March 23, 2023
Technology Enthusiasts Weekly Issue 228 Humanity and the Meaning of.webp

Technology Enthusiasts Weekly (Issue 228): Humanity and the Meaning of Life – Ruan Yifeng’s Blog

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This year’s Mid-Autumn Festival, a man-made full moon device appeared next to the Crescent Moon Spring in Dunhuang. The reflection on the water surface reflected a round human moon, symbolizing reunion. (via

Topic of the Week: Humanity and the Meaning of Life

Before going to bed these few days, I was reading “The Collected Works of Ji Xianlin”.


Mr. Ji Xianlin passed away in 2009, and the publishing house asked his son Ji Cheng to write the preface.


Ji Cheng (1935-2018), a senior engineer at the Institute of High Energy Physics, Chinese Academy of Sciences, was a consultant to the China Advanced Science and Technology Center chaired by Mr. Li Zhengdao, and has worked closely with Li Zhengdao for 30 years. (taken fromBaidu Encyclopedia

After a search on the Internet, I found out that Ji Cheng and his fatherbad relationshiphave not been in contact with each other for more than ten years.

In this case, he actually doesn’t want to write about his father, but the publishing house must ask him to write. In desperation, he found an unrelated article as a preface.

“I didn’t dare to write a preface to my late father’s work, but the kindness of Qingdao Publishing House was difficult, so I had to write a preface that was not a preface to meet my request. Just a while ago, I randomly wrote a short essay “Also Talking About “Life”, this short article is copied below, even if it is handed in.”

The “Also Talking About Life” he used as a preface is very short, only 600 words, but it talks about an ultimate question: what is the meaning of life?

I was amazed to find that this preface was well written and solved a puzzle that I had not been able to figure out. After reading the whole book, the most memorable thing is this irrelevant article.


I’ve pasted the main part of this short article below.

Does life have meaning? What is the meaning of human beings?

I say,Life is meaningful, but human beings are meaningless.

Asking whether the existence of human beings has meaning is like asking whether the existence of the earth or the universe has meaning, and there is no answer.

What is the meaning of life? Its meaning is to work, serve, etc. for meaningless human beings, and its purpose is nothing more than to make human life better and continue.

Anyway, human beings are real existences, and you are one of them, and you are obliged to make it develop and continue. As long as you do this, your life will have meaning, or value, and you don’t have to pay attention to the meaning of human existence.

Do you understand what he means?

What he means is that in order to understand the meaning of life, we must first understand the meaning of human beings. But he believes that humans, as a species, are meaningless, just like you ask what the meaning of dinosaurs is.

But since humans exist, you have no choice. Your purpose in life is to help other people, and even the human species, survive and thrive.

Therefore, the best way to realize the meaning of life is to do what is good for society, so that society and human beings can continue. At the very least, with normal labor and work, your life has meaning.

Do you agree with his statement?

I think it’s very enlightening to me, made me figure out that a thing can be meaningless on a macro level, but meaningful on a micro level.

There is a school of Western philosophy called “existentialism” that sees the world as absurd. I also have this feeling, and often feel powerless, on the one hand feeling futile and impossible to escape, on the other hand feeling that something must be done.

This short article made me even more convinced that you can’t stop, your only way out (or a way to fight it) is to keep working and do something good for society, and only then can you find a little meaning in a meaningless world.

10.24 Programmer’s Day Activities

Large domestic technical community“Rare Earth Nuggets”In conjunction with the 10.24 Programmer’s Day, a number of events are being held.

This year’s event is different than ever, with a special focus on participatory and technical aspects. I think it’s worth telling everyone.

1、Nuggets Future Conference

Various technology conferences now tend to focus on hot technologies and development practices. Have you ever thought,There is a dedicated conference focusing on “Future Technologies”

The Nuggets held such a conference this time, called the “Nuggets Future Conference”.


They invited upstream technology providers and downstream technology consumers to analyze for developers what kind of technology needs the market may have in the future, and what technologies will become popular. Their idea is to let developers and technical team leaders pay attention not only to technical details, but also to the technical direction required for socio-economic development and the opportunities it brings.


The General Assembly is on December 2 (Friday) this year,Click hereOr scan the QR code above to learn about the details of the conference lectures, and register to make an appointment for live broadcast, as well as participate in other activities and receive conference materials.

2、The first national programming challenge of “Nuggets on the Code”

Nuggets also held the first National Programming Challenge, which is a rare front-end programming competition in China. Everyone is welcome to submit their own works.


All kinds of original works (web games, web animations, UI special effects, 3D modeling, etc.) can participate in the competition, as long as they can be found in“Nuggets on the Yard”The platform can run.



The deadline for submissions is November 22. Once shortlisted, the Nuggets will promote your work on their website, with generous bonuses and prizes, and a raffle as long as you sign up.accessthis linkor scan the QR code above to learn more and register.

3、Chinese developer ecology survey

In order to understand the current situation of Chinese developers (age, industry, technical direction, tools used, etc.), Nuggets launched a large-scale survey, and developers are welcome to participate.

Their goal is to collect enough valid questionnaires to eventually complete “2022 China Developer Ecology Report” , using real data to present the overall situation of Chinese developers.clickhereOr scan the QR code below, you can enter the questionnaire, there are about 60 questions in total, it takes about 10 minutes, everyone is welcome to participate, provide your development information, and there will be souvenirs after completing the questionnaire.


Technology trends

1、solar fence

A German company has launched a solar fence that can generate electricity from the sun as long as it is installed on a home balcony.


Its biggest advantage is that it does not take up space and can be naturally combined with buildings. Balconies already need to be fenced, and it makes sense to put solar panels here.


Its disadvantage is that it is expensive, the power generation is not high, and it is not easy to promote unless the government has subsidies.

2、AI group photo

An Indian photographer has discovered a new use for an AI photo engine.


He travels alone and only takes single-person photos. One day, he suddenly had an idea, he told the AI ​​engine “add a beautiful girl beside me”, and he got a group photo of men and women.

The female companions in these photos do not exist, and AI has added them.



This function is very suitable for photo booths in scenic spots, and “single photo into a group photo of men and women” is sure to be popular.

3、surgery saxophone

An American musician has a brain tumor and needs a craniotomy. The tumor was in a very complex area of ​​the brain with many nerves around it, and doctors ordered an awake craniotomy, where the patient is awake during the procedure.


The purpose of staying awake is that the doctor can always know that the patient’s brain is working normally and prevent nerve damage.

Knowing that the musician could play the saxophone, the doctor handed him a saxophone and told him to play the saxophone during the operation. As long as the music didn’t stop, the doctor knew that his brain was normal.



4、lunar motorcycle

A motorcycle company has designed the first electric two-wheeled motorcycle for the moon.



Its materials are aluminum and carbon fiber, and it is extremely light, only 136 kilograms in the whole car.

Such a light weight saves electricity on the one hand, and on the other hand, the gravity of the moon is only one-sixth that of the earth, and it will jump up with a slight bump. The design of this car fully considers jumping forward.


Articles and Videos

1、The three major indicators of Chinese scientific papers are ranked first in the world(Chinese)


According to Japanese media reports, three important indicators of research papers in the field of natural sciences—the total number of papers, the papers ranked in the top 10% of the number of citations, and the papers ranked in the top 1%—China all ranked first in the world in 2019, over the United States.

2、Implementing HEVC hard solution for Chromium(Chinese)


ByteDance engineers and Intel engineers cooperated to add HEVC support to the Chrome browser, that is, support for H.265 video encoding, which has been released in the latest Chrome 107.

The reason why Chrome has not added this feature is because the H.265 decoder requires payment. The implementation this time is very clever, calling the decoding ability of the system, and does not involve payment issues.

3、Pico 4 real experience(video)


Byte’s new VR headset Pico 4 has very attractive specifications. After the author experienced it himself, he found that there are many problems.This is the video of station B, otherwise Youtube URL

4、Why JavaScript months start at 0(English)

JavaScript months are counted from 0. This article traces the origin of this practice, who first used 0 to represent January.Also refer to thislong tweet

5、What happens when you disable cookies(English)

If the Chrome browser is prohibited from saving cookies, many related APIs will be closed together, such as localStorage and IndexedDB, making many websites unusable at all.

6、Tracking Aircraft Signals with JavaScript(English)


This article introduces the use of Web USB API to allow browsers to read USB devices and receive ADS-B signals from aircraft.

7、How to install plug-ins in Android Firefox browser(English)


The Android version of Firefox now has a feature that lets you select a set of add-ons on your computer and install them all at once on your phone.

8、one chart, one message(English)


One of the problems with visual charts is that they are too complex to understand (above). This article uses examples to explain that a chart is only suitable for expressing one piece of information. If there is too much information, the chart should be split.

9、MacOS enables sudo fingerprint authentication(English)


The sudo command requires the password of the root user, and MacOS supports using a fingerprint instead of the sudo password.




Vercel has released a new generation of bundler, Turbopack, which claims to be 700 times faster than Webpack and 10 times faster than Vite.


Also, it comes from the Webpack author, whom Vercel hired to lead the project.

Turopack can be seen as Webpack rewritten in Rust language. It is still in its infancy, and there are plans to support compatible Webpack plugins in the future. It seems that Webpack is really about to exit the stage of history.​​​



A voice changer software for Linux platform that can turn your voice into male, female, announcer and more.



A Tailwind CSS component library. If you don’t know how to match those class names in Tailwind CSS, take a look at this library.



The Markdown plug-in of Microsoft’s free note-taking software OneNote, which can input notes in Markdown syntax, seeIntroductory article。(@WeiXinLee post)


A JS library that extends Base64 to 2048 characters, so that binary data can be converted into very short strings.

6、building block avatar


A WeChat applet (search for “block avatar”), which can generate notion-style avatars, and supports customization and background color of various parts. (@bimohxh post)


A tool to check Makefiles for errors.



Unit testing framework for C/C++.



An Android application with built-in SSH client that can log in to the server and graphically display the real-time status of the server.



Open Source AI Drawing Engine DALL E mini After the name change, the image is generated based on the text, and it is free to use. The characteristic is that the speed is relatively fast (no more than 2 minutes), and the effect is also good.


1、Origami Tutorial


The five origami tutorials written by Japanese origami master Shuzo Fujimoto (1922-2015) are now in the public domain by his descendants, all of which can be downloaded for free.

Below are some of Fujimoto’s origami works. If there are children at home, it can be used as a handicraft teaching material.





2、AI selfie

Users upload 5 to 10 selfies to the site, and it uses an AI model to generate a handsome selfie. The images below are the original footage and a selfie generated by the model.



3、TLS 1.3 diagram


Using pictures, the author explains in detail the meaning of each step and each byte of the new version of the TLS 1.3 protocol.

4、Quick Reference


This website collects cheat sheets for various programming languages ​​and tools, withSource code repository。(@jaywcjlove post)

5、Introduction to 3D Math for Graphics and Game Development(3D Math Primer for Graphics and Game Development)


Free-to-read English-language tutorials that introduce the mathematical knowledge needed to develop 3D graphics software.


1、five-engine aircraft

Ordinary planes have at most four engines, but an Australian airliner once had a fifth engine temporarily “installed”.


In 2011, a Boeing 747 of Qantas Airlines, after flying to Johannesburg, South Africa, suffered a sudden engine failure and could not fly back.

After researching various options, Qantas decided to urgently airlift an engine from Australia to South Africa.

As the quickest way, they put the spare engine under the wing of the next Boeing 747 bound for South Africa. That plane becomes a plane with 5 engines.



2、Graphical interface for OpenSSL

OpenSSL is a command-line tool primarily used for encrypted communications.

It comes with a lot of parameters, what would it look like if it were made into a graphical interface?

Someone designed one, because there are too many parameters, and finally it looks like the horror below.


It can be seen that for tool software with a large number of parameters, the ease of use of the command line interface is actually far better than that of the graphical interface.


1、TikTok’s impact on record labels

TikTok has become the main channel for music dissemination in Europe and the United States.

Record companies in the United States now require singers to release albums only after new songs become popular on TikTok.


Halsey, an established female singer, has also been asked to post new songs on TikTok. She posted a lot of videos, but none of them became popular.

In the end, she couldn’t bear it anymore and posted a crying video.

“I wanted to make an album, but the company didn’t agree because I didn’t have a single song that went viral on TikTok. I’ve sold over 165 million albums, but now I can’t make a new album.”


Unexpectedly, the video went viral. The record company saw her popularity and finally agreed to release an album.

This incident has caused a discussion in American music, and many people believe that the record companies are too short-sighted, and if this continues, the entire record industry is in jeopardy.

Only release albums for popular songs, although you can reduce the risk and ensure that you can make money. However, once musicians open up their own market on TikTok, they will establish their own channels, then they will no longer need a record company, and there will be more ways to make money.

In order to keep profits, record companies have given up the role of cultivating singers and excavating music. They just want to harvest ready-made results, which is tantamount to digging their own graves.



In 2010, the CIA discovered that bin Laden may be hiding in a mysterious three-story building in rural Pakistan, but it could not be determined.

They began to monitor the clotheslines outside the building, and judged who and how many people lived in the building by the type and quantity of clothes to be dried.

“Chasing Osama bin Laden”


Now is a great time to become a Linux user. The system is mature and has good usability for ordinary users.

The hardware basically works out of the box, and you have rich and up-to-date drivers for free, quick fixes for bugs, and large community maintenance updates that are close to enterprise level.

Hacker News readers


Software observability has three pillars: metrics, traces, and logs.

The Three Pillars of Observability


Video games are the primary medium for this generation still in school. For them, video games are not just an activity, but a major part of their social life.

The world of tomorrow will be built on the design and habits of video games.

“Video Game Research”


The author of an open source project has a real privilege, that you are the only one who decides the software design, and you can experience the feeling of being in control. You have the right to reject other people’s suggestions or designs as long as you don’t feel they are in line with your goals.

The Open Source Paradox

this week in history

2021 (issue 180):Where do you want to live in China?

2020 (issue 130):young internet

2019 (issue 78):What is the next industry?

2018 (issue 27):Jobs’ “Enthusiasm Assumption” Right?


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Ewen Eagle

I am the founder of Urbantechstory, a Technology based blog. where you find all kinds of trending technology, gaming news, and much more.

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