JSON Visio; Espanso; Bull***t Charts
Reminder: we are on holiday next week.
Further reminder: 🇺🇸 liberal democracy suffered some major blows, again, this week. Try not to sit on the sidelines if you're a citizen.
JSON Visio [GH] is "data visualization tool [created by Aykut Saraç (@aykutsarach) ] for your JSON data which seamlessly illustrates your data on graphs without having to restructure anything, paste directly or import file."
A slightly less marketing-y description is that JSON Visio is a diminutive progressive web app that generates a tree visualization of whatever JSON you paste/import into the tool. You can do some basic searches, tweak the tree styling and orientation a bit, and download a PNG of the image. The section header image is some GreyNoise SSH Worm data I just tossed into the tool to test it out.
The immediate use-case I see this solving for is generating output for documentation. For that, I'd like to see SVG and/or PDF export options, but it uses save-html-as-image for exporting images, which means my output preference is not likely to see the light of day anytime soon.
Since the GH repo has instructions for saving this locally, it means others can hack on it to make it do more than it currently does. Like, say, supply your own CSS rules for more customization options.
The tool does what it says on the tin; does it fast; and does (what little it offers) it pretty well.
The repo also relies on Just, the command runner I mentioned a little while back. So, if you were interested in Just but needed to see more of it in action before using it, here's another example to poke at.
Despite the irony of being 100% in the Apple ecosystem, I really don't like platform lock-in for anything. I do carry this philosophy in the use of all my xOS devices, which means I feel a bit more pain than many normal xOS users feel, since I won't lock myself in to, say, iCloud, or most xOS-only apps, save for a few, such as OmniGraffle.
This moderate case of cyber-cleithrophobia means I haven't invested time, money, or effort in many types of tools, such text expanders.
A text expander is a program that detects when one types a specific keyword (it can be gibberish vs an actual word or normal shorthand like Tigger's
ttfn — don't judge, having a 9mos old grandson means I get to make WTP references again, sans critique) and replaces it with something else (i.e. '
ta ta, for now').
xOS has some of this built-in, but I don't have it configured, since I never know when I'll end up on a Windows (ugh) or Linux box without my personal device being the prime interface to said environments. Relying on something as essential on typed shortcuts expanding to do your bidding could be a productivity killer in the wrong environment.
Works on Windows, macOS and Linux
Works with almost any program
Works with Emojis 😄
Works with Images
Includes a powerful Search Bar 🔎
Date expansion support
Custom scripts support
Shell commands support
Expandable with packages
Built-in package manager for espanso hub
Support Regex triggers
Experimental Wayland (X11 alternative) support
(And, if y'all will permit me an inside joke → Kwan: they even have the shrug!
The community seems active and engaged; the package ecosystem isn't so vast that it's inaccessible (but still pretty interesting/useful); and it does some things I will admit to presently locking myself in with via Alfred, which I may be able to migrate away from.
I haven't installed it yet (decided that trying out a new daily idiom-changing digital toy on a beta 2 OS before going on holiday wasn't a good idea), but will do so, soon, and report back on how it goes.
If you do use Espanso, drop a note in the comments with your experience (or a link to your blog/thread with said experience notes).
I suspect the Venn diagram of readers of this newsletter, and the number of said population who have already seen Michael Correll's (@Birdbassador) bull***t paper may be a perfect circle/oval, but I wanted to get it into the newsletter, anyway, for digital posterity.
In Michael's own words:
In this unhinged rant, I lay out my suspicion that a lot of visualizations are bullshit: charts that do not have even the common decency to intentionally lie but are totally unconcerned about the state of the world or any practical utility. I suspect that bullshit charts take up a large fraction of the time and attention of actual visualization producers and consumers, and yet are seemingly absent from academic research into visualization design.
This was presented at alt.VIS last year, with some other fun talks/papers:
We made it to the end of the week! I'll try to crank out a few editions whilst on holiday, next week, and perhaps sneak in a few pix of Acadia National Park whilst doing so. ☮