Weeknotes- Sunday 12 July 2020

I have a week on holiday! Because I am an idiot this is the first time off that I’ve had this year, not counting being sick with COVID (and that wasn’t really a holiday). I have no idea what to do with the time off though, particularly as Kim is actually doing some work.

Expect next week’s post to be either a celebration of my enlightenment after a week of doing little, or the most dull post I’ve ever written.


Ulysses in iPadOS 14 and a bit about the workflow I use for these posts

Obviously I’m using iPadOS 14, and obviously there’s bugs which affect applications. One of these is in Ulysses, which I use to do most of my writing, and which crashes under the current developer beta.

I should add at this point that it’s not their fault, and it’s almost certainly a bug in this developer beta which is nothing to do with Ulysses. It worked fine with the previous version, it crashes now. It happens.

However, this does give me a chance to experiment with other workflows, so I’m using a combination of Drafts and IA Writer as a bit of an experiment.

The workflow I usually use is pretty simple: through the week, I jot down little notes in Ulysses, which go into a “Weeknotes” project. These then get shifted around and edited, and I write an introduction at the start. Once done, it gets grouped together and exported into WordPress, then the whole post is archived.

With no Ulysses, I’m using IA Writer instead. However, annoyingly IA Writer doesn’t have a Share extension, so there’s no easy way to capture something, which means I need to use something else: in this case, Drafts is the best option.

The workflow looks like this:

  1. Capture a though, or a URL and some text in Drafts, tagged with “weeknotes”
  2. When I’m collating the post, use the “Send Multiple to IA Writer” action to copy everything into iA Writer
  3. Write my intro, then use the Content Blocks feature in iA Writer to add in the other pieces of content
  4. Send everything to appropriate archives

It’s obviously not as elegant as just using Ulysses, although in theory it allows me to do some automation to archive everything once I’ve done my post. But it’s fun to tinker.

Why is Apple exposing tracking apps and websites?

Interesting point from Dieter Bohn on The Verge podcast. Dieter says that things like exposing tracking done by apps nudges developers towards the business model that Apple favours – paid, not ad supported – which happens to dovetail with giving Apple a cut of the money.

Another way to look at it: Apple has consistently prevented developers from using methods of monetisation that are user-hostile, and is exposing the tracking that developers do which everyone – including the developers – would rather hide from users. And the reason that prefer it hidden from users is they know users wouldn’t like it and would regard it as an unacceptable invasion of their privacy.

Things I’ve been reading this week

Apple began work on the Watch’s handwashing feature years before COVID–19 | TechCrunch

I’ve turned this on and – surprise surprise – I don’t wash my hands for long. It’s surprisingly accurate in terms of spotting when you’re washing your hands, although it does seem to get triggered sometimes by washing dishes…

How the Apple Watch tracks sleep – and why – CNET

“You can’t really coach yourself to have more or less REM stages,” he says. “We felt like that wasn’t the best way Apple could add value here on sleep. We focused on the transition to the bed, which we think is way more actionable, and will result in people getting a better night’s sleep, which then has secondary effects of perhaps your REM stages sorting themselves.”

Absolutely: when it comes to sleep, duration is the only thing you can really impact. It’s not the only thing worth measuring but it’s the thing you can personally change

The iPadification of macOS: What Does it Mean for Developers of Productivity Software? – The Sweet Setup

Some really good points about the implications of Apple’s current direction with macOS and iPadOS on pricing models for software.

What’s really behind “tech” versus “journalism” | Revue

But what if you take the whole discussion of “tech versus journalism” and reframe it as “managers versus employees”? Then, I think, you get closer to the truth of what’s going on.

What it comes down to is simple: powerful people do not like scrutiny, they do not like criticism, and they do not like being exposed for their terrible opinions and practices.

Francois: ‘If called upon I will form a military junta’ – The Daily Blether

Your weekly reminder that the Brexiteers are a bunch of liars and hypocrites. In this case, Mark Francois, a former TA officer who seems to regard himself as the best of the best of the best, claiming that if Brexit didn’t happen last October he would form a military junta. Reader, Brexit did not happen on 31 October, and mark did not man the barricades.

How Prosperity Transformed the Falklands | The New Yorker

The Falkland Islands were now among the richest places on earth—with an income, per capita, comparable to those of Norway and Qatar. Despite its spending, the government had also put aside several years’ income for a rainy day: it had no debt at all.

The story of the Falkland Islands is utterly fascinating. From a sheep farming station to a level of prosperity it hasn’t seen before.

Gender Spectrum: A Scientist Explains Gender Isn’t Binary

For all too long, the government, the medical system, and even our parents have assumed that sex (and gender) are binary. Based on science, this is not biologically or medically accurate. What is true is that sex characteristics tend to be bimodal, meaning there are clusters of characteristics that tend to be associated with people that we call “female” or “male.”

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