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299 interviews since 2018

Pat Plummer

Sleep Specialist

Who are you, and what do you do? What do you like to do outside of work?

I’m Pat, and I’m a physician who specializes in sleep medicine as well as a computer nerd from way back. I bought my first 64K 8086 PC compatible in 1985 and my first Mac in 1987—a toaster Mac SE. My medical/surgical practices have all run on the Mac platform since then. I’m an otolaryngologist-head/neck surgeon (ENT) by original training, but in 2002, I had what can only be called an epiphany and became a sleep specialist. In fall 2020, at the height of the pandemic, I made the hard decision to close my clinical practice. These days, I am semiretired and help manage five sleep disorder laboratories across three states. This involves a fair amount of windshield time, but fortunately the majority of the work can be managed remotely from anywhere in the world I may find myself.

Pat Plummer's woodcraft: sofa table
When he's not traveling, Pat uses a home workshop to make woodcrafts like this beautiful sofa table...

Pat Plummer's woodcraft: folding jewelry box, closed
...and this lovely jewelry box...

Pat Plummer's woodcraft: folding jewelry box, open
...which is almost too special to actually put anything in

Outside of work, I travel the world with my wife of thirty-nine years, do woodworking in my garage, and build digital light/color based clocks in my basement electronics shop. We live at home with our four cats when we’re not on the road.

Pat Plummer's clock craft: kaleidoscope and flower clock
Pat also made these dot clocks, a kaleidoscope and a flower...

Pat Plummer's clock craft: kaleidoscope and blooming flower dot clocks
...and the flower blooms as the hour nears

What hardware do you use?

My travel kit includes my M1-based MacBook Pro, my new Voyager keyboard, a Logitech Ergo M575 trackball mouse, and my Firewalla Purple to keep my gear safe on sketchy hotel Wi-Fi networks and to connect securely to my home network. It is all stored on the road in an Alpaka Elements Travel Backpack with all the cables and accessories I might need, including my Bose noise-canceling headphones.

Pat Plummer's travel setup
Pat's travel setup is ready to move at a moment's notice

My home setup also includes an LG external monitor and Sonos Roam speaker for my MacBook Pro, as well as an older 2017 Retina 5K iMac with my ErgoDox EZ Glow keyboard and a Samsung external monitor.

Pat Plummer's home setup
Pat's been using Macs since the SE days and knows how to juice older Apples

My network setup includes four Mac minis to manage my file storage, backup services, media services, and SFTP service. A Firewalla Purple SE protects my home network from outside influence and helps manage my internal VLANs for security. I use a small HDMI monitor to keep tabs on the Mac minis.

Pat Plummer's network setup
Pat's serious about his home network

And what software?

I use the typical Mac apps (and Microsoft Word when forced to), but since I spend a fair amount of time with the command line, iTerm2 always has its own desktop on all my computers, as does Panic Software’s Transmit SFTP client. Edovia’s Screens and ScreensConnect software let me keep tabs on my servers over WireGuard VPN when I am away from home. I use Tunnelblick to connect to hospitals that use OpenVPN and SonicWall Mobile Connect for those hospitals that use SonicWall VPN devices. I use YubiKey 5 series keys for 2FA.

Pat Plummer's woodcraft: redwood shower mat
Pat made this shower mat out of rot-resistant, sustainably harvested redwood

What’s your keyboard setup like? Do you use a custom layout or custom keycaps?

I use the default keycaps with Kailh Chocolate Red keyswitches on my Voyager for now, as I am pretty happy with that setup.

I run custom keycaps (Artifact Bloom series Glow from Drop.com) on my EZ, as you can see from my photos, with HaloTrue keyswitches.

What would be your dream setup?

I feel like I have my dream setup now! The only upgrades might be to change out all my Mac minis and my iMac to the latest Apple silicon, but that’s not in the budget for this fiscal year :)

Pat Plummer with feline companion
Thanks, Pat! Hope your friend there is kind to your tech and your crafting projects

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