Updates to the Acceptable Use Policy

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Updates to the Acceptable Use Policy

I've made some updates to the Acceptable Use Policy. The new rule changes clarify that usernames on this forum take precedence over usernames on other Applefritter services:

3.e. The user who registers a username at www.applefritter.com has the right to that username on other Applefritter services, even if the other registration predates the registration at www.applefritter.com.

 

I also added a new section about outside linking, to address issues we're running into with older posts:

1. Long-Term Viability:

a. This website is intended as a perpetual resource. When creating a post, try to include context that will help it remain useful 10, 50, and 100 years from now.

b. Do not link to remote images. Please upload them directly.

c. If you're linking to remote content of your own, or to content shared under a Free license, whenever possible, please also upload it directly to the discussion thread. This is encouraged even for large content, such as videos.

d. If you're concerned about how uploading the content might affect your personal site's popularity or pagerank, it's acceptable to obscure the content when uploading here. For example, instead of embedding a video, you could attach a zip archive containing it. The goal is preservation.

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But beware of slow uploads!

c. If you're linking to remote content of your own, or to content shared under a Free license, whenever possible, please also upload it directly to the discussion thread. This is encouraged even for large content, such as videos.

Ok, that's a sensible goal.

I went back and uploaded media to this AppleFritter blogpost about a music generator.  I had previously failed to upload the media when I originally created the blogpost, so it just had an off-site link to YouTube.   I think I just hadn't allowed enough time for the file to upload.

NOTE TO ANYONE UPLOADING MEDIA: Large files can take a long time without any visible signs of progress -- just click the NEXT button and wait as many minutes as required until the screen changes.  (The UPLOAD button didn't work for me, but the NEXT button eventually did.)

 

Question: I want to save/share the MIDI files from Ultima V for posterity, but the media browser doesn't support .MID files.  These are especially novel files because they were created before widespread adoption of  General Midi so the game's built-in player wasn't capable of performing them as-intended.  (eg: percussion is  inadvertently converted into arbitrary musical notes)  Should I just upload them in one giant ZIP file attachment, or is there a way of uploading .MID via the media browser?

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Thanks, S.Elliot. We have a

Thanks, S.Elliot. We have a big drupal upgrade coming as soon as the server move is complete. I'm hoping we can make a lot of UI improvements at that point.

 

Uploads of files with uncommon extensions will remain an issue, though. There are security concerns with allowing all file extensions, although there is a module to allow it. Specifying every possible file extension is impossible for a site like Applefritter, but if you have a big project planned and need a certain extension, ask me, and I can add it. The alternative, like you suggested is to zip files before uploading.

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Hope and disappointment...
Tom Owad wrote:

Uploads of files with uncommon extensions will remain an issue, though. There are security concerns with allowing all file extensions, although there is a module to allow it. Specifying every possible file extension is impossible for a site like Applefritter, but if you have a big project planned and need a certain extension, ask me, and I can add it. The alternative, like you suggested is to zip files before uploading.

Ooo...better still...I can capture and share recordings via the media browser, and put the MIDI files in a zip for academic interest and preseervation.

This is a much better approach because your average user won't be able to use the MIDI files anyway...but most users can play recordings of them.

Here's a summary/preview of what I intend to share...

[Edit: I'm also using this as an opportunity to practice how I would share these files.  It didn't work...please see note at the bottom.]

 

  • In 1988, Lord British published Ultima V: Warriors of Destiny with an optional musical score.  If you owned a Passport MIDI Interface  you could configure the game to perform its music through an external synthesizer.  That was 3 years before General MIDI was adopted, so MIDI devices were not widely interoperable yet.  Consequently, Ultima V: Warriors of Destiny required the user to specify one functional MIDI channel and choose one musical instrument for each song.

Ultima V: Warriors of Destiny

From Apple II, through MIDI channel 2

  • Trumpet

 

 

That sounds really impressive for a computer game soundtrack...but it's especially impressive for an Apple II game, isn't it?  Well...hold on to your hat!

 

  • In 1993, I investigated an oddity in the musical scores -- although it played through just one MIDI channel, with all parts sharing just one musical instrument for each song, the data contained ten distinct track numbers from the composer's mix.  That's weird.  Curious, I connected the MIDI cable to another computer and split those ten tracks back into ten distinct MIDI channels and assigned a distinct instrument to each track.  Based on its 1988-ish composition date, I assigned track 10 to a contemporary Roland drum kit and assigned distinct instruments to the other channels.  Holy cow, it was composed for a full orchestra and Roland Drum Kit!!

Ultima V: Warriors of Destiny

From Apple II, split into 10 MIDI channels

  • Cymbals
  • Orchestral strings
  • Trumpet
  • Harp
  • Flute
  • Cornet
  • Kettle drum
  • Oboe

 

That's got to be the best hidden treasure...ever!

EDIT: Something is distinctly broken.  There were supposed to be two audio clips in this post.  They show up in the editor, but disappear upon clicking Save.

  • MP3 files show up in the WYSIWYG editor, but disappear after clicking SAVE or PREVIEW.  MP3 files are playable from the editor.
  • OGG files show up in the WYSIWYG editor, but disappear after clicking SAVE or PREVIEW.  OGG files are not playable from the editor, as the controls are grayed out.
  • M4A files show up in the WYSIWYG editor, but disappear after clicking SAVE or PREVIEW.  M4A files cannot be edited or deleted from the editor...very strange.
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Please forgive the previous comment...

In the previous comment, I tried to insert two playable audio clips...and it didn't work.  In fact, it was a terrible mess...

 

Here's a partial-consolation, for now.  Because I can't seem to embed audio clips at AppleFritter, here are external links (shudder!) to external videos that contain soundtracks that illustrate the audio I was trying to share in the previous comment...

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I didn't test ogg, but m4a

I didn't test ogg, but m4a and mp3 were working for me. It might be related to html tags getting stripped for security.

All this will change with the Drupal update, so let's not spend any more time on it right now, although I appreciate the detail.  I expect to migrate Applefritter to the new server next week, then hopefully update Drupal the week after that.

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Tom Owad wrote:I didn't test
Tom Owad wrote:

I didn't test ogg, but m4a and mp3 were working for me. It might be related to html tags getting stripped for security.

All this will change with the Drupal update, so let's not spend any more time on it right now, although I appreciate the detail.  I expect to migrate Applefritter to the new server next week, then hopefully update Drupal the week after that.

That's absolutely fine, and absolutely sensible.

 

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File "extensions" are an

File "extensions" are an abomination, and frankly, OSes that determine file type or accessibility by the filename are design flawed.  That wasn't so big an issue with CP/M (who I believe actually inherited it from DEC mini OSes like RSTS/11) because malware basically didn't exist back then.  By the time MS-DOS had become ubiquitos that started to become an issue as modems and downloads propagated software more anonymously.  Viruses started to happen and then when the world went online and security started to become an issue the design flaw became a critical problem.  One that Microsoft has never really adequately addressed.

 

I hate that we have to be concerned with file extensions when uploading files but I guess I understand why since so many still live under the tyranny of Microsoft rule.

 

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softwarejanitor wrote:File
softwarejanitor wrote:

File "extensions" are an abomination, and frankly, OSes that determine file type or accessibility by the filename are design flawed.  That wasn't so big an issue with CP/M (who I believe actually inherited it from DEC mini OSes like RSTS/11) because malware basically didn't exist back then.  By the time MS-DOS had become ubiquitos that started to become an issue as modems and download

 

If you think extensions are the problem and that you are safe compiling everything in Linux, you should definitely watch this video my friendhttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=25Txv9MmrYA

 

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Oh, I know better. but file

Oh, I know better. but file extensions are one of the several fundamental design flaws in the lineage of software that Microsoft represents.  What you are talking about is just as big an issue under Windows, except of course that almost nobody there ever has development tools installed or builds anything themselves.  That's why the extension problem is a bigger deal for them because they mostly run pre-compiled stuff they download.  One of the other fundamental flaws is the "drive letter" system with multiple roots that are inconsistent.

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softwarejanitor wrote:Oh, I
softwarejanitor wrote:

Oh, I know better. but file extensions are one of the several fundamental design flaws in the lineage of software that Microsoft represents.  What you are talking about is just as big an issue under Windows, except of course that almost nobody there ever has development tools installed or builds anything themselves.  That's why the extension problem is a bigger deal for them because t

 

Blaming the most popular operating system can falsely suggest that there are safe operating systems and can divert from the fact that every single CPU manufactured before 2019 is vulnerable to Spectre. The operating system simply doesn't matter. There is no fix or patch, other than replacing the CPU with a newer one.

Here is more about it: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YRohz9VO1YY&t=223s

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The video is interesting.  I

The video is interesting.  I never "double click" on things to run them because I'm a command line guy, so the trick he describes wouldn't be an issue.  When I would try to open such a fake pdf with xpdf it would barf on it.

 

FWIW, I never do "coding challenges" or "take home assignments" either, because companies that do those things are generally bad places to work.  I guess it is a good thing since bad actors are using them this way too.

 

It is interesting that anyone is targeting Linux desktop users because the media still says we're not significant enough in number to matter.  Maybe they're wrong about that or these hackers are targetting specific people who are high value for some reason.  Maybe if you work in the defense industry or something and foreign agents are trying to get in?  I dunno.

 

But you still notice the extra gyrations needed through zip files, etc., to get something executable instead of just it automatically being executable due to the file extension.  The other thing that I hate on Windows is not only is file extension so important but then so many things in Windows go out of their way to hide it like their file managers and a lot of software when you are trying to open files.  File extensions can be useful to visiually tell what a file should be but it just shouldn't grant any kind of permissions.  Microsoft could have greatly reduced the problem if they had just added a requirement that a file also have permissions set on it to be executable in addition to the extension.  But back in the day when it was suggested and they could have made that transition (when they moved to the NT style kernel and away from the tradtional MS-DOS base) they chose not to for convenience sake.

 

 

 

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softwarejanitor wrote:The
softwarejanitor wrote:

The video is interesting.  I never "double click" on things to run them because I'm a command line guy, so the trick he describes wouldn't be an issue.  When I would try to open such a fake pdf with xpdf it would barf on it.

 

FWIW, I never do "coding challenges" or "take home assignments" either, because companies that do those things are generally bad places to work...

 

Well, you don't have to do exactly the examples the guy in the video provides to be vulnerable to an NPM package. You could have been helping someone compile a video converter for Linux or MacOS. ;)

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CVT wrote:softwarejanitor
CVT wrote:
softwarejanitor wrote:

Oh, I know better. but file extensions are one of the several fundamental design flaws in the lineage of software that Microsoft represents.  What you are talking about is just as big an issue under Windows, except of course that almost nobody there ever has development tools installed or builds anything themselves.  That's why the ex

 

 

That's a pretty big leap.  There is nothing that is truly safe, but that doesn't mean that one should accept something that just plain has fundamental design flaws that they've known about for years and ignore because when they had good opportunities to change things they chose convenience and backward compatibility over doing the right thing.  I don't see how that diverts from awareness of things like Spectre.  That's a totally separate issue.

 

I never understand why some people feel like they have to defend Microsoft so much any time anyone criticizes them for anything.  Nobody else seems to get the kind of cult of personality treatment that they do even Apple.

 

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softwarejanitor wrote:...I
softwarejanitor wrote:
...
I never understand why some people feel like they have to defend Microsoft so much any time anyone criticizes them for anything.  Nobody else seems to get the kind of cult of personality treatment that they do even Apple.

 

 

I am not here to defend Microsoft, but simply to point out that the other big corporations are just as bad, and lately even worse.

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Recommendation: make picture files as small as possible !

The above thread seems to encourage people to upload anything into Applefritter  regardless of file size.

 

I think this is a very bad policy even nowadays. There are many threads on Applefritter into which people have copied photos taken with their smartphones with insane resolution. The consequence is that the whole thread is now "polluted" and will take too long to load (minutes).

 

So my recommendation is that anyone putting photos / pictures into posts should make them as small in file size as possible. What I usually do is to load the files from my digicam into any picture processing tool and then use its 'reduce size' function step by step to make "medium" and "low resolution" versions of the same picture.

 

I keep reducing the resolution until I can't see the details anymore which are needed to understand what the picture is supposed to show. These versions are useless and are deleted.

 

This approach greatly speeds up loading / reading of threads without losing any significant information.

 

Keep in mind that not everybody has fast internet access or - worse - may be on a metered connection where every gigabyte costs real money.

 

The latter is a huge issue with the websites who complain about ad blockers. I have to use ad blockers because my public internet access (anonymous) is shared with many other users and data rates are so slow that I simple can't load websites with ads (meaning: videos) in any useful amount of time. I think those who push ads on me steal my time, and should be liable to pay me no less than $600/hour of my RQLT they steal from me with their stupid ads which I don't watch anyways, but have to sit out until they download to see the rest of the website. So far the only remedy is to avoid those websites who insist on removal of ad blockers for their site. Of course, if I were on a metered connection (which would be fast but not anonymous, so I won't use one)  even the largests ads would load in mere seconds, but then they still should pay me for what the data for their ads on the metered connection costs me. This is not penny pinching or unjustified ranting - browsers like Brave with built-in ad blockers tell you what they did block and how much time (in hours) and money (in gigabytes, you do the math, multiply with what a gigabyte costs you) was saved. These numbers are mind boggling.

 

Applefritter has no ads so it's not an issue here but pictures / photos / scans which are too large for a quick download placed in a post have the same effect. I could not help some Apple-1 builders asking for help simply because I could not wait until their super high resolution photos of the problem would load.

 

So keep your pictures placed within a post as small in file size / resolution as possible. You can always attach a larger and more detailed version as a zip file which can be downloaded by anyone who is interested in the fine details.

 

- Uncle Bernie

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Generally, I prefer larger

Generally, I prefer larger images, despite the increased load time.

Bernie, try adding anti-adblock-killer to your adblocker's filter list. In ublock origin, it's just a checkbox.

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How is the site funded and is

How is the site funded and is there a way to contribute to the fund? I did not find any links.

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Dr Webster provided the

Dr Webster provided the server (Dell R730XD). I pay the hosting bills.

There isn't any way to contribute money right now. We were using a web service that provided a stripe front end a couple years ago, but it's no longer available.

I've been thining about replacement options, but haven't looked into any too closely yet.

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