Recent tidbits

  • Audius streaming service and iOS app is out. audius.co
  • MarkTwo → web-based Markdown editor that stores files in Google Drive.
  • Tomato 2 → free Mac pomodoro timer written in swiftUI.
  • Clew → Cloud search on Mac for Google Drive, GitHub, Figma and Dropbox.
  • The new Chromium Microsoft Edge is officially available for Mac and Windows blogs.windows.com
  • Winston → a free typewriter simulator for macOS.
January 17, 2020

Hindenburg Research on Opera

On hindenburgresearch.com:

We think Opera collapses on its own worsening financials, with that timeline accelerating significantly if Google bans its lending apps or if its Chairman/CEO continues to draw cash out of the business through questionable related-party deals.

They basically pivoted into a very shady mobile lending business. So sad to read.

Although, on the investor.opera.com you are greeted with this:

The Company is aware of and has carefully reviewed the report published by the short seller on January 16, 2020. The Company believes that the report contains numerous errors, unsubstantiated statements, and misleading conclusions and interpretations regarding the business of and events relating to the Company.

Oh, drama.

Update: Arjan from Opera writes:

Sounds like there’s something fishy on the reporting. Shouldn’t have posted without reading more.

snippets
January 15, 2020

The Apple Archive

Sam Henri Gold presents applearchive.org:

Dedicated to the unsung studio designers, copywriters, producers, ADs, CDs, and everyone else who creates wonderful things. 

This is amazing. Already blew past by bedtime hour browsing through the 2000’s.

snippets
January 15, 2020

Sian Cain, on theguardian.com:

In a letter filed this week in federal court in New York, Audible’s attorneys, writing on behalf of both sides, announced that the parties had resolved their disputes and expected to submit the settlement documents by 21 January. No other details were provided.

Doesn’t sound like the feature is coming anytime soon.

snippets
January 13, 2020

Tidbits for 2020 Week 2

  • Front and Center window management app that replicates Classic MacOS bring all to front” behavior. By John Siracusa, instant buy.
  • Firefox Lockwise — password manager — take your passwords everywhere mozilla.org
tidbits
January 8, 2020

Share Before You Solve It

Great message by Andrew Duckworth:

However you do it. It’s vital to share. And share what you’re working on before you solve it”.

The earlier you share an issue or idea the more room you have to ask the right questions and get answers you can handle.

This is the sort of quote that lies at the intersection of productivity and creativity. I’m keeping this one around.

snippets
January 8, 2020

Paul Graham on Having Kids

Very thought provoking essay by paulgraham.com:

What I didn’t notice, because they tend to be much quieter, were all the great moments parents had with kids. People don’t talk about these much — the magic is hard to put into words, and all other parents know about them anyway

With a a few hard punches:

I hate to say this, because being ambitious has always been a part of my identity, but having kids may make one less ambitious.

​And a closing slap in in the face:

[…] The fact is, most of the freedom I had before kids, I never used. I paid for it in loneliness, but I never used it.

This one inspired me to revisit a few drafts and put something together.

snippets
January 8, 2020
Foundryside (Founders, #1)Foundryside (Founders, #1)
★★★★★

Foundryside (Founders, #1) by Robert Jackson Bennett

Enjoyed this book from the first page. The world it creates incorporates magic incantations with coding, and the results works perfectly for me. The characters are good, and the story is very well timed. It’s the beginning of a series, and I’ll be back without a doubt.

January 4, 2020

Wyze Confirms Server Leak

Catalin Cimpanu on zdnet.com:

Song said the exposed database — an Elasticsearch system — was not a production system; however, the server was storing valid user data.

Elasticsearch is a really powerful tool, but it loves data. The more the merrier. If you designed a safe(ish) production environment and change management process for it — then things should be ok. But dev environments usually have more relaxed rules - which is ok, they also have less less data to work with - which is a pain to test, which usually leads to lets just copy prod data for a test” - which becomes the weakest link in your security chain without you realizing it.

Song confirmed that the leaky server exposed details such as the email addresses customers used to create Wyze accounts, nicknames users assigned to their Wyze security cameras, WiFi network SSID identifiers, and, for 24,000 users, Alexa tokens to connect Wyze devices to Alexa devices.

As a big Wyze user: dammit.

snippets
December 16, 2019

Tidbits for 2019 Week 50

  • Photo Editor : Pixlr Editor - 2020 version pixlr.com
  • I’d buy this Apple TV Remote in second if available internationally. Update: it is just $20! someone in Zürich please buy me this.
  • Craigslist Launches Mobile Apps. This AppStore thing might take off. 9to5mac.com
  • Plex launches ad-supported streaming service in over 200 countries. techcrunch.com
tidbits
December 2, 2019

Tidbits for 2019 Week 48

  • Dual-screen Android/Linux Cosmo Communicator is out. I love this modern Psion Series 5 exists, just can’t justify one. zdnet.com
  • Add CarPlay to Any Car With an Android Tablet and Adapter redmondpie.com. This is very hacky, but still intriguing.
tidbits
November 28, 2019

Deep Brain Stimulation Knocks Swimming Ability

Denise Grady on nytimes.com:

A lifelong swimmer leapt into deep water near his lakeside home, and was horrified to find himself completely unable to swim. Had his wife not rescued him, he might have drowned.He had recently received an electronic brain implant to control tremors and other symptoms of Parkinson’s disease, and somehow the signals from the device had knocked out his ability to coordinate his arms and legs for swimming.

What the heck? Just one initial study, but interesting to see where the research leads.

snippets
November 27, 2019

The Case for Pull Rebase

Enrico Campidoglio on his blog megakemp.com:

[…] git pull isn’t actually a core command per se, but rather a combination of two other commands: git fetch and git merge; the former downloads any missing commits from a remote repository, while the latter merges them into your current branch.

Very educational post, and great recommendation. I’ve been bouncing off the article here in the office, and even if you don’t go ahead with his reco, the discussions started have been useful.

snippets
November 25, 2019

Tidbits for 2019 Week 47

  • Looom iPad + Apple Pencil artsy looping animation app. Keeping an eye for when it’s out.
  • Legra, render your image using Lego like bricks.
  • The 50 best nonfiction books of past 25 years. One down, many to go. slate.com
  • Open source illustrations kit, free for commercial and personal use. Good to keep around. illlustrations.co
  • Maxtand portable sit-to-stand desk. Very temped to back this. kickstarter.com
  • Spark iOS updated with new design and more customizable UI. Will give it another try.

w46Done

tidbits
November 20, 2019
The Wizard and the Prophet: Two Remarkable Scientists and Their Dueling Visions to Shape Tomorrow’s WorldThe Wizard and the Prophet: Two Remarkable Scientists and Their Dueling Visions to Shape Tomorrow’s World
★★★★★

The Wizard and the Prophet: Two Remarkable Scientists and Their Dueling Visions to Shape Tomorrow’s World by Charles C. Mann

Some books are hard to put down, this one was hard to abandon. It took me most of 2019 to read it, and although it’s long (~600 pages), the slowness was mostly because some of the ideas had to be digested.

The Wizard and the Prophet was a strange book for me. It’s the typical show-off book to causally mention you’re reading, but I struggled with it silently. It’s surprisingly, or even purposely, not an opinionated book. Even though it deals with many of topics I’d argue loudly with my uncle. It’s a extremely factual book, with the only preaching it hints at being: to always look for some unseen impact in all the simplifications that are required to arrive at these facts.

Above all it’s a calming book. It has a soft cadence that would make me read, stop, think, and picture many of the ideas. Lastly at least for me, it’s a humbling book. Many concepts that I attributed to recent fads, or corporate marketing are shown to have origins decades, and even centuries, in the past. It shows people that died not being rich, even though their work has improved my life even more than a smartphone or an app even could.

I can’t recommended it enough. I even bought a copy for my uncle — not to argue, but because I’m curious if given the facts, we can have a more intelligent argument.