Month: May 2014



  • The White Background Patent

    Ken Rockwell on Amazon's rather controversial new patent related to photography: Amazon was just granted US patent 8,676,045 for a very clever and particular way to arrange a raised Plexiglas platform, lights and backdrop to give instant in-camera images with a 100% white background and a slight reflection below the subject, all with no postprocessing…


    Fantastic new iOS photo editor which can correct for distortions. Must have for photos of things with straight lines where you care about keep those lines straight.

  • Just Abolishing the TSA

    Dylan Matthews pulls no punches here: It's worth remembering that the inconvenience and injustice of the TSA's activities exists for literally no reason. If the agency's privacy violations and annoying carry-on regulations were merely the price we paid for reducing the incidence of terrorist attacks, that'd be one thing. But, as security expert Bruce Schneier…

  • ShootTokyo: The Book by Dave Powell

    I broke my rule today of not backing anything on KickStarter in order to pre-order this book from Dave Powell. He's one of my favorite photographers right now and the thought going into this book is likely to make it very special. Only a few days left to back it. (His site is worth following…

  • From the Archives: Delegate a Task in OmniFocus With Email

    So I tweaked it, the result of which is a script that grabs the selected task in OmniFocus and creates a message based off the data. The URLs for downloading the script are now repaired, and I doubled checked it still works in OmniFocus 2. I haven’t used it in ages, but if you…

  • Giants Behaving Badly

    Matthew Ingram on why big companies are dangerous: Google, Facebook and Amazon have shown us again this week why the combination of a quasi-monopoly, vested interests and an inscrutable algorithm can be a dangerous thing for internet users, since it allows them to influence what we see, know and buy Good post.

  • Design Changes

    Earlier this week I pushed an update to the design of this site. Visually not a lot has change, but I reworked a bunch of little things. Notably I changed how the site displays the post metadata. I was never happy with this part of the design before so I’ve been rethinking it. Now you…

  • The Myth That Americans Are Busier

    Derek Thompson, refuting the aforelinked New Yorker article: There is little evidence that America, as a country, is working more. Many of us—perhaps most of us—enjoy downtime that would look luxurious to a mid-century time-traveler.

  • No Time

    Elizabeth Kolbert: A second theory that Schulte considers is that “the overwhelm” is a function not so much of how many things Americans have to do but of how much time they spend thinking about how many things they have to do. A doctor who’s running through the list of groceries she needs to pick…

  • Amazon Unprime

    Jason Kotkke on Amazon’s latest bullshit: No question about it: this sucks on Amazon’s part and demonstrates the degree to which the company’s top priority isn’t customer service. Better customer service in this case would be to offer these books for sale.

  • Start/Defer Dates

    David Sparks on what I think is the most powerful, and underutilized feature of OmniFocus: Conversely, I rarely use due dates on tasks unless they truly are something with a deadline. Arbitrarily assigning due dates to tasks means that you’re going to be getting lots of alarms for missing due dates on tasks that really…

  • Design is Every Piece of It

    From Mark Wilson’s interview with Mark Kawano, former Apple designer, has this nugget: You see companies that have poached Apple designers, and they come up with sexy interfaces or something interesting, but it doesn’t necessarily move the needle for their business or their product. That’s because all the designer did was work on an interface…

  • Create Todos in OmniFocus 2 That Are Linked to Original Messages in Mail

    Neat use of Keyboard Maestro, alas I cannot try it as it requires you to use the OmniSync Server (if I am reading it right) — and I am far too paranoid to do that.

  • Quote of the Day: Peter Watts

    “Mammals don’t respond well to surveillance. We consider it a threat. It makes us paranoid, and aggressive and vengeful.” — Peter Watts

  • OmniFocus 2 Perspective Icons from Josh Hughes

    Nice set.

  • Why the Surface Pro 3 is an Enterprise Dream

    Tim Bajarin: Now, I realize this statement is pure marketing hype and the reality of the Surface Pro 3 replacing all the demand for laptops is absurd. But the message overall that the Surface Pro 3 could replace laptops is going to resonate with many in the enterprise. If Microsoft pushes this message too hard…

  • OmniFocus 2 Design

    Federico Viticci: The new design modernizes the app, but I feel like usability and legibility have been sacrificed for good looks in some areas of the interface. I'm skeptical about the decision to separate action titles from the checkcircles, and long lists of actions can be difficult to scan quickly. This appears to be a…

  • The Surface and Windows 8 Problem

    Ben Thompson has a piece up today with his reasoning for killing off the Surface, and even though I disagree with him — I also largely don’t give a shit what Microsoft does with the Surface — far more interesting to me is why Windows 8 failed so miserably. Windows 8 seemed like everything users…

  • The Definitive Shawn Blanc Review of OmniFocus 2 for Mac

    Shawn Blanc: Every one of the design changes in OmniFocus 2 for Mac is an improvement on an app that has been desperate for a visual overhaul for years. The visual overhaul has been worth the wait. I don't know if I'd go that far, but it is substantially better.

  • Print Sale

    Recently I was printing out a bunch of photos to update pictures around our home. One of them I printed out to replace a photo we had been using in the same frame for the past five years — that pictures resides in our entry. The new picture seemed brighter, it looked better, and I…