Snack Pick of the Week: 12/17/18

Ahhhhhmmmmmmmyummmm

The snack pick for this week is an all time favorite of mine, Marie Biscuits, the round delicious tea time biscuits you always find in places you duck into in order to kill time. They are delicious, and of course you can snag them on Amazon.

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  • Tom Bihn’s Shadow Guide

    Hey-o, what a great backpack with a ton of room.

    Note: Tom Bihn sent me this bag for the purposes of this review.

    Some time ago Tom Bihn released the Guide’s Pack, which looked like an old school hiking backpack, but with some modern treatments. The limiting factor with that pack, is that despite being quite good, it is far more at home in the woods than in the airport or city. That’s where this Shadow Guide comes in, the same basic design, but rethought to work better as a city and travel backpack.

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  • Insisting on family friendly

    Ok, so there’s going to be some talk about Pornhub in this one, fyi.

    I’m worried about Apple’s stance that their ecosystems must be pure and free from debauchery, remaining family friendly at all times. Or to put it another way, free from pornography and swearing.This isn’t a straightforward thing, and it’s not clear what is good or bad for society as a whole, though I would argue that Apple’s approach of random censorship is more bad than good. And at best, absurdly hypocritical.

    Apple’s Current Stance and what we know as why

    Generally speaking, iOS users today are restricted as follows:

    • no pornography based apps
    • sexual ‘wellness’ apps are fine, but hindered in what they show. For example: you could get away with depictions by way of illustration, but not out right photography of them.
    • there amazingly does exist a plethora of ‘sexy’ games, but most seem to be benign truth or dare style text based games.
    • iOS autocorrect will not allow you to swear easily, you have to jump through many hoops.
    • any app that allows easy access to adult content, porn, is likely not to survive long, if at all. Unless it’s very popular.

    We know about the why for some of this:

    It’s all what you would expect. There’s too great a risk for unintended consequences with autocorrect working with curse words, and Apple generally feels pornography is a slippery slope which is not manageable for them. Which is fair, until you realize the complete shit that makes it into the App Store already then your like, wut.

    But these two rather simple decisions have quite a ripple effect on our lives as a whole.

    Swearing

    There’s something innocuous feeling in Apple’s refusals to acknowledge curse words. At first glance this seems rather obvious, it would be too easy for a kid talking about a duck, to send a message that says fuck. I am going to go out on a limb and say that a machine learning based autocorrect system will quickly learn that fuck is far more common than people talking about ducks. Which is perhaps why it is so ducking annoying that iOS doesn’t make cursing easy.

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  • Tom Bihn Road Buddy Duffels

    These are the best duffels I tested this year, and the best I have ever used.

    Note: Tom Bihn provided these bags as review samples.

    Perhaps it is time to call 2018 the year for great duffel bags, as there has been no shortage of them this year. Adding to that established mix is Tom Bihn’s new Road Buddy Duffel Bags which come in both 36L and 60L sizes. I was told that these are decades in the making, and a partial revival of something Tom Bihn has been working on since day one, as well as a modern take on that idea. They are part duffle bag, part gym/gear bag, and part Aeronaut style travel bag.

    And I love them.

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  • A Packable Bag For One Bag Travel

    Why are packable briefcases not a thing companies make?

    For years now I have struggled with the same problem, which is admittedly a problem for very few people. The problem is that I travel with just one bag, a small 20-26 liter bag, typically a GORUCK GR1 and I only store it at my feet on the plane. But when I get to where I am going, especially for business travel, I want a smaller bag which I can use to carry my iPad and a few essentials. All of which makes the GR1 overkill for most of those types of tasks.

    I’ve never solved this issue, and I have tried numerous bags and setups. Some are hard to pack in my larger bag, taking up too much room, others are too large on their own while packing down nice. And a great many simply look terrible, such that I wouldn’t want to taken them anywhere but a hiking trail.

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  • Snack Pick of the Week — 12/10/18

    MmmmmmmyuummmmmmMMM

    We are at the cusp of the great holiday shit show as I like to call it. Right now is not the time for the great unknown or experimentation. It’s now the time for comfort food — for food that makes you feel good right now and terrible later down the road. That means, of course, the snack pick for this week is Doritos.

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  • Fun with Shortcuts

    Randomly selecting things from a text file.

    For a while now I have been using a handy little shortcut which randomly selects an item from a text file. This allows me to create a really simple text file, with each ‘item’ on a new line, and have Shortcuts randomly select one and tell me which one. I’ve been using this on days when I want to do a workout at home, and have it select the order in which I do things. Or when I am raffling off something and need to select a random name. Building a text file on iOS is dead simple, and from there I just need to select which text file Shortcuts pulls and I get a nice little random item picker.

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  • GORUCK MACV-1s First Impressions

    A purpose built rucking boot, you knew it was coming.

    Last spring and summer GORUCK started teasing that they were about to release a boot. Some people found images of those boots online, and I quickly formed the opinion of: yikes. While I find GORUCK’s bags to be aesthetically pleasing, the preview images of the boot, I found to be comical. Surely it could not be real.

    Then GORUCK announced the boot as part of a pre-sale, I didn’t order one, because as it turns out the boot looked exactly as I had seen. And at $195, I was not willing to pay that for a boot I found to be hideous. A couple months ago people started receiving their boots and checking them out. For the most part the impressions I read were along the lines of these being the most comfortable boots out there.

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  • Getting in Shape

    Wherein I manage to talk about backpacks and how they got me in shape.

    In February of 2017 I made the decision that I needed to get in shape. I was larger, and more out of shape than I had ever been in my life. And while it wasn’t a dire situation, I could tell that I was more physically winded by things which had previously never troubled me. And this fact was now troubling me, so I made a simple decision: get in shape.

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  • Casio G-Shock GD350-1B

    My new alarm clock.

    If my recent G-SHOCK purchase taught me anything, it is that I really like G-SHOCKs. They are versatile, durable, and more than anything else: functional and extremely comfortable. The issue was that I had not found the one that I loved — the one that was right for me.

    So I kept searching.

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  • Apple News is Secretly Really Great

    It’s my new RSS.

    I am a news junkie, and a completionist. That combination means the day I discovered RSS and, specifically at the time Google Reader, was the peak of my news obsession. It’s been downhill since then.

    While I still use RSS, most sites now abuse RSS in egregious ways. They randomly republish their entire feeds every month, or they don’t offer feeds for the ‘latest’ content instead forcing you to go find categories to subscribe to. Some flat out ignore RSS, instead telling you how great their miserable newsletter is.

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  • Snack Pick of the Week — 12/3/18

    MmmmmmMMMMMMmmmmMMMmm

    Note: This was a tradition I started at my last employer where I picked a snack for the week every Monday. I’ve been asked by several people to carry this on, and so I shall.

    The weather is colder, and the coffee naturally tastes better. But mornings can drag, so it’s good to have a goto snack in the morning that will give you a boost of energy, make you smile, go well with coffee, and of course later on the day make you slightly regret having ate it. For this very specific task we are going with: Little Debbie’s Glazed Donut Sticks.

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  • Filtering Out Stress

    Some key lessons I learned to manage my stress and get a good nights sleep.

    It’s that nag that keeps you awake at night. The trigger which spins your morning from the enjoyment of a well rested night, to a deep sinking feeling. I don’t know how to make it go away, not for you, and not really even for myself. I do know when I am stressed, and I do have a few top tips for you to help delay the feeling of stress in the morning, and to keep it at bay through the night. To help focus during the day.

    My advice is to use two tried and true methods:

    1. Bury your head in the sand and;
    2. Always get some small wins.

    I’ve been working through most of these ideas since the beginning of this year, so allow me to share them with you now.

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  • Orient Bambino Small Seconds

    Among the watches available for people who want something very inexpensive, but mechanical and which also doesn’t suck for one reason or another — they always end up getting recommended an Orient Bambino. The Bambino is a bit of a wunderkind, with a huge array of options and colors available, while coming it at an […]

    Among the watches available for people who want something very inexpensive, but mechanical and which also doesn’t suck for one reason or another — they always end up getting recommended an Orient Bambino. The Bambino is a bit of a wunderkind, with a huge array of options and colors available, while coming it at an absurdly low price typically under $200, but far more often able to be found discounted below $120. Right now there are options on Amazon with Prime shipping for $114. That’s a bargain for any well made watch, let alone one with an automatic movement.

    I’ve had my Small Seconds now for a while and I’ve become quite fond on it. Let’s dive in.

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  • Bond Travel Gear’s Travel Wallet

    I’ve been keeping a close eye on Bond Travel Gear since testing out their excellent Tool Roll a while back. This Travel Wallet caught my eye as a potentially great little organizer pouch. I picked one up to test, and have been quite pleased with it over the last several weeks.

    I’ve been keeping a close eye on Bond Travel Gear since testing out their excellent Tool Roll a while back. This Travel Wallet caught my eye as a potentially great little organizer pouch. I picked one up to test, and have been quite pleased with it over the last several weeks.

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  • The ‘Fuck All’ Nature of iPad Work

    It’s disrespectful to tell someone that because they use an iPad instead of a laptop, they don’t do real work.

    November 15th started off like any other day, and then Tom Warren, a verified twitter user (I suspect that’s important to him, so I’ll note it), tweeted:

    Nilay made this point on Vergecast, but the people who have replaced their laptops with an iPad are people who do fuck all work. The rest of us hard working people use a laptop, because we have real stuff to do other than send emails and fart around. Don’t @ me ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

    I respected his wishes not to “@“ him, and am instead posting some longer thoughts here. Before we dive into this, I do want to point out the best response to that tweet from Steve Troughton-Smith:

    Real hard-working people don’t use a computer at all 😛 You don’t know how easy you’ve got it

    That’s a very kind way of telling both Warren and Nilay Patel to fuck off. A less kind way is to say that — as someone (me) who has worked manual labor in construction for years, has started two companies which were very small (2-3 employees) and as someone who has run a tech company — that Patel and Warren can fuck right off with that arrogant bullshit they spout everyday. How a website dedicated to technology can so loathe new technology is beyond comprehension.

    It is, though, worth actually diving into this topic of “real” work versus “fuck all” work.

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