Owning my own data

Padlocked Mac Pro

I finally got sick and tired of the sync dance with Apple and Google not wanting to talk to one another. I use a Mac but I also have an iPad and since recently I now have an Android phone. I had been syncing with iCloud and a long time ago I imported all my contacts into Google, but I haven’t had sync on that for quite a while.

Why I'm not upgrading to Omnifocus 2

I like Omnifocus1 a lot. I can’t say that I’ve mastered it to the point where it has fully become a trusted repository for my tasks, but it is useful for keeping track of the things I have to do. The new version looks great. I got the demo version to test out before buying the upgrade and it is a big improvement. The price tag is somewhat high but in my opinion it’s a worthwhile upgrade.

So why wouldn’t I buy the upgrade?

Lead Me On: Heart of Fame, Book 5
Lexxie Couper

Thanks to Deirdre Saoirse Moen for recommending this book. It’s not my usual fare but I was looking for material for structuring a romance plot. I asked Deirdre to point me toward some good examples from the genre. Looking to a romance novel seemed like a good place to get a start on the tropes of the form—both the ones to use and the ones to avoid.

Bagged my first Messier

Two nights ago I went out with the telescope to look at the Moon and the planets. Right now the moon is so bright and lately the air has been so hazy that even though I would like to start looking for other kinds of objects, it’s got to wait for some time that I can get up into the hills and away from the City. But I ended out there until after the Moon had not properly set but was at least behind some trees, and decided to begin my hunt for the Messier objects.

Most traders ignore this vital truth about altcurrencies

RonPaulCoin wallet

I’ve been wanting RonPaulCoin(RPC) for some time. I’m not bullish on the currency, in fact, I think it’s a bad idea. Naming a currency after a personality, especially a living one (Teslacoin could be kind of cool) is a terrible idea. But especially because Ron Paul is such an anti-fiat-currency goldbug, I thought it would be funny to have one RonPaulCoin.

Das Keyboard: feel the noise

Das Keyboard close-up

It seems a little strange to refer to Das Keyboard as «the Das Keyboard» because of course «das» means «the». It’s something like asking for the «hot salsa picante sauce», except that «keyboard» is not German for «keyboard», placing Das Keyboard firmly in the realm of branding. Das Keyboard isn’t even made by a German company—the keyboards are manufactured in Taiwan and they are designed and sold by a company in Austin Texas.1


Condition or fitness. Can be thought of as an analogue to mettle, but regarding functional rather than material qualities. Fettle is how something is made in contrast with mettle being what something is made from.

Found in the 25 January 2014 edition of The Economist.

Brave New World
Aldous Huxley

I vaguely recall reading Brave New World in my late teens or early twenties. I was a bit disappointed by it at the time and I suspect I may merely have skimmed the book. It didn’t leave a big impression the first time.

Image of What Is God?
What Is God?
Jacob Needleman

Many years ago in the midst of the results of some very poor choices, a friend exposed me to the Tao Te Ching. I read it in an evening, pondered over parts of it, and purchased my own copy the next afternoon. I purchased the Gia-fu Feng/Jane English translation at a store on Polk Street in San Francisco called Rooks and Becords, which sadly does not exist any longer. I recommend the coffeetable edition of this particular translation for its gorgeous photography, but the one I picked up that afternoon was a much smaller paperback.


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