Last week Ondo Lady struck upon a very good idea. Let’s post a quick insight about our blogging tools, i.e. the key items we have in our arsenal. It’s not supposed to be technical, but I’m a techie at heart so apologies in advance if you hear me salivating. So here are my blogging tools.
1. Acer Travelmate 3004 Laptop
I bought this on 21st April 2006, it’ll be 5 years old next month at which point I may replace it. When I bought it, it was state-of-the-art and even today it still runs quickly and smoothly. Mainly because I’ve never EVER let anybody else use it. Nobody.
A little bigger than a netbook, it’s light weight and fits inside most small bags but as it’s a full notepad it packs all the punches I need. I’m not sure what I’ll get next, but one thing’s for sure – it won’t be a Mac. I’m a PC
2. HTC Desire HD Smartphone
Arguably the best smartphone available right now, pound-for-pound, only rivalled by the Samsung Galaxy S and iPhone 4. I was a BlackBerry user since 2006 but could no longer work with how woeful their products are now. They’ve fallen about three generations behind in technology advances.
With my Desire HD I can do nearly everything I can do with my notebook and just as efficiently. The camera is an 8MP dual flash and it records HD video. It supports almost every good app the iPhone has and has some the iPhone doesn’t. For blogging I have WordPress, Google Analytics, FTP, Dropbox, Skype, YouTube, TweetDeck and so much more at my fingertips. With my 16GB microSD card I have all the space I need and then some.
The WordPress app in particular allows me to write quick posts on the move and moderate comments as they arrive. Using my Desire HD, I have actually made sweeping design changes to this blog which would be impossible with a BlackBerry, and laborious with any of the iPhones. The big screen makes writing easy and the browser is the fastest, truest, and best there is on any smartphone, with included support for Adobe Flash, meaning websites look how they’re supposed to look.
3. Canon IXUS 130 Digital Camera
I needed a cheap, tiny camera for blogging so I went out and bought the Nikon S3000 around a year ago. Before the week was out I had changed it for the Canon. I had always had Canons and I tried the cheap Nikon option but the pictures it took were abysmal.
The IXUS 130 lives up to the superiority of the IXUS range and packs several superb features, true HD video being one of them. It fits snugly into the tiny hip pocket in jeans so it’s unobtrusive.
Before I bought the IXUS 130 I was in the market for an SLR and had researched for months. I was so close to buying the Canon 500D, but I’m glad I didn’t. I’m not a photographer, I’m a writer so the trade-off in quality of shot for portability and stealth works much better for me. The battery lasts for ever on a single charge.
4. Olympus Digital Voice Recorder
I take this everywhere. It’s perfect for recording interviews and gives me several hours of voice recording. It’s directional microphone is detachable to allow for a cabled, longer mic if you prefer although, I’ve never needed one.
It takes 2 AAA batteries which last for ages and it has a micro USB port for easily transferring my recordings to my laptop. Recordings are clear and crisp and it has some pretty good background noise reduction abilities. I’m so glad I have this.
5. Aspinal of London Leatherbound Writer’s Journal
My girlfriend got me this for Christmas and I so love it. Before that I was using a WH Smiths Feint, Wide Ruled A4 Pad. I’ll never look back, whipping it out makes me feel like a proper writer. Thanks babe X
I also value the following greatly for blogging and laptopping in general.
Irfanview – a very simple and light image manipulation tool. Great for resizing, cropping and basic altering of images, particularly in reducing those unwieldy 3MB 6000px images your digital camera takes to more web friendly 150k 1024px. Superb for batch tasks like resizing and renaming hundreds of images at once, even if they’re not in the same folder. Despite having Photoshop and Fireworks on my laptop, Irfanview has been indispensable to me for over five years. Download Irfanview
Dropbox – I can’t live without it. It automatically backs up my files. I save my files in the normal way to the Dropbox folder on my hard drive and it automatically backs them up online. I can access them from anywhere, my Android phone, an iPhone, BlackBerry, PC or Mac – using their apps. The cherry is that I can share folders with friends or clients, so collaborating on articles, or generally sharing photos is a synch. Do you see what I did there?
It just means I have access to everything, everywhere. Get it here – Download Dropbox
Well that’s me and my blogging tools, was it too technical? Sorry.