Reading old newsletters

I’m subscribed to a few newsletters and tend to read them either immediately or months after I received them.

So now I know what an omelette thing stemmed from, that made the rounds on the twitters and other newsletters that I did read when I got them. Months after the fact.

Some things from newsletters:

I don’t think I was ever a blogger. I had a livejournal for a long time and various blogs etc over the years, but I don’t know if I ever had anything in particular to broadcast.

I <3 RSS 5eva

Reading a Wired article on how RSS is apparently coming back and mostly struck by the fact that, for me at least, it never went away.

Still, the lasting appeal of RSS remains the parts that haven’t changed: the unfiltered view of the open web, and the chance to make your own decisions about what you find there.

“The most amazing thing to me about RSS is that no one really went away from it,” says Wolf. “It still exists. Somehow through all of this. It’s crazy, in a way, that when you go away from RSS and then come back to it, it’s all still there.”


I browse Tumblr by RSS. I BROWSE TUMBLR BY RSS. And boy am I glad that the spooky names for October business died down because now I only have to check who I am following every once in a while to see who just randomly changed their URL (I have never understood the changing your URL stuff, how are people you know supposed to find you?). I get podcasts by RSS. I still follow a few blogs by RSS.

I miss Google Reader, but now I use Feedly and keep a foot in over at Inoreader and maybe I’m gonna see if I still have an Old Reader account because I liked that one. I also use an RSS reader in the Opera Browser which currently is kind of an extension that is replicated in the latest version a thing that used to be in the old version but Opera has brought in some thing called “News” that tries to hijack RSS feeds away from the RSS reader extension I installed. And you can’t turn the news thing off.


RSS may have sometimes delivered the last 20 items that I already read from a blog, but at least they have never been delivered to me out of chronological order.

Very endless implications

Lately I find myself subscribing to more newsletters. Partly I blame Warren Ellis, mostly I think I just miss the stream of longer form wittering that I used to get from my Livejournal friends page. I never stopped being annoyed when a website failed to furnish me with a RSS feed (or get slightly angry when they removed it).

Oh you don’t have RSS, well I guess I don’t need to look at your website at all.

Which maybe is a little counter-intuitive, since RSS tends to just give you the latest thing (and yeah, I don’t enjoy the RSS feeds that only give truncated snippets), but since if the latest thing in my aggregator looks interesting, I open it in a new tab to pay attention to later then…

Newletters. I don’t always get to them as they arrive, but every so often I binge on a few of them (it’s the same with podcasts for me).

Anyway, I’m slowly putting some links to the ones I subscribe to in the sidebar. Enjoy.

Yes, I would like to subscribe to this feeling

In this week’s edition of Sarah Jaffe’s newletter she says:

“I keep those things closer to the vest these days; once upon a time I was as much a feelsblogger as anyone but, well, some combination of adulthood, professionalism, and Literally Everyone Being On The Internet now marked a shift there.”

And isn’t that a great term? Feelsblogger. I’ve never really been one to talk about how I feel about anything – online or offline. Maybe I did right at the beginning of the Livejournal days, but mostly due to a lack of anything to really say? Most of my writing back then was on Usenet, so that’s where all the real substance (such as it was) went.

Now all the feels I have on the internet are about Star Trek or Captain America or Star Wars or some other media I have engaged with. For me, I’m not sure that anything has changed now that I’m a so-called grown-up with a job and anyone could search for my witterings – perhaps I’m more likely to share my feels (limited to scifi, very little to do with life events)? I don’t think I’ve ever put anything online that I wouldn’t want someone to find – I’ve looked back at those early LJ days and there’s nothing embarassing, though it is like looking in a mirror at someone wholly unrecognisable to me now.

An Open Letter to the Alliance & Leicester failwhale of a website

Dear Alliance & Leicester website,

Setting aside the garish orange colour that you feature so heavily, but cannot get rid of as it is your brand colour, I cannot help but feel disappointed by you.

Mainly for your HORRIFIC SECURITY BLUNDER in needing to press TWO links/buttons in order to log out. Most websites have just the one. It’s safer that way. You log out once and that’s it. Out. Secure.

YOU however need first to have a link clicked on that leads to a page that seems to look like you are logged out, BUT NO. You then need to click on another button to ACTUALLY LOG OUT. You shouldn’t care if your customer is SURE they want to log out. Just log them out. If they logged out by mistake then they can DAMN WELL log back in again, rather than thinking they logged out and then having someone STEAL ALL THEIR BANKING DETAILS they’ve not actually logged out.

And then this leads to my second item. It’s almost impossible to find some place on your website that gives an email address contact for someone who does not have an account with you. I don’t want to ACTUALLY write a letter on paper. I want to email. LAME.



Michael Marshall Smith blogging for

“The other thing about this Wednesday is that it appears to have quite a serious hangover.


Always seems like such a good idea at the time. The problem, of course, is that the brain that thinks it’s a good idea is one suffering from increasingly impaired judgment. You start the evening as a sophisticated gentleman, judiciously sipping a jaunty beer as you discuss the dominant cultural forces in seventeenth century Flanders, and next thing you know you’re dressed up like a nun and running around the town baying at the moon. Unless you started the evening as a nun, I guess, in which case maybe you wind up dressed as a writer. I don’t know. I’ll have to find a nun and ask her. Seems like a high mountain to climb right now, though.

On the upside, I got my week’s exercise done by standing up for the whole evening. So on balance I think I can feel pretty virtuous about the whole thing.”

Michael Marshall Smith

It’s stuff like this that makes me wish he wrote stuff more often.