Brian does all this from his two bedroom, one bath house in San Francisco he shares with a roommate plus his girlfriend, who also happens to be the fabulous founder of Tokyo Mango – so really you're getting a two for one Behind the Blog! After the jump we pick and prod their live/work situation...
What's always found on your workspace? Clutter.
Favorite thing about your workspace? It is within twenty paces of ice cream, my girlfriend and my dogs. And the sunlight.
What do you hate about your workspace? I use my dining room table as a desk, so when its time to eat, sometimes I don't feel like clearing the table and I end up eating in front of the TV, standing in the kitchen, on top of my laptop, you name it.
What inspires you to blog? What inspires me to blog is the huge intersection of gadgetry and culture that is widely ignored in old and new trade media. It's a cozy little spot that's all about how these gems of technology affect our life, for better or worse.
Is it reflected in your workspace? I'd say so. I tend to keep a semi messy virtual desktop and a regular desktop, but everything there is an "active" thing or task I need to get done. If it's messy, I just need to finish up stuff. I don't believe in filing things away. Either process it or trash it; that's the rule for 99% of the stuff that comes in.
What kind of TV do you own? I don't, actually. I just test a few TVs here and there. So when I'm out of a TV, I have to use a computer monitor and an iPod dock as a speaker. I have to sit two feet away to play video games on it because the new high definition video games have so much detail.
Do you mostly work from the dining room table or do you move around the house with your laptop? I work on the table, near all the papers. Lisa hits the couch to sit with the dogs sometimes.
What computers are you and Lisa working on? She's got a new Macbook. I've got a Macbook Pro from the last generation, which needs to be replaced. I also use an X300 Lenovo for Windows duty when it comes up.
Why didn't you make yourself a proper home office in your home? The room in the back is dark, and you can only eat at a dining table 3 times a day, but work goes on for 10-14 hours a day. So I'd rather use the better room for work. Also, not having a dedicated space for work forces me to deal with clutter head on. When there's not much space for junk, not much build up for it, either.
What's it like working basically just a few feet from your GF all day and then also living with her? It's great, can't get enough of her (Hi Honey!)
Is your home teched out or does writing about tech make you want your home to be as Luddite as possible? I prefer it to be Luddite in some ways. I find that the more I know about gadgets, the more I can get done with less. And we have a rule – no gadgets in the bedroom except the alarm clock. I also don't own much of anything. Almost all of it is on loan, except the TiVo.
Any tips or advice about office décor, layout, organization, working from home in general? Working from home takes discipline that I have yet to develop. I am going to try to wake up early and exercise. Just so I can get it out of the way and work late without thinking I haven't done anything for my health. Eating is another thing that is hard to do on a regular schedule when you're trying to cover news minute by minute. I'd say that if I can eventually work at home while balancing out the personal and professional responsibilities, and set boundaries as to when I should stop working, I'll have achieved something. Until then, I don't think I'm qualified to give advice on this!
photos: Brian Lam