Friday, June 30, 2023

Friday Links 23-20

A backpack and a bicycle travel bag at the airport.
Two great long reads this week: "The Case Against Travel" and "How to reduce the damage done by gentrification"


Platform Engineering Hype - I am not a big fan of these kinds of teams either. Maybe there is a scale where it makes sense, but not for most of the companies. 

climbing the leadership ladder: from manager to director to VP - interesting perspective about managing in different directions and "If the things that you love are communicating, unblocking, and coaching, you must do more of that at higher levels."

Senior Rotations"The basic concept is that every Senior Engineer and above (back then that meant Staff, Principal, and Distinguished) was entitled to a 4 week rotation with a different team once a year."


Meta developer tools: Working at scale - remember: you are not at Meta's scale

Emacs for Android [LWN] - this would be nice if I could get org-mode working and there were some reasonable way to work around the keyboard issues. 

Disabling SELinux's runtime disable - this won't affect many people, there are still many options to turn it off. 


546. Are E.S.G. Investors Actually Helping the Environment? [Podcast] - I don't buy the idea that one should invest in dirty companies in the hope to change them.

 ‘A war on nature’: rangers build mountain out of wildlife traps found in Uganda park - of how many which haven't been found?

Sweden abandons 100% renewable energy goal as EU reconsiders climate policies - adding more nuclear … good luck with that.


Is It Worth It To Confront Drivers? [Podcast] - no, it is frustrating, and you will just get more upset.

How to reduce the damage done by gentrification - "fairer housing, fairer public transport and fairer schooling"

I finally found a true Dutch bike in North America. Here's what you need to know  [YouTube] - these are really only useful in cities and relatively flat areas. Cool initiative, though. 

Still nurturing love and vines: the centenarian who built Barcelona’s first roof garden - this looks better than our proper garden.

Random Travel

The Case Against Travel - I am so off travelling.

Building atomic habits with James Clear [Podcast] - amazingly I still haven't read that book

Biniam Girmay: Africa’s new cycling hero [Podcast] - one more reason to look forward to the Tour.

National Geographic reportedly lays off its last staff writers - :-( 

McGrath: Red Hat’s commitment to open source - I am not happy.

Friday Links Disclaimer
Inclusion of links does not imply that I agree with the content of linked articles or podcasts. I am just interested in all kind of perspectives. If you follow the link posts over time you might notice common themes, though.
More about the links in a separate post: About Friday Links.

Friday, June 23, 2023

Friday Links 23-19

Group of professional cyclists passing on top of a climb in Barcelona

The last two weeks I enjoyed the interview with S.A. Cosby (and his book) and the story about the right-wing looney on ecstasy.


Honor the Past, Present, and People: Creating and Managing Positive Change (with Esther Derby, Consultant) [Podcast] - "See the role of the middle manager as connecting the contextual knowledge from the top of the organization with the day-to-day operations at the bottom."

Ep - 26 - Should I be using the SPACE framework? feat. Abi Noda (CEO and Co-Founder at DX) [Podcast] - about the shortcomings of DORA & SPACE.

Ask Questions, Repeat The Hard Parts, and Listen - I think the title already says it all. 

Identify your controls. - relating different levels of control and alignment.

How We Connect Our Engineers Directly To Buffer Customers with Customer Engineering Days - bringing engineers closer to customers and other departments can only be good.


New Approaches For Detecting AI-Generated Profile Photos - websites who live off user contributed content are pretty buggered. 

An explosion in software engineers using AI coding tools? - I just dipped my toes into this, and not with a lot of success. This will change though, quickly.


Switzerland referendum: Voters back carbon cuts as glaciers melt - sadly this is an outlier. 

Spain drought forces Fuente de Piedra flamingos to find new home - and so do the tourists. 

Greta Thunberg takes part in her final school strike - warning: 'The fight has only just begun' - five years, 251 weeks! She probably learned more during this time than other people in a lifetime.


The Dumbest Excuse for Bad Cities [YouTube] - also good: "it's too new"

Neighborhood walkability as a remedy for childhood anxiety - I am uncertain if you should draw this conclusion, but I like the argument.

The Collboni Surprise - Barcelona's new mayor might not be as bad as expected, but still pretty bad. (see also: Socialist mayor in Barcelona for first time in 12 years after last-minute drama)

Can U.S. Cities Build Narrow European Streets? [YouTube] - spoiler: yes!

Bicycle theft and traffic nuisance: the main concerns faced by cyclists in Barcelona - surprise! 

We Keep Losing The Battle Against Traffic. Is This Inevitable? [YouTube] - sadly, yes

Random Cyclists

Leah Goldstein: the cyclist who raced men across America … and won 

S.A. Cosby [Podcast] - this made me buy and read "All The Sinners Bleed" right away.

Sperm counts [Podcast] - frozen peas on your testis?

Batman Reading Order - I was looking for inspiration, but this is too much.

Red Hat cutting back RHEL source availability - I guess one should have seen this coming after the CentOS Stream debacle. Is Fedora next?

Stud Lane Book Nook - I love book nooks, sadly I have no real bookshelf. 

‘Touch mic and shell it!’ How British freestyle rap videos became a global phenomenon - for some reason UK rap seems much more real to me. My time in London might be to blame.

BIKE24 invests 10 million euros for a robotic logistics center in Barcelona, creating 50 jobs - they are not specifically saying this is because of me, but it is because of me. 

How a dose of MDMA transformed a white supremacist - I bet things like these happened a lot in the 90s. 

Rocky Horror at 50: ‘A place for the marginalised’ - I'll file this under "anniversaries that make me feel old"

Who needs the Metaverse? Meet the people still living on Second Life - every couple of years I go: "What happened to Second Life?"

The curse of the Nuon [YouTube] - another fun odyssey in an obsolete technology that I didn't know existed.

Other Links

Friday Links Disclaimer
Inclusion of links does not imply that I agree with the content of linked articles or podcasts. I am just interested in all kind of perspectives. If you follow the link posts over time you might notice common themes, though.
More about the links in a separate post: About Friday Links.

Friday, June 09, 2023

Friday Links 23-18

Bird looking into a camera
I am skipping every second week currently, with the result that today is a bit long.

I loved the podcast about the U-Cycle initiative in Ukraine and one about the climate-grandmas in Switzerland.


Measuring Success & Performance of Managers - A Deep Dive [Podcast] - measuring individual contributors is already hard, measuring managers even more so.

Admiral Linda Fagan on servant leadership [Podcast] -  I usually skip military leadership lessons, this is great, though.

An alternative to NPS for dev tools - NPS is questionable, this is another approach. 

TBM 223: Why Aren't They Saying Anything? - there are many reasons, it's the leader's job to figure it out and avoid the obvious ones. 

Continuous Code Reviews using Non-Blocking Reviews - a case study


Should you optimize for all-cash compensation, if possible? - it depends.

Story: Quitting (And Then Rejoining) Stack Overflow [Podcast] - cool story about the site.

Work-Life Harmony: Karinna Briseno Shares Her Experience at Buffer  - hmmm.


Sci-fi writer Ted Chiang: ‘The machines we have now are not conscious’  - about "AI"

Apple Vision Pro Impressions! [YouTube] - this is a very reasonable review. It sounds like a nice toy, that is too expensive for me. 

Red Hat dropping support for LibreOffice - not good news. 

Open-Source LLMs - I haven't tried any of these, but I love to see projects built around them.

WezTerm - you can never have enough terminals, right?


The biggest climate case that ever was [Podcast] - older Swiss woman fighting to change climate laws. 

Germany’s forests under threat [Podcast] - I didn't realise that it was this bleak. 

BBC OS Conversations: Mount Everest [Podcast] - climbing this mountain is looking different as climate change happens. 

Testing New York Apartments: How Dirty Is That Gas Stove, Really? - pretty dirty. 

Drought-struck Barcelona quenches thirst with costly desalination - climate change is costing us already. 

Water war: Why drought in Spain is getting political - these are very peaceful wars at the moment.


Paved Paradise with Henry Grabar [Podcast] - parking again. 

Sadiq Khan [Podcast] - the Mayor of London about pollution in London and climate change. (also: Sadiq Khan Q&A [Podcast])

Stockholmer Radpolitik, ukrainischer Widerstand & Shimano CUES  [Podcast, mostly German] - both, the interview with the minister for traffic of Stockholm (in German) and the interview with U-Cycle in Ukraine (in English) are great. 

Car-Free Cities Are the Future, Biometrics Reveal - "sifting through these data we see that people do not like looking at cars"

Finnish businessman hit with €121,000 speeding fine - can we use this system worldwide, please? 

Sex Work Bollards: Not Actually Bollards - better than nothing! 

“Very conservative and unresponsive attitude towards bikes”: United Nations' delegates slam policy of allowing cars in HQ but not bikes - always the same.

Five easy ways to reduce bike theft in your community [YouTube] - easy if they let you do this.

Nick Offerman [Podcast] - just a pleasant chat.

Post-Colau Barcelona: Implications, ‘bikelash’ and opportunities - I am worried. 

Minnesota Legislature passes $1.3B transportation deal with gas tax hike, sending it to Walz - take from the cars and give to everybody else.

Random Birds

The Seagulls [Podcast] - turns out being homosexual is completely natural … who knew?

Why California is dismantling its death row [Podcast] - It is remarkable that this is even going on.

#167 Dr. Gina Poe: The Science of Better Sleep [Podcast] - this is all fine, if you have control over your environment. 

Concert for the 50th anniversary of the album 'Tubular Bells' by Mike Oldfield. 4K  [YouTube] - 50 years!?

‘Only 12 other people have completed it’: cycling the 7,600km European Divide - that looks beautiful. 

‘Deeply personal and very authentic’: how podcasts took over the world in 20 years - 20 years!? - a clickable timeline since the beginning of time. You can easily waste a few hours on this. 

Getxophoto festival – in pictures - they are all lovely.

Living and working from an all-electric VW ID Buzz - nice. 

Ditching a Phone Case Is the Latest Symbol of Stealth Wealth - it's a sign of rich or careful people.

Other Links

Friday Links Disclaimer
Inclusion of links does not imply that I agree with the content of linked articles or podcasts. I am just interested in all kind of perspectives. If you follow the link posts over time you might notice common themes, though.
More about the links in a separate post: About Friday Links.