I was taught by Mr Ben Poole that a good contractor should leave his desk empty and clean at the end of each day, and watched how Gab Davis seems to be able to work from anywhere at a moments notice so I have been trying for some time to manage both things.
As normal I have not quite got the hang of the simple part, and given the small nature of my studio flat where I do most of my from home working I have tried to pack my whole office into one bag but it does have a few advantages
- I don’t mind working anywhere as I have no ‘homebase’ as such.
- I can always give my all at a clients site as I will never be lacking anything
- I don’t mind doing less than a day at a clients as I can just get on with other stuff
This all works well for me as I enjoy people’s company and do my best work in a busy environment. so I though I might share what I carry in addition to a the real basics: a Laptop (Thinkpad W510), Phone (Nexus 5) and headphones (Sennheiser 550-X)
- The silent and powerful USB fan from Thermaltake, saved me from misery in many an over hot office.
- In my opinion the best mouse in the world the Logitech M570
- Baby TPLink 150Mbps Wireless N Nano Router , USB powered and perfect for sites where they may not have a desk setup for you, you can just plug this in and you are up and running.
- Bloody huge Thinkpad charger, weighs a sodding ton, but can be used as a ball and chain in those tricky meetings.
- At last a proper retractable and collapsible UK power cable this one by ReTrak
- Western digital Elements Portable HDD inside its Caselogic case a more reliable and essential paring I have yet to see
- Anker portable USB 15000mAh battery + the lovely smaller version provided by Panagenda
- Decent 2Amp USB charger any brand is fine, but this one is from Lenovo
- Torch: present from Matt White (for some late night working) + spare batteries (including ones for my headphones)
Abroad and in the dark
- Eagle Creek bag to store everything from all the pictures in (they also supply the small bag in the next image)
- The awesome GoalZero Luna LED light
- Skross World Adaptor Pro+ which is by far and away the best socket adaptor I have found, both in terms of amperage it can take and the fact it is earthed.
- Lenovo Travel charger + its thousands of cables and adaptors
- Various adaptors: Euro to US, kettle lead to figure of eight and vs versa
- 5 USB cables of various lengths
- 2 USB OTG adaptors so that I can plug things like keyboards and usb sticks into my phone/tablet
- Mini USB hub
- SIM adaptor and tool (in case of phone dieing at a critial time)
- USB Sticks
- Audio adaptor cables for my Sennheiser 550-X bluetooth headphones
- Lindy retractable Ethernet cable, this may look big but its nice and long and most importantly it protects the little clips from being broken which happened to its 2 predecessors
- Spare mouse by Swiftpoint
- Spare headphones
One thing that people tease me about with my setup but frankly I simply could not do without is my Magma laptop Riser, this combined with a USB version of the ThinkPad Keyboard and a couple of mouse pads as arm rests mean I get to have the top third of my laptop’s screen at my sitting eye level which is how its supposed to be.
What do I carry all of this in?
After the destruction of many brands of rucksack including the Wenger backpacks that everybody else swears by, I have finally settled on the Lowepro pro runner 450aw which while rather large means I can carry everything I want and JUUUSSST get it on a plane as carry on (its right on the limit), if I’m travelling on a budget airline I use a Lowepro Fastpack 350 which always fits.
And here is how it looks when I’m all setup ( in this case at a Regus Office near a client at Bank station London )
Of course in addition to this I carry pens, pad, spork, small flask, umbrella and the usual ‘man bag’ stuff, but that was all boring