April 2, 2020

Device Overload

Shopping for Horizon Project ItemsI walk around everyday carrying at least 4 communication devices, my trusty Blackberry Bold, my newly acquired iPad, my mobile Wi-Fi device, and my laptop. About a year ago, the two devices I carried were my laptop and my Blackberry. There was very little overlap of functionality between the two devices and I struggled to devise methods to keep both devices synchronized. Of course the Blackberry was very portable, easily accessible, and while  it required a hardwire connection to the laptop to sync with Microsoft Outlook, it was manageable. There was not a constant need to keep everything sync’d in real time.

Recently, I added 2 new devices to my arsenal, an apple iPad and a Mobile Wi-fi device to keep it and me connected in real time. By adding these devices, I suddenly find that now I am a little saturated. I have all these devices, each of them featuring a specific piece of valuable functionality. Yet all of them provide a great deal of functional overlap and redundancy that has caused a bit of an overload and a maintenance nuisance.

Over the years I have implemented technologies and integrated them into business processes to make my business more efficient. There are probably many changes I can make to my business processes to make more efficient use of the technology but that’s backwards, the technology is there to support my business processes. I am not particularly interested in re-engineering my business processes to make more efficient use of my technology so I think I’ll be shedding some of the redundant technology.

The new challenge for me is to find cost-effective solutions that offer as much unique functionality and eliminate as much redundancy as possible.

Originally Published at Chester County Chronicles

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  1. hmmm i rock a blackberry and a dell laptop –not as cool as the iphone/ipad snobbery — but they do it all —dont want to cross over just yet

  2. Malcolm Carter says

    Such a useful post, Patrick!
    I was talking with Nikki Beauchamp and Ron Gitter at our last Lucky Strikers gathering about whether to change my e-mail and voicemail to Google. Both agreed that there was no point in doing so if what I was using currently worked well for me. It does, and I am comforted by knowing that I don’t have to undertake, change, which I always resist.
    Therefore, I agree with you: We need to allow technology to serve us, not the other way around. But please don’t misread me: I’m no Luddite; I have been a faithful BlackBerry user since 2002 and now rely on Twitter and my blog as the best way to market my business. And they are just tips of my technological iceberg.
    Thanks for the reminder!

  3. There’s actually very little maintenance overlap ,depending on your set up. But that aside,it is up to US to manage technology not the other way around.Plain and simple. Before RE I came from the technology world,and that’s a lesson I learned then.It is up to me to set up and maintain (and change) my boundaries as necessary.
    (as an example the current arsenal of gadgets includes iPad,iPhone,BB and three ‘laptops’ -almost NO maintenance involved,I can pick up any of the devices and there’s no difference in my workflow…..but of course…I used to do this stuff for a living).
    The one piece of advice,I find I am repeating a lot lately,is that you need to analyze what YOUR needs are,and determine what can be added or ammended-that at the end of the day works for you,and isn’t disruptive to your workflow. Don’t be distracted by every new and shiny thing that pops up-if you go that route,you may not be doing much of anything else besides that.
    (PS btw the FB authentication didn’t work too well just now)

  4. I have a Droid and a Netbook. Both have 3G so I don’t need the Hotspot duhicky. I’d love to replace the Netbook with the iPad I got my wife for Christmas, but she keeps hitting me with a stick every time I reach for it. If I had to add a 3rd device I think I’d go cross eyed. It’s tough enough to keep track of all the AC adapters and rechargers.

  5. Personally, I love the idea of just having one device that does it all but I don’t think that’s in our future for quite some time. In the meantime I am rocking a tweaked out desktop and a blackberry. It’s not optimal though. I an thinking of going tablet PC but a small one like the Samsung Galaxy Tab and using google voice on there for my mobile phone needs. I am already 100% on GV and I have very few complaints. This will also save me a nice little pile of money every year. Still doing the research but it may be the move……

  6. Matt Wilkins says

    I totally agree that it’s what works for you. I’ve used every smartphone platform out there and my preferences are BlackBerry and Apple iOS but since I won’t switch carriers for a phone I’m on a BlackBerry (just got a new one in October).

    Once you really analyze how and where you work you might be surprised at what you do and don’t need. I’m actually considering replacing my aging ThinkPad Tablet PC with an iPad because of the uses it has in my day to day business and personal life.

  7. The Droid 2 I use is smart enough to allow me access to information, status, and updates on my clients, but it really serves only as a bridge between sittings at the desktop. I don’t carry other mobile devices right now, and most days that’s ok, but sometimes I do have to bum a seat at whatever office I am at to get something done, and it’s not always friendly. Perhaps it is time to stop slumming…