Profile cover photo
Profile photo
Nick Alcock

Post has attachment
glibc 2.25 was just released, with the stack-smashing protector support I worked on back in 2008 finally reviewed, wildly improved as a result of those reviews, and incorporated for everyone else to use!

(Especial thanks to Florian Weimer for shepherding it in and tirelessly reviewing it and picking at its manifold flaws until all were gone.)

Aside: It really is appropriate that the article "Dementia rates show signs of falling" on the BBC is a broken link.

So... any subscribers to Locus's digital edition among my circles? The most recent digital-edition subscriber's email was sufficiently messed up that downloading the issue was impossible. (They had different random high-ASCII bits turned on in the email's alleged hyperlinks: each email normally has several identical links in it, but this time they were all differently randomly wrecked). I emailed Locus, but got no response...

So... anyone got a copy? (I normally read the PDF and mobi editions...). Anyone else had this problem, or is it just me?

OK, time for me to stop using G+ until this fucking awful new interface goes away or is radically redesigned.

I read G+ largely for the comments, and this interface makes it nearly impossible to read the comments in order or be sure you've read all of them, and even makes it impossible to read comments more than two lines long or read them if it takes you longer than three seconds to do so.

These do not seem like very radical ideas for a commenting system to me, but it seems the new G+ developers are such utter fuckwits that they have failed to notice that this property of their existing system might be desirable.

Post has shared content
Some superb Sir Humphrey lines in here. (You can tell it was done by the original writers.)
Sir Humphrey On the contrary, that is most fortunate. The civil service has always opposed the appointment of anyone with specialised knowledge.
Minister Why?
Sir Humphrey Their preconceived ideas may not be compatible with government policy.
Minister What if the ideas are good?
Sir Humphrey Most good ideas are incompatible with government policy.

Post has attachment
+MegaZone, thought you might like to know that if you're interested in properly-hyphenated ebook versions of the textual EPU stuff, I just souped up Brent Laabs's epub conversion script from a few years ago to be able to do that via a new -h option and the TeX::Hyphen module (with a few minutes' trivial massaging per work). Anything capable of displaying discretionary hyphens right should be able to handle the result, which includes things like Kindles newer than the K4 (via kindlegen).

(Well, OK, it turns out Knuth's hyphenation algorithm mishyphenates a few new coinages: it doesn't know Japanese isn't English so the hyphenation in the few brief Japanese bits is kinda nuts, and it bizarrely hyphenates "metaspace" as "metas-pace", but those are the only problems I've found.)

(This all came about 'cos I was rereading the Sword: it might not cope so well with much older stuff like the Core.)

Next on the list: figure out a way (probably using XML::Twig) to hyphenate the HTML stuff for ebookization too :) it's not like it makes massive use of colour or intricate layout so it should work quite well on an e-ink reader.

So Boris Johnson (!!) is foreign secretary.

I suppose May could have done something even worse like make him Chancellor of the Exchequer, but really this is telegraphing that May expects to do everything interesting with respect to foreign affairs herself. Given his performance over the last few months I very much doubt she has any trust in him to do anything at all without micromanagement, but thankfully she's rather good at micromanaging people. (I mean, unless she's an idiot, and she's not, she's surely noticed that the only less competent person diplomatically in this whole mess has been Nigel Farage.)

i.e. this is a sop to the Brexiteers, and Johnson will be one of the least powerful foreign secretaries on record. (Either that, or he'll start WWIII by mistake.)

The UK is now in an unusual, liminal position: not only are we neither exactly inside nor yet heading outside the EU, we also have a situation where the leader of the party in power is not Prime Minister.


(After all, the Prime Minister, er, sorry, First Lord of the Treasury, is part of Her Majesty's Government, which is nominally independent of Parliament, in a vague and rarely-relevant semi-theoretical sense. This is one of the few occasions in modern times when this actually has any effect on anything.)

Post has attachment
It looks more and more like leaving the EU necessarily means blowing up your economy for years, if you truly cannot even begin to negotiate any trade pacts at all, including with other EU member states, until after you've left!

Nice trap -- but it would only work to discourage departure if the people agitating for departure were smart enough to notice it, which almost our entire political class clearly was not. (Not even the Remain side, or they'd surely have shouted this from the rooftops.)

Needless to say, the UK simply cannot spend years trading with everyone purely under WTO rules (10%+ tariffs on almost everything and sod-all services allowed, IIRC). 75% of the export economy, most especially including the predominant services economy, would simply collapse. We wouldn't be Greece: we'd be Zimbabwe.

Post has shared content
Because however you voted — even if you were on the winning side — you should be angry that you have been so cynically and callously used in an attempt to achieve other people’s political gains. You should be angry that this decision was put in your hands without anyone providing a full and detailed plan that could be examined over many months of scrutiny. You should be angry if you realise that you were lied to. You should be angry that our country has been split down the middle and may yet split further, not for the good of the country but to further the ambitions of a tiny group of men and their quest for power.

So demand change. Demand rigour. Demand that our press and our politicians stop lying to our damn faces. Demand better.
Wait while more posts are being loaded