Switching to Redcarpet

I’ve always hated the way Jekyll uses liquid tags to highlight code snippets. I found a way to do this, which until today, I never knew existed.

Redcarpet is the answer here. Here’s what I wanted to do:

.element {
  color: $red;

Basically like the way you do code snippets on Github. Now, you might be thinking, “Kramdown has Github-Flavored-Markdown support!” But, after trying to get it to work for an hour or so, I was left frustrated. The fenced code block was technically working, but no syntax highlighting.

So I changed a few lines of code:

# _config.yml
markdown: redcarpet
markdown_ext:  markdown,mkdown,mkdn,mkd,md

  extensions: ["tables", "autolink", "strikethrough", "space_after_headers", "with_toc_data", "fenced_code_blocks", "no_intra_emphasis", "footnotes", "smart"]

Voilá! The fenced_code_blocks extension is the important one here, but personally, footnotes, and smart are crucial extensions for me too.1

That’s it! With a few lines of code, I improved my whole writing experience ten fold.

Update on November 15, 2016: I’ve switched back to Kramdown because it was way easier and removed a dependency.

  1. The footnotes extension lets me write these. And the smart extension frees me up from having to manually type the right quotes. If you don’t know what I mean by this, Jason Santa Maria wrote about it

For The Record: Beauty Is in the Imperfection

Paul Armstrong was in a business partnership back in 1998, which ended in him being sued. Soon after, he went through debt, the birth of his first baby, his parents divorcing, and his mother being diagnosed with dementia. He talks about life, marriage, kids, and how they’ve influenced his work.

Sponsored by:

  • Harvest - Simple online time tracking software. Use the coupon code TOWER and save 50% off your first month.
  • Listeners Like You! - Please consider supporting Tower on Patreon.

‘Jim Dalrymple on Family and Losing Weight’

For the first episode of For The Record, I decided to talk with Jim Dalrymple. Jim is one of those people who’s so easy to have a great conversation with.

This summer, he revealed to the world he’d been trying to loose weight, and there’s no debate about it, he looks great. At the time of recording, he’d lost 47 lbs, and was wearing size 34 pants. The amazing thing to me, is that Jim has made small, but sustainable changes: talk a walk, eat a salad, watch what you eat.

Jim also opened up about the beginnings of his relationship with Apple, writing his true opinion no matter what, and the importance of spending time with family.

If you haven’t listened to For The Record, give it a shot. I think there will be conversations where you’ll learn something new about someone, and find relatable stories.

Welcome to ‘For The Record’

The premiere of my new show, For The Record, is only a few days away! I’m so excited, and I really hope you like it. Until then, you can listen to the preview, and find out what I plan this show to be all about.

This show has been a huge experiment of how to promote a new show, and get people excited about it. Honestly, I suck at promoting things, but I sincerely hope it hasn’t come off as overbearing.

If you’re looking forward to the premiere, share it with your friends! You can also subscribe, rate, and review on iTunes. That’ll give the For The Record a huge boost for its first day. I really appreciate the word of mouth.

Thanks for your support!

‘Fantastic Four’ Sucked

Brooks Barnes writing for the New York Times:

20th Century Fox’s big-budget “Fantastic Four” went down in flames at the weekend box office, adding to fears about superhero fatigue[…]

Superhero fatigue? No. People want a well-made film with a great story.

Everything seems to point to the fact that if Fox would’ve let Josh Trank do the film he wanted, the movie might have been better. Although I’m still not sure it would’ve been good.

But the notion that people didn’t watch this movie because of “superhero fatigue” is utterly stupid. People didn’t watch because they could smell the stink a mile away.

Listen to my review of Fantastic Four on The MovieByte Podcast.

‘Fire the Workaholics’

David Heinemeier Hansson:

People who always work late makes the people who don’t feel inadequate for merely working reasonable hours. That’ll lead to guilt, misery, and poor morale. Worse, it’ll lead to ass-in-seat mentality where people will “stay late” out of obligation, but not really be productive.

David wrote this in 2008, and it’s just as true today as it was then. I enjoy having a life, and I’ve loved working for those who encourage me to live it.

‘On Passion’

Noah Stokes nails it:

Who doesn’t want to follow their passion? Do what they love? It’s on posters and t-shirts. It’s nearly half of all Medium articles. You can turn your passion into a full-time job. Your passion can free you from the daily grind. Your passion is what you were meant to do! Follow your passion they say. I say, follow your passion… on the weekends.

Happy National Radio Day!

There’s only an hour left in National Radio Day, but I wanted to post a little something I made for it.

Radio is a hugely powerful medium, and it’s impact and ability to tell stories grows stronger and stronger. Take some time to donate to your favorite shows, or send a note in the form of an email or iTunes review.

You can read and find out more at nationalradioday.com.