by Mark Sukhija on Google +
Deciding what bits of technology on the road with you can be a daunting task. The more you add, the more you have to carry with you – which all adds to the weight of your luggage. Picking wisely is, therefore, essential.
Laptops are an essential piece of kit
For me a laptop is an essential piece of kit – allowing the full flexibility of having full computing power without being dependant on having an internet connection to reply to emails or edit documents. Carrying a laptop with you allows you to, for example, edit your pictures and, at least, prepare replies to emails while your away from an internet connection – for example in-flight. Laptops come in all shapes and sizes – mine weighs under 2kilograms – but, in general, the lighter they are the more expensive they become and some features (such as a DVD player) may have been stripped out to save weight.
Don’t EVER pay for Wifi
Most laptops come with WiFi ability which is an essential in today’s world. Many hotels offer WiFi – I try not to pay for WiFi by finding a local coffee shop, pub or bar nearby which often provide free WiFi if you buy a coffee (often I’ll either have a coffee in the morning or a beer in the evening and download my my mail and read the news – coffee and beer being expenses I’d have anyhow!)
Email client V web-mail
In terms of email, I always use an email client (as opposed to web-mail) as it means I have access to my email in-flight where I can read and reply to email in my own time whether I have an internet connection or not – such as when I’m in flight.
Camera. DSLR v Point & Shoot.
Most people will travel with some form of camera – be it a DSLR or a point-and-shoot. Both DSLRs and Point-and-shoots have their pros and cons. DSLRs are much more flexible than point-and-shoots but are heavier to carry and on the wallet. Aside from the interchangeable lenses, a DSLR provides greater control over taking a picture in the first place with controls over exposure settings, aperture and shutter speed settings for example, and often come with various pre-set modes. The major advantage of a point-and-shoot is the smaller size (and often smaller price tag) which means it will easily fit into your trouser or coat pockets (or handbag for the girls!) Of course, you’ll also need to bring some spare memory cards with you (or copy you images to your laptop regularly)
Plugs are a perennial problem for the road warrier
The issue of plugs is a perennial problem for the road (or air) warrior is. Every country, it seems, has its own standards – although Germany and Switzerland have the same number of pins, they’re different sizes. The “all-on-one plug adaptor” is an essential piece of kit. It keeps the number of adapters you need to carry with you (and store at home!) to an absolute minimum! If you buy a gadget overseas, you’ll be able to charge it when you get home. Many of the all-on-one plug adaptors are symmetrical – that is to say they accept the same pins that they allow you to plug into the wall.
Don’t overlook backups
Backups are one of the most overlooked parts of modern day computing – especially in a home environment All employers (well, all sensible ones!) do regular backups of all their data to prevent it being lost and many people don’t even realise it’s being done – so it can be easy to forget! Most of us with laptops have some, if not a lot, of important personal data on our machines. Should that machine fail on the road (as one of my previous laptops has!) you can loose all that valuable data if you don’t have a backup (I did!) Before you leave on a trip – backup all the data on your laptop. Should the worst come to the worst, you’ll only loose the work you did while you were away. I often backup important changes (like my mailbox) to SD cards when I’m on the road as it keeps me safe and saves carrying a bulky disk with me.
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