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Search - "entropy"
Navy story time, and this one is lengthy.
As a Lieutenant Jr. I served for a year on a large (>100m) ship, with the duties of assistant navigation officer, and of course, unofficial computer guy. When I first entered the ship (carrying my trusty laptop), I had to wait for 2 hours at the officer's wardroom... where I noticed an ethernet plug. After 15 minutes of waiting, I got bored. Like, really bored. What on TCP/IP could possibly go wrong?
So, scanning the network it is. Besides the usual security holes I came to expect in ""military secure networks"" (Windows XP SP2 unpatched and Windows 2003 Servers, also unpatched) I came along a variety of interesting computers with interesting things... that I cannot name. The aggressive scan also crashed the SMB service on the server causing no end of cute reactions, until I restarted it remotely.
But me and my big mouth... I actually talked about it with the ship's CO and the electronics officer, and promptly got the unofficial duty of computer guy, aka helldesk, technical support and I-try-to-explain-you-that-it-is-impossible-given-my-resources guy. I seriously think that this was their punishment for me messing around. At one time I received a call, that a certain PC was disconnected. I repeatedly told them to look if the ethernet cable was on. "Yes, of course it's on, I am not an idiot." (yea, right)
So I went to that room, 4 decks down and 3 sections aft. Just to push in the half-popped out ethernet jack. I would swear it was on purpose, but reality showed me I was wrong, oh so dead wrong.
For the full year of my commission, I kept pestering the CO to assign me with an assistant to teach them, and to give approval for some serious upgrades, patching and documenting. No good.
I set up some little things to get them interested, like some NMEA relays and installed navigation software on certain computers, re-enabled the server's webmail and patched the server itself, tried to clean the malware (aka. Sisyphus' rock), and tried to enforce a security policy. I also tried to convince the CO to install a document management system, to his utter horror and refusal (he was the hard copy type, as were most officers in the ship). I gave up on almost all besides the assistant thing, because I knew that once I left, everything would go to the high-entropy status of carrying papers around, but the CO kept telling me that would be unnecessary.
"You'll always be our man, you'll fix it (sic)".
What could go wrong?
I got my transfer with 1 week's notice. Panic struck. The CO was... well, he was less shocked than I expected, but still shocked (I learned later that he knew beforehand, but decided not to tell anybody anything). So came the most rediculous request of all:
To put down, within 1 A4 sheet, and in simple instructions, the things one had to do in order to fulfil the duties of the computer guy.
I. SHIT. YOU. NOT.
"What I can do is write: 'Please read the following:', followed by the list of books one must read in order to get some introductory understanding of network and server management, with most accompanying skills."
I was so glad I got out of that hellhole.9
Manager: Why are you always refactoring?
Me: Refactoring keeps the codebase's entropy in check :)
Manager: mind blown!!3
There used to be a CLI utility for ordering dominoes pizza online, and I wrote a patch for it to have a .pizzarc and read entropy from standard in and randomize not only the size and contents of your pizza but how many of them you wanted to order in case you couldn’t make up your mind.
So you could do “dd if=/dev/urandom bs=1M count=1 | pizza -“ and it would look for your address in the configuration file and pizzas would show up but you never knew how many. This was more than ten years ago and I have since lost it.9
Tesco.com, you deep pool of creamy baby shit. I've tried to reset my password three times already. My new password has way more entropy than your mathematically impaired rules command, but apparently using password managers is bad practice. It should be about having at least one special character, not EXACTLY one. I've got lots of uppercase characters, not PRECISELY one.4
Life as a homeless developer.
I'm a lil brainsick but homelessness makes you that way.
I started writing software as a hedge against an old injury i had from my teen years. I have a unique condition leaving me with limited use of my hand as such any jobs like cashier call center and they like are of limits to me, i can't hold change because my hands don't bend flat, and to much typing is excruciating. Therefore being adev should get the most bang for the buck that I have left. Ive been doing this for 12 years. Well it's all bullshit and unicorns. I can't get a job to save my life. All i get is calls from recruiters wanting a full stack retard. I'm an erlang developer for about 5 years, c# php no i can't do Photoshop or frontend gay as colors because it's a different skillet. Oh but trumpy says we're at the lowest unemployment ever, ya because we're all homeless and companies are still looking for unicorns, they don't exist just like the fake jobs which is the real fake news. In reality if a company wants you its because their dev left and you are to fix their broken shit, which never worked in the first place thus cannot be fixed besides I'm not a plumber. In my opinion many companies nowadays are run by liberal sjw children who don't value your time but want the product now, spoilt. Recruiters are the worst, gimme money because i touched your resume. I'd rather just kill myself than try to appease some fucking retarded children. Its so awesome to live in a tunnel while my skills entropy while i have 160 self published github repos, know many programming languages and be told your have no value. its those same children that dont understand the flow of money or value loyalty, claim we have all these jobs but no skillid employees, so they can bring in more visa overstayers, underpay them and claim record profits, the more you pay forieners my countries money the less there is to go around in the society leading to disenfranchised people like me, and you wonder why there's so many shootings in il. How long can i endure homelessness before i start becoming a criminal? Soon i will have no other option. You employers had a choice but I'm going out with a bang.25
I'm not enjoying my current experience with the web.
I feel sad, alone most of the time.
Let me disclaim first that I don't have like an apocalyptic view of the world, I actually think it's improving (in very broad terms).
I also understand that the web is a complex thing and everyone being happy with is going to be very unlikely, specially as more and more people use it, since the entropy will naturally increase.
I don't have solid evidence of what I'm saying next and I'm not even entirely what exactly I'm saying, but maybe I'm onto something.
I feel that when the internet first started, businessmen were like "meh, geek stuff".
But slowly, things changed, and every greedy person tried to just fucking unload his greed filled cum onto it
And now it feels like 1984. And I hate when people reeeee 1984. But it does feel like it.
The ads are like "ok, I know you like that other shit, but CHECK THIS SHIT OUT".
It's AI driven to maximize profits, with little care for people happiness.
I miss when youtube had related videos. The algorithm wasn't perfect but at least it was exactly that, related videos.
Now though, youtube likes to be smart. But not smart in a way that enriches your youtube experience.
It's smart in a way that maximizes ad revenue.
"what? did you think we were going to use AI to make you happier? that we were going to enrich your youtube experience?
NO MOTHER FUCKER! OF COURSE NOT. We're gonna use it to show you whatever shit that will make us richer faster."
Controls for customizing the recommended videos behaviour? Pff, no.
They're gonna decide for you what it is that you like
They're going to decide what you should be watching.
Everytime i turn on my samsung tv, the youtube app recomends me watching "BETTER THAN SEX EYE LINER". Jesus christ, what the shitcum, I'm the only motherfucker on the house that uses youtube, and I couldn't care less about this cunt's disguised ad video, let alone fucking eye liners.
Why youtube, why do you promote whatever porn video VEVO uploads?
Why do you ruin every youtube rewind?
Why do you pander to the lowest common denominator?
Why can't you be shining beacon, a moral company considering you're a cultural icon?
Fuck you youtube, and while we're at it, fuck you too samsung, I must have been drunk the day I bought this shitty closed source software piece of shit "smart".
And these are just 2 companies. The internet is FILLED with these greedy bastards. They have no passion for their products, for making people happy. They only have passion for the MUNNNEY.
Thanks a lot business schools, thanks a lot CEOs of the world, thanks for making the world a happier place.
Ok, now that I said that, I want to back up a bit.
Youtube may bot be perfect, but it's ad revenue system enables some youtubers I love to be able to make that their careers.
I appreciate that, so maybe youtube isn't that bad... so sorry for saying those horrible things man!9
Was going through some old books and found the mathematical proof that building good software from the beginning has positive long term effects... in case anyone had any doubts
would software product companies plz start describing what the product *actually* does on their homepages? if u say ur product/framework/tool will help me leverage this or collaborate that, it's an almost zero entropy statement, because everyone says so. Are u selling coffee or a .net gui library? because both can help me make my software better and leverage whatever it's supposed to leverage .. so, pleaaase, just say what ur product does, if that doesn't sell it, using hyped catch all phrases won't either ...
oh, and stop calling ur products somethingfy or somethingly .. just stop
Two days ago I wrote the deployment instructions. 5 lines. I sent them to the devops four days before the release (two days before usual).
A colleague of mine leashed out and had me send another message to say to ignore my instructions because they "generated too much entropy" he is releasing too his application and we should create a single instruction file. Okay, I see no reason to do that nor how that helps the devops. A longer file is not easier to understand than a smaller one.
Today the devops deploy our application. They make a backup of the new files and promptly overwrite the original copies with the files from production.
I lost 3 hours today. My colleague is refusing to communicate the error properly to the devops and I have a meeting in 20 minutes. I love my job.5
This boring story with stupid ending started on Monday with me going out to buy some food and cook something delicious, day like always until my mind went nuts.
I work from home and cook my meals by myself cause I love cooking.
To buy ingredients I go shopping couple times a week always making the same steps, doing this for over a year now and by this time everything was automatic so I could think about work problems and solutions.
I start usually by getting up from my desk around noon, not many people doing shopping at that time and I can proceed quick.
Algorithm is like this: go to kitchen and look at the fridge, go out, wait for traffic lights, take tram, ride two stops, wait for the traffic lights again, go to supermarket, do shopping and finally go back the same way. Boooring.
When I get out from tram that day l looked at traffic lights to go green, as always and that’s the place where everything started to go bad.
So I was waiting there doing nothing and then stupid idea got me.
I figured out I can stop looking at light to make this day different and look ahead.
Then simply start walking when people from other side start walking.
It worked smoothly on those lights and I was happy I can do things differently from now on. I proceed with this idea on the way back and motherfuckers started walking on red. Twice !!!!
Since then three times some car was driving on green near me in those places and people started walking on red.
It got me worried about world determinism instantly. I might increased some entropy to much and some world developer changed some line of code while I was shopping and from that time death is passing by me.
Now it got me to the point where the more I follow this way the more I am worried about my life. Started thinking about ordering ingredients online.
So if you read this you know that I know your plan and I will be changing supermarkets and paths to it randomly starting from next week.
Or not I hope nobody hacked my mind and only thing that read and write to it is my consciousness.
I feel relief now.2
hey, we added new function (random_bytes) to generate secure random strings, so you don’t need to do that manually anymore.
If it’s not possible to gather sufficient entropy, exception will be thrown.
So just in case, I still need to implement fallback method, well, because that stupid php designers team were fucking to lazy to provide it by default...
And that’s how programming in php is like, half the time you spend catching exceptions and extending native functions and other half implementing business logic.5
Let's face it: I am and will always be a tinkerer. Yes, I know my ways around, I can sneak into legacy code bases easily and throw new stuff in there, I've seen software stacks. But scarcely sound design, really modular. Even from the cleverer, experienced ones. They can master more complexity, so they can handle more spaghetti. Some essay from the 80's had this grand idea to organically 'grow' software. That's how it looks like most of the times: cancerous, parasitic super fungi (armillaria). Yeah, we all know have to fight bit-rot and entropy, but it was all lost before already. We'll never get rid of legacy protocols, legacy code.
And even when we go green field, start a fresh. Yeah, take a great design, make everything new, after some months of throwing features and outer constraints at the thing, it's the same old mud again.
But we can still dream on: some day I will design great APIs, I will have great test coverage, documentation, UML design, autometed tests, fuzzing, memchecking, I'll work professionally, clean coder style.
Pfft forget it. Maybe change for consulting, because we'll continue to dream of the 'clean' code, so you can sell the next 'recipe', development method. It's like diets. As effective. For the one selling.2
Bought my first VPS, because the shared plan we are using is shit.
Spent just half an hour trying to log in, because upon registration they encouraged a strong password with simbols and everything.
But in reality a root password can only contain letters, numbers, underscore and minus sign... The fuck is wrong with you? Reducing the entropy is one thing, but really fucking up the most essential part of a VPN setup?7
After listening to the deadmau5 plane crash story on h3h3 this exact thought play went on in my mind.
The universe wants to be uniform. Everything is the same, nothing reacts anymore.
Humans like the complete opposite. We like complexity and entropy. We create and we destroy.
But we are part of the universe.
So if you break this down into absolute math statements, they are contradicting.
So are we breaking the equasion?
Or are we part of the equasion?
...Are we the universe's self made antidote to itself?2
I'm going through a KhanAcademy course learning about cryptography. I learn better by doing, so I wrote a script. It shifts bytes up depending on a random int produced by a high entropy pseudo random number generator using a sha256 hash as the seed. I'm trying to find information on the flaws with this method, that lead us to create DES, and then AES.
There are some who view software as a social construct (like Pieter Hientjes), and I think it's a valuable perspective. So if we know about the intrinsic brokenness of software, can we deduce sth about the brokenness of human interactions? Did social API's evolve to similar clusterfucks of dead entropy we have to shovel in our brains to get along?
I think the answer is an emphatic yes. And you know what's even making it worse? Software. Y'know there are all these whining about the millenials, and I too have had my experiences with stuff of that category. Like back when we searched a new roommate for our flat, we needed three rounds because people who had said yes suddenly reconsidered. Similarly now when we tried to sell our couch: people tried to push the price. Said they were interested, never showed up at the appointed time. It's like they have been spoiled by Amazon: expecting to buy with one click, for the cheapest price and send back if they don't like. And that is not a generation thing. Those old blokes ranting on the young are just as bad. They are just as lost in antisocial media as anybody else. It's a general erosion of not sticking to civility and courtesy, to the yes or no once said, coz everything is now as flexible and fluid as the digital projections of ourselves transmitted round the globe, changing in realtime.
I fucking hate it. - I'm out like this stupid Tom Cruise character in Oblivion.7
In university, I got really into cryptography. I wrote software that was testing the entropy of lots and lots of HTTPS encrypted packets, for sites that also supported HTTP. Meant that I had a pretty good idea what the plaintext was, and the quality of the encryption algorithms used. In the end, I got into lots of trouble with my university because apparently what I was doing could be deemed 'dangerous'! Never felt more like a hacker in my life.
"Designers deal in ideas. They give shape to ideas that shape our world, enrich everyday experiences, and improve our lives. Where there’s confusion, designers fashion clarity; where there’s chaos, designers construct order; where there’s entropy, designers promote vitality; where there’s indifference, designers swell passion; where there’s mediocrity, designers imbue excellence; and where there’s silence, designers lend voice. " - Ken Peters2
Usually an idea comes up in the back of my head... Then i wait. After some time, the idea comes again. Now ill think about it, when i lay in bed, when im in a train, everywhere. Ill think about the technical implementation. How ill present it to someone else. To my boss. To my little brother. I think about the counterarguments, ill simulate discussions in my head, how ill defend it.
And then, one day, while thinking about it, ill start writing it.
Edit: Its like my brain needs enough entropy to do something. Then it works, then it generates entropy again, eg youtube, gaming, working on something else, dreaming etc
Entropy wins. More useless accumulated historical nonsense in each programming language. Complex software stacks impossible to reach the bottom. However C and C++ still there possibly even some Cobol and Fortran zombies. And we devs still writing our ifs and loops for that kind of legacy stuff.
From a little bit heated discussion I want to extract this: One big pain in the ass is the human to computer interface. Maybe it's the natural vs. formal language divide, but there's a mismatch deeper than between object and relational models that no ORM can failingly fix.
The whole point of the discussion was on such a point where some wanted an interface more human friendly and I stubbornly insisted on the way it is simple for the computer system. Like not too much human messiness should invade machine. One argument sounded as if human words were like unicode code points which meaning doesn't depend on its representation.
That's raising red flags to me: Nonono, natural language is too messy, keep it out. This poor machine could have been so clean and well designed and we already stacked up so much entropy we still dare to call OS,..
Dunno, what's your stance? Still hoping that your shell one day will be able to process our poor standard English? Or do you think, like me, all those failed attempts show there's a gap you should not even touch?6
This is neat https://twitter.com/atlasobscura/... take a picture of bunch of lava lamps, make that bit array your entropy for crypto.1
Hasn't technology become magic - and we ignorant sorcerer's apprentices who can perform a video call to the other side of the globe perhaps while we understand only some bytes of the thousands software snippets that were piled up by us code monkeys to perform the miracle? ...
This however has always been the state of software (for us developers): that this house of cards needs constant care by our hands to not collapse - in constant fear we may preserve the facades while the number of components that interact, the sheer mass of code only allow for guesswork and hotfixes accumulating the technical debt. Yes, we have all that terms for that. The problems are known since the 80s or 60s, so we might be relabeling it once in a while, but mainly it is just: complexity.. or entropy.2
Has anyone experiences with hardware entropy generators like OneRNG.info? Any useful usage scenarios? VeraCrypt doesn't yet seems to support it.1
TIL that Debian package names are not allowed to have underscores in their names. Toast my tomatoes. As if file name conventions, like discouraging colons, would not be enough, you just added another useless bit of entropy to all the clusterfuck information just because you established a naming scheme yourself where you delimited the versions and date with an underscore from the package name.2