I try to ride my bike most mornings, assuming it’s not pouring down rain. It’s the same route most days, but it occured to me a few weeks ago that I really had no idea how far, or fast, I was riding. Being the nerd that I am, I decided to find a technology solution to this problem.
Enter Cyclemeter Dedicated bike computers and GPS devices have existed for some years now, but like most everyone else these days, I’ve got an iPhone with a GPS built right in.
As the title of my blog implies, I’m a curious person. I like learning, and I’m addicted to keeping up on the latest news about things I’m interested in: programming, design, and the like. Sometimes I find it hard to keep up with it all. About a month ago, I discovered Prismatic, and it’s changed how I read the web by making it easier to find the news that I care about.
I tend to be a little skeptical of the new and shiny. There is often a lot of hype about how life changing some new website or gizmo is going to be. Sometimes, however, something comes along that does live up to the hype. The latest one I’ve found is a rather nondescript site called ifttt. The URL is strange, until you understand that it stands for “If This Then That”.
Inspired by Mike Gunderloy’s recent blog post, I decided to put together a list of the tools I use, both hardware and software.
I use a Mac at home and a Windows laptop at work; I plan to cover the Windows tools in a later post.
Hardware MacBook Pro
My primary computer is a late-2007 17" Macbook Pro with 2gb of RAM and a 160gb hard drive. I love this laptop, but I made two mistakes when buying it.
I’d heard (first from Joel Spolsky, I believe) about a cool new travel planning site called Tripit. I’m making arrangements for a trip to St. Louis later this month, and so I thought this would be a good opportunity to try it out. To say the least, I’m impressed.
The first thing that I noticed was the registration process: there isn’t one. All you have to do is take any travel-related email (hotel confirmation, airline itinerary, etc) and forward it to plans@tripit.
Probably the worst title I’ve ever chosen for a post.
Regardless, I’ve been using Montastic for a month or so now, and it’s great. It’s a free website monitoring service that lets you know by email when it can’t reach one of your sites. It’s got a limit of 100 sites (I’ve got a ways to go before reaching that). I’ve only received one false positive since I’ve started using it.