Show and Tell: Traveling nerd - the basics

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Alexander Hohenthaner
June 24th, 2015
Show and Tell: Traveling nerd - the basics

For the last few years I have been trying to build up the ultimate nerd travel kit - especially for short business trips lasting only a few days. The basic idea is to take as little as possible while still giving you access to all the basic nerdy activities you can't live without (gaming, internet, streaming services etc.).

Here's what I have come up with so far. This whole setup fits nicely into my bag and does not make it too heavy.

Mobile phone: OnePlus One

After years using various types of iPhones I made the switch to Android 2 years ago. My latest smartphone is a OnePlus One and I am very happy with it. Before this I had a Samsung Note 3 which I loved to bits, but it was paid for by my former employer and when it got to paying for a new phone by myself it was just too expensive. So it had to be a OnePlus One - and so far I am very happy with it. I've had none of the problems reported by other users and don't even miss the stylus that the Note came with.

Tablet: iPad Air

While it would be very tempting to keep up with the latest and greatest in tablet technology it just isn't possible financially, so I skip a few generations now and then. This is why I'm still using my iPad Air and it's still a great companion. Not only for reading and gaming, but also for my other hobby: DJing (but that's a topic for a whole other article I shall be writing at a later stage). With some great new games available and some classics (GTA San Andreas - do you even need another game on the iPad?) you can spend hours in your hotel room just forgetting the outside world.

Controller: Stratus Steel Series

For serious gaming you need a good controller. And the Stratus Steel Series delivers a great performance for its small size. GTA San Andreas is seriously fun using it, it just feels like on the Playstation all those years back. With more and more games supporting these controllers the iPad is becoming a great gaming machine.

Keyboard: Logitech Keys-To-Go

Turning the iPad into a true workstation is only possible with a good keyboard. You just need one to get typing fast. I tried a few cases with built-in keyboards, but they added a lot of bulk - and I didn't use them too often, since I only need a keyboard every now and then at a conference or barcamp. So the Keys-To-Go Bluetooth Keyboard is the perfect solution for me. It is so lightweight and thin that you hardly notice it in your bag, yet provides a good enough typing experience to hack away for hours at good speed. Great battery life too!

Smartwatch: Moto 360

While I absolutely loathe the voice command function - Can it simply not handle German? Do I have a lisp? Is it simply not working? - I like everything else about it. Especially after the latest update it is beginning to feel like the futuristic gadget it was always meant to be.

Action Cam: Polaroid Cube

For little fun videos on the go this is probably the best choice: small enough to just have in your bag at all times while delivering a pretty OK picture. You won't get the highest quality out of the tiny thing, but for little experiments while on the road it is perfect. The magnet at the bottom is great for quickly popping it into place in strange locations for great shots.

Charger: Apple Plug with Lightning-Micro-USB Cable

For charging I use the Apple plug which came with one of my later iPhones - it is still one of the smallest plugs you can find, perfect for traveling. On Amazon I found a cable with USB on one side and a Lightning-Micro-USB Adapter on the other. So it is perfect for charging all my gadgets.

With these gadgets in my bag (and my R2D2 hard shell suitcase from Thinkgeek) I feel like the ultimate traveling nerd and have everything covered. Or did I miss something you always make sure to take on your travels?

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