How to follow topics on Mastodon

I said in a recent video that it is harder to find people to follow on Mastodon than it is on traditional social media because there’s no amplification of posts or people. I also mentioned that, despite the discoverability issue, I’m still enjoying it, but I didn’t explain my strategy.

I’m basically following hashtags (see video-tutorial below) and paying attention to the posts showing up in my timeline. When I see an interesting post, I usually check the person’s profile and other posts before deciding if I want to follow them. But I recently found another option, the Fedi.Directory, which is a list of accounts that are grouped by topic.

Why not an Apple Watch or Wear OS?

Before the Apple Watch, there was the Pebble (image below). I loved that smartwatch, but the end was inevitable, the company eventually went bankrupt, and was sold to Fitbit. The final nail in the coffin was the watch being discontinued, and the servers turned off.

Without the servers, many features would stop working, and the experience wouldn’t be the same. To save us, a group of enthusiasts created Rebble to bring life back to the Pebble. I appreciate what they did, but it’s not the same. Our watches would inevitably get old and parts would break.

Long story short, I could never find a smartwatch alternative that would check all the boxes: waterproof, buttons instead of touch screen, e-ink display, long-lasting battery, health sensors, and good quality build. I ended-up moving to a G-Shock, that I absolutely love. However, it was not a complete experience. I was constantly missing the health sensors.

It was only recently that I came across an alternative from Garmin. Yes, I completely missed the original Instinct release. But that’s ok. I recently got the Instinct 2, and I’m thrilled. Not only it checks all the boxes, it looks like the G-Sock I was wearing.

A new old Apple IIe

The Apple II was the first computer I ever used. This is a IIe I recently got on eBay, but unfortunately, it is not working. When I plugged it in, I saw smoke coming from what, I think, is a capacitor on the C15 position on the board. Next step, figure out what that part actually is and order a replacement.

Apple IIe

I have no experience with electronics, multimeters etc. This is definitely going to be a long-term adventure.

Human Driving

I lived in this world where most of the cars were self-driving. So much so that I was one of hardly any people still actually driving. For some reason the awake me can’t understand, I was not happy with all those autonomous vehicles and commissioned a bumper sticker to protest:


When I woke-up and was proudly sharing my brilliant sticker idea with my wife, it occurred to me how silly that was. After all, no self-driving car would ever read it.

By the way, I love the idea of a world where no humans drive. Or at least I thought so.

Spring 2022

As in so many other countries, the first of May is Labor Day in Portugal. However, there’s also an old tradition linked to this date. It’s known as “Dia das Maias” (Maias’ Day). In fact, it all starts on the 30th of April, when people put yellow genisteae bushes outside windows and front doors.

There are several theories that explain the origins of this tradition, most of them connected to religion. As an amateur gardener, what resonates with me the most is the symbolism of the end of the winter.

🌱 I love the way plants respond to spring. It feels so magic.

Unfortunately, we don’t have giestas amarelas (yellow genisteae) bushes, but my wife picked-up some yellow flowers early today when she was walking our dog.

It feels like driving on a highway not wearing a seat belt

When I arrived at the checkout counter, all the other cashiers were teasing him. I only understood all that buzz when I looked up. He wasn’t wearing a mask.

I was aware that the government was discussing new measures that day, but my brain took a while to assimilate that a store employee, that person right in front of me, wasn’t wearing a mask. He had this wonderful happiness face, replying to his friends:

—No, I’m not going to wear it anymore.

That was a great smile. Made my day. 

Starting on the last last 21st, masks in Portugal are only mandatory on public transportation and health related situations, like hospitals, home care, etc.

It’s remarkable how we humans get used to new habits. It’s a week after the new rules, and it still feels like something is not quite right when I enter a store without my mask.

😯 Feels like driving on a highway, not wearing a seat belt.