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A Visit from the Goon Squad, by Jennifer Egan

A photo of the book “A Visit from the Goon Squad” by Jennifer Egan
A Visit from the Goon Squad

I really enjoyed this book, recommended to me by Gillian and Tom.

It’s set primarily in New York and tells the stories of a cast of interconnected characters (and their children) linked by the music industry, taking in themes of youth and ageing, loss and regret, insecurity, celebrity and image.

There are some great moments including Rob’s story which called to mind The Talented Mr Ripley; Jules’s unpublished and unhinged newspaper article on the celebrity interview which sent him to jail; and the dystopian final chapter which suggests where the internet and the world of influencers might be headed if we don’t watch out.

I loved author Jennifer Egan’s storytelling, dark humour and also the way she switched her writing style dependent on the era or character.

Recommended!

Intrinsically Responsive CSS Grid with minmax and min

Evan Minto notes that flexible grids created with CSS Grid’s repeat, auto-fill, and minmax are only intrinsically responsive (responsive to their container rather than the viewport) up to a point, because when the container width is narrower than the minimum width specified in minmax the grid children overflow.

Applying media queries to the grid is not a satisfactory solution because they relate to the the viewport (hence why Every Layout often prefer Flexbox to CSS Grid because it allows them to achieve intrinsic responsiveness).

However we’ll soon be able to suggest grid item width as a percentage of the parent container, avoiding the overflow problem. The new “CSS Math functions” to help us achieve this are min(), max() and clamp(). At the time of writing, these are only supported in Safari however Chrome support is in the pipeline.

Elijah – Ice 2 Go (Iridite)

On reflection this one was pretty naive and raw but I can live with that! I was 25 when I made it and listening to a lot of John Tejada, and you can definitely hear that influence alongside other typical Detroit Techno stylings.

I made it in Cubase with a combination of software and hardware. The main bassline sound came from NI Mercury, with an additional bassline from my Waldorf Pulse. The drums were programmed in Attack and the main riff with its panning effects was also software-based. The pad and portamento/gliding lead part came from my Juno 106 and Nord Lead 2 respectively.

Fun fact: the name Ice 2 Go came from a night out in Amsterdam with label-boss Jason and the lovely Lydia during which we asked a bar for a bag of ice to take away to make caipirinhas. A mildly merry Jason first heard then signed the track that very night.

I remember that DJs like DJ 3000 and Nomadico/Dex from Underground Resistance played it. Closer to home I heard that Hudson Mohawke was a fan and played it at the Sub Club, while Jackmaster was good enough to showcase it in a “lesser-known gems” feature on Radio 1. And nice people who I respect like Mark still rate it, so that’s good enough for me.

Mac-Talla Nan Creag – The Sorrow of Derdriu

The Sorrow of Derdriu. Photo by Oli Breidfjord.
The Sorrow of Derdriu. Photo by Oli Breidfjord.

Just took delivery of this feast for the eyes and ears from Firecracker Recordings. Other Lands, Lord Of The Isles and friends on the sounds; House Of Traps and co. on the stellar artwork. Like the first release this was made in association with The Forestry Commission, is totally unique and I highly recommend grabbing a copy.

Namecheap

I’ve heard a couple of people mention that when they buy domain names, the use Namecheap because they are cheap and trustworthy. I tend not to have any particular favourites but I’ll maybe give Namecheap a go next time.

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