Travel tool experiments and experiences

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Travel tool experiments and experiences

I just got back from almost two weeks in northern Italy, and I used a different set of tools for this trip than our other trips.

I left my laptop at home – I used my new iPad And iPhone for everything. And it worked well – they took up less space, were a lot lighter and did what I needed (blog entries, FourSquare, Twitter, photo storage and manipulation).

There are some accessories I’d suggest. First, you’ll want the camera kit from Apple – that provides a USB interface so you can load camera images into Photos (you can plug in your iPhone and copy over those, too). And it’s dead simple – plug in the adapter, plug in your camera, and Photos starts right up asking you if you want to transfer the images.

I also brought a cheap Bluetooth keyboard, the Perixx 804i – it was reasonably cheap and had some good reviews online. I like the feel and it’s pretty light. The really speeds up writing blog posts and taking notes and writing emails.

I brought my Korg nanoKey to use to write music – I didn’t use it on this trip but I have before and if the mood had struck…

Here’s the list of apps I used:

I only brought 4 magazines, no books – well, no physical books. I read three or four digital books between the flights and down time at night. Reading is one thing I like to catch up on when I’m on holiday and using my iPad saved space and money, and I could bring PDFs that I’d been meaning to read as well…

Now for a couple hints – I didn’t want to purchase international 4G service for my iPad so I kept it in airplane mode – when we got to a hotel with WiFi I’d turn on WiFi on my iPad and also Bluetooth (which is in the general settings) for the keyboard. I did get international data service for my iPhone and used that while walking around. And I carried the iPad with me – for one thing you can’t lock it down (tsk tsk Apple, should have created an aftermarket for a small locking tool in the case), and if I happened on some WiFi or wanted to make a note I could pull it out.

And I used FourSquare check-ins to write my blog entries – I checked into each place we visited and therefore had a great memory jog (and link to photo times too) when I got back to the hotel in the evening.

I’ll definitely do this again, it makes the trip a lot easier!

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