Essential tools for a low bandwith connection.

Before me the dawn rises from the dark soil and sheds its rays across the trees that stretch as far as the eye can see. The songs of birds drown out the ever present hum of society and remind me how far I am from the busy world around me. Yep, i’m up in a cabin, in the woods, with almost no internet connection at all. Whats a geek to do ? Be creative and make the most out of the tiny trickle of internet that gets through here. Time to turn your cellphone into a wifi hotspot and squeeze the most out of the trickle of bits that goes for broadband around here.

So after noticing that the signal on my cellphone had only an edge/gprs coverage, and that 4 other people in the cabin were using it as their personal hotspot too, I knew it was time to be creative. Watching hd netflix was not going to happen and even surfing standard websites with a lot of graphics was gonna be slow. The only thing that was left is to break out the “bandwith impaired emergency toolkit”

Blogging : WordPress for the iPad. A pretty simple app for some quick and dirty blogging without a lot of fancy features. So forgive me for the bad text markup. I’m kinda on dailup here. The great thing about the wordpress app os that you can do the entire post offline and sync it up when you are ready.

Issh : The command line is the way to get things done when you are on a tight pipe. Issh on the iPad is a cute little app that lets you setup multiple ssh and telnet connections your your server. With moderate bandwidth use issh is ideal to bring the power of the unix command line to your fingertips.

So, the command line apps of choice are …

Twidge : if Tweets are what you need , but you can’t afford the interface, twidge is awesome. Commands like Twidge update “hello world” let you share your greetings with the twitterverse. Punch in TWIDGE COMMANDS for a simple list of commands. Hit sudo apt-get install twidge

Irssi : Without a shadow of a doubt, my favorite IRC client. Simple, powerful, versatile AND made by a Belgian. Irssi is your link to the chatrooms of your choice. Hit sudo apt-get install irssi

Alpine : a very powerful but also slightly complex email client for any mail server of your choice. Imap, pop, whatever. Asynchronous in use it lets you compose and reply to emails offline and “burst” your communications to the cloud. ( this is in fact the way we used to do it in the days of dial-up !) Hit sudo apt-get install alpine

Mc : Instead of going cp and mv, just hit up “mc” or midnight commander to have a powerful file manager from the command line. Move copy and transfer file easily. Hit sudo apt-get install mc

Centerim : If you can’t live without your IM, Centerim is a quick command line tool to hook up your Aol, Yahoo, Msn and Jabber accounts. If you configure it right, you can hook up hour googletalk and Facebook chat from the command line. Hit sudo apt-get install centerim

Trying to surf websites with a text only browser is painful, so I will spare you a review of Lynks and the like , but with the tools mentioned above you can survive your digital drought until you find your big fat pipe again.

Do YOU have a favorite command line tool you like to share ? Drop your thoughts in a comment 🙂

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