Onno (VK6FLAB)

Anything and everything Amateur Radio and beyond. Heavily into Open Source and SDR, working on a multi band monitor and transmitter.

#geek #nerd #hamradio VK6FLAB #podcaster #australia #ITProfessional #voiceover #opentowork

  • 16 Posts
  • 315 Comments
Joined 3 months ago
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Cake day: March 4th, 2024

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  • I had no access to or use of a car until I was around 23. Up to that point I lived in a country where you could cycle for most of your daily routine, take the bus a couple of times a month and the train sporadically.

    I moved to a country where cycling was for the poor and foolhardy, me for several years, and public transport was atrocious.

    Public transport has marginally improved, my bicycle hasn’t been used for 20+ years and our household has one car.

    Learning to drive is a process. It takes time. Just like learning to fly a plane takes time. If you have a need to drive, learning how is step one. In my country even when you pass your test, you are required to keep a logbook for at least two years and drive in a variety of conditions before you can actually upgrade your probationary licence.


  • Well, that and radio waves:

    With the publication of “A Dynamical Theory of the Electromagnetic Field” in 1865, Maxwell demonstrated that electric and magnetic fields travel through space as waves moving at the speed of light. He proposed that light is an undulation in the same medium that is the cause of electric and magnetic phenomena. The unification of light and electrical phenomena led to his prediction of the existence of radio waves. Maxwell is also regarded as a founder of the modern field of electrical engineering.



  • What will it take until people get it through their thick skulls that ChatGPT isn’t intelligent, doesn’t learn and is a tool that can only generate plausible gibberish.

    Using the same tools to detect such gibberish will give you more gibberish.

    Garbage in, Garbage out has been true since the difference engine, it’s just that today the garbage smells like English words, still garbage, but not knowledge, intelligence or anything like it.

    The machine learning approach for building models, used to produce so called large language models like ChatGPT is also used to create weather forecasting models that are bigger, better and orders of magnitude faster than available until now.

    The tools have changed life, but I’m unconvinced that it’s a suitable, sustainable or realistic way to create artificial intelligence, despite claims to the contrary.


  • You need to make an effort to put yourself in places where you can meet people. Often this takes the form of finding a community with a common interest. This could be a hobby, a lecture, a course, book club, gardening, etc.

    Other places where you meet people can be a workplace, a volunteering effort, social gatherings like listening to a band, orchestra or a play.

    You can go to the local coffee shop and spend time there watching people. If you do this regularly, you’re likely to meet people whom you can talk to and interact with.

    If you already know people, acquaintances, then organise or participate in activities with them.

    Social media is an add-on to life, not life itself.

    The way to make friends is essentially finding ways to interact with other humans, preferably in places where you like to enjoy yourself.






  • Based on what you wrote, referencing burnout, I suspect that the issue isn’t that you need a hobby, it’s that you need to make time to do nothing at all.

    Go for walks in nature, away from technology, walk alone or with friends, laugh, tell stories, share secrets and dreams.

    The more you do, the more resilience builds up, the better you can cope with stress and work.

    Only then might you find joy in a hobby. For me it was Amateur Radio, but it might be different for you.



  • In my opinion, you’re solving the wrong problem with the wrong solution.

    The user base for Canonical, Red Hat and SUSE is not the general public watching traditional TV to decide that they want to install Linux across their enterprise data centre, it’s ICT professionals who talk to other ICT professionals and read white papers and implementation guidelines, then pay installation, management and subscription fees to get ongoing support across their shiny new data centre.

    Growing the user base with mums and dads is not something that Linux vendors are interested in, since it only costs money instead of generating an income stream.

    Linux as a commodity comes from rolling out Android phones and tablets, from deploying embedded Linux on network routers, security cameras, in-car entertainment systems, set top boxes, etc.

    The final hurdle for general desktop Linux is not resolved by getting more users through advertising, it’s through having a product that can be purchased. Chromebooks were promising, but missed the mark.

    System76 are trying, but the scale is too small and Linux isn’t ready as a general computing platform yet. I say that having been a Linux user for 25 years.

    If you don’t agree with that last statement, consider what all computer manufacturers would do at the drop of a hat if they thought it would be cheaper, they’d drop Windows like the hot mess it is.

    Unfortunately, it’s still cheaper to pay the Microsoft tax because the associated support network is already in place for the general public.

    That’s not there, yet, for Linux.

    It remains to be seen if ever will be.



  • There is a growing trend where organisations are strictly limiting the amount of information that they disclose in relation to a data breach. Linked is an ongoing example of such a drip feed of PR friendly motherhood statements.

    As an ICT professional with 40 years experience, I’m aware that there’s a massive gap between disclosing how something was compromised, versus what data was exfiltrated.

    For example, the fact that the linked organisation disclosed that their VoIP phone system was affected points to a significant breach, but there is no disclosure in relation to what personal information was affected.

    For example, that particular organisation also has the global headquarters of a different organisation in their building, and has, at least in the past, had common office bearers. Was any data in that organisation affected?

    My question is this:

    What should be disclosed and what might come as a post mortem after systems have been secured restored?





  • Yeah, that’s never going to happen.

    The media is too centralised, owned by too few people with too much money and an agenda to run the world.

    We were raised with the notion that information must be free, but forgot to figure out how to pay for food for the ones producing that information.

    Once the rivers of gold (real-estate advertising and pages and pages of personal adverts) dried up, journalism was doomed and freedom of the press with it.

    The closest we still have is public broadcasting, but that is being decimated by Neo Liberal claptrap beholden to interest groups.

    If we don’t figure this out soon, democracy as we know it will vanish, if it isn’t too late already.