Twitter Sends A Eulogy to 3rd Party Apps

I’ve always heard, “never build your business on something you don’t control” and those words have never been more accurate for 3rd party Twitter apps. Of course, this is nothing new as Twitter has crapped on developers a few times in the past and now they are continuing that trend by removing API that my Twitter client of choice, Tweetbot, relied upon.

Rob Johnson, head of product at Twitter, shared some of the reasoning in a thread and then ended asking this:

We’ve heard feedback () from our customers about the pain this causes. We’re committed to understanding why people hire 3rd party clients over our own apps, and we’re going to do better with communicating changes

I want my feed in chronological order, I want to use a desktop app (not the browser), I want my likes to be my likes, I want to utilize lists and searches.

I think what really gets to me is the head of product has a total of 5,000 tweets and follows close to 700 people. Just following that many means he has a whole different perspective on the platform than most of my friends that follow less than 200. I’ve noticed when I followed around 150 I could keep up with everything throughout the day, but now that I’ve doubled that number it’s just not possible.

At the end of the day, Tweetbot gives me a better Twitter experience than Twitter itself has ever been able to. I have to assume they are happy strangeling the competition to force everyone to either adapt to their ideas or leave the service.

Maybe it’s a great time to revisit Deep Work and quit Twitter altogether and revive that old blog you have laying around?

Embracing Remote by Working Outside

Even though I’ve worked remote for years I’ve always been a work from a desk kind of person. I liked having everything in a certain spot, a certain daily routine, and the comfort of the mundane.

This year I’ve been thinking about ways of changing this. I debated getting an office in town away from home or possibly renting a spot at a coworking place. Both of those adds a lot of expense and I didn’t want to spend that much only to not use it.

Yesterday I decided to try something a little different by just riding my bike to a local trail system, putting up my hammock, and working. During the summer UserScape, where I work, gives us summer hours which means half day Fridays and i knew four hours would be a perfect opportunity to try this idea out.

I woke up Friday morning and grabbed some coffee and breakfast and then hit the road. The trails are ten miles away and because I haven’t ridden on a road bicycle in years I wasn’t sure how long it would take to ride. I left home at 6:50am which gave me an hour for the ride and the setup. After all was done it was 7:52 so it was almost a complete hour. What I didn’t account for was how slow riding the trails would be.

As I fired up my phones hotspot and did the morning checkin everything seemed to run smoothly. I contribute to this to the area where I live which is outside of Charlotte NC but close enough to get a lot of the bigger city infrastructure.

The morning went great with the only annoyance being that I didn’t bring any food and that morning ride really made me hungry.

Riding to some remote place in my city and working from a hammock is definitely something I plan to continue doing. It was awesome being out in nature. I seen fish feeding, birds flying by, and even a deer.

If you work remote and get bored working from home or a coffee shop give this a try. The new style hammocks are amazingly comfortable and you can experience the tranquility of nature.

Travis Pastrana Makes All Three of Evel Knievel’s Historic Jumps

Last night in Las Vegas and live on the History channel Travis Pastrana landing all three of Evel Knievel’s historic jumps.

At the end of the day, Travis Pastrana made leaping over 52 cars, 16 buses and the notorious fountain at Caesars Palace on two wheels look easy. Even in 100-plus-degree weather. Even using a heavy, stiff, flat-track bike unlike anything the action-sports stunt icon is used to jumping with.

As I’ve mentioned before I used to race motocross as a kid and although I’m a little older than Travis we still attended a lot of the same races and he was always a super nice kid that would talk to anyone and had no fear.

I remember around 1995 or 1996 at Loretta Lynn’s all the kids would go to the creek and jump off this tree with a wooden platform. It was high enough where you needed to land in a pencil position so you didn’t smack the water. For Travis, I’m guessing 10 or 11 at the time, this wasn’t good enough and he climbed all the way to the top of the tree where the branches were swaying and then did a one and half out of the top.

This is just one story in the many of insane things I’ve seen him do and my short description doesn’t do it justice but I’ve always had mad respect for him.

Photo Gallery: Walking around USNWC

Every Thursday night the White Water Center in Charlotte NC has what they call River Jam. A different live band each week and lots of people just enjoying being outside and having fun. Last night I went and snapped a few pictures I wanted to share.

Kayakers about to slide into the water.
Dancing to the music
People dancing to the music
A group that just finished a technical section of rapids
A group hitting the rapids sideways
Kayaker going through some aggressive​ rapids.
Rope Bridge
A rope bridge with mountain biker on the trail

Mojave Desktop Backgrounds

Yesterday, Apple announced the new MacOS Mojave and it comes with an awesome day and night picture of the desert. If you’d like to use these now, a user on Reddit shared the source files.

Of course, this is just static images and Mojave will be able to automatically adjust the image based on the time of day. A feature I’m looking forward too.

Ditch the iPhone for a cellular Apple Watch?

I’ve seen some companies are now offering “dumb phones” which are basically cell phones that do two things, phone calls and texts. The idea is to break the habit of being always connected to the internet, games, social media, and anything else that strives for your attention.

The problem is, you still have to carry the thing around, and I think the cellular Apple Watch would be a good alternative to those. With a pair of Airpods and the watch, you’d be able to do almost everything. Make phone calls, text, play music, listen to podcasts. At least, in theory, I think this is possible.

The downside to this idea is Siri, and one example is that Apple refuses to let Siri play songs on Spotify. Of course, there are many other problems with Siri but that alone is enough to make the whole idea a deal breaker for me. Maybe Android watches have the solution?

I think it’s a neat thought experiment to think about ditching the cell phone and still remaining connected to what you need. I just don’t think the tech is there yet for me.