Tag Archive for ‘Marius Masalar’

AirPods Max Are a Frustratingly Wonderful Experience ➝

Marius Masalar, an actual audiophile, revising the AirPods Max:

They frustrate me because you can tell that these could have been disruptively perfect. If Apple had made them lighter, chosen better materials, made them fold properly, given them a useable case, included the damn 3.5mm audio cable—even if they’d kept the price—the AirPods Max would be an easy recommendation.

As it is though, I have no idea who I would recommend these to. I think anyone—even audiophiles—should find a way to audition them just for fun. But actually dropping this much money to own a pair? I don’t know.

In short, the headphones sound great, much better than Marius was expecting. But they have some downsides that very well could be a deal breaker for some.

➝ Source: mariusmasalar.me

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

Hey Is Not for Me ➝

Marius Masalar:

In Hey, my email history is always visible, even though I don’t want it to be. I don’t know about you, but once I’ve finished with an email, I don’t want to look at it anymore unless there’s been a reply or I have to refer back to something (via search).

In Gmail, when I open the inbox I see only emails that I need to do something with. In Hey, I see those emails, plus the emails I’ve already dealt with, plus the emails I’ve decided I’ll reply to later, plus the emails I’ve set aside, and sometimes even a button letting me know I have other emails to do something about in the Screener…how exactly is this more tidy and peaceful?

This was my immediate reaction when I gave Hey a try and the primary reason why the service isn’t for me. I want my email client to be enjoyable to use. And that isn’t possible without an archive feature.

I’ll be sticking with my current combination of Fastmail, Gmail, and Apple Mail.

➝ Source: mariusmasalar.me

The True Value of Link Posts ➝

Marius Masalar:

Link posts turn each of your RSS feed sources into their own editorial curation board, offering you glimpses into corners of the internet you may not be exposed to otherwise.

There’s no right or wrong way to do this, and I’m not suggesting that people who share links without commentary are committing some sort of crime against the indie web. However, if you’re going to share new ideas and experiences with someone, it seems courteous to do so with the same care and attention you’d grant them if you were making the recommendation in person.

I’ve published more than my fair share of link posts without any additional commentary, but it’s something I try to avoid as much as I can. It’s much more courteous to add a bit more context about what the link is, why I’m sharing it, and/or any thoughts I have regarding the overall topic.

There are occasions where the blockquote speaks for itself or the commentary is provided within the title, but those are the exception, not the norm.

➝ Source: mariusmasalar.me

A First Look at the Doppler 2 Music App ➝

Marius Masalar takes a look at Doppler 2, a music app that’s built for people that maintain a collection of purchased tracks. The app looks slick and I’d love to give it a try, but you essentially have to transfer your music manually with iTunes file transfer, the Files app, or the app’s built-in WiFi transfer feature.

I currently store my music in my Plex library and use Prism for playback. Prism let’s me authenticate with my Plex credentials and either stream audio right from my server or download the tracks to play them locally. I can pick and choose which tracks to download or, from the library view, I can download all tracks that I haven’t yet. I would love to see Doppler fern this as an option as well. Until then, I’ll stick with Prism.

➝ Source: thesweetsetup.com

AirPods Pro Impressions ➝

Some nice thoughts and impressions from Marius Masalar on the newly released AirPods Pro.

I’ve never used in-ear headphones or anything with active noise cancelation before. I’m still pretty happy with my second generation AirPods, but I wouldn’t be surprised if I end up with the new Pro model at some point. I’ll be traveling more frequently for work next year and I wouldn’t mind blocking out a bit more noise while I’m flying.

I’m sure I’d see a lot of benefits using them at home, too. With Josh in our lives, family and friends are stopping over a bit more frequently. Which is typically a joy, but can be quite distracting while I’m working. The AirPods Pro might be just what I need to ensure I’m able to keep my focus.

➝ Source: mariusmasalar.me

Mouse and Trackpad ➝

Marius Masalar:

My usage is by no means exclusively as described above, but in general if I’m moving a cursor and clicking, it’s with the mouse, and if I’m navigating a canvas or scrolling, it’s with the trackpad.

I can’t say that this approach will make sense for everyone, but now it feels natural to me and has noticeably reduced my wrist and finger pain after long days at the computer.

I’ve been struggling with some relatively minor RSI issues lately, almost certainly because of my mouse usage. I’m not sure if using both a trackpad and mouse with different hands is going to take for me, but I’ll definitely give it a try.

➝ Source: mariusmasalar.me

A Notification Audit ➝

Marius Masalar:

It’s easy to inadvertently dig yourself into a pit of distraction. We install new apps, and we’re excited to use them to their fullest so we accept their terms and grant their permission requests…and suddenly that’s one more thing pinging, beeping, or vibrating our phones during the day.

Over time, this becomes untenable. To their credit, phone manufacturers have generally done a good job of giving us the tools to manage this deluge, but we tend to be bad at actually making use of them.

I’m happy to say that I’ve resisted this behavior on my own devices. I basically refuse to allow notifications from apps unless I have a very good reason to enable them.

But if you’ve been a bit less disciplined, I would recommend you follow in Marius’ footsteps and adjust your notification settings. You’ll be amazed how much peace of mind can be obtained when your device isn’t bugging you with unnecessary beeps, buzzes, and badges throughout the day.