Five things on Friday #141

Things of note for Friday September 11th, 2015.

Things of note for Friday September 11th, 2015.

and then there were five

This week’s edition of FTOF was written on a plane somewhere over the French/Italian Alps – isn’t that lovely?

Upside: peace and [offline] quiet. Downside: if you’ve emailed/pitched me anything to include in this week’s edition, I can’t get to it – so maybe you’ll see it next week. Maybe.

On that note, shall we?


Use Instagram? OF COURSE YOU DO. Got kids that use Instagram? MAYBE. Whatever, this is a hugely important piece of information and, I have to admit, for someone who is usually hot as s*** on this stuff, I missed it and have since fixed.

In short:

Until recently, once a user added their location to a photo they were posting, Instagram would take this as their default preference for all future photos they would post. That is, Instagram would tag all future photos with the location from which they were uploaded. This alone isn’t really the problem. The problem is that Instagram did not make this obvious to users — so what has transpired, is millions of people uploading millions of photos in the one place they use Instagram the most. Their homes.

Note: this happens irrespective of whether you add a location tag or not this is IF you have added a location previously.

The fix is available here.

You’re welcome.

Not just any level design by the way, but the level design of probably one of the most iconic and memorable levels in the history of video games:

Super Mario Bros, Level 1-1.


We’ve all played it at some point in our lives (and if you haven’t, just do this right now: shout out loud ‘Did anyone play the original Super Mario Bros on the NES?’ out loud right now, someone will say yes, guaranteed) and here, to the delight of all, is a video of arguably the world’s most famous video game designer, Shigeru Miyamato, creator of Donkey Kong, Zelda, Pikmin, Starfox, Donkey Kong, and of course, Super Mario Bros, discussing – with aclarity – the thought that went into make that level the classic that we know and love today.

There is so much to love about this.

  • Shigeru Miyamoto, at 62, is still boyishly charming and fun in what is clearly the job he was born to do.
  • Goombas started out as ‘bad mushrooms’ that a programmer thought looked like a chestnut. Chestnut in japanese is ‘Kuri’ which is why the name ‘Kuriboh’, which is Goomba in Japanese, came about.
  • The wonder in which he talks about ‘working in the unknown’ – specifically in regards so Super Mario 64 – is inspiring.

Watch it.

On Spotify? Got a smug-resting face? This app is for you.


Tapping into the hipster zeitgeist (really? – Ed (do I really have an ‘Ed’?! – JW) (No, you don’t – this is literally a conversation with yourself) (OK, so not weird at all)) and allowing those who were, like, totally into, like, Boston brostep boybands, like, before anyone else to actually prove just how how much of a TREND SETTER they truly are.

Do you feel the validation? Do ya? DO YA? DO YA?


Anyway, it’s ace and, as you were wondering, my ‘discover score is’ 19. Huzzah.

Screen Shot 2015-09-11 at 07.50.49

Including being in the first 1% of listeners to Hozier, Major Lazer, and Mark Ronson. The experience is fun and you get bragging rights on your Facebook etc but there seems to be a couple of things up with it. First off, the ‘Tweet them’ button is hideously sycophantic.

Screen Shot 2015-09-11 at 12.17.01

And, while the output of this tool can actually a be new playlist based upon the discoveries that you’ve made, it doesn’t actually put together a playlist of anything mentioned in your list. Which is a shame because that would’ve been nice.


Seriously, tho, like, I was totally listening to Sam Street before James Bond even knew his name.

Like, yeah.

Not a Doctor Who fan? Scroll straight on to the bonuses (clue: they’re just a little bit past the koala). Still here? Right then, the new season kicks off soon and the Beeb have just dropped a 2min ‘prologue’ that’s actually pretty good.


As in: it’s a great piece to watch but ultimately tells you nothing. But the Doctor is in and Peter Capaldi is generally brilliant at everything so… y’know, go watch it and stuff.



‘Hey Bob, when’s the big Apple announcement?’
‘You missed it, Larry. You’re gonna have to listen to The Voicemail instead.’


Bonuses this week are as follows:

  • Azeem Azhar’s Exponential View is worth a moment of your time (and even a sub).
  • Two Voicemails in a week – what? As mentioned in last week’s FTOF, my friend Stefan and I recorded a bumper IFA episode of The Voicemail podcast (that I’m resharing as the downloads are considerably higher than usual – so we must be doing something right) covering all things at the Berlin-based tech conference. That’s two podcast plugs in a very short space of time. Next week: no podcast plugs.
  • Another Nintendo bit, this time about Super Mario Bros. 3. Link.
  • Cyclists vs Self-driving cars (expect more of this; the programmers’ laughter is the high point for me).
  • The best #AppleEvent write-up. Period.



– Michael Underhill

‘Top marks for another fine edition!’
– Richard Emes

‘Fave part of Friday!’
– @DarkStarSteph


And finally…

For the UK readers among you, the delightful team over at Shaken Cocktails have thrown me another referral link.

If you fancy joining the Shaken Explorer’s Club (and starting a journey into a world of amazing home-made cocktails) for £5 less than you usually would, here’s a link to do just that (you should spot a little blue pop up at the bottom of the screen when you open the page – you’ll see).

Said link has unlimited usage so if you don’t fancy it but you know someone who might, then do please forward it on.




Whatley out.

Ps. Gude, I got the Bat (it/he was amazing – thank you). Expect to see him (and your new venture) highlighted here next week. Woop woop!

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