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Entries tagged 'cat:Shared'

Posts tagged with category Shared are where I show and usually link to something on the web that I find interesting, helpful or otherwise worth sharing. Posts categorised as Links are link lists or link collections with no descriptions.

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YouTube channels that I find worth recommending

There is no other reason why I restrict this list to YouTube channels other than that is where I'm most likely to discover interesting videos. It's just where most online videos are. The channels in this list are in no particular order. Some pretty well-known and famous, some not that big, but all very interesting to watch to me.

  • World Science Festival - Science panel talks - I've written about it here already.
  • DIY Perks - Interesting electronics-related DIY projects, partly very elaborate. Nice voice.
  • Technology Connections - In-depth explorations and explanations of technical, electrical and electronics topics. Retro tech, home appliances, traffic lights, video technology, ...
  • TrackZero - Computer/digital electronics projects vlog. Homebrew computer hardware, vintage computer hardware.
  • Tipharot - Short videos on lucid dreaming
  • colinfurze - Weirdly over-the-top and professional-looking DIY builds
  • Pursuit of Wonder - Philosophical and thought-provoking stories nicely told
  • Absolute Unit (at this point still also known as "DWK's new channel") - Peeves and other personal shortcomings portrayed in a fun way
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Stop Liking What I Don't Like: Tiktok

Letting out some of my dissatisfaction with the modern web seems to become a regular thing here. Here's the take of somebody else on some of these things. It's a different angle than my own. But I agree with lots of it. Maybe it's just a video that you're supposed to watch for fun and move on. But I had a few thoughts while listening. It's a video on YouTube. But the audio is most important.

Absolute Unit - Stop Liking What I Don't Like: Tiktok

Most of the thoughts that I had aren't worth mentioning. But here is one anyway: I forget what I wanted to say. Anyway, I just felt like sharing the video anyway.

Also: "The Small Web" with independent small web sites doesn still exist. "Little corners on the internet", "hidden jems you can stumble upon", "creativity". It's not gone. It's just flooded by other web sites and forgotten while posting and reading on some few central web sited.

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Poly Keyboard

Here is another project idea I never really started working on: A computer keyboard that has a small LCD in each key cap. I'm convinced that there are legitimate use cases. After all, the function of the keys changes according to context. Different applications have different shortcuts, when I press and hold the Ctrl or Super key, the whole layout practically changes. Most people don't remember useful keyboard shortcuts, if they try to memorise them in the first place (if the learn about them to begin with). It would be nice to have the markings on the keys reflect their role. In some special applications, like video editing, a completely custom keyboard layout would be useful (a cheap alternative to byuing a custom video editing interface input device). In computer games, only the useful keys could light up, as well as display what they do (which depends not only on the game, your custom layout, the current situation in the game, as well as what happened earlier in the game, e.g. what items you have in your pockets). You might want to write in different languages and need different keyboard layouts at different times. You could have icons or descriptions of key functions be displayed whenever you hold a modifying key, to see which shortcuts are available. You could have a second keyboard with an additional layout to give you access to frequently used functions, and have the keys display the relative application icons or describe what they do. And it would just look cool.

The idea has been in my head for years. I even board the electronics to build a few keys to try it out. But I never build one because I think it would have been too much work on the side to get it done well, considered I come by very well without one. Now I learned that somebody else has built a keyboard very similar to what I had/have in mind. To be honest, I never really get very deep into the keyboard building community to know whether a keyboard like this already existed. I think when I had the idea I didn't even know how big the mechanical keyboard fan community is and that DIY builds are such a big thing.

The project I stumbled over is the Poly Keyboard by thpoll. Here is an article about it in the Keyboard Builder's Digest, here is the Github repo. Apparently (according too the article) it isn't the first of its kind. But it's the only one I've seen.

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SOFA

Sometimes I find it helpful, calming and stress reducing to remind myself of SOFA. The principle "Start Often Fuck Achievements" is one I tend to live by and believe in. But I also often hold myself accountable to the status of unfinished projects and try to justify before myself the state of hobby projects that didn't end up looking as professional as they could have been if I had put 10 years more work and experience into them, even though that never really is the goal when I start a project. When I start to write some software, build or compile something, write a blog entry (or a series) or even just watch a movie series or read a book, I almost always do it for fun, out of interest for the subject, to pass time in a fulfilling way or to do something for somebody elese. If - or I rather should say when - I stop before something is "done" because it's not that much fun any more, I lost interest, don't have the time at that moment or the one I was trying to help is satisfied with very little or no longer in need what I was trying to do, then there is no purpose to continue these projects. When something is "done" could be seen as an arbitrary point anyway. Almost no hobby projects actually have a point were they suddenly become having been worth the effort and leaving nothing else to do. Even a jigsaw puzzle, to use a simple example, that actually does have such a sudden point of being finished (unless it's this one) could be aborted at any point and still have served the purpose of passing time and training skills. But most of my projects don't even have a predefined point at which they would be considered finished. So why feel bad if I abandon a project without having reached that point?

From the SOFA 🛋 web page: You can be finished with your project whenever you decide to be done with it. And "done" can mean anything you want it to be. Whose standards of completion or perfection are you holding yourself to anyway? Forget about those! Something is done when you say it is. When it's no longer interesting. When you've gotten a sufficient amount of entertainment and experience from it. When you've learned enough from it. Whatever, whenever. Done is what you say it is.

You can find different philosophical reasonings or rational justifications for how and why applying this principle might be a good thing, or even what it means to you and which rules apply to you. I myself am actually satisfied with just stating that it's a good idea. It feels good to remember. That's enough. This web site was founded with a similar philosophy in mind even though I had never heard of SOFA. I just need to remind myself of that every now and then.

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Command Line Loading Animations

Around the time I implemented the neat little waiting animation in SBWG I stumbled over a bash script that displays such animations. It actually gave me the idea. I mean, it's not a useful feature at all in SBWG. I just did it because I liked how fancy text based waiting animations can look with modern unicode fonts. I didn't use the code from the bash script that I found, or one of the animations (although there is a similar one there). So it effectively has nothing to do with SBWG and I don't know why I had to mention it here again. Anyways.

Here is the script on GitHub by Silejonu. There are some very nice and really creative single-line example animations in there.

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On Notetaking; Minimalist Web Notepad (and an edit function for SBWG)

There are so many ways to take and organise notes… I stopped thinking about it. I stopped trying to organise the right kind of notes in the right place, right kind of software or in the right structure. Some things I write on a piece of paper, which may or may not lie around and in the way for weeks, or I put it in a file, or create a bookmark. Or a write it in a terminal so that I can grep it from the history later. Or I send myself an email. Yes, that's still something people do. I do it even though I know there are better ways to save and sync notes across devices. There are so many better ways that I can't decide on which I want to use. There are so cool, sweet and genius little (nd not so little) apps, CLI tools, TUIs and web UIs that people recommend. I don't want to spend years testing them so that I can decide which I want to use with which config. But there is one that I adopted qhickly and gladly. I guess I stumbled over it just at the right time or I wouldn't have installed it, and wouldn't still use it years later.

It's called Minimalist Web Notepad. I'm not sure if the linked Github is from the originl author. Feel free to check yourself. There are quite some forks. One reason for that may be that its name is very much a complete description of what it is, and the minimalism is enforced by the maintainer. If you want any feature on top of the core functionality, you have to add it yourself or look through the forks. Upon installation you choose or create a directory in which the notes are saved. Then you can pass a file path through the URL when you open the app, and it will display the contents of the file. If you edit anything in the notepad, it will be saved immedietly to the file (if JS is enabled). If the file didn't exist, it will be created. So, this notepad can be used as a simple addition to the practice of collecting a convoluted mess of text files that contain notes, which is perfect for me. There is no password protection (in the original version). But Apache can already do that.

And I found another use for minimalist-web-notepad. I started SBWG on the idea that more things should be files. The concept of everything being a file works great in Unix-like systems, which device drivers and kernel components that create those files as sensible interfaces to things. But I like the idea of things being files independently of sensibility and efficiency. Maybe that's why I like minimalist-web-notepad. There, notes are files, in SBWG, blog entries are files, in my etherpad-lite, pads are files. Wait a moment… if I use the entries directory of a SBWG web site as the notes directory of minimalist-web-notepad, I could edit blog entries in the web browser. And so I did that, and added a hook to the settings file of draft0 that includes a link to every entry that links to the notepad of that entry. For a while now there has been a hidden edit link in every draft0 entry that allows me to edit blog entries quickly without moving away from my principle of not adding any client-to-server interaction to SBWG.

See, that's why it's great to agree on formats (and standards in general). The author of this minimalist-web-notepad didn't know about SBWG, but just kept the tool simple and file-based, and thereby created a blog entry editor for SBWG web sites that fits perfectly, accidently.

Just in case anybody wants to add the same hook to their SBWG settings file, here it is:


# Add an edit link to every entry's title section (when the entry is displayed on its own page)
hook_entry_title_tags_after() {
  echo "edit" >> "${outfile}"
}

Replace https://edit.draft0.de with the URL to your minimalist-web-notepad (or other editor) installation. Make sure to protect it from anonymous access, unless you like surprises, I guess. If you want to hide the link, too, use CSS or change the link text to '.' or place it differently by using a different hook or be creative or use a browser extension instead of the hook.

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Derpy did 9/11

I realise that the fun in this GIF, if you would have ever been someone who would have smiled at a joke like this, is lost by now. But it was a popular and hated animation among bronies after the episode where Derpy demolished that building came out. I'd like to keep a backup here because the file is known to be reported (and removed) on image boards, discussion boards and other moderated web sites. (Imgur is almost the only one who kept it until now. But they started to remove old uploads. So it will vanish from there, too.)

This probably would be the most popular My Little Pony GIF animation that I've made if most bronies weren't Americans. :)

Edit: Oh and I found this audio recording of an old version of the Google text-to-speech reading an excerpt of the transcript of the relevant MLP:FiM episode. I created that file as a test audio file for some other project. But I think it fits here as well and sounds kind of funny.

File Attachments

derpywtc.mp3 Download
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