Web dev at the end of the world, from Hveragerði, Iceland

Bookmarks – Milk it

Loving amateurs. (No, not like that.)

We are drunk. The lights are low. I start giving you indie advice…
"If you are a one hit wonder: MILK IT."

— Daniel Cook (@danctheduck) July 29, 2015

"Who buys software if not startups?" The same people who pay billions of dollars every year for accountants.

— Patrick McKenzie (@patio11) July 30, 2015

I want to take readers through some of my previous writing on ideology and character, and how they help form the societies we live in.  Taking the time to read these articles (a short book’s worth), should vastly improve your understanding of the world and the articles to come. It should be worth your time even if you read the articles when they were published, as, at the time, they lacked both context and commentary, and were not collated to be read together so that the connections were obvious.

The Role of Character and Ideology in Prosperity by Ian Welsh (1357 words).

2008: "Git is decentralized! You don't need a server!" 2015: GitHub raises $250m at $2b valuation.

I've written this tweet so many times.

— Gary Bernhardt (@garybernhardt) July 30, 2015

The nerds obsess over the theoretical purity, ignoring social reality. A small band of nerds addresses social reality. Then: a $2b company!

— Gary Bernhardt (@garybernhardt) July 30, 2015

Distribution is right; the social reality is a trap. Centralization of information storage is centralization of control over people.

— Gary Bernhardt (@garybernhardt) July 30, 2015

Just sit down and seriously think about a company that hosts "distributed" version control repositories being valued at $2,000,000,000.

— Gary Bernhardt (@garybernhardt) July 30, 2015

When I say "distribution is right", it's mostly a lament that our world is not configured to reward distribution. GitHub build great stuff.

— Gary Bernhardt (@garybernhardt) July 30, 2015

So, let’s hear it for the amateurs. Be proud of your independence, your passion and your creativity. Just because you’re not being paid doesn’t mean you’re any less smart, appreciated or talented. Any job can earn money. (Besides, even professional writers are generally poorly-paid.) But it’s a rare and precious thing to find work that satisfies heart and soul. So if you love it, do it.

On Amateurs, and Why I Love Them. by Joanne Harris (854 words).


Without the logos, could you tell which companies own which screenshots? Does it matter? The pattern’s become its own trademark. Just one of the popular yet mediocre ones plaguing modern screen-based design.

What’s wrong?

Design machines by Travis Gertz.

We can’t trust the data. And those who do will always be stuck chasing a robotic approach to human connection.

Whether it’s a lack of our own critical thinking or external pressure clamping down, we shy away from carving our own path. Originality is risky. It’s difficult to quantify and defend. Why try something new when someone else has already tested it for us?

Content on the web is not king. Half the time it’s barely the jester. Unless created by an individual or one of the dwindling sources of legitimate journalism, it’s rarely produced for noble intentions like education or entertainment. It’s a tool with an agenda manufactured to drive business interests.

PR in: “Sitting is the new smoking”. Er, no.

Gosh, I wonder if they’re selling a standing desk?

scrolls down


— Craig Grannell (@CraigGrannell) July 30, 2015

Kin selection isn't a good measure of human fitness.

We're moving much faster than our genes. pic.twitter.com/PcPWiNJTij

— John Robb (@johnrobb) July 30, 2015

So ads are out of control even for sites. That’s so removed from the world of print, where an editor could veto or move an ad, that it’s boggling.

It’s this lack of control – the mad desire and demand by advertisers to get everything, indifferent to the effect of the user experience on the reader – that is driving people to adblockers. It’s a variant of the tragedy of the commons.

The adblocking revolution is months away (with iOS 9) – with trouble for advertisers, publishers and Google by charlesarthur (2559 words).

It strikes me as an inferior design decision, arising from inattention. It’s a minor problem, sure, and there are more pressing ones in the software. I have seen Apple Music streams drop mid-play; other users have lost music with iTunes Match.

iTunes Really Is That Bad by Robinson Meyer (1111 words).

Apple is NOT a great design company, they are a graphic design company, they are an industrial design company, but they fail epically on ux.

— Christina Wodtke (@cwodtke) July 30, 2015

Apple famously does not do usability testing, and is woefully ignorant of use cases of ordinary people, content to push style on the masses.

— Christina Wodtke (@cwodtke) July 30, 2015

Apple is a fashion company from day one, not a design company. From the iPod to the watch, style not use has led them.

— Christina Wodtke (@cwodtke) July 30, 2015

Apple will pay the price though – when I complain about iTunes everyone says "just use Spotify."
Let's think about that for a second.

— Christina Wodtke (@cwodtke) July 30, 2015

Apple's willful ignorance of user behavior, needs and desires in favor of fashion will force their user base into the arms of competition.

— Christina Wodtke (@cwodtke) July 30, 2015

Usability isn't charity, it's good business.
Like a pair of comfortable jeans, comfortable use triumphs the latest fashion.

— Christina Wodtke (@cwodtke) July 30, 2015

I hate iTunes not bc its profound unusability but because of its arrogance. Apple thinks it can impose sloppy ux in users bc they are cool.

— Christina Wodtke (@cwodtke) July 30, 2015

Every designer knows how bad iTunes has been for years. It's a known problem. Crazy that Apple hasn't fixed it.

— Joshua Porter (@bokardo) July 30, 2015

I will never know how good a Mac is, bc Apple has taught me not to trust them via their choices with iTunes.
Seems foolish.

— Christina Wodtke (@cwodtke) July 30, 2015

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