Unraveling the JPEG

“Unraveling the JPEG” is a great deep dive into the JPEG image format.

This article is about how to decode a JPEG image. In other words, it’s about what it takes to convert the compressed data stored on your computer to the image that appears on the screen. It’s worth learning about not just because it’s important to understand the technology we all use everyday, but also because, as we unravel the layers of compression, we learn a bit about perception and vision, and about what details our eyes are most sensitive to.

Comes with interactive editors which allow you to adjust the JPEG data, and directly see how it affects the image.

Great stuff to play with!

Unraveling the JPEG →


Yesterday, next to revealing a $999 monitor stand, Apple announced SwiftUI which got me quite excited.

SwiftUI is an innovative, exceptionally simple way to build user interfaces across all Apple platforms with the power of Swift. Build user interfaces for any Apple device using just one set of tools and APIs. With a declarative Swift syntax that’s easy to read and natural to write, SwiftUI works seamlessly with new Xcode design tools to keep your code and design perfectly in sync.

The code samples feels very React Native like imho:

List(landmarks) { landmark in
   HStack {
      if landmark.isFavorite {
         Image(systemName: "star.fill")

As @orta noted:

SwiftUI →

🤔 Wondering how fast one could build stuff when SwiftUI is combined with the also announced Combine Framework

The Economics of Open Source // Introducing Entropic, a federated package registry

At JSConf EU 2019, CJ Silverio – former CTO at NPM Inc – gave this talk on why a VC-funded private package registry (read: the one ran by NPM Inc) holds many dangers.

The JS package commons is in the hands of a for-profit entity. We trust NPM Inc with our shared code, but we have no way to hold NPM Inc accountable for its behavior. A trust-based system cannot function without accountability, but somebody still has to pay for the servers. How did we get here, and what should JavaScript do now?

At the end of the talk she announced Entropic, a federated package registry for anything; but mostly JavaScript.

Entropic assumes many registries co-existing and interoperating as a part of your normal workflow. All Entropic packages are namespaced, and a full Entropic package spec also includes the hostname of its registry.

Entropic: a federated package registry for anything →

macOS Mojava: Disable the floating screenshot thumbnail (using defaults write)

A tweet that’s been making rounds this week is on how to disable macOS Mojave’s floating screenshot preview thumbnail (and remove that delay along with it).

Nice, but there’s also a way to do this from the CLI:

defaults write com.apple.screencapture show-thumbnail -bool FALSE
killall SystemUIServer

There, much better 😉

Happy Screenshotting! 📸

☝ I’ve also added this tweak to ./freshinstall, a tool which I built to automatically configure my MacBook (Preferences, Dotfiles, Installed Software, etc)

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The Disco Invention that Changed Pop Music

I’ve been enjoying – and have linked to – the videos by Vox quite a lot, especially those from Vox Earworm. This video on how disco’s newly invented vinyl format – the 12-inch single – revolutionized pop music in the ’70s, is something right up my alley:

ℹ️ Embedding the Facebook version because the YouTube version is down due to a copyright claim …

Including content from other files in your HTML (“HTML Includes”)

Nice find by Scott Jehl from Filament Group: Instead of fetching files over XHR and then injecting their contents, you can also use an iframe + leverage its onload event to include the contents of any other file directly into the current web page.

  onload="this.before((this.contentDocument.body || this.contentDocument).children[0]);this.remove()"

The example above loads up a .svg, but you can also use it to include other pieces of markup. Above that you can combine it with [loading="lazy"].

This is “Server Side Includes” all over again 😅

HTML Includes That Work Today →

Alfa Mist – Mulago

Stunning track by Alfa Mist, from their latest album Structuralism:

This track should’ve lasted at least twice as long … great vibe.

Via Jurriaan (who went to Roeselare Jazz last week, posted some photos/videos praising Alfa Mist their performance on Instagram, thus piquing my interest …)