It’s June! Oh Hai!

It's June 2024, I'm doing okay!

Just because we were silent didn't mean we were doing nothing at all. Some items on this site were quietly being moved around and worked on. Let's go through a few of them.

The title of nostalgia.

What's up with that title picture you ask? Well, during one of many airport trips we had the opportunity to fly into Long Beach Airport (LGB) instead of LAX which is thousands of times better! We rarely get to land in a place that crosses paths with majorites of tourists going to Disneyland or the Knotts Berry Farm (flashbacks of Confurence 8) but by far. One of the better airports to land in. Especially for Los Angeles.

As we walked out to get our rental we saw this wonderous beast in front of the budget rental office. A pay-phone! Back when people didn't have a network they could use in their pockets. And other corporations in turn use such networks against their customers. You made a call, and you walked away. No fucks given. We did pick up the receiver and the dial-tone was still active. So at 50 cents a call (1.00 for Mexico), it's a miracle this thing is still alive.

Princing Skilitare - 2024

Since we were on a Nostalgia trip not having been to this part of Los Angeles since the mid-90s we took a trip to the Prancing Skilitare. Because of my schedule being that it was a Thursday. The best we could do was take pictures of the sign and get in our rental to keep driving. For readers outside the furry fandom, this was the original meet-up before it was even called 'furry'.  Although we never knew the furry by the name of 'Sy' which ran this place on any personal level. Their death was a serious psychological slap in the face to us. Time doesn't care. It's valuable that you spend time with those you care about as much as you can. Maybe a little too sentimental for some readers out there. Don't care.

Rest in peace Sy.

As for the rest of Los Angeles. Endless malls with a cornucopia of mediocrity and blindly expensive places to eat. So 25 years later that part of Los Angeles has not changed. If you go into Chinatown. Hooboy. Guess that's a different story.

The webrings.

Webring example

The webrings have been reformatted to provide a description and a display of exactly where you are going if you click the button or link. We found a giant wall of buttons to be confusing as fuck to you the reader and instead replaced it with a doom-scroll of 5,000+ words of text explaining briefly each website we visited explaining what it is they do. We feel it's the duty of a blogger to at least "talk" about the sites we link to. This will inadvertently help out those rocking text-only browsers such as Lynx. Instead of clicking on the one or two-word descriptor behind the button they will be on the same level as the graphical browsing community.

Video blogging.

WebM VP9 encoded videos will be slowly deleted from the site unless it's a test article like the intel A380 card. Reason why?

As of 06/23/2024 - with more than 90 percent control. In a word? "Obsolescence".

Since Google's partnership with the Alliance of Open Media; This organization is responsible for the AV1 codec has picked up traction and compatibility. The WebM project feels like Google pretty much stalled the entire thing. After all, AOMedia does not have the stigma of being a "Google-Only" project and thus has adopted a lot quicker than WebM has been doing. Combine this with the streaming markets wanting to use the codec for live-streaming at the same bandwidth as what is being provided to 1080p style MP4 level streaming. It appears to be a win-win all around.

The only thing that AV1 cannot do is encode lossless. That is a feature we particularly like doing for our FFmpeg encodes. Why? It's better to encode to lossless first and then compress than it is to leave something already compressed. Fewer errors and fewer headaches across the board.

HTML5 coding.

We talked about this in length in the past with replacing FooGallery Video. However this is our updated video HTML5 code.

<video poster="/test123/testies.jpg" preload="none" controls="controls" width="640" height="420"> 
<source src="/test123/testies-AV1.mp4" type="video/mp4" codecs="av01.0.05M.08,opus" />
<source src="/test123/testies.mp4" type="video/mp4" codecs="avc1.4D401E,mp4a.40.2" />
<source src="/test123/testies.ogv" type="video/ogg" />
<p style="text-align: center;"><strong><span style="color: #ff0000;"><em>If you are seeing this message, it means your browser does not support embedded videos and/or the ability to play embedded videos was disabled. If possible alternative instructions will be listed below this message. Server protect you. - S</em></span></strong></p> 

You could also use a <div id="player-overlay"> if you wish to use some CSS magic to make the video more a part of your site like we did.

Now, we have to understand one thing. AV1 is a codec. Not necessarily a container like MP4 or WebM. Originally we were naming our videos like a container. Example:

 <source src="/test123/testies.av1" type="video/av1" codecs="av01.0.05M.08,opus" />

While 'technically' legal not every browser likes this MIME naming convention. We could've replaced VP9/WebM with AV1/WebM as that too. This is also legal at least according to Mozilla. We decided to keep everything underneath the mp4 container for now.


The concept of "Thinking with Google" states that you should split the difference between encoding time and quality such as using "--cpu-used=4" as a logical flag in FFMpeg. Take the ecological path while quickly transcoding videos to the new platform. Perhaps if we had millions of videos to transcode that would be sound advice. However; Thinking with Google only puts you out of business. Luckily we're not a business so bullet dodged there. However, why in the fuck would we do that? Especially since we have access to 16 core thread rippers that we could bounce off of at a commercial site where energy is 1/20th the cost of residential?

AV1 codec Title.

No, we cranked it to "--cpu-used=0."Even though the VMAF quality and compression are minimal. This will be the absolute best encode we as a self-hosting provider could give you the reader. And another thing we are using is av1an which is a python-scripted software that allows for parallel computing of AOMedia av1 encodes.  This script is a real motherfucker to set up because of dependency hell. If you use the latest FFMPEG av1an fails because it doesn't split the frames evenly. You use specific versions of FFMpeg to get the job done within Windows.

Ogg-Vobis video? Fucking really S?


Do you guys remember netbooks? We still have one. It's a Toshiba NB505 that refuses to die. Conventionally we use this netbook for voice recording as we plugged a DAC into one of the USB ports with Audacity. CPU fan does not kick in during recording so it's a perfect netbook to have in a quiet room. The lithium battery even still works! with a CPU passmark of 193 which to put into perspective is approximately the level the Raspberry Pi 2 is operating at. This laptop is running Void Linux which was a little bit of a pain in the ass to setup at first because it didn't know what the wi-fi card or onboard ethernet was during USB base installation. After hooking up a USB over Ethernet, the netbook can be updated enough to get XFCE on this X86 box and load Firefox.

Well! In the browser on this netbook, the latest version of Firefox eats way too much CPU for even the Stepmania 5 model tutorial video. So, we downloaded it and played it in VCL which the OGV works perfectly while the MP4 .h264 skipped frames like mad (MP4 at 60fps and thus, makes sense).  Now, if video can work on a potato of a machine like this. This should be good to go for most machines out there.

We will not give up on OGV video as easily as Google Chrome has tried. Yes, it's bulky as fuck. However, not every Linux distro has a variant of chromium baked into their image by default. A lot of them have Firefox because (At the time it made sense) it used to be the only browser that was not associated with an advertisement firm (Until now) and refuses to depreciate VM2 which is what UBlock Origin and Ad-Block heavily relies upon to stop advertisements from even approaching your browser screen. On top of all of this. OGV video is CPU friendly which is the total opposite of AV1 requiring a LOT of power to software decode a video without a GPU.

Like MP4 the videos will be sized down to 720p to improve performance on low-end machinery. In addition to this. The FPS will be reduced from 60 to 30.

WebP and JXL images.

WebP imaging is useful to the Tor community as certain versions of Firefox rolled into Linux distros do not have full AVIF compatibility. Thus, WebP stays.

JXL - JPegXL Title.

As for JXL. Despite being a little harsh on our review in the past. We're not giving up on it despite Google Chrome trying to kill it. JXL is neat in respects that you can losslessly convert jpg images to JXL back and forth without losing data. JXL is also more CPU-friendly for encoding on a web server than AVIF. We feel there are a ton of applications JXL can do beyond just serving the web such as video game applications. Camera data compression. and so-on.

To give an example: CPU cycle usage for encoding is a fraction of that of AVIF when working on tight environments such as phones with limited ARM processing. Like what Apple does with HEIC. a phone could store more data using a newer container and let the CPU of the phone translate to jpg or png when it leaves the phone to a cloud network or e-mail attachment. etc.

So fuck you Google for attempting to kill JXL. Like OGV. Although it would be cool if alternative nets such as Tor and I2P embraced JXL within their browsers. There are plenty of applications beyond the web that it's good for.  We will continue to host it for those rocking the Firefox nightly builds.

Final thoughts.

We had to take care of some issues after the last article. No gangland-style executions. Sorry darkweb! But we did get a lot more retro consoles and parts on my bench that we'll be going through soon. So stay tuned on that front.

To those who commented "You're gay" in 27 different languages around the world and round-about variants thereof on our last post:

Pride Flag

For starters. Happy Pride. Our sexuality isn't homosexuality however we do feel rather good! So under 1920's terminology. Yeah, we're feeling rather gay lately.

Second. Thank you. Your efforts have only made my spam detection tools stronger. Continue to fuck around and find out.

That's what server said.



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