2018/06 - An excellent laptop. Possibly one of the best investments you can make

Procrastination, in almost any creative endeavor, is mostly hampered by the process of actually sitting down and starting the work. To this end, it is my fervent belief that spending oodles of cash on a high-end laptop is great for your "work outside of work".

When I did my undergrad, I made the unfortunate mistake of buying a notebook laptop to develop my project on. Despite being very easy to carry around, it only held three gigs of RAM and a processor so meh that development was a chore. I didn't develop much outside of college with this, aside from one-off examples on how to use particular technologies that I'd then upload to Github.

Upon my first graduation, I purchased a Sony Vaio laptop with six gigs of RAM and a 2.4GHz processor. This laptop could actually run fairly heavy-duty development projects without much pain, and a lesson in not buying smaller, cooler-looking laptops was learned. After I finished college for my MSc, I used this laptop to create Rotten Alive and release it onto the Play Store, my first attempt at actually making professional software outside of work. My little notebook could never have afforded me the comfort and ease-of-use that allowed Rotten Alive to be created, as it was just so much of a bother to turn on the damn thing that most of my motivation would be drained in the ten or so minutes it took to start the  machine and load up Android Studio.

A year after completing my MSc, I decided to treat myself with a new laptop from pcspecialist. I bought an Optimus Series laptop with sixteen gigs of RAM and a processor that allows me to run pretty much any software I want to this day (Except maaaaaaaybe VR stuff). It literally changed my programming life. I could begin furthering my career again (Through personal projects, blogging, learning, etc) in mere seconds thanks to the SSD I'd ordered with it. In the year since I started using this laptop, I have finished the website you're visiting right now, revamped/improved it multiple times and finished and re-released my Encroaching Death game a few times too (This is currently un-released again until I get a new Android phone to test out ARCore). I can start up my laptop and Android Studio or Unity in roughly a minute or so, depending on how tempermental Windows behaves.

I've also read about the concept of "resistance" in Steven Pressfield book The War of Art, which he uses to describe the mental force that prevents us from doing our work (Amongst other things). I believe that since you can face plenty of motivation problems already when starting a personal project, a slow-to-start-up laptop should be avoided as much as possible. If you do this, you'll have a much easier time developing your apps and projects! Save up the money for a really good laptop and you'll be reaping the benefits for years to come!