The Future: A Cat Litter Box and DRM

Jorge Lopez:

Seriously CatGenie, you added fairly sophisticated DRM to a litter box? I’m a tad hurt you spent my money on building in a restriction instead of figuring out how to avoid constantly cooking poop.
 This made me realize that I don’t actually own a CatGenie, I’m renting it. Though I paid for it, I have to pay per use yet I’m still responsible for all repairs until it craps out and I have to get another one. A tad disheartening.

I had written up a much longer post about DRM, advertising-driven monetization and where we are headed, but never published it, I couldn’t find the right way to express it all.

Jorge hits the nail on the head: manufacturers want us to rent the hardware we buy, whether it is the CatGenie or Keurig. They want to make money on every interaction with their product. And it isn’t just makers of disposable pod coffee makers, but every company. Microsoft and Apple working on patents to insert advertising into their operating systems is one example, the music industry salivating at a chance to charge every time one hears a song in their catalog, whether you own it or hear it in an ambient way.

Frank Chimero in the post Boring Future, Volume 1

Boring Future #3
 Ten years after the introduction of Google’s self-driving car, it still shows ads for businesses in other cities. Everyone complains, but we’d be terrified if the ads were too good. There’s a mutual interest to retard the platform. You want a dumb ad network so you can believe Google doesn’t know too much. Google wants it to seem dumb so they can keep some knowledge for themselves. After watching a 15-second YouTube ad for bail bonds, the car starts driving you to the Google grocery store without you telling it you needed milk. When you arrive, the car makes you sing the grocery store’s jingle to unlock the doors.

This is the future…

Using Evernote (the right way)

Thomas Honeyman:

When I first started using Evernote, I used it the way I’ve always used physical notebooks: a note goes in a notebook.
 Of course!
 So I created a bunch of notebooks. One notebook for a school class. One notebook for my parking tickets. One notebook for reminiscing about coffee. Unfortunately, this is a fine way to miss out on perhaps the most powerful way to use Evernote: the tagging system. I discovered this system through a wonderful Michael Hyatt post. He noticed that tags are essentially the same thing as notebooks, except with a lot more power (and a lot less visual reinforcement).

Related to my Productivity Late 2014 post, the secret to using Evernote successfully is to realize the notebook — note relationship is one-to-one, but the tag — note relationship is many-to-one. Notes can be trapped and lost in a notebook, but be more fluid and accessible with the use of tags.

Ben Brooks: The New Way to Edit Photos

Ben Brooks:

What finally pushed me over the edge was a long look at how I actually use photos. My primary goal is not to make art, but to capture moments and in that, when I do capture a great moment, I want to share that image quickly and widely. I don’t want to share the unedited image, I want to make the image look great still, but sharing is really what photography is all about.
 And so, with that in mind I looked at my Lightroom workflow:

  • Wait a long time to import images from my camera. (Usually weeks after I took the photos.)
  • Never import iPhone shots, where a lot of images reside.
  • Once imported, rate images.
  • After I rate them I edit them by choosing one of 12 “presets” that I have created.
  • Apply cropping to select images.
  • Share on Flickr,, or other means like Dropbox, email, etc.
  • Close my computer.

Even if I am just editing a handful of pictures, I still will take about 30 minutes to do all of this, between Lightroom being slow with RAW files, or me obsessing over minor tweaks.
 What I realized in looking at all of that: it is a big pain in the ass.
 I don’t like it, I don’t enjoy it at all.
 Further, I don’t have the images in the most important place: my iPhone. What kind of bullshit is that? Not my kind of bullshit. This was at the moment I decided I had to figure out how to do this all faster on my iPad.

I am finding that the further we get from the iOS 8 launch the more capable my iPad is becoming. I have replicated almost every function of my work computer on the iPad, with the exception of multiple monitors. Using Ben’s photo method is just one more step in my journey of shifting my work to iPad.

Game Theory: The Potluck Dilemma.

Game Theory: The Potluck Dilemma

The Potluck Dilemma offers various insights on producer behaviors when attending one of Cheryl’s snooty gatherings. The individual determinants of compliance are so complex for each agent from game to game that a Nash Equilibrium is all but impossible. Few constants exist. Except that Drew will drink too much and fire off that unhinged laugh at all his own jokes. That’s a given.