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Hasnain says:

“During the COVID-19 pandemic, when millions of professionals suddenly began working from home, some employers rolled out software that captured screenshots of their employees’ computers and algorithmically scored their productivity. It’s easy to imagine how the current boom in generative AI could build on these foundations: For example, large language models could digest every email and Slack message written by employees to provide managers with summaries of workers’ productivity, work habits, and emotions. These types of technologies not only pose harm to people’s dignity, autonomy, and job satisfaction, they also create information asymmetry that limits people’s ability to challenge or negotiate the terms of their work.

We can’t let it come to that. The battles that gig workers are fighting are the leading front in the larger war for workplace rights, which will affect all of us. The time to define the terms of our relationship with algorithms is right now.”

Posted on 2024-07-07T02:33:16+0000

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Gloom about the ‘day after’ the Gaza war pervasive among Mideast scholars | Brookings

A new survey of Middle East scholars suggests that a two-state solution to the horrific devastation of the Gaza war is highly unlikely.

Click to view the original at brookings.edu

Hasnain says:

“Their assessment of the resultant reality is equally dark: Respondents describe Israeli actions in damning terms, with 41% saying they constitute major war crimes akin to genocide, nearly 34% saying they constitute genocide, and 16% saying they are not akin to genocide, but are still major war crimes. While these views may seem surprising, they are not markedly different from the views of some segments of the American public, especially Democrats, with one recent poll showing a majority of Democrats saying Israeli actions amounted to genocide.”

Posted on 2024-07-07T00:50:46+0000

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FIFO queues are all you need for cache eviction

FIFO queues are all you need for cache eviction Computer Systems Cache · August 01, 2023 · by Juncheng Yang More information can be found at https://s3fifo.com EDIT: Many people have noticed a bug in pseudocode of the original blog post when S3-FIFO was posted on lobste.rs. This post has been upda...

Click to view the original at blog.jasony.me

Hasnain says:

Yay for caches. And simplicity.

“We demonstrate that a cache often experiences a higher one-hit-wonder ratio than common full trace analysis. Our study on 6594 traces reveals that quickly removing one-hit wonders (quick demotion) is the secret weapon of many advanced algorithms. Motivated by this, we design S3-FIFO, a Simple and Scalable cache eviction algorithm composed of only Static FIFO queues. Our evaluation shows that S3-FIFO achieves better and more robust efficiency than state-of-the-art algorithms. Meanwhile, it is more scalable than LRU-based algorithms.”

Posted on 2024-07-07T00:48:39+0000

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Synchronization is bad for scale

In the early days of Mailgun I started working on a distributed lock service. Something I had worked on briefly at Rackspace. Even as I implemented the thing, I had the sneaky suspicion that it was a bad idea.

Click to view the original at wippler.dev

Hasnain says:

“Since synchronization is literally built into the database, it’s very tempting to use the Database and the transactions they provide as the synchronization point for EVERYTHING. I would advise caution here, because the database is an expensive part of; and often is THE MOST EXPENSIVE part of your infrastructure. It’s better suited for storing bits on disk, than for synchronizing all of the things for you. If you rely on the DB for synchronization, you will inevitably need to shard and rebalance your database in order to continue scaling, and BTW, you are scaling the most expensive part of your infra.”

Posted on 2024-07-06T22:00:22+0000

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I Have No Constructor, and I Must Initialize

It has been three days. The room is cold and dark, but your screens are blinding. You feel disoriented as you come in and out of dissociative episodes. Now and again, you laugh, to no accompaniment. Why are you here? Was this your fault?

Click to view the original at consteval.ca

Hasnain says:

“That should be most of it. I mean, there are special initialization rules for static variables (constant initialization included), but, like, do you really care? In my humble opinion, here’s the key takeaway: just write your own fucking constructors! You see all that nonsense? Almost completely avoidable if you had just written your own fucking constructors. Don’t let the compiler figure it out for you. You’re the one in control here. Or is it that you think you’re being cute? You just added six instances of undefined behaviour to your company’s codebase, and now twenty Russian hackers are fighting to pwn your app first. Are you stupid? What’s the matter with you? What were you thinking? God.”

Posted on 2024-07-06T06:23:19+0000

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Beating NumPy’s matrix multiplication in 150 lines of C code

TL;DR The code from the tutorial is available at matmul.c. This blog post is the result of my attempt to implement high-performance matrix multiplication on CPU while keeping the code simple, portable and scalable. The implementation follows the BLIS design, works for arbitrary matrix sizes, and, wh...

Click to view the original at salykova.github.io

Hasnain says:

“TL;DR The code from the tutorial is available at matmul.c. This blog post is the result of my attempt to implement high-performance matrix multiplication on CPU while keeping the code simple, portable and scalable. The implementation follows the BLIS design, works for arbitrary matrix sizes, and, when fine-tuned for an AMD Ryzen 7700 (8 cores), outperforms NumPy (=OpenBLAS), achieving over 1 TFLOPS of peak performance across a wide range of matrix sizes.”

Posted on 2024-07-05T00:21:31+0000

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How Uber Migrated Financial Data from DynamoDB to Docstore

Introduction: Each day, Uber moves millions of people around the world and delivers tens of millions of food and grocery orders. This generates a large number of financial transactions that need to be stored with provable completeness, consistency, and compliance. LedgerStore is an immutable, ledger...

Click to view the original at uber.com

Hasnain says:

This is how we measured the success of this critical project:

* Not a single production incident, given how critical money movement is for Uber
* We didn’t have to rollback the migration for a single table
* We backfilled 250 billion unique records and not a single data inconsistency has been detected so far, with the new architecture in production for over 6 months
* Our new data model reduced complexity in the query path, and we observed latency improvements in both read and write path on Docstore
* The project also resulted in technology consolidation, reducing external dependencies

From a business impact perspective, operating LedgerStore is now very cost effective due to reduced spend on DynamoDB. The estimated yearly savings are $6 million per year, and we also laid the foundation for such other future initiatives.

Posted on 2024-07-04T22:45:32+0000

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Hasnain says:

“If you ever see someone advertise a language feature as “everything is an X”, your first reaction should probably be healthy skepticism, rather than delight. Programming languages generally tend to draw distinctions between distinct things for good reasons.

The C++ committee added concepts after decades of pain with templates, and even these do not overcome all the problems mentioned above. I would not be surprised to see Zig add a similar system (likely with its own twist to it) at some point if it keeps growing in usage.”

Posted on 2024-07-04T02:33:42+0000

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Gender Quotas and the Crisis of the Mediocre Man

Quotas aren't anathema to meritocracy: they increase competence levels by displacing mediocre men, write Tim Besley, Olle Folke, Torsten Persson and Johanna Rickne. A common criticism against gender quotas is that they are anathema to meritocratic principles. This research on Sweden shows that the o...

Click to view the original at globalpolicyjournal.com

Hasnain says:

“Within each local party, we compare the proportion of competent politicians in elections after the quota to the 1991 level. The figure below show some striking results. The left panel illustrates our estimates for politicians of both genders with black dots showing the change in the proportion of competent representatives in a party which is forced to increase their share of women (by 100 percentage points). The right panel splits the results by men and women (blue dots for men and pink dots for women). It shows distinctly that the average competence of male politicians increased in the places where the quota had a larger impact, and that the effect is concentrated to the three elections following the quota. On average, a higher female representation by 10 percentage points raised the proportion of competent men by 3 percentage points! For the competence of women, we observe little discernible effect.”

Posted on 2024-07-02T15:32:57+0000

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The 'soft dictatorship' of this Supreme Court

With the nine justices reconvened for the fall term, SFGATE columnist Drew Magary is here to remind us all to stay angry and demand change.

Click to view the original at sfgate.com

Hasnain says:

From October. Prescient.

“The momentum is there, but only if you stay angry. Given this court’s pattern of behavior, that shouldn’t be hard for you to do. Don’t treat these judges with respect, and don’t allow our elected representatives to treat them with respect, either. Tell those reps that this court isn’t legitimate. It’s vile, evil and must be destroyed. Never stop saying it to them.”

Posted on 2024-07-02T02:44:03+0000