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  • Review of the Tom Bihn Parental Unit

    11m By Shawn Blanc
    Over on Tools & Toys, Erin Brooks wrote a review of the Tom Bihn Parental Unit. It’s a diaper bag that doesn’t suck: The market for diaper bags is pretty flooded — there are trendy diaper bags, designer fashion diaper … (More)✚
  • HipChat (Sponsor)

    Mon 11:26am By Shawn Blanc
    For much too long email has been the main medium for communication at work. While email isn’t going away, team communication platforms like HipChat are allowing for more collaborative and productive communication experiences between co-workers. HipChat…
  • Your Best Creative Work, Part II

    Fri 4:20pm By Shawn Blanc
    Last week’s episode of The Weekly Briefly was about technology. And, more specifically, how technology helps us to do our best creative work. This week’s show is about another aspect of doing our best creative work: our inner work life. … (More)✚
  • ✚ Celebrate Progress

    Fri 11:12am By Shawn Blanc
    How would you define a successful creative career? There are two important elements: creative freedom and financial stability. So let’s define success as having the ability to do creative work we’re proud of and to keep doing that work. Now, … (More)
  • Macminicolo (Sponsor)

    Thu 6:23pm By Shawn Blanc
    Macminicolo has been hosting mac minis for ten years, and they’d love for you to join them. To celebrate the milestone, the Decades Promo is just $10/mo for ten months. Low cost. High performance. The perfect Mac server. * * … (More)✚
  • Our Favorite App for Shared Lists is Wunderlist

    Thu 5:08pm By Shawn Blanc
    Over on The Sweet Setup we just posted our latest app review, and it’s for shared lists. We chose Wunderlist as our favorite because it has great apps for every major platform (so you can share your lists with folks … (More)✚
  • ✚ Write for Yourself, Edit for Your Reader

    Jan 21, 2015, 10:39 am By Shawn Blanc
    At the root of most bad writing, Stephen King says you’ll find fear. It’s fear — or timidity — that holds a writer back from doing her best creative work. Ray Bradbury admitted this outright: “I did what most writers … (More)
  • The Levenger Circa System

    Jan 20, 2015, 3:53 pm By Shawn Blanc
    In response to yesterday’s article about The Core Curriculum, a few people asked me how I intend to put together my notebook. Well, I don’t know yet. But, I have a pretty good idea. The first question is the most … (More)✚
  • The Ona Bowery Camera Bag Review

    Jan 20, 2015, 3:36 pm By Shawn Blanc
    After having a nice camera for two and a half years, I finally settled on a camera bag: The Ona Bowery. And it is awesome. It’s one of the most usable, handsome, and well-made camera bags I’ve ever come across. … (More)✚
  • ✚ The Core Curriculum

    Jan 19, 2015, 9:44 am By Shawn Blanc
    Premise There are many books, speeches, articles, sermons, quotes, and conversations which have shaped us over the years into the people we are. We retain a limited amount information when learning something new, and our recollection and interpretation of that…
  • Your Best Creative Work

    Jan 16, 2015, 3:48 pm By Shawn Blanc
    On this week’s episode (episode 50!) of The Weekly Briefly, I talk about how even though technology can be a cause of distraction for doing our best creative work, so too can it empower us — not to mention enabling … (More)✚
  • ✚ “How does this setup help you do your best creative work?”

    Jan 16, 2015, 10:21 am By Shawn Blanc
    As longtime readers of this site will remember, the Sweet Mac Setup interview series used to be hosted here. That was before The Sweet Setup launched a little over a year ago and took over the interviews. The very first … (More)
  • Loren Brichter on Software and Being a Dad

    Jan 15, 2015, 1:43 pm By Shawn Blanc
    There’s an excellent interview in the latest issue of with one of the coolest guys around, Loren Brichter. Regarding software today and where it’s headed: Personally, I’m tired of the trivial app stuff, and the App Store isn’t conducive ……
  • Seth Godin on Software

    Jan 14, 2015, 4:39 pm By Shawn Blanc
    Seth Godin: The argument goes that making software powerful rarely pays off, because most users refuse to take the time to learn how to use it well. The violin and the piano, though, seem to permit us to create amazing … (More)✚
  • Lukas Mathis’s First Impressions of Firefox OS

    Jan 14, 2015, 4:33 pm By Shawn Blanc
    Lukas Mathis: I’ve been playing around with a Firefox OS phone for a few weeks now, and I really like it. I think the most interesting thing about it is how simple everything feels. It feels like the first iPhone, … (More)✚
  • A Review of the GORUCK GR2 Bag

    Jan 13, 2015, 3:13 pm By Shawn Blanc
    Today we published a fantastically written and photographed review of the GORUCK GR2 by Álvaro Serrano. When we were working on the redesign of Tools & Toys last fall, articles like this were exactly what we had in mind: equal … (More)✚
  • Dash (Sponsor)

    Jan 12, 2015, 5:53 pm By Shawn Blanc
    Dash is a web app for building and sharing realtime dashboards. They look great in a browser tab, on your phone, or on a wall-mounted TV through Chromecast. To help you get started quickly, Dash has pre-built dashboard widgets for … (More)✚
  • ✚ Perpetual Neglect

    Jan 12, 2015, 3:16 pm By Shawn Blanc
    “Perpetual devotion to what a man calls his business, is only to be sustained by perpetual neglect of many other things.” — Robert Louis Stevenson * * * Like many of you, no doubt, I spent some time thinking about … (More)
  • Maker’s Schedule, Manager’s Schedule

    Jan 12, 2015, 11:20 am By Shawn Blanc
    Speaking of uninterrupted work time, Paul Graham’s essay about how makers and managers use and schedule their time differently is always worth a read. ✚✚
  • Your Best Work

    Jan 12, 2015, 11:17 am By Shawn Blanc
    Michael Lopp: Who understands the compounding productivity interest earned with each consecutive uninterrupted minute of work? It is there in those hard to capture collective minutes where your best work is happening. It’s not just a challenge to get…
  • Tripling the Traffic and Income on Tools & Toys

    Jan 9, 2015, 2:24 pm By Shawn Blanc
    It’s been 90 days since the re-design of Tools & Toys went live, and when comparing the most recent numbers to the same quarter last year we saw a 3x growth in pageviews, unique visitors, and site revenue. And so, … (More)✚
  • Gumroad Introduces Scheduled and Automated Email Campaigns

    Jan 7, 2015, 3:48 pm By Shawn Blanc
    Wow. This is a brilliant and fantastic new feature to Gumroad. I use Gumroad to sell Delight is in the Details, and I couldn’t be happier with the service. As a seller, Gumroad is extremely affordable and very easy to … (More)✚
  • AT&T Introduces Rollover Data

    Jan 7, 2015, 3:34 pm By Shawn Blanc
    Sounds great, but… rollover data only carries over to the next billing cycle, and it’s only for those on the Mobile Share Value plans. And the Mobile Share Value plans only get their discounted pricing if you pay full price … (More)✚
  • The Best RSS Reader for OS X is Reeder

    Jan 6, 2015, 11:07 am By Shawn Blanc
    We just posted our latest app review over on The Sweet Setup, and it’s for desktop RSS readers. We tried out literally a dozen different apps and Reeder was clearly the best. It’s fast, it’s well-designed, it’s awesome. ✚✚
  • Harvest Forecast (Sponsor)

    Jan 5, 2015, 2:27 pm By Shawn Blanc
    Managing teams is hard. Imagine it’s Monday morning and your team doesn’t know what they’re working on for the week. Plans change and schedules change with them. Spreadsheets weren’t built for this. Harvest Forecast is a tool designed to plan ……
  • Sebastian Green’s Sweet Mac Setup

    Jan 5, 2015, 12:31 pm By Shawn Blanc
    Great setup interview with Sebastian Green. And I love that The Sweet Setup now has its first Hackintosh featured: When in my home office, I use what I call a Hackintosh Pro (Yes, you did read that correctly). Before I … (More)✚
  • Setting Up and Maintaining a Paperless Home and Office

    Jan 5, 2015, 11:29 am By Shawn Blanc
    Once you go “paperless” you can never go back. It’s great. For one, the lack of clutter is wonderful. Secondly, it’s ridiculously easy to set up some Hazel rules that will automagically sort your incoming document scans for you — … (More)✚
  • Curbi

    Jan 3, 2015, 10:43 am By Shawn Blanc
    I want to thank curbi for sponsoring all three sites this week. Curbi offers parental controls for iOS devices, and it’s pretty incredible — especially if you’ve got a family of devices you’d like to help safeguard. Curbi is a … (More)✚
  • The “Best”

    Jan 2, 2015, 2:05 pm By Shawn Blanc
    On this week’s episode of The Weekly Briefly, I talk about the pursuit of “the best”. Who doesn’t love finding the best tools, the best coffee, the best food, the best experiences? I know I do. But I realize that … (More)✚
  • It Is 2015. Update Your Footer.

    Jan 2, 2015, 12:54 pm By Shawn Blanc
    Welp, it convinced me to finally drop in a dynamic timestamp in all my sites’ footers. ✚✚
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