Newsletter Leaf Journal 98, A new[s] endeavo[u]r
Welcome to the 98th edition of The Newsletter Leaf Journal, the official newsletter of the perennially virid online writing magazine, The New Leaf Journal. This newsletter comes to you as always from the waterproof keyboard of the administrator and editor of The New Leaf Journal, Nicholas A. Ferrell. However, I just switched my workstation operating system from Manjaro Linux to EndeavourOS, so I suppose that some things are a little bit different. Things were a bit slow at The New Leaf Journal last week because I was a bit busy, but the instant newsletter will come with plenty of content to make up for the shortcomings.
Table of Contents
- Leaves From The Week That Was
- Leaves From Around The Web
- The Old Leaf Journal
- Most-Turned Leaves Of The Newsletter Week
- Notable Leaf Journal
- News Leaf Journal
- Taking Leaf
1. Leaves From The Week That Was
I published three full articles during the last week. While the number is underwhelming, I like to think that the content itself was compelling.
- A Metal Flower in Brooklyn | N.A. Ferrell | August 21, 2022 | Summary: Despite not having published statue content in several months, I found that I was not rusty (pun intended).
- Productivity Window Shopping and Backlogs | N.A. Ferrell | August 23, 2022 | Summary: On productivity challenges in an era of abundant content.
- What is an "Android Alternative"? | N.A. Ferrell | August 24, 2022 | Summary: My lengthy on-site response to one part of the Hacker News thread on my /e/ OS review.
I published four leaflets in addition to the full-length content. First, I praised Microsoft for making most of its emoji collection open source (bured lede: Clippy is still proprietary). Two days later, I posted about an interesting new color e-ink display for the Raspberry Pi and expressed my hope that this technology leads to more ereader options in the future. On August 23, I made the short case for building your own computer. Finally, I addressed one of my favorite New York City complaints: E-bikes.
2. Leaves From Around The Web
I hardly expect that my three articles, as enthralling as I hope they were, suffice for satisfying voracious readers for too long. Fear not, however. While I was writing, working on future article projects, and preparing my computer for a big transition, I took the time to collect interesting content from around the web.
- Where in Japan is Pokémon’s Vermilion City modeled after? An official video reignites a decades-old debate | Seiji Narita for Automation West | August 22, 2022 | Description: That the first four generations of Pokémon games were based on real regions of Japan is not a well-kept secret. However, I was not aware of debates about the specific cities the cities in the games were based on.
- Zuckerberg Reveals the FBI Told His Company to be Wary of "Russian Disinformation" | Jonathan Turley | August 27, 2022 | I modestly quote me: "Twitter's importance derives not from a large number of active users, but from its centrality to the people who create narratives." From Leaflet.
- iFixit: Self Repair Program actually makes M1 MacBooks less repairable | José Adorno for 9 To 5 Mac | August 24, 2022 | Thoughts: Everything is an indefinite rental.
- Random: What Do You Mean Super Mario's Donut Blocks Aren't Based On Donuts? | Alana Hagues for Nintendo Life | August 25, 2022 | Rest Easy: While the donut blocks in the classic Mario games were based on fishcakes rather than donuts, the English name "Donut Planes" for one of the areas in Super Mario World "shares the same name in Japanese." Whew.
- Here's what it's like to live in a windowless dorm designed by a billionaire | Nate Berg for Fast Company | April 13, 2022 | Spoiler: Dark.
- Panic erupts on Tokyo train after drunken sushi chef drops knife | Keita Yamaguchi for The Asahi Shimbun | August 27, 2022 | Charming: That this was enough to cause a panic suggests that Tokyo trains are kind and gentle places.
- How defaults make you share, share and share | Luzia Jarovsky | Thoughts (aside from noting that the lack of Oxford comma in the title bothers me): This is a good reminder to always check the default settings for an app or service. See my post on Steam's privacy settings for an example.
- Retro writing 11 - Casio HW-300JS | Mateuz Urbanowicz | August 20, 2022 | Thoughts: Interesting post on a very old minimalist Japanese word processing device with a built-in printer.
- Manjaro and EndeavourOS are like Ding Dongs and Zingers (YouTube) | Derek Taylor (DistroTube) | August 21, 2022 | Thoughts: Fitting content since I just moved from Manjaro to EndeavourOS. Funny title aside, DistroTube offers an interesting perspective on the complaint that there are too many Linux distributions.
3. The Old Leaf Journal
Let's dig into our archives...
- An Essay on Productivity, Production, and Productive Leisure | N.A. Ferrell | March 24, 2021 | Summary: My newest productivity post was something of an addendum to my longer post from 2021.
- August and The Comedy of Life | N.A. Ferrell | September 19, 2020 | Summary: What better way to mark the last newsletter of August than with a post inspired by the purported last works of Augustus?
- Justin and Justina 〜 The Weird Statue in Gowanus | N.A. Ferrell | October 8, 2021 | Summary: Looking back at last year's metal statue post.
- Stop Saying Bob Dylan Can't Sing | Victor V. Gurbo | July 23, 2021 | Thoughts: Revisiting our most-read post of August 2021 (thanks to legions of Bob Dylan fans).
4. Most-Turned Leaves Of The Newsletter Week
I list our most-visited articles of the previous week in each newsletter. In keeping with our newsletter schedule, these “Newsletter Weeks” begin with Saturday and end on Friday. The statistics come courtesy of our local and privacy-friendly analytics solution, Koko Analytics - which I reviewed. The week of August 20 to 26 was the 34th Newsletter Week of 2022.
|1||Review of /e/ - An Android Alternative For Mobile Phones||NAF||11.21.21||3 (3)|
|2||Recommended F-Droid FOSS Apps For Android-Based Devices (2021)||NAF||11.27.21||33 (7)|
|3||The Mystery of Sōseki and Tsuki ga Kirei||NAF||3.14.21||34 (21)|
|4||Biden, Lincoln, and Counting Back From the President's Birth||NAF||4.29.22||5|
|5||Installing Ubuntu Touch on an Asus Nexus 7 (2013)||NAF||7.5.21||29|
Things returned to normal at The New Leaf Journal as the avalanche of views for my /e/ OS review stemming from its Hacker News appearance began to fade. However, the article had more than strong enough of a week to notch its third consecutive first-place finish.
Although my tsuki ga kirei post had a modest week by its own standards, I must note its 70th consecutive weekly top-5 appearance, dating back to the 17th Newsletter Week of 2021. Let us have a look at the longest appearance streaks dating back to 2021:
- The Mystery of Sōseki and Tsuki ga Kirei
70 consecutive weeks. NLW 17 of 2021 to the present.
2. Installing Ubuntu Touch on an Asus Nexus 7
34 consecutive weeks. NLW 42 of 2021 through NLW 23 of 2022. 3. Recommended F-Droid FOSS Apps For Android-Based Devices (2021)
33 consecutive weeks. NLW 51 of 2021 through NLW 30 of 2022. 4. How to Find Substack RSS Feeds and Other Notes
25 consecutive weeks. NLW 34 of 2021 through NLW 6 of 2022. 5. Reviewing the HALOmask and är Mask
23 consecutive weeks: NLW 1 of 2021 through NLW 22 of 2021.
The longest current streak other than tsuki ga kirei's 70 consecutive weekly top-fives is three, so the record looks like it will be safe for the foreseeable future.
5. Notable Leaf Journal
Since I just installed EndeavourOS as the operating system on my main desktop workstation, I thought that I would feature it today. EndeavourOS is a popular Linux distribution. Like Manjaro, which I used for two years beginning in August 2020, Endeavour is based on Arch Linux. However, unlike Manjaro, Endeavour uses the regular Arch Linux repositories. Manjaro uses its own repositories and holds Arch packages back for a couple of weeks, which is designed to make it more stable and amenable to new users. Another difference between the two is that while both employ a user-friendly graphical installer and have welcome utilities, EndeavourOS does not have a graphical package manager, something that kept me away from it when I reinstalled Manjaro in 2021. Like Manjaro, EndeavourOS offers several official and community editions. I installed the XFCE edition on my desktop (just like I did on Manjaro), but users can also opt for GNOME, KDE, Mate, Budgie, Cinnamon, LDXE, LXQT, and i3. There are also several community editions. I run the Openbox community edition on my laptop (I decided to forego the challenge of figuring out how to properly set up display profiles in Openbox across my two monitors and my television).
My experiences with EndeavourOS were positive on my laptop, and that prompted me to try it on my desktop because I do not need most of the quality of life aspects of Manjaro and prefer working with the main Arch repositories (without using Arch proper, of course). If you are interested in trying EndeavorOS, it is entirely free to download and it can be run in a live environment (off a USB stick) without installing. The same is true of Manjaro.
6. News Leaf Journal
No major New Leaf Journal news to report - but I am working on several projects that you should expect in the near future.
7. Taking Leaf
Thank you as always for reading The Newsletter Leaf Journal. If you have not done so already, you can subscribe to the newsletter via email or RSS or follow the syndicated issues at The New Leaf Annex on Bearblog. Links to our nine most-recent issues are available on The New Leaf Journal and you can find our full archive on Buttondown. I look forward to sharing more content with you on September 3 as we look forward to the final third of 2022.
Until next week,
Cura ut valeas.
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