f.lux: software to make your life better

Interesting! Found this nifty little piece of software today that filters most of the blue light from your computer’s screen according to daytime, thus simulating the natural lighting conditions and being less offensive to your brain’s melatonin production. Apparently, latest research yields strong evidence for impaired sleep in people using tablets, smartphones and computers screens later at night or right before falling asleep. More specifically: The blue light emitted from many of nowaday’s commodity devices such as smartphones, tablets, laptops is responsible for altering the body’s circadian clock, which regulates sleep and waking time patterns. Study results indicate that it is particularly the high percentage of blue light coming from those screens that has the body “think” it was looking into the sun at mid day. In using such a device in the hours before falling asleep – which is most likely true for a lot of people working from home or needing to check their inbox one last time before going to bed – we literally seem to “program” our bodies into staying alert at a time, when the body is meant to wind down and get ready for sleep. (I know, I’m guilty as charged in that regard….). F.lux – I love the clever naming, b.t.w.! – is a little piece of software – temporarily, non-destructively – manipulating the color profile of your computer screen in such a way that most of the blue light is filtered away according to daytime and geo location.

I’ve become aware of this software and the science behind it today and immediately headed over to test drive it. Even upon first use I think I can say that I find the mellow warm light when working on the computer later at night a lot less aggressive and offensive to the eyes than the computer display’s regular blend of colors (unless it’s daytime, of course). I switched off F.lux for a moment to see the difference and it’s really an almost “tangible” one. Anyway, if you’re a person aware of your health and caring about it, you might want to try this thing (free of charge, at least for now). Follow the link below to download it for your computer.

f.lux: software to make your life better.

MacOS X Yosemite and high WindowServer CPU usage – Nitai

accessibility on yosemite

Here’s a “life saver” article on how to fix the high window server usage on Macs after installing Mac OS X 10.10 “Yosemite”. The trick is to find the transparency setting in the general preferences and turn it all the way down:

MacOS X Yosemite and high WindowServer CPU usage – Nitai.

By default the “Reduce transparency” checkbox is not checked, which results in the “Window Server” process to max out CPU usage – clearly poor engineering as it means that the Mac OS X graphic user interface hogs as much CPU power as it can get, thus effectively rendering the machine unusable to the point, where you might want to ditch Yosemite. What that tells those users who depend on the accessibility settings – I leave that to your own reasoning…. Here’s to hoping that Apple will address the issue in an update – and that this update lands asap. After you’ve followed the instructions in the article, your Mac will return to being a usable machine.

(Thanks to Dietmar Liehr in that case, who brought this article to my attention as I was indeed in the process of running a full backup, wiping out disk contents and going back to Maverick…)

Leistungsschutzrecht: Verlage erteilen Google Recht auf Gratisnutzung – SPIEGEL ONLINE

Google

Leistungsschutzrecht: Verlage erteilen Google Recht auf Gratisnutzung – SPIEGEL ONLINE.

Schätze mal, das wird Signalwirkung im Hinblick auf den Streit zwischen GEMA und YouTube/Google haben… – nicht zum Nutzen der Künstler natürlich. “Wer zahlt, schafft an”, hieß es auch früher schon immer… Tja. Die Zeiten ändern sich eben doch nicht wirklich….

Everything Is Broken — The Message — Medium

So yes, the geeks and the executives and the agents and the military have fucked the world. But in the end, it’s the job of the people, working together, to unfuck it.

via Everything Is Broken — The Message — Medium.

Aw man – the most clever “blurb” of writing I’ve come across in a loooong time!!

My 2 cents and paraphrase of above would be:

Most of what’s been dubbed “conspiracy theories” is the combined effects of bad engineering and people exploiting those weaknesses in the technological realm in order to save their own butts. As a person, who has been working in the IT/C industry for 25 years myself in varying positions and having a thorough enough in-depth look into things to understand how they work – or don’t, more often than not – I can attest to everything the article says. You can’t even call out companies on the bullshit they produce, because it would violate their “trade secrets” and other fancy words invented to thinly disguise blatant ignorance married to insane schedules and deadlines (programmers/engineers often love their work, but never get the resources needed to come up with reliable, dependable solutions to any given task.) The headline “Everything Is Broken” is not an exaggeration at all, telling from my own experiences.

What separates me a little from mere conspiracy thinking is the experience that things aren’t meant to be this way from the get-go, at least not in the industries I have been a part of. But one thing leads to another, one jerk finds the next – bigger – jerk and a snowballing effect sets in. Everything may be broken – but it doesn’t have to remain broken. Where do we start? With each and everyone of us, constantly questioning our choices as to whether or not they make good sense, are meaningful and whether or not they harm the environment or other people. It starts with your daily cuppa Joe and goes on to what you’re wearing. In the world of computers: Downsizing and keeping distractions and gadgets at a minimum. I’m not anti-progress all of a sudden. But it should be progress that’s in the best interest of the consumers, not in the interest of corporations. We have to get them back to where they started, which is: Make their utmost effort to serve US, not themselves!

Some CSS Adjustments

Been tinkering with adjustments to images floating to the right in content sections. They are now supposed to be vertically aligned with topmost navigation items (roughly) and overflow is set to ‘visible’. For non-tech readers: Any image appearing on the right is now meant to be roughly aligned with the content above and not supposed to be cropped (which it was before).

It’s kind of fun to tinker with these things 😉