what kind of technology does WEB MASTER TUCKER HOTTES need in the rockies?
A few must-have gadgets for traveling
Hey, what do you know, Apple announced some stuff this week! I’ll bet the first thing you did was run out to your nearest ec or dc box, frantically searching for a copy of the paper to tear it open, desperate to read what I have to say on the whole matter. Well, all those people standing around you staring in shock at your sudden outburst are justified, because you look ridiculous.
Besides, I have nothing to say on the matter. This column arrives to you straight from the past. I’m presently in the wilderness in the Canadian Rockies, far from any sort of data connection. I probably won’t find out what sort of magical, glorious, world-changing device they release until long after everyone has moved on with their lives, so don’t expect much commentary from me on the subject.
Instead, I spent the previous week furiously packing and making sure all the technology I will be bringing along on the trip will be enough to fend off the gadget withdrawal. Once I’m up in the woods with a fly rod in my hand, I doubt I’ll care much about tablets and smartphones, but during the round trip flight including a layover on both sides, I’ll be jonesing for anything I can get. At the same time, I need to be really conscious of space considerations, so I can’t exactly bring a full arsenal of tech gear.
The first things that made the list were my phone and Kindle (old-school, e-ink type). I’ll be able to get a cell signal when I land in Calgary, useful for contacting my ride once I arrive. Aside from that, the phone will probably sit in a suitcase. The Kindle was another obvious choice, since I’ll have plenty of time to sit around and tear through some books. Media was another consideration altogether. I don’t want to bring the laptop, because of obvious bulk and power concerns. I’ve got some music on my phone, but have mostly given over to streaming, which clearly won’t be an option during the flight.
So, I packed up my recently acquired Google Nexus 7 — a great little 7-inch tablet that I’ve been neglectful in mentioning due to all my outdoorsy type columns lately. The thing is super portable, but big enough to enjoy a flick or two. I also loaded up a ton of comics (while traveling, I will be a nerd. While in the woods, I will be an outdoorsman. Such is my life). It was actually comics that sold me on the 7-inch tablet in the first place: watching my buddy flip through some issues on his Kindle Fire inspired me to pull the trigger on the then-newly released Nexus 7.
I’ll be bringing multiple chargers and cables, of course, but two other new items make the list for this trip: an external, 5000mah battery pack and a USB-on-the-go cable. The former is a battery with a USB input to top off your device (should be able to get about two charges out of the sucker before it dies), and the latter is essentially a short USB-to-micro USB adapter. That sounds dumb, until you realize it allows you to plug external flash drives into a phone or tablet. BAM — instant extra storage for a whole trip’s worth of music and movies. With all my gadgets safely stowed in my carryon backpack, I’m ready to head into the wild.