★ The Setup

I love reading about and taking a look at people’s setups. I was inspired by this series so I decided to do one for my own setup.

So who are you and what do you do?

I’m Jay Torres and I’m a sales engineer for an HVAC company.

What hardware are you using to get your work done?

My current setup is a 15″ MacBook Pro (2.4 GHz Intel Core 2 Duo, 2GB RAM) and it is connected to a 24″ Dell monitor. I use the Dell as my main workspace and push other distractions (iChat, Tweetie, iTunes) to the MacBook’s monitor. I use Apple’s wireless keyboard and mouse. I thought I would get annoyed of the keyboard’s lack of a dedicated number pad but I really like how small and minimalist it is. The Mighty Mouse isn’t my favorite thing in the world but until I find a decent Bluetooth mouse that comes with a rechargeable cradle that works with OS X, I’m stuck with it. I listen to music through a set of iHome computer speakers that also serves as my iPhone dock.

I have a 160GB external drive that USED to serve as a mirrored backup but that drive is on it’s way out. In the meantime, I’m using a 500GB Time Capsule and Time Machine for backup. It’s convenient but whenever it backs up, it’s slow as shit. I also use the Time Capsule to store movies/TV shows and stream them to my TV via a 160GB Apple TV.

I have an original 16GB iPhone that I could not function without.

And what software?

I thought about this and amazingly, I spend a lot of my time in my web browser. I currently use the latest beta of Safari 4. Simple equipment selections are web based but for actual equipment quotations I have to use Internet Explorer. I haven’t really committed to either using Parallels or just booting into Windows. Parallels is more convenient, but its slow. Booting into Windows means everything runs faster but I don’t have the applications from the Mac side. On the dark side, I use Windows 7 and IE8. For chat, I use Pidgin.

For email, contact managment and calendars, I use Google. I love Google. I love how my contacts and calendar sync over the air with my iPhone. I manage my personal email and my work email using the multiple inbox feature in GMail. I make full use of labels to organize what has to be done. And finally I also use Microsoft Office on both Windows and Mac OS X. It’s a necessary evil.

As for random miscellaneous software, I use iChat, NetNewswire, Marsedit, iPhoto, Stickies, and Tweetie. On my iPhone, I make use of Twitterfon, Loopt, NetNewswire and Beejive.

What would be your perfect, ultimate setup?

I love my current setup but I always want more. If I could, I’d like a tricked out 15″ Unibody MacBook Pro and one of those new LED Cinema Displays. Extra HDDs for backups would be nice and an iTunes NAS would be awesome.

★ Two Months

It’s been 2 months and one day since I moved into my new place so I thought now would be a good time to post an update. It’s been sort of an adjustment from living in a 6 bedroom house with 7 roommates (at one point) to living by yourself in a one bedroom apartment. You go from constant commotion in the house and always having someone to bother or bother you to living by yourself and seeking any sort of social contact even if its with the resident weirdo in the elevator. Not saying that those are bad things, just different. I like having the TV and couch all to myself. I like knowing the only dishes and stray pee splashes I have to clean are my own. I like saying finally that “I have my own place”.

My place is far from “finished” and I don’t think it ever will. The first thing I did was set up my TV and computer desk in the living room. Since I work from home, my living room will double as my home office. I got a couch and coffee table from IKEA a couple weeks after I moved in. I would like to get some sort of bookshelf in the living room and a dresser for the bedroom and I would be content with that. The walls are pretty bare but I hope to put up pictures or maybe even wall decals soon.

The cool thing about my neighborhood is that it’s in an area that with shops, bars and restaurants walking distance from my complex. Every Thursday and even Fridays and Saturdays, I’ll have friends come by and have a predrink before heading down to the bars. This definitely helps with keeping in touch with friends. I just have them all stop by on Thursday as a warm up to the weekend.

And finally, a little over 2 months into the new job, I’m still trying to get adjusted to working to a smaller company, working from home, and starting over again with a new product and new accounts. With this ongoing recession, it’s kind of tough finding new projects to work on, but I’m using this time to lay down groundwork and build relationships with my new accounts. The fact that my company is smaller is kind of exciting knowing that I have a chance to help this company grow.

It’s always fun to play the “one year ago” game so let’s see where I was last year.