Why We’ve Been Quiet Here: We’ve Moved!

If you thought we’d dropped off the face of the planet, you probably missed it: we have moved away from Medium and started publishing on our faster, open source, and privacy-respecting blog at blog.elementary.io. We’ve echoed our announcement blog post here on Medium for posterity, but all recent and future posts are exclusively hosted there.

Visit the new blog

In 2016, elementary moved to a Medium publication to host our official blog. At the time, Medium was touted as a simple, clean, and reader-focused host for writers. They supported custom domains, a robust API, RSS, rich formatting, and great image…

A beastly Linux laptop, with some caveats

I recently raised funds for a new beast of a development machine for my work on elementary OS. After receiving the laptop, installing elementary OS, and using it for a while now, I’m ready to share my thoughts. A video is also coming soon as promised, but that takes a bit more time to prepare. :)


In a nutshell, this is a beast of a laptop and I would highly recommend it to anyone looking for a relatively thin and light workstation-type machine. Over all it works wonderfully with elementary OS Juno, and should work great with any Linux-based OS…

New features and snazzy UI refinements

Today I’m happy to announce the latest release of the private-by-default browser for elementary OS. Ephemeral 5 brought some useful new features, and 5.1 add few small refinements that really add polish.

What is Ephemeral?

If you’re just hearing about it for the first time (or need a refresher): Ephemeral is the private-by-default, always-incognito browser for elementary OS. It’s heavily inspired by Firefox Focus—a mobile web browser—but designed and developed specifically for elementary OS using standard libraries for the platform like GTK, Granite, and WebKit.

The primary design is that you set it as your default browser, and thus any links you click…

What’s new with the always-incognito web browser

In case you’ve missed it, I’ve been actively developing Ephemeral, the always-incognito web browser, for elementary OS. My vision for version 1.0 was simple: a barebones web frame that didn’t keep any information around about your browsing. Since its release at the beginning of the year, I’ve been hard at work dogfooding and adding features as they seem relevant.

The always-incognito web browser

Ever since Firefox Focus landed on Android, I’ve been a fan. It’s an interesting idea of making privacy a habit by default instead of a separate mode you manually enable; on Android, you can set it as your default web browser meaning Google doesn’t vacuum up all of your browsing history in Chrome and sites don’t get persistent cookies and other trackers following you everywhere.

tl;dr I’m going full-time at elementary

My Career at System76

In 2013 I was looking for a new high end laptop to help with my elementary contributions — I wanted it to be powerful and high quality, and of course it had to support Linux out of the box. I settled on a System76 Galago UltraPro, and we were able to purchase it in part thanks to the new elementary t-shirt store I was running out of my dorm room.

During the research and ordering process, Ian at System76 encouraged me to apply for an open web development position they had. It was a long shot—I was a kid in…

Know when your websites are misbehaving!

Web Watcher by KJ Lawrence is a native app that aims to replace third-party services for something your computer is perfectly capable of doing on its own: monitoring websites.

While it might seem trivial at first, Web Watcher fills a niche for me that I’ve long tried to fill by installing some browser extension (opening up privacy issues) or using some third-party website: it simply pings any given website once a minute, and reports back a status code. If the site goes down or is inaccessible when Web Watcher checks, it’ll notify you. …

Let’s Imagine an Alternate Universe

This whole YouTube Music thing has been really poorly handled. It’s not entirely clear where the overlap is between existing services and subscriptions, what will happen to users’ content, and when anything is actually happening (some users are using the new YouTube Music app, but others, like me, got an ad for it and are still seeing the old version).

The problem, it seems, is Google’s lack of orchestration and vision for their products. Sometimes Google really gets things right, but right now, media and entertainment is not one of them.

Let’s imagine an alternate universe for a minute. One…

A new app for elementary colors

This past weekend, I realized I was opening a web browser to do something a native app could do better: referencing and copy-pasting colors. I was inspired to build that native app, and after a weekend of hacking, I’m proud to introduce Palette.

Cassidy James Blaede

Co-founder & CXO at elementary, Inc. GNOME Foundation member. UX Architect. Writer. He/him/his.

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