Sunday notes – blogging on the go

Busy times ahead for me at Thomson Reuters. Before I talk about that, I am just happy that I managed to find a very convenient way to blog post using Jekyll blogging on GitHub while on the go. My lovely daughter allowed me to use her old iPad Mini 2. She got a new Chromebook but she wanted the Mini for watching Netflix while we travel. So we made the arrangement that she uses the Mini whenever she wants. It’s hers after wall but I use it when it is idle… The iPad may be old but it still works like charm. I got myself a Zagg rugged bluetooth keyboard that hooks to the iPad and make the iPad look like a mini computer. I would then be able to carry my “new mini computer” on the go and use it for daily writing, research, and blogging. My big old new Macbook Pro will stay most of the time in my backpack unless I need it to do some really professional coding – something that needs bigger screens and big machines. Other than an old iPad Mini that has now resurrected as a mini computer works so perfectly with what I constantly seek after – a minimalist professional lifestyle.

If you like to do the same, here are the instructions:

  • left over iPad Mini. (Any tablets or phones would) but the size of the Mini is just perfect. Thank you, Apple. Wait! Thank you, daughter !!
  • for note taking on iOS: i tried may apps but I ended up with 1Writer. It is really good and allows you to customize it with Javascript and other techniques. It is my note taking tool of choice for markdown.
  • for blogging: I experimented with different tools and solutions including self-hosting, paid-hosting, etc but I seem to always go back to GitHub.io using Jekyll for microblogging. As for the custom domain, I just purchased my domains from Google Domains and hooked it up to my GitHub repo.
  • for storing files: I wanted an easy way to keep all my notes and files in sync, hence, it was a struggle deciding on DropBox, iCloud, Google Drive, and OneDrive. Believe me when I am saying that I wasted too much time and synchronization effort to decide on what is the best file synchronize strategy for me. Not necessarily for note taking but for everything – this needs a whole blog post. After a millions of trials, I decided to stick to DropBox and live with the 0/month for 2TB that I will only use probably one fourth max. Dropbox teams knows how to price something … no wonder they went IPO. I moved my Zotero-based research papers on DropBox and then updated Zotero settings to allow access to DropBox. I honestly feel bad that I did not go with Zotero own cloud plan because that money goes to developing Zotero, my reference management tool of choice for over a decade. I will donate money to them so hopefully that takes care of my guilt
  • for pushing blog posts from 1Writer app and into GitHub, I found Git2Go iOS Git Client to be a God sent! Thanks to a 1Writer Action for Git2Go I am now able to able to write a blog post like this one, send it to Git2Go app, add the new file, do the commit, and push the post on my blog. Love it

That said, I feel that I am completely mobile now. I can blog. I can write. I can read. I can listen to music. I can research. All with this beautiful device that proves that what Steve Jobs imagined Apple to be has hit home for me.

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