Twitter just announced that “favorites” will now be called “likes” and will be represented by hearts instead of stars. In part they say:

You might like a lot of things, but not everything can be your favorite.

The heart, in contrast, is a universal symbol that resonates across languages, cultures, and time zones. The heart is more expressive, enabling you to convey a range of emotions and easily connect with people.

The term “favorite” has been used in this context for a long time on the web. Browsers often called bookmarks “favorites”. Even when they didn’t use the term, they used a star. Why? Probably because in handwritten notes, you star important points; rarely do people heart them. And as Jimmy Fallon mentioned, you don’t stay at a 5-heart hotel or leave a 5-heart review on Amazon; stars are used for these purposes.

Using a heart attaches emotion that may not exist. While a heart says “I like – or maybe even love – this,” a star says, “I want to come back to this.” The star is more flexible, really.

I don’t think this is the right move. It may have been better to change “Favorites” to “Starred”. 💔

I love VMware Fusion 8, but only Boot Camp will let me use two sound devices at once. Boot Camp Assistant, though, was unable to partition my disk to make room for Windows (this is a recurring theme starting with Mac OS 10.10). The linked article provided the perfect solution to Boot Camp Assistant’s “Disk could not be partitioned” error.
Introduced in Mac OS 10.7, Resume re-opens apps and files at login. It’s terrible. Thankfully, I found one simple command line that fixes this:

defaults write -g ApplePersistence -bool no

This is Part 2 of a 4 part series about my first major international trip.
Read Part 1: Travel, Part 3: Spain, and Part 4: Germany.

The first stop on my trip was Tallinn, the capital of Estonia. It is on the Baltic Sea, a 3 hour ferry ride across from Finland. Estonia also shares a border with Russia and Latvia. The main reason for visiting was a special 3-day Bible convention with delegates from Estonia, Finland, Russia, Norway, Latvia, Lithuania, and various US states. However, I arrived several days beforehand so as to enjoy and explore the area.

Arrival

The Tallinn metro area has around 500,000 people and has an airport to match. It is relatively small, quiet, and feels Nordic with its blue metal roof, lots of windows, and wood floors. This airport was probably my favorite of the trip.

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        <div class="image-caption">Tallinn Airport</p></div>
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I was advised ahead of time to stick with the airport’s recommended taxi companies, and for good reason. Taxi drivers from other companies will come up to you trying to get you to ride with them. And they have a reputation for taking advantage of riders. My taxi driver was pleasant and surprised me by driving right up onto the sidewalk of the hotel when we arrived.
1

Climate

Estonia is substantially cooler than my southern New Mexico home. Even in July, highs stayed between 65 and 75 degrees (roughly 18-25 Celsius). Within one week, cloud cover ranged from mostly sunny to overcast. Some days there was light, refreshing drizzle; Sunday morning it rained. It was beautiful. When it comes to weather, Estonia is a perfect summer destination for desert dwellers.
2

Tallinn

As a whole, Tallinn is a nice city. Estonia has modernized a great deal since gaining independence. The city center is very walkable, but there is also a good public transporation system made up of buses and electric trains. There are many nice hotels, such as the
Nordic Hotel Forum, which is located near the Old Town.

Old Town

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        <div class="image-caption"><p>A view of Old Town Tallinn from atop Toompea.</p></div>
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While many places have boring old city centers, Tallinn has the best preserved medieval town in Europe – and a lively one, too. It It’s really amazing: much of the city wall still exists, as do many of the iconic towers. It is made up of a lower area and a hill, called Toompea, where the national government and many embassies are located. People still live in this part of the city.
3
Each door has a unique appearance, which presents an interesting photography project. There’s a variety of restaurants to suit your taste, and we were never disappointed by the service. Old Hansa – though very touristy – has a very tasty cinnamon beer that I highly recommend. Pegasus, too, is an excellent restaurant. 4

Kadriorg

Kadriorg is a palace built by Peter the Great, and sits adjacent to the Estonian presidential palace. It is a great example of Baroque architecture and is surrounded by beautiful gardens.

Special Convention


7000 people attend the "Imitate Jesus" Special Convention in Tallinn, Estonia.&nbsp;
7000 people attend the “Imitate Jesus” Special Convention in Tallinn, Estonia. 

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The weekend came to a close with a 3-day Bible convention at A Le Coq Arena. Attendance hovered around 7,000 and there was quite a bit of media coverage. Seeing people from many different places and cultures all peacefully benefitting from Bible instruction was very special.

Next up: Spain!

  1. Fun!

  2. However, it may not be as great a winter destination; even the warm coastal areas have average highs in the 30s Fahrenheit.

  3. In fact, the old KGB office is now a luxury condo building.

  4. Ask about the building’s history.