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.
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.
And doing this post on WordPress hosted on a sloooowww GoDaddy’s hasn’t been a treat, either. Uploading was so glacial that WordPress timed out several times. I have since unplugged GoDaddy and have gone with Rochen Host…so far, I’ve seen speeds like I never experienced in two problematic years at GoDaddy.
Factor in that you don’t sleep as well on the road, eat badly and mix work with vacationing, getting things done is just more difficult. So when I hear that smartphones and iPads make working on the road as easy as sitting at your desk, I respond with a big eye roll. Desktops, in my opinion, have a future and three months ago, I voted with my wallet and bought an HP Pavilion Elite HPE-410f.
If mobile perfection means matching the convenience and power of a desktop computer, methinks it’s just as much an illusion now as it was five years ago. But I guess this overlooks that mobile unchains you from the desk even if it works 70% as well.
Whoa, I gotta run. The fire alarms are going off in this condo we are staying in (line written when I was in Florida).
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