Reader’s Setup: Ryan Gonzalez



Ryan Gonzalez writes about technology, design, or any interesting subject he comes across at his blog. A designer at heart, but a budding young writer from the cultural hub of South Carolina, he’s been in love with the Mac since kindergarten and can be found on Twitter as @rmg7344.

Ryan’s Setup:

1. What does your desk look like?

Ryan Gonzalez's Mac Setup

Ryan Gonzalez's Mac Setup

Ryan Gonzalez's Mac Setup

2. What is your current Mac setup?

I have a 17″ white iMac, circa Fall 2006, running at 2.0 GHz with a Gig of RAM and a very small (160GB) amount of storage. It’s not customized at all, a stock version plucked off the shelves of the (now defunct) local CompUSA.

Connected to the Mac, I have:

Behind all the technology, there’s a cork-board that’s very helpful when organizing my thoughts on everything, particularly for my design sketches.

3. Why are you using this setup?

It’s long-winded-story time: I remember playing with an ancient Apple II back in kindergarten, all the text based and 8-bit games fascinated me for as long as I could use the computer. So, at that point I decided I would get a Mac; unfortunately, until 7th grade I was left with a half-way decent Dell Desktop. By then, I knew it was time to finally get a real computer. Over my first year in middle school, I saved the $1299 to get the iMac; looking back, it seems like money well spent.

I told my parents it was mainly going to be used for schoolwork. That was a lie. So, not surprisingly, I use it more for writing, designing, and general web browsing. So far the computer has run sufficiently enough, though Photoshop does get a hiccup from time to time. Even with these shortcomings, I still love my iMac, my first but certainly not last Mac.

4. What software do you use on a daily basis?

Firefox has been my main browser for a while, though I did flirt with the Safari 4 beta until I learned about its horrid cache of hidden files. I’m not an extension man though, because I have only a couple installed with Firefox: Firebug for development, and Greasemonkey/Stylish for making the web a little better looking. iTunes is for my music, podcasts, and archive of films. Photoshop, obviously, is for my creative exploits. Tweetie is my preferred Twitter app for now, though I like reading on my iPod touch more. I use Ecto for writing and publishing my blog, and Scrivener for long pieces. Google Reader might be my most used app, overall; I have a Fluid instance set up for it.

5. What other mac gear do you own?

Before even my iMac, I had the 3rd-Gen iPod, the first one with the click-wheel. It’s still in use, though it is somewhat messed up (skipping songs, etc.) My Dad has a video iPod that was mine for a couple years; he also has a 2nd-Gen iPod Nano. My mother has a 2007 MacBook that my little sister plays with constantly. Last, but certainly not least, I have an original iPod touch. It’s the most important gadget that I carry around, even more so than my (ancient) cellphone.

6. Do you have any future upgrades planned?

Actually, I’m in the process of a making a major transition technology-wise and with life in general. In a few months, I’ll be moving to a public boarding school that’s set up like a college. Living there for two years means that I’ll need something portable, powerful, and sufficient enough to replace my iMac (it’s staying home.) The $1699 15″ MacBook Pro fits that perfectly; hopefully I’ll have it within the next month or so.

Like I mentioned earlier, my cellphone is ancient — it’s pre-Treo, let alone pre-iPhone. Though it pains me to say, I’ll be moving to AT&T from Verizon just to get the iPhone 3GS. If only there was a Verizon iPhone…

More Sweet Setups

Ryan’s setup is just one in a series of sweet Mac Setups.