The people who use our boards.

Eimear Crotty

Senior Site Reliability Engineer

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

I’m Eimear (sounds like femur, without the “f”).

By day, I’m a site reliability engineer at Google.

By night, I venture into the world of Vulkan graphics engineering, build characters and worlds in Blender, and, when all else fails, I sit down with a pair of knitting needles and a glass of local whiskey.

Eimear Crotty's setup
Eimear's remote work setup sticks to the necessities

What hardware do you use?

My keyboard is the Moonlander Mark I with Cherry MX Brown keyswitches.

At work, I have multiple VMs running in the cloud, along with a physical workstation. I mostly use my 16” 2019 MacBook Pro to SSH onto one of those machines and I go from there. I have a ThinkVision P27h monitor and an Ogi Drive standing desk. My 3 9s mug is a staple on my desk, although, after reading Seán’s interview, an upgrade to an Ember mug may be in the works.

Eimear Crotty's mug
This mug is too good to be retired, but if there's an Ember on the way, it could move to the back burner

At home, I have my own personal build. After working in computers for some time, I thought it was finally time to build one myself. This meant I could tune it to my own needs, which are graphics-based.

Eimear Crotty's boxes
Elements of Eimear's graphics PC build

You may notice a distinct lack of GPU—after trying hard to purchase an NVIDIA 3080, I gave up and got a secondhand NVIDIA 1060 from a colleague. While not as powerful, it does help me “optimize my workflow.”

I also have a Wacom Cintiq 22 for my 3D modeling and sculpting work.

I’m new to Blender, which is the primary software I use on my personal workstation, so I started with a low-ish spec machine, with the plan to benchmark my regular workflows and plan on the best upgrades to get (some workflows are multithreaded, some are single-threaded; some are CPU-based and demand a lot of RAM, while others are GPU-based).

And what software?

At work, I use Vim for coding, tmux for session management, and Chrome for visiting StackOverflow. YouTube Music for music, YouTube for catching up with Critical Role.

At home, my workstation is Ubuntu, and I use Blender, Inkscape, and OBS, along with ImageMagick and OpenShot, which I sometimes use to edit videos for my little YouTube channel.

Eimear Crotty's keyboard
Eimear's first mechanical keyboard is also her first ergonomic keyboard and her first split keyboard

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

My layout is very close to the default. I’ve been slow to customize it, as I’m still getting used to actually having a split keyboard (this keyboard is my first mechanical, my first ergo, and my first split keyboard!). I’m looking forward to exploring this more in future.

What would be your dream setup?

I’d love to figure out some way to easily switch between work and home mode. Even though both take place at the same desk (most of the time), there are still multiple steps required. Some sort of dock which switches the monitor connection between my work laptop and my home workstation would be ideal. Being a lazy and inflexible person, bending down to disconnect and reconnect wires is something that always causes me to grumble.

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