off for a drink before formulating your coverage the following day.
But since the advent of liveblogging and video, all is changed, changed utterly. A terrible beauty is born.
Live coverage means having a decent network connection, a notebook, a stills cam, a videocamera and mic. And a lot of energy
Well, this time I'm carrying a totally new set of kit, and like any self-respecting gadgeteer with a bagful of new toys, I'm embarrassingly excited. Here's my list:
- My MacBook Air, because it's so light. And despite what some might say, the battery life is good - you can easily get 3 hours out of it, even with a 3G USB stick constantly connected. At a push it'll make it to 5 hours. Compare that with my previous ultraportable, the Dialog Flybook, which struggled to make it past an hour with HSDPA turned on.
- A Canon FS11 camcorder, which records to SD card and outputs via USB, because I can't use my old MiniDV camcorder with the FireWire-less Air.
- A battered Nikon D50 because I know the Canon's stills won't be good enough to print in the magazine
- A Vodafone HDSPA USB stick, although I'm renting an EVDO USB modem in SF because the Voda stick only picks up AT&T GPRS coverage in the US - which is fine at the hotel, but was painfully slow back at the MacBook Air keynote this January. as hundreds of journos all tried to access the same GPRS connection.
- A bunch of software. I'm using the excellent - and free - ScribeFire plugin for Firefox to blog, iMovie 08 for my initial video editing (despite its usability foibles, iMovie is worth because it supports the codec used by the Canon, and because it's so quick to uplod to YouTube), Final Cut Express for deeper video editing, and Garageband for podcasting (but as the Air has no audio input I'm going to have to record audio to the camera first).
- I also have a great Sandisk 4GB SD card which snaps oped to reveal a built-in USB connection do I don't need a card reader. (Note to self: I'm not going to be able to plug my photos in when my USB modem is connected because of the Air's ludicrous single USB. D'oh!)
So what do you think? Anything missing? Naturally I also have my PSP to keep me entertained on the flight over. Plus a few episodes of The Wire on my iPhone.
I'll be writing up a few thoughts on what we can expect from the keynote on the flight over, so check back soon. And, of course, I'll be covering the announcement as it happens... networks permitting. Oh for a little Wi-Fi.