My Must Have Dark Mode Friendly Apps

My eyesight being what it is, I’m now almost to the point where I can not read a bright screen anymore: it’s really painful on the eyes. Everything is much easier when the screen is dark. So, no surprise, I welcomed Mojave’s Dark Mode as a blessing–a perfectible one, though.

Here is the list of the apps and utilities that help me to take full advantage of this. There are many more, but those are the one I use the most.

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Inside Creative Writing, with Robert Olen Butler

Art does not come from the mind, art comes from the place where you dream. And in a sense then, I’m welcoming you into my dream. (…) I want you to see the whole process as it happens, in real time. (Robert Olen Butler)

A series in seventeen instalments of approx. 2 hrs each, made by Robert Olen Butler, and that should date back to around 2001.

I have only started watching the very first video. So, I can’t tell much except that I like the way he uses some old postcard, a little bit of googling, a map, and music, to trick himself into having something worth writing: ideas are everywhere.

But even watching none these vids, just by looking at their sheer length (~34hrs), there is something to learn for any budding writer, and that is: writing takes time.

Something that might not be that easy to understand, and to accept, in our intensely hostile to delayed-gratification culture.

I also like how he doesn’t bother with fancy tools, taking notes and diving in with his word processor of choice–even if I’d rather use Ulysses, but that’s just me being nerdy and… bothering with fancy tools 😉

Getting Ulysses to publish to a custom WordPress blog

Do you get an error message while trying to publish a post to your blog directly from Ulysses? I did.

As I could not find what was going wrong, I created a dummy blog from scratch, to no avail: I was getting the same error message. But at least there was a good news there: I now was certain the problem was lying somewhere between Ulysses and/or WordPress, not in one of the many plugins and security enhancement I use on my live blog.

After a bit of googling, it appears the problem is related to WordPress, not Ulysses. More info here–with many thanks to Hans Bruins for sharing his findings with us. Go read his explanations on why it doesn’t work as expected. Here is the quick fix to the problem:

  1. Rename the “your-blog-url/xrmlrpc.php” file to something you alone will know, let’s say “odysseus.php”.
  2. Install the Rename XMLRPC plugin.
  3. FTP to the newly created wp-content/plugins/rename-xlmrpc directory, and move the rename-xlmrpc.php file from there to the root of the plugins directory.
  4. Now the tricky part starts: open this rename-xlmrpc.php file and locate a line containing “xmlrpc2.php” (line #14 in the screenshot):
  5. And replace this name by the name you gave to your xml-rpc.php:
  1. Save. Go to your WordPress admin and activate the Rename XMLRPC plugin.
  2. Done. Ulysses should now be able to publish to your blog, when using the new file name in its settings:

A big thank you too to my host, Monarobase, for his support and advice: you saved me hours ❤️

“The Martian Chronicles” Read by Ray Bradbury

Martian Chronicles audiobook, read by Ray Bradbury

Nice finding in one of my old iTunes account I was about to delete: a bunch of audiobooks, including The Martian Chronicles read by Bradbury himself.

Random House produced it, and it’s from I could not find much else about it, besides this webpage. If by any chance you have more info, contact me.

What bugs me is that I can’t find any trace of this book, or the other that were waiting for me in this old iTunes account, anywhere in my Audible Library. That’s odd, because many of the audiobooks I’ve purchased along the years on Audible have since then been removed from the shop, but all are still available in my Library for download.

Is it possible I had purchased these directly through iTunes, hence them being backed up by Apple but not appearing in my Audible account? Whatever, I’m glad I found them, this one in particular, and I’m glad Apple is so much more reliable than me regarding backups.

Having been an Audible customer since around 2001, it means these books might be 17 years old? No way, I can’t be that old 😛

Maybe I should look for some way to strip the files from their DRM, even if it’s not planned anymore to close this account. And seeing how Apple has preserved them for me–despite my own carelessness–it’s not like there is any urgency in backing them up either.

So, if you’ll excuse me, I think Ray’s been waiting long enough to tell me his next Martian chronicle 😉