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Author: kris

Self-Hosted WordPress and GDPR compliance

So I started this blog after being a long time “Google+ only” publisher, and now GDPR is coming.

I have looked into making this wordpress instance GDPR compliance, but it’s no fun. The webfonts are easy, but “no more Youtube embeds without a consent orgy” is no fun, and losing the Google/Facebook/Twitter SSO integration will basically lose all mobile users (80% or so of all readers).

The easiest way to get GDPR compliance is to move back to Google+ only, or to move this blog to or to

What migration target do you prefer (running a self-hosted instance is not an option for me after May, 25)?


Harbebrained Battletech

So two days ago Harebrained Schemes’ Battletech came out. Harebrained Schemes is an Indie Game Dev Studio from Seattle, previously known for the very successful Shadowrun Games.

I found time to play the intro and the first few chapters in the campaign, and the game is exceptionally nice. It feels like one of those over designed simulation games, where you can minmax the player characters and their gear to the limit, but the computer is taking over the task of all the bookkeeping, so the paperwork is not going to pull you down.


Donaldism is what happens, …

Donaldism (Wikipedia de en) ist what happens, if you science the shit out of the work of Carl Barks and Erika Fuchs, using the framework of your chosen profession.

This particular work deals with The Law and Ducktown, and reveals Ducktown to be actual Sin City.

The Wikipedia article of the english Wikipedia is actually quite bad, and in parts outright wrong. The german Wikipedia nails it. That’s rare.

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TIL there is no Google Spaces any more

TIL Google shut down Spaces on April, 17th. That was 2017, though.

I just had a discussion about a bunch of people getting excited about “Chat”, Googles new upcoming Chat client based on Joyn. And we listed Talk, Hangouts, Allo and Duo, as well as Spaces and Wave as being interactive chat-like things that nobody uses.

Joyn is based on a standard from 2008, initiated by the late Nokia. It’s currently on it’s fifth major revision and has zero adoption, zero encryption and an intransparent cost – it’s implemented by each telco, with each telco providing it’s own implementation and gateways, and cost model, which may be charging only for the bytes, or like SMS for each message element. Also, each telcos message server intercepts all messages in the clear, by design.

Anyway, speaking about Spaces, I checked the site and learned that it was shut down on April, 17th. 2017. One year ago. Literally nobody noticed.

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Things you cannot say on Facebook, SQL Edition

EDIT: This is now fixed. Facebook worked on the bug report and fixed the problem within 72 hours, including rollout.

Where I work, I am using an instance of Facebook at Work to communicate with colleagues. That is basically a grey-styled instance of Facebook which is supposed to run a forked codebase on isolated servers.

Today, it would not let me write the following SQL in Chat, in Facebook notes or comments:

Other versions of the error message complain about it being Spam, or mention the string as being problematic.

Why is that?


beep, patch and ed

So a few days ago, somebody found an exploit in beep – now CVE-2018-0492. beep is a program that is part of Debian (and Ubuntu) to have the PC speaker multiple times, at different frequencies, with different pauses and beep lengths. That works just fine.

It’s also SUID root.

There is zero code in it that deals with the fact that it may run privileged. The author confidently writes:

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Paw is nice

Paw is a graphical curl with JSON decoder and a bunch of code generators.

Paw is a nice graphical curl with a JSON decoder and a bunch of code generators. If you want to test or explore a REST API, it’s really helpful.

So let’s autogenerate Grafana Dashboards from config data in a MySQL using Python now.

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Hashes in Structures

In Hashes and their uses we have been talking about hash functions in general, and cryptographic hashes in particular. We wanted four things from cryptographic hashes:

  1. The hash should be fast to calculate on a large string of bytes.
  2. The hash is slow to reverse (i.e. only by trying all messages and checking each result).
  3. The hash is slow to find collisions for (i.e. it’s hard to find two input strings that have the same hash value).
  4. The hash does chaotically cascade changes (i.e. a single bit flip in the original message does flip many bits in the hash value).

With these things and general cryptography we can built three very versatile things that see many applications: Digital signatures, eternal logfiles (“blockchains”) and hash trees (“torrents”).