Use this: Irish Coast • Ocean Waves, Wind and Rain Noise Generator.
It’s fantastic. Perfect for sleep sounds, or to listen to while working.
A good list: 10 Rules for Appreciating Art by Sister Wendy Beckett (RIP), the Nun Who Unexpectedly Popularized Art History on TV | Open Culture.
Not just for people who know little about art. Thanks Sister Wendy: you are missed. As are you, Francis Bacon, the painter of the image above.
Thanks to the folks from Roam, you can do just that. It sounds appealing. To find out more, check out: Forget Coworking—These Coliving Spaces Let You Travel the World For $1,800 a Month – Dwell
Your home office may never get near to any of the ones in this piece,
25 Home Office Designs & Decorating Ideas — Dwell – Dwell, but it’s nice to dream and get inspiration, and that article can help there. The image above is one of the more modest ones. But hey, go check it out and steal some ideas.
This seems like a wonderful book, Small Pleasures Book | The School of Life.
It reminded me of small pleasures of my own, like listening to the rain while sitting on a porch, or driving at night listening to jazz, or having a good croissant and latte in a quiet spot.
I think I want to keep a list of such pleasures and make sure I have them constantly in my life. They are the things that make our lives bright and warm.
Not your average marathon, this. For example:
Marathons and footraces are a world of granola bars, blister care, and sugary packages of energy-giving goo. This classic French race through wine country has all that, as well as a party atmosphere and 23 stations that offer wine, cheese, oysters, and foie gras, often set out like a tasting at a picturesque winery. The tone is set the night before, when participants tend to complement the traditional carb-loading pasta dinner with healthy helpings of local wines. Each year’s race has a theme (think “Amusement Park” or “Tales and Legends”), so don’t be surprised to see a runner dressed as Robin Hood vomiting at mile five.
If this sounds like you kind of marathon, get more information here: Marathon du Médoc – Gastro Obscura
Here’s something to add to your bucket list: visit a Dark Sky Park. This is about how the Grand Canyon has become one: The Grand Canyon is now a Dark Sky Park.
In the article is a good slideshow with a list of other such parks. Well worth visiting.
I have always thought that myself. And now I find out that I am not alone. As this article below says, “Most people welcome long summer days. And then there are the haters, who loathe the unending light that doesn’t give way to night until it’s almost time for bed.” I would not say I am a hater; I’ve become reconciled to it. And early summer can be pleasant. But the most extreme days of summer are no more welcome to me than the extreme days of winter. Both extreme days are to be endured more than enjoyed.
If you too are not in love with summer, you might enjoy this: www.washingtonpost.com/lifestyle/style/summer-means-a-parade-of-long-sunny-days-and-its-actually-the-worst/2019/06/23/27868ac6-92a1-11e9-b570-6416efdc0803_story.html
I continue to be a big fan of the Apple Watch. For one, it allows me to put away my phone and still not miss notifications. It’s the remote control for your phone you didn’t think you need. Still I am glad for this, because I need to get more out of my watch: 20 Most-Wanted Apple Watch Tips and Tricks – Hongkiat.
If you are maxing out all the features of your watch, that’s great. Otherwise, take a peak at that link and get more out of it.
The pomodoro approach to work seems smart. You set a timer for 25 to focus on a task. When the timer goes off, you take a 5 minute break. Then you repeat this process.
When I first heard of it, I thought: what a great idea! I tried it a number of times and failed. The reason I failed, and why you may be failing, is that I cannot focus for 25 minutes. It’s sad, but true.
The simple trick that works for me is to adjust the times from 25:5 to 15:5. I find I can focus for 15, and a 5 minute break is just enough.
I find that even though I take more breaks, I also have more focus time throughout the day, which means I still benefit. Plus, once I get on a roll, I skip some of the breaks.
If you want to get on and stay on the pomodoro bandwagon, adjust your focus time until you find your sweet spot. Your overall productivity will go up, I’m sure.
According to this:
If you’re facing a dilemma, and can’t figure out whether to take the plunge, then all else being equal, you should.
Why? Partially because we tend to stick with the status quo, especially if all the options are bad. Also, because studies show that people that did take the plunge were happier than those that did not.
For more on this, see the Guardian article linked above.
Don’t believe it? Read this: I Built A Bot To Apply To Thousands Of Jobs At Once–Here’s What I Learned. Not just to see what not to do, but what you want to do instead.
If you would like to work from home all the time, then you owe it to yourself to go here: Remote Jobs: Developer, Design, Writing, Customer Support & More
Lots and lots of jobs you can apply for that let you work remotely. Worth a look!
(Image via pexels.com)
Apparently this one is: Bissell Zing Canister Bagless Vacuum, 2156A, Green: Amazon.ca: Home & Kitchen.
I saved this link in Pocket, but I don’t remember how I got there! But it’s supposedly good. If you are in need, consider this one.
Here are two good pieces full of advice for artists.
One big: Advice to Young Aspiring Artists from Patti Smith, David Byrne & Marina Abramović | Open Culture
One small: None of us know what will happen – Austin Kleon
Key quote from the Austin Kleon piece is this, from Laurie Anderson:
The world may end. You’re right. But that’s not a reason to be scared. None of us know what will happen. Don’t spend time worrying about it. Make the most beautiful thing you can. Try to do that every day. That’s it. You know? What are you working for, posterity? We don’t know if there is any posterity.
(Image from pexels.com)
An interesting critique of it here: Why falsificationism is false
Definitely yes. Here’s how two cities are doing it:
- New Orleans
It can be done. These cities are showing how it can be done. Other cities need to strive for similar or better results.
Arguably they are the ones in this article: I read the 8 best business books of all time—here’s what I learned. If you want to know what they are and get a synopsis, read that piece.
A gentle program to get you out of your rut in 30 days can be found here: NYT Programs – 30-Day Well Challenge.
Recommended especially for people who are a) in a rut b) overwhelmed with other things to do.
If you read articles like this, Why Homes in Major U.S. Cities Are Nearly Impossible To Afford – Curbed, it can be hard to believe than any city not on the decline can be affordable. But there are exceptions, and it is good to know about them and why they are. One such city is Vienna, and this piece has a good explanation on why it is.
If you are concerned about cities being affordable, I recommend the piece on Vienna. Affordable cities is going to be one of the big challenges of the 21st century. We need good ideas to deal with this.
(Image via pexels.com)
Reading this piece about how a $999 monitor stand is everything wrong with Apple today, and while my judgement isn’t that harsh, I agree that Apple has missed a step with such a stand. There is a premium that Apple can and does command for its products, but when they are so far outside the range of the market, they start looking ridiculous.
Is this iMac great? No doubt. Is the stand price ridiculous? Also no doubt. Do better, Apple.
I really liked a recent article about Ben Sisario, the New York Times reporter who covers the music industry. He is talking about what he uses to listen to music, and this quote jumped out at me, especially the part I put in bold.
(I) try to keep an eye on all the major platforms out there, which means regularly poking around on about a dozen apps. My go-to sources are Spotify, SoundCloud, Bandcamp and Mixcloud, which has excellent D.J.-style mixes and to me feels more human than most.
At home I have a Sonos Play:5 speaker, which plays streaming music and podcasts, and is a piece of cake to use. I also have Google Chromecast Audio, a little plug-in device (now discontinued) that allows me to send high-fidelity streams to my stereo. It sounds better that way, but it’s not nearly as easy to use as the Sonos.
To be honest, my preferred way to listen to music is on CD, as unfashionable as that might be. You push a button, the music plays, and then it’s over — no ads, no privacy terrors, no algorithms!
Like Ben, I started to listen to music on CDs again too. For a number of reasons:
- I have some great old CDs from labels like Deutsche Grammphon that I am never going to download again and which I don’t even want to listen to on Spotify.
- I find it satisfying to put on a CD, listen to it, and then it be over. I don’t want to listen to an infinite playlist all the time.
- I always worry that some day services like Spotify will simply trim their catalog and I will never be able to listen to that music easily again. For music I love, I want to own it outright.
- I worry about how what I listen to on Spotify is constantly fed into their analytic software – what people like to call their algorithm – to determine what I want to listen to. Some times I just want to listen to music in a different direction. I don’t want Spotify to start suggesting new music based on a whim.
- I don’t want Spotify or others to know everything about my listening choices. I think we all need a stealth mode for any services we use online.
I still love Spotify, but I don’t want to depend on Spotify to enjoy music.
That’s my two cents. For more on Ben, see: Why Play a Music CD? ‘No Ads, No Privacy Terrors, No Algorithms’ – The New York Times
If you want to understand the challenge of dealing with climate change, then read this: Climate change and the 75% problem | Bill Gates.
There are things you can do in your own day to day to reduce your contribution to climate change. But in the bigger picture, much larger changes have to happen. And soon. You can contribute there too, by supporting politicians and companies and other organizations that are working to make big positive changes.
You can’t do it alone, but every thing you do move us in the right direction. We are cutting out coal. We are getting energy efficient. We are eating more of the right things. Many many things are being done that help, and much more can be done to improve things. Keep up the good work, and work hard to avoid complacency and despair.
I love this piece: Chinese millennials are rejecting dull factory jobs — and transforming the economy – Los Angeles Times.
Why? Because it affirms my view that people are largely the same when it comes to certain demographics.
I say “largely” because there are differences. Chinese millennials will still have differences with millennials in Serbia or Canada or Kenya or Peru due to culture and geography. But there are many similarities. Going through that piece in the LA Times, I kept reading the quotes and thinking: that’s true for young people here too!
People ignore age demographics all the time, as if young people — not to mention older people — have different interests and drives in different eras and in different regions. Don’t be one of those people. 🙂
If you have forgotten about Mikhail Gorbachev and wondered what he is up to, you can find a rich source of information here: ‘Crucify me right here’ The post-presidential life of Mikhail Gorbachev — Meduza.
At 88 he is still alive and active. He’s outlived Reagan and Bush Sr and many other leaders of the era when the Soviet Union was collapsing. He’s led a remarkable life, one worth reading about.
(Photo: Mikhail Svetlov / Getty Images; linked to at the site)
This is a great read: The Widows of the Plaza Hotel – The New York Times.
If you love New York, hotels, stories of odd balls, and people sticking it to Donald Trump, you will want to read that story. I ate it up! 🙂
That photo above is just one of the many photos over at Via Colossal of Venice at night. Far removed from the tourist busy city of day. Well worth visiting Colossal to see the rest.
If you are struggling with adversity, then read this: Read This If You’re Going Through Adversity – Darius Foroux.
There are four rules in it:
- Do something good. By this, do something that makes you say, “I love life”.
- Ask for help. You know you need help when you are getting to the stage it all becomes “too much”.
- Write down your biggest fear. Get it out of your head and on paper. Write about it. You will be surprised how it shrinks on paper.
- Create a plan. It doesn’t have to be elaborate. It can be: I will do A and then based on that I will do either B or C. There! You have a plan to deal with things.
- Shorten the timelines. This is one I am adding. Often when we think of adversity we imagine it never ending. But it will. Don’t believe me? Go over past adversity. Even long running adversity. It always ends. It ends sooner than we think. This doesn’t mean you should passively wait it out. Write down how long you think this adversity will end, then make a plan, ask for help, tackle your fears and do something good.
Good luck. Need more help? Read the article linked above. And congrats. You were likely facing adversity when you searched out and read this, and you decided you needed to get help. You’re already on your way to doing something about it. Well done!
I highly recommend you use this extension: Momentum.
It provides a beautiful photo, a small todo list, an inspirational message, the weather, the time….everything you want in a minimal desktop.
Remember: There is Always a Plan B.
Always. Don’t believe me? Take a read.
I’m often disappointed by lists of software that supposedly help me work better. This is not one of those lists. I think the tools here are really great, and anyone with a Mac that works remotely should definitely check out this: These Are the 8 Best MacOS Apps for Working Remotely | Inc.com
According to this, no. What do you need? Like somewhere in the range of 4000-7500. Key quot:
… women who took 4,400 steps per day, on average, were about 40 percent less likely to die during the follow-up period of about four years compared with women who took 2,700 steps. The findings were published Wednesday in JAMA Internal Medicine.
Another surprise: The benefits of walking maxed out at about 7,500 steps. In other words, women who walked more than 7,500 steps per day saw no additional boost in longevity.
Walking is great exercise. But if you are unable to get in your 10,000 steps one day, don’t fret.
One thing that struck me about the new Mac Pro is that Apple has finally gotten to do design again for a hardware. Most of their products these days are as minimal as can be when it comes to design. With the Mac Pro, at least, they can apply new design ideas to their product. I like it, even if it is compared to a cheese grater. But I liked the previous model, even though it was compared to a garbage can.
For more on the device, see: Apple announces all-new redesigned Mac Pro, starting at $5,999 – The Verge