Uses This

A collection of nerdy interviews asking people from all walks of life what they use to get the job done.

A picture of Christine Corbett Moran

Christine Corbett Moran

Technical manager, cybersecurity engineer (JPL)

Posted in developer, mac, security, space

Who are you, and what do you do?

I'm Christine Corbett Moran and I work as a technical manager and cybersecurity engineer at NASA's Jet Propulsion Lab. I have a background in software engineering and astrophysics, and love using my interdisciplinary lens to create and solve problems.

What hardware do you use?

I have dual setups, one at my office and one at home, for personal use. I'll speak just to my home setup, the stuff I own, and personal use cases (hobbies), although I've brought part of my work setup home in the COVID era as I work from home for now.

At home I have a slightly older MacBook Pro and a Thunderbolt Display for my desktop, and my mobile setup is a giant iPad with a keyboard. I belong to the iPhone upgrade program so I always have the latest iPhone, which is important to me as a gadget nerd. I also have an Apple Watch. Key to me are my AirPods.

For my desk, I have a big kitchen butcher board mounted in a closet. I love it because it's lots of surface area to bring up gadgets (maybe something to record a podcast, or some MIDI device depending on the day), and also that any clutter can be hidden from my eyes and the toddler's hands very quickly. I don't like looking out a window when I work (the sunlight plays tricks on my whitebalance and also my mental stamina to stay at the keyboard), so definitely a windowless closet is for me.

And what software?

I use Sublime Text for most of my coding, which tends to be Python heavy for my personal projects these days (my latest personal project was a data analysis of the words my toddler learned in the past year). At home I also do a lot of creative writing, so I use Ulysses and Scrivener depending on the project for that. For whatever reason I prefer creative writing on my iPad because it doesn't feel like "work", and both these apps have great back and forth between desktop and mobile.

For task management I tend to switch up my routines a lot. At home now a days, I'm using an analog task manager, in a bit of a bullet journal style, a planner called Passion Planner. Occasionally I will migrate one of those todos to Google Keep.

I'm a huge fan of AntiRSI, which reminds me to take breaks and stretch and refocus my eyes when I'm in the zone. I've had really minor issues with computer injuries and try to nip that in the bud by taking breaks.

What would be your dream setup?

My laptop is really more of a desktop. It doesn't leave my room. So I'd love to get one of the fancy Mac desktops, with tons of RAM and SSD space, and a few Apple monitors, and setup a full music studio. I'd also love to upgrade my big iPad at some point to one of the newer, lighter models. My ultimate dream would be some sort of headsup display of the future!

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