Sleeping Cyborg

Jonathan David Page talks about whatever he happens to be thinking about. Sometimes other people join in.

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A collection of cool people and projects.

A Layperson's Guide to the Heartbleed Bug

by on 9 April 2014
in , , , ,
with some comments, maybe.

At this point, a lot of you have probably heard about the Heartbleed OpenSSL bug, which has come into the public eye to the point where the BBC reported on it. The implications have been fairly well-covered in the media: disclosure of passwords, disclosure of private keys, etc. In other words, Bad Stuff. This article aims to cover the technical details of the bug in a manner suitable to non-technical people. It may get dry. However, no previous knowledge of computers should be required.

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This Space Reconsidered

by on 5 April 2014
in ,
with some comments, maybe.

I’ve been thinking about what I want to do with this site. I’ve done a few different things with it, but none of them have really felt right. Some of you may remember that, once upon a time, back in the days of yore, this blog lived at jd-page.com. That URL still works; it just redirects here.

Since then, I’ve changed domains twice, first to blog.jd-page.com and then to its current home at sleepingcyb.org. I’ve rebuilt the entire site three times, too: I originally based the site on Textpattern, moved to Jekyll for a while, migrated to Tumblr, before coming back to Textpattern again. I’ve redesigned the look of the site too many times to count, covering everything from the industrial-inspired dark gray, lime green, and fuchsia of the original, to a fairly staid black-on-white style, to the current red-accented narrow-column presentation. It’s gone through one name change, too: the original title of the blog was “Null-String”, which was eventually changed to “Sleepying Cyborg”, to match the domain. In short, this site has been my personal playground for the past four years, and I’ve had a lot of fun with it.

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#FOSSFair2014

by on 1 March 2014
in ,
with some comments, maybe.

Tool Values Followup

by on 19 February 2014
in , ,
with some comments, maybe.

Before I continue, I’d like to credit the inestimable Ishan Raval as the “Mr. Salviati” from my previous post. During further discussion via email directly afterwards he asked:

If you think tools indeed aren’t value-neutral, then how can you justify that the loop could be broken on our end? Implicit in your making that claim is that people, through sheer will, can alter or disentangle themselves from the inherent value of a tool. Or that though tools aren’t value-neutral, the value isn’t inherent to the tool. Where do you stand?

My response at the time was:

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One Last Call

by on 11 February 2014
in , ,
with some comments, maybe.

Update, 12 Feb 2014: The banner is gone, but the tool should still be available at thedaywefightback.org for a while longer.

Sorry to belabor the point, guys, but if you haven’t contacted your representatives about the NSA yet, please do so. We need the bipartisan USA Freedom Act passed to decisively say that unwarranted mass surveillance is inappropriate behavior, and we need the FISA Improvements Act, which would make what the NSA is doing entirely legal, crushed.

For more information see thedaywefightback.org, and please, call or email your representatives! There’s a banner below which makes it super easy. You enter your phone number and zip code, and it gives you a script and connects you to their offices. When I talked to the lady at Senator Burr’s office, she mentioned that they’d gotten a lot of calls about this, so yes, we are being heard!

Again, sorry for the politi-spam, but this is really important stuff. Real content coming soon, I promise, so until then, ladies and gentlemen.

But seriously: have you called yet?

by on 11 February 2014
in , ,
with some comments, maybe.

Update, 12 Feb 2014: The banner is gone, but the tool should still be available at thedaywefightback.org for a while longer.

If you haven’t called or emailed your congresspeople about the NSA yet, please take the time to do so now. There’s a banner at the bottom of the page which you can use to automatically connect you to your congresspeople, and it gives you a script with a specific list of things that we want done to curtail this unconstitutional violation of our rights.

You can email too, but I would encourage you to call: it’s been shown to be that much more effective.

(Until next time.)

Day We Fight Back Logo Header

Today We Fight Back

by on 11 February 2014
in , ,
with some comments, maybe.

Update, 12 Feb 2014: The banner is gone, but the tool should still be available at thedaywefightback.org for a while longer.

You should be able to see a banner at the bottom of the page. I encourage you to use it to call your congresscritters and tell them that they need to tell the NSA to back off. For more information, take a look at the main site. That’s all. Until next time, ladies and gentlemen.

Twitter, Kafka, Cupcakes, Dinosaurs

by on 4 February 2014
in ,
with some comments, maybe.

Now might be a good time to mention that, if for some truly bizarre reason, you want to receive more regular updates from me, you should follow me on Twitter. If I wrote half as many words here per week as I do there per day, I would post at least twice a week. It’s pretty questionable whether that would be a good thing, but there we go.

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