24 Things I have in my mobile office - how I stayed productive during a hospital visit

Local anaesthetic, hopefully routine. The people waiting with me are, generally, older. One sits making small talk with their husband, another sits reading the paper with their daughter.

I'm working. Not just 'a bit of work' full on UX work, wireframes in Omnigraffle. In my small InCase rucksack I've brought every single thing that I have available to me at home except my A3 sketchpad and my 27" monitor.

My productivity is surprisingly portable, with a little forward planning I have an entire office with me and with some judicious use of hospital furniture I've built a tiny office in the corner of the ward.

In my bag I have:

  • MacBook Pro - mid 2011 model (2.5Ghz, 8GB RAM, 512GB SSD)
  • Mac power supply, importantly including the long extension that you can pull on and off. This means I can sit somewhere comfortable and still plug into hard to reach plug sockets. I also have the regular plug that just slots onto the PSU for convenient power sockets.
  • iPad (3rd generation, 64GB, 3G), with all of my reading material. Although 95% of use is over WiFi I opted for a 3G model, not only because the price bump was small but because using tethering it serves as a back up internet connection should there be an issue with my phone. This is essential - use a different provider from your regular phone, should Tmobile (my phone provider) have bad signal, it's possible that 3 (my ipad 3G provider) has a good signal. Less chance of losing connectivity.
  • Bose QuietComfort 15 noise cancelling headphones. I find it hard to concentrate at the best of times, these help by filtering out background noise, they're also very very good at playing me music.
  • A4 lined notepad, ring bound. For planning Pomodoros, making quick action lists, quick sketches etc. I favour Europa Notemakers - as they have nice rounded corners.
  • 2 USB cables - one for my phone and one for my ipad. The ones for my ipad was a cheap 99p ebay job, the one for the phone came in the box.
  • An iphone 5, 64GB. I use this as my primary internet connection as there is rarely WiFi available. I'm using Tmobile and paying for unlimited fair use tethering (£36 a month for unlimited calls and texts as well)
  • A plain black pencil case with 3 compartments.
  • Pens - many. There are 9 Mitsubishi Uniball - fine, 9 different colours. Used for some sketching but mainly for adding colour to ketches drawn with the 5 Mitsubishi Uni Pin - Fine Line black pens in 0.1, 0.2, 0.3, 0.5 and 0.8. I have to be honest I only really use 0.8 and 0.1.
  • Pencils - some. 2 Propelling pencils from Pental, 0.5mm, B.
  • Spare leads, 12, to match the pencils.
  • Rubber - Staedtler Rasoplast Combi. Yes, the propelling pencils have rubbers built in, no they aren't any good.
  • 2 nail files & a pot of "Stop 'n Grow". If I forget to put this stuff on for a day I fall back to old habits and start biting my nails. At least I worry I will so I keep this with me!
  • A5 sketch pad, plain. Doesn't get the use I expected it to as I tend to just use the A4 pad.
  • Sun glasses, prescription, in a hard case. Including a large polishing cloth.
  • Glasses, as above.
  • Sinus pain killers and decongestant, Ibuprofen & Heartburn tablets. Always be prepared.
  • A Thunderbolt to DVI adaptor.
  • Glasses polish spray, small 35ml bottle from vision express. Helps clean the laptop screen as well as the glasses.
  • USB Battery charger, excellent model from Energiser, cost £4 and included 2 AAA rechargeable batteries.
  • In addition to the AAA from above, another 2 AA batteries that also fit in the fantastic USB charger.
  • A 10cm USB extension cable in case things get crowded around the 2 USB slots my mac has.
  • a pitifully small 512MB USB memory stick just in case I need to transfer files and we have no network access.
  • I also have, although I carry it everywhere rather than it being part of my mobile office, a Swiss Army Cybertool 41 which covers any tool related tasks I've ever needed to do.

I think that's about it.

My ruck sack is small, comfortable and totally portable - got a really happy place with me.