Struggling for an image to illustrate something? Find inspiration at the Noun Project

Images for ‘blog’ suggested on The Noun Project

The Noun Project is a wonderful resource for creatives, especially when brainstorming.

According to their website, the purpose of their site is to create “a global visual language that unites us — a language that allows quick and easy communication no matter who you are or where you are.”

What image comes to mind when you think of the word ‘save‘?

I guess many of you would have thought of an old 3.5″ floppy disk, the kind used as the save icon in Microsoft Word. Or maybe you thought of a lifebelt, the kind that is thrown out to sea to help save someone’s life.

It is this kind of thing that the Noun Project is trying to collate—the connection between words and images.

Another one, what image comes to mind when you think of the words ‘improve‘ or ‘wish‘ or ‘inspire‘? It is those more abstract words that I find the Noun Project particularly useful for, when I need to illustrate something.

Fliqlo flip-clock screensaver

Fliqlo screensaver in 24-hour mode, low brightness about 50% scale

I may be a bit late to the party when it comes to minimalist-style PC clock screensavers but I’m here now.

Loved by photographers of beautiful desktops and minimalist office setups the world over, Fliqlo is a free screensaver that displays a clean, simple flip-style clock on your screen.

Currently, it is offers three options: 12-hour/24-hour, brightness and size. Future releases promise multiple monitor support and the ability to exit from the screensaver by mouse-movement rather than keyboard press.

Fliqlo is available for Windows and Mac.

Firewatch (redux)

Firewatch wallpaper

Five years ago today, Campo Santo released what quickly became my all-time favourite computer game, Firewatch.

If you haven’t already played it and you’re tired of running, jumping, shooting-at-people games, this is a very welcome change.

In a world that has been locked down for almost a year, this game has been a perfect virtual escape for this introvert who loves to explore the world alone.

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Installing Ubuntu 20.04 LTS on an old Asus X551CA laptop from 2013

Welcome to Ubuntu screen

One of the items that I inherited after Mum died was her old laptop, an Asus X551CA that I bought her for Christmas 2013. This month I replaced the battery, upgraded the hard drive and installed Linux.

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Helping my sleep pattern with F.lux

It’s now late October, the clocks have gone back an hour to GMT. In Scotland the nights are fair drawin’ in—it is getting dark earlier. All the more important then to make sure I look after my sleep hygiene.

For the last 14 years I have been working mostly sitting in front of a PC. I’m also a bit of a geek so I find myself sitting in front of a PC even when I’m not being paid to do so.

For years I found it hard to get to sleep at night. It turns out that staring at computer monitor for hours is not great for your sleep. The blue light emitted by a screen affects our attention, reaction times and mood (Source) and, crucially, our sleep.

In 2009, I discovered an application called F.lux that detects where you are in the world and automatically adjusts the screen colour temperature to gradually remove the blue as the sun is setting.

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