Apple voor bedrijven korting

July 18, 2018

Deze blog post ter info voor andere bedrijven, zodat jullie geen 1 uur en 20 minuten aan de telefoon moeten hangen om computers te bestellen zoals ik vandaag.

Je krijgt ongeveer 6% korting op een laptop bestelling als je geregistreerd bent als bedrijf bij Apple en aan een minimum bedrag voldoet.

Welk bedrag dit is was niet zo duidelijk aan de telefoon, maar het ging over ca. 4000-5000 euro. Dit geldt voor alle bestellingen (ook iPhones enz.) en er wordt gekeken naar het bestelvolume vanaf een bepaald e-mailadres (of bedrijf vermoed ik…) voor de laatste 12 maanden.

Je kan je registreren als bedrijf via de telefoon, dan wordt je in het systeem gezet en krijg je proper facturen op je bedrijfsnaam/BTW nummer.

Aangezien je eigenlijk met Apple Nederland belt is het intracommunautaire levering en hoef je geen BTW te betalen.

Op het moment dat je een bestelling wil plaatsen is dit altijd telefonisch en krijg je een mail met een offerte. Je kan dan bevestigen, ik heb mijn recente bestelling betaald met mijn kredietkaart. Door de cijfers door te geven via de telefoon. Modern hoor Apple ;).

Kijk de limieten op uw kredietkaart na bij grote bestellingen! En als je geïnteresseerd bent in de nieuwe Apple laptops, check zeker de laatste video van Dave2d.

Rollende hellingen

June 12, 2018

Er is een nieuwe feature in Basecamp: de rolling hill chart.

Ik moet toch efkes lachen hiermee.

Ik volg Basecamp als bedrijf al jaren en ik ben mee met veel van hun ideeën.

Maar tegenwoordig gaan ze toch vaak in de mist.

Zoals die keer dat ze hun staigair een breadcrumb navigatie hadden laten maken, en die dan trots een Medium post erover schreef.

Ik zie dat meisje nog blinken op de Product Design meetup in Gent: hey, ik heb een stage bij Basecamp. En ik heb net deze feature ontworpen.

2 maand later hebben ze het veranderd, want zo goed werkte het precies niet om een dropdown te openen bij iets dat er duidelijk als een link uitziet (alé zeg, wie had dat nu gedacht?)

Kijk, iedereen moet leren, en iedereen maakt fouten, maar het is voor mij dan de fout van het management om zulke zaken goed te keuren.

Wij gebruiken Basecamp al lange tijd op het werk en tellen hier een aardige som voor neer per jaar.

Maar we gebruiken het eigenlijk redelijk inactief. Het is er, en soms is het eens nodig, en dan zijn er weer projecten waar we het totaal niét gebruiken.

Ondertussen blijven we $75 per maand betalen, een mooie $900 per jaar. Goed verdiend voor die mannen.

Ik heb mijn twijfels bij de product richting in de huidige Basecamp, maar ik blijf het een heel tof bedrijf vinden.

Het is alleszins gestoeld op interessante ideeën die ik doorheen de jaren gretig heb opgenomen.

Zo hebben ze een boek geschreven dat Remote heet, waar het over remote work gaat.

En ze hebben ook lekker veel geschreven over de bullshit waar je soms door moet in klassieke bedrijven.

Over het algemeen proberen ze hun software zo eenvoudig mogelijk te houden, en maken ze goede beslissingen.

Maar, terug naar de rolling hill chart. Een nieuwe feature in Basecamp.

Zo’n nieuwe chart uitvinden, waar niemand van snapt wat die eigenlijk betekent, dat is toch het tegenovergestelde van eenvoudig?

Van op de zijlijnen (van op Twitter dus) kan ik afleiden dat dit het pet project is van één van de designers die er al jaren werkt, Ryan Singer.

Het gaat over hoe ver een project staat te kunnen inschatten.

Er hangt een hele theorie rond, over onzekerheid en over een punt dat je voorbij je “berg” bent, en dat het “dan maar uitvoering is”. Een theorie die je zou kunnen gaan uitzoeken.

Ik vind dat relevant en interessant voor een design project.

Maar wat ik zie in de context van een pakket als Basecamp is gewoon weer een beetje feature creep.

Ik ga echt niet ver in de archieven van Basecamp (37Signals) moeten zoeken om een blog post te vinden met statements over zaken eenvoudig houden, simpliciteit, en het niet nuttig zijn van allerhande project management technieken (zoals progress charts).

En nu smijten ze er zoiets in. Akkoord, het is iets nieuws. Maar ergens ook exact hetgene waar Basecamp jaren hard tegen aan het vechten was.

Want nu komt er een moment dat ik iemand ga moeten uitleggen wat die chart betekent. Of ik kan ‘m gewoon negeren, en dan maakt het de software weer een beetje zwaarder dan het allemaal moet zijn.

Grappig toch dat je uiteindelijk hetgene wordt waar je tegen aan het vechten was…

WWDC wishes

June 3, 2018

WWDC is around the corner.

Time to dream up what would be awesome, and then have a reality check tomorrow.

Hardware

  • An expandable Mac Pro with a competitive price vs. a Windows-based machine (Below €3-4k depending on options) . I want a machine where I can slot in 32Gb of RAM and a super great GPU (like a GTX1080 or something newer). But I won’t need it if the new Macbook Pro turns out to be perfect (see below)
  • A new Macbook Pro that is really just a faster version of the 2015 Macbook Pro aka the perfect laptop
    • Brings back the good stuff
      • Actually has ports again: HDMI (full), SD, headphone jack, USB A (x1 or x2)*
      • Has magsafe <3
    • Removes the “innovations” that turned out to be actually worse than what we had
      • Removal of newer trackpad that is way too huge*
      • Removal of Touch Bar*
      • Removal of the Butterfly key switch mechanism*
    • Upgrades what is decidedly 2015 about the 2015 Macbook Pro
      • 720p webcam becomes 1080p
      • The 2 thunderbolt ports on 2015 Macbook Pro should become USB-C (Thunderbolt 3)
      • Newest Intel processor line (8th gen I believe)
      • A laptop graphics card option that can hold up in 2018, even when it comes to gaming (this would be a GTX1060 equivalent)
    • In terms of looks, I think the 2015 Macbook Pro is pretty much perfect and I don’t desire another look. But less bezels might be nicer, maybe?
  • A Mac Mini with a Blu Ray slot to put next to my TV. I regularly stream from Universcine or other web sources, play Blu Ray discs or DVDs, and I just want to show my computer screen on my TV with the last amount of hassle. It needs to have at least 1Tb internal storage that I can access over the network (i.e. from my Macbook Pro). It should also have a big picture mode (like Steam).

Software (Mac)

For the Mac, I feel it is time for another “Snow Leopard” style release where Apple just works on the stability of the system, and doesn’t add any new features.

It happens too often that your machine might just lag for a bit when you log in to your account – or that randomly Spotlight reindexing messes up your entire workflow.

I have to dig deep to find things that I would want on the Mac that aren’t already there.

I would opt to remove some features that I deem crappy or replace them by newer implementations. For example the way fullscreen apps work in MacOS is pretty much terrible.

The Mac can take a hint from Windows or from apps like SizeUp. This would be one less thing to have to install on a new Mac.

Software (iWork)

For iWork I would love better documentation surrounding Numbers on how to do spreadsheets that talk to each other and that have pivot table-like functionality.

Also having an up to date documentation surrounding automation would be great. I imagine a website where Apple explains with screencasts how you can do your business administration using iWork efficiently, with example files.

For Keynote, I would appreciate a way to export your slide content as JSON, and deeper options on how to optimize image output from large presentations.

Software (iOS)

I am entirely happy with iOS, I can’t really think of anything I need or want.

But I’ve also largely given up on the idea of using iOS for actual work, so maybe there is some work that can be done in this arena. At some level it would be awesome to be able to do design work on an iPad Pro.


I am curious to see what Apple will announce tomorrow!

*I’ve never used a 2016 or 2017 Macbook Pro as my daily driver because of all the bad things I keep hearing about them. So I don’t have practical experience with the machines, but I don’t think I need that to know that dongles suck, and that keyboards breaking is just bad news.

 

 

Movie recents (May 2018)

May 27, 2018

I check the cinema offering every week and to be honest, these days the offering is a bit disappointing. Oscar season has ended and not a lot is being released anymore. Cannes just happened but usually those films only land in the cinema much later.

So, to get my movie fix, I mostly resorted to streaming this month. You can stream the first 3 listed movies below yourself by using Universcine. Streaming a movie is usually something like €4. I swear I am not being paid to put this here, I just like this service. I set up my PayPal account to not have to verify for small purchases and when I make my choice I am usually watching a film in seconds.

La Fille Inconnue (The unknown girl) (★★★)

The brothers Dardenne make movies that are usually social dramas situated in “poor” neighborhood Seraing in Liege, Belgium. This movie is no different. I found this to be a gripping story of a doctor who becomes obsessed with something shocking that happened in her life. It’s best to see this one without any spoilers really.

Daphne (★)

This film follows a woman in her thirties who has some problems in her life and resorts to one night stands and a lot of drinking. Even though it is a relatively short movie it takes too long to make any point whatsoever. I really wanted to like this film but it just falls short in the end.

La Vie d’Adéle (Blue is the warmest colour) (★★★)

This is a coming-of-age movie that follows young Adéle (played by Adéle Exarchopoulos, who you might have seen in Le Fidéle (The Racer and the Jailbird). It’s a film about love, about discovering things about yourself. Don’t watch this one with your parents or it might get awkward.

Solo: a Star Wars Story (★★1/2)

I went into this with low expectations and just found it to be a fun movie that I enjoyed watching – even though I disliked the acting of both leads. I can’t help but think of Danaerys from Game of Thrones when I see Emilia Clarke. I had the same problem with Robin Wright in Blade Runner 2049.

This film does however continue to diminish the value of a “Star Wars” movie. When TFA came in cinemas I thought they were on to something. Now after seeing all of the “new” Star Wars films (including the very disappointing Last Jedi) I don’t think these films are all that special anymore.

Sure, some of them are fun to watch, and you’ll have a good time in cinema. But the mythical aspect sort of disappeared.

Taste of Okinawa

May 2, 2018

When I was on holiday a few months ago, I took a cooking class at Taste of Okinawa. I finally got around to writing a bit about it.

The dish I made.

The cooking class took place in Naha, Okinawa. Naha is the capital of Okinawa, which is a series of islands in the south of Japan. These islands used to be their own kingdom before becoming what is now known as Okinawa.

The influence of the US — who attacked Okinawa during WWII — can really be felt when you’re there. There are several US military bases on the island and even in the food you’ll sometimes find a US influence with dishes like taco rice (my favorite!) or cans of spam in stores.

Taste of Okinawa is kind of a restaurant/bar that also offers cooking classes. The cooking classes are held in a neat cool space that has 2 big tables and a bar. It is located in a shōtengai, which is a covered arcade full of shops.

Shōtengai (商店街)

When we arrived we found out there were only 2 participants, me and a friend. For me this was great since this meant we would get all the explanation we wanted.

First we went on a tour of the nearby shops. We got explanations about specific ingredients and got to taste some as well.

I loved the fresh market with a wonderful selection of fish. My goal to eat a live shrimp was not fulfilled but the selection there was simply amazing.

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Movie recents (April 2018)

May 1, 2018

These are the films I’ve seen in cinema in April 2018.

Avengers: Infinity War ★★1/2

After the boringness of Black Panther I wondered for a second what I was doing at another Marvel screening, but I enjoyed this more than I thought I would. Pro-tip: if you never saw Age of Ultron and you’re not up to date with the comics maybe it’s a good idea to see this one first.

Game Night ★★1/2

This film has been running in cinemas for a while and it is surprisingly good. I saw this immediately after the lengthy 2h29 Avengers and you would think after seeing such a big movie I’d be disappointed by a small one. Nope! I laughed a lot and the whole film just smoothly flowed from scene to scene leaving me curious and engaged until the end.

Isle of Dogs ★

This is a weird one where I feel the art department should maybe win an Oscar for their work, yet as a film it is no good. It might have been tiredness but I literally almost fell asleep. I do have to state that, except for the Gran Budapest Hotel, I just don’t like Wes Anderson films in general. Quirky, not too much of a story, a big emphasis on style? This one yet again checks a lot of these Anderson boxes.

Wien is ‘t Hof van Commerce? (1/2)

A poor documentary/mockumentary about West-Flemish rap group ‘t Hof van Commerce. I learned absolutely nothing and if the object was to be funny it did not work. To whoever edited this movie: why the constant loopback effect? It almost looks like you learned to use Final Cut the same day you edited the film. On a positive note the music is still a lot of fun and I was reminded of some classic songs.

Movie recents (February + March 2018)

April 5, 2018

It’s time for another film roundup. These are the films I’ve seen in cinema in February and March 2018.

Phantom Thread ★★★ 1/2 

PT Anderson’s best movie in a while. I am definitely going to watch this one again. I’ve seen every Oscar nominee for “Best Picture” besides Darkest hour and this one one should have won in my opinion.

The Square ★★1/2 

A Swedish movie. I went into this with low expectations but this was unexpectedly good. In a way it feels a bit like a quality series and not a movie but nonetheless I thought it was very good.

Red Sparrow ★★★ 1/2 

Red Sparrow is so much better than the reviews out there say it is. I bought a beer before the show, opened it when the film started and when the credits rolled I realized it was still nearly full. A solid 2h20 of great entertainment.

Call Me by Your Name ★★★ 

While perhaps a bit too long, this is a great story with some really memorable moments. It has a certain sweetness and peaceness to it, like a summer that never ends.

I, Tonya ★1/2 

I did not really enjoy “I, Tonya”. It felt like a TV movie. Maybe the small-scale plot with not much actually happening just wasn’t for me. Kudos to Margot Robbie for both (co-)producing and starring a movie at 27 years old though!

Lady Bird ★★

Expectations are important. For months I’d been hearing that Lady Bird is brilliant. I was expecting a Boyhood-esque coming of age movie. I found it to be enjoyable but I felt very emotionally detached to Lady Bird and her 16-year-old problems. I guess I am not the target audience.

Black Panther ★

For me this was another Marvel snoozefest. It might have been the jetlag as I was coming back from a trip, but I literally fell asleep. For me a film it doesn’t work. It’s as if three stories were forcefully merged into one. I thought maybe after Logan maybe Marvel picked things up again to start their movies with an interesting premise. But this  just didn’t work for me.

The★ scoring system is explained in this post.

Multi line regular expressions in Textmate

April 5, 2018

I am mostly writing this for my own reference.

Because of the Sketch mask trick, when trying to export icons they had a mask in them that I did not want. Basically I had to remove all masks across 75 icons. Since SVGs are just text files, you can do some regex processing  to find all <mask> elements:

(?m)\<mask(.*)\/mask\>

The (?m) part is a filter that makes the regex work across multiple lines.

Sources

A visit to Kitchen Town (Kappabashi)

March 24, 2018

On a recent trip to Japan, I combined my newfound obsession with cooking with a not-so-common touristic destination.

Kappabashi or “Kitchen town” is a street lined with cooking-related stores. It is said that if you can’t find it in Kappabashi, you can’t find it anywhere.

You can basically start a restaurant with what you can buy there. No kidding – it’s not just knives and pots and pans – it’s racks, machines, signs, menus and just about everything you can think of.

If you see the big chef, you know you’re in the right spot.

When I came to Kappabashi I first went for a sushi lunch in nearby Asakusa. This touristy neighborhood is probably the first place that many people to go in Tokyo because of Senso-Ji.

Medium fatty tuna, fatty tuna, sweet shrimp. Background – red miso soup.

The place was quite expensive but it was also pretty great in terms of quality. You know you’re in the right spot if you think there is a God right after eating a piece of chūtoro (中とろ) [medium fatty tuna].

Now, on to Kappabashi itself.

Looking through the pictures of my visit, I don’t actually have a lot of good ones, since most of the time there was spent looking through small shops with limited room to move (and thus to photograph).

Japan, land of convenience. Lockers around every station.

I knew I wanted to buy a lot of stuff so I put a big backpack in a coin locker, and went exploring.

Looking around for knives

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On cooking

February 10, 2018

The past year or so I’ve been on a bit of a quest to improve my cooking.

There’s a wealth of info on the internet on how to make almost anything. In my Best of 2017 – YouTube I mentioned 2 cooking channels – not a coincidence!

Lately I’ve been into making curries. First I made this Japanese beef curry:

And then this butter chicken curry:

It might look simple, but there is a lot of work behind this.

The hardest part is nailing the rice and the broth. But then when it turns out well it is quite rewarding.

You do end up with a lot of food though. I’ve resorted to giving out food to friends and family because otherwise I would be eating the same thing for a whole week.

In Antwerp we have this “Chinese street” close to the Central Station which is ideal for sourcing ingredients.

I also found a nice local African shop, where I’ve sourced spices that were otherwise hard to find in my typical supermarket (den “Delhaize”). Best of all it is quite cheap.

Containers and labelling are quite important, especially for spices. I’ve bought so many plastic boxes to store things but I still feel like I run out of containers often.

This shows some of the stuff I got today. The rice paper is meant to make some spring rolls. The nori sheets are meant for an experiment to make some ramen. The celery and the spring onions are for the ramen as well.

It might sound stupid but every time you try something new, you cross a new boundary in skill levels. First a piece of ginger is this semi-exotic object and 6 months later you’re like – how can you not have a piece of ginger on hand at all times?

My latest experiment is this 1,5kg of beef meat I just bought in a local butcher shop (€8). In the supermarket I’d probably pay 4 euros for the best part of this which I can just cut off now. Then I have some remainders and I can make a broth from the bones.

Awesome.