00:08:27 ◼ ► Like, unless you're actually carrying it on your back all day long, every day, the difference between two pounds and four pounds is not going to make a huge difference in the total weight of what you're carrying, or the total weight of what you're packing.
00:08:37 ◼ ► And so, we tend to, like, really nitpick and overthink these differences between these laptops, but really what it comes down to is, like, what size are you comfortable with and what offers the features you need.
00:09:00 ◼ ► The 13 is plenty fast. Speed-wise, like, once it went to four cores last year, it's, speed-wise, it's fantastic, and it really doesn't need more speed for what most people do, unless you do GPU heavy stuff.
00:09:28 ◼ ► It's a pretty good stock. You can maybe bump up the SSD size, but otherwise, like, you can leave everything else stock and you get a great computer for, you know, I wouldn't say it's a great deal, but it's an alright deal.
00:09:42 ◼ ► Honestly, the more I think about it, like, I think the thing too that is often overlooked is the reason, the thing that is going to help the machine be most effective for your actual ability to get work has less probably at this point to do with the computer itself, and more the environment in which you're able to set up for you to work with that computer.
00:10:02 ◼ ► Like, I'm starting to think how, I think the biggest advantage I have for getting work done this summer is that I have a keyboard and a mouse, and they're my normal, like, ergonomic keyboard and mouse that I use at home, like, that I brought with me.
00:10:15 ◼ ► Because I think I was just realizing, it's like, I think that it makes it really work is that I can sit and I can, like, work for long periods without, like, ergonomic problems and strain.
00:10:27 ◼ ► And, like, the thing that's ultimately going to give out, if I was just trying to use my 13-inch MacBook Pro or a 15-inch MacBook Pro as in its, you know, natural configuration using the trackpad and keyboard on the computer, on a desk, or in a coffee shop or whatever, like, the computer is going to be fine.
00:10:48 ◼ ► And that's something I think is a consideration that I haven't often always taken when I've been traveling, is how, while, you know, like, I was just talking about how I'm trying to save space and weight by, you know, having a 13-inch rather than a 15-inch.
00:11:07 ◼ ► And, like, those are not necessarily, like, light or small, but the reality is I think they're the essential parts, really, because if I didn't have those, like, I could probably only work for, you know, an hour or two at a time at a MacBook Pro.
00:11:35 ◼ ► And, like, you know, we've been joking a bit about it, but, like, in most kind of environments you're in, like, just a normal hotel room that has a desk, or you're in an Airbnb and you can find, like, some way to cobble something together, like, at a dining room table.
00:12:19 ◼ ► Yeah, that's a really good point. I mean, I would, like, if I was given the choice between, like, work on a 15-inch all summer or work on a 13-inch with my keyboard and mouse and having the 13-inch be elevated, like, on a pile of books, I would take the 13-inch with the proper ergonomic setup any day over having the bigger screen or the 15, but having to use the built-in keyboard all the time.
00:12:48 ◼ ► You know, they were designed for, like, well, if you have to have a laptop for portability, you can get stuff done, but hopefully you're doing most of your work, like, at a desk with a proper setup.
00:12:56 ◼ ► And over time, like, as laptops have become people's primary computers and become the computers that almost everybody buys, the ergonomic side of it has been kind of forgotten and ignored.
00:13:20 ◼ ► But, yeah, like, if you're going to be somewhere for a while, if you have the ability to improve the ergonomic setup, it is worth it, even if it means something that seems ridiculous, like carrying a keyboard with you, like a full-sized desktop keyboard and mouse, like, that seems ridiculous, but it actually is a really good idea for ergonomics.
00:13:38 ◼ ► >> Yeah, and another thing to also keep in mind for this trip is there are nice options now for things like using a Luna Display or a sidecar coming in Catalina for using an, essentially creating an external monitor out of an iPad, which may be nice if it's an iPad that you just would have with you anyway, which also can give you some more ergonomic flexibility.
00:14:00 ◼ ► If you can't elevate your monitor, you might be able to use the monitor at its, you know, use the monitor's keyboard at desk light, but have a screen that's higher up that you can look at, which may also give you some ergonomic flexibility.
00:14:14 ◼ ► Or it's also just nice if you want to have a second screen, if you're using a smaller, you know, if I'm using a 13-inch MacBook Pro, sometimes I might want more screens real estate, and so I've brought along, you know, my Luna Display just so I can connect to the iPad and use it as a second screen if the situation arises, if I'm doing something where, you know, I have a big simulator build running on one screen and I want to have Xcode on the other.
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00:16:45 ◼ ► So we've talked about how to set up your stuff to work and how to work on vacation. I think one really interesting topic to cover next is the overall category of choosing what to work on and what not to work on when you are traveling. How do you choose that? How do you balance that?
00:17:06 ◼ ► So I think something that first comes to mind is how easy it is to lie to yourself about how much you will actually work when you are traveling. When you're on extended vacation or you're visiting family or whatever it might be.
00:17:22 ◼ ► I feel like I always go into these types of situations with these grand lofty aspirations of how much I'll be able to get done, how nice it will be to go back and forth between doing family stuff.
00:17:37 ◼ ► And then I can go and do some work and it might be even more productive because I'll be so relaxed and my mind won't be overburdened like it might be at home. You could tell yourself all these lies about how productive you're going to be.
00:17:52 ◼ ► The reality is, I find this for myself, I find it's very hard to work in general. My brain doesn't want to work ever at home, on the road, wherever I am. It's always a battle to actually get work done.
00:18:10 ◼ ► But at home, there are fewer distractions, there are fewer other things that I want to do. There are just structural things and choices that we've made about, like, my family is not around, there's nothing really happening. It's not like I'm making other plans during that time.
00:18:27 ◼ ► So work is something that happens organically because there's nothing else to do. When you're away and when you're traveling, even if you have the most ideal setup you could imagine, it's always going to be a battle because the things around you are probably more interesting than work.
00:18:46 ◼ ► So it becomes very hard to want to be motivated to do that. And so I think to your point and your question is something that I think I've found is it's very important to choose the right kind of things to work on if you're in an environment where you're going to be traveling and you're kind of telling yourself that I'm going to get some work done.
00:19:04 ◼ ► Because usually, obviously the easy one is if there's work you have to do, a server goes down and you have to deal with it, well, you'll just deal with it and it'll be fine. But the actual work to do, I find it's either fun to work on something that falls into the delightful but rare category of the project you're super excited about and that feels like fun, that feels like it's play, it's vacation, you have this app idea that you want to explore, and you're like, "Oh, I'm going to get some work done."
00:19:33 ◼ ► Or you have this feature that is something that you're intrinsically motivated to work on, that you want to do, that feels like fun. If you have one of those, that's great because it's going to pull you towards it and just be productive and it will be fun.
00:20:04 ◼ ► So what I've tried to do so far that I've been away from home is I'm picking features. A lot of them are these little things that I would like to have but haven't gotten around to. For example, one of the features people have wanted for a long time in C++ is the ability to export your data to a CSV file for people who just want to have it in a different format.
00:20:27 ◼ ► It's a relatively easy feature. It wasn't like it was a long time to build. In a day's work, which is often four or five hours, I could build it, I could test it, make sure it works, I could wrap it up.
00:20:59 ◼ ► It's very hard, I find, to have two, three, four days in a row of big, long chunks of dedicated work, the kind of work where you really want to be remembering exactly where you were when you picked up, left off the last time, the next day when you picked up.
00:21:16 ◼ ► That kind of work becomes so much harder to manage because your schedule isn't necessarily your own. There may be things that come up that you just want to do. Or even worse, in a weird way, you might be putting the people you're traveling with in an awkward situation if they want to go and do this thing and they don't want you to feel left out.
00:21:56 ◼ ► And in some ways, it's dealing with stuff that you haven't been excited to work on or is just these more nice-to-have features. It moves things forward, but I would not say, "Okay, during this travel, I'm going to build this big, deep, overarching feature that deals with huge amounts of low-level data stuff or syncing or server interactions."
00:22:20 ◼ ► That's silly. Focus on something that you can bite off, work on, and have something to show for, honestly, too. Because one of the most demotivating things is when you work for four hours and you're like, "I don't have nothing to show for this. I made some deep, low-level change, which may be important."
00:22:36 ◼ ► But I find it really hard then to be wanting to come back and do it again if it's not something that's like, "Oh, here. Here's this thing that I built. Here's a new feature, a new option in the app," whatever it might be.
00:22:48 ◼ ► Yeah, that's a good point. Motivation, as you said, or motivation while traveling, I feel like, is so fragile and hard to come by. If your other option is to be doing cool stuff and in a place you've never been before or sitting on a beach or something, it's so hard to motivate yourself to sit down and work for long periods, way harder than at home.
00:23:11 ◼ ► The last thing you want to do is do tasks or types of work that you find demotivating. A good example is, "I don't want to have to fight the provisioning portal or deal with, 'Oh, great. My table view is buggy in the new OS. Awesome.'"
00:23:45 ◼ ► As you mentioned, it's a great time to do fun little features, any kind of prototyping new stuff you might want to do, or even just making a new app that's kind of like a toy app. It's a good time for that if you can spare it.
00:23:58 ◼ ► Every summer I have extreme temptation to make a brand new app of some kind. Sometimes I do it, sometimes I don't. Usually I don't release these apps because they're terrible and I don't want to support them.
00:24:08 ◼ ► I have much more motivation to try something new, possibly with the new beta stuff that Apple has released, to try something new with the cool new toys we got, rather than, "Well, I've got to go back to the grind of finishing this feature."
00:24:33 ◼ ► It's been very frustrating and demoralizing for me, but I'm getting through. I'm plowing through slowly. Maybe by the time I actually get to working on the new features that are in the betas, maybe they'll be more stable. Maybe the time will have paid off.
00:25:21 ◼ ► It's very productive and very interesting because if you're going somewhere for that purpose, you typically are going somewhere that is not interesting in quite the same way. Don't go to Disney World and want to be there to do work.
00:26:07 ◼ ► I'll say for a long time, I beat myself up where I would have grand aspirations, go on vacation, or go on and travel, even if it was just a short trip. It doesn't have to be something that's long and extended. I'm going to the beach for a week with my family.
00:26:25 ◼ ► But in the back of my mind, because when you're self-employed, you don't get paid vacation in the way that you do at a regular job. I felt that I always had to work, that if I wasn't working, that was bad.
00:27:02 ◼ ► When you're on the one of those weeks of leave, hopefully you're not thinking about work too much. That's just as beneficial, that's good for mental health, that's good for productivity, and that's good in a variety of ways too.
00:27:12 ◼ ► So keep in mind that not every travel, trip, or vacation needs to be a working one. Sometimes that makes sense if you're going for a long period of time, or you're going explicitly for the purpose of taking advantage of your flexibility in location to have a more hybrid lifestyle.
00:27:32 ◼ ► That's kind of cool, but at the same time, also don't beat yourself up if you don't get anything done or you decide ahead of time. It's not good. And if you do that, it's also kind of a nice thing to...
00:27:43 ◼ ► That's honestly kind of why I love my 12-inch MacBook, is I sometimes will bring it on a trip because it is awkward to work on. And if I don't bring my keyboard and mouse, it is awkward for me to work.
00:28:03 ◼ ► There was some weird data corruption bug that sprung up out of nowhere, and all of a sudden I had to get this update submitted. I just worked in the friends I was visiting, their bedroom for three hours, and got an update up on my 12-inch MacBook.
00:28:37 ◼ ► Yeah, I'm glad you brought this up because I feel like we need to remind ourselves as indies, it's okay to not work all the time that you could possibly work. It's okay to take a vacation and set expectations with yourself and with your users.
00:28:54 ◼ ► I've honestly thought about telling my users at this point, "Look, all this cool stuff that's going to come in iOS 13 and all this stuff, I'm not going to be there on day one because I can't make it. Summer's too short and I also want to have some kind of vacation time for myself."
00:29:08 ◼ ► So set expectations with yourself, your family, your customers, that you do have to take vacation sometime and you can't constantly work, and that's okay. That's the whole point of being indie, is to get the flexibility like that.