The podcast episodes that make me better
The podcasts I love to listen to to recharge my passion, productivity, and joy
I wanted to fulfill my promise of bringing some fun to this issue and share some podcast episodes I listen to fairly often. I have been an avid podcast listener as long as I can remember it being available on iTunes. As someone that drives two hours a day for my day job I fill the time almost exclusively with podcasts. This collection is just the tip of the iceberg for me, and the reason I listen to them multiple times varies. In general, it all boils down to a combination of enjoyment and knowledge. I have left every episode listed below feeling better than I was before I listened. If you want more, I am happy to add to the list in a future issue.
Automators #28: Keyboard Maestro and the Mac - Keyboard Maestro was Shortcuts for the Mac before Shortcuts can’t to the Mac. It has so much power and this episode gave me a taste of the app and what you can do with it.
Longform: Jenny Odell - This podcast opened my mind in many ways, mostly in ways I can’t articulate here in this newsletter. If you ever feel like you are on the internet too much, have caught yourself Doomscrolling, this is a podcast that is worth a listen. You can also buy Jenny’s book, How to do Nothing, and gain even more insight.
Compound Writing: How to Design a Sustainable Daily Writing Workflow for Blogs and Newsletters with Michael Jones - Michael gives a talk about his story in making The Supercreator, what he did to brand and define his newsletter, how he writes daily, and what you can do to stand out. Michael is a genuinely nice person and graciously gave me a half hour of his time to chat with me about Tablet Habit as I got started with it. If I ever feel lost or want to make sure I am doing the right thing with this newsletter I listen to this.
Media Voices Podcast: Man cannot live by newsletter alone, the realities of going solo as a journalist - An audio documentary showcasing newsletter writers in all stages of their writing careers. This is some fantastic reporting, interviewing, and editing to show the good and bad sides of newsletter writing. It doesn’t just show the wildly successful stories, it also shows when things don’t work out and what those people have learned from it. This is easily one of the best pieces about the creator economy I have consumed in the past year.
43 Folders Podcast: John Gruber & Merlin Mann's Blogging Panel At SxSW - Merlin Mann and John Gruber have a talk at SxSW in 2009 where they talk about what makes for good blogging. Really, this talk is about creating things online in general. Online publishing as changed dramatically since 2009, but very little about this talk has seemed to become obsolete after more than a decade since it was given.
Mac Power Users #583: The Obsidian Deep Dive - David Sparks and Stephen Hackett dive deep into Obsidian and helps newbies to the app understand what it is, what it can do, and how you can make it work for you. There have been a few meaningful updates since this episode went live but it’s still suitable for those getting started.
Automators #71: Automated Capture - David Sparks and Rosemary Orchard show how to handle capturing ideas, tasks, notes, etc. and what to do to ensure you have a system that works.
Do By Friday: The Doodler - This isn’t a normal productivity podcast, so be warned about that. That said, this is my favorite podcast to listen to to get back to the basics of Drafts. The hosts have creator of the Drafts app, Greg Pierce, on as a guest and talk about what Drafts is, what it can do, and how you can make it your own. If you want a fantastic text editor that holds a lot of power user options download Drafts and give this a listen. Bonus points if you listen to their later episodes, one revisiting Drafts to do more with it, the other where they write their texts in Drafts.
Automators #73: Custom Drafts Themes, Syntax, and more with Tim Nahumck - Tim, who is a friend of mine, shares how one of the latest updates to Drafts allows you to use custom themes and custom syntax. This is for the people that already use Drafts. If you aren’t familiar with the app I suggest you listen to the previous episode of Do By Friday.
What are some podcasts and/or podcast episodes that have made you better? Leave a comment below!
New Craft Update makes Daily Notes Easier, free Premium access to Students and Teachers
Craft released their latest update Monday, sharing several new features, improvements, and access to the premium tier for students and teachers free of charge.
Updated Daily Notes Actions in Shortcuts
Craft added several quality of life improvements to the daily notes section allowing Shortcuts to have access to Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow notes which are tied to the current date.
Previously Craft allowed you to add things to a document via a Shortcuts action but only a specific note, not something connected to a relative date like “Today” or “Tomorrow”.
I always wanted a shortcut that allowed me to append something to my daily note via the Share Sheet. Sadly, this wasn’t possible in an easy way. If I wanted to do this I would have to make a shortcut to append to a specific document, in this case today’s daily note, but updated it every day in order for it to work properly. Now that Craft has added relative dates like Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow I can make the daily note shortcut I dreamed of.
Craft has added a number of user options that can change the appearance of your documents on a global basis. The new options include:
Page Width (only on Mac and iPad)
Date Badges - how to display the links for daily notes.
Show Author - only for additional Craft Spaces (for your own Private Space, this will still be turned off by default, and you need to enable it from the document itself).
These seem like small options compared to things like custom fonts, more accent colors, or even font spacing but I like the direction Craft is going with these.
Free license for students, teachers, and faculty
As the school time is only a couple of weeks away, we are kicking off our Back to School event - students, teachers, and faculty members can apply for a free license until the end of September! 🎉
If you are eligible for the free license, you will be able to reapply a year from now (up to 5 years) for free of charge.
Students and teachers can apply here.
All in all I think Craft is still one of the best apps out there for notes. Additionally, the updates they give are not only meaningful and impressive, but the consistency and the speed at which they come brings excitement and joy to me.
If you haven’t given Craft a shot, you should at least have a look at what they offer on their website and see if it is for you.
WebM Audio Codec added in latest iOS 15 Beta
iOS 15 Beta 5 was released Tuesday adding WebM audio codec to Safari. If you aren’t familiar with what WebM is, don’t worry I wasn’t either. After some quick googling I learned that the Google-owned WebM audio codec is “a royalty-free video file format for use in the HTML5 video tag.”
Finally, According to 9to5Mac, Steve Jobs didn’t show interest in Google’s codecs because they were “a mess”.
If you want to give WebM a shot you need to have the latest beta installed on your iOS device and check your advanced settings in Safari to have it enabled.
Matt Birchler zags as everyone zigs and shares what he likes about the new Safari. It was a refreshing read given that nearly everyone in the tech criticism space have been tearing the web browser apart since its initial release in Beta 1 of iOS 15.
I've written my fair share about what I don't like about the version of Safari releasing this fall, so today I wanted to mention the things I actually do like about it.
It is through a company called VaxYes and the company claims it “uses AES 256Bit encryption to make sure your personal information is secure in a HIPAA compliant environment.”
The Sweet Setup released another fantastic course this week all about the note taking app Obsidian and Personal Knowledge Management (PKM). I purchased it when they were bundling it in with a workshop, and I am beyond happy I did.
If you are new to Obsidian...
If you are just getting started with with Obsidian, then you are in the right spot. The first half of this course (Modules 1 and 2) walk you through everything you need to know.
You will discover what Personal Knowledge Management (PKM) is and why it matters so much. We will also take you step-by-step through getting your Obsidian setup up and running.
After the first two modules, you will be confidently set up with this powerful app for organizing and connecting all your notes and ideas.
Or, if you are a seasoned Obsidian user...
If you are already using Obsidian, then you will love the advanced lessons and workflows that will show you how to fine-tune this app to your exact needs and wants. We've also got a whole slew of downloadable templates you can copy and paste to improve your setup even more.