I’m Jamie Thingelstad, and you signed up for this weekly letter from me sharing things that I have found notable and engaging for the week.
We are continuing to have a nice February in Arizona, escaping some incredibly cold weather back home. This massive cold streak has caused havoc for so many. I’m glad to see that finally people are getting power and heat restored. 🤞
This week was another crazy busy week for me. I’m going to get right on to the links. There are also a bunch of pictures from some hiking and exploring that we did around Joshua Tree National Park.
Hope you had a great Valentine’s Day! ❤️
“Every action you take is a vote for the type of person you wish to become.” — Atomic Habits (p 38)
Lucky gets taken on a walk pretty much every day. There is real benefit to walks.
But, when I think about the simplest and most strategic thing I am able to do for myself that’s Covid-safe, it’s walking. When I weigh what activity I can do almost every day, with little preparation, minimal effort, no special equipment, and that can contract or expand to fit the exact amount of time I have available, it’s walking. When I consider what I can do for myself even when my back pain is flaring up, it’s walking. When I want to do something that’s good for my mind, body, and soul, it’s walking. When I want someone’s company (physically distanced, of course) — or just want to be alone, walking works.
Walking meetings are still one of my favorite ways to explore ideas and solutions with colleagues.
This is an interesting read about how Tim Cook has evolved Apple, and put his fingerprint on it in so many ways. It also highlights how deft of a negotiator and communicator he must be.
These Joshua Trees are so appealing for reasons I can’t quite put my finger on.
Feb 13, 2021
Yucca Valley, California
These invisible trackers in email are one of the biggest benefits you get using network level privacy tools like Pi-hole. It is unfortunate that, to my knowledge, no email clients have privacy protection capabilities right now. Even as Web browsers have gotten that added. I do like how Hey calls out senders that do this. Hopefully that spurs others to follow suit.
This is an impressive tool to help web developers designing responsive applications. The ability to see various layouts simultaneously is incredibly powerful. Wow. ⚛️
Will Larson shares the nitty gritty details of self-publishing his own book. If you are considering writing and publishing your own book, this is a great resource to frame up how to approach it.
The challenge of naming things is well known in the software world. It’s hard. This article is a good writeup on “why” it is so hard, and provides a framework for how to think about it. Also see Why Is Naming Things Hard? by Neil Kakkar.
A very simple email newsletter platform. I use Buttondown which I don’t think is any more complicated than this. But Underline has good pricing for a simple newsletter solution. It seems comparable, and a lot better than, TinyLetter which MailChimp bought a while ago and is letting slowly atrophy.
Skittish sounds cool and I hope, and would guess, that there are a number of folks working on solutions to host events online in a more interesting and engaging way. Zoom is wonderful for meetings, but events are not just meeting!
More than anything, I wanted it to be optimized for fun: interesting to explore on its own, make new friends, and a vibrant place for creators and event organizers to bring together their communities in a new way.
I like the concepts here and it seems like a great start. We need a lot of innovation in these services, and there should be room for a number of alternatives.
This is a great set of recommendations. Give up the clutter, Multi-tasking doesn’t work, Give up the urgent distraction, Stop feeding your comfort, Don’t sit still, and Stop consuming media and start creating instead. Sound interesting? At least one of these is worthwhile to take on.
Thompson frames Clubhouse in the realm of social media in an interesting way. I recently signed up on Clubhouse (@jthingelstad, thanks @hectorguatemala). It is interesting and the experience is well done. It seems very much driven by a small handful of very popular users that host events. It feels a lot like a live podcast.
I like how reading this you can hear how clearly Bray loves the act of coding.
Old-school it may be, but I’m learning cool new Java things like postmodern switch because IntelliJ keeps sneering at my Java 8 idioms and suggesting the new shiny. And I’d forgotten, really, how nice carving executable abstractions into shape feels. Also parsers are particularly fun.
Keep that connection to the passion that you have as a technologist!
Tammy and I thoroughly enjoyed this interview with Fran Lebowitz. Her comments were refreshing! 👏
I like Brooks thinking on using the right tool for the job.
I need a bucket not a warehouse with programmable robots.
I think the important two words here are “I need”. Knowing what you need in your tools is critical. For me, I do need a programmable robot when it comes to task management and it is why I use OmniFocus. But, I’ve never found any of the 3rd party apps to work well for me for Mail or Calendars. They just don’t perform. I see a lot of people seeking 3rd party apps for core components, and I think for a lot of them the investment doesn’t pay off.
Wow, this is incredible growth. Personally my podcast consumption has plummeted during the pandemic because I’m not commuting. However, I think I’m an outlier.
Watching Perseverance land on Mars today was another amazing example of engineering and discovery being done at amazing levels. Perseverance has a drone on board! How cool is that! Congratulations to the team that made this a reality today!
Day 18 of the February Photoblogging Challenge: At home
We aren’t at home, so I am doing at Airbnb instead.
Day 16 of the February Photoblogging Challenge: Erudite.
Today we visited the Noah Purifoy Outdoor Museum in Joshua Tree. We weren’t familiar with Purifoy, but his background is very impressive and the outdoor museum he created here is unique, interesting, and a little confusing. We spent a while walking around and taking pictures. We didn’t read up about Purifoy until we left which we actually liked since it allowed us to see the art “as is”.
The kids had a fabulous time running and climbing up the rocks while I anxioulsy watched worrying someone might fall. 🤷♂️
Day 15 of the February Photoblogging Challenge: Reflection.
Skull Rock in Joshua Tree National Park.
We hit the trail and were thinking it would be warming up so we had shorts and just shirts on. Immediately we saw people with snowjackets, hats, gloves. I’m not sure who was dressed right, but one of us picked wrong. It was mostly us.
The way up was a 1,000 foot ascent that was pretty much non-stop. It was strenuous but that also made it a great accomplishment when we got to the top!
Day 14 of the February Photoblogging Challenge: Compassion.
I struggled to get a photo for this one. I ended up having the kids pose for me as the sun was setting by Joshua Tree, CA.
We did the Titanic Room at Escape Room Palm Springs today. They isolate everyone so it’s as safe as can be. It was a fun room, it not a bit easy. We finished in 44 min 29 sec and didn’t ask for any clues!
This frame they had on the wall made me chuckle.
We followed this DIY Modern Architecture Tour of Palm Springs today. One of the stops was Elvis Presley’s Honeymoon Hideaway. It was under construction but I got a picture over the fence. So many amazing houses in Palm Springs.
Picture with Frank Sinatra’s star in Palm Springs, CA.
Happy Valentines Day! My daughter crafted these amazing Valentines cards for us.
The morning view from the Art Loft Airbnb in Joshua Tree, California. Inspiring.
Day 13 of the February Photoblogging Challenge: Make.
A great place for making.
The Cholla Cactus Garden at Joshua Tree National Park. They are pretty but hazardous to touch. Keep your distance.
Heading to Joshua Tree National Park for a couple of days. 4h 30m drive. 👍
It is amazing how long it takes to just get out of Phoenix!
Smart TV’s should be renamed Surveillance TV’s. Never connect these to the Internet. Get an Apple TV and plug that into it.
This is fabulous. 🤣
Good background on what is driving the massive power issues in Texas.
I’ve struggled with this because I worry that the quality of masks online is terrible. After reading this, I placed an order for 500 various masks at Bona Fide Masks. 😷
What a super niche but cool idea.
Looks like a good tool. There is still a lot of innovation to happen in this space.
This is a fun read of a particularly tricky bit of debugging. If you are curious how some of these bugs are so difficult to find, this may give you some deeper appreciation.
Good perspective on the demands being placed on many and how COVID-19 has made some of them so much worse.
Wow, emoji use can be complicated! ❤️
Here is your fortune…
You will be successful in love. 😍
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I’m a fan of the lawn game Kubb and play on the Kubbchucks. Together with a friend of mine, we created the very first scoring & notation system for Kubb so that games can be recorded like a baseball box score. Here is an example of a game-winning turn
3ir 2f f - b b K!