10434
From video game to day job: How ‘SimCity’ inspired a generation of city planners - Los Angeles Times
I love how impactful SimCity was to some people. I’m not a gamer, but there are a few games I’ve played a lot of. Tetris, Spectre, and a couple others. SimCity is definitely one of those. I had a city I actually upgraded and played for over a decade on and off.
march 2019
The ultimate guide to DuckDuckGo - BrettTerpstra.com
There are a bunch of DuckDuckGo things I didn’t know even existed. The ! searches are a neat feature. 👍🏻
march 2019
How to Reduce Anxiety Through Meditation and Buddhism - The Atlantic
Some surprising numbers here on how many people are getting into meditation and Buddhist philosophy. I found it a little shallow that the author only points the finger at the classic “everyone is so busy” thought. I think there is a real connection between the near universal adoption of mobile devices along with social media that are driving this. 🧘🏼‍♂️
march 2019
Tempad – New Home for Notes
Yet another markdown note app, but completely free. Uses Google for sync.
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march 2019
800+ Million Emails Leaked Online by Email Verification Service - Security Discovery
I found out about this one thanks to a notice from HaveIBeenPwned. They had four addresses in my domain. The surprise for me was that I’ve never given my email address to this service, but I guess other services I use must have been using them for email validation.
march 2019
FastCharts.io
Cool to see the [Financial Times](https://www.ft.com) making their chart generation software available. This is nice since you can just paste in some data and download a nice looking static image.
march 2019
Facebook’s Privacy Cake – Stratechery by Ben Thompson
Mostly I read this as Facebook has surveilled it’s users so much, and continues to spy on them in every way possible, that they can easily forego spying on some part of your communication and add encryption to it. Said another way, if the cigarette company has you addicted to nicotine, they can completely afford to put warnings on the packages without impacting sales.
march 2019
The Tesla Model 3, reviewed (finally) | Ars Technica
This review is much more sedate than the one I would write, something like "It’s awesome!" Simple, and just two words. It’s a decent review however I don't agree that the touch screen is so inconvenient and distracting from driving. I continue to 💙 my Model 3!
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march 2019
Big Idea Famine
Shuffling status updates in social networks isn't a big idea. This is one where I give Elon Musk credit, he's working crazy hard on things that he has identified as big problems.
march 2019
LockInCost
I like the basic concept here that the "lock in" cost of a solution is more complex than just the migration expense. However, I would also add to this that migration cost tends to trend down over time. So, in addition to the opportunity gain referenced here, I think that you compound that on a shrinking migration cost as time moves forward. Why does migration cost shrink? Because software gets more sophisticated over time, and solutions should get easier to replicate. Over a very long time that may actually go back up as the software becomes brittle, but in the first several years I would argue it trends down.
march 2019
Status as a Service (StaaS) — Remains of the Day
This might be one of the best takes I've ever read to understand dynamics in social networks. The fundamental idea of "social capital" and "network utility" and how they play together is a very interesting.

> What ties many of these explanations together is social capital theory, and how we analyze social networks should include a study of a social network's accumulation of social capital assets and the nature and structure of its status games. In other words, how do such companies capitalize, either consciously or not, on the fact that people are status-seeking monkeys, always trying to seek more of it in the most efficient way possible?

This calls out the Facebook News Feed as a sea change in how social capital is accumulated.

> It's difficult to overstate what a momentous sea change it was for hundreds of millions, and eventually billions, of humans who had grown up competing for status in small tribes, to suddenly be dropped into a talent show competing against EVERY PERSON THEY HAD EVER MET.

As I read this I kept thinking of LinkedIn. LinkedIn is largely a utility network. However, in recent years they have gotten into the news feed game and added a lot of "like" functionality. They have added a bunch of features that are clearly ways to build "social capital". And, notably, their user metrics shot up as soon as they did that stuff.
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march 2019
People Call My Photos Fake... But They're Not
Fun read on the planning and background, and sometimes serendipity, that go into some amazing photographs. Many people have no idea of the amount of planning that has to go into getting shots like this.

> Also, many locals shoot the Milky Way there. The fact is that this shot was technically not that hard. It is not a single shot but was rather a panorama to get the whole valley in the frame. I planned the alignment and the shot, and “just” needed the volcano to erupt. The planning and the whole trip was the most difficult, but being there was simply executing and enjoying the spectacle unfolding in front of my eyes.

Neat. 📷
march 2019
Book: Digital Minimalism - Feld Thoughts
Feld and I seem to be reading some similar books lately. I enjoyed reading this book as well. It was fun to read Feld's comments on it as well.
march 2019
How to get better at estimating your time
I like the 2nd recommendation in here of having other people estimate for you. In a way, that is what agile teams do when they do [Planning Poker](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Planning_poker).
march 2019
How to Apply The Principles of Long-Term Investing to Everything
I like this approach considering small improvements in the same way that we think about long-term investing.
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march 2019
Camille Fournier on Scaling, Structure, and Growing as an Engineering Manager
I like how much Fournier focuses on the "integrator" role of managers in a growing company.

> Fournier emphasizes that managers will need to develop strong peer relationships to stay connected with everything that’s going on in their growing organization. Equally important, she says, is developing relationships with higher-level directors or executives. These relationships will allow you to be more efficient in communicating and getting work done, while also building trust for your team.

Very true.
march 2019
Tech Ecosystem Guide to Ukraine 2019
Interesting data on the tech market in Ukraine.
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march 2019
This Hilarious Twitter Thread About Peloton Illuminates the Reality of Riding Indoors
I ordered a Peloton Spin Bike, and this made me laugh out loud. 🤣
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march 2019
Why I’m into meditation | Bill Gates
My view on meditation is very similar to how Gates positions this.

> I now see that meditation is simply exercise for the mind, similar to the way we exercise our muscles when we play sports. For me, it has nothing to do with faith or mysticism. It’s about taking a few minutes out of my day, learning how to pay attention to the thoughts in my head, and gaining a little bit of distance from them.

Via [Patrick Rhone](https://www.patrickrhone.net/5499-2/).
march 2019
Bookmarklet: Archive Page to Wayback Machine // Plasticmind
I had no idea that you could trigger Archive.org to save a URL like this. This is a pretty cool capability. 👍
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march 2019
Mailist App – Save links for later and get reminded
What if you took a bookmarking or read-it-later service and combined it with a newsletter capability? You get Mailist.
march 2019
Microsoft Excel will now let you snap a picture of a spreadsheet and import it - The Verge
What a cool idea! Kudos to Microsoft for putting something truly innovative in like this. This will be a "magic" feature for many people. It did make me wonder about security, but there isn't a new security risk here, it might just make it easier to take a picture of a screen and not have to type it in.
march 2019
10 Breakthrough Technologies 2019, curated by Bill Gates - MIT Technology Review
I love that Bill Gates has turned his attention to technology areas that are much more impactful to human health and happiness. You'll notice social networks and advertising algorithms are nowhere on this list.
march 2019
Introducing Spectre – Halide
This photo app looks interesting for long exposure shots. I've been very impressed with their other camera app Halide, so this was an "instant buy" for me. [MacStories has a good writeup](https://www.macstories.net/reviews/spectre-a-computational-approach-to-long-exposure-iphone-photography/) as well. 📷
march 2019
Minnesota Compass - Measuring Progress Inspiring Action
I've seen [Allison Liuzzi](https://www.linkedin.com/in/allison-liuzzi-6564aa159/) of Compass present some very good demographic data for the State of Minnesota. I finally went to their website and they have a ton of data available.

> By tracking and analyzing trends in topics that affect our quality of life, Compass gives everyone in our state – policymakers, business and community leaders, and concerned individuals who live and work here – a common foundation to act on issues to improve our communities.

Wealth of data here. Good resource.
march 2019
bullet : Beautiful Python Prompts Made Simple
Nice library for building menus in CLI tools.
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february 2019
Carrot | Leadership communication for fast-growing and remote teams.
This looks interesting but I don't totally get how the product work, and where Slack ends and it starts.
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february 2019
Huawei Mate X hands-on: our foldable future - The Verge
I've been totally uninterested in foldable phones, but seeing these pictures is sort of interesting. Having something fold out into a much bigger display could be pretty interesting. Sort of magic! 🎩
february 2019
Why the Siri Face Is All I Need from My Apple Watch – MacStories
I've been using the Siri face ever since it came out on watchOS and my thought is very similar to this article. I like how it puts stuff in a stream for me throughout the day. My calendar is the bedrock, but I like that it sprinkles in other things. It’s by far my favorite way to keep tabs on the few sports teams I follow.
february 2019
The secret lives of Facebook moderators in America - The Verge
What a horrible stream of bile to deal with, and the trauma it causes for the people that are paid to inspect and judge that stream of bile. I’m so happy to have nothing to do with these social platforms.
february 2019
AT&T Suspends YouTube Ad Spending as Boycott Over ‘Pedophilia’ Videos Scandal Widens
Don't let your kids publish videos on YouTube, don't publish videos of them on YouTube. Probably just don't publish stuff on YouTube.
february 2019
Gopher: a present for Redis - <antirez>
I totally thought this was an April fools joke, and then…

> I’ll use the ten years of Redis as an excuse to release something I played a bit in the previous days, thinking to use it for the 1st April fool: but such date is far and I want to talk to you about this project now… So, happy birthday Redis! Here it’s your present: a Gopher protocol implementation.

I 💚 Redis and it’s fun to see this. Made me think I would like to make a Gopher version of my website. 😍
february 2019
How to Create a Morning Routine that Works for You – SaneBox Blog
I really don't understand how all this time is supposed to be made for a morning routine. I can’t see getting up at 3am so I can read, meditate, exercise all before heading into the office for an early meeting.
february 2019
Day One 3.0 for Mac Introduces Cleaner Design and Simplified UI – The Sweet Setup
My preferred journal application for macOS and iOS got a big step up on the Mac. Official [Day One 3.0 announcement](http://dayoneapp.com/2019/02/day-one-version-3-for-macos/). I like the improvements.
february 2019
How to Be a Good Board Member – Both Sides of the Table
This is a solid set of recommendations, easy to parse and follow. Good stuff. Via [AVC](https://avc.com/2019/02/how-to-be-a-good-board-member/).
february 2019
HQ2: Understanding What Happened & Why - The Big Picture
Compelling recap of the HQ2 process that Amazon has being going through.

> From the start, the entire HQ2 optics have been terrible. When the world’s wealthiest man happens to run the world’s most most valuable company goes looking for a new place to call home, perhaps compelling self-flagellation by states and local officials to win his business . . . well, let’s just say that is not the greatest look.

Totally agree. Via [Daring Fireball](https://daringfireball.net/linked/2019/02/25/ritholtz-amazon-hq2).
february 2019
Payroll Provider Gives Extortionists a Payday — Krebs on Security
This is a very scary ransomware story. If you are in charge of a bunch of computers, you need to be thinking about ransomware.
february 2019
Intelligent Tracking Prevention 2.1 | WebKit
More improvements to WebKit's baked in privacy protections.
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february 2019
The Power of Full Engagement: The Four Energy Management Principles That Drive Performance
My friend [Garrick](https://www.garrickvanburen.com) recommended this book and I thorough enjoyed it. This writeup captures the theme well. Over the years I have made great strides in optimizing my time and insuring that I have slots available for things I need to do. However, It’s common that I get to that time and lack all motivation and energy to *actually do it!* This sucks. The idea of managing time _and_ energy efficiently is an important one. I like the pyramid that this book considers for building energy into your day.
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february 2019
You Give Apps Sensitive Personal Information. Then They Tell Facebook. - WSJ
These are profound violations of trust and privacy.

> In the Journal’s testing, Instant Heart Rate: HR Monitor, the most popular heart-rate app on Apple’s iOS, made by California-based Azumio Inc., sent a user’s heart rate to Facebook immediately after it was recorded.
>
> Flo Health Inc.’s Flo Period & Ovulation Tracker, which claims 25 million active users, told Facebook when a user was having her period or informed the app of an intention to get pregnant, the tests showed.
>
> Real-estate app Realtor.com, owned by Move Inc., a subsidiary of Wall Street Journal parent News Corp , sent the social network the location and price of listings that a user viewed, noting which ones were marked as favorites, the tests showed.
>
> None of those apps provided users any apparent way to stop that information from being sent to Facebook.

Via [Daring Fireball](https://daringfireball.net/linked/2019/02/22/facebook-apps-data).
february 2019
Seeking the Productive Life: Some Details of My Personal Infrastructure—Stephen Wolfram Blog
Stephen Wolfram gives an exhaustive inventory of his personal gear. Wow, just wow.
february 2019
50 Years In Tech. Part 16: From One Ice Floe To The Next
[Jean-Louis Gassée](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jean-Louis_Gassée) has been writing some very fun retrospectives of his time in tech. If you remember [BeOS](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BeOS) and the [BeBox](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BeBox) this is a fun read. I also found this little inside baseball look at [NeXTSTEP](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/NeXTSTEP) and Apple's acquisition of NeXT fun.

> Later, I learned another version of the story from a NeXT and Apple insider. By 1996, Jobs had given up on NeXTSTEP and had focused the company on WebObjects, a set of tools and building blocks aimed at the design and implementation of high-performance, feature-rich websites. But the noise from the Apple-Be conversations attracted the attention of Avie Tevanian, VP of software at NeXT, who urged Jobs to dust off NeXTSTEP and whip up a demo. The master persuader convinced Gil Amelio to pay the price Apple didn’t want to pay for Be: $429M for NeXT.

It’s unlikely Apple acquiring BeOS would have been transformational, but maybe. The leadership behind NeXTSTEP was very transformational for Apple.
february 2019
COI - Chat Over IMAP
If this were on April Fool's Day I would be positive it is a joke, but I don't think it is. 😕
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february 2019
Evolving Microservices with Event Sourcing – Damon Allison – Medium
Fun writeup on the evolution into Microservices and then adopting Event Sourcing to provide additional capabilities. Good discussion of tradeoffs and benefits. Plus a fun read!
february 2019
Intentionality — MacSparky
I like this annual review that David Sparks walks through. 🤔
february 2019
Tasksaur
Super simple to do list service. ✅
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february 2019
FormSubmit | A Contact Form to Email Service
Handy service if you need to collect form data. 📝
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february 2019
Commento: A fast, privacy-focused commenting platform
I've waited and waited for someone to come out with a commenting service that doesn't surveil users, charges a reasonable fee, and isn't filled with ads (I’m looking at you [Disqus](https://disqus.com)). This service looks high-quality and respects everyones privacy. I've deployed it on my [Link Blog](https://links.thingelstad.com/) to give it a try.
february 2019
When Kids Google Themselves - The Atlantic
I've thought about this, but have no great answers. I first read about this back in this [2011 blog post](https://links.thingelstad.com/2011/07/hes-not-my-character-to-write-anymore) on the topic. It is a way bigger topic today, particularly with photos being some prominent. 🤷‍♂️
february 2019
WiFi Hides Inside a USB Cable | Hackaday
Holy crap! This is brilliant and frightening. It would be super easy to take over control of a computer by giving someone one of these cables. How do you defend against this? 🦹‍♀️
february 2019
Scripting News: If I were CEO of the NYT
Interesting perspective from Dave Winer. Not surprising that it’s focused around blogs.
february 2019
Password Managers: Under the Hood of Secrets Management - Independent Security Evaluators
This is all about how password managers deal with unencrypted data in memory. On disk the encryption is all fine, but when running, they should minimize the attack surface. I was expected better outcomes for 1Password, my preferred password manager. Note though that these all require access to a computer and unlocked memory state, so the real risk is low. Nonetheless, I'd like to see this improved.
february 2019
On being an Engineering Manager | Nick McHardy
One persons experience trying out the role of being an engineering manager, and then opting to ultimately stay in an individual contributor role. Good breakdown of the decision process he went through.
february 2019
Introducing .dev domains from Google Registry
Interesting way that Google is rolling this out charging very high amounts to register early, avoiding domain squatters trying to take domains and hold them ransom.
february 2019
The Weekly Email – AVC
This is written about startups and founders, but I think it easily applies to a lot of contexts.

> But more than anything, writing the weekly email is a tool for the founder to collect themselves, get grounded for the week ahead, and articulate what they and the company are doing and why.

I've been doing this with the Weekly Thing. I've had a pause on the Tech Weekly, which is for our technology team at SPS for the last couple months and I’m planning on retooling it and get it going again.
february 2019
Launch WorldWideWeb CERN 2019 WorldWideWeb Rebuild
This is very cool.

> In February 2019, in celebration of the thirtieth anniversary of the development of WorldWideWeb, a group of developers and designers convened at CERN to rebuild the original browser within a contemporary browser, allowing users around the world to experience the rather humble origins of this transformative technology.

You can experience the web as it was in the very beginning!
february 2019
Privacy is a commons | TechCrunch
This is an interesting angle of privacy that I hadn't considered.

> The answer is: no, actually, not necessarily; not if there are enough of them; not if the commodification of privacy begins to affect us all. Privacy is like voting. An individual’s privacy, like an individual’s vote, is usually largely irrelevant to anyone but themselves … but the accumulation of individual privacy or lack thereof, like the accumulation of individual votes, is enormously consequential.

🤔
february 2019
Janet Programming Language
Interesting Lisp-based functional language.
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february 2019
ongoing by Tim Bray · Tech Office Sketches
State of the technology company environments from Tim Bray.
february 2019
Tetris 99 isn’t just a great twist on a classic — it’s a gameplay revolution | Ars Technica
I put [Tetris 99](https://www.nintendo.com/games/detail/tetris-99-switch) on my Switch and you may not hear from me for a very long time. It’s super fun! I never would have thought of a [Battle Royale](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Battle_royale_game) version of Tetris! 🎮
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february 2019
Brandi Carlile - The Joke (LIVE at the 61st GRAMMYs) - YouTube
We've been fans of Brandi Carlile for a while, and this performance at the Grammy's was amazing! 🎶
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february 2019
Letting neural networks be weird — Candy Heart messages written by a neural network
Good reminder for everyone preparing for machine learning to take over the world. Let's first figure out Valentine's sayings. 😁
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february 2019
Blockchain and Trust - Schneier on Security
Schneier is very savvy and smart, and this direct takedown of blockchain is to the point. I've gotten more comfortable with the idea that blockchain is a technology solution for trust, but Schneier's arguments for why that simply isn't true are strong. 😳
february 2019
Amazon to Acquire eero to Help Customers Better Connect Smart Home Devices | Amazon.com, Inc. - Press Room
I use eero devices at home. I always suspected that eero would be purchased by a bigger company. I didn’t think it would be Amazon though.
february 2019
Inside story of how legendary NFL broadcaster Bob Costas ended up excised from football and out at NBC -- ESPN
I've always enjoyed Bob Costas. I’m not a huge sports person, but Costa's has a way of bringing stories together in a way that is very compelling. The reaction to him speaking out about brain injury issues in the NFL is at best dissapointing.
february 2019
Coaching Tools - The One on One | Silicon Valley Product Group
This article is written referring to product management, but nearly all of it can be applied to any 1:1 context. This is a topic I keep wanting to investigate as it is not well defined in most companies. Just the statement here referring to 1:1's as a "coaching technique" is a compelling way to frame these sessions.
february 2019
The Observation Deck » Reflecting on The Soul of a New Machine
Reading this, along with [Jess Fraz's writeup](https://blog.jessfraz.com/post/new-golden-age-of-building-with-soul/) makes me want to go and re-read [Soul of a New Machine](https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Soul_of_a_New_Machine) again too! It’s a great book. 📚
february 2019
Leave Me Alone - Take back control of your inbox
Neat tool to specifically help you with unsubscribing from bulk mail. Sadly it only seems to work with Gmail at the moment. 😴
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february 2019
Python Itertools: For a faster and memory efficient code – Kanoki
Slick examples of what you can do with Python's `itertools`. 🛠
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february 2019
Reflecting on My Failure to Build a Billion-Dollar Company
Reflections from the CEO and Founder of [Gumroad](https://gumroad.com) on building the business and the significant ups and downs. He grounds back to delivering value. It seems obvious, but that is really what matters.
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february 2019
No thank you, Mr. Pecker – Jeff Bezos – Medium
Is "complexifier" a word? If not, I want it to be one. What a bunch of slime ball stuff. Glad Bezos didn’t capitulate.
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february 2019
Bloomberg London: Workplace of the Future - YouTube
If you find buildings and architecture interesting this is an amazing look at the new Bloomberg London location. The first half was the most interesting to me covering the mechanics of the building. Amazing space. Thanks to [Nick](https://www.linkedin.com/in/nick-swenson-976b7337/) for the link.
february 2019
The ARPUs of the Big Four Dwarf Everybody Else – Monday Note
These ARPU numbers are amazing.

> For each dollar of digital ad growth between 2011–2018, Google took $1.00, Facebook $3.70, while the NYT took only 32 cents.

😯
february 2019
Executive coach: 7 secrets to lasting career satisfaction
These seem like worthwhile actions to make sure you are adjusting your trajectory in a thoughtful way.
february 2019
National Park Typeface
I dig cool little font projects like this. 👏
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february 2019
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