This guy wrote his novel using only open-source tools. While it’s not mind-blowing stuff – the tools involved are fairly standard – it’s nice to see someone go through all the steps and show how easy it is to publish nowadays
I recently fixed up an old iPhone 4 for fun and to try out iOS. Turns out it’s limited to iOS7 which means most of the apps I try to install don’t work. Damn you apple, damn you.
I stuck it in airplane mode to fast charge, then plugged it out and forgot about it. A few days later I came back and found it at 100% battery life. Turns out the iPhone 4 has incredible battery life if you put it in airplane mode and do nothing with it.
6 Days, 17 hours, 85% and counting
This helped my poor ageing eyes so much this morning. No more trying to read crimson on navy!
It’s alarmingly simple – a 52 x 90 grid, which represents your life, assuming you life to be 90. Each square is a week.
I found it a bit of a gut punch to see my weeks splayed out like that. The phrase “it really puts things in perspective” is an overused cliché, but this does just that. You literally see your life from another perspective. And in some ways, it is horrifying. I’m a third of the way down the page, and what have I achieved, really? How long have I left? And this is the best case scenario, really, barring miracle life extension technologies. How much can I cram into those remaining boxes? Each one seems ridiculously precious.
Anyway, it’s an interesting project. The weeks can be toggled, but there’s no functionality there so I don’t know what the point is. Perhaps the author is working on some extra features. It would be cool, and scary, to be able to put in your birthday and see where you are on the grid.
Peter-Paul Koch over on quirksmode.org has mirrored my own thoughts on ads far more eloquently than I could ever manage:
Ad-funded free content providers have a strong vested interest in pretending the web is in danger from ad blockers. They need to protect their revenue stream — and if they can generate some clicks along the way, so much the better.
But the web is a lot larger than just news sites with problematic business models. E-commerce sites, brochure sites, government sites, personal homepages, web interfaces for various services, none of them are inconvenienced in the slightest by ad blockers.
Read the rest here – http://www.quirksmode.org/blog/archives/2016/03/the_webs_origin.html
I’ve released a new app on the windows store, a universal / UWP app for counting words. It sounds silly, but I needed a way to count words on my phone, and there were no options.
At time of writing there are three other wordcount apps on the windows store. One is full of horrific full page ads, one doesn’t work (on wp10 at least), and one is a paid app.
It seemed to me that there was a gap in the market there for something that worked, didn’t cost anything and didn’t try to sell you some random crap. It takes some balls to charge someone for an app that counts words. As for the ads guy, don’t get me started.
Here’s a link to wordcount in the store, which is free, has no ads, no in-app purchases, and works on windows 10 and windows phone 10.
I spotted on techcrunch this morning that my favourite browser, Opera, has just added a built in adblocker which it claims speeds up page loads by up to 90% in some cases. This is sure to fuel the current tension surrounding ads and adblocking.
I stand firmly on the side of blocking ads. I’ve heard the arguments for ads, for white-listing a site so it can continue to profit etc. I’ve even complied a few times just to test out the experience, and I quickly relented.
I’m not going to go into a big anti-ad rant just now. I don’t have time. I’ll just say this: I hate ads. I hate them on TV, billboards, junk mail, spam, web page popups, inlines, sponsor messages, or in apps – especially in apps, and I know you do too. Everyone does, and the narrative that we need them in order to keep things the way they are is just more marketing on top of marketing.
I never have, and never will, put ads on any of my websites, or in any of my apps.
Found this nice little in-browser editor through HN:
– Your thoughts are backed up directly to Chrome: no account or syncing.– Here are some handy shortcuts for you. Take notes ⌘B, ⌘I, ⌘U, ⇧⌘S– Choose Day 🌤 or Night 🌕 mode– Count the number of characters 🔢– You can print your note
It has most of the things that Poe currently does, and a few that it will have in the next version. It doesn’t save your work, so you must export it to keep anything you write. This is a fairly big hole in functionality, something that could be easily fixed by leveraging localStorage.
It’s pretty though, and I like how simple it is. Simple is good.
Voice recognition on Windows Phone 10 Preview is terrible. To demonstrate, I’ve attempted to write the next sentence of this blog using it. Here’s every attempt:
- It off and start
- it’s nothing stops halfway through a sentence.
- It off and stop
- Often stops halfway through president
- It often star
- It often starts at waitara send an
- It often starts at waitrose in
- It after
- Aften stop sao
- It often stops halfway through the
- It often
- It often stop sasha
- It often stops halfway through a sentence?
Thirteen attempts just to get one sentence. This is bad. This is comically bad. Voice recognition on Windows 8.1 was near perfect. Although it was only available for text messages, it worked almost flawlessly. WP10 seems to have done an about turn, because now it can’t figure out what I’m saying no matter what way I force myself to speak.
What happened Microsoft?
Mary Robinette Kowal, author, narrator, puppeteer, and caster-of-pods over at writing excuses, has this to say about “imposter syndrome” on her blog today. We’ve probably all felt this at one point or another. I know I have.
I’ve just given the same pep talk to three different writers, so I figure you probably need it to. Let me speak to you about impostor syndrome. That thing where you are sure everyone knows you’re faking it and they are going to find out any minute and then you will be cast down and …