I should really learn C at some point

On the way to the coffee shop, it occurred to me that the way I approach coding is not unlike how artists approach art. My coding is not a precision instrument, though I frequently wish it {were|could be}. I'll feel inspired and throw hours or days or weeks at a problem. Frequently the thing I start out planning to build doesn't work out, so I change tactics and build something else. I take the torn painted canvas and stitch it together again to make something altogether new. "It's rustic," I'll say. "Artisanal." "It... doesn't pass linting." "It does now!" "...are those polygons?" "Artisanal!" "Why is it a Google Chrome app??" "Because I don't know C."…

The latte is critical to this story

Recently, I met with a two men about a possible career shift. One has a Swedish name, originally from Australia. He's living in Tunisia, but about to move to Costa Rica, where there's just as much sun but fewer explosions. The meeting's in Manhattan -- I took the train from DC, he took the redeye from Istanbul. Amsterdam is nice this time of year, don't you think? We discuss politics of the field in which we work -- there's only about a hundred of us -- and it occurs to me that we've all left our original homes in favor of greener skies and bluer pastures elsewhere. We're digital vagabonds, like some Silicon Valley VC's idea of what refugees are…

Quinnspirators

I have had a hard time trying to refine my feelings about the whole "gamergate" butthurt extravaganza into something that actually makes sense to people who aren't already familiar with it. But this line from Zoe Quinn herself sums it up far better than I could: "They talk like they're exposing the Watergate scandal -- but instead of the president, it's just a woman they've never heard of supposedly doin' it with some other people they've also never heard of." ~Zoe Quinn Then the death threats started, based around the idea that One Woman was able to control the entire gaming industry via her vajay. The more unseamly parts of the internet love a good (albeit far-fetched) scandal, and this…

Community Relations

1997-ish "Why aren't you ever on IRC?" 1999-ish "...is... is that a girl on our party line?" 2001-ish "That's a pretentious handle." 2003-ish "Pfft. Phone Phreaking is dead." 2005-ish "Come on man, don't let drama get to you." 2007-ish "You're not really gone. No one ever really leaves. It's like Hotel California." 2009-ish "If they're trans and in the military, they pretty much deserve what they're getting. What did they expect?" 2010-ish "You think you're helping these people, but you're not." 2011-ish "Prove that you're not up to anything bad. No, that isn't enough." 2012-ish "I really like your work, but there's no budget right now." 2013-ish "Why don't you come to events more often? People would trust you more…

ICANN Advisory on ClipboardSec

Note: emails to ICANN's security-ops team on this issue bounced. Yes, really. Keen observers of last night's Horizon: Inside the Dark Web special may have noticed a split-second shot of this clipboard: This clipboard contains instructions on accessing the high-security restricted areas of ICANN's Virginia doom fortress office, as well as information on the devices used to update critical backbone infrastructure. As televisions improve clarity and resolution, the threat posed by invited camera crews will only increase over time. Threat Mitigation However, advances in technology that help mitigate the threats posed by ClipboardSec vulnerabilities: As you can see, this clipboard is equipped with an opaque metal cover which protects the contents from cameras, curious interns, and the intense bleaching effects…

Nomenclature

Note: This blog post started off many months ago, but for various reasons was scrapped. After revisiting it, I've decided to edit it to hide the subject's operating pseudonym. Samantha Dee is an interesting lady, who like many people in the netfreedom community has a more layered identity. She started off with a pseudonym, and when asked for her real name, gave Samantha Dee (which is another pseudonym). This is kind of cool for a few reasons. She's a journalist who goes to lots of, er, "interesting" places to meet with interesting people and write interesting stuff. This has the expected side effect of making her life very interesting. ;P But while lots of people get followed and surveilled and…

Pond - expectations vs reality

Expectations Flirting with cryptographers Plotting to take over the world Reading unreleased scientific papers Reality Talking to a guy about Latex formatting for my FOCI submission Eh, close enough. ;-) It's just funny to me that this is what finally caused me to set up Pond on this machine.…