Chris Roos by Chris Roos

Week 400 - Interesting links

On the Yak Shaving Habits of a Writer

Entertaining post about the author’s battle with a number of things that suddenly became important when it was time to sit down and write. CR

Zen: Distraction free writing plugin for Atom

On the subject of distractions. I found this great Atom plugin when I was supposed to be writing a blog post recently. CR

Tom Armitage: Weeks 183-186

I’ll finish up my writing-related links with a quote from Tom’s post:

I’m a little concerned when weeknotes slip – sometimes, it’s just because I’m busy, and after a long week the idea of writing them out of office hours isn’t always super-appealing. For me, the utility is not just the act of doing them, but looking back on them later. So there’s still value to handing in work late, as it were. I’m going to try to get back into some better patterns in the coming weeks, but balancing reporting/documentation with Doing The Work is important, and the former is taking priority a little at the moment. Busy is good, though, and hopefully that’ll continue.

We’ve currently got a bit of a backlog of unwritten weeknotes and it made me feel slightly better to realise that we’re not alone in our struggle to keep them up to date! CR

GitLab - Team Handbook

GitLab intend this to be their central repository for how they run the company. I also recently came across the Hanno Playbook which is a similar idea. We’ve previously made some of our internal wiki public. We had intended this to be a gradual process, but our progress on it seems to have stalled, so we probably need to have a re-think in order to make sure this really happens. JM


This is a crowd-funded project by Cornell University to design and build a flock of tiny single-board spacecraft called Sprites. These will be launched in a 3U CubeSat as part of NASA’s ELaNa programme. I’m fascinated by this project and hope to follow its progress. JM

People’s Ride

This is a co-op ride-hailing company in Grand Rapids, Michigan. While competitors like Uber take 30% commission from their drivers and pays them to investors, People’s Ride uses all the revenue to pay drivers and improve the service. JM

Why Are Computers

After almost 3 years of hiatus, Tom Stuart’s podcast has recently burst back into life. I’ve only listened to a couple of episodes, but they’ve been really interesting. I’m also really impressed by the quality of the editing and the excellent transcripts! JM

Monzo: We Are Now a Bank

Having chatted to Tom Blomfield (now Monzo CEO) a couple of years ago about creating a new bank from scratch, we’ve been really interested to follow Monzo’s progress. It’s great to see them become an official bank and we wish them well for the future. I’ve been interested to follow the How to get a banking licence thread on their forum and I hope they are able to share more about their experience of the process. JM

Living in the Himalayas

I loved reading this article by a digital nomad, Thomas Buckley-Houston, who’s been living in Leh, the capital of the Ladakh region of North India. It looks like a beautiful place to be, even if his internet connection isn’t good enough for him to work remotely. JM

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