The other day I received a request from reader John for an update to the digital tech gear I use on a daily basis to run my websites. While I understand not everyone is interested in what I use, hopefully some of you guys will find this helpful… or at least partially interesting. If you feel like it, would love to hear about your setups in the comment section. I myself am always curious as to what people use to run their online lives!
My computer is a circa-2009 MacBook Pro which still works flawlessly. It is a 2.53 GHz Core 2 Duo machine with 4 GB of RAM. I am still running Mac OS X 10.6.8, but I will be updating to OS X Lion before summer. I have never understood the need for anyone to update their machine every year just because a company comes out with a new model. My computer still runs any and all software just fine, works just as fast as the day I got it, and has plenty of storage space left in it. I imagine I will get at least another year or two out of this computer. We aren’t in the old days of computers when they truly got exponentially better each model year; these newer machines can last quite some time before they need replacing.
- External monitor is an ASUS 24″ Full HD/HDMI LED BackLight LCD Monitor, as I can’t stare all day at a 13″ computer screen.
- Keyboard is a wireless Apple keyboard and my mouse is an Apple Magic Mouse.
- External hard drive is a LaCie Starck 1 TB USB 2 drive, which gets backed up to constantly via Time Machine.
- Printer is a Canon iP100, which mostly stays unconnected and in the closet.
- Laptop case is from GreenSmart and is made from 100% recycled plastic bottles.
- Batteries for mouse and keyboard are rechargeables, as otherwise would be constantly buying new ones.
To do everything I need to do every day, whether it’s for my own blogs, someone else’s, or a paying web client I have, I have several go-to applications that get heavy use almost every day.
- Chrome, for web browsing.
- Transmit, for FTP transfers.
- Adium for chatting.
- Reeder, for RSS feeds of my favorite sites. I have this open all day long.
- ImageWell 4 for simple image resizing.
- Spotify and Pandora for music.
- Wunderlist for list-making.
- MPEG Streamclip for ripping from DVDs.
- Echofon for Twitter accounts (which, by the way, I just started one for this site. It’s @simpleolife.
- LastPass for keeping passwords.
- Adobe CS3 Suite for, well, all that stuff.
- Final Cut Pro for video editing.
- OpenOffice and Google Docs for word processing.
- Dropbox for cloud storage
- BackBlaze for automatic off-site backups.
Phone – I am still rocking the iPhone 3GS and will do so until the next generation iPhone comes out. I was going to switch to an Android phone, but seriously – it’s the best looking phone that works flawlessly with all my Apple gear. I don’t care about open vs. closed, I am not a hacker; to switch would be crazy at this point. It is definitely on it’s last legs, but it should make it to the next update later this year.
Apps – The homepage of my iPhone contains the following apps: Maps, Safari, Clock, Calendar, TurboScan (for creating PDF’s on the go), Wunderlist, Fahrenheit, Words with Friends, Instapaper, Reeder, Tweetbot, Amazon, Messages, Mail, and Phone. I also have 4 folders on my homepage:
- News – CNN, BBC, News360, LATimes, MSNBC, Dwell Magazine
- Music – iTunes, Shazam, NPR, Ambiance, Remote, NPR Music, Pandora, KCRW, KPCC
- Social – Trillian, LinkedIn, Tumblr, WordPress, Pinterest
- Photography – Hipstamatic, CameraBag, Best Camera, Instagram, Plastic Bullet
I think that about sums up my tech gear and how I live my life online. I work from home and have for nearly 6 years, but unless I can find more work doing some writing, social media, content management, etc, I will be trying to find a desk job to pay the bills within a month or so. (So if you need someone, get in touch!)