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Tagged "tool"

Link logging

Mark’s bookmarklets

I like bookmarklets. I like that these are bookmarklets made by Mark. See also Mark’s Learn2JS.

Pixaki for iPad

This is an app that I have not tried, but that looks groovy if you are into creating pixel art.

Bad ethernet cable

Reminding us that it is important to remember that the medium is the message…especially when the message relies on a medium for transference.

SQL: One of the Most Valuable Skills

Leave your ORM at the door. SQL fo’ lyfe!

Opportunity did not answer NASAs final call, and it’s now lost to us

RIP. You were the best robot adventurer. You will be missed.

I’ve gone full Apocalypse Dad

I read this. It caused me to panic. Living in blissful ignorance and being busy with work and not having the money to actually really stockpile anything of usefulness is what keeps me from being a full on doomsday hoarder.

But responding to the possibility of the worst, by pursuing mere survival, seems a bit limited — even to the point of being paradoxical. Survival is conservative by nature: however bad the world might be, my best chances of surviving in it are by learning and respecting its rules. My best hopes at riding out any given disaster are if things, as far as possible, continue to follow laws and norms I already understand. And yet, the possibility of disaster is inherent to the world as it presently exists, as long as the world remains the same, that possibility will be there. In a way, then, the best thing to do would be to throw caution to the wind, to forget [mere] survival and embrace — as far as possible — radical change. Only then might we achieve a world in which we are genuinely safe, without ever needing to rely on mere survivalism again.

Hello. By the Way. Whatever.

Nora Ephron on blogging.

…one of the most delicious things about the profoundly parasitical world of blogs is that you don’t have to have anything much to say. Or you just have to have a little tiny thing to say. You just might want to say hello. I’m here. And by the way. On the other hand. Nevertheless. Did you see this? Whatever. A blog is sort of like an exhale.

Virginia Woolf on a similar topic:

Of all forms of literature, however, the essay is the one which least calls for the use of long words. The principle which controls it is simply that it should give pleasure; the desire which impels us when we take it from the shelf is simply to receive pleasure. Everything in an essay must be subdued to that end. It should lay us under a spell with its first word, and we should only wake, refreshed, with its last.

SPUDwrite is a DIY E Ink typewriter… with a printer… and an LCD display

An E Ink typewriter.

O Uommibatto”: How the Pre-Raphaelites Became Obsessed with the Wombat

I had no idea that wombats were so beloved by the Pre-Raphaelites!?

Wombat sketch by Edward Burne-Jones featured in Memorials of Edward Burne-Jones (1904) by Georgiana Burne-Jones

TYPE DESIGN, TYPOGRAPHY, TYPEFACES AND FONTS: An encyclopedic treatment of type design, typefaces and fonts. This site is also known as on snot and fonts.

Need I say more than this title?

Basic blot blogging from the command-line

Posting to my blog is a breeze from mobile thanks to a couple shortcuts and Drafts actions I’ve put together. I wanted posting to be just as seemless from my computer, too. Here is my quick and dirty solution!

#!/usr/bin/env bash

cd "$(dirname "$0")" # Go to the script's directory

DATE=$(date +%Y-%m-%d-%H-%M)

# The paths to your blot website's draft and post directories


# Your editor of choice

if [ -n "$USER_INPUT" ]; then

    if [ $USER_INPUT == "post" ]; then

        printf "title: \ndate: ${DATE}\ntags: " > ${POST_DIR}${DATE}.md
        $EDITOR ${POST_DIR}$DATE.md


    if [ $USER_INPUT == "draft" ]; then

        printf "title: \ndate: ${DATE}\ntags: " > ${DRAFT_DIR}${DATE}.md
        $EDITOR ${DRAFT_DIR}$DATE.md



    printf '\nBlot blogging from the command-line.\n\n    draft   create a draft post\n    post    live dangerously and just post that sucker!\n\n'


In the future I may expand this to support editing existing posts, too. I’ve also been toying with a way to do this without ever leaving emacs.

After years and years of using figma, I purchased a copy of Sketch today. Boy-howdy. I made mockups of an app in about 1/3rd of the time it would have taken me using figma.

A few weeks ago I said I’d re-write my CMS by the end of the year.

The year ended (happy New Year, btw 🥳).

That has not happened.

I’ve come to a realization:

  • Yes, the code that runs my website is an atrocious embarrassment.
  • Yes, it works perfectly for what I need/want in a website.

In short, it is good enough. Good enough, however, ain’t good enough to share and encourage other folks to use. So, while my CMS may be good enough for me, I want to do more this year to see what I can do to help make the IndieWeb more accessible to anyone who wants in. I also just want to make more thing this year. Not big grand thing, but small fun things. To kick that off I’ve started to make a toy static site generator. It is called little, and it is not done.

Last night I decided to explore other task management solutions. I migrated all my todos from TodoTxt to Notion. After playing with Notion for a bit I then migrated all my tasks to Microsoft’s todo thingy-app…not wanting to break my streak I then migrated my tasks to my self-hosted trello clone. After playing around with that for a bit I figured why not just use emacs” and then re-formatted all of my TodoTxt tasks into Org-mode…so now I have all my tasks across a whole heap of platforms and I feel obligated to maintain them across all of them until I make a choice. WHAT HAVE I DONE!?

No description provided. I will be better about this in the future!

I don’t care if you think I’m a monster. I love leaving menu-bar-mode enabled in emacs.

A few years ago Tova digitized a collection of poems that her great grandfather wrote. She then got the scans printed and bound as a gift for her mother. This evening, at my mother-in-law’s request, I made a little website of those poems. It was a fun project I was able to tackle in about an hour.

First I uploaded the PDF to archive.org and Google Drive, then I used pdf2htmlEX to convert the PDF into a webpage. I then threw together a little wrapper webpage to make pdf2htmlEX’s output a tiny bit prettier, and published the whole kit-and-caboodle using surge.sh.

Eyeballs and vampires and vim and 14px font

My vim set up as of 2018-01-23, featuring lisp koans

I’ve got pretty poor eyesight. This being the case, I often keep font sizes cranked up to at least 18px. Lately, though, I’ve needed to be able to see more of a file’s contents than my measly screen will accommodate, so I’ve been experimenting with how small I can keep my font and still see anything.

14px is the number I’ve settled on. This change, paired with my passionate romancing of all things Lisp lately, has lead me to re-enable syntax highlighting, as well. I’m not 100% certain why I disabled it…but I did (probably the fault of some blog post I read once upon a time). I actually re-enabled it a while ago, when I started my new job — I was embarrassed whenever someone else would look at my screen and not be able to find some variable I had a question about — but used a pretty minimal theme.

A couple of weeks ago I switched to the github theme…this morning, however. I decided to go all in and start using dracula everywhere — terminal, vim (I thought this list was going to be longer…but that is really it 🤷‍♂️). So far, I’m wicked pleased. I’ve worked with this setup all day, and felt good about what I can see without toooooo much squinty or ⌘+ing.

P.S. Shoutout to lisp koans featured in the screenshot

While reading Clojure for the Brave and True, I’ve also been working my way through the lisp koans. At this point I’m pretty obsessed with lisps, and am growing increasingly excited to use one for a project. Generally speaking, I feel most cozy working with a really small (some would say constrained?”) toolset. Lisps most totes fulfill this coziness.

After a long time of using fish, and before that zsh I’ve returned to being a full time bash user. There was no particular rhyme nor reason to my using one shell over another, so in an effort to simplify my setup across my two computers and the heaps of servers I interact with on the daily I’ve gone all in on bash.


A large part of my job boils down to fighting with Javascript carousel frameworks. Slick is the one I’ve had the best luck with so far. Anyone have any favorites or recommendations?

Since starting my new job I’ve kept an active rotation of text editors and IDEs. On Mondays I use Sublime Text, on Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays I use Vim (well, Neo Vim) and on Fridays I either go back to Sublime Text or use Visual Studio Code. It just sort of happened, but now has become a fun experiment in contextual productivity.

No description provided. I will be better about this in the future!

Sublime Text 3.0 features many new features and improvements…also a new icon. Griping about change is a bit passé, but here I am. Gripers gotta gripe. I realize that this is only a logo, and that they can be changed by the user…but this is a demonstrably terrible logo. Firstly, the old logo communicated something about the app. It was a key cap, much like the ones that must be tapped and poked to use sublime text. This new logo is abstract to the point of near meaninglessness. And while icons needn’t always carry meaning this icon seems a little blind to what meaning it edges against. Beyond being vaguely reminiscent of the cool s, it also looks a heap like a broken capital N, or, you know, a bit like the insignia of the Schutzstaffel, or SS. Does any of this matter in the long run? Probably not, but iconography can help to shape the personality of a product (see Susan Kare’s work for Apple). Product design and app development aren’t purely technical. There is also a good bit of theatre involved. The set needs to be dressed.

Stupid-simple bash script to create a local copy of a website


printf "\n\n    Please enter the URL of the website you wish to download.\n    Do not include leading 'http://' or 'https://'?\n\n\n"
printf "    "
read URL
printf "\n\n    Depending on the size of the website you just\n    entered, this may take a few minutes.\n\n\n"
sleep 6
wget --recursive --no-clobber --page-requisites --html-extension --convert-links --restrict-file-names=windows --domains ${URL} --no-parent http://${URL}
printf "\n\n  DONE!\n\n\n"

All the heavy lifting is done by wget, so that will need to be installed before using the script

Hackintosh, day 1

I finished setting up the Hackintosh and worked from it all day today. It. Was. Awesome. This machine is absolutely beastly in comparison to the late 2012 Mac Mini I’ve been rocking as my full-time work machine for the past few years.

RIP Mini :’(

The Mini was getting a wee bit long in the tooth so I have been working from my MacBook Air more often than not. I’m excited to get back to working at a proper desktop machine. I’m a bajillion times more productive, and I like having a dedicated work space—it makes it easier to walk away and stop working when the day is done.

So far running the Hackintosh (thinking of calling it a PineApple…becuase it is sort of like a mac and I’m in Maine…get it, get it?) has been a breeze. I anticipated more hoops would need to be jumped through, but so far sailing has been smooth. Tonymacx86 is a veritable wizard’s tome of helpful applications, how-to documentation and troubleshooting tips.

I also took this opportunity to reevaluate what tools I need and where.

Here is a quick list of what I’ve installed on the machine so far:

  • iTerm2, a co-worker turned me on to iTerm, I’ve become addicted to its mouse support for specific tasks ( e.g. clicking on links in IRC chats)
  • Homebrew, because I literally don’t know how to run a mac without it
  • Vim and my beloved .vimrc, of course
    • vundle.vim, my script installer of choice
    • Also installed neovim. Gonna give it a spin
  • Microsoft Office Suite (because work demands that I do so). I typically use Mutt or Mail.app for email and plaintext for everything and anything else that I can
  • Dropbox
  • nvAlt, which I use as a programming wiki/notebook
  • Adium, it may be old…neigh, ANCIENT, but I haven’t found a better IRC GUI
  • Transmit, the single greatest FTP client in the UNIVERSE. @ me!
  • KeePassX, because I ditched LastPass a few months ago, and haven’t looked back
  • Keybase, so so so fine for managing all the .ssh stuff
  • Sublimetext, because sometimes it is nice to be able to click on stuff
  • Xcode, of course
  • Visual Studio, again, becuase work demands it
  • pgweb, for all my database-y tasks
  • ImageOptim
  • Firefox
  • Chrome, for testing
  • MAMP
  • PasteBot, I started using this when the public beta was released a few months back after having never used a clipboard manager before. Life changing. World changing.
  • Toggl’s desktop client, because I gotta keep track of what I work on and when
  • GPG Keychain
  • Node, and a couple of node packages:
  • weechat, for when Adium dies ☠️
  • Hack Font, my favorite fixed width, powerline font

The big new thing I installed was fish, instead of my normal bash config. I’ve been reading a lot about fish lately, and like its scripting syntax…also autocomplete is pretty luscious.

I consciously didn’t install any graphics software on this machine. My thinking is twofold: a) I loathe doing graphics work, and much prefer to do it in code if I can, b) I’m going to do what graphics work I need to on my Macbook Air because I’m a lot quicker with the touchpad than a normal mouse.

…I also haven’t installed Spotify yet because I don’t have any speakers 🌽

Installing Visual Studio while deciding whether to hackintosh or iMac. ⚖️

Exporting a database from phpMyAdmin always feels like the wrong move.