iPad Productivity Report — 11/13/17

Focused, attentive, diversion-less, but not precious, work.

This week I take a dive into why iPads make for a less distracting operating system — and how I leverage the tools offered by iOS to make it even less annoying.

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  • State of Bags: The Best Choices to Make

    So you’ve read all my bag reviews and every time I like a new bag you wonder if that’s a bag you should get. This article should help clear things up for you.

    In lieu of the normal iPad Productivity Report, I present to you my “state of bags” report.

    Over the past year, I’ve tested and reviewed a bunch of new bags. This often leaves readers wondering: yeah but which one should I get? I hope to clear that up with this post, as these are the best choices you can make for a range of activities.

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  • Year of Gear: October 2016 – October 2017

    Taking a look at my favorite things I reviewed over the past year.

    This year has been a big year on gear reviewing side of things, as I’ve poured through a lot of stuff to try and find things worth owning. Below, are some of the very best things I found and reviewed this year:

    Continue reading: Year of Gear: October 2016 – October 2017

  • Tote Bags for Grocery Shopping

    A whole new bag category for the blog, totes!

    There was a recent change in local laws, this change means that grocery stores can no longer give patrons plastic bags, and they must charge $0.05 for each paper bag. The goal is to push people to use reusable bags, and for most, the 5 cent charge per paper bag is inconsequential but a little annoying.

    But it pissed me off, naturally.

    Continue reading: Tote Bags for Grocery Shopping

  • iPad Productivity Report — 10/30/17

    Dictation as a primary means of input on the iPad.

    This week, a short note about dictation as a primary means of input.

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  • Rucking Gear

    What I am using on my rucking workouts.

    Since I posted about my Rucking workouts, I figured I should also post about the gear I use when I ruck. My list is still evolving, but I’ll go over what I use now and generally why I have that item.

    Continue reading: Rucking Gear

  • iPad Productivity Report — 10/23/17

    Going around the horn on iPad thoughts this week.

    A potpourri of thoughts this week from journaling, iPad mini, keyboard sharing, and even a tip for a change. Plus, as a huge bonus, I got to use the word potpourri twice.

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  • Thinking More About Apple Watch

    Where and how does the Apple Watch fit, and grow?

    Like many I had the first Apple Watch model and quickly fell to love it, then I hated, then I liked it, and now I am back to being rather ambivalent towards it. It seems that if you regularly used a watch before the Apple Watch, that you are much more prone to having mixed feelings about it. Whereas, generally, those who had no watch before the Apple Watch tend to like the watch much better.

    I’ve been thinking a lot about this, especially with the impact of a new version of Apple Watch with LTE coming out. This solves a lot of the shortcomings, but doesn’t fundamentally change the value proposition for those who like “normal” watches.

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  • Rucking as a Workout

    Turns out, the best work out for me involves a backpack, shocking, I know.

    A eight months ago, I made a decision to start working out five times per week. Being the nerd I am, I started by trying many different work out apps on my phone, and they all sucked. Working out in your house is boring and lame was my conclusion. I started looking at local gyms, but since I don’t ever have any reason to drive somewhere during the day (I work from home) that seemed laughable at best.

    There is a very large and nice wooded state park a short five minute walk from my front door. So I started to do short hikes in there on the rugged and hilly terrain. At first this was a casual walk, then I added a backpack since it was a good way to test them for my reviews. Then I added a bit of weight to get a better work out and quickly realized: well this is rucking.

    Continue reading: Rucking as a Workout

  • First Look: Meridian Dress Shirt from Bluffworks

    A new travel dress shirt, which has the makings of something many people will love for everyday.

    Currently on Kickstarter for a few more days, the Meridian Dress Shirt is billed as the ultimate travel shirt. It boasts the standard set of travel dress shirt features: multi-day wear (because it is odor resistant), wrinkle free, breathable, and comfortable. Bluffworks sent me a non-final press sample, which arrived just a few hours before I left for a weekend trip. Here’s my initial thoughts on this new shirt.

    I tested this shirt by wearing it while loading my car for the weekend, driving two hours and forty-five minutes, and then unloading the car. I hung it up, and put it back on a couple days later to again load the car, drive the car, and unload the car. Then I wore it for half a day at work (I got too warm with my t-shirt under it) and lastly I wadded it up and stuck it at the bottom of a pile of stinky clothes for the night. So basically, I abused the shirt pretty well in the short time I’ve had it.

    Continue reading: First Look: Meridian Dress Shirt from Bluffworks

  • iPad Productivity Report — 10/16/17

    NAS systems, cell radios, and FaceID.

    An update on my file storage search, and thoughts on cellular iPads and FaceID for iPads. Also a quick question about a possible new member feature.

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  • Triple Aught Design’s Admin Panel

    A great organizational panel for packs with little to no organization built in.

    When I picked up the Triple Aught Design Azimuth backpack, I also snagged an Admin Panel to try and help organize the otherwise organizationaless Azimuth. It was almost an afterthought of a purchase for me, at $35 it’s hard to put too much consideration and I often just try stuff out at that price. I purchased it because it has a clip and rail system that is designed to work in Triple Aught Design packs (I can’t test this, but I suspect it might work in Outlier packs too).

    Continue reading: Triple Aught Design’s Admin Panel

  • iPad Productivity Report — 10/9/17

    Files, clipboard manager things, and home screen decisions.

    This week, I want to tackle three areas: home screen layouts on iOS 11, those weird clipboard managers, and what to do when you have a shit ton of files to deal with. Let’s get started, this seems ambitious.

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  • Triple Aught Design Azimuth Backpack

    A versatile, packable, backpack for carrying stuff.

    One of the things I am constantly trying to find is a bag to be my “dad bag” — I’ve mentioned my high standards for such a bag before, but want to recap specifically what I am looking for:

    • Something 10-20L in size.
    • Something which can be packed down to fit inside a GR1/GR2.
    • Something which can carry my kids coats in the winter.
    • Something which is comfortable to carry all day.

    The GORUCK Bullet Ruck 10L, is as close as I have ever come, but it’s hard if not impossible to bring it with you. The Outlier Quadzip came tantalizingly close, but the high price, and some framesheet discomfort left me to sell it too.

    Continue reading: Triple Aught Design Azimuth Backpack

  • iPad Productivity Report — 10/2/17

    Taking a look at some iPad history, and I share my current iPad home screens, prepare to be underwhelmed by them.

    Diving into the past a bit this week.

    Update on Google Drive: the app has now been implemented to work with Files.app, and has removed the shady shit it does to register with every file type. Small win there, big results. Though, amusingly, macOS server is not a native Files integration — collectively we can all laugh and cry at the same time now. Also, it looks as though Readdle’s Documents app does the same shit Drive did. So that’s fun.

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  • Fragility of Free, a Redux

    Six years ago, I didn’t even imagine the worst part about free systems, because back then it was unthinkable.

    Six years ago, I wrote a post called “The Fragility of Free”, ostensibly about how “free” things will always break down over time, using popular apps, and Twitter as my examples. You can read the post here, while the references are dated (except Twitter) I still like the post.

    Continue reading: Fragility of Free, a Redux