What Is Your Favorite Tech Hardware? [NOT 8/8/21]

My first mobile phone was the size of a shoebox - Very Get Smart.

Back when dinosaurs roamed the earth, I got my first computer at work. It was an IBM that ran with unformatted floppy disks; DOS was the operating system, and basic sequel commands were of use. It was very exciting when the disks came pre-formatted.

Our first home computer was a Packard Bell 486, with a 1 GB drive and 16MB of RAM. Today, most thumb drives hold more data than that. My current work PC has 16 GB of RAM and a Ryzen 7 8-Core processor. Because I remember the old days, I never take a fast, quality computer for granted.

As for a favorite technology, it has to be the Kindle. I am a voracious reader, and it saves me from frequent library trips or from the purchase of much more expensive physical books.

How about you? What is your favorite tech item? Do you love your mobile phone? Big-screen TV? 3-D printer? Smart home? Or do you really dislike technology?

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Four dogs, one partner. The dogs win.


      • I most certainly do! And changing the ribbons, which were…dual reel, I think that’s the way to describe it? 

        I was actually the first in family to own a typewriter (a manual) when I was very young. I’m left-handed, and I liked to write, and I had really good penmanship, but i t w a s v e r y l a b o r i o us, so my parents bought me one for my birthday and I taught myself to type. I was maybe 10? It was a green and white “portable” that probably weighed about 30 pounds. It came with 2 black ribbons and 1 of those special red/black ribbons. I got so that I typed so fast the keys would stick, so I’d have to stop and carefully unstick them, so as not to bend them and break the thing, because if I did we’d have to take it to a repairman who would order new parts…

        • I used to help my mom type up documents for my elementary school’s PTA (before she went back to work). I also taught myself cursive by copying her handwriting. They were a little uptight about it at school because that was too advanced for a kindergartener, but I typed my own “Student of the Month” certificates more than once 😆

  1. one whole gb?
    goddamn that must have set you back a pretty penny
    i stole a 512mb seagate hardrive once….more than doubling my available disk space
    it was awesome…coz it was free
    my favourite tech item is my creative headset…it has the sounds….not as good as the senheiser i had before….but…it has a cat proof cable…and thats worth its weight in gold

  2. I’m pretty low-tech in general because I’m lazy and don’t want to bother with it.

    But definitely my smartphone, because of the google maps/waze whatever other map application people use. I’m one of those people that gets stressed and overthinks routes waaaaaay too much and having that little screen with the map is super comforting. 

    • i tried following googles directions lady to get to the track once
      i ended up lost in suburbia within 10 minutes of leaving home
      who knew you could get so lost in your hometown?
      anyways the main lesson i learnt that day is do not trust google

    • I live in fear of having to replace my 5 year old Samsung Galaxy phone. Phones are expensive and I have a very slow learning curve with them. Also, stuff that I am able to do on a PC is much more difficult on a phone.

      • I am another last-adopter of tech. I tend to get my devices or software “just so” and so an update wipes out all my efforts. I have to learn the new stuff AND put all my shit back.

    • Google maps is the main reason I haven’t gone back to a flip-phone.
      There have been a lot of times when I have pulled up googlemaps in an unfamiliar area to find a public transit route/connection to get me where i wanted to, that no amount of bus-station-map-reading could have ever accomplished.
      They are really great at knitting together various otherwise uncooperative public transit agency maps and timetables.

  3. I love my Kindle Paperwhite. It’s lightweight, glare free, and waterproof. It’s the only e reader I’ve ever been able to use outside in the sun. I used it poolside at my sister’s without worrying about it getting splashed. And I can even read in the tub. 🛀

  4. So far my 3-D printer is finicky, so it’s not making my list. 
    In terms of use, it’s my smartphone. But for leisure activities, it’s my tablet. I don’t like to watch programs or read on my phone, but I’ll happily do both on my tablet. And none of this iPhone nonsense. I started out with an iPhone and an iPad, but after realizing that Apple’s planned obsolescence policy intends for you to buy new ones every two years, I broke away and went to Android. I have Samsung for phone and tablet. The ability to install an SD card and put gigabytes of reading and other entertainment on my devices was the clincher. I also just bought a terabyte flash drive that reverses from standard USB to C connector, and that thing is the bomb. Plug it right into your phone or tablet. Fucking awesome and it’s tiny

  5. I just got an upgraded phone; I went from an iPhone 6s to a 12! I know Apple has their haters but I’m happy with my purchase! 
    I just got a surface that I love as well, after I dropped my old one on the floor in the Denver airport bathroom. 

    • I need to research MP3 players and see what’s out there now. I’ve got music files scattered all over the place and I’d actually like something that’s not connected to the Internet. I can’t load my old iTunes songs onto my Samsung phone for some reason, and then I have stuff that just randomly disappears off my phone. I ripped a bunch of CDs, and those are slowly evaporating from my phone. These are all legit purchases, but they seem to get erased when the phone updates or something. 

      • I relatively recently uploaded my cd library to my phone.
        I don’t like using data or streaming services through my phone, so I just copied my entire music library from my laptop (ripped from CDs as MP3s (I know, there are better formats, but I don’t really care enough…)) to a micro SD card and put that in my phone.  I use it with bone-conduction headphones for my bicycle commute, and with bluetooth hearing protection with built in speakers while at work.  I’m pretty happy with it so far, it makes both the commute and work a bit more enjoyable.

  6. My old Commodore 64.  Memories of hours of playing pisspoor graphic games and okay sound.
    Elite, Jumpman, Autoduel, Raid On Bungeling Bay, Hardball and the Ultima series.
    Now?  My MacBook.  Info.  Reader.  Video player.  Typewriter.  Stock Analyzer and checklist.

  7. I definitely use my smartphone enough that it’s the most consistently utilized piece of tech. But I would say that currently my favorite piece of technology is my almost 30-year old KitchenAid mixer. I can’t imagine having to do 3/4 of the shit I make mixing by hand. 

  8. I resisted apple for years – but everyone at work uses apple stuff so I finally broke down and got an ipad. I had to get one that is its own hotspot – so I can send pics and stuff when there’s no internet.  I won’t say I love it – but it is easy to use and I can take it places I can’t take my laptop. I still refuse to get an iPhone though. 

  9. An Alaskan friend has one with a hotspot for the same reason…but in her case it is for when they rotate the wind turbine on the hill and she loses internet. 

  10. My favorite piece of tech is either my Garmin 45s running watch, or my Garmin InReach Mini, depending on which one I’m using at the time. They’re not perfect but they do their base functions very well, which I cannot say for my smart phone.

  11. My father built a HealthKit computer when I was a kid that used cassette tapes, pre-floppy disk.  He soldered every circuit to every board.  I can’t believe how far it’s come.  

  12. My car is the most tech thing I enjoy, it has smart cruise control that tracks the car in front of you & will keep a set number of car lengths from it & auto brake.  I love it on long road trips until it shows a pic of a cup of coffee & tells me I need to take a break because I’m not paying attention.  

  13. I’m venturing further towards luddite as I get older.
    At work, I tried to explain to a younger coworker how back before floppies, we used to use audio cassette tapes to record data on home computers.  And then I had to try and explain audio cassette players and audio cassette tapes.
    my favorite…. maybe my SSD drive?  It’s literally less than 30 seconds from me pressing the on button, to getting my (fully functional, ready-to-go) desktop (not this old windows bullshit where it pops up the desktop and then spends the next three-to-five minutes with a spinning icon as it runs through all the bloatware updates/initializations/whatever).
    And probably half of that time is me typing in passwords.
    Otherwise, I hate smartphones, I hate tablets, I hate “smart” everything.  If something that isn’t a computer, phone, or router has “WiFi” I don’t want to have anything to do with it.

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