Watermark Listening Test Results

Over the holidays, I looked at the data from the watermark listening test. My hypothesis was that the watermark added by Universal Music Group is at least as audible as 128 kbps MP3 compression artifacts. The test results support the hypothesis for certain types of music. The most important takeaway is that the UMG watermark is an enormous […]

Enable Mac Volume Control for HDMI and DisplayPort Audio Devices

When you hook up an HDMI TV or DisplayPort monitor with built-in audio device, you might discover that you can't change the volume with the Mac software mixer any more. Volume buttons on your keyboard won't work. You're expected to use the TV remote or volume control on the device. Here's a trick to get […]

Generate Mac App Icons Photoshop Action

Creating App Icons in all the required sizes for a Mac app can get pretty tedious. Here is a Photoshop action to simplify the task: Download Mac App Icon actions for Photoshop CS6+ The first thing it does is to paste the clipboard contents into a square document — so it's designed for workflows where […]

Making Sausage: Fixing a Previous Git Commit

Let's say I'm six commits ahead of master on my work branch. I've sent out a review, and find out I need to fix something on the 3rd commit. This is my workflow for fixing up the previous git commit: Get to a clean state on the work branch. (git stash if needed) Make the […]

Shuffle Algorithms for Music

Update, March 7, 2014: Improved shuffling has been rolled out on Spotify. More details at the Spotify Labs post, How to Shuffle Songs. Lots of users complain that Spotify's shuffle algorithms aren't really random. This can best be explained by a cognitive bias called the clustering illusion. Users aren't wrong to complain, though. What people […]

Subpixel Letter-Spacing in Webkit

As of sometime in August, Chrome Canary enables subpixel CSS letter-spacing attributes. It's a beautiful thing.

Avoid Faux-Bold with Web Fonts

Only the best web fonts have a full complement of bold, italic, and bold-italic faces. Typekit provides lots of great fonts with a fleet of variants, but if you're on a budget or enjoy the freedom of Google Fonts (as I do), you'll find a lot of great fonts that don't have true bold variants. […]

Converting to Retina

These are my personal recommendations for making the switch to a high-DPI website. 1. Step one: stop working at 72 DPI This one is for the designers: get into the practice of doing everything at high-DPI. If you are working in Photoshop, get to know and love shape layers and the path tool, even for […]