Thursday, January 30, 2014

January 2014

I'm 97% complete with everything needed to put Uroboros Book 2 on the market. I think it's in that last 3% that many creatives probably flounder, procrastinate, and engage in doubting one's self. Reading through the text for the last time, finalizing the cover, promotional text, getting your ISBN, and jumping through the various hoops to get to market is exciting and demoralizing.

Pretty soon, anyone with a couple bucks and the will to read your work can see what you've done, again. I don't think the process is any easier the second time like I'd hoped, and the third will likely be the same struggle. Or, maybe not.

Speaking of struggles, I'm having one with gear. I love mobile technology and use it pretty exclusively to do what I do. Even my workstation is a 15" laptop. It's a first world problem, but I'd really like to get down to a single mobile computing device that can do everything I need, and an 8" tablet as a sidecar.

My ideal device needs to have:
  1. A really good backlit keyboard that I can type on comfortably for hours. 
  2. Pen Input, I really like writing and drawing on the screen. 
  3. A touch screen with 400+ nits of brightness and a decent color gamut. 
  4. An OS with decent 1st Party applications for handling a calendar, email, and browsing.
  5. I need one of the OS partitions to run 64 bit Windows for the Windows Phone SDK.
  6. 256 GB of storage plus whatever I could squeeze from an SD card. 
  7. 8+ hours of battery life.
  8. 3-4 lb. of carrying weight and decent docking options. 
  9. A video card that can run World of Warcraft and Warframe at 25-35+ FPS. 
  10. The machine needs to be attractive or appeal to me aesthetically, I'm vain about gear. 
The Thinkpad Yoga is a device I talk about and look at often. It has Windows 8 so it'll never fulfill #4, but in a year it'll likely be Ubuntu Certified and I'll be able to banish Windows to a partition I use for the SDK, Photoshop and Gaming. I could do my writing and everything else in Ubuntu.

I've looked at getting another Mac but they all lack #2 and 3. I really like pen input and like having a touch screen. #9 is down the list a ways but my Macs have never been ideal gaming machines either. Also, I pay more for an extended warranty that isn't as good as what Lenovo offers their customers. That's pretty much the stumbling block for every other device I've looked at too, the manufacturer's warranty isn't even comparable to the awesome that is Lenovo.

If Microsoft showed any sign of supporting their hardware in a timely manner, I'd just get a newer Surface Pro as I love the hardware. I could understand having problems with Windows 8.1 on my Lenovo but not on Microsoft's own hardware. Likewise, I could understand a 3rd party keyboard not pairing properly, but 1st party proprietary keyboards?

So, I roll around to the same conclusion I have since the Lenovo Thinkpad Yoga was announced, that it is probably my next.

I think it comes with age, but it used to be I'd buy a computer every 9-12 months and it would be the only major purchase of the year, barring extraordinary circumstances. I drive a $500 car, buy clothes fairly infrequently, and have a franken-bike my father and brother graciously assembled for me from spare parts and an abandoned frame.

The idea of spending $2000+ on a machine that would probably last me 4-5 years easy shouldn't be a hard cost to calculate and I'd be happy. Some of my apprehension is that the PC market is in high gear right now, every manufacturer struggling even gasping for the air that is market share. Some of the neatest devices I've ever seen in the last 15 years came out in the last six months.

I ordered a Lenovo 8 Thinkpad Tablet yesterday, and I'm already bemoaning the decision because what if someone makes one with a pen? I console myself saying that I'd rather have Lenovo quality and their incredible warranty. It's some consolation for sure... but pen input! Pen! And what if Lenovo makes an 8" Tablet with pen input. Alas, discontent is the happiness of buying and loving technology.

My wife and I have almost lived in Kansas for a year. It's been nine interesting months and we've met some great people here and had many adventures. I think Wichita is a special place in it's own right, and that there are things here one could find nowhere else. The people are like you would find anywhere, but somewhat more caring and professional about what they do. There are more than a couple places I would put in the "Taco Time" quality category.

Even the Best Buy in Wichita is better. I know right? Also, Wichita is the birth place of my favorite Senator, Ron Wyden, if Wikipedia is to be believed.

Even if there is only two streets near my house with bike lanes, they are really nice streets with enough of a challenge (especially on a single speed bike) to make it interesting. The rest of Wichita isn't particularly bike friendly, but the downtown area is keen and the coffee shops comfortable. Our home is cozy and the street a quiet place where people walk their dogs.

We could have ended up in much worse places, and few that I'd say were better.

Mormon Missionaries visited me during the week. I'm not sure how they found me, but they've invited me back to church. I don't speak about my faith much on my blog, as I'm not really permitted to do so. I think it's fine to say that it was nice to talk to people that even partially share my beliefs, even if it was for only thirty minutes or so.

It looks nice enough outside to walk somewhere for lunch. I think I will do just that.

No comments:

Post a Comment