The “IT Guy Kit”

My "IT Guy Kit"

When you work on IT you’re prone to two things: being a geek and carrying a lot of gadgets.

Well, I surely can’t escape my fate, and suffering from both issues (geeking with gadgetry) I have a plethora of things always ready on my “IT Guy Kit”.

Here’s the list:

  1. The kit pouch itself – It’s a Goodis GPS pouch but you can use it to carry anything. It has a decent amount of space for storage and two additional small pouches inside.
  2. TP-LINK M7350 Mobile LTE WIFI router – My main portable router. 4G LTE, 802.11a, with a 2550mAh battery and a 32GB MicroSD card I can share over the network, it’s the perfect router to use outdoors and indoors when your ISP or electricity provider fails.
  3. TP-LINK M5360 Mobile 3G WIFI router – This is my spare router. It’s not as fast as the M7350, but it has more autonomy thanks to a 5200mAh battery. It also doubles as a power bank.
  4. TP-LINK (yeah, I like TP-LINK’s stuff!) TL-PB10400 Power Bank – This sucker can charge a lot of stuff with its 10400mAh. It has two charging ports (1A and 2A) and a bonus flashlight.
  5. WD Passport Ultra 1TB – Storage on the Go. For Virtual Machines, backups and other stuff I don’t want to fill my laptop SSDs with (games, music, emulators, etc…)
  6. SanDisk Extreme USB 3.0 Flash Drive 64GB – One of the best USB pens on the market, very fast, but it lacks a lot on the build quality of the materials. It heats up very easily and it should have an Aluminium body instead of plastic.
  7. USB OTG 3 Port Hub & Card Reader LINDY (42626) – This is a hell of a gadget to have around if you are an Android user. Plug it on the USB port of your tablet or phone and you can use it as an SD Card reader or connect other USB devices like a mouse or a keyboard.
  8. Network stuff – Assorted cables, WIFI and Gigabit Ethernet USB adapters; Serial to USB adapter – I often need more than one network connection on my laptop when I’m configuring a router or a firewall so, these are always useful to have around.
  9. urBeats – All around good set of earphones, comfortable on the ear and with a decent quality. Very durable!
  10. VictorInox CyberTool M – Love this guy! It has an insane amount of tools, some of them specific for fixing electronic devices.
  11. Google Nexus 7 (2012) 32GB 3G – Right now I have a love / hate relationship with this tablet. After Google released Lolipop for it, it became useless, slow, buggy. Only after a full rom flash with the latest Android 5.1.1 it became tolerable to work with this thing again…
  12. Samsung Galaxy S6 (not in the photo) – My current phone. Replaced it last month after my HTC One M7 went to warranty due to multiple problems. The S6 is a beast of a phone concerning the hardware, still the TouchWiz could be more polished. It’s not as bloated as it was on earlier Galaxy S phones, but there’s still room for improvement.
  13. Bellroy Very Smal Wallet – Not really a gadget or a tool, but I love this wallet. I dumped my old classic wallet and fitted everything I need in this small pocket wallet. Never been happier without the bulge of papers and receipts I accumulated on my old wallet.

And you? Do you have a kit as well? What do you usually carry arround?

The Blog that sleeps…

It’s more like the blogger who sleeps… I really have to reconnect with my blog. Twitter, Facebook and G+ are taking a heavy toll on blogs. Mine is no exception. In the social networks you have almost an instant audience, it’s like you are in the middle of the street shouting you rants at strangers, while the traditional blogs are more like a radio station, you have to tune in to listen what’s on… still the blog seems more cosy, intimist, like a one to one experience. I miss blogging… I miss having the time to spend on my blog. Damn.

 

Farewell LucasArts

This beatifull sunset is only present in the original EGA version of Monkey Island.
Trivia: This beautiful sunset is only present in the original EGA version of Monkey Island.

It’s a sad day for us gamers in their 30’s and 40’s.

Today Disney announced that it’s closing LucasArts. The famous game studio that was part of LucasFilm, and included in the package that George Lucas sold to Disney, is being closed down after 31 years. I’m 34. I grew up with LucasFilm Games (that was the original name back then), the good old Maniac Mansion, Loom, Monkey Island, Indiana Jones and so many others. All of them made me a very happy kid. If I exceled at english in my teen years, I owe it all to these titles. Brillian graphic adventures, games unmatched even today…

In the past 10 years, LucasArts has been only a medium to release Star Wars games, straying very far from its roots. In this economy and with the lack of good titles, it was only a matter of “when”.

Farewell LucasFilm Games. I’m off to play some Secret of Monkey Island, hopping one day I might play Monkey Island 3, delivered directly from the hands of the creator.

1982 Blade Runner Studio Notes

Blade Runner Movie Notes

 

Some hilarious notes on Blade Runner. If you saw “Dangerous Days” you will understand some of them and why this movie was almost scrapped from production.

Big things have small beginnings

The title of this post is one of the most significant lines of David, one of the main characters in Prometheus and it’s perhaps the best way to describe Ridley Scott’s latest sci-fi movie.

First, let me get just one thing out-of-the-way. Prometheus is a great movie, one of the best sci-fi movies of the last 10 years, but it’s not supposed to be an Alien prequel, so for the critics out there that insist in comparing Prometheus with Alien and saying that it’s bad, FUCK YOU. Alien is one of the best exercises in fear and suspense, an excellent movie, so good that no other Alien movie (2,3 and 3) can live up to it, and those were supposed to be better. Prometheus is a whole new beast, it’s an action sci-fi movie that shares the Alien movies DNA and answers some of the questions raised 33 years ago, but it raises new ones, a lot of them, many beyond everything we learned about this universe in the Alien movies.

With this out-of-the-way, let me start my short review, hopefully without spoilers.

Let me start with the 3D. I’m not a very big fan of 3D movies, and when possible, I watch the 2D versions. Prometheus is the best 3D movie I’ve ever seen. The 3D usage has been meticulously thought, it works great and serves its purpose. It’s also the first 3D movie that didn’t give me a headache, that’s supposed to mean something. It’s a polished movie, the photography is amazing, the effects are sublime, very well done, almost an exercise in design, with each an every one of them serving their purpose. The days of the walls with blinking led lights are long gone, now every led, screen or hologram is there for a valid reason, so real that makes you believe it’s true. The creatures are amazing, we get to see more that we hoped for, everything done in a seamless way. Ridley Scott’s formula of real sets with CGI works ten thousand times better that the green screen shit other directors do. This only proves that RS knows what he’s doing from the beginning of the movie to the end.

The cast is good, but even with great names like Charlize Theron and Guy Pearce, it’s Michael Fassbender’s David that steals the show. David is a roller coaster ride of personalities. In a minute he’s a curious child exploring an alien world like it was a toy shop, in another he’s a calculating and mischievous bastard with the face of Peter O’Toole. David, Elizabeth Shaw (Noomi Rapace) and Meredith Vickers (Charlize Theron) are the strongest characters in the movie, all the others are there to enhance the plot or are “cannon fodder”, and that it’s perhaps Prometheus biggest flaw, the personality traits of the stereotyped movie characters, but even that doesn’t spoil the amazing story Ridley Scott tells us. There are a lot of topics covered in Prometheus. Life, death, religion, faith, humanity, all in a mixed bag of emotions that leaves a lot of room for at least two more movies, which I really hope RS makes them. The story is so good that you won’t want to leave the theater in the end waiting for more.

To finish, if you want to see this movie, leave your “Alien” baggage out the door, it will be more interesting that way because each nod, each piece of information related to the Alien universe you get to see in this movie, will be a better surprise. You can “connect the dots” later on when you arrive home and watch Alien, only to find that your memory of the movie was “sugar-coating” it a lot more that you were expecting it to be.

Prometheus can be, indeed, the small beginning for on of the biggest trilogies the sci-fi genre will ever have.

The White Robe Guy

Moleskine Star Wars: The Origami Battle