Themeable seasons

One thing I’ve been doing over the last couple of years is switching colours on my blogs and social media profiles according to the seasons.

Technically it’s spring in the UK although with the weather it certainly doesn’t look like it. Never mind, I’m still switching to green to mark the start of spring.

Nicholas Bate offers up some nudges to get you writing.

BBC Studios is adapting Terry Pratchett’s iconic Discworld books for a six-part TV series

I enjoyed the adaptations that were on Sky a few years ago. I’m looking forward to seeing what the BBC do with Terry Pratchett’s Discworld books.

Version control for project management

Did a stupid thing today and deleted a checklist from Trello that I was using. As far as I am aware, there’s no way of undeleting it and also no backup of the Trello board to speak of.

Perhaps it’s not only the source code that’s a valuable asset of a project. The supporting project management material that drives the development should be at least backed up or even under version control as well.

🎵Got the Master and Commander soundtrack playing while I catch up on some Rails work for a client tonight.

Twitter finally gives us an official way to bookmark tweets

I can’t see me using this at all. I use Pinboard for bookmarking and I’m rarely using any of the Twitter clients these days.

Overwatch’s newest hero is an armor-clad engineer named Brigitte.

Overwatch can do no wrong in my eyes. Easy to start playing, easy to level up and immensely fun. Makes me wonder if Blizzard would have done a better job at Star Wars Battlefront II than EA and Dice did.


I’m wondering if this is something that might interest the users of

I want to ask a question to users, but I don’t want the question to appear on my blog. Much like my replies don’t appear on my hosted blog, I would like to ask a question to the community and for everyone to see it on their timeline. Just not on my blog.

I know there are Slack groups for this type of thing, but perhaps is just as great a place for this type of thing.

Does that make sense?

What's in a number?

I’ve been moving over some lists and accounts over to Feedbin. The significant advantage of this is that I don’t need to open Twitter and scroll through my timeline.

It’s the same way in all social media platforms. You’re trying to find that point in the timeline where you left off previously, and you can’t determine what you have already seen. Throw in the different ways in which posts are promoted or injected in your timeline, and it makes for a very confusing experience.

Yesterday I opened up Feedbin at the end of the day and noticed that one of the lists that I have on Twitter had over 50 unread posts on it. Unusual for that particular list, but there was an event on, and so the activity was a bit higher than usual. Rather than pour through each post, I decided to flag the whole list as read.

I weighed up that the amount of posts that were unread wasn’t worth my time to scroll through, even on Feedbin. So I just marked them as all as read.

Seeing the number of unread posts in Feedbin allows me to quickly decided if a list, tag or feed is worth reading. If it’s too high, I can just mark everything as read.

The number of unread items on Feedbin is a small thing, but it’s a great indicator of what I’ve missed. I wish more services and social media platforms would use signs like this rather than trying to sort out your unread items for you magically.

Another day of snow in Paisley.

Micro Monday shout-out to my writing prompt generator on, @penmuse.

Weekly digest

The school shootings in Florida a couple of week’s ago are still fresh in my mind. The continued defence of guns and the right to bear arms is wearing. People will agree and disagree on this and there will likely be no change in the laws. Just politicians going round in circles defending the organisations that they have been paid to defend.

I am glad to see though that there are young people in America wanting a change. Perhaps we’ll just have to wait for these youngsters to take positions in American politics for any real change to happen.

I’m still reading a bunch of articles on the fallout from the shooting in Florida which I’ve grouped together first.

And here’s the rest of my weekly links.

Crux technology

My wife is thinking of setting up a Facebook account so that she can book in for a fitness class she likes and keep up to date with the kid’s school information.

Crazy, right?

Yes, Facebook will be the single way that my wife will be able to register for the fitness class in the future and yes Facebook is the only channel that the school regularly updates despite having a website and two native apps.

Frustrating? Definitely.

There’s a section of people that still see Facebook as the “default service of the Internet”. Facebook is probably easy to set up but other than that the only perceived benefit it has for these organisations is the numbers. They think most people are on Facebook, so they use Facebook.

Facebook is a crux technology and not a good one at that. The Internet has many tools for organisations to communicate and engage with audiences. So, why do so many organisations turn to Facebook?

I don’t know the exact reason why. It could be that organisations find it easy to use and they think that everyone else is using it. It’s true that most people are using Facebook, but it’s not everyone that’s using it.

It’s not Facebook that’s the problem, it’s the view that Facebook is the only way of communicating with audiences. 

How do you change that when the majority of people see Facebook as the only way of using the Internet?

Just what we need, more guns

I’m not surprised it’s being suggested by Trump that they need to arm teachers in schools.

Rather than making schools safe areas to learn, aren’t they just going to be turned into places where kids fear for their lives? Arming teachers is one thing, but in the heat of the moment, can armed teachers react in the same way that the police should?

John Gruber also linked to an article describing the devasting effect of AR-15 bullets on the organs.

More guns is not the answer.

Start that novel

Nicholas Bate has the steps you need to start that novel.

Great to see Ethan making progress under the watchful eye of club professional Andy Carlton. More work on the short game this week with great results. 👍🏻

I’ve been moving a few newsletters so that they’re sent to Feedbin. Amazed by the amount of newsletters that don’t allow you to just update your details.

Unsubscribing, finding the landing page and then subscribing again is quite a chore for a few newsletters.

Looking forward to more nights like this when I can get both the boys out on the course.