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Pet Peeves For Patreon

I just noticed a highly aggravating thing about Patreon. Ever noticed how when you start typing a long comment, and reach a certain length, the visible area keeps jumping up above the area where you're writing? That's pretty aggravating.

Even more aggravating, though, is how if you accidentally delete your comment whilst in the process of writing said comment... you can't get it back! CTRL + Z won't do a thing.

It is however possible that, in conjunction with the grievance above, this only happens if you've actually typed up a comment longer than the allowed comment length, which you wouldn't have been able to post had you finished it and tried to, and if you ever tried to copy and paste such a comment into the comment area it just wouldn't work, or get cut off. Which leads me to my next grievance: that you can type more than the allowed comment length into the comments box.

That's just asking for trouble.

Either way this is all really pretty aggravating. Reminds me of the old days with Word and no auto-save. Little limitations of not-that-far-away days we forget quick in the haze of technical improvement

I rewrote the comment, but of course it didn't turn out quite that long the second time around. So that's that. Write on.

Don't Wreck The Net!

Stop Article 13

Image courtesy of Creative Commons.

The EU Copyright Directive threatens to undermine fundamental concepts of how the internet works.
Read on to learn how Articles 11 and 13 are bad for users, creators, publishers, and online platforms!

I just copied that text from the site linked to above, but really, this is the type of reform that could drastically change the Internet landscape for us. All community-driven websites would need to manually supervise the influx of all content... and that just wouldn't work now, would it?

And that's not all. The link tax, the meme ban... they call it many things. Ultimately: Internet wouldn't be free anymore.

I'm growing so tired of these commercial crusades... but when you start ogling the Google results for article 13 you'll realize people aren't so discrepant after all. Not most of them. There's a large train underway to stop this thing, and it's been going a while now! Do jump on it.

And check out all those memes! What would the Internet be without them. Courtesy of Google (and whomever made them).

The Patreon Pledge Anomaly

The Patreon Pledge Anomaly

Just noticed this thing in my notifications hmm. For this one month only. Hope it's only a visual anomaly...

Google One

Google One

I have no idea what this is, but it seems interesting! Something about storage. Possibly not for the normal individual at all. Possibly only for companies, or for those with paid plans (those with paid Google Drive upgrades will apparently be getting upgraded early).

I stumbled upon this today while browsing through Google's ever-expanding array of often useful and so very functional products.

You can sign up for early updates right here if you like.

UPD: Some more info here, though it seems to still be a work in progress... basically: a little bit more of everything. A bit cheaper. A bit better. A bit more of an incentive-based Google experience.

The Life And Legacy Of TextMechanic

TextMechanic is dead. Long live TextMechanic.

My favorite website for text-related tools just went paywall. You can't perform more than four actions - no matter how small - per hour, as a free user.

I understand that hosting's not free, and though I finance my own sites out of my own pocket - and know many others who do the same, as this guy did before - I realize not everyone has this luxury. Or they have a better sense for business.

I'm hoping it's the lack of luxury in the case of TextMechanic, as the latter implies an array of more negative concatenations of traits, of which the first that comes to mind is: greed.

I never figured Larry for that kind of guy though (pardon if I recall the name wrong - all references thereof have since been removed from the website). In 2016 he lost his regular job, redesigned his Text Mechanic site and seemed intent on pouring all his energy into this old hobby-project instead. He started a Patreon, he added ads (not sure if this was before or after), and he posted one blog post regarding the change, and all that was to come. I started looking forward to the upgrades.

Since then nothing. No more blogs. No Patreon updates. No tiers. Suddenly it seems he wasn't so interested after all.

A few users signed up and are currently throwing in ca $28 per month, but his activity apparently seized after those initial posts, and the promised tools were never released. I sent in some feedback on the new design when it first launched, happy that the site I'd been using for the past decade or so suddenly had a public face to go with it; a name behind all those awesome tools... but never received a response. I wish I'd saved my message, because i didn't get a copy of it either, nor a confirmation via email. And since then things have only gone downhill.

I wasn't very fond of the new design in the first place - it seemed rushed and inconsistent; adhering to modern standards more than functional practice, but I think I focused on the good more than the bad in my email. This time however... I'm not hanging around. The alternatives are, fortunately for me but not so much for Larry, in surplus. Most of them are free, most of them are equally easy to use - if not easier, and better-looking, and the one I'm testing right now doesn't have as obtrusive ads either. Some, company-sponsored ones, don't even have ads.

They don't require you to log in, they don't limit your uses, and they don't cost a thing. Some don't even need you to reload the page between actions. The ones that do have pro versions seem to at least allow you a few minutes of work before forcing you to take a break.

Maybe I wouldn't have minded this drastic change if the wait time wasn't so excessive (one hour), or the four-try limit so meager (if you're not proficient with advanced reg-ex just replacing commas, periods, spaces and line breaks in one paragraph takes all those four tries at once).

It's a bit strange how loyal I've been to this one service since I first found it, and that it had to come to this for it to hit a breaking point. Even after it started changing and growing all the more complex and difficult to navigate I stuck with it, even when I knew there were other tools out there. Old habits die hard huh. Or is it ample nostalgia?

Even now that I've found better sites I wouldn't mind going back to the original, if only it went back to how it used to be. Or better yet: better. It's sad to see a good site decay and lose visitors, and purpose, and especially so when it seemed to be going towards greener pastures just moments before. I guess with time I'll get settled in to the alternatives instead.

I'm including the letter I sent to Larry this time as reference, and if it happens to fall into his spam folder maybe he'll stumble upon it here:

Read on...

We Got A SHIT CHAT

Check it out! It's a well-working, embeddable, JS-based, minimalistic, P2P communication contraption (AKA CHAT) with no frills, just everything you really need to initiate a quick convo with strangers all around the globe. First one to join becomes the host, via which all communication is relayed, and if they leave you can just refresh the page to take over. It's pretty cool.

It's also not mine, but it seemed handy and worth promoting, and the author's OK with it being here as well. For the record SHIT CHAT is the official name, and although I think something like ASTOUNDING CHAT would've been a better sounding name for it since it's not shit (nor is shit frequently chatted about there... as far as I know), it is a chat, and this has a nice ring to it too don't you think? Short. Simple. Memorable.

And not a name that raises bars or expectations all too high either.

I'll probably not be on much, but who knows, some dark and silent nights when spare time allows... who knows. Hopefully others will when I'm not.

Also keep in mind that the userbase here is not limited to CDB. This thing can be embedded anywhere, and will have the same users in every place. You never know who you might run into! Have fun.

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