Sean Tilley

Metamora, United States

A geek, apparently.

  • 2015-11-26T01:05:03Z via To: Public

    Malte DikMalte Dik wrote the following post 12 minutes ago
    PGP is the latin of crypto tools.
  • 2015-11-25T08:37:49Z via To: Public

    ownMappownMapp wrote the following post 3 days ago
    New plugin settings
    ownMapp now features some user settings, including the options to enable automatic tracking when the map loads and auto-saving of location data when tracking is active.


  • 2015-11-25T02:13:03Z via To: Public

    Mike Macgirvin, on cross-platform federation and protocol standardization

    Some people here may not always agree with what Mike has to say, but he raises a number of very valid points here.

    Mike MacgirvinMike Macgirvin wrote the following post 4 hours ago
    I hope we don't have to rehash the last decade of the state of the federated social web and standardisation efforts and specifically how that relates to hubzilla. I know quite a lot about federating the social web. Been there, done that. Yes I know exactly how to federate with GNU-social. I know exactly what it would involve and how long it would take and what bits would work and what bits will never work because the projects are fundamentally incompatible. In any event, no - I'm not doing it again. I refuse. Full stop.

    If you want to federate project 'x' with project 'y':

    Step 1.

    Obtain an account and hopefully code access to both projects. Study the projects and learn their capabilities and integration points. Make a list of things that are likely to be a problem.

    Cross network privacy issues are often show-stoppers unless you can convince one of the projects to change their privacy implementation; and this is rarely possible. So you must come up with some convoluted workarounds so that privacy is not leaked through the less private project and so there is also no significant loss of functionality on the more private project.

    Step 2.

    Roll up your sleeves and get to work.


    That's it.

    All other approaches have traditionally failed.

    Repeat this process for every project you wish to federate with.

    Sure, you can rely on a committee to define how best to do these things, but you still need to perform these steps in the proper order. You cannot change this.

    Note: after ten years of trying to create a federated social web protocol through various consortiums, they're still stuck trying to invent a "universal RSS feed". Nobody in these committees are seriously looking at privacy and spam (the killer issues) and how to provide a universal privacy policy control mechanism. Many do not even understand what privacy is. (Hint: it is not anonymity). And if you mention this topic, it starts a massive war amongst implementers and everybody gets mad and goes away for another six months. Then they start over again defining the RSS feed. We've redefined the feed format a number of times now.

    It can be achieved. Stop worrying about the danged protocols. See my previous post and follow the steps. If 10-20 people out of the 7 billion people on the planet did this we'd have a federated social web. Once these 10-20 people get together and discuss how to reduce the pain and how to resolve the privacy mish-mash between projects we'll figure out a protocol.

    The problem is they're doing it backward - trying to define a protocol when they haven't even identified what it's supposed to do (except to describe the content of social messages). That's the easy part - always has been. Don't even worry about the format/content of the messages. We can solve that. Sending messages back and forth is also a no-brainer. We've been doing that 40+ years.

    Privacy and spam policy differences are the hard issues - every thing else is just a smoke screen. But you won't know that these are the hard issues unless you actually try to federate two services that implement them differently. That's why I specifically mentioned

    All other approaches have traditionally failed.

    You also need to be aware that all these federation efforts invite the large players to the table. The large players are sitting at a table discussing how to federate different services with one hand whilst the other hand is trying to build a walled garden and lock their communities into their silos. So is it at all surprising that progress is slow? Don't take my word for it. Read the author names on the relevant spec documents. See who employs them. Here's ActivityStreams:

    Activity Streams Working Group
    J. Snell
    M. Atkins
    SAY Media
    W. Norris
    C. Messina
    Citizen Agency, Google
    M. Wilkinson
    MySpace, Facebook, VMware
    R. Dolin

    Notice who you don't see: Diaspora, Redmatrix, Friendica, GNU-social, and

    Bernhard E. Reiter , jrobb like this.

    Diaspora, GNU Social, and (and yes, MediaGoblin too) all have people participating in the group and on the mailing list.

    Christopher Allan Webber at 2015-11-25T02:39:01Z

    And also, the big players have mostly stayed out of the Social WG so far, which if anything has been a major criticism so far. There are a lot of errors in Mike's post.

    Be careful, it's often easy for people to sound authoritative by being negative...

    Christopher Allan Webber at 2015-11-25T02:42:35Z

    Yeah, sorry - I wasn't trying to come across as a negative nancy.

    I think, historically, Mike has done a lot of work developing a lot of his own solutions that work for him - some of which are fairly novel, and remain unparalleled in other federated applications. He's done most of the heavy lifting in making his platform work, and consequently has had difficulty in finding other developers to help build the platform. 

    But I think he's generally had some disappointments in attempting to work with other platforms in the past - Friendica and Diaspora have had to work on moving past a series of long flamewars with one another. 

    I personally would really like to see a cross-project collaboration bear fruit - but things like privacy and identity management are absolutely worth considering on a protocol level - there are many things that Zot and MagicAuth can do that other protocols currently don't demonstrate.

    Sean Tilley at 2015-11-25T06:45:02Z

    I wasn't accusing you of being negative, Sean, but I think that Mike wrote a lot of that post without a good understanding of what's actually happening in the Social WG. I think there are serious challenges to the Social WG, but many of them are in different directions than Mike said.

    Anyway, I do agree that Mike has done a lot, and has a lot of insights! But I think this post is problematic.

    Christopher Allan Webber at 2015-11-25T14:33:08Z

    Sean Tilley likes this.

  • 2015-11-24T20:09:20Z via To: Public

    Be careful what you say online; some people are willing to spend ridiculous amounts of money to unmask you for making a single comment.

    One man spent four years and $35,000 to unmask his internet troll

    On December 28th, 2011, Bill Hadley read the comments. It was a simple article in the Freeport Journal Standard, detailing Hadley's run for a newly vacant seat on the county board. But the commenters were less polite. "Hadley is a Sandusky waiting to be exposed," a commenter called Fuboy had written. "Check out the view he has of Empire [elementary school] from his front door."

    It was a rude but not unusual comment, in line with the ad hominem hostility often found in comments sections. But for Hadley, this comment crossed the line, and he set out to find the person behind it. His quest to unmask Fuboy set off a four-year legal saga that would send shock waves through Freeport's legal and political community.
  • 2015-11-22T21:34:06Z via To: Public

    I dream of a future where ailing actors and actresses are cryogenically frozen instead of dying from old age. We'll be able to see when the greats from our youth are "put on ice" instead of simply passing away. Imagine the buzz that Hollywood could generate - "We're thinking of unfreezing Patrick Stewart and his friends for a new Star Trek TNG movie!"
  • 2015-11-19T23:19:33Z via To: Public

    Taschenlampe MüllerTaschenlampe Müller wrote the following post 3 weeks ago

    ben likes this.

  • 2015-11-18T23:35:17Z via To: Public

    Does anyone know of good #Linux news sites that keep up-to-date with stories? I feel like #FOSS coverage in general has slowed down.

    Claes Wallin (韋嘉誠) , Claes Wallin (韋嘉誠) , Claes Wallin (韋嘉誠) shared this.

    #slownews is good news reading practice. skip rest.

    Mike Linksvayer at 2015-11-19T01:43:46Z

    Claes Wallin (韋嘉誠) likes this.


    Ramakrishnan at 2015-11-19T12:09:09Z

  • 2015-11-16T22:40:46Z via To: Public

    This article feels like it has propaganda written all over it.

    ISIS encrypted communications with Paris attackers, French officials say


    The investigation into last Friday's coordinated terrorist attacks has quickly turned up evidence that members of the Islamic State (ISIS) communicated with the attackers from Syria using encrypted communications, according to French officials.

    Former CIA Deputy Director Michael Morell said in an interview on CBS' Face the Nation on Sunday, "I think what we're going to learn is that these guys are communicating via these encrypted apps, this commercial encryption which is very difficult or nearly impossible for governments to break, and the producers of which don't produce the keys necessary for law enforcement to read the encrypted messages."

    Adam Moore (LÆMEUR) , , shared this.

    my guess is they would probably not only encrypt but aso try to make it very hard to find .. like hiding data inside something very ordinary such as looking like part of the background noise in something that looks innocent and commonplace eg like cat videos on facebook/youtube/etc could be anything -

    I doubt they would be using anything that shows any obvious hints that there is anything to decrypt

    the nsa would be wasting their time if they are snooping on tor users

    michaelmd at 2015-11-17T06:36:31Z

  • 2015-11-14T01:38:01Z via To: Public

    This is pretty representative of large monolithic services that scale up to serve millions of end users.

    #^How Facebook is Stealing Billions of Views
    by In a Nutshell – Kurzgesagt on YouTube

  • 2015-11-13T18:42:15Z via To: Public

    Moral Guardians: "Remember to talk to your children about The Dark Web."

    Chattanooga just discovered the dark web, and it is freaking out


    It must be sweeps week in Tennessee, because Chattanooga's WTVC pulled out all the stops for a series about why you should be afraid of the internet. "Computer gurus say there is a place they can go to dig up some of the internet's oldest websites," says WTVC's Calvin Sneed, and — wait. What is this story about? "And visit chat rooms you cannot access through a normal Google search." Old websites? Exclusive chat rooms? Co-anchor Kim Chapman steps in to raise the stakes even higher. "Chattanooga police say that part of the internet can also be a crime-ridden place that many people don't even know exists."
    Yes, they even have pr0n. :)

    Luis at 2015-11-13T19:05:35Z

    Douglas Perkins likes this. Oi!

    Freemor at 2015-11-14T01:41:27Z

  • 2015-11-13T10:27:32Z via To: Public

    Hubzilla - Content Management and Templating


    Progress on customizing my personal site. There's a lot of neat things you can do with the platform's built-in templating system, which makes use of blocks, regions, widgets, and variables. If this sounds familiar, that's because one aspect of this platform involves templating and page-building. In a way, #Hubzilla maintains some capabilities of a Drupal-like Content Management System. There's a lot of uncharted territory here still, so it will be fun exploring different ways to extend page layouts.

    Pages primarily conform to Layouts, which hold Blocks in different Regions. Blocks can be custom-written bits of template that are either already present in Hubzilla, or available in a theme or a plugin.

    For me, my design goal is to play with a clear visual break between what a guest user sees, and what the logged-in user sees. Different features within Hubzilla can be given alternative layouts, allowing the platform to be used in a number of different ways.

    Learn more about Hubzilla pages and templating here.
  • 2015-11-12T07:14:50Z via To: Public

    Got ice cream for $6.66 tonight. Clearly this means that I'm condemned to eternal damnation for a late night ice cream run.

    Elena ``of Valhalla'' likes this.

  • 2015-11-10T20:13:59Z via To: Public

    Christmas is just a propaganda narrative to justify Santa's occupation of the Arctic Circle.

    Christopher Allan Webber likes this.

    B. Ross Ashley shared this.

    I ran an RPG scenario once that kind of turned into that narrative. I did a write-up (but warning, it's kind of silly).

    Christopher Allan Webber at 2015-11-10T20:53:37Z

    Sean Tilley likes this.

  • 2015-11-10T18:43:10Z via To: Public

    If you ever feel badly about how slowly your life seems to be progressing, just remember that GNU/HURD still has yet to hit v 1.0 after 25 years of development.

    Douglas Perkins likes this.

    B. Ross Ashley shared this.

  • 2015-11-10T01:04:54Z via To: Public

    I've had this stuck in my head for a while. #CrystalCastles

    #^Crystal Castles - Cry Babies [video]
    by kluytv2 on YouTube
  • 2015-11-09T22:06:07Z via To: Public

    Meet the man who holds the future of the Internet in his hands — and thinks most security experts are “completely crazy”


    Linus Torvalds created Linux, the operating system that dominates the online world. But a rift exists between Torvalds and security experts.

    #Linux #Torvalds

    Luis , Alex Jordan , jrobertson , Claes Wallin (韋嘉誠) like this.

    Claes Wallin (韋嘉誠) , Claes Wallin (韋嘉誠) shared this.

  • 2015-11-09T19:40:24Z via To: Public

    Really interesting read. This reflects some evidence of the struggle of scaling up operations for a centralized service. Imagine having millions of users on one platform, that use it all day long - how do you end up supporting everybody while preventing growing pains?

    How Facebook puts petabytes of old cat pix on ice in the name of sustainability


    When someone says the word "sustainability," the first thing that leaps into your mind is not a data center. These giant buildings full of computer, network, and storage gear are typically power-hungry behemoths with giant cooling systems that keep servers happy and chilled. Their power distribution systems lose kilowatts just shifting electricity from one form to another. And the farms of environmentally unfriendly backup batteries and diesel backup generators on site are there to nurse things along if the power all this demands suddenly disappears.

    #Facebook #Centralization

    Christopher Allan Webber likes this.

    Christopher Allan Webber shared this.

    Show all 8 replies

    Yes, I think that there's some computational efficiency in moving things to a shared computational structure. It doesn't necessarily need to be centralized though. That's a claim I have to back up, I guess. Backing up that claim is part of my life's work? ;)

    But I think it's definitely true that every year I increase my computing resources. I have far more, not less, computers running in my life than I used to. Some of them have become more efficient over time, but they've also grown more powerful. I'm sure I'm still consuming more resources though, even just at home. Meanwhile, I'm certainly participating in a fraction of many, many servers doing my bidding across the planet. I don't see them, but having worked in megadatacenters, at least I can visualize the process in ways some others can't.

    The pressure to constantly upgrade and throw away old machines exists at datacenters just as it does here. You don't see it though if you aren't living or working there. I wish I could explain more about this directly, but I have some fear about telling stories about where my NDA applies.

    Christopher Allan Webber at 2015-11-09T22:09:06Z

    Sean Tilley , Claes Wallin (韋嘉誠) like this.

    I think it's not even debatable that monster data centres are more efficient. A computewatts/inputwatts at 1.08? I doubt I'll ever see a machine that's anywhere near that unless I go to Luleå.

    The problem though is that efficiency never saves resources. The politicians here call efficiency "the third energy source" or something like that. Jevons calls bullshit.

    Claes Wallin (韋嘉誠) at 2015-11-09T22:27:40Z

    inputwatts/computewatts, obviously.

    Claes Wallin (韋嘉誠) at 2015-11-09T22:29:21Z

    I have worked in a lot of data centers as well from the early 2000's. There are things today that are a lot better than it used to be in the past.

    The biggest one is server virtualization. In the past you would either share services in a single server and separate your users by userid and filesystem location, otherwise, you would put additional hardware or a machine for a given customer or purpose. Now servers are a lot faster, capacity is getting cheaper and virtualization software is available in commodity hardware, you can provide services
    with less hardware than in the past.

    I think the biggest challenge is moving from legacy system to new ones. That is one reason why old machines are not moving out fast enough. As new services come by, you still have to maintain those legacy systems around. That is why you end up with computer proliferation. However, I think that this is improving being that even through emulation, you can run some of these legacy programs in commodity hardware.

    The real reason why "the cloud" is attractive is because it is cheaper to pay a provider than having your staff managing those systems. I do not think that it is because of environmental reasons. Yes, data centers today can be made greener with modern facilities, but at the end, it is all about the bottom line.

    I do have more computers now in my life, some of them must be recycled. :). However I tend to keep computers for a long while to my wife's chagrin.

    Luis at 2015-11-10T17:22:18Z

    Claes Wallin (韋嘉誠) , Sean Tilley , Christopher Allan Webber like this.