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    Inspiring blogger - Matt Gemmell

    Matt Gemmell is such a good writer, his post Dear TextMate is a beauty and must reflect the thoughts of many former Textmate fans.

    His recent Simplicity post has me looking into Octopress.

    Another great piece by Matt, Accessibility for iPhone and iPad apps is must read for anyone designing a User Interface. I sent this to a friend who suffers the condition Matt was referring to and he was blown away by the insight shown.


    This precious life

    "Because we don’t know when we will die, we get to think of life as an inexhaustible well. Yet everything happens only a certain number of times, and a very small number really. How many more times will you remember a certain afternoon of your childhood, an afternoon that is so deeply a part of your being that you can’t even conceive of your life without it? Perhaps four, five times more, perhaps not even that. How many more times will you watch the full moon rise? Perhaps 20. And yet it all seems limitless.”

    Paul Bowles"
    (Via Maxistentialism)


    CNN occupy wall street

    I had missed the interesting social experiments Ruskofff describes, the local media is adopting its usual superficial view.

    CNN: Occupy Wall Street is not a Protest but a Prototype

    “Occupy” is anything but a protest movement. That’s why it has been so hard for news agencies to express or even discern the “demands” of the growing legions of Occupy participants around the nation, and even the world. Just like pretty much everyone else on the planet, occupiers may want many things to happen and other things to stop, but the occupation is not about making demands. They don’t want anything from you, and there is nothing you can do to make them stop. That’s what makes Occupy so very scary and so very promising. It is not a protest, but a prototype for a new way of living. (Via Douglas Rushkoff.)


    Guerrilla bagging

    Horrified to discover the damage that plastic bags were causing to our marine environment, Claire Morsman devised a plan for action - 'sociable guerrilla bagging'.

    The idea is that people make reusable bags from recycled material and then give them away to friends and family or sometimes during mass handouts.
    Since it began in January 2007, hundreds of people working alone or in "pods" who work together on the bags have made over 20,000 bags. Its taken off in the UK, US, New Zealand, Spain, Japan, Morocco and France.

    The bags are known as Morsbags.

    Check out the website here


    The franklin river campaign - 25 years on

    This post was inspired by a rendition Shane Howard gave of his song Let the Franklin Flow at the Blue Mountains Blues Festival a few months ago.

    25 years since the Franklin River Campaign
    In July 1983 the Australian High Court ruled the Franklin Dam could be stopped by the new Federal Labour Government against the wishes of the Tasmanian State government.
    Prior to this over 1000 people from all over Australia and the world had travelled down to the river site camps and been arrested in a mass act of civil disobedience.
    I was there with a number of friends and it was one of the defining experiences of my life.
    We camped in the rainforest near Strahan for a week or two and among the many wonderful experiences I remember meeting Bob Brown who so impressed me with his integrity that I have voted for him and the Greens ever since.
    In the action where I took part we walked down a logging track ("the Crotty Road") which had been ruled Hydro Electric Commission land, meaning we were trespassing. There was some media interest as the novelist James McQueen was part of our group and the TV cameras were there. This caused some consternation at my grandparents house when their nephew appeared briefly on the Channel 7 news for his 15 seconds of fame.

    Bob Brown getting ready to address the Crotty Road protest in 1983. Photo from the National Gallery Collection - Bob Brown Collection 1.

    The action was well planned and we were duly arrested and bundled off to Risdon jail. Expecting to be held in the remand block we were surprised to find that it was full of "greenies" so we were put into the maximum security wing with some unsavoury characters. Those few days in a cell and an enclosed exercise area confirmed for me the wisdom of staying on the "straight and narrow". Our arrest was eventually ruled illegal and we were free to go.
    The Wilderness Society has some videos on YouTube that will transport anyone who was there back 25 years to another world.

    [![Franklin River Campaign Video 1][youtube]][youtube 2]
    [![Franklin River Campaign Video 2][youtube 3]][youtube 4]

    Franklin River Campaign Video 3


    Biodynamic wine in the news

    Michelle Gadd of has a good summary of recent coverage of biodynamic wine in the Australia media.

    With lots of recent media interest in biodynamic wine producers the rest of the world is starting to discover the absolute quality of biodynamic wines.

    She is offering some excellent mixed cases of Australian biodynamic wines including the Krinklewood Vordelho mentioned here on Slowlane recently.

    Her new Catalog also has a special on a mixed box of Tamburlaine organic wine. I ordered one of these a few months ago and was very pleased with the value for money.



    Diversify your dreams

    Great post from HBR that calls out the danger of simplifying your dreams down to a narrow outcome that can setup a black and white success or failure scenario. One tool they describe to help avoid this is the "folder of gratitude"

    Diversify Your Dreams

    So how do you start moving from one dream to many? A practical tip I've seen work well is to develop a "folder of gratitude," a constantly-updated list of all the things in life you're grateful for. Chances are, many of the things on your list correspond neatly with your underlying passions. Then, take your list and amplify these passions with intelligent experiments. Test and invest in your areas of interest, and cultivate the joy of learning from failure



    Drowning in books to read

    I love books, i enjoy being given them at this time of the year and I enjoy buying them at any time. Unfortunately I sometimes fall behind with reading them.

    The to read pile has grown to the point where I decided I needed to create a list to keep track of them - Omnifocus to the rescue. Listing them like this should discourage me from acquiring any more until I have reduced this backlog.

    The Tufte and Alexander books were acquired as sets and are works I have been keen to have in my library for years. Christopher Alexanders' A Pattern Language is one of my favourite books. I'll take my time with these and expect to revisit them often.

    Dark Mountain and eaarth share themes of coming to terms with a changed world and looking to the future.

    The Adventures of Jack De Crow will appeal to anyone who has sailed dinghy's especially Mirror's. We built on of these in our garage during the 70's.

    And a smattering of IT books the most interesting of which is hopefully the Design of Design by Fred Brooks of Mythical Man Month fame. Still a relevant book although not everyone thinks so.

    Now all I need to do is polish up my speed reading skills…and then there are the numerous magazines...

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