Linked List Archive

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

The Constitution Protects Our Rights ➝

The first amendment to the Constitution of the United States:

Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.

I think it’s worth reading the actual text from time to time. It’s short, simple, and easy to understand.

But I think there is some often ignored nuance to the way it is written — the Constitution doesn’t give you rights, it protects your rights. These are rights that you already have and the Constitution prevents the government from infringing upon them.

➝ Source: constitution.congress.gov

HomePod Mini ➝

Many of us have wanted a device like this from the very moment the original HomePod was announced. I have two HomePods in my house — one in the kitchen and one in our son Josh’s room. I think we’ll probably end up with at least two of these HomePod Minis.

I’m not sure exactly where the Minis specifically will end up because we’ll probably juggle around our existing HomePods a bit. But I know I want a smart speaker in my home office and in our living room.

The Intercom feature sounds neat, too:

With more than one HomePod in the house, you can easily communicate with your family members by voice using Intercom. Ask Siri to send your message to the whole house or to individual rooms — and everyone can easily respond.

Throwing a message to my wife from the kitchen while she’s in Josh’s room sounds fantastic. It’s one of those features that seems so unbelievably obvious once you hear about it.

➝ Source: apple.com

How to Avoid Read Later Queue Bankruptcy ➝

Marius Masalar:

There’s been a lot of conversation in my circles recently about how to effectively save links and deal with articles you want to read later.

The trouble these folks run into is that their queue quickly grows to impractical proportions, forcing them to give up, empty it, and start again.

I don’t pretend to have the one true solution, but since this isn’t a problem I run into, I thought it might be worth outlining my approach in case it helps.

I don’t have the same workflow as Marius, but I’m glad he started the conversation. And I think his thoughts on the matter or certainly valid and could likely be adopted as is by many others or altered to fit your mindset.

Personally, I save just about everything to Instapaper. When I read my queue (in Reeder), I don’t go there to read necessarily, I go there to process the links that I’ve saved. As I go through my queue, I’ll move links to my to do list, watch videos, subscribe to new RSS feeds, read articles, link to interesting things here on Initial Charge, share links on Twitter, save thoughts in Bear or Day One, and so on.

The key to keeping my Instapaper queue under control is to actually make the time to go through it regularly. Marius has some great thoughts on this:

Those articles aren’t going to read themselves! It’s all well and good to have a system for saving things, but if you don’t have a method for doing something about those things then of course you’re going to find yourself frustrated.

I have two main article reading times: morning and evening. I always hit at least one of the two, and on normal days I do some reading during both time windows.

I don’t make time for processing my queue as much as I used to, although I haven’t found myself saving as much to Instapaper recently either — so it’s likely a wash. But my prime time for going through my queue is right before bed. My wife and son go to bed before I do, which gives me a little bit of time where I can focus on the task at hand.

If it’s worth anything, Marius’ article is actually the last item in my queue, so once I hit publish, I’ll be at Instapaper Zero.

➝ Source: mariusmasalar.me

The Toonie Newsletter ➝

Josh Ginter, introducing his newsletter:

Dubbed “The Toonie Newsletter”, this newsletter will house my thoughts on personal finance and tax, and perhaps some investing and stock market discussions. The goal is to provide value to a wide range of readers, from beginners to experts, but probably will shy away from the professional end of the investing spectrum.

I sort of wish Josh was publishing this writing on his own weblog instead of within a newsletter. Despite his opinion that personal finance is “out of The Newsprint’s scope”, I think his site should revolve around what he’s interested in, regardless of what that might be. If he’s interested in personal finance, he should write about it there.

But, The Newsprint is what he makes it. And I’m certainly happier knowing that he’s sharing his thoughts on personal finance somewhere rather than not at all.

I’ve read every issue so far and enjoyed all of them — especially his thoughts on creating an emergency fund. Over the last handful of years I’ve gotten married, changed careers, and had a child, so improving my personal finance situation and saving for retirement has been on my mind a lot lately. The introduction of The Toonie Newsletter couldn’t have come at a more perfect time for me.

➝ Source: thenewsprint.co

The Peculiar Rise of the Paid Email Newsletter ➝

Nick Heer:

It seems almost tragically ironic to think that newsletter subscriptions are the future of independent publishing. Email has been around for far longer than the World Wide Web, and has almost none of the design advantages or surveillance mechanisms celebrated by web publishers. All this time we have been subject to the whims of ad technology firms when the solution seems to be a rewind button.

➝ Source: pxlnv.com

Boring Old Menu Bar ➝

I don’t plan to upgrade to Big Sur for several months after release. But I’m not too fond of the translucent menu bar, so when I eventually upgrade, I’ll probably use an app like this.

➝ Source: publicspace.net

Bootable Backups and Big Sur ➝

Dave Nanian, writing about SuperDuper! on Big Sur:

At present, it’s not possible to make bootable copies of Big Sur, even with asr, Apple’s own built-in replication utility. As such, we haven’t released a Beta, or even an internal Alpha, because it wouldn’t meet our own requirements.

So, for the moment, we’re holding back, hoping that Apple will fix the issues and allow 3rd party (or even 1st party, given asr) bootable backups. While asr was failing completely in previous builds, in the most recent one it isn’t able to back up because the system volume isn’t properly ‘sealed’ (which is ominous, since why wouldn’t a standard install be sealed, and if it’s not, why wouldn’t you be able to back it up anyway).

So, while progress is being made, we’re kind of stuck waiting for the king.

This is from about a month ago at this point, but I haven’t seen any new information that shows bootable backups are possible with newer betas.

Over the past few years I’ve been much more hesitant to upgrade macOS immediately after major version are released. My machine is far too essential to risk breaking anything. So I’ve been waiting several months before I upgrade.

Even if that wasn’t the case, though, this news about the inability to create bootable backups would give me pause. Although, Time Machine and Backblaze are my primary, everyday backup systems, SuperDuper! is essential to me. When I travel or send in my machine for repair, albeit rare, I always do a SuperDuper! backup so I can get up and running quickly if anything happens.

If I upgrade to Big Sur and bootable backups aren’t even possible, I’d always have a little bit of worry in the back of my mind that I would want or need to create one and wouldn’t be able to.

➝ Source: shirtpocket.com

Umami Website Analytics ➝

From Umami’s About page:

Umami is a simple, easy to use, self-hosted web analytics solution. The goal is to provide you with a friendlier, privacy-focused alternative to Google Analytics and a free, open-sourced alternative to paid solutions. Umami collects only the metrics you care about and everything fits on a single page.

Here on Initial Charge, I don’t plan on switching from WordPress.com’s stats through Jetpack. But if I was looking elsewhere, Umami looks like a nice option.

➝ Source: umami.is