I've been hearing a lot about Meta's Threads lately, and it piqued my curiosity. So, yesterday, I decided to create an Instagram account on their website since it's the only way to access Threads. However, I ran into a problem. Every time I tried to access the website, I kept getting an error message saying, “Sorry, this page isn't available. The link you followed may be broken, or the page may have been removed. Go back to Instagram.” It was frustrating, and I couldn't understand why this was happening.
I posted this in The Daily Click yesterday. I thought I would also post it here just in case you missed it.
Republican Blockade Leaves Marines Without Leader for First Time in Over a Century | The New Republic In a fucking display of incompetence and misplaced priorities, Republican Senator Tommy Tuberville has single-handedly managed to leave the Marines without a leader for the first time in over a century. Not only has Tuberville's abortion policy blockade jeopardized top military promotions, but it has also drawn criticism from the defense secretary himself. Perhaps it's no surprise that Tuberville is known for his questionable stances, such as refusing to acknowledge white nationalists as racists. With leaders like Tuberville in the Republican Party, one can't help but wonder what's wrong with them.
No this is not a drill, it’s actually here! We have a ton of great new stuff for you including tables, nested styles, pinned tags, a better Bear Pro, Backlinks, ToC, custom fonts, and so much more! You can grab it in the App Store and Mac App Store.
Finally! I have been fucking waiting forever for this. I’m writing this post in Bear 2, so this is my first experience with it. After reviewing everything new and writing this post, I’m impressed! If all goes well, I may even switch back from Apple Notes to Bear for my notes.
If you’re curious about everything else that’s new, read on.
I want to share a discovery I made this week regarding those seemingly insignificant colored dots near the front-facing camera on your iPhone. These dots, known as Apple status bar icons, serve as warning signals for potential privacy invasions. Understanding their meaning can help protect your online safety.
Newer iPhone models have integrated privacy indicators that activate these dots when accessing certain features. There are three main colored dots to be aware of:
Orange Dot: An orange dot signifies that your device's microphone is actively being used by an app. This can serve as an alert to potentially unauthorized microphone access.
Green Dot: A green dot, similar in size and shape to the orange dot, indicates that your device's camera is currently in use by an app. It's crucial to be cautious if this dot appears unexpectedly.
Blue Dot with White Arrow: The blue dot, featuring a white arrow pointing right, appears when an app is attempting to access your location. This dot should raise concern if you're not expecting an app to use your location.
It's important to note that a blue dot appearing alongside apps on your home screen indicates that the app has recently been updated and doesn't relate to privacy concerns.
To identify which apps are using your camera, microphone, or location, you can check the App Privacy Report in Settings, which provides a comprehensive log of apps that have used sensitive permissions and when they accessed them.
Understanding and monitoring these privacy indicator dots can enhance your control over your personal data and safeguard your online privacy.
Over the past 2380 days, I wrote 321 blog posts on this site, including this one. That doesn’t make me a writer. The act of writing itself doesn’t make someone a writer. And you don’t have to be a writer in order to write on a personal site. People often tell me they don’t have a personal blog because they don’t know how to write. That is clearly not true. What they’re really saying is that they don’t consider themselves writers. Because a writer is someone who writes in a certain way, is someone who considers writing a skill to perfect and to master. Writers love the act of writing. That is not me. And that also doesn’t have to be you. I am not a speaker and chances are you’re not one either. And yet you’re probably speaking with other people constantly in your life without giving it a second thought.
I am not a writer and I don’t plan to become one. And that’s ok. What matters here is not the writing, is the communication. Is the exchange of ideas, and the sharing of experiences. That’s why more people should have personal sites and why more people should write. Because those ideas matter, those experiences matter and are worth sharing.
What Manu had to say here really resonated with me. I like to think I’m a writer but I’m not. I’m a blogger.
A blogger is an individual who regularly publishes content on a blog. Blogs are online platforms where bloggers share their ideas, experiences, expertise, or opinions on various topics or personal reflections. Bloggers create engaging and informative articles, accompanied by images, videos, or other media. They cultivate a community of readers who follow their blog and interact through comments and social media.
HuffPost highlighted a related senatorial misstep from yesterday:
“Sen Josh Hawley (R-Mo.) is coming under fire for a Fourth of July tweet that managed to include both a false claim and a false quote at the same time. Hawley tweeted a quote he claimed to be from Founding Father Patrick Henry saying the United States was founded “on the Gospel of Jesus Christ.” Just one problem: Henry ― a slave owner perhaps best remembered for his “give me liberty or give me death” quote ― never said it.”
It was late in the afternoon on the Fourth of July holiday when the Missouri Republican published this tweet — which, as of this morning, has not been taken down — with a purported quote from Patrick Henry, a prominent figure from late-18th century Virginia.
“It cannot be emphasized too strongly or too often that this great nation was founded, not by religionists, but by Christians; not on religions, but on the Gospel of Jesus Christ,” the quote read. “For this very reason, peoples of other faiths have been afforded asylum, prosperity, and freedom of worship here.”
What Hawley should’ve realized before promoting the quote is that Henry didn’t say it. The line was reportedly published instead by a white nationalist publication in 1956 — more than a century and a half after the founding father’s death.
On the surface, it’s obviously unfortunate to see a senator — a graduate of Stanford and Yale — make a mistake like this, especially as so many other Republicans also fall for fake quotes.
But let’s not brush past the underlying point the Missouri Republican was trying to make by way of a made-up line: Hawley seems certain that the United States was founded as a Christian nation, with members of one faith tradition — his own — enjoying exalted status over others.
Indeed, the GOP senator’s misguided tweet was part of a larger rhetorical push. It was just two weeks ago when Hawley spoke at a far-right event and declared his belief that the Christian faith had “formed the soul of this country.” He went on to say, “There is not one square inch of all creation over which Jesus Christ is not Lord,” adding that he believes “the time for Christians to rise is now.”
It was against this backdrop that Hawley — on Independence Day — pushed the line that the United States was “founded ... on the Gospel of Jesus Christ.”
It really wasn’t. The Constitution is a secular document that created a secular government. Thomas Jefferson — in an actual quote — wrote in 1802 that our First Amendment built “a wall of separation between church and state.” In 1797, John Adams agreed: “The government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion.”
It’s unfortunate that Hawley made a rather obvious mistake, but more important than the senator’s sloppy error is the fact that a prominent Republican senator thought it’d be a good idea to tout an inherently theocratic vision on the Fourth of July.
The right wing Christian Wackos just can't resist spewing their nonsense onto the rest of us. They love pushing this garbage, even though deep down they know it's a load of bullshit. As pointed out above, “the Constitution is a secular document that created a secular government. Thomas Jefferson — in an actual quote — wrote in 1802 that our First Amendment built “a wall of separation between church and state.” In 1797, John Adams agreed: “The government of the United States of America is not in any sense founded on the Christian Religion.””
So, Josh Hawley, and all your fucking Wacko friends, do us all a favor and spare us your steaming pile of bullshit.
ldstephens has always been a blog focused on technology, particularly Apple-related topics. While that will remain part of my content, I also have other topics that I'm eager to write about. However, I want to ensure that you have the freedom to select what interests you most, without receiving unwanted emails.
Therefore, I've decided to discontinue sending emails. If you wish to continue reading my posts, you can follow me on your preferred RSS reader, Mastodon, or by visiting the ldstephens website occasionally. Additionally, you can find my writings on read.write.as and Medium.
Thank you for being a valued reader, and I look forward to sharing my diverse range of topics with you through these alternative channels.
Lisa and I are very proud that our 10-acre property in central New Jersey recently qualified as a certified wildlife habitat with The National Wildlife Foundation. It serves as an oasis for birds, butterflies, deer, wild turkeys, raccoons, rabbits, groundhogs, chipmunks, the occasional fox, and other creatures, fostering a harmonious relationship between us and wildlife.
One of my greatest joys everyday is observing and interacting with all the animals that call our property home.
Native plants play a vital role in providing sustenance for a diverse range of wildlife. By incorporating flora indigenous to your region, you can ensure a steady supply of nourishment. Additionally, bird feeders and strategically placed food sources can supplement natural food availability, ensuring that animals are well-fed throughout the year.
Water is a fundamental necessity for all living beings, and wildlife is no exception. A wildlife habitat should offer accessible sources of water, not only for drinking but also for other essential activities such as bathing and breeding. This can be achieved through the use of bird baths, shallow ponds, or even strategically positioned water features.
Just as humans seek shelter from inclement weather or hide from potential dangers, wildlife also requires safe havens. Incorporating various forms of cover, such as dense vegetation, brush piles, or even birdhouses, provides wildlife with protective spaces to weather storms, hide from predators, or hunt for prey.
Places to Raise Young:
One of the most rewarding aspects of nurturing a certified wildlife habitat is witnessing the miracle of life as creatures reproduce and raise their young. To encourage this vital cycle, your habitat should offer resources like nesting boxes, dense shrubs, or even dedicated areas where animals can build their nests, lay eggs, or care for their offspring.
An essential aspect of maintaining a thriving wildlife habitat is practicing sustainable techniques. By adopting environmentally-friendly approaches to yard or garden maintenance, you contribute to the preservation of healthy soils, clean air, and uncontaminated water. Avoiding harmful chemicals, implementing composting, and conserving water are just a few ways to ensure the long-term sustainability of your habitat.
I wish I had more to say about the new 15-inch MacBook Air, but really, the best compliment I can give it is that it’s just as great as the 13-inch model I reviewed last summer. I liked that laptop so much that I bought one for myself. Now Apple sells that same computer but with a 15.3-inch display. If you’ve hesitated to consider buying a MacBook Air because its screens always seemed a bit too cramped, you now have another option. If you’ve always wanted a bigger display but didn’t want to pay more than $1000 for the privilege, your time is now.
I don’t think so. I’m perfectly content with my 13” M1 MacBook Air. The whole point of the Air to me is to be sleek and tiny, but I’m happy for those of you who wanted a larger MacBook Air.
That being said, I've been seriously leaning into using my iPad Air 4th generation as my primary computing device lately. I’ve discovered that I prefer the combination of a keyboard, trackpad, and touch interface compared to just a keyboard and trackpad. Additionally, I've set up Drafts as my primary writing space and configured actions with keyboard shortcuts that replicate many of the automations I use on my Mac.
Since my MacBook Air is the model preceding the M series, I decided to upgrade to the new M2 11-inch iPad Pro with 128 GB of storage. Initially, I considered the 256 GB model, but since I'm currently using only 28 GB of the 256 GB on my Air, I saved $100 by choosing the 128 GB Pro. On a side note, the 100 GB Pro was only about $50 more expensive than the 256 GB M1 Air.
Have you accidentally deleted a file on your iPhone or iPad? It can be super frustrating, especially if the file was important. But don't worry, it's super easy to recover deleted files using the Recently Deleted feature in the Files app.
Recently Deleted in the Files app is kinda like the Trash on a Mac. When you delete a file, it goes into the Recently Deleted folder where it hangs out for 30 days before being permanently deleted. This gives you a chance to recover the file if you change your mind. When you delete a file, it goes into the Recently Deleted folder where it stays for 30 days before being permanently deleted. This gives you a chance to recover the file if you change your mind.
Open the Files app and tap on “Browse”
Tap on “Recently Deleted” under “Locations”
Tap on the deleted file you want to recover
Tap on “Recover”
One thing to keep in mind is that you only have 30 days to recover a deleted file before it is permanently deleted. If you don't see the file in the Recently Deleted folder, it may have already been deleted permanently.
Losing a file can be a stressful experience, but with the Recently Deleted feature in the Files app, you can recover your deleted files with ease. Just remember to check the Recently Deleted folder within 30 days of deleting the file. By following these simple steps, you'll never have to worry about losing an important file on your iPhone or iPad again.