Best of “Today I Learned” in 2021 (So Far)
A roundup of tidbits and useful tips from Postlight's #TIL Slack.
The Postlight team is a curious bunch. Every day, all sorts of interesting links float across Postlight’s Slack channels. Sometimes these are useful tidbits such as sharing how you can right-click on meetings in Google Calendar to quickly edit your attendance status. Sometimes they’re silly trivia (Ciabatta bread wasn’t invented until 1982).
We also have a :good link: reacji for content worthy of sharing beyond Postlight. A little less trivia and tools, a little more think-y — and every week the best links make their way into Postlight’s newsletter. What can I say, we enjoy our Pleasant Internet Things here.
In either case, any Postlight team member can react to a shared learning or link with our custom :TIL: emoji, short for Today I Learned. The reacji automatically copies the link over to our #til Slack channel, which becomes a curated virtual land where you can explore when you’re in the mood to learn, low stakes.
Following along with the #til channel feels like being immersed in a steady stream of life hacks and curiosities. I’ve lost count of the times I’ve learned a time-saving keyboard shortcut, or a new vocabulary word. Here are 15 of the best things I learned from :TIL: this year, so far:
Slack and Google Calendar
1. If you copy a URL, then highlight text in the Slack message field, then paste, that text will become a link.
2. You can create a calendar event without leaving Slack by using the Google Calendar or Outlook Calendar apps for Slack (source).
3. If you commonly create Google Events with the same group of people, you can create a label for a group of contacts in Gmail by clicking the “To” label in a new email, then use Manage Labels to label a group of people. The label will be available when you Add Guests to any meeting (source).
4. iOS has built-in sound recognition and can alert you if it hears certain sounds such as a crying baby, a doorbell, or a siren (source).
5. When taking a screenshot on Mac OS, you can press and hold the spacebar to move the frame while preserving its dimensions (source).
6. While in “jiggle mode” in iOS (yes, that’s actually what it’s called), holding an icon and tapping on others with a different finger will let you stack them and move them together (source).
Web development and software engineering
7. Running `document.designMode = ‘on’` in the browser console allows you to make the entire document editable, which is useful for taking screenshots for feedback or pranks (source).
8. `git rerere` allows you to reuse the recorded resolution of conflicted merges, which is useful in cases of resolving the same conflicts over and over again (source).
9. Artificial banana flavoring tastes unlike most fresh bananas because it was originally based on the Gros Michel banana, a variant mostly unused in the modern era (source).
10. The difference between flotsam and jetsam: Flotsam is defined as debris in the water that was not deliberately thrown overboard, often as the result of a shipwreck or accident; jetsam describes debris that was deliberately thrown overboard by a crew of a ship in distress, most often to lighten the ship’s load.
11. Saskatchewan, Canada, is the world’s largest producer/exporter of lentils (source).
12. Netflix has strict rules about the camera equipment that can be used for “original” content.
13. You can prevent the “acid burn” when eating pineapple by first soaking it in salt water (source).
14. Scooby Doo’s full name is Scoobert (source).
15. Mountain Dew was originally created as a mixer for whiskey (source).
And last but not least:
Preston Richey is a Senior Engineer at Postlight. Say hello at email@example.com or follow him on Twitter @prestonrichey.
Postlight has an extraordinary team of people who love to make great digital products — and we’re hiring. Come join us.
Story published on Jun 2, 2021.