Skype for Microsoft Edge or Google Chrome.

Dear Microsoft: if  your web app requires Microsoft Edge or Google Chrome to work, it’s not a web app. Name it Skype for Microsoft Edge or Google Chrome and I’ll stop complaining. Or just make it a proper web app that truly runs on web browsers.

Web apps that only run on Chrome or Chrome based browsers, are not web apps; they are Chrome apps.

Continue reading Skype for Microsoft Edge or Google Chrome.

The Trusted Partners of Tumblr; a fairy tale.

Not being a Tumblr user sort of has its benefits. One is that, well, you’re not using Tumblr. The other one is you never accepted their cookie and tracking policy and can have a beautiful view into not only how ad tracking works, but a bit into dark patterns, and how companies, that really don’t want to, reluctantly comply with the GDPR.

Let’s look at the particular example of Tumblr! I’ll be honest, this is the first time since (presumably; see also: GDPR) last May that I actually dug into what they want you to accept without thinking. Luckily Tumblr is a site that you don’t really have to see (especially since, you know, the purge… would say a lot of other guys), so whenever I was presented with their full screen consent request by accidentally clicking a link I just closed the tab. But now I had some free time to read, and I went down the rabbit hole. Continue reading The Trusted Partners of Tumblr; a fairy tale.

The funny thing about Facebook’s “Messenger-WhatsApp-Instagram can chat to each other” idea…

…is that they could actually do this in a way that doesn’t upset users, the press, European data privacy watchdogs, and Cory Doctorow (and me.) Continue reading The funny thing about Facebook’s “Messenger-WhatsApp-Instagram can chat to each other” idea…

The invaluable Facebook Messenger. (A rant.)

By now I’m down to Messenger only, when it comes to Facebook. Not that I officially stopped using Instagram, I still have an active account… it just so happens that the iPhone’s hideous camera killed my creativity and there’s no new content — helping me delay the “quo vadis, photoblog?” question until I get a proper phone, or camera. But I digress. Continue reading The invaluable Facebook Messenger. (A rant.)

Maybe it’s just the winter but…

…I’m removing text based social media from my phone. This at the moment means Mastodon. (Twitter and Facebook were banished before.)

I’m not saying I won’t ever use it again, I’m not that fatalistic. (And because I will.) But, let me still add some rationale:

  • I removed my Twitter client a while ago (around 6 months, I think), and I don’t miss it. I sometimes look at it on a laptop, browse a bit mainly for news and not for discussion. I figure I’d be able to do this with Mastodon. (I removed Facebook a long time ago from my life. Had it not been for Messenger, which I still have to use unfortunately, I would have deleted my account proper.)
  • These days I find that I prefer proper sources over social media. I have a vast RSS feedlist in my Inoreader account; and if I just want some random thing to read, I prefer reading news… or a book. The less time I have, I guess, the more I feel I’m wasting it with social media. (RSS itself is another deepdive topic…)
  • Most of all (and yet another topic for later), I listen to podcasts.
  • Instagram will stay, for now. Unfortunately the horrible camera of the iPhone has essentially killed my photographic creativity, but still nice to see what friends are up to, I guess. Also, whenever I do end up posting, I also cross post to my Pixelfed feed. At one point that might become my main feed. Or I import the whole content into another WordPress site. Or something else… we’ll see.

On Google’s $5b EU fine.

I know I’m a weirdo: I run my own NextCloud, I use Mastodon and Pixelfed but not Facebook, I run Linux (Mint flavoured) on my notebook, and I have UK English as my default spellcheck language (see? “flavoured”). But maybe you’ll still agree with me when I say the EU antitrust decision against Google (which they just appealed while also complying) is an important milestone.

Because yes, now Samsung can start developing their own search, or Amazon can put Play store and Google Maps on their Fire devices… but there’s more, and again, I know I’m a weirdo, but bear with me. Continue reading On Google’s $5b EU fine.

A very early look at Pixelfed.social, the federated Instagram clone.

Along with the recent rediscovery of Mastodon (and not entirely coincidentally) I came across Pixelfed, a (let’s put it this way) Instagram clone… in a very early stage.

Continue reading A very early look at Pixelfed.social, the federated Instagram clone.

Geek alert: enter the Image Ninja!

I’ve returned from my holidays in lovely Tenerife. Beautiful volcanic islands, grandiose landscapes… you either capture them in panorama or you don’t capture them at all. (In all honesty, even panorama doesn’t do justice, of course.)

So of course standing there in awe, looking at the beauty of let’s say Mount Teide, and thinking about the forces that created it, the question that literally everyone on Planet Earth would be asking is:

How do you capture all this beauty in Instagram?

Continue reading Geek alert: enter the Image Ninja!