Links from 2020-12-28

The Rise and Fall of Getting Things Done

What Mann and his fellow-enthusiasts were doing felt perfectly natural: they were trying to be more productive in a knowledge-work environment that seemed increasingly frenetic and harder to control. What they didn’t realize was that they were reacting to a profound shift in the workplace that had gone largely unnoticed.

Jeffrey Paul: Your Computer Isn’t Yours

the world that Richard Stallman predicted in 1997. The one Cory Doctorow also warned us about.
On modern versions of macOS, you simply can’t power on your computer, launch a text editor or eBook reader, and write or read, without a log of your activity being transmitted and stored.
It turns out that in the current version of the macOS, the OS sends to Apple a hash (unique identifier) of each and every program you run, when you run it.

The Story of the Music Video for Take on Me by A-ha

In 1985, two groundbreaking works of animation could be viewed, sometimes in the same hour, on MTV.
One was “Take On Me,” the A-ha video in which a woman (actress Bunty Bailey) gets yanked out of a café by lead singer Morten Harket and into a black-and-white animated realm where they fall in love and get chased by bad guys. The other was “Money for Nothing,” the Dire Straits MTV diss track that brought the two complaining blue-collar workers from the song to 3-D animated life.
The two videos demonstrate how creative and technologically ambitious videos had become halfway through the decade, a fact reflected the following year at the 1986 MTV Video Music Awards, where the two were the most nominated videos of the night. “Take On Me” earned 8 nominations and won six awards, while “Money for Nothing” received 11 nominations and won two Moon Men, including the big prize, Video of the Year.

The Surprising Story of the First Microprocessors

You thought it started with the Intel 4004, but the tale is more complicated

The Definitive Guide to the Doctor Who Theme Music

Welcome to the definitive guide to the original theme music for long-running BBC science fiction series Doctor Who, composed in 1963 by Ron Grainer and realised by Delia Derbyshire and the BBC Radiophonic Workshop.

Email a dumpster fire

You may now send email to a dumpster fire, literally, then watch it burn.

  1. Send an email to with whatever you want to torch. Use plain text or an image attachment. PG-13 rules apply.
  2. Watch on the live feed as your message is created, conveyed, and then dropped into the rolling flames.

Instant Messaging vs. Email

You’ll get messages on the go – during the honeymoon period, you can even turn on notifications again! – and then need to come back to them later (because you’re on the go, and the messages are important).
Then, one of two things happens: either you fall back to email or the IM tool gets CC, BCC, mark unread, search and bulk messaging.
Except that it’s shitty email. It’s email that’s locked inside a social media company’s walled garden, with only one client, not federated.

The Attack Surface Lectures: Cyberpunk and Post Cyberpunk : Cory Doctorow

The Attack Surface Lectures were a series of eight panel discussions on the themes in Cory Doctorow’s novel Attack Surface, each hosted by a different bookstore and each accompanied by a different pair of guest speakers.
This program is "Cyberpunk and Post-Cyberpunk," hosted by Andersons Books in Napierville, IL with guest-hosts Bruce Sterling and Christopher Brown. It was recorded on October 19, 2020.

Why COBOL will never die

There are an estimated 240 billion lines of COBOL out there, and they’re the backbone of your financial life — 95% of the time when you swipe your bank card, there’s COBOL involved, and every night when the work-day is over, the massive mainframe farms of big banks leap into action, using COBOL to balance the day’s books.

Restoring a 37 Year-Old IBM F Mechanical Keyboard

I wanted to share my journey from start to finish to restore a 1983 IBM Model F XT mechanical keyboard to it’s former glory. It includes the steps, mistakes, and additional hardware required to make it functional with a modern computer. This blog post is dedicated to my dad for teaching me about computers.

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„Leyrers Online Pamphlet“ ist die persönliche Website von mir, Martin Leyrer. Die hier veröffentlichten Beiträge spiegeln meine Ideen, Interessen, meinen Humor und fallweise auch mein Leben wider.
The postings on this site are my own and do not represent the positions, strategies or opinions of any former, current or future employer of mine.


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