Newsletter #62: All Your Base Are Belong to Basically Whomever

Hello Recompilers,

We’re hoping to clear out some of our stock of back issues, and maybe you’re looking to fill in the gaps in your collection! We’re running a sale at the moment: buy any two issues and get the third one half-off. Use the code READER18 at checkout.


Surprise surprise, the Pentagon’s new toys have abysmal cybersecurity. The government pen tested their $1.6trillion in new weapons systems and found many of them could be neutralized within hours. Even when hackers accidentally triggered alarms, defenders were so desensitized to various alerts that they took no action.
(David E. Sanger and William J. Broad for The New York Times)

Do Not Pay is an app that lets anyone sue anyone and it’s surprisingly non-dystopian. A 21-year-old named Joshua Browder developed an app to help people without financial access to lawyers make use of a legal bot and it’s helping tenants win against landlords and generally helping the weak confront the strong.
(Caroline Haskins for Motherboard)

Amazon found misogynist bias in their AI recruiting tool and scrapped it. Amazon spent three years trying to develop and use a tool to evaluate resumes, but their AI prioritized phrases found in existing resumes, mostly by men, and proved unusable. This is yet another example of how machine learning can perpetuate existing social biases.
(Jeffrey Dastin for Reuters)


Recompiler Episode 72: I’ve Just Confused Myself
This episode we’re talking about Wickr’s use of domain-fronting and other anti-censorship techniques, HashWick vulnerability, Verizon throttling emergency responders data cellular connections, and licensing shenanigans.

Conference Talk of the Week:

This talk is part of our “Favorite Talks” YouTube Playlist. Check it out and subscribe! 

Perfect Storm: Taking the Helm of Kubernetes

Ian Coldwater talks at DerbyCon 2018 about the open source project Kubernetes and its ramifications for security.


Outreachy applications are open for 3-month paid internships in Free and Open Source Software. Applications are open to anyone who faces underrepresentation, systemic bias, or discrimination in the technology industry.

RubyConf Australia 2019 call for papers is open until October 15.

Ruby on Ice 2019 call for papers is open until October 19.

PyCascades call for proposals is open until October 21.

DevFestLA call for papers is open until October 31.

PyTennessee call for papers is open until November 1.

PyCaribbean 2019’s call for proposals is open until November 1. Spanish language talks are especially welcome!

GETConf (Gender Equality in Tech) call for papers is open until November 15. Only open to speakers who are women or non-men.

Upcoming Events:

All conferences have been screened and abide by clear and strict Codes of Conduct.

API the Docs London 2018
November 9, London, United Kingdom

DevFestLA 2018
December 2, Los Angeles, California

February 7-9, 2019, Miami, Florida

RubyConf Australia 2019
February 7-9, 2019, Melbourne, Australia

PyTenneesee 2019
February 9-10, 2019, Nashville, Tennessee

February 16-17, 2019, Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic

Ruby on Ice 2019
February 22-24, 2019, Tegernsee, Germany

February 23-24, 2019, Seattle, WA

ConFoo Montreal
March 13-15, 2019, Montreal, Canada

April 26, 2019, Omaha, Nebraska

Do you know an upcoming conference or CFP that should be included? Email leads to

This newsletter compiled by Margaret Killjoy (@magpiekilljoy). Margaret is an author, activist, and musician based in Appalachia. Her most recent book series is the Danielle Cain novella series, which starts with The Lamb Will Slaughter the Lion.

Image credit: Photo by Clay Gilliland (CC BY-SA 2.0)