Swiss Cheese IT

Intriguing week. Lots of confusion and strife. Had to motor into Nawth Alibam’s Shining City on the Hill Wednesday for a gum inspection. Two weeks early. Not bad but draining with the uncertainty going in.

Then on Thursday I had to motor to Guntersville to help a colleague install Linux Mint on an old (relatively) W7 lapbox. Which turned out to be severly whacked by its Windows install and had to be given religionist internment.

Did I mention the box was made by HP? Sad. Used to be a good company when I was in college. Stercus now.

After the debacle we shared our experiences with IT staffers over a mediocre cup of coffee distilate. I won’t mention the location since coffee distillate isn’t part of their mission.

Then today, at gym, I listened to an episode of Linux Links podcast. On this, the part I listened to this morning – the rest tomorrow afternoon (I do hate the religionist discrimination the gym management practices!) – the four talkers held a telecon with some young woman who was a Freshman in college studying Computer Science. This conversation – and the discussion Thursday – reminded me of a couple of things

  1. Computer Science folks can’t do Nerd computing.
  2. If you have to tell me your discipline is a science, then it isn’t.

I have visited the latter several times previously and won’t elaborate much on the matter. Computer Science is considered to be a STEM discipline but too many of the folks who study it are not nerds. They’re geeks. They collect stuff mostly, and do sometimes. But mostly in inordinately well defined environments.

Take the physical universe. The only manuals we have for it are the ones we have written for ourselves. (And, NO, religionist books are not manuals!)

Take the biological universe. The only manuals we have for it are the ones we have written for ourselves.

Take the computer universe (relatively speaking.) All the manuals we have for it are how the universe was made. In effect, Computer Science guys are gods because the create their stuff from the physical and biological and social universes. 

So why do they have such problems? If you ask, they will tell you it’s because of all the people who aren’t IT and the IT folk who are idiots and sociopaths. The latter usually being everyone but the individual and his (very few her – mostly because of good sense) drinking buddies. 

Did I mention that this is a construct of MegaHard and Forbidden Fruit attitudes towards computing? The more serf-like the users, the better. Especially management, who is seen as the great evil because they never make the IT budget large enough. 

But all the wiring diagrams of their universe are there from the get-go.

What does this have to do with nerd computing? Well, nerd computing is different from everybody else’s. Most people do browsing and spreadsheeting and word processing and maybe a bit of databasing. Nerds write computer programs, something that only IT folk are supposed to do. But the Nerds use languages that the IT folk don’t know and, in most cases, can’t learn very well. 

Say FORTRAN to a young IT person and they’ll have to go into psychiatric analysis. And that’s what all the supercomputers are programmed with.

Nerds also want to attach computers to things they have built for themselves, like spectrometers and particle accelerators. IT folks mostly can’t make stuff but they can – sorta – repair what they have. At least if it can be repaired. Only the minority of IT folks can design IT stuff. 

IT folks claim that IT is a profession. No argument, if profession means a body of knowledge that you get paid to know and use. 

So what is NERD computer programming? For example, a simulation of the formation of the universe? Can IT guys do this. Unless they’re the rare ones who are NERDs, they can’t. Generally only NERDs can do NERD programming. And that really bugs IT folks. Because it’s a knowledge hole in their domain.

The good news is that some of them can learn it. If they are taught by NERDs. Unfortunately, if they are, they too become NERDs and can’t be “real” IT folk any more. 

Sleeping with the Enemy.

And I need to reveal a big secret. The NERDs are happy with this. Because they want someone else to do all the scut work on the Internet. NERDs don’t mow grass. Not because they can’t but because after the first time it’s a waste of time. 

And I ain’t even gonna mention Quantum Computers. 

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OS Schule

Five Day. End of Week In. Cleaning up a bit around the Crunch Corner. 

One of the articles [Link] waiting for reading was entitled “5 of the Best Linux Distros in 2017” and after reading it I had occasion to contemplate how I grade OS.

First of all, are they available live? That is, can I burn the OS on a DVD or USB stick and boot the computer to try the OS? If not, they grade out F–

Note that this fails both Winders and the Apple OS. They are in the buy-then-try category. And they’re the primary reason Linux exists with this and other crippling defects (like inbred susceptibility to digital cancers.)

My father had a quite narrow foot – 12AA with an AAAA heel. When he was bored on TDY he would go into shoe stores and ask to try on shoes, saying he needed several pairs. Then the clerk would have to own up to having no shoes in the store that would fit him, thus no sale and no commission for the clerk.

That was a long time ago when one could actually buy shoes that fit instead of the gunboats of today.

My similar activity is to go into a computer selling store and ask how much a computer is without Winders. When the clerk gets obnoxious, I ask for the manager’s name and social security number so I can report them for legal violations. 

If the OS boots but can’t work with the WiFi adapter and the video card in the box, then they grade out F. The article I mentioned about included two OS I tried this week: Debian 9 and Solus. Both failed this test. Yes, they could talk to the monitor but neither one could talk to the WiFi stick. 

If the OS gets a passing grade, and I like how it feels, then I install it on my test box. Then I test it for a while. The tests are fairly broad. For example, I try to see how much it degrades over time. This is where Ubuntu fails. Their LTS releases are 24 months apart but the probability of failure at 18 months is O(50%). So Ubuntu (and its clones) only gets put on machines with constipated UEFI that lock up when Secure Boot is disabled. So far the only boxes I have found with this flaw were made by HP. 

Right now I am mulling SNAPs and FLAT PACKS. At the moment I am negative, mostly due to their overhead and the state of ISPism in the hinterland. I have mentioned earlier that in the summer – when the bairns are unleashed from schule – I have to do updates at night because they – the bairns – hawg the bandwidth so much. The problem is that most of Amerika, outside the megametropolises, has stercus for bandwidth. All courtesy of capitalists, of course.

So why do I want a software store that offers me no bandwidth benefit if I have the OS installed? That’s the question no one seems to want to address, much less answer. Most of my updates are a few Mb. Most of the new programs I add, even with additional supporting SW, are a few MB. So why do I want those to climb to Gb? Odor of rattus.

Music Messiah

One Day. And I got reminded I am ORF at gym this morning. And not by the polite weight bouncers – all one of them. Rather, the podcast was a episode of the CBC’s “Best of Ideas” about Jewish Canadian talk fest about the nature of the electronic revolution. AS is often the case, the focus isn’t on what’s important like field theory or quantum mechanics or even manufacture and design of the electronics. No, it was about the social aspects and that was a resounding mental thud for me. 

Yes, I care about the parasitic nature of contemporary organizations, especially the corporate ones. And yes, Facescroll and Gooey and such are the evil pretender or some such superstitious thing. And I care that human slavery is being reinvented by everyone from greedy entitleists to politicians to whizz wizards. 

But I’ve heard it all too often and climate change has already gotten too far, so what difference does it make how the species ends? 

And then I ran across an article [Link] entitled “Apple Just Killed Off 2 Iconic Products, And People Are Super Sad.” Turns out Apple – one of those corporate slavemasters – is killing off two of its lower end (as in cost/profit) offerings. And they’re both MP3 players.

OK. The news flows – I call them that because they span a range from a torrent, as in SMS news bulletins, to a diffusional creep, as in television broadcast news programs that seem to always be hours out of date – have been full the last few years with the demise of the MP3 player. (I do watch the local weather foretelling, mostly so FD SCP and I are on the same (erroneous) sheet.) 

I have commented on this previously, mostly about the so-called demise of the MP3 file because its copyright has discorporated, but this blot is more about the players.

The demise of the MP3 (/OGG/…) player is supposedly because everyone is using their cellular telephone to stream music. And so the dedicated MP3 player is irrelevant.

I feel like taking my claymore to the tertiary STD infectee who claimed that. Mostly because the type of stercus caput (that’s fecal cranium for the Bogs) that says such a thing is the same type who says all one needs in the way of a knife is named Swiss Army. So I’ll give him a Swiss Army knife against a claymore any day. And when I clave him from the nave to the chaps, I won’t have to listen any more?

The Swiss Army knife is exemplified by the MacGyver stories. More the original ones than the current farce on the television. Not that it isn’t entertaining, but it’s not congruent enough with the book. Like most remakes. Like ALL remakes?

Anyway, I see folks at gym with ear buds – those wired raisins one sticks into one’s ear canals – plugged into their cellular telephone trying to get it to play music. And when they finally waste enough time to get that to work they have to figure out how to secure that cellular telephone on the short leash of the ear buds. Most of them spend more time wrangling with the hardware than exercising. 

I have a dedicated MP3 player. It acts like a USB stick when I connect it to my deskbox. So all I have to do is tell my RSS accumulator which podcasts to download and then I use the file manager – usually one that supports two panes – to drag and drop the podcast files onto the mp3 player. And then I put it in a pouch attached to a neck strap, attach the earphones – not earbuds, I see no reason to irritate and inflame my ear canals – and I’m ready to go off to gym and spend less than a minute queuing up the podcast of the session. 

So on the one side we have cellular telephone and ear buds that doesn’t work well but does lots of other stuff not well too and on the other we have a dedicated player and ear phones that work very well.

A classic instance of the Swiss Army Knife paradigm. We can even express it as maths:

number of things it can do * how well it does each thing = constant

For the acalculate, that means the more things you can do with one tool, the worse those things will be done.

If you want to walk around unencumbered with a multitool for emergencies, carry a Swiss Army Knife. If you are in the emergency business, you carry a toolkit. 

That’s why the MP3 player is repeatedly declared dead; because Bogs can’t understand why they are useful and most journalists are Bogs.

And what about music? I have a separate MP3 player for music. Why? Because what I listen to isn’t available on those streaming services.

Brachistochrone OS 1

I often get questions from Winders serfs and Apple slaves about changing to Linux. These questions run from the terminally asentient “can I run program XXX on Linux?” when all they have to do is visit XXX’s web site and see if there is a Linux version. Hint: it’s almost always a waste of effort. People who make money selling software to Winders serfs can’t compete in the Linux marketplace. But the availability of Linux equivalents (or superiors) is better than Ivory Soap’s buoyancy. This is one of the reasons I try to get Winders and Apple users to think in terms of tasks and not in terms of clients.

Intriguingly, the process that most users who convert take is classically that of technology adoption. (see Rogers’ “Diffusion of Innovation”) The primary difference has to do with a blind spot in Rogers’ model – abandonment. In the old days, back when agriculture was the “new” technology and people were going from being nomadic Hunter-Gatherers to sedentary agriculturists, Rogers’ model of technology adoption was quite valid, but today when we have extensive technology, the adoption of new technology has to also consider the abandonment of old technology. At its simplest, giving up the land line telephone for a cellular telephone. 

In my experience, changing OS is an archetype of this modern version of adoption. Look at how many people refuse to move to WX. Some are even so unsure that they consider Linux quite deeply, which is a unique channel. Most Linux demagogues consider only the OS -> OS channel, not the OS version -> OS distribution channel. Which is good, because the demagogues usually scare off as many potential converts and churches scare off members with excessive (and intrusive) evangelism.

One of the questions I get asked when a Winders or Apple user is almost ready to experiment is “which distribution should I try?” This is a big step for people whose only concern with OS variation for most of their adult life as been version (and some who are truly mind puppets always go for the latest.) The enormous democracy of Linux, hundreds of distributions, is daunting. It makes supermarkets full of different brands and variations of product look like Yugoslavia under communism: “you want soap, here’s the national soap.”

So my first question to try to help them make a decision is “scheduled or rolling release?” A scheduled release (upgrade) is discrete and occurs (usually) on some calendar schedule, annually or semi-annually. A rolling release upgrade is spectral, but not discrete. That is, as parts of the OS get improved they are released immediately in a rolling release but saved up for a scheduled release.

This means that you have a lot of little upgrades over the year in rolling releases but only one or two BIG upgrades in scheduled releases. 

I prefer rolling releases, and the reason is captured in the title of this article [Link] “Ubuntu 16.10 (Yakkety Yak) Operating System Reaches End of Life on July 20, 2017.” It’s those words “end of life” which have come more and more to be literal. 

If I get an upgrade notice in a rolling release and I am busy, I can wait a while to install. If I get an upgrade notice in a scheduled release that my current release is “dead”, then I install at once or I’m bad off. 

So scheduled releases are almost like MegaHard updates: they don’t take control but they do try intimidation. And because they are BIG and half of us live in the Heartland with stercus for bandwidth, scheduled releases have a MUCH higher probability of vertically copulating the OS than do rolling releases. 

But that’s my take. And, by the way, Linux has no blue screen of death.

More when the muse descends.

On the Imprisonment of Electrons

One of my colleagues, an academic Velocity Spin Angular Momentum, has a tag line in her signature “No electrons were killed in the production of this email, but several were inconvenienced”. We have to expect humor like this from a feminist computer geek trapped teaching computers in a business college. 

I am reminded by it, however, that when we do things electronic, including saving emails, we are usually imprisoning electrons. Which led me to consider two matters in this regard.

The first, [Link] has to do with the relationship between updates and the recent WannaCry pogrom. I call it that because it was an organized execution of a social group. In this case, not Jews, or other religionists but, in a sense, atheists. 

Many of the aspects of computer geeks and nerds is that their attitude towards computers and matters computing has strong parallels to stupidstition and mythtrapping. They are a people set apart, exalted above the majority, and often disliked by that majority. As I have mentioned several times the difference seems to be that between a tool and a appliance.

The study bemoaned in the article talks about the faithful majority. It turns out what they are faithful to is not installing updates. IOW, their commitment to believing, no matter what, that their computer is an appliance and needs no maintenance, only replacement when it craps out.

All sorts of statistics are presented but they are not very convincing beyond some skillful artistic presentation. Apparently that minor difference is significant. Survival is once more razor thin. 

What bemused me about the survey is its bias. It is pro-appliance user. The attitude is that freedom from updates is something decreed by the deity. So their answer is the make updates unsensible. IOW, just sit back and let the deity take care of you. 

Very anti-vaccination, anti-soap, anti-knowledge, anti-freedom.

The bias extends to only including Winders users in their sample. This one is a bit smelly. The sample population is large enough that the probability of being comprised only of Winders users – no Apple, no Linux,,, – is vanishing small. Maybe not suddenly asphixiate when all the air in your room crowds into one corner but still so small as to prompt a special counsel.

And they all hate updating, to some degree. I understand that. I am almost always not thrilled by updates. The exception is when the previous update trashed something I need to use.  But I check for updates daily. Usually I let the update client in the OS do the checking but I don’t let it do automatic updating. Why? Because I have learned from experience that if X is updated and not Y at the same time, Z doesn’t work. So if X is in the update list and Y isn’t, the X update waits.

This is the situation in spades fro MegaHard. In the last twelve months they have released three (that I know of) system killing updates. They got fixed in a day or two (surprise! surprise!) but that didn’t help the pious who updated automatically and had to hire someone to bring their box back. 

Abandoning responsibility is a short road to loss of freedom. And maybe to gain of death. Think of updates as Listerine. Hate it, use it when it makes sense, and keep your teeth.

The second, [Link] is entitled “Ode to the Graphing Calculator.” It’s written by some tweener journalist who had to buy a “graphing” calculator in public schule. With lots of tears fro the pain and suffering of having to carry the thing and have to use it. Evidently finger enumeration is preferred.

I have scant sympathy except for knowing that what little chance this fellow had of learning any maths (and enjoying them) were vertically copulated (with mentally deteriorating STD) by the public schule system. Education by mandate is ineffective. And the public schules will never abandon it. 

So Tyson (“Chicken Man”) is right: “Good students learn in spite of bad teachers.” Or bad schule systems. 

I went through public schule in a different era. Parents held students and teachers responsible. And they were part of the process – regardless of whether the schule system wanted them to be or not. Fastest way to retire as a superintendent in those days was to get a dozen parents micturated. And the teachers were judged on how much the kids learned that the parents didn’t. None of this no science because we’re Conservative Reformed Shrub Druids. Kids were supposed to learn to analyze stuff for themselves. And make enlightened decisions. And standardized tests were a distraction, not a holy ritual. 

And we had no calculators. That’s an overstatement. The admin office had a tape adding machine. That was it. And from fifth grade on (ninth or tenth for most who did,) I had a slide rule. I got it as a Christmas holiday present from pushy parents (it was a fad that year) and I was precocious enough to learn how to use it on my own. Because my parents were at the taped adding machine level and wanted be to be more advanced. 

So I used a slide rule all through public schule. And all the way through college. And I drew graphs with graph paper and pencil and straight edge and French curve. I still do except I use a spreadsheet program. 

When I was a first year grad student the first battery powered portable (not fit in a pocket) calculators (four arithmetic operations) came into the marketplace. Only the rich kids had them; grad students didn’t have the coins. Food and rent and heat were higher priority. But we did have access to the schule’s Freiden calculators. No tape but you could crunch numbers and write them down preparatory to hand graphing,

About the same time, HP brought out their first portable nerd calculator, the HP-35. $375. That’s two months gross salary for a teaching assistant. So we still used slide rules.

When I was about to take my qualifying exams, HP brought out a third iteration, the HP-55. The Yankee Army of Occupation saw fit to issue me one for my work duties and allowed me to use it for other things not involving damage to the calculator like smashing nutmeats or loosening frozen machinery. I never used it in an exam. Why? Because it was too slow. Slide rule was faster. Risk avoidance. 

Years later I got a graphing calculator. Not a TI, which the author extols. Mostly because TI bought the standardize testing people. Not directly – baksheesh. That’s why the public schules adopted them instead of HP. That and the inability of the proletariat to learn how to use Reverse Polish Notation. That slowness of HP I mentioned? Still twice as fast as a TI because of RPN!

So no great love for TI. Lots of colleagues like. That’s fine. TI is like Unity to me. (See previous blot.) 

I never really learned to do graphs on a graphing calculator. Resolution too low. Only worked with nice functions. So when Lotus 1-2-3 came out I signed on immediately for “Instant Graphification.” I could mumble up numbers AND plot them. Pretty goodly. Especially if I had a laser printer. HP again. 

So I have no dog flesh in the graphing calculator thing. I prefer the number display. Got lots of calculators. One is a TI. Bought it to be able to converse with a colleague. 

HP isn’t as good as it used to be. My HP-35 (bought at a salvage sale) still works but the battery is goop and I have to stay withing reach of a wall. If it wasn’t an antique for my daughter to sell when I discorporate iot would be all I need except for vanity and whim. So I mostly use an HP-35S. And a couple of others. And despair of the demise of the calculator. The crap on my cellular telephone is not 90%, it’s 100%.

And I still think schule kids should have to learn to think and analyze and reason and decide. Not get tested on key pressing.

Another time I am glad to be ORF. And have a good calculator. And several good slide rules. And integral tables. 

So I may find the authors’ comments misplaced but not unattended. And bemoaned. 

Day of the Linux Spanner

Five Day. End of gym for the week. Accompanied by the unpleasant nattering that the gym will close One Day next for a holiday. Any excuse. Everybody else will go about their business, with an interruption to observe the reason, but otherwise the holiday is not an excuse for non-service.

This is what happens when one lives in the Old Confederacy, in a small town. The people generally think themselves exceptional when they are actually mediocre to defective and use any excuse to avoid effort. 

Reminds me of the latter days of the Roman Empire when chariot races and bread donatives were more important than effort. 

We have become addicted, at least in most places and of most people, to avoiding effort and productivity. No wonder jobs are scarce and disappearing. Robots are better workers and soon to be smarter as well. Makes me glad I am ORF so I don’t have to worry about the political oligarchs implementing the Irish Solution.

On which azimuth, I noted yesterday an article [Link] entitled “Why Linux has Failed on the Desktop.” I should warn the reader that the author of this article is a journalist and not a knowledgeable human.

The thesis is that Linux has failed on the desktop. That is intriguing and so I picked up the article to see what insight might be present.

There wasn’t much.

The article starts by blasting the propaganda of the Linux capitalists that this is “The Year of the Linux Desktop” repeatedly for several years. Somehow he fails to note who is saying this: people who sell Linux services. 

Then he makes a series of arguments that basically come down to: Linux is too difficult for all those folks who wait about for chariot races and bread.

The sad part is that much of his arguments against are actually arguments for the success of the Linux desktop. Specifically elitism, given that elitism is personal standards, productivity, creativity, and learning. In this regard the standards of contemporary journalism are marvelously upheld.

Yes, Linux is elitist. If competency is elitist. Yes, it helps to think like a “developer” to use Linux. It helps to think like a surgeon to do heart transplants. Or like a mechanic to fix motorcars. When I was growing up reading Popular Mechanics and Popular Science and they were full of do-it-yourself projects one of the currents was the need (and how) to think to do the project, be it carpentry or plumbing or soldering. 

The problem is not that you have to think like a computer geek to use a computer; the problem is that you don’t. That’s the difference between a tool and an appliance. And if you can make do with an appliance, well and good; you don’t have to think computer. But if you need a tool, you need to think like a tool user or you’ll end up needing someone who thinks like a physician. (Worse Case, admittedly.)

The people who want to make lots of money selling Linux are the only ones who give any credence to the “Year of the Linux Desktop” catch phrase as anything other than that. People who believe this are the same ones who eat daily at fast food troughs and think MalWart is a benevolent employer. Television before Thought. 

The people who actually use Linux, whether as server or desktop software, are worried about the quality of their tools, not the sound of the beep on their appliances. 

But I do have to worry about the folks who drink the koolaid and criticize the sippy cup.

Oram Sans Mens

Three Day. A bit strange, even for a Wodensday. Schule is obviously counting down to desessioning for the torrid term, loosening all manner of carpet cruds to suck up my share of bandwidth from the so-called Oneonta Telephone Company, a corporation who thinks that landline voice service is their core competency even though they lose 0.1 of subscribers each year. 

The scary part after attending aboard meeting some years ago was to discover that this is indeed the core competency of their directors and management. Shade of the Containment Era!

Anyway, the podcast, an episode of CBC’s “Quirks and Quarks” was entitled (What Scientists did on their Summer Vacation.” The title is the humorous part. First of all, all the scientists interviewed were women. Not that I have anything against women; my life depends on them, but they are hideously underrepresented in the sciences and to have only women on a podcast like this smacks a bit of genderism?

I also have to wonder if geographers are actually scientists? Even scuba diving geographers. 

Anyway, I motored to Nawth Alibam’s Shining City on the Hill in search of provisions and wisdom, obtaining both, the former from various stores and the latter from a colleague, Mass Magnetic Field. 

While I motored I listened to a CD I had recently purchased of pipe musics and highland throat mumbling. A good collection and I found myself cursing traffic idiots in a brogue. And reflecting that the greatness of the Scots is amply demonstrated by the bagpipes, a musical instrument that is easier played while walking than standing still. 

Then I reflected in whether that thought was racist of not? 

I shall not belabor my thoughts on “race” as a matter of rubbish, but the stereotyping denigration (which is NOT a racist word) is rubbish only in the sense of not having any merit or benefit. I realize that humans are programmed to delineate “Us” versus “Them”, but not outside our skulls and definitely not in action. 

For some reason, I was reminded of a family July 4th reunion the summer after I had finished being a Freshman. Flip flops were enjoying (?) their first (?) popularity and all of my girl (is that genderist?) cousins were wearing such. My grandmother commented something along the lines of “nothing says trailer trash like flip flops.” I recall their parents, at least half of which were the children of the woman speaking, looked horribly uncomfortable, apparently unsure of whether they should defend their offspring or defer to their parent. I was bemused, looking at my own feet, shod in Hush Puppy loafers horribly pitted over the toes almost to a hole on both shoes where acid had dropped in lab that year. The air tingled with that horrible agony just before super-cooled steam turns to crystaline ice with a wild crash as everyone froze and pretended to be deaf. Then the moment passed and a frustrated lemming urge to flee was suppressed until food was consumed. 

That was the last time I went to a summer reunion. 

And when I got back to Castellum SCP, I came into contact with an article [Link] entitled “RIP MP3 – the sound file that changed the world is declared dead.” Somehow this abomination of techno-journalistic babble put the whole matter into perspective. 

The thesis is that the organization who owns the patents on MP3 encoding announced that they would no longer license the use of the encoding. Lots of journalist who know how to write but not what to write have been announcing the demise of the MP3 file. 

(Sniggering laughter from the Nerd and Geek contingent. Blank ignorance from the Bog majority.)

What the Fraunhofer Institute meant was that they could no longer license MP3 encoding because their authority to do so had expired. Patents have a lifetime, unlike – apparently – copyright which seems to have been conscripted by greedy people wearing flip flops. 

In words of a different flavor, licensing of MP3 encoding is no longer necessary. It is now a resource of the species.

I suspect that part of this Bronson Beta grrrr brrrr was pandering to the people who make high end music players (those that do OGG or AAC but not MP3) and the makers of RAM. After all, journalists have to make money to survive because no one will willingly pay to read what they have written these days. (So they have difficulty purchasing new flip flops.)

The MP3 is not dead. It still has utility. For one thing something like five thousand new podcasts are generated every day on Tellus and almost all of them are available as MP3s. And a lot of music is still available as MP3s and will. Because there are lots of audio files – podcasts and not-classical music – that people don’t want the enormous, audio accurate files. If I’m listening to a podcast at the gym, surrounded by weight bouncers shouting visceral groans and crunching cement when they drop their weights and educationalists whose indoor voices are more suitable for a football game in a hurricane, I want enough quality to understand (maybe) what is said but not pay the RAM price I would pay for Beethoven from the Berliner. 

And it will likely stay that way. Despite what some knowledgeable journalists ominously foretell. 

But the intriguing question is what kind of Themism is discrimination against a file format? Fileism. Formism. Digitism? Noiseism?