The personal weblog of Jack Baty



The first time I used Firefox it was still called “Phoenix”.


I haven’t used anything other than Safari in years, if you don’t count repeated failed attempts at using Chrome. I thought I’d see what’s new with Firefox. I’ve been running it for a couple of days and find it a pretty good experience so far.

I’m not ready to make Firefox my default browser, but I’ve not given up yet either.

Amazon S3 static site head start

Amazon’s S3 service has always baffled me. I’ve set up a few static sites using the service but never felt comfortable with it. While poking around today I found this…

Quick Start

Apparently, it sets everything up in a new bucket automatically. I may try creating a site and see how it goes.

Self-hosted Gitlab

As I get older I’m less inclined to want to manage my own servers, but I’ve been enamored with Gitlab lately, so I decided to try installing my own copy of Gitlab CE.

It turned out to be easy enough. I used a pre-configured Digital Ocean droplet. I then installed an SSL cert from Let’s Encrypt, imported a few of my repos and I was off and running.

I have not yet tried adding any Runners or other CI tools but so far it’s pretty painless. Hard to beat having control over the environment and the privacy/security that brings. All for the price of a $20/month server instance.

Caption your photographs

Dick Gordon Dorothy Ronald Nov. 16, 1941 the Sunday Ronald was Baptized.

This photo was taken 75 years ago today. My dad was baptized that day. I know this because my grandfather took the time to write a caption on every photograph he made.

I also caption every photo. You should too. Generations of people will appreciate that you spent the extra few minutes to preserve history for them.


The first 30 seconds or so of “Sabotage” by Beastie Boys is fantastic. The whole song is great, but man that intro.

Listen on Spotify


Vise (2016). 4x5 Speed Graphic. HP5+ in R5 Monobath

There’s something wrong with my process or my equipment. I took this photo of a bench vise today using the Speed Graphic. It was lit using the Foldio, shot on HP5+ and processed in R5 Monobath from New55

I metered carefully, but it still ended up underexposed. What’s worse, is that the right one-third of the image is darker than the rest, and slightly discolored. I corrected for the coloration problem, but something is still wrong. I don’t trust the R5 developer. I’ll try again using D76 and see where I get.

Three Notebooks

I have taken to carrying three notebooks. Here’s how (or better, when) I use them.

Before it happens

I use a Hobonichi Techo Planner for scheduling and planning. It’s loaded with calendars and dated pages.

Hobonichi Techo

The Hobonichi is a wonderful, easy-to-carry planner that uses Tomoe River paper; my favorite. I record all event-based information in one. On each day’s page I write a list of things relevant to that day. I sometimes include a small sketch representing the day.

While it’s happening

I use a Field Notes notebook to jot things down while I’m away from a desk.

Field Notes

The Field Notes notebook fits in my pocket, so I always have it with me. With it, I can quickly capture things any time.

After it happens

I use a Leuchtturm1917 notebook to record notes and keep lists. It’s a modified Bullet Journal.


The Leuchtturm is great for longer-form notes and lists. It’s my bullet journal and where I collect things captured in the Field Notes notebook once I’m back at my desk.

My notebook configuration changes regularly, but I like where things are now.

Replacing Dropbox With iCloud Drive – Collin Donnell

Collin Donnell

The strange feeling I have is that I’m not moving because iCloud Drive has gotten better than Dropbox, or even that it’s gotten as good. I’m moving because maybe it’s become sufficient for my needs. I’m purposefully not using what’s clearly the best thing on the market, because I think I’m willing to live without some of it’s features. Hopefully it’ll be good enough.

That last bit gets me.

Hopefully it’ll be good enough

I’m not willing the make that leap yet.

History will judge us harshly for this

What the fuck have we done?

Tantek switches to DuckDuckGo

Tantek Çelik:

I remember when I switched to Google for web search over a decade ago because Google was faster and good enough compared to Yahoo! Search. Now DuckDuckGo is faster and good enough compared to Google Search.

I’ve been using DuckDuckGo as my default search engine for so long that I tend to forget about Google. I don’t miss Google at all.