Dodge Retort: Mobile technology not on par with desktop


By John Dodge

I have been on the road a couple of times this year and for all the talk of the mobile technology wonderment, it’s still considerably harder to get work done than at your desk.

No broadband on I-40, but plenty in the Grand Canyon

A colleague years ago wrote that he was “a road worrier.” I am still a road worrier, fearful of the technology obstacles I will face when traveling. And during a week in Florida in mid-March, it was a struggle. Traveling is always going to be harder than being in one place.

There’s multiple devices to configure such as my iPhone to serve as a hot spot for my laptop. Having them both open in a car and reading the displays in daylight is, well, difficult. My desktop display is consistently veiwable and 23 inches!

After some teeth gnashing, I learned that the iPhone as a hotspot must be open to a certain page if you want your laptop to connect in less than five minutes. Lots of time wasted finding that out.

Internet service can be sporadic. For instance, I needed to send something, but was prevented from doing so in a Verizon Wireless dead zone on a long stretch of I-40 in northern Arizona on a February trip. Ironically, I had a great connection three miles into the Grand Canyon from the South Rim (in a Blizzard no less).

And for someone as keyboard centric as me, typing on a laptop just isn’t as quick and comfortable as my desktop. Files? I remember to download some and others I forget. I know about products like DropBox, but am too busy to use them.

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