Read about Featured Gadgeteer – Gavin Maxwell

Hmm, where to start…

Name: Gavin Maxwell
Location: Australia

My first foray into the world of gadgets was a few years ago when I was working
as a Macintosh developer… my boss brought in this weird lookin’ little
greenish lump of a box from a recent visit to Apple HQ here in Australia – low
and behold it was a pre-release Apple Newton – this one still had the basketball
hoop for the trash can! That was it – I was hooked. I got a beta copy of Newton
Tool Kit and started developing software for the Newton OS and fell in love with
the simplicity of the device – no massive OS to wade through – I could churn out
cool, useful little applications in under an hour! Wow!

I turned away from mainstream developing and started focusing solely on the
Newton – this involved changing jobs etc – it was *so* exciting! I started
gathering as many different devices and accessories as I could – it helped that
the company I moved too also had a retail shop-front! 🙂

It was around this time the first Palm Pilot came along – I of course bought
one, along with a copy of Metrowerks Codewarrior and started writing software
for it too. However this new Pilot had one feature I’d never really noticed
lacking with the Newton’s – it actually *fit* in my pocket!! Within a short
space of time I had modems, GPS’s and digital compasses hooked up to my Pilot
(even did a small spot on a local cable station, Channel V, showing off my

After banging away learning the in’s and out’s of the Palm OS, I started
wondering why there weren’t any books around to help people develop software for
it – there were certainly enough around for other platforms. So I sent a
half-dozen emails to various addresses asking if they
thought such a book was of interest. Turns out it was to one of them –
Macmillan/SAMS. Long story short – 9 months later there was a new book on the
market called "Teach Yourself Palm Programming in 24 Hours". It wasn’t the
first, my friend Neil Rhodes beat me by only a month or so – but I didn’t care –
I was a published author in the coolest market going – the gadget market!

Not long after that I spent almost 2 years inside "gadget heaven" – yup,
Palm, Inc. By this time I was a hard-core gadget junkie. I had all the toys,
latest mobile phone, latest Palm handheld, latest Bluetooth bits etc… I had a
bag that colleagues called my "bag of tricks" – I’d whip it out at the slightest
provocation and regale people with the wonders of any number of gadgets I had on
me at the time. Stuff like heart monitors for Palm devices, Bluetooth sleds,
WiFi sleds etc – bleeding edge gear at the time!

I’m still heavily into the gadgets, carrying with me a trusty Palm m515,
Ericsson T39m mobile phone (with GPRS activated of course), Palm Bluetooth SD
card, Kodak PalmPix and a myriad of SD content cards. These tools I use
constantly and would feel beheaded if I lost any one of them. Other gadgets I
play with regularly are my Bluemod (,
my Apple Titanium G4 PowerBook (with Airport, of course – my house if fully
wireless!), and an Apple eMate I’m in the process of getting hooked into my
Airport network.

Early this year I joined the newly formed Australian Palm OS Users Group (,
and am now the overall coordinator for the group. I was even interviewed by one
of our largest newspapers just last week – they wanted to know who AusPUG were
and what we did. I sure the story reads like a god-awful "star trek episode" to
the uninitiated, but that’s what you get when you interview a card-carrying
member of the gadget-brigade!

Anyway, that’s my story – please find enclosed the most recent photo of me
"in my world"… I may look like I want to get out – but really I don’t!!

Cheers from Sydney, Australia.


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