Issue 1352 - Tuesday 27th April, 2021

In Today's Issue

The News

Basecamp thinks banning political discussion in the work group chat is a good idea

Jason Fried, Basecamp's CEO (a project management tool & the company responsible for trendy email app Hey) latest blog post proclaims there will be "no more societal and political discussions on our company Basecamp account". He argues "it's become too much. It's a major distraction. It saps our energy, and redirects our dialog towards dark places. It's not healthy, it hasn't served us well". Basecamp partner David Heinemeier Hansson elaborates, saying he's all for political causes, "just don't bring it into the internal communication platforms we use for work, unless it directly relates to our business". Kinda weird thing to bring up all of a sudden - which one of them got roasted in the work group chat I wonder?

iOS 14.5 brings anti-Facebook feature & macOS 11.3 fixes a huge Gatekeeper bug

Big day for Apple updates. iOS 14.5 is finally out and introduces the feature Facebook and other grubby advertisers have been fearing - App Tracking Transparency. The New York Times has a good article explaining why Facebook and Apple are now sworn enemies. Also in iOS 14.5 is the ability to set a default music player in Siri (Spotify is happy), new Shortcut actions and the ability to use an Apple Watch to unlock your phone if you're wearing a face mask (hello West Australians). The other big update is macOS 11.3. It fixes a significant bug in Gatekeeper that's already getting exploited in the wild and is a piece of piss to leverage.

Linux foundation pissed off researchers experimented with kernel maintainers without permission

Three University of Minnesota researchers recently got busted experimenting with Linux kernel maintainers without their consent. Unsurprisingly, the kernel maintainers are not happy about being lab rats in an unapproved experiment to test if a malicious actor could insert vulnerabilities in what is a pretty damn important piece of software. Despite an apology from the UMN research team responsible (which was more of an explanation than an apology to be honest), the Linux Foundation is demanding a list of all the code UMN managed to sneak past the maintainers so they can get it out of the Linux kernel and for the paper to be withdrawn from formal publication.

Something I Saw On The Internet

Tedium is still a very good email newsletter

Ernie over at Tedium has been on a roll lately, putting out some blog posts that I wish I wrote. He ponders why tech companies pander to the lowest common denominator instead of indulging the power users that love their products, using Facebook Paper, Google Inbox and Final Cut Pro 7 as examples. There's a great reminiscing about Novell, a company that was big in the early 90s mostly known for their network operating system NetWare. Unbeknown to me they almost got Apple to port MacOS to x86 back in 1992! Finally, Ernie tells the story of how the LCD displays we take for granted now were invented by Americans in the 70s, but they totally failed to capitalise on the invention, leaving the door open to the Japanese to pioneer it and make all the money.


The End

📻 You're standing on my neck (Splendora cover) - Destructo Disk

😎 The Sizzle is curated by Anthony "@decryption" Agius and emailed every weekday afternoon.

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The Sizzle is created on Wathaurong land and acknowledges the traditional owners of country throughout Australia, recognising their continuing connection to land, water and community. I pay my respect to them and their cultures and to elders both past and present.‚Äč