Back in the saddle!

Just as I'm writing this, asteroid 85275, with a diameter of at least 2 kilometers, should be passing just by Earth. If it had hit, all of us probably would have been gone by now. So, what better time and way to say that I'm back writing? :-) I hope you all have had a great summer, and that you, of course, have missed my writings. I've thought about how to write this post and what to include in it for some time now, but really (as you will soon find out) I have no proper disposition. It will just be thoughts, opinions and other things in random order; some personal, some web-related, some superfluous... But, it would be great if you'd like to join me for the ride that is my first post in quite some time here, and that it will contain at least one tidbit of information that is at least remotely entertaining or useful. So, here goes:

"Summer"

A picture of Emilia with a ladybug Weather has pretty much really sucked here in Sweden. It has been worse, at times, but overall way too cold and too much rain. Speaking of cold, actually, do you know what the (true) definition by meteorologists for summer in Sweden are? If it's above 10 degrees Celsius/50 degrees Fahrenheit three days in a row, it's summer. Are you f**king kidding me? Where are we; the North Pole? That is not summer in my book, I can tell you that much!

I'm an Internet junkie

My name is Robert and I'm an Internet junkie

During July I realized that I have a really hard time to detach myself from the computer and online activity. Luckily, I make sure that this doesn't affect the family, but instead spend time with the family as long as they were awake and then sit up way too late with the computer doing, when looking in the rear view mirror, nothing. Or socializing, researching, bonding; whatever you might like to call it. Getting involved on Facebook (my Facebook profile) as well was just the icing on the cake... Frankly, it got to that I point where I just had to force myself to put the computer away and just take a real proper, full-time hiatus from everything online. This took place from the end of July, to about Monday this week, when I, for the first time in a month, read my e-mails again, checked out Facebook, started the RSS reader. And to be honest, it felt great with such a break; even to the point that it felt awkward using the computer once I opened its lid again.

Books

I've been reading books, watching TV, just chilling. And, really, reading a great book when it's just you and the book all on your own is a marvellous thing. A couple of the books read are (and please note that the links below aren't links to Amazon, trying to trick you into buying it to give me some affiliate breadcrumbs... :-)):
Chronicles, Vol. 1 - Bob Dylan
A picture of the Chronicles, Vol. 1 cover A fascinating book! Dylan's persona, life and music is truly inspirational, and that he himself writes his own memoirs is indeed a great thing. The book (part one of three planned ones), just like some of his songs, takes you away to a time and a felling which seems long gone, and within you linger in a dream world.
The Children of Húrin - J.R.R. Tolkien
J.R.R. Tolkien's son Christopher has put together a lot of his father's old writing, puzzled the pieces together, and the result is a "new" book from a fantastic author. It is a very grim and dark tale, and thinking of it now, I think it would make an outstanding movie. Just reading something new taking place in Middle-Earth is an edifying feeling! Apparently, Entertainment Weekly wrote a negative review about it, but really, would you heed their advice regarding Tolkien (or any book, actually)?

Stand up and fight, or do good behind the curtains?

A picture of Filippa thinking In mid-August, things got, to say the least, a bit heated, and I think it all originated with Molly's Dear W3C, Dear WaSP post. Later, it was followed by Roger Johansson's re-entry into the W3C HTML Working Group. I must say that I sincerely admire and look up to Molly's passion, and I'm glad that Roger, while more calm, decided to continue contributing. However, I'm just not sure that I have such strong force in me (any longer?) do get so much involved and upset. I would say that I rather agree with Jeremy Keith's Reflection post (except for the stance about comments; I think comments are a good thing, given the right environment, which is NOT web sites like Digg and YouTube): there's so much more to life than blogs, forums and such things.

A picture of Filippa pushing Emilia I'd rather do my job properly, write about web development here when it amuses me and can help others, and generally just build good web sites instead of, as it seems to be, forever putting time into bickering and fighting. I'm glad that Molly, Roger and others do get involved, that they stand strong and try to make it better. But I don't think such a role's for me, that's all.

iPhone all over the place

During June, no matter where I looked and what I read, it was iPhone, iPhone, IPHONE! Tips, tricks, reviews, videos, hacks etc etc. I believe it to be a very decent product, but given the explosion of attention over Internet, it sounds rather that it is the first cell phone that can actually give you a blow job as well...

Things of seven

July 7th this summer, a magical date: 07/07/07. Two big events took place, where one actually had a connection to the number itself:

Live Earth

The gala for the environment took place. A worthy cause, but from what I hear it didn't get the impact nor the number of viewers it expected. Either way, the artist line-up sure looked interesting, but given at least the Swedish National Television's broadcast of it, it was a few live performances, gazillions of comics showing how you can get more environmental friendly and with way too many boring studio interviews with famous Swedish musicians (that is, famous within Sweden...).

The new Seven wonders of the world

Since only the Great Pyramid of Giza stands of the original seven wonders of the world, a voting was announced which took place for many years. A lot of controversy has surrounded the voting, since people could vote multiple times, some questioned the motive behind the initiators and so on. For instance, just read more in the Wikipedia article linked in the heading above about what took place in Brazil... Personally, I truly believe it to be a shame that Angkor Wat isn't amongst the winners, and, as you might have guessed, my opinion is that the Easter Island Moais definitely should have been there too (Chile actually got a letter of apology, saying that they should have been one of the seven). Anyway, agree or not, but the new seven wonders (at least according to the New Open World Corporation) are:

Random thoughts and opinions

  • Adobe Photoshop CS3 on an Intel Mac is really a dream compared to previous, unadapted versions. And oh, the Quick Selection Tool is quite nice too!
  • Fisher-Price produces quality toys that can take a kid's beating (which is more than I can say about their web site).
  • Adobe Photoshop Lightroom is quite nice for managing one's pictures. now, if I only knew how to copy one image from one folder to another without any reference to the original image (i.e. I don't want any Virtual Copy)...
  • The true meaning of Zune: quite clever and funny!
  • Wireless Internet sucks. Really. Poor performance, breaks etc. Ethernet cables rock!
  • I have to say that I do, honestly, think Microsoft Surface looks cool. It's like it was right out of Back to the Future Part II or something.

I'm back!

Man, that felt good! I'm sure I forgot tons of things I wanted to have in the post, but never mind. At least I have started writing again, so look forward to a fall with ramblings, web dev tips, opinions and reviews.
Posted in Apple/Mac,Developing,General,Personal/life,Technology |

22 Comments

  • Matt Robin says:

    Hey – good to see you making a return to writing again Robert (your writings have been missed, well, maybe not missed…but…your posts are usually good! hehehe). Glad to hear you had a good time – regardless of the crappy weather (we got it bad in the UK too)

    This article was a great summary of many things that have been buzzing about during your online absence (you weren’t offline at all were you?!!)…..

    Good comment about the Web Standards ‘Stand up and Fight’ through August (and ongoing?) – I even got caught up in a bit too – commenting on Molly’s site, possibly on Roger’s, and a few other places too – including Jeffrey Zeldman and Jeff Croft’s own sites.
    Messy business…but something that was going to boil-over at some point. It was just a matter of time!

    iPhone! (Groan) ….as nice as it might be, us Europeans still have to wait…and wait…for this to make it to our shores. The sheer volume of posts about the iPhone on the Web since its launch have just made the wait even more frustrating and annoying. Shame – I have almost forgotten what makes it good! (But if it does that extra thing you were talking about….well…I better pre-order! hahaha)

    All the other stuff you wrote is good too…but this part gets a big grin from me:
    “Ethernet cables rock!”
    Yeah, the really do! Wireless is great in theory – but can be very unreliable in practice!

    I’m sure Roger will be glad you’re writing again – and I expect him to link back to more of your new articles over the coming months!!! :)

  • RobertDM says:

    good you're back, I'll be reading…

    "I make sure that this doesn’t affect the family, but instead spend time with the family as long as they were awake and then sit up way too late with the computer doing, when looking in the rear view mirror, nothing"

    that's one thing we have in common :-)

  • Hey Robert,

    I did indeed miss your posts and it's great to see you're back!

    I must say I agree with your bit about 'Fighting'. Personally, I think it'll take ages before we will see any real, wide-spread implementation of HTML 5 and when that time has come, I'll get on top of it.

    Again, great to have you back!

    Harmen

  • Welcome back. Taking a month off from the Net is good. I did it myself two years ago and it felt great.

    About HTML 5… yeah I will continue to keep an eye on it and contribute where I can, but I will try very hard to stay away from the hopeless battles. Fundamentalists can rarely be reasoned with, and there seem to be many extremely technically oriented fundamentalists in the HTML WG. I completely understand your feeling that contributing is not for you.

    I also agree about the iPhone… the attention it gets is way out of line in my opinion, so I've stopped reading about it.

    And yeah, wireless Internet sucks. I love my ethernet cables.

  • Box says:

    Welcome back to the world wide web!

  • icaaq says:

    Nice to have you back, Now I only wanna know when the next geek meet occurs.

  • Chris says:

    Nice to have you back Robert :-)

    And yes, the weather in Sweden this summer was… was…well… :-(

    We toured in Dalarna and Bohüslän this time. Our big event on 07/07/07: Mina our daughter turned 5!

    Hello from France to you and your family!

  • Dake says:

    Welcome back man.

  • Tommy Olsson says:

    Welcome back, mate!

    Here in the heart of Sweden, the weather has been quite decent. If you insist on living in some remote, outlying part of the country, it's your own fault. ;)

  • Eric Shepherd says:

    I have just left Fisher-Price after two years, so I take no offense at your comments on their website. I tried to make it better, I really did. See Baby Gear for example.

    Anyway, welcome back!

  • Deborah says:

    Glad you're back Robert! I've missed reading your posts and look forward to your next post. Love the close-up photos of the kids!

  • Robert Nyman says:

    Thanks everyone, it feels great to be back and even better to get comments (I was a bit nervous that you had all left for better blogs… :-))!

    Matt,

    <blockquote cite="http://www.robertnyman.com/2007/08/30/back-in-the-saddle/#comment-96136"&gt;

    Messy business…but something that was going to boil-over at some point. It was just a matter of time!

    Yeah, I guess it was bound to. It's good that it gets discussed, but I'm just weary about the chaos it creates.

    The iPhone seems cool, but one thing that is a real problem for potential customers is that you have to get a certain service provider as well. All companies already have deals with their own provider, and if that one isn't the one getting iPhone, no one in that company can use it professionally. And, of course, we Europeans don't settle for crappy Edge, we demand 3G connection speed.

    Wireless is a fantastic thing, but it just doesn't work as it should. For no-one. The day it does, it will be the de facto standard for everyone.

    And yeah, long time since Roger linked to my articles, I think. What's up with that? ;-)

    RobertDM,

    Yes, sleep and food are the first two things forsaken so one can click around in some perpetual surfing…

    Harmen,

    Thanks! And I agree: if/when HTML 5 is a reality, of course I will learn it better. But by that time I will probably be close to retirement on the Caribbean island I bought for all my consultancy money writing HTML 4 and XHTML…

    Roger,

    I'm sure you will lend very valuable and professional help to them. And yeah, I could've guessed that you were a cable guy! :-)

    Box,

    Thank you!

    icaaq,

    Thanks! I already have speakers and topics planned for the next meeting. I just have to find a suitable date.

    Chris,

    My congratulations to Mina! I guess she's grown a lot since I had the pleasure of meeting you last year!

    Dake,

    Thank you!

    Tommy,

    <blockquote cite="http://www.robertnyman.com/2007/08/30/back-in-the-saddle/#comment-96344"&gt;

    If you insist on living in some remote, outlying part of the country, it’s your own fault. ;)

    Ha ha! Yeah, we Swedes always place our capital in some far-off outskirt… :-)

    Eric,

    Man, I really didn't know that. No offense meant, I can relate what it's like building web sites for a large organization. What ticked me off was some pop-up crap. Baby Gear looks much better, thank you!

    Deborah,

    Thank you! If you liked the images, you (hopefully) might like the tool tips that go with them too. :-)

  • Steven Clark says:

    My name is Steven and I am an Internet junkie too.

    glad to see you're back on deck Robert :)

  • NICCAI says:

    Your line about the iPhone might be the quote of the year for me. It has almost single-handedly sucked the life out my blog reading. I have to tell you – if the iPhone isn't a mind-altering success, we may as well kill the concept of advertising altogether.

  • Good to have you back Robert, was actually beginning to wonder if you'd given up on us entirely ;-)

  • Welcome back, Robert :-)

    FWIW your absence seems to have had a peculiar effect on Amazon's opinion of you: the first ad in your sidebar at the moment is for "Wonderbra. Captivating gel push-up bra" :D (It then gets back to normal with "HTML Dog" and "Ajax Hacks".)

  • Scott Powers says:

    Sweet return post Robert. A definite entertaining read. Oh yeah, Welcome back!

  • Robert Nyman says:

    Steven,

    Welcome to the meeting!

    NICCAI,

    Thanks, I'm glad you liked that quote!

    Morgan,

    Ah, I would never do that!

    Nick,

    Ha ha! Yeah, I saw the same thing the other day… I will do something different with that part of the web site anyway, so for now I guess I'll let it pass (and besides, breasts are a hell of a lot more interesting than HTML… :-)).

    Scott,

    Thank you, good to hear that I at least haven't entirely lost it.

  • [...] order of the day is to welcome Robert Nyman back to the blogging scene after his break. I like his statement “My name is Robert and [...]

  • Pat says:

    Robert, I haven't had time to read your whole post yet, but when I got back from, well, I guess you can say holidays, I was ecstatic to see an update from you in my live bookmarks. In other words… welcome back, I've missed reading your blog!!

  • Robert Nyman says:

    Pat,

    Thank you! I'm glad I hadn't lost you! :-)

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