You may have noticed that I’ve adapted my popular version 10 layout into a lifestream1. I quite enjoy the concept of the lifestream, where you can see a person’s latest activity that’s up-to-date by the minute. A change like this means a bump up to a full sub-version number, 10.3
The key to all of this is my new iPhone 3GS. The technology has roughly caught up to my needs, so I decided to get one this year. Apple tends to announce new iPhone generations every summer, which means I’ve been planning this design update for months now.
So with this fancy new iPhone I can write tweets on-the-go, stay up-to-date on the people I follow, and check my @replies, all with the Tweetie application2. I once had my tweets integrated into the blog, but decided not to stick with this because the frequency with which I use twitter meant that the sheer number of tweets was flooding my RSS feed. Then one day, the realization dawned on me to exclude that one category from my feed, et voila! A simple workaround that lets people subscribe to my twitter stream if they so choose.
I can also take pictures with the built-in iPhone camera and e‑mail them to Flickr directly from the phone, which will automatically create a WordPress post and embed the picture in the entry3. And coincidentally enough, the maximum width for images posted to Flickr is 500 pixels, which happens to be exactly how wide the main column of my blog is. It’s like it was meant to be.
So there are two new categories: one for tweets, and one for snaps. Both of them display with CSS styling unique to each category and an icon to denote the type of post. A note on the “snaps” icon; I tried to find something that would represent both a camera and an iPhone, because the iPhone isn’t a pure camera, nor is it just a phone. I decided to use the camera app icon built into the iPhone, which says both. There are no comments allowed on these entries because I don’t care for discussion on such fleeting things. If someone really wanted to comment, they could post a reply through twitter, or a comment through Flickr.
So unlike most other life streams, this blog is not exactly an aggregator of various service feeds because there’s a unique WordPress blog entry created for every one of my Flickr posts and tweets as well, each one retrieved from within the WordPress loop. I did this to retain a little independence from services like Flickr or twitter; if I ever chose not to use them anymore, my blog won’t explode into a ball of fire with all the missing entries.
With all of this snazzy integration in place, I can post things quickly and on-the-fly, as long as I have internet access. Which is almost anywhere, now that I have a 3G data plan. Version 10.3 is a reflection of that.
With my ever increasingly busy life, the ability to post snippets of things comes as a welcome change to my regular entries, which often take days to write.
- If you’re seeing some strange rendering issues, they’ll probably clear up if you refresh the page. [↩]
- This also helps me avoid text messaging charges, which is how I wrote tweets before, when I was out in the real world with no internet access, though my new data plan has unlimited texts anyway. [↩]
- In an ideal world, I could send the picture to a WordPress e‑mail address or post it using the iPhone WordPress application, but the post-by-email option of the former doesn’t allow attachments, and the latter has very crude image uploading options with only one set width available for resizing. [↩]
I really like it Jeff. I’m jealous of your 3gs. Since I just got my 3g this Jan, I’m not eligible for the 3gs until next September :(
iPhone rocks though. A few apps you may like: Toycamera and Camerabag, both are $0.99 I believe. They create nice vintage effects for your photos.
iFlick. a Flickr app that’s great. You can manage tags, categories, sets, and mass upload.
There’s always technology envy. I’m sure I’ll be jealous of whatever you get next year because I won’t be able to upgrade to the latest thing!
I did purchase Camerabag, and I’m enjoying it so far, but I’ll check out Toycamera too.
Gyaaaah. That’s a lot of (laudable) technical endeavor. I just keep flitting from page to app to smaller, briefer app and eventually I suspect I shall disintegrate altogether.
I had noticed a long time ago that your blog comes up fitting in the iPhone screenwidth perfectly and thought you had planned it that way.
I’m sure that soon there will be twitter brain implants, where you just need to think to post a tweet.
The narrow column has been a design choice for me simply based on my content. I did it without knowing how it fit in the iPhone. One of the advantages of smaller columns is having content fit on smaller resolution systems.