What’s In My Bag?

What’s In My Bag?

As an avid reader of Lifehacker, I enjoy when they share (or readers share) what they carry in their bags. Ultimately, it becomes a techie version of the Tim O’Brien novel we teach in high school. As I pack today to head to the 2012 MA New Literacies Institute, I wanted to take a moment to share what I carry in my bag.

I do have a couple more things packed than normal (not that many), because it is a week-long event…and anything can happen. I usually do not carry my external hard drive around, but the last time I presented at the Microsoft NERD Center, the hard drive on my MacBook Pro died. I want to be prepared.

The Timbuk2 laptop bag – It has served me well as I am frequently dragging this equipment around. I am frequently looking for a new bag…but haven’t found anything I like as much. I have experimented with adding solar cells to the bag, but nothing works as of yet.

15 inch MacBook Pro – The work horse of the bag. Any and all real work has to be done on this. I’m slowly trying to move my work over to the iPad…but it’s taking time.

1 TB Seagate external drive – This carries the Time Machine backups of the MBP, and also holds my music collection.

32 GB iPad – Currently loaded (and unorganized) with tons of apps as I try to figure out the best way to shoehorn it into my workflow. More on that later.

Timbuk2 iPad sleeve – Helpful as I throw things into the bag and don’t want to scratch up the iPad. Also, on a flight I feel a little less apprehensive about pulling this out to protect the iPad.

Logitech Ultrathin iPad Keyboard – As I try to fit the iPad into my workflow, I needed a bluetooth keyboard to allow me to bang out quick notes on Evernote as I work.

laptop bag

A. Micro USB charger for phone, Logitech Ultrathin Keyboard…and to connect phone to MBP…just in case.

B. Microfiber cleaning cloth…just because.

C. Rechargeable AA and AAA batteries.

D. Energy bars. You never know when you skip breakfast/lunch because you need to edit a website, change a PPT, set up before a presentation.

E. 32 GB Galaxy Nexus (Verizon). Currently running CM10 Jelly Bean. This is where I do most of my communicating, reading, researching. Next to the MBP, this is as mandatory as can be.

F. Powerblock for the MBP.

G. Mini-screwdriver, all purpose tool. You never know when you’ll need this out on the road…but when you do…

H. 4 GB flash drive. I always think that I don’t need this…but it always gets dragged out of the bag again and again.

I. Tweakers speakers. Best $20 I spent. I always have video in presentations, and you need to make sure people can hear it. This small size, big sound performs admirably.

J. Flip video camera. I went back a generation or two and bought the Flip that allows you to put your own batteries in. It’s a little fatter, but I can plug in the rechargeable batteries, or pick up some on the road…(or “borrow” them from the hotel TV remote)…when I get stuck.

K. Gorillapod for the Flip camera. Very helpful when you’re taping something longer than five minutes.

L. Ultimate Ears earbuds. No one wants to listen to Public Enemy’s Fear of a Black Planet with you before a session.

M. USB cord, and powerblock for iPad.

N. VGA adaptors (dongles) for the MBP and iPad. USB adaptors for the Flip Camera…and extensions for all other USB needs.

That’s all I will be bringing with me as I hit the road. What do you carry with you in your bag?

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