MailTrackerBlocker for Mail on macOS

Block tracking pixels in macOS with MailTrackerBlocker for Mail on macOS:

I generally use MailMate which has pixel blocking built-in, or Fastmail apps which also block tracking. But it’s good to have an option for Apple Mail as well.

🔗 Link Post: “A New Board Game: {macro}Dungeon - //Jason Burk”

Jason Burk writing for

“Players can advance in boring one increment moves or strategically build macro sets that can contain up to 5 moves allowing you to jump ahead of the competition.”

My friend Jason has designed and produced a genuine, actual board game that you can buy. He’s invested a lot of time and effort into this.

International shipping is currently a bit expensive, but if you live in the United States, I encourage you to make a purchase.

More Evidence Against Trickle-Down Economic Theory

Keeping tax low for rich does not boost economy:

From the Department of the Blinding Obvious, which has been consistently challenged by the Department of Vested Interests, comes a new paper demonstrating that Trickle-Down Economics… wait for it… doesn’t work!

Major reforms reducing taxes on the rich lead to higher income inequality but do not have any significant effect on economic growth or unemployment, according to new research by LSE and King’s College London. Researchers say governments seeking to restore public finances following the COVID-19 crisis should therefore not be concerned about the economic consequences of higher taxes on the rich.

The foundation of an effective and fair progressive tax system is one upon which successful nation’s can build. Trickle-down economics can be expressed another way as ‘hollow-out economics’.

Via: 50 Years of Trickle-Down Economics Didn’t Work

🔗 Link Post: “Daring Fireball: Ecosia Is Now a Default Search Engine Option for Safari”

John Gruber writing for Daring Fireball:

“I actually hadn’t heard of Ecosia before, but their story is interesting enough that I’m giving them a shot.”

If Gruber listened to Hemispheric Views he would have heard about Ecosia on Episode 2 back on 24 September.

Don’t be like Gruber. Subscribe now!

Chrome is Bad

Chrome is Bad:

Short story: Google Chrome installs something called Keystone on your computer, which nefariously hides itself from Activity Monitor and makes your whole computer slow even when Chrome isn’t running. Deleting Chrome and Keystone makes your computer way, way faster, all the time.

I’ve never been a huge fan of Chrome. Reading this was enough to convince me to uninstall it for good.

This website has been published by Loren Brichter, who authored Tweetie way back when. I trust the guy.

Kakistocratic Nepotism

Biden’s next move after Trump’s COVID-19 hospitalization - Axios:

But with Trump in quarantine for the foreseeable future, the campaign is now relying on members of the first family — Donald Trump Jr., Ivanka, and Eric and Lara Trump — to carry the torch as part of a new “Operation MAGA” campaign…

Cool, that should go well then.


My youtube-dl Setup - //Jason Burk:

There is a utility called youtube-dl that you may or may not have seen mentioned online. Here is a rundown of how I am now using it to manage all my YouTube videos I want to watch

Thanks to Jason @Burk for the write-up on how to create an offline YouTube library. I’ve now implemented it myself. Good stuff.

🔗 Link Post: “How Work Became an Inescapable Hellhole”

Anne Helen Petersen writing for Wired:

The first part of this story describes a day of vacuous hell to me. I don’t know how people function that way, but I know many do. Reading the first part of this article makes me happy I’m older.

Later, we get this gem:

“When you “shoot off a few emails” on a Sunday afternoon, for example, you might convince yourself you’re just getting on top of things for the week ahead—which might feel true. But what you’re really doing is giving work access to be everywhere you are. And once allowed in, it spreads without your permission: to the dinner table, the couch, the kid’s soccer game, the grocery store, the car, the family vacation.”

It’s so true. Work can wait. It might feel it can’t, but actually, it can. Cut out the social media waste during work days and there is plenty of working time within regular hours.

Microsoft finds underwater datacenters are reliable, practical and use energy sustainably

Microsoft finds underwater datacenters are reliable, practical and use energy sustainably:

Microsoft put a server farm at the bottom of the sea and let it run for a few years.

The team hypothesizes that the atmosphere of nitrogen, which is less corrosive than oxygen, and the absence of people to bump and jostle components, are the primary reasons for the difference. If the analysis proves this correct, the team may be able to translate the findings to land datacenters.

Or will it means data centres are plonked all over the oceans?

“Our failure rate in the water is one-eighth of what we see on land,” Cutler said.

“I have an economic model that says if I lose so many servers per unit of time, I’m at least at parity with land,” he added. “We are considerably better than that.”

Worth following the link to read more detail and see some images of the subsea vessel.

Govt urged to ditch COVIDSafe for GApple

Govt urged to ditch COVIDSafe for GApple - InnovationAus:

recently released testing data revealing that upon launch, COVIDSafe logged encounters 25 per cent or less between locked iPhones. After a series of updates and improvements, this figure is now between 25 to 50 per cent.

A switch to using the official tracing architecture within the Android/iOS platforms seems a sensible move to me.

Marked 2 as teleprompter

Marked 2 as teleprompter, revisited -

Once you have the theme, you can start prompting just by hitting the ‘s’ key in a Marked preview. That will start autoscroll at the slowest speed. Use left and right arrows to speed up/slow down the scroll speed. (You can also click and drag on the meter that appears in the lower left of the screen.) That’s all there is to it.

So this is amazing. Love it.

🔗 Link Post: “Inside Trump’s coronavirus meltdown | Free to read | Financial Times”

Edward Luce writing for The Financial Times:

“Other scientists have taken note of Bright’s fate. During the Ebola outbreak in 2014, when Obama’s administration sent 3,000 US military personnel to Africa to fight the epidemic, the CDC held a daily briefing about the state of progress. It has not held one since early March. Scientists across Washington are terrified of saying anything that contradicts Trump.

“The way to keep your job is to out-loyal everyone else, which means you have to tolerate quackery,” says Anthony Scaramucci, an estranged former Trump adviser, who was briefly his White House head of communications. “You have to flatter him in public and flatter him in private. Above all, you must never make him feel ignorant.””

This brilliant long read article details how the US has essentially become a failed state, led by a megalomaniacal madman.

🔗 Link Post: “Daring Fireball: Financial Times Reports the Obvious: Trump Resisted Testing ‘Too Many People’ Lest the Results Spook the Stock Market”

John Gruber writing for Daring Fireball:

“The problem isn’t testing, the problem is sick people, and testing is a way to get a handle on the problem. Trump’s stance is like telling your girlfriend not to take a pregnancy test because you don’t want a baby.”

What a great line.

My wife and our kids were featured in a newspaper article over the weekend as part of Mother’s Day.

🔗 Link Post: “Introducing for Families”

Cloudflare Blog:

“Introducing for Families — the easiest way to add a layer of protection to your home network and protect it from malware and adult content. “

I used Cloudflare DNS in the past, but more recently have been using OpenDNS to block non-kid-safe content but its relatively slow. Now I’m moving back to Cloudflare.

🔗 Link Post: “Donald Trump Is a Menace to Public Health”

The entire article is certainly worth reading. It was hard to pick out excerpts because it’s all so well written.

Adam Serwer writing for The Atlantic:

Authoritarian leaders prize loyalty over expertise, and part of the way such leaders determine loyalty is through demanding sycophantic praise from underlings, smoking out those unwilling to bend the knee.

Democracy can be thought of as a garden; if you don’t tend to it, it doesn’t take long to be overtaken by the weeds of alternative, less-preferred civic models.

“Trumpist media outlets, by contrast, have created a bubble of unreality where nothing but the most effusive praise of Trump is acceptable, where anyone who disagrees with or criticizes the president is part of a grand conspiracy to destroy him, and where the only facts that exist are those that reflect well on the president.”

Having denied that the coronavirus was a major issue for months, the president sought to recast himself as an oracle, and conservative media followed suit, shifting their tone from downplaying the severity of the pandemic to praising the heroic efforts of the president to address it.

I’m old fashioned in that I like my news to give me the news, not an opinion. Right-wing media is out of control - pretending to be news but actually delivering propaganda.

The president is a relentless scammer at heart, and even during a pandemic he will attempt to get what he wants while providing as little as possible in return, as though he were trying to save cash by stiffing a contractor.

This pretty much nails it. Everything is for personal gain; not for the collective good. In Trump’s world, everything is a zero-sum game.

🔗 Link Post: “Why outbreaks like coronavirus spread exponentially, and how to “flatten the curve” - Washington Post”

Harry Stevens writing for Washington Post:

If the number of cases were to continue to double every three days, there would be about a hundred million cases in the United States by May.

That is math, not prophecy.

The simulation diagrams in this story provide the best example of how social distancing can be beneficial.

Like You:

Like You is a mindfulness podcast for kids, exploring feelings & encouraging self-esteem through imagination-based exercises.

I’m supporting this podcast on Patreon. Both my boys enjoy the show.

🔗 Link Post: "Boeing 737 Max: debris found in fuel tanks of grounded planes"

The Guardian:

“Boeing has ordered inspections of its entire fleet of grounded 737 Max planes after it found debris in the fuel tanks of some of the aircraft, in the latest setback for the US plane-maker”

Boeing seems to have forgotten the key tenets of lean manufacturing, especially the part about fixing problems at the source and not passing faults up the chain.

It used to be said that, “if it’s not Boeing, I’m not going”. Nowadays, I feel more comfortable with Airbus.

🔗 Link Post: "Donald Trump, the view across the pond"

Paul J. Miller:

“Trump is a troll. And like all trolls, he is never funny and he never laughs; he only crows or jeers.

And scarily, he doesn’t just talk in crude, witless insults – he actually thinks in them. His mind is a simple bot-like algorithm of petty prejudices and knee-jerk nastiness.”

Paul offers some thoughts and insights regarding Trump, from a British perspective. I think the Australian view is similar, but members of our society are more likely to say, “well, what else would you expect from a Seppo1?” Disparaging critique is a key element of our culture.

  1. Seppo, short for septic tank, which rhymes with Yank, which is slang for an American citizen. [return]

🔗 Link Post: “Clayton Christensen dies at 67 after lifetime of business, spiritual influence - Deseret News”

Tad Walsh writing for Deseret News:

“A true disruptive innovation, he taught, first appealed only to a niche market and appeared less attractive than the powerful incumbent it eventually usurped. In fact, the incumbent typically looked down on it as inconsequential until it ate up huge swaths of its market share.”

This article rightly focuses on Christensen’s impactful theory of disruption.

In my work I often crib Christensen’s case study about the utility of a milkshake as part of the ‘jobs to be done’ theory.

Rest In Peace, Mr Christensen.

🔗 Link Post: “Middle Age Is Actually Good - The Atlantic”

James Parker writing for The Atlantic:

“You’re not an apprentice adult anymore. You’re through the disorientation period”

— via Things to Click

🔗 Link Post: “Playdate December Update”

Panic writing for Playdate newsletter:

“We’re a smedium-sized crew — 25 people, 5 on Playdate.”

The Playdate gaming device is coming along nicely. Amazing what a small team has achieved, with this device and across other projects.

I like that Panic aren’t taking money in advance and that they are cash flowing the production. It’s real business.

🔗 Link Post: “Girls on Tour in Beirut — Long Distance Call”

Eliza Harvey & Geraldine Doogue: Long Distance Call Podcast E88:

“Geraldine and one of her oldest friends (and Eliza’s godmother) Mary Ciccarelli are in Beirut for new years celebrations.”

My Mother-in-Law Mary in what I’m sure must be her first podcast appearance.

Back to the Blog – Dan Cohen

In this older article, Dan outlines the benefits of blogging, but also the challenge of getting people to see beyond big social media.

It is psychological gravity, not technical inertia, however, that is the greater force against the open web. Human beings are social animals and centralized social media like Twitter and Facebook provide a powerful sense of ambient humanity—the feeling that “others are here”—that is often missing when one writes on one’s own site.

People still love the likes.