You Chose Poorly S03E01 - 10% worse for 90% off

Mikey and Sawyer discuss replacing broken Apple Watches, replacing broken Apple Watch straps, and replacing reality with Apple’s face dingus. All this and more on the season premiere of You Chose Poorly!

Links:

Mikey’s Series 7 Watch Face:

Knockoff Apple Watch Straps:

April 28, 2022 podcasts youchosepoorly

Link Blog, March-April 2022

Many workers are fed up with work”, writes Black. In order to stop suffering, we have to stop working. That doesn’t mean we have to stop doing things,” he continues, but it does mean creating a new way of life based on play; in other words, a ludic conviviality, commensality, and maybe even art”.

By default social media forces you to take whatever is on offer, but Twitter lets you avoid this via the use of lists. You should use them aggressively, whether or not you choose to roll your own. Lists also let you offer those lists to others.

Because this is how I think of my camera: Quiet, a deliberate extension of the eye with a neutral gaze, allowing me to quickly define all aspects of exposure, satisfying to hold and use. A true” tool that readily bends to the will of the artist/artisan/craftsperson.

They say that the past is a foreign country, and nowhere is this more true than with food…Ingredients were prepared in ways that sound pretty strange to a modern ear. Whole onions were baked in tomato sauce and then eaten for lunch. Whole tomatoes were scalloped on their own.

This is the lesson, over and again. What we learn, what we know, the knowledge we create takes useless matter and turns it into something useful: a resource.

But by the middle of the last decade, every sacrosanct precept started to seem antiquated. If the pervasive deterioration became unmistakable, Coachella began to reflect a societal unmooring. Even though it started to sell out before the lineups were announced, the festival seemed to adopt Jeff Bezos’s overarching philosophy: All businesses need to be young forever. If your customer base ages with you, you’re Woolworth’s.”

Sometimes, design provides the perfect analogy. Playdate, on the surface at least, is a deeply nostalgic machine - an oddball handheld made by a team who genuinely understand this crucial thing: that all handhelds are at least a little oddball in the first place.

People are being driven to work, despite everything that’s going on. Workplace culture removes our ability to link together in our grief and become less lonely. Capitalism is inherently alienating. But there’s also a level of being uncomfortable experiencing other people’s grief if we’re already experiencing our own. We’re trying to cling onto this appearance that we’re all okay: But what’s the prize?” she says. There isn’t one.”

Which brings us, revoltingly, to me. I visited my doctor, a kind and skilled practitioner on the outside but a vicious crusher of human souls on the inside. We won’t get into the details, but she gave essentially this diagnosis: What the hell have you been doing to yourself all these years? You think this is a rental car?”

April 25, 2022 Logbook links

A One-Year Review of my Desktop PC

Buying a Desktop PC is usually about favouring power, speed, and disk space over portability and ease. This is what I heard repeated in my research before purchasing one. After owning one for a year, I can say this is the precise balance decision. Everyone is right about this.

Here’s a quick audit of how I’ve used this PC over the last year.

If you want to know what apps I use all the time, I recently wrote this post: Solid Windows Apps, updated for 2022

Art & Design

  • In 2021, I learned how to make pixel, voxel, and 3D art.
  • I began using Photoshop again for the first time in many years.
  • I began using Bridge and Acrobat more.
  • I began learning Adobe XD, which may inform the type of work I do in the future.

Gaming

  • I’ve played Death Stranding, Final Fantasy VII Remake, and Cyberpunk 2077. I wouldn’t have been able to play any of these on a Surface Pro.
  • I’ve created an emulation library for myself, containing digital backups of almost every game and system I own. I’m even in the process of backing up my 3DS, which I thought was impossible until recently.

Video

  • I learned how to use Davinci Resolve to edit a ton of video game footage. Also, podcasts, gifs, and tiktoks.
  • It’s not a bad Plex setup.

Work

  • Most of my work is in Illustrator and InDesign. These aren’t the most intensive Adobe apps, but it’s still been very nice to never feel a slow down.
  • I’ve been able to sync more files to my local pc without worrying about running out of space all the time.

Photography

  • I’ve finally had the space to locally store every photo file I have, and I’ve begun the work of tagging/rating my collection, something I just haven’t had the bandwidth for in the last decade. Lightroom is awesome at exactly this.

Music

  • I was able to rebuilt my local music file collection. Starting with a bunch of FLAC files from vinyl purchases, and moving onto files from an old iPod of mine, I was able to mostly get back what I’d lost nearly a decade ago when I made the move to smaller laptops with less storage.
  • I used the old iPod for a while, actually. It was nice! But I found it had syncing issues, and would sometimes appear to glitch out. Time comes for us all.

Phone Backups

  • Every now and then, I’ll make an encrypted backup of my phone with iTunes. I know iCloud has largely obviated this, but it’s still nice.

Experiments in Mac and Android Emulation

  • I had an itch to see if I could make a hackintosh” with this machine, and I did. It worked. If I ever feel the need in the future, I can run the experiment again and work as a Mac” user, with access to most apps (I don’t think it would work with M1-based apps, for obvious reasons).
  • When windows 11 came out, it enabled better android app emulation. This also works! It’s a novelty to see something like Apple Music running on Windows. But much like the Mac emulation, I don’t actually have much use for android apps in my routine.

Downsides to a Desktop PC

  • No Built-in microphone or camera. So the decision is to be made: keep a microphone or webcam always plugged in? Or have some system where you put them away when they’re not in use, so you don’t have to cover your desk with accessories. I’ve been frustrated by this modularity at times.

  • It’s obvious, but still worth mentioning: I can only really use it while sitting in one place in my apartment. Teamviewer gets around this for the odd thing, as I can sort of peek at it from my phone or my old Surface.

  • I worry about heat. This is a big, hot machine that can kick up to 70-80 degrees while doing normal stuff. I’m probably going to buy more fans, which will only make it louder.

April 22, 2022 technology windows

March 2022 in photos

April 7, 2022 photos

Solid Windows Apps, updated for 2022

I wanted to make a Windows version of Craig Mod’s well-crafted piece of macOS software list, but for Windows. Windows has a reputation for having rough software that’s often ridiculed. I stopped using macOS because I fell in love with touch-based Windows PCs this decade, specifically the Surface line. And while it was a rocky transition, I’ve learned to love so many Windows apps. I’m sure some of these are also on the Mac, but here’s a list of what I feel would make any Windows PC sing:

  • Calibre, for everything ePub, PDF, CBR, and mobi.
  • Advanced Renamer. Just a swiss army knife of batch file renaming. I’ve been using it for years and it’s still teaching me new tricks.
  • Affinity Suite. Especially on a Surface, where the pen support is fantastic. They run cooler than equivalent Adobe apps too.
  • ScreenToGif - a super easy (and fun?) recorder/gif editor that I use all the time.
  • Ditto clipboard manager. I tried a few of these and stuck with this one and I just never thought about it ever again.
  • Big Stretch Reminder. A taskbar applet that reminds you to get up, stretch, or whatever you want, when you specify. It’s Apple Watch’s time to stand” feature but a pop up on the computer you’re actually looking at.

On top of those, I feel like Microsoft themselves have some of Windows’ best apps (I know that sounds obvious, but it just isn’t true on the Mac side anymore).

  • OneNote has been my best buddy for almost ten years.
  • Visual Studio Code, for when you need more organization and text help than Typora (I use both everyday).
  • Photos is underappreciated. It’s ability to just let you point at a folder and work in it for a while is great. The built-in video editor is an excellent fast option.
April 6, 2022 links windows

Good Movies, February-March 2022

March 30, 2022 Logbook movies

Link Blog, March 2022

  • Kazuchika Okada Reigns In A Silent Empire

    All of that is lost, for now. Clapping and stomping show that the audience is reacting, but barring the kind of clarification Okada asked for in his promo (which is of course much more difficult to do during a match), it’s tough to imbue these actions with distinct meanings. The good guys can’t have their names chanted—fans can clap in a specific pattern, but that really only works if they’re facing someone with a distinctly different number of syllables in his name. The heels can’t be booed—they can only be met with silence, which is brutal to sit through, or a kind of droning applause that only serves to say We are not ignoring you. That New Japan is still running their shows in large buildings where these soft sounds echo sadly through empty sections only further depletes the intensity.

  • Slobbing out and giving up: why are so many people going goblin mode’?

    Goblin mode is kind of the opposite of trying to better yourself,” says Juniper, who declined to share her last name. I think that’s the kind of energy that we’re giving going into 2022 — everyone’s just kind of wild and insane right now.”

  • How WordPress and Tumblr are keeping the internet weird

    I’ll tell you a stat most people don’t realize. Half of all users who sign up for WordPress.com every day are there to blog.

  • Have iPhone Cameras Become Too Smart?

    The average iPhone photo strains toward the appearance of professionalism and mimics artistry without ever getting there. We are all pro photographers now, at the tap of a finger, but that doesn’t mean our photos are good.

  • Our Fundamental Right To Shame And Shun The New York Times

    Americans don’t have, and have never had, any right to be free of shaming or shunning…. Someone else shaming me is their free speech, and someone else shunning me is their free association, both protected by the First Amendment.

  • Mr. Bones’ Wild Ride 10th Anniversary: Why the Ride Still Won’t Stop

    Mr. Bones’ anniversary this month also coincides with the 55th anniversary of Harlan Ellison’s science-fiction tale, I Have No Mouth, and I Must Scream,” a story centered on a malignant, self-aware computer that inflicts eternal torment on the Earth’s four surviving humans. Published in 1967, Ellison’s literary nightmare highlighted cultural fears of nuclear annihilation and our earliest adoptions of computer technology — two awful anxieties that recent headlines make even more ominous and prescient.

  • We Aren’t Just Watching the Decline of the Oscars. We’re Watching the End of the Movies

    No, what looks finished is The Movies — big-screen entertainment as the central American popular art form, the key engine of American celebrity, the main aspirational space of American actors and storytellers, a pop-culture church with its own icons and scriptures and rites of adult initiation.

March 29, 2022 Logbook links

Mont Tremblant 2022 in photos

March 4, 2022 photos

Keeping Track of Stuff, Winter 2022

Music

When I’m listening to music, it’s usually on Spotify in a playlist called Add to Collection?” There’s usually a few hundred songs in there. When I see a new album or a playlist I think is good, I dump it in there. I usually listen to it on shuffle. If I don’t like a song, I remove it from the playlist. If I like the song, I hit the little heart button. If I think the song belongs in one of my theme playlists, I add it. Then, I remove it from the Add to collection” playlist.

If I really like an album, I’ll buy the vinyl. This usually comes with a little piece of paper that lets me download the highest quality version of the album. I do that. I put it into iTunes. Then I mostly forget that I did that and listen to it on Spotify.

Photos

I take a couple of photos with my iPhone XR every day. Sometimes, I’ll take out my Canon DSLR and real photos” with RAW that I dump into Photoshop afterwards, but this is rare. These photos upload to OneDrive, and once a month I go in there and delete the ones I don’t want to keep. I make a folder called February 2022” and put them in my All Photos” folder in OneDrive.

I’ve been tooling around with Lightroom lately as a way to organize things beyond that.

TV

I recently switched from TV Trakt to Just Watch. Both services do the same thing: let you tick a box next to an episode title to help you keep track of what you’ve seen. TV Trakt was better at letting you rate things and read reviews. Just Watch is better at integrating with your TV and acting as a home base.”

Movies

Letterboxd is the best website on the internet and I will hear no arguments. When I review a movie, an IFTTT script takes that text and places it in a text file on my dropbox. That’s how I write my good movies” blog posts.

Health

When I do workout, I’ll track it with my Apple Watch. After that, I put that info into Notion, because it helps me put it somewhere I can see it. I wish the Fitness App on iPhone was better.

Journaling

I’ve been better at writing in my journal lately. I don’t blog much, but I journal a lot. Once a year, I scan my journal and keep it in an archive in OneNote, so I can search through it later.

February 24, 2022 workflows music photos tv movies health bujo

Link Blog, February 2022

  • Against the Stream

    CHOICE CAN BE OPPRESSIVE, and the lack of it, liberating. The poets who still try to rhyme know this. A rhyme scheme only seems to narrow your options, forcing you into warrens that will suddenly widen, leading you to unforeseen words. Anyway, artistic freedom is always a feint. No verse is free for the man who wants to do a good job,” wrote T.S. Eliot.

  • The Futures of Typography

    …we first have to acknowledge a rather serious problem with the web: the web hates beautiful typography.

  • I Spent Hundreds of Hours Working in VR. Here’s What I Learned | WIRED

    VR desktops like Immersed put you in an environment like this spaceship, or a mountain lodge, or a serene forest shrine, and project your computer’s screen before you. Stretch your screen to massive proportions if you’d like. If you want a standing desk, just stand up and take a few seconds to flick your monitors to the right height. A month after getting the headset, I gave away my real-world desk.

  • Back To Normal Isn’t Enough | Defector

    The minimum wage is still atrociously low. Cops are still shooting black people in the streets. School shootings are only down because the students are learning virtually. Everything is more expensive and not any nicer. Our experiences of buying things are also bad. The government’s relationship with the people is that of a disapproving and forgetful grandparent with a very young and very naughty child. The country is in shambles, and everyone can feel it.

  • TODOs from Paper Systems — SLIME MOLD TIME MOLD

    The key to fixing this is coming up with a todo system where the emotional experience is pride. This way you often want to look at your todo list, you enjoy the experience of working with it, you approach it, you seek it out, etc.

  • How James Hoffmann Became the Coffee Expert

  • Is Old Music Killing New Music? - The Atlantic

    Decades ago, the composer Erik Satie announced the arrival of furniture music,” a kind of song that would blend seamlessly into the background of our lives. His vision seems closer to reality than ever.

  • No one will read your book - by Elle Griffin

  • The Future Is Not Only Useless, It’s Expensive

    This is how NFTs make me feel: like the future is useless but expensive, and world-altering technology is now in the hands of a culture so aesthetically and spiritually impoverished that it should maybe go back to telling stories around the cooking fire for a while, just to remember how to mean something.

  • Maybe All Boyfriends Should Be Offline

    It goes the other way too. I’ve never found myself more into a guy after seeing his social-media accounts — at best, my feelings stay the same; at worst, his feed is full of fish photos. Because so many of us (myself included) post like we’re shouting into the void instead of leaving things on the internet for the world to see, the chances of stumbling across something embarrassing about the guy you’re dating — or vice versa — are annoyingly high. Unless, of course, the guy is offline.

  • Ode to the Bimbos of HBO

    When I speak of the hyperfeminine, I am referring to an aesthetic that highlights a practiced, distinct, and obvious effort into looking traditionally, or even stereotypically, feminine. Think the color pink, effortful makeup, big jewelry, flashy clothing, and well-manicured acrylic nails. Hyperfemininity is in-your-face, often purposefully exaggerated. It has a rich queer history, particularly regarding queer people who identify as femme.

  • Ogilvy on Dating: The Consumer isn’t a Moron, She is [Hopefully] your Wife

    You cannot bore people into DATING. The average GIRL is now exposed to more than 1500 BLOKES a day. No wonder they have acquired a talent for skipping the DUDES in newspapers and magazines, and going to the bathroom during television PERSONALS.

  • I Hate Games

    I went into the arts to get away from this stuff. But it’s everywhere. Art is now structured like games are structured. What is fandom but a bunch of players trying to win a never ending game of Trivial Pursuit? It’s all trivia now, details. It’s all collecting, aggregating, and optimizing.

February 23, 2022 Logbook links