I like winter just fine if I have a snowblower

For this Puerto Rican, living in Minnesota can be a trying experience.

Oh, summers are just fine, especially when deliciously wet, Caribbean-like air slaps me in the face. (Once, when I was visiting friends in San Juan, the weather was hotter and more humid in St. Paul, which sounds crazy but is not uncommon).

Minnesota winters, though? I have been in the Twin Cities for three decades now, and I still have my “dear God, what have I done?” moments in January or February when the mercury takes a polar plunge.

But, over the years I’ve learned to make my peace with King Boreas.

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Twitter for Mac is no more; I try alternatives

As a Twitter power user, I’m in mourning because my favorite Mac-based software for accessing the popular social network will soon be no more.

That application, also called Twitter, is an elegant one-column construct that for years has permitted me to effortlessly and enjoyably access my various accounts. Now, though, Twitter is killing off the Mac app. That’s a shame.

With a sniff and perhaps a barely audible sob, I must move on.

For a TidBITS article, I kicked the tires on three Mac-based Twitter-app alternatives.

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I partake of the wireless-charge revolution

Of the many, many tech gadgets I’ve tried over several decades as a tech writer, a few stand out in my mind because of their ingenuity, beauty or both.

The TDK Wireless Charging Speaker is one of these. Made by then-Minnesota-based Imation in a licensing deal with Japan’s TDK, the compact audio gizmo kicked out nice sound.

But what made it unusual was it’s top surface, which incorporated a wireless-charging technology call Qi (“chee”).

Newfangled at the time, Qi allowed certain kinds of phones (including iPhones, if they were fitted with a special kind of case) to replenish their batteries simply by being placed on a wireless-power surface.

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My #bestnine Instagram pictures for 2017

Here are my #bestnine Instagram photos for 2017:

1, 6 and 8: Mississippi River Boulevard vistas taken while on bicycling excursions

2: My neighbor Colleen’s backyard while she was working an an interesting, unusually colorful project

3, 4: St. Paul-skyline shots taken from the Pioneer Press’ 7th-floor outdoor patio

5: Me and St. Paul Mayor Chris Coleman just before the St. Paul Winter Carnival Torchlight Parade

7. Great shot of downtown St. Paul and my buddy Chris as we were on a ride

9. I took a lot of bicycling shots this year, and this is one of my favorites.

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