Date: July 30th, 2009
Article by: Nathan Glentworth (Owner / Head Editor)
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Whether you are an average consumer, businessman, college student or computer enthusiast, it is inevitable that you will have to bring your technology with you. But the question is what exact tech will you use, and what are you bringing along that is extra unneeded weight.
As a tech site admin, I am professionally tied to keep up to snuff on the daily happenings around the net and with my site so taking a portal with me is mandatory on most excursions that are longer than one weekend.
Through the years my office packing has dwindled from almost packing the whole office to packing only what I really need. Of course what I need dynamically changes with the type of trip I am on. Am I visiting family? Am I on vacation and will be taking photos? Is is personal or business? How long will I be traveling? Will I be visiting different countries?
These are all things one has to consider.
For me, the bulk of the packing isn't because of the devices themselves, it is because all the adapters, cables and accessories that come along with them. Because of this, I have been trying, and in part accomplishing, getting the extra stuff down to a minimum.
The things I will list below are things you need and what you need to change to make your traveling lighter and easier.
1.) Laptop/Netbook - If you have a portable computer, you know that having a big powerful laptop in theory might seem a great idea while looking around in a store, but after lugging it around for a while you will soon see that power is not a huge concern. For the past three or so years, the relative power of laptops has in a way surpassed what most people need to support their basic computing needs. So power shouldn't be a concern. Just make sure it has at least one gig of ram for an XP based computer or at least two gigs of memory if it is running the Vista operating system.
The next thing to consider is size and weight. If you need basic computing power for email, internet browsing, document creation, and photo storage, I would strongly consider a netbook or a small laptop. Bringing a huge laptop will only burden you with unneeded weight, but looks rather foolish to most when you try and extract the beast from a bag while stuffed into a economy flight seat. some option on reading about netbooks can be read HERE and HERE.
The last thing to consider is battery life. While travelling, power sources can be far apart and few in between so getting a portable computer with good battery life and battery management is extremely important. This is where netbooks do get more and more attractive in the eyes of the traveller and will get even more popular as they become more mainstream.
2.) Batteries - It doesn't really matter what brand, megapixel range, capabilities your camera has, but when it comes to longevity during your trip, getting a camera model that uses AA batteries is key to a more enjoyment and less charging. Most cameras I have seen and used that have a proprietary battery have a millamp-hour rating of about 900-1200.
Whereas a couple rechargeable Ni-Mh batteries used together have a milliamp rating of 5000mAh. Although this will mean you will have to bring a small charger for the batteries, it does mean that you will have to charge your camera less, and in the case that you do run out of batteries or they discharge, you can go to any local convenience store and buy a couple alkaline batteries to get you through the day. For me, I have a four rechargeable AA batteries with me at all times (two in camera/ two extra) and I have never had a problem. So essentially, the extra small AA charger and more advantages than its small added weight disadvantage. Of course you could go a different route and buy an additional proprietary battery on ebay if you want extra battery capacity during the day but you won't have the ability to get some additional batteries in a pinch at a store.
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