Chuckellania for October 6th, 2021

Published on Thursday, October 7, 2021

There are surprising etymologies for bork, including a politician by that name, who was a little borked up.

A tribute song to Steve Jobs having passed away ten years ago on the 5th. This was the first celebrity-ish person whose death really hit me. Also problematic in various ways (do I want a boss with a reputation of abusiveness? No), but for better or worse an inspiration to me (do I want a boss with brilliant ideas and a genuine love for what the team does? Yes).

Perhaps a particularly egregious example of corporations taking advantage of government- funded research.

Why does it have to be health? Why can't that be a more ethical industry?

On a more positive health note, a malaria vaccine is apparently coming.

The iPhone 13 Pro/Pro Max (but not the two non-Pro models) add macro. Halide, a third-party photo app, is doing machine learning to imitate macro on the non-Pros, and to make it better on the Pros.

The post is worth a skim just for the gorgeous photos alone.

Those "Sign in with…" buttons are becoming increasingly absurd.

How long until we'll see Sign in with Tinder?

On a more serious note, I never understood how you’re supposed to keep track of this. "Oh, sure, with Doodle, I use my business Microsoft account. With Trello, I don’t; I have an Atlassian account. This app is via Apple."

Even if you can manage to keep that all in your head, or perhaps in some kind of note (should this be a feature of modern password managers?), it doesn't seem like an improvement. It seems worse than having actual accounts.

Plus, there's the difficult tradeoff of security and privacy. On the one hand, yes, some Mom + Pop website is more likely to make mistakes in their security design than Facebook, so if you have a password with them, it's more likely to be stored in an unsafe manner than it would be with Facebook. On the other hand, now you're giving Facebook the piece of information that you have an account with Mom + Pop!

There are potential upsides, privacy aside, to having one central provider of your sig-ins, much like there are benefits to Apple managing all your subscriptions on your iPhone. It's nice having that one centralized overview.

But in practice, that isn't really how it works. Whom would you trust to have all that info? To both be near-flawless in security and non-abusive in privacy? Whom would you want to be the mediator of all your accounts?

So, in practice, I'm not sure this concept is a net win.

More discussion regarding the added complications of tech support.