Monthly Archives: May 2019

I hated the most recent episode of Game of Thrones but it has stayed with me all week

Now I’ve completely changed my mind. It’s great TV.

All the flaws are still there but, I can’t shake the image of Dany, who we thought would be a kind and wise Queen, cruelly and unnecessarily firebombing King’s Landing, either on whim or as a strategic decision.

It doesn’t matter why she did it, because that’s not what the episode was about. It was about putting yourself in the position of an average citizen of King’s Landing, a baker or blacksmith, watching your home and children burn because an orphan from across the sea decided she deserved to be queen and has a dragon to back her up.

Think that’s just fantasy? Ask someone who lived in Hiroshima or Syria or the Ukraine or Dresden or a Muslim who lives in China.

The central theme of Game of Thrones has always been that you don’t know who is going to win the game, but you surely know who loses, and those are the regular people unfortunate enough to be caught on the board when the gameplay starts.

Question about Facebook Live video for Pages

I volunteer for the local Democratic club. Part of my responsibility for them has been to stream meetings live over Facebook, on our Facebook page. I use my iPhone XS for that. I want to stream it in landscape mode, of course, holding the phone horizontally.

My problem is I have not been able to do that. Facebook will only stream the video in portrait mode. It looks terrible.

I’ve done some googling on this subject, and found you have to start Facebook with the phone in landscape mode before starting the video; but even when I do that, the video insists on going in portrait mode. Have you encountered this problem and found a fix for it?

Separately but related: which do you find the best video platform for live video, Facebook or YouTube? I would prefer to switch to YouTube, but really I need to be where most of the community is.

Tricks for getting more hours from a MacBook Pro battery

My job often requires me to work for many hours at an unplugged laptop. I’ve picked up a few tricks for making the battery last longer. None of these are particularly brilliant, but they’re very helpful:

  • Turn off WiFi. That’s a big battery suck right there. In practice, I end up turning it on again briefly if I need to check something, then turning it right off again.
  • Likewise, dim the screen as far as I can still read it. That’s one or two ticks up from completely dark.
  • When I’m not typing, I shut the screen off manually. I close the lid if I think it’s going to be a while, and for short periods I have a hot corner set up to shut off the screen when I move the mouse to the bottom right corner.
  • Use Activity Monitor to find which apps are using the most energy and shut them down. For me, that’s Google Chrome and Microsoft Teams.

By taking these four measures, I was able to get about nine hours’ usage out of my MacBook Pro on Monday.

Do you have any tricks for getting more out of a laptop battery? I’m told shutting off Bluetooth helps, but in practice I haven’t found it to matter much. And I’m also told that Chromebooks can easily get 10+ hours of battery life without having to do any tricks at all.