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Ask Slashdot: What's the Best Way To Work On Projects While Traveling?

Soulskill posted about a year ago | from the build-an-office-inside-a-rental-truck dept.

Programming 273

An anonymous reader writes "I really want to go travel the world with the money I've saved up at my day job, but I also want to grow as a developer in the process. This is a long-term engagement: 2-3 years or more depending on whether my software is successful. I'll probably be hopping from hostel to hostel at first, with a few weeks at each. How do I find a good work environment in these conditions? Do hostels generally have quiet areas where work could be done? Is it OK to get out your laptop and spend the day in a cafe in Europe, assuming you keep buying drinks? What about hackerspaces — are those common on the other side of the globe? (Apartments are an option for later on, but I'm concerned about losing the social atmosphere that's built in with the hostel lifestyle.) I've never done anything like this before, but I'm really excited about the idea! Any advice would be greatly appreciated."

cancel ×

273 comments

first post? (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844249)

no way!

Re:first post? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844667)

Came for the mandatory "Why are you working while traveling?" first post question.
Was disappointed.

LOL (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844251)

Shove cucumbers in your rectum and make ass pickles.

First world problem (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844257)

Most pretentious thing I have read in a while. Congratulations on your trip, thanks for sharing.

Damned if you do.... (3, Insightful)

Picass0 (147474) | about a year ago | (#43844519)

A person expresses a desire to travel and improve him/herself. You snark.

If the same person had said they attempt to live frugally and therefore don't travel you'd probably say they were a typical Ugly American with no interest in the rest of the world.

Unless you're one of the millions of people in the world who drink unsafe water and live in shantys you also have "First world problems" and can STFU.

Re:Damned if you do.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844531)

Looks like the submitter is no longer anonymous.

Re:First world problem (2)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year ago | (#43844829)

actually if the guy is moving between hostels he isn't exactly loaded with cash, and many people like to have a break from regular work

he's probably single with no wife/girlfriend or family to support

i say good on him and wish him luck in his adventure

my advice would be to leave the computer at home. there is a good chance that wherever you go will have slow or no internet access anyway, and power connectors vary between countries. also, why travel the world if you're just going to hunker down in a hostel at a computer? seems like a huge wasted opportunity to go outside and experience the countries and cultures you visit. i'm not saying you should be an ignorant tourist with a camera strapped around your neck, but if you're going to visit another country and spend the time programming on your computer you way as well save your money and travel with google earth and streetview.

he could also be a pizza face teen in his mom's basement posting what he wishes he could do, but in either case if it's the most pretentious thing you've read in a while you clearly don't do much reading.

Re:First world problem (2)

pakar (813627) | about a year ago | (#43844965)

The power-outlet differs between countries, but they all use 240V so using a simple adaptor will work... Laptop's AC adaptors are usually designed for anything between 110-240V...

Internet in most countries in europe is quite good, and you can buy fairly cheap 3g prepaid cards for pure data too..... and loads of cafe's have free wifi too...
Some prices for Sweden : http://prepaidwithdata.wikia.com/wiki/Sweden [wikia.com]
So buy a prepaid sim for the wanted duration and plug it into a cheap android phone and you have a perfect way to get online where ever you might be..

Why not just "relax" and enjoy travel WITHOUT work (5, Insightful)

CronoCloud (590650) | about a year ago | (#43844265)

You want to travel AND you want to grow as a developer? Well if you want to travel and enjoy yourself why take work with you. And if you want to grow y our development skills why not stay home and take classes or something.

Re:Why not just "relax" and enjoy travel WITHOUT w (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844333)

Who can afford to travel for 2-3 years without some sort of work? Most of us can afford to take a week or two off at most, not years. But if seeing the world were combined with a paying gig, long term could be more feasible.

What's wrong with doing both? You're afraid it'll be more interesting than your boring life?

Re:Why not just "relax" and enjoy travel WITHOUT w (1, Interesting)

Mitchell314 (1576581) | about a year ago | (#43844437)

I admit, I'd be jealous. More power to you if you can pull it off.

Re:Why not just "relax" and enjoy travel WITHOUT w (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844469)

I'm a big fan of cum farts. Why don't we let your fetid cock and my rancid, feces-filled asshole get acquainted? I swear I'll give you all the feces farts that you want! What say you?

Re:Why not just "relax" and enjoy travel WITHOUT w (4, Insightful)

H0p313ss (811249) | about a year ago | (#43844495)

You want to travel AND you want to grow as a developer? Well if you want to travel and enjoy yourself why take work with you. And if you want to grow y our development skills why not stay home and take classes or something.

I'm not sure why this is flamebait, but sadly I'd rather comment than moderate.

I would suggest breaking the time into phases: travel and study. Say spend a month wandering around, then pick a city and settle in for some serious study time.

Seems like the best of both worlds to me.

Re:Why not just "relax" and enjoy travel WITHOUT w (1)

MarkCollette (459340) | about a year ago | (#43844657)

Traveling while working allows you to not just visit places, but stay for weeks and months, and get to experience actually living there. When you first arrive at a place, it usually only takes 3-5 days to see all the top sights. The thing is, you won't know until you're actually there if it's a place you would like to stay longer in, or if that's good enough, and you can move on. So planning ahead to segregate time as travel or life isn't necessarily doable. And instead of spurting between making money and spending money, it's a lot easier to budget with a semi-stable income and expense profile.

Re:Why not just "relax" and enjoy travel WITHOUT w (1)

H0p313ss (811249) | about a year ago | (#43844733)

Unless you have a big enough bankroll... which I thought was the premise of the whole question.

Re:Why not just "relax" and enjoy travel WITHOUT w (4, Interesting)

HoldmyCauls (239328) | about a year ago | (#43844513)

Because growing as a developer is enjoyment for him. I have trouble explaining to my significant other that building electronics, developing software, and yes, even maintaining my work's servers in offtime, gives me not only a sense of accomplishment, but also a feeling of growth and even pleasure.

Otherwise, I might just find a deserted island and maroon myself there (possibly with my family).

But I would expect not to have to explain that on /.

Also, development skills can (sometimes, even in isolation from other developers) be grown with little more than a book, an IDE, a compiler and time -- the kind of time he's looking to avail himself by travelling while he has no immediate debts or job responsibilities. That's leaving the question of Internet connectivity and all that entails: wikis, IRC, Youtube, etc...

Again, not the sort of thing you think you'd have to explain to a fellow /.er

do it (2)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844281)

you'll never look back, or regret it. i've been doing it for 3 years and it's the best lifestyle possible.

you can find wifi in most guest houses/hostels in the world, and also cafes too, if you buy a hot chocolate or coffee from time to time they let you sit there for hours.

depends where you are. (4, Informative)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#43844287)

duh.
but in europe, you can find quiet places in most cities. if it's a quiet cafe they don't mind if you give them money every now and then.

hackerspaces you'll probably find near universities. which brings up another point, at least in finland you can just walk into any university during daytime and nobody will ask you any questions and you'll find quiet places to work during daytime, during night you might need a pass to get in and get booted by the security depending on the university(booted means asked to leave, though that happens probably only if you're drinking alcoholic beverages).

Re:depends where you are. (1)

AmiMoJo (196126) | about a year ago | (#43844763)

Europe is big. Much bigger than the US. The rules vary a lot. I live in Europe and honestly have no idea if it's okay to sit in a cafe for hours on end in Portugal or Romania. I think the OP will just need to play things by ear for the most part.

Re:depends where you are. (3, Informative)

DrData99 (916924) | about a year ago | (#43844845)

Europe is big. Much bigger than the US.

No, it isn't.

http://goeurope.about.com/od/europeanmaps/l/bl-country-size-comparison-map.htm [about.com]

Re:depends where you are. (1)

james_pb (156313) | about a year ago | (#43844927)

The link you posted only compares a part of Europe with the United States; Europe is much larger than that. Western Europe != Europe.

Re:depends where you are. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844951)

It's bigger in everything except size, and population density is more important.

Re:depends where you are. (3, Informative)

nogginthenog (582552) | about a year ago | (#43844959)

You know that map misses most of Europe right? It doesn't even show all of Western Europe as it claims.

Compare with the map here: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Europe [wikipedia.org]

Re:depends where you are. (3, Informative)

kylegordon (159137) | about a year ago | (#43844969)

Whilst the original comment is wrong in that it's not "much bigger", Wikipedia also states that you are, unfortunately, wrong as well. USA @ 3,794,101 sq mi vs Europe @ 3,930,000 sq mi

Either way, they're both big enough to have vastly different cultures and lifestyles depending on where you visit.

Don't. (3, Insightful)

Freddybear (1805256) | about a year ago | (#43844291)

It's hard enough to give a development project your full attention while you're at home, much less "hopping from hostel to hostel" or leeching internet connections in cafes.

Re:Don't. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844467)

I do some of my best work in cafes around town. I find it much easier to concentrate for a few hours in a busy coffee shop than at home or at work.

Re:Don't. (2)

MarkCollette (459340) | about a year ago | (#43844709)

I found that when you have exciting things to do, then you really focus on working when you are working. You don't mess around on the Internet when you could instead be at the beach or partying. It's funny, when everyone else is bitching about bad weather, you're glad because that's the perfect time to work, and make more money for more fun later.

Do it. (2)

dmbasso (1052166) | about a year ago | (#43844739)

And be prepared to forget about work. That's what usually happens when I do these kinds of trips, in which I lie to myself that I'm gonna do some work.

You're funny, Europe doesn't work that way (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844295)

You're talking about social atmosphere but are planning to sit behind your laptop all day.

But, to answer your question, there are almost no hackerspaces as people normally have tools themselves. Also, sitting all day in one cafe, coffeeshop and such will get you frowny looks real quick. It's just not something people do here.

If you want to work, go to a shared office (available in most large(-ish) cities in western europe on an as-needed price plan, couple of dollars an hour). Use the rest of the country for meeting people, seeing the sights and enjoying yourself.

Re:You're funny, Europe doesn't work that way (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844459)

will be surprised that the outside world is not like his moms basement

Re:You're funny, Europe doesn't work that way (1)

The Terminator (300566) | about a year ago | (#43844571)

It depends, in many cafes and pubs in Germany they will not bother as long as you don't block a place in a crowded place without consuming some beverage or food.
In many places you will find free WiFi or payd hotspots from the Telekom or another provider in the vicinity.

Be aware, that there is the rule, that the cheaper a hotel is, the better is the chance to get free internet access.

A good way to connect is to get an O2 mobile account. You can get it with a one Month termination term and at least in all greater cities the access is more than ok (HDSPA+). (Use the phone as WiFi-Router).

 

Visas are going to be an issue (5, Insightful)

james_pb (156313) | about a year ago | (#43844305)

There are time limits on how long you can stay on a tourist visa everywhere (something like 6 months for Americans in the EU, and you can't just leave and come back to reset the clock). Plus, it's not really clear that you can legally do what you're talking about; countries haven't adjusted to the new reality of working from anywhere. You may find that you need a work visa to do this, even if you're not making money in the country.

Re:Visas are going to be an issue (3, Insightful)

gordo3000 (785698) | about a year ago | (#43844501)

be a bit realistic. they won't know he is working, and most travelers do exactly that, leave after 6 months, go to some place outside the eu for a month, and then come back.

and there are lots of ways to extend your stay. language school is a modestly priced option for people in europe (or many other countries).

Re:Visas are going to be an issue (3, Informative)

p43751 (170402) | about a year ago | (#43844595)

Check price and length of Visa. It varies from country to country. Europe is mainly EU(Schengen) and three months is the standard tourist visa. Then you have to leave for three months before coming back. For American citizens EU is free. There is also other countries around EU that is cheap.
As long as you do not get paid from the EU you do not need a work Visa.
I travel SE Asia a lot and live in EU. Theoretically it is possible to do what you want. WIFI and electricity is available most places. If you find a quiet corner in a cafe they will love you for spending money all day even if it is just coffee.

Re:Visas are going to be an issue (2)

p43751 (170402) | about a year ago | (#43844649)

Yea, i reply to my own post, but this tip is golden : couchsurfing.com!
You can stay with people at their homes, usually they have a room or even a guesthouse(happened once but they also had servants). Since they already are on couchsurfing You can assume they have internet and power. You will probably be able to find a lot of prospects for your trip where the hosts have some of your interest

oh... And according to one of the girls i met you do not always have to sleep with your host(s)

Re:Visas are going to be an issue (1)

james_pb (156313) | about a year ago | (#43844963)

"As long as you do not get paid from the EU you do not need a work Visa."

Sure about that? When I was looking at the situation in Ireland, the answer seemed to be "it depends - you need to talk to us." The laws just aren't set up for remote international working.

You do not want to assume that you're going to fly under the radar. As a working professional, you do NOT want to be in a situation where it's hard for you to travel to country X because of visa violations when you were younger.

Re:Visas are going to be an issue (2, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844611)

With the Dutch American Friendship Treaty, you can get a Visa pretty easily so you don't have to worry about going back to the US every few months. You can be based there on paper and travel elsewhere in the EU if you plan on spending the bulk of your time in Europe. The Netherlands is very central and has great access to all of the EU, and although the trains are slow until you get out of the country, the airport in Amsterdam has been rated the best in the world on multiple occasions. The Dutch are all fluent in English and very welcoming. And renting an apartment is surprisingly inexpensive, even in Amsterdam proper.

The Visa is good for a year, and can be renewed annually so long as you maintain your qualifications (which are minimal). It sounds as though you may qualify based on your post:

http://www.expatlaw.nl/dutch_american_friendship_treaty.htm

I almost did this four or five years ago, but my business ended up doing well in the US to the point where it didn't make sense to leave. I still hope to do it someday, as I think it would be a great experience.

Good luck!

--SONET

Re:Visas are going to be an issue (2)

archshade (1276436) | about a year ago | (#43844939)

although the trains are slow until you get out of the country

Clearly you have not had experiance of trains in the UK, I have been in the Netherlands for almost a year now and my experiance Dutch trains although not super fast, they are puntual, and rarely suffer from extreme delays. I only have refrence of UK which is a known hell hole for trains (the last train I took in the the UK was >3hrs late and missing 2 carriages, so packed.)

The rest of your points all seem true, well as far as I know. I have only been here a year and am not fammiliar with NL/USA VISA arrangements.

if (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844313)

if u go to france or any country full of arab's and nigger's it won't matter your laptop will be stoled any way

Re:if (1)

TheCarp (96830) | about a year ago | (#43844497)

Funny, I was actually going to write about my experience in France as well, though, for me it was more that the German tourists are very loud and make it impossible to get any peace and quite in the morning at the Hostel.

Though, the brit I ran into over there, who was living there teaching English, did talk about the arab communities there. Though most of his comments were about how well he was treated in their establishments and how "the white french are the most racist people you will ever meet".

Guess different people have different experiences.

Re:if (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844775)

I'm very courios about the skin colour of the brit you met. If he was white, and was treated properly by the arabs, but shittily by the white French, then the French are cunts. If he was black, there may have been some bias, as you'd expect to be "normal" (no, quite a lot of white people haven't adjusted to the reality that people of colours other than white are also people). If you're white, you may get the racist treatment from the dark-skinned folk, especially if the conviving white-skinned folk are cunts towards the former (every action has an equal and opposite reaction, and given enough of this you get resonation or something?)

Cool story, brah. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844321)

Cool story, brah.

Buy a laptop? (1)

sproketboy (608031) | about a year ago | (#43844323)

Ya think?

You're young and have your health... (1)

Sponge Bath (413667) | about a year ago | (#43844327)

... what do you want with a job? (Quote from Raising Arizona) Seriously, enjoy the time off you have earned instead of polluting it with a development project. You will have plenty of time to sit in front of a screen when you are done, assuming you still want to stare at a screen.

Been there, doing that :D (5, Informative)

canadiannomad (1745008) | about a year ago | (#43844341)

"I really want to go travel the world with the money I've saved up at my day job, but I also want to grow as a developer in the process. This is a long-term engagement: 2-3 years or more depending on whether my software is successful.

Awesome, welcome to the fun :D

I'll probably be hopping from hostel to hostel at first, with a few weeks at each.

Each place you stay try to find semi-furnished apartments by the month if you can. Honestly if you can find them you will save loads of money. I usually found a touristy area in my desired city, and asked bartenders and restauranteurs.

How do I find a good work environment in these conditions? Do hostels generally have quiet areas where work could be done?

Not really, they are designed typically with socializing in mind. My favourite hostel work space is in bed... Next best is an area with various cafes.

Is it OK to get out your laptop and spend the day in a cafe in Europe, assuming you keep buying drinks?

I find it is more internal that I start to feel uncomfortable working in any particular cafe too long or too many times in a row. I don't think they mind, but I start to feel awkward. That is why I like areas with lots of cafes/bars all with internet. So I can shuffle around a bit.

What about hackerspaces — are those common on the other side of the globe?

I haven't found them, they would be a welcome site to me. Maybe more in Europe.

(Apartments are an option for later on, but I'm concerned about losing the social atmosphere that's built in with the hostel lifestyle.)

I find when I'm working I lose that social atmosphere anyway and have to find it outside after work anyway. I'm not sure the benefits of a hostel outweigh the costs.

I've never done anything like this before, but I'm really excited about the idea! Any advice would be greatly appreciated."

Good luck, it is fun!

Re:Been there, doing that :D (4, Interesting)

MarkCollette (459340) | about a year ago | (#43844727)

If you stay at a hostel first, then you'll make friends to hang out with later, when you've moved into a short term lease apartment. Might even find flat mates. You don't want to miss out on the social connections of hostels while traveling for 2-3 years.

Coworking (4, Interesting)

Roadmaster (96317) | about a year ago | (#43844343)

I suggest you look at the concept of coworking. Basically you'd rent, short-term, a desk in an open-plan office full of people who work under the same arrangement. This includes internet access, power, and perhaps snacks and drinks. The other people in the place provide the social work atmosphere you crave, and exposure to other interesting things they may be working on. You can pay by the day, week or month (week and month payments usually cover a set amount of days but are cheaper than paying by the day).

Coworking spaces exist in many cities around the world, and since coworking enthusiasts are, well, very enthusiastic about the concept, they communicate with each other and set up collaboration networks. Before you leave on your trip, I suggest you look for local coworking spaces to scout the concept, and talk to the space owners about your plans. They can certainly give you more information and tell you about the "coworking visa" which "allows active members of one space to use other coworking spaces around the world for free for a set number of days (3 is the default)."

Read more about it here:
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Coworking [wikipedia.org]
http://wiki.coworking.com/w/page/16583831/FrontPage [coworking.com] (they have a worldwide directory).

Re:Coworking (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844475)

I orked a cow once.

It was fun.

Hai anonymous coward (1)

ickleberry (864871) | about a year ago | (#43844351)

Hostels.. most will kick you out after two weeks to make room for fresh guests but other than that you are unlikely to have problems. Most have free wifi and there are plenty (unfortunately) of antisocial folk stuck in a corner Facebooking, some even have special areas. Writing code is grand but you have to make sure none of the girls see you at it, or you'll and up on the National "Do Not Fuck" List because you know girls don't like coders / nerds (joke). You won't be the only one stuck behind a screen but you'll be doing something more useful than any of the rest of them

Hackerspace is relatively new here in Yurop. I seen one in Cork that costs €40 a month to sign up to, a bit far away for me. Havn't checked it out really

You are more likely to be moved on in a Cafe, it's expensive anyway, usually, in the expensive countries at least. I don't know every place you intend to go:)

There are cheap places to rent particularly in depression-struck Ireland and I'm sure other countries too. You can get a room in a house for 50e a week or less sometimes. If you are willing to live in a dump you can get it cheaper yet, maybe get a discount to help do the place up (you'll be very lucky to find a place like that). More realistically you could try and work in a hostel in return for a free place to stay. Unless you want to go legit and get a proper visa.

Also don't go to Bhutan. That country has a paywall. As a slashdotter I doubt you'll approve of that sort of carry on

Public libraries (4, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844363)

Surprisingly good places to work in many western nations.

Re:Public libraries (2)

steg0 (882875) | about a year ago | (#43844711)

Second that. Larger cities generally have ones that open till midnight. Hostels are not ideal, the ones I've been to (Germany, UK) aren't quiet at all. If you already know what you'll be working on, that's good, I think finding projects locally could be a real challenge.

Libraries and distributed CM (git) (1)

dwheeler (321049) | about a year ago | (#43844369)

Presuming that you bring your own laptop, ideally with good battery life (and a spare battery)... When you want internet connectivity, try out libraries. In the US they're quiet and usually have free Wi-fi. I don't know how common that is in libraries around the world. As far as development goes, yank down the relevant documentation (wget works great), and use a distributed CM system like git. Git, in particular, works really nicely for disconnected environments; you can work away and then sync up later. Then go to some beautiful locale like a park. You may find that you don't need to be "always on" to get things done. For more $$, cell phones work for Internet connectivity, but depending on where you are that can get pricey.

Earplugs (1)

gweihir (88907) | about a year ago | (#43844379)

For "quiet space", I recommend really good ear-plugs. Best for me are "Ohropax Color". I use them frequently when working at home (noisy people living below). You can use each pair for several days before effectiveness diminishes. Should be available at most pharmacies in Europe or they can get them for you often within only a few hours. As for Internet, for Europe, you may also want to look at things like Fon (http://www.fon.com). Most of your needs should be covered by hotels and cafes though. As for hackerspaces, I don't think there are many in Europe, the idea is just too silly and the "hackers" in them too much of the "wannabe" class.

Assume worst case scenarios (4, Informative)

asmkm22 (1902712) | about a year ago | (#43844385)

As long as you understand that you will very likely get robbed, or have your laptop stolen at some point, I'd go into something like this with a learn-as-you-go attitude. After all, it's supposed to be an adventure, right? Gain some world knowledge from first hand experience and whatnot. Just make sure you're saving your work remotely somehow, probably through some cloud service, and that your credentials and personal identity information isn't easily available to the first person who swipes your phone or laptop.

Seriously consider getting remote wipe software for both, as well.

As for the other stuff... hostels are, by their very nature, community areas. Most have space to break out a laptop and get internet access, but you are very much sharing the area with other strangers. Again, theft is a huge issue at these places, to the point that you might return to from taking a piss only find your laptop stolen.

There are also some security-related issues to consider, if you are going to be hopping from one country to another. Many will flat out require access to your laptop just to pass through, and if you have it encrypted (which you should), they'll demand access to the encrypted data as well, or else confiscate it while you miss your flight. It can be a real big pain in the ass. So what you want to do is setup your laptop with a standard unencrypted Windows OS install that you use for random internet crap like Facebook or general browsing, and maybe a few games. Then setup a second hidden install of whatever OS you prefer, and use it for your *real* work. TrueCrypt handles this for the purpose of plausible deniability, although any encryption software should be able to handle it. The basic idea is that, if you get stopped at customs, you can happily give them access to your laptop and let them log in and see your mundane OS install with normal internet crap, without raising any flags about whatever work you are doing.

And it really doesn't matter what kind of work you are doing, either, because the security guys at checkpoints could easily decide that the crazy-looking computer code for your gaming pet project might really be stolen state secrets. Or that the photos you took of some Buddhist temple could be considered spy activity. Crazy people are crazy, and the last thing you want is get sent to some labor camp in the middle of your dream vacation.

Re:Assume worst case scenarios (3, Insightful)

greg1104 (461138) | about a year ago | (#43844597)

Agreed on most of this, but I don't see much value for remote wiping software on a system that's secured properly with encryption. If an attacker can get as far as booting the drive to where the remote wipe feature kicks in, they've already made it too far. Having remote wiping on a phone makes more sense because there isn't much available for boot time security on those.

Re:Assume worst case scenarios (2)

Macman408 (1308925) | about a year ago | (#43844607)

And it really doesn't matter what kind of work you are doing, either, because the security guys at checkpoints could easily decide that the crazy-looking computer code for your gaming pet project might really be stolen state secrets. Or that the photos you took of some Buddhist temple could be considered spy activity. Crazy people are crazy, and the last thing you want is get sent to some labor camp in the middle of your dream vacation.

Heh, this reminds me of a story from when my Uncle was traveling in some Latin American country (perhaps Guatemala?) long ago. He was wandering around, and saw some building under construction, so he snapped a couple photos. Somebody saw him doing this, and he soon found himself being hauled off to a jail. He didn't speak the language, so he had no idea what was going on. He was eventually released, though his camera had been relieved of its film. To this day, he has no idea what happened, or what he was taking a picture of...

Re:Assume worst case scenarios (1)

MarkCollette (459340) | about a year ago | (#43844761)

I never had anyone ever ask me to access my computer, and I've had my fair share on enhanced pat downs. But yes, definitely use the feature to have your hard drive encrypted, since all your banking info etc will be on it.

I agree: Assume worst case scenarios. But, then (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844883)

I agree: Assume worst case scenarios. But, then why travel at all?

I have not flown anywhere for over 15 years, find little reason to drive more than a couple of hours from home, and have taken no vacations longer than a weekend for the same period. It simply isn't worth the risk and hassle. Besides, who can afford it? (Trick question. Protip from your elders: if you are not seriously wealthy you should be saving/investing NOT spending a dime on long-distance travel and vacations. You cannot afford it, you just don't realize this yet.)

Walks and hikes, local trips, evenings out, time with friends and local family are all much more rewarding, far more return for the effort and time.

Or at least why travel when trying or needing to get something done? If you are on a business trip - then you take that attitude (assume worst case scenario), and ultimately any loss is to the business. You simply cannot combine pleasure and business, one or both is being shortchanged.

If you are going to travel for the adventure or enjoyment then anything beyond a simple cell phone is just added risk/hassle.

Photographs? Video? Waste of time and effort. Live your life, don't record it. If your life is important enough to record, others will do so.

Maybe a simple journal, or letters home.

Re:Assume worst case scenarios (1)

Xacid (560407) | about a year ago | (#43844941)

With that said - check out Prey if you haven't heard of it already: http://preyproject.com/ [preyproject.com]

Pretty handy stuff for handling a situation where your gear gets stolen.

Re:Assume worst case scenarios (1)

Xacid (560407) | about a year ago | (#43844953)

And yeah, definitely encrypt your drives. Pretend your thief is as nerdy as any of us.

bah. (5, Informative)

magic maverick (2615475) | about a year ago | (#43844403)

Things to take:
A spare battery for your laptop. (And encrypt your laptop, and have a decent backup solution.)
Power adaptors for your things.
A powerboard, hostels often only have one or two powerpoints.
Oh, and a voltage converter thing.
An unlocked mobile phone.
Fewer electronics (no music player, no recorder, etc., let your phone do all that).
A backpack (a suitcase will really piss you off).
Water bottles. Plastic travel cutlery maybe (it's cheaper to buy bread and cheese separately than it is to buy them together as a pre-made sandwich).
Travelers Checks and cash for many countries.
A lock for your bags, a lock for lockers in hostels, and a bicycle lock to tie your bags to your bed (or park bench) when you don't have a locker.
Get clothing with hidden (inside) pockets to put cash in. But that's emergency cash. Put your general day cash in an easily accessible pocket (and watch it).

Hostels only sometimes have quiet areas, and are only sometimes quiet (not just drunken people wandering in at 3:00, but also just the traffic all evening, or the bar downstairs), and only sometimes have Internet in the rooms.
If you're looking for places to stay all day, try libraries instead. Ask yourself if an American cafe would let you stay all day. The answer is probably the same for other countries. But then again, a library or a local park would be cheaper.

Two years is a long time. You'll probably get sick of traveling by the end.

Your question is too generic to give a more specific answer.

Re:bah. (1)

WillKemp (1338605) | about a year ago | (#43844903)

Travelers Checks and cash for many countries.

That depends where you're travelling to. Pretty much everywhere i've been in recent years has ATMs. A couple of different cards (one Visa, one Mastercard, maybe), in case one stops working, and maybe a small amount of cash just in case, should be plenty. Carrying cash and travellers' checks is a pain in the arse and it's asking for trouble. But find out about ATMs in the country you're going to next before you go there (not hard).

Make yourself an itinerary of co-hacks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844405)

Visit people who you can learn from. Work with them on concrete projects. Then move on.

Hackerspaces (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844417)

If you know you're going to be in a specific area and want to see if there's a hackerspace close by that you could work in (subject to the membership fees/rules of each hackerspace, of course) you can always check the listing on www.hackerspaces.org

Also, I know it's possible to develop and travel at the same time. Just don't get so attached to your laptop that you miss what's around you.

support a botnet (4, Funny)

alen (225700) | about a year ago | (#43844419)

if you're traveling in russia and eastern europe then you should be able to find a job supporting a botnet operation

In my honest opinion. (1)

houbou (1097327) | about a year ago | (#43844433)

Get yourself a good laptop which has the features required for the work you need.

An extra battery isn't something to sneeze at.

For the most part, understand that if the internet is something you often use for references that assists you in your work or to store your files onto a cloud server or even github, then do your homework.

At the moment about 2/3 of european hotels will offer free wifi with their services (Complimentary Perks!).

Problem is, free wifi doesn't mean performing wifi.

Since you need this for business, you may want to use something like Boingo Wi-Fi, or something similar. Do your research.

The more you know where you are going ahead of time, the better the itinerary and then you can more than like line yourself a list of hotels where one of the requirements is good wifi.

In the US, I've gotta my own hotspot from Sprint and in the areas where I don't get 4G, i get a decent enough 3G.

It cost 70$ a month with a 5GB per month use.

So, you might end up paying a bit more in Europe, again, Google a bit and do some research, it's not all that hard.

I work on the road internationally (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844507)

I need hotels, absolutely, because I have to have quiet, privacy, in-room wifi and ideally a landline for concalls. Wifi in many countries is often poor (Italy comes to mind). B&Bs, hostels and other options usually won't give you a landline. You can sometimes make do with Skype but if connectivity is poor then Skype and voip software sucks. Certainly you can get a local sim card for your phone and use calling cards as well. It's all possible, but even cheap hotels tend to have better privacy, quiet, internet and other facilities like fax compared to cheaper options like hostels.

Learn about people (1)

Kittenman (971447) | about a year ago | (#43844521)

including yourself. I'm with Crono (unfairly, imho, modded as flamebait). If you're travelling and trying to work, you're either going to miss some amazing sights ("Taj Mahal? Sorry, can't make it today - just want to get this exercise complete...") or get ripped off (no disrespect to the other side of the world - which to me is the States, btw...).

Do some travelling, meet people. Talk. Look. Think. Consider. Learn how to talk to other people and learn how you react to other things. Learn another language. Try some different food. You'll come back a better person, and have better conversations, better outlook, better health. Yeah, you'll be poorer and a year or two out of date with tech. Is it worth it? Now that's another matter.

Bring your own (1)

Yakasha (42321) | about a year ago | (#43844539)

I'll assume you're young and thus not yet crippled by such things as "bad posture" and tell you to work outside.

Really, you're traveling to see the world right? So, see it. Always. Work anywhere the tour guides won't kick you out of. Bust out your laptop on the steps of the Sistine chapel. Read a tech book at the top of the Eiffel Tower. Head over to "The Pub" or wherever that cute local girl is frequenting.

Starbucks will always be waiting for you if you really need something "normal".

You'll just need a camp chair and some good noise cancelling headphones.

Beware of the "cute local girl"... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844633)

Google "tea scam" and you'll find out that the friendly cute local girl is probably part of a criminal gang who will rob you and empty your bank accounts and then beat the crap out of you just for the hell of it and dump you half dead in a ditch. This is no joke. This is something that happens every day.

Hackerspaces (1)

MrEricSir (398214) | about a year ago | (#43844555)

There's awesome hackerspaces all over the world, you should be able to locate them very easily with this newfangled thing called "The Google."

Tomorrowland Terrrance (1)

cadeon (977561) | about a year ago | (#43844557)

One of the features I'm most proud of I coded almost entirely at the Tomorrowland Terrance Restaurant in the Magic Kingdom (WDW Florida).

Quiet places can be found just about anywhere. All you need is electricity, and for the most part you can bring your own these days (laptop batteries are way better than they used to be).

Side items (1)

Fencepost (107992) | about a year ago | (#43844563)

TrueCrypt full disk encryption (but be prepared for Customs to ask for access). Automated online backup (or at least github and backups of that repository).

Dual displays? Tablet and appropriate software (e.g. iDisplay) , and if stored separately you may not even be fully down if/when your laptop goes on its own travels. With good backups, laptops can be a commodity so be prepared for a possible loss of one to *not* ruin your travels /week /month /year.

Congratulations! (4, Informative)

ph1ll (587130) | about a year ago | (#43844569)

You'll have a blast!

I really recommend that you spend some time in Berlin. I lived there for 6 months (some of it working, some of it chilling out). It's a hugely exciting city and everywhere has free wifi. I spent many happy days just hanging out in cool cafes, coding. Don't be put off if you can't speak German. I only really have schoolboy German but everybody under the age of 35 speaks fluent English (which is a bummer if you also want to seriously learn the language).

I've also done similar in Stockholm, Sweden (but for a much shorter amount of time).

Basically, both have really nice people, great beer, great coffee, great working environment and a surprisingly large number of fellow coders.

Enjoy!

Let me get this straight (1)

viperidaenz (2515578) | about a year ago | (#43844577)

You want the social atmosphere of living in a hostel but want to speed all day on your laptop at the same time?

A Few Thoughts... (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844585)

As someone who recently did this (and planning to continue) here's some advice off the top of my head.

- Try to limit your involvement to realistic levels. You won't be able to be as tightly integrated into the team and projects as you were before. Acknowledge this early with your employer.

- Coffee shops are great work environments, and double to put you into the mindset of "in the office".

- Slow down. While traveling, a lot of people are in such a hurry to get from one place to the next in an effort to "see as much as possible", but really don't truly "see". Instead if an itinerary set up a variety of waypoints you want to visit. Move on to the next only when it feels right.

- Now that you're slowed down, change your work habits. Instead of doing 8 hrs, break that into a few 2-3hr sessions each day at the coffee shop. You get a surprising amount of work done when you're not doing big daily drolls and instead short intense/focused bursts.

- Invest in a quality NEW ultra book. Don't try and lug around that 12lb 17" Dell you've had for two years.

- Cell phones are important. Buy a SIM compatible phone outright and get it unlocked. Many also have "world" configurations with multiple antennas.

- Enjoy the trip. Say "ok, I'm game" more. Focus less on work and money and stuff. Don't over prepare, it can be a waste of time.

If you want to talk more let me know, I'll be glad to share.

I may be odd in this (1)

bferrell (253291) | about a year ago | (#43844603)

But when I travel, I'm "supposed" to be doing something different from working. It sounds like you just want to be a mobile worker. What a waste

Re:I may be odd in this (3, Informative)

MarkCollette (459340) | about a year ago | (#43844795)

Think of it not as an alternative to vacation/traveling, but an alternative to living/working in the same city you always have.

Backpacking while writing software (5, Informative)

MarkCollette (459340) | about a year ago | (#43844609)

I recently did this myself, traveled for a year and a half through Europe, Australia and Hawaii, while writing software to pay the bills. It was much easier than saving up that much money before hand, and the work was more stable and dependable than trying to find temporary work at each new location. I stuck to countries with good Internet access, where I didn't have to worry about getting mugged or my rig stolen.

Some hostels provide free wifi, but in many cases it's painfully slow, and many hostels charge for wifi, but it can often be by the hour or for really small amounts of data. Basically they're assuming that you're just emailing and facebooking. Many do have a quiet area, but it might not be setup well for plugging in a laptop, and ergonomically sitting there for hours at a time. What worked best for me was to plan on participating with the other hostelers at all the peak times, such as the shared breakfast and possibly shared dinner times, and either afternoon treks or late night partying. Then I worked in all the gaps in-between, usually the late morning, afternoons, and before supper. Staying in the hostel quiet area all that time was very unappealing, so I would use any rooftop patio, or cafe, or pubs that aren't busy and so will allow you to camp out for hours after you've finished your meal, if asked nicely. Libraries are very good, as well as any post secondary schools that might be nearby. When I found a cafe with good wifi, I would return often, and they would usually accommodate me, even asking other patrons to move for me so I could access a plugin!

Since not every place has good cheap/free wifi, it quickly became necessary to get local SIMs for my iPhone, and get data plans that allow for tethering. Luckily in most places outside of North America, getting 1 GB pay as you go is pretty cheap and easy. At times I got 1.5 or 3 GB. It did take some effort to make sure that a wireless provider allowed both tethering and VPN through that tethering, so I could access my company's intranet for SVN etc. Also, having a local SIM will facilitate with communicating with fellow hostelers and locals that you meet. People seem to mostly stick to SMS, WhatsApp, iMessage and Facebook for messaging and coordinating meeting up.

I always kept a very current Time Machine backup of my computer, which I stored separately from my computer bag, which saved the day when my computer did eventually get stolen. Don't rely on a computer that you can't afford to replace. If you can, keep your home insurance up, to cover your possessions abroad, like I did. Also, I use CrashPlan for an offsite backup, in case I lost everything. This helped get back my very most recent work that I hadn't yet backed up to my Time Machine. But beware, your data plan or limited wifi will not readily support regular backing up everything. I added rules to CrashPlan to not backup any temporary or built files, and I would regularly use the feature that allows suspending backing up for several hours, until I was back on a free wifi. Also, don't let your computer automatically download updates. It can take a while for an online backup service to upload everything for the first complete backup, so start that process well before leaving. I used Mozy first, and didn't like how slow it was and the trouble I had restoring files, so I needed to start all over again with CrashPlan. Also, a padded water proof or resistant computer case is a must. Many times I went to a cafe it wasn't raining, but on my return it was. Always lock up your computer in your locker in your room. Not every hostel has lockers in the rooms.

The main thing, is to not shut yourself off from the other backpackers, but to find a balance of socialising, seeing all the sights, relaxing, and also fitting in your work that will pay the bills. This way you will have an even better time than those who are not working but must live within a tight budget as they're burning through their savings.

Re:Backpacking while writing software (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844907)

I travelled for two years moving very often ( 27 countries.. many cities/regions). It was only a two month trip initially so I wasn't prepared to do software development while I was on the road but did think about the possibility as I was moving around.

  I would agree with the comments above ( specially about expecting to be robbed at some point, even in the safest countries you're still a targeted tourist - be prepared ).

  You'll make new friends but because of your occasional work schedule you'll be forced to say goodbye more often.. or more likely say to heck with the work and travel along with the group. It's a very intense social atmosphere ( yes, even for two years ) and you'll have to be very disciplined in order to get any real work done.

From personal experience - YES! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844617)

You have a great adventure ahead of you. From my own experience doing something very similiar in Europe, I can say that you will easily be able to find quiet places to work while soaking in the atmosphere.

One of my favourite places was Rome - there are so many great parks and tourist attractions where you can find a nice place in the sun to relax and work at the same time. Just get a laptop with built in 3G modem, so all you need is a SIM card, and away you go. I had no problems sitting in cafes for half a day or more, just ordering drinks occasionally and being friendly with the waiters.

It's a hell of a better way to live than being stuck in an office cubicle all day.

I would refrain from pulling out the laptop in a hostel too much - just for security reasons if you are sharing your room. And be wary of flashing your equipment in public as well - I have personally seen several bag snatching incidents - so I always made sure to follow the usual guidelines for staying safe on the street. (Bag secured over both shoulders, don't listen to music, keep aware of your surroundings etc).

But you'll have a great time - and meet some great people. Enjoy!

Cost of living! (1)

olddoc (152678) | about a year ago | (#43844621)

You want to do this for a long time? Avoid high cost of living areas! A pint of beer that costs $1.50 in Cape Town South Africa would cost $10 in Copenhagen. Look at inexpensive cities that intersect with places you would want to visit.

Re:Cost of living! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844929)

If you pay $10 for a beer here in Copenhagen then you are in the tourist area. A nice local pub just as a hostel, charges you $1.20 for a bottle of beer. Let me know next time you are in town and I would be more then happy to show you around, unless the high price tourist experience is your thing.

you FAILY[ it!! (-1, Redundant)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844625)

Do one thing well (1)

petes_PoV (912422) | about a year ago | (#43844639)

... or both things poorly.

If you want to see the world, then focus on that. Take some time (not 2 or 3 years, a few months) and do your travelling. However, get involved in it and leave your techy bits behind.

If you feel unable to spend time apart from your computers, then spend the time writing your software as that will be apparently what you value most highly. Part of growing up is getting to know yourself: are you more content doing software on your own, or can you put that to one side and do something completely different that is also important to you? Maybe this episode will help you learn something about yourself - nerd or explorer?

What I would do (1)

stewsters (1406737) | about a year ago | (#43844641)

For what I do, a $500 12-14 inch laptop with Ubuntu and a unlocked phone with tethering when you can't find wifi.

Full disk encrypt the harddrive, and back up your project with git. It most likely will get stolen or break some time while traveling, so make sure you have enough money to buy another. A usb stick with the OS should nice to carry in your backpack for these emergency occasions. Not sure if any of these will cause odd looks from security personnel.

Also make sure you have enough money to fly back to the US if you find the situation doesn't work. Do you have family or friends staying abroad that you could crash at for a week? That can be useful if things get hard.

The hostels I have stayed at were all pretty nice, but they weren't the cheapest options in town. It's going to be hard not to let your laptop leave your view for 3 years. Traveling with someone else would make this easier.

best way to work on projects while travelling? (1)

froth-bite (2777385) | about a year ago | (#43844647)

uh, make sure you fly to the city where the project is located ?

travel (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844655)

I've done the hostel travel thing, and travel a lot internationally for work now.

Connectivity is always the biggest pain, next to finding a plug to plug into in a public place. The hostel probably have wifi, it will almost certainly be crap. An unlocked 3g dongle or wifi access point, with carefully selected local pay-as-you-go data sims is a good way to go.

As for quite spaces. Coffee shops work well, but you can't spend all day there. A nice quiet pub without music or sport in the afternoon is a surprisingly productive place work. If you want to spend serious time on a project, then a library is a great place to go.

Hard to comment without more specifics (1)

Mostly a lurker (634878) | about a year ago | (#43844665)

I left England in 1979 and have been living and working in different places around the world ever since.

IMHO, your basic idea is right. Combine work you want to do with traveling and experiencing all the world has to offer. Those suggesting you simply skip working for a few years have no idea how difficult it can be to get back into the swim later.

Issues such as visas, living costs, easy access to good Internet connections and an environment conducive to working effectively vary tremendously from place to place. [If you have ideas about where you might go, and let me know, I might be able to provide more specific advice.]

Here are some pointers that you will probably not receive from others, especially those who have not done it. First and foremost, you need a clear plan on work/life balance and you need to be disciplined on adhering to it. I have seen many intelligent and talented people, faced with the temptations that exist in many parts of the world, simply self destruct because they lack structure in their lives. That does not mean you cannot take periods of a month or two to concentrate on traveling and enjoying life in a way that cannot easily be combined with work. It does mean that, any time you do this, you should set yourself a time limit for returning to your more structured lifestyle and stick to that time limit.

If staying more than a couple of weeks anywhere, try to escape from traveler ghettos and immerse yourself in the local culture. For instance, rent a room in an area where few foreigners live and eat in the places frequented by locals. This will take you out of your comfort zone, but will teach you more in a week about the realities of the society you are in than a year in a backpacker guest house.

If you have specific questions, ask away!

Jealous (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844717)

I just want to say that this has always been my secret dream. Glad you're taking yours seriously.

Backups Backups Backups .. Backups (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#43844721)

Sounds like a great idea, but whatever software you develop (even If it seems insignificant at th time), pleeeeeeeease back it up.

Not just to a memory stick, but to some cloudspace as well. Physical backup devices get lost, stolen, damaged, destroyed, zapped by alien rays, or maybe confiscated. Okay, so the Cloud ain't perfect yet, but you stand more chance of saving your work to show a prospective employer if you keep your source somewhere primarily under your control.

If you think you can't lose 5 years work in a moment then take it from someone who's done that. Otherwise, have a lot of fun, and write about it all when you get back.

Working and travelling (1)

AndyCater (726464) | about a year ago | (#43844757)

If you've been a student - get recommendations from your supervisors. Carry some academic credentials so that you can get to universities / higher education institutes / academic libraries. If you can afford it, take a course in a European universtiy for a semester or two. Connectivity may well be the biggest / most expensive problem.

Hammer out visas ahead of time - make contingency arrangements to transfer money - one of the hardest things will probably be moving living expenses around.

Find software developers to hang around with in the areas you're moving to next. contribute to FLOSS in an international team before you go?

Be prepared to learn (human) languages as needed, even if only enough to order food from a street stall / cafe or whatever. Be prepared to live like a local and life is always easier.

Experience (1)

Frontier Owner (2616587) | about a year ago | (#43844765)

I have been all over the world for work. go here, fix that, why aren't you working on your day job? kind of travel.

have fun with that. by the time you've seen the sights all day, drank at the pub all night, and found a quiet place to sleep it off, you'll be doing it again.

my biggest problem was finding a balance. 8 to 10 hours onsite, then go back to the hotel for a drink to answer emails for a couple hours, make phone calls, eat, then home gets to work so they are emailing and needing this or that. you end up with another 9 hours with them trying to do your day job.

now sleep.

In other words... (1)

fahrbot-bot (874524) | about a year ago | (#43844793)

... Eat, Code, Love ?

Do hostels generally have quiet areas where work could be done? Is it OK to get out your laptop and spend the day in a cafe in Europe, assuming you keep buying drinks?

I haven't done any of this either, but I image that you can simply go and ask along the way. If you're polite and show some patronage, I'm sure most cafes will tolerate your laptop loitering, especially if you're considerate about their busy times, etc... Immerse yourself in the environment and you may get a richer experience than you imagine.

Good luck and good travels.

Tips from a Touring Musician / Full Time Dev (3, Informative)

ionrock (516345) | about a year ago | (#43844807)

I've traveled 150+ dates a year while keeping a full time job and I can say that it is not easy. While most of that time is spent in a van and in nasty green rooms, there have been some helpful tricks that have helped a great deal being productive while on the road.

  1. Keep whomever you work for in the loop. There are going to be times where you are missing a meeting or will have trouble being available. Most of the time isn't a big deal if you're up front an open about where you are. It also helps if you end up keeping somewhat "off hours", which I typically do.
  2. Get a MiFi or some other reliable internet source. Coffee shops and hotels often have flaky connections. When you do need to have that meeting or restart some services, it is beneficial to have a connection that is reasonably reliable. Also, if you use Linux full time, a MiFi is like any other wifi, which can mean less futzing with USB drivers.
  3. If you work while "moving" (ie in a van, train, plain, etc.) then make sure you don't get motion sickness. I used to take Dramamine and Bonine, but both made me extremely tired and put me in a horrible mood. Since then I keep a lot of ginger chews / gum and natural motion sickness remedies. Specifically, I use a chewable tablets with Nux Vomica and Cocculus Indicus. You can pop that stuff like candy and it really works.
  4. Have different themes available for your text editor. When traveling, having a light and dark theme is helpful when you may not have the best natural lighting or you have to battle some sunshine outdoors or by a window.
  5. Battery life is critical! A small power efficient laptop is really helpful, especially if you have to carry it around. I also keep a small power inverter for working in the car. You want to get the lowest power possible as they are less likely overheat and break.

I've also found that using a email client that can work offline is helpful at times. I use Emacs + Mu4e with offlineimap and have found it to be helpful at times. Org-mode in Emacs is also helpful as it provides me with a timesheet and a helpful system of organizing my notes that is close to the code. This is nice b/c when traveling, you typically will have shorter time spans to focus. Being able to clock out and keep a note of what you were working open when you close your laptop can go a long way when trying to get back to work.

Good luck!

remote ssh (1)

lililalancia (752496) | about a year ago | (#43844835)

work all you want, then ssh and upload?

Working at random place... (2)

pakar (813627) | about a year ago | (#43844847)

.. It can be challenging but can be done....

Here in Sweden you have lots of places where you can go and work outside.. At least in the summer when the polar-bears are not roaming the streets :)
There are quite a few places where you can sit and work inside too, as long as you order stuff for the duration... Have done that myself quite a few times, but only for about 3-4 hours at the max.. never had the need for anything longer...
Libraries can also be kind of nice if you want a bit quieter environment..

In London, at least the places i usually visit i don't see that a whole lot, but there must be some... The hotel-bars is often a good place unless it's crowded and i usually see some people working from those from time to time...

Amsterdam have tons of cafe's, and yes coffee-shop's too :), and it's a wonderful city... But same thing here... just as long as you keep your orders going... Most i have spent in one place there where about 3 hours without any complaints...

It probably differs from place to place, but as long as you are not disturbing anyone and keep ordering stuff you should not have any problem anywhere in Europe.....

But from experience you can never go wrong with the hotel-bar/cafe/lounge .. Usually you don't have to order that much and it's usually not packed during the day so they will not complain even if you don't order anything as long as you are staying in the hotel...

I usually don't stay in hostel's, but from the few i have been staying in one maybe 30% of them have had some semi-quiet place where you could sit and work... Check online before booking...

Hackerspaces do exist here, but not too many depending on where you are going... Check http://hackerspaces.org/wiki/List_of_Hacker_Spaces [hackerspaces.org]

Why not rent rather than a hostel (1)

bigalzzz (2692893) | about a year ago | (#43844849)

I'd consider renting an apartment/spare room when you find somewhere you like, it'll normally work out a lot cheaper and you can cook for yourself to save money. Plus there's no people waking you up at 3am running around drunk. You might also want to consider Internet access, some places (eg Vietnam) block many sites like Facebook - that said that might provide a big boost in productivity! others often have pretty unreliable internet out of cities. That's assuming Internet access is important for you...

don't use 3g / 4g without a local sim unless you l (2)

Joe_Dragon (2206452) | about a year ago | (#43844861)

don't use 3g / 4g without a local sim unless you like paying about $20 a meg.

Just do it! (1)

WillKemp (1338605) | about a year ago | (#43844933)

Don't worry about the details, just do it. You'll work it out as you go along.

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