For now, writers—whether Docs fans or Word stans—need to be ready to accept edits in whatever form they come. But Google Docs appears to be coming for us all, slowly but surely—even if we’re not quite ready to Accept This Change.
I don’t love web-based word processors. They’re just a little laggy for me. But Google Docs is convenient—especially for collaboration. However, I don’t think it’s any better or worse than the online Word or Dropbox editors. I’m not sure it’s good for a news organization to depend upon a free product, though. That would make me nervous. Especially if I were reporting something negative about the owner of the free product.
Finding 1: There are significant challenges in creating and maintaining a successful Google+ product that meets consumers’ expectations.
Action 1: We are shutting down Google+ for consumers.
And I’m genuinely surprised Google+ was compromised the way it was. I thought Google was tighter than that.
I did enjoy sharing posts there, though. RIP, G+. FYI, I’m on Mastodon.
A few weeks ago Google shipped an update to Chrome that fundamentally changes the sign-in experience. From now on, every time you log into a Google property (for example, Gmail), Chrome will automatically sign the browser into your Google account for you. It’ll do this without asking, or even explicitly notifying you. (However, and this is important: Google developers claim this will not actually start synchronizing your data to Google — yet…)
I’m curious how much of this impacts Chromium. I usually don’t sign into Chrome/Chromium anymore since I use so little of Google. And I’m using less and less. Which is my larger point. The problem isn’t the browser — it’s the company behind the browser.
Why I’m done with Chrome | A Few Thoughts on Cryptographic Engineering
I’ve seen a lot of contentious posts about this. My hot takes are:
- Living by the Golden Rule. I’d be very upset if someone I cared about was on the wrong side of a Linus Torvalds rant, email or otherwise.
- Torvalds is an adult trying to make himself a better person. That’s something a community should support.
- The kernel is in great hands with Greg Kroah-Hartman.
After Years of Abusive E-mails, the Creator of Linux Steps Aside | The New Yorker
Dropbox is annoyingly dropping support for a bunch of Linux file systems. Because backup is so important, I don’t want to use something self-hosted, but I think I’ll give SpiderOak another shot.
I’d say Dropbox doesn’t care about Linux, but honestly I think it’s more they don’t care about their customers (see the Public Folder debacle). They’re just not an awesome company to work with.
Dropbox client warns me that it’ll stop syncing in Nov, why? | Dropbox Community
Sam Hewitt has a very nuanced post on the challenge of customization with desktops, specifically GNOME. The ability to customize makes it hard for software designers to know how things will render. So less customization options makes their life much easier. But the ability to customize it what draws many of us to Linux. He ends on a fair thought:
I would rather see GNOME evolve as a platform and become a little less developer-hostile by dropping support for third-party themes, than stagnate. Doing so would also bring us in line with the how the major (successful) platforms maintain a consistent look and feel and consider app developers’ control over their apps and their rights to their brand identities.
That said, I doubt such a hardline position will be widely warmly received, but I would like to see a more closed approach to look and feel. Though, perhaps actually building some sort of framework that allows for custom stylesheets (so that downstreams can have their unique visual identities) that doesn’t involve totally overriding the one at the toolkit level would be the best solution.
Moving Beyond Themes | Sam Hewitt
A colleague runs our department’s summer youth program and he went around asking people to give the high-school-age students presentations on various topics, from library databases to financial literacy. He suggested I do something around free and open source software, and since I had never done something like that before, I thought it might be helpful to throw the lesson into GitHub.
Free and Open Source Software Lesson | GitHub