Red Echo

November 25, 2015

Thanksgiving is a science-fiction story

The proper genre for Thanksgiving is science-fiction:

It has come to my attention that people are woefully uninformed about certain episodes in the Thanksgiving narrative. For example, almost no one mentions the part where Squanto threatens to release a bioweapon buried under Plymouth Rock that will bring about the apocalypse.

Mr. S, an ordinary American, is minding his own business outside his East Coast home when he is suddenly abducted by short large-headed creatures like none he has ever seen before. They bring him to their ship and voyage across unimaginable distances to an alien world both grander and more horrible than he could imagine. The aliens have godlike technologies, but their society is dystopian and hivelike. Enslaved at first, then displayed as a curiosity, he finally wins his freedom through pluck and intelligence. Despite the luxuries he enjoys in his new life, he longs for his homeworld.

November 14, 2015


November 13, 2015

ne, the nice editor:

ne is a free (GPL’d) text editor based on the POSIX standard that
runs (we hope) on almost any UN*X machine. ne is easy to use for
the beginner, but powerful and fully configurable for the wizard, and most
sparing in its resource usage. If you have the resources and the patience to
use emacs or the right mental twist to use vi then
probably ne is not for you. However, if you need an editor that:

  • compiles without effort everywhere (or almost everywhere), is packaged for
    all Linux distributions, and ported to other operating systems (such as Mac OS X);
  • is fast, small, powerful and simple to use;
  • has standard keystrokes (e.g., copy is CTRL-C);
  • uses little bandwidth, so it is ideal for email, editing through phone line (or
    slow GSM/GPRS/UMTS) connections;
  • has a very compact internal text
    representation, so you can easily load and modify very large

… then you should try ne.

November 12, 2015


From IEEE Spectrum, Bosch’s Giant Robot Can Punch Weeds To Death:

At IROS last month, researchers from a Bosch startup called Deepfield Robotics presented a paper on “Vision-Based High-Speed Manipulation for Robotic Ultra-Precise Weed Control,” which has like four distinct exciting-sounding phrases in it. We wanted to write about it immediately, but Deepfield asked us to hold off a bit until their fancy new website went live, which it now has. This means that we can show you video of their enormous agricultural robot that can autonomously detect and physically obliterate individual weeds in a tenth of a second.

November 6, 2015

Oh yeah, this project to marry unikernels with the Qubes system is pretty much exactly what I have been going for with Fleet.