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I relate news, Microsoft 365 has been renamed Microsoft 364, pending consideration of Microsoft 363.


I chose the article's subtitle as it is more relevant for the HN community.

I don't think any user who leaves their unsynced data sitting in a drawer for more than a year can reasonably expect it to sync to a shared database, not just because of schema incompatibility but more so because of conflict resolution (imagine expecting your PR based on a two year old git commit to be accepted to a very active project). Just give them a report of the diff (the unsynced changes) so they can redo them via the latest client manually.

Lenses make total sense. You don't have to maintain lenses for all past versions, just a rolling set with old ones scheduled for deprecation announcements and a sunset schedule.

> doesn’t it then mean that whatever process is encoded in the NN, it should both be possible to represent in some more efficient representation...?

Not if NNs are complex systems[1] whose useful behavior is emergent[2] and therefore non-reductive[3]. In fact, my belief is that if NNs and therefore also LLMs aren't these things, they can never be the basis for true AI.[4]


[1] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Complex_system

[2] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Emergence

[3] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Reductionism, https://www.encyclopedia.com/humanities/encyclopedias-almana..., https://academic.oup.com/edited-volume/34519/chapter-abstrac...

[4] Though being these things doesn't guarantee that they can be the basis for true AI either. It's a minimum requirement.

From a nine-year-old HN comment and a reply to it[0]

$12.70/month, according to that Mozilla research, is the total value of advertising per user.

> The news and other content we all enjoy on the open web is mostly underwritten by ads, as are the social networks activists use to coordinate.

And who underwrites the underwriters? We do! It's a lie that ads give people content and services for free (explained below). If Mozilla truly wants to fight for users, it needs to end its reliance on advertising revenue, and help invent honest ways for content and service creators to get paid by end users. We are a creative industry. We can find ways to do this while also keeping access open to the fraction of the population that can't afford to pay (which per below would only be people who don't buy advertised products).

I know this truth is hard to swallow for an industry that has grown so dependent on ads. As Upton Sinclair said, "It is difficult to get a man to understand something when his salary depends upon his not understanding it." But if we are to do the right thing, we have to really think about the truth:

1. The advertisers who pay web providers get their money from us, added to the prices of other things we consume. There is no free lunch.

2. The overhead cost of advertising is huge and we pay for that too.

3. We pay the opportunity cost of a product that cannot put users first because ad-supported web providers live or die by giving advertisers what they want (and what we want indirectly and secondarily). This includes both the cost of lost privacy as well as business, editorial and design decisions that optimize for advertising revenue. As has been said, they are using us as products more than treating us as their paying customers. Let me restate to be extra clear: WE are the paying customer, but we don't look like that to their finance department.

4. We pay for all the collateral damage of advertising, such as the tremendous amount of link-bait and other garbage that advertising perversely incentivizes.

5. We pay the social costs. Whether or not you agree with the social costs laid out in the above article, I'm sure most can agree democracy and the free market assume people make voting and purchasing decisions based on facts and reason. Advertising undermines democracy[1] and the free market[2]. Advertising is predominantly about manipulation and deceit. I believe the social costs are the most expensive.

Added together, we end users are paying a lot more for "free" product than if we could just straight up pay for it. And even we non-users are paying the social costs and collateral damage.

Ads are simply a sneaky and dishonest way to get at end users' money without them realizing it.


[0] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=9961761

[This is a condensed version of a more detailed case with reference links that I made here: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=7485773]

[1] You don't need me to explain. We all know that money often overwhelmingly decides who gets to run in an election, plays a big part in who wins, and influences what legislation they introduce, support or fight.

[2] http://www.chaosisgood.com/2013/03/how-advertising-undermine...

It's not just consumerism. It's selfism, of which consumerism is a subspecies. As I wrote nine (9!) years ago on this site:

Advertising is our C8. It pollutes nearly every corner of the web with deception and manipulation. It is the cause of the cancer called click-bait. It is so profitable it has given rise to factories that pump out cheap junk "content", overwhelming anything of merit on the web[1][2]. Then, to extract even more from the devil in this Faustian bargain, we invade our very customer's privacy, selling our soul twice over.

Most of us avert our eyes from this moral abdication because it funds our high salaries and our get-rich-quick startup schemes[3]. Everyone seems happy with their "free" non-stick pans and waterproof boots, so why spoil the party?

    It is difficult to get a man to understand
    something when his salary depends upon his
    not understanding it.” 
    - Upton Sinclair
[1] Most people will miss this article about C8 because it doesn't stand a chance against all the ad-supported garbage. The Intercept doesn't do click-bait. Journalism, a cornerstone of democracy, is dying. This toxin analogy is sadly too accurate.

[2] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=8585237

[3] https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=9961761

It's a longer comment, with a lot of replies.

> So what gives us the right to claim responsibility for our victories? Do we ever truly win? Or do we just get lucky sometimes?

> Well, in any given game of Probabilistic Tic-Tac-Toe you can do everything right and still lose (or do everything wrong and win.) However, the better player always rises to the top over time.

> Bad breaks are inevitable, but good judgment is always rewarded (eventually, and given enough chances.)

This assumes that everyone is on a level playing field with only non-compounding randomness preventing the better player from winning. But as you point out, luck does compound over time:

>The parents we’re born to, societal power structures... so many past events have an invisible impact on each new action we take

This is commonly known as the rich get richer and the poor get poorer, and to economists as the Matthew Effect[1].

You could try to model this in the game by having wins skew the odds of the next game in your favor. It's harder to model in a simple two person game like this... You have to persist state for a population of players over time.

I've wanted to publish alternate rules for Monopoly, where at the start of the game players don't get the same amount of cash. Cash is instead distributed according to real statistics for "birth wealth". Alternatively, your cash at the end of a game roles over into the next game.

I'd love to discuss this with you if you are interested. We might even collaborate on a future project.


[1]: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Matthew_effect

On any given day, in any police department in the nation, 15 percent of officers will do the right thing no matter what is happening. Fifteen percent of officers will abuse their authority at every opportunity. The remaining 70 percent could go either way depending on whom they are working with.

~ I'm a black ex-cop, and this is the real truth about race and policing, http://www.vox.com/2015/5/28/8661977/race-police-officer

> Fifteen percent of officers will abuse their authority at every opportunity. The remaining 70 percent could go either way depending on whom they are working with.

This is why I find it bizarre that the behavior of bad cops is minimized by calling them "a few bad apples", when the entire aphorism is "one bad apple spoils the bunch".

Because the ones saying it ARE the bad apples. It's important to realize millions of Americans see a cop pull a gun and shoot a black guy in a traffic stop after he informs the cop he owns a firearm LIKE YOU ARE SUPPOSED TO DO and just go on with their day.

It does not bother them.

I've thought of and yearned for this too. Conversely, in the winter I'd like a path with maximum sun exposure.

    There's a dark and a troubled side of life;
    There's a bright and a sunny side, too;
    Tho' we meet with the darkness and strife,
    The sunny side we also may view.

    Keep on the sunny side, always on the sunny side,
    Keep on the sunny side of life;
    It will help us every day, it will brighten all the way,
    If we keep on the sunny side of life.

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