You want a new landline? Someone will come over to your house and collect the documents, get an account opened and have your phone/DSL ready in a couple of days. Sounds great? Not so fast.
Here is how it works in the real world: after collecting the docs, the guy asks for a Rs 200 “service fee”. I understood it was a bribe, but told him I’ll pay a tip after the line ready. But the guy insists on getting paid upfront. Since I badly wanted it done this week, I pay him. The guy takes the money and runs away in 20 seconds leaving nothing but a cell number.
I get a bit suspicious, call the phone provider the next day and tell them what happened. Someone threatens this guy with a complaint and the guy is hugely upset. He threatens to return the Rs 200 and the application form and tells me to go to a different ISP (knowing there is only one).
I pacify him into coming over, he throws his weight around a bit by making us wait and making 3 different trips to get the wiring right. On his 4th trip, he finally gets my landline + DSL working, but doesn’t want to tell me the password! If I get a new router, he wants to be invited over.
He made sure that phone connection doesn’t work in the bedrooms, so we invite him over at least one more time.
Suddenly things clicked into place. I understand why the roads are bad, why they get cut, why they need to be replaced every 12 months.
There is a huge disparity in income between the “privileged” class and the average technician. So they probably see their behavior morally justified in some twisted sense.
From my point of view, if he just quotes a price for getting everything done without this insane/dishonest dance, I’d probably pay it as a tip.
I was sitting in a 25 min traffic jam just to make it past one signal light for dinner with friends. As the conversation with the cab driver went from the hindi speaker invasion of old bangalore and the foolishness of his dad for not buying some land, he peers out of the window, sees a woman driver and immediately goes:
The traffic jam is caused by women drivers. They’re everywhere and doing everything - which is the root of many problems!
I was taken aback for a moment, but realized that this is not an isolated opinion and probably not very useful to get into an argument with.
I felt bad about not having made my opinion known. May be next time.
Free software activist Bradley Kuhn wrote that “I’m not against the closing of this bug; however, the closed status should be something like ‘Can’t Fix.’” (The actual status is “fix released.”) Kuhn went on to note that the original bug report stated that “[a] majority of the PCs for sale should include only free software,” and that even Android devices tend to include proprietary software. — http://arstechnica.com/information-technology/2013/05/mark-shuttleworth-gives-up-dream-of-ubuntu-toppling-windows/
In the book the authors happily take up the white geek’s burden. A liberal sprinkling of convenient, hypothetical dark-skinned worthies appear: Congolese fisherwomen, graphic designers in Botswana, anticorruption activists in San Salvador and illiterate Masai cattle herders in the Serengeti are all obediently summoned to demonstrate the progressive properties of Google phones jacked into the informational supply chain of the Western empire.
Google phones use mostly free software and Julian Assange is not exactly a shy freedom of information activist. But getting into international politics has a cost.
The great workplace dilemmas of our time…
I bought a Samsung Chromebox (core i5 based) recently with the expectation that this would be a quiet, general purpose small form factor PC that I’ve been trying to build for years. Turns out that it’s more complicated than that.
Turning off verified boot and enabling the dev BIOS doesn’t necessarily give you the ability to plug in a external USB drive with a bootable MBR like a traditional PC BIOS would. Scripts like the one from ChrUbuntu partition the already meager 16GB drive. What I’m looking for is the ability to keep the ChromeOS partition as pristine as possible, while retaining the ability to boot something else.
What has been demonstrated so far is the ability to boot a ChromeOS kernel on a Ubuntu partition. Anything else requires some time commitment and hacking on your part (which is probably going to cost you more in terms of time than the cost of the hardware).
Ability to kexec a non-chromeos kernel (or grub) on an external device in the dev mode would be nice.
Bluetooth: don’t expect to be able to connect to your audio system and stream music. Only bluetooth keyboard, mouse are supported.
Lack of hardware settings: either things work or they don’t. No ability to configure anything. Don’t like 1024x768? Get a new cable. Don’t get audio from the builtin speakers when display port/HDMI is plugged in? Get a new headphone. Don’t like headphones? Sorry. Reduced complexity is good, but this one goes a bit too far.
In spite of all the limitations, the device delivers on the promise of a fast, quiet, general purpose x86 box. Sometimes I don’t like mobile computing (= devices that I have to go looking for around the house). This one makes a great immobile computer that stays in one place.
This is what happens when I drink too much coffee on a Saturday night:
Ran into ll_prof.py today. Looks like V8 dumps generated code some place when run under —ll-prof. This script can then parse the perf.data file and produce disasm.
I spent a few evenings hacking Chromium (open source version of the Chrome browser). The idea is that users can have personalized and anonymous services from a single browser instance.
Today, a Chrome user has to have two windows open: one in incognito mode for using services where identity is not disclosed and a second one where the user is logged in. It’s hard to manage and easy to get things mixed up. I suspect that the number of search queries from an incognito browser instance are minuscule.
On the other hand, the “Manage search engines” dialogue is a great place to provide a search engine option for users who don’t like or don’t want personalized search. Open Search for example could define an <anonymous/> tag or equivalent. Browser implementations could then build the UI to give user the option of using a given search engine anonymously (i.e. without sending cookies).
I uploaded proof of concept patches to github earlier today. If the search provider also is an email service provider (not very uncommon), you can now use one browser instance and two tabs — one personalized (email) and the other anonymous (search), so your search queries are not associated with your email profile.