Okay, so here’s where I admit that I’m an avid John Mayer fan. His live show in LA back in 2007 is perhaps one of my all-time favorite recordings ever — I wish I could have been there in person.

You know how at a concert it’s normal to have an opening act, a 2nd band, and then the headlining band? Well, for this show Mayer did all three: his acoustic songs as the opening act, then a blues jam session with the John Mayer Trio, and then headlined with his studio band playing his more popular hits.

The video of the concert has a couple songs and other behind-the-scenes tidbits that you don’t get with the audio-only version. I have the iTunes version, and I often turn this on and then just listen to the audio while working. But just recently I saw that the full-length version is also on YouTube. So, boom. Here you go.

John Mayer, ‘Where the Light Is’ 2007 LA Concert

Akin to the piece I wrote yesterday, this is a great article by Jon Bell about how any bad idea will do when you’re just trying to get moving:

I use a trick with co-workers when we’re trying to decide where to eat for lunch and no one has any ideas. I recommend McDonald’s.

An interesting thing happens. Everyone unanimously agrees that we can’t possibly go to McDonald’s, and better lunch suggestions emerge. Magic!

It’s as if we’ve broken the ice with the worst possible idea, and now that the discussion has started, people suddenly get very creative. I call it the McDonald’s Theory: people are inspired to come up with good ideas to ward off bad ones.

McDonald’s Theory

The Root of Non-Writing

The blank page sucks. I’m certainly familiar with how intimidating it can be, and I’d bet a cup of coffee you are too.

To help get over that intimidation, Anne Lamott advises we give ourselves permission to write a very, very horrible first draft:

For me and most of the other writers I know, writing is not rapturous. In fact, the only way I can get anything written at all is to write really, really shitty first drafts. The first draft is the child’s draft, where you let it all pour out and then let it romp all over the place, knowing that no one is going to see it and that you can shape it later. […]

Almost all good writing begins with terrible first efforts. You need to start somewhere. Start by getting something—anything—down on paper.

But why? Why fight the blank page by just getting anything down even though you know that when you’re done you’ll be left with something so ugly and embarrassing that it doesn’t even deserve to be used as fuel to light the charcoal for your grill?

Well, a crappy first draft is important because: momentum.

I’m currently reading through Frank Chimero’s excellent book, The Shape of Design. In chapter 3, “Improvisation and Limitations”, Frank also discusses the difficulty of getting started with a creative work.

He says you’ve got to build momentum when starting from zero. Even writing a crappy first draft still means you’ve got to push-start a car that’s not currently moving.

Frank writes:

I find the best way to gain momentum is to think of the worst possible way to tackle the project. Quality may be elusive, but stupidity is always easily accessible; absurdity is fine, maybe even desired. […]

Momentum is the most important aspect of starting, and rejecting and editing too soon as a tendency to stifle that movement.

To pull the curtain back for a second, one of the monsters I face as a writer is the fear that if the words don’t come out just right the first time around then there will be no hope for them after that. I wait to get started because I assume that if I don’t write something magical and clever as I’m typing it for the first time then I certainly won’t be able to improve upon it in the editing and re-writing process.

Of course, that’s a load of crud. In On Writing, Stephen King wrote that he’s convinced fear is at the root of most bad writing. Fear is also at the root of most non-writing.

The truth of the matter in my situation is that if I can just type out something — anything — then I’m far more likely to be able to take that crappy first draft and mold it and steer it in the direction I want until it’s something presentable. If I wait, I may never actually start.

Moreover, it’s usually in the molding and the steering that greatness shows up. Because: momentum!

Seth Godin:

[T]he only path to amazing runs directly through not-yet-amazing. But not-yet-amazing is a great place to start, because that’s where you are. For now.

There’s a big difference between not settling and not starting.

The best ideas and creative works love to build on their previous iterations far more than they love to spring out of nowhere (unless that nowhere is the shower). Therefore it’s often when I am going back over my first or second or third drafts that I actually come up with the magical or clever turn of phrase I was so hoping would pop out the first time around. It was there all along, just not bubbling on the surface.

The Root of Non-Writing

What’s new in the Yahoo Weather app version 1.0.3:

Beautiful new icon

Oy. Not only is the new icon not beautiful, it’s far worse than the previous one. I like Jason Stoff’s simple suggestion regarding the previous purple version: just ditch the “Yahoo!” from the icon and you’ve got something that’s pretty nice, right in line with the Yahoo brand, and which matches the design aesthetic within the app as well.

Misleading Release Notes of the Week

Last Week’s News

A huge thanks to my cousin Nate who wrote for the site while I was taking some time off. His football article was incredibly well received, and I heard from some folks on Twitter who watched Primer last night (it’s streaming on Netflix, fyi) and really enjoyed it.

While I was unplugged from work, a handful of things happened. And so here is some of last week’s nerdy news that’s still worth talking about.

Keyboard Maestro 6

When I saw the email about this update I just about laughed out loud for joy. In part because it’s always great to see there’s been a major update to one of your most-used apps, and also because there are some very useful new features in KM6 that I’ll be taking advantage of. Such as the ability to launch a macro when a USB device is plugged in, and the new Safari actions for grabbing a URL and Title.

Every Mac user has a few apps that they just have to have on their computer, without which they feel lost and just can’t get anything done. For me, Keyboard Maestro is one such app.1

Basically, Keyboard Maestro is the app you use to bend your Mac to your will. Don’t like the way Mail handles email signatures? No problem. Wish you could launch an app with just one keystroke? Easy peasy. Wish you could replicate the functionality of an app that’s no longer for sale? Done.

My friend and fellow Keyboard Maestro aficionado, Ben Brooks, wrote a brief rundown of some of the highlights of what’s new in KM6.

If you’re new to Keyboard Maestro, you may want to listen to Ben’s and my 35-minute B&B episode where we share some tips and tricks about the app. For additional primers, see also Ben Brook’s KM series, Rocket Ink’s Multiple KM articles, and Federico Viticci’s review from about 18 months ago.

TextExpander 2 for iOS

Speaking of nerdy apps with major updates, TE2 for iOS came out last week. There are some really cool new features, though I have to admit my primary use-case for TextExpander on iOS remains the same: I use it to supercharge many of the apps I use that work with TextExpander. Such as Simplenote, Scratch, Byword, Poster, and Writing Kit.

New Book: Manage Your Day-to-Day

Manage Your Day-to-Day is a new book by Jocelyn K. Glei, the Editor-in-Chief of 99U.

I read and greatly enjoyed Scott Belsky’s book, Making Ideas Happen. And after hearing some good and interesting things about this new book I pre-ordered the Kindle version — it’s just $4(!), or if you’re on Prime you can borrow it for free. It downloaded while I was on vacation last week. Though I haven’t yet started it as I’m currently finishing up Frank Chimero’s The Shape of Design (which is a post for another day).

I’m not sure that they meant for it to be specifically targeted for the self-employed types who work from home, but this line from book’s description sure sounds apt to me:

Manage Your Day-to-Day will give you a toolkit for tackling the new challenges of a 24/7, always-on workplace.

Michael Schechter has a concise review of the book on Workflowing.

The New Flickr Design

Flickr got a major redesign and I think most of it is pretty great.

If you’re logged in, the Flickr home page is far more usable and interesting. And I think the look of the new profile pages for individual users encourages more frequent uploads without the need to upload gloriously professional shots. And if you’re a free user, there is no longer a limit on the collections and galleries you can have. Instead you see ads on the site as you’re browsing the home page or the Explore collection, etc.

James Hague wrote about the evolution of the design and how it wasn’t a total reworking all overnight. And Cap Watkins wrote about some of the shortcomings he sees with the new design.

I’m hoping the redesign garners more traction for the network because the iPhone app didn’t seem to do that. I’ve been using Flickr for six years, and it’s the main place where I upload my favorite images taken with my E-PL5.

But the interaction and feedback I get on Flickr is close to none even though I have about 800 contacts. And I can’t help but wonder if the low interaction rate has to do with the seemingly high expectation of talent: I don’t want to post images that are crappy, and I don’t want to favorite an image that isn’t something I’d frame on my wall, and I don’t want to comment on something unless I have something deep and constructive to say.

And that’s where Flickr totally differs from Instagram. Not that the former should at all try to replace the latter, but I get significantly more likes and comments on my Instagram photos than I do on my Flickr photos despite the fact my Flickr uploads are 100 times higher quality than my Instagrams. It’s the conversation and feedback of Instagram that keeps me coming back to it, and that’s what Flickr is missing right now.

I hope the new design, if nothing else, will encourage more feedback and interaction amongst the users.

Designing Blogs for Readers

Matt Gemmell wrote some good advice for weblog design. There are some pretty great tips in here for making a website that is readable for the readers:

Having had a decade to think about it, I want to share my views on what I think you do and don’t need on a blog today. Your needs may be different, but perhaps you’ll find something to think about. I bet you could simplify your blog in some way without detracting from the reading experience.

One of his tips (paraphrased) is to get rid of the sidebar and try to fit everything into the header instead. In some ways, I think this is a good idea. Having the text and nothing but the text underneath the header is a clean design for reading a website.

I think Matt’s site design looks great. It’s akin to some other sites, such as Zeldman.com, Marco.org, and zenhabits. But I don’t know that the single column of large serif text on a white background is the route for me. Part of why these site designs look this way is so that they’ll look really well when viewed on an iPhone — which they do.

My site doesn’t wiggle or change if you adjust the width of your browser. If you visit shawnblanc.net on your iPhone, it’ll look exactly like it does if you view it on your iPad or on your Mac. But my site is perfectly readable on an iPhone, you just have to double-tap on the main text column to zoom it in to a comfortable reading size. And that is by design.

When demoing Safari on the iPhone for the very first time at his Macworld 2007 keynote address, Steve Jobs said: “It’s a revolution of the first order to bring the real Internet to your phone.”

The iPhone doesn’t always need a “mobile” version of a website because it’s perfectly capable of rendering many websites as they would appear on a desktop computer. Now, of course this isn’t always the case since some sites (e-commerce websites in particular) are virtually unusable on an iPhone. But for websites where it works, why have a mobile version when the real version would work just as well? And that’s why my website doesn’t wiggle.

Last Week’s News

Dr. Drang points out there’s no free lunch in physics. But one thing he doesn’t mention (nor that I’ve seen anyone else mention either) is that big ice cubes are cooler than regular ice cube. And by that I mean they are more awesome. A fun drink with a big fun ice cube or two is, well, more fun.

Big Ice Cubes

Borne Back Ceaselessly Into the Past

My time on shawnblanc.net is coming to a close, much to my dismay.

A natural topic for my final article is cinema. I’m a movie fanatic, probably a 6 out of 10, where 1 is “watches a movie a week” and 10 is “recognizes the type of lens used in every shot.”

My favorite part of watching movies is the vicarious experience that you get seeing what someone else’s life is like and hopefully coming away a broader person. A close second is the storytelling aspect of film. I love books as well, but I think it’s a lot easier to experiment with storytelling forms in a film than in a novel. Watching Memento feels like a revelatory experience, but reading Ulysses feels like a chore (to most people, anyway).

So anyway, I thought I’d pick a category and share some of my favorites in that category, and explain what I like about them. Since I wish I could go back to last Monday and start writing for you guys all over again, I chose Time Travel as my category.

For some of these movies, the category itself is a bit of a spoiler, but if you haven’t seen them already, I hope you won’t mind in the name of me trying to suck you in.

12 Monkeys

12 Monkeys is classic storytelling — a dyed-in-the-wool time travel mystery. The movie adheres to time-honored sci-fi tradition by assuming that the past is unalterable; the hero trying to change the past is a tragic hero doomed to failure.

The mystery unfolds in a slow and steady manner while clues accumulate until you think your head is about to burst for not being able to piece them together. Then as the cold truth finally splashes over you like a bucket of ice water, your heart breaks for the poor sap crushed by forces beyond his control. But then there’s that last meeting . . .

Happy Accidents

Happy Accidents is an “Is he or isn’t he?” love story/mystery. Like Bruce Willis in 12 Monkeys, our hero is befuddled by his travels through time and struggling to make anyone believe him. Unlike 12 Monkeys, however, we don’t know whether he might be lying or possibly just crazy. The romance is cute and the clues are fun. One thing I like about the storytelling is that the movie sets itself up to break the usual rules of time travel well in advance, so that a crucial moment toward the end feels triumphant instead of feeling like cheating. The movie is light overall but worth watching.

Terminator 2: Judgment Day

(Why is Judgment so hard to spell correctly the first time?) There are so many things to like about Terminator 2 that I don’t know if I’ll even be able to list them all.

First of all, I really like that the story abides by rules it doesn’t bother to explain but is consistent with. For example, there is obviously some rule about how often people (and Terminators) can come back to the past. Perhaps there is some great energy cost associated with sending them back. Perhaps there are nodes in space-time which are the only places that time travel is possible, which would explain why the time-travelers end up coming back so close to each other. Whatever the rules are, they are consistent and lend themselves to an interesting story — one time traveler each for the humans and the machines, roughly every 16 years. These rules, whatever they are, end up being violated for the spin-off TV show, The Sarah Connor Chronicles, to its detriment (there are time-travelers everywhere) and aren’t even addressed in the miserable Terminator 4. Once time-travel becomes “free,” then the story becomes much less interesting, because you get bogged down in questions of “Why didn’t they just . . .”, which is the death knell of interesting discussion.

Judgment Day also does a great job of one-upping the previous film — which was a B movie — in every aspect. The previously unstoppable machine is now outdated and struggles to keep up against superior killing technology. The acting is better across the board. Linda Hamilton is now playing the character who can’t get people to believe that she knows the future (a common theme in these movies), a part that makes it easy to sympathize with her because you know that she’s right. But she plays the part with such animal ferocity that she almost pushes you back onto the side of the loony bin people, as she holds a syringe full of cleaning fluid to a guard’s neck.

The moment where she comes face to face with the specter that killed her lover and haunts her nightmares is one of the finest moments in the film. A lesser storyteller would play the moment for laughs. A better one would have her lash out in anger. Cameron, then at the height of his powers, knows that pure terror would overwhelm her despite all her training, and in that moment you understand all her earlier ruthlessness and fall back into rooting for her.

Ok, I was right, I don’t have time to talk about everything T2 does right. Moving on.


Looper is such a departure from storytelling norms that I’m still working through how I feel about it. On one hand, it’s easy to say that the movie is really two movies — the first half is a sci-fi/time travel movie about Bruce Willis in the city, and the second is about a small boy on a farm in the countryside.

On the other hand, the movie really works. It’s involving, and I cared about all the principle characters.

I liked that they decided to just throw all the conventional rules about time-travel right out the window. Time travel doesn’t make sense, right? There’s no way you can say that “this movie depicts time travel correctly and this one doesn’t,” because there’s no such thing as time travel (yet?). So whatever you decide to do in a movie is perfectly fine, as long as it’s consistent and isn’t so stupid as to be distracting.

For instance (BIG SPOILER), in Looper, there’s this bizarre phenomenon where a younger version of one character is having his limbs lopped off, and the effects are playing out immediately on the “older” version of him that has traveled back to the same time as his younger self. This doesn’t “make sense” because in theory, the older version of the man would have been crippled and would never have lived a life that allowed him to come back in time at all. But because time travel itself doesn’t make sense, we can always find some way to explain what’s happening. In this case, we could postulate that the effects of the mauling will make their way through space-time eventually. It’s just that it will take years for the effects to make themselves known “in the future” and prevent him from coming back, but right now they can propagate through the very short space-time to the older version who is trespassing in the past. He’s literally around the corner in space-time terms, and he’s the same entity as the younger man. Of course that violates the law of conservation of mass, but who cares about laws? Time travel!

In short, I liked Looper and I hope you will too.


Primer is the holy grail of time travel movies for time travel nerds. Written and directed for a paltry sum by an ex-engineer in Dallas, the movie is delightfully and willfully obtuse, resisting all attempts to be consumed as pop culture (easily digested, easily forgotten). Repeated viewings are a necessity.

I like to call it the only Gene Wolfe movie that will probably ever be made, although I don’t know that anyone has ever agreed with me. I’m not going to spoil one iota of the film because it speaks for itself, especially when it doesn’t.

After you’ve seen the movie, there’s some fascinating history about the director and his attempts to do something in the Hollywood system, his ultimate detachment from said system, and the saga of his new movie Upstream Color, which I’m ashamed to admit that I haven’t seen yet.

* * *

This is a guest post by Nate Spears, who has taken over the while Shawn is on vacation at an undisclosed location.

Borne Back Ceaselessly Into the Past

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* * *

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Sponsor: Fracture. Photos printed on glass.

Jeffrey Abbott’s Sweet Mac Setup

Who are you, what do you do, etc…?

My name is Jeffrey Abbott. I spend my time writing, editing, and making photographs in Huntsville, Alabama.

I currently work for a large international software company that has a local office nearby. They create plant design and management software, and I write the help manuals. It’s not incredibly exciting, but it pays the bills.

To scratch my creative itches, I spend a lot of time writing, reading, photographing, and helping other people with their writing. Most of my writing isn’t public; it’s just not something I have a desire to publish, and I love the feel of writing with pen and paper.

I run a blooming photography business that I’ve been growing for the past year. I typically create portraits for families and couples, or I work with local media to provide news and sports photos on demand. I’ve also launched an editing service that’s geared toward individual authors called Draft Evolution. I love partnering with writers and helping them get better at their craft.

My wonderful wife is a piano instructor and works out of our home. Our fourth anniversary is coming up really soon. We have two adorable Cavalier King Charles spaniels to look after and make sure we don’t become too busy.

What is your current setup?

Jeff Abbott Sweet Mac Setup

Jeff Abbott Sweet Mac Setup

Jeff Abbott Sweet Mac Setup

My primary computer is a mid-2011 Macbook Air. I usually connect it to my cheap-o 23″ Acer monitor, but I also enjoy using it in my reading chair as a true laptop. The monitor is mounted on an arm that makes it convenient to reposition when I’m working. I’m continually impressed by the speed and resilience of the Air. It’s my favorite computer, and I wish I could use it everywhere. At work I use a company-issued Dell with Windows 7 that weighs about 37 pounds. Even though it’s crazy fast, it still feels slow compared to the Air because it uses a hard disk drive. SSD is the only way to go.

I didn’t know that mechanical keyboards existed until Shawn wrote a review of several. I now have a CM Storm Quick Fire mechanical keyboard that I bought from Amazon. It was cheaper than most, and I wanted to experiment with the genre before spending more money on a nicer one. I love the keyboard, but I keep it at home now because it was annoying my coworkers (sorry guys).

My desk is a large number from IKEA that I dreamed of having for many years while I put up with an extremely small and wobbly desk from Target. The desk is large and immodest, but it’s so nice to spread out notebooks, prints, and electronic devices comfortably when I’m busy. After I make a mess, it all gets cleaned up. I try to dust and polish the desk once a week to combat the dust that a dark colored surface attracts. Some weeks are better than others. I sit on a generic Herman-Miller knock-off from Sam’s Club.

My Sony MDR-7506 headphones are never far away. Since my wife is usually teaching until 7 or 8 each night, I need a way to enjoy my music without disturbing anyone around me. These headphones do an excellent job of that and being comfortable at the same time. I’ve used these since high school when I went through an audio recording and engineering phase. Someone recommended them to me back then, and they’re still some of the best around for the price.

There is always a small collection of fountain pens on my desk. Right now, the current rotation is a TWSBI Mini and a Pilot Metropolitan. These change fairly regularly, but that’s an entirely different post.

For mobile computing, I can’t be without my third-gen iPad and my iPhone 4S. I prefer using the iPad for writing and reading, and the iPhone for communication and in situations where there isn’t WiFi. The iPhone amazes me as a pocket computer, but the iPad lets me work easier and faster. I carry an Amazon Basics bluetooth keyboard that connects to the iPad for longer writing sessions.

There is a 2-bay NAS attached to our Apple Extreme router that holds two 2 TB RAID-0 drives. This holds all of our media and backups of my photo libraries. I have two more backups on external USB drives that I keep in our fireproof safe, but all of our computers are backed up to CrashPlan as well. I take backups very seriously.

I also use a Spyder color profiler for my monitor to make sure the colors I’m seeing are somewhat accurate. I have a USB hub and a CF/SD card reader to ingest all the photographs I come home with.

My wife has a white MacBook that I bought in 2008. It’s had a long, fulfilling life, and it’s almost time to retire it. We also have a Mac Mini that does a great job as a media center for our TV. We don’t have cable TV, so the Mini makes it easy to watch all the things we enjoy. The Mini is also in charge of backing up the NAS to CrashPlan. I’d love to turn the Mini into more of a server that can process mail rules and folder scripts, but I haven’t made the time.

Why this rig?

The Macbook Air was a difficult choice, to be honest. I’m a photographer, and I can usually get by with the minimal power that the Air has for processing large files. But there are some times, usually when I’m working through a large number of RAW files that require small adjustments, that the Air gets completely overwhelmed. I love the computer for the portability — that’s why I got it. When I purchased the computer, my freelance work required me to have a computer with me at all times. News is unpredictable, and I was writing a large number of stories that required photographs. I didn’t have an iPad at the time, so the Air was the best choice for me at the time.

Then I got the iPad.

Now, I just take my camera equipment and iPad, photograph the thing, and then come back home to download and process the photos. The time-sensitive nature of my freelance work is pretty much gone, which means I hardly carry the Air with me. The iPad has all the software I need to do my freelance work outside of my office. It’s incredible.

The only thing I don’t use my iPad for is editing photos. Other than that, I could get by with only an iPad 98% of the time. It’s an incredible computer.

What software do you use and for what do you use it?

I predominantly use my Macbook for photo editing, managing my websites, writing, and discovering music. Here’s a list of my favorite software:

  • Adobe Lightroom 4 for processing, organizing, and exporting my photos to all the various outlets.
  • Adobe Photoshop for the occasional touchup that Lightroom can’t handle.
  • Billings for keeping track of my freelance income and sending out professional-looking invoices.
  • Things for making sense of the craziness in my head. This software keeps me organized, and I’ve never felt the need to jump to a different platform.
  • Spotify for keeping the music interesting.

And here’s a list of the software I use on a more casual basis:

And iOS:

  • I listen to Spotify pretty much all day during my day job.
  • Downcast for all those lovely podcasts.
  • PhotoSmith – I use this app in conjunction with Lightroom to flag photos as keepers before I start making adjustments.
  • Kindle and iBooks for reading.
  • Evernote for keeping track of receipts and things to reference later.
  • Byword for writing while I’m not at my computer.
  • IA Writer for opening .txt or .md files from email. For some reason, Byword can’t do this.
  • Tweetbot for keeping up with Twitter on a regular basis.
  • Riposte for keeping up with App.net. I was using Netbot until I read Shawn’s review of Riposte.
  • Day One for keeping track of my ups, downs, and memorable moments.
  • Camera+ for taking photos and making them look slightly more dramatic.
  • Things for keeping up with my tasks when I’m not at my computer. I use the iPhone app more than anything else.
  • Quotebook for storing lines of poetry, quotes, and other inspirations.
  • Fantastical is my favorite calendar app for the iPhone by far. I will be very pleased when they bring it to the iPad as well.
  • Mail for reading email.
  • Rego for storing places that I want to visit again, visit frequently, or plan to visit. Thanks again to Shawn for this recommendation.
  • Reeder – I don’t use this so much on my phone, but I’m excited about the new version for iPad.
  • Instapaper for reading long articles.
  • Pocket for saving multimedia items for later.
  • Wake N Shake – Never fails to wake me up quickly.
  • 1Password keeps my passwords straight.
  • Simplenote for referencing recipes. I don’t keep any other notes on this service anymore since most of my text files are on Dropbox where Byword can see them.
  • The Magazine is something I look forward to every couple of weeks.

How does this setup help you do your best creative work?

My current setup allows me to keep my head down when I’m working on a project. This office is my physical mind space, and it’s very important that I can come in here, shut the door, and get some work done. The vast desk lets me spread out my thoughts and organize things physically when I’m thinking through things. The reading chair allows me to lean back and read a new book or get some writing done. I typically do most of my editing work in the chair as well. There’s something about that chair that lets me think clearly. The dogs also love to use the chair when I’m not using it.

Jeff Abbott Sweet Mac Setup

When I think about being creative, I never think about my tools or my environment. They melt away when I’m focused on something. This environment allows me to do that easily. My previous home office environment and my current “real job” environment are non-conducive to focusing on the work. That’s why I prefer to be here, in my external brain.

How would your ideal setup look and function?

I would love to have a new 27″ iMac. I imagine the extra processing power will slice through large RAW files like butter. And that gigantic screen. Mmm. It would also be nice to have Mail, CrashPlan, and Hazel constantly running on my computer. The laptop goes to sleep or gets turned off too often to take full advantage of those scripts.

The other thing I’d love to upgrade is my chair. I have a cheap lumbar support pad on the chair that I’m pretty sure only improves my posture by 0.01%. I use an Aeron at work, and I’d be happy to have one here too. I’d really like an Embody, but they’re just so expensive. Small price to pay for a happy back, right?

I’d love to add more decoration to my office walls. We haven’t really spent a lot of time decorating the house, but I would love to have some visual inspiration on the walls that I can look at while thinking.

For the long term, I’d like all of my computers and needs to fit into one iPhone sized package that allows me to do everything from one small device. I’ll make sure Tim Cook is working on that.

More Sweet Setups

Jeff’s setup is one in a series of sweet Mac Setups.

Jeffrey Abbott’s Sweet Mac Setup

Combining the dour wisdom of the philosopher Kierkegaard with the modern philosophy of the … something something Kim Kardashian:

To win a crowd is no art; for that only untruth is needed, nonsense, & some knowledge of human passions. LIKE me on Facebook to learn more!

Ok one more:

A little makeup lesson for a friend: Tears do not quench the gleam in your eyes; pallid cheeks are all the more soulful.

But seriously this is the last one, this time from her spiritual twitter brother, Justin Buber:

The Thou is beyond description, not a mere list of named qualities. But I love ur eyes & ur hair, & the way ur jeans fit is makin me stare

This is a guest post by Nate Spears, who has taken over the site this week while Shawn is on vacation at an undisclosed location.