Linked: “Remarks of President Joe Biden – State of the Union Address As Prepared for Delivery”

Via Whitehouse.gov:

Let me be clear, our forces are not engaged and will not engage in conflict with Russian forces in Ukraine.

Our forces are not going to Europe to fight in Ukraine, but to defend our NATO Allies – in the event that Putin decides to keep moving west.

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Now our infrastructure is ranked 13th in the world. 

And tonight, I’m announcing that this year we will start fixing over 65,000 miles of highway and 1,500 bridges in disrepair.

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Raise the minimum wage to $15 an hour and extend the Child Tax Credit, so no one has to raise a family in poverty. 

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It’s time for Americans to get back to work and fill our great downtowns again.  People working from home can feel safe to begin to return to the office.   

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We should all agree: The answer is not to Defund the police. The answer is to FUND the police with the resources and training they need to protect our communities. 

Worth quoting in full:

And for our LGBTQ+ Americans, let’s finally get the bipartisan Equality Act to my desk. The onslaught of state laws targeting transgender Americans and their families is wrong. 

As I said last year, especially to our younger transgender Americans, I will always have your back as your President, so you can be yourself and reach your God-given potential. 

While it often appears that we never agree, that isn’t true. I signed 80 bipartisan bills into law last year. From preventing government shutdowns to protecting Asian-Americans from still-too-common hate crimes to reforming military justice. 

And soon, we’ll strengthen the Violence Against Women Act that I first wrote three decades ago. It is important for us to show the nation that we can come together and do big things. 

I prefer reading speeches primarily because I’m always short on time and reading without a pause for clapping is more efficient. The downside is any variations of this speech at delivery are lost. 

I quoted the portions that resonated most with me. We must defend NATO even if we don’t activate defenses in Ukraine but USA and allies are doing all they can without literally going to war in Ukraine. Infrastructure is huge. Our country is crumbling and the massive construction that occurred in the 40s and 50s…that construction is crumbling. Concrete buildings, billions of pounds of concrete across our nation is cracking and crumbling. It’s reaching end of life over the next 25 years and we’re not prepared for it. Private and Public efforts are going to happen that disrupt our conversion to renewable resources. It’s not far fetched to imagine we’ll have to rebuild every high-rise in New York that was built last century over the next 50 years.

$15 an hour is $28,800 a year pre-tax. It’s not enough.

Biden calling out the need to return to offices is interesting. I wonder who had that written in? We’re on the verge of a collapse of commercial real estate markets. Once leases begin to expire over the next 5 years, it could trigger a recession. Billions of square feet of space will be emptied and tech companies are already moving on to “stay home, live in VR” 

Defund the police was poorly executed. It was a protest seated in truth and reality but poorly named and poorly marketed. There’s not a single community that will eliminate law enforcement i.e. defunding it from their budgets at the city / county or state level. I wish that had never caught on because I don’t think anyone wanted to eliminate LEOs entirely. I’m glad to see Biden acknowledge it’s not possible while still recognizing there needs to be a change in how policing is conducted.

Finally, human rights. This part of the speech I quoted in full. We have people of all colors, genders and sexual orientations who are discriminated against daily. It has to stop yet these laws and societal changes are met with push back every step of the way. Millions of Americans will have a half life of opportunity, lifespan, economic prosperity and freedom from being jailed or worse, completely ignored by a society who wrote in 200 years of laws to ensure they never rise to their fullest individual potentials. Children born today are in this group and many more millions will be born into modern day slavery because of their race, gender, sexual orientation. It is criminal and we need to change it.

Linked: “Musings on Modern Mapping”

Via TidBITS (and Michael Tsai)

Unfortunately, it’s all too common for mapping services to rely on obsolete or incorrect data. In the On The Go Map map at the top of the article, you’ll see Plantations Rd in the lower-left corner. When I sent a map proposing a running course to my contact at Cornell, she pointed out that that road had been renamed Arboretum Rd. as part of an overall name change from “Cornell Plantations” to “Cornell Botanic Gardens.” It turns out that On The Go Map uses data from OpenStreetMap, a free and editable map of the world, so I created an account, logged in, and left a note asking for a fix.

I wanted to thank Adam for writing this. I don’t often get to read experiences in map making from amateurs / hobbyists very often. Seriously. Working full time at a digital mapping company means I’m always thinking about and engineering solutions to the really tough problems and since I’m not building customer facing products, I lose sight of how someone, a runner, may develop a method to making, annotating, publishing and correcting maps. 

Linked: Who do you want to be?”

Via Om.co:

Being authentic is hard. Social doesn’t reward it with engagement. No one likes, retweets, or appreciates the factuality. Instead, we have come programmed to create endless moments of outrage, faux opinions, and triggers so we can generate some or any reaction. If only we paused to think “meaning,” not “metrics,” we all might be better.

As usual, very succinct observation. Nothing I do online in my ‘publishing’ of photo, video, audio or written word is sensational or edgy. It’s just me and really isn’t anything dramatic or politically incorrect. That’s one reason why I’m not a user of social media anymore and haven’t been for nearly 10 years. I use online forums related to things I’m interested in and I maintain an account on LinkedIN but this blog, my Flickr and YouTube channel are my creative outlets and they’re mostly languishing because I don’t follow trends or try to be as engaging. 

Timing: A MacOS App for Logging your Computing Activities

One year into this pandemic, I was feeling like every day really was Groundhog Day. I woke up, made coffee, sat at my desk and remained there until the sun went down. In New Hampshire, our sunset can be as early as 4:12PM and as late at 9:xx PM. In the Winter, it feels like you literally work from sunrise to sunset because you do. The pandemic had me feeling…not burnt out but in desperate need to assign a number or value to my efforts. It’s hard to measure output and that isn’t my intention but I really wanted to understand where my day was spent. I came across Timing. March 9th of 2021, I installed Timing and forked over $72 for their Professional plan. I didn’t need phone call tracking or multi-user / team support. I’m a bit surprised that the developer didn’t make ‘device sync’ a higher-tier feature as I would have paid for that. My Timing logs sync across multiple MacOS devices which is wonderful. 

While not quite 1 year of data, I wanted to provide an update in a few images to show the value you can gleam. If you are billing out by the hour to clients, this is your standard (albeit native and beautiful) time-tracking app. You can assign things to many tags/categories/projects. It’s pretty wicked. I literally never touched a single thing except allowing this app many MacOS Security Privileges to track everything I was doing and to tell Timing to pause tracking after 1 minute of inactivity. 

Maybe I should back up a bit. Time Trackers, well I used to use a paid app called Wakoopa back in the day. They struggled with finding a way to monetize my usage data and that of a few thousand others and they’ve pivoted to a similar but more creepy model – http://wakoopa.com. I checked Flickr and I did have a few Wakoopa Screenshots from back in 2009. It’s funny because it shows that time-tracking has been on my mind for ages and I was so bummed when their consumer product shut down. 

Wakoopa circa 2009:

I took a day off

Wakoopa Stats

Lol, Twhirl, who remembers that? https://www.askdavetaylor.com/twhirl_twitterific_which_is_better_twitter/

Anyway, Timing has been helpful. Here are some things that it tells me that I find interesting since March of 2021:

  • I spend 134 hours every month on a MacOS computer actively working or about 33.5 hours per week
  • I spend 1600 hours every 12 months working or about 66 straight days. This obviously doesn’t count iOS time (iPad/iPhone) nor does it count times when I didn’t move my mouse or keyboard for 1 minute. 
  • 612 hours in Safari
  • 280 hours in Mail
  • 69 hours reading articles in my RSS reeder app (excludes IOS so double that as I prefer iPad to MacOS for reading)
  • 33 Hours in Fantastical managing my very busy 12 hour a day calendar
  • 32 hours editing videos in Final Cut Pro
  • 28 hour editing Lightroom Photos
  • 28 hours talking to people in Slack
  • 7.5 hours in MarsEdit blogging (that can’t be right?)

No surprise but looking at my calendar year, my busiest months are April and June. Things tapered off from there. This is not at all surprising and will likely be mirrored in 2022. I have reasons that I won’t go into here but it relates to Snowbirds and Interns. Surprisingly, my December was much more involved than it should be for a holiday month. I didn’t take off a single day in December, even Christmas and it shows. Every year, I tell Heather that my Winter is a time for re-charging and every year, I’m a liar. 

I did see the sharp drop off after Labor Day, again for reasons I know of but there’s no point in getting into here. 

Timing says I’m only 64% productive and they recommend I adjust my productive ratings. Fine and I should do that so we can accurately capture 2022. 

I’ll leave you with a few screenshots.

This is total Timing Log for 2021 (minus January and February):

Timing app 2021 in Review

This is the communication category for 2021:

Timing app 2021 in Review

 

Here is Web Browsing:Timing app 2021 in Review

 

And Business documents / productivity which isn’t quite 100% accurate but close. It’s missing a few applications:

Timing app 2021 in Review

 

Total time per app largest to smallest in 2021:

Timing app 2021 in Review

 

While we’re not quite at a full year yet, I will be reporting in a year what the full 2022 looks like. I think we’ll all be surprised in 12 months how this comes out.

I am a Writer Part 2 – 365 Days of Words

To piggyback on my post from 2020 about my anxiety on how often I blog, I decided to measure how much I write even if it’s not being published here. One year ago, I installed WordCounter. This MacOS MenuBar app synchronizes via iCloud between my iMac and MacBook Pro and sits in the menu bar diligently counting every word. The corner grows each time I hit the space bar. It’s fun to watch if I am not watching what I’m writing. This application keeps track of words per hour, per day and per app. I can see today’s break down even though I have 2 more meetings tonight:

WordCounter for MacOS 2021

I also have the last 7 days:

WordCounter for MacOS 2021

And last 30:

WordCounter for MacOS 2021

And last 365:

WordCounter for MacOS 2021

I spend nearly every waking hour communicating with others. It’s not always easy or fun but it’s necessary to pay my bills and put food in my belly. Writing, Replying, Reacting and Communicating has become my livelihood. I wanted to see in the last year just how much I’ve written. One bug with WordCounter is key commands also count so while I haven’t written any words in Adobe Lightroom, it says I’ve written 4400. Those are just key commands and the system isn’t perfect. You can exclude some apps though as a way around it. 

What I wanted to see was how much I spend in writing applications per year; This would be MarsEdit, Microsoft Word, Slack, Mail, Safari and ByWord. I wish it broke down written words by website so I could see WordPress.com versus Office.com and Reddit.com 

Here are the apps I wrote over 1500 words in during 2021:

  • Safari 479,266
  • Mail 371,618
  • Word 33,017
  • Messages 31,165
  • Slack 23,325
  • MarsEdit 16,914
  • Teams 11,111
  • Excel 6,828
  • Powerpoint 6,137
  • Outlook 5,847
  • TextEdit 4,597
  • Byword  3,570
  • BBEdit  3,357
  • Zoom 1,944

998,696, man, honestly only 1 blog post short of writing 1 million words in 2021 just in these apps alone. If I throw in the apps that did not make the cut like Acrobat or OneNote and Miro, I’d be well over 1 million words in a year. It would appear that if I could have devoted my 2021 to writing 10-14 fiction novels instead. :) How very Stephen King of me so long as I could actually come up with that many stories worth publishing. 

Last 365 days officially says I wrote 1,041,677 words but again, that does include some key strokes and commands.

I don’t think 1 million is much and I’d challenge some of my readers to install WordCounter and see for themselves. You may be surprised how many words you write specifically if you were a MacOS developer and using Xcode…every space bar stroke equals a word. I’m guessing the return key counts as well?

Anyway, I’ll try to remember doing this again in 2023 for this calendar year. It certainly was an interesting academic exercise.