Replaced the backup hard disc that died

I felt antsy only having one copy of a lot of my old files, and it's good to know they're in two places now


Crass language; Techbros 

I wish big tech companies were institutions that I could use in good conscience and trust

Imagine if you could use Google Drive for sensitive research data, or personal stuff

But I gotta go out and buy hard drives and replace them every few years as they die myself, rather than benefit from this massive organization that could easily handle all those sorts of details

All because the techbros shit the bed and built an evil empire rather than a decent public utility

Crass language; Techbros 


this is where I wish that academia could come together and actually build a fucking commons

imagine a massive nextcloud instance federated together from all unis globally. collabora online to replace google office suite. nextcloud talk to replace google meet. nextcloud deck for trello. all self-hosted in each institution and then federated to make sure people can ALWAYS talk to each other/collaborate cross-institution

(i wish this for everyone ever too)

Crass language; Techbros 

@vickysteeves @bgcarlisle We still haven't moved to free textbooks, even for introductory courses where the material hasn't changed in 50 years.

Crass language; Techbros 

@bstacey @vickysteeves @bgcarlisle
Ever since I was assigned Kenneth Waltz's Theories of Intl Politics in grad school, which is 100 pages for $80 (I relied on second-hand notes and photocopies instead), my approach has been to avoid textbooks whenever possible, sometimes creating my own intro materials.

Unfortunately, this approach doesn't scale outside the handful of topics I teach. I think it's costing textbook publishers about £20k a year for my classes.

Crass language; Techbros 

@mplouffe @vickysteeves @bgcarlisle I taught graduate-level statistical physics over the spring, and as it happened, the book chosen by my predecessor --- which I think is a good one --- wasn't really suitable for the course. It presumes more background knowledge than many of the students had, and it often doesn't spell out the intermediate steps that they'd benefit from seeing. Fine book, not matched to the audience. So, I started writing my own. I had a fair amount of material already that I could repurpose, so it wasn't completely a job from scratch.

I wish somebody would pay me for even just a semester to do nothing but write an introductory textbook for something that all physics undergrads typically take. Sadly, I don't know of any funding agencies that would give that proposal the time of day.

Crass language; Techbros 

@bstacey @vickysteeves @bgcarlisle
I've run into the same sort of problem finding a suitable econometrics text for a graduate trade-policy class. I think I'm less advanced than you when it comes to creating something new, but I think the only way this will ever get finished is from teaching the class a ton of times.

Crass language; Techbros 

@bgcarlisle honestly wish there were a good encrypted backup system for the commons that was backed by a tolerable redundancy level

I know that you can easily use syncthing to keep things up to date between as many parties as you want but there needs to be some kind of encrypted layer on top of that that's easy to use. and some dedicated folks willing to offer the hard drive space and stuff

Crass language; Techbros 

@lightdark @bgcarlisle I wouldn't trust Syncthing for that. It's okay for syncing ephemeral files, but does terrible at data safety. I lost large amounts of data because of its terrible failure modes on multiple occasions, one of which was irrecoverable loss of months' work.

Even if a perfect cheap reliable NGO backup service were available, it's too risky to not do local backups.

Crass language; Techbros 

@cadadr @bgcarlisle I've never had much of an issue with syncthing but I can imagine that being a pretty awful experience :(

Crass language; Techbros 

@lightdark @bgcarlisle Yeah, I complained longform on my blog about it but basically a couple .stfolders were deleted just out of blue and I stupidly "touch .stfolder"ed it, which was totally my mistake. But syncthing decided to just delete all my files on all repos to punish me which is not an okay failure mode at all. And totally silently at that.

Crass language; Techbros 

@bgcarlisle Techies are the mercenaries of this colonial war on users. The warlords are venture capitalists and ad networks. The moment they touch a company, any resemblance of good will is murdered (e.g. Cisco).

re: Crass language; Techbros 

@bgcarlisle the worst thing is that we've been sold "the cloud" as a commodity, like electricity coming from a wall socket

imagine if the electric sockets in your house spied on you and stole your data and sold them to the… to literally any bidder.

Umm, plenty of places let you use their stuff if you pay for it. Kind of like how utilities work…

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