if you actually know me, online or IRL, now is the time to find out where the fabulous new installment of weierstrass' blog is going to appear.




partly because i haven't posted here for a while anyway, and partly because i am fed up with Google, and don't wish to use their logon system to use Blogger, this blog is now defunct.
i might still post here once or twice, in case there's somewhere else on the internet i will be writing at, to let all my faithful readers know about the next episode. or maybe i'll just tell you all IRL.
google's attitude to privacy has raised concerns among many, including the EU and the German govt. i do not want to be identified and logged on to Google when i search, not just because i'm paranoid, but because i don't want to receive search results that have been tailored to 'my needs'. i preferred google, and it was more useful, when everyone could be sure to see the same hits for the same search terms. in the early (for me at least) days of the web, they achieved huge success through word of mouth by just having a great text search when the other search engines like yahoo were trying to be 'portals' - one-stop-shops for all your internet advertising needs.
instead of improving search - which desperately needs to be done - special characters, deeper levels of 'trust' and 'relevance' networks, better context guessing, better phrase matching, they are trying to be the next big thing in advertising. and the next big thing is targeting - using every piece of information you have about someone to spam them with the ads they are most likely to click on.
because comment spam threatened their business model, they created a solution which didn't fix comment spam, did keep it out of their algorithms, but at the price of also excluding all links posted in all blogs and forums. Google now have no incentive whatsoever to make search better, because they don't make any money unless you click the ads on the right. the only purpose to search is to find out what you're interested in, so they can target ads at you everywhere else on the web you visit. their incentive could have been competition, but the competition isn't about good quality search anymore, it's about who can make their search the default on the most browsers. there's a war going on and it's not about organising the world's information, it's about selling to the people who don't understand the difference between an address bar and a search box.
so, anyway, thanks all for your attention, google are evil, see you soon.



traffic light control box operation modes



brilliant analogy

[1] It doesn't take a conscious effort to make software incompatible. All you have to do is not work too hard at fixing bugs—which, if you're a big company, you produce in copious quantities. The situation is exactly analogous to the writing of bogus literary theorists. Most don't try to be obscure; they just don't make an effort to be clear. It wouldn't pay.

From Paul Graham's new essay "Microsoft are Dead and They Suck"




The design and manufacture of all equipment intended for installation
and operation at the roadside shall take account of the heavy day-to-
day wear and tear, including wanton vandalism, to which street
furniture is inevitably exposed.

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