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Nullish Coalescing and Optional Chaining

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9 min read | 2554 words | 0 views | 0 comments

Unless you're a front-end web developer, "nullish coalescing" and "optional chaining" probably don't mean much to you. If you're like me though, you cringe inwardly every time you read them. So, what's the big deal with them, and why are they bad?

Actually, bad is an understatement: these are simply downright evil. Nullish coalescing and optional chaining (hereafter N.C. and O.C. for short) are special operators in JavaScript that attempt to simplify traditional JavaScript syntax. To understand why they were introduc… — Read full post

When the World Wide Web goes on strike, how do you fight back?

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6 min read | 1745 words | 0 views | 0 comments

As some people may know, my primary browser of choice is SRWare Iron 70. Iron is a Chromium-based browser that's very similar to Chrome, without the phoning home to Google (although some people allege there are other concerns). How much better than Chrome it is exactly is up for debate, but it essentially looks and feels exactly like Chrome. I'll use both Chromium and Chrome throughout this post to reflect the fact that Chrome is just a specific Chromium-based browser, and I haven't been a regular Chrome user in years now, so using Chromium is more encompassing.

I don't use the latest version of … — Read full post

SameSite, Sessions, and Single Sign-On

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12 min read | 3533 words | 0 views | 0 comments

Web developers in the past year may have been caught off-guard by the effects of Google's new stance on SameSite cookies, or rather, cookies without an explicit SameSite attribute. Or, perhaps a website you use regularly has been acting erratically of late. For those unfamiliar, Google has a good introductory overview of what SameSite cookies are all about, but we'll rehash the basics here.

Cookies, of course, are key-value pairs stored by the client, which are sent as part of the request headers when requesting a webpage. Originally, cookies were used to allow shoppers in the 1990s to save items to their shopping cart. This is rarely done anymore - instead, the server keeps tr… — Read full post

Actually, Windows Encodes New Lines Correctly

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2 min read | 532 words | 0 views | 0 comments

Ever open a text file somebody sent you in Notepad and wondered why it looked all wonky? As in, why everything is all run together on one line? The reason this happens has to do with line control characters, and dates to the days when teletypewriters still ran the world. The two control characters in question related to the carriage return (CR or \r) and the line feed (LF or \n), also known as new line. A carriage return, a manual process on a regular typewriter, returned the typewriter head to the beginning of the line. In contrast, line feed (LF) advances to the next line. Typically (but not always), these operations occur together.

When computers arrived on the scene, not all operating systems agreed on the control characters to use. MS-DOS, and subsequently Windows, adopted t… — Read full post

The Future of Passwords

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9 min read | 2543 words | 0 views | 0 comments

Based on the title of this post, you might be expecting some futuristic revelations about passwords and how quickly they'll be going away. If that's what you're looking for, look at the technical blogs of high-tech companies with futuristic visions that generally fall flat. The conversation about passwords that has been ongoing in industry is an interesting one we've been watching from the sidelines but not publicly commented on until now. Now that the idea of potentially going password-less has gained some prominence among average users, some good common sense insight into this issue is warranted.

Phasing out passwords has been the wet dream of many in the tech industry for some time now. A Microsoft white paper from 2016, titled … — Read full post

InterLinked Launches New Satire Site

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1 min read | 124 words | 0 views | 0 comments

If you're reading this, you're probably familiar with our blog. What you might not be familiar with is a new satirical blog that we have publicly launched recently, which we've dubbed "The DiaLog".

"The DiaLog" is a technical satire blog touching on different technical aspects of today's society. One doesn't need to look too far today to feel disgusted, overwhelmed, or dismayed by current happenings and goings-on in the tech world today. Indeed, there's no abundance of stupid technology today! That's why we've capitalized on the opportunity to spread some humor and convey some serious information. Articles are contributed by the InterLinked community — if you have something good to say and can say it in a funny way, w… — Read full post

The Truth About Fiber-Optics

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23 min read | 6647 words | 0 views | 0 comments

Fiber-optic cables aren't exactly new. Part of the reason for the 2001 recession was a tech crash caused by excessive buildout of fiber, most of which remained "dark" for years. Fiber has been used for Internet backbones as well as long-distance trunks in the PSTN, but only recently has the idea of extending fiber directly to the home become pervasive. I won't give an overview of fiber here, so for some history and details about how fiber-optic communications works, you can check out Broadband Now.

Until recently, I'd been fairly ambivalent about fiber-optics. Fiber is much faster than cable or DSL Internet, but it's much more expensive. The cost of fiber-optic cable and connectors is exorbitant: which is why computers … — Read full post

What Wi-Fi Really Is (And What It Isn't)

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14 min read | 3980 words | 1134 views | 0 comments

Hint: It has absolutely nothing to do with Internet connectivity.

Today, I'd like to acknowledge the fact that despite the vast number of Internet users in the world, a good majority of them are quite dumb. Not dumb in general, but not especially smart in the way they approach technology terminology. For those of us who were around in the 80s and 90s, confusing computer networking technology would be a disgrace, but for the unlucky generation born after 2000, not much can be said for them. Let's look at a few ways that young people today, especially teenagers and college students, manage to screw things up.

First off, let me talk about the most common misconception. The Internet and the World Wide Web are not the same thing. The World Wide Web is … — Read full post