Is programming an Arduino from MacOS always a nightmarish clusterfuck, or am I just lucky?

I spend like 95% of my time wondering why the god damned serial port isn't working.

Of late, it goes like this:

  • Upload the code.
  • Unplug the FTDI from the Arduino Ethernet and change something.
  • Plug it back in.
  • FFS, where did /dev/cu.usbserial-WTFBBQ go?
  • Yup. It's gone.
  • Power cycle my USB hub.
  • Oh great, now my Mac's entire USB stack has gone away and now I don't even have a mouse or keyboard.
  • Hold down the power button and reboot.

Unplugging the FTDI doesn't always make /dev/cu go away, just like nine times out of ten. But as soon as that happens, I'm within minutes of needing to hold down the power button.

To whom do I address my hate? The authors of the comically horrible Arduino IDE app? I'm gonna guess, "yes, there" because the fucking thing is written in Java and anyone who made that decision any later than 1997 clearly can't be trusted to find their own ass in the dark with both hands. But I would certainly entertain the idea that this is all Apple's fault somehow. Maybe they've assigned maintenance of their USB stack to some intern who sees it as a great learning experience.

But, holy crap, do people really put up with this? Or am I just lucky? Or doing something wrong?

Is someone going to say, "You just unplugged it? You can't just unplug it, USB isn't hot-swappable! Chickens must be bled first!" Ok, but I didn't read anything in the manual about these chickens, tell me more.

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This Is Not an Interview with Poppy

Poppy's internet presence can be traced back to a YouTube video upload on November 4, 2014 which features her eating cotton candy. Today, this account is populated with hundreds of absurdist videos like the one above, the vast majority of which feature Poppy in a featureless space, posing existential questions over an ethereal soundtrack. The content of these short videos varies widely: there are two videos that are just 50 minutes of Poppy reading the Bible, a video of Poppy showing her viewers how to load a pistol (this video has since been removed), a video in which she shills for Tide detergent, and another where she talks about browsing /b/, an image board on 4chan.

But if you have the patience to work your way through all the videos on this channel, certain trends start to emerge. The most obvious is Poppy's fixation with the internet and social media culture, which she claims to love. But far more interesting is the general tone of the videos, which have gotten progressively darker over the last two years. Poppy's early videos feature a bright-eyed young girl clearly enamored with her glamorous pop lifestyle and her fans. Yet Poppy's character soon changes -- she begins posing increasingly dark questions ("Do you know what's happening? Have they told you? What rhymes with breath?"), talks about running away and wanting to disappear, references secrets that her "handlers" won't let her tell her viewers, and suggests that she is being controlled by a vague "they" from whom she cannot escape.

Previously, previously, previously.
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Why a Tax Break for Security Cameras Is a Terrible Idea

Why a Tax Break for Security Cameras Is a Terrible Idea

Law enforcement agencies around the country have been expanding their surveillance capabilities by recruiting private citizens and businesses to share their security camera footage and live feeds. The trend is alarming, since it allows government to spy on communities without the oversight, approval, or legal processes that are typically required for police.

EFF is opposing new legislation introduced in California by Assemblymember Marc Steinorth that would create a tax credit worth up to $500 for residents who purchase home security systems, including fences, alarms and cameras. In a letter, EFF has asked the lawmaker to strike the tax break for surveillance cameras, citing privacy concerns as well as the potential threat created by consumer cameras that can be exploited by botnets.

Previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously, previously.

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End of fillings in sight, for at least the tenth consecutive year

Scientists find Alzheimer's drug makes teeth grow back

Researchers at King's College London found that the drug Tideglusib stimulates the stem cells contained in the pulp of teeth so that they generate new dentine -- the mineralised material under the enamel.

Tideglusib switches off an enzyme called GSK-3 which prevents dentine from carrying on forming. Scientists showed it is possible to soak a small biodegradable sponge with the drug and insert it into a cavity, where it triggers the growth of dentine and repairs the damage within six weeks.

Professor Paul Sharpe, lead author of the study, of the Dental Institute, from King's College London, said: "The simplicity of our approach makes it ideal as a clinical dental product for the natural treatment of large cavities, by providing both pulp protection and restoring dentine. "In addition, using a drug that has already been tested in clinical trials for Alzheimer's disease provides a real opportunity to get this dental treatment quickly into clinics."

Based on the "previouslies" in this post (ten years ago, seven years ago, three years ago), I'm starting to suspect the hand of the powerful Oral Decay Lobby in suppressing this technology.

Previously, previously, previously.

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