January Badges

January is a big month for winning fake awards from my Apple Watch. On deck for this month:

  • Perfect Week (x4) – close your activity rings every day for a week
  • Ring in the New Year Challenge – at least one Perfect Week in January
  • January Challenge – burn 16,830 active calories this month
  • Perfect Month – close your rings every day for a month
  • Longest Move Streak – my previous longest streak is 36 days, which I could break on January 31 if I also complete the Perfect Month challenge

It’s going to take a lot of work, but I’m going to try to complete all 8 of these goals this month. I’ve already gotten 2, so I’m off to a good start, and I haven’t missed a day yet.

The personal monthly challenges in watchOS 4 managed to get me motivated again. I’ve completed all of them since last October. Sure, it’s just a silly picture of a fake badge on a screen, but it works for my dumb brain. Whatever algorithms they’re using to automatically gin up plans that push you to work just a little bit harder seem to be pretty good. Really enjoying that feature so far.

A letter about Google AMP

A message from the open web to Google:

AMP keeps users within Google’s domain and diverts traffic away from other websites for the benefit of Google.

This isn’t new. Back in the day, we used to call this “content framing,” and it was A Thing You Are Not Supposed To Do. And you still shouldn’t. Shame on Google.

The Air Porter from Waterfield Designs

Joe Cieplinski wrote an incredibly detailed review of the new Air Porter bag from Waterfield.

Waterfield never fails to sweat the details on design. The Air Porter is no exception. Waterfield’s usual quality is evident everywhere when I look at this bag. The stitching is clean. The materials are of quality and free from defect. You even get a nice personal note in the box from the people who made your bag. This all adds up to a customer experience that is second to none. And no matter how many times I’ve ordered products from this company, that has never failed to be the case.

I’ve always considered Waterfield to be the Apple of bag design. Over the last fifteen years or so, I’ve ordered at least a dozen products from them, and I’ve always been beyond satisfied with the bags, Waterfield’s attention to detail, and their customer service. Just a great company.

The Trouble With Twitter

Nazis, Trump, divisive politics, abuse of women and people of color, and the people running the service don’t care about any of it. I want to leave Twitter and never look back. So, why haven’t I?

  1. I met some of my best friends on Twitter. What would my life look like without them? What new friendships would I miss out on if I weren’t there?
  2. I met some of my clients on Twitter. They helped me launch my business. Without them, where would I be? What awesome clients might I miss out on in the future if I left Twitter?
  3. When we sign off on our podcast, we list our Twitter handles. Never mind that we haven’t made a new episode in a while. What if I want to do a new podcast? It’s typical to tell people to contact you via Twitter. And if not Twitter, where?

These things bring me back every time. It’s the what-ifs. Twitter has altered my life in big and small ways. It’s a cesspool now, though. I’m not sure how to reconcile the positive with the negative.

I’ve quit the service numerous times only to come back. But each time I quit, I stay away a little longer than I did the last time. I’m currently on hiatus again, and I really don’t want to go back.

But, more than the what-ifs, I usually return because I miss my friends’ voices. They don’t congregate anywhere else. Leaving Twitter means leaving them. It means isolation. I’ve not even been away a week, and I already miss my friends.

I don’t miss the constant exposure to the ills of the world, though, or the rampant negativity, the trolling, the abuse. I think we could all do with a lot less of that. Why would anyone choose to make that part of their daily life?

We need an alternative to Twitter. I don’t know what that looks like, but I have a feeling it’ll involve tight control of micro-communities where users have the ability to ban people for bad behavior. Whatever it is, I hope it surfaces soon and gets enough traction to pull my friends (and some third-party app developers) away from Twitter for good.