If you want to find more out about me, this page is a good place to start. My interests include reading, running & long walks, technology and motorcycles. I use this site as my personal blog and a way for people to get in touch with me.
I am a Linux, open source and privacy advocate.
I read a lot, but not always books. Most of what I read tends to be blog posts, mostly about motorbikes and technology in various forms. When I do read book, I enjoy sci-fi, technology and autobiographies.
- The Cookoo’s Egg – Cliff Stoll
- Anything by Conn Iggulden, but particularly the “Conqueror” series
- Uneasy Rider – Mike Carter
- The Culture Series – Ian M Banks
- Troy Hunt’s Blog
- The Fry Chronicles – Stephen Fry
- This blog! 🙂
Running & Walking
I have a job that doesn’t involve much exercise. In fact, it involves no exercise. Since leaving the Army in 2009, my waste-line has been steadily increasing.
I now try to go running a few times a week, but even if I don’t get time, I still get out for some nice long walks, mostly with the dog. I find this very relaxing, especially after a long day in the office.
Tech is probably my biggest interest – so settle down and get a coffee as this is going to be a long section. I’ve deliberately formatted this section to be very similar to Richard Stallman’s How I Do Computing page, as I think it’s a really good way of articulating an interest like technology.
I have two main computers that I use – my primary device is a 2nd generation ThinkPad X1 Carbon. By modern standards the specification of the machine is fairly modest with a 256GB SSD, 8GB RAM and a Core i7-4600U @ 3.3GHz. However this is more than powerful enough for my needs.
I also have a home built desktop PC. This is more powerful than my laptop, but still fairly modest by today’s standards. With an AMD FX-6300 @ 3.5GHz, AMD Radeon RX 560 graphics card, 8GB RAM, 120GB SSD and 1TB HDD for data.
As well as these two devices, I also have a HP Elitebook that I use for work, an iPad Mini 4, an iPhone SE and a home built server that is used to host media and sync/backup my family’s important data.
What I do on my computers
A lot of what I do on my computers day-to-day is pretty boring to be honest. I’m a very heavy email user (who isn’t these days), I maintain a number of websites, including this one and I play some games – mostly Minecraft as I find it very relaxing.
My day job is in Cyber Security, so I use a wide array of tools for that, however I would be remiss to go into those details on a public page such as this.
My PC does have a Windows partition on it and the Elitebook I use for work runs Windows too. However, my main operating systems of choice tend to be Linux-based. I currently use UbuntuMATE on both my personal laptop and desktop machines.
As well as being a Linux/Open Source advocate, I’m also a privacy advocate. I have tried to de-Google wherever possible, I use a VPN most of the time I’m online and my email provider is separate from my search provider.
I also try to make your visit to this site as private as possible. You can read more about it here.
- I would recommend DuckDuckGo as a privacy respecting alternative to Google search
- I would recommend Private Internet Access if you’re looking for a trustworthy VPN provider
- I would recommend Fastmail is a privacy respecting, ad free email provider
I don’t use traditional social media. I’m not on Facebook, or Twitter, or Instagram, or any other social network that you’re likely to have heard about.
This is because of the numerous privacy concerns that come with using social media. I do however make use of a social network called Mastodon. I actually host my own instance on the network, called Fosstodon
Motorbikes are a huge part of my life – I enjoy riding them, working on them, restoring them and talking about them. I currently ride a 2017 Yamaha MT-09 Tracer (FJ09 if you’re in the USA).
I’m very lucky to live close to North Wales, which has some incredible riding roads. I also try to get away on tour when time permits. So far I’ve done Northern Ireland, Scotland and a tour of the UK’s best national parks.