Henrik Carlsson's Blog

Microcast #13

I just finished New Super Mario Bros 2 for the Nintendo 3DS.

Download and listen to Microcast #13

(Also on Anchor.)

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Det är pinsamt hur fejkat allt ser ut i ”Hobbit”-filmerna. 

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Det är sunt,
en hel bunt,
att ständigt rota runt.

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Microcast #12

Download and listen to Microcast #12

(Also on Anchor.)

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Microcast #11

Yet another microcast. I’m on fire today!

Download and listen to Microblog #11

Also on
* Anchor
* Twitter

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Microcast #10 (SWE)

En ”microcast” (på svenska) om att vårt husbygge har börjat på allvar idag.

Ladda ner och lyssna på Microcast #10

(Även på Anchor.)

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Microcast #9

Musings from a visit to the library.

Download and listen to Microcast #9

(Also available on Anchor.)

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Microcast #8

A quick ”review”, so to speak, of New Super Mario Bros 2 for the Nintendo 3DS.

Download and listen to Microcast #8

(Also on Anchor.)

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Microcast #7

Old habits die hard, I guess.

Microcast #7

(Also on Anchor.)

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Hanne Kjöller: Marxism som höjden av rättvisa – DN.SE

Gång på gång varnas för ökade klyftor. Vanligtvis utan att avsändaren berättar vad som vore rimliga inkomstskillnader. Är lika lön för busschaufförer och neurokirurger verkligen eftersträvansvärt? undrar Hanne Kjöller.

Hanne Kjöller: Marxism som höjden av rättvisa – DN.SE

Den här texten bör alla läsa och fundera på när nya ”larmrapporter” om ökad klyftor dyker upp. Därmed inte sagt att det inte är okej att oroa sig för klyftor men var och en bör fundera på vilka klyftor man accepterar och inte innan man deltar i en panikreaktion.

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Today, February 21st 2016, it’s exactly 30 years since the first Zelda game, The Legend of Zelda, was released in Japan for the Famicom.

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Microcast #6

Random musings during a night time power outage.

Download and listen to Microcast #6

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Microcast #5

Some #feedback on the Anchor app.

Download and listen to Microcast #5

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Microcast #4

Just a quick wave/microcast about what I’m doing today.

Download Microcast #4

I’m still trying to figure out how I’m going to use Anchor and the microcast feed on my blog, so today I thought I’d try to speak a little off the cuff about what I’m doing.

(You can subscribe to the microcast RSS feed here.)

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Apple vs FBI (Microcast och Wave) (swe)

En microcast om Apple vs FBI

RSS-flöde för att prenumerera i en podcatcher.

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Second wave

I responded to a wave by Joel Comm on Anchor suggesting the name ”micro podcasting”. Here’s my response, both as an audio file and as text.

(This is part of my microcast feed so you can subscribe to it in your podcatcher of choice.)

Two thoughts on that:

  1. I’m with Adam and Erik, I prefer microcasting since it’s shorter and has been used ”in the wild” before Anchor.
  2. If a name alluding to podcasting should be used, Anchor needs to actually embrace the openness of podcasting. Each user account should have an RSS feed with the Waves so that it’s not locked down in Anchor and instead can be used in regular podcatchers as well.

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Apple vs The US Government, or I stand with Tim

As most of you probably know by now the FBI has demanded that Apple build a new version of iOS with a backdoor in place. This iOS version is ostensibly only meant to be used on an iPhone 5C owned by one of the San Bernardino terrorists.

Tim Cook, Apples CEO, has publicly refused this.

First off, let me say that I agree with and fully support Cook in this. Good work Tim!

Second, if it wasn’t so serious it would be quite funny that suddenly private corporations go all in on defending civil liberties from the government. Should the government be the ones doing the defending of liberties?

This is a really important line in the sand than Cook is drawing. I’m not sure that Apple can uphold their stance in the long-run, but I hope I’m wrong and that they can.

As other people have said, the FBI has chosen this case wise to get the legal precedent they want. Nobody sympathizes with the San Bernardino terrorists so it’s easy to make a straw man argument about Apple being evil for being more interested in protecting terrorists than ”the American people”. But we need to realize that this is not about the San Bernardino case. This is about US federal agencies wanting the technical help and legal precedent to do whatever they want with the private data of whoever they want.

Where are the other tech giants? Why aren’t Microsoft, Facebook and Google lining up next to Apple? So far the only CEO that I’ve seen taking a firm stance on this is Jan Koum, CEO of WhatsApp

I have always admired Tim Cook for his stance on privacy and Apple’s efforts to protect user data and couldn’t agree more with everything said in their Customer Letter today. We must not allow this dangerous precedent to be set. Today our freedom and our liberty is at stake.

Some links

Here are some good articles on the topic:

Or just look at ”the front page” of Daring Fireball. John has collected a lot of good links and quotes.

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A (manual) cross-post of my first Wave from Anchor

I decided to manually cross-post my first Wave from Anchor. I don’t know if I’ll keep doing this or not, but I’ve created a tag for it here so that you can subscribe to my short-form podcasts in your podcatcher of choice.

Feed URL: http://blog.henrikcarlsson.se/tag/microcast/feed

Or you can just listen to it here:

Or download it: The post

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(Facebook) Instant Articles

Built for Publishers

Instant Articles keeps publishers in control. Publishers decide what to share on Facebook, with article templates that mirror the look and feel of their brands. Publishers can even automate their workflow by using RSS to publish Instant Articles directly from their existing content management systems.

Instant Articles

(My emphasize.)

Yes, this is the way to do it. If you want people to add stuff to your silo, make it easy for them to do it using their existing infrastructure, and thereby enabling them to cross-post to the silo, as opposed to exclusively create and post there.

And yes, using a tried and tested technology like RSS is a smart move. No, it’s not the latest hotness. Yes, XML feels clunky. But it’s a frozen format. It’s widely understood, easy to implement and most publishers already have it implemented.

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Please Anchor, be a good citizen of the open web

I’ve tried Anchor today. It’s a service that let’s its users post short audio posts, like Twitter but for audio. Or put more accurately, it allows its users to make short-form podcasts. I thought it was really fun to use, and discussing a topic on it with a friend seemed much more fruitful that doing the same thing on Twitter.

The setup procedure in the app was simple and as far as I know there are no easier way of recording a piece of audio and broadcasting it ”to the people”. (Note the quotes.)

However, there are quite enough silos around already and I really don’t like to lock myself into yet another one. I want to own the data – or content if you prefer – that I create. Therefore I’d like the following:

I also want to mix and match sources. I want to be able to consume similar content in one app, not having to constantly switch from one app to the other just because people lock their content in various silos.

As I said in the beginning, what Anchor does is provide a way to easily record short-form podcasts and publishing them to the people following you. There is nothing about this that is new from a podcasting perspective. What is new, is how easy they’ve made it. I love that! But since they are podcasts I want to treat them as such. I want people to be able to listen to the things I publish even if they don’t have, never have had, nor ever will get, an account on Anchor.

So I would like Anchor to provide a way for its users to use the content they – the users that is – create outside of the Anchor. The simplest way to do this, that almost certainly would require very little effort on Anchor’s part, is to have some sort of feed for each user of the service. Making those feeds RSS feeds with <enclosure> elements would make them compatible with pretty much all podcatchers that are currently in use.

That would make the service so much less of a silo. It would mean that other people could listen to my stuff outside of Anchor and I could interleave the ”Waves”1 of people on Anchor with other short- or long-form podcasts that I listen to. It would also mean that I could set up automation to cross-post my waves to my own site.

And it wouldn’t even have to be RSS/XML. Any kind of easily parseable feed available without authentication would do for me. Once upon a time even Twitter provided this function for its users tweets and it was great.

Sure, it would be nice to have a posting API for Anchor and it would be equally nice to have a way of using their app to post directly to another service, or to my own blog, but the simple act of adding feeds would take them so far along the way of becoming good citizens of the open web. And I want them to be that since I thought the app and service was great, but I don’t want to lock up my content.

One good thing about it is that there are more or less easily accessible URLs for each Wave. Unfortunately, those URLs are not easily crawlable for the media they are meant to display.

I’ve asked Anchor, both on Anchor and on Twitter, whether they are going to add feeds or not. So far I’ve not gotten a respons. If you who read this also finds this important, please ask them about it you too. (They are @anchor on Twitter.)

So please Anchor, please, be a part of the open web. In your Medium posts you claim to be ”the world’s first true public radio”. Make this real by actually making the content created by your users public. Embrace feeds, embrace the open web.


  1. A post on Anchor is called a wave

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Tim Cook tar ställning mot USAs regerings krav på en bakdörr i iOS. Bra Tim!

A Message to Our Customers – apple.com

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So I have a question for Anchor…

Does the service have an API? Or a way to listen to peoples waves inside a regular pod catcher? Do the people behind Anchor intend to play nice with the open web or is this just another silo that want to usurp the web?

I’ve searched their help and found nothing regarding APIs or XML/RSS.

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I’ve updated my post about which X-files episodes to watch to get into the show with season and episode numbers.

http://blog.henrikcarlsson.se/2016/01/an-introduction-to-the-x-files/

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More Lego Star Wars: Droid Tales

As I’ve mentioned earlier, Iris and me have been watching Lego Star Wars: Droid Tales. I was really entertained by the first episode and found it hilarious at times. Unfortunately the rest of the episodes where not as great.

The plot of the show is just an excuse to let Threepio retell episodes I – VI. The retelling of The Phantom Menace was amazing. It managed to parody all the things that are silly in that movie. The other prequel-retelling was okay, but not as funny as Episode I and once the series started retelling the original trilogy I felt like the funny moments were fewer and further between. I guess the jokes in ”Droid Tales” are very cheap and a bit lazy, which works as long as the movies they riff on are so lazily written but once they face better movies it just starts seeming cheap, rather than fun.1

Anyway, watch an episode or two of ”Droid Tales” but if you find them losing their way a few episodes in it’s okay to stop. There are plenty of other things to watch on Netflix.


  1. Please note that I do not imply that episodes II and III are better than The Phantom Menace. I actually believe that Episode I is the least terrible of the prequels. 

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Don’t tell me what my browser can’t do! | Christian Heilmann

There are many outside influences that will interfere with the execution of your JavaScript. That’s why a non-naive and non-arrogant — a dedicated and seasoned web developer — will never rely on it. Instead, you treat it as an enhancement and in an almost paranoid fashion test for the availability of everything before you access it.

– Christian Heilmann, Don’t tell me what my browser can’t do!

Exactly. Progressive enhancements are more important than ever. The fact that the web is accessible from different devices and can be displayed with varying amount of ”flash” and native apps generally can’t and aren’t is a good thing for the web.

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Femton minus igen! Hur gick det här till?

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How to browse the mobile web:
Navigate to site
Close modal popup (if you can)
Decline native app offer
Close top banner
Close bottom banner

Justin Palmer (@Caged), on Twitter.

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Whenever someone tells me ”coding is the new literacy” because ”computers are everywhere today” I ask them how fuel injection works.

Startup L. Jackson (@StartupLJackson), on Twitter.

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Igår kväll läste jag klart Gone Girl. Väldigt läsvärd! Skriver kanske en längre recension senare.

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LISA MAGNUSSON: Köttfri måndag kan införas i smyg

Men istället för att diskutera politisk reglering behandlar vi detta som en fråga om personlig livsstil.

En enormt präktig och snörptråkig personlig livsstil dessutom, som kräver 100 procent hängivenhet. Så du använder energisnåla lampor och källsorterar – men är de där tomaterna ekologiska?

Jag tror att det allra bästa man kan göra om man vill värna vår art på ett privat plan vore att släppa förnumstigheten som präglar allt som börjar på ”miljö-”. Och fräls oss ifrån fräschheten.

LISA MAGNUSSON: Köttfri måndag kan införas i smyg

Exakt så. Låt oss sluta vara så djävla förnumstiga i det lilla, och faktiskt lagstifta vettigt i det stora så kanske det finns hopp.

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Johan Norberg: Du har mer pengar än de fattigaste två miljarderna

Johan Norberg har många viktiga poänger om förmögenhetsfördelningen i världen:

Men något är konstigt. Min dotter har en förmögenhet på ungefär hundra kronor i sin spargris. Det är nästan ingenting, men jag ser i Oxfams tabeller att hon därmed har mer pengar än de fattigaste två miljarderna har tillsammans! Hur kan det vara möjligt? För att de två miljarderna inte har några tillgångar alls. Det krävs alltså bara några kronor för att vara rikare än dem, och det räcker att de 62 rikaste människorna i världen har 0,7 procent av världens rikedom för att de ska ha mer än den fattigaste hälften.

Johan Norberg: Du har mer pengar än de fattigaste två miljarderna

Och den viktigaste:

Problemet är inte att min dotter har hundra kronor, utan att två miljarder inte har någonting. Problemet är inte ojämlikhet, utan fattigdom.

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En närstående hävdar att det jag sopsorterar, utom metall och glas, slängs i samma hög i slutänden. Ni som är smartare än jag, är det sant?

(Även på twitter.)

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PSA: Idag är sista dagen att göra momsdeklaration för oktober-december 2015 för de av oss som gör sånt kvartalsvis.

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Building a WordPress plugin

Today I started working on a WordPress plugin (I’ll tell you more about it soon). To do that I needed to brush up a bit on my plugin-writing skills. I’ve always found making WordPress plugins unnecessary frustrating but as I searched for some articles about it today I found this:

Since WordPress 2.8, building widgets has been a matter of extending WordPress’ own widget class, WP_Widget, resulting in your custom widget only having to focus on 4 main functions:

  1. Initialisation (__construct) – handles actions to take when the widget is first created such as enqueueing specific javascript or stylesheets in the output
  2. Front-end display (widget) – handles the generation of the widget’s HTML output
  3. Back-end form (form) – handles the generation of the form controls that make up the widgets edit interface in the Admin interface
  4. Update (update) – handles the form submission from the back-end form, updating stored data as necessary

How To Build WordPress Widgets Like A Pro – WPMU DEV

I had completely missed this. In my mind plugins was still this boiler-plate filled bag of hurt. Instead all you got to do is subclassing WP_Widget and replacing a couple of methods. Wow!

As I took the approach suggested in the article and based my code on the sample code in it, I got up and running super-quick. A beta version of the plugin is actually running on my local machine already, after maybe an hours worth of work. The fact that it was so easy makes me very happy and gives me the urge to write more plugins.

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Gentlemen & Gangsters

Jag hade tänkt rekommendera tv-serien Gentlemen & Gangsters som sändes i SVT runt nyår men det verkar tyvärr som att tiden då den finns på svtplay har tagit slut. Så du får helt enkelt hitta den på andra sätt.

Gentlemen & Gangsters är en filmatisering av Klas Östergrens böcker Gentlemen och Gangsters. Två olika böcker som släpptes med tjugofem års mellanrum. Gentlemen släpptes som film sent 2014 och nu har den alltså klippts samman med Gangstersmaterialet och gjorts till en miniserie om totalt sex timmar.

Jag började läsa Gentlemen för många år sedan och det är en sådan bok som tog otroligt lång tid att slutföra, inte för att den var dålig eller tungläst utan tvärtom för att den var så intressant och förtjänade att ta tid. I slutänden fick jag ta till ljudboken inläst av Björn Kjellman för att ta mig i mål första december 2014. Det är en brokig rövarhistoria om författaren Klas Östergrens möte med, och skildring av, bröderna Henry och Leo Morgan och om Sverige från fyrtiotal hela vägen fram till sjuttiotalets slut. Det är en historia som tar väldiga turer och som är proppfull med bikaraktärer varav somliga aldrig riktigt får ett avslut. En fantastisk bok helt enkelt!

Jag såg tv-serien när den sändes och fastnade för historien igen. Jag misstänker att serien kan vara rörig för den som inte läst åtminstone en av böckerna, eftersom det är så otroligt mycket som ska klämmas in på kort tid. Men den är spännande och framförallt otroligt snygg och stämningsfull.

I och med tittandet på serien fick jag alltså uppleva Gangsters också. Den delen av historien har jag svårare att komma överens med och sättet på vilken den får läsaren/tittaren att totalt omvärdera Gentlemen på är inte bara bra. Men jag är nyfiken, nyfiken på hur berättelsen är i bokform. Så idag har jag börjat lyssna på en ljudboksversion av Gangsters, läst av Reine Brynolfsson. Hittills har jag inga åsikter om den men det ska bli spännande att uppleva den.

Just det, jag höll på att glömma. Det var fantastiskt att i serien äntligen få höra Europa, Vittrande fragment. Vackert.

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Tydligen i iBooks.

http://macworld.idg.se/2.1038/1.621379/storsatsning-pa-ljudbocker-i-ios-84

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Var hittar jag mina ljudböcker i iOS9? De verkar inte vara i ”Musik”-appen där de var förr.

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Link: Extract JSONP Resultset in PHP

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Introducing River5

Dave Winer has now formally announced River5. I’m a user of River4, and I’m really liking it. If you don’t yet have a River of News you should check it out.

RSS is alive and kicking and ready to act as the open distribution format for news for many years to come.

Introducing River5

I think Dave is right. RSS is definitely not dead, as some people has implied. It’s more alive and more important now than it has been for a long time. It’s an important piece of the puzzle that let us breath new life into the open web.

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I saw The Force Awakens a second time, this time in IMAX 3D

Once again there will be spoilers for Star Wars, The Force Awakens.

A few weekends ago my brother, his girlfriend and me went to see The Force Awakens in the IMAX theater at ”Mall of Scandinavia” in Stockholm. It was an interesting experience since it’s the first feature film that I ever saw in iMax and also the first time I saw a whole movie in 3D.

I am nearsighted and ever since I started wearing glasses I think going to a movie in a theater lost something for me. I can easily start obsessing over almost non-existing smudge on my glasses, to the point that I loose focus on the movie. This problem has been solved since I stared using contact lenses.

Why do I tell you about this? Because the 3D makes this problem a problem again and in a big way. Not only am I wearing glasses again, I’m wearing glasses that has been used and smudged by someone else. Given the look of the glasses the person using them before me must have tried to wipe them clean using a potato chip. So the glasses were gross and that took me out of the movie from time to time.

Even disregarding that, the 3D didn’t do it for me at all. I think it made the movie seem less real, not more as I hope is the intent. It is something about when the depth of a shot, and size of a person in it doesn’t match the apparent distance to which he/she is standing from me that makes my brain cringe. In 2D a great movie can feel like I’m watching actual events unfold. In 3D The Force Awakens felt more like watching a video game from time to time.

Ignoring the 3D, rewatching the movie was great. I had been slightly worried that it would be as great the second time but I do think it was. Yes I laughed/gasped slightly less at somethings but I also feel like I appreciated the story and the whole of it more.

In my earlier review I criticized the movie for the Starkiller Base plot-point.

Which brings me to the Episode IV rehashing. The whole idea of this new super weapon (The ”Starkiller”) and the comparison between it and the Death Star felt silly. I think the plot didn’t need this. The search for the map to Luke Skywalker had been enough for me. That would probably also meant that the filmmaker had found a better way to get the story to the point of the meeting between him and Rey.

It felt really jarring when a super-weapon was suddenly fired after General Hux’s Hitler speech and felt the whole operation against it felt rushed. I felt a whole lot less of this is the second viewing. Now that I knew there would be a super-weapon the pacing of the movie around it felt much better. Because of that I do think that it should have been introduced in the opening crawl. Just a quick sentence about how the First Order is working on getting its super-weapon operational would have been enough for me, I think.

All in all the movie was just as great the second time around and I do want to watch it again and again, maybe even once more in the theater. But I do not recommend anyone to see it in IMAX 3D. Use the money from the expensive tickets to see it twice in a regular 2D theater instead.

Oh, one more thing. Something that I sort of missed the first time was how badly injured Kylo Ren is before his battle with Finn and Rey begins. Off course I didn’t missed the fact that Chewie shot him but on the first viewing I didn’t really think about how clear the movie makes it that Chewie’s bow-caster is a really, really powerful weapon. Everyone that’s being shot by it in this movie is not only dead but also literally blown away from the spot where they stood. Worth noting for those who think that Rey is ”overpowered” and that she should have been crushed by Ren.

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