I stand in full support of the Free Software Foundation and its ethical and moral stance on free software. I oppose the misguided recent attacks against Richard M. Stallman, the accusations against whom are baseless and lacking in factual evidence. I am a signatory to the open letter in support of Richard M. Stallman.

How to waste your career, one comfortable year at a time

One common trait I’ve observed in all great engineers is their sense of adventure. People who pigeonhole themselves into a specialty and do the exact same job for years tend to grow complacent. The problem is that stability is an innate human instinct. So you need to deliberately counterbalance this tendency. Taking risks and being uncomfortable is a muscle you have to train.

A friend of mine told me this story about wild ducks — Wild ducks migrate in the winter not because of the cold but because of the food. If you feed them, they won’t migrate. Keep feeding them for a few years in a row, still won’t migrate. Then stop all of a sudden, they won’t migrate, and they’ll die. The moral is that you can tame wild ducks, but you can’t wildify tamed ducks (that’s why there isn’t even such a word as wildify). So you have to be careful not to lose that hustle.

Apoorva Govind

QEMU and macOS Big Sur

QEMU logo

If you try to run QEMU under macOS Big Mac Sur with the -machine accel=hvf flag (basically with Apple’s Hypervisor Framework ) you’ll get one ugly error; every time hv_vm_create() runs it returns an HV_ERROR. The reason is that the com.apple.vm.hypervisor entitlement (used in macOS 10.15) has been deprecated and replaced by com.apple.security.hypervisor.

You need to sign your binary with the correct entitlement. Add the XML below to an entitlements.xml file.

<?xml version="1.0" encoding="UTF-8"?>
<!DOCTYPE plist PUBLIC "-//Apple//DTD PLIST 1.0//EN" 
<plist version="1.0">

After that, sign the QEMU binary with the entitlements.xml file.

$ codesign -s - --entitlements entitlements.xml --force /usr/local/bin/qemu-system-x86_64

Starting QEMU with -machine accel=hvf will work now.

Why Do We Assume Extraterrestrials Might Want to Visit Us?

It is presumptuous to assume that we are worthy of special attention from advanced species in the Milky Way. We may be a phenomenon as uninteresting to them as ants are to us; after all, when we’re walking down the sidewalk we rarely if ever examine every ant along our path.

Our sun formed at the tail end of the star formation history of the universe. Most stars are billions of years older than ours. So much older, in fact that many sunlike stars have already consumed their nuclear fuel and cooled off to a compact Earth-size remnant known as a white dwarf. We also learned recently that of order half of all sunlike stars host an Earth-size planet in their habitable zone, allowing for liquid water and for the chemistry of life.

Avi Loeb

Building mkp224o on macOS

mkp224o is a vanity address generator for ed25519 onion services. This tool generates vanity ed25519 (hidden service version 3 , formely known as proposal 224) onion addresses. Github

Make sure you have Homebrew installed and start by installing the dependencies:

$ brew install autoconf make libsodium

Clone the repo:

$ git clone https://github.com/cathugger/mkp224o

Aldous Huxley interview

Aldous Huxley interviewed by Mike Wallace in 1958, Huxley shares his visions and fears for this brave new world: the difficulties and dangers of world overpopulation; the tendency towards distinctly hierarchical social organisation; the crucial importance of evaluating the use of technology in mass societies susceptible to persuasion; the tendency to promote modern politicians to a naive public as well-marketed commodities.