Weekly output: Blendle, municipal broadband, OS X Calendar crashes

I spent last week on vacation, more or less, with my wife’s family in the Bay Area. I didn’t succeed in avoiding work completely, but I did manage to compress my laptop time to maybe a day and two-thirds of effort. To carve out a little more downtime, I also refrained from answering non-urgent e-mails; if yours was one of those, I should be able to answer it in the next few days.

Yahoo Finance Blendle review8/10/2016: This ambitious new service wants to be the ‘Spotify of news’ — but falls short, Yahoo Finance

After a few months of trying out Blendle, a news app that lets you make micropayment for news stories, an otherwise slow news week meant it was time to review the service. After the story ran, Blendle spokesman Michaël Jarjour wrote in to say that about two dozen news sites in Germany and the Netherlands had added a special Blendle button that allows readers to pay for a story without leaving that site–a good way to make this app less invisible–and that the company was working to bring the same feature to U.S. publishers.

8/11/2016, We need more high-speed internet, but politicians are blocking the way, Yahoo Finance

I worried that the comments here would skew towards denouncing the socialist evil of collective ownership of the means of watching cat videos, but instead people lined up to complain about their Internet provider.

8/14/2016: Cure a calendar crash on Mac, USA Today

This column was curiously popular with people on my Facebook page–although my share of it only reached 348 people as of now, nine of them gave it a thumbs-up “Like” or the rarer, more coveted “Love” reaction. Was it something I said?

Weekly output: traveling with tech, SwiftKey versus Swype, iCloud backup, OS X’s Library folder

This list excludes one other job I did this week: Edmunds.com had me give an opening talk for their annual Hack Days conference at the car-news site’s Santa Monica, Calif., offices. I spoke about transitions afoot in how we connect our phones to our dashboards, how we shop for new and used autos, and the ways vehicle-sharing services might reduce the need for individual car ownership. The video should show up on YouTube eventually, but for now you can read the list of related resources I posted in lieu of inflicting a PowerPoint deck on my audience.

8/14/2012: Avoid Tech Travel Travails, CEA Digital Dialogue

For an August blog post, a vacation-minded summary of the things I’ve learned from traveling with technology for work seemed like a good idea. I didn’t realize I would get a reminder of my own advice about the perils of airport WiFi Friday morning, when I found both LAX’s WiFi and T-Mobile’s coverage equally useless in a large chunk of Terminal 7.

8/17/2012: New Android Keyboards Swallow Your Words, Discovery News

I started this review maybe two months earlier, but kept pushing it back as breaking news interrupted things. Those delays allowed me to try improved releases of each of these alternative Android keyboards–and to see that Android phone vendors still feel it necessary to sink good money into replacing the perfectly good keyboard they get for free from Google with their own awful software.

Since this review ran, two or three readers have recommended yet another aftermarket onscreen keyboard, TouchPal. Should I should check that out next?

8/19/2012: Tip: How to clear space in your iCloud storage, USA Today

This piece started with a question from my wife about an alert on her iPhone about insufficient iCloud backup space, but I knew the situation was widespread after reading a memorably-headlined post by BuzzFeed’s John Hermann. The post also recaps advice posted here last summer about forcing OS X to show your Library folder; credit goes to Apple’s Mountain Lion for keeping this foolish default and making the tip relevant again.