Hackerific

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I’m at the end of a trial of Contexts an interesting window switching app for macOS (ooh, new style naming!), and I’m enjoying using it so decided to write a review. From its homepage, the core idea of Contexts is to improve Command + Tab functionality and make it a lot more flexible. In my view it definitely succeeds on both counts, but at the expense of being a little confusing, and maybe having a few too many features.

Music in July

For me, July has been completely dominated by Gojira’s Magma. Having not been a fan in the past, the fact that I’m enjoying this so much came as something of a shock… Especially the vocals, which seem a bit cleaner than on their previous albums. Overall, this seems a bit more progressive on past albums, as well as less aggressive. Check it out. Listen on: Apple Music CD from Amazon MP3 from Amazon (also on Amazon Prime Music) Next up, I’ve been loving Inter Arma’s Paradise Gallows.

This is a short and hopefully sweet post with a quick tip I use in Pinboard all the time, but which as far as I can tell other people don’t really know about. I’m also always surprised when I try pinboard apps and they don’t support this feature. You may already know about the Popular page on the barebones-and-yet-super-awesome bookmarking site Pinboard, but did you know you can also drill down by tag?

Music in May

Early summer seems to be a great time for new releases. It’s traditional for touring bands to release new material before the summer of festivals and live shows begins, and this May has been no exception. Here are a few new releases I’ve been enjoying, from throughout May and some of June. Starting at the top, there’s Katatonia’s The Fall of Hearts. While Katatonia’s last few albums were on the softer side, this album really shakes things up a bit.

Well, it’s taken an embarrassingly long time to finish writing about it, but here’s the final post on my Exist plugin for Slogger. If you’ve not seen the other sections, you’ll want to start by reading Part 1 and Part 2, as this article just pulls the parts of the previous two together and into a Slogger plugin. Writing plugins is pretty straightforward, and there’s a template to help too. I started turning all my hackery from the previous two parts in this series into a plugin by copying that into the plugins directory, and picking a name for it.

In my last post I worked out how to grab data from Exist, using oAuth 2. In this post, I’ll take the data from the Exist API, convert it into markdown, ready for integrating into a Slogger plugin. Unfortunately, due to me running out of time contracting the plugin will have to wait until part three! Recap At the end of the last post, I had a way to authenticate with Exist and get back a token which could be used to make requests for data.

After writing a simple Slogger plugin for MyFitnessPal I was keen to add more plugins for services I use, and so an obvious target was exist.io. A lifelogger and activity correlator I’ve written about before. Exist has an API, along with some very shiny and user friendly API docs, so I set about learning how to grab the data I need. From the start, I knew this would be a bit more involved than just munging some publicly accessible HTML from MFP, so decided to handle the tasks in two main chunks.

I’ve been using MyFitnessPal (MFP) to log exercise and food for a couple of weeks (before that I tried SparkPeople but the app was buggy and the food database wasn’t great), and I really like knowing exactly how many more calories I can eat, as well as keep track of exercise and weight. Now, it’s great to be able to log stuff using an app with a barcode scanner, and then view stats and info online, but I don’t like the idea of my data all being locked away and belonging to someone else, and what it I want to use a different service?

April Tunes

The last few weeks have seen a lot of exceptional new releases. Hardly a day goes by when Apple Music’s New page doesn’t have some juicy metal to digest. We’ve seen albums from Haken, Deftones, Desaster, Cult of Luna & Julie Christmas and Painted Wives. Some of these are excellent albums, but for this post I want to step slightly outside the world of mainstream metal and focus on some slightly difference releases.

There’s no doubt in my mind that journalling is a really useful thing to do, both for personal logging and keeping track of progress and decisions at work. I’ve spent a bit of time experimenting, and I’ve tried various logging and journalling apps, including Quiver, Ulysses, rolling my own using vim and one of the most popular Mac Journalling apps, Day One. All of these have pros and cons, and for various reasons I can never settle into sticking to just one methodology, so I’m currently using Day One for personal logging, helped along by Slogger (mentioned previously in my post on Mac Dev Tools).