Look What I Found #6

I’m back! I had the week off last week with regards to this series of posts. The reason was because I was away photographing the sani2c mountain bike race and on returning I discovered that my site was down 🙁

After working out what was wrong I decided to hold of on my regular post until this week as I was already a day or two late.

Anyway, here are a hew things this past week that I found interesting, intriguing, or just worth sharing. There are a few products/services this week so I just wanted to point out that I paid for them with my own cold hard cash – nothing has been sponsored!

Jetpack

For sometime I have subscribed to Jetpack. If you don’t know, Jetpack is described as “essential security and performance for WordPress” and offers a variety of tools to help make running your own WordPress site that much easier.

Since subscribing I have enjoyed the automatic backups, spam filtering, and other features you get with the paid version of Jetpack, but this past week when my site went down I submitted a support ticket and the team at Jetpack had me up and running ASAP.

The whole issue was caused by a rogue plugin that I don’t even think I was still using. This obviously updated itself whilst I was away and crashed the site.

We do our best to automate as much as possible so: attacks are automatically blocked, data is reliably backed up, threats are detected and fixed.

But the internet changes quickly, and some things are not easy to automate. Not every threat or situation has an automated fix:

  • Your site might have custom configurations that our automated services are unaccustomed to.
  • You could be the victim of a new form of attack or threat that we’re not yet aware of.
  • There may be a limitation to our services that you’ve run into.

That is why we have expert Happiness Engineers ready to provide support to all free users, and priority support to all paying customers.

The team at Jetpack responded quickly, located the problem, logged in to my site via ftp, and sorted everything out for me.

If, like me, you are not the most web development literate user who runs their own WordPress site I can’t praise the team at Jetpack enough. In the past the features I had been using more than justified the price, but the support I received this past week was the cherry on the top!

Römer Cooler Box

Romer cooler box

© Römer Cooler Boxes

For ages I have been searching for a decent quality cooler box to take with me to events where I am away for multiple days, many of which without access to electricity.

The typical options I have had in the past have all disappointed in one way or another, but mostly they have just been poorly made and their ability to retain ice has been lackluster.

On doing a bit of research I discovered that there is quite a difference between ‘consumer’ options and the more expensive versions available at specialist stores. Some of these were just way out of my price range, but I stumbled upon Römer that seemed to tick all the below boxes that I wanted from a cooler box:

  • Durable
  • Replaceable parts
  • Keep ice for 5 days
  • Cost under R2,000

On my recent trip to shoot the sani2c I put my 45L Römer to the test and it came through with flying colours. Of course I will only really be able to test the durability of the cooler over a longer period, but I am suitably impressed so far.

Romer Cooler box

© Römer Cooler Boxes

I packed ice into the cooler box on Tuesday morning and the following Sunday there was still ice. And, what impressed me the most, was that for two and a half days the cooler box was either in direct sun or in a hot tent that was in direct sun.

If like me you are looking to replace your aging, poorly made, dodgy cooler box with something that should last for many years, then I have no hesitation in recommending the Römer coolers. And did I mention it is locally made? 💪🏻

Netflix Has 175 Days Left To Pull Off A Miracle… Or It’s All Over

I read this article recently and found it rather interesting. It also points to how volatile things can be in the fast changing world of streaming TV.

Netflix Has 175 Days Left To Pull Off A Miracle… Or It’s All Over

I had never really given it much thought, but what would happen to players like Netflix and our own Showmax if the old-school cable giants slowly transitioned to streaming services?

The article makes some interesting points about how Netflix hasn’t really changed anything other than how we consume content, but the content is essentially the same. This has given leviathans like Disney time to adapt and probably surpass Netflix.

This reminds me much of Tesla in its quest for world domination. The only thing they have really changed is how the cars are propelled. Everything else is essentially the same, and more of the same is what VW, Honda, Toyota, Merc etc… do very well – and at scale! The big guns are starting to come online and we are already seeing the Tesla bubble looking like it could burst. A recent video about the new Mercedes EQC even makes mention that the Merc is just better made with better fit and finish and nicer materials used. Tesla didn’t need to give us electric cars, they needed to give us flying cars!

Netflix also needed to reinvent the whole viewing experience and they just haven’t done that at a level that would keep people tuned in when the likes of Disney come online.

FujiFilm GFX 100

By now anyone who is vaguely interested in photography has probably heard of the recently released FujiFilm GFX 100. This 102 megapixel medium format camera is the latest offering from FujiFilm and expands on their existing medium format digital cameras the GFX 50S and GFX 50R.

This definitely isn’t going to be for everyone, especially at $10,000, but at that price it is considerably less expensive than some of the traditional offerings from Hasselblad and Phase One.

I think studio, landscape, and fashion photographers will definitely have their interest piqued by this new offering.

My hope is that some of the newer technology that never made its way into the earlier models will make it into revised future versions of the GFX 50S and GFX 50R.

Breaking Up Facebook Isn’t Enough

A few weeks back I shared this article about how a founding member of Facebook feels the company should be broken up.

This week I have found a counter to the initial article which you can read here. Well, it isn’t really a counter as such but rather points out some flaws and argues that it doesn’t go nearly far enough.

That’s a nice gesture, and Hughes, now a co-founder of a basic-income collective, puts forth some worthy ideas that tech entrepreneurs, even lapsed ones, rarely embrace. But the gesture is still more rhetorical than actionable, and it doesn’t go nearly far enough into specifics about how to dismantle a company he calls a dangerous monopoly.

It is an interesting read and one anyone even slightly interested in the goings on with Social Media should probably read.

Adverts Coming To WhatsApp

I think everyone has suspected this for some time but probably hoped it wouldn’t happen.

You know that one episode of Black Mirror where everyone can’t even go to sleep without watching an ad that covers their entire bedroom? Well, we’re one step closer to that reality today, as Facebook has confirmed that ads will arrive in its app as part of Statuses (which are the equivalent of Instagram’s Stories) in 2020.

This article in BGR links to proof that the ads are just around the corner and is actually surprised that they haven’t been rolled out yet.

I for one am against this model, you know, the one where companies mine our private data to sell us advertising. As such, I have decided that as soon as I see an advert on WhatsApp I will be saying goodbye to the app. If I can get more friends to move with me then I will go sooner.

If you too would like to move away from WhatsApp then my suggestion is to go with Signal Messanger.

That is it for this week! I hope you also fond some of the above interesting. If there is anything you came across in the last week and you would like to share it then please do so in the comments below.

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