Hi, this is Allison Sheridan of the NosillaCast Apple Podcast, hosted at Podfeet.com, a technology geek podcast with an EVER so slight Apple bias. Today is Sunday, July 10, 2022, and this is show number 896. This is the last show before Steve and I jaunt off to Iceland. It’s very weird for me to be packing and not including flip-flops, shorts, and sunscreen, but I’m still looking forward to seeing a land unlike no other. We’ll be staying for three days in the city of Reykjavic, and then we’ll circumnavigate the island country in a small ship with only 100 passengers. As floating Petri dishes go, we’re hoping the small number of people on a ship that can accommodate 200, along with requirements for a negative test before embarking will keep us safe. We’ve stocked up on KN95 masks for the airports and flights, and we’ve had 4 vaccinations each, so everyone keep their fingers crossed for us, ok?
Another trip means another opportunity for me to make a diagram! The trip isn’t nearly as complex as our Dubai/India/Nepal trip, but I made it fun by using an outline of Iceland (from The Noun Project). I make these diagrams partly because I’m just obsessed with diagramming but I also do it so I have situational awareness of my trips. In a few cases, it has saved us from disaster.
For example, when we went to Ecuador/The Galapagos/Peru to go hike to Machu Picchu, I made my initial diagram and discovered that all of the Peruvian intra-country flights were missing! I contacted our travel company and the agent blithely told me, “Oh, you’re supposed to arrange those yourself.” My response back was to ask her when the heck she planned on telling me that? We could have easily gotten off the train after leaving Machu Picchu only to discover we had no way of getting to our next destination.
On the Dubai/Inda/Nepal trip, the diagram was invaluable too. As we entered each country (5 separate country entrances), immigration would ask us where we were staying. I simply handed them my laminated diagram and let them figure it out. While I never got any hassle as a result, I was surprised that none of the agents appeared to be amazed and delighted that I had made it so easy for them. They’re probably just of a culture that doesn’t express such excitement; I’m sure they were secretly thrilled.
I make my diagrams with diagrams.net and if you would like to amaze and delight immigration officials or even your own family, I suggest you give it a try.
If you’d like to follow along with our trip, I’ve included a copy of the diagram in the shownotes.
No Live Show for Two Weeks
Since we’ll be gone, remember this means there will be NO LIVE SHOW on July 17th and July 24th. Last week I got the dates wrong (and nearly gave Allister a heart attack), but July 17 & 24 are definitely the right dates. Allister and Bart have enough material ready to do fabulous shows for you, and many thanks to the contributors who have made this possible.
If you were working on any content, please still send it along. We’ll be returning very late on Monday the 24th quite possibly a smidge jet-lagged, and then I have 3 days home before we leave to see Forbes for the weekend to celebrate his 6th birthday. We’ll be doing a live show that weekend but I will most likely need content so bring it on!
Chit Chat Across the Pond
I have a book recommendation for you. It’s a book called Through The Ages (The Fox and Crowe Chronicles Book 1). I read this book because it was written by Sarah Allder, daughter of Kevin Allder, also known as Big_In_VA, also known as Steve’s wingman in the live chat room. I bought this book just to support Kevin’s daughter as a new author, but I have to tell you, it’s really good! It’s an imaginative book about a young woman who is pursued romantically by a man who has been dead for 400 years or so. The story line is like nothing I’ve ever read (which I love) and the characters are vividly described and I absolutely had no idea where the story was going at any point. I’m thrilled that this is Book 1 because I seriously need to know what happens next. Again it’s called “Through The Ages (The Fox and Crowe Chronicles Book 1)” and I’ve put a link to it on Amazon so you can go check it out yourself.
Ed was Wrong, Frank was Right
Last week I told you a little story about permissions problems reading files I’d created myself and stored on my Synology. I explained that I tried every solution I could think of, including reinstalling macOS over the top. Then I told you that Ed Tobias, aka @MrEd in our live chat room, had given me the correct solution way back at the beginning of this adventure. He had suggested I delete my keychain entry for my Synology, but I didn’t want to do it, and in the end, that did solve my problem. As much as it pained me, I was forced to admit that Ed was right.
But the story isn’t over. In our Slack at podfeet.com/slack, Frank Petrie, aka @Wheels, said he’d been having a similar problem, but that it was isolated to just PDF files and it had nothing to do with storing the files on network-attached storage.
As I thought about what Frank wrote, I was kicking myself because when I was having the problem I never tested anything but PDF files.
The kicking came to an end this week when the darn permissions problem returned! I printed a file to PDF, stored it on my Synology, and then tried to open it, only to be denied. I tried opening a couple of other PDFs that I had not created but had moved to the Synology, and I couldn’t open those either. Then I remembered what Frank had said that it seemed to be a problem with Preview.
I tried opening an Excel spreadsheet on my Synology and it opened without any pesky permissions errors. This showed that the problem was with the PDFs only, but I needed a way to prove it was Preview at fault. I went into SetApp and downloaded Nitro PDF Pro, which I think is the new PDF Pen since Smile sold it to Nitro Software. I tried to open one of my PDFs on my Synology with Nitro’s PDF tool and it opened without complaint.
I can’t quite say that Ed was wrong because it was a good idea and I should have tried it sooner, but I can say that Frank was right!
Stephen Goodenough posted in Slack on this conversation explaining that he’s been struggling with the same error message on Big Sur, but that it went away in a recent security update for the OS.
I’m hoping this isn’t a generalized problem, but I’m sure Preview is involved. That’s bad enough because it means my hands are tied on how to fix it without Apple’s help. And don’t make me make the Phone Call of Sadness™️ I just don’t have the energy for that right now!
I meet such terrific people through the podcasts I make, and one of those people is Shaun Peterson. This week he wrote me a lovely note with a question and some fun stories about how long he’s been listening. He illustrated his point by sending me two photos, both of him and his son. The two photos showed how long he’s been listening by how much older his son is now than when he started listening. In his email, he asked for some help with a tech problem, and explained that it was his son who said, “Ask Allison!”
I thought all of this was lovely enough but then I got a notification that before he sent the question to me, he became our latest Patreon supporter! He started a very generous donation to the show by going to podfeet.com/patreon and choosing an amount to donate that showed the level of value he gets from the content we create here at the Podfeet Podcasts.
If you want to be lovely like Shaun, by showing me how long you’ve been listening or becoming a Patreon supporter, that would be lovely.
That’s going to wind this up for this week. Did you know you can email me at [email protected] any time you like? If you have a question or a suggestion just send it on over. You can follow me on Twitter at @podfeet. If you want to join the conversation, you can join our Slack community at podfeet.com/slack where you can talk to me and all of the other lovely NosillaCastaways. Remember, everything good starts with podfeet.com. You can support the show at podfeet.com/patreon or with a one-time donation at podfeet.com/paypal. And if you want to join in the fun of the live show, you’re going to have to wait a couple of weeks. We’ll be back live on July 31st when you can join the friendly and enthusiastic NosillaCastaways. Thanks for listening, and stay subscribed.