The Reading List is a round-up of interesting blog posts and articles I’ve recently read, curated and posted every couple of days.
Almost every time I’ve talked to a reporter has gone this way: they had already decided the narrative beforehand. I’m never being asked for information — I’m being used for quotes to back up their predetermined story, regardless of whether it’s true. (Consider this when you read the news.) Misquotes usually aren’t mistakes — they’re edited, consciously or not, to say what the reporter needs them to say.
Talking to reporters is like talking to the police: ideally, don’t. You have little to gain and a lot to lose, their incentives often conflict with yours, and they have all of the power.
A good anecdote (which is true, in my experience) from Marco Arment in his look at the narrative that
podcasts are suddenly “back”. The Reading List is a round-up of interesting blog posts and articles I’ve recently read, curated and posted every couple of days. The Reading List is a round-up of interesting blog posts and articles I’ve recently read, curated and posted every couple of days.
Andy Baio on short-form blogging, in
the post which inspired the “rules” from Gina, which I linked to earlier:
In the early days of Waxy.org, before I launched the linkblog, I used to blog short posts
constantly. Multiple times a day. Twitter and Waxy Links cannibalized all the smaller posts, and as my reach grew, I started reserving blogging for more “serious” stuff — mostly longer-form research and investigative writing.
fuck that. I miss the casual spontaneity of it all, and since I’m pretty sure hardly anybody’s reading my site again after the death of Google Reader, the pressure’s off.
The spontaneity is something I miss. Somewhere along the years (probably when the “pro-blogger” thing started to get attention), blogging transformed from a fun thing people did on the web, to Serious Business.
Gina Trapini gives
a few ideas about short-form blogging, for when Twitter is too short, and a full article is too long (such as on Medium). Her new “rules” are all things I’ve mulled over. In particular, this item from her list is one resonates with me a lot: Negotiate a comfort zone on two axes: personal and public, tech and everything else (feminism, musical theater, MMA, parenting, etc). 2001-era Scribbling.net was too personal, Lifehacker/Smarterware too tech. There’s something in the middle.
This blog tends to go quieter when I’m struggling to balance writing between personal and public, or when the immediacy of
Twitter overwhelms the need to say something. The number of times I’ve bent over backwards to get a thought into 140 characters is ridiculous. Not everything belongs on the blog, but probably more does than I’ve been writing.
Space Hulk is one of my all-time favourite games. It’s one of the best rule sets ever written by Games Workshop. It’s been out of print for a few years now, but it looks like it’s being brought back for a limited-run re-release.
Rumours have been swirling for a few days now, and this morning Games Workshop put up a teaser video on
their White Dwarf Daily blog. VIDEO
It’s the standard, ropey, low-budget GW affair, simply panning across a piece of artwork depicting a Space Marine being fitted into Terminator armour. But at roughly 31 seconds in, for a few fractions of a second, another picture flashes up, showing a Terminator fighting a Genestealer – the classic badguys in Space Hulk.
So it looks like Space Hulk is on its way back. While I’m very happy, my wallet is off crying in the corner! [ UPDATE 09:31]
Matt on Twitter for sending me this other still from ~14 seconds in, which I initially missed:
My blog’s older than Twitter and Facebook, and it will outlive them. It has seen Flickr explode and then fade. It’s seen Google Wave and Google Reader come and go, and it’ll still be here as Google Plus fades. When Medium and Tumblr are gone, my blog will be here.
The things that will last on the internet are not owned. Plain old websites, blogs, RSS, irc, email.
Brent Simmons, commenting on “Community Services”.
These days I use Social Media more than I write in this blog, though it wasn’t always that way. Mostly that comes down expediency – it’s quicker to share a trivial thought or link on
Twitter than write a post about it. Social Media, to get all Silicon Valley on you, is for ephemeral sharing. I don’t expect any of it to last, or be noticed beyond the <20 seconds it appears at the top of someone’s “feed.” It’s fleeting, and I think of it as such.
If I want to record something more substantial, or which will last, I use this blog. Maybe not as often as I should, and sometimes I’ve not cared for backing up
the archives as much as I should have . But the blog has endured anyway. 1
Derek Bateman shines the spotlight on how good Commonwealth Games being held in Glasgow is for Scotland, and then closes out with an evisceration of Alistair Darling.
Comfortable with that, you Labour voters who read here but have no critique of your own? Want to get in touch and applaud Darling’s Blairesque crawling after business bucks? Think he’s entitled do you? Think it’s morally acceptable for a ‘Socialist’ to trouser vast sums when his constituents go hungry, lose their jobs and their homes? Can’t see how your Labour champion is just another self-seeking Tory loaded with cash, oblivious to working class needs and working hand-in-glove with UKIP and the BNP? Is that why you joined Labour? Darling is Cameron’s proxy – do any of you disagree – and will fight working class Scots to the death for his right to make money and stay in the British elite.
Derek Bateman: We Are World Class
A wonderful piece by Peter Arnott –
100 Days: Who Are The Scots?
“But what guarantee is there that any of that would be better with independence?” is the question No voters ask.
And Yes voters should answer: “WE are the guarantee. YOU are the guarantee. If, WE, the Scottish electorate elected then re-elected a government that did this to our people, then hell mend us. But do you really think we would do that? The point is not WHAT we would choose, but the fact that WE would have the choice. And if it we found that a government wasn’t to our choice any more, we could vote against the cruelty and incompetence and hatred were doing all this to us…and, unlike now, it would make a difference. It would matter what we did and what we chose. The government would actually change. Right now, we can’t do anything except complain about it in the pub. We want to make sure that our opinions count. We want to make sure that YOUR opinions count. Come with us!”
Overcast by Marco Arment has launched today. ( finally, some of you might be saying)
I downloaded it on my way home, and haven’t had a chance to try out any of the more interesting features, such as “Smart Speed” yet. However, with just a quick tap-through I’ve seen a few touches which suggest it’s a very well-crafted app. I’m not convinced about the use of a non-“standard” font for the UI though, but that’s just my preference.
Despite being around on the web when podcasting first came about (waaay before Odeo, for example) I never really got into podcasts in the same way a lot of other people did. I’ve started listening to a couple recently – and I’m always on the look out for more – and as I knew Overcast was “Coming Soon™” I stuck with Apple’s really very mediocre Podcast app. I’ll be interested to see if a better “podcatcher” helps me get into more podcasts over time.
You can read Marco’s write up of the release
over on his blog.
Deadspin’s great series “
Dead Wrestler of the Week” has been around for a while, but I only started reading through them recently. The premise is simple; a look at the colourful lives and legacies – the legends, if you will – of a dead professional wrestler. There’s a whole bunch of them, all very much worth a read, but for me my favourites are the articles on Owen Hart, and Chris Beniot. Both of these guys were among my favourites at the time of their deaths; both their deaths were tragic, in very, very different ways; and both deaths had profound effects on the industry in their aftermaths, something the articles dissect and analyse brilliantly.
I just caught up with Game of Thrones season 3 (because, y’know…
it happened), so I decided to post up various thoughts about the the show. Note: I haven’t watched season 2 at all… I have it on Blu-Ray, but haven’t got around to watching it yet. I’ve read the books, so I know ~80% of the story… I just wanted to watch season 3 for the build up to that thing everyone is traumatised by. The Theon Greyjoy plot-line was more interesting (and IMO) better done than in the book. Roose Bolton is one of the most compelling characters on the show. In the books I barely paid attention to him. I get an older Daniel Craig’s James Bond feel off of him. Roose Bolton’s Bastard is… well… a complete and utter bastard. I like the show’s portrayal of him, and the actor is very convincing. Arya Stark looks almost no older than in season 1. On the other hand, Brann Stark looks quite a bit older. This could cause the show issues in the future? What happened to Arya’s Braavosi sword, Needle? In the book it’s a touchstone for her character, but in the series it seems she’s lost it? Tywin Lannister is a scary dude. Scary, scary dude. I think I prefer the Melisadre plot-line from the book, but I guess it meant we get to keep Gendry around a bit longer. (spoilers, but awesome) in episode 9 came across as a lot more ‘clinical’ than in the book, and as a result seemed all the more brutal. Not sure which version I preferred more yet. That thing Daario Naharis reminds me of Brad Pitt’s Achilles in “Troy”. That is not a good thing. Awesome odd-couples in the show: Arya and The Hound, plus Brienne and Jaime. I found this on Hacker News, and it reminded me of something I wrote 8 years ago. Working from home can be amazingly productive and rewarding if you can get it right. I enthusiastically encourage most of my colleagues to try it at every opportunity I can.