Skip Navigation
InitialsDiceBearhttps://github.com/dicebear/dicebearhttps://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/„Initials” (https://github.com/dicebear/dicebear) by „DiceBear”, licensed under „CC0 1.0” (https://creativecommons.org/publicdomain/zero/1.0/)SB
sbv @sh.itjust.works
Posts 110
Comments 3.1K
The Web We Lost
  • I think this misses the cultural shift around the popularization of the web/Internet.

    There used to be a high barrier to entry for creating content. The folks who were capable and willing to surmount that barrier posted stuff that nerds like us enjoyed. It was really hard to monetize (unless porn), so it was typically free.

    Then social networks came along and made it easy for everyone to post. Just like normal society, the non-nerds started drowning out the nerdy early adopters.

    Certain networks became cool (Twitter, Medium) because cool normies were on there (aka the network effect), and that pulled many nerds of self hosted software.

    Other social networks were monetizable and incredibly accessible (YouTube), which pulled many other nerds off self hosted software.

    Proprietary networks suck morally, but they're incredibly easy to use and democratizing. That cranks their network effect to 11 and makes the old school web less rewarding.

  • xkcd #2959: Beam of Light
  • As a smooth brain, I needed the explanation:

    In this comic, we find Einstein imagining the scenario that would later help to make him famous, but before any particularly profound revelations have been established. It is currently just, so to speak, a flight of fantasy.

    In a similar vein, the Title text refers to one of the long-standing issues about the orbit of Mercury - that it doesn't quite orbit the Sun in the way that Newtonian physics would suggest. We now know that this is accounted for by General Relativity

    ngl, not my favourite xkcd, but I did learn something. Maybe a few things.

  • What Trudeau and Biden Don’t Seem to Understand | The Walrus
  • The left is waking up

    Is it tho? In a Canadian context, I only see mobilization around Culture War wedge issues that are framed by the right.

    Left leaning talking heads show up in current affairs shows, decry neoliberal policies, but that's about it. There's no mobilization around cost of living concerns, underemployment, or corporate gouging.

  • What Trudeau and Biden Don’t Seem to Understand | The Walrus
  • My ninety-two-year-old great aunt has said she’s glad she won’t be around much longer, while others in their seventies have put it more bluntly: it’s a good time to die.

    My grandfather said the same thing in the 1990s. Plus ça change.

  • What Trudeau and Biden Don’t Seem to Understand | The Walrus
  • an inability to meaningfully address the severity of our current polycrisis

    That's it, right there. People fear our quality of life is declining. Trudeau (I don't know about Biden) has failed to acknowledge the fear, and has failed to popularize policies to improve our quality of life.

    His opponents don't even need to provide solutions - they just need to admit there's a problem.

  • Those of you who don't vote, why?
  • In some Canadian municipal elections, you can vote for school board trustees.

    Before I had kids, I was too lazy to educate myself on their platforms, so I wouldn't cast a ballot. I'd rather leave it up to people who care to make the decision.

    Now that I have kids and school boards have turned into a culture war battleground, I am researching and voting.

  • Wear OS 5 prepares to add support for UWB ahead of Pixel Watch 3 launch
  • It was one of the reasons I went with a Pro. Okay, it wasn't a significant reason, but I was thinking about it.

    I was pretty disappointed when Google's Find My Network didn't support UWB on release. Here's hoping they finally support it if/when they release their own tracker in the fall.

  • Meanwhile, in cyberspace

    cross-posted from: https://lemmy.world/post/15835822

    > Door of Durin by poppel > > https://teia.art/objkt/769117/listings

    0
    www.theglobeandmail.com Facing a costly mortgage renewal, this family decided to downsize and instead saved thousands

    Selling the four-bedroom family home they bought 10 years ago will save loads of money each month

    Facing a costly mortgage renewal, this family decided to downsize and instead saved thousands

    > The family is moving to find more financial flexibility. Owning their current home is a financial burden, and the stress would only get worse with a mortgage renewal coming up soon.

    ...

    > Proceeds from the sale plus a cash top-up will mean they can live mortgage-free in their new three-bedroom townhouse. Current mortgage costs are $3,965 per month. > > As well, Ms. Deane has estimated that her family will save on electricity, heating, insurance, property taxes and maintenance. Even with strata/condo fees of $710 per month at the new place, Ms. Deane calculates overall savings of $4,640 per month.

    Props to them for making a smart move.

    5

    Ottawa taxi lawsuit finds City negligent in allowing Uber to operate in 2014

    ottawa.ctvnews.ca 'A great victory for the industry': Taxi drivers celebrate ruling that found City of Ottawa negligent in allowing Uber to operate

    An Ontario Superior Court judge has ruled that the City of Ottawa was negligent in its enforcement of the city's taxi bylaw when it allowed Uber to begin operating in 2014, harming the city's established taxi industry.

    'A great victory for the industry': Taxi drivers celebrate ruling that found City of Ottawa negligent in allowing Uber to operate

    > "The evidence establishes that the City knew that its failure to properly enforce the 2012 Bylaw would likely cause harm to the taxi industry. > > "A multinational giant was invading Ottawa, and because of the City's unpreparedness and its lack of efforts to develop a plan to enforce the 2012 Bylaw, the City's enforcement efforts against Uber drivers were ineffective."

    17
    www.theglobeandmail.com Could nurse practitioners fill the primary care gap?

    More than 6.5 million Canadians are without a family doctor. Some would like to see nurse practitioners step in to ease the crisis in primary care

    Could nurse practitioners fill the primary care gap?

    > Nurse practitioners could help fill the void, advocates for the profession say, if more provinces would adopt policies to integrate them into primary care and pay them fairly for their work. Some physicians’ organizations have pushed back against that approach, arguing that NPs don’t have as much training or education as family doctors and therefore should only be funded publicly when they’re embedded in interdisciplinary teams with MDs.

    Aren't these the same organizations that have been dragging their feet on recognizing foreign credentials?

    I've been seeing a nurse practitioner for the last couple of years. So far, she's provided the same level of care I'm used to from family doctors: prescriptions, forwarding me to specialists when appropriate, providing the usual advice during checkups. It's fine.

    https://archive.is/PkAdd

    Edit: took out my grumbly summary, since our healthcare spending seems to be middle of the pack, compared to peer countries.

    23
    jacobin.com The Canadian State Is Euthanizing Its Poor and Disabled

    Canada boasts one of the world’s highest assisted-death rates, supposedly enabling the terminally ill to die with dignity. However, this suicide program increasingly resembles a dystopian replacement for care services, exchanging social welfare for euthanasia.

    The Canadian State Is Euthanizing Its Poor and Disabled

    > In 2022, Global News said the quiet part out loud: poverty is driving disabled Canadians to consider MAiD. Those “some” who are driven to assisted death because of poverty or an inability to access adequate care deserve to live with dignity and with the resources they need to live as they wish. They should never, ever feel the pressure to choose to die because our social welfare institutions are starved and our health care system has been vandalized through years of austerity and poor management. > > Given the way our institutions and economic and political elite create and perpetuate poverty in Canada, particularly among disabled people, we should be particularly sensitive to the implications of the country’s MaiD regime for those who are often ignored when warning about the dangers of the law.

    ...

    > While MAiD may be defensible as a means for individuals to exercise personal choice in how they live and how they die when facing illness and pain, it is plainly indefensible when state-induced austerity and mismanagement leads to people choosing to end their lives that have been made unnecessarily miserable. In short, we are killing people for being poor and disabled, which is horrifying.

    9

    Anyone else doing the Loblaws boycott?

    Is anyone else boycotting Loblaws? I don't have many alternatives, but I'm doing my best to take my business elsewhere.

    43
    www.theglobeandmail.com How TD Bank got caught up in the global drug war, helping to launder hundreds of millions of dollars

    U.S. authorities believe the criminal ring laundered US$653-million between 2016 and 2021

    How TD Bank got caught up in the global drug war, helping to launder hundreds of millions of dollars

    US regulators have found evidence that TD's anti-money laundering fraud detection is insufficient

    > For months, analysts have predicted a fine in the range of US$500-million to US$1-billion, but that’s now jumped. “We believe cumulative fines could easily hit $2-billion,” Mr. Dechaine wrote.

    Meanwhile, in Canada, TD is facing record fines (archive) from Canadian regulators.

    https://archive.is/e0SGA

    5
    www.theguardian.com Teenager finds ‘holy grail’ Lego octopus from 1997 spill off Cornwall coast

    Boy discovers octopus figurine that fell from cargo ship along with 5m other Lego pieces during storm

    Teenager finds ‘holy grail’ Lego octopus from 1997 spill off Cornwall coast

    > The octopus is one of nearly 5m Lego pieces that fell into the sea in 1997 when a storm hit a cargo ship 20 miles off Land’s End, Cornwall. While 352,000 pairs of flippers, 97,500 scuba tanks, and 92,400 swords went overboard, the octopuses are considered the most prized finds as only 4,200 were onboard.

    20

    OCDSB shouldn't ax Early French Immersion

    ottawacitizen.com Côté: OCDSB shouldn't ax Early French Immersion

    Almost 70 per cent of families enrol their children in the Early French Immersion program.

    Côté: OCDSB shouldn't ax Early French Immersion

    The Ottawa Carleton District Schoolboard is winding up to drop early French immersion.

    wtf

    3

    Ottawa’s plan for a (very limited) increase in the capital gains tax? It’s a start

    www.theglobeandmail.com Opinion: Ottawa’s plan for a (very limited) increase in the capital gains tax? It’s a start

    There are lots of third rails in Canadian politics. Since governments won’t dare to go there, Tony Keller will

    Opinion: Ottawa’s plan for a (very limited) increase in the capital gains tax? It’s a start

    > Let’s start with one of the highest-voltage [third rails] in federal politics: Old Age Security. > > OAS only begins to be clawed back once a senior’s income exceeds $91,000. And payments aren’t zeroed out until income hits $148,000 – or $154,000 for those 75 and older. Senior couples earning a quarter-million dollars a year, and living mortgage-free, are getting cheques from younger and (much) lower-income taxpayers. > > That has to be fixed. The OAS threshold should be lowered – to, say, $60,000 – and the clawback sharpened, with benefits tapping out at $100,000.

    ...

    > End the capital-gains exemption for principal residences. It’s even more untouchable than OAS. It’s also more economically harmful and inequitable. > > It pumps up housing prices and pushes more and more national wealth into housing. It’s dumb economics, plus the tax break only goes to the two-thirds of families who own a home. And the richer you are, and the more home you own, the bigger the tax break. It adds up to a hyper-regressive policy to make Canada less productive.

    ...

    > Let’s restore the two percentage points of Goods and Services Tax the Harper government cut. Our tax system is too tilted to income taxes, and away from taxes on consumption. And the cut to the GST costs Ottawa about $20-billion a year. > > If the GST were raised, some of the proceeds could beef up the tax credit for low-income Canadians.

    There's some good stuff in there.

    https://archive.is/GDzQG

    12
    www.theglobeandmail.com How a ballooning public sector is reshaping Canada’s economy

    The number of workers in Canada’s public sector has soared in recent years, outpacing the private sector, but economists warn the growth of government jobs is not sustainable in the long run

    How a ballooning public sector is reshaping Canada’s economy

    Interesting article on growth in public sector jobs over the past decade. What I got from it: lots of people were hired during the pandemic to handle pandemic-related initiatives; aside from that, lots of people were hired in general; governments appear to hire in times of economic uncertainty (e.g. growth under Harper during 2008+); federal unions argue staffing levels are returning to "normal".

    But the killer is the last section where the author tries to figure out if we're getting value for money. The answer is short and sour: Canadians don't think so, and internal targets aren't being met.

    > Are Canadians getting bang for their taxpayer buck? > > ... One way to gauge that is through surveys, which doesn’t leave Canada looking good relative to its international peers. The OECD polls residents at its member countries on their satisfaction with public services such as health care and education, and between 2017 and 2022, Canada experienced the largest decline in satisfaction among G7 countries for education (from 73 to 67 per cent) while the drop in health care satisfaction matched that of the United Kingdom, but to the lowest level in the G7 (from 69 to 56 per cent). > > ... The share of respondents who said their provincial government had done a “good” or “very good” job fell overall from close to half in the first quarter of 2019 to 30 per cent at the end of 2023. Both B.C. and Quebec, two provinces that have seen public-sector job growth rise particularly quickly, registered some of the worst declines. > > ... the Office of the Parliamentary Budget Officer (PBO) reviewed four years of results reports to see how the government measured up against nearly 3,000 performance targets it had set for itself. The assessments weren’t promising. For fiscal 2021-22, roughly 25 per cent of targets were not met, up from 20 per cent in 2018-19. But that didn’t capture the full scale of the performance shortfall. One-tenth of performance targets included no information on results, while another one-third stated results would be achieved at some point in the future.

    Yeah, that mixes provincial services with federal ones.

    https://archive.is/m0qtc

    12

    What do dystopias look like in 2024?

    What's the next wave of dystopia in popular culture?

    I think the classic CRTs, mirrorshades, and black synthleather look of cyberpunk doesn't really work with our expectations in 2024.

    In the 70s and 80s, we expected acid rain, ozone holes, and lawlessness to fill our future, as companies took over from (relatively) responsible governments and civility/civilization collapsed. The outfit fit with that: keep the burning rain and sun off, while protecting against looters and raiders. Meanwhile, writers didn't see how technology would shrink and get better.

    In 2024 we expect our dystopia to be hot: the world is heating up, so black synthleather is out. Maybe mirrorshades stick around. Corporations aren't taking over any more, governments are becoming corrupt/evil (e.g. Hunger Games). And technology is tinsy tiny, verging on invisible.

    I'm thinking of the Hunger Games and Upload. (And the first five episodes of Fallout)

    10

    Feds announce $1.5b to expand affordable housing

    www.theglobeandmail.com How rental-protection funds can help stem a vanishing supply of affordable units

    Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announces creation of $1.5-billion rental protection fund to help non-profits buy affordable rental apartments when they go up for sale

    How rental-protection funds can help stem a vanishing supply of affordable units

    It's good to see some kinda/sorta/almost direct spending on affordable housing being announced:

    > Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the creation of a $1.5-billion rental protection fund that will provide a combination of loans and grants to help non-profits buy affordable rental apartments when they go up for sale.

    It's nowhere near enough, but it's better than the neoliberal tHe FrEe MaRkEt WiLl SaVe Us shoveling that both the Liberals and Conservatives have been pushing.

    The article explains how the number of homes affordable to people making $30k annually is crashing across the country (but less so in Quebec).

    https://archive.is/ocuud

    18
    www.theglobeandmail.com Consumers may grumble, but these oligopolies are great for investors

    Introducing the top stocks in sectors with limited competition

    Consumers may grumble, but these oligopolies are great for investors

    Canada: three oligopolies in a trenchcoat.

    > Bank service charges and overdraft fees can infuriate consumers, and more choices could lower their temperature. > > From the perspective of investors, though, Canada’s cozy network of oligopolies – in which a few players dominate one sector – can look very different. Slim competition can keep upstarts out and profits in, driving strong shareholder returns and attractive dividends over the long term. > > “We have a handful of oligopolies that are able to fend off new entrants (whether regional or foreign) without needing to destroy profits for an extended period of time, or where we need a government financed solution,” Ian de Verteuil, head of portfolio strategy at CIBC Capital Markets, said in an e-mail.

    https://archive.is/1BPVW

    19
    www.theglobeandmail.com There are good ways to make life more affordable for Canadians. Cutting the carbon tax isn’t one of them

    There are better ways to improve affordability, such as policies to reduce housing, child care and other major costs of living

    There are good ways to make life more affordable for Canadians. Cutting the carbon tax isn’t one of them

    > Whenever I hear politicians propose to cut the carbon price, I can’t help but think back to my childhood growing up with divorced parents. > > On the rare occasions my dad took me for weekends, he would offer me candy and let me stay up late. > > “Why can’t you be more like him?” I’d yell after returning home as my mom made me do my homework, eat vegetables and go to bed on time. > > So it is with proponents of Axe the Tax. They offer us candy, when the federal government, like my mom, expects us to live responsibly.

    ... > But a politician’s promise that pollution can be free is no more realistic than my childish fantasy that I could live on candy alone. > > We are all entangled in an energy system that helps and harms our children. While it enables us to taxi our kids around, and keep them warm, it also poisons the air they breathe, evaporates the water they need to drink and burns the forests in which they play.

    ... > To preserve summers without smoke, winters when our kids can ski, water they can drink and forests and wildlife with which they can live in awe. > > That’s why we pay for our pollution.

    This dude gets it. We need to do so much more, but walking back the carbon tax is a terrible idea.

    https://archive.is/kpZQu

    32

    Newfoundland’s Auditor-General probing province’s expensive travel nursing contracts - The Globe and Mail

    www.theglobeandmail.com Newfoundland’s Auditor-General probing province’s expensive travel nursing contracts

    The announcement arrives in the midst of an uproar in Newfoundland about the cost of travel nurses, who are hired from out of province by private, for-profit agencies

    Newfoundland’s Auditor-General probing province’s expensive travel nursing contracts

    > Toronto-based Canadian Health Labs, had inked contracts with health authorities in Newfoundland and New Brunswick, and charged rates that in many cases worked out to more than $300 an hour per nurse. That is roughly six times as much as nurses earn in the public health care system.

    We've systemically underpaid nurses for decades. We've failed to train enough nurses. Their real pay has shrunk, while their workload has grown. It isn't surprising nurses have left the public system for less shitty jobs.

    Canadaland Commons has a great interview with a nurse who has seen the decline.

    0

    Canada needs to get real about addressing the housing crisis

    www.theglobeandmail.com Opinion: Canada needs to get real about addressing the housing crisis

    We don’t just need millions of new homes - we need all of the infrastructure to support these houses

    Opinion: Canada needs to get real about addressing the housing crisis

    It feels like Canadian governments have forgotten how to plan. As the op-ed states, we don't have the sewer/water/road/fire for the 5,800,000 houses we're building by 2030. And politicians aren't budgeting for it's construction.

    In the bigger picture, we aren't training enough nurses and doctors to service our current population, let alone what our population is forecast to become. Similarly, we aren't funding post-secondary education beyond overcharging students from abroad.

    But I digress. On the housing file:

    > The politicians who are promising action to build the 5.8 million new homes Canada needs by 2030 seem to be forgetting that, unlike that log cabin, the millions of homes that are needed can’t even begin to be built without connection to the world around them, to roads, bridges, clean water, electricity and waste management. They don’t seem to be factoring in that those houses will have people in them, millions of people, who need access to hospitals and schools, to civic and recreational facilities, to public transit, to emergency services. In other words, it is not possible to build so many new homes across Canada without considering essential housing-enabling infrastructure. Yet no one is even talking about that part of the equation, let alone announcing funding for it. > > It is a significant oversight. A report by the Federation of Canadian Municipalities estimates that each new housing unit will require $107,000 in public infrastructure investment. This amounts to a total of $620-billion in new public funding needed to produce workable housing, which far outstrips currently projected investments of $245-billion.

    https://archive.is/xEIez

    20

    Westboro shooting: Woman taken to hospital following Ottawa police-involved shooting on Avondale Avenue

    ottawa.ctvnews.ca Woman critically injured in police-involved shooting in Ottawa's Westboro neighbourhood

    A woman is in critical condition in hospital following a police-involved shooting in Ottawa's Westboro neighbourhood. Emergency crews responded to a shooting in the 200 block of Avondale Avenue, near Tweedsmuir Avenue, at 1:30 p.m. on Friday.

    Woman critically injured in police-involved shooting in Ottawa's Westboro neighbourhood

    > A woman is in critical condition in hospital following a police-involved shooting in Ottawa's Westboro neighbourhood.

    1

    Ottawa police shocked, struck, kicked Black man in case of mistaken identity

    > Niyondagara, who is Black, said he was shocked with a stun gun, pinned down, struck in the face and handcuffed before police realized their mistake.

    ...

    > After some discussion about the name [of an alleged murderer], the police officer left the cruiser and soon returned to explain "that there was a misunderstanding," Niyondagara said.

    The cops then drove Niyondagara home.

    7

    Film studio aims to stir up ‘populist anger’

    www.theguardian.com Film studio from Oscar-winning director aims to stir up ‘populist anger’ over climate crisis

    Yellow Dot Studios produces short-form videos to inform with ‘genuine, righteous anger’ and ‘laugh-out-loud comedy’

    Film studio from Oscar-winning director aims to stir up ‘populist anger’ over climate crisis

    Yellow Dot studios has been releasing YouTube videos trying to mobilize "populist anger" over the climate crisis.

    3