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Back to our regularly scheduled programming:
This week was something I could have done without 👎. And that's not just because I had to take my cat to the vet. More because:
- Virtual Reality for virtually one reason: ads (which are also virtual).
- Windows 11 has made me realise how much I hate operating systems
- China is banning crypto. Or is it?
🥽 Facebook is virtually just ads... and virtually some reality.
Facebook are tightening their dry, unimaginative grasp on VR — the Oculus headset now runs ads. Honestly, there's nothing I like more than escaping into a fantasy world where I fight demons (or whatever the fuck), only to be reminded that I can get 20% off my next Uber Eats order.
Time for your most favourite part of Horrific/Terrific: a list of facts laced with my opinion...
- 97% of Facebook's revenue is from ads. The rest is just 'other' and Oculus makes up most of that. It's nice to make a bit of money from good old fashioned physical objects sometimes, I guess.
- Perhaps you remember that Facebook are also phasing out the Oculus login to replace it with the Facebook login. Personally I hate having to login to do just about anything... but needing a Facebook account just to make your Oculus work is a new level of putrid.
- Part of their reasoning for ads is: "We’re also exploring new ways for developers to generate revenue". No. That's just going to make VR games bad, and contribute (once again) to the underpaying of game developers — because they'll just make any old game, and chuck a bunch of ads in it, just like with mainstream mobile games.
The river of shit underlying all of this is, of course, the fact that Facebook's business model is built on gathering as much data from as many people via as many dimensions as they possibly can. Data gathered from a virtual reality headset seems particularly invasive, because a lot of it is biometrics — juicy, valuable biometrics.
🧻 If all that wasn't enough, take another look at point number 3. Facebook BASICALLY want to profit from game developers not getting paid enough. Georgia's ripe, low-hanging take: game developers should make money from developing games.
🖨 And they say print is dead...
...but like, maybe it is? With money I mean. FYI printing money is my hobby. My job? Making stacks on stacks on stacks on stacks on—
Anyway: China have gone all DC/EP (Digital Currency Electronic Payment) in an attempt to destroy the US dollar. The digital yuan made its debut in Hong Kong earlier this year and apparently it went well.
Important detail about the digital yuan: it is not a new currency, just a digitised version of the currency that China already use. Digitised currency is a really good way to:
- minimise transaction fees
- track what people are spending their money on
- threaten the existence of other stable currencies that are not also digital
☝️ Okay so, interestingly: this week, China have started 'cracking down' on the mining of cryptocurrency. Are they banning it? Not explicitly, no. And yet 90% of its Bitcoin mining facilities are now GONE.
Result: Bitcoin is down by about 13%, and for once this wasn't because of an Elon Musk tweet.
Other result: the potential collapse of Western society. Ha, just kidding... that would be bad. Unless?
🪓 Look, it's time for me to complain about Windows 11, okay??
Deal with it. This week, some leaked information about the new Windows projectile-vomited into my RSS feed. Here is a rough summary:
- Something something rounded corners (who cares)
- The start menu is now in the middle of the task bar, but you can still put it on the left if you want — so once again, who cares
- There's going to be widgets (who in the history of operating systems has ever actually 'used a widget'?? No one — no one uses widgets because they are pointless and difficult to set up)
But, the main thing that annoys me — and this is true of basically all recent operating systems — is the kind of 'short-cut pinned-item recently-used' bullshit way of organising files and apps. Just look at this list I wrote, demonstrating how none of it is helpful:
- For some reason anything under 'recent files' is completely unrecognisable
- 'Pinning' items in an OS is a dumb idea — I've never needed to pin anything anywhere, and also why have you pre-pinned these things for me? Stop it.
- 'Recommendations' are especially vacuous. My online life is already bursting at the seams with machine recommendations so why do you — my OS; a closed system that I control — have to recommend my own files and folders to me?
That's it, that's the end — you are a strong, confident, fully-formed adult with a great personality. Because you read this newsletter. You REALLY read the shit out of it.
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