This is a living document in the spirit of and Uses This where you’ll find a rough rundown of the hardware and software that makes up my daily working stack, and (where relevant), what my dream setup would be (in my current state of mind, at least!). If you’re looking for what hardware my boat uses, instead, see her dedicated page.

I’m constantly changing my setup and tinkering with things on a monthly or at least quarterly basis in some form or another. The history of this page is all in version control, that history may be useful or entertaining or both.

Most recent update: 2024-02-13

Primary Desktop Setup

A picture of this workstation in my home office

For those curious, the hostname is snowcone, after the deadmau5 song.


It's a Thinkpad... what did you think it was going to look

My primary laptop is a Lenovo Thinkpad X13S Gen4 AMD with an AMD 7840U and 32GB of RAM. My only complaints about it in general are that it’s a bit too big (11-12” is my ideal, the X13S is very close to 14”) and the battery life is truly awful (~5hrs on a good day). It’s otherwise excellent: plenty of port selection, fast USB-C charging, matte 16:10 aspect ratio screen, a fairly decent keyboard (I’ve used better, but almost never on a laptop), and a huge, smooth trackpad. (Unlike many Thinkpad fans, I couldn’t care less about the trackpoint).

For those curious, the hostname is nocturnes, after the Silicone Soul song.

I also own an MNT Reform (the original thiqq version). If I’m being honest, this is more of a project car I get to take around the block a couple times every few months before something else about it breaks (or I just run out of RAM - 4GB on the stock model - to handle my workflows), whereas the Thinkpad is more of the trusty Honda Civic I can drive to work daily. This Reform has been plagued with countless problems and has honestly spent most of its life in storage bins or closets, which makes me deeply sad, because I really, really want a sturdy, repairable laptop with a mechanical keyboard and commodity battery cells to be reality. It’s just not currently my reality.

Elsewhere in my arsenal of portable machines, I still own two barely-usable machines:


Most of my services are hosted on a small fleet of Linode (er, “Akamai Cloud” - whatever, corporate) VPSes, all running Alpine Linux and managed with Terraform, though all config and state management is currently manual (no Nix, Kubernetes, etc. here - I use those when I’m paid to. Ever hear about how cobblers’ children have no shoes?).

A few things run on a Raspberry Pi 4B here at home, notably, Home Assistant to control a litany of Zigbee devices (light bulbs, plugs, temperature/humidity sensors, etc).



Okay, now with that out of my system… I currently use a Pixel 7a which runs crDroid with MicroG and no Google services. It perpetually brings two Nolan Lawson articles 12 to front of mind, for sure… especially since I actually have to keep my prior phone, a Moto G Stylus running stock Googled Android, around to log into certain systems at work. Sigh. (yes, YubiKeys exist, yes, I used to use them at every startup job I held between 2018-23, no, the enterprise org I now work for doesn’t allow them as replacements for the closed-source auth stack we use. Sigh again.)

Also somewhere in my piles of rotting tech shit are three PinePhones. They’re all slow, fragile, horrible shit, on both the hardware and much of the software sides, don’t buy them.

Other Gadgets


Beware the rabbit hole that is “audiophile” culture. I own what I own because it performs well and otherwise scored well on my personal rubric in every category I cared about, including repairability. I don’t necessarily endorse you buying the hardware I use, and if you do snag any of this stuff, I definitely endorse finding used deals on one of the many audio gear marketplaces. You can save hundreds to thousands of dollars.

When at my home office, I listen to either my Edifier R1280T speakers or one of a few ZMF over-ear headphones I own, with digital-to-analogue translation and headphone amplification handled by an RME ADI-2 DAC FS. At this point, barring an upgrade to the speakers (I’m eyeing some KEF Q150s or Polk ES10/ES20s some day), my home office audio stack is considered “complete enough”. I’m mostly done trialing too much new gear and happy with where I’ve landed.

On the go, I listen to Truthear Zero IEMs via a Qudelix 5K DAC/amp (which works as both a USB-C device and a Bluetooth sink). I may consider adding another IEM or two to this list eventually, but otherwise am, again, largely happy with where I’ve landed.

I’ve also crowdfunded the Tangara portable media player, which I hope will help me use my phone for fewer tasks, and use open-source task-dedicated hardware for listening to music on the go. Also, it was just nice to support an internet pal’s OSHW venture :)


As a non-exhaustive list:

… and whatever else you find in my dotfiles.

I tend to build software using (in no particular order): Rust, Zig, Python, TypeScript, and plain old shell scripts. Oh, and I’m working on my own language, too, I guess.

  1. Living With An Open Source Phone, 2017 

  2. Tech Veganism, 2019 

  3. And of course all of these require separate windows on my screen these days because the golden era of using Pidgin to merge all protocols into one sensible UI is long gone (in Discord’s case, you’ll get banned for even trying, which IMO should be damn near criminally chargeable for a company to enforce).