I’ve been watching the emergence of AI image creation tools like Midjourney, Dall-E, Craiyon and Stable Diffusion and I think it’s pretty neat. But not everyone has been happy about our new AI overlords. Art communities and freelance artists have been particularly vocal about their displeasure.
As much as I see there are serious philosophical issues, in the meantime I wanted to try it out and have been delighted at the news that users of Apple silicon Macs can now access the Stable Diffusion engine on their own computers using Diffusion Bee.
Diffusion Bee is the easiest way to run Stable Diffusion locally on your M1 Mac. Comes with a one-click installer. No dependencies or technical knowledge needed.
Runs locally on your computer no data is sent to the cloud (other than request to download the weights and checking for software updates).
It works just fine on my M2 MacBook Air. I’m glad I splurged and got the 24GB of RAM. Because the results can be a bit random, I popped into Photoshop to improve the results of the above “Homer Simpson as a Muppet” prompt. (I’m not sure what the floating head beside him is all about, but I left it because it’s amazing.)
If you have questions or comments, please post them here.
Why now? RSS 2.0 will be twenty years old on September 18. One month from today. I’m working on something pretty big for that day, maybe it’ll be out a bit earlier, who knows. But in the meantime, here’s something new to spark a new use for RSS and Twitter — hooking people’s tweets up to feed reader apps like NewsBlurand The Old Reader.
Google Reader’s uncermonious dismantling has long been the beginning of my loss of faith in Google as a “do no evil” company. This TechCrunch article, “Google revives RSS” is disturbing on many levels. For one thing, RSS is not dead despite Google’s multiple attempts to kill it. For another, Google has shown over and over again, it can’t be trusted not to ditch any product that isn’t bringing in boatloads of cash.
Google did so much damage to RSS, the thought of them “reviving” it is analogous to Exxon reviving the site of some huge oil spill, one that they didn’t contribute to cleaning up. Even worse, browser vendors have no place trying to provide the user interface for RSS. Another toxic dump site. If Google wants to help RSS, great — here’s how. Do the subscribe button, that’s a good thing. But the result should be a dynamic OPML subscription list, that the user can provide to any reader app they want. It’s dynamic in that the contents can change, and the readers should periodically check to see if feeds have been added or removed. This way, if someday Google abandons RSS, again, everything can keep on ticking, more or less. Inviting users to rely on them shows that they have no sense of responsibility for the trust they betrayed in the past.
Hurray for supporting RSS but it’s not dead and it certainly won’t be after Google decides to drop it once again.
Some friends of mine1 built a new kind of online meeting space. It’s called Relm. It’s a virtual space that brings people together in a game-like environment with live video chat. In a nutshell, it’s a playful virtual space for online events.
Relm is a community of artists, engineers, philosophers, and spiritual thinkers making a new kind of home on the internet. It’s a virtual world where you can commune with friends.
Just a couple of days ago they updated it to (sort of) work on iOS (iPhone, iPad). Safari is my browser of choice and while you can get basic functionality, it seems to work best in Chrome.
Charlie Warzel, former technology opinion writer for the New York Times, has quit his job there to jump onto the newsletter subscription Substack bandwagon. He’s calling his, “Galaxy Brain”.
In the introduction to his foray in the Substack revolution he explains why he would jump ship.
“The last two places I worked were big, polarizing brands, which also meant that a huge chunk of my readers on a given story were there because they wanted to use what I’d written — usually just the headline — as ammunition in a culture war battle… And if I’m honest, it’s burned me out and left me feeling grim about the role of mainstream media.”
His latest instalment features him outlining why he is skeptical of Facebook’s courtship of creators. While I enjoyed the piece, I’m not exactly neutral on Facebook in the first place. Go figure — Facebook again ripping-off another platform in a blatant attempt to capitalize on the latest trends… who would have thunk-it?
You give it the ID of a tweet that’s at the top of a thread. The app loads all the tweets it can find that are replies to the tweet with that ID, written by the author of the original tweet and shows them inside a box, in chronologic order, as a nice sequence of easy to read paragraphs.
Next, just copy and paste from the Threadviewer.com output and Twitter can be a writing space for posts you want to use in other places on the web.
With the new M1 MacBook Air comes the need to once again figure out how to get a modern, highly secure, 64-bit operating system to communicate with a device made in the early 2000s. The device in question being a Dell 1100 Laser Printer.
After some searching online, a little trial and error, some attempts at using an old driver from an old computer (nope) and a little more searching online I finally came up with the solution. I’m posting it here in the hopes that it will help someone else save some trouble and probably for my future self at some point.
Before I even started, I knew I would need a USB-C to USB-A adapter.
I’ll save you the trouble of going through all my trial and error and just say that the solution to get Andrea’s MacBook Air (M1, 2020) running Big Sur 11.0 to work with the Dell 1100 Laser Printer was to download this collection of drivers:
Open it and when it’s done installing head to the System Preferences Printer icon (with the printer plugged in and turned on) and add a new printer.
When selecting software, choose Samsung ML-2160 Series.
Albeit there was an error the first time I printed (or maybe it was just a warning) but then it began its typical whirling sound and out popped the printed page. It continues to work every time without issue.
Should we continue to use — and promote the use of — Zoom at institutions and organizations that stand for liberal democratic values when Zoom has been discovered terminating accounts and disrupting video calls about the 1989 Tiananmen Square massacre of pro-democracy activists? Obviously, we should find something else.
Prosecutors said the China-based executive, Xinjiang Jin, worked as Zoom’s primary liaison with Chinese law enforcement and intelligence services, sharing user information and terminating video calls at the Chinese government’s request.
If our organizations believe in free speech then it behooves us to tell our organizations about Zoom.
Zoom continues to fail us and mark my words, this will not be the last time we hear that this corrupt company is in the news.