There’s a first for everything.

John Gruber on the MacBook keyboards:

I consider these keyboards the worst products in Apple history. MacBooks should have the best keyboards in the industry; instead they’re the worst. They’re doing lasting harm to the reputation of the MacBook brand.

I just started a new job and normally I get excited because that means I get a brand-new MacBook Pro.

This is the first time in my 19 years as a graphic designer I’m not looking forward to getting a new machine.

And that sucks.

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Product

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McGregor

Conor McGregor willing to serve as co-main event for the UFC, on one condition:

While he didn’t quite get what he was asking for, McGregor did ultimately get a new, six-fight deal with the UFC that included an official sponsorship deal for McGregor’s Proper 12 whiskey, including putting it on the UFC canvas. But after serving as the A side for by far the biggest PPV in UFC history, McGregor is back to chasing the equity he feels he deserves, and at this point, it’s getting harder to deny him. McGregor is responsible for five of the six highest-selling UFC PPVs ever. If any fighter deserves equity in the company, it’s him, but the UFC has been adamantly against setting that kind of precedent.

The UFC should give him a cut, he’s worth it. Every contender in the UFC is a fighter, but not every fighter is a fight promoter. McGregor is a promotion machine. He’s one of those rare individuals who understands there’s way more to fighting events than just fighting. As the article mentions, he was in 5 of 6 highest-selling pay-per-views ever in the UFC.

That’s not an accident.

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Sports

Shitty Movies

In Hunter S. Thompson’s book Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas: A Savage Journey to the Heart of the American Dream attorney Dr. Gonzo lists out all the clothing, illegal drugs, and weapons his client, Raoul Duke (the book’s protagonist), needs for his trip to Las Vegas where he’ll be covering the Mint 400 desert motocross race. Duke replies, “Anything worth doing, is worth doing right.”

This quote popped in my head when I saw The Shitty Movie Sundays Watchability Index my friend Bryan put together after watching and reviewing shitty movies for over 10 years. His first shitty movie review was Doom back in June of 2008.

If you don’t have a penchant for shitty movies, or are overwhelmed by the idea of sifting through thousands of shitty movies in order to find the “good” shitty amidst the unwatchable shitty, head on over to Missile Test. Like any list, it’s subjective, and full of the action, sci-fi, and horror genres.

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Film

Crediting Other Users’ Content

The Instagram account fuckjerry, along with a few other high profile accounts like thefatjewish, have become notorious over the last few years for stealing other peoples’ content.

It seems Elliot Tebele, founder of Fuckjerry, is finally starting to understand what copyright law is and has issued a statement via Medium:

I know I’ve made enemies over the years for using content and not giving proper credit and attribution to its creators. In the early days of FuckJerry, there were not well-established norms for reposting and crediting other users’ content, especially in meme culture. Instagram was still a new medium at the time, and I simply didn’t give any thought to the idea that reposting content could be damaging in any way.

In the past few years, I have made a concerted, proactive effort to properly credit creators for their work. We have also updated our policies to make sure we are responsive to creators whenever they have reached out to us about posts. It hasn’t been a perfect system, but I do feel it was a significant improvement, as many of my peers have approached these issues in the same way.

Given the conversations over the past few days, and the issues that have come to light, it is clear however, that we need to do better.

Effective immediately, we will no longer post content when we cannot identify the creator, and will require the original creator’s advanced consent before publishing their content to our followers. It is clear that attribution is no longer sufficient, so permission will become the new policy.

Comedic video editor Vic Berger posted a very Berger-y video making fun of Tebele that was pulled from Youtube but has reemerged on Vimeo.

“If in my position I can’t stand up to this kind of extortion, how many people can?”

The National Enquirer’s parent company, AMI, tried to blackmail Jeff Bezos with naked they obtained, but Bezos isn’t playing:

Well, that got my attention. But not in the way they likely hoped. Any personal embarrassment AMI could cause me takes a back seat because there’s a much more important matter involved here. If in my position I can’t stand up to this kind of extortion, how many people can? (On that point, numerous people have contacted our investigation team about their similar experiences with AMI, and how they needed to capitulate because, for example, their livelihoods were at stake.)

In the AMI letters I’m making public, you will see the precise details of their extortionate proposal: They will publish the personal photos unless Gavin de Becker and I make the specific false public statement to the press that we “have no knowledge or basis for suggesting that AMI’s coverage was politically motivated or influenced by political forces.”

If we do not agree to affirmatively publicize that specific lie, they say they’ll publish the photos, and quickly. And there’s an associated threat: They’ll keep the photos on hand and publish them in the future if we ever deviate from that lie.

AMI is a scummy company that lacks morals. Who would have thought?

Related: The New York Post didn’t pass up the opportunity to publish a great headline.

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Law, Privacy

Failure Résumé

Tim Herrera recommends keeping a failure résumé:

Keeping a failure résumé — or Anti-Portfolio or CV of Failures or whatever you’d like to call it — is simple: When you fail, write it down. But instead of focusing on how that failure makes you feel, take the time to step back and analyze the practical, operational reasons that you failed. Did you wait until the last minute to work on it? Were you too casual in your preparation? Were you simply out of your depth?

“The definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again, but expecting different results.” —Albert Einstein

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Career

“There never was going to be a happy ending for the heavyweight great.”

Chuck Mindenhall on Fedor Emelianenko’s loss to Ryan Bader this past Saturday night in Bellator:

It’s an unofficial statistic, but MMA is something like 0-for-4,563 when it comes to giving its fighters storybook endings. The latest to get a shot was Fedor Emelianenko, who at 42 years old was trying to become Bellator’s heavyweight champion on Saturday night at Bellator 214, against all odds and decorum. Had he beat Ryan Bader to close out the Heavyweight Grand Prix — had the old Emperor successfully stormed the West one last time — he could have gotten the hell out and left all the authors of his legacy scrambling for the right superlatives.

Instead, he got smashed by a left hand. Worse, he barely reacted to that inbound left as it made its way towards his face. When the punch landed, the light flickered in the attic and his blue eyes went to some distant spot on the horizon. Bader wasted little time in blasting him again after he fell. And then again, just for good measure.

Total bout time: 35 seconds.

Total groans of sadness: 3,298,470.

Mindenhall is (unfortunately) getting good at writing about once-great fighters falling before they retire.

If you’re not familiar with Fedor’s career in MMA, do yourself a favor and check out one of his highlight reels.

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Sports

“the prisoner of his own impulse”

Inside Trump’s shutdown turnaround:

His poll numbers were plummeting. His FBI director was decrying the dysfunction. The nation’s air travel was in chaos. Federal workers were lining up at food banks. Economic growth was at risk of flatlining, and even some Republican senators were in open revolt.

So on Friday, the 35th day of a government shutdown that he said he was proud to instigate, President Trump finally folded. After vowing for weeks that he would keep the government closed unless he secured billions in funding for his promised border wall, Trump agreed to reopen it.

He got $0 instead.

Trump’s capitulation to Democrats marked a humiliating low point in a polarizing presidency and sparked an immediate backlash among some conservative allies, who cast him as a wimp.

Elected as a self-proclaimed master dealmaker and business wizard who would bend Washington to his will and stand firm on his campaign promises — chief among them the wall — Trump risks being exposed as ineffective.

“He was the prisoner of his own impulse and it turned into a catastrophe for him,” said David Axelrod, who was a White House adviser to President Barack Obama. “The House of Representatives has power and authority — and now a speaker who knows how to use it — so that has to become part of his calculation or he’ll get embarrassed again.”

The dog learns to heel.

Is that you, Suunto?

News came last week that Alphabet’s health division, Verily, got clearance from the FDA to test the EKG feature on their smartwatch. Remember, last year Apple introduced this feature on the Apple Watch Series 4.

Anyway, that’s not the follow-the-leader news that caught my eye. It was the watch photo featured in the Verge story. It reminded me of a watch I had seen before:

The reason I know about the Suunto Lumi is because I bought one and wrote a blog post on it in 2009.

Everything is a remix.

Cars in the Wild: San Francisco

At the end of 2015 I dedicated my Instagram account exclusively to all the old cars I spot on the streets of San Francisco (photographing old cars is a hobby bordering on an addiction).

Then in the summer of 2018 decided to compile them into a hardcover book (layout in InDesign, retouching in Lightroom). Now the book is ready to be printed up on Kickstarter.

It’s been a labor of love. If love old cars, or San Francisco, or both, check out my project. It’s called Cars in the Wild: San Francisco.

ICE-ing

Aggrieved Tesla Owners Can Just Tow Trucks Blocking The Supercharger Stations:

Tesla drivers calls it “ICE-ing”, after the initials for internal combustion engine: It’s where gasoline- and diesel-powered vehicles block access to Superchargers as a way to… protest electric vehicles I guess? It has to be frustrating to be barred from obtaining the single thing your car needs to function, but it looks like Tesla owners are looking at new ways to fight back.

The owners of those trucks are assholes.

The response by Tesla owners is great for two reasons. First, they’re able to tow the trucks from the charging station spots, thus (somewhat) solving the problem. Second, the douchebag truck owners are reminded who has more torque.

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Vehicle

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Bird Brains

Netflix warns against Bird Box challenge as dangerous trend goes viral:

Netflix has warned fans against participating in a potentially dangerous online challenge that’s inspired by its recent original horror film Bird Box.

The challenge takes the core concept of Bird Box — wearing a blindfold at all times while wandering around outside — and applies it to a certain period of time. Some people, like YouTube creator Morgan Adams, have tried to go about their daily lives for 24 hours while blindfolded, while others have attempted the challenge for a shorter period.

Netflix’s social media team called out the challenge on Twitter, asking people to not hurt themselves while performing the act.

Seems I already have contenders for my 2019 Darwinism Awards.

Yay humans!

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Twatter-In-Chief

Kara Swisher, writing for the Times, on Trump’s Twitter dependency:

It also makes one wonder exactly what Mr. Trump would do without Twitter, which has become his best and only true way to communicate. He can certainly go on television and he does; he can make a live speech and he does; he can stand out on the White House lawn and he does. But it’s not the same. The lightning-fast, easy-hit addiction of Twitter has Mr. Trump hooked like none other.

And there are zero alternatives online. Facebook is too bloated and slow; Snapchat is too small and hard to use for the olds; Reddit is a hot mess. There is no other digital harbor for Mr. Trump’s carnival barker show, no place where both the left and right can react and where all the media gathers.

So what would happen to the president who governs by tweet if he finally did or said something that forced Twitter to throw him off the platform? Could he do his job at all?

That last question is a scary one but also completely valid.

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Uncategorized

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