What's in your bag? is a recurring feature where we ask people to tell us a bit more about their everyday gadgets by opening their bags and hearts to us. Show us your bag in this forum post. This week, we're featuring Tom Warren.
When I'm packing for an event I try to squeeze every gadget possible into my bag. It often feels like I'm moving home, and I'm probably a prime target for would-be muggers, but there is no perfect phone, tablet, or PC right now. Everything fits in somehow, especially if I'm travelling overseas to an event. This bag is a modern day Mary Poppins production, so expect some surprises throughout.
My bag of choice is a Case Logic laptop case. It's slimline and has some thick foam padding throughout that makes it perfect for trade shows and events. It also has a number of compartments that are ideal for storing phones and various accessories. I'm particularly fond of the rear case that lets me quickly store a laptop or tablet. I've dropped it a number of times and my gadgets have always remained safe. The only downside is the single strap, which bothers my shoulder if I've packed a lot of gear inside. Overall it's lightweight and you don't end up looking like a grown man wearing a backpack. Bonus.
13-inch MacBook Air (mid-2011)
Yes, I use a MacBook Air like 99.9 percent of The Verge staff. I might be the resident Microsoft expert, but Apple's hardware is still appealing for Windows use. I've held off running Windows 8 directly on the MacBook after some early trackpad issues, but Apple recently updated its Boot Camp drivers so I'll be taking the plunge soon and ditching my existing virtual machines. Speaking of Apple, I'm a big fan of the iPad mini. It's the perfect form factor for this type of device and I haven't touched my iPad since I bought one.
I also rarely go anywhere without a dedicated Windows machine, or two. I have been testing a couple of Samsung tablets (Ativ SmartPC / Ativ Tab) and you will usually find me with a Surface too. I'm still on the fence about using a Surface Pro full time, mainly because of lap use, but I'm hoping the perfect all-around Windows 8 form factor arrives soon so I can finally ditch my MacBook for good.
NOKIA LUMIA 920
My daily driver is typically the Nokia Lumia 920 right now. When I'm visiting the US I use a cyan AT&T version, but back home I use a red or yellow unit (yes I'm an Arsenal fan). I like to keep up-to-date on all mobile operating systems so I switch phones regularly; lately it's been between an iPhone 5, Nexus 4, and other Windows Phones. The Nokia Lumia 920 has some drawbacks in terms of features and app selection, but the camera is second to none. Given that I spend way too much time in dimly lit pubs, the Lumia's low light performance fits my needs perfectly.
NIKON D5000 / aF-S 18MM-55MM
I'm a fairly basic guy when it comes to photography. I have a Nikon D5000 with the AF-S 18mm-55mm lens and shoot the majority of my photos with this. For live blogs and events I'll use a D7000 with either an AF-S 18mm-200mm or 40mm macro lens. Cameras are like Excel to me, I don't use half the settings but I get the job done.
Mi-Fi and Wedge Mouse
Connectivity is key for my job so I keep a Huawei Mi-Fi in my bag just in case. My iPad mini has since turned into my hot spot of choice, but it's always useful to have a Mi-Fi around just in case. I also use a Microsoft Wedge Touch mouse. I wouldn't recommend it for hours of use, but it's particularly useful when you're mobile and want to get some work done without a touchpad. It's Bluetooth, too, so no pesky dongle required.
Windows to go and USB sticks
I never go anywhere without a USB key handy. I have a Windows To Go stick in my bag at all times, which allows me to boot a Windows 8 instance on any PC. I also have a 16GB stick which is useful for quick file transfers, especially for photos. Cloud services like Dropbox or SkyDrive might be useful, but nothing beats the speed and ease of use of a USB stick just yet.
I seem to burn through business cards at a decent rate. If you're at a trade show, then these are still essential for quickly distributing contact details. I have a fairly iconic image on my particular cards, see if you can guess what it is.
Sim adapters are essential for me personally. I switch phones so regularly that I'm constantly swapping from a nano SIM to Micro SIM. I also visit the US regularly so I keep a spare AT&T SIM in my bag to switch across once the plane touches down.