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Earliest: Latest: April 19, 2020Total: 57
April 19, 2020

Massachusetts Schools

Tomorrow Massachusetts Governor Charlie Baker may announce the status of the Public Schools during the Corrona Crisis. School in Massachusetts have been closed since March 13th - some even earlier than that.

Many School districts have worked hard to get distance learning up and running. It has been a challenge for students, teachers, and parents. Some cases it has worked, and in others, it has been challenging.

Some school districts were slow to implement distance learning, for example, Framingham schools students distance learning programs were delayed for 2-weeks.

Empty School Corridor
Massachusetts School Halls may stay empty until August 2020.

Decision Time

Currently 31 states and Washington D.C. has recommended that schools be closed for the rest of the school year.

Charlie Baker has commented publicly that he doesn't want to cancel school for the rest of the year. He has said that closing schools will make things more complicated.

Decision on the Massachusetts schools will come this week.

Baker Sending Out Hints?

Reading between the lines, it's pretty certain that kids aren't going back in May. Charlie Baker on April 17, 2020, :

?If you could wave a magic wand, which we can?t, I believe that the vast majority of school systems and school district leaders would like to see the kids back at some point before the end of the year,? Baker

Other Events To Watch

These are other events that I am watching to see if they are impacted by the COVID-19:

  • 2020 Republican National Convention (Scheduled for August 24-27 in Charlotte, North Carolina)
  • 2020 Democratic National Convention (Moved to August 17-20 in Milwaukee)
  • Fourth of July in Boston
  • Start of the Major League Baseball Season
  • Opening of Disneyland and Disney World
March 29, 2020

Corona Virus Update

Here?s a recap of the events that happened this past week, in the world of COVID-19.

Massachusetts Numbers

Massachusetts started the week with 646 confirmed cases. By Saturday there were 4,257 confirmed cases. On Friday, the state started publishing the number of people being tested. Interesting enough only 8% of those that got tested were positive.

It will be interesting to see if that percentage goes up by the end of this week.

Massachusetts has a population of 6.902 Million. Which means that .06 % of the population of Massachusetts has the Corona Virus.

Empty Stop Shop 2020
Empty Shelves show that Paper Products are still high demand.

View from the Front Lines

This afternoon I ventured out to Stop & Shop in Framingham. I was surprised that their meat department was well stocked. However, Eggs and Paper good (Paper Towels and Napkins) were empty. The pasta aisle was also hard hit.

I did find a 5-gallon bottle of Poland Spring water and some yummy ice cream.

How Long will it Go?

President Donald Trump extended federal guidelines recommending people to stay home for another 30 days until the end of April to prevent the spread of the virus. This is an extension of the original 15-day guideline that was issued a couple of weeks ago.

Massachusetts currently has a "Stay-At-Home Advisory." Maine is the only New England state to not have a Stay at Home Statewide order. Portland, Maine is the only city with a Stay at home advisor.

At least 229 million people in at least 26 states, 66 counties, 14 cities are being advised to stay home. This represents about 70% of the approximately 327.2 million people in the United States.

Schools in Massachusetts will be closed through May 4th. There are rumors that schools in Connecticut will not open this school season. Massachusetts Governor would like to see the schools in Massachusetts to open before the summer sessions.

Palm Sunday San Francisco
Palms at St. Dominic's Catholic Church

Palm Sunday

Most churches around the country will be closed for Palm Sunday next week. I really enjoyed how the St. Dominic's Catholic Church in San Francisco displays their Palms. They have four large palms in the middle of the church as a bridge as people walk in.

The above picture is from 2000.

December 29, 2019

Open Topic Posts of 2019

Lots of good open Sunday posts in 2019. I didn't get to spend too much time putting together as much creative content that I would have liked.

Best Weekly Sunday Posts

Here are the nine posts that are worth checking out again:

Top 5 Open Topic Posts of 2019

Year in Review

Open Topic Sunday is very hard to do. It's really hard to come up with some creative posts that people will enjoy. If there's anything that you want to share - or for me to investigate - leave a comment.

In 2020, I may focus on some sights in some New England towns and people around New England. One thing I won't do is wait until the last minute to come up with a generic post.

September 15, 2019

September 15th

September 15 is a special day. Here are some fun facts about this day.


Fun Facts about September 15th

  • September 15, 1969 was a Monday
  • Zodiac Sign for this date is: Virgo
  • This date was 18,262 days ago
  • September 15th 2020 is on a Tuesday
  • Someone born on this date is 50 years old

If you were born on this date:

  • You've slept for 6,087 days or 17 years!
  • Your next birthday is 366 days away
  • You've been alive for 438,288 hours
  • You were born on a Monday in mid September
  • You are 26,297,280 minutes old
  • Your next birthday is on a Tuesday

Famous Celebrities Born on September 15th

  • Jolin Tsai -b. September 15, 1980
  • Agatha Christie - b. September 15, 1890,
  • Norman Spinrad - b. September 15, 1940
  • James Fenimore Cooper - b. September 15, 1789
  • Prince Harry - b. September 15, 1984
  • Marco Polo - b. September 15, 1254

Major Events

  • 1862 ? American Civil War: Confederate forces capture Harpers Ferry, Virginia
  • 1916 ? World War I: Tanks are used for the first time in battle, at the Battle of the Somme.
  • 1935 ? Nazi Germany adopts a new national flag bearing the swastika.
  • 2008 ? Lehman Brothers files for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, the largest bankruptcy filing in U.S. history.

You Special Day?

If today is your special day, leave a comment below and share!

July 7, 2019

DayOne Journal

The best way to create content for a blog is to use the Day One app.

I started using DayOne as my primary Blog content creation and planning tool since April 29, 2019. I have found that It's been very easy to organize my content and plan things out.

Previously I was using Trello and Evernote to plan content. I found it hard to get an idea on upcoming

Blogging Day One

Five Things I Learned Blogging with DayOne App

  1. Very easy to add content on my iPhone XS Max or Macintosh computer.
  2. Limited formatting capabilities - there's no tables or fancy text features. Which is fine, because I can always touch up the content before posting. DayOne lets me focus on the content first.
  3. Change the Date - I can change the date of any Journal entry. This is huge because now I can prep up a future post whenever I want.
  4. Multiple Journal Views - I can view the Journal entries by a brief summary, Photo Thumbnails, Locations or by Monthly Calendar. I like the Monthly Calendar because I can easily jump to the blog post of the day.
  5. You can have multiple Journals! I created an Idea Journal for when I come up with future blog ideas. I tag the idea based on the blog category. That way in the future if I am looking for a blog idea on a particular topic I can just go here. I can also save related photos and videos - so I don?t have to go searching for them.
June 16, 2019

Bootstrap 4

I am in the process of moving this site to use Bootstrap 4. Currently the site is built using Bootstrap 3.

Two major issues that I face with this upgrade:

No more Panels

In Bootstrap 4, panel feature is gone. I have used this just about every place on this site. I?ll be replacing all the Panels with Bootstrap Cards.

This also means that the random panel and random well are now legacy. I?ll replace them with a random card generator.

Legacy Bootstrap Template

I purchased a Bootstrap Template from Creative Market and this DESIGN won?t work under Bootstrap 4. Most likely I?ll come up with my own style.

, For now, the site will use the basic Bootstrap look and feel, I?ll migrate to different design later in July.

Looking Forward To the Migration

I am looking forward to updating the site look and feel and more excited about all the new features in Bootstrap 4. BBEdit makes it easy to do search and replace using Text Filters.

December 30, 2018

Top 8 Open Topic Posts of 2018

Sunday posts are an open topic day, it's a chance to blog about something that doesn't fit in any of the regular categories.

Top 8 Sunday Post of 2018

You may not agree with these, but these are the post that stands out from all other Sunday posts.

  1. Mr. Clean Magic Eraser in a Pool Skimmer - The most popular Blog post of 2018. Lots of people talking about this on various social media channels.
  2. Mystery at the Breakers Mansion - Second most popular blog post. Is there writing on the painting? If so, what does it say? Watch the video.
  3. Palmco Energy - Still getting calls with them wanting me to switch over.
  4. iPhone Xs Plus Video - Check out the video quality of the iPhone XS Max vs the iPhone 6s Plus. Can't wait to see what technology Apple will come up with in a few years.
  5. The Dog Treatery - Gluten Free birthday cake for dogs. Yes they do exist.
  6. Framingham Commuter Rail Tips - If your new to the Framingham/Worcester line. Here are some tips to help make your travels safe.
  7. AAA Trip Tik Booklets - Comparing the 1990s AAA Trip Tik to todays. There's lots of differences and your better off using Waze than look at paper maps.
  8. Fixing a Green Pool Quickly - How to quickly fix a Green pool so that its safe to swim in a few days later.
June 3, 2018

Hidden Treasures

This month?s blog theme is Hidden Treasures. From hidden features in Keyboard Maestro to sites in Boston, you?ll surely learn something new every day.

Example Hidden Feature in Apple Photo.

Did you know you can add GPS search queries to Photos smart groups? Adding GPS filters can help filter images/videos.

Some practical examples:

  • Movies taken at Disney World
  • Photos taken in Boston
  • Photos taken in the state of Florida

In Smart Groups, the way you filter images/movies is by using the Text field. Here?s a sample query:

H Idden Feature

Hope you enjoy all the cool hidden treasures that are revealed this month!

May 6, 2018

A-Z Challenge - 2018 - Reflection

This is my third year as part of the A to Z challenge. It was a lot of fun coming up with practical content with a unique letter every day. Obviously, I didn't want to repost old content.


Things I learned new this year

  • Advanced content planning helped a lot. There were a few last minute content changes that had to be made due to the lack of information (or the chosen topic wasn?t interesting.) I started planning in early March.
  • The alphabetic letters for Thursday were the same as last year. It was a bit challenging since Thursday is Boston day and this is the third year that I have been doing this.
  • I learned a lot about Quaker Ave, and would not have learned anything about it had it not been for the A-Z challenge.
  • It was hard to come up with topics for the letters ?G' and ?V? and I had to get a bit creative to blog something interesting. I didn't want to throw up a page just because.
  • I certainly wouldn?t do Evernote as a blog topic again. It's not a good topic with a lot of different alphabetic words.
  • There were 697 participants this year. Which is a good turnout.

What to do differently in 2019

  • Come up with better graphics
  • Work with other people to come up with useful topics
  • Post early as possible. It was a lot easier to chunk multiple topics than to spend time writing one topic.
  • Plan the topics a head of time. Make sure to pick something that has lots of choices.
  • Challenge yourself to do something that you wouldn't normally do. For example: Talk to an expert about a topic/idea.

Interesting Facts

Here's the break down of the number of words by first letter in the Unix dictionary (/etc/dict) by number of words:

a 14,537 m 10,709
b 9,675 n 6,098
c 17,406 o 7,219
d 9,946 p 2,2171
e 7,818 q 1,075
f 6,382 r 8,955
g 5,843 s 22,759
h 7,889 t 11,389
i 8,303 u 16,179
j 1,158 v 3,079
k 1,735 w 3,607
l 5,211 x 293
m 10,709 y 532
n 6,098 z 719

Its interesting to see which words have the fewest letters.

What do you think? Did the content in April meet expectations? Any ideas about what topics to write about for next year?

April 1, 2018

A-Z Challenge - 2018

It's April, and that means that it's time for this years A-Z Challenge.

This is the third year that I have participated in the challenge. Check out all the past A-Z posts on a special page that I have set up.

What is the A-Z Blogging Challenge

The A-Z Blogging Challenge is to have bloggers post something related to the letter of the day. Most bloggers don't post every day so this can hard to balance life and quality blog posts.

In addition, it can be tricky to come up with topics for certain letters - q, x, y, and z.

Topics This Year

Here is the weekly topic schedule:

MondayQA MondayPractical Tips/Information with Quality Assurance Testing.
TuesdayEvernoteTips and Tricks with the popular Evernote productivity tool
WednesdayArubaWe'll be vacationing in Aruba soon, thought it would be good to learn about the country before our trip.
ThursdayBostonLearn some detail information about sites in Boston, Massachusetts.
FridayMacintoshVarious tips and tricks that I have learned related to Macintosh Hardware or Software.
SaturdayInternet ToolsProfile of some useful Internet tools to make your job easier.
WeekendsAnything GoesOpen topic! I usually find something interesting to post.

My Personal Challenge

Here's what I am committed to delivering this month:

  • Orginal Content - Most of the content is already exclusive to this site. I will continue to seek to have orginal content and also focus on finding challenging topics that people have written about.
  • On Time Delivery - All post should be live by 3pm EST.
  • Creative Graphics - Come up with some cool graphics that engages people into the topic.

I already have much of the month content mapped out - something different that I haven't done in the past.

Getting Topic Ideas by Letters

Some of the resources where I got topic ideas:

  • Boston Public Library - great books on whats going on in Boston.
  • Tumblr Search - Easy to search for topics.
  • Twitter Posts - people asking questions
  • Google Autocomplete - Type in a topic in the search bar and a letter to find interesting ideas.
  • Personal Collection - lots of ideas that I gathered over the year.