Who are you, and what do you do?

My name is Finlay. I work as a software developer at Splunk, here in Vancouver. Outside of the office, I love sailing, and I crew regularly on a couple of boats that race around Vancouver. We race fun weeknight races in the summer, local regattas, and some overnight distance races in the area. I seem to spend a lot of time reading.

What hardware do you use?

At home I have a 15” MacBook Pro (with SSD, best upgrade ever!), together with a 27” Crossover LCD. It’s a lot of pixels. I also watch movies on a projector -- I like the size of the image, and I don’t want to have a TV screen in the apartment.

I love my Kindle Paperwhite for reading. I originally wasn’t sure about ebooks, but as soon as I used a Kindle, I was sold – now I can carry every book I’m reading when I travel, and even just dip in for a couple of pages while riding the train to work. I do miss easily seeing what other people around me are reading, but Goodreads is pretty nice, too.

I recently picked up a Rancillio Silva espresso machine, which is pretty sweet, but more than a little finicky to get right.

And what software?

Apart from all the usual file stores and note-taking tools, there are a few apps that I find indispensable. 1Password for storing all your passwords and keeping them in sync between machines, phones, etc, is outstanding. Stop using the same weak passwords all over the place. When I come across something I’m going to read later, I send it to Pocket – great for always having your own “magazine” of articles, and really good browser/Twitter integration. I’m firmly in the “vim” camp, of course you can check out my .vimrc setup here. I can’t say enough good things about the Pleco Dictionary for Chinese on my phone. The basic version is free, and it’s really worth it to pay for some of the add-on features if you’re going to use it a lot. Late in the evening, the soothing colors of f.lux remind me that it’s time to go to bed already!

What would be your dream setup?

I’m pretty close to my dream setup right now. I’d definitely love some combination of vi editing, together with the interactive code manipulation that you see in Bret Victor’s demos, or in the Light Table IDE.

And if you haven’t already seen it, this page is inspired by The Setup