Thoughts on Threads

Threads Launched.

My overall impression of threads 48hrs in are pretty “meh.”

If anything, it’s proving just how mature of a product Twitter really is at this point. It’s missing simple things that we’ve taken for granted, like gif integration. It’s missing more substaintial things hashtags and a way to actually see posts from people who follow.

Is it actually enshittified from the get-go!?

All the “Twitter killer” micro-blogging apps popping off in the past 6 – 12 months lead me to agree with growing thought that we are at the end of an era.

I’m getting strong deja vu of peak-MySpace when we had a bunch of bad choices (Friendster? Bebo? Orkut? Dogster? Facebook) and no real direction.

I’m just not sure what era we are at the end of.

Twitter invented a new type of web app, a new category of discourse; a sort of global “town square” and love it or hate it, Twitter (along with Reddit TBF) has been the catalyst of so so much social change.

As I’ve said before, IMHO this is the main reason it’s hard to “kill” Twitter – even with a feature-complete clone – it’s more than the sum of its parts.

I have no idea what’s next, but if we’re on a retro-internet tip, maybe blogging’s coming back.


Add another item to the lack-of-support tally.

Threads does not support oembed. Unsurprisingly, I suppose.


I Need To Found A Town

…if I want to be allowed to register the domain name

I’ve always thought it would be cool to register a domain for my surname so that I could give my family email addresses and website subdomains. Or even just as a bit of nerd cred.

Unfortunately, the Canadian Internet Registration Authority won’t let me.

If you do a whois lookup on you’ll see the following non-descriptive error message.

I’ve actually been on a quest to figure out how to register since before I registered over 18 years ago. Back then, the error message was a bit more specific. It mentioned something to the effect of the domain name being reserved for a municipality.

Sure enough, Neudorf is a village in Saskatchewan with a population of just under 300 and a nice looking community hall.

It turns out that the CIRA has reserved all municipal names registered in the Canadian Geographical Names Data Base and only official of those municipalities are ever allowed to own the domain name. They’re not even allowed to transfer it, according to a conversation I had with @cira on Twitter.

However in cases where the municipality shares a name with a major brand (ex., the brand has been given the right to register the domain name. What gives?

A close reading of the CIRA’s General Registration Rules indicates that there is one small exception to these rules, written consent from the CIRA.

So this is what I am now pursuing, written consent. It seems like less work than founding a town.


While I understand the the motivation for this policy is likely to avoid domain name squatting. It seems like a better policy would be to reserve the third-level domain name (i.e. rather than give every tiny hamlet and village a reservation that’s difficult and annoying to register if you’re a legitimate party sharing the same.

There must be hundreds of overlaps between surnames, even business names and small municipalities who will never ever bother to register a domain name.


Twitter Circles Security Incident

A couple of months ago I wrote a post promoting the use of Twitter’s Circles. It was one of my coping mechanisms for using current Twitter in its semi-broken state.

Then people started reporting that their private circle posts had were appearing in public timelines.

They were right.

Twitter sent out an email last week acknowledging what they call an “incident.” So that something…

I feel bad if somebody followed my advice to use circles and then Twitter leaked something sensitive.



Route 90 Safety

Mayor Gillingham wants to spend $1,000,000,000 “improving” Winnipeg’s Route 90 (aka Kenaston Blvd) between Taylor and Ness avenues.

The proposal can be read here (PDF, it’s large).

“Improvement” seems to be defined as: a reduction of projected 2041 travel times (by car) by 90 seconds (page 7).

It should also be noted that the goal travel time is of 9.2 minutes is actually 72 seconds slower than the current travel time of 8 minutes. Travel times increase regardless of the capital expended on adding one more lane because induced demand is in fact real. And the proposal does seem to implicitly acknowledge this.


To put it another way, the Mayor is proposing to spend

$11,111,111 per second

…of travel time reduction. I have to question whether this is a good use of money.

But nevermind that, let’s talk about safety.


The City of Winnipeg has adopted a Strategic Road Safety Action Plan with the (very feeble but very achievable) goal of “…of a 20 percent reduction in fatal and serious injury collisions.” So I was wondering how the Route 90 expansion might fit into this.

The fine people over at MPI provided me with 10 years of collision data for Kenaston Boulevard for the proposed “improvement” area. Keep in mind that these are only incidents that generated a report to MPI, it’s safe to assume that this are all “serious.”

Over the past 10 years, 10 pedestrians have been injured in this “improvement” zone. Or roughly 1 in every 108 vehicle collision involves a pedestrian injury.

I cannot see how adding two lanes (a 50% increase) and increasing the speed limit from 50km/h to 60km/h is going to help bring those 10 pedestrian injuries closer to zero!

A computer rendering showing the proposed intersection at academy and route 90.
An at-grade crossing at what is effectively a freeway entrance!

The pedestrians crossings at grade throughout this proposal simply are not going to be good enough! If we’re spending $11M dollars per second of car quality of life, surely we can spend a few million dollars to allow pedestrians to cross this pseudo-freeway safely!

Let’s save some money and turn Route 90 into a park!

Public Engagement

At the time writing the city is requesting public engagement. Please take some time to complete the survey available here.

The Data

For those interested, the raw data from MPI can be found here:


Brent Bellamy suggests that the cost for this project is only a mere $715,000,000. Which brings the per second improvement cost to $7,944,444 🤷‍♂️


Winnipeg Budget Day 2023

Today was budget day for Winnipeg City Council. Perhaps the most important day of the year. And I watched it so you don’t have to!

Spoiler: it passed 14 – 2 and it’s a huge step in the wrong direction.

There’s plenty of discourse on Twitter (I’d suggest starting with Millennium for All’s feed).

You can watch the entire meeting below.

Winnipeg City Council Special Meeting – 22nd March, 2023

But it’s over four hours long so I’ve gone ahead and created a table of contents, bookmarking the important moments.

If you’re extremely short on and you only have 10 minute to spare, watch Councillor Allard’s Introduction to his amendment and imagine what a great city we’d have if we had more than one urbanist on council. Or maybe the impassioned speeches by the delegates in opposition to the budget.


Think about what kind of amazing city we would be living in if their positions were flipped!

In Support

  • Loren Remillard, The Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce (5:42)
  • Chris Lorenc, Manitoba Heavy Construction Association (12:13)

In Opposition

  • Michael Redhead Champagne & Mary Burton – Fearless R2W (43:04)
  • Kate Kehler – The Social Planning Council of Winnipeg (49:51)
  • Ryan Beardy – Gang Action Interagency Network (55:26)

Police Budget

Note: this was presented “as information” only.

  • Chambers – St. Norbert, Introduction (1:21:33)
  • Wyatt – Transcona, a plea for more council oversight of police board, etc (1:26:08)


  • Mayor Gillingham, Intro. Summary of high level items (1:38:58)
  • Browaty – North Kildonan, his highlights (1:43:36)


Arguments in Support of Budget

  • Rollins – Fort Rouge-Easy Fort Garry (2:18:13)
  • Gilroy – Danielle McIntrye (2:27:00)
  • Wyatt – Transcona (2:38:07)
  • Chambers – St. Norbert (2:48:04)
  • Schreyer – Elmwood-East Kildonan (2:53:04)
  • Orlikow – River Heights-Fort Garry (3:03:49)
  • Mayes – St. Vital (3:11:58)
  • Eadie – Mynarski (3:20:42)


  • Allard. Amendment (3:31:36)
  • Mayor Gillingham. The budget itself (3:41:59)

The Vote (3:46:51)

Notably Silent

If you live in the following wards, your representative was totally silent during the most important council meeting of the year.

Please think about this when they’re up for re-election in 4 years.

Update: I should note that Councillor Sharma was on leave for most of the day and attended remotely for the vote. She may have had more to say if she was able to be present during the meeting.