The Road Warrior Gear

To create this site while on the road, and to stay wired (get email, surf the WWW , etc) I use the following gear. If you have additional information or corrections, please

Laptop - Apple PowerPC Powerbook 5300cs

I chose the Apple Powerbook 5300cs for two reasons. First of all, as long as it's my choice, I'll always use Apple products. I help design and build PC clones for a living, and I program them and deal with them daily. I know their internals inside and out, and frankly, they suck dead bunnies through a bent straw. Life is too short to use PC clones while on vacation. Given that, I borrowed this 5300cs from my dad, who was willing to part with it for my 86 day sabbatical.

The 5300cs is an fine computer for what it is, but it does have some limitations. First, it's fairly old, and not too fast compared with a modern G3 Apple Powerbook. Second (related to the first point), the display is only 640x480 and 256 colors. The color is especially a limitation given the digital pictures, because it's hard for me to see what the pictures will actually look like when downloaded to a decent 24 bit color (millions of colors) monitor. But the price was right.

Modem - 3Com Megahertz 56Kbit Cellular Ready PCMCIA Card

This modem came recommended from a friend, and after using it I really think it's a good product. It comes with an XJACK connector, which allows you to plug a phone cord directly into the modem with no adapter which is very convenient. I have a cable that connects the modem to the cell phone, but I haven't had an opportunity to try this out yet.

Cell Phone - Motorola StarTAC 6500

The StarTAC 6500 is a very small (3.1 oz) cell phone. It is analog only, which I chose for three reasons:

  1. Analog phones are smaller and lighter than digital phones.
  2. I guessed that my coverage would mostly be analog in small ski towns.
  3. I couldn't find any information on connecting a digital cell phone to a modem, or how that would work.


Digital Camera - Fujifilm MX-700

This is a megapixel camera (1280x1024) that is VERY small, and I have been extremely happy with everything about it. See any of the "gallery" pictures to see the results. It has a 16 Megabyte removable smartcard, which stores about 22 of the very highest resolution, highest quality pictures. It will store about 300 lower quality pictures. To read more about this camera, here is an excellent WWW page. I upload the digital pictures to my Apple Powerbook 5300cs by serial cable, which is slow, but works and is cheaper than buying another (faster) solution.


Adobe Pagemill 3.0 - this web page creation tool is very friendly and easy to use, although pretty slow. I've hacked raw html in "vi" for years, but as long as the web pages are simple it's really much faster and easier to use a drag and drop, WYSIWYG tool. I've heard complaints that the html source produced by these tools isn't "readable" or "good quality", but who cares? Those sound like ancient objection to 'C' compilers to me.

Adobe Photoshop 4.0 LE - this came free with Pagemill. It allows me to resize images, correct the color and brightness, and save in different formats.

Netscape Communicator 4.05 - I create and receive email, and browse the web with this. It allows me to create and read email offline, then "sync up", which is a really good feature considering online time can cost me a long distance phone call, depending on where I am.

Fetch 3.0.3 - this is an excellent ftp program for the Mac, which I use to upload my WWW pages and photographs.


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