11 - On Location... Vacation at last!

11 - On Location... Vacation at last!
Ponto Do Sol - Digital Nomad capital of Madeira

Issue 11 already - I will be including numbers going forward to make past letters easier to find and refer to.   The past two weeks I have been on vacation - my first real vacation is a couple of years.  Monday I am back to work for a bit.  I have decided to work from here rather than subject myself to more international travel - we are still refugees from the insanity in Hong Kong.  We really have been relaxing and enjoying life on the island.  Levada hikes and Jeep tours!

220415 Jeep tour - Cabo Girao, Porto Moniz, Fanal and Ponto do Sol - Madeira

We had plenty of time to relax and enjoy life.  Madeira is a fantastic place to visit with lots to see and do and even more weather!.  I did think that HK was mountainous - but Madeira is next level!  Portuguese is also something else; have not yet made much progress but we did not try much and English will generally suffice.  As you see in the video above, Madeira is getting serious about attracting Digital Nomads and as you will see below they have forward-thinking local government - exactly as foreseen in my top book pick - The Sovereign Indvidual.

I did get to read quite a lot of interesting books and material - will be sharing insights below and going forward. Happy to discuss too - that offer is still open.

Among other things I got to appreciate more the Apple ecosystem and the seamless integration between Mac, iPhone and iPad - in combination with working with no/limited WiFi and using tethering from my CalyxOS Pixel.  Strong privacy is important and Apple scores reasonably well - though you will want to take some additional precautions,  I have been enjoying reading my kindle on all platforms and listening to the audio-books with reading-location syncing (fantastic).  I am considering sharing tips and tricks on secure setups as well as aspects that I find particularly useful - do talk to me if you have questions or suggestions.

Bitcoin BTC

Given how important Bitcoin already is and will become I think it is right that I should include a section here with relevant news, insights and provocations to discuss.  Note that Bitcoin is different from "Crypto"; do not get them mixed up!

Discovery of the week - Obsidian

For years I have been an avid notetaker.  I caught the bug when I did Electronic Engineering at Southampton University and we had to keep a "lab book".  Ever since then in my professional work I kept a notebook and took daily notes.  Recently this evolved into taking notes on computer.  With the arrival of online working and screen-sharing such notes can be very useful and this unleased new value in note-taking.

For personal notes I found great value with Apple Notes - a tool that has improved dramatically in recent years and works perfectly on Mac, iPhone and iPad.  However, like many notetakers I often felt that I was "missing a trick".  The reality is that searching and retrieval is not as easy as you want it to be and it's hard to reassemble and repurpose your collected information into new output.

In recent years I have considered using several tools but found none of them compelling enough to put in the time to learn and adopt.  There is also the fear of "lock in" and endless subscriptions to pay - as anyone who has used Evernote will know!

Big thank you to Rachel for this one.   She did get me thinking and encouraged me to give Obsidian another try - I had looked at it last year but it felt overwhelming compared to Apple Notes -  I could never have imagined how great it could be!

The absolute best overview of Obsidian and how to use it is FromSergio - his playlist is required watching.  Particular highlights:

  • Kindle Highlights - this is a superbly useful feature that normally you can only get with a subscription service - do buy the developer a coffee!
  • No Lock-in - your files are simple markdown and you have full control
  • Works perfectly on Mac and iPhones using iCloud - no annoying sync subscription to pay for
  • It's free for personal use - no payment or annoying subscription
  • Lots of high quality training material readily available and a great community of people to help you


Watching and Listening

For those who prefer a structured reading list, check References

That's it!

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