blackhole://nilFM

computers

Home office setup

Here are data regarding my computing devices, their basic setups, and my go-to computing accessories. My hope is that someone reading this might find inspiration for their setup or learn of new software or hardware configurations. I also have a computer issued by my employer, but it's nothing special and it's not mine, so I don't list it here...

ksatrya

ksatrya is a first generation Lenovo Thinkpad X1 Carbon. I've had it since November 2019 and it is my daily driver. Perfect balance of oldschool ergonomics, portability and power. Use cases include email, coding, web browsing, graphic design, audio editing, DJing, and light emulation (up to PS1).

the machine itself during surgery desktop environment

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See also, desktop software I typically use.

pet01

PET01 is my current phone; it's an unlocked Nokia C300 with Google services disabled running a minimal suite of software to make it an efficient and highly useable cyberdeck or PErsonal Terminal. I purchased it as fonon's chassis began to fall apart and muon is a piece of spyware.

Nokia C300 face-up on a dark wooden surface. The screen is on and shows a minimal text launcher with vertically arranged text panels of white on translucent black, with the central and most intricate part of tsugumiV2-1440 as the wallpaper

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yggdrasil

yggdrasil is a Dell Precision T3600. It's our household desktop computer and has been with us since 2018. Solid as a rock, use cases include DVD player, streaming, web browsing, video editing, gaming (emulation thru PS2 and Gamecube, Steam, etc).

the machine itself during surgery desktop environment

stats

See also, desktop software I typically use.

vajra

vajra is a modest, low-power NAS/homeserver and workstation — a Surface 3 running Void Linux from its comfy docking station. Use cases include email, time tracking, playing music and podcasts.

Vajra on the desk showing the login screen with split keyboard visible in the foreground

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notes

This device was an accidental gift from an eBay seller whom I bought a refurbished GPU from. They sent me this as well (with no power supply) by mistake and after I messaged them 2 or 3 times asking if they wanted me to ship it back they said "just keep it." It sat around mostly unused for about a year and a half after briefly testing the hardware and lamenting at the TypeCover keyboard.

More recently, I had a mind to use it as a homeserver since its low power consumption and modest specs make it ideal for that kind of usage. I found a docking station to setup the device with (ethernet, more USB ports, and a more reliable power supply than any USB adapter I had lying around) installed Void Linux (musl) on it using almost an identical setup as described in filesystem surgery and restored from a kyanite backup. The only thing that didn't work out of the box was that the backlight stayed on at 100% brightness all the time (and if you close the TypeCover the machine locks up, but I never use it), so I used yggdrasil to compile a kernel with the options described here and it worked like a charm.

While I work my day job from a Windows machine, this machine now serves as my point-of-contact with reality via SSH with X forwarding — pumping tunes and keeping an acme9k window open, mostly. It also sports an almost identical copy of the desktop environment on ksatrya (except with urxvt as the terminal since it launches way faster on this hardware, and compositing turned off) for workstation usage if the need or mood arises.

Usually, my media library on 2x1TB RAIDZ1 is plugged in here and available over the local network over sshfs.

computing accessories

Kinesis Freestyle Pro Keyboard

My Kinesis Freestyle Pro Split Ergonomic Keyboard

It's said that a programmer's keyboard is more important than their machine itself. Cheap yet well made and programmable split mechanical keyboard.

GUNNAR Optiks Cyber

My blue-light glasses

Protects my eyes from high-energy photons emitted by computer screens.

Google P2718EC Monitor

Macro shot of the monitor

Inexpensive 1440p 27" IPS LCD scored on ebay. Mounted to the desk on a swivelling, jointed monitor arm.

2x1TB RAIDZ1 External SSD array 'xilikon'

MAIWO 2x2.5in external SATA enclosure, assembled with data cable

My media library lives here on a ZFS pool in RAIDZ1 configuration. It usually stays plugged into vajra as a micro-SAN, but if I'm travelling I probably bring it with.

Western Digital Elements 2TB External HDD

My cold storage external HDD

Backups go here. I use kyanite to backup home directories and my media library onto an encrypted ZFS pool with redundant files hard-linked to save space. It stays inside of a small cardboard box amidst some tissue paper to stay safe and cozy.

Afterglow Wired PS3 Controller

My wired PS3 controller

My favorite game controller is this cheap biz from Afterglow. Comfy, responsive, and lasted through some travelling and traumatic drops. Great for all kinds of emulators, and PC games which don't support it natively can use tools to remap it to key/mouse input or map it to a virtual XInput controller. It's wired, so no batteries required.

Happy Plugs

Best earbuds ever

Favorite headphones. Work well as a headset for gaming or telephony too. I store them in an old tea tin.