webshit weekly

An annotated digest of the top "Hacker" "News" posts for the first week of October, 2020.

My friend starts her job today, after learning to program in prison
October 01, 2020 (comments)
A Bay Area company hires a programmer with an unusual background: someone who has actually studied software engineering. Several Hackernews have attempted this, and met with mixed results. The other Hackernews gather around to incorrect each other about why, exactly, companies might shitcan an otherwise-qualified candidate. While a very few Hackernews have productive suggestions regarding ways to help fellow human beings not die in poverty, for the most part the comment threads constitute a series of defenses on why basically everyone on earth is unemployable for some reason or another. There is nothing we can do about this, reasons Hackernews, because any attempt to improve anything at all won't immediately fix all problems and is therefore not worth pursuing. Ban the box, you shits.

What is the best dumb TV?
October 02, 2020 (comments)
A spam blog would like to earn a commission by linking to Amazon.com. Hackernews would like some other dumb products. One third of their comments are about microwaves.

Honda quits F1, invests in carbon-free tech instead
October 03, 2020 (comments)
Honda, desperately searching for a way to avoid filling Formula 1 headlines with reports of embarrassing engine failures, suddenly realizes it already had a plan that worked for it in the past: giving up and going home. Hackernews is mad that Honda claimed they're leaving because of fossil fuel concerns instead of because Honda makes shit engines that can't win races. The rest of the comments are Hackernews typing in the same complaints about F1 racing as other web forums do every day, except now they're suddenly interspersed with comments from people who think all sports are stupid or people who are amazed to 'discover' that automotive engineers use computers.

French bar owners arrested for offering free WiFi but not keeping logs
October 04, 2020 (comments)
The French government black-bags some recalcitrant citizenry who refuse to narc on their patrons. Hackernews muses on the morality of government, and has many suggestions on how to make it truly just, most of which are based on common software-as-a-service terms and conditions. Most of the rest of the comments are trying to figure out why France hates bars. Later, the "why aren't laws written like computer programs" assholes show up.

Missing Covid-19 test data was caused by the ill-thought-out use of Excel
October 05, 2020 (comments)
Microsoft Office singlehandedly reduces the COVID-19 infection rate in the United Kingdom. Hackernews lists every single inconvenience they have ever suffered at the hands of Microsoft Excel. Other Hackernews insist that the first group is just holding it wrong. There follows a really long and completely uninteresting dialectic regarding authorial intent as applied to computer programs.

Trump administration announces overhaul of H1B visa program requiring higher pay
October 06, 2020 (comments)
The Department of Homeland Security decides to give some people a raise. Hackernews struggles with understanding nonimmigrant visas in terms other than purely economic, and keeps stumbling across the fact that the holders of these visas are human actual beings. The comment threads are therefore a collaboration wherein Hackernews attempts to ascertain exactly which of and to what degree those human beings can go fuck themselves. The hall monitor shows up to point out that the "Hacker" "News" forum software is incapable of handling more than a couple hundred comments, and there are in fact several pages of pointless bickering, which is very important information.

Recycling was a lie to sell more plastic, recycling industry veteran says
October 07, 2020 (comments)
The Canadian Broadcasting Corporation reports news that the Pacific Ocean has known for decades. Hackernews knew it all along, even though they had previously based their opinions on childlike misinterpretations of accounting practices instead of actual information about the industry in question. Once again, this problem is declared intractable: any possible improvement falls short of perfection, and thus must be ridiculed as infeasible. The most Hackernewsest thought process comes from the moron who scoffs at "washing bottles for reuse" as a waste of energy, when you can just make new petroleum-based plastic bottles instead.