One of the many unexpected bonuses of doing Kodsnack is that we get asked to appear in the real world every now and then. Wednesday was such a time, we were invited to wrap up the day of Devops summit by doing what has become known as a live pod. In short (and long), we sit down on stage and discuss ideas and thoughts from the day for half an hour, sometimes the three of us, sometimes with a guest. It was great fun as usual, and it remains calmly amazing to me that we get to do this.
On Tuesday I arrived at work with a packed backpack, and in the afternoon I walked to the train station and was context switched to the heart of Stockholm via a brief three-hour train ride. I find a lot of charm in travel with a purpose like this, more of business than pleasure. It takes away any feeling that I need to get out and see or do any more than I absolutely want in the moment. I also seem to be something of a hotel romantic, I just love the whole concept for some unclear reason. Yes, even in instances like this, where the room was just a tad too warm at night and there was roadwork being done on the busy street outside.
I keep thinking I could have a great time just staying at H random hotel by myself for a weekend. Perhaps I will try it some day …
I checked in, after an unexpectedly summer-like and nice walk from the station, with about an hour to spare before the evening's podcasting, so I let the hotel handle dinner as well. They did a pretty solid job on the burger front, after which I had a bit of time to breath before recording and trying the Zoom H2n as a podcasting microphone for the first time. I edited the episode today, and it seems to have done a good job. A pop filter would be nice, but more importantly I just need to get the connections right. As this was the first time, I ended up fiddling with stuff at the last moment (and somewhat later too) and ended up recording without hearing myself in my headphones. As anyone used to hearing themselves knows, it feels very strange and somewhat uncertain when you suddenly do not. Feedback is lacking, as if you have gone slightly deaf. But next time I will fix that, and then the setup will be even nicer. I kept the Zoom on my Gorillapod tripod. Both with and without tripod the microphone is so much lighter and easier to handle on the move than the Røde podcaster I use at home. I even got up and moved from the desk to lying down in bed while recording.
WWDC (Apple's developer conference, also going on this week) was a natural discussion topic. A fun fact I dared not mention for fear of jinxing everything was that I actually recorded on my Macbook running the just released beta of Macos 10.12. It has been working almost suspiciously well so far, and it did so during the whole recording too. Had things actually exploded, I had my work computer to fall back on. Speaking of which: what a heavy monster a 15-inch (non-retina, as well) Macbook pro is! The weight, the bulk … Oh, and not to mention the heat and the fans when you actually use the things for a while. I found myself resting my elbow on the area next to the trackpad several times when thinking about a problem. It feels like bringing a metal table around with your machine. The Macbook, on the other hand, just gets more lovely the more I bring it around. I even find myself using and liking the keyboard backlight quite a bit. All this just got better the next day when the conference actually started.
(Okay, it was good at breakfast too. Hotel breakfast, another major part of my love for hotel stays.)
All day, I was taking notes during talks, keeping up a little with Slack and handling the odd email. But mainly notes. About 3000 words worth of notes, in all. All of which, through conversations with Tobias and Cecilia - our great surprise guest suggested by the organizers when it became clear Kristoffer would be home fighting a flu - boiled down to a handful of discussion points which we brought on stage with us, Sublime in distraction-free mode with a suitably enlarged font.
I do all the writing mainly for my own benefit, as you may have noticed it helps me organize my thoughts. I am often impressed by the extent to which my co-podcasters and many other people manage to keep a good flow with everything in their head, but this time I think we all actually had some use of the point list. And it definitely worked well for me. Usually I feel as if I forget at least as much as I remember to say, but right now I still think I got most things I wanted out and also thought of some new ones in the moment.
Practise, it works.
Job well done, we worked our way back to the hotel after which I followed Tobias' expert lead through a short succession of nice places for dinner, a beer in the sun and finally a fantastic ice-cream drink to round off the evening. All accompanied by fascinating stories from various times and places.
(Yes, I did think at many points that the story should have been recorded for more people to enjoy. I am just as pod damaged as you might think.)
Back at the hotel, I caught myself consuming even more thoughts by diving into Apple's Platforms state of the union presentation from WWDC. Eventually I managed to stop listening and watching, instead lying down in bed and winding down by writing yet more words, letting food and thoughts process just a bit.
It is a luxury to be friends with people who have stories to tell.
Inspiration to hear more, and perhaps tell one every now and then.