How Not To Kill The Little Blue Birdy

I’m referring, of course, dear worst-reader, to my twitter account. Been on twitter since 2009–at least with (at)worstwriter. A few years back, when the right-wingers and #Trump started taking over the minds of THE LAND OF FREEDOM TO BE STUPID lost in social-media, I deleted all my tweets. Better get off this $hithole, I thought. It’s not as though worstwriter couldn’t be (mis)interpreted as a crazy. Or? Anywho. Long before that I got off facebag. As far as the other social-media thingies, I’m just not interested. But twitter. Twitter! I really wanted to somehow continue using it, even hoping that it could save itself. Reason? It’s a great source for newz. IMHO it’s also the best example yet of online connectivity (forget the whole social thingy). As far as all the bat$hit crazy goes, I think I’m pretty good navigating unscathed through it all.

Then I came across this article.

The effort was sparked when a tweet from the president, who has 37m followers, generated nearly 29m impressions while a similar tweet from Musk – who has 128m followers – generated little more than 9.1m impressions. -Source: see link below

Ok. Ok. I get it. Musk made a huge mistake NOT by buying twitter but buying it so overpriced that the only way to save himself from his own crazed antics is to either bankrupt it and then try to recoup some of his money selling it or go full throttle on turning it into a über bat$hit bat$hit $hithole of right-wing mindlessness galore that includes the dreams and strawberry flavoured nightmares of Ayn Rand.

Is this article chronicling yet another example of how rich people might, just might, not be as smart as some think they are? Delusions run amok? I mean. Seriously. Musk is gonna solve his bat$hit problems by reacting to his own personal inadequacies because POTUS (Biden) got more attention with a Super Bowl tweet than he did? This is jealously, right? Or is it spite? Stupidity–at the hands of the world’s richest man? This is how to run a business? #Nomatter

When I read this article my immediate reaction was: enough. It’s time to quit the online little blue birdy. But then I went online and only ended up cleaning out my follow list. Since I only use twitter for finding newz–and I made the mistake of following Musk–I’m gonna continue using it without following Der Führer of bat$hit and then reevaluate.

Rant on.



PS What’s the deal with calling people who design a website engineers? WTF.

Pseudo-Review 3 – iPad Air 5, A While Later

Pseudo-Review 3 – iPad Air 5, A While Later

Alternative worst-title: Solving iOS 16.2‘s biggest problem

Previous pseudo-review here and here.

Well. Don‘t you know. Dear worst-reader. Worst-writer is still pretty tickled with the new iPad Air 5. In fact. Since the iOS 16.2 update, where there are significant improvements to driving a second monitor, I haven‘t touched my 2017 twelve inch MacBook. This iPad not only blows the MacBook away–even as a replacement for running my MacBook on my desktop in clamshell mode–every time I use it I can‘t get over how fast it is. That worst-said. I’m almost full-in on the iPad replacing the/my Mac. For example.

Using Apple’s StageManager means that I can easily integrate my entire workflow on two screens and at times it feels like I have three monitors. The thing is, I rarely used my MacBook monitor when on my desktop, hence clamshell. Even though the twelve inch MacBook is Apple’s smallest, the iPad has a much more useable desktop footprint. Again. Space saving clamshell mode. Obviously I also don’t have a very large desk, so space saving is important. As far as multi-monitor performance, the only issue I’m having is adapting to the differences between MacOS and iOS. As an old Mac user, the differences are not unsubstantial. But I think I’m making progress.

The main issue I‘m having with the iPad right now is, would you believe, that someone at Apple thought it a good idear to not make AirPlay available when the iPad is connected to an external monitor (see screenshot above)? WTF! I mean. This is/has to be an error. Or? #Nomatter. The work around I‘ve found for this, well, is to not use Airplay. Instead I’m connect via using Bluetooth to a Raspberry Pi 3b that has a Hifiberry DAC hat that is connected to a stereo and it works great. For those not in the know, the RPi3b has to have a USB bluetooth dongle, since it doesn‘t have BT onboard. There are still some issues with bluetooth connectivity but I‘ve worked them out by just sticking with Hifiberry‘s in-house OS for music play I’ll continue to work on them until Apple gets it together with Airplay. My pay-grade means that I can‘t get bluetooth working on any minimal Linux distribution on the RPi3b. HifiberryOS works like a charm, though.

A few other minor issues I‘m having? I‘m using the Keychron K2 version 2 external keyboard and for whatever reason it seems to disconnect out of the blue. It doesn‘t do it often but every once-a-once, usually after the Keychron recharges, things get hairy. Although it indicates that it reconnects right away once it‘s charged, typing doesn‘t work. Solution? Lot‘s of iPad restarts. Hopefully I don‘t have to replace this keyboard because I really dig typing with it. Might I eventually move to an iPad keyboard case? Maybe. Recent travels with the iPad haven‘t convinced me I can go without a physical, external keyboard.

Then there’s the issue of a Terminal app. Unlike MacOS, which comes with a Terminal app, that I need to manage all the Raspberry Pi‘s I have around my house, iOS doesn’t have one. Although I’ve tried a few via the AppStore, I’ve not been able to get any of them to work/connect. Again. WTF! Ok. Since I’m on a worst-roll. Another minor issue. And this relates to me getting used to iOS. The world of apps is really weird. The thing that kept my away from iPads through the years was the fact (idear) that Apps are not programs, at least they‘re not to me. Are they written/coded like programs? Sure. But I don‘t care. The thing is. Apps are nothing more than a way to make a webpage standalone–and look like it ain‘t a webpage. But. Again. I reckon I‘ve got a bit more iOS acclimating in front of me. Oh. Before I forget. The iPad as a desktop machine works really well with Apple‘s Magic Mouse. You know. Since I hate touchscreens. Who‘d a thunk it.

So there you have it, dear worst-reader. Worst-writer is on the verge of giving up on MacOS. This little iPad with only 64gb is flat-out stealing the thunder out of my Mac world, even though it still has a few flaws. Considering how I‘ve used iPads for only a short period of time and the significant improvements Apple‘s done with iOS, I can‘t praise it enough as a worst-writing work-horse.

Rant on.


Battle Of The Worst-Writing Apps

Worst-Alternative title: iaWriter vs. Ulysses or the battle for writing minimalism

For worst-writer, dear worst-reader, it all started with some kinda tex-edit program or what today would be called a note app. Or maybe not. Yeah. Anywho. So it started. As in the late friggin 1980s. I’m worst-writing, of course, about writing on computer machines back when they were, indeed, glorified typewriters. Still are? #Nomatter. Seriously. They all sucked and still suck. On top of that. What happened to the idear of word-processing? But. Wait. I have to worst-admit. Now that I worst-think about it. I kinda dug WordPerfect back in the day. Again. #Nomatter. WordPerfect too was a bloated behemoth of lingering nothingness within the masterbatory-wings of windows-98 über-software krapp. Moving on.

The thing is, dear worst-reader, writing apps–software–are still struggling to not be krapp. With that in worst-mind. They’ll always be krapp. And so. No. Seriously. For most of my worst-writing life I’ve relied on apps that are, more or less, über-minimum when it comes to the $hitshow that is/should be worst-writing on a computer-machine. And so. Don’t you know. For. I can’t spell. I don’t even know what grammar is all about. And I really worst-hate the idear that when I’m writing something that something has to technically reside within the confines of the software I’m using. Hence. I haven’t written a thing in Microsoft Word in twenty years. The .doc file format sucks bat-balls. Although I like Apple’s Pages, for the same reason, I don’t use it. Then again. WTF! All worst-writer has ever wanted is to be able to worst-write and, get this, store what I worst-write in a folder on my computer–that is in a file format that isn’t dependent on any particular software. What a crazy thought, eh. Which brings me to… Scrivener.

There was a short stint where I thought Scrivener was the writing app I needed. Heck I even bought it. But you know what? I’ve never written anything in Scrivener that I’ve then published on my blog. Although my novels drifted in and out of Scrivener, I’ve since stopped using it. Everything on my blog is written in one of three apps. Apple’s Notes, TextEdit or iaWriter. Why iaWriter? For $hits & giggles, I guess. The thing is, I could use the Macs Note app to write a novel. Then again. While we’re on the subject of $hits&giggles, I gave Ulysses a test the other day. It’s always been on my radar but I haven’t used it cause of its subscription business model. Subscription business models suck. And guess what? I fiddled with it and immediately deleted it. Reason I dumped it? The same reason I dumped Scrivener–above and beyond the business model. It’s just too complicated. The thing is, with TextEdit, Notes or iaWriter, I don’t care about all the snappy software gimmicks that are supposed to make writing less worst. All I really want is some spell and grammar checking and whatever file/document/text I create I can then open in any other app or in any other operating system. Yeah. That’s the ticket. I don’t want files corrupted by dependencies from an app. Indeed. Worst-writer simply wants his worst-writing to be pure, uncorrupted, and accessible via whatever app or operating system I use. Yeah. That’s the ticket.

Rant on.


Screenshot From Almost Hell

Alternative worst-title: iPad Air 5 pseudo-review number 3 or how I might lose my worst-mind

Was so looking forward to iPadOS 16.2 update, dear worst-reader. Reason? As noted here, worst-writer is kinda enamoured with the new iPad Air 5 (M1). In fact. I’m so impressed with this glass slate of tech I’m on the verge of ending my relationship with Macintosh. What is the thing that has made this such a decisive device for worst-moi, you ask. Unlike my trusty MacBook, a laptop a few years back I never thought could be replaced by a tablet, this thing can do just that. Well. It kinda can.

It’s the external monitor support that’s got me. Keep in worst-mind, I already have an external keyboard and mouse, which accompanies my MacBook when in clamshell mode. These two things are (kinda) required when connecting an external monitor to an iPad. Also. I worst-mean. Even though the speed of M1 iPad Air overwhelms—it is literally blazing fast when it comes to loading webpages and puts my 2017 i5 MacBook Air, with the faster 500gb HDD, to shame—its portability and the fact that I’m really coming around to iPadOS, is the real magic. But I’ve already worst-said most of that.

When I received the iPad about three weeks ago it immediately updated to iPad OS 16.1. I quickly learned that I’d have to wait for 16.2 to get the full benefits of what, from the specs indicated, sold me on this device, namely the iPad’s ability to drive a separate monitor. Even though the monitor mirroring it has with 16.1 was totally cool, I checked almost every day for the release of 16.2–because it was/is supposed to support full dual monitor connectivity. And it does. Now. I’ve always used my MacBooks with a separate monitor when at my desk. Which means there are a few things I’m gonna have to get used to with the iPad. That worst-said. I don’t fear the learning curve here. I’m impressed with 16.2’s monitor support and can only wonder at the reason it’s taken Apple so long to do this. This being providing real world applicability to a product that, for worst-writer, I never thought would/could replace Macintosh.

Stop the worst-presses.

Which brings me to the screenshot above. Turns out that Apple doesn’t quite have iPad OS 16.2 under control. Or is there a reason that when driving a separate monitor I cannot use airplay? WTF! Hopefully this is a bug and not a feature. That Apple would include such a warning (pic above) does seem to indicate something more than a bug, though. Or? Ok. Wow. Can you imagine, dear worst-reader, getting all productive and giddy with your new apple product and suddenly when you want to listen to some tunes to hold your mood(s) you get this message? Yeah. WTF–double.

Rant on.


Don’t Panic

So. Like. This happened the other day. I’m in town approaching the bio-market and out of the blue sirens start going off all around me, even on my phone. At first I startled, thinking it was a bank robbery on account I was at that moment walking past a bank. Then I remembered. Oh yeah! It’s that new fangled wireless emergency alert test. Yea, that’s the ticket. It goes something like this. In Germany they still use those über-loud sirens every once-a-once that is supposed to wake up Das Volk to batten down the hatches, trouble is coming. But now, with these changing times, z’Germans are finally getting their $hit together as those old sirens need replacing. I guess. The new siren, which is supposed to provide a more efficient warning, is based on embedded sim technology known as CellBroadcast. And that’s fine and dandy. It worked on December 8, as promised (see pic above). But here’s worst-writer’s question: How is it that the German government is able to send a message to my phone like this? Obviously the cellular phone network, that all our phones are attached to, is being used for this. But. Again. Fine and dandy. It’s just… How did they get my phone number to send me this message? Ok. Wait. I’m not asking the right questions.

The thing is, dear worst-reader, they don’t need a phone number to send this message. Which says a lot about what this technology is all about. But we’ve known that already, right dear worst-reader? Our digital life is not a one-way street. Or is it a one-way street–just not in the direction we think it is? Wow. And so. Beyond this being kinda invasive, what other surprises await us. You know. What else can the government push our way?

Buckle up.

Rant on.



Pseudo-Review – iPad Air 5, One Week Later

MacBook (clamshell) left, RPi4 (under table) right. New iPad Air 5 center.

Previous pseudo-review is here.

So. First. For some worst-context, here‘s a rundown of worst-writer‘s tech.

  • MacBook 12“ (2017), i5/8gb/500gb
  • iPhone 11
  • iPad Air 5 (2022), M1/64gb
  • Raspberry Pi 4, 4gb

For the past year or so I‘ve been using my better-half‘s hand-me-down iPad. She has since moved on to an iPad Pro. Although her old iPad sat around unused for a while, it eventually became my go-to device for e-book reading, newz reading/scanning, YouTube and VLC for viewing movies and TV from my home media server. In short, I worst-guess, the iPad has become my main gadget for media consumption. Also. When we‘re traveling in our wunder-van (see pic above), that old iPad quickly replaced me having to take my MacBook which has also lead to me reconsidering my daily-driver computing needs. Of course. The iPad Pro I inherited is over five years old. But that’s not the problem. In fact, it works fine, updates n‘all. No. The big problem is it can‘t go more than an hour without hanging on a charging cable. What good is an iPad if it always has to be plugged in? And so. My better-half surprised me last week with the new M1 iPad Air.

As noted in my previous post, I‘m not a fan of touch screen computing. When others thought that Apple should make MacOS a touchscreen operating system, as was done with Windows, I was in the wings preying it would never happen. With that in worst-mind, once I hooked up a keyboard and sometimes a mouse to the old iPad, I quickly realized that working (worst-writing) on a tablet might not be a bad idear–touchscreen n‘all. And even though my MacBook has the smallest footprint since the MacBook Air 11“, as far as mobility goes, the MacBook can’t compete with the iPad.

Having fiddled and giggled with my new iPad for over a week now… Boy oh boy am I sold on this slate of wunder-glass. In fact, other than it not having a terminal app, or at least one that I‘ve figured out how to get working like the MacOS terminal app, there‘s nothing on this iPad Air that makes me miss my MacBook. Plus. Oh. In case you‘re not in the know. The speed of the M1 CPU in this iPad is amazing. Surprise. Surprise.

As far as my work flow goes, I‘m obviously not a power user. I don‘t do any video work and the photo work I do is minimal, including nothing more than cropping and resizing pictures I take with my iPhone. Other than scanning a document every once-a-once, I don‘t see a need for a camera on an iPad. But I guess it is nice to have just in case. As far as the iOS learning curve is concerned, compared to MacOS, iOS very different indeed. What I thought was cumbersome at first, like various settings or the entirety of a touch screen, I‘m sure I‘ll eventually adjust. Of course, there is the issue of storage since I only have 64gb. I haven‘t yet downloaded anything but I‘m considering trying out Apple Arcade–once I figure out, as a non-gamer, what games I might want to try. I use my iPhone 11 for audio podcasting so I don‘t have to worry about downloaded files cluttering up my iPad. With all that in worst-mind, I don‘t see having the minimum spec as an issue. We‘ll see how that goes.

To protect it I‘m using the ESR magnetic case but am considering getting a keyboard case. The Apple keyboard case is waaaaay to expensive so I’ll probably get one from Logitech. As far as the Apple pen goes, I’ve fiddled with the first gen Apple pen and although I find the pen a better input method than fingers on glass, I don‘t know what else to use it for. I don’t draw and would rather type than transcribe handwriting. My Keychron keyboard works great on it, which means I‘ve finally got three separate bluetooth connections for typing: 1 MacBook (clamshell), 2 iPad, 3 RPi4.

All in all, I‘m impressed with the new iPad Air. Not only does it cost significantly less than a new MacBook, it blows my 2017 MacBook out of the water when it comes to opening webpages or apps. That it could possibly be the device that replaces a Mac in my life is a bit of a surprise but so far not a disappointing surprise. This may mean that I can finally start considering a laptop solely for my Linux needs. Indeed. I‘m seriously considering buying a Framework laptop and going full Linux. Again. We‘ll see.

Rant on.


Pseudo Review: iPad Air 5 2022

Alternative worst-title: Has worst-writer purchased his last Macintosh (laptop)?

One week later pseudo-review here.

Took a few years, dear worst-reader. You know. Took a few years before I came round. Round to what, you ask. Well. The biggest reason I never really liked iPads and barely tolerate iPhones is because of one piece of modern tech that bugs the bee-gee-bees out of me: touch screens. Having been swept away long ago with the Macintosh, a magnificent alternative to Windows, this not only makes me old school, it makes me a bit weary when it comes to big (tech) changes. The thing is, I dig keyboards and command line interfaces. And so. The biggest move I’ve made so far with distancing my worst-self from Apple‘s hideous and monopolistic product politics, that began with Macintosh, has been to embrace Linux. And so. I‘m digging ARM based SBCs. As you can see in the pic above, I have been sharing the right half of my work space with a tried & true RPi4 for going on a year, not to mention that all my music and video and file server needs in my little townhouse are fulfilled with other raspberry pi SBCs. But this worst-post ain‘t about my having seen the light. Or is it the dark? #Nomatter. Moving on.

For years now worst-writer has been a perturbed Apple fanboy. Whether dazed and confused about hardware, software or its baked-in product obsoletism, IMHO the company has taken the fun/thrill out of its stuff—other than unboxings, of course. Even though I know how technically powerful Macs and iPads are, there‘s something about what money grubbing monopolists do that just makes things… un-fun. And I have a lot of un-fun, boring Apple stuff, don‘t you know. So. The question for worst-moi for the past few years has been simple. Will my frustration with Apple make me give up on Apple?

Discovering the joys of worst-writing on a slate of glass that glows and talks and plays music/videos and connects to the world may have turned things upside down.

The thing that has sent me over the edge over the past few years is Apple‘s new Silicon. You know. The new CPU/GPU it supposedly developed to replace the burden of having to buy over-priced chips from Intel. I‘m probably a bit naive in making this assumption but hear me out for a worst-sec. Why is it, after developing completely new Silicon and thereby not having to pay Intel‘s monopoly chip prices, are Macs as expensive if not more expensive than ever before? Keep in mind, dear worst-reader, Apple Silicon is based on open-source chip architecture. The development and manufacture of chips is supposed to be a huge part of the cost of chips. Again. Perhaps I‘m not well enough informed but to worst-moi, at the least, anything with Apple Silicon should be substantially cheaper because a big chunk of chip development doesn‘t cost Apple a thing. Then again. We no longer live in times where capitalist innovation could/should benefit consumers. It’s all about the shareholders. Am I wrong. Moving on.

As usual, worst-writer is off subject. This worst-post is supposed to be about reviewing my latest Apple purchase which could have been a new Mac–cause I‘m due for a new one. So. Thank you for indulging me. Again. Moving on.

As mentioned above, I was never an iPad fan. I hate touch screens. But. My better-half has been using iPads for years. I can’t deny the fact that she’s also been very productive with her iPad. This has lead me to look over her shoulder once or thrice which then lead to a few YouTube videos and before I knew it, she hand-me-downed her second generation iPad Pro about a year and a half ago. At first, I only used the iPad to read the newz in the morning with coffee. I then started reading books on it–having long since giving up on Kindle and Amazon. Once I figured out how to browse the #Interwebnets with it I started to find myself casually reaching for it more and more instead of putting my 2017 MacBook (the twelve inch one) on my lap. Long worst-story short. This past summer, as my better-half and I began our vanlife, I became more and more hesitant to camp in remote places with an abundance of expensive tech krapp. I mean. It‘s bad enough that we have our iPhones, iPads, Apple Watch, etc. Even though our van has a lock-n-key safe in it, my MacBook does not fit in that safe. But I‘m rambling. The worst-thing is, the more I used that old, second generation iPad Pro, the more I dug it and only took it on our vanlife trips.

My aging iPad‘s battery has been at its end for a while now. It lasted under constant use for almost five years and that‘s more than I can say for my MacBook or any iPhone. I started to complain that I had to plug it in every hour after any significant use. Complaining enough meant that my better-half was also getting bored (of my complaining). Surprise. Surprise. She bought the new iPad Air 5th gen with the caveat it‘s my early Xmas present. Tickled to death as I waited for it to be delivered, and after informing her about all the research I’d done about which iPad I wanted, I made a plan to turn it into my daily driver. Yeah. Since last summer (2022) I am digging the iPad, touch screen n‘all. Who‘d a thunk it!

Will this new iPad Air replace my aging 2017 12“ MacBook? I mean. I had the MacBook battery replaced last summer. Because it has i5 processor and a 500GB HD, it‘s also, unlike the i3 MacBooks, still quite useful. In fact, unlike the i3 MacBook, mine runs MacOS Ventura. But that‘s all neither here nor there. The thing that blows my mind with my new iPad Air is how much faster it is at opening apps, browsing the #Interwebnets and multitasking. Of course, the question remains, as my daily driver, as I have to rely on it for all my computing needs, will the Air deliver? We‘ll worst-see. This worst-test is ongoing.

So. The question now is: what in worst-writer‘s computing world will replace my Mac laptop? Keep in worst-mind, dear worst-reader, I didn‘t say, by potentially giving up Macintosh for an iPad (iOS) that I‘m also giving up on using a laptop. I don‘t think that‘s the case. What I‘m really doing is searching for a path to reduce my dependency on Apple. That worst-said. If things go as planned, I may finally replace Macintosh for iOS for all my ecosystem needs but for my other computing needs, it‘s Linux all the way.

Ever heard of a Framework laptop?

Rant and review on.


Boy You Best Prey I Bleed Real Soon

Sub-worst-title: Thoughts on Apple’s Sept, 2022 event.

First, dear worst-reader, the title of this worst-post is from the song Silent All These Years by Tori Amos. If, btw, you want to melt worst-writer, put me near Madame Amos. I would jump off mountains for her, bring down aeroplanes full of conservative idiots for her, crush Republican man-children for her, thereby squishing their innards between my toes, laughing and giggling through my nose, all the while listening to the thunder of one of the greatest rock music composers ever–that just happens to also be the epitome of the human female, female and more female. But on that note I should die-gress for my loins churn me to unrest.

Since I’m on the subject of menstruation and technology and my love and respect for females, something extraordinary caught my eye and ears yesterday while watching Apple’s marketing circus, especially the part about the new Apple Watch. Or am I over worst doing it when I say that I couldn’t help but think of the politics of my beloved & missed united mistakes of #Americant as Apple presented its newest incarnation of a time machine that can also track a woman’s cycle? The video link above, by-the-buy, is time-stamped for the presentation, which starts at about the nine minute mark. And what a presentation it is IMHO.

The thing is, dear worst-reader–and fellow lovers of all-things feminist–I couldn’t help but get the feeling that Apple might be taking a political swipe with this presentation about its wunder-watch capabilities. Well. Political as much as profits go, don’t you know. Specifically. Apple is using this five minute presentation, certainly seen by millions of people, to explain how a watch tracks a woman’s cycle. Now. That’s great. Technology is fun. But. And I may be worst over doing it here. For what do I know about ovulation? Indeed. Using a female doctor to explain all this, she also uses words like privacy and women’s health numerous times. Important words in selling a gadget? Again. Indeed. What do I know about this stuff? Then again… For those not in the know, allow worst-writer to recap one of the pillars of the political krapp-show that is #Americant:

Roe v. Wade

What one should never forget about this landmark decision dating back to 1973 is that it’s not entirely about abortion. It is, in fact, about privacy. Hence the recent overturning of Roe is at the same time an attack on what should be an inalienable human right, with or without a Constitution. That misconstrued man-children, including their delusional if not abused sister-wives (what other kind of female would marry these extreme conservative men), think they have the high-ground on the morality of abortion is only further proof of what’s ahead for my beloved & missed united mistakes of #Americant–unless it can get itself out of the (political) $hithole it’s dug itself in with the likes of the GOP, republicans and so-called centrists. But let’s not get too far off subject here.

During the watch presentation I couldn’t help but get the feeling that Apple was taking a swipe at the current political situation #Americant has gotten itself into by voting for republicans and conservatives for the past fifty friggin years. Does that mean that a watch will help women in need? Of course not. Is there a ten year old rape victim in need of an abortion that can afford one of these watches? But. Again. I die-gress.

Other than privacy, the other issue of misconstrued #Americant politics regarding inalienable human rights that only apply to females is that all-things women’s health should NEVER be questioned by the state. It’s none of the State’s business. It is, in fact, nobody’s business except for the woman. Apple seems to know this. But until that inalienable right is given the freedom she deserves, worst-writer can only hope that an ingloriously profitable corporation making gadgets no one needs, but are still kinda fun, is at least taking one small stance on what is the right thing to do or say.

And so. Apple has a new watch gadget that tracks a woman’s cycle and they want people to know that privacy and health is a priority. I love how they go about explaining that. In times like these, I’m still dreaming about the one that got away and in that same dream she’s singing to me Silent All These Years by Tori Amos.

Rant on.



Exploring Streaming, Finding Budgie

Worst-title 2: Doing my worst-best to discover the convenience of music streaming

As you’all may or mayn’t know, dear worst-readers, as an Apple fanboy, if I’m gonna finally break down (give-in) and try music streaming, it’s gotta be with Apple’s music service. Or?


After a six month trial (on account I bought HomePod Mini’s last fall to provide stereo to the AppleTV I bought last year), it took me till the end of that trial to buckle down and finally figure out what this streaming krapp is all about. Yeah. Six months for free is one thing. Having to start paying for it is another. No. Seriously. I really didn’t think I was ready for music streaming. But here we are, eh.

As you certainly missed elsewhere in this worst-blog, here and here, I’ve been maintaining an SBC media server for audio and video for going on a decade now. That server has a quarter century of purchased CD music and DVD movies/tv and it’s done its job. But. As much as I’d like to keep on keeping-on with physical media, I have to worst-admit, even worst-writer has to go with the punches every once-a-once. Times not only be a’changing but maybe it’s not so bad to change a bit along with it. And so.

The question is: Which streaming service should I NOT use? That question, by-the-buy, is easy to answer. Since Spotify can’t register on my radar (on account it supports with around $100m the lie of the mind that is my beloved & missed #Americant via Joe new-born Limbaugh Rogan), the only other services to choose from that I know anything about is Amazon Music, Tidal or SoundCloud. Amazon music left a bad smell in my nose as I used what it included with Prime for a while. Both the streaming and the sound quality were awful. SoundCloud was much better at streaming, even though I only used its free-tier service. The other problem I had with SoundCloud was the music offering. Although it has lots of new artists doing lots of great music, that’s just not how my music taste rolls. That worst-said, I consider SoundCloud to be the most original music streamer out there. It’s definitely staying on my radar for the future. As far as Tidal is concerned, even though I never tested it, I knew it could be an option because it streamed lossless audio. Again. Amazon’s Music service didn’t do music justice. Higher quality bitrates or better bandwidth cannot and should not be compromised here. But then… uh oh. Apple bumped up its service to lossless and I have to admit–I’m impressed.


The thing is dear worst-reader, it took me years to get used to iTunes. Remember iTunes? Once I got used to ripping and encoding my CDs to FLAC, I then had to re-encode them to the highest bitrate MP3 so my music would work with iTunes. For years I maintained two music libraries. My better-half could then use the simplicity of iTunes for her music needs and when I needed CD quality, I used other players that supported FLAC. As frustrating as all that was, I got used to it. The banality, btw, of having to do that was because Apple is either greedy, stupid or just outright spiteful towards open-source (FLAC) or it had made too many promises to the music industry–which doesn’t make sense to me because I always bought my CDs. But on that worst-note, I should die-gress.

Almost conclusion

Now that I’m a paying, streaming customer, the question lingers whether or not I’m gonna stick with it. It’s been about two months since taking Apple Music seriously. In that time I can’t say that streaming has knocked my socks off. Then again, the convenience when out-and-about and calling up a song is kinda cool–especially when the streaming quality is better than anything I experienced previously (Amazon). When at home and streaming to my stereo system from iPhone, iPad or Mac, Apple’s lossless rivals any quality I achieved using FLAC. Then there’s the interface…

Sucky interfaces

The Apple Music (app) interface sucks. And get this. It sucks more than iTunes ever did. As a top category for picking/choosing music it has what it weirdly calls Apple Music. This category designates Apple’s streaming service. Oh really. The streaming service has three sub-categories namely Listen Now, Browse and Radio. Whaaaaa? WTF do I need Radio for? Go into one of the other categories and you’re overwhelmed with choices galore that somehow are deemed worthy by those who set up this $hit. The only way I’ve been able to find music is by using search, the results of which are as confusing as anything else. Wait. Am I too old for this krapp? #Nomatter

Another category in the Music app is Library. This is something like what iTunes used to be–I’m guessing. It has sub-categories that makes sense that the streaming service (above) doesn’t have. This is the users library which stems out of all your owned music that is converted into this service when you activate it. That conversion, btw, is another reason I postponed or was skeptical to sign up in the first place. Now that I know how NOT to loose my music data to Apple (by maintaining my media library on a separate server), I’ve simply added some of my music here and now it’s part of my library. Which is cool on account I had lost a few songs from Aerosmith and Bad Company and now I have them back–until I cancel. Whoopi! Which begs another worst-question: If I’m streaming music why do I need a library? Ok. At least Library has subcategories that I can relate to like Album and Artist. But. Again. I’m now using a streaming service and…? Ok. I don’t get it and I probably have to spend some more time to figure it out. Then again, who are the people (automatons) that come up with this $hit in Cupertino? Die-gress.

Audio tech confusion

There’s another little issue that’s bugging me, dear worst-reader. Now that I may or mayn’t become a music streamer, I’m also an avid non-audiophile. After years of fiddling with the idear of being an audiophile, I gave up on that krapp toot-sweet. The only thing the audiophile world taught me was that audio equipment sucks–and the industry is filled with grifters–like the bicycle industry, btw. Does that mean there’s no quality differences in audio reproduction? Heck not. There are huge differences. But audio reproduction can be scary–above and beyond being a money pit. Hence I couldn’t wait to get rid of all that dead-weight that was/is the BS of surround-sound, hi-res, fifty pound amps, DVD vs Bluray and, the worst of the worst, subwoofers. It took me the better part of twenty years to figure out that all I need is STEREO. Since then, after the discovery of Raspberry Pi and managing a home media server, all my audio equipment is the cheapest best sounding music reproduction I’ve ever heard.

And one more thing

What I dislike about audiophile BS is the krapp between amp, pre-amp, volume control, input-output, cinch, DAC, subwoofer, etc., etc. Obviously this technical krapp has to be dealt with if one is not gonna listen to music through laptop speakers or wants to enjoy music as one sees fit thereby getting on with the digital age–and not breaking the bank. When I can, I prefer streaming music from my Mac to one of three Airplay speakers in my little townhouse. Reason? The Mac (to worst-moi) sounds best–and I can’t figure out why–compared to streaming from my iPhone. A second set of stereo speakers are in our bookshelf and are driven by a RaspberryPi and a Hifiberry Amp2 (60w class D amp). A third set of stereo speakers are upstairs in my workroom and are connected to a second RaspberryPi using a Hifiberry DacPlus that is connected to a Teac mini integrated amp. Considering that two of these players use an open-source version of Airplay (shairport), it all works like a charm–with only a few hiccups here or there.

The hiccups are mostly about volume control–or is it pre-amping? Here’s an example. There is a significant difference in audio quality when streaming Apple Music using the Mac system volume or using the volume control in the app. WTF! Should I have paid more attention during my frivolous audiophile days concerning what the fcuk a pre-amp is? I’m guessing this has something to do with how these devices differentiate sources. To try and figure this out, dear worst-reader, I even rode my e-bike to a local Apple Store and asked one of the blue-shirts what this is all about. The answer was the same as most answers I get from blue-shirts: Wow. That’s above my pay-grade. You buying a new Apple Watch or not? They had no idear what I was talking about. But at least they did suggest I get in contact with Apple support online. Who could have known, eh. (Sarcasm off.)


I’ve never been into modern pop-music. It’s one of the reasons I’ve avoided music streaming services. Is that a generational thing? Maybe. That brings me to a few worst-questions: What am I paying for? What if I don’t like the music being pushed? Why is there so much disparity between music source and music player? Is this all about convenience? I mean. Yeah. It is convenient. WTF! Seriously. After fiddling with this for the past six months, I still don’t care about whatever Apple is pushing. That’s what streaming services do first, right? That worst-said, the other day, on a whim, I asked Siri to play me some Budgie. And she did. Now that takes me back to a time (70s) where three Englander-dudes played music as though they never had fun doing anything else. Seriously. They make music as though it’s better than making…

But I die-gress.

Thanking you for all the good-luck wishes in exploring music streaming services (at my age) and dealing with the Godzilla of monopolies that is in my worst-face every fcuking day: Apple.

Rant on.


Micro Blog v Social Media

Gotta worst-write a bit about Musk-Twitter or is it Twitter-Musk, dear worst-reader. First. I remember when Twitter started. I wracked my brain trying to figure out what the heck it is. To this day I still don’t quite know. But then I joined twitter around 2007. I liked the idear of there being a micro-blog where I could connect headlines to worstwriter dot com. Tried to do the same thing with facebag, don’t you know. But you know what facebag did? That’s right. They completely shutdown–unless you pay, I guess–linking from anything you post on their site to anything outside their site. Of course, that’s not the reason I bagged facebag. Indeed. Bagging facebag quickly became a no brainer once I started receiving odd if not obscure ads and/or friend requests that I couldn’t shut down or control as I saw fit. Then there’s the opining run amok that was split between family pics and what would eventually turn out to be outright political propaganda via the likes of Cambridge Analytica. But this worst-post ain’t about facebag.

I can’t remember exactly when I did but it must have been about two years ago, I erased all my tweets. I suspended all regular tweeting and only tweet a link to my worst-blog if the mood was inciting. That worst-said, I also don’t have twitter on my phone but I do have it on an old 2nd gen iPad Pro that never leaves my living room couch. I only use twitter as a newz or headline source. And, as mentioned above, I have no clue what the real purpose is of social-media other than promoting whole bunches of STUPID around the world. Unfortunately social-media hasn’t found a way to circumvent all that STUPID, which is the reason worst-writer posts all his STUPIDNESS on his own little barely visited worst-blog.

So what’s with Musk buying twitter? I have no idear. Could it simply be: because he can? Or is this really about free speech? All the gibberish about free speech is kinda mind-boggling anyway. I mean. Why is free speech being touted mostly by right-wingers? Could it be because their speech is so unfree? Or do they just prefer FREEDOM TO BE STUPID? Hence, my beloved & missed united mistakes of #Americant and its right-wing religious joy ride theme park(s) where dinosaurs roamed the earth steered by Jezus. Man o man, dear worst-reader. We know how well things are going with war and climate but did you ever think it would go this well for stupid people? Oh wait. I new it all along. Yeah, baby. Two thumbs up for worst-writer-ism.

The thought occurred to me to do with twitter what I did with facebag once I heard that the deal was done. But then I thought: hol up a sec. Worst-writer has said a thing or three about Musk in the affirmative. Does that mean I would want to have beers with him? No. Would I want to work for him? Again. No. But has he done some amazing things? You betcha he has. Are his doings worthy of praise as a free speech advocate? Probably not. For we know, dear worst-reader, that most successful people, who’s success stems out of their own doing, happens inspite of capitalism and not because of capitalism. And I’m sure that’s a worst-thought that may or may not put your cookie crumbs back in order.

The worst-thing is, dear worst-reader, if Musk enables the likes of former prez pee-pee-hair to get back on twitter will I leave it then? Since I never followed former prez cheeto-jezus and never received any whacked-out political propaganda ads from twitter–as was the case with facebag–I got no beef with it. The other worst-thing is–unlike facebag–twitter has always felt like it has something worthwhile to offer in these digital times. Social media or no social whacky media, speech of any kind doesn’t bother me. Reason? I can turn it off just like I’ve done with broadcast TV, radio and cable. The worst-question remaining? Will Musk turn twitter into a cesspool of stupid that I can’t opt-out of unless I bag it? If so, I’m gone, baby.

Oh. And. One last worst-thought on crumbled cookies. I am firm believer in the idear that now more than ever the world needs government to regulate. Did you get that? Yeah. Regulate the heck out companies and not people. With that in worst-mind, people still need to be accountable for their actions–which we know isn’t the case for people driven by moneyed and only moneyed interests. How that’s to be done since Reaganism corrupted the minds-eye? Well. I reckon voters could handle that. If they can over-come all the STUPID. But on that worst-note, I die-gress.

Good luck suckers.

Rant on.



The iOS Regime

Can’t update because you made it obsolete. Bitches!

Ok. As you may or may not have worst-read, dear worst-reader, I’m an Apple fanboy. Well. I am until I boot-up my Raspberry Pi and get lost in Linux. #Nomatter. The thing about Apple is, I like MacOS. Is it the best operating system? Don’t know. It is the best of the worst, I’ll give it that. That worst-said. I can’t stand iOS. I mean. I really hate it. How Apple has been able to get away with this sandboxed, top-down, un-intuitive mobile and small device operating system, shouldn’t surprise me–but it does. Of course. It was always Steve Jobs intention to lock things down and only make things available via Cupertino central services. iOS does this best. This tyranny harks back to the original Mac days. You know. Jobs literally created a new screw (or something) that required a tool that only Apple had so that no one could open the Mac and fiddle with its insides. You know. Jobs wanted to hinder the whole idear that made the personal computer a hit in the first place. But that was the early to mid 80s. Flash to now and worst-writer has to beg the question: have things changed?

The only reason I own an iPhone is because it does three things. First. It’s a phone. We all (kinda) need a phone, right. Second it’s a great audio/podcast device when I walk Beckett, the killer pug. And third? It’s a pretty good mobile internet device. Now. I know. I know. It has a great camera on it and if you like you can even make movies with it. Heck, you can use it as a recording studio or movie editing platform. Whoopi. But what good is all that tech–if it’s not used? Wow. Ok. I’m getting into real whacky territory here. Moving on.

Why do so many people have so many apps on their iPhones? For. Don’t you know, dear worst-reader. Apps are nothing but silly little programs that connect to the #Interwebnets. The only difference to traditional computers and connecting to the world, isn’t the fact that you can do PC stuff on a phone. No. The reason there’s so much potential on a simple little phone is because the friggin eco-system is owned and controlled and centralised and basta! Oh. And let’s not forget. There’s no way out–once you’re in. Hence I prefer MacOS for any productivity or work (and I’m seriously considering dumping it all for linux–but that’s a whole ‘nother worst-post). Put another worst-way. Apple has finally created another dream device where it owns the key, the tools, the innards, everything. That’s life, eh.

I only have two screens available on my iPhone. In those two screens I have four folders with a few apps in them. The only apps I use on a regular basis are those available from Apple. You know. Podcasting. Mail. Contacts. Etc. Although few & far between, the third-party apps I use include the Covid warning app. AdGuard to block obnoxious advertising when I use Safari. DHL for tracking packages. Etc., etc. My worst-point is, I think I’m pretty frugal when it comes to loading stuff on this device. I’ve never attempted to make a movie. I rarely use the camera and more and more it’s only used for scanning or taking picture of information. My point with this convoluted paragraph is that the iPhone, as smart as it is, is actually kinda stupid. But I die-gress.

Ok. Good. Let’s get to where this worst-post is supposed to be going.

The pic above is a recent screenshot from when I tried to setup Apple’s new Account Recovery Contact. Now. Unfortunately I wasn’t able to set up the service. Reason? That’s right, you guessed it, although my iPhone has the latest iOS update, my beloved stainless steel Apple Watch 2, does not. And so. You want to know how your device is made obsolete? In all my tech years obsoletism has never been out in the open. The people running these companies that make this krapp probably never even talk about it. It just happens. And it’s obviously very convenient for profits. So. In a way. This is a first. WTF. Or maybe not.

Lo and behold the benefits of hand-me-downs.

I have the privilege of being able to use two Apple Watches. Reason? Like all my iOS devices, I don’t buy them, except for the phone and my MacBook. My wife is on her fourth Apple Watch and her third iPad. Unlike me, she needs these things. She needed a new Apple Watch on account the old one’s battery was dying. So she got the Apple Watch 6. Don’t get me started on iPads, but she’s broken so many of those I’ve lost count. (It’s at least three.) Her previous watch, a stainless-steel Apple Watch 2, she reluctantly handed down to me, but has since given up on it because, well, the newer Apple Watch 6 is so much better. She especially likes the fact that it’s waaaaay lighter. After a while I started to fiddle with the Apple Watch 2 and then I took a real liking to it–and not because it’s so much slower than my Apple Watch 3. It’s something about the stainless steel, the weight, the shine, I think. Anywho.

My Apple Watch 3 was also on its last battery legs. As I fiddled with these two watches to see which I like best, I was just gonna sell the other. Then I discovered that iOS lets you use two watches at the same time by enabling something in the watch app on the iPhone. Ok. Cool. The problem is, getting hand-me-down devices also means you get worn-out batteries. Like I said. As I fiddled with them for a few weeks I quickly realised that my battery situation was critical in both watches. Neither watch would get me through a few hours, let alone a full day, without having to charge it. What a pain in the… Anywho.

I really took a liking to the stainless steel watch so I decided to use Apple’s renewal program where I paid the €98 fee, they sent me special packaging, I packaged it, and then sent it in for what I thought would be a simple battery replacement. Turns out they don’t just replace the battery. They sent me a completely new stainless steel Apple Watch 2. This thing cost €800 when my wife bought it, which was right after its introduction. So I was tickled to death thinking, even though €98 for a battery renewal is nothing to laugh at, I got a new friggin watch. But then. About a month or two of full-time use, letting my Apple Watch 3 collect dust, Apple pulls a whammy. Apple made the Apple Watch 2 obsolete. In other words, it doesn’t receive updates anymore. Ok. Fine. As long as the watch works, I don’t care. And it does work. It’s brilliant. In fact, I think it works for two days on one charge. It’s also perfect for telling time, controlling podcasts and music and receiving/answering messages. But then I tried to set up the Apple recovery thingy and bam. Nothing works. Which means, I have a choice. Not only is the Apple Watch 2 obsolete, but I probably have to stop using it because I can’t use the Apple recovery thingy. So the choice is to not use the Apple recovery thingy or… Ok. Great. Not.

My point with this worst-post is 1) we really need some right to repair laws and 2) we also need to regulate the $hit out of corporations that think they’ve earned the privilege and it’s now their right to rip us off. With that in mind. Do I like the Apple Watch? Sure. I do. Would I go out buy one. No. My wife breaks enough of her stuff or uses it long to have to replace it which means I’ve got lots of hand-me-downs to play with. But. This is a friggin watch. Can’t they (Apple) at least put some effort into one product and not make it obsolete? Please.

Rant on.


Pseudo-Review: Keychron K2 V2

Worst-title 2: This is one cool keyboard that I didn’t know I needed

Every once-a-once, dear worst-reader, whether in a computer section of a retailer or fiddling around at an Apple Store, I always give keyboards a test. The thing is, as a MacBook user for the past (going on) twenty years, I’ve never really liked the keyboards. And even though there’s been a lot of complaining about the 2015-2017 12” MacBook’s butterly keyboard, I’ve actually taken a liking to it compared to their chiclet keyboards. That worst-said, over the past few years when trying out all these fancy gamer keyboards, which are nothing but copies of keyboards from the IBM PC days (1980s), I couldn’t help but think these things are more for nine1 finger typers. And so. I’m there. I need me some new keyboard.

When my MacBook is in clamshell mode I always use an Apple wireless aluminium keyboard that dates back to 2010. Yeah. In fact. When I bought my 2017 12” Macbook I also took in my trusty albeit broken keyboard hoping they’d repair it. And get this. After I paid for the MacBook, I’m sure, the Apple Store just gave me a new aluminium wireless keyboard. Now. They didn’t give me the newer magic keyboard. Of course not. But they had an actual new-old aluminium keyboard and they didn’t even charge me for it. Ain’t that cool.

New-old keyboards betold

I broke down the other day after visiting with my son who just bought a new gamer keyboard. After I finished fiddling with it–where he always admires his old man’s nine finger typing skills–it didn’t take long before I knew what was to be done. And so. When I got home I started doing some research.

Which of these new, fancy, higher tech copies of 1980s keyboards should I get? Keep in mind. I’ll rarely refer to these things as mechanical keyboards. They are NOT mechanical in the least. If you notice in the pic above, I’m still an avid worst-typewriter. Now that’s where you’ll find mechanics in a keyboard. Moving on.

Long worst-review almost short

I decided for the Keychron K2 version 2 bluetooth and RGB keyboard with the aluminum bezel. Since it was also on sale I kinda new the stars were aligned. As soon as I hit the buy button I continued watching reviews on the youtubes and blogs to see what I’ve gotten myself in. Luckily, unlike many other tech purchases I make, the reviews about this keyboard didn’t make me regret my choice. The only problem? I got a delay message from you-know-who online distributor which meant it took almost a full week for it to arrive. You know, a full week after we pay that annual fee that’s supposed to give us two-day shipping. Sarcasm off.

Brown, Red, Blue

This keyboard is much heavier than I expected. I suppose that has something to do with the aluminium bezel. As far as the design and styling, I like the contrasting grey keys and the orange accentuated ESC and RGB lighting key. I’ve only begun to understand the meaning between red, blue and brown key mechanisms so the jury’s still out on that. I have the brown mechanisms. I think my son’s keyboard is red. If the brown mechanism is supposed to be between the red and blue in loudness and tactile feel, I’m not sorry with my choice. I don’t need anything louder–but a bit more key resistance would be welcome. Then again. Beggars can’t choosey, eh. For whatever reason the red key device was only available in the larger (with number keys) keyboard and was significantly more expensive.

RGB Backlighting

I’ve been worst-typing with it for about three days now and it’s gonna take some getting used to, which should be expected after typing for the past (almost) twenty years with krappy chiclet keyboards. But my first impression is positive. Even though I’m still not quite sure what the RGB backlighting is all about, I’ll probably only use white light when I need it in the evenings. BTW. This is the first external keyboard I’ve owned with backlighting, so that’s cool. I guess I can see the lure of the fancy lighting for young folk. Then again. Keychron does market this little keyboard to gamers, which, even as a non-gamer, doesn’t make much sense with its compactness. Don’t gamers want more room? But I’m just gonna let that sit for a while till I figure out more ins and outs.


I was a little surprised how large and bulky it is compared to my aging Apple keyboard. In fact, directly compared, its size is not insubstantial. It’s at least, I’m guessing, two and a half times higher and, as I already mentioned, it’s waaaaay heavier. When typing intensely on the Apple keyboard I would often have to adjust its position as it moved around with my finger hacking. The Keychron doesn’t move at all. It’s more planted on my desktop and its rigidity makes typing more precise. In fact, I would compare it to how the rigidity of a car or motorcycle chassis (without getting into suspension) determines how well it handles on the road. That’s cool, right.


One of the issues I was concerned about is bluetooth. Although I’m a bluetooth fan, for as long as bluetooth has been around, I’m kinda surprised that it doesn’t do more. You know. Like polish my toenails or just work. Luckily I’ve had no issues, except one. The keyboard immediately connected to my Mac and I guess it’s polishing its toenails. What more could you ask for, right. There is a lag between the keyboard waking up (after sleep mode) and then reconnecting. This takes a few seconds–where the Mac keyboard had zero lag. The good news is, once the keyboard wakes up, the number 1, 2 or 3 key lights up in blue. This lets you know which of three bluetooth devices is connected. Yeah. That’s worth a few second wait.

Macintosh & Linux

Obviously I bought the Mac version of this keyboard. It has a sliding button on the left side that allows you to switch to Windows. It also includes a bunch of spare keys to replace the Mac keys. What would have been really cool is having spare keys for Linux. I think Keychron is working on that. As of the writing of this worst-review, and I’ve not yet connected it, but I also use a Raspberry Pi 4 (see pic above) for $hits & giggles. I’m looking forward to just hitting a button and connecting to my Pi. Previously, I would have to disconnect my Mac keyboard and then reconnect it to the Pi. Had to do the same thing when reconnecting to my Mac. Yeah. That was no fun. Oh. And before I forget. This Keychron K2 has a few more keys than the Apple keyboard. I can now finally enjoy using the page-up, page-down, home and end keys. Heck. It even has a dedicated del (delete) key. Do you have any idear, dear worst-reader, how long it might take me to get used to NOT using the option back-space key for delete, i.e. the standard key combination I’ve been using on the Mac keyboard layout for all these years?

Worst-review conclusion

Is this keyboard a keeper? Yea. I guess it is. Well. I think it is as long as the battery life lasts, the keys don’t corrode and it doesn’t stop cleaning my toenails. At the least, if it fails or I find fault in it, I will most likely upgrade to another Keychron. I’m sold on these new fangled keyboards, that’s for sure. Is it worth the price I paid considering what a new Apple magic keyboard costs? A new Apple magic keyboard is but another chiclet keyboard, and it costs quite a bit more. Since the wireless/bluetooth seems to work reliably and the key feel is a pleasure to type on and and and… It has a delete key!

All in all, let’s see how it goes.

Even if I don’t end up keeping this keyboard, I don’t think I’ll give up on Keychron. The K2 V2 is already an out-of-date model (hence the sale price) and what I’ve seen of newer models there’s been a whole lot of improvement. I’m sold.

Rant on.


  1. Nine finger typers are those who learned to type with every finger except the left thumb. ↩︎

Pseudo-Review and Long-Term Test: RPi4 As A Desktop PC

Worst-writer’s desktop

Today, dear worst-reader, it is time to take another look at worst-writer’s experience with a/the wonder of the tech world. I’m worst-writing, of course, about nothing other than my favourite computing platform the Raspberry Pi. Specifically. I’m reviewing today my trusty Raspberry Pi 4 after having fiddled with it for the past two years as a desktop alternative, among other uses. For those not in the know and at the risk of being a bit redundant, Raspberry Pi is, IMHO, the mostest tech hardware innovation since the #interwebnet itself. But don’t worry. I know. Some worst-readers think that the personal computer (Mac or PC) or the smart-phone or tablets or gaming or cloud computing, etc., should be included in any claim of great tech innovations. But I’ll leave that worst-argument for a different worst-post.

My setup

As far as my experience with single board computing (SBC) goes, I’ve currently got four Raspberry Pi’s in full-time use as media and/or audio players in my little townhouse. In other words, I’ve replaced ALL old-school tv receivers, radio, stereo, video, etc., with SBCs. Other than Raspberry Pi, I’m also using a RockPro64 SBC running Jellyfin media server. This device is also my home data server using Samba that includes 6TB of data storage. Along side that I have a Rock64 (the little brother of the RockPro64) running an ad-block server. Both these devices are from which is also a great SBC maker. Unfortunately, and once again, IMHO, Pine64 takes a backseat to Raspberry Pi when it comes ease of use, setup and software. But that’s neither here or there. These are all great devices. That worst-said. All my SBCs, except the RPi4 being worst-reviewed today, are running linux and I manage them headless via SSH. But let me not get too far off subject.

The device I’m pseudo-reviewing today is a Raspberry Pi 4b with 4gb of RAM. It is one of the first iterations of this board, which also means that there is a new iteration that can do a bit more $hits & giggles. There’s also a Raspberry Pi keyboard-computer that came out two years ago which has the same specs as mine, but don’t worry, I won’t be getting into product iteration details here. Or will I? #Nomatter. Let’s move on.

I’ve been testing my RPi4 as a desktop PC ersatz for a while now. In other words. Although my daily computing driver is a 2017 12″ Macbook with i5 CPU and accelerated 500gb HDD–which cost around sixteen hundred Euros new–I’ve often wondered, since the day I started fiddling with Raspberry Pi’s, if I could actually quit Apple (and thereby quit standard, old-school PCs) and use an SBC instead. I mean. Heck. Come on. Even with all the covid BS and subsequent economic downturn and supply chain issues, inflation, greed-galore, etc., SBCs cost a fraction of a traditional PC. As I worst-write this post and, although they are pretty much out of stock in Germany, a Raspberry Pi is still worth its weight in gold compared to my MacBook. Indeed. As far as old school desktop PC work goes, I think I’m finally coming around to accepting what may ultimately be my future in computing. In fact. I’ve fiddled enough with Raspberry Pi to learn, in a pinch, I could even make the likes of an RPi3b a total and functional desktop device. Worst or best case scenario considered, one just has to curb some enthusiasm–as the saying goes–and these things work like a charm even if they are a bit slow. The only serious issue one has to consider when making this leap is the tech learning curve compared to old-school computing, which boils down to convenience. More on that in a sec.

Which OS

I’ve tested three operating systems for regular use while considering the RPi4 as a desktop device. The first is Raspberry Pi OS, formerly known as Raspbian (if I’ve got the vernacular correct). The second OS is Manjaro. And the third OS I’ve tried is DietPi. Long story short, you can forget DietPi as a desktop alternative. It’s just too cumbersome. As a headless device, though, it’s all I use. That said, as of the 64bit version of Raspberry Pi OS, it is the clear winner. The only reason that Manjaro loses out in this race boils down to my choice of keyboard and Bluetooth. I’m using an old Bluetooth Apple keyboard. I’ve NEVER been able to get this keyboard to work consistently with Manjaro or DietPi. And let me tell you, I’ve since learned a thing or three about configuring via bluetoothctl. That is, if/when I have to restart the OS–which is often–I have to go through the whole reconnect thingy with the keyboard. With the recent 64bit upgrade to Raspberry Pi OS, though, it seems to connect directly, #nomatter how many times I restart. That means I don’t have to worry about replacing my trusty old Mac keyboard that I’ve been using for the better part of ten years.

As far as software, looks & feel, Manjaro is the clear winner. It’s impressive what the Manjaro team has done. It doesn’t win based on the amount of software available, though, or its ease of use. The interface of Manjaro–especially the Gnome and KDE versions–are simply brilliant. In fact, Manjaro is so good it made me give up on Ubuntu, hence the reason it’s not in the running for my favourite Raspberry Pi OS. For whatever reason, Ubuntu has always been the most bloated and slowest OS I’ve tried.

As far as interface and design goes Raspberry Pi OS is totally functional. It’s not as pretty as Manjaro but it certainly gets the job done. Although its software repository is borderline obnoxious to use and it reminds me of everything I hate about computing, once you get used to it, it works. But. Then again. Beggars (or hunters for free software) can’t be choosy, eh. The simple fact is, for worst-writer, after two years of fiddling, the recent Raspberry Pi OS 64bit on the RPi4 is killer good. It works like any OS for real world computing and that’s pretty impressive stuff.

Is this thing a viable PC ersatz?

Yes. Basta!

The learning curve

As indicated, the only thing that should hold anyone back from using a Pi as a desktop PC is getting it to work consistently, which in and of itself might be the only reason to not use it. Considering how much it costs, though, should also make this decision a no brainer. Even though flashing a micro SD card is fairly straight forward, maintaining the card w/ backups and data recovery is cumbersome. For what ever reason and error on my part, I’m sure, I’ve lost two SD cards to data corruption. I attribute that to the constant requirement to do hard restarts every now and then. The Debian based Linux kernel works like a charm but it still has ALL the quirks and challenges of Linux. For example. Accessing the software repository leads to the majority of crashes and restarts I’ve experienced. I have no idea why but I’m sure it all has to do with my lack of linux abilities. Configuring and personalising the interface is also a challenge and I pretty much refrain from fiddling with it anymore. Until the recent 64Bit update, though, maintaining OS updates was also a challenge. Now it works like a charm. But that’s probably all higher tech stuff that normal users shouldn’t be bothered with. Word processing, note taking, file management, connecting to my network, surfing the #interwebnets works flawlessly, albeit sometimes a bit slow.


Considering the one-way greed street that is the tech industry–where nothing seems to change in the right direction, as far as I’m concerned–it’s a wonder to me that the Raspberry Pi isn’t more wide spread as a desktop alternative. Perhaps its keyboard design will change that. Even at its current inflated price, though, it’s certainly worth consideration. Hopefully when this stupid economic and covid crisis is over the Raspberry Pi foundation can get back on the development good-ship and up the ante with upgrading its specs. Not sure how that can be done, though, with its 5v power consumption and credit card size. It is entertaining to watch videos of guys out there adding water cooling to coincide with over-clocking. Which begs the question: am I ready to replace my Mac for this thing? Maybe not right now because I can afford a new Mac. But what is clear, as far as tech in my house goes, there’s nothing that can beat these little things.

Rant on.


Apple Fanboy Unfun And Bath Salts

Even though there’s a lot of know-non-sense here about worst-writer’s tech preferences, I’m always afeared to admit that I am an Apple fanboy (aghast). Which means, it cannot go un-worst-said: my choice of tech is NEVER about what one can do (w/ tech) but about what one can circumvent to make due (with tech). Or is it do? #Nomatter. In other worst-words: technology today is not about what you can do but about what IT lets you do. All of it determined by the graces of monopolies, of course. But enough about worst-conspiratorialisms galore. Or maybe not.

As far as a fanboy goes, I like most things Apple Macintosh but have a take-it or leave-it attitude towards all things iOS. That is, I really don’t like anything touch screen. Hence I’ll use an iPhone (what other choice is there really) but could give two hoots about iPads. But. Again. Enough about my prejudices.

There was yet another fruit event this week, dear worst-reader. And. Yes. I watched it all on my iPhone 11 while bathing in a tub full of Kneipp Salz (bath salt). What? Never heard of Kneipp Salz? It’s really cool stuff, don’t you know. You consume-to-survive these little packets of crystalline what-not, throw it in a tub full of hot water and within fifteen or so minutes you kind of dissolve. Of course. I have no idear what the therapeutic value of this stuff really is. But. Considering it stems out of a period of #Eurowasteland history where people didn’t know the value of good food, proper hygiene, and a bit of exorcise, etc., it’s no wonder that it has lingered through the centuries albeit reduced to marketing bull$hit galore not unlike what Apple does to get me throw money its way. And keep in mind, when I worst-say throw money, I’m not really talking big bucks here. For worst-writer is nowhere near spending the big bucks on computing power that some folk spend. Indeed. That worst-said. I’ve thrown a penny and three at Apple over the years. And now. Let’s move on to closing this worst-post.

Apple is unfun because it is a fcuking monopoly that deserves as much hate as love. Or maybe not. Basta!

I started using Apple’s Macintosh computers back in the mid-90s. There was a small stint there (during my divorce years at the end of the 90s) where I was reduced to piecing together a cheap PC–on account I could no longer afford a Mac–but after that, once things recovered from the monotonous lie that is industrial matrimony, I quickly got back on the Mac ship. By the mid 2000s I was full-on Mac again. That said. After all these years, I’m glad that I’ve finally figured out what it is this device can do for me and all my worst-writing. Hence, the lust driven by Steve Jobs marketing bull$hit galore for a new & improved glorified typewriter every year is mute. I can now stretch the use of a Mac for up to five years. I know there are some out there that can push their devices for much longer, and you can do that with Macs, and that’s cool, but I decided to not go through any more divorces, which also means I can easily afford a new Mac every few years. It also means, I have to keep an eye on what’s new in the Apple-verse. Aghast! The only problem is, when Apple goes through its marketing freak shows, like it did the other day, I have to sit through all the bull$hit before something interesting comes along. You know. The bull$hit about iPads and iPhones and AppleTV blah, blah, blah. Needless to say, my lustful eyes perked up when they finally get to the serious tech stuff i.e. the Mac.

But then I was, as usual, let down.

The thing that surprised me with Apple’s recent announcement was that there was no new chip. At least no new chip in a device that I wanted. The introduction of the M1 chip (2020) threw me in a tizzy, dear worst-reader. Wow, I thought. Apple is finally done with Intel. But are they really? #Nomatter.

I rarely buy first generation Apple products. My trusty 2017 Intel MacBook, which I bought in early 2018, is still going strong. That said. I knew it wouldn’t be a problem to NOT lust after a first iteration M1 device. Instead. I could just wait for them to introduce the M2 or a new designed MacBook Air, which would then be second iteration. But that didn’t happen. WTF? No one wants my money? That worst-said. Looks like I’ll be waiting a while longer before getting rid of my 12” Intel MacBook–which I’m still kinda loving, btw. Yes. I’m even kinda loving the butterfly keyboard. I’m worst-typing on right now and it feels odd, vague, unreal but kinda good. What’s everyone’s problem with the butterfly keyboard? But I digress.

The Apple event was boring–but the bath salt felt good. Yet I’m intrigued by the continued development of the ‘M’ series of new CPUs aka SOCs (system on a chip) even though it become more and more obvious as I watched the show that I wasn’t getting a new MacBook anytime soon. That worst-said, the way Apple is positioning these new chips I find kinda odd. As good as the M1 is, #nomatter which iteration (M1, M1plus, M1max, etc.), there’s something missing. Keep in mind, being a fanboy doesn’t mean that I’m blind, nor does it mean I don’t follow other parts of the tech world. I mean. If this chip is so good and under complete and total control by Apple, why hold back and continue after almost two years with the same M1 label? Could it be that they can’t develop an M2? I’m sure that’s not the case. But still. The same chip (M1) for more than two years? WTF?

Worst-writer’s quick & dirty assumption is thus: Apple obviously doesn’t give a hoot about the rest of the industry–nor does it really care about competing with Intel (anymore). That ship has sailed. Yet. As I watched the Mac presentation I couldn’t help but wonder between all the tech comparing and contrasting that perhaps the M1 ain’t all its cracked up to be. Which is fine. For the Mac world it obviously works. I mean. I’m a creator. Worst-creator. Or? Ok. But I’m also anti-monopoly. Yeah. Ok. But let’s move on.

Here’s another worst-writer thought about what Apple is doing. If these chips are so awesome why hasn’t any company from the gaming industry ported their fancy-pants games in order to utilise Apple’s incredible GPU capacity? Again. It’s been two years. Even though I’m no gamer, I’d buy Call of Duty if it ran on my Mac. You know. For $hits & giggles! But perhaps I should stop there. I really don’t know much about the gaming industry–other than it requires krapp loads of computing power to make it all happen. Yeah. Moving on.

I’ve considered more than thrice to simply dump the Macintosh because of what Apple has done to it over the years–especially the years following the introduction of all-things iOS. And even though I’m working on one of the last Jony Ive Macs, I certainly don’t miss him and his confused industrial design bull$hit either. I’m pretty confident at this moment that I could easily transition all of my worst-writing over to a linux based laptop. Since I’ve got all my home networking and media devices running on Linux it would be a no brainer. So what’s stopping me? In short:

Even though Linux is awesome there’s much to be desired out of the confusion of linux software and hardware.

I was impressed with the introduction of the M1 chip in 2020. The thing that impressed me about it is not just the chips technical prowess, though. I was hoping that because Apple is no longer dependent on Intel maybe it could also depart from the vertical monopolisation of its product pricing. That is, I always thought/hoped that Apple’s devices are expensive not ONLY because of all the Apple bull$hit behind them (designed in cupertino) but because all the bull$hit combined with having to pay-off the likes of Intel now means there could be a bit of a dividend for users. I know. I know. How naive of you worst-writer. Then again. The price of a new M1 MacBook Air is between five and six hundred less than what I paid for my 12” Intel based MacBook. And, according to the numbers, a new M1 MacBook Air is probably twice, if not three times, faster. Oh yeah. I’m running the faster 12” MacBook with the i5 and larger/faster HDD.

The introduction the other day of the new Mac Studio though has yanked my chain in another direction. Holly krapp is that damn thing expensive–which shouldn’t surprise anyone. This is Apple, right? Does the marketing bull$hit work getting potential users riled up about its speed and technicality, #nomatter the price? Of course it does. But can you open it up? Can you change parts? Does anyone really need to hook up five friggin monitors? Obviously none of those questions apply to worst-writer. Worst-writer just needs to worst-type. Then again. The thing that’s got me worst-riled now is that Apple didn’t introduce a new M2 MacBook Air because it’s in the process of disappearing the cost savings it gained by stealing from open-source chip architecture (ARM). Indeed. I was hoping with the intro of the M1 that Apple would/might free-up not only its hardware and software integration but also its old-economy pricing. But. Again. How naive of worst-moi.

Obviously no new MacBook means that I’m gonna continue evaluating a new laptop purchase. As far as replacing my Mac with a Linux laptop? Yeah, that may still be in play, even though I thought I would buy an M2 MacBook Air this spring. Then again. The only comparable Linux machine that I can buy will have to be with an Intel chip. And who wants that these days, eh. Which begs this last worst-question: why ain’t there an ARM based laptop out there to compete with what I’m forced to buy from Apple? Pine64 Pine Pro? Not quite up to par, I’d say. System76? Darn tooting except for the fact they’re all about Intel–and, as far as I’m concerned, overpriced! But what about a Framework laptop? Now that’s something on worst-writer’s radar–except that it too is all about Intel and it also is supposed to have linux OS issues. Oh well. The fight against the monopoly continues.

Rant on.



Oldest Profession vs Three Trillion Dollar Man

Screenshot from the #interwebnets

Disclaimer: if you’d prefer to skip all the/my worst-writing about the pitfalls of being an Apple fanboy, scroll down to buzz-word-monopoly.

As an Apple fanboy let me first get this out of the way: technology is never about what you can do but instead about what you cannot do. Taking that worst-thought one step further: the reality of (post-Dotcom) technology is not about progress but instead consolidation and/or dictating profits–as opposed to earning one’s keep in a functioning market place. Worst-writer’s worst-opinion regarding non-open, monopolised markets? I can’t tell you how many times a day, when using Apple tech krapp, I ask my-worst-self: why can’t it do this or why can’t it do that? And don’t you know, dear worst-reader, the reason(s) it can’t do any of the stuff it should (be able to) do has nothing to do with technology itself. The capacity to do what I wish it could/would do is there. Instead, we’re all forced to live with the monopoly i.e. corporations owning/controlling everything. And don’t get me started on the stupidity of krapp tech services e.g. Siri, Apple Music, etc. Ok. Maybe just a few worst-thoughts on that.

After giving up on iTunes years ago, I finally broke down at the end of last year because Apple made an offer I couldn’t refuse—to try its Music (streaming) service. Instead of the standard three month trial they offered it to me for six months. Ok, I thought. Six months might be the time I need to evaluate this krapp. After a week or two of consideration on whether or not to try it–for I must contemplate deeply compromising my worst-principles–I took them up on their offer. I mean. What the heck. I’ve put off streaming since its inception. I just never thought I needed it. Tick that off to I’m an album guy, I hate wawawa pop music, the music industry sucks anywho, etc. But get this. With three months remaining in my testing of this krapp I can honestly say that I’m not impressed. In fact. The only thing I’ve gained from giving this a try is the reassurance that I’ve been worst-right all along. Apple Music and any other streaming service (both music and video) is nothing if not the long grift. Long live physical media, eh. Long live owning what you pay for. In fact. I’ll just keep maintaining my CD and DVD collection that I access through my dirt-cheap SMB Linux-based home media server. As far as the convenience of streaming? What a crock of $hit. And since I don’t consume music that way–which means I can’t find a reason that warrants paying hundreds of Euros a year for this krapp, WTF? And by the buy. The reason I won’t sign up for AppleTV is the same. I would rather rent movies via AppleTV or buy DVDs. (That’s right. DVDs, not blue-rays, are perfectly fine.) And so. Are these worst-capitalist times we live in where everything has to be monopolised–because these organisations can monopolise–worth it? Hell no, baby. On the other hand, I’m just another ageing fuddy-duddy stuck in an eco system–until I finally make the hundred percent jump to Linux. Am I wrong.

Buzz-worst-word: monopoly

While I was reading through a post about yet another lawsuit involving Apple’s monopolising over everything, its recent situation with the Dutch struck my fancy. Now. I don’t always feel sympathy for software developers, which is the reason I use open-source whenever possible. But software developers (the guys who actually write/create stuff) deserve their due–if their software warrants it. What determines software’s worth? Well. That’s a whole other worst-blog-post. But then something else hit me about this situation.

According to Apple’s latest attempt at justifying what is obviously monopolistic behaviour, I can’t help but want their to be some long over-due and serious government regulation to get this bull$hit under control. If I understand the situation correctly, see link below, the Dutch government is siding with software developers in their fight against Apple’s unjust payment processing system that is the Apple App Store. Now. I don’t know about you, dear worst-reader. But get this. Apple actually believes that it has the right to dictate away a third of potential earnings from app developers simply because it arbitrarily controls the means with which software is forced to transact through its system. As is always the case with greed-mongering, perfected, of course, by Steve Jobs, delusion becomes reality. And delusion is part of the downfall of capitalism, hence the likes of former prez pee-pee-hair, right-wing political bat$hittery, and we’re all now on the brink of WW3, etc. These are all signs of a system that is in free-fall. But don’t get me started on politics, eh.

Allow worst-moi to worst-write what I think needs to happen in order to stop all the monopolies and all the arbitrary (meritless) money making that is today’s digital world run amok.

  1. The Internet is a public utility
    • no ifs ands or buts
  2. ALL personal information is private and NEVER a mechanism for corporate profits
    • find another, more socially productive way to make money you cucksuckers
  3. No corporate Internet for stupid people
    • e.g. facebag and social media should have to jump through regulations hoops galore in order to make money because that would be a good thing
  4. No software, protocol or hardware is allowed to monopolise data that curbs individuals choice(s) regarding use of personal data
    • no more .doc or file systems (ntfs) or containers (HEIF), etc.

It’s an unfinished list, dear worst-reader. A bit of worst-mind farting, if you will. It’s also, obviously, less than empirical. But it might contain a seed of legitimacy. In any case, something needs to be done about monopoly corporate power that is nothing less than grifting.

There’s one other thing about Apple’s App Store bull$hit. In the few articles I’ve read about this stuff, everyone is concentrating on the obvious. That is, Apple’s arbitrary requirement of 30% would be ok if developers had other choices where to sell their wares.

It’s essentially the same issue between Apple and Epic software (Fortnite). The problem is, due to the monopoly of the App Store, developers have no other choice. Aren’t we supposed to have free markets? For those out there that claim the Apple App Store is no different from a mall, which also charges outrageous fees for retail space, that issue is mute. I mean. Could one argue that the reason Malls are dying-out is because the free market challenged the arbitrary costs they added to retailing? The Apple App Store is obviously not a mall. Is it a service? Sure. Why not. But does it deserve 30% of developers earnings when those same developers have no other choice in selling their wares?

There’s one other issue that I’d like to address regarding Apple vs Dutch. Keep in mind that what we’re dealing with here is a dating app. The developers of this dating app don’t want to have their margins reduced (or have to raise their prices to cover lost margins) because of unwarranted fees. Ok. That’s fine and dandy. I’ve already worst-established where I stand on that. But how ‘bout this worst-thought: could it be that the Dutch government has gotten involved in this issue because, well, don’t you know, a dating app in The Netherlands could threaten tax revenues on what the Dutch do best, other than selling (taxing) dope: selling the oldest profession? Indeed. Dear worst-reader. Now that’s a worst-thought or three about how to deal with too much corporate power. Or?

Rant on.


Links that motivated this post:

The Crypto Game Show

Source of pic: Bitcoin logo

Why am I surprised, dear worst-reader? Did I believe that Bitcoin was impenetrable? Did I think that the government or authorities would never crack the kryptonite–that could take down the likes of Bitcoin? Or did I simply think, ultimately, Government doesn’t really care–if there may or may not be some competition? That is, somewhere in the back of my worst-mind, I thought (dreamt?) that because government monopoly on currency could never be broken and only at best dented by crypto-currency, it would just stand by and watch the show go on and on and thereby giggle once or thrice as the masses lose their collective $hit about the value of block-chain generated currency. But guess what, dear worst-reader? Worst-writer be all-kinds of wrong.

According to reports, government crypto authorities (FBI) employed one of three tactics to break into the recent ransomware payments from the Colonial Pipeline attacks that almost crippled gasoline supplies for the entire south east of the united mistakes of #Americant. An act, by-the-buy, that made me laugh my arse off. Not unlike any of the ransomware acts previously perpetrated, worst-writer couldn’t help but perform cartwheels along with exuberant $hits & giggles with these recent perpetrations. Indeed. So is it entertainment for those of us who not only question the idiocy of old money in #Americant but also could give a hoot what happens to that old money? That said and before I get too far off worst-subject, the three tactics employed by crypto authorities (FBI) in order to reign in the simple genius of ransomeware pirates includes the following:

  1. Someone from Darkside snitched and provided access
  2. The criminals were careless which could have given access to emails or other related correspondence
  3. Either Bitcoin or a Bitcoin exchange snitched

Not sure about you, dear worst-reader, but something about this story gets to me. I mean. Don’t get me wrong. I’m glad they recovered something from the ransomware. Heck, over $4m dollars (of very, very old money) was paid out and just over $2m was recovered (which, of course, don’t make it new money. Am I wrong.). Obviously criminal activity like this ain’t right. But if you allow me to put this in a bit of worst-context…

A private company was hacked due to private company negligence. Put another way. Capitalist entities today are one of two things. First, corporations are borderline criminal entities. It’s the only way they can function in the fiction and pseudo-science that is today’s the market place. Corporate taxes, CEO compensation and stock evaluations should be evidence of this. Second, since the demise of the Dotcom boom–which worst-writer considers that last attempt at subverting the return of the robber barons–old capitalist entities, old money, has been struggling to make sure that that sort of thing doesn’t happen again. Reason? The greatest struggle of old money (unearned wealth) is the reversal of all forms of corporate costs–which is what capitalists have been fighting since FDR. In other words, corporations have been given the green light since the so-called Reagan-revolution so that they…

  1. Don’t pay taxes
  2. No longer have to worry about labour or unions interfering with profits
  3. Use stock price, whether inflated or fake (stock buy-backs), to determine the value of the company which also determines management compensation, etc., etc.

So. Again. I could give a hoot if an old-money corporation like Colonial Pipeline (doesn’t the name give worst-reader the creeps) takes one up the poop-shooter because ransomware made one of its privileged and useless employees click on the wrong email link. Again. Whenever I hear about ransomware my arse starts laughing! But that’s neither here nor there.

Capitalism is pretty much, according to worst-writer, upon its nadir. If you’re not in the know, dear worst-reader, just have a visit to my beloved & missed #Americant to see it. The sheer number of #Trump flags making ridiculous claims or conspiracy theories running rampant about how that idiot is gonna be re-instated as prez pee-pee-hair by August 2021 or just look at how much debt people have because gas prices are still at Iraq war levels… Heck! It’s a wonder there aren’t more ransomware attacks. Not that I’m wishing it on anyone, don’t you know. But my arse is puckering up for more laughter. Am I wrong.

Rant on.



Update: Tech Rig Galore And Fun Discoveries

Worst-writer’s Feb 2021 desk rig.

The pic above, dear worst-reader, is the latest and greatest desktop setup of my tech world. As you may or may not note from any of my SBC and tech posts (, I’m a cheap-o when it comes to tech stupid-money. That said, myself and my better-half are Apple fan-boys. To maintain a bit of perspective, our Apple world consists of iPhones, iPads and a 2015 and 2017 MacBook. That’s right. I’m a fan of the 12″ MacBooks that are supposed to have the terrible butterfly keyboards–and IMHO the 12″ form factor is the bomb. Although mine is a workhorse, my better-half’s MacBook is barely used on account she’s a real iPad user both personally and professionally. If it’s a contradiction to say I’m a tech cheap-o after we buy so much Apple stuff, well, maybe in this one area we do splurge somewhat–even though most Apple purchase for me are refurbished products.

Continue on the cheap-o tech theme. My better-half gets a new iPhone and iPad every few years and I then get her hand-me-down iPad, which is also used around our little townhouse as a media controller and music player for the various SBCs for both audio and video. I try to make my iPhones last for at least four years, which I was able to do with my previous iPhone 7s. My iPhone 11 is about to turn two years old and my wife’s iPhone 10 is pushing three and half years–and if it weren’t for COVID, where she works from home full-time, she would have replaced it already. Back to my desktop rig.

My 2017 12″ MacBook is my favourite Mac of all-time. I absolutely love this thing. It took me a while to get used to dongle hell but that quickly faded the more and more I used it. Considering the new–and for the first time in my Mac-life fairly priced M1 Macs–I’m still hoping that this Intel Mac will hold-out a while longer, especially considering Apple doesn’t seem to have another 12″ MacBook in the works. Anywho. As I first started using the MacBook it never occurred to me that I might want a second monitor connected along with the one I’m already using while it’s in clamshell mode. But then I discovered something kinda cool.

Again. As a cheap-o, I refuse to replace perfectly good devices simply because their I/O changes with the times. Take for example my monitors. On the left is a 10+ year old 22″ Dell monitor. It doesn’t even have HDMI. Using an adapter cable, it’s been a second monitor for this MacBook and my previous 2010 13″ MacBook Pro.

But what about the monitor on the right, dear worst-writer? A 2017 12″ MacBook can’t drive two external monitors.

Good question dear worst-reader. And how worst-right you are. Or?

The monitor on the right is actually a 22″ Samsung TV. It’s gotta be at least twelve years old now. For years I’ve mainly used it as a monitor for AppleTVs. You know, one in the kitchen or in a spare room for $hits&giggles. But I finally replaced my ageing AppleTV3 with an AppleTV4 (refurbished) last summer and connected it to a fancy-pants beamer. It took a few months to figure out what to do with this old little TV but lo and behold… I’m using the old AppleTV3 (also purchased ten years ago refurbished), which is attached to the back, so I can stream (or is the nomenclature in this case “cast?) from my MacBook directly to it. Obviously it’s not a second monitor per se, but as far as I’m concerned, it’s perfect for streaming audio/video while working–and my little MacBook handles it all with ease. I’ve been using this setup for a few months now and I’m sorry I hadn’t thought of it much earlier. But perhaps that’s a whole other worst post.

The beamer and ATV4 are on the bookshelf.

And while on the subject of cheap-o and neat-o tech discoveries. Get this. The one main problem with using AppleTV and, say, a beamer, especially when watching movies, is that Apple and the tech world still don’t quite have it right when it comes to wireless audio. This is the main reason I refuse to go anywhere near those fancy (and stupid-money expensive) HomePods. I’ve read that they also have issues when it comes to streaming audio from from a video source. That said, I’m using an open-source version of Apple’s Airport technology called Shairport for audio streaming. Shairport is what all my audio/video SBCs use to mimic Apple’s airport technology, which allows me to circumvent Apple’s stupid and greedy eco-system politics. With only audio it works fine and if anyone is a cheap-o like me, but you still want good audio in your home, look into this stuff. Needless to say, I’m often disappointed when watching a movie and the audio constantly goes haywire. Until the other day. I realised (yeah, I’m a slow learner), hey, why not try your AirPods when watching a movie. So I did. I put them in, fired up the AppleTV and beamer and clicked around in the AppleTV OS to add another audio device. My AirPods were immediately recognised. And guess what? It doesn’t only work great when watching a movie, it’s actually some of the best audio I’ve heard in years when watching something via AppleTV. Who’d a thunk it, dear worst-reader!

And there you have it as only worst-writer can present it. Cheap-o tech world from a young #OKBoomer that found a way out of the $hithole that is #Americant but never thought he’d land in #Eurowasteland along with so many $hits&giggles.

Rant (and cheap-o tech) on, baby.


PS Oh yeah. I still use a manual typewriter to write my mother letters.

Update: Non NAS NAS Galore, SBCs, Daily Rig

How ’bout a bit of a worst-update regarding worst-writer’s tech krapp? Yes. No. Well, then… buckle up butter cup cause I haven’t typed anything all day and I am seriously itchy. Or maybe not.

As of late 2020 there’s nothing left to be (technically) done, changed, updated, booted (into the bin) or saved in my humble abode of tech krapp galore. In fact, everything in my reduce & simplify tech world works great right now. Reduce & simplify means nothing more than getting rid of truck-like tech devices, an effort I consider complete as of 2018 which is also reflected in the fact that I have a half dozen (or so) SBCs doing things such as: stereo systems, media players, bluetooth audio end-points, servers, etc. Cool, eh. More worst-writer posts about the journey is here (tag link).

By-the-buy, worst-writer’s SBC journey includes not only Raspberry Pi but also Pine64. So let me discard a few worst-words about that. At this point I’m pretty much done with Pine64. It’s not that I don’t like their boards. It’s just that getting them to work is above my pay-grade. That worst-said, I’ve still got a RockPro64 running as a samba server and as a Jellyfin media server. Reason for Jellyfin? My linux distro of choice for both the the RockPro64 and a lingering Rock64, i.e. that which fits my pay-grade, is DietPi. It’s the only Linux distro I’ve been able to manage on both the RockPro64 and the Rock64 with only minor headaches. Even though I’ve tried distros that include OMV (Open Media Vault), I’ve always found myself resorting back to DietPi–on account I couldn’t get the others to work. In fact, my Rock64 (the little brother of the RockPro64) is connected to an external 4-bay HDD enclosure which I use to back up my RockPro64. It’s also serving as a PiHole anti-ad server—which I kinda love. The problem is, I’m starting to feel as though these two devices are at their end—at least in my worst-world. And get this. The RockPro64 feels like it has a bit more life left in it, the Rock64 is pretty much maxed out. I think. Pause. Drink. Gulp. I should move on.

Thank goodness last summer (or fall), as I was losing my $hit over Plex (hating it) and looking for a replacement (within my pay-grade), DietPi began offering Jellyfin in their repository. Since Jellyfin is an open source fork (I think) of Kodi (or is it Emby), which I’ve used on Raspberry Pi, I quickly felt at home with it. My only question has been: how long will it work–before all else fails (which seems to be a result of my low-pay-grade Linux capabilities)? The good news: So far so good–and even my better-half is getting used to using Jellyfin. My better-half, btw, hated Plex more than me and she totally refused to use it. I’m sorry to get on Plex so much. But, as the saying goes, never go full retard, which Plex has done with its microsoft-like, big bloated-ness. But on that note, I die-gress.

As far as media servers go… With Plex on my $hitlist, do I even need a media server? There was actually a short stint there where I thought I’d just give up completely on a media server and use the various Raspberry Pi’s as media players that simply access files via samba. And they worked.The problem with that, though, is, it seems, my iPhone and iPads couldn’t handle the (direct) file access using VLC. I’m not sure if that has to do with my home network setup or VLC on iOS. It doesn’t really matter because, no matter what I tried, I couldn’t get seamless playback using any iOS device via samba. Once I started using Jellyfin the iOS devices worked toot-sweet. I suppose that has something to do with transcoding. And so. Back on to SBCs.

After a few years of use, worst-writer is questioning how long will the RockPro64 last and/or when will I replace it with, say, a Raspberry Pi compute module 4? At this juncture, after using an RPi4-4gb for the past few months as a desktop PC, where I mostly watched YouTube videos, streamed movies or TV (from my media server) or used the Terminal app to manage my Linux devices, I’m tickled to death about how well it actually works. In fact, I was really tickled by how well the newest 64bit version of Ubuntu worked on it. I can’t praise Raspberry Pi enough for such an achievement with these little devices. And, by-the-buy, to my worst-mind, Raspberry Pi’s achievements is only rivalled by what Apple did with the first Mac and later the iPhone. And so.

The Raspberry Pi is nothing short of phenomenal. Not only has it rocked my low pay-grade world but it’s obviously gonna be even more valuable in the near future for my everything networked household. That you can get an RPi for less than a hundred bucks with only a few bucks more to turn it into (what I consider) a high-end audio player (HifiBerry!), it’s no longer a question of if but when these little things will completely over-take the PC world–let alone the fact that I have never regretted selling all my old standard high-voltage stereos and A/V receivers. Add to that the new RPi compute module, which should eventually replaced my RockPro64, I’m tickled to death that my choice to start fiddling with these things in the first place so many years ago was the right choice.

But. As usual. I’m probably off worst-subject. As I’ve said with a whole lot of nothingness here and there, what’s the deal about non-nas-nas and my daily rig (the title fo this worst-post)? Well, since the/my non-nas-nas is based on an SBC, albeit the RockPro64, which, as stated above, I’m not sure how long it’s gonna be around, I can’t complain all that much. It does work–as a samba server. And samba is all about file sharing. And as far as I can tell, I’ve lost no data after fiddling and fiddling. But I have gone through quite a bit of headache and troubleshooting. I’ve also concluded after all this time and effort, Pines64/RockPro64 is not a NAS replacement–unless you’re interested in a lot of troubleshooting and Linux headaches. But it does look good in that Pine64 case (see pic above). Or?

Since I refuse to buy a NAS (aka Synology or Drobo), beggars can’t be choosy. I’ve had to fiddle quit a bit to the point where I’ve (pretty much) given up on having a home NAS as a file storage device. Since my wife and I are Apple fans and we use Macs and iOS devices, I simply maintain a TimeMachine drive that is connected to an old AirPort Extreme which backs up our Macs. It works and works and works. Other than that, we use 200gb of iCloud space for important files and photos on both Mac and iOS. So I guess. If I wanted to. I could provide a half decent worst-argument that average tech users don’t even need a nas. I mean. I’m using the RockPro64 as a media server only on account my pay-grade can’t really get it to do anything else. But. Again. I die-gress.

As far as I my home rig goes. Get this, dear worst-reader. Like I said above, I’m really, really, seriously impressed with the RPi4-4gb as a desktop PC. In fact, I’m so impressed with it, that I’m probably gonna buy the RPi4-8gb this spring, relegating the 4gb device to some media player service and then, when it’s available, getting the RPi compute module 4 so I can get rid of the headache that is the RockPro64–and then, finally, begin the process of getting into some kind of truly functional non-nas-nas configuration. OMV, as far as I can remember, works great on RPi (and terrible on Pine64)–it’s just been a matter of waiting for RPi to provide some kind of SATA interface. If/when Raspberry ups the RPi4 to an RPi5, though… well, heck, don’t you know. I’m already re-thinking weather or not I’m gonna replace my MacBook with a new M1 device in 2021. And even though the new Macs with M1s are rockin’ good, the thought of actually getting a M1 MacMini just ain’t in the cards on account how well RPi’s are working these days. As far as my 2017 Intel MacBook goes, slow or no-slow, avoiding Big Sur (and Apple’s stupid update policies), etc., etc., I’m still kind of good so I’ll probably keep it a while longer. And so.

Tech happy, baby. Nuff typed.

Rant on.


Desk Rig While Migrating To Linux

desk setup Feb 2020.jpeg

In worst-writer’s quest to eventually (when exactly?) dump MacOS, I’ve been dabbling in Linux for quite some time. The problem, of course, is that I’m a very slow learner. Add to that the relative slowness of previous RPi’s, I’ve not yet felt comfortable with Rasbian or any other Linux distro on the RPI3, with the exception of Dietpi, but that’s not really a desktop option. Besides, as we all know, eh dear worst-reader, there’s no place in this worst-world for slow learners or pure CLI. Hence I am worst-writer and I’m destined to live as such–slow CPU here or there albeit with a desktop environment. And so. Since Windows is out of the question, the alternative OS for worst-moi can only be Linux with a fancy desktop distro. My only regret with facing such a reality is that I have to wait till my current MacBook is ready for the dung-heap before making the change. The laptops from System76 are looking pretty right now. Reason for the wait, though, is simple: that fcuking pink MacBook was fcuking expensive and to make matters worst it fcuking works great as a worst-writer daily driver, USB-C dongle or not. I’m mean, it is one of Apple’s smallest and weakest computers. Yet I love the thing, krappy keyboard n’all. And for fourteen hundred painful Euros… I can’t believe I paid that much for such an underpowered device. What’s wrong with me? Goo-goo, ga-ga. Bling, bling. Anywho.

The reason I’m eventually (when exactly?) changing to Linux is the open question of the day, of course. What’s clear is that I’m really NOT interested in paying the über high price for Macs anymore. Considering how the company is going full iOS, plus the Apple tax, i.e. the made-up cost (arbitrary) of Apple + intel that is bordering on STUPID, when considering the power and usability of something as cheap as an RPi (ARM processors), it all only reminds me that the whole industry is, not unlike #Trump and the LAND OF FREE TO BE STUPID, waaaaaaaaaay out of whack. And as we all know, I’ll tolerate an iPad as a hand-me-down from my wife for viewing media and reading digital books but boy oh boy do I hate touch screen computing–and I’ll never (in this case never say never may or may not apply) buy another iPad for as long as worst-live. But let’s not get tied up on the tablet thing and me making promises worst-writer might not be able to keep, eh.

As you can see in the pic above, I’m currently running my Mac world on the right side of my desk and on the left my new RPi4 world. Since I’m also not ready to splurge on a new monitor, I’m using an old TV that has two HDMI ports as my RPi monitor. And although a TV is not a computer monitor, this one works pretty good on account it’s desktop small. At the least, it’s good enough for fiddling around with Raspbian-Linux (a Debian distro). To my surprise, even after only using it for a few weeks, the whole desk setup, including those new infancy monitor arms, works pretty good. Considering I didn’t have to buy a new keyboard for the RPi4, which I thought I’d have to do to use two computers systems on one desk, the setup is looking even cooler. My old Apple keyboard and mouse work just fine on the RPi4. As you’ll note in the pic above, there is also a second RPi, an RPi3b+, that I’m currently using as a retro game tester, which is plugged into the TV’s second HDMI port. I did splurge on a cheap knock-off PS3 controller for that one, though. I may or may not post something regarding RPi retro gaming but that’ll have to wait since I’m still trying to figure out how it works.

As far as desktop setup and duel monitor arms, I splurged on a you-know-who Basics offering. Although there is no vertical movement of the monitor arms, you can easily adjust height via the centre poll. It’s all not as uppity and fancy as those more expensive arms that seem to float in the air but I suppose that’s the reason this one only cost 35,-€. And since I can rotate my Dell monitor 90° when needed, as I sometimes use it in portrait mode when working on longer draft worst-writing, this is all über-good, baby.

Yes. All in all this is a cool desktop solution for lots of worst-writing, including lots of continued worst-writing procrastination. Combined with my Ikea height adjustable desk, I should be good till the next urge to consume-to-survive hits and I have to buy something else that I don’t really need but is, well, cool. Speaiing of consuming things needed (or not), I’m really digging the idear of getting back into motorcycling. Maybe this year I’ll be able to worst-post something about getting back on two (powered) wheels again. Or maybe not.

Rant on.


Worst-Road Travelled: The NON NAS NAS

Well, there you have it, dear worst-reader. As I’ve indicated in many a-worst-post here and there, I hate the NAS industry. In fact, even though I kinda grew up with it, worked in it, played with it, I sort-a hate the tech industry. But that’s neither here or elsewhere. And so. Of all the tech krapp out there since consume-to-survive with interwebnets is the new & improved way of worst-life, the tech that’s pissed me off the most–other than gaming PCs, don’t you know–is the rip-off that is NAS boxes. And so, in my quest to avoid such devices–even as the world progresses ever-more towards co-called cloud computing–which is nothing more than an industry controlling (your; all) content–I’ve spent the last few years (since 2015???) trying to figure out how to maintain a quarter century of personal data so that my data1 is mine and mine only. And keep in mind, dear worst-reader, when I say my data I really do mean the stuff that belongs to me–copyright here or there, political or generational ideology here or there, greed-mongers included. For as far as I’m concerned, most of the media industry (audio, video, tv, radio, podcast, etc.) has been ripping people off since Welles’ 1938 broadcast of Wells. But let’s adhere to the current issue of copyright nonsense and/or avoiding the costs of corporate obsoletism galore. I mean, if it weren’t for the ability of worst-moi to get copies of albums from friends and foes on cassette–back in the day–I wouldn’t have purchased half of the music that I currently own. Hence, with the likes of iTunes and streaming services, I can’t remember the last time I actually consumed music. Which brings me to this tangent: Not only does most of the music produced in the last thirty years suck but the way one is forced to get it sucks too. Wait. That’s not quite right. At the least, I don’t consume music like I once did. You know, buy a CD and then rip it and then listen to it either via cassette, ripped/copied CD or iPod. Indeed. But I do remember buying Greta Van Fleet last year as shitty mp3 download or some Brian Jonestown Massacre and, yes, a Japanese only version of Sinatra At the Sands–at least I think it was Sinatra but it could have been his daughter and, don’t you know, those boots walking all over me in dream. But. Once again. I’m off subject. Nomatter.

So I’m not really into consuming much media anymore. Although I suppose I shouldn’t count ebooks in the mix. I have actually bought more of those than music or videos. Still. Even though I don’t buy much digital content, what’s the point of maintaining an ageing library of content that is, for the most part, poorly ripped? Well, I guess, because I can. And. More import. Because. It’s mine. Or. To be more fair to my worst-self, I maintain such a digital library because, well, I get a kick out of it and, so far, it’s proven to be a slap in the face of an industry hellbent on continuing the grand rip off. And so. Indeed. Enter the world of SBCs as a means to circumvent the grand rip-off.

The discovery of SBCs for worst-moi (2015) has been a godsend, dear worst-reader. Not only has the world of SBC opened up my digital horizons, I think it too might be saving me time, effort and, of course, money. Not to mention that these little computer boards are as fun as tits waving in spring time as though man-scarcity were the norm and the Weinstein tragedy were long behind us. Add to that the fact that I’m slowly becoming comfortable–at a very superficial level, of course–with Linux, as that’s the system that runs on SBCs–and I feel that the/my future of tech is bright, shiny and cheap–where it once was dim, dark and dank thanks to the greed of Apple & Co. Or am I the only one that thinks the time has come to put the rip-off tech industry in its humble place? Oh wait. There’s still a deal here or there on a Synology or a Drobo, eh? Oh fcuk me. Nomatter.

And so. Worst-writer, with this worst-post, wishes to coin a phrase. Ready? Here we go:


I get a nickel for every time it’s used, don’t you know.

That’s right. As of early 2020, after five or so years of fiddling here and there, having bought, discarded or returned several NAS boxes (Western Digital, Synology, Drobo), I’m finally feeling comfy with having found a replacement for at least one part of the rip-off tech industry. That replacement? Single board computers, baby. The PC is dead. Long live SBCs. You know, Raspberry Pi, Pine64, etc. I especially love the RPi4 with its GB ethernet and USB3. Not only is it a fully functioning computer but it’s also finally a viable alternative to the rip-off intel-based PC industry. The RPi4 that I’ve been fiddling with as a desktop device works like a charm even though, in my cheapness, I have to hook it up to a ten year old 20″ TV, which is the only HDMI ported monitor I have right now. Put another worst-way, I cannot hook my RPi4 up to my 5 year old Dell 22″ monitor because, well, it doesn’t have HDMI. That is, mini-HDMI to DVI doesn’t seem to work, adapter here or there. Nomatter. VNC over my network works fine. For you see, dear worst-reader, I’d gladly spend more dough on replacing a monitor or buying new cables than having to spend thousands to replace the Mac I’m worst-typing this on right now. Which brings me to the godsend part of this worst-post. As I’ve suspected while fiddling with SBCs, this also might be the last Mac I ever buy. For don’t you know, dear worst-reader, a linux laptop has to be in the worst-writer mix soon enough.

Hail the NON-NAS-NAS! Hail SBC!

Rant on.


  1. The whole use of the word my and/or I is part of a generation, don’t you know. Which? #OKBoomer, of course. Or is there another generation that has been so greedy, so selfish, so narcissistic, so that the likes of #Trump can find its way to the surface? Or maybe not. ↩︎

What Could You Get Away With

No. Seriously. Dear worst-reader. What could you get away with if there were no rules? For don’t you know, just the other day, I came across something that blew my mind. It was about getting away with things. Or was it about there being no rules (in life)? Nomatter. While scanning the news and perhaps listening to a podcast here or there, a rational human, who is proficient in the ways of the dark-arts better known as Economics, was going on and on about Neoliberalism. Out of the blue he said something along the lines of: Neo-liberals aren’t so much about small government and deregulation but instead they are about authoritarian government and re-regulation. Hold the presses! What did I just hear? Re-regulation…what? Talk about being thrown for a loop.

Yeah, I worst-thought. That’s it. That’s the word-game-link I’ve been missing for years regarding all worst-thought about what it is that makes/facilitates my beloved & missed #Americant, the land of FREE TO BE STUPID, post Ronald Reagan. #Americant politics in my life-time has never been about cutting and/or reducing government but instead it’s been about increasing it, infiltrating it in the name of a certain ideology, and then making it stealth so that an already dumb downed public won’t know the difference here or there as moneyed grubbers and their ilk get on about bidness that rides on the backs of others. And then, after they’ve done all that, thanks to the likes of Limbaugh and faux-newz, there is no such thing as deregulate, but there is/has been lots of re-regulate. Get it? No? It’s ok. Go back to your couch. A bag of chips is waiting. A favourite tv show! Or run off to your favorite third-world country where you can abuse women younger and stupider than you because, well, you’ve got a dollar or three in your pocket–and your mortgages are being paid by the military industry complex.

And that’s not what I wanted to get-on about today, dear worst-reader. Or is it? No. Today we want to get-on about some tech krapp–that is, perhaps, related in someway to re-regulation galore. Specifically, let’s have a go with smart-tech. For don’t you know, dear worst-reader, smart-tech ain’t and has never been what some may think it is. At the least it ain’t smart. Look where it’s from? It’s from the land of… that’s right. Regulate or deregulate or… Wait for it. Re-regulate. Indeed. The greed $hit$how that is my beloved and missed united mistakes of #Americant, in desperation to find more and more and easier and easier profits, is always hastily hoping to find the next hit, the next wunderkind, another Steve Jobs, albeit one without all the drugs, and in doing so, mega-unearned-profits ooze out of the ether like a stupid man’s religion.


In the last ten or twelve years I’ve consumed two refrigerators. Wait. Is that right? Yes. I’m on my second fridge which I bought within the last ten years. I think my mother has a fridge that is well over twenty years old. Nomatter. The first fridge I bought was an LG standalone1 fridge. It was a piece of shit. But it had some bells & whistles. You know. It had a water dispenser, a special beer rack, and an ice maker that would deliver three types of ice: whole, crushed or ice with smiley faces. The problem with the fancy fridge, though, was that within a year it started leaking at the bottom. I put up with it for a few years while having to put a towel underneath it to soak up the leak. And while it ruined the wood floors it stood on, I cursed it and this consume-to-survive life of hell I’m forced to live in. After that I bought a Liebherr fridge. It has no frills or bells and whistles but works great–and it doesn’t leak. So hang on a sec as I try to bring this post around to a cohesive subject.


Anyone remember that smart-fridge with the Windows 8 screen on the front door? I remember staring at the thing while buying that piece-of-shit LG fridge. “This can’t be good,” I thought as the sales guy pitched me about a fridge being a IoT device for the home. “You want this thing to hook up to my home wifi,” I asked. “Sure,” was his response. Little did he know that I had worked at the end of the Dotcom boom for a company that created a tool that allowed online retailers to parse URLs and thereby alleviate the need for cookies and still track users. Wonder what happened to that company. Nomatter. And let me not even get into the experience of buying my last flatscreen TV and how I tried to tell a salesman to stop trying to sell it as a “smart” device. “There’s no such thing as a “smart” device,” I said. “And IoT is gonna bomb,” I added. Yeah, the lie of IoT sucks as much as IoT sucks. Which brings me to…

I’ve solved both my fridge and TV problem. How? I bought devices that are not “smart”. But then the “smart” speaker thing hit. Or were you not impressed with Sonos when it first hit the market, dear worst-reader? I was most certainly impressed. Reason? I was sick & tired of multi-speaker surround systems. I had fiddled with them for years. More on that here. The main reason I never bought Sonos, though, was simple. IoT sucks! And. As soon as I looked at the software controlling the Sonos speakers, I knew it wasn’t for me. Like the smart-fridge or the smart-TV, these things are not in a anyway regulated and yet they are a total and complete compromise to my home network system. Above and beyond that, I have absolutely no control over the software that makes them work. I’ve long since adopted open source in my life. But that’s another worst-post.


Not only was Sonos charging delusional prices for stuff that should have cost a third their price, there is no waaaaaaay that they would be able to maintain the software if they were creating a device that was supposed to compete (mimic) what someone would/could own for half a life time. I’m worst-writing, of course, about the product life span of speakers and stereo systems. Obviously Sonos put marketing before product. It probably also thought it could mimic Steve Jobs’ success with having done the same thing. But. Again. The problem is, playing with computers isn’t the same as sitting down and listening to music. Sonos tried to make something smart that was already way beyond the marketing hype. Long story short. I knew at the get-go from Sonos that it would have a problem in the future maintaining speakers as it also tried to improve the customer experience. Lo and behold, Sonos recently announced that its solution for that experience. Again. Dear worst-reader. We are at a cross-road of forced corporate obsoletism.

Indeed. This is what happens when sales guys run the greed $hit$how. Or am I the only one to have given up on Microsoft as soon as that whack-job took over after Bill Gates? Nomatter. Although Sonos was/is a great idear, it was/is doomed to fail on account, well, the software that makes those speakers function sucks bat-balls.

  1. All proprietary software sucks2
  2. Updating upgrading hardware software = can only lead to forced obsoletism of older devices3
  3. What do you do when competition starts to kick your ass?4
  4. To this day Sonos speakers can’t play FLAC files5.

Worst-writing about companies that are run into the ground because ship builders shouldn’t sail ships–or–sailors shouldn’t build ships… Here’s yet another example of it. Boy am I glad I never bought Sonos speakers. Lesson to be learned? You betcha! Can anyone say Boeing?


Rant on.



  1. For those not in the know, in the Germania region of #Eurowasteland, you have to buy kitchens, inducing a fridge, when you rent apartments or houses. ↩︎
  2. Everyone should avoid using it unless absolutely necessary not to. ↩︎
  3. At least Apple can claim that it’s iPhone batteries can’t last forever. ↩︎
  4. Amazon speakers, Apple HomePod, Hifiberry, etc. ↩︎
  5. When a company tries to tell me what file format my old ripped CDs should be in and it’s not the file format I want… Fuck you Sonos! ↩︎

SBC Rundown

As I’ve stated here and there in this worst-blog, Steve Jobs had it right. Long live the post-PC era. Long live… Steve?

With that in mind, as of the end of 2019, I’ve got two too many SBC’s in my abode. You know, post-PC stuff galore, dear worst-reader. Oh what to do, what to do, what to do?

Have I ever been more tickled with so much tech gluttony? There was a time, don’t you know, when I had too many Macs hanging around. What a time that was, eh. The good news is: unlike the old school computer world, to which I’m kinda bound heart and soul, when you have too much of anything, Macs included, it’s easy to use them all as a kind of tech filler in a life of early retirement fanboy boredom. The thing is, Macs, unlike PCs, can’t just fade away. In my experience a ten year old Mac can do as much as when it was new, whereas a PC of the same age can only be useful if turned into a linux machine–and even that has extreme limitations. But let me move on as my pretentiousness might be getting out of hand.

In my case, not only was I able to find purpose for most of my ageing Macs, as in, you know, a file server here, a Plex media server there, but I also let my better half take one of them and slowly claim that she too is a Mac user (when in reality she’s still stuck in the corporate issued PC world). After a decade or so of maintaining all those machines, though, and thereby accumulating a relatively vast library of digital media–and waking up to the reality of streaming media which is also part of the post-pc era that I’m failing at avoiding, circumventing–I got bored as hell waiting for files to copy, data to process, backing it all up, lifting a forty pound Mac Pro from one room to the other, etc. And so. Welcome to the new world of SBCs, especially Raspberry Pi. Indeed, dear worst-reader. Where would I be today without these little miracle devices that have been a long time coming and have finally provided the means to break away from the old guard truck-PC world of wasted digital everything?

But. Again. Before I get too far off on my pretentious sailing yacht named tech-no-nevermind, here’s where things stand with worst-writer’s post-pc era household. Here’s a rundown of my SBCs and their usefulness galore.

RPi3B + HiFiBerry Amp2 + Volumio

Been dabbling in this–dare I call it–cheap-audiophile setup for going on two years now. Other than a few glitches here or there, it works like a charm. Of course, it also sounds great in any room hooked up to Audioengine P4 speakers or Pioneer BS22’s that I stuffed in a suitcase and lugged across the Atlantic last year on account I couldn’t buy them in #Eurowasteland. In fact, as far as I can tell, it works with any set of speakers. Considering its cost, especially if you already have digital media and server capability in your life, and, perhaps, a few speakers from the good old days laying around, I don’t understand why any #okboomer doesn’t have one of these just for the fun of it.

That worst-said, since using this as my go-to audio player, a question has arisen with my better half: as an Apple household, is it time to go (aghast) HomePod? Indeed. But the biggest turn-off with Apple’s HomePod is the simple fact that I cannot use it with my current music library setup–unless I integrate that setup into Apple’s greed $hit$how music subscription service, previously known as iTunes.

First of all, iTunes sucked bat balls, including its new iteration “Music”. The only place I use it is on my iPhone–and only because I transcode and install MY music manually from my Mac, from my home music server, to my iPhone. The HomePod is basically an extension to Apple’s subscription Music service. It doesn’t really work without that service. Although I’ve battled internally with accepting this as the future, there’s simply no way that I can currently go for a subscription music service. I’m not well informed as to how the HomePod is selling for Apple, but the entire concept is such a deal-breaker to me simply because Apple 1. doesn’t support FLAC and 2. I can’t just play my music on its fancy pseudo smart speaker. In other worst-words, have I reached the the point of… I can’t give Apple my money?

Back to my current wondrous pseudo-audiophile setup. As far as glitches with Volumio, most have been caused by my fiddling around with settings thinking I could get more out of both the RPi and the HiFiBerry hardware. As usual, I was fiddling all for naught. In fact, after most recent update to version 2.692 at the end of 2019, things kinda went haywire. The update seems to have bricked the thing. Although the UI worked after the update, library access didn’t. There was also no HiFiBerry configuration in the “Playback Options”. The digital volume control only went from 0 to 100, which meant I had a few almost speaker exploding moments trying to figure things out. To save the day I did a factory restore which returned the system back to version 2.389 (which is from 2018). And get this. Maybe it’s my ears playing games, but the old software version sounds better than any of the updates. The UI isn’t as clean and there are few add-ons that are no longer available, but I’m good with that on account it seems to sound as good as ever when playing Bowie, Beethoven or the friggin Bee-Gees. I love it–glitches n’all.

If you can, and you like good audio, get yourself one of these, dear worst-reader.

RPi2B + HiFiBerry DAC Pro + Plex Client

This thing has been working like a charm since day one. Ok. Wait. It ain’t all roses here. I need to hard restart it every once-a-once. My guess is it freezes up because of memory cache issues, or the like. But that’s no big deal on account it reboots quickly. After almost three years of consistent use, though, and considering the price of this thing, like the Volumio device above, all worst-readers (of age) should use one of these things as a media player.

By-the-buy, it’s connected to an old Sony 1080p flatscreen. Controlling it is done mostly by using the Sony remote and HDMI-CEC. It’s like a TV but on steroids, baby. Keep in mind that we have no broadcast TV in our home. We just use Plex, an AppleTV3, which also gives us Amazon Prime, and, as previously mentioned, Volumio. Anywho. Sometimes I’ll use the iPhone app to control this Plex client but, like most tech stuff with any lifespan these days, Plex has gotten a bit complicated and it’s easier to just use the cheap Sony remote to control it.

This is my go-to device if you have or want a home media player that’s as simple as eating pie–and not baking it–and don’t want to rely solely on AppleTV or any other streaming box, let alone rely on krappy broadcast TV. Although it can do things like photos, I’ve never used it for that as I just use Apple’s Photo app along with a few iOS devices. And get this. Since this Plex client works so well, I’ve put off getting a new Apple TV even though the newer ones are capable of running a Plex client. The thing is, I love the RPi + HiFiBerry DAC as a music player as much as I love the Volumio player (RPi + Hifiberry Amp2) that I use downstairs (as previously mentioned). As far as I’m concerned, as a cheap audiophile, the sound of these things in combination with my TEAC amp is darn tooting’ good. Nuff said, baby.

Oh. By-the-buy. Again. The difference between Volumio and Plex, as far as audio is concerned, is that Volumio works headless. Although I’ve read that Plex can be used headless, I don’t quite get the point of doing that since it is being used with a flatscreen. So. Indeed. Again-again. Even though Plex is getting unnecessarily complex, these devices are so cheap, why doesn’t everyone have one? Oh yeah. The tech stuff. Flashing an SD card, etc., etc. Speaking of tech stuff…

Pine64 Rock64

I use the Pine64 Rock64 device as a test device as I’ve not quite found a steady digital purpose for it. It’s been a pihole adblocker, a Volumio tester, a distro fun-maker, etc. Unfortunately for Pine64, the Rock64 and RockPro64 (below) might be the last devices I buy from these guys. Although the the boards are excellent, they are a bit too techi for me, unlike Raspberry Pi. I’ve been battling with software installs, distros, etc. since day one with these things, which is mega disappointing. Right now, the only software that I’ve found to work is DietPi and whatever I can install from that–but that doesn’t always work without tech tweaking that is usually over my head. Yeah, these things are my SBC disappointment. That said, I still kinda recommend them.

Pine64 RockPro64 + DietPi

Even though I’ve been disappointed with the software available for Pine64 devices, I’m kinda tickled with the RockPro64’s server performance–and my ability to actually get it to function. It has been quite a fight, don’t you know. Remember: this thing replaced a 2010 MacPro (the cheese grader) but there have been moments… What saved it from the dung-heap? The minimalist Linux distro known as DietPi. If you’re a newbie and not afeared of a bit of Linux CLI, this is my distro recommendation for the RockPro64 as a do-everything linux server. It works ALMOST like a charm. So far it has been running as a Plex server, a samba server (for my household Macs) and I’m even using it as a ad-blocker (pihole). Heck, I even installed a WordPress install on it so as to maintain a copy of this blog. Indeed. For the past 18 months or so it’s never crashed once. Whaaaaaaa?

The most disappointing thing from Pine64 is the fact that I have yet to get OMV to work. OMV is an open source NAS system that is supposed to emulate and/or compete with those stupid-expensive NAS boxes, aka Synology, Drobo, etc., which I refuse to buy. The problem is–as with most software I’ve tried on Pine64–I couldn’t get OMV to work. It would boot, I could access it via my network, I could dabble here or there with it. But as soon as I started messing with “shares” or add-ons (like Plex), it was crash time galore. Now that I’ve kinda gotten use to the CLI of DietPi, I’m not even watching out if OMV gets out of beta for this thing. The heck with it. DietPi works–and I’ve learned to live with a basic Samba file server! All in all, this home server project has turned into a reliable home media and file server device–that has, again, replaced at 2010 Mac Pro. Whaaaaaa?

Indeed. All is good in the land of the SBC, glitches n’all.

Rant on.


PS Oh yea. I started this worst-post ranting about having two too many SBCs. So get this. Waiting in the wings for some purpose is another RPi3 and for Xmas 2019 I received the new RPi4. I’m considering the RPi3 for another audio project, perhaps with something other than analog audio outputs. The RPi4 is a different story. Currently the RPi4 is my Raspbian Linux training station which I use headless. It has already proven that there is no need to buy any other SBC again. (Sorry about that Pine64.) The RPi4 is finally a fcuking great little computer. Needless to say, I’m excited about fiddling with it as 2020 progresses.

First RPi4


Thought I was gonna wait a bit longer, dear worst-reader. You know, being the never-buy first iteration consume-to-survive guy that I am, at the least, I was gonna put off getting this till the thermal problems were dealt with in version 2.0. But then it was required of me for Xmas that I post some sort of wish list–at the last minute, don’t you know. Which raises this worst-question: What does a man who already has everything wish for? Especially when such a rational thinking man (worst-moi) wishes he could wish for that used ten metre sailing yacht that’s just waiting for me on the baltic shores.

Screenshot 2020-01-04 at 19.33.37.png

Or perhaps there’s that thought or three that been lingering with me for sometime now about getting back into motorcylces. You know, motorcycles for old guys. I’m really digging Kawasaki’s W800 retro bike. Although I think it’s priced a bit high considering the cost of an Enfield. Also. Considering western world demographics, there’s plenty of new old guy motorcycles on the market these days. Am I wrong?

Screenshot 2020-01-04 at 19.37.45

Anywho. Other than a pair of gloves that also work with touch screen interfaces (iPhone, Apple Watch), the only other wish I could came up with (again, at the last minute, at the behest of my better half), which was on the tip of my tongue, was a Raspberry Pi 4 w/4GB–including case. Lo and behold, my better half delivered–on the RPi. (Or was it Santa Claus?) The case my better half ordered wasn’t up to worst-writer specs, though. She ordered a case that included some cheap cooling fan. It’s also some kind of push-together plastic case. Cheap, push together stuff a big turn off, eh.  Although I think I’ll keep the case for future RPi4 orders, on account it’s so cheap, I’m gonna fiddle with the new RPi4 first without a fan. And so. I ordered the FLIRC aluminium case, which has some pretty good reviews and, because of its design, seems to circumvent the need for a cooling fan.

All in all, so far, I’ve been impressed with the new Pi.

Let’s run down the issues after first few days of use and some minor testing, shall we.


  • Fast, fast, fast
  • Finally can boot and run Raspbian via VNC without obnoxious lag on client machine (this Mac)
  • USB-C power socket, finally away from flimsy mini-usb power (see con below)
  • Networking feels fast and sure (wifi and ethernet)
  • USB 3 provides great speed making this a definite alternative to the non-NAS I’ve been working on in 2019 that has also left me disappointed (on account of Pine64 software offering)


  • It’s un-understandable why there are two obnoxious Mini HDMI ports that are so non-backward compatible (since this is a cheap alternative to expensive PCs and NAS devices, why over do it with these connections???)
  • Mini hdmi does not work with (my) 1080p Dell monitor via display port > hdmi adapter, which means I have to order yet another adapter to try and connect it via DVI
  • USB-C power socket feels flimsy and probably won’t last a bunch of in-out connections
  • Heat – the FLIRC alu-case gets surprisingly warm even with my minor testing

Rant on.


Pine64 Taking The Lead For Home Digital Storage Galore?

This is kind of an update to here and maybe here.

This is also kind of a battle, dear worst-reader. If you haven’t worst-guessed by now, it’s between worst-moi, Raspberry Pi and Pine64–all at the level of SBCs, baby. That is, for the moment, Pine64 is winning my non-NAS NAS competition. Or. How does one build a solid home digital storage thingy without having to buy one of them overpriced and over complicated glorified HDD enclosures, aka Synology, Drobo, etc., that suck bat balls? And so…

At the least, dear worst-reader, I’ve surpassed yet another threshold (or is it milestone?) of success-failure in my quest to avoid the NAS industry. You know, avoid paying stupid money to those over-rated, under-powered hard-drive bays that somehow have their own operating system and are only accessible via SSH where storing large amounts of old school data have become the bugs and whistles of gimme-gotcha. Oh wait. I’m getting kind of redundant. Move on.

The original worst-idear was to have a place for all my digital files but get rid of all the old hardware and thereby rely on Raspberry Pi. At the same confused time, I wanted to rid myself of the complication of GUI based NAS krapp, don’t you know. The only problem is, once you start transferring data, especially terabytes of data, the greatness of the R-Pi… bogs down real, real quick. That’s not to say I’m outta love for/with R-Pi. Currently the two (out of three) R-Pi’s I have running are clients for media–and they work great. For a while there I thought my taking a chance with Pine64 might not pay off on account I couldn’t get either the Rock64 or RockPro64 to do what I was hoping they’d do–as in, you know, work great like R-Pi. And then came the R-Pi4 with its faster data transfer speeds. Oh my. Moving on.

I knew by 2016-2017, in order for worst-moi to build a non-NAS NAS, gigabyte ethernet is the key. Lo and behold, R-Pi finally came out with worthwhile ethernet speeds but I’m still waiting for them to work out the kinks R-Pi4. Of course, I’d already bought into Pine64 and their SBC offering, naively unaware of software issues. Indeed. If only software would work on Pine64–managed by novice computer geeks. And so. The other day, after painstaking lazy-learning more and more about DietPi, I finally figured out how to set up not only the internal HDDs of my Pine64 NAS case but also an external drive bay (see pic above) that houses four of my old drives.

The result is I’m tickled to death. Not only does the Pine64 RockPro64 finally rock my world as a Plex media server but it’s also a great and simple Samba server with those four drives–add to that it’s got USB3! Now I can access all those old drives on my home network–with speed, baby. For shits & giggles, to test USB3, I copied my Music file library from the internal HDDs of the Pine64 NAS case to one of the drives in the external 4-bay case. Just under 1TB of data was copied in about 40min. That’s pretty good considering the same via R-Pi and USB2 would take almost a half a day. For the first time since fiddling with SBC as a replacement for all my old hardware (Macs, which I sold in January of 2019), I’m finally out of the world of PCs as trucks. Hardware in my digital world is now down to a few devices plus a great and so far stable cheap digital storage solution, including a great media server. Yeah, I’m tickled to death.

Since I’m a novice computer geek, I should also add that it’s taken me most of 2019, on and off, to be able to setup this system. Keep in mind, part of that time has been waiting patiently for a stable version of OMV for the RockPro64. But I’ve been shit-outta-luck, don’t you know. Even the Rock64, the RockPro64’s little SBC brother, doesn’t have what I would consider a stable version of OMV. So while I was hacking around with trying to get OMV to work on the RockPro64, in the interim I always relied on R-Pi and OMV to access all my drives. But. Again. The data transfer speeds were/are awful. Anywho.

The only stable software (system) I’ve got to work on the RockPro64 has been DietPi. Granted, I’ve only tried OMV and DietPi, although once I tried a Ubuntu but felt as though it was too much (as in: too much software). Also. Half the effort of getting DietPi to work has been relearning the CLI (command line interface). Indeed. Even after all these months, I’m still reliant on the google-machine to be able to do anything CLI. Yet I’ve avoided any graphical interface access like the plague. Again, that has something to do with SBC minimalism, I suppose, which I’ve kinda enjoyed since discovering R-Pi so many years ago. Aynwho.

Plex media server setup is a piece of cake because once installed, you access it using a web interface. I’ve been running Plex for about six months now and it’s worked without flaw. I have had issues requiring a restart of my R-Pi Plex client, though. But that’s no big deal. The real challenge came with setting up and configuring Samba shares for network access. Here I needed to access a share (a folder on a drive) with my R-Pi and Hifiberry Amp+2, which is currently my favourite audio player. The more and more I fiddled with this, the more convinced I became that OMV was probably not going to be necessary after all. I finally had hardware with fast networking capability but I could never get OMV to work properly on the Pine64 devices. I’m sure that has something to do with the software not getting out of beta, as indicated here. Back to Samba.

Even though I was able to setup one Samba share, I couldn’t figure out how to add more shares. My hat is off to DietPi for making this so simple–even though I spent countless hours trying to get the configuration code in the smb.confg file right. A break through came the other day once I figured out that all I had to do was copy and paste the [Share] code in the smb.confg file and then just add the correct [path =] and a new name. Boom, baby!

Now that I’ve got network access to my entire system with much better data transfer speeds, I’m no longer interested in the complexity of OMV. I certainly didn’t see that one coming. I really thought OMV would be the one compromise I’d have to make to my non-NAS NAS digital storage solution. You know, since OMV is pretty much NAS software. Again. Anywho.

Rant on–and network on, baby.


Pseudo-Review: iPhone 6s > iPhone 11

Why go to 10 (or Xr or 8) when you can go to 11? For that is the worst-question, eh, dear worst-reader? I mean, wouldn’t we all go to 11, always skipping the others, if we could? Or is the issue mute? Nomatter. The moment I’d been avoiding for so long by nursing my iPhone 6s–you know, the good-fight we all must lose in order to postpone Apple’s corporate strategy of forced product obsoletism–finally arrived the other day. Even though I’ve been giving it my best for almost four years, the whole time knowing that these devices really only last, on a good day, for about two years, I hung to a glimmer of hope. I mean, come on. Almost 4 years out of the 6s? WTF. That is pretty cool. On the other hand. Maybe. Just maybe. Why couldn’t I make it last a bit more? You know, make it last until the iPhone 12–or the 13, etc. Or? But then, about two weeks ago, I updated my 6s to iOS 13 and suddenly the bells and gongs of Steve Jobs’ greed-mongering rang galore. The 6s was the last old iPhone that was supposed to handle the new update, its predecessor the iPhone 6 being hurled to the official wastedom of obsoletism. Indeed. FYI. They should have hurled the 6s, as well.

Obsoletism And Batteries

The first thing that went, about two years ago–the thing that always goes first–was the battery. And not just one battery. I utilised Apple’s offer of replacing the 6s’ original battery with their 30,-€ deal last February. And don’t you know, for about two months I thought things were great. But then, probably after another system update (or two), that 30,-€ battery deal turned sour. Unwilling to make a claim that Apple’s battery replacement program was a hoax, I decided to resort to a somewhat extreme solution. After my 6s’ first year I bought one of them Anker battery cases. Although it bulked-up the device to being the size of the newer “plus” phones Apple was offering, I went with it. The battery case lasted for about eight months till it too started showing major power degradation. After that I tried carrying around one of those USB chargers. It also worked for a while. Then I came across an original Apple iPhone 6s battery case at a reduced price of around 100,-€. I went for it. To say the least, that damn 6s cost me quite a bit to just keep it going. So was/am I glad that it kinda died the other day? Now that I finally upgraded, I can easily say… shur-nuff, baby!

Old=out New=in

Of course, there were a few moments here and there where I thought I shouldn’t splurge so much cash for the latest model. Why not just take the iPhone 8? It’s priced at about two hundred less than the 11, don’t you know. In fact, I don’t really need much in/from an iPhone. I had long realised that the worst part about corporate forced product obsoletism isn’t that they design these things to make you buy more, but, during the last two years of stretching its life, I could barely use any non-Apple Apps. The processor is just too slow to keep up with new software. With the 6s it’s really not so bad since most of my computing activity is with my MacBook. Also. I rarely make phone calls with it and if I do, it’s mostly using FaceTime with family. Otherwise, I use it for podcasting, GPS, camera, news, reading books (Kindle and Apple Books), weather, note-taking, etc. Most of that stuff worked till the end because the software was from Apple. Indeed. The Kindle software (Amazon) was pretty much toast, though. Plus, I got tired of reading on the little 6s screen. Anyhow. After only twenty-four hours of use of my new iPhone… Boy have I been missing-out.

Price Reality

Lucky for worst-moi and because of pricing politics after the ridiculously expensive iPhone X–which my wife paid almost 1200,-€ for last year–the price of the new iPhone 11, including a 50-, trade-in for my old 6s, wasn’t looking too bad. Comparably the Xr model, only a hundred Euros less, and the 8 model, two-hundred less, but also with substantially weaker hardware specs, meant that nomatter how I cut it, I was gonna fork out anywhere between 550,- to 800,- with this consume-to-survive transaction. For you see, dear worst-reader, I’ve never had a phone contract so buying one of these things with a contract is a no-go. I hate cell phone carriers, but that’s another worst-post. In the end, with the trade-in, I paid 749,-€ for the newest iPhone. Does that make me want to jump up and down and or kiss Pamela Anderson posters till I blow my goo? Indeed. 749,- for a new iPhone of this caliber is a long way away from 1000,- plus. Indeed. Indeed.


So I went through the crowded rigamarole at the Apple Store on a Saturday afternoon. Luckily, nomatter how crowded my local Apple store gets, I’ve learned that if you’re buying something, especially hardware, the line to get service is easily shortened for you. Within a few hours I was back home getting ready to unbox and set up my new iPhone 11. Since I had made a backup on my MacBook the night before of my 6s, I declined the offer to setup up my new phone at the crowded store, always telling the Apple rep that I new what I was doing. Of course, deleting and emptying my 6s, so I could turn it in to him, took a while, too. Btw, it’s pretty cool how Apple makes sure your devices is wiped. For whatever reason, my old iPhone was having trouble NOT backing up my data to iCloud while at the store. The rep kept saying I should let the backup happen but I also kept telling him that I trusted the backup I made the previous night on my MacBook. All in all, I was right, but with one caveat. The only setup issue I had with my new iPhone, iCloud account n’all, was that I didn’t expect it to not be on the latest iOS, which, btw, my 6s had. That meant I couldn’t “restore” from my backup because the 6s iOS was newer than what was on the iPhone 11. And so. What should have taken about half-hour to forty minutes, took almost an hour and a half to complete. The new iPhone iOS update took the longest. The restore from iTunes took about fifteen minutes. Even though direct old phone to new phone updates that Apple has are cool and work great (it’s how my wife does it), the way I did it works, too. It just takes a bit longer. It’s really cool that my new phone, after the update and restore from old 6s, is identical. Love it!

Apps Crash

Wow. After just under 48hrs of use, I’m tickled to death with my new iPhone. I can finally run a few 3rd party Apps I haven’t been able to run for years–or they completely got out of my usage radar because my 6s has long since been obsolete. iaWriter, for example. One of my favourite worst-writing apps. It syncs with all my worst-writing to my MacBook now. I was never able to do that with either my new MacBook or its predecessor my MacBook Air and the 6s. (Why?) There’s also a few Apps my wife wants us both to use (for cooking recipes, of course) that I couldn’t use before because she’s got a iPhone X. Even Apple Apps are no longer crashing as much as they did before e.g. FaceTime and Contacts. Volumio, my audio player/controller of choice (in combination with a household full of Raspberry Pi’s plus HifiBerry), was also crashing. The 6s used to crash all the time before I could even start a song with my iPhone 6s; had to resort to playing/controlling music with my MacBook. Hasn’t crashed once with the new 11. But. Ok. Obviously this new iPhone is better than the previous one. I mean, it’s the best iPhone apple has EVER made. Or? Nomatter. Lots of re-learning about Apps is still to come.

Design Flaw Ongoing

Of course, let’s not get too junky about being an Apple fanboy. Like the 6s, the same things I hated about that design will still be with me in the new 11. For example, the volume buttons being directly across from the power button–or what is now also the Siri button–is stupid. Whoever at Apple came up with this idear is, well, stupid. Reason? Unless you take special care, you cannot change the volume on this device with one hand. Cupping the iPhone and then using your forefinger to either increase or decrease the volume, thereby requiring your thumb to counter the pressure on the other side of the phone, either turns it off or, now, calls up Siri. Whaaaaaaaaaa! Also. Why the hell do they make these things as slippery as a greased pig. (No. I’ve never tried to catch a greased pig! But I have read about it.) The fact that I’ve become accustomed, since the 6s, to being very careful how I handle/hold/pick-up this phone, says everything. I feel like, sometimes, someone at Apple (Steve Jobs?) had the idear: how can we subvert product obsoletism, which only alienates customers, with a surer way of getting them to buy more of these things? That’s right. Make them out of glass so that they are supposed to slip out of your hands and fall crashing to the ground. Apple care anyone? (Fcuk you!)


Although I probably pissed away a lot of money trying to keep my iPhone 6s running for so long, in the end the only thing that killed it was battery. After getting used to an old, slow iPhone, I could have lived with it, including not being able to run certain apps. Oh well. And by-the-buy, I would have replaced the 6s sooner if Apple would have upgraded (hardware) the iPhone SE. Personally, another design flaw of these things is that they are just waaaaaaaay too big. The last best fitting iPhone for me was the 5s. Again. Oh well.

Now take my money Apple!

Rant on.