Cory Doctorow's thoughts on Spotify (and repordely Apple's) plan to kill podcasting


That's why traditional, pre-Reagan antitrust banned "mergers to monopoly" and acquisitions of nascent competitors. Growth through acquisition means that companies succeed by having more money, not by having better products or prices. It's a winner-take-all death spiral

In other words, the only difference is enclosure: taking something from the federated, open, competitive web and sticking it inside a walled garden. It's the App Store strategy, the Facebook strategy, the AOL strategy, the MSN strategy.

The internet is running out of open, federated platforms. There's the web (those parts of it that Facebook hasn't swallowed), email (same, but Gmail), RSS, and some Fediverse tools like Mastodon.

They're like national parks, tiny preserves for the open spaces that once dominated the landscape. And like national parks, every time they are discovered to have something good, a plute comes along to enclose them and charge admission.

Scary stuff. Plus Bloomberg reported yesterday that Apple is ramping up its push into original podcasts by seeking an executive and to buy shows, which means they want in the killing open podcasting spree as well. :(

Xbox and Windows NT 3.5 source code leaks online


Microsoft’s original Xbox console source code has leaked online, alongside code for a version of Windows NT 3.5. The Xbox source code includes the kernel for the operating system on the original console, a custom version of Windows 2000. We can confirm the leaked Xbox OS is genuine, and appeared online earlier this month. “We’re aware of these reports and are investigating,” a Microsoft spokesperson said in a statement to The Verge.

While the Xbox OS leak includes some build environments, the Xbox Development Kit, emulators used for testing, and internal documents, we understand this kernel and source code has been passed around privately among enthusiasts previously. That means it’s unlikely to help further homebrew and emulator efforts for original Xbox games.

A number of emulators exist for the Xbox, including CXBX, XQEMU, and CXBX Reloaded, but most have struggled to emulate the original Xbox OS and kernel. Microsoft developed the first Xbox with x86 hardware in mind, but the Xbox kernel was based on a custom and stripped down version of Windows 2000 with DirectX 8 support.

Yikes, Microsoft is going to have to have a long post MS Build period of sorting the legal mess up.

House Democrats Have The Power To Protect Our Web Surfing From Warrantless FBI Searching; Instead, They're Pointing Fingers


Lofgren and others are now pushing to get their amendment back on the agenda, and it sure sounds like Schiff and Pelosi are trying to stop it, with Nadler -- whose public statements seem to indicate his support, but his actions show otherwise -- the key to actually making a decision.

I still find it bizarre that this amendment is even remotely controversial. First, it's just making it clear that the 4th Amendment applies. Second, if bad shit is happening, the FBI can still get a warrant. Third, both Democrats (stop Trump from abusing his powers) and Republicans (stop the deep state from surveilling Americans) have ready-made stories to explain their votes.

So what's the damn holdup?

Mike Masnick just sums this up and this proves that it's very obvious in the US, no lawmaker or public official from any party gives a shit about civil liberties but a strict few.

Karl Bode goes all out at the NARB after AT&T announced it won't remove their misleading 5G E label


AT&T refuses to stop pretending 4G is 5G, and nobody anywhere will do anything about it.

NARB is a self-regulatory apparatus designed to keep regulators from actually cracking down on false advertising, and its fecklessness is laid bare here.

I don't post bird site threads but this is an exception.

NYU Game Center Showcase 2020


Welcome to the 2020 showcase! This year brought with it more challenges than any of us could have expected, and our graduating classes rose to meet those challenges at every turn. Our community, scattered by a global pandemic, came together from all over the world to produce a collection of innovative and exciting games at a time when play is paramount. These games are a mark of the resilience, passion, and creativity of our designers. While we know you can only watch this year, we encourage you to seek out and play these phenomenal games for yourself. We have so many different games in store, from hot pots to post-apocalyptic gardening, from magical capes to subway laundromats, there’s so much to offer in this year’s showcase, and we can’t wait to share it with you. Join us on Twitch on May 21, 2020 starting at 2pm.

The NYU Game Center is streaming various games from their 2020 showcase from graduates tomorrow starting at 2PM EST (1400) on their Twitch channel. These students are the future so tune in to support their work!

Microsoft is bringing Linux GUI apps to Windows 10


Microsoft is promising to dramatically improve its Windows Subsystem for Linux (WSL) with GUI app support and GPU hardware acceleration. The software giant is adding a full Linux kernel to Windows 10 with WSL version 2 later this month, and it’s now planning to support Linux GUI apps that will run alongside regular Windows apps.

This will be enabled without Windows users having to use X11 forwarding, and it’s mainly designed for developers to run Linux integrated development environments (IDE) alongside regular Windows apps.

Very encouraging signs that they're embracing Linux after just a decade or so ago, Steve Ballmer declared Linux "the enemy".

The effects on cognition of sleeping 4 hours per night for 12-14 days


I slept 4 hours a night for 14 days and didn’t find any effects on cognition (assessed via Psychomotor Vigilance Task, a custom first-person shooter scenario, and SAT). I’m a 22-year-old male and normally I sleep 7-8 hours.

I was fully alert (very roughly) 85% of the time I was awake, moderately sleepy 10% of the time I was awake, and was outright falling asleep 5% of the time. I was able to go from “falling asleep” to “fully alert” at all times by playing video games for 15-20 minutes. I ended up playing video games for approximately 30-90 minutes a day and was able to be fully productive for more than 16 hours a day for the duration of the experiment.

This is quite a experiment…

Podcast Addict pulled from the Play Store for allegedly violating COVID-19 policy


Another month, another wrongful removal from the Play Store. Google booted Podcast Addict off the Play Store because it references the novel coronavirus outbreak — or rather, it offers you to listen to podcasts that do, just like any other podcast player out there. For some reason, Podcast Addict has been singled out by Google, with the company asking the developer to prove that his product is endorsed by some government, or remove any references to COVID-19.

Google references section 8.3 of its developer distribution agreement, which it recently updated to make it harder for malicious apps to take advantage of people searching for information on the pandemic. That's a good thing, but taking down an app that merely offers third-party COVID-19 content seems to overshoot that goal — Google would have to remove its own apps like YouTube, Google News, and even feed readers or other news aggregation services shouldn't be allowed on the Play Store if they're not government-sanctioned. Thus, it's safe to say that some automated algorithms probably stumbled upon mentions of the coronavirus in the app and issued a false positive, and as always, no actual person at Google is available to the developer to resolve the problem.

This would be a huge blow to indie podcast developers on the Play Store if this is become a precedent. Hope it can be fixed ASAP.

Space Force unveils its service flag at White House ceremony


The U.S. Space Force unveiled its service flag on Friday, when top Pentagon officials presented President Donald Trump with the sixth military branch's officials colors during a private Oval Office ceremony marking Armed Forces Day.

In photos tweeted out by a Reuters photographer, Trump is seen smiling as the Space Force’s senior enlisted leader, Chief Master Sgt. Roger Towberman, holds up the new flag representing the military service charged with carrying out the Pentagon’s space-based operations. The new service was officially stood up in December when the president — who championed the force’s cause even as some Pentagon leaders initially pushed back on it necessity — signed a law mandating its creation.

And the US Space Force unveiled their flag…by ripping off the Federation's shield logo!!!

Download your Post History


Before I say anything else, I will tell you that this tool is SLOOOOOW. I'm not a super clever PHP developer, so I don't know how to multi-thread this process, so it's going to take a while to get your report, so get a cup of coffee while it's running.

With that out of the way, I’ve created a simple page for downloading all of your messages in a nice simple CSV.

If you're interested in seeing your old ADN post, a former user created a tool to see them. The CSV is currently disabled but it should be back up soon.