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The Pensieve

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09/2017: Thoughts on service abuse prevention by phone numbers

Lately, I see a trend in services requiring users verifying phone numbers to register, such as Gmail. Giving Google (and many other services that do it) the benefit of the doubt, I think the requirement is because phone numbers seem to be a pretty good proxy to prevent service abuse. Phone numbers are a limited reso...

04/2017: GNU/Linux, honestly, why?

Recently someone contacted me to ask why should they use GNU/Linux. So I replied below, and reposting it with the hope that someone out there will find it useful.

04/2017: Reflections on my trip to the Google campus, and other unimportant stuff

I went to Google last week for an on-site interview and have just heard back that I failed fair and square. I learned quite a bit of what a company like them looked for so hopefully I will look more intelligent in the future. This was my first interview with a big company and missteps were to be expected and there i...

02/2017: My issue with Facebook

I used to have at least one active a Facebook account, because of its conveniences, despite many ethical problems associated with using (or being used by) Facebook. But my biggest concern with Facebook is that it is actually not a “social network,” because it actually does not facilitate sharing.

01/2017: Bufferbloat in layman's terms and router hacking, 101

TL,DR: If you play games or do voice/video chat, then the latency figure is what you need to pay attention to instead of the bandwidth figure. If the connection to your router is consistently good, yet your internet seems slow at unpredictable times, then you might have the symptom so-called bufferbloat. You will ne...

01/2017: 2017 resolution: No smartphone

One of the highlights of 2016 to me was how remarkably wonderful smartphones are. I had a Google Nexus 5x, then switched to a Google Pixel when it came out. The Pixel phone was one of the best phones I could get, it has the best processor, the best high-res screen, the best camera of all phones, and the purest and s...

12/2016: Notes on getting LEDE/OpenWRT to work on the Netgear WNR2000V1 router

The State of the Union regarding custom firmwares for home routers: Custom firmwares are no strangers to home networking enthusiasts. They offer several advantages compared to stock firmwares in many cases: Security, stabilizability, performance, and features – all long after manufacturers abandon the routers. Last ...

02/2016: New blog

I’m finally migrating my blog to Jekyll and github pages. As my previous setup – oryza – was inspired by jekyll, so the move wasn’t horrible and only took a day. I now don’t depend on my raspberry pi/oryza daemon working correctly all the times anymore, which is a good thing.

07/2015: Linear Edit Distance/Needleman-Wunsch calculation in Javascript

The project I am working on requires me to make a function to calculate edit distance between two arbitrary sentences. I just happen to have a very good understand on this topic and hereby write a function to do just that, in linear memory requirement, in other words Hirschberg’s algorithm. I actually have a much be...

08/2014: Unbricking the C720 Chromebook with the BeagleBone Black or Raspberry Pi

As a regular Linux user, I am extremely happy with the Acer Chromebook C720 that I bought almost 1 year ago. The Chromebook line is one of the more libre lines of laptops that is not compromising on features, power or price. With some fixable quirks, it runs Linux (in my case, Kubuntu) almost flawlessly out of the b...

07/2013: Chumby, revisited with Bittorrent Sync

Remember the good-looking, ill-fated Chumby? The company went under on December 2011 and shut down their “cloud” services on February 2013, rendering all devices a dumb calendar widget making everyone sad.

03/2013: Streaming keygen music from my Raspberry Pi

Since I have my Raspberry Pi “server” in my butt the cloud co-lo’ed in Austria (thanks to EDIS), I wanted to make it a media server that is accessible anywhere, and supports streaming music to my computers at work as well as my Android phone.