1782: "Team Chat"

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1782: "Team Chat"

Postby jozwa » Fri Jan 06, 2017 4:27 pm UTC

Image
Title text: "2078: He announces that he's finally making the jump from screen+irssi to tmux+weechat."

Irssi. I haven't heard that name in years.

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Reka » Fri Jan 06, 2017 4:33 pm UTC

I need the explainxkcd version of this comic (it's not up yet). I vaguely know what IRC is, and I definitely know what Skype is, but the rest of the terms are gibberish: Slack? Gateway? (Wasn't that a brand of computers about 10-15 years ago?) irssi? tmux? weechat?

(I do understand the point the comic is making, but it bothers me that I don't know what all the buzzwords mean.)

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby StClair » Fri Jan 06, 2017 4:37 pm UTC

"Can entropy be reversed?"

LOOK, I'M NOT ANSWERING YOUR QUESTION UNTIL YOU SUBMIT IT IN A MODERN PROTOCOL.

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby ahammel » Fri Jan 06, 2017 4:37 pm UTC

Reka wrote:I need the explainxkcd version of this comic (it's not up yet). I vaguely know what IRC is, and I definitely know what Skype is, but the rest of the terms are gibberish: Slack? Gateway? (Wasn't that a brand of computers about 10-15 years ago?) irssi? tmux? weechat?

(I do understand the point the comic is making, but it bothers me that I don't know what all the buzzwords mean.)

Slack is a popular chat program. irssi and weechat are both IRC clients (which is to say, computer programs used to chat over IRC). "The gateway" is a way to connect to Slack via an IRC client. tmux is, in this context, an amazingly nerdy way to have tabs in your IRC client.
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby markfiend » Fri Jan 06, 2017 4:58 pm UTC

I use screen+irssi :mrgreen: GOOMHR
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby cellocgw » Fri Jan 06, 2017 5:00 pm UTC

StClair wrote:"Can entropy be reversed?"

LOOK, I'M NOT ANSWERING YOUR QUESTION UNTIL YOU SUBMIT IT IN A MODERN PROTOCOL.


+5 for awesomeness
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby cellocgw » Fri Jan 06, 2017 5:02 pm UTC

Reka wrote:
(I do understand the point the comic is making, but it bothers me that I don't know what all the buzzwords mean.)



There is only one correct answer to your question:


Spoiler:
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby RGB-es » Fri Jan 06, 2017 5:05 pm UTC

I know who's the future father of that one guy... :x

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby madaco » Fri Jan 06, 2017 5:27 pm UTC

Aren't Skype and Slack proprietary though?

This seems to be acting like switching to them is progress in some way, but I don't see what would be better about skype or slack?

Is it the voice chat, or sub-topics or something?
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby commodorejohn » Fri Jan 06, 2017 5:29 pm UTC

People who want me may feel free to email me, dial my personal extension on the office phone system, or walk over and talk to me directly. End of discussion.
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Ray Kremer » Fri Jan 06, 2017 6:28 pm UTC

So what you're saying is that IRC is the only stable platform here, while the alternatives are temporary fads?

True story: Twitch chat is a heavily modified IRC, so I just use an IRC client. Mainly because of logging and I can leave it running all the time without bogging my browser down with a streaming video. As a trade-off an added benefit, I can't see any of the emoticons.

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby ahammel » Fri Jan 06, 2017 6:30 pm UTC

madaco wrote:Aren't Skype and Slack proprietary though?

This seems to be acting like switching to them is progress in some way, but I don't see what would be better about skype or slack?

Is it the voice chat, or sub-topics or something?
They have a bunch of nice features that IRC doesn't provide out of the box. Probably the biggest things from a business perspective are barrier-to-entry and ease of admin. A good chunk of the staff probably won't know how to run an IRC client and have to be trained. Running an IRC server requires staff with specialized technical skills who could be doing other things with their time. It's cheaper just to pay Slack or MS to deal with that stuff.
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby teelo » Fri Jan 06, 2017 7:19 pm UTC

Not familiar with "Slack". Most teams I've encountered use a voice chat platform such as Ventrillo, Skype, Curse Voice, Discord, Teamspeak, or the integrated Battle.net/Steam voice chat.

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Copper Bezel » Fri Jan 06, 2017 7:29 pm UTC

commodorejohn wrote:People who want me may feel free to email me, dial my personal extension on the office phone system, or walk over and talk to me directly. End of discussion.

Then I don't think the "team chat" issue would really arise...?
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby qvxb » Fri Jan 06, 2017 7:55 pm UTC

Yes, we speak of things that matter
With words that must be said
"Can entropy be reversed?"
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby madaco » Fri Jan 06, 2017 8:17 pm UTC

ahammel wrote:
madaco wrote:Aren't Skype and Slack proprietary though?

This seems to be acting like switching to them is progress in some way, but I don't see what would be better about skype or slack?

Is it the voice chat, or sub-topics or something?
They have a bunch of nice features that IRC doesn't provide out of the box. Probably the biggest things from a business perspective are barrier-to-entry and ease of admin. A good chunk of the staff probably won't know how to run an IRC client and have to be trained. Running an IRC server requires staff with specialized technical skills who could be doing other things with their time. It's cheaper just to pay Slack or MS to deal with that stuff.


Making it easy to set up through the services of another company makes sense to me, but why not use one which is build it on top of irc? Irc is the standard, like email and rss.

I guess some things might be hard to build on top of irc?
If the irc standard isn't up to the task of having the things built on top of it, I guess maybe a new standard could be made?

But there should be some open standard that the platform uses/is built on, imo.
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Copper Bezel » Fri Jan 06, 2017 8:38 pm UTC

That'd mean limiting the total feature set to whatever you included in your federated standard. There's no incentive to do that, and no compelling incentive for a user to prefer your service on the basis of your choice to do so. Then, of course, your universal standard is still only as universal as it's used in practice, starting from zero.

It's a lot easier for a company to present a packaged service that doesn't have to interface with someone else's software somewhere, and it ends up easier on users, too.

I don't think e-mail would be likely to be invented today, but I do think it's solving a different kind of problem than either chat services or IRC is.
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby HES » Fri Jan 06, 2017 8:59 pm UTC

Talk about a weirdly timed comic, my company is migrating to a new chat client tomorrow.
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby deskjethp » Fri Jan 06, 2017 9:15 pm UTC

IRC is the best. It is easy to run and use. mIRC forever yo (specifically version 6.17)

Slack is terrible. They are one of those arrogant silicon valley companies. They advertise being able to connect anyone anywhere, yet require on-site work in SF. Every feature of the product is done better by something else.

Galactic singularity is obviously still in alpha phase, but I'm willing to give it a chance. Anyone with an invite let me know please!
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby madaco » Fri Jan 06, 2017 11:10 pm UTC

Copper Bezel wrote:That'd mean limiting the total feature set to whatever you included in your federated standard. There's no incentive to do that, and no compelling incentive for a user to prefer your service on the basis of your choice to do so. Then, of course, your universal standard is still only as universal as it's used in practice, starting from zero.

It's a lot easier for a company to present a packaged service that doesn't have to interface with someone else's software somewhere, and it ends up easier on users, too.

I don't think e-mail would be likely to be invented today, but I do think it's solving a different kind of problem than either chat services or IRC is.


I was kind of thinking the new standard (if needed) might be an extension of irc, if feasible, so that it would be at least partially compatible with irc.

Regarding the feature set being limited by the standard, I suppose it would be in a way, but I think it should be possible for the standard to make it easier to build things that weren't previously considered on top of that, in a way that, if interacting with a client that doesn't support those features, that client perhaps can't make much sense of those messages (or what have you), but they can at least still get the standard parts well enough.

In one program I use, it is an irc client in the back, but a sort of moods feature is there, which works by every client joining a room that isn't shown by the client, in order to send and receive changes in the mood list. This works fine. If you want emoticons in messages, just encode them in the messages. If you want to be able to "like" a message, just send messages for that with some format. Etc.

I don't see why it the base protocol couldn't be broad enough that basically anything you would reasonably want to have as the same thing couldn't be built on top.

You might need some bots or something for some of it, but that doesn't really seem like a problem to me.
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Soupspoon » Fri Jan 06, 2017 11:27 pm UTC

(Maybe slightly ninjaed, at first glance.)

Copper Bezel wrote:That'd mean limiting the total feature set to whatever you included in your federated standard. There's no incentive to do that, and no compelling incentive for a user to prefer your service on the basis of your choice to do so. Then, of course, your universal standard is still only as universal as it's used in practice, starting from zero.

A kind of XML approach to IRC (eXtensible Relay Chat?), perhaps... Bearing in mind that I lived through the <BLINK>-tag era (though thankfully did not, myself ever use a browser compliant with that particular non-standard element) and the streamlined version wouldn't be in actual XML, or even straight MIME-ish, as a primary assumption of 7-bit transmission (before or after any streaming compression/encryption, or perhaps encryption/compression) would not be as necessary in modern-day socketing.

I don't think e-mail would be likely to be invented today, but I do think it's solving a different kind of problem than either chat services or IRC is.
It's probable that an email-niche would still exist. A lot of modern P2P communications are clear analogues of tried and tested email delivery/receipt methods, albeit atop alternate protocol (at the OSI 7, or maybe 6) like HTTP in leiu of SMTP.

Just like Reddit seems to be reinventing NNTP over an HTML/HTTP abstraction, whether those involved know it or not.

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby rmsgrey » Sat Jan 07, 2017 12:38 am UTC

There are only so many communication scenarios you need solutions for, so it's not exactly a surprise if people keep reinventing the same feature sets.

People have exchanged largely disposable written communication for centuries before email and SMS came along, and with much the same attitude toward unexpected delays in receiving a response (there are scenes in Jane Austen's novels where characters wait impatiently for a reply to a message that could scarcely yet have been delivered - and later agonise over the possible meaning of the lack of response).

Things like snapchat aim to restore a feature of interpersonal interaction that's not a native part of digital interactions - its ephemeral nature.

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Flumble » Sat Jan 07, 2017 3:08 am UTC

Souspoon, are you trying to say XMPP?

Everyone with an IRC daemon should run an XMPP proxy plugin/daemon next to it to get familiar with the protocol, so we can finally deprecate IRC in 2051 and we're stuck with an extensible ancient protocol. :)

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Mikeski » Sat Jan 07, 2017 4:35 am UTC

HES wrote:Talk about a weirdly timed comic, my company is migrating to a new chat client tomorrow.

I believe you misspelled "GOOMCR!"

commodorejohn wrote:People who want me may feel free to email me, dial my personal extension on the office phone system, or walk over and talk to me directly. End of discussion.

I fought that for years. Had to give up when we went to google mail (with integrated chat-like thing.) If it's something that can wait for my convenience, email. If it's something that can't, in-person or phone. "Chat" just seemed to be a way to bump your priority in the email-speed queue.

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby ahammel » Sat Jan 07, 2017 4:49 am UTC

Email is a very poor fit for informal comms with more than two participants, in my experience.
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Mikeski » Sat Jan 07, 2017 5:43 am UTC

I'm an engineer; people at work are busy all the time, with stuff requiring long-term concentration.* Chat programs are even worse than email for us; getting multiple people to drop everything and pay attention right now? Never happen. Just schedule a meeting and break out the whiteboard markers (or the webex, if you need people from multiple sites).

* - it's perfectly acceptable to outright ignore someone who walks over to your cube/office if you're juggling too much stuff in your head. Don't even have to make eye contact. They know where your mind is at and they'll come back later.

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Uristqwerty » Sat Jan 07, 2017 6:49 am UTC

Slack's great if you can trust a US-based company with a full copy of all communications, can afford to run a full web browser rendering engine displaying a UI written entirely in JavaScript and DOM manipulation (so much room for domain-specific optimizations left untouched because of running in a generic environment. As I understand it, the "standalone" slack clients are just wrapping a browser engine as well. Especially on phones and other battery-limited systems), and finally benefit from being able to access it from multiple devices with things such as history and read message status inherently synchronized (but if you want fast offline searching...).

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Solra Bizna » Sat Jan 07, 2017 7:30 am UTC

markfiend wrote:I use screen+irssi :mrgreen: GOOMHR

I used to. I switched to tmux yesterday.

Flumble wrote:Souspoon, are you trying to say XMPP?

I'm glad I wasn't the only one who thought of that! When XML got mentioned I really started feeling like I was in an episode of Twilight Zone where XMPP never happened and I'm the only one who remembers otherwise...

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby NemeSys » Sat Jan 07, 2017 11:15 am UTC

I still use the first email account I got (Orange, mid-1992); my Nokia mobile phone is over 20 years old, it does what I expect of it, and I use Winamp to play music files on my PC. I'm not a Luddite, these things are simply reliable and I like them, so I have no reason to change.

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Manabu » Sat Jan 07, 2017 2:24 pm UTC

Ray Kremer wrote:So what you're saying is that IRC is the only stable platform here, while the alternatives are temporary fads?

That was also my take on it. For text chat I don't think anything is better than IRC.

Voice/video chat is another matter, and unfortunately I'm unaware of a similar established open standard for it, with comparable ecosystem around...

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Tub » Sat Jan 07, 2017 2:40 pm UTC

markfiend wrote:I use screen+irssi :mrgreen: GOOMHR

screen+irssi+bitlbee. bitlbee is a gateway for many popular IM protocols (jabber, icq, ...), so all my chats can use the same client.

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Bratmon » Sat Jan 07, 2017 4:16 pm UTC

Randall seems to be surrounding the issue of proprietary communication services by taking all sides.

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby ahammel » Sat Jan 07, 2017 4:18 pm UTC

Mikeski wrote:I'm an engineer; people at work are busy all the time, with stuff requiring long-term concentration.* Chat programs are even worse than email for us; getting multiple people to drop everything and pay attention right now? Never happen. Just schedule a meeting and break out the whiteboard markers (or the webex, if you need people from multiple sites).

* - it's perfectly acceptable to outright ignore someone who walks over to your cube/office if you're juggling too much stuff in your head. Don't even have to make eye contact. They know where your mind is at and they'll come back later.

On the other hand: nothing is worse for long-term concentration than 10 meetings a day.
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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Soupspoon » Sat Jan 07, 2017 4:25 pm UTC

Flumble wrote:Souspoon, are you trying to say XMPP?

Hadn't heard of it, but when I looked it up I recognised its originator of Jabber (as one of those 'new fangled things that I'd never use', being an open(er) solution to proprietry AIM/etc, which I had never used).

Though I want to reiterate that the advantages of an actual XML-based solution (human read/writability, at least with a bit of knowhow and care; ditto YAML and JSON and the like) is overkill for this scenario where an XMLish solution, but packed as binary is probably the way I'd go.

Spoiler:
e.g. Reserve 0xFF for metaquoting, 0xFE for defining tags, 0xFD for terminating them (first or both followed by literal ID value, but strict nesting should be Ok if error-control is already built in to the stream), probably don't need anything else for Commentsmetc, 'keynames' and param-names can be a Byte/Word/Whatever (context and/or predefinition and/or terminator byte and/or Huffman-style coding), param-data and tagged data stream-compressed (LZWishly?) binary, all of these avoiding the meta bytes (or being metaed to disambiguate)...

Can you tell that I'm from a bandwidth-poor era where stream-paucity was an advantage, but we didn't mind a bit of extra pre-/post-processing? ;) These days it'd be more an obfuscation method, e.g. part of an encryption solution, assuming not sufficiently buried beneath a tried-and-tested encrypted transport protocol like SSL...

But the point being that it's extensible in a familiar way (YAML/JSON/etc alternatives possible), while, leaving the utility of the extensibiliy down to those that produce the more advanced forms of schema...

Oh, look, it seems like others have also thought about this. I shouldn't have sat on the basic idea for over a decade... Story of my life. :P
Last edited by Soupspoon on Sat Jan 07, 2017 10:33 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Techrocket9 » Sat Jan 07, 2017 6:14 pm UTC

2051 is awfully optimistic for the dawn and dominance of a galactic singularity. The Milky Way is 100K light years across, so even if the singularity propagates at c it's still going to take at least 50,000 years to encompass the galaxy.

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Flumble » Sat Jan 07, 2017 7:09 pm UTC

Soupspoon wrote:Though I want to reiterate that the advantages of an actual XML-based solution (human read/writability, at least with a bit of knowhow and care; ditto YAML and JSON and the like) is overkill for this scenario where an XMLish solution, but packed as binary is probably the way I'd go.

Of course, so there are widely accepted extensions for XMPP like binary formats and transport security.
But without compression it's also just some 300% overhead ("even less" for files), so nothing terrible in today's internet landscape.

Still, I would mostly advocate anonymous suites, like tox and ricochet. Tox has the nice property that it has direct connections between peers, so you can have video calls, whereas ricochet has the benefit that it's completely on tor, so you add to the obfuscation power of it (except your traffic is probably discernable by a large enough eavesdropper because it's bidirectional short bursts) and it's harder to get an idea of physical locations or to bind identities to a person.

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby speising » Sat Jan 07, 2017 8:03 pm UTC

Techrocket9 wrote:2051 is awfully optimistic for the dawn and dominance of a galactic singularity. The Milky Way is 100K light years across, so even if the singularity propagates at c it's still going to take at least 50,000 years to encompass the galaxy.

But do you know when and where it started?

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby Techrocket9 » Sat Jan 07, 2017 8:48 pm UTC

speising wrote:But do you know when and where it started?


No, but the odds of it being perfectly aligned in time and space to occur any time soon are very low. Also, the comic seems to imply that the singularity is coming from humanity, since human communication methods remain a point of contention.

If we were assimilated by an external singularity, I don't think we'd get asked about our preference of chat protocol.


Edit: Also, I don't think there's any origin point/time combination which could separate us from the end of the process by 34 years. We're too close to the middle.

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby rmsgrey » Sat Jan 07, 2017 9:11 pm UTC

Techrocket9 wrote:Edit: Also, I don't think there's any origin point/time combination which could separate us from the end of the process by 34 years. We're too close to the middle.


If you're assuming a single point of origin and space-like propagation rather than, say, having several centers that later merge, or propagating along travel routes rather than through boring space, then, sure, you're looking at a while to reach completion after we're included.

Having multiple independent origin points would also explain why human protocols are a concern - our protocols are just as valid as any other independent contributor's even if we only just manage to join as equals rather than being assimilated...

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Re: 1782: "Team Chat"

Postby ps.02 » Sun Jan 08, 2017 7:18 am UTC

Techrocket9 wrote:2051 is awfully optimistic for the dawn and dominance of a galactic singularity. The Milky Way is 100K light years across, so even if the singularity propagates at c it's still going to take at least 50,000 years to encompass the galaxy.

Until we discover intelligent life that does not live on Earth, the diameter of the Milky Way is of no consequence. We can still call it the Galactic Singularity even if its effective reach is a single solar system. It's a bit like calling a sporting contest which spans two countries a "World Series."

ObSlack: I actually like their IRC gateway. I tried the XMPP gateway but it either didn't work well, or didn't interact well with mcabber. The main problem with the IRC gateway is that they insist on trying to translate emoticons and/or emojies to stupid things like :slightly_smiling_face: instead of just, you know, actual emoticons! I guess it's their way of saying, "Fine, if you insist on a protocol over which it's impossible to deliver idiotic distracting icons, we'll have to replace them with something as idiotic and distracting as we can think of."


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