It’s been a rough month. I’ve been struggling. I feel tired all the time and don’t know why. Smarter heads than me suggest it’s stress — with world events being what they are.

I try to treat myself and keep up with exercising and going easy on myself when I don’t end up accomplishing much.

It’s hard not to be hard on yourself.

These posts have turned into more of a “here are interesting articles I read this month” and less “what’s going on lately” because I’m not doing much.

Vox: The word “Orwellian” has lost all meaning

With the removal of Donald Trump from Twitter, the term “Orwellian” has been tossed around a lot. It’s lost all meaning. It’s become the sloppy, lazy rhetoric that Orwell himself rallied against.

A private company is within their rights to determine who can and cannot use their service, especially when they are using it to incite riots.

Sound of Colleagues

The office vibe is something I’ve missed in the past few months. Keyboards clattering away, idle chit-chat, people coming and going. It’s a comfortable background noise that strangely can help me focus. This handy little noisemaker helps bring back that office feeling with plenty of options to fiddle with.

Whitehouse.gov chooses WordPress, again

For any web development readers, here is a great breakdown into what powers the White House’s site. It’s WordPress, if you hadn’t guessed.

I’d like to know how they decided to go with WordPress. My assumption would’ve been that WordPress represents too much of a security risk and they’d go with something static (Hugo, Next, etc). Then again, WordPress is battle-tested — been around for over a decade. Plus for anyone doing content it makes sense to have something simple and straightforward like the WordPress dashboard.

At least it wasn’t Drupal.

Rage Against the Machine x The Ummah Chroma – Killing In Thy Name

I’ll let the video speak for itself. White rage is one of the biggest issues facing Canada and the US. The reading list near the end of the film is a starting point I will be participating in.

Fuck white supremacy.

The Atlantic: The Pandemic Has Erased Entire Categories of Friendship

This article was a “whoa” moment for me. Having not realized what was missing until it’s pointed out to you. As I imagine for everyone, my own social circle has reduced to my partner, and on occasion (appropriate social distance) visiting my parents. I found something missing and it has to be these weak/moderate tie relationships.

Vox: Why you should care about data privacy even if you have “nothing to hide”

I struggle to explain why I’m passionate about privacy to those who have “nothing to hide”. A common refrain I hear is “if you don’t like it, don’t use the service” which means nothing when these companies gobble up enough data to construct “shadow profiles” on those who don’t use their services.

Worse is the ability for these services to learn everything about an individual and control the information they see. All under the guise of driving “user engagement”, which may be all they are trying to do... but it ends up with people stuck in echo chambers. When these echo chambers are full of misinformation, it’s no wonder we are seeing radicalized individuals.

The Washington Post: I checked Apple’s new privacy ‘nutrition labels.’ Many were false.

I’m disappointed to see Apple enforcing these arbitrarily. I shouldn’t be surprised though with how arbitrarily they enforce other guidelines like human-interface guidelines or submission rules.

The idea of “privacy nutrition labels” is a big deal in making data harvesting transparent and easy to understand. I hope that Apple decides to follow their own values and be strict with apps following their privacy labels.

Vox: Doug Emhoff, wife guy extraordinaire

I’m excited to see how the first “second gentleman” plays out. It’ll be refreshing, and more importantly, bring attention to the fact that men can play a supporting role that traditionally women fill. He will be scaling his own career back to more support his wife’s.

It’ll be important for men (read: white men) to see a man in this role.

Love this quote:

I may be the first Second Gentleman, but I know I won’t be the last.

That’s all for this month. Learn from me and take it easy. Be nice to yourself and others. ✌️