What I Use (Hardware)

I should probably talk about my setup before I start sharing my technical thoughts here on this mini blog.

I fully believe that my data should not be locked into a specific ecosystem. My data should always be securely available to multiple operating systems, not cost a lot of money to maintain, and be as future proof as possible. So, for my hardware setup, I have this.

  • My main computer is an M2 MacBook Air. I went for the second model up from the bottom, with a 512GB hard drive and 8GB RAM. Though I waffled a bit on deciding on what my computer would be for (hopefully) the next five years, I decided on the MacBook Air because of its size, weight, and the excellent performance of Apple Silicon. Unfortunately, this runs a little contrary to how I feel about right-to-repair, but the build quality of this MacBook Air should endure for the lifespan I have intended for this device.
  • I have a secondary laptop that I use when I really want to tinker, and it’s a Lenovo ThinkPad T460s, maxed out at 20GB RAM and with a 256GB SSD. It’s running Fedora Linux with the Cinnamon desktop (a little more lightweight than Gnome).
  • My productivity ecosystem is based around two home servers; I have a 2011 Mac Mini configured as a server running Debian Linux. This server handles my task management, RSS aggregation, and a bunch of housekeeping scripts I’ve built over the years.
  • I have an Alienware Aurora R7 for gaming, primarily for X-Plane 12 and Microsoft Flight Simulator. It’s running Windows 11, with Pengwin Linux installed in the WSL.
  • Work has provided me with a Dell laptop running Windows 10 that is pretty locked down. The BYOD (Bring Your Own Device) program at work doesn’t work well for my development needs, even though I’m more of a people leader these days, so I go with the company provided equipment. WSL isn’t allowed, so I run a bunch of Linux-y stuff in git bash.
  • I have an M1 iPad Pro (the larger model) that I was initially going to use as my mobile machine, but iPadOS is not where I want it to be on an open level. The iPad is fantastic though, and there’s a lot I do on it, especially when traveling on short trips, but for longer trips I want a laptop.
  • I also have a iPad Mini 5 that I use as a private pilot. I heavily rely on ForeFlight during my aviation endeavors. I also use this iPad Mini 5 as an ebook reader.

As you can see, I use plenty of different operating systems in my day to day operations. When it comes to data, cross compatibility is imperative.