October 2021 Entries

Sunday, 31st October, 2021

A 5.7”, 7 colour e-ink display! Wow, that is nice. A great add to my “projects that sound awesome but I’ll never do” pile.


Happy Hallowe’en!

That’s a lot of checkboxes

If I can jailbreak my kindle, this replacement OS/interface looks to be just what I need to sync highlights automatically. Plus other features.

I shouldn’t read non-fiction in bed before going to sleep. I read things and think this is amazing and I should do something about this. Maybe I highlight it on the kindle. Then I go to sleep and wake up and completely forget about it all. I don’t actually even get the benefits of kindle highlights as I don’t often buy books from Amazon. I buy them elsewhere (or they’re free) and I load them onto the kindle. So the highlights just sit in the text file on the device. Of course I could connect it to the computer, download the file and parse it (there’s probably many scripts online to do this for me already). THEN I could benefit from it. This is never going to happen. If I could ssh or remotely connect to the kindle then I could sync stuff. Perhaps that’s worth some research. Or maybe a different ebook reader is for me. OR maybe I should read non-fiction at another time, but then that conflicts with other stuff I do (like what? What do you do? Watch YouTube videos and browse used cameras+lenses that I don’t need).

The end of daylight savings. Where people with young kids get up at 5am. It’s still the “same time” as yesterday but when the clock says 5 it feels a lot earlier.

Saturday, 30th October, 2021

What’s Shakira’s favourite web framework? Django Waka waka, eh eh

Friday, 29th October, 2021

Everything Github Actions

After listening to a python podcast for years, I thought I should branch out and have just started listening to this javascript podcast. I started with this episode about automating everything using node.js. I’d never even consider that it would be possible but it’s intriguing.

The Voigtlander Heliar Classic 50mm f/3.5 VM looks like a nice lens…

But in all seriousness, I’m not buying a new computer for Windows 11. Although I do *wantto buy a new computer. In fact I find it quite curious that I, as a computer aficionado, does actually only have pretty old computers. There’s a few of them about but the youngest is probably the T450s ThinkPad with 5th gen intel. Windows 11 might run on it, but it’s happily running GNU+Linux and my daughter uses it for her school work and so I don’t have to worry about it. The others are 3rd and 4th gen intel cpus. For the past 5-6 years I’ve been “buying a new computer”. The problem is nothing seems right, and I don’t want to buy something that I’ll be annoyed with. It is a little bit of *don’t let perfect is the enemy of goodbut my current computer isn’t actually that slow - they are probably “slow” (benchmarks puts the new Ryzens about 3x the multithreaded performance) but nothing that has become annoying. I suspect if I used a newer computer I’d notice the difference but right now I’m ignorant to it. I used to upgrade my computer frequently, I feel like back (~2000s) then it made a noticeable difference. I also used to play a lot of computer games and so a newer graphics card was always on the menu. I still play a few games but it’s getting less and less often. I’m to the point that I should just not bother with a “gaming” computer as all that happens is I buy a game and then never play it. I like the idea of computer games but I just have no interest anymore. Every so often a few friends will get something and we’ll play it together. That is a lot of fun but mostly as it’s us all chatting together. Sometimes I think about going Apple, although the SSD tax is eye watering, and then I think about all Linux (and very occasionally some maddness over OpenBSD), or just get a laptop and be done with all desktops and computers and make the office a reading and writing room. I can’t quite go without any computer or just iPad but sometimes I feel like the computer takes over too much of my life. But then I’m conflicted as I want to learn programming stuff…so yeah. I’ll just continue window shopping.

What’s a meta? Nothing, why what’s the meta with you?


This PiBox looks awesome, and that tiny screen is so cute 🤩 [Jeff does a video on it](https://youtu.be/YtdVotS3018).

The compute module 4 has opened up so many options for tiny NASs. The RPi 4 is decent, and think it would be fine for media transcoding - which is my most demanding task. I’d like to replace my current server with a small, SSD only one. Maybe the PI is the answer. Although probably a refurb Lenovo or Dell with a SATA riser and a bunch of SSDs just kicking about inside would be a lot faster, less ARM hassle and maybe even cheaper.

Thursday, 28th October, 2021

Phil buys some nice gear! 🤑

Get your REALMS in the latest auction! Website seems very buggy at the moment, so maybe worth waiting a day or two…I do like the art style and maybe now the “game” will actually have something to do.

Been on another Dave’s software rabbit trail. Ended up on this blog post from 2000 which is a series of good questions to ask yourself if you’re in the pursuit of FIRE. (Surely everyone is once they know what it is?). I liked it.

I like the look of those opml pages that Dave writes his docs in, and I was trying to find out how to do it. I managed to find it and here’s my own notes with links. I’d quite like to set this up on my own domain for publishing outlines. I think I just setup page park and point it at the opml and it renders it fine? Not quite sure, so I’ll mess about with it tonight and see.

For example this is a nice living space computer.

Running GNU+Linux on a Chromebook looks a lot easier these days than it used to be. Given all I use are web apps, maybe a Chromebook would be a nice tool.

Wednesday, 27th October, 2021

Somewhere along the line, I’ve lost the little arrows and the ability to expand or collapse items on my blog… 🤔

Large Format Photography. Source.

Ugh, I’m so behind on things…it’s been about 6 weeks since I updated my hledger journal, and 3 months since I added any photos to my family photo website. One is certainly a lot more interesting than the other.

The Bonnie Banks of Loch Lomond 🎵

I have 31 pages left in my Leuchtturm1917 notebook. Last week I used 9 pages, this week so far I’m on page 4. At best I can scrape my way to the start of December but not sure I’ll make it to Christmas. Would be nice to end the year in this notebook. Not that I ever go back and look in them, they sit on my desk but I start to forget what was in it and so don’t look. I always start off trying to use the index but often there are 30 page gaps or I just stop. I suppose I’m not making useful entries? I always want to be more organised but find I just get away with remembering things, googling, searching old emails, or flicking back though my current notebook. I have a very small tiddlywiki for work which does work well…when I remember to update it. Yesterday I was all about drummer for work but I’m not sure the tool is the issue. Thinking about an e-ink notebook is an (other vain?) attempt at trying to be more organised. The supernote one has options for tags and table of contents or something, but that’ll still rely on me using them when I write stuff down.

Curly brackets { and } are also known as “curly braces” or simply “braces” (UK and US), “definite brackets”, “swirly brackets”, “birdie brackets”, “French brackets”, “Scottish brackets”, “squirrelly brackets”, “gullwings”, “seagulls”, “squiggly brackets”, “twirly brackets”, “Tuborg brackets” (DK), “accolades” (NL), “pointy brackets”, “fancy brackets”, “M Braces”, “moustache brackets”, “squiggly parentheses”, or “flower brackets” (India). 😅

I also like octothorpes ### Saw this nice looking recipe markup language, and remembered how I want to put all of Granny’s index card recipes onto the computer. Not sure this is what I want though, as I’d rather have a website that everyone can access. Think I have a few projects starred on Github, even Tiddlywiki would work for it, but the bulk of the work is transcribing the index cards into text. Would be nice to have them as plain text files that software can use to generate a site vs. a database.

Tuesday, 26th October, 2021

Been thinking about how I can get data into Drummer, particularly data I write on my phone as Drummer on my phone is..unpleasant. However there are other good apps, like dynalist and Zavala, for writing on phone. I don’t think there’s a way to push data into Drummer, unless the token in the download files button works to upload, but I could use the schedule to load a file from somewhere. The only caveat is that it has to be publicly available. OR I just import it manually when I have something to add. But I’d still like the ability to push data in for future ideas.

Why will none of our iPads update to iPadOS 15…

I keep a private tiddlywiki for work, but I’m considering a private outline in Drummer. I think having everything viewable in a single page would be more useful than a wiki. Something like Notion or Airtable might be good for work but they’re strict about posting information outside work network and I also can’t be bothered with all the faff of those tools. One big list is my preferred option, as it usually just ends up being weekly summaries or results. The big ‘+’ button makes it nice to add a day.

Jack has wanted an improvement to downloading his drummer outlines, and I would like it too if I started using private outlines more. I’d noticed the download link had a unique URL which meant I could likely access it directly outside of Drummer. I decided this lunchtime to have a little look and it does work. Here’s my small python example but it’ll work with other languages too. Update: everyone else in the thread have posted great alternatives too. There’s one for everybody from Apple’s Siri, to serverless Zapier to unix server cron 🤩

Monday, 25th October, 2021

So Obsidian has released mobile apps now. For free. You can use iCloud sync or pay for their sync or maybe git via Working Copy. A quick test of it (on iPad) and the mobile app is very impressive, looks to have most, if not all, the features of the desktop app. Has a nice toolbar that you can customise, gestures to open command palette. I think I like it more than the desktop app! If you just use Apple products, it’s a pretty decent setup. If you paid for Publish it would make for a great experience. I just don’t like the desktop app nor want to pay $192 / year for it. Probably if I looked someone has made a static html generator using your Obsidian notes. e.g. 1, 2

I’ve come back to thinking I want a reMarkable (or similar) tablet again. I love paper notebooks to flick back through for some information but once I move to a new book this is impossible. Also like the idea of annotating/note taking from a book at the same time. Have to actually research how good it really is first. Seems Supernote might be better. Will take this research line over to the wiki.

Whilst looking up the name of the next Stormlight Archivesbook to read, I found out about another epic fantasy series, Realm of the Elderlingsby Robin Hodd.

Ordered a copy (digital and physical) of Derek Siver’s new book “How to Live”. It sounded very interesting and thought provoking. Going to give the physical copy to my sister.

Sunday, 24th October, 2021

Phil could rearrange his bookmarks and spell…BARF 🤣

2 hours, 38 minutes, 54 seconds doesn’t seem too bad for getting going with doom-emacs…🤔

Do you think Dave would put this in Drummer?

No-one knows what an outliner is.

When I’m away, I’m always so good at updating our family journal in DayOne. It’s because I’m not going on my (non-Apple) computer and instead using my iPad or phone so the app is right there. I want to print out our journal from America I kept in it. Only did about 2 years but would be nice to have. Something happened to some of the photos - probably the transition between old and new DayOne apps - but I did take a backup ages ago so they’re on my computer. I just need to go through each one and find the right day…I do have the json or whatever from the export so hopefully the photos are referenced in that and then I can at least skip straight to the right day. Not sure how to do this on my iPad…perhaps a combo of looking up the day on the computer from the journal text and then just adding the picture in the app on iPad. It’s a bit of a chore but would make a good christmas present for my wife. I told myself it would be a good anniversary present but too late for that now. I think DayOne books are from USA, so really need to order it in next couple of weeks. Unless I export pdf and have it printed locally…anyway need to do the photos. I’m also wondering if I should (or need to) edit the text, this will then take a lot longer.

REALM parcels go up for sale this week on Aavegotchi. This should start to make the game an actual game with things to do. At least I’m hopeful of that. Be interesting to see what the land parcels go for. I’ll probably try and get a small. These things it’s best not to convert what you spend into £/$ and keep it as magic internet beans money.

Film ISO fails

* The fun of film is fixing what you get for the next 24/36 shots. I suppose midway rewinds are possible but that’s just asking for trouble. The big choice is colour or black and white and then what ISO. There are other choices too but these are the main ones for me. ISO 400 is generally a good one for me as it let’s me just get away with f/1.4-f/2 with 1/60s indoors and outdoors it’s fine on overcast days. If it’s sunny then it would be nice to make use of (generally) finer grained ISO 200 or ISO 100 films. Gives the photos a smooth, crisp look. The problem is you don’t always know what you’re going to be shooting, how many frames you’ll use and how reliable the weather forecast is. A professional will mitigate these issues with multiple bodies or backs and probably take more photos than I would. This weekend was a particularly bad *series of unfortunate events*, and I was all over the place.
* I’ve been wanting to try some different black and white stocks, and had some cheap Kentmere 400. I’d also brought some Kodak ColorPlus (again cheap!) which is ISO 200. The B&W was loaded first before we left and it was a beautifully sunny day. I used a whole roll without resorting to pointless shots, which is always nice, and didn’t bother loading another as we were about to leave. To be organised, I decided to load the ISO 200 colour film that night ready for the next day. Oh, how grey and dull and dark is was, even outside! Trying to take pictures at 1/50s f/1.4, or trying 1/30s knowing that there’s going to be movement. Clearly a flash or other light source would be helpful but I don’t have one that works with my film camera. Down at f/1.4 is also pushing my focusing when everyone is running around. Oh how I wished I’d waited until the morning to load the film…there’s a lesson for me…I could’ve pushed the film but I’m not confident cheap ColorPlus would handle that very well. I managed to use up the roll, maybe something can be salvaged from it.

* So back to another roll of Kentmere for the next day. It was more mixed in weather, plus I knew I’d be taking some photos inside. I’d also brought my digital camera and it’s easy to forget that it can easily push ISO 6,400 before it looks bad and in B&W ISO 12,800 even looks nice. Around the house it was 2500-3000 ish. So when I switch back to ISO 400, I realise this is still going to be tricky. So I decided I’ll meter it for ISO **1600**! +2 stops. Am I mad? The cheap stock pushed two stops?! Only one way to find out…We shall see how that goes. However, at 1600 I now have plenty of latitude and can start closing that aperature down a bit. So everything’s great…

lochlomond * We then decide to go out to Loch Lomond and the clouds part and the sun comes streaming out. Which is lovely for the kids and everyone to enjoy it, but for me I’m now at f/16 and topping out on shutter speed on my camera! The scenery is of course beautiful and the autumn colours aren’t quite the same in black and white! Oh well!

* On my digital camera, I was trying out some new fujifilm simulation settings - trying to get to just one colour and one black and white that I use 99% of the time to make it easier to decide - and the B&W one is way too bright on the highlights. Maybe I could’ve turned the exposure compensation down but it was only +1/3 or +2/3 at most. So now I either accept or delete a lot of those photos, or go and reprocess the raws.

Saturday, 23rd October, 2021

Ah, so Concord is what all this lovely outliner JavaScript websites are built on. Might be fun to play with.


Ready for the weekend

A 2017 post about Magit is top of hacker news today!

Friday, 22nd October, 2021

I’ve been very into the Stormlight archives by Brandon Sanderson. So much so that I’ve been up to 1am every night reading it!

Developer tablets? Interesting…

Every year I think about doing NaNoWrite but always do nothing. This year I’m “too late to start thinking about it”…What I should do is just write crap for month because it’s better than doing nothing. I get too bogged down in process and not action.

All this messing about with Fuji film simulations is another reason why I appreciate film. There’s no menu or settings, just lens, film, aperture and shutter. I think ColorPlus has a nicer case than Gold.

Thursday, 21st October, 2021

For a blast from the past have a look at your Blogger Blogs I follow

The new Voigtländer 90mm APO f/2.8 is now available to pre-order…oh dear…It’s 250g and 60mm long.

@Phil, we were one step away from finding your house and standing over you until you made a Drummer blog :) Welcome! It took me a few days to figure it out, and I still use my Tiddlywiki, and it’s somewhat random what goes where, but the wiki tends to be more chatty, least at the moment. I’m intrigued you find Drummer easier to use than Tiddlywiki on the phone. I can’t see anything when I open drummer on my phone, I turn it landscape but it’s all overflowing, but TW fits to the screen.

Took the boys for the their haircuts. The barber was a very strict Italian man who kept them sitting up straight the whole time. I enjoyed it.


Getting in the Hallowe’en mood with pumpkins, biscuits and decorations.

Wednesday, 20th October, 2021

Had to cut the lawn, although it’s been raining for weeks and it’s still wet, but I did it anyway. I usually listen to talkpython.fm podcast but the most recent ones looked boring from my perspective. So I thought I’d search for Dave Winer. I’d not really heard of him until I somehow got to know about Drummer (most likely via Jack). I found this one from Nov 2020. It’s fascinating to listen to the early days of the internet, and generally any of Dave’s stories from the early days of tech and silicon valley (including meeting with Steve Jobs, Bill Gates and others back in the early days). It was also during peak COVID lockdown.

Tuesday, 19th October, 2021

Fuji Film Simulations

I think it’s time I worked out my own ones. It’s only been 4 years of using Fuji and I’m yet to do it. Mostly just taken ones from online, such as Fujix weekly’s, or other random places. Right now I have two that I use a lot, and two others that I occasionally use but then like them when I remember. The other 3 are just entries I have to jog over to get to what I want. I should also order them in how I want to use them. E.g. top is favourite colour, then favourite B&W, and last another favourite (as my custom button means I can press it then up or down to get to another custom settings).

The tethered FujiFilm X raw studio should be useful for this but requiring tethering is a bit of a pain. Last time I tried it got upset and stopped working or something equally frustrating. It does help me get the image on the big screen so I can see if Shadows needs another -1 or whatever.

Classic chrome is generally my favourite colour simulation, although sometimes it’s a little grungy for family photos. The classic neg in the newer camera models looks a bit nicer but I’m not buying a newer model for a film simulation. The newer models do offer more customisation though…I’ll wait for the X-T5/6 to be released then maybe it’ll be time to get the X-T3 (assuming it has what I’m looking for). Acros is by far my favourite black and white.

Trying out 27mm (eq.)

The lens focuses fast enough for me and my kids. Yes, it’s not the fastest lens but I’m not getting annoyed with it. It is my first day with it but enjoying it inside and outside.

Wondering if I should subscribe to smugmug or flickr or none…I wish Apple did more with Photostream web albums.

Film data imprinting

Several cameras offer the ability to imprint data on the film, such as time, date, but more interestingly is shutter speed and aperture. Most do it via a special back. I don’t want it on the photo (and I don’t want date/time) but between them.

The tricky part is finding available backs.

Minolta Dynax/Maxxum 7 has a data recorder on the camera. So no imprinting but saved for later retrieval via the menus. I guess that’s something, but I’d have to remember to write it out. Fortunately it saves 7 films so in my typical batch of 3-4 for development should be fine.

Gary helps explain why I want a 7.

I never use twitter (I did back in 2010 or something but then deleted my account after a few years). Sometimes I think I’m missing out but I don’t care.

Monday, 18th October, 2021

Analogue WonderLab

* I ordered 2x B&W film development and scanning from [Analogue Wonderland](https://analoguewonderland.co.uk/collections/film-developing). They had a 20% off promo that ended last night. Even with the promo filmdev is cheaper for C-41.

* If I had my own scanner then it might be worthwhile as you can do £6 development then scan myself, and that includes postage.

* Eventually I’ll develop my own black and white. Not sure about colour.

* Also started browsing black and white film stocks….there’s quite a lot which could be fun.

Sometimes I think about going all in with Apple: Macs, iPads, iCloud, Watch, Apple One subscription, AppleTV. Replace everything in the house with Apple. Think it would all work well but a lot of eggs in one very expensive basket.

I actual lol’d

Still not sure where this site fits. It definitely doesn’t take over Tiddlywiki. It might take over my blog, but it’s a different type of blogging. It’s more like the short posts I do on the blog vs. the long ones. However, this blog would most likely be much more active that my current one. I could also capture the long posts that I want categorised in the wiki. OR I could keep both TW and the blog and add this as another blogging site. I’m thinking as my home domain, alexjj.com. That way I can still link to the blog for longer stuff I want to add (which I should also just make copies of in the wiki - or in fact draft them in the wiki) and then have the wiki for random gibbering, plus wiki stuff and then this as a slightly more refined blog/home page. I might tweak the index.html to have “an about” at the top. It’s quite the all-in mode but this is a much better static gen site than I used to have and whilst I do like my novelty css alexjj.com landing page, it’s a little pointless. hmm have to think about it some more.

No new mac mini. Possibly good for me as, if I do buy one, I’ll find a decent deal on the existing….unless I want 16GB RAM…

Sunday, 17th October, 2021

Decided (for now) instead of a GRiii(x), I should get a 18mm lens for Fuji. The f/1.4 is nice but pricey and big, so sprung for the older 18mm f/2. It’s tiny, light and has a cool square metal lens hood (that makes your photos look better). It gets a lot of hate online but most likely (a) it’s fine, (b) I won’t be able to tell. It’ll be my Q2 😅

Fuji Portrait Lens

* I’m interested in also getting the 60mm f/2.4 macro lens too. Another (according to the internet) a runt of the Fuji litter. I don’t have anything fast in the range 50-90mm on APS-C. The macro feature tempts me for film scanning. The alternatives are the 50mm f/2, nice little lens, 56mm f/1.2, the classic portrait lens and that f/1.2 but big, the 90mm f/2, appears to be the “best” lens ever but even bigger, then 80mm macro, supposedly the best macro but also massive.

    * Oh and the 50mm f/1.0 🤑

* Whilst I want the 56mm, I’m not sure I’d really use it that much, and probably better getting the 50mm f/2 for speed, weight and WR. Of course the 56mm is supposed to have *character*. The 60mm is virtually same weight as 50mm f/2 and will have more compression with a bit longer plus, again, the macro function.

It was funny reading Dave describe his perfect app that he wants. I feel like I’m pretty much there with Tiddlywiki hosted on github pages (or a self hosted nodejs would work). It’s not a native app, it’s a web app but it works perfectly on phone and tablet.

The Ricoh GR iii is £750 new. GRiiix is £900 new. £150 for 40mm vs 28mm.

  • Drummer Pros

    • This site is much more convenient for entering text throughout the day, and also just for general rearrangement of text. Images are a little more time consuming to setup, bit like how TW was before that uploader plugin, so not a huge deal. Plus most of the time I don’t bother with images. Although I do like the little right aligned ones people drop in.

    • It’s nice having other outliner files just here for private or draft stuff too. Or even just commenting out sections for later if I don’t finish them in time.

      • There’s probably a lot more to the “environment” that I’ve not realised yet.
    • When I was looking for a static generator and a web based editor system, this is what I was looking for.

    • I like the linklog, doesn’t need explanation.

  • Tiddlywiki Pros

    • Seamless transition between journal entries and a wiki.

      • There’s more scope to join things together over time
    • Search built in on the website

      • Drummer’s search is on the editor not the website.
    • Entirely self-hosted and git managed

    • Mature, and big community with lots of support/plugins etc.

      • Not that I use many but things like uploader plugin are community developed
    • The text editing is more straightforward, but maybe I’ve just not got used to drummer yet.

    • I quite like a tiddler a day, although outliner mode of drummer means I can close off days/months easily.

    • I can use it quite easily on my phone. Drummer is not great on my phone.

  • Conclusion

    • I’m not sure today. It can’t replace the wiki but how should I use them together. Duplicate info? TW is just for me and drummer is for the world (so more polished?) Drummer could take the place of my blog, and maybe that’s the best thing.

    • So then where should it sit in my the domain structure?

Decisions on web logging

* [Jack](https://rudimentarylathe.org/2021/10/17.html#a101131) - I think the ordering during a day only matters if you update yourself. e.g. trying to fix x at 10am. 6 hours later “I found the solution”. Then in time order makes more sense. Of course with an outliner style (vs. TW) you can always just do a new level underneath. Personally speaking, I like the idea of it being in the order of the day for when I go back and look at it and remember that day. I suppose it’s easy to do with just reordering levels.

* Writing this makes me wonder if a “conversation” section of the day makes sense - bit like how you started tagging things with conversation.

Saturday, 16th October, 2021

Useful notes if you want to get started in drummer

back home