Linked List Archive

The Initial Charge Linked List is a collection of notable links and brief commentary, with entries regularly added throughout the week.

Cosmicast 2 ➝

Habib Cham:

Cosmicast, a podcast player released a couple of years ago and recently redesigned from the ground up, is set to disrupt the two-horse race currently led by Overcast and Pocket Casts as the two coveted full-featured third-party podcast players on the App Store by offering on par features, platform access and unique design-centric delights.

I like a lot about what Cosmicast has to offer, especially tvOS and macOS support. If the app allowed for subscribing to password-protected feeds, I would seriously consider switching from Overcast.

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Shortcuts Wishlist ➝

Jordan Merrick:

Shortcuts has gained plenty of features and functionality over the years, especially after Apple’s acquisition of Workflow, but how shortcuts are created and organized has remained almost unchanged since the app first launched back in 2015.

As a result, creating shortcuts like Mocktail is a painstaking and frustrating process. The app simply hasn’t scaled with the increasingly complex uses for shortcuts and the interface is still skewed towards simple shortcuts made up of only a few actions.

After spending what felt like an eternity updating Mocktail, I’ve come up with a wishlist of ten improvements I’d love to see in Shortcuts.

A great list from Jordan here — copying actions, backups/versioning, and the ability to share shortcuts as files are my favorite of the bunch. But I’d add Apple Watch support to the list as well. Specifically the ability to display a shortcut on your Apple Watch Face as a complication, which could be configured per shortcut with a toggle switch next to “Show in Widget” and “Show in Share Sheet”.

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FusionCast, a Podcast to Video Converter ➝

A clever little app from Guilherme Rambo that let’s you quickly create a video from an audio file. It’s designed to allow podcasters to publish their episodes on video publishing platforms. I gave it a try with a random podcast episode from my subscriptions and it is drop-dead simple to use.

I don’t really understand why people listen to audio content on YouTube, but I guess FusionCast could be a powerful tool for podcasters trying to build an audience — letting the algorithm do the work of recommending your episodes to people that might be interested in it based on their viewing habits.

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‘My Number One Complaint With Working on the iPad’ ➝

Matt Birchler:

Try as I might, the Files app won’t let me add more than 5GB of files even though the Settings app says I have tons of space (this is why I bought a 256GB iPad, after all). I can’t delete anything else because there’s nothing showing up in Files for me to delete and the Settings app doesn’t let me do anything because it tells me I’m swimming in free space. And yes, I’ve gone to “Recently Deleted” in Files to actually remove the things the system hadn’t purged yet.

This specific issue isn’t something I’ve run into myself, but the mysteriously large “other” storage usage problem would frequently plague both my wife and I. Luckily, Apple is a bit more generous with storage capacity than they used to be and that has essentially solved the issue. But iOS and iPadOS clearly aren’t good enough at managing local storage for you and the system should offer some more tools so that we can manage it ourselves.

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Abyss Saves URLs for Later ➝

A nifty new read later app that’s available for all of Apple’s platforms and uses iCloud for syncing. It looks slick and minimal, but I think I’m going to stick with Instapaper. Not just because it powers my Suggested Reading page, but I also have some automations setup through IFTTT that I rely on, which I wouldn’t be able to use if I switched to another service.

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Automatic Discontinuing Connected Car Adapter and Shutting Down Service ➝

From the announcement on their website:

With fewer consumers purchasing and leasing vehicles and drivers on the road, we unfortunately do not see a path forward for our business. These are unprecedented times, and with so much uncertainty ahead, we have made the difficult decision to discontinue the Automatic connected car product, service and platform.

I’ve had one of these adapters in my car for about two-and-a-half years and purchased one for my wife’s car shortly thereafter. We enjoyed the peace of mind from the crash detection, being able to read check engine light codes, the parking location features, fuel usage tracking, and knowing when we arrived or left a location. The biggest disappointment with this news, though, is that there doesn’t seem to be an alternative on the market.

I know newer vehicles offer these sorts of features built-in, but It’ll be quite some time before we replace both of our cars. Maybe someone else will fill the void soon.

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Unread 2 Is the Best RSS App ➝

Josh Ginter took the arrival of his 11-inch iPad Pro as an opportunity to re-evaluate his RSS setup, both the backend syncing service and the application he uses with it. He moved to Feedly and Unread 2 for his setup. Although I prefer Feedbin, I couldn’t agree more regarding Unread 2. The application is the best RSS reader on the platform by far — it’s thoughtfully designed, offers a great set of themes, and has excellent support for all of the latest iOS technologies.

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‘Just $349 to Make My iPad… Worse?’ ➝

Some interesting thoughts from Matt Hauger, building off of my Magic Keyboard review. Specifically my concerns about the accessory making the iPad less inviting to use when I keep the device inside of it full time.

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