webshit weekly
April 15, 2017 4:08 PM   Subscribe

An internet posts a C programming tutorial, in which the reader is taught how to build a toy text editor for unix. Hackernews trades examples of favorite toy text editors and favorite toy programming languages. A particularly haunting comment is posted by one Hackernews: a Haskell program that translates C to Rust, which gives us a brief peek into the grotesque Godless painscape where the Rust Evangelism Strike Force plans its webshit-brigading operations.
webshit weekly is an annotated digest of the top "Hacker" "News" posts.
posted by Foci for Analysis (50 comments total) 53 users marked this as a favorite
 
Holy shit this is every non-work-related conversation I've ever had with devops.
posted by ardgedee at 4:12 PM on April 15 [5 favorites]


Though a lot of this is foreign to me, I love the writing. I'm just imagining a similar digest for our MeFi threads.
posted by njohnson23 at 4:26 PM on April 15 [2 favorites]


A Hackernews realizes people might disagree about things for reasons other than ignorance, and becomes distressed.

I like the house style of "an internet" and "a Microsoft"
posted by the man of twists and turns at 4:29 PM on April 15 [15 favorites]


Some of these really cut to the essence of the site:
How to start a startup without ruining your life
A spammer posts his bullshit, the 21st-century equivalent of motivational speaking, only with fewer ticket sales and more ebook download links. A Hackernews shark attack ensues as everyone realizes it is finally on-topic to desperately plead for any possible scrap of advice on how to actually make money. Not discussed: how to start a startup without ruining anyone else's life.
posted by postcommunism at 4:31 PM on April 15 [23 favorites]


Thanks so much for this.
Someone wrote a metric fuckload of javascript to create a fragile, overengineered framework that uses other fragile, overengineered frameworks to build massive fragile, overengineered CSS files. "Semantic" is a Latin word that means "wrap every word of content in its own div tags."
My regular Monday call just got more interesting.
posted by cedar at 4:34 PM on April 15 [28 favorites]


This is the only thing that makes the continued existance of the HN echo chamber bearable.

I say this even though I know the developer of said C-to-rust thing, great guy.
posted by joeyh at 4:34 PM on April 15 [1 favorite]


Though a lot of this is foreign to me, I love the writing. I'm just imagining a similar digest for our MeFi threads.

I think Metafilter's too self-reflective, for the most part, for it to be as interesting. This works on HN because HN is the purest hive of engineer's disease I've ever seen. (Said with some love, because I lurk there extensively and have gotten a ton of useful professional knowledge from reading conversations there.)
posted by protocoach at 4:45 PM on April 15 [10 favorites]


This is hilarious. So is the rest of the site. Like, I literally just lol'd.

Who made this?
posted by chmmr at 4:59 PM on April 15


You could do MeFi this way, but you could also work snippits of these into the Metafilter: A Tagline format:

Hacker News: another layer of abstraction.
Hacker News: free speech from first principles.
Hacker News: shitcan every single program except web browsers.
posted by postcommunism at 5:03 PM on April 15 [5 favorites]


They really have HN nailed.
...and then six thousand pages of bad economic theory.
posted by cowcowgrasstree at 5:16 PM on April 15 [4 favorites]


Someone writes an "intro to algorithms" textbook aimed at undergraduates. Hackernews is excited to see another huge list of shit they can memorize for their next opportunity to perform like trained monkeys during the degrading hiring rituals they all profess to hate.

Oh, that reminds me... time to write my final exam!
posted by erniepan at 5:28 PM on April 15


I don't know, seems like someone has a lot of time to shit all over this website. Maybe take up woodworking?
posted by OverlappingElvis at 5:31 PM on April 15 [4 favorites]


Does the developer if said C to Rust tool use the obvious Crust name or perhaps Krust?

I would investigate but I am unwilling to subject myself to maximum Hacker News.
posted by vuron at 5:49 PM on April 15 [1 favorite]


The rust people are indeed very eager. But on the other hand it seems like every month some new, apocalyptic zero day with a cute name shows up stemming from either a memory management bug or a concurrency bug or both. So yeah haha these millennials with their newfangled languages, but going back to writing orthodox C is not really an option.
posted by Pyry at 5:55 PM on April 15 [2 favorites]


This reminds me of vintage NTK: sharp, bitter and brilliant
posted by scruss at 6:16 PM on April 15 [7 favorites]


Yep, I really like it.
posted by ntk at 6:18 PM on April 15 [10 favorites]


I love their about page.
posted by maxwelton at 6:24 PM on April 15 [1 favorite]


Hackernews, all of whom live in the same ten-mile radius as their entire employment market in the midst of a massive tech bubble, cannot figure out what the big deal is.
Heh, indeed.
posted by tobascodagama at 6:34 PM on April 15 [2 favorites]


no reasonable defense of the theory besides "I want it to happen."

To be fair, this is a reasonable description of everything on the web, plus most economic theories and most policy statements.
posted by GenjiandProust at 6:35 PM on April 15


This reminds me of vintage NTK

I was thinking the same thing. I miss NTK.
posted by Slothrup at 6:41 PM on April 15 [3 favorites]


This was posted a week or two ago and deleted, but I've read the whole archives at this point, sometimes in borderline tears from stifling a laugh. I've see it linked in comments at least once as well. Glad it got a second life.

Also is how I found out that 10k package of NES games was recovered. That's a win-win in my opinion.
posted by lkc at 6:44 PM on April 15


Google updates their browser to optionally eliminate the pesky "user" part of the browsing experience. Hackernews kindles a pyre for the ten thousand half-assed github projects they've been using for this purpose, eager to give Google as much control over their businesses as possible.

Equal-opportunity cynicism, i love it and might actually start reading "tech news" again with this site as the conduit.
posted by sylvanshine at 6:56 PM on April 15


I first got hold of their existence via cat-v.org. That site itself is about excellent technical docs, Plan 9 from Bell Labs, and techno-anarcho-capitalo-libertarian ramblings.

The n-gate website has an Easter egg:
$ curl -I http://n-gate.com/
HTTP/1.1 200 OK
Server: nginx/1.10.3
Date: Sun, 16 Apr 2017 01:56:56 GMT
Content-Type: text/html; charset=UTF-8
Connection: keep-alive
Vary: Accept-Encoding
X-Battleship: HIT
posted by runcifex at 6:59 PM on April 15 [7 favorites]


Next, they need to do the same for Hackaday…
posted by Pinback at 7:30 PM on April 15 [1 favorite]


Reminds me a bit of the old Need To Know newsletters that brightened my Fridays back in The Before Times.
posted by wenestvedt at 7:34 PM on April 15 [3 favorites]


(Aaaaaaaaaand double jinx.)
posted by wenestvedt at 7:34 PM on April 15


Google continues the war against their own users. The XMPP Memorial Society trades barbs about whose fault it is that a misdesigned overengineered shitshow of a protocol failed to gain traction amongst non-erlang enthusiasts. Every single messaging platform in current existence is held up as Obviously The Future. Hackernews tries to figure out what Google's master plan is, and why Google is working so hard to make it look like aimless poorly-managed floundering. IRCv3 continues to be a retarded pile of solutions to the wrong problems.

There's a golden nugget of truth deep inside all that cynicism.
posted by GuyZero at 8:04 PM on April 15 [8 favorites]


Hacker News is an echo chamber focusing on computer posturing and self-aggrandizement.
What it says on the tin.
posted by MtDewd at 8:10 PM on April 15 [2 favorites]


In accordance with federal law, someone has ported this to Rust.
posted by XtinaS at 8:20 PM on April 15 [2 favorites]


I'm refusing to port anything to Rust until someone gives me the Smalltalk future we all deserve, dammit.
posted by RobotVoodooPower at 8:29 PM on April 15 [4 favorites]


"Though a lot of this is foreign to me, I love the writing. I'm just imagining a similar digest for our MeFi threads."

Well there is this part:
Climate scientists continue to panic. Hackernews vomits forth hundreds of thousands of kilobytes of useless, uninformed bickering. Nothing of value is posted, but the shit proceeds to flow until every last URL is mined from the references sections of all relevant Wikipedia articles.
Which is not quite as bad in particulars here on MeFi, but generalizes well to every internet argument ever.
posted by traveler_ at 8:31 PM on April 15 [3 favorites]


This reminds me of vintage NTK: sharp, bitter and brilliant

At points it's like a mixture of vintage NTK and vintage TV Go Home. Internet Go Home.

Since the main purpose Hacker News fulfills for me is reinforcing my long-ago career path decision to go into the humanities and keep coding as a hobby rather than becoming a true programmer, I love it.
posted by A Thousand Baited Hooks at 8:40 PM on April 15 [2 favorites]


They really have HN nailed.

Indeed.
Hackernews debates whether this tremendous waste of effort warrants an erection.
posted by fatbird at 9:36 PM on April 15


One Way to Improve Your Coding
December 20, 2016 (comments)
An Internet thinks the best way to get better at programming is to read programs. There are two sections highlighted in yellow; one could have been used to replace this whole article with a tweet and the other is a desperate attempt to increase user interaction with his website. Hackernews isn't so sure and also does not like the guy's font selections. I was unable to continue reading the Hackernews comments when I came across the sentence "I feel like I learned sane C++ by reading LLVM code" which seems like it should be English but doesn't add up to anything that can possibly be true.
You and me both, friend.
posted by strange chain at 9:51 PM on April 15 [3 favorites]


I think Metafilter's too self-reflective, for the most part, for it to be as interesting.
I disagree with the first part, but agree with the second. Most posts would be ", handwave, handwave, virtue signalling"
posted by jgooden at 10:00 PM on April 15 [10 favorites]


...."denial that 'virtue signalling' exists"
posted by thelonius at 10:39 PM on April 15 [4 favorites]


> This reminds me of vintage NTK: sharp, bitter and brilliant

>> At points it's like a mixture of vintage NTK and vintage TV Go Home. Internet Go Home.


Two great tastes that taste great together, and not a coincidence I suspect: TV Go Home is actually hosted by NTK now, according to the FAQ there. If you are not familiar with either of these then right now would be the best time to go and read the entire archives. And yes, that is where Nathan Barley came from.
posted by merlynkline at 12:24 AM on April 16 [2 favorites]


"It has been ported to Rust" is my new euphemism for senescence and death.
posted by Grangousier at 2:28 AM on April 16 [8 favorites]


It reminds me of Mr Biffo, strangely, but that and early PC Zone Brooker both sprung from the same wellspring of techno-curmudgeonliness.
posted by Jon Mitchell at 4:10 AM on April 16


Blue website dislikes orange president more, links to fake news about latest move, complains it unfairly targets poor immigrants, fails to realize that's the point. Demands that people think of the children, but only as long as those children aren't disgusting rich White men who only eat the most expensive plates of beans.

The linked site makes some fair points and gets some cheap shots in, plus you really do have to be able to laugh at yourself, but jeeze that level of cynicism and sarcasm is toxic and exactly how I imagine Uber's tech-bro culture to be internally. At least they have the self awareness not to lambaste Susan Fowler for working at Uber or posting about it on the orange website.

I'm impressed they've been going since September though.
posted by fragmede at 4:51 AM on April 16 [2 favorites]


Not a big fan of the interface for viewing old posts, namely the "click individually on the year, month, day, and arbitrary numerical post identifier, each of which gets its own page with just links to numbers on it, rather than being able to go back or forward or view more than one post at a time" method. Harumph. Still better than infinite scroll though, I guess
posted by eykal at 6:27 AM on April 16


I like the house style of "an internet" and "a Microsoft"

It's eerily SovCit.

I do love this, though: "Semantic" is a Latin word that means "wrap every word of content in its own div tags."
posted by Thorzdad at 6:30 AM on April 16 [2 favorites]


(An internet makes fun of another internet. One Metafilter complains about the user interface rather than discussing the actual content.)
posted by eykal at 6:32 AM on April 16 [5 favorites]


 â†’ TV Go Home is actually hosted by NTK now

But that would have meant unplugging my Speccy to see what's on telly, so why would I do that?
posted by scruss at 9:15 AM on April 16


One Metafilter parenthetically subfilters themself.
posted by waninggibbon at 10:15 AM on April 16 [1 favorite]


jeeze that level of cynicism and sarcasm is toxic and exactly how I imagine Uber's tech-bro culture to be internally

I really think the problem with tech bro culture is that it's the precise opposite of this.
posted by stoneandstar at 8:25 PM on April 16 [6 favorites]


I'm refusing to port anything to Rust until someone gives me the Smalltalk future we all deserve, dammit.

And the Forth past we never really had!
posted by Chitownfats at 10:07 AM on April 17 [1 favorite]


I didn't know about this, so thanks for the laugh. It's fairly spot on and it kills me that there are often enough tremendously useful nuggets on HN that it's almost worth plowing through the crap.

Last "maybe I should learn one of these newfangled languages" decision point I was at, I went with Go as a protest of the content free and usually irrelevant HN Rust fanboiism. And the fact that when you point out we've had production ready memory safe languages for decades that no one want's to use (see: Ada) they act like they can't hear you. The only thing worse is the functional programming zelots (esp the Haskell types) failing to convince anyone outside their own echo chamber within an echo chamber that it's good for anything outside of academia and that one HFT shop. And Paul Graham...because he is their god.

Of course...for pure, distilled HN bullshit, you have the "Mill Processor" guys. They show up in every thread about hardware architecture or compilers to tell you how Mill will solve the problem in a way both more elegant and vastly faster than any processor ever made. Intel? ARM? Morons. Then you figure out Mill is a bunch of guys who like to make YouTube videos talking about an 'architecture' that only exists as a 'simulator'. That you can't have access to. But Real Soon Now you'll be able to; trust us. And get chips. After they crowdsource a foundry...or something. I haven't decided if it's some penny stock fraud scheme or an elaborate performance art piece, but the HN crowd lap up every eye-roll worthy pronouncement. It's been going on for more than a year, so they're definitely playing a long game.
posted by kjs3 at 10:21 AM on April 17 [3 favorites]


And the Forth past we never really had!

Ha! I'm occasionally surprised that there's not more Forth trolls on HN, but then I remember their shtick is more 'any problems you have with Forth is because you're too stupid to be a Forth programmer' and taking their balls and going home.
posted by kjs3 at 10:26 AM on April 17 [1 favorite]


You have got to admit that the Mill processor guys at least look the part - that Gandalf-The-White-esque dude in the videos has my support based on appearance alone.

Anyway, I read too much hackernews and this commentary is 100% on point. Or maybe I am just bitter since none of my few submissions has ever made the front page.
posted by AndrewStephens at 11:00 AM on April 18 [1 favorite]


« Older Crazy Talk: What Free Mental Health Apps Should I...   |   “We're talkin' bout Rick James, man.” Newer »


You are not currently logged in. Log in or create a new account to post comments.