Snow Falls on Black Friday

It has already snowed a few times since the end of October, but it looks like we are going to get enough snow that it might stick around for a while. The rain we have been getting is cold, and the wind has dropped the temperature significantly – enough to turn the rain to snow. In my old shop I would have heard the rain hitting the roof and the wind blowing through the trees. Since my new shop is below ground level I won’t hear any of that. I have my Christmas music playing low in the background, so it is easy to work uninterrupted for long stretches of time unless I get a call, text, or an email – but I can shut those down if I want to really limit distractions. My computer has the time displayed, but I still put an old fashion wall clock up to check the time at a glance.

I’m still using my Pixelbook as my main laptop for any content creation or consumption (weather and tech news), but I keep a few dedicated laptops for Linux and Windows 10 for specific work related usage. I prefer to use the Pixelbook because it is still the most comfortable keyboard I have ever used, and it is fast to get up and start working. I will probably need to start looking for a new laptop in the future to run any Windows 11 dedicated software. I don’t have any to worry about right now. I tested one of my older Lenovo laptops and although it did run, it wasn’t very impressive. Since I work in a terminal most of the time I don’t really see an imediate need to upgrade as long as I’m only working with older stable programs when I need a Windows machine.

The Pixelbook is a great choice for mobility. The battery life is good, it’s lightweight ,and the screen is easy to read. I don’t spend a lot of time tweaking the configuration settings or troubleshooting the system. It just works. That was what I wanted when I bought it and so far that has been what I have experienced. I can run Linux on this machine, but I usually use a dedicated machine for that. I can run Linux on my Windows 10 laptop also, but even though it is a cool option, I really just want to run Linux and not deal with another operating system at the same time.

I did replace a new Macbook Pro with this Chromebook, and although it seemed like a bad idea to some people, it has proven to be a good move for me just in how it has simplified my workflow. I stopped using my iPhone and switched to a Pixel 4a, which has some odd issues with sim cards, but the phone is still great when it works properly. I use my old iPhone as a work phone only, and I’m less and less a fan. I still use an older iPad sometimes, but I find myself moving farther and farther away from Apple products. I think they are great devices, but the constant need to upgrade and buy the latest versions of all the hardware is annoying and not as exciting as some would think. I hope to get a more streamlined setup with just a Chromebook and an Android phone. I sort of have that right now, but it’s not a perfect setup because I still have reasons to use other systems from time to time for some of the projects I end up working on.

You need to find the right tools that work for your own situation. What works for me may not work for someone else. With supply chain slow downs, and inflation limiting what is and isn’t affordable or feasible to work with I need to work smarter and more efficiently – even though I thought I was doing that already.

I know today is Black Friday for some stores, and maybe I could find some great deals, but I would want to make sure any new gear I buy makes sense financially and increases my productivity. That is not always an easy call to make. My old gear is still working, so there is no immediate need to refresh any hardware. On the other hand I might find some deal that’s too good to pass up. Maybe I shouldn’t even look. Why go out in the snow if I really don’t have a good reason? It’s the Holiday season so I will probably look for gifts for family members. That usually is more satisfying than buying something for myself. – Another reason I’m glad I bought this Chromebook last year. It still works.

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