Thoughts about being off Facebook

I just read Cheri Baker’s post titled “Eight months without Facebook” that touches on my unformed thoughts about being on Facebook.

When I spent a lot of time on sites like FB and Insta, I developed the habit of stereotyping people based on what they shared. I’d unconsciously tell myself that so-and-so is all about being a parent, and my other friend is super career-minded, and yet another friend is a world traveler. Our digital projections can become so strong that we don’t really see our friends (in all their complexity) any longer. And when that happens, it seems difficult to get beneath the surface.

I believe relationships take time. Conversations. Support. An investment in one another. And in that regard, getting off Facebook acted as a sorting mechanism. I found the answer to: Who will make time to hang out? For me that’s a small group, but a treasured one. And sure, it can feel lonely while you look for your people in the flesh-and-blood world. But it gets easier the more you invest in your relationships.

 Cheri Baker

I’m still undecided about Facebook, despite being especially enthusiastic about it in the past. There’s still more value having a Facebook profile than not, at least for me. My family and friends use it fairly heavily, so removing myself from Facebook tends to amount to me removing myself from those circles, to varying degrees.

As Cheri pointed out, stepping away from Facebook only really works if you put in the effort to remain connected to your friends and family. I’ve fallen short here. I tend to become pretty caught up in my day-to-day life with my wife, and our kids, and I forget to reach out to the rest of my family and friends.

If anything, Facebook probably masked my tendency to withdraw by default. The odd thing is that I don’t really consider myself an introvert. Perhaps that is something for me to focus on going forward – reconnecting, and rebuilding relationships that were artificially supported by Facebook.

unsplash-logoFeatured image by Thought Catalog

Tim Cook interview: why he publicly announced that he’s gay

I just watched this interview with Tim Cook about why he made the decision to publicly announce that he’s gay. It’s well worth watching!

Earth’s 5 continents

My daughter informed me that, according to her teacher, there are 5 continents:

  1. The Americas (because North and South America are connected)
  2. Africa
  3. Australia
  4. Europe
  5. Asia (no comment on how connected Europe and Asia are)

Antarctica is apparently just a really big block of ice …

The world really has changed since I was at school … 🌎

Update: One of my colleagues pointed out that there are a few ways to count the continents (SPOILER: Each method includes Antarctica).

Break Through it all with this track

Listened Break Through - Club Mix by Sons of Maria from Spotify

I’ve been listening to the Lounge – Soft House playlist on Spotify a lot lately, and the Sons of Maria track, Break Through – Club Mix, really appeals to me. I have it on repeat at the moment.

Taking a park breather

It’s easy to get so caught up in work. I forget how nice it is to take a break, and head to the park towards the end of a day. 🌳

You’d think that I’d get out more given that I work from home, but I seem to do it less frequently.

A perspective on what it’s like to be a Jew in the United Kingdom at the moment

Replied to

Thank you for the thread. You offer a valuable perspective on what it feels like to be a Jew in the UK.

You shouldn’t be victimised for being a Jew, certainly not because of a distorted view of what our government is doing to keep us safe, here in Israel.

Modi'in-Maccabim-Re'ut
25°C few clouds

VS Code has a little too much of the old Microsoft

Update (2018-09-18): I had this wrong. I was able to disable the Live Share and Azure extensions in VS Code. I just wasn’t paying close enough attention to the error messages I highlighted below.

You can disable the both the Azure and Live Share extensions by first disabling their dependencies. In the case of Live Share, I first had to disable the Live Share Audio extension. In the case of the Azure extension, I had to disable the Azure Functions extension first.


I like VS Code. That, in itself, still surprises me a little given which company created it. I still remember the Old Days when Microsoft took every opportunity to coerce users to use its solutions, often using pretty aggressive tactics.

Many have said that we’re dealing with a new Microsoft, friend to the FOSS community, trusted custodian of critical platforms like GitHub. That may well be true. At the same time, I still see a little of the old Microsoft seeping through now and then.

I opened VS Code today, to take a look at some code I’ve been meaning to continue working on. I noticed that Live Share updated when I open the app, and then seemed to start running for some reason.

I don’t use Live Share (although the functionality is interesting).

Rather than have extensions running that I don’t use, I thought I’d disable Live Share, along with the Azure extensions that seem to be installed and activated by default. That didn’t quite work out for me.

Can't uninstall or deactivate Live Share
Can’t uninstall or deactivate Live Share

I can't uninstall or deactivate VS Code's Azure extensions either.
I can’t uninstall or deactivate VS Code’s Azure extensions either.

As good as VS Code is, I don’t like being required to keep Microsoft’s extensions installed when I don’t make use of them. I’d expect that from an application that doesn’t hold itself out as “extensible and customizable”.

This just taints the progress the company has made, to a degree. It also leaves me wondering what else is running in VS Code when I use it, that I didn’t enable?

Where does the expression “Ok” come from?

Why we say "OK"
https://www.vox.com/videos/2018/9/12/17850662/why-we-say-ok-okay

I watched this Vox video about the origins of one of the most common expressions I use each day, “Ok”:

I use this so often, I rarely pause to think about its origins. It’s a pretty interesting story too!

OK (or okay, ok, or k) might just be the most widely spoken word in the world. We use it so often, we barely notice it’s there: It’s in our speech, our writing, and even our computers. It feels like it’s been around forever, but it actually dates back to an obscure language fad in the 1830s where people facetiously misspelled abbreviations.