If you follow the Privacy Cookbook that I write plus read the articles I have posted within decentralize.today's EXPOSED! series, you may know by now that I'm pretty much a typical Linux and open-source guy.

Even so, I do occasionally get asked a question about what gadgets I use at home.

I must admit that I was once a big gadget guy and always needed to have the latest 'bright, shiny thing'…but with age comes wisdom (apparently) and so this is the list I am rocking atm. I try to remain as offline and as open-source as I can, but sadly this is not always possible.

Let's dive in!

Smartphone

I am using a Pixel 5 with GrapheneOS on it. No Google services, not even sandboxed. The phone runs on a prepaid SIM, which I replace occasionally. I have molly.im (Signal) on it (even though I only use it with 2 people) and I registered the Signal number via an online number, which I paid in crypto. Everyone else I have on Threema (paid via BTC) and/or Matrix (SchildiChat) which I use for most of my contacts.

Likewise, I try to use the smartphone as little as possible (even it has a GrapheneOS) and have it off completely as much as it allows. Meaning that when I am at home, or if it is 'after hours' I can chill with my family!

Router

I am using the GL-inet Velica which is my mesh network throughout the house with AdGuard Home and VPN built-in. I admit I use the VPN connection mostly because it allows me to watch football from outside my IP restriction zone.

Tablet

Yes, I like to read a lot via RSS and check a few websites but I prefer not to power up my laptop just to do that. I am using an iPad for RSS and news. However, I scroll through most headlines and send the interesting ones to my Remarkable2. The iPad is really just a half an hour a day usage.

Remarkable2

This is an e-ink tablet, where I can make notes, mark things up and just do great research. I couldn't live without it (albeit I only got it quite recently). Makes my life so much easier, sadly it's not open-source. It is an e-ink reader, distraction-free. I also read a lot of books on it, I just love to read!

reMarkable 2 | reMarkable
The next-generation paper tablet

However, still can't wait to see the new PINE64 reader, which comes out later this year.

PineNote | PINE64
Quad-Core Rockchip RK3566 @ 1.8 GHz 1404×1872 (227 DPI) 16 grayscale multi-touch Eink panel Wacom EMR Pen Digitizer Up to 4GB of LPDDR4 RAM Built-in 802.11ac WiFi with Bluetooth 5.

Laptop

System76 all the way. I am loving my Lemur Pro 14, got mine totally maxed out in RAM 40GB and rocking 2 hard disks, one for backing up all my files and one for day by day use. I am jumping between distros, using, atm, EndeavourOS.

System76 - Linux Laptops, Desktops, and Servers
System76 computers empower the world’s curious and capable makers of tomorrow

TV

I have an LG TV that I use offline. Except football, I don't watch much TV but my family uses the Raspberry Pi to the max ;)

Multimedia

For Multimedia and online streaming, I am rocking a Raspberry Pi 4 Model B. The Raspberry Pi runs all my media, IPTV etc.

Buy a Raspberry Pi 4 Model B – Raspberry Pi
Your tiny, dual-display, desktop computer…and robot brains, smart home hub, media centre, networked AI core, factory controller, and much more.

Speakers

With a combination of NewPipe and SpotiFlyer (F-Droid) I have all my music fixes and this is boosted to my Bose SoundLink Revolve speakers. That does a better job than most 'smart speakers' and it is not hooked up with an app or via WiFi, thus making it a 'dumb speaker' but one that does an outstanding job.

The speakers with offline music is what gets me through most days and on our weekend fakeations.

Footnote: I am not a gamer, but from time to time play with my son, who runs his Steam account on a System76 Serval WS 15 and his gaming on Pop_OS! I am getting him to write about some tips on gaming for Linux soon.

Stay safe!

The Privacy Advocate