Welcome to the (syndicated) 146th edition of our official newsletter The Newsletter Leaf Journal. I sent the original to our subscriber’s inboxes on July 29, 2023. The newsletter, which I re-print with the addition of one link to an article that was forthcoming on the 29th, covered our new articles published between July 22 and 28 (inclusive), 12 links from around the web, and other news and notes.
Leaves from the week that was
I published two regular articles and three leaflets/leaf buds in the previous week. First, I present the articles.
- Hallmarks of Former Service Members
Nicholas A. Ferrell. July 23, 2023.
A story from my college days about how the professor inferred that one student in his class was a veteran.
- DuckDuckGo in the Bing Pond
Nicholas A. Ferrell. July 28, 2023.
A new essay on the tangled relationship of DuckDuckGo and Bing. Note as usual that you should not use either search solution to find The New Leaf Journal since its being de-indexed by Bing means it is also invisible to DuckDuckGo.
Now for the short posts…
- On an Android-based PocketBook ereader (Interesting… but not quite what I am looking for)
- Techdirt Blocked or De-Indexed by Bing (I had actually drafted my new Bing-DuckDuckGo article right before this story broke… which caused me to have to make changes)
- “The Old Men With Good Eyes” (On an interesting quote from a Hacker News commenter about having worked at a storied Japanese imaging corporation)
Leaves from around the web
I gave you 18 links from around the web last week. However, since I actually published articles this week, we return to our regularly scheduled 12 links.
- NYC cabbie beaten on street fumes at ‘horrible system’
Deshenia Andrews, Amanda Woods, and Natalie O’Neil for the New York Post. July 28, 2023.
I agree with every word and would add a few words, but that would require an article – not a newsletter.
- What happened to Vivaldi Social?
Thomas Pike at Vivaldi. July 28, 2023.
Reminds me of a short leaflet I published about Vivaldi’s ever growing feature suite…
- The Experiences of People Running Mastodon Servers Suggest a Bumpy Road Ahead
The Cheapskate’s Guide. June 27, 2023.
Running an open Mastodon server probably suggests some degree of self-loathing. (It’s neat when I have a link on my to-use list which ties in with a new link I save…)
- See the First Complete Map of an Insect’s Brain
Will Sullivan for Smithsonian Magazine. March 10, 2023.
This is very neat so long as the cartography stays out of my home.
- Glade Creek Grist Mill in Danese, West Virginia
Atlas Obscura. March 15, 2023.
A working mill in West Virginia built in 1976 from parts from three non-functioning mills.
- We try the bizarre ‘Get Your Finger Chomped By A Sturgeon’ experience at a Hokkaido aquarium
Katie Pask for SoraNews24. April 11, 2023.
Certainly a conversation starter.
- This License Plate Just Became the Most Expensive in the World
Sarah Kuta for Smithsonian Magazine. April 14, 2023.
Some people have to find new hobbies to keep themselves busy. Other people have to find new ways to spend money. (I used the link in an article that was published a few hours after I mailed the newsletter.)
- Gridman Universe – Review
Richard Eisenbeis for Anime News Network. April 28, 2023.
The theatrical follow-up to the SSSS.Gridman (2018) and SSSS.Dynazenon (2021) anime series. I liked Gridman (my third-favorite of 2018) and Dynazenon is one of my favorite all-time series (2021 anime of the year), so I ought to see this movie at some point.
- privacy not included
Jen Caltrider, Misha Rykov, and Zoe MacDonald for Mozilla. May 1, 2023.
“Last year, we reviewed the privacy and security of 27 mental health apps and we were shocked at how bad they were.” (While I am not familiar with their study, it would probably not be possible to shock me with the results.)
- “We are Restricting Freedom … for the Common Good”: Irish Green Party Calls For Limiting Free Speech
Jonathan Turley at Res ipsa loquitur. June 18, 2023.
“What is particularly chilling is how low the threshold is for denying free speech, according to O’Reilly. It now appears that ‘deep discomfort’ is enough.”
- The United Nations vs Free Speech
Jacob Mchangama at Persuasion. July 21, 2023.
Now what could go wrong here?
- A dialogue with a chatbot
Larry Sanger. May 23, 2023.
The dialogue is predictably somewhat less than reassuring.
The Old Leaf Journal
Let’s dig into our archive…
- Importance of Bing Indexing For Alt Search
N.A. Ferrell. August 7, 2022.
Ties in nicely with my new Bing-DuckDuckGo article… but little did I know we would prove to be a test case a few months after I published this.
- Justin & Justina 〜 Hot is a State of Mind (and Other States of Mind)
N.A. Ferrell. June 10, 2021.
Never forget this.
- Hot Coffee on Summer Walks
N.A. Ferrell. August 14, 2021.
The paper cups I was using became too expensive, so I have not done this in a while.
- Matt Damon’s Brooklyn Heights Crane Game
Observant Misanthrope. July 17, 2020.
I wonder how Mr. Damon is doing three years later.
- The Little Stream Mushroom
Victor V. Gurbo. August 4, 2020.
Victor found a mushroom floating down a stream…
- Overheard on the Street: “Like and basically like…”
N.A. Ferrell. July 27, 2021.
I could make an entire website devoted to these…
Most-turned leaves of the newsletter week
I list our most-read articles from the previous newsletter week (Friday to Saturday) in each edition of The Newsletter Leaf Journal. These statistics come courtesy of Koko Analytics, our local, privacy friendly page-counting solution (see my review). Below, I present the 5 most-visited articles for 2023 newsletter week 30.
- Height differences in anime romances (NAF, 5.22.23)
5th appearance. 4 top placements.
- The Nice Boat 〜 A Look Back at the School Days Anime (NAF, 5.6.21)
- Tiki paralogue trick in Fire Emblem Engage (NAF, 2.3.23)
22nd appearance. 11 to placements.
- The Pokémon Special Split in Generation 2 – Statistics and Analysis (NAF, 1.18.22)
- Abraham Lincoln’s 1851 Letters on Work to John D. Johnston (NAF, 11.4.21)
For the first time since Newsletter Week 16 of 2021 (which fell in April), our ranking is missing my history of the phrase tsuki ga kirei. It posted its weakest week (in terms of page views) since April 2021 and just missed preserving its top-five streak by one stop. Thus, its string of weekly top fives ends at 117 weeks. I have noticed that while it still generates a large number of Google impressions, its average Google ranking has gradually slipped. Why this is the case I know not – I do not see many new articles on the subject that did not exist in 2021. I may look into an update or tweak or two, but in any event – I expect it to still regularly feature in the rankings in 2023.
(Note: I will note that the tsuki ga kirei article posted some of its weakest months in 2021 and 2022 in June-August, so that combined with its general decline could also be a factor.)
Last week was odd beyond the absence of tsuki ga kirei in the ranking. We had a weak top five (weakest 1st and 5th place finishers), but on the whole our total page views (according to Koko) were similar to the previous two weeks because visits were well-distributed across the site. My essay on height differences in anime romances completed its sweep of July in weekly first place finishes (and barring a last minute Hacker News-level surprise, it will be the first anime article to top a monthly ranking). My 2021 essay on School Days made its third all-time weekly top five, which undersells the fact that it is currently our 6th most-visited article of 2023. Finally, my article on an 1851 letter by Abraham Lincoln made its second appearance in three weeks after having been almost invisible for the first half of 2023 (it had four appearances and one first-place finish in the last four months of 2022).
The three dominant articles of the first half of 2023 (tsuki ga kirei, Tiki-Fire Emblem, and my Peekier search engine review) are all trending down and, while I expect my essay on height differences in anime romances to be a factor through the end of the current anime season in late September, it has also fallen off its peak. With our Bing-ban still in effect and no clear dominant article, the next few weeks present a more open path to the top of our weekly rankings than at any point since I began keeping track in January 2021.
I have no New Leaf Journal news to report. So let us skip ahead to the Notable Leaf Journal…
Notable leaf journal
I mentioned last week that I had begun using Kodi with my mini PC. This week, I thought of an interesting trick to add only legitimate English-language IPTV channels to the Simple IPTV for Kodi. You can look forward to reading about my set-up in a few days.
Thank you as always for reading and following The Newsletter Leaf Journal. If you enjoyed the content and have not done so already, you can subscribe to our weekly newsletter by email or RSS feed (see options). I also syndicate the newsletter to The New Leaf Journal (I am a bit behind with syndication, but I will catch up this week).
July ended a bit slowly, but I should be able to publish more in the coming weeks as I finish a few work projects and my allergies die down. I have a few projects that were intended for July but subsequently shelved, so perhaps August will be a busy month.
Until August 5,
Cura ut valeas.