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Spend last night reading about the Apple ii series disk drive, and its requirement that disk sector reads be "self-clocking", meaning that there was strict control over how many 0s were in succession. I keep realizing how much computing comes back to coding theory, and how my lack of higher math education limits me on that front.

One of the things that really keeps retrocomputers from being real daily Internet machines is that they can't handle modern SSL/TLS. I lately am wondering if this could be solved with dedicated hardware. It turns out that SSL accelerators used to be a somewhat common card to add to a workstation. This feels solvable with an ASIC but it seems nobody's really doing it any more.

Kit Sunny boosted

"Buddha is dead. Maitreya hasn't come yet. I just had a terrific nap and didn't even dream about Confucius." --Hotei "The Laughing Buddha"

I'm still doing everyday . Indeed, it seems I keep finding reasons why the minimal specs aren't so minimal.

Kit Sunny boosted

My code now runs on two planets and in space.

12:45, restate my assumptions: One, some people get by with a little understanding. Two, some people get by with a whole lot more. Three, I don't know why you've got to be so undemanding. Four, I want more.

In drafting up my will, a critical part to protecting my polyamorous family, I had to face the interesting question of where my estate should go if nobody in my household remains to receive it. I ultimately concluded that the majority of my personal wealth was built on the back of FOSS, and it's only right that wealth return to FOSS organizations when my family no longer needs it.

Ah, Lastpass. First you get all my passwords, then tell me that you'll take away my access on either my phone or computers unless I pay you. Time to find an alternative, I guess. Seems like I ought to be able to have my own self-hosted alternative, no?

"konwert utf8-ascii". Holy smoke, does this do an amazing freaking job at making modern programs work in an ancient ANSI terminal.

So, Python hacking friends...I need to work on an app that I'd normally install from pip and I have no clue at all how to actually iterate on this thing. Like, how do I set up a local environment properly? How do I get Python to read the local source and not the stuff installed via pip? A crusty old C hacker needs to know.

Kit Sunny boosted

that soft sound of a needle lifting gently off the vinyl boost if you agree

It's fascinating to have only a monochrome vt100 terminal emulator in hand and discover how many "command line" and "terminal UI" programs require colors, UTF-8, and emoji. Even our command line apps are leaving the retro world wholly incompatible.

Drew Devault gets me. This is ultimately why I don't throw myself into Rust-- it's a heavy, rapidly moving target with no standards for the language or ABI.

@neauoire You might find it funny that, because of our various interactions, search engines seem to know your websites matter to me. When I go looking for ORCA/C, the Apple iigs C compiler, your ORCA comes up first.

Kit Sunny boosted

The Real Novelty of the ARPANET

"Physical distance was conquered well before the ARPANET by the telegraph. The kind of distance conquered by the ARPANET was instead the logical distance between the operating systems, character codes, programming languages, and organizational policies employed at each host site. Implementing the first packet-switched network was of course a major feat of engineering that should also be mentioned, but the problem of agreeing on standards to connect computers that had never been designed to play nice with each other was the harder of the two big problems involved in building the ARPANET—and its solution was the most miraculous part of the ARPANET story."

Tooting this from a terminal app on an Apple iiGS emulator. Pretty damn cool.

Kit Sunny boosted
Kit Sunny boosted

"Remember the ladies, and be more generous and favorable to them than your ancestors. Do not put such unlimited power into the hands of the Husbands. Remember all Men would be tyrants if they could. If particular care and attention is not paid to the Ladies we are determined to foment a Rebellion, and will not hold ourselves bound by any Laws in which we have no voice, or Representation."

-- Abigail Adams, March 1776

I've spent years lamenting that my output, both at work and in my side projects, is sporadic and below my real ability. The honest but sad truth is that I really lost the sense of wonder and fun in hacking a long time ago and I've never been able to get it back.

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