I am at something of a loss for snark here. I want to believe that this is fiction, like some early 90s Mondo 2000 cover story documenting some made-up movement with a photo of some creepy-assed Cap'n Crunch lookalike in fun-fur. But I suspect it's not.

There's just too much to quote here, so I've bolded my favorites.

There's an actual house called the Crypto Castle, and the king is Jeremy Gardner, 25, a rakish young investor with a hedge fund who has become the de facto tour guide for crypto newcomers.

"I do I.C.O.s. It's my thing," he said. He wore a pink button-front and pink pants. "It's me, a couple V.C.s and a lot of charlatans."

About eight people live in the Crypto Castle on any given night, and some of Mr. Gardner's tenants brought out snacks (Cheez-Its and a jar of Nutella). One of the bedrooms has a stripper pole. Mr. Gardner leaned back into the sofa and rested his feet on the table. He recently did an I.C.O. for a start-up after-party. "You can I.C.O. anything," he said. He runs Distributed, a 180-page magazine about cryptocurrency that comes out about once a year. He is now raising $75 million for his hedge fund, Ausum Ventures (pronounced "awesome"). He said his closest friends are moving to Puerto Rico to get around paying taxes.

"They're going to build a modern-day Atlantis out there," he said. "But for me, it's too early in my career to check out." [...]

"My neurons are fried from all the volatility," Mr. Hummer said. "I don't even care at this point. I'm numb to it. I'll lose a million dollars in a day and I'm like, O.K."

His room is simple: a bed, a futon, a TV on a mostly empty media console, three keyboard cleaning sprays and a half dozen canisters of Lysol wipes. His T-shirt read, 'The Lizard of Wall Street,' with a picture of a lizard in a suit, dollar-sign necklaces around its neck. He carries with him a coin that reads, "memento mori," to remind himself he can die any day. He sees the boom as part of a global apocalypse.

"The worse regular civilization does and the less you trust, the better crypto does," Mr. Hummer said. "It's almost like the ultimate short trade."

Mr. Hummer went out to meet Joe Buttram, 27, for drinks. As a mixed martial arts fighter, Mr. Buttram said he would fight for a couple hundred bucks, sometimes a few thousand, and worked security at a start-up, but his main hobbies were reading 4chan and buying vintage pornography, passions that exposed him to cryptocurrency. [...]

They talk about buying Lamborghinis, the single acceptable way to spend money in the Ethereum cryptocurrency community. The currency's founder frequently appears in ((fan art as Jesus with a Lamborghini. Mr. Buttram says he's renting an orange Lambo for the weekend. And he wears a solid gold Bitcoin "B" necklace encrusted with diamonds that he had made. [...]

"When I meet people in the normal world now, I get bored," Mr. Hummer said. "It's just a different level of consciousness."

The tone turns somber. "Sometimes I think about what would happen to the future if a bomb went off at one of our meetings," Mr. Buttram said. Mr. Hummer said, "A bomb would set back civilization for years." [...]

As the holiday party filled up, a cryptocurrency rapper called CoinDaddy -- Arya Bahmanyar, 28 -- was getting ready to perform. Formerly a commercial real estate agent, Mr. Bahmanyar works full time at CoinDaddy after becoming a self-described crypto-millionaire ("you think I would dress up like this if I wasn't?"). "Right now all our entertainers come from outside crypto culture -- not inside crypto, and we've got to change that," he said.

He pointed to his outfit -- a long white fake mink coat, gold-heeled shoes -- and said, "It's gold, right? It's gold. It's a niche, and I'm going to fill it."

(So that you don't have to, I clicked on some of his YouTube clips. Not even funny enough to share.)

Previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously.

Posted Mon Jan 15 01:04:55 2018 Tags:

Democrats that voted for continued warrantless spying on Americans made the difference; if they had not, we would have defeated it.

Posted Mon Jan 15 00:00:00 2018 Tags:

The inadequate funding of the NHS is forcing even cancer surgery to be delayed.

Delays in cancer surgery can be fatal.

Posted Mon Jan 15 00:00:00 2018 Tags:

Putting a work requirement on Medicaid would result in an increasing number of people who need treatment and have trouble working until they get it. Whoever judges whether someone is disabled would probably be under pressure to bias the decisions, as happens in the UK.

Posted Mon Jan 15 00:00:00 2018 Tags:

The chair of the House Intelligence Committee, Rep Nunes, is going all out to prevent the investigation from advancing.

Posted Mon Jan 15 00:00:00 2018 Tags:

Right-wing extremists continue killing in the US.

Most did not make the news, because only one person was killed.

Posted Mon Jan 15 00:00:00 2018 Tags:

Saboteur Pruitt is still working on cutting the EPA staff by 50%.

Posted Mon Jan 15 00:00:00 2018 Tags:
Posted Mon Jan 15 00:00:00 2018 Tags:

Ajit Pai's next blow: wiping out small ISPs.

Posted Mon Jan 15 00:00:00 2018 Tags:

To thwart Republican's selective leaks and threats, Senator Feinstein published the whole testimony of Fusion GPS.

Posted Mon Jan 15 00:00:00 2018 Tags:

Everyone: call on the US to free torture victim Toffiq al-Bihani, to shut down the Guantanamo prison, and to end imprisonment without trial no matter where.

Posted Mon Jan 15 00:00:00 2018 Tags:
Obligatory hax0r stock photo
Dear Lazyweb, is TweetDeck spying on my web browser?

I use TweetDeck because it's the only workable way to manage multiple Twitter accounts.

Recently it has been crashing a lot. It crashes at pretty random times, but only occasionally when Tweetdeck is the front app. It doesn't usually crash when I'm scrolling down the list. Usually it crashes when some other app is selected, like when I've clicked a link and it opens in Safari.

But now I've noticed that it most often crashes when I'm in Safari, haven't used Tweetdeck at all recently, and I open or close a Safari window... Right then is when Tweetdeck crashes. Exactly then.

So now I suspect that Tweetdeck is using AppleScript to monitor all the URLs I load in Safari, and presumably is phoning home with them.

Anyone know how to prove, monitor or prevent this? I don't know how you'd log or MITM AppleScript IPC.

This behavior would not be unprecedented for such an ethical and trustworthy company as Twitter: remember when they got busted phoning home with all of the applications installed on your iPhone to "better improve your advertising experience"? Yeah, they'd totally do this.

Previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously.

Posted Sat Jan 13 22:28:45 2018 Tags:
Origins of the Sicilian Mafia: The Market for Lemons

In this article, we argue that the mafia arose as a response to an exogenous shock in the demand for oranges and lemons, following Lind's discovery in the late eighteenth century that citrus fruits cured scurvy. More specifically, we claim that mafia appeared in locations where producers made high profits from citrus production for overseas export. Operating in an environment with a weak rule of law, the mafia protected citrus production from predation and acted as intermediaries between producers and exporters. Using original data from a parliamentary inquiry in 1881 -- 1886 on Sicilian towns, the Damiani Inquiry, we show that mafia presence is strongly related to the production of oranges and lemons. The results hold when different data sources and several controls are employed. [...]

Our results are also strongly associated with research on the p "curse of natural resources". We claim that the economic boom in international citrus demand, and the subsequent rise of Sicilian exports during the nineteenth century, are key factors behind the rise of mafia. This is also consistent with the more recent finding that windfall gains from natural resources are often associated with intense rent seeking and patronage politics. For instance, Xavier Sala-i-Martin and Arvind Subramanian (2003) argue that political corruption related to oil revenues hampered Nigeria's growth for decades. Daron Acemoglu, Thierry Verdier, and James A. Robinson (2004) show how mineral wealth in Zaire allowed President Mobutu to buy off political challengers. A recurrent theme in this tradition is that resource windfalls might actually destabilize and deteriorate institutions, if key groups in the society believe that predation is more profitable than production.

Hmmm, 'Key groups believe that predation is more profitable than production', what does that remind me of... Oh right! The entirety of the tech industry!

Previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously.

Posted Sat Jan 13 04:38:21 2018 Tags:
DNA Lounge update, wherein we've got a photo booth now!
Posted Sat Jan 13 03:17:53 2018 Tags:
Adversarial Patch:

These adversarial patches can be printed, added to any scene, photographed, and presented to image classifiers; even when the patches are small, they cause the classifiers to ignore the other items in the scene and report a chosen target class.

We present a method to create universal, robust, targeted adversarial image patches in the real world. The patches are universal because they can be used to attack any scene, robust because they work under a wide variety of transformations, and targeted because they can cause a classifier to output any target class.

Previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously.

Posted Fri Jan 12 20:39:27 2018 Tags:
Internet of Shit, indeed.

The team developed an ingestible electronic capsule to monitor gas levels in the human gut. When it's paired with a pocket-sized receiver and a mobile phone app, the pill reports tail-wind conditions in real time as it passes from the stomach to the colon. [...] Such fume data could clarify the conditions of each section of the gut, what microbes are up to, and which foods may cause problems in the system. Until now, collecting such data has been a challenge. Methods to bottle it involved cumbersome and invasive tubing and inconvenient whole-body calorimetry.

Previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously.

Posted Fri Jan 12 20:05:12 2018 Tags:

Even these days, I still spend too much time on the command line. My friends still make fun of my MacOS desktop when they see that I run a full screen terminal, and the main program that I am running there is the Midnight Commander:

Every once in a while I write an interactive application, and I want to have full bash-like command line editing, history and search. The Unix world used to have GNU readline as a C library, but I wanted something that worked on both Unix and Windows with minimal dependencies.

Almost 10 years ago I wrote myself a C# library to do this, it works on both Unix and Windows and it was the library that has been used by Mono's interactive C# shell for the last decade or so.

This library used to be called getline.cs, and it was part of a series of single source file libraries that we distributed with Mono.

The idea of distributing libraries that were made up of a single source file did not really catch on. So we have modernized our own ways and now we publish these single-file libraries as NuGet packages that you can use.

You can now add an interactive command line shell with NuGet by installing the Mono.Terminal NuGet package into your application.

We also moved the single library from being part of the gigantic Mono repository into its own repository.

The GitHub page has more information on the key bindings available, how to use the history and how to add code-completion (even including a cute popup).

The library is built entirely on top of System.Console, and is distributed as a .NET Standard library which can run on your choice of .NET runtime (.NET Core, .NET Desktop or Mono).

Check the GitHub project page for more information.

Posted Fri Jan 12 15:10:07 2018 Tags:

Planet Debian upstream is hosted by Branchable.