July 17, 2018

Instapaper is going independent

Today, we’re announcing that Pinterest has entered into an agreement to transfer ownership of Instapaper to Instant Paper, Inc., a new company owned and operated by the same people who’ve been working on Instapaper since it was sold to betaworks by Marco Arment in 2013.

Instapaper is probably the most continually installed app on my iPhone. I bought the original iPad daydreaming about using it. My saved for later articles directly represents my interests, intentions and state of mind throughout the years. I’ve gone months without opening it and hours with only it open.

Right now it shares an uncomfortable balance with Safari’s Reading list — but if I want to highlight and take notes, it’s what I use to export the notes in Markdown to Day One.

Instapaper is an App which I have bought, subscribed, abandoned and reinstalled. It’s an App I care about and I’m hopeful this is good news.

snippets
July 11, 2018

Comparison Between Tags on GitHub

Often I’ll want to see the difference between two releases on GitHub. Typically there is a CHANGELOG that will tell me a between versions but what if I want to see a diff between two versions that aren’t sequential? GitHub offers a way to do this. […]

https://github.com/<user>/<repo>/compare/<beginning-tag><ending-tag>

This tip by Peter Ramsing has changed my life. Proofing my Release Notes now is so much easier.

snippets
July 5, 2018

Over the past 2 weeks I’ve been using my personal MacBook (Retina, 12-inch, Early 2016) as my daily driver — while my job’s MacBook Pro 2015 is in the shop for a keyboard/trackpad issue. Very surprised of how well it performs, and how used I’ve gotten to the keyboard.

June 27, 2018

Jessica Toonkel:

Apple is considering creating a single subscription offering that would encompass its original TV shows, music service and magazine articles […]

Very compelling. We’re currently a Spotify and Netflix home — and I enjoy both services. But if Apple’s tv offering has an interesting show lineup, enough back catalog fillers like Netflix, and a good combo price for all, I’d consider it.

snippets
June 26, 2018

Bookshelf of Shame (Abandoned Fiction)

Over the years I’ve rarely abandoned fiction books, but the past year has been a shameful display of towel throwing. What made it strange was how some of these sounded just amazing when I decided to pick the up.

I present my current bookshelf of shame:

  • New York 2140 by Kim Stanley Robinson. Great world and disaster story/history, sprinkled with dumb and uninteresting characters.

  • Artemis by Andy Weir. I kept imagining a fake sitcom laugh after much of the dialogue. Will probably make a fun movie, but as a book I got really bored by page 100.

  • Space Opera by Catherynne M. Valente. I was not in the mood for the restless writing style, no comas, long paragraphs — so many jokes strung together. A new H2G2 it’s not, but I may revisit.

  • Black Star Renegades by Michael Moreci. Will likely revisit if in a YA novel mood. I wanted to slap the rascal main character too much — maybe I’m getting old.

  • The Nix by Nathan Hill. Very likely to revisit. Most likely a victim circumstance — read it during the move to Costa Rica, and my mind needed something a bit faster.

Luckily the streak has ended with Stephen King’s The Gunslinger (The Dark #1). Can’t wait to get back to it after publishing this.

Review Books
June 25, 2018

Good candidates finish last?

10 years ago I marveled at Turkish democracy. On a vacation there I saw disagreements, but all within a working democracy. The balance that founding father Atatürk seemed to continue work 70 years later.

Watching yesterday’s result on Twitter I was hit with both dejavú and sadness: the enthusiasm of the opposition after a huge rally, the contrast between the abuse of power and the hope of a fair election, the feeling of giant leap backwards for your country. All these are scenes of a movie we’d already seen in Venezuela.

How can we fight against this anti-democratic trend? Of course answer is strong institutions. But maybe institutions need a way to fight back with the same tools as authoritarians and populist?

Here’s where being democratic works against you. Giving institutions weapons to protect themselves when the people fall under the spell sounds great. But how to tell is something is a spell or a fundamental shift that needs to happen?

Autocratic leaders don’t seem to worry about this. They never asume anyone else will be back in power — and if it happens, they’re the first to call out the unfair rules which oppresses them.

June 24, 2018

Trying to get back into comics. Starting with Vinland Saga, which I abandoned last year because of life™. Comic Zeal still works but hasn’t been updated in while, so giving Chunky a try (so far liking it).

June 23, 2018

Saw Isle of Dogs with Robie and The Post with Ana today. Enjoyed both. Wes Anderson’s formula works with me, so no complaints — still love the Fantastic Mr. Fox above all.

June 19, 2018 Fathers day was really great for my coffee hobby.Fathers day was really great for my coffee hobby.
June 15, 2018

Brent Simmons:

to read a good blog is to watch a writer get a little bit better, day after day, at writing the truth.

What an inspiring and aspirational thought.

Snippets
June 9, 2018

In its current state, iOS 12 Siri Shortcuts are a modern version of the one button mouse. Forcing developers and users to use voice commands UI — instead of to touch UI like share extensions.

June 3, 2018

Dave Winer on GitHub:

GitHub is what we want it to be, quiet, out of the way, taken for granted, there when we need it, a constant and dependable option.

Exactly how I feel. It’s not the end of the world if Microsoft buys GitHub, but it’ll stop being the stoic neutral observer we’ve enjoyed.

Snippets
June 1, 2018 After the birth of my children – and tied with my wedding – this is the happiest day of my life. Shared my first pizza with Robie completely out of his request.After the birth of my children – and tied with my wedding – this is the happiest day of my life. Shared my first pizza with Robie completely out of his request. microblog
May 31, 2018

Solo: A Star Wars Story

Spoiler free. This movie has grown on me since watching it with my office friends last night. It’s not a great movie, but it’s a solid Star Wars story — which is exactly what it says in the title.

I should preface any Star Wars comment with a borrowed stance from John Siracusa on the topic:

I prefer to live in an universe where there’s a Star Wars movie every year, rather than the alternative of just having the three original movies exist.

Even with this lowered bar, I haven’t been an instant fan of the new ones. I did enjoy Rogue One a lot, even with its weird plot moments.

If Rogue One had some big ups and downs, Solo is flatter. Which isn’t a bad thing. While I did laugh out loud in Rogue One a lot, I mostly smiled throughout Solo. Yet the movie felt more consistent.

All the characters that we know from the original trilogy — including the Millennium Falcon — were familiar and recognizable. Naturally different enough since they’re younger, but similar without being an imitation of the original performance.

Just after leaving the theater, I wondered if this was a movie for average Star Wars fans, but after playing it back in my mind it’s quite the opposite. There’s so many references to the expanded universe that I didn’t recognize most. Even some references to the original movies flew over my head.

I had fun during the movie and thinking about how it expands the Star Wars universe in my head-cannon afterwards. And that’s good enough for me.

Review
May 24, 2018

Great article by Ernie Smith on the history of MacOS X interface skins for Windows. I wasted so much time with WindowBlinds, LiteStep and other software customizing Windows XP.