted a photo:

Morning Run

Processed with VSCO with ke1 preset



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mkalus
15 minutes ago
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Leserbrief zur Weltbank-Kinderarbeit:Man sollte dann ...

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Leserbrief zur Weltbank-Kinderarbeit:
Man sollte dann doch erwähnen, dass die Weltbank sich schon auf wissenschaftliche Ergebnisse bezieht und den aktuellen (mehrheitlichen) akademischen Konsens widergibt, was Arbeitnehmerrechte und insbesondere Kinderarbeit in den ärmsten Ländern der Welt angeht.

Die tl;dr-Version ist, dass es keine realistischen Alternativen für die betroffenen Kinder gibt. Man impliziert das bei einem Verbot der Kinderarbeit die betroffenen Kinder dann einfach zur Schule gehen würden. Genau das ist nicht der Fall, da es oftmals gar keine Schule gibt und wenn es sie gibt, dann sind die in der Regel qualitativ so schlecht, dass die Kinder Einkommensnachteile bekommen im vgl. zum Gewinn an Arbeitserfahrung den sie während ihrer Kinderarbeit bekommen hätten. Dann sind die Kinder auch noch in der Regel auf die Einkommen zu ihrem eigenen Existenzerhalt oder dem ihrer Familien angewiesen. Also arbeiten sie illegal (und sind noch mehr Willkür und Missbrauch ihrer Arbeitgeber ausgesetzt) oder rutschen eher in die Kriminalität und Prostitution.

Ich weiß, das klingt nicht nur zynisch, das ist wahrscheinlich auch wirklich sehr zynisch, aber der einzige wissenschaftlich schlüssige Weg Kinderarbeit zu bekämpfen ist das Erreichen eines gewissen gesellschaftlichen Wohlstands, so dass die Kinderarbeiter von heute genug verdienen können, um ihre Kinder mal auf ordentliche Schulen schicken zu können. Du musst auch immer bedenken, dass die betroffenen Staaten zu arm sind, um ihren Bürgern den Bildungsweg zu subventionieren.

Also es ist eine Abwägung zwischen zwei Übeln, wobei man sich für das scheinbar kleinere entscheidet…

Daher würde ich in diesem Kontext auch die Forderung der Weltbank, Arbeitnehmerrechte generell abzubauen, nicht so ultra-kapitalistisch betrachten. Das ist eine Position die auch von vielen NGOs mittlerweile vertreten wird, da bisher einfach keine funktionierende Alternative gefunden wurde, um Gesellschaften aus der absoluten Armut rauszuholen.

Hier noch ein paar Links dazu, insbesondere der Post der Weltbank zitiert ein paar sehr bemerkenswerte Studien:

https://www.theguardian.com/world/2016/dec/18/child-labour-un-ban-damaging-mistake

https://www.theguardian.com/sustainable-business/2015/aug/26/ban-child-labour-developing-countries-imposes-naive-western-ideals-complex-problems

https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/worldnews/northamerica/canada/1482368/fnord.html

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mkalus
4 hours ago
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100 years ago on this day, Manfred von Richthofen (1892-1918) was shot down. He had 80 aerial combat wins, and now he is commemorated with a pineapple pizza. pic.twitter.com/eKz4zvIpV6

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100 years ago on this day, Manfred von Richthofen (1892-1918) was shot down. He had 80 aerial combat wins, and now he is commemorated with a pineapple pizza. pic.twitter.com/eKz4zvIpV6




Posted by primalpoly on Sunday, April 22nd, 2018 12:44am


1340 likes, 539 retweets
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mkalus
4 hours ago
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