Well hello there. I plan to start posting here again given, you know, being stuck in a global pandemic. Stay tuned.
It’s a month that is of vital importance to my family. As some of you may know, our oldest son was diagnosed in May 2009 with a malignant brain tumor. In the blink of an eye, we went from a young family with a seemingly-healthy six month old baby to a young family facing the reality that our son was gravely sick.
Today, that baby is in second grade. As I write this, he’s eating dinner with his two younger siblings. They just spent an afternoon running around the yard together.
That may just sound like another September afternoon to you, but to me, it’s nothing short of a miracle.
There are few things as important as helping support families of children with cancer. I tear up every year that Stephen posts this. This year is no different. Then I donate. You should too, if you’re able.
Vann Newkirk II, at The Atlantic:
The disconnect in terms is understandable. It’s one thing to see the Red Shirts and Klansmen as bogeymen of the past and imagine their pogroms and mob clashes in the abstract. It’s another to see them manifest suddenly in violent strength, even if one subscribes to the idea that white supremacy runs deeper than caricatures of hooded rogues, and that its long tendrils have always animated politics and political violence in America.
Even for me, as my father has studied the violence of white supremacy for most of my life, it’s hard to square a group of men with Home Depot tiki torches, wrinkled khakis, bad haircuts, and a love of memes who came down to Emancipation Park with the blood-curdling menace of Klansmen in my mind’s eye. It’s easier to joke about losers camping out in a park than to consider them capable of the kinds of paradigm-shifting horror that destroyed countless black families.
But that’s a trick of historical perspective—even the most feared white supremacists in the lore of Jim Crow were just regular white men, transformed from lives as politicians, mechanics, farmers, and layabouts by the sheer power of ideology. And often, their movements were considered “fringe” and marginal—until they weren’t.
And it’s a pretty great update. Loads of new goodies. I may be celebrating my next birthday before I get through them, but both Nick Heer and Federico Viticci’s reviews are worth your time. Now back to your regularly scheduled programming of me barely posting.
At a glance, it’s very similar, but instead of working with iTunes, it untangles the nightmare of Amazon Affiliate links. I rarely use my Amazon affiliate account because it’s a pain. Associate makes these links incredibly easy to create.
Affiliate links are an easy way to generate a little bit of cash to keep sites like these. Especially for those who do a better job keeping up with theirs. I’m happy apps like this exist. Plus, John and his son Owen are good people. I like supporting good people. You can get Associate for $4.99 on the App Store.
I’ve been redoing my Drafts setup lately, much like Gabe. He’s always an excellent source for some critical thinking about your setup. I don’t know where I stumbled across Tim Nahumck’s site, but he has some pretty amazing stuff of his own on the subject. Cheers to these guys.
Side note: Sorry for not putting anything on the site recently. It’s been a little busy. Rest assured, I’m still here. Maybe I’ll get back to this regularly, maybe I won’t. We’ll see!
Hamza Shaban, at BuzzFeed:
“We believe that if you look at the amount of investment happening in the fintech startup space, which is off the charts right now, there are a lot really smart people working on these challenges and technology is going to be the solution.” Peters hopes the group will capitalize on young people’s dissatisfaction toward traditional brick-and-mortar bank branches and the trust they have for customer-friendly technology companies. Financial Innovation Now also aims to push novel mobile and cloud-based services, with an eye for the tens of millions of “unbanked” Americans who lack access to savings accounts and credit cards. “The companies believe that technology is going to help solve the financial inclusion challenge, which a lot of policymakers are focused on,” Peters said.
Now if they could just force my credit union to get up to date.
John Voorheen of Squibner Software:
Blink 2.0 has a bunch of other cool features too, including side-by-side multitasking. I’m really excited about this one. Just as Blink 1.0’s action extension was its secret weapon letting users generate affiliate links from within Apple’s stores and third party apps, I think multitasking on the iPad is going to be big for Blink 2.0. No one likes to switch back and forth between apps and now, whether you are looking up media in Blink or via its extension from another app, having it next to your text editor makes it immediately more useful. Keyboard shortcuts will also make searching for media easier for iPad users who use an external keyboard and the ability to edit links in Blink’s extension enhances Markdown links because who hasn’t run into a title that is a little too long, especially App-Store-Optimized app titles like FancyKey for iOS 8 - Personalize your keyboard with cool Fonts, colorful Themes and beautiful Emoji Art?
So what’s next for Blink? Blink, which was conceived as a tool for bloggers to generate affiliate links (Blogger + Link == Blink), has started to become something more. The Apple Music and Apple Podcast App support are just the start. In a world where web advertising is in decline and being actively blocked as user-hostile, it has never been harder for creators to earn a living. Affiliate linking, by its very nature is not in your face and the barrier to entry is nonexistent — signing up takes all of five minutes, it’s free and it scales. Whether you share links with a handful of friends or run a web site with millions of page views an month, the iTunes Affiliate Program is an easy way to add a revenue stream that supports your blog, podcast, book club, or whatever. The point is that it’s not just for big web sites or developers, affiliate linking is for anyone who has ever recommended a good book or shared a playlist, podcast, or cool new game they discovered and can be part of any business model that includes linking to iTunes media.
We are at a unique moment in time where affiliate linking has the opportunity to take off as a respectful alternative to the gross, in-your-face mess that much of web advertising has become. But to take off, affiliate linking is going to require education and better tools on every platform. That is where Blink is heading.
Good software made by good people. I like Blink, and John is good people. You should grab a copy if you use affiliate links. Yes, that link was generated in Blink.
Jason Snell, at Six Colors:
But the thing is, a lot of the people I work with have a free Dropbox account—meaning they’re limited to 2GB of Dropbox data. Sometimes that Incomparable Transfer Folder can get big—and some of them are so close to the Dropbox size limit that they’re not able to even join the shared folder, because it’ll push them over. And though I’m a paying customer, I can’t grant the rights to some of my storage space to members of my shared folders. That’s not how Dropbox works.
But a feature introduced by Dropbox in June is starting to change how I use the service. It’s called File Requests, and it allows me to create a link that I can give to anyone who needs to send me a file—whether they use Dropbox or not.
I feel like a dope, but I had no idea that this existed. I could use this in a ton of ways.
Matthew Panzarino, at TechCrunch:
To control the new Apple TV? A new remote. One major feature of which was pretty much nailed by Brian Chen in an article earlier this year. It’s slightly bigger and thicker, with physical buttons on the bottom half, a Touchpad area at the top and a Siri microphone. Info about this remote was included in a report by Mark Gurman earlier this month, along with some other information we’ve confirmed about the new Apple TV.
One thing that hasn’t been talked about yet is the fact that the new remote will be motion sensitive, likely including several axis’ worth of sensors that put its control on par with a Nintendo Wii remote. The possibilities, of course, are immediately evident.
Of all the new things reportedly coming to the new Apple TV, this is what I’m most excited about. Am I weird? Maybe.