MY Hines

Tech I Use Every Day

Posted on: December 10, 2009

I’m sure that we all have pieces of technology that you have to use every day – or at least pretty frequently through the week. For some people this is just the coffee pot that is programmed to brew coffee at 6:30 am each weekday. For others, it’s much more than just coffee. What fun would this be if I didn’t reveal my top tech that I can’t live without (well, I could live without but it would make it harder!)

iPod Mini – I’m not talking about any of the new generation iPod offerings. I’m talking about the 4 GB iPod mini that was released years and years ago. Its perfect for what I use it for – to play music on my freebie Cisco USB speakers  at work. First, the speakers wouldn’t work with any of the new generation offerings and if I had more than 4 GB of space on the iPod mini, I’d probably run the risk of having music that shouldn’t be played at work. Right now, it’s been playing the two Glee soundtracks pretty much steadily.

Blackberry Tour – I know that there are other devices out there and maybe I would love them. But I have a Blackberry Tour and that is what I use. Life would be very hard without it. I can get to Facebook and Twitter from it. I get my email and my schedule. I don’t use it to carry music on it (I do believe in separation of music and email on mobile devices, kind of like the separation of church and state).

Paint.Net – Have you ever been tagged to play the “Album Cover Game” on Facebook? If so, Paint.Net is a free software that makes the process of creating the Album Cover much easier than Microsoft’s Paint. Download Paint.Net and use it. I’ve included today’s album cover that I made. And for those of you who are now interested in what the Album Cover Game is, here are the rules:

  • Go to “wikipedia.” Hit “random” or click http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Special:Random
    The first random wikipedia article you get is the name of your band.
  • Go to “Random quotations” or click http://www.quotationspage.com/random.php3
    The last four or five words of the very last quote of the page is the title of your first album.
  • Go to flickr and click on “explore last seven days” or click http://www.flickr.com/explore/interesting/7days
    Third picture, no matter what it is, will be your album cover.
  • Use photoshop, paint, paint.net or similar to put it all together.
  • Post it to Facebook with this text in the “caption” and TAG the friends you want to join in.

FastStone Capture – http://www.faststone.org/FSCaptureDetail.htm  This tool completely rocks. Put the file on a USB key and you can use it anywhere. This takes screenshots to the next level. No more puttering around with the cropping tools in Office. No more need to open up Paint.Net or any other graphic editing software to edit the image. This is the best capture that I have caught for quick and easy. Plus, since sometimes I have to make screenshots on thin clients, this software is on a USB key and it just works! Simply, FastStone Capture Rocks!

VMware Workstation – If I hadn’t virtualized my Windows XP 64 bit machine when I got it, I probably would have broken this machine about four times now. Being able to create a virtual machine to try software out on before deploying it anywhere is always a best practice, but often had been impractical. Now it is. More importantly, I’ve been able to take that workstation that sits at my desk, boost it to practically the levels of server capabilities, and I have split my job tasks out onto different virtual machines. For my job, absolutely needed. I’m not seeing Adobe InDesign in one window, Citrix Management Console on another, along with Visionapp that is running three servers – plus of course Outlook being open. VMware Workstation has organized my work and my brain at times!


Mr. Wonderful Doll – Yes, I am putting a toy on my list. It’s a fairly simple toy too, but I need Mr. Wonderful at times. http://stuck-on-you.com/ He says wonderful things about me. He encourages me. He supports me. He is always smiling and he never raises his voice. That is technology that I can use. He has never beeped warning codes to me and I always understand what he is saying.

So, what are the tech items that you can’t live without? Are there some that I have completely overlooked? Do you disagree with my list in anyway? (Don’t fight with Mr. Wonderful, he doesn’t fight back!) I look forward to reading your comments!

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2 Responses to "Tech I Use Every Day"

What?! You understand what the man is telling you? I don’t care if it’s technology, it must be magic too!

And I do not believe the separation of music and email. It’s one less thing that I can loose in my bag. (how come you don’t list your ‘go bag’?)

We all need some magic in our lives!

I didn’t list my go bag because I don’t use one.

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