Birchtree
By Matt Birchler
I've been writing here since 2010! Back when personal blogs were all the rage. Kids, ask your parents.

Twitter Break = Leaning Into a Few New (and old) Hobbies

I took nearly a month off Twitter, and although I've come back, I'm spending far less time there than I was before. Like 10 minutes of Twitter a day is good for me, but an hour or more was not.

Anyway, in my time away I wanted to get a few hobbies going either again or for the first time ever for myself. Here's a few things I've been up to.*

Keyboards

Ok, so obviously this isn't new, and I wrote about it here, but I've gotten a bit more into tweaking my keyboards recently. The Keychron Q1 plugs into my Thunderbolt dock and I use it with my personal and work laptops, but I also have a gaming PC, and that doesn't run through the dock, so it needs it's own keyboard, which is currently the Keychron K8 Pro.

Is this overkill? Yes, but it's a hobby, right?

What I like about both these keyboards is that they are built to be torn apart and changed to fit my needs. Key caps, key switches, foam inserts, and more can be tweaked, and I love being able to tinker to get something perfect for me.

Lego

I wanted to do some more things that didn't involve a screen, and my wife and I both though Lego was a good thing to try. It's super satisfying to do, and we're loving it right now. We started with Central Perk from Friends, and now we've moved onto a Harry Potter one (which subsequently lead to a donation to an org supporting trans rights, link at the top of the page).

If you enjoy clever design and get satisfaction from following instructions, then I'd highly suggest trying a smaller set and see if it connects with you.

Sim Racing

So my desk usually looks quick nice, but for a few hours every week, this honker locks onto the front of it. This is the Logitech G923 TRUEFORCE Sim Racing Wheel, and from what I can tell, seems to be a very good wheel, although if your budget is in the $1,000 range, you can get stuff much fancier.

I got the model that works with PC and PS4/5, but I've only used it with my PC. F1 is my current obsession, and this wheel lets me play those games with a sense of realism I hadn't experienced with a a controller.

I'm also really loving Gran Turismo 7, but my PS5 is in the living room, and while my wife is understanding, I don't think she'd dig me setting up shop with this wheel and pedals in the living room...

Graphic Novels/Comic Books

I've very casually dabbled in graphic novels in the past…by which I mean to say I've read Watchmen and that's literally it.

I do audiobooks for "normal" (for lack of a better word) books, but in the interest of getting off of my devices, I went to my local Barnes and Noble and bought a bunch of comics to jump start this a bit.

So far I've read all of the first book of One Punch Man, which is just fun (the show is pretty good too), and I'm a quarter through The Sandman, which reminds me very much of Watchmen in terms of art and density. It's definitely good, though, but it's good to have some of these easier-to-read books at the ready as well.


* I'm sharing some of the more nerdy stuff here, not everything I do with my time. Gotta maintain a little bit of privacy online!

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Hey there, I'm Matt!

I'm a UI/UX designer at NMI and I make videos over on A Better Computer, which I think you'll love.

Hey there, I'm Matt!

I'm a UI/UX designer at NMI and I make videos over on A Better Computer, which I think you'll love. You can also check out my side projects, Quick Reviews and Quick BIN Lookup.