Wiser Web Wednesday

Wiser Web Wednesday – a semi-regular link to posts of interest from around the web, by those far wiser than myself:


Pen Economics
After this week passing the one year mark for the site, some more insightful commentary from Dr Deans on the nature of competition in that fabulous market that is fountain pens:

But I’d say that growth in the popularity of pens, and better economic education of the community, is likely to lead to more and better-discerning consumers. As long as that continues, I think we’re likely to see brands becoming more competitive and better deals for buyers.

I also think a better-discerning consumer is not stuck in a buy, buy, buy mentality. Better deals and better decision-making would seem to be the killer combination:
Competition in the Fountain Pen Market


Relay FM
Canvas, a new podcast hits the airwaves on Relay FM:

Hosted by Federico Viticci and Fraser Speirs, Canvas is a podcast all about mobile productivity. Armed with iOS, Federico and Fraser will be walking through workflows, exploring the best apps for the iPad and iPhone and helping users solve problems.

Upon listening to the tone and approach of the first episode, I am looking forward to what is coming on this show. Do I need (or even want) to get really geeky with iOS? Do I use iOS for tasks simply to show they can be done? Neither on both counts.

The simple fact of the matter is that I am away from home every workday from 7am until after 6pm, and considerably more than half of the writing, research, and general doings for this blog and many other non-job related activities occurs on iOS. A good working knowledge of what is available to do these activities goes a long way in tweaking workflows and processes without having to necessarily test out a bunch of apps myself.

I’d say this should help that knowledge pool:


Agile Bits
A couple of nice updates to kick off the new year to 1Password for iOS and Mac, which I use each and every day to manage my Passwords. I’ve nothing more specific to say other than this suite of apps is quite simply the most used across both my Mac and iOS devices, and are the reason I have confidence in the strength and integrity of the numerous online accounts I have. Well, at least the integrity of my logins any way.

I suspect many reading this are already aware of 1Password, however if not, or you are looking for a better solution, I’d highly recommend checking it out:


Matt Gemmell
Matt’s invitation to join his site’s membership, of which I have been a paid subscriber for the past year or so, having just received weekly newsletter number 47 a couple of days ago.

Towards the bottom of the post you’ll see a testimonial I wrote a little while ago outlining my thoughts on being a member (which remain the same today).

There are numerous sites following these types of programmes, and at times it can be difficult to choose where to place your hard-earned money. I am happy with the choices I’ve made in this regard, and look forward to my “Monday nights with Matt” (because time zones) when the newsletter arrives each week in my inbox:
Site Membership for 2016


Perfect Daily Grind
In attempting to obtain more consistency in my espresso making at home, I weigh the dose going into the portafilter, and when I have a little more time (on weekends or if I’m running early of a morning), check the yield by weight as well. When I think about it however, it really takes no more time to weigh the output — it just seems like it does.

However that’s me. Making two espresso based drinks each morning (let’s not go into my weekend morning tally), one for myself and one for my wife. Any resemblance to what is being discussed in this article? None.

Suffice to say, I am very interested in a professional’s view on these types of things, and how they manage to achieve such feats in face of an unrelenting caffeine deprived mob first thing in the morning:
Weighing Espresso Shots in Service: Insanity or Essential?


As a coffee enthusiast, I am sure I am perhaps perceived as this guy.

Though I can assure you I’m not, it is just one of those things any enthusiast encounters on a regular basis, irrespective of the particular interest.

I speak with utmost sincerity when I say there really is no need to preface asking if I want coffee with “it’s not very good/it’s not what you’re used too/it’s only…”.

My reply? A simple yes, or no thanks — nil judgement applied, every time.

Unless of course, you are that guy:
When Your Friend Is A Coffee Snob


The Clicky Post
Vintage pens haven’t really been my thing, in part because my knowledge of them is so limited I’d have no idea where to start, nor what might constitute a good deal. That said, without going overboard on price, I guess that isn’t necessarily the whole point is it.

A nice piece from here by Mike, which I think probably highlights one of the more satisfying aspects of delving into vintage pens — the knowledge acquisition which results from digging a little deeper.

A great looking pen to boot:
My Vintage Parker 61 Jet Flighter Fountain Pen Experience


The Pen Haul
A thorough review of the Kaweco Sport Fountain Pen. I must admit to not having the same issues with the medium nib on my Ice Sport, which, along with the Classic rollerball are two of my favourite pocket pens.

Sometimes it is a shame when some of those pens we love so much get pushed down the list a little as more come into our collections. Perhaps its time to stick them back in my pocket again:
Kaweco Sport Review


From the Pen Cup
Although at present I sit in the don’t-own-and-haven’t-ordered-either camp when it comes to the Hobonichi Techo, I’m always interested to hear how others use them.

You never know, perhaps one day:
A Practice: My Hobonichi Techo


While I enjoy the odd glass of whisky, I must admit to not specifically keeping a sharp eye on the next big release — for financial as much as practical reasons.

Apparently Ireland is one place to cast my gaze, and I have enjoyed watching along on Twitter as the Waterford Distillery came together over the past year, culminating in the birth of a new single malt in December. Clearly we’ll be waiting a little while to taste the fruits of this particular segment of labour, however some general trends are forecast for both ‘ey’ and my preferred ‘y’ varieties in 2016:
Here’s What 2016 Will Hold for Whiskey

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