Facebook Buys Giphy

If you would have told me in 2005 that GIFs would be huge, I would have laughed at you. Absolutely absurd. GIFs were the bane of personal websites in the late 90s and early 2000s. But as media has evolved, bandwidth increased, and now we all have mini-computers in our pockets, GIFs have been an indispensable resource in expressing our feelings, referencing pop culture, and generally speaking it’s lightweight portable video now.

Now Facebook is involved which in turn means privacy is at risk. I didn’t think about it at first, but Giphy is the defacto source for GIFs and integration to their Google database of GIFs. Now we all have trackers in any app we use.

Of course Giphy is going to retain its own brand. If they renamed it to “Facebook Tracking Pixels”, usage might drop off. Think about all the messaging apps that don’t offer Facebook integration for security/privacy reasons (not to mention not wanting to have their apps crash on launch when Facebook pushes a buggy update), where Giphy images appear. You know, like Apple’s Messages. Well, now Facebook has tracking pixels in them.

John Gruber

Cool. Cool cool cool.

Journaling

I started journaling in 2013 and since then it’s been very inconsistent. I have started to write more often and found solace in the reflection and introspection. Journaling can take on many different forms, but I’d recommend you find some method that you’re comfortable with. I tried handwritten journals, but they were never my thing. I had considered Evernote, or Google Drive, but they didn’t really capture what I wanted in a digital journal. It wasn’t until I found Day One that I really started trying to capture things.

The cool thing about Day One is it syncs on all of my devices. It’s entirely personal, and has a ton of options. It’s very focused on journaling/lifelogging. It has a few features that are incredibly important to me.

Locations

Every journal entry automatically geotags where the post was created. Additionally if you want to start an entry based on a photo it will automatically change the date and time of the entry to the time of the photo was taken and use the location where the photo was taken. Location has always been important to my memories so these features are great. You can view all of your journal entries on a map.

Encryption

The paid service of Day One offers end to end encryption. This means my memories are safe.

Photos, Prompts, Audio, Drawings

Entries don’t have to be written text. Sometimes a photo will do. You don’t have to share every photo with the world, and sometimes a journal is a good place to put the most important ones. You can also attach audio recordings, or video. There’s even a built in sketchpad for tablets and the sort.

Activity Log

As an optional feature you can have Day One track everywhere you’ve been and the duration of when you were there. If you are concerned about privacy this data is only stored on your local device. But by capturing this data, you can create a prompt based on any particular location if you forgot where you were.

Metadata Metadata Metadata

In addition to geotagging posts, Day One captures all sorts of other metadata. It will automatically capture the weather conditions through Dark Sky1 based on the entry date and time. It will capture how many steps you walked for the day. You can capture what you were doing at the time (sitting, walking, flying, etc). It will also capture if you were listening to a song when you were writing an entry2.

Overall it’s been really helpful for me to have perspective. I’ve written about some really shitty times, and I’ve written about some times that have been really good. I recently had a really good night with friends to the point where it was just very serendipitous how splendid it was. My first instinct was I need to go write about this in my journal. I’ve never been that way before. I think if journaling is something you are considering you need to find something you’re comfortable with. I’ve always been oriented towards the digital, but a handwritten journal will get the job done. Or a bunch of txt files on a hard drive.

I recommend it if you’ve ever thought about it. We’re living through history right now. Covid-19 is something that’s impacting the world and touching everyone of us. One of the hardest things I had to get past was documenting the bad times where I disagreed with someone, or my feelings were hurt, or where I made a mistake. But then I remembered no one was ever going to read it. In the immortal words of Garth Algar, “I gotta be comfortable with me first.”

  1. Although I hope they find an alternative once the API shuts down. https://blog.darksky.net/dark-sky-has-a-new-home/
  2. Brings me back to the old LiveJournal days.

Lyric Logistics: Hot Blooded

It’s been a while but I used to write these post it notes based on the lyrics of songs I’ve had hammered in my head. I call them Lyric Logistics. My wife Erica loves them so I’ll post all of them here for posterity over the next few weeks.

But to kick it off I created a new one!

Detective Crocodile

Sometimes my most ridiculous humor comes when I’m loopy 1. In between some furious Rocket League matches with a friend, I just started sending him random voice memos via iMessage. That’s when my brain unleashed this gem:

So I present to you the manifestation of that idea. From the people who brought you Everybody Loves Mammoth2, the prime time procedural show you never knew you wanted: Detective Crocodile.


  1. Not drunk. More like sleep deprived.
  2. https://www.flickr.com/photos/jarbo/4556089510/