My technology ecosystem : the tools

To put the “Ok, so what am I doing with this new computer” into context, it’d help to know what else there is:

My geeky stuff: 

My work computer is a Dell laptop, running Win7, and a variety of software, including the Adobe Creative suite. I mostly live in my web browser, Word, Excel, and forays into various Adobe products, but less than I did before most of our website management moved into WordPress from Dreamweaver.  Our IT policy is that we can use work machines for reasonable personal use, but in practice, it lives on my desk (plugged into a widescreen monitor) unless I’m at the reference desk or on my fortnightly evening reference shift. (However, if I ever *did* have a trip where I really wanted a computer, not the iPad, I could easily bring it.)

At home, I have: 

  • My primary computer (since 2009, this has been a MacBook, it is about to be the new iMac). It lives on a small rolling desk by my couch, and I often have a small black cat within arm’s reach when I’m home. (Not the best ergonomics ever, but awesome on the ‘reach out and get purred at’ quality of life scale.)
  • An iPad 2 and a keyboard case (now my primary portable device: it doesn’t do quite *everything* I would want in a primary device, but it’s manageable even for a week-long trip.)
  • An iPhone, which (as I’ve commented to various people) is less phone and more “portable computer that fits in my pocket that occasionally makes a phone call.” I am really not a phone person.
  • A Time Capsule, which stores my backups and also purchased digital downloads (movies, TV series) that are not in active use. It is also my wifi router.

Other bits of tech: 

I should note here that I don’t own a TV and haven’t since 2005. (This has been largely for space reasons: I watch things via Hulu, Netflix, and various other streaming tools.)  But part of why I’m excited about the iMac is that watching something while keeping an eye on my IM windows will now be much easier.

I will eventually get a USB DVD drive, but this past week is the first time I’ve stuck a DVD in my computer in about a year.


I believe in naming my technology. And sometimes renaming it. Here’s my about to be naming scheme:

  • the Time Capsule: alexandria (really, what else do you name a storage device if you’re me?)
  • the local wifi network : musica humana (the term for human-made music in discussion of music of the spheres)
  • the new iMac: diapason (the term for a perfect octave, in Pythagorean ratio discussion of music.)
  • the iPhone : diapente (the term for a 4:6 or 2:3 ratio in Pythagorean ratios of music, a fifth.)
  • the iPad : diatesseron (the term for a 9:12 or 3:4 ratio in Pythagorean ratios of music, a fourth.)

You might notice a relationship between the screen ratios on the last two devices and their names. They’re imperfect, but amusing.

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Hi, I’m Jen

Librarian, infovore, and general geek, likely to write comments about books, link collections, and other thoughts related to how we find, use, and take joy in information.

I'm the Research Librarian at the Perkins School for the Blind

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