Last week I was too busy at work to be creative at home. I’m back from this business trip, so my creative activities have resumed. In this edition, something new from Apple, lots of new apps and services news, and some news about my Craft template sales.
🗞️ 22 articles posted on my blog posts & 2 articles shared on my main website 👨🏻💻
🏞️ 22 photos shared 😃
🎙️ No podcast episode published 😔
📺 No YouTube videos published ☹️
1️⃣ I did some reading of saved articles in Omnivore. Since I’ve been using Omnivore, my reading time increased a bit. I'm more intentional about reading. I don't know exactly why because before Omnivore, I was using Matter and before, I used Pocket. Something about Omnivore might make me want to return to it and read, which is a good thing. 2️⃣ I'm not the only one who creates weekly summaries like this one. I recently started paying attention to this one from Maique. It's quite different than mine. It is more family matters oriented with touches of professional life tidbits. I like it.
1️⃣ I published a long list of Mac utilities that I find hyper-useful and depend on all the time. That article was quite easy to put together, for once. It gained some traction among my readers. Some people told me they discovered a few apps. I’m grateful for that. 2️⃣ My monthly posting summary on my blog went out to subscribers on November 1. It's always surprising how much writing I can achieve in a month. Don't miss the next issue, if you prefer emails, read my posts right here.
1️⃣ Unsplash introduced a new and revamped homepage. All the announcement details can be found here. It's subtle, but it’s interesting. The homepage should adjust according to the user usage (frequent users, occasional, etc.). One notable change is the removal of the photo of the day. One quick note: my use of Unsplash with my content could potentially decrease since I started using Midjourney to generate the article's header images. It is fun and more creative than picking an image from a random photographer. 2️⃣ I received a reminder to renew my subscription to Exposure, a photo-sharing service. Exposure is quite expensive at 319 CAN$ per year. In the last twelve months, I created and shared six visual stories. I got three subscribers. And I only got a few likes for my stories. It's not worth my time. With my current migration to Pixelfed, I can no longer justify my subscription to Exposure. So, I cancelled my subscription. The sad part is that Exposure doesn't offer an export feature. The next subscription to be cancelled is SmugMug next year. As I wrote in the past, in 2024, Pixelfed will be my only place online for sharing my photos. 3️⃣ As I'm migrating my photos to Pixelfed, I wonder what it would take to run my own Pixelfed instance. Setting up my instance wouldn't create an isolated silo because Pixelfed is based on Fediverse. I would expect to have my instanced federate across other instances. It could be a project for next year; who knows? I would need to consider how to migrate my photos from one instance to another.
1️⃣ Scary Fast event took place on Monday, late at night, a first, to my knowledge. As I wrote, I wasn't too excited about it the days before. The event lasted 30 minutes. It's probably the shortest Apple Event of all time. Apple set a spooky look to the production, which was more or less convincing. The focus was the Mac, as the invite animation hinted at it. The third-generation Apple Silicon was introduced. Welcome to the M3, M3 Pro, and M3 Max variations. The first Macs to take advantage of them are the MacBook Pro and the iMac. The latter was a bit of a surprise, but it was long overdue for a processor upgrade. I'm still impressed by Apple’s execution in the micro-processors field. The pace of iterations is steady, and the M3 seems a hyper-powerful chip. Kudos to them. I just got an M2 MacBook Air and don't plan to upgrade anytime soon. The space black colour is gorgeous.
🚧 Special projects
1️⃣ Started working on a third Craft template for sale on Gumroad. This one was a biggy: the 2024 Calendar! My Gumroad account is still in the queue for official review. Until then, the exposure I get is minimal. I did sell a few of my templates without much exposure, except for my promotional posts on Slack and Mastodon. When publishing this weekly summary, I sold three times the calendar template! Not bad. 😀
📱 Apps & Services
1️⃣ I had a twenty-minute feedback interview with Rewind's community manager. We went through some of the concerns exposed in my written review. She seemed happy to have me for a few moments. 2️⃣ Pixelfed's third-party client, Vernissage, was updated to version 2.0. What I find strange is how fast this app is being updated while we wait for version 1.0 of the official Pixelfed app. This app has been in beta forever. 3️⃣ Flipboard was a novel idea back then, and I wanted to take advantage of it and share my content on the platform. But nobody is noticing. I’m not going to do anything with this. 4️⃣ Don't miss this list of Mac apps I like. 5️⃣ I recently started testing Kagi, a paid search engine. I'm still exploring while using my free search requests. I like what I'm seeing. More comments in the future. 6️⃣ Glass updated its app to add more widgets and support for Stand By mode and macOS Sonoma widgets. I like it when apps get updated to support the latest technologies. 7️⃣ Ghost launched (in beta) a new recommendation feature, and I’m ready to see how it will move the needle for me. I don't expect much, but I like this idea of showing my recommendations for other websites I like when people subscribe to my blog. 8️⃣ Audio Hijack 4.3.0 came out with the support of audio transcription, thanks to AI (again)! I can see myself using it while recording a podcast! Phew, that was a busy week. 9️⃣ If you want an automation app on the Mac, don't buy Keysmith. I explain the reasons right here. An automation app lets you record repetitive steps to create a macro or process you invoke using a key combination. I decided to try Keyboard Maestro, and I'm super excited. It works great and is not subject to a software subscription but a one-time purchase.
1️⃣ My business trip to Las Vegas was intense and prevented me from doing meaningful creative activities. As expected, stepping back from my creative hobby and taking a distant look at what I was doing was okay. I came back exhausted but also willing to return to my usual activities. 2️⃣ I started thinking about my career in IT this week because I've been in this field for three decades! I learned so many things (I still do) and underwent many changes and technological waves. I must start to write about this journey. There are so many things to talk about.
1️⃣ It's been a while since I posted a new video on YouTube. The lack of meaningful new features in Craft is probably one of the reasons. While people like Matt Birchler expand their subscriber base, mine is stagnant. I still get some new subscribers, though.
🔮 Looking ahead
1️⃣ I want to produce a new YouTube video or a Podcast episode in the coming weeks. With my current exploration with Keyboard Maestro, I might have found my next YouTube video idea: automating Craft using Keyboard Maestro. Stay tuned.
1️⃣ I started gathering AI use cases in my day-to-day creative life. On what occasion do I go to ChapGPT to ask something? About what? How often? It's an exciting and valuable introspection. I'm already at half a dozen use cases. Stay tuned for all the details about each. 2️⃣ I'm considering subscribing to a paid version of ChatGPT. Many apps would benefit from this because they require an API token from ChatGPT to enable AI-related tasks. 3️⃣ Speaking of AI, I read Om Malik's article where he refers to Augmented Intelligence instead of Artificial Intelligence this week. I prefer this appellation. The idea is to convey the idea that AI augments human capabilities instead of replacing them with a pale copy of their capabilities. 4️⃣ Without really knowing it, I'm part of the POSSE movement: write and publish on one open platform and cross-post to other open platforms. If I get replies on those platforms, I try to respond to them, like on Bluesky. All ActivityPub platforms get a reply from Micro.blog, the closest to the content's origin.
I wish you a great week!