Welcome to the syndicated version of Newsletter Leaf Journal 136. We mailed the original on Saturday, May 20, 2023. Newsletter Leaf Journal 136 included our usual assortment of links of new and old New Leaf Journal articles, links from around the web, and news and notes about our humble, perennially virid, online magazine. If you enjoy the newsletter, consider signing up via email or adding the flagship newsletter feed to your favorite reader. However, you will always find syndicated versions of The Newsletter Leaf Journal here. See all of our newsletter following options here.

Below, I present Newsletter Leaf Journal 136 as it originally appeared, save for the introduction section.

Leaves from the week that was

I published four regular articles and six short-form posts since mailing Newsletter 135.

Regular articles

My experiences with the web installer for a security-focused Android Open Source Project fork.

Contemplating personal sites as the centerpiece of a social web.

“Let me tell you a story about how the news that Ms. Martha Stewart will be one of the cover models for the 2023 Sports Illustrated Swimsuit Issue reminded me of a story from my 2007 high “school” health ‘class.’”

Why not?

Leaflets and Leaf Buds

Leaves from around the web

Let’s try to put a dent in the ever-growing (pun intended) around the web backlog…

This is one case where I am not sure that the sum is greater than the parts.

What for me is just a nickname is a real name for others.

Looks good.

It would be huge news if this really was a new statue, but the news is cool as is.

What I admire most here is that he spent enough time in the Nintendo DSi browser to do this without throwing his console through a window.

Certainly necessary, if not sufficient.

They are not doing a good job selling this as a vacation destination.

There is such thing as taking your love of giant robot movies too far. This may be within the bounds, however.

Physically aesthetic minimalism is often distinct from functional minimalism…


Time for thenewleafjournal.zip?

An interesting interview with the creators of the manga upon which the currently-airing Oshi no Ko anime is based.

The Old Leaf Journal

Let’s take a look in our own archives…

Stories from four years of May issues of The Nursery Magazine, a 19th century children’s monthly.

One of our most successful 2022 articles saw its one-year anniversary this week. However, I recommend that you find better ways to spend your time than watching TikTok videos, even through a privacy front-end.

Please don’t be this guy.

Victor V. Gurbo writes about, and performs, a classic folk song telling a tale of rejection and sorrow.

A personal favorite… maybe I should have included this when I had a good number of coronation-themed links a couple of newsletters ago…

Another story from my junior year of high school.

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 of the 20th newsletter week of 2023.

  1. Biden, Lincoln, and Counting Back From the President’s Birth (NAF: 4.29.22)
    2023 Appearances: 4
    Top Placements: 1
  2. Peekier Search Engine Review (NAF: 2.26.22)
    2023 Appearances: 13
    Top Placements: 2
  3. The Mystery of Sōseki and Tsuki ga Kirei (NAF: 3.14.21)
    2023 Appearances: 20
    Top Placements: 5
  4. Tiki paralogue trick in Fire Emblem Engage (NAF: 2.3.23)
    2023 Appearances: 15
    Top Placements: 11
  5. How the Forget-Me-Not Flower Found Its Name (NAF: 3.11.21)
    2023 Appearances: 2

Our entire top five from Newsletter Week 19 returned for Newsletter Week 20, but in a different order. The notable change is my 2022 article on presidential birthdays rising to the number one spot for the first time. The article had a very strong debut full month in May 2022 before falling back to Earth, then seeing sporadic bursts of views mixed into periods of little presence. For example, it was our fifth most-read article in January 2022, 18th in February, and outside the top 25 in both March and April. Now, with a sudden and unexplained May surge (nothing about the article specifically implicates May), it is currently our second most-read article of the month.

My Fire Emblem Engage article finished outside the top two for the first time since it was published in early February, dropping to fourth. It seems that post is on the wane as more people have finished Fire Emblem Engage and more articles about the game are available (speaking of which, I need to complete it at some point…).

The battle for the fifth spot, which was well behind the top four, was interesting. This week was fairly deep in terms of articles recording solid weeks, but we had our lowest (in terms of recorded visits) threshold for entering the top five behind the solid-performing top-four. Two of the four posts in the mix on Friday would have been first-time top-five entrants, but in the end, my article on the forget-me-not-flower, which made its top-five debut last week after more than two years online, returned for a second consecutive appearance. While most articles have not been setting view records subsequent to our January Bing blacklisting, the forget-me-not flower article is on pace to have its best month in terms of total visits and its best ever relative finish (it is our 5th most-visited May article as of the mailing of the instant newsletter).

News leaf journal

This past week saw no significant changes in The New Leaf Journal, although I have greatly improved my system for saving new article ideas and prompts (expect to see that covered in the near future). I have added a custom post type for New Leaf Journal link collections, but it does not yet host any collections (maybe next week…).

Notable leaf journal

I reviewed F-Droid apps in 2021. For those not in the know, F-Droid is a repository for free and open source Android apps. In that review, I recommended using the official F-Droid client for managing apps. The official F-Droid client is a bit slow and not great with updates, but I understood it to be the best option. While setting up GrapheneOS shortly after mailing the previous newsletter, I learned about an app store called Droid-ify. I gave it a try and discovered that in addition to having access to all of the F-Droid apps, it has a better UI and better performance, repository management, and update handling. The difference was night-and-day, and so stark that I uninstalled F-Droid from my own Pixel 3a XL phone and LineageOS tablet and replaced it with Droid-ify. So far so good. I may review Droid-ify on The New Leaf Journal in the future.

Taking leaf

Thank you as always for joining me for another edition of The Newsletter Leaf Journal. If you enjoyed the content and are not already a follower, you can sign up via email, add the newsletter’s RSS feed to your favorite reader (I would personally go with the RSS approach), or wait for the syndicated version of this humble newsletter here on Mondays. See all of the options here.

Last week featured some article variety and a solid word count. I look forward to trying to end May with some interesting articles and a few long-planned New Leaf Journal improvements.

Until May 27,

Cura ut valeas.