James Mead by James Mead

Week 458 - Interesting links

Learning from the design of railway systems

I really enjoyed reading this article by Nat Buckley, particularly the bit about “making mistakes impossible (or at least unlikely)”. The last time I travelled on the Cumbrian Coast line from Carlisle to Whitehaven (some years ago), they were still using a physical token passed from the signalman to the driver to control access to the sections of single track. JM

Git for Humans – Alice Bartlett at UX Brighton 2016

In this talk I think Alice does a great job of demystifying git to an audience of designers. JM

Don’t Design Your Emails

I was pleased to read that “plain emails not only save time but work better”. This article describes a trial in which half the recipients received an HTML email and the other half a plain text email. The plain text email had 3.3 times more clicks than the HTML email! JM


I’ve been playing with Termux on my phone. “Termux is an Android terminal emulator and Linux environment app that works directly with no rooting or setup required”. I’ve also installed the Hackers Keyboard to make it easier to type escape characters and use modifier keys. I have no idea what I’m going to do with this, but it’s certainly fun to run emacs and an irb session on the bus. CL

Signal K

Marine instrumentation has historically been proprietary and overly expensive. So I’m pleased to see a group of developers setup this free and open-source data exchange standard to compete with the proprietary ones. JM

Ambient Shipping

This project captures AIS messages broadcast by passing ships to obtain identity, position, course & speed, and joins the data up with public data sets that reveal what the ships are carrying. Very cool! JM

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