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2:00PM Water Cooler 5/13/2019

Summary:
By Lambert Strether of Corrente. Patient readers, I cannot do a Water Cooler today because of technical problems that you are to imagine me snarling as I describe. As you may know, my workflow has two steps: (1) a collection phase, where I ingest enormous amounts of material, mostly via the Twitter, on my iPad. (I use the iPad because I can do the work in bed, or on the bus, etc.) I then send the links from my iPad via email to my laptop, where they are sorted into the proper directories (e.g., Links or Water Cooler) via keywords in the subject line. In step (2) on my laptop, I go through my mail directories and aggregate the links into posts. Periodically, iOS or Apple’s mailer — my account is Yahoo, but I use the iOS app — decides it doesn’t like me sending URLs to myself, and stops

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By Lambert Strether of Corrente.

Patient readers, I cannot do a Water Cooler today because of technical problems that you are to imagine me snarling as I describe. As you may know, my workflow has two steps: (1) a collection phase, where I ingest enormous amounts of material, mostly via the Twitter, on my iPad. (I use the iPad because I can do the work in bed, or on the bus, etc.) I then send the links from my iPad via email to my laptop, where they are sorted into the proper directories (e.g., Links or Water Cooler) via keywords in the subject line. In step (2) on my laptop, I go through my mail directories and aggregate the links into posts.

Periodically, iOS or Apple’s mailer — my account is Yahoo, but I use the iOS app — decides it doesn’t like me sending URLs to myself, and stops sending the mail, which then piles up in the mailer’s Outbox. iOS does not tell me when this happens during step (1), so I only notice during step (2), when I am least inclined to unf*ck the mailer, because I’m on deadline ffs.

Generally, I can unf*ck the mailer by resending the mail in the Outbox with a minor “qwerty” addition of random keystrokes, which generally amounts to resending 50 or so pieces — but if that doesn’t work, I have to go through the insanely laborious process of resetting my Yahoo password (which now includes words like “hate,” “[family blogging],” “worst time,” and similar). Today that didn’t work, and I couldn’t send URLs to myself even after a new password. I deleted the account, and tried again. Nope. I set up a new Yahoo account and tried again. Nope. I tried fiddling with the SMTP settings, but Apple and iOS rendered them unfiddle-able. So I made the move to the Yandex app — boy, are the alphabet dudes gonna hate that — at least for the account from which I send mail on the iPad*. So Yandex worked, but too late for today.

All of which is to say that I can’t do a Water Cooler today because iOS and Apple Mail and Yahoo together made a meal out of hours of my work collecting links, and ate up more time as I tried to straighten out a machine that I own.

I still own my laptop, in the sense that I can send mail from it, or browse on it, without worrying whether Tim Cook and his Middle Men like what I do or not. Not so with iOS. I sure gawd paid good money for the iPad, and I use it in photography workflow too, but I don’t really own it, because iOS or Apple or the mailer can suddenly decide that I can’t do any more what I’ve been doing for years and take my workflow away from me. Which is really the point of this whole rant. Silicon Valley would be very happy if we didn’t own our machines at all (and that Apple is more and more making MacOS look and work like iOS gives me the willies). I’m sure the same will go for robot cars. Maybe I should try to find a Huawei tablet; at least then I’d be giving all my personal data to a government that couldn’t do anything with it.

In any case, I hope to do better tomorrow.

UPDATE Bwa-ha-ha-ha. Now Yandex is doing the same thing. Intermittently. Guess the iOS SMTP dingus needs to be ripped out and replaced.

UPDATE Bwa-ha-ha-ha. Now the new Yandex account won’t send anything at all; everything goes to Drafts with a nastygram (“unable to send message”). I — and the tablet! — must be blacklisted somewhere. Thanks for passing the word, Apple! Or Yahoo.

* Yandex on the laptop has a great feature where you can select everything in a directory and delete it. Yahoo, as one might expect, does not. Nor does the iOS Mailer, despite Apple’s brand fumes about superior design.

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Readers, feel free to contact me at lambert [UNDERSCORE] strether [DOT] corrente [AT] yahoo [DOT] com, with (a) links, and even better (b) sources I should curate regularly, (c) how to send me a check if you are allergic to PayPal, and (d) to find out how to send me images of plants. Vegetables are fine! Fungi are deemed to be honorary plants! If you want your handle to appear as a credit, please place it at the start of your mail in parentheses: (thus). Otherwise, I will anonymize by using your initials. See the previous Water Cooler (with plant) here. Today’s plant (JU):

2:00PM Water Cooler 5/13/2019

JU writes: “Some of our dozen different cherry varieties, Utah Giant, Van, Stella, Rainier & Lambert.” Not sure which varieties are in this photo, but what a lovely mountain scene. Also, perennials rule!

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Readers: Water Cooler is a standalone entity not covered by the annual NC fundraiser. So do feel free to make a contribution today or any day. Here is why: Regular positive feedback both makes me feel good and lets me know I’m on the right track with coverage. When I get no donations for five or ten days I get worried. More tangibly, a constant trickle of small donations helps me with expenses, and I factor in that trickle when setting fundraising goals. So if you see something you especially appreciate, do feel free to click this donate button:

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2:00PM Water Cooler 5/13/2019

If you hate PayPal, you can email me at lambert [UNDERSCORE] strether [DOT] corrente [AT] yahoo [DOT] com, and I will give you directions on how to send a check. Thank you!

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