The Demanding-More-Features Edition Sunday, May 6, 2018

At Top Of WorkFlowly Founder’s To-do List: Keeping His App’s Cult-like Following Happy, by Tony Lystra, Geekwire

It wasn’t your usual Silicon Valley product announcement, but this isn’t a typical app. WorkFlowy is basically a cloud-based list-making program with a cult-like following. Unlike other apps, like OneNote or Omnifocus, WorkFlowy places almost zero restrictions on how you organize your ideas. Just open it up and start typing. People speak of the way WorkFlowy structures information not as technology so much as religion.

But the app has hardly changed in its eight years, and calls for new features have grown louder among the WorkFlowy faithful. A feature-rich but less-charming WorkFlowy clone called Dynalist has been siphoning away customers. And in recent years, some have questioned whether WorkFlowy is even in development anymore. It’s not difficult to see why Patel and his team would be feeling a little beat up these days.

Now, Patel, 37, is rebooting WorkFlowy with new features and a smoother interface. He faces a tough challenge: How to win over customers demanding more features while staying true to the thing purists love most about WorkFlowy — its bare-bones simplicity.

Screen Guilt? Kiwi-made App Makes Kids Earn Tech-time, by Jamie Morton, New Zealand Herald

Research shows nine out of 10 Kiwi kids aged between 10 and 14 gaze at screens for longer than the recommended two hours each day.

More alarmingly, most have no limit at all on the time they spend playing computer games, using their phones, or browsing the internet.

Now, one Kiwi family has come up with their own clever solution: a home-made app that makes kids earn screen-time, while ensuring they get enough play, human interaction and space to get their homework done.

Warren Buffett Wants Apple To Spend Its Cash Buying More Apple Shares, Not On Mega-deals, by Peter Kafka, Recode

The Berkshire Hathaway CEO, who makes a point of saying he doesn’t understand technology, now owns a large slug of Apple stock. And he says he likes Apple’s plan, announced last week, to spend $100 billion buying its own shares.

It’s a better idea, he says, than spending that money on other companies, which have the disadvantage of not being Apple.

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What am I reading currently: David Allen's Getting Things Done. I've read and hear so much about this GTD thing, but, I just realized, I haven't actually read the actual book yet.

What am I watching currently: BBC's Sherlock. Series 4. I quite agree with some of the negative reviews I've read. What a mess of a first episode.

What am I listening currently: Carlo Rovelli's The Order of Time. Read to me by Benedict Cumberbatch. I am so savoring this.


Thanks for reading.