It is American Thanksgiving (well, in America, it’s the next day here in Japan) and Justin asked a good question in the Mega Maker Slack today and I wanted to share my answer publicly.

When it comes to tech or business, what are you most thankful for?

My answer:

Open source. Not just because there’s a bunch of high quality tools available for free (gratis), but that it shows that humans, no matter where they’re from or what they believe can work together for the greater good.

When I was first getting into programming windows ruled and the idea of being able to work using open source all day every day was still a bit for dreamers. Grateful that’s no longer the case.

  • It’s been 20 weeks since I started doing the week. Let’s go for 20 more!
  • I started getting my feet wet with desktop linux again. I last ran linux on my desktop the around 2003 or 2004 running Gentoo. I liked that computer, it was a full tower with a sticker of Calvin (of Calvin & Hobbes) smashing a swastika in two that said Stop Racism, it was great. But X11 was fiddly and OS X gave me my unix without the fiddling.

    To my surprise Ubuntu just worked on my mid-2014 MacBook Pro. Wifi works, resume from sleep works, printer works, everything that used to be fiddly “just works”. I’m able to connect to my Mac Mini and remote control it and access it’s shares (my Drobo). monadical wrote a nice blog post that details settings for Mac users on linux to make them feel a bit more “at home”. The little things like adjusting the mouse movement and so forth.

    In the event that I switch full-time to Linux, it seems like I could use icloud photos downloaderto automatically sync my photos from iCloud to my computer.

  • Speaking of iCloud Photos, I discovered that it’s not useful for anything but looking at recent photos. I’ve been a user of iPhoto since version 1 or 2 – a long time. I never got deep into rating photos or building extensive albums, but I dutifully upgraded each time a new release came out.

    Some photos – like the one that showed my old full tower computer from high school was shot in 2003 has made all of the migrations between computers and versions. Or another of me and my brother smoking a celebratory cigar after his daughter was born in 2011. These photos show up in Photos on my desktop in the years 2003 and 2011 respectively.

    But on iCloud Photos the years only go back to 2015. What’s more is that photo of me and my brother smoking a cigar shows up in 2015. The photo from 2003 is, I’m assuming in there somewhere because the number of photos matches on my desktop and in iCloud, but I can’t find it or tell you where it is.

    It’s almost like Apple is trying so hard to not read or use your data for privacy purposes off your machine that it can’t read the exif data to get timestamp. But that it can’t even order photos by the correct year online makes me question if all of my photos are actually safe.

Sometime this morning my top drive in my drobo died. New (larger) one comes tomorrow. Let’s hope another one doesn’t die in the meantime. Lasted 7 or 8 years, not bad.