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Chrome broke the web... and other things.

Old 10-04-21, 07:43 AM
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genec
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Chrome broke the web... and other things.

Well apparently Chrome chose to do something that dropped support for Javascript calls... and they didn't bother discussing it with anybody.

But frankly, that isn't why I am posting (I have not written any "serious" code in over a decade)...

I thought this however was quite interesting (especially for folks like Seattle Forrest .)

[The] assumption that everyone is a professional fits the currently popular narrative of web development, which is that "web development has become more complex; so complex, in fact, that only an elite priesthood are capable of making websites today."

That is, as Keith puts it, "absolute bollocks."

I've been teaching people to build things on the web (in one form or another) for almost 20 years now, and you know what? It's no harder to write HTML now than it was 20 years ago. There's no more need for the supposed complexity of the modern web than there ever was. In fact, I think it's actually the opposite.

I find myself increasingly turned off by sites that are so obviously overengineered. I've started to notice the beautiful simplicity of an HTML page. Just the simple fact that it loads without a spinning circle makes it stand out on the web today.

You'd be forgiven for thinking that the most common content on the web these days is that little spinning circle you see while you wait for simple text content to pass through several layers of unnecessary complexity before being seen.

The complexity of the modern web seems like the law of diminishing returns in action. Developers keep pouring on the JavaScript and we keeping getting... less of what we actually want.
https://www.theregister.com/2021/10/...me_breaks_web/

The web is and has been created by just about anyone... anyone that took the time to learn basic HTML... It is not the domain of HTML "gurus" out there... although obviously some sites are vastly more complex than others.
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Old 10-04-21, 11:42 AM
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Could this be linked to FB, IG, WhatsApp et al being down today?
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Old 10-04-21, 12:03 PM
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The more things change ... Chrome is in a position similar to what IE used to be. Less hated, but with almost monopoly power.
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Old 10-04-21, 01:01 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
The more things change ... Chrome is in a position similar to what IE used to be. Less hated, but with almost monopoly power.
Not quite. Chrome has about 50% of the US market, but Safari has about 35% with the remaining 15% split up among Edge, Firefox, Opera, Android etc.
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Old 10-04-21, 02:01 PM
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I switched to Brave -- which is a fork of Chromium (note Chrome is Google's fork of Chromium)
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Old 10-04-21, 02:08 PM
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
Well apparently Chrome chose to do something that dropped support for Javascript calls... and they didn't bother discussing it with anybody.

But frankly, that isn't why I am posting (I have not written any "serious" code in over a decade)...

I thought this however was quite interesting (especially for folks like Seattle Forrest .)


https://www.theregister.com/2021/10/...me_breaks_web/

The web is and has been created by just about anyone... anyone that took the time to learn basic HTML... It is not the domain of HTML "gurus" out there... although obviously some sites are vastly more complex than others.
Interesting ruminations. Yes, HTML is pretty easy. How easy is it though to find a free host for 'raw' HTML nowadays? There is a certain standard of 'beauty' that web tech has driven up in an arms race, a page of HTML, with some pictures and some text, maybe some video embedded, would have trouble matching. So it may take more skill/creativity to get an old school HTML page to not look outdated/primitive.

Also, bare HTML is tough to make interactive. Very web 1.0; serving static content. Are 'forms' even considered secure anymore?

The design all web page seem to be going to nowadays is where 'tabs' don't take you to different urls in the site (giving the visual sensation of moving left/right in a list of possible pages), but to different scroll points in the same/current super-long vertically scrolling page. I think this is driven by smartphone browsing -- that's what works best on a portrait-oriented smartphone screen, so that's what became de rigeur for websites, even as consumed in desktop browsers.

(I use a portrait-oriented browser anyways, so it works out ok for me!)
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Old 10-04-21, 02:25 PM
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Originally Posted by skijor View Post
Could this be linked to FB, IG, WhatsApp et al being down today?
Nah, different problem... Apparently associated with FB making updates to it's BGP (border gateway protocol) and doing so in typical FB fashion... klutzy. Apparently that "update" affected routing information and DNS servers... and the whole thing rippled down the line.

Just goes to show that the 'net is not quite as robust as we like to think. In fact, honestly, a lot of our recent technology is quite vulnerable. Cell service, 'net service, satellite services... all of it could easily fail due to the wrong solar flare. Cell technology is so fragile that folks should really say "thank you" for every complete call, rather than curse when they get an occasional drop.

A peek at Down Detector (or your Twitter feed) reveals the problems are widespread. While it’s unclear exactly why the platforms are unreachable for so many people, their DNS records show that, like last week’s Slack outage, the problem is apparently DNS (it’s always DNS).

Cloudflare senior vice president Dane Knecht notes that Facebook’s border gateway protocol routes — BGP helps networks pick the best path to deliver internet traffic — have been “withdrawn from the internet.” While some have speculated about hackers, or an internal protest over last night’s whistleblower report, there isn’t any information yet to suggest anything malicious is to blame.
https://www.theverge.com/2021/10/4/2...whatsapp-error

Last edited by genec; 10-04-21 at 02:44 PM. Reason: update and link
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Old 10-04-21, 02:27 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
The more things change ... Chrome is in a position similar to what IE used to be. Less hated, but with almost monopoly power.
While IE wasn't great, I think the biggest gripe was that MS tried to "take things over" and did so by bundling the browser with the OS... and then lied about it. (yeah, I know..."marketing.")
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Old 10-04-21, 03:10 PM
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Originally Posted by RubeRad View Post
Interesting ruminations. Yes, HTML is pretty easy. How easy is it though to find a free host for 'raw' HTML nowadays? There is a certain standard of 'beauty' that web tech has driven up in an arms race, a page of HTML, with some pictures and some text, maybe some video embedded, would have trouble matching. So it may take more skill/creativity to get an old school HTML page to not look outdated/primitive.
As a Windows dev, it's very convenient to be able to be able to generate html and have it rendered, vs having to actually build a UI. More so for static content, like you said. I can serialize a complex object (list, tree, whatever) into xml and then transform it, or nowadays just stringify it to json. With css rules I can even make it look half decent. If you're showing read only data that's all you need.
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Old 10-04-21, 03:17 PM
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
While IE wasn't great, I think the biggest gripe was that MS tried to "take things over" and did so by bundling the browser with the OS... and then lied about it. (yeah, I know..."marketing.")
IE was an absolute trainwreck from a development standpoint. We had to write IE specific CSS to get the site to look decent on IE because IE just didn't do things to spec.

<!--[if IE ]>
<link href="iecss.css" rel="stylesheet" type="text/css">
<![endif]-->
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Old 10-04-21, 03:28 PM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
As a Windows dev, it's very convenient to be able to be able to generate html and have it rendered, vs having to actually build a UI. More so for static content, like you said. I can serialize a complex object (list, tree, whatever) into xml and then transform it, or nowadays just stringify it to json. With css rules I can even make it look half decent. If you're showing read only data that's all you need.
Also nice to be able to use tools to render python docstrings (and I suppose other languages) to create browseable documentation
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Old 10-04-21, 06:54 PM
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Originally Posted by skijor View Post
Could this be linked to FB, IG, WhatsApp et al being down today?
Nah, that was caused by Zuckerberg forgetting to pay the cable bill.
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Old 10-04-21, 11:08 PM
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I heard more about that shutdown on NPR tonight (saw it mentioned here, but did not experience it since BF is my only social media), they were hinting/speculating that there's a possibility the shutdown was on connected to the recent facebook ethics leak the other day
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Old 10-05-21, 04:58 AM
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
Well apparently Chrome chose to do something that dropped support for Javascript calls... and they didn't bother discussing it with anybody.

But frankly, that isn't why I am posting (I have not written any "serious" code in over a decade)...

I thought this however was quite interesting (especially for folks like Seattle Forrest .)


https://www.theregister.com/2021/10/...me_breaks_web/

The web is and has been created by just about anyone... anyone that took the time to learn basic HTML... It is not the domain of HTML "gurus" out there... although obviously some sites are vastly more complex than others.
Interesting.

But something that affects 0.00906% of page loads isn't "breaking the web".

...Google did assess the estimated impact of its proposal: it determined that 0.00906 per cent of page loads would be affected by the change.
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Old 10-05-21, 08:12 AM
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Originally Posted by njkayaker View Post
Interesting.

But something that affects 0.00906% of page loads isn't "breaking the web".
True, it just "breaks the web" for those folks that need that feature.

FB just really "Broke the web" yesterday with their little update fiasco.

Facebook has apologized for the inconvenience caused by the incident. "To all the people and businesses around the world who depend on us, we are sorry for the inconvenience caused by today’s outage across our platforms. We’ve been working as hard as we can to restore access, and our systems are now back up and running. The underlying cause of this outage also impacted many of the internal tools and systems we use in our day-to-day operations, complicating our attempts to quickly diagnose and resolve the problem," said Santosh Janardhan, VP for infrastructure at Facebook.
https://arstechnica.com/information-...ll-businesses/
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Old 10-05-21, 08:35 AM
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
True, it just "breaks the web" for those folks that need that feature.
Calling it "breaking the web" is ridiculous hyperbole. The article managed to torpedo itself.

Originally Posted by genec View Post
FB just really "Broke the web" yesterday with their little update fiasco.
No, it only broke Facebook (which is a big thing but still not "the web"). The actual web was working just fine.

Anyway, conflating Facebook with "the web" is a serious misunderstanding that plays into Facebook's plans. Facebook breaking once in a while might not be an entirely bad thing.

Why are people so inclined to say "the sky is falling", when it isn't?
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Old 10-05-21, 08:48 AM
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Originally Posted by njkayaker View Post
Calling it "breaking the web" is ridiculous hyperbole. The article managed to torpedo itself.


No, it only broke Facebook (which is a big thing but still not "the web"). The actual web was working just fine.

Anyway, conflating Facebook with "the web" is a serious misunderstanding that plays into Facebook's plans. Facebook breaking once in a while might not be an entirely bad thing.

Why are people so inclined to say "the sky is falling", when it isn't?
No, it broke DNS servers... several resources went off line yesterday, including Cell Phones... Not all, and not everywhere. But it was a huge outage.

A peek at Down Detector (or your Twitter feed) reveals the problems were widespread. While it’s unclear exactly why the platforms were unreachable for so many people, their DNS records show that, like last week’s Slack outage, the problem is apparently DNS (it’s always DNS).

Cloudflare senior vice president Dane Knecht notes that Facebook’s border gateway protocol routes — BGP helps networks pick the best path to deliver internet traffic — were suddenly “withdrawn from the internet.” While some have speculated about hackers, or an internal protest over last night’s whistleblower report, there isn’t any information yet to suggest anything malicious is to blame.
https://www.theverge.com/2021/10/4/2...whatsapp-error

My internet actually improved yesterday... So again, it wasn't everywhere... but the larger cities did have problems... and mostly east coast. I saw issues with some web pages that just ended up being that rotating wheel for quite some time.
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Old 10-05-21, 08:53 AM
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
No, it broke DNS servers... several resources went off line yesterday, including Cell Phones... Not all, and not everywhere. But it was a huge outage.

https://www.theverge.com/2021/10/4/2...whatsapp-error

My internet actually improved yesterday... So again, it wasn't everywhere... but the larger cities did have problems... and mostly east coast. I saw issues with some web pages that just ended up being that rotating wheel for quite some time.
Cell phones? Do you mean Whatsapp?

The Verge article only mentioned Facebook properties as having an issue.

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Old 10-05-21, 09:26 AM
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Originally Posted by njkayaker View Post
Cell phones? Do you mean Whatsapp?

The Verge article only mentioned Facebook properties as having an issue.
Do you want me to go out and do all the homework?

Yes, cell phones too... messaging failed. And of course apps failed when they hit the DNS issue. Here is an example of reported outrages.


https://downdetector.com/status/t-mobile/

The DNS outage may have caused issues with WiFi and VoIP calls... but probably not straight cell...
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Old 10-05-21, 09:35 AM
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
Do you want me to go out and do all the homework?
Your link didn't support your claim.

Originally Posted by genec View Post
Yes, cell phones too... messaging failed. And of course apps failed when they hit the DNS issue. Here is an example of reported outrages.

...

https://downdetector.com/status/t-mobile/

The DNS outage may have caused issues with WiFi and VoIP calls... but probably not straight cell...
Not "cell phones" at all. Or WiFi. And only Facebook VoIP.

That chart appears to be showing people complaining about problems with Facebook properties.

https://www.independent.co.uk/life-s...-b1932198.html

In fact, what is probably happening is that the outage has taken down the only things that a lot of people use on the internet, and to keep in touch. In turn, it looks like the internet is broken – but it doesn’t seem to be, at least in any widespread way.
2559 complaints out of 1.04 million T-Mobile subscribers (but the "sky is falling").

https://www.statista.com/statistics/...on%20customers.

Last edited by njkayaker; 10-05-21 at 09:54 AM.
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Old 10-05-21, 10:01 AM
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Originally Posted by njkayaker View Post
Your link didn't support your claim.



That chart appears to be showing people complaining about problems with Facebook properties.

https://www.independent.co.uk/life-s...-b1932198.html

2559 complaints out of 1.04 million T-Mobile subscribers (but the "sky is falling").

https://www.independent.co.uk/life-s...-b1932198.html
https://www.statista.com/statistics/...on%20customers.

OK, I'm wrong, I lied. don't believe me. No problem. Have it your way. Oh, and T mobile is NOT the only carrier out there. It was but one example.
https://istheservicedown.com/problems/verizon/map
https://downdetector.com/status/us-cellular/

Bear in mind that these were merely the "reported errors." Do you call your cell provider each time there is an outage? How about your power company? Or do you assume "someone called?"

Anyway... FB did it, it caused issues with many services. Period.
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Old 10-05-21, 10:06 AM
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
Oh, and T mobile is NOT the only carrier out there. It was but one example.
https://istheservicedown.com/problems/verizon/map
https://downdetector.com/status/us-cellular/
You didn't even look at the data!

It shows tiny numbers of complaints (just like T-Mobile)!

It doesn't show widespread "outage" at all.

Originally Posted by genec View Post
Anyway... FB did it, it caused issues with many services. Period.
It was only problems with Facebook properties.

Originally Posted by genec View Post
Bear in mind that these were merely the "reported errors." Do you call your cell provider each time there is an outage? How about your power company? Or do you assume "someone called?"
This doesn't mean that they weren't just complaining about Facebook issues. The numbers are tiny.

If it was a widespread outage (like you keep claiming), it should be easy to "do your homework" and find a link!

Originally Posted by genec View Post
OK, I'm wrong, I lied. don't believe me. No problem. Have it your way.
Yes, you are wrong. That's your problem (not mine).

Given your proclaimed expertise, it's surprising you got this widely-reported issue so wrong.

Last edited by njkayaker; 10-05-21 at 10:14 AM.
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Old 10-05-21, 10:52 AM
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Annnyways <sidesteps unnecessary flame war to return to the OP>

That actually is an interesting article.

[QUOTE]over 70 per cent of the market is made up of people using Google Chrome or another browser based on the underlying Chromium project.[/QUOTE]

That includes me on Chromium-based Brave. What caught my eye was the little paragraph right before the quote in the OP:

What we are forced to assume in turn is that Chrome is built by the professional developers working for an ad agency <i.e. Google?> with the primary goal of building a web browser that serves the needs of other professional developers working for the ad agency's prospective clients.


Remember, the 'free' product of television entertainment is an illusion, it was always only ever just a means to get your eyesballs onto advertisements, and sell airtime to advertisers. In the same way, the 'free' product of the internet is just a means to get your engagement, so they can advertise to you, and extract valuable data from you. I mean not you personally (don't flatter yourself), but you as a member of 'everybody'.

So what guarantee is there that the design decisions that Google makes for Chrome (or we can pretend there's a powerful, benign community of open-source hippies controlling Chromium, and Google's derivative Chrome just has to go along) are beneficial for the public? None, we can only be sure they'll be beneficial for Google's business interests.
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Old 10-05-21, 10:55 AM
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Originally Posted by genec View Post
Do you want me to go out and do all the homework?

Yes, cell phones too... messaging failed. And of course apps failed when they hit the DNS issue. Here is an example of reported outrages.


https://downdetector.com/status/t-mobile/

The DNS outage may have caused issues with WiFi and VoIP calls... but probably not straight cell...
The outage may have created a black hole that swallowed the earth and spit us out into a parallel universe where time runs backwards. The covid vaccine may have 5G in it. Did the Facebook outage "may" took out cell phones, or did it "did?"
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Old 10-05-21, 11:08 AM
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Originally Posted by Seattle Forrest View Post
The outage may have created a black hole that swallowed the earth and spit us out into a parallel universe where time runs backwards. The covid vaccine may have 5G in it. Did the Facebook outage "may" took out cell phones, or did it "did?"
The BGP error caused DNS server problems, which caused issues with services needing DNS, such as VoIP and WiFi calling... calls got dropped, but cell networks themselves did not fail.

Message traffic relying on DNS routing failed, and service provided by FB failed. Not all, not all day, not everywhere. I was getting reports from co-workers in other cities that they were down... then up, then down. Email seemed to be working fine.

I never lost anything in my area. In fact it seemed to work better for me. But I did notice some URLs were down. I got the rotating wheel with some weather URLs I use often. (I don't do FB, Twitter or Whatsup) Bottom line; your mileage may vary.

Now about that giant comet coming our way...
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