How-To Geek

Use Your PC to Keep Yourself Entertained While Traveling for the Holidays

Staying connected may be hard no matter what network you are on, and in flight Wi-Fi isn’t pervasive enough to count on. Here are tips and tricks to keep yourself entertained when unplugged and traveling.

Image Via MarinaAvila

Audio and Video

Little keeps us entertained like the music and movies we love. There are plenty of ways to keep occupied online with YouTube, Hulu, and Netflix but what happens when your cord is cut? Obviously DVDs are not practical when traveling so here are a few easy ways to get your movies and TV shows on your computer, phone, iPod, or portable gaming system with ease.

Lets not forget you can also download YouTube videos for offline viewing or set up Miro to download some of the fantastic Revision3 shows before you leave.

Reading and Writing

If music and movies aren’t your cup of tea, we also have a plethora of how-tos to get your favorite book or article onto your eReader of choice.


If you are a gamer then you probably already have some great games stored on your laptop or mobile device to keep you entertained on a trip to Mars. But what if you are a casual gamer and don’t have an expansive library stored on your laptop?

For some flash based games you can download the .swf file to your laptop for offline playing using the Firefox Unplug addon. If you are looking for some of the flash games we have featured on the site over the years, check out the list of Friday fun articles we have posted.


For some people work doesn’t stop when you are on vacation. However transitioning all of your work to Google docs doesn’t seem like that great of an idea if you won’t be online for an extended period of time. Here are some tips to make those cloud apps work locally so you can use them offline.

There are also plenty of options available to building a wiki and taking it with you on the go.

With all of these options available your only enemy will be the batteries that give life to your electronics, and maybe your drunk uncle but we can’t help you with that.

Justin Garrison is a Linux and HTPC enthusiast who loves to try new projects. He isn't scared of bricking a cell phone in the name of freedom.

  • Published 12/22/10

Comments (5)

  1. Withanamelikedave

    All you need to know about Hockey is that it is the greatest sport on Earff.

  2. J. Anthony Carter

    And with that being said I want it known that from now on, everyone on the planet will only EVER play hockey on Earff, no where else! (LMFNAO!!)

  3. Roi

    ^^ What the heck is wrong with this kid?

  4. Anonymous

    Where is the “report spam button” (on the mobile site) ?

  5. Kate

    Hi Justin,

    Thank you for such a great article. I would love to use some of these tips! I need a little guidance, though.

    I just bought an instructional DVD set for piano playing. We have a big, bulky laptop that I can play the DVDs on, but just for my own ease of use, I would like to put the videos on: 1) my Acer netbook (which has no DVD drive, but does have SD slots and has Windows XP) and 2) my Palm Pre Plus (webOS 1.4.5). For now, though, let’s just stick with the Acer.

    When I play the disk in Windows Media Player, and I click on “Root Menu”, I get a simple menu with about nine individual titles, but there’s no other breakdown beyond that. I’d like to play each section over and over until I master the technique, then move on to the next. I’ll also probably go back and review each section from time to time, as well.

    So my question is, would it be better for me to use the first tip for ripping a DVD to play on your PC, or the second one for converting a TV series into individual files? BTW, it’s a 3-DVD set.

    Any tips about playing the files on the Pre would be helpful, if you happen to be familiar with any.

    Thank you so much!


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