Archive for February 28, 2013

Thursday, February 28, 2013


Lode Vandevenne (via Edward Marczak):

The output generated by Zopfli is typically 3–8% smaller compared to zlib at maximum compression, and we believe that Zopfli represents the state of the art in Deflate-compatible compression. Zopfli is written in C for portability. It is a compression-only library; existing software can decompress the data. Zopfli is bit-stream compatible with compression used in gzip, Zip, PNG, HTTP requests, and others.

Silent Email Filtering Makes iCloud an Unreliable Option

Dan Moren and Lex Friedman:

To be clear, the problem is not that Apple is flagging terms that are most often used in unwanted, spam messages—it’s the lack of transparency about this filtering. Apple is flagging messages that it seems very sure are spam, but it has no real system in place for dealing with false positives—messages that are filtered, but aren’t actually spam.

Apple deletes some of the false positives outright. They never even appear in the Junk mailbox. This has been going on for many years. It’s also no longer possible to turn off Apple’s server-side filtering, e.g. if you prefer to use another filter such as SpamSieve. These days it’s easy and inexpensive to host e-mail on your own domain, and there are free e-mail services that are better than Apple’s, so I see little reason to use iCloud for e-mail.

Update (2013-03-01): Matt Henderson:

I’ve been telling friends and family for years to think twice before using a Gmail or iCloud email address — or even worse, the email address provided by one’s ISP. The problem is lock-in — once the world knows you or, it’s not easy to change when you become concerned about Gmail account hacking, or when your ISP goes belly up.

Leak-Free Recursive Blocks

Jeremy W. Sherman (via Romain Briche):

So you need both a strong and a weak reference to your block. And the block needs to be stored in the strong reference first, so you anchor it to this world.

And you also have to make sure that the strong reference outlives the recursion. ARC makes easy things easy, but…

Jeff Biggus wrote macro to simplify this.