About Me

Robert Winter Portrait

Philosopher and historian by training, Operations Manager by pay cheque, and a doctoral candidate at Macquarie University researching Edmund Burke on authority and the implications for leadership.

Recommended Fiction

Any of the Sherlock Holmes Stories by Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, though the novels of The Hound of the Baskervilles and The Sign of Four are masterful

Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
J. R. R. Tolkien
P. G. Wodehouse
Oscar Wilde
Stephen Fry

Recommended Non-Fiction

How I Do Computing

While my privacy interests favour Linux, the practicalities of life necessitate pairing this with a Windows environment. My Windows PC is a home built desktop (AMD RYZEN Threadripper 1920X, Corsair Cooling, Nvidia GPU and plenty of RAM).

However, my personal operating system of choice is Linux-based. I currently use Pop!_OS with Typora for my focused writing environment and LibreOffice paired with Zotero for my research projects.

Screenshot from Pop!_OS
My Linux desktop, powered by Pop!_OS

Privacy

Perhaps it is a creeping presbyopia, in which life seemed to afford a greater privacy in the past. Perhaps it is an increasing awareness of the intrusive nature of advertising and data mining. Whatever the cause, I have become a strong privacy advocate and try, difficult though it is at times, to Restore Privacy… with some Privacy Tools it can be done.

Firefox for browsing – modified and tweaked for privacy

DuckDuckGo for search

Signal for messaging

ProtonMail for email

ProtonVPN for VPN

Tresorit for file storage

  • NextCloud gets an honourable mention for those willing to manage their own service

Mastodon for social posting

  • While I understand the pull of the world’s biggest social network, Stop Using Facebook has some compelling arguments if you haven’t seen them…

PixelFed for social imaging

WordPress for blogging

For those looking for a Google Docs / Office.com replacement and don’t want to manage a NextCloud instance: CryptPad has a great suite of tools.

A Sovereign, Open and Healthy Web

This section is inspired by Ru Singh philosophy of an ‘Open and Healthy Web,’ Aral Balkan’s conceptualisation of the ‘Small Web,’ and the burgeoning IndieWeb project. The prime principles of which are:

Your content is yours

When you post something on the web, it should belong to you, not a corporation. Too many companies have gone out of business and lost all of their users’ data. By joining the IndieWeb, your content stays yours and in your control.

You are better connected

Your articles and status messages can go to all services, not just one, allowing you to engage with everyone. Even replies and likes on other services can come back to your site so they’re all in one place. 

You are in control

You can post anything you want, in any format you want, with no one monitoring you. In addition, you share simple readable links such as example.com/ideas. These links are permanent and will always work.

This represents a reform of the global digital network to promote the adoption of individually-owned and controlled sovereign spaces.