December 2021

Easily send notifications to your desktop/device

What is it? It’s a way to send arbitrary notifications from…well, just about anywhere to just about anything that can “listen”. The author has created an app (iOS and Android) as well as a CLI, and an API that you can run via cURL or any other similar app which means you can drive it just about any way you want!

I came across this in HackerNews at The author has the source available on github at While you can host it yourself, the author has the service available for free at ntfy,sh.

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A Linux that makes it easy to track…

…your installed packages and determine which file(s) are used by which package. I came across recently and, I have to say, I’m intrigued! It’s an experiment that has been going for 10 years(!) – you can read an interview with one of its original developers at There’s an fairly active forum over at and they also do Twitter, IRC(!), Mastodon, and…yes, Facebook!

No, I haven’t installed it yet…not enough time to play with a radically different distro (that is not without its problems) but it’s progressing and takes an interesting approach to file and package management.

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“You don’t own web3”

Jack Dorsey tweeted this a few days ago ( and it caused quite a stir. I don’t completely disagree with him but I think it’s a little different – web3 belongs to those with cash. You see, every transaction, every webpage loads, every search has to be paid for in some way. Why? It’s the cost of owning your own privacy and is the linchpin of web3. No, it generally doesn’t cost a lot but you have to pay in REAL money by way of tokens or cryptocurrency. Want a web3 domain? Sure! Get one at for only $5/year. BUT you’ll need to pay the “gas” (i.e. pay for the energy expended to register your domain on the Ethereum blockchain. How much is that? Well, how much does ETH cost? Right now, it’ll cost about $100 to register that $5 domain. Quite a lot different from those deals you can get from “regular” registrars (for .com and .org, etc).

So, which is it? Pay with money or pay with your personal information?

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It was bound to happen

Token Music,, is launching a way for music artists to securely sell a portion of their royalties to their fans using blockchain tech – FST (Fungible Security Tokens) as opposed to NFT. has details for how you can join them.

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Switching to a chromebook

I’ve been using a Mac for the past few years a work. It was an opportunity to learn and use a Mac at no cost to myself and, well, honestly, the corporate addons for the Mac were considerably fewer than those for a Windows machine. At home I was a die hard Windows and Linux user. Linux couldn’t do everything I wanted easily – too many distros, too many packages, too difficult to upgrade to a new version – and Windows did pretty much everything I needed (especially with the new Windows Terminal and WSL/WSL2) for my use here at home. When it came time to replace my work Macbook, I was offered my old Macbook at a very reasonable price so I took it and began using it for my stuff here at home. What made me move to it as my primary machine? Windows updates! I use a Windows laptop and every time I picked it up the battery was dead because Microsoft had decided it needed to wake it up and install the latest updates! So I eventually moved all my home stuff over to the Mac.

I’ve had chromebooks for a few years and they’ve been OK as an occasional use platform. The best part is you have a real desktop browser in Chrome on them. So, with a small-ish chromebook (10-12″ screen) I could easily and quickly pull up a desktop site on a fully capable browser. Over the years Google has added the ability to run Android apps and even host a full Linux (Debian) distro, complete with full GUI access…and support for Windows is just around the corner (it’s already available for Enterprise customers). So I’ve been on the lookout for a new chromebook, which I found in the Acer Spin 713 with an 11th generation Intel i5 on sale at Best Buy for a tad over $500. That’s what I’m writing this on. It’s still on the small side – 13″ screen – but plenty powerful. And, honestly, I can already do 95% of everything I need on it now AND I can run the Android apps that I use every day as well as Progressive Web Apps. This is now my go-to machine. The one I keep nearby and reach for whenever I need to do something…pretty much anything that requires a decent keyboard and/or a larger screen and/or a desktop browser and/or multiple windows.

Feel free to reach out to me with questions or comments. Honestly, I can’t recommend this enough and I may consider getting a chromebox to replace my little Linux server.

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No-code/Low-code web3

A few days ago I was fortunate enough to find out about over on (see ThirdWeb is a platform to help you build and deploy web3 apps and games without worrying about how to make your commits to the blockchain of your choice. It’s still in the early adopter phase and they interface with various testnets so you can create and test your ideas for no cost (you can easisly get free testnet tokens). If you’re interested in learning more or trying your hand at creating a web3 app (dApp), check them out –

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For all you CLI/shell aficionados

Next Generation Shell ( looks interesting. I’ve been doing a lot with REST APIs which generally return JSON or XML; i.e. something I need to parse to know the results. I could do a lot of my coding in Python or some other language that can easily parse those returns, there are a number of reasons I use bash (notably, the ability to put stuff into the current environment for later use and not have to worry about config files cluttering up my filesystem). NGS doesn’t address THAT particular issue but it does have native parsing capability as well as quite a few other really useful features. It’s something to look in to, for sure! For Mac and Linux and a docker container, too.

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