Speaking about Paul Graham, I keep forgetting to visit his site, though I mean to. The RSS feed from it doesn’t work very well, at least in NetNewsWire. There have been several new posts which I’ve overlooked.

John Naughton linked to a 2009 essay by Paul Graham which is a revelation to me. Since learning about #aphantasia, I’ve blamed my scheduling failures on my inability to visualize. But maybe it’s because I’ve been trying to follow a manager’s schedule instead of a maker’s one.

I’ve noticed a lot of Substack users asking how to find new writers or newsletters on the platform. I use Google, with site:substack.com added to my search term. For example

"crime fiction" site:substack.com

It’s not foolproof but it can certainly be useful.

After trying it for a few days, I’ve removed the “blogroll” (officially called “Homepage links”) from my Substack archive page. It was making the page look cramped and causing the titles of some posts to wrap. I’ll put a list of “Newsletters I read” on my personal site instead.

I’ve been driving myself crazy trying to figure out why I can’t get some music to sync from Apple Music to my iPod Touch. It turns out that, though this music is in the iTunes folder on disk, it’s somehow been deleted from the former iTunes library in the Apple Music app. Ugh 🎹

I’m rereading (after a very long gap) William Empson’s 📖 Faustus and the Censor (1987) for the next issue of my newsletter. It will be the third (and probably final) issue under the general heading “Empson’s insightful errors”. It’s due in a week’s time.

Vous n’encaissez pas la vérité!

But can you handle the deepfake? via Charles Arthur, The Overspill 😉

Microsoft Teams for personal use is now available on the web/desktop as well as on iOS and Android, it says here. I’ve been using it on iPad since Aug/Sep, as a substitute for WhatsApp. Still the odd minor bug but it’s pretty good in general.

“There are many ways in which the thing I am trying in vain to say may be tried in vain to be said”

Lara Marlowe on the affinity between Beckett and Giacometti.

Legislation will be introduced, the Queen said last week, to “restore the balance of power between the executive, legislature and the courts”.

Joshua Rozenberg, A Lawyer Writes. So we can expect Parliament to get more power, at the expense of the government? Good, long overdue.

Whoever designed the sardine tin, with its thin, springy metal top that practically guarantees you’ll either slice your hand or spray ketchup/oil on yourself, was a (malevolent) genius. (I probably said this before but it was some time ago: I don’t eat sardines that often.)

I’ve been trying out the new “blogroll” feature on Substack. I think it makes the page look too cramped, so I’ll probably remove it and put my list of recommended newsletters on a separate page somewhere instead.

It seems that I only ever mention Lawrence Lessig when I write “I don’t usually agree with Lessig, but …”. Here he is On the issues with free speech

Well, I read An Anonymous Girl to the end. It got better in the second half and the plot was quite well handled, though utterly daft. I didn’t believe a word of it. Not recommended 📚

What’s this about Martial Solal hanging up his piano stool? I went to a trio concert of his in Aix-en-Provence in (approx) 2013 that was billed as part of his final tour. Did he fail to stay retired?

I wish I could get the MacBook Air and iPad to connect to the iPhone’s personal hotspot automatically. Every time I wake one of them from sleep, I have to go through a ritual dance to get them back online. I never had this problem with previous phone hotspots (Nokia/Microsoft)

I’m a third of the way through An Anonymous Girl📚 by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen and I’m thinking about giving up. Its premise is extremely contrived; insubstantial characters, unexciting writing. I started it only because the library had the ebook with no waiting list.

I swear, if Twitter keeps nagging me to turn on notifications I will delete my account again 😡

Here’s more about Substack’s acquisition of People & Company, from one of the latter’s founders.

Substack announces that it has acquired People & Company, an organization specializing in “community building”. I don’t know exactly what this means, but I’d like to find out.

I’ve just sent out the latest (by my count the 13th) issue of my Talk about books newsletter. The title is “Morally neutral at best: Sally Rooney’s Conversations with Friends”. Next issue, in 2 weeks, will be about William Empson’s interpretation of Marlowe’s Doctor Faustus 📖

Tried again. Something is downloading this time: 5.69GB of software. Fingers crossed.

So, I plugged the iPhone into my MacBook Air and followed the steps to Restore. It says it’s downloading the software but I’m not convinced that anything is happening. There’s something that looks like a progress bar and it isn’t showing any progress.

Whenever you change the passcode on your iPhone, or set one up for the first time, the phone should force you to use it the first 5 or 6 times, before it allows you to unlock with Face or Fingerprint ID, so you remember the passcode 🤨

I haven’t read anything by Christopher Priest except The Prestige📚, — my review — and I read that only after (and because of) seeing Nolan’s film. I’d like to have come to it without preconceptions. I’m undecided whether to read any more of Priest’s fiction.