February 28, 2024

William Gibson's Neuromancer Coming to Apple TV+

Apple, on Apple TV+ Press:

Apple TV+ announced today that it will expand its acclaimed slate of science fiction offerings with Neuromancer,” a new 10-episode drama based on the award-winning novel of the same name by William Gibson.

Acclaimed Sci-Fi slate indeed: Foundation, Silo, upcoming Murderbot. I never got into For All Mankind, but I appreciate that they let it go for 4 Seasons.

February 24, 2024

2024 Coffee Daily Driver

A bunch of stuff arrived of the past few months to justify sharing a new coffee daily driver setup. I’ve been looking forward to these for most of last year, and I’m very happy with the results.

My new approved corner in the kitchen.My new approved corner in the kitchen.

TIMEMORE Sculptor 064 Grinder

Finally arrived earlier this year after a long Kickstarter wait. Was worried for a while after using my Dad’s Fellow Opus, but those concerns are now gone. I really love the design and build quality. For my AeroPress, Pour Over and (no press) French Press needs, it works great. Big quality of life improvement from my manual 1Zpresso JX

NanoFoamer PRO

Another delayed and recently received Kickstarter. I’ve had all Subminimal NanoFoamer products, and this one finally delivers of the promise of amazing milk foam without much fuzz. I’m very curious about the upcoming Meticulous Milk Steamer, but for now, I think this is the best you can get — save for the the real thing.

AeroPress Clear

Meh. Got his for the novelty of the clear AeroPress and because my original AeroPress lettering was all gone. Works fine, but the details are a bit off, and it’s more expensive.

AeroPress Flow Control Filter Cap (original)

Crap. Only reason I use it is because the Clear AeroPress doesn’t fit the Fellow Prismo, but it’s worst in every way. Looks like there’s an updated version which fixes most of the complaints, I’ll give a try at some point.

PYREX Heavy Duty Griffin 1003 400mL Beaker

The best carafe for AeroPress hands-down. Cheap, tough, small — been using it for years, and still have no better alternative. Get a nicer one for when you have people over, but this is your daily driver.

Fino 1L Kettle

It has almost doubled in price in the 6 years I’ve had it (still a reasonable $40), but every time I attempt to replace it, I end coming back to it. It’s minimal has survived daily use without one spot of rust. Size is perfect for our use. I widened the hole a bit an use a Target thermometer.

RACK for AeroPress

Build quality is atrocious (it leans to a side), but extremely convenient way to store the AeroPress when not in use.

Monty Milk Art Cups Latte 11 oz.

Got this at on a sale, and enjoy them. Sadly Ana is not crazy about the weight, so she prefers our brown glass set, which — even sadder — only one cup is left.

February 22, 2024

Astropad Updates Rock Paper Pencil Kit

Juli Clover, on MacRumors:

Rock Paper Pencil combines a screen protector and a unique Apple Pencil tip so that writing on the ‌iPad‌ feels like writing on a piece of paper. The new version of Rock Paper Pencil has a NanoCling Screen Protector that attaches to an ‌iPad‌ using static cling rather than a magnetic edge like the prior version.

I almost got the original one, but the comments of the separation between the screen and the protection held me back. New version seems to address this.

February 15, 2024

Responding Using Your Blog

Nitin Khanna, on nitinkhanna.com:

My blog sits idle most of the time, until I have something I want to write. This may be private or public. But writing goes here. (Journaling, of course, goes into Day One.)

Absolutely love the phrase: but writing goes here. Will try to practice this over the next few days.

February 14, 2024

COSMIC Desktop Environment Approaching Alpha

The Team at System76 Blog:

We’re on approach towards an alpha version of the new COSMIC desktop environment for Pop!_OS and other distros. Meanwhile, COSMIC testing has expanded to more users around the office. This month, we’re providing updates to the checklist we published in January on remaining tasks for releasing the alpha.

This is looking better and better. I don’t see myself switching to a Linux distro anytime soon, but I do hope this starts a new crop of apps or features for macOS.

Please Apple, give developers public APIs for Stage Manager and let them do their magic.

February 9, 2024

Tim Urban Thoughts on the Vision Pro

Tim Urban, on Wait But Why:

I’m writing this on a 30-foot screen on top of a 10,000-foot mountain in Hawaii, at a table in an Austin coffee shop where I’m pretty sure other people are taking photos of me to send to their friends so they can all call me a piece of shit. In the last week, life has gotten weird.

Of all the Apple Vision Pro reviews, this one has tempted me the most to do something stupid.

I’m gonna do a demo for sure the next time I visit the US but I feel fairly certain I’ll be able to hold off until v3… but not much longer.

February 6, 2024

Summary of macOS VM Apple Silicone Performance

hoakley, on The Eclectic Light Company:

Lightweight virtualisation of macOS on Apple silicon does deliver performance that’s impressively close to that of the host

I’m seriously considering setting up a virtual Mac in my work MacBook Air to separate my personal time at the end of the day.

Tried Bunch as a way to more clearly break within the same desktop, but without success.

Before virtualizing, I should try creating separate users. However, that feels inefficient. Or at least more inefficient.

January 31, 2024

Castro Podcast App New Owner

Posted by Castro Team, on castro.fm:

We are excited to announce Castro has been purchased by Bluck Apps. Castro is a great app with a long history on iOS and many passionate fans, and it will continue to operate in its current form. This is a return to its independent roots.

I really hope this works out. Been hoping around podcast apps1 since for a month or so, but nothing follows my mental model like Castro.

  1. I’ve tested: Apple Podcast, Overcast, AirShow, Untitled,↩︎

January 22, 2024

Day One Introduces Shared Journals

The Day One Team, on Day One | Your Journal for Life:

Today we’re excited to introduce Shared Journals in Day One, a new way for you to safely share life’s moments with friends and family, while upholding the privacy and security you trust.

They’ve been testing [[[snippets]/2023-09-28 Shared Journals Waitlist|for a while]], and I’m happy to start using it. First use is a Kids shared journal with Ana… of stuff only a parent would find fascinating.

I already had a personal journal for this, and copying all the notes wasn’t flawless — it gave an error on media attached, but I don’t know which ones didn’t make it.

Shared Journals are available with Day One Premium. Those you invite can access your Shared Journal with a free account.

Great a approach, I feel confortable suggesting we use this for family trips this way.

January 16, 2024

Apple Vision Get Ready

I’d like anything that starts with Gene Wilder yelling get ready. And with iPhone Hello commercial vibes from 16 years ago, this reaches back into my geek nostalgia like nothing else:

Right now I’m enjoying the introduction of a new category. I do think the Apple Vision is going to be something. Rational me clearly states publicly: I’ll wait for the Apple Vision Air, or whatever the Gen 3(?) at $1.999 of this will be.

Still 16 years ago, I basically said the same thing while holding my Sprint Palm Treo 650, and less than I month later, I had an iPhone in my pocket.

January 11, 2024

32 Items Limit in Find My on iOS 17

From Apple Support:

You can add up to 32 items in Find My. In addition to AirTag and the third-party Find My network accessories in the Items tab, AirPods Max count as one item, AirPods and AirPods Pro (1st generation) count as two items, and AirPods Pro (2nd generation) count as three items.

Good to know. This will put a tamper in my current obsession with getting Find My devices every time there’s a sale.

January 5, 2024

(Most) Microsoft’s Keyboards and Mice Will Live On

Tom Warren, on The Verge:

Microsoft-designed mice will continue to be available too, including the Bluetooth Ergonomic Mouse and the Modern Mobile Mouse. Incase will also offer Microsoft-designed speakers, audio docks, headsets, and the Modern Webcam. There are 23 products in total that will be available later this year.

Sadly, my Microsoft Precision Mouse doesn’t appear to have survived the transition.

January 2, 2024

Running Ubuntu in Work MacBook

Mike Rockwell, on initialcharge.net:

This is actually a screenshot of a virtual machine running Ubuntu 22.04. The MacBook is primarily a work machine and I had previously setup a separate user account on it for personal stuff. This year I decided to move that to a virtual machine instead, which makes it easier to switch back and forth for quick breaks throughout my work day.

Basically a note-to-self post. Currently I only have my work MacBook Air M2 — although I’m thinking of purchasing an used M1/M2 MacBook Pro 14in sometime this year.

I found this concept by Mike worth considering. Even as a way to segment my work and personal workspaces.

December 17, 2023

A Farewell to (my) Cable Bags

Many years ago, a young man bought three Muji mesh pouches: white, black and greenish.

Being an Apple fanatic, the man filled the white pouch with cables of the newish Lighting connector. Still, many 30 pin cables were also added to the bag, because well, he had many around. The prize possession of this pouch was a chimera: an Apple micro USB to lightning adapter1.

The mesh bags in questionsThe mesh bags in questions

Then came the black bag, for which black cables were the natural occupants. Surprisingly, the color of the cables wasn’t really what conditioned their brotherhood. No, this bag was filled with two different yet similarly common connectors: micro and mini-USB.

Lastly, the green bag. This held a special place in the man’s heart. He was actually proud of having to even need a bag for this sort of cables: audio cables. It included everything from adapters to extensions, and even replacement earplugs2.

The man collection grew over the years. He moved countries. Met people. Started a family, and it also grew. This required even more cables. But still, the three pouches remained a useful constant in his life.

Things were good. The man could satisfy all cable requests done under his roof. But then, things started to change. A newcomer cable started to show up. Occasionally at first, a Wifi router here or a smart speaker there. But suddenly, it invaded his domain. The man’s wife’s iPad started to use this new USB-C cable — and then his beloved Mac laptop. The man couldn’t visit the Muji store, so he bought some cheap mesh bags. But his heart was not in it: I’ll sort it out soon” he said, but it never happened.

Now the time has come for the man to face his bag’s obsolesce. Two new iPhone 15 devices await under the Christmas Tree, and the realization hit him that they’re filled with antiquities.

He won’t be able to use any of the cables in his faithful 3 pouches with his new everyday device.

Yes, there’s his trustee AirPods and his young daughter old iPad. But the time has come to decide: are the bags themselves tied to their contents fate? or is it a time for inner-renewal? Or … should the man just visit Muji again and shut-up about it?

These are the struggles of this post-modern man.

  1. I remember being fascinated by the size and utility of this adapter. Even more by the fact it was from Apple®. Also remember no one in my family understanding my fascination.↩︎

  2. The Shure SE215 were my joy for many years.↩︎

December 15, 2023

Yawman Arrow Handheld Flight Controller Launching in January

Yawman team, on Yawman News:

The Yawman Arrow is the fusion of a traditional handheld gaming controller and the unique flight controls found on aircraft of all sizes. Designed for precision and versatility, the Arrow brings together a traditional joystick, desktop throttle quadrant and rudder pedal capability — and more — all into a handheld form factor that has never been available for flight simulators before

I still haven’t figured out how to plan how to play Microsoft Flight Simulator 2024 with needing to buy a new computer or console, but when/if I do, this $249 seems like a great option.

The Arrow is fully compatible with Microsoft Flight Simulator on PC, Infinite Flight for Android, Laminar Research X-Plane on PC and macOS, Lockheed Martin Prepar3DDCS World – and more — as well as non-simulation games that support joystick controls.

This will be in my 2024 wishlist for sure.

December 15, 2023

Matt Mullenweg 2023 Bag

Matt, on Matt Mullenweg:

I’m not going to label it all, just posting for posterity.

I enjoy these sort of post, especially from someone known to travel a lot. Didn’t add anything immediately to my wishlist, but did bookmark for future reference.

December 14, 2023

Apple is Adapting Murderbot

Andrew Liptak, on Transfer Orbit:

Apple has announced that it will be adapting Martha Wells’ acclaimed Murderbot stories for its streaming platform, Apple TV+. Directors Chris and Paul Weitz have been tapped to helm the 10-episode adaptation, with Alexander Skarsgård set to star and produce. David Goyer will also be producing.

Apple’s streaming corner is looking pretty-good Sci-Fi wise. Silo and Foundation Season 2 were two of my favorite TV shows this year.

I haven’t read all of Murderbot books (will do now), but the few I have were funny and very TV action friendly.

December 12, 2023

Journaling Suggestions on Day One

The Day One Team, on Day One Blog:

Journaling Suggestions in Day One provide personalized journaling recommendations inspired by your photos, locations, activities, and more, bringing a whole new level of introspection and discovery to your daily reflections.

Nice to have these prompts. However, the way I journal at the end of each day, I usually have either a photo — or a screenshot from the Mac — that I can use as a starting point. Still, excellent to have this feature parity with Apple’s Journal app.

Behind the scenes, Day One now integrates with the Apple Suggestions API to bring Journaling Suggestions directly into Day One.

Even better is that as more applications add support to the suggestions API, more things can be used.

November 27, 2023

Neil Gaiman on Blogging, Writing and Fantasy

Neil Gaiman, on ruv.is:

The process of writing, is always a process of trying to trick my brain of into thinking that what I’m doing is not important.

This is just one tidbit of a great short interview in an Icelandic TV show. Really worth a listen.

November 27, 2023

Matt Gemmell on His Kindle Scribe

Matt Gemmell, on Matt Gemmell:

And my dear reader, since it arrived, I haven’t been without it. I also haven’t charged it since then either, and it only just dropped below 80% after four days. As for my wife, her Scribe has gone from couch to bed to kitchen to greenhouse to desk, and I’m pretty sure she’s started reading on it too. She’s used it even more than I have.

He’s really loving it and has a found a place for it alongside his iPad.

I want one notebook and one pen, and to never be afraid of sullying a beautiful, virginal piece of stationery with my unworthy marks. I also love new toys, and I’m too old to pretend otherwise or to apologise for it. I absolutely love this gadget.

If e-ink tablets are able to hit the $299 with pens, I suspect a whole lot of more people will start using them.

November 26, 2023

Default Apps 2023

I’m so late on this that it’s likely evolving from a blogging trend to a LinkedIn shared post thread (ugh). Still, inspired by a recent podcast episode from Hemispheric Views, here’s my list of default applications/services:

  • 📨 Mail Client: Superhuman
  • 📮 Mail Service: Gmail and Migadu
  • 📝 Notes: Obsidian, but also  Notes (for anything with attachments or collaboration with Ana).
  • ✅ To-Do: Things 3 and  Reminders (for attention grabbing notifications).
  • 📓 Scratchpad: Drafts.
  • 📷 iPhone Photo Shooting:  Camera.
  • 🟦 Photo Management:  Photos
  • 📆 Calendar: Vimcal & Fantastical.
  • 📁 Cloud File Storage: iCloud Drive
  • 📖 RSS: Reeder
  • 🙍🏻‍♂️ Contacts:  Contacts
  • 🌐 Browser: Arc
  • 💬 Chat: WhatsApp and iMessage.
  • 🔖 Bookmarks: Raindrop.io
  • 📑 Read It Later: Readwise Reader
  • 📔 Journal: Day One
  • 🛒 Shopping Lists:  Reminders
  • 🎥 Media Tracking: Listy
  • 🎵 Music: Spotify
  • 🎤 Podcasts: Castro
  • 🔐 Password Management: 1Password 
  • 🐘 Mastodon: Ivory
  • ⌨️ Launcher: Raycast
  • 🛤️ Habit etc. Tracking: I keep switching, leaving empty as a mark of shame.
  • 🌤️ Weather: Window outside (I’m in CR, so it will always rain) and  Weather when travelling
  • 👨🏻‍💻 Terminal:  Terminal
  • 🧮 Code Editor: SublimeText
  • 🎙️ Dictation: superwhisper
  • 🤖 ChatGPT: BoltAI and Machato

You can find a huge index of posts like this at Robb’s defaults site.

November 24, 2023

Black Friday 2023 Software Purchases

Here are my software Black Friday purchases this year:

These I didn’t buy — mostly because I already own — but I recommend:

November 14, 2023

Opal Tadpole Portable Webcam

From opalcamera.com:

Introducing the Tadpole the Smallest Webcam Ever Built. With a Category-First Directional Microphone, a Mirrorless Sony Sensor, and the Easiest Way to Mute Your Call With a Tap It’s the Perfect Webcam to Take With You Everywhere

The Opal C1 was intriguing, but this portable version is a bit more justifiable. Since Continuity Camera holders are way less convenient on laptops, I see this a good solution.

November 9, 2023

Team Scheduling in Superhuman

From new.superhuman.com:

No need for time zone math or back-and-forth threads. You can now instantly see when your team is free, and schedule meetings right from Superhuman.

Been waiting ages for this. Many will roll-their-eyes, but I find it very useful to take threads that are going nowhere and scheduling a quick call1 to push the task forward.

  1. I know, I’ve become my own worst enemy.↩︎

November 7, 2023

No Plans for 27in Apple Silicon iMac

Dan Seifert, on The Verge:

Apple PR representative Starlayne Meza confirmed the company’s plans to The Verge. The company encourages those who have been holding out hope for a larger iMac to consider the Studio Display and Mac Studio or Mac Mini, which pair a 27-inch 5K screen with a separate computer, compared to the all-in-one design of the iMac.

While sad from the history perspective, it makes sense when you look at the current Mac Mini and Apple Studio display.

Personally, unless they bring back the ability to use the iMac as a screen for other Macs, I don’t see myself ever considering an iMac.

November 6, 2023

Reset Screen Recording Permissions on Mac

Every so often, my Mac screen recording permission screen System Setting decides to completely ignore whatever setting is in the UI. Steps below have helped me a couple of times

Locate the bundle ID of the affected application:

  • On Terminal run
osascript -e 'id of app "App Name"'

Reset privacy database for affected application:

  • On terminal run:
tccutil reset ScreenCapture com.BUNDLE.ID

As always with the Terminal, be careful.

November 3, 2023

Ideo Layoffs Cut a Third of Staff and Close Offices

Mark Wilson, on Fast Company:

[…] Derek Robson, CEO of Ideo, on the morning of October 2 as he announced widespread layoffs, office closures, and a restructuring of operations at what’s been one of the world’s most storied design firms for the last three decades, collaborating with companies ranging from Apple to Coca-Cola.

You could argue that Design Thinking has become commonplace and Ideo is the victim of its own success. However this still feels off. While getting my master’s in Boston, IDEO was one the places I dreamt of working on.

October 30, 2023

MacStories Review of Astropad’s Rock Paper Pencil

John Voorhees, on macstories.net:

The experience of using the new Pencil tips along with the cover is the closest thing to paper that I’ve ever tried on the iPad. I’ve spent time taking notes in a variety of apps.

My preferred screen-cover on my last two iPad’s has been the Moshi iVisor, mostly because I like the fact it’s removable/washable (not that I’ve ever done it), which means it’s much less stressful to apply. Previously I used Paperlike’s cover, but it always ended up with some sort of bubbles — and the screen sensation wasn’t that amazing.

Very sure this will be the cover of my next iPad. Good news is that an iPad mini 6 version will be available soon.

October 30, 2023

Apple new MacBook Pro featuring M3 chips

Apple, on Apple Newsroom:

14-inch MacBook Pro with M3 now starts at $1,599

14- and 16-inch models with M3 Pro and M3 Max are available in a gorgeous new space black finish

Great lineup for the MacBook Pro’s. The new base MBP is a great option. However, I still think you get better performance at the $1800 range with a loaded up 13/15in MacBook Air M2.

Or… as my eBay watchlist currently makes evident: a loaded-up M1 Max MacBook Pro.

Either way, there’s no laptop you need to worry about in the current lineup, which is great news.

October 29, 2023

YouTube Blocking Adblockers

Zhenyi Tan, on And a Dinosaur:

YouTube isn’t rolling out the anti-adblock to everyone. It seems to depend on things like your account, browser, and IP address. And if you’re not logged in or you’re in a private window, you’re safe. As a result, there are a bunch of people saying, I use XYZ and I haven’t seen an anti-adblock popup yet,” unknowingly spreading misinformation.

But here’s the thing: YouTube isn’t just targeting adblockers. Use Privacy Badger? You’ll get flagged. Use Malwarebytes? You’ll get flagged. Set your Edge browser’s tracking protection to strict”? Yep, you’ll get flagged. So a lot of people think their extensions are safe to use, but actually they’re not.

I mostly used the author’s Vinegar Safari plugin until GoogleFi gave me a year of YouTube Premium with our plan change. However, not sure if I’ll be renewing next year — I need more friction to control by YT rabbit holes.

Keeping an eye on this.

October 19, 2023

Obsidian Importer Apple Notes Support

kepano, on obsidian.md:

Today we’re excited to share that Importer now works with Apple Notes, and is compatible with its many content types — including internal links added in iOS 17. See our guide: How to convert your Apple Notes to Obsidian.

I currently have a workable mental model for what goes into Apple Notes and Obsidian in my workflow. However, I’m planning to use this plugin to create a standalone vault as a backup for Apple Notes.

October 17, 2023

Apple New Apple Pencil

Apple, on Apple Newsroom:

The new Apple Pencil is the most affordable model, making it ideal for everyday productivity and creativity. With USB-C charging and pairing, the new Apple Pencil is great for iPad (10th generation) users and also works with all iPad models that have a USB-C port, including iPad Pro, iPad Air and iPad mini.

Basically it’s the Apple Apple Pencil (2nd generation) without pressure sensitivity, double-tap for switching tools and wireless charging. Ok, I’ll bite, having bought a few of alternative pencils without these features, it’s a good compromise for a lower price.

The new Apple Pencil will be available for purchase separately for $79 (U.S), with availability beginning in early November.

Wait, what?! Go home Apple, you’re drunk. The Apple Pencil 2nd Gen is usually found on Amazon for $89 , and generic pens with similar features cost half the new Apple Pencil.

Less difficult to recommend than the Apple Pencil (1st generation), but still hard to do with a straight face.

October 12, 2023

Matthias Pfefferle, on WordPress.com News:

ActivityPub is a WordPress plugin that facilitates seamless integration between your blog and a host of federated platforms, including Mastodon, Pleroma, Friendica, and more. This plugin empowers your readers to follow your blog posts on these platforms. 

In addition, replies to your posts from these platforms are automatically turned into comments on your WordPress blog, creating a more interactive and dynamic conversation around your content. Synchronicity for the win!

This is really cool. Specially the second part: the ability to channel reply’s as comments is something that would have been a killer Twitter feature back in the day.

I’m glad this is out. Specially with rumors that Tumblr ActivityPub integration is shelved. Not sure I’d use it in Wordpress, but will have it enabled in an instant on blot.im.

October 5, 2023

New WhatsApp AI Features

Meta on WhatsApp.com:

Starting today, some users can start testing the following in chats with friends and family:

  • AI stickers: You can now create a custom sticker that represents a thought or idea that’s just right for your chat.
  • AI chats: With Meta’s AIs, you can ask any question to find out more about topics or try and settle a debate in your group chat, including getting the perspective from dozens of characters Meta has created that respond in interesting ways.
  • Photorealistic Image Generation: By typing the prompt /imagine, AIs allow you to generate images to represent an idea, place, or person.

I’m amazed of what Meta managed to make generally available these features in such a short time. I haven’t figured AI stickers, but the AI chats and image generation are impressive … and free”.

October 3, 2023

OpenCore Legacy Patcher Project Brings macOS Sonoma to Old Macs

Andrew Cunningham, on Ars Technica:

Yesterday, the OCLP team announced version 1.0.0 of the software, the first to formally support the recently released macOS 14 Sonoma. Although Sonoma officially supports Macs released mostly in 2018 or later, the OCLP project will allow Sonoma to install on Macs that go back to models released in 2007 and 2008, enabling them to keep up with at least some of the new features and security patches baked into the latest release.

Planning to try it with my 2016 MacBook which Ana uses. And thinking about using it on the 2015 MacBook Pro I use as a home sever.

October 2, 2023

Google Intros Chromebook Plus Category

John Maletis, on Google:

More than 10 years ago, we created Chromebooks to bring you easy-to-use computers that offer reliable performance and unmatched security. Today, we’re introducing a new category of Chromebooks that takes the promise even further: Chromebook Plus.

I was once really into Chromebooks, but is just seems like a way to try to differentiate crappy laptops with less crappy laptops.