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The wind whooshes in from the open window. Suddenly, a macabre ghost slips through, pausing only for a moment to gather their pale breath. They let out a haunting wail: “Yooouuuu migghtttt beeee surrpriiiisedddd… a hundreddd yearssss is a longggg tiiiiime… for guests to arriiiiiveeee…!”

The spectre implodes; a pile of crumpled S-expressions fall to the floor, rustling softly in the winter breeze, lit dimly by the pale moonlight shining softly through winter’s shrouded skies.

The cabin grows quiet; the library shelves stand dutifully at attention, patiently waiting for guests to fill them with stories.


Thank you! This is an interesting tool.

I’ve wanted to try out Mastadon, so maybe I’ll take the plunge sometime.


They do. I've been meaning to let users edit the tags, though.


I was shocked how good this is. Then I noticed how great the rest of the site is too!




I used to build tools like this at my first job (gamedev circa 2008):

We built everything in C#. It made sense at the time; the browser javascript ecosystem barely functioned, and our desktop app was lightyears ahead of anything else.

Fast forward 15 years, and it's really interesting to see that we weren't even slightly on the right path. Unity and Unreal Engine would've steamrolled us (if the company hadn't folded). And now in 2022 it's so easy to build tools with javascript that I still wince at the years of esoteric C# knowledge I accumulated.

It's fascinating how much effect one decade can have.

Cheers to 2032 -- it's tantalizing to look around today and wonder "Which of these tech stacks will seem in 2032 the way C# seems in 2022?"

I can't wait to see how makers build tools in the 2030's. It's been feeling like the pace of tech has been slowing down, but it's always an illusion.



2 points by shawn 325 days ago | parent | on: Laarc API

A surprising oversight on my part. Let me look into it when I’m not juggling a job and a puppy.

Since it’s the first feature request in a year, I’d feel bad not doing it. So let’s see if it happens.


2 points by shawn 325 days ago

I haven't updated the API docs yet, but items now export tags. And since it's 5am, I'd rather leave a quick note here on how to get them.

Here's what looks like:

    "by" : "rain1",
    "descendants" : 0,
    "id" : 2545,
    "keys" : [ "nokill", "/l/electronics" ],
    "score" : 2,
    "text" : "",
    "time" : 1610283131,
    "title" : "Why three prongs?  Electrical ground, stray voltage",
    "type" : "story",
    "url" : ""
To get the tags, use this algorithm:

1. Check whether there's a "keys" entry. If not, return an empty list.

2. Remove all keys that don't begin with a forward slash, then return the list.

I'll explain in more detail why I chose this approach. But for now, just know that you get more information this way. (e.g. you can see whether a story is flagged by checking for the "flagged" key.)


It looks sort of interesting, but is there a way to try it out without granting it sudo privs to my browser?


Up until this exact moment, I had no idea that a percentage was dimensionless. Ditto for angles.

The concept of "dimensionless quantity" just refused to compute.

But now whenever I measure a circle, there'll be a voice in the back of my head yelling "Uno!" whenever it reaches one radian.


You might have more luck if there wasn't a $5 cover charge. I was interested in trying it out, and $5 is indeed cheap, so maybe I will. But it raises the activation energy considerably.

The other concerns are, will the data go away if your service shuts down? Can I add an adwords tracker? What if I need to inject custom HTML, or custom scripts; is it possible? Etc.

A few of those would be answered by a free trial.


I couldn't help but notice that you've created a fork of Gwern's website. That's so cool! It seems to be an independent implementation too.

I wanted to invite you to come say hello in #lesswrong on freenode sometime, or to DM me on twitter:

What caught my attention about your site is that I know from experience how hard it is to create a fork of I noticed lots of little details in yours, like the fact that the anonymous feedback form is different, and that you exported your logo with potrace. (Killer logo by the way!) All of that took a lot of thought and effort, and it was a delightful surprise to see that someone else did it independently. It'd be neat to compare notes with you!

Thanks a lot for the thoughtful content, and the tree of concepts. I don't have nearly as much training in math, so it was quite helpful. :)


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