Category: The Bulletin

  • The Bulletin for February 17th, 2024

    Hey party people,

    This week has been spent on two secret projects I can’t tell you about yet. Sorry! There’s one that I could technically tell you about now but I’m too excited and want it to be a surprise. That said, I’ve spent most of my week taking care of Beau’s bad ear. Unfortunately he ended up having to get it drained, so now he’s on an oral antibiotic, ear drops, and an ointment. My youngest cat just cannot catch a break, I swear… I hope he feels better soon.

    Chayse ​came to visit last week​ and we’re planning to do it again very soon. Not sure exactly when, as we’re still working out the details, but I’m willing to bet it will be within the next month and a half or so. We’ll see! Keep your fingers crossed for us and pray that everything works out in that regard.

    Instagram will load in the frontend.

    Okay, enough chit-chat: here’s The Bulletin.

    Things I found across the net…

    Catching them all, one step at a time.

    • A damning report says ​Twitter’s Super Bowl stats that the company shared were actually fake​! (My thoughts are here on the Slade’s Corner linklog.)
    • ​Cobalt​ is a great video downloader for websites like Twitter and YouTube that doesn’t have any ads, and isn’t doing anything shady! It’s quite cool, check it out.
    • Google Pixel is almost done with the transition to their own in-house Tensor chips, as ​Android 15 drops support for Pixel 5, 5a, and earlier​.
    • Windows 2000 launched 24 years ago today! NeoWin ​has a wonderful look back​ at the business-oriented operating system that would later be used as the foundation for Windows XP (which was released in 2001 and the first unified release of Windows for both home and business consumers.)
    • A woman was able ​to take a flight from Nashville International to Los Angeles International Airport without a ticket​. She was caught and immediately taken into custody upon landing in LA. The investigation is ongoing, but the TSA insists she was screened, but was able to bypass the ID checkpoint by jumping a barrier. How she was able to even board a flight without scanning her ticket is unknown. (Somebody’s probably getting fired.)
    • Elon Musk was caught with his pants down again sharing fake stats on Super Bowl 58’s performance on Twitter, ​according to a report​ from CHEQ. They found that 75.8+% of those numbers were fraudulent, and the impressions were much, much less than what the company shared. “‘I’ve never seen anything even remotely close to 50 percent, not to mention 76 percent,’ ​CHEQ​ founder and CEO Guy Tytunovich told Mashable regarding X’s fake traffic data. ‘I’m amazed…I’ve never, ever, ever, ever seen anything even remotely close.’” Geez.

    For more, consider checking out ​my linklog on​! I usually share a bunch of stuff throughout the week that doesn’t always make it into The Bulletin.

    What I’m listening to…

    I’m kind of a Spotify addict, so I happen to listen to a lot of music. Here’s what I’m currently listening to—usually on repeat. Here’s what I’ve got for you, for the week of February 17, 2024

    Thanks to ​Odesli​ for making all these streaming platform-agnostic!

    Here’s hoping you feel better soon, Beanie <3

    I close this week by reminding you to be kind to yourself and others. These are some hard times we live in, and a little kindness goes a long way towards making that at least a little bit better.

    Just keep swimming,


  • The Bulletin for February 10th, 2024


    This is the first email I’m sending out with help from the folks at ConvertKit. They’re providing the creation tools to rapidly increase the creativity behind these emails — while also allowing me to use my existing infrastructure. It’s a cool piece of tech, and I’m very happy to be playing with it.

    For the first time, back issues of The Bulletin will be available to view every Tuesday after they release right on my blog at! If you ever wanted a friend to read, consider forwarding an email to them, or waiting until the back issues are released on Slade’s Corner.

    For all the new faces, and even for the old faces, The Bulletin is my flagship newsletter: it’s the most major point of communication in which I interface with the internet. Every week on Saturdays at 8pm Eastern, I provide a peek into my world, and sprinkle in some music recommendations and interesting links to a few things I found while being on (or even off) the internet. It’s a fun time, and I always appreciate replies to these emails, as well.

    Things I found across the net…

    I think I hate this little life.

    • “PC cleaning” apps are almost always a scam, and Microsoft’s new PC cleaning app is no exception. It even does things they don’t recommend. It’s odd, and you should avoid it.z
    • wrote on my blog that Apple’s proposed rules for ‘complying’ with the Digital Markets Act the EU enacted are just a giant middle finger to the EU.
    • Tomorrow night’s the Super Bowl! Reba McEntire will perform the US National Anthem, while Usher will take the stage at halftime. Post Malone is set to perform “America the Beautiful,” and there are other small performances from other performers lined up, which CBS News has a list of here
    • Nickelodeon, sister company of CBS/CBS News/CBS Sports by way of parent company Paramount, announced that Sweet Victory from the SpongeBob SquarePants episode “Band Geeks” will also be reanimated in CGI and shown at this year’s Super Bowl, as well.
      • Band Geeks last got a nod in 2019 during the introduction to guest performer Travis Scott. The “performance” was meant as a tribute to Stephen Hillenberg, the creator of the show who passed away from ALS in November 2018.

    What I’m listening to…

    I’m kind of a Spotify addict, so I happen to listen to a lot of music. Here’s what I’m currently listening to—usually on repeat. Here’s what I’ve got for you, for the week of February 10, 2024

    Thanks to Odesli for making all these streaming platform-agnostic!

    And that’s it for me this week. I’ll see you on my blog at ​​, and across the internet in the future.

    And away this goes,


  • The technical difficulties continue!

    ** The Bulletin ** – January 14, 2024


    I apologize for the newsletter being a little later than usual two weeks in a row. Trying not to make that a habit and keep Saturdays at 8PM Eastern the schedule. We’ll be back to normal next week!

    The technical difficulties continue this week with Windows completely corrupting on the final machine in my setup that runs it, right as I was pulling data off of it. So, that’s cool. I’m quite mad about it because I’m finishing the final things on the biggest project I’ve ever worked on—and I just don’t have the energy to deal with that right now. Sigh.

    I also just got done dogsitting for my neighbors, and I’m gonna be honest: I will miss checking on their old golden retriever each day! She really gives the best hugs! <3

    There’s a lot for me to dig into this week, including one “tiny” announcement. Let’s do this…

    Buried Alive: The First Chapter (Preview) available now

    The first chapter of my new book, Buried Alive, is available now on Amazon and my website. The book itself is dedicated to my best friends Chantel, Max, and Kolin, and I can’t wait to share the full thing with all of you later this year.

    I’m very proud of it, and I hope you are, too!

    This week’s question

    Here it is: the question of the week! Each week, I’ll ask a question, and you’ll vote. (In the email, just tap on your answer!) In the following week’s Bulletin, I’ll ask another AND reveal my answer to the previous week’s question along with rough tallies from all of you~!

    Sound like fun? I thought so. Please consider participating!

    Polls close at time of this post going out on Wednesday (Eastern Time). Make sure to cast your vote before then!

    Last week’s question (and my answer!)

    Last week’s question was “Of these four things, you’re only allowed to bring one to a deserted island: what do you bring?” 100% of you said you’d bring along a few novels. Despite loving Cheez-Its, I would also bring a few novels—it’ll be so quiet that I could actually put a dent in my massive ‘to-read’ list.

    This week’s soundtrack

    I’m kind of a Spotify addict, so I happen to listen to a lot of music. Here’s what I’m currently listening to—usually on repeat. Here’s what I’ve got for you, for the week of January 13, 2024

    Thanks to Songlink for making all these streaming platform-agnostic!

    Things I found across the net

    We’re back with some interesting stuff.

    • Substack has a serious problem: Publications big and small, such as Platformer and even me are leaving due to Substack’s non-commitment to removing literal Nazis from their platform. Casey has a really good write-up on Platformer that I recommend you go read. As for me, no one will be affected by this transition—it will simply be moving to my own in-house platform known as Beauregard CMS (which I’ve very loosely based on WordPress), and you all you’ll need to do to read Slade’s Corner is visit the new URL once the new website is up!

      • Friends with blogs: if you’d like to move off of Substack as well, perhaps onto my Beauregard CMS, please send me a message. I can help you migrate within as much time as you want—a month, two months, three months, a year—just let me know!

        • In addition to that, I will also be asking a couple friends to help me beta test—but if you want in, also drop me a message! I could use some assistance.

      • There will be a longer (free) explainer from me soonish about why I’m personally leaving Substack and building my own Substack alternative, but I echo a lot of what Casey shared in his article!

    • Schiller does Threads: Phil Schiller, most known for being in charge of Apple Events and the App Store, joined Meta’s Threads—and not only did he detail how he sets up his Mac dock (spoiler: it’s the same thing he had on NeXtStep), but he also revealed the sheer amount of Macs he uses. I personally believe he’s one of the more ‘down-to-Earth’ executives, so it’s definitely worth reading those!

      • Side note: this man has responded to both emails I’ve ever sent him—he’s very fast and is very kind with his words too! While we may not always agree, I certainly hold him in high regard.

    • Google reorganizes Devices & Services teams; lays off “a few hundred roles” on AR team: It’s official, there’s a shake-up in leadership happening on Google’s hardware teams as a result of several Fitbit alumni leaving the company. The team will become more similar to Apple’s structure, wherein all individual teams report to one leader. As of writing, a leader of the reorganized team hasn’t officially been named, but my assumption is that the current Senior Vice President of Devices & Services at Google, Rick Osterloh, will be steering that ship.

      • Unfortunately, Google has also laid off a chunk of its 1P AR team, reiterating in a statement that the company is “deeply committed to other AR initiatives, such as AR experiences in our products, and product partnerships.”

    Thanks as ever for reading, and for you support here in my Corner of the internet. It really means a lot to me! For those who like email, you can always reach me at [email protected] — but just note that due to the amount of emails I get, I can’t always guarantee a response!

    Clearly having a gay panic (or something like that),


  • New Year's pup! Also, I went blonde.

    ** The Bulletin ** – January 6, 2024

    Hi everyone:

    I spent New Year’s with one of my best friend’s, plus his siblings + their friends! It was such a great time! We got to hang out and play various Jackbox games—but honestly, I was sad when I had to leave on Wednesday, because they have a new Shih Tzu pup named Gwendolyn who is an absolute sweetheart. I’ll attach a pic for you below so you can see her!

    While I was visiting, my best friend’s little sister bleached my hair, and now I’m back to what was once my natural hair colour: blonde. I think it looks fantastic—and dear reader, I’m honestly in love with it! I would’ve kept visiting if I could, but I have a few things here at home that need my attention right now… and let’s be honest, I’ll probably be back visiting again very soon anyways.

    I started my playthrough of 2004’s Pokémon FireRed on Thursday night, by the way! Long time coming, and I’ve still yet to really develop my team’s movesets, but I’m just happy to be back at it with Pokémon after a little break. I’ve been falling in love with this series the more that my good friend Kolin has been teaching me! That’s — without a doubt — going to continue as this playthrough progresses, and as my journey through the series does, too!

    This coming week is a little busy, so next week’s email will probably have a pretty boring recap for you since I won’t be able to discuss much. But I may share an update or two on my Pokémon escapades. So stay tuned for that, I suppose.

    With that said and done, it’s time for the latest happenings in my world and beyond—all in this week’s Bulletin

    Buried Alive: The First Chapter (Preview) available next week

    The first chapter of my new book, Buried Alive, will be published next week on Amazon and my website. The book itself is dedicated to my best friends Chantel, Max, and Kolin, and I can’t wait to share it with all of you later this year. I’m very proud of it and I hope you are too!

    Some housekeeping for 2024

    A handful of super quick announcements for you as we jump into our first Bulletin of the new year.

    • My book, “Buried Alive”, is launching this year! It’ll be available in two editions, Standard & Blue, on starting June 7, 2024. Pricing and further availability to be announced very soon. I can’t wait to close that chapter of my life after all these years.

    • Slade’s Corner has a paid subscription! I’m probably not going to mention it a lot in articles/emails themselves, but I do have a paid subscription you can upgrade to and access additional benefits with. The first paywalled article of the new subscription offering will launch this month, and is being drafted starting this weekend—I expect that to be live for paid subscribers in a couple weeks or so. (FOR TRANSPARENCY: I do comp/discount the paid subscriptions of family/friends.)

    This week’s question

    Here it is: the question of the week! Each week, I’ll ask a question, and you’ll vote. (In the email, just tap on your answer!) In the following week’s Bulletin, I’ll ask another AND reveal my answer to the previous week’s question along with rough tallies from all of you~!

    Sound like fun? I thought so. Please consider participating!

    Last week’s question (and my answer!)

    Last week’s question was an easy one—do you prefer iOS or Android? The results were equally as straightforward: 75% voted for iOS, and the remaining 25% voted for Android. As for my answer? It’s not a secret at all: I grew up on Android, and that’s what I prefer.

    This week’s soundtrack

    I’m kind of a Spotify addict, so I happen to listen to a lot of music. Here’s what I’m currently listening to—usually on repeat. Here’s what I’ve got for you, for the week of January 6, 2024

    Thanks to Songlink for making all these streaming platform-agnostic!

    Things I found across the net

    Oh no, here we go again with the mountain of links!

    • Microsoft adding new key on keyboards for Copilot: In “why?” news, Microsoft has announced they will be adding a new key to keyboards for Microsoft Copilot, their AI assistant that is now built into various Microsoft products (including Bing and Windows 11). I’ll admit—as someone who uses Linux and Mac quite frequently now, I don’t quite get why you need so many dedicated buttons on a keyboard for things. (Hell, I went to a keyboard without a numpad for that purpose!) But hey, maybe people who are okay with Microsoft knowing their every move and selling that info to the highest bidders will appreciate this extra button? I don’t know.

    • DeGoogle your life: Listen, there are some things you probably don’t need Google for — and some of these services meant to help you “DeGoogle” your life not only better respect your privacy, but they also include many more features on top of what Google offers at a lesser cost to your wallet (and sanity). Highly recommend reading through it and seeing what you could replace to be less reliant on one company for your entire workflow!

    • Clicks, a physical keyboard for iPhone 14 Pro and 15 Pro: If you’re one of those people with a fancy 14 Pro or 15 Pro/Pro Max, good news, you get to live the days of having a BlackBerry without compromise thanks to a new case called “Clicks.” I’m sad, because I have a 12 (and the case is fairly pricey as-is) but this is still cool and if I could get one, I would in a heartbeat. Trust me.

    • Installer: A newsletter from the lovely David Pierce over at The Verge, it includes a ton of goodies from across the internet—app recommendations from David, the Verge crew, and readers! It’s one of my highlights of each week, and I highly recommend throwing it a sub. Think my Bulletin, but with a very drilled-in focus on the world of tech! (For those interested, but don’t want to subscribe to the emails, posts go up on this page a day after they’re sent out!)

    • And on YouTube this week: Something bittersweet, along with some just utterly hilarious and fascinating stuff…

      • Tom Scott officially retired on Monday after ten straight years of weekly videos! I don’t know how this man did it, but he did. I don’t think he quite realizes this—but he absolutely helped push the YouTube platform forward for the better in more ways than one! He deserves his rest. Congratulations on your retirement, Tom! Not sure what you’re going to get up to with your newfound free time… but my hope is that you’ll use it to have fun! (Or get into some trouble, that works too! You’ve more than earned it as far as I’m concerned.)

        • Legend has it he’s still hanging off a harness in the sky, just flying around without a care in the world. He better be having a blast!

        • Oh, and, I highly recommend his weekly newsletter that goes out every Monday around 11am/12pm Eastern. Always some fascinating links in there to peruse! That man finds some weird stuff sometimes, too…

      • Steamboat Willie in 4K, anyone?: Yeah, I saw this coming with the public domain thing that happened last week—Steamboat Willie has been transferred from film to 4K and is now available to watch on YouTube. There have been a lot of projects announced that use Steamboat Willie’s Mickey Mouse—but I think this one is the one I’m the biggest fan of, if I’m being entirely honest.

    That’s it from me for this week! And as wonderful as this week was, I am definitely looking forward to the week ahead: it’s filled with Pokémon FireRed, tiny projects with the blog, and some other cool stuff I can’t talk about just yet!

    As usual, I’m reachable at [email protected] if you want to get in touch. (Can’t wait to share more about those projects very soon, too!)

    Going insane,


  • ** The Bulletin ** – December 30, 2023

    Sorry this is late! Had a bit of a technical issue with the new section that delayed getting this out the door on time. We’re back, though, and everything works perfectly! Enjoy!

    Hello you,

    It has been a long week with a bit of good chaos mixed in—and honestly, putting this all together like I usually do has been the least of my priorities—but I hope EVERYONE had a very Merry Christmas and is planning to spend New Year’s enjoying themselves, no matter what they plan to get up to. As for me, I’m spending New Year’s partying with my best friend and his family—who have seriously become mi segunda familia (my second family) this year. I love them all so much!

    Now what did I do this week, you ask? Well—this was my week off, so I decided to play some games and plan my playthrough of Pokémon HeartGold with my friend Kolin’s help. Kolin has been guiding me through the Pokémon series, without spoiling anything too, and I couldn’t ask for a better friend and teacher. I’ve learned a lot of useful things from him, and I’m told we’ve barely scratched the surface.

    I also set up a new-old Xbox for the house, installed Super Mario Bros. Wonder (still haven’t played it yet), and started cataloging some of the games our household got for Christmas. Basically a lot of administrative stuff that I need to do to make sure things are tracked and set. I’m back to work in the new year with a couple entirely new projects, though, and as we get closer to them becoming reality—I’d love to tell you about them!

    OH, and before I forget, I’m set up on my friend ChiefGyk3D’s Mastodon server now, too. If you were following me on, don’t worry, you still are! You can now find me as @[email protected] on the fediverse (which will soon include Meta’s Threads!)

    Now that introductions are settled, let’s hop into the final 2023 edition of everybody’s least favorite newsletter: The Bulletin!

    This week’s question

    We’re starting a new section of the newsletter—the question of the week! Each week, I’ll ask a question, and you’ll vote. (In the email, just tap on your answer!) In the following week’s Bulletin, I’ll ask another AND reveal my answer to the previous week’s question along with rough tallies from all of you~!

    Sound like fun? I thought so. Please consider participating!

    These polls are available to both free and paid subscribers to vote in.

    This week’s soundtrack

    I’m kind of a Spotify/Apple Music addict, so I happen to listen to a lot of music. Here’s what I’m currently listening to—usually on repeat. Here’s what I’ve got for you, for the week of December 30, 2023

    Thanks to Songlink for making all these streaming platform-agnostic!

    Things I found across the net

    See you in hell, Mr. Kotick.

    • Bobby Kotick steps down from Activision-Blizzard-King: Kotick publicly announced he’d be leaving the company at the end of this month, and as of my sending of this Bulletin to you, he is no longer the head of Activision Blizzard. Oh, and if you think his tenure couldn’t be any more soured—the devs of Overwatch have come out and said he “sabotaged” the game’s launch on Steam.

    • I’m working on a rewrite of AC Helper: Thomas Ricouard has given me the green light to fork and work on a rewrite of AC Helper, a Swift app for Apple platforms that is meant as a companion for Animal Crossing: New Horizons. It’s open source on GitHub, so if you’d like to help contribute, please consider doing so in the sladewatkins/ACNHBrowserUI repository! (We’re calling this rewrite version 3.0, and it will require iOS 17 or later.)

    • On YouTube this week…: Just a couple things I think you’d all enjoy watching.

      • Disney will be losing its copyright to the original Mickey Mouse (Steamboat Willie cartoon) in 2024, as reported on by CBS News.

      • Somebody remastered the Super Mario Bros. 3 OST and it sounds so freaking fantastic. Please give it a listen, especially if you grew up during the time where game music was very basic!

      • And also entirely randomly in my recommendations relating to video game music OSTs, an extremely low quality version of the Super Mario 64 OST. Enjoy… I guess…?

    As ever, please feel free to chime in by emailing [email protected]. I can’t answer everything—but I do try my best! I hope you have a wonderful weekend and start to your New Year! 🙂

    Best wishes,


  • ** The Bulletin ** – December 23, 2023

    ¡Feliz Navidad y felices fiestas! (Merry Christmas, and Happy Holidays!),
    I’ve done a lot this week: from visiting with friends all the way to my mom and I’s annual December date together. It has been a lovely holiday already, and I’m very excited to close out the year on one brilliant high note. I’m out of announcements for the year, and am going out of commission until December 27th, so don’t expect much from me! (I’m actually putting this together on the 20th, so don’t worry! I’m on my sabbatical!)

    I’ve also started learning Spanish! I’m doing Duolingo lessons every day for around an hour at minimum—and also have a friend who is a native Spanish speaker that will be tutoring me as well (to the best of his ability). I’ve always wanted to learn Spanish (and be bilingual), so I’m excited to be taking this step officially and keeping up with it in 2024.

    With all of that said, I do have a newsletter to run and many things expected from me in the new year as well, so I hope to come back refreshed to do that for you lot! Alright—enough blabbering: here’s my Bulletin for this week!

    This week’s soundtrack

    I’m kind of a Spotify/Apple Music addict, so I happen to listen to a lot of music. Here’s what I’m currently listening to—usually on repeat. Here’s what I’ve got for you, for the week of December 23, 2023

    Thanks to Songlink for making all these streaming platform-agnostic!

    Things I found across the net

    A little lighter on content this week due to the holidays! Just ever so slightly…

    • The teenager who hacked Rockstar and was responsible for GTA 6 leaking receives sentence: In a really depressing end to the story involving GTA 6’s leak a few while back: Arion Kurtaj (18), who is autistic, has been deemed a danger to society due to his skills and “desire to commit cyber crime.” He will be held in hospital for life unless doctors deem him “no longer a danger.” As someone who is also on the spectrum, I have so many thoughts on this story as a whole—but I’ll save them for another time and allow myself time to process it before I discuss this in further detail.

    • Android tablets get some love: 9to5Mac has a really handy list of all the apps from Google that have gotten the Android tablet optimization treatment. As for every other app, I wasn’t able to find a listicle for that—but if you see one, please send it along to me so that I can include it in The Bulletin! Would love to get that out there for those of us who use Android (or in my case, Android-based [Fire OS]) tablets.

    • Apple pulls Apple Watch Series 9 and Ultra 2 from sale: The ITC has ruled that Apple must pull its Apple Watch Series 9 and Ultra 2 from its own retail sales channels ( and Retail locations) beginning Christmas Day due to allegedly infringing upon two of Masimo’s patents relating to the blood-oxygen sensor included in the Apple Watch Series 6 and later. Apple did this preemptively, removing them from their storefronts earlier this week.

      • President Joe Biden and his administration could technically step in and veto the ruling from the ITC prior to the December 25th Presidental Review Period deadline, but has not done so. (It appears unlikely the administration will.)

      • In the meantime, however, Apple confirmed to 9to5Mac that it is exploring multiple options on the legal and technical sides, to “ensure that Apple Watch is available to customers.” The devices will be available from third-party retailers such as Best Buy while their stock lasts as they are unaffected by the decision.

      • Apple Watch SE (2nd generation) lacks the offending blood-oxygen sensor, and thus, remains available for sale as normal at this time.

    • And finally, on YouTube this week: A couple things here and there that I think are worth checking out…

      • Tom Scott answers the following insane question: why does government drop flies on California? (Well, that’s a new sentence.) I did not know they did this and now I am mildly disturbed. Okay then.

      • MKBHD’s annual Smartphone Awards for 2023 has gone live on YouTube, and I am not surprised at all by the winners in each category. Although I kind of disagree on Best Foldable—honestly, I’m just not a fan of OnePlus anymore, but that doesn’t mean it’s a bad device by any mean.

      • The Browser Company is teasing something for January 30, 2024. As an Arc tester since December 2022, I’m quite excited to see what they’re cooking up over there. (Really hoping for Arc 2 on Mobile, with an Android app. Please?!)

    Aaaaaaaand that’s all I’ve got for you! As usual, you can email me at [email protected] if you want to say hi or something. I’m not gonna be monitoring my inbox very closely but I will get your message, I promise!

    Anywho: have a very Merry Christmas, and Happy Holidays!! 🙂

    From my family to yours,


  • Broken fiber lines and a lot of Pokémon

    ** The Bulletin ** – December 16, 2023

    Hey you,

    The week began without an internet connection, as Verizon’s fiber lines were quite literally severed between here and the substation in which my town is served from. After about 38 hours, it came back up around 1:10AM on Wednesday. This stopped pretty much everything in my house, as we’re reliant on the connection to live our lives, but hey—it gave my mom and I some much needed time to spend together! I also had another dentist appointment to fix a filling, and felt more “high” than usual on the local anesthetic than I am normally accustomed to. So, that was interesting! (Not uncomfortable though.)

    I intended to do some writing, but unfortunately, I couldn’t work with my writing partner due to the internet outage and I am having to put this together rather quickly, and slightly early, due to a very fun and busy weekend with my friends ahead. Instead, I finally completed Pokémon Violet (now working on the post-game, with the intention on going back to finish Shield as well), and I am going to spend the rest of the week getting caught up on emails prior to my usual holiday sabbatical from the 20th to the 26th. Not what I wanted the end of December to look like, but I suppose it’s quite all right!

    With all of that out of the way, let’s get right into this week’s edition!

    This week’s soundtrack

    I’m kind of a Spotify addict, so I happen to listen to a lot of music. Here’s what I’m currently listening to—usually on repeat. Here’s what I’ve got for you, for the week of December 16, 2023

    Thanks to Songlink for making all these streaming platform-agnostic!

    Things I found across the net

    I still had cell service, you know! It wasn’t amazing but I still had it…

    • Rapid-fire holiday gaming news: Some interesting stuff is happening in gaming just before the holidays for whatever reason, and I simply don’t have the time to go in-depth on literally every single thing (we’d be here for HOURS if I did that). So—instead, here are some of the more interesting things I’ve come across…

      • It’s official! Your Spotify Wrapped, Nintendo Switch Edition is now available through Nintendo’s official Year In Review microsite. Here’s a link for everyone interested!

      • Pokémon Scarlet and Violet’s Indigo Disk DLC is now officially available to download (assuming you own the expansion pass) alongside the version 3.0.0 update that includes several bug fixes and improvements. This is the final expansion planned for either of the games.

      • Could we see an ad-supported tier of Xbox Cloud Gaming (xCloud) coming in the near future? A Microsoft executive has gone on the record and hinted at the idea—so it’s entirely possible, I suppose. I personally doubt any big titles from the past year or so, like Starfield, would be able to be streamed on such a tier though.

    • GM phasing out CarPlay/Android Auto support to make drivers “safer”: I’m not sure I buy this one, but GM is going to remove support for Apple’s CarPlay and Google’s Android Auto from its future vehicles in the name of making drivers “safer.” They’re instead switching to an “in-house” infotainment system co-developed with—get this—Google. It’s quite dumb, and I don’t understand the logic here. Also, at least from what I’ve seen online, nobody likes this decision either. So that’s probably not good for their bottom line!

    • Arc on Windows, written in Swift?: I’ve been beta testing Arc—the cool browser from The Browser Company—since December 2022, and let me tell you, it’s fantastic on my M2 MacBook Pro. And now, it’s coming to more people thanks to a brand new Windows counterpart that’s… written in Swift?!! What?! Yep, Arc’s going to be available on Microsoft’s Windows 11 platform with builds written in Apple’s programming language. I’ve signed up to beta test that as well, and will absolutely be putting it right on my Windows machine as soon as I’m onboarded into the closed beta.

      • These folks also have a great YouTube channel and are very transparent about the work they’re doing—check them out! I’m sure you’ll agree that they’re all incredibly talented & creative!

    • Apple shuts down Beeper Mini—signals that circumvention will result in further action: A surprise to absolutely nobody, Apple has shut down the app that made it possible to register phone numbers associated with Android devices to iMessage. As a result, the app broke entirely and the company released a statement confirming that they were the ones that did so. Beeper Mini did come back with limited support for those that choose to sign in with iCloud, and stopped requiring a subscription for the time being, but it won’t work with your phone number now. My bet is that Apple will work to block Beeper entirely in the near future, however, so enjoy it while it lasts, or just get a bloody iPhone if iMessage is so important to you…

      • By the way, as I was putting together this week’s post, the app has broken for some people AGAIN. Like I suspected, there’s no way Apple isn’t actively trying to play whack-a-mole with this right now. *Sigh.* RCS support can’t come soon enough.

    • Space Karen breaks his dying social media app again: For a brief time on Wednesday, outgoing links on Twitter would not redirect links through its URL shortener to their proper destinations, resulting simply in a generic error. This has been rectified, but it just goes to show that the platform is just one simple decision away from something breaking entirely. I’m glad there are a handful of third-party apps that still work, though, so I don’t need to get on the official app (for web OR mobile) that often…

    And that’s all I have for you this week! When you get this, I’ll probably be in the thick of some random video game on the Xbox my friend’s giving me. (I actually had to get an Xbox One controller the other day for this…) I’m sure I’ll share some photos next week or something.

    Only two more Bulletins for 2023… let’s end this year on a high note! Have a great weekend, and week ahead!

    Becoming addicted to Pokémon (and another thing),


  • ** The Bulletin ** – December 9, 2023

    Hey you:

    Good news, I’m not sick anymore! Even greater news, I finally remembered to put up the Christmas tree I got from my aunts a few years back! It has been in the basement for some time now—and has been in desperate need of some TLC. I spent an hour just giving it some attention, and I think it looks great now! Haven’t had this up since high school. It’s nice to see it again after all this time… and have it still work perfectly. Seriously, all the lights and ornaments are the same, which is kind of impressive!

    Speaking of Christmas lights, those are up, too! Though frankly, I leave them up year round. Finally replaced a broken strand. Should probably replace the other strand too next year. Eh, that’s future Slade’s problem.

    This week has seen me doing more writing than I usually do. According to my stat tracking software, I wrote roughly 550,000 words. Which is absolutely insane. That doesn’t necessarily mean 550,000 words will ever see the light of day—but the stats themselves are insane. My busiest day was Tuesday, per usual, where I did around 240,000 of those. Everything else was pretty gradual, thankfully.

    I do know that some of those words will be coming your way, though, so stay tuned! Fiona and I have a writer’s room meeting on Monday for the show, and we have a lot to go over and get situated before the new year. I’m also going to be writing another thing with someone I know from high school, and I’m excited to share more about with you all in the coming months. Oh, and I’m working on those blog posts I mentioned last week.

    I have also been playing a LOT of Pokémon—and had a dentist appointment. Go figure. Okay, now with all that catch-up, I bring you the latest beyond my world in this week’s edition of The Bulletin!

    This week’s soundtrack

    I’m kind of a Spotify addict, so I happen to listen to a lot of music. Here’s what I’m currently listening to—usually on repeat. Here’s what I’ve got for you, for the week of December 9, 2023

    Thanks to Songlink for making all these streaming platform-agnostic!

    Things I found across the net

    Big, little things? Yeah, that sounds about right. (For the uninitiated, that was a hardware joke.)

    • Google details December Feature Drop for Pixel 5a 5G and later, rolling out now: Google is now rolling out a fairly sizeable Feature Drop for its Pixel lineup. Included are some enhancements to Pixel Tablet/Fold, the new Gemini Nano AI model on Pixel 8 Pro, as well as significant improvements to Photo Unblur (including it being available on Pixel 6 now? I saw it as an option and tried it earlier, it works well!) and the ability to use your Pixel device as a webcam for your computer!

    • Nintendo postpones Nintendo Live 2024 Tokyo & Splatoon World Championship due to safety concerns: In a statement spotted by Eurogamer, Nintendo has elected to cancel its Nintendo Live 2024 event in Tokyo due to threats directed towards the safety of its employees and visitors. It has also made the decision to postpone the Splatoon World Championship as well to a date that has yet to be announced, due to threats directed towards Nintendo’s employees and threats that have “spread to spectators.” (I’m quite glad to see they’re making this decision and prioritizing the safety of everyone involved.)

    • Those mad people finally did it, they brought iMessage to Android: Not Apple, of course—I’m actually talking about the folks at Beeper. Using an open source proof-of-concept from a literal high school student, these folks were able to reverse engineer Apple’s iMessage protocols and make the whole thing just work in a new app called ‘Beeper Mini’ that’s only a couple bucks a month. I’m oversimplifying it quite a bit, but Quinn of Snazzy Labs has a great video summing it all up. I’m absolutely blown away. Congrats, and bravo, to everyone involved in making this happen!!

    • Discord announces rollout of very heavily disliked redesign on mobile: The chat platform has officially rolled out an “improved” UI redesign for its mobile app, which has immediately been met with a LOT of dislike and backlash. The company has yet to comment directly on the negative reaction from users, but says in their blog post that they built this by listening to “sparks of feedback” from users. If that were true, this wouldn’t exist (given what I’ve seen online), but okay…

    • In the land of YouTube this week: Some interesting stuff in here! Here’s some of what I found…

      • The Second Doctor welcomes Victoria into his TARDIS for the first time, but in full colour! Apparently this was done with some fairly simple tools, and it looks pretty good!

      • Tom Scott does an excellent video on why subtitles don’t always match the dubs of a video in another language. This video also makes use of a new YouTube feature that allows multiple audio tracks to exist for that said feature, so that’s a nice touch!

      • Peter Capaldi gives some beautiful advice to Ncuti Gatwa, the Fifteenth Doctor, while accepting a Scottish BAFTA award for Outstanding Contribution. I’m pretty sure I saw Ncuti tearing up, too! He’s going to be a magnificent Doctor!!

      • And finally, something that made me laugh for way too long: Jesus Christ takes the escalator.

    And that’s it from me this week! If you want to get in touch for whatever reason, you can definitely email me at [email protected]! Can’t guarantee you a reply—I get too many emails as it is—but that’s the best way to reach me on the internet these days.

    The owner and operator of Catlantis,


  • ** The Bulletin ** – December 2, 2023

    Evenin’ y’all,

    I’ve emerged from my suffering of sickness to bring you this week’s Bulletin, which I normally stuff full of information and goodies for you. This week, it’s ever so slightly on the lighter side this week as I’m currently battling an illness (which I’ve nicknamed “The Demon Plague” in conversation with the people in my life) which thankfully isn’t COVID, BUT that’s not to say I didn’t find some interesting things to share with you. That’s all below for you as usual.

    This week, in spite of everything: I’ve been mostly focusing my energy into other things—like putting myself out there a little bit and actually talking to my friends outside of social media. I also helped fix my friend Max’s blog (successfully, might I add! does a lovely job with it and I’m glad I could help get things back on track! He’s a great guy and wonderful friend, and I hope you’ll consider reading it!) Trying (and mostly failing miserably) to beat Microsoft Windows into submission—all of which was resolved by simply reinstalling Windows 11. Oh, and, I suppose playing an unhealthy amount of Animal Crossing: Pocket Camp while I recover too.

    I’m starting to slowly feel at least somewhat normal again and can help finish my mom’s website as well as work with Oman on getting the rverse website finalized as well. (Lots of website work to close out the year, yippee!) Not sure what else I’ve got on the menu as we close out the year, though—will keep you posted on it though.

    Okay, now with all of that out of the way—I think that’s enough chit-chat: let’s get into the rest of this week’s Bulletin!

    Upcoming events

    My mom—the talented woman behind Theodessa Designs—will be present at the Holiday Market in Greenwich Junior Senior High School’s gymnasium from 10am-3pm tomorrow (December 3, 2023). I accidentally forgot to throw this into last week’s Bulletin, but put out a little thing on social media to remind everyone. My bad!

    As far as I’m aware, this is the last one she’s doing for a while—so come on down and say hey if you’re in the area!

    *Percival’s are not for sale, so sorry for the inconvenience.

    This week’s soundtrack

    I’m kind of a Spotify addict, so I happen to listen to a lot of music. Here’s what I’m currently listening to—usually on repeat. Here’s what I’ve got for you, for the week of December 2, 2023

    Thanks to Songlink for making all these streaming platform-agnostic!

    Things I found across the net

    This quip has been removed due to a copyright claim from my cats, Oscar and Beauregard.

    • Rockstar announces “Trailer 1” release date for GTA 6: After what feels like 84 years, Rockstar has announced that a trailer for the long-awaited sequel to GTA V will be releasing on Tuesday, December 5th, 2023, at 9AM Eastern Time (US). I’m curious to see what they show off!

    • 10 year old asks Apple to redesign the nerd emoji, please: Alright, kind of a cute one here—but a 10 year old from the UK named Teddy has petitioned Apple to redesign the ‘nerd’ emoji (🤓) arguing it makes people who wear glasses feel “absolutely horrible.” He even sketched a new design himself, calling it a ‘genius’ emoji instead. While I don’t know if Apple will listen, despite making international headlines, it’s adorable and they should at least send him a treat of some kind!!

    • Apple-related misinformation relating to NameDrop begins spreading, thanks to police departments across the U.S.: Well, folks, in a definitely-not-surprising turn of events, police departments across the United States are spreading misinformation relating to how Apple’s new NameDrop feature in iOS 17 works. According to a Facebook post by the City of Chester, PA Police Department, they state that the feature “allows the sharing of your contact info just by bringing your phones close together.” This isn’t true, as the feature requires not only really close proximity with the phones, but also manual confirmation upon sharing contact details. While other departments across the U.S. updated their messaging after being called out, the post from that particular police department remains unchanged, with comments disabled, further perpetuating this false information. Fun—how about we don’t do that?

    • Apple reportedly ending Goldman Sachs partnership, leaving Apple Card in limbo: As reported by The Wall Street Journal (via 9to5Mac), Apple has appeared to have pulled the plug on its partnership with Goldman Sachs, who helped build—and is the bank behind—Apple’s credit card, which launched in August 2019. The deal between the two companies was set to expire in 2029. The future of Apple Card is unclear at this time, as Apple apparently continues to work internally to find a solution for its 6.7 million cardholders (as of early 2022).

      • WEDNESDAY UPDATE: Apple made a very opaque statement about the reports to tech outlets: “Apple and Goldman Sachs are focused on providing an incredible experience for our customers to help them lead healthier financial lives. The award-winning Apple Card has seen a great reception from consumers, and we will continue to innovate and deliver the best tools and services for them.” The future of Apple Card continues to remain unclear following this statement’s release.

    • My mom made an Instagram account for her kitten: Yep, she did it—she made an Instagram for her one-year-old Maine Coon kitten Percival (mostly known as “Percy” or as I like to call him, “Perchy”) that joined our family back in February. If you want to follow it, and you totally should, his username is @percivalmainecoon! He’s adorable—and I’m very excited that this is his first Christmas with our crazy family! (If you follow me on Instagram, I’ll be sure to reshare some of the photos from his account to my own every so often, too!)

    • Android 14 gets its first “feature bundle”: Android 14 (with some backporting, too) is getting an absolutely enormous “feature bundle” (a title notably separating Feature Drops for Pixel devices and feature bundles for everyone else)—and being a recent Android reconvert from iPhone, I’m appreciative of this. Most notable in this update: Huge updates to Google Messages, an expanded emoji palette hits Emoji Kitchen on Gboard, and you can now set custom PINs for security keys, too. I linked Android Police above, but you can also check out Google’s Blog for more info. I am suspecting that, because this is not Pixel-exclusive, that this bundle of features will roll out through Google Play System Updates very soon.

    • On YouTube this week: If I’m being honest, it’s mostly just a bunch of random Doctor Who related things, but there are a couple other goodies in here, too:

    Well, that’s all I was able to put together for this week. I hope y’all enjoyed. I am well aware I owe you a couple bonus posts. I’ve already started my notes for them, so it’s just a matter of feeling up to putting everything together. That should be rather soon, assuming my recovery continues to go well! 🙂

    As always, my email is [email protected] if you’d like to get in touch. I’m also elsewhere on the internet, where you can usually find me being absolutely unhinged (although, admittedly, I’ve been pretty slow at getting back to people and updating my feeds this week due to my illness—but I’m doing my best to catch up.) If any of that interests you, I’m sorry or you’re welcome!

    Yours less sickly than he started the week,


  • ** The Bulletin ** – November 25, 2023

    Hey everyone!

    This week, I took it easy and didn’t really work on anything so that I could spend the holidays without too many outstanding projects looming over my head. As some will recall from last week’s Bulletin—I actually mentioned having turned in three of the bigger projects, which honestly took a huge weight off my shoulders for the first time in forever. I think December (and even January ‘24) is going to be rather slow compared to the rest of 2023, to be honest. I could use a little rest from all these odd jobs.

    It seems that things are lining up perfectly for The Big Thing™ I’ve been teasing and hinting at for some time now. Time is freeing itself up and the universe is lighting the way. Perhaps there will be something to share about that soon (*wink wink, nudge nudge*), but it’s a big passion project and goal of mine now, and it’s something that I will be working towards throughout the next stretch of time until it happens. Because it’s going to happen. (For real!)

    Alright, with the usual blabbering on at the beginning of this thing out of the way, here’s the latest from my world…

    Kakariko Herald took the week off so that we could spend time with family and relax during the Thanksgiving and Black Friday holidays. We’ll be back next week with more Nintendo goodness for you!

    Additionally: Kakariko Herald will not be updated from December 20-26, 2023 (America/Eastern time), in observance of the Christmas holiday.

    We hope you have a wonderful holiday season!

    Announcing my new series, Unhinged, coming soon!

    I took to Twitter on Monday to announce that my new series, Unhinged, will be coming soon to an Internet near you. Yes, everyone, it’ll be streaming for free on YouTube. The show features my friends and I, playing fictionalized versions of ourselves, as we navigate our friendships over video chat (and a bit in-person, too) now that we’re all in adulthood. It’s being written by fellow Sackett-alum Fiona White and yours truly (me), and I can’t wait to share it with you very soon!

    This week’s soundtrack

    I’m kind of a Spotify addict, so I happen to listen to a lot of music. Here’s what I’m currently listening to—usually on repeat. Here’s what I’ve got for you, for the week of November 25, 2023

    Thanks to Songlink for making all these streaming platform-agnostic!

    Things I found across the net

    Two dashes of random, three sprinkles of kiss my ass.

    • dbrand and Zach of JerryRigEverything file lawsuit against Casetify, alleging copyright infringement: A big one for you—JRE and dbrand announced on Thursday that they have filed a federal lawsuit in the United States against competitor Casetify, alleging copyright infringement relating to the pair’s Teardown collaboration. The proof was damning enough that Casetify’s website went down temporarily and came back with those designs removed, after which the company released a statement on Twitter (which was poorly received).

      • dbrand responded Friday, pointing out that they also ripped off iFixit’s images for their “X-Ray” case collection. The company’s CEO responded, thanking dbrand and Zach for bringing it to their attention. In other words, Casetify stole a bunch of stuff and is now getting sued for millions of dollars by dbrand (and maybe even iFixit). I kind of feel bad for Casetify’s legal department having to wade through all of this.

    • Pre-production Apple Watch model from 2013 found: Well, a very early model of the Apple Watch from 2013 (two years prior to the product’s introduction) has surfaced. According to 9to5Mac, it’s one of the earliest prototypes ever found of the Watch product line. Similar to other Apple prototypes, this one also happens to run a version of SwitchBoard based on iOS 8 (intended for diagnostics and testing.) How fascinating! Take a look if you have a minute!

    • I couldn’t stop cackling, so you get to see it too: Here’s a parody of Mr. Sandman wherein they man someone a sand. I’m sorry, or you’re welcome. (Thanks to Tom Scott for sharing this on your mailing list! I was legit sobbing because I was laughing so hard!)

    • Minecraft, but make it sound exactly like it was released in 1996: Also in the music department, YouTube user TABBY has made an absolute treat—Minecraft: Volume Alpha, but with Super Mario 64’s music and sound effects. It sounds quite lovely, actually, and thus I had to share it with all of you.

    • Aero cursors, but in high definition: If you want a better looking mouse cursor on your Windows computer, might I suggest oxou’s Windows Modern Cursors repository on GitHub? I use the Modern Aero White variant at x1.0 and it looks so much better than the default cursor on Windows 10 (even though a huge part of me wants to move to Linux). Definitely give it a try if you want something fresh, but familiar, too!

    • Every wondered how much it costs to run a messaging app?: One of the best messaging apps that literally no one I know uses besides my grandfather, Signal, is an expensive app to run—we’re talking in the neighborhood of $14 million a year. They talk more about this in their blog post on the topic, and it’s a good read if you ever happened to wonder how much it costs your favorite services to operate… (it’s certainly pricey.)

    • iOS 18 slated to include “major new features and designs” — among other things: Via MacRumors’ roundup on the iOS 18 update set to be announced at WWDC 2024: among the features includes the long-awaited support for RCS, the spiritual successor to the antiquated technologies of SMS and MMS. Give the article a read if you want to see everything that’s rumored and expected in the update coming to your local iPhone next year!

      • (And full disclosure for ethics reasons, Joe Rossignol wrote the article I’m linking here—and he happens to follow me elsewhere on the internet—but he didn’t ask me to share this at all. Joe, nor MacRumors, did not ask me to promote this to my readers. I just thought it was worth the share!)

    And that’s it for this week’s updates. I’m sure there’s a lesson in here about not being weird in public, but let’s be honest, it’s me we’re talking about.

    Friendly reminder that my email is [email protected] — feel free to send me an email to say hi or whatever. Maybe even share some cool stuff I might not have seen! My inbox is open to whatever you’ve got for me. (Within reason, of course…)

    Very excited for what’s in store,