Monthly Archives: May 2018

How to add lined paper to Notes

I’ve been using a lot of default Apple apps in a bid to simplify both my workflows and data. In this day and age it’s good to have your data in just a few places and I’m starting to delete third party apps that hold my data (more on this in a later post).

Here’s how I add lined paper to the Notes app on iOS.

  1. Open up Notes
  2. Create a new note
  3. Tap on the Share icon (see first image above)
  4. Tap ‘Lines & Grids’
  5. Choose the grid pattern that you want

The thinnest iPhone X case

I’m not a huge fan of cases but when I do use one it has to be minimal. I’ve used the iPhone X both naked and in an Apple silicone case but I’ve found one that might suit all of your minimal lovers.

I’m talking about the Tozo PP Ultra Thin. It’s only .35mm thick and covers the entire phone, leaving small openings for the ports. What I like about it is that it obviously adds very little bulk but adds grip. It also adds some plastic around the camera bump so adds some protection to the camera glass, although being sapphire it’s going to be hard to scratch the glass anyway.

I find the glass back of the X to be pretty grippy anyway but it’s the sides that I find slippery.

Drop protection should be fine for the back and sides stopping dings but (like any case) drop it face down and you’ll break the front glass. I still recommend Apple Care + to everyone with an X given the cost to repair.

One major downside is though if you want to take it off again it can be tricky, I managed to break mine when I took it off but if you are careful it’ll be fine.

Buy it here: TOZO® for iPhone X Case, PP Ultra Thin [0.35mm] World's Thinest Protect Hard Case for iPhone 10 / X [ Semi-transparent ] Lightweight [Matte Black]

Non Spoiler Infinity War review

I’ve seen Infinity War twice now and wanted to share my thoughts on it now that I have had some time to digest everything. First off I’ll come straight out say it’s in my top 3 MCU movies along with Winter Soldier and Civil War – these are in no particular order by the way.

To me as someone that is somewhat familiar with the comic story line I couldn’t believe what I was seeing in front of me, it really is like a comic book coming to life. Massive fight sequences mixed with humour and a diverse set of characters make this a really enjoyable movie. It has to be seen at the cinema, it’s that huge a deal. Not many movies like this come along and it’s up there with Empire Strikes Back and The Lord of the Rings trilogy in terms of it being that epic (to me).

Not everyone is going to be pleased but I am glad that Disney backed the Russo brothers and pulled out something amazing from a crazy amount of characters.

If you haven’t seen any MCU movies then it’s going to be difficult, you have to see at least the 3 Captain America’s, first 2 Iron Man, Guardians of the Galaxy and previous Avengers.

iOS 12 wish list

We aren’t too far away from WWDC 2018 and iOS 12 so I’m doing my usual write up.

This years theme I’m hoping is “speed and stability”. I want iOS to run better on older hardware and deal with some of the long time outstanding bugs such as rotation on iPad (dock being left in wrong orientation etc.). I also see a lot of UI issues in Apple Music, especially on iPad.

I’d also like to see some investment in Reminders but Apple appear to have all but given up on improving their productivity apps so I won’t even talk about what I want to see. Same deal with Mail and Calendar.

Yes, it’ll seem like a boring release but I’d be quite happy with a low amount of visual changes but a high amount of polish and bug fixing.

This will be shorted post I’ve written for an iOS update but I really don’t want to see many bells and whistles, just a ‘boring’ stability update please.

My iPad Home screen (May 2018 edition)

Here’s an update on my home screen, specifically the iPad Pro 10.5″ that has become my main device.

Here’s the apps I use the most.

  • OmniFocus: I bounce between to do apps almost monthly but I’m trying to get myself settled on OmniFocus
  • WordPress: The app I use to manage my blog and add new posts
  • Music: I’m an Apple Music subscriber and aside from a few UI issues I’ve come to like it a lot
  • Tweetbot: My Twitter app of choice, I cannot stand the official app so I’m hoping that we continue to see updates to third party apps
  • Notes: My note taking app of choice, reliable sync and being able to use the Apple Pencil means that I can use it for both work and play
  • IA Writer: I use iA Writer to sketch out ideas and start the bulk of the writing on my posts
  • DuckDuckGo browser: Pretty much replaced Safari for me these days, puts privacy first and gets frequent updates
  • Marvel Unlimited: I’ve recently got back into comic books having read them growing up, Marvel Unlimited gives me everything I need, although I wish that you could download more than 12 issues when on the go

What are some of your favourite apps?

What I learned from blogging on Medium

Trying to make it as an independent blogger is hard, especially in 2018 where the landscape is slowly but surely moving to video and social. I truly believe blogging is not dead and if you find your voice (and more importantly an audience) it is possible to make a go at it. I found that on my previous provider, Squarespace I just couldn’t afford to run my site (at £20 a month) so I looked at making the switch to another platform.

I explored all of the options available to me and went for Medium. It’s a platform that I used on and off since launch but it was a free option that looked like it had potential. Well, the short story is that am now completely off the platform (due to lack of confidence that they would continue long term) but I did take away a few lessons.

Write about what you are passionate about

On my previous site I focussed a lot on technology and found that over time it wore me down just writing about one of my passions. When I moved to Medium I found that I had a good response to a variety of subjects I wrote about, anything from games to movies.This was my main lesson, I am now going to be writing about what I’m passionate about.

Medium is full of startups

I found a heavy bias towards life coaches and startups on Medium. Writing about technology, movies and more traditional subjects aren’t popular enough to gain traction on the platform. Everything that rises up or is picked by their editors is all around the startup scene, if you don’t write these kinds of posts I wouldn’t invest in using the platform.

Make use of tags

It’s something I’ll be doing going forward on this blog, make sure of tagging to make sure that you are discovered by new audiences.

Own your content

My biggest takeaway, it’s better to build your own content on your own blog than build someone else’s platform. I have zero confidence in Medium, I give it 3-5 years before it goes out of business. I’d rather build it somewhere else.

Have you used Medium?

Let me know in the comments.

Weathering a Star Wars Black series figure

I’ve started to get into building and painting and after watching many videos on weathering I decided to give it a go.

Here’s what you need

  • Black acrylic paint
  • Small pot of water, about 10 tablespoons
  • Brush
  • Tissue

Technique

Put a couple of pea sized amounts of paint into the pot of water and mix. Apply the paint mixture liberally to the area you want to weather. Once you’ve done this step use the tissue to wipe away the excess you don’t want to dry. I find it’s also good to use some neat acrylic paint in things like knee and elbow joints.

Marvel Legends Captain America Shield

I’m slowly but surely filling my home office with stuff I love, thought I was time to get some Marvel props. The Marvel Legends series are made by Hasbro and offer an affordable high quality replica of your favourite film props. I’m planning on wall mounting this one, more on this in a later post.

Here are some images of the unboxing: