The next level of my #projectipadonly! Finally I can use Adobe InDesign "on the iPad" and minimalize my desk setup.
I’ve come a huge step closer to my dream of working exclusively off the iPad and could not be happier with my tech setup. Although my experiment is called #projectipadonly, I make no secret of the fact that a Mac (mini) is still essential for me. I don’t need the Mac very often. But there are tasks which mostly are part of my freelance work, which I simply can’t do off the iPad and some of which I don’t want to do (yet).
A few days ago I finally ordered a Luna Display-Dongle, after a long search for a solution to remote control my Mac (in my own network). But "remote control" sounds a bit too easy for what I wanted to achieve. My goals were:
- I wanted to be able to work with Adobe InDesign or the Safari Web Inspector as latency-free as possible.
- I wanted to get rid of my not so pretty 24" display and
- run my Mac mini headless, as well as send it into sleep mode to save power.
Of course, the Luna display is not quite cheap. But in several podcasts (where a discount code is mentioned) or on relevant tech websites it was praised as the best solution for my ideas. And as the first tests showed, it is.
Because of my goal no. 1 solutions like Teamviewer or Chrome Remote Desktop were out of question. The connections always use the internet and are way too slow. Also the app duet, despite being operated via USB cable, was not usable for me. The latency was still too high. Used in my wifi network the refresh rate of the Luna Display is also noticeably delayed or parts of the screen are slightly pixeled. However, connected via USB cable, I don’t notice any difference to a attached display. Everything runs extremely smoothly. Thats what I want! ✅
The challenge for goal no. 2 was the Mac mini, built in 2014, which has a mini display or HDMI port instead of the USB-C port that is currently built-in. To be able to operate the Mac "headless", a HDMI-Dongle was required, which simulates a connected display. ✅
To realize goal no. 3, I used the awesome Shortcuts by Federico Viticci, which allow waking up and login on the Mac as well as activating sleep mode via SSH command. ✅ Without the use of Shortcuts, this point would have been possible only by disabling password protection on the Mac. But for security reasons this option of course was not acceptable.
After all my requirements had been fulfilled, I was now able to rearrange my desk in a two-hour procedure, remove the monitor and rewire everything properly.
This morning I was working at my wonderfully minimalist desk for the first time. In a two-hour InDesign session, I prepared a training script for one of my clients.
I have modified the "Wake & Login" Shortcut to open the Luna Display app directly after the login. This way I can start working on the Mac seamlessly. When the work is done, I send the Mac back to sleep. Instead of switching off only the display, I put the Mac into sleep mode (pmset sleepnow instead of displaysleepnow).