582: Radio and Podcasts and Books, Oh My... with Shelly Brisbin

Just listened. Very good, very interesting. Thanks all.

I agree. I thought that Shelly was an excellent and engaging guest. I particularly liked the fact that she seemed to be able to strike a solid balance between finding apps to use and remaining completely practical in her choice of apps and how she used them.


Great episode! The work/personal divide on a single computer really resonated with me — I don’t have a work computer, so everything is on my own devices. Chrome/Firefox profiles are great, but I want all my work to be fully quarantined into a separate apps so I can quit them at the end of the day. Here’s the workflow I’ve developed:

  • I use Safari and Mail.app for personal, Firefox and Mailplanefor work
  • I have Choosy set as my default browser which lets me route URLs with a list of rules. Some examples:
    • any URL opened in Slack or Mailplane gets sent to Firefox
    • any link opened in Mail.app gets sent to Safari
    • If a URL starts with “docs.google”, “sheets.google” etc., it’s probably for work and should open in Firefox (my app-specific links supersede this)
    • Finally, I can shift-click on any URL to be presented with my browser options.
  • Finally, inspired by @tjluoma, Keyboard Maestro/Shortcuts give me a nasty-gram and quit my work apps if I try launching them outside of work hours. Keeps me from defaulting to work when I need to stop.

There are some nice things about not having a work computer — I can use the exact computer I want and like, there’s no weird spyware, I can run apps like Keyboard Maestro without an IT person raising an eyebrow — but it really requires intentionality to keep that work/life balance. There’s certainly been a lot of refining this over the past year!

Also, love hearing a fellow public radio producer on MPU :radio::relaxed:


Very nice! I do similar things. I use Firefox for work because I have to use Facebook for work and Firefox is pretty good about keeping Facebook from tracking you all over the web.

I have tried using different user accounts for my Work and Personal but always found it more hassle than it was worth. I still think it’s the best way to go in theory but in practice I can’t stick with it.

Just popping in to say I agree with @ismh in that I want a non-watch product from Apple for fitness tracking. I prefer my mechanical watches and would love a fitness tracker I could wear on my other wrist (or finger, like Oura)!

Their device could even have some taptic options if they want to notify me to check my phone, etc.


Enjoyed this! Found it interesting how the unique pressures of radio informed her tool and workflow tradeoffs.

Edit: Also, you got $5/mo from me for that watch discussion (and all the other great work! :slight_smile: )


A super episode. Shelly Brisbin always has great ideas!

Was excited to hear Voice Dream get some attention on this episode. Would love to hear more about text-to-speech (TTS) workflows from @MacSparky and others. TTS is what got me interested in RegEx–cleaning PDFs to prep them for Voice Dream or Ghost Reader Plus on the Mac. It even sent me on a hunt for transcription foot pedals to control playback. The TTS approach to reading presents many interesting problems. I’m especially curious to hear how long-term TTS users have learned to ear-read. It’s defiantly it’s own skill set and has transformed how I listen to all sorts of things, including the MPU podcast.

Counting the days until Voice Dream arrives fully fledged on the Mac:

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Shelly mentioned a device she uses to hold external drives like a toaster. Does anyone have a link to a good model? I could use just such a device.

I don’t have a specific model in mind, but I would recommend whatever they are selling at OWC, just based on my experience with OWC.

A few years ago I bought a couple of cheap ones from Amazon and they were unreliable, leading to unmounting drives “unexpectedly” which is Very Bad and macOS will definitely yell at you about it.

These two look promising, but it depends on what kind of drives you have/want to use, etc: