From The Desk to My Hand
It was the middle of 1982, and as my business partner and I were making our way through The Netherlands Schiphol Airport, we decided to stop by the local Duty Free Shop. One of the busiest stores in the terminal, they carried some of the most recognizable brands and designer items. As we made our way through their many aisles, we stopped at a new department featuring some of their latest products.
Our eyes were immediately drawn to a new electronic device which was getting a great deal of attention. And there it was, the Commodore 64 computer, the first of its kind. Up until that time, my partner and I had never utilized any technology for our business or personal lives. So, without hesitation, we both lined up and each purchased our first computer. We both struggled to learn how to use it and had no idea how this simple computer would start a revolution that would change our lives and how businesses would operate in the future.
For the past few years, I had been hopping around the world with only telephones and faxes (very expensive!) as a means to communicate with business partners. All meetings were conducted face to face. I was making monthly trips to Europe and at least 4 trips a year to the Far East. There were several instances when I would fly to a country, meet with associates in the airport to sign agreements, and hop on the next plane home.
As the ‘80s moved forward, Microsoft introduced their first Windows computer, while Apple launched its initial Macintosh unit. Companies started to provide their staffs with desktop computers for word processing. Computers started to pop up in homes. The Age of Technology was in full swing, and in the mid nineties, AOL started offering Internet access through telephone lines. However, it would take time before any work could be done away from your desk.
Moving through the ‘90’s, technology gradually crept into our lives. Computers became more powerful, and laptops became a necessary accessory. Toward the end of the decade, handheld devices started to enter the market. The blackberry became a staple as a pager, email provider, and a rudimentary means of access to the Internet. Starting in 2001, Apple entered the handheld market with its first iPod, offering music and other features, such as the ability to listen to books through Audible. The introduction of the iPhone in 2007 was a game changer. Google’s Android followed shortly thereafter, in 2008. Starting in 2010, tablets were introduced by both Apple and Google.
All of a sudden, we became a mobile society. No longer were we tethered to our desks. We were able to communicate and access information on the road. As we moved through the decade, it was possible to leave our computers at the office and home. Phones and tablets became mainstream, as handheld devices outsold computers. It is estimated that in 2021, the number of mobile devices operating worldwide stood at almost 15 billion, up from just over 14 billion in the previous year.
I have been writing this document on a number of different devices from several locations. In the past, this could only have been accomplished by saving the file on a “flash drive” and transferring it from device to device. Now, with the advent of “cloud storage,” it can be accessed on any computer I use, as well as a phone or tablet.
Growing up, television was still in its infancy. Listening to the radio was mainstream. We now have “Smart TVs” with Internet access. Why go to movies with the advent of “streaming?” Isn’t it ironic that radio has returned in the form of podcasts which lets us enjoy programs similar to how we relied on radios 70 – 80 years ago?
I often look at my life through a prism of “pre and post technology’s infancy.” I have written about my overall discomfort with corporate life, particularly the travel that was involved, prior to the Internet becoming mainstream. Having made the decision in the early 90’s to change careers, what would have happened if I hadn’t recognized the potential of the Internet and decided to be a computer tutor and technology consultant? At 52, where would I have turned. I had a successful corporate career, but needed another challenge. Looking back to nearly 30 years ago, the world of technology offered me the opportunity to pursue a second career, which has been rewarding and exciting.
As I complete this article from my handheld device in the park, thank you Steve Jobs, Bill Gates, Steve Case, and the many others who have made this ride so enjoyable.
CAREER IN TRANSITION?
HOW GOOD ARE YOUR TECHNOLOGY SKILLS?
Looking to start a new business? Are you in the job market?
Chances are that if you previously worked for a company and had an assistant, many tasks were delegated and support was just a phone call away. Whether you are starting a new venture or looking for employment, your success will depend on your basic computer skills and having a technology plan that supports your efforts.
The majority of Baby Boomers did not start their professional careers in the digital world. The way we communicate and acquire information has changed dramatically. Social networks such as LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter are now part of our personal and business lives. Cell phones have made us more mobile and reachable everywhere. Everyone uses Google to find people, places and things.
Set some time aside and take an inventory of your basic technology skills. Are you able to retrieve and save e-mail attachments, search through past e-mails? Are you able to type and format documents? Are you able to locate your documents? Are you able to make educated decisions about your equipment? Do you know how to use a smartphone? The list is endless.
Individuals and companies that have not embraced technology will find it very difficult to compete in today’s global and wired world.
Thought Your Mobile Calls Were Safe?
German researchers discover a flaw that could let anyone listen to your cell calls
As reported in today’s Washington Post, German researchers have discovered security flaws that could let hackers, spies and criminals listen to private phone calls and intercept text messages on a potentially massive scale – even when cellular networks are using the most advanced encryption now available.
The article reports the problem, but offers no solutions. Anyone have any ideas?
To read the full article, click on the link below.
Tablets Are Expected to Outsell PCs in 4th Qtr 2013
Have you bought your first tablet yet? Hard to believe that the forecast is that more tablets will be sold during the holiday season than desktop and laptop computers.
Whether you are a Windows or Apple person, change is in the air.
To read the full article in the Digits Section of the Wall Street Journal, click below.
In First, Tablets Are Expected to Outsell PCs – Digits – WSJ.
The Mobile World is Now – Are You Prepared?
Over 700 million smartphones (Apple’s iPhone, Google’s Android, RIM’s Blackberry, etc.) were shipped globally in 2012, according to Strategy Analytics. In an article in yesterday’s Wall Street Journal, major companies, such as Facebook, Google, Apple, and Amazon are all competing for a share of the global market. If you already own a smartphone or tablet (Apple’s iPad, Samsung’s Galaxy, Microsoft’s Surface, etc.), you are probably familiar with the world of apps, which is an abbreviation for application, a piece of software which is run on your phone and tablet.
How important is it for you to be a true “road warrior?” Well, the same article reveals that sales of smartphones were nearly double that of the traditional PC last year. Within the next two years, more people will be accessing the Internet through a mobile device than a computer.
If you find you are on the wrong side of the “Great Digital Divide,” and want to learn all about the mobile world, my e-book (pictured below) contains many useful tips. You can order it directly from Amazon by clicking on the image below.
THE WORLD OF TECHNOLOGY. WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW.
– Do you have the right equipment to support your business and personal needs?
– Confused by all the new gadgets being introduced almost on a daily basis?
– Do you know what type of smartphone (iPhone, Android, blackberry) is right for you?
– Do you understand the new data plans that have been introduced by your wireless service provider (Verizon, AT&T, Sprint, etc.)?
– Are you or someone you know going through career transition and need help determining their technology needs?
– Need to set up a home office?
These are just a few topics that I discuss on my weekly radio program. While the shows are aired every Thursday at 4:30 PM, you can click on the link below to access the archives of all past programs at anytime. The topics as well as the names of guest speakers are listed for each show.
If you have any questions about any of the topics discussed, please contact me at 917 921-4518 or by e-mail at email@example.com for a FREE telephone consultation. Feel free to visit my website, www.bluetutor.com for more information about my services.
To hear the latest program, click on the play button (>) below. To access my program site and the archives, click on my name (Jim Blue).
ARE YOU PART OF THE NEW MOBILE WORLD?
We are all spending more and more time on the road, whether for business or pleasure. The operative word now is “Mobile.” Are you ready? To be a true “road warrior,” you must be able to:
– Select a mobile device (iPhone, Android, Blackberry, iPad, etc.) based on your needs.
– Choose the right provider (Verizon. AT&T, Sprint, etc.)
– Understand the differences between “data” and phone plans.
– Understand the rules for accessing the internet while traveling.
– Use mobile apps for travel sites (hotels, flights, etc.) as well as information such as restaurants, weather, news, movies, online banking, stocks, etc.
– Control your telephone costs.
– Manage your e-mails.
– Text messaging.
– Access your contacts.
– Maintain your calendar.
– Set up reminders.
– Access your critical files.
– Store important personal information such as medications, emergency contacts, passwords, etc.
– Watch movies.
According to the most recent report issued by Ericsson, the number of worldwide mobile subscribers in 2011 was 6 billion. Within the next five years, the number will grow to close to 9 billion.
The population of the United states is 315 million. There are over 325 million cell phones in use in the US. Smartphones (iPhones, Androids, Blackberries, etc) now represent over 50% of all mobile phone sales.
I can make you a true “road warrior.” To set up a free consultation, I can be reached by phone at 917-921-4518 or by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
THE NEW IMPROVED MAGICJACK
MagicJack, the popular (VOIP) internet based phone system has recently introduced a new program that allows you to make and receive phone calls without your computer being turned on.
For those of you who are not familiar with MagicJack, the system lets you make free telephone calls to anywhere in the United States, regardless of your location, whether you are in the US or abroad.
How does it work? When you sign up, you select a phone number with your local area code (in New York, either 917,646, or 347). What this means is when you plug your MagicJack into your computer, you are calling through the Internet making it possible to make what appears to be a local call within the US, MagicJack is a tiny device that is plugged into one of the USB slots in your computer. The device costs $39.99 with an annual fee of $19.99. Not only that, but when you purchase a MagicJack, you get the first year for free – no monthly charges. You can purchase one at places like Best Buy or online at magicjack.com.
With its new enhanced program called MagicJack Plus ( at a slightly higher rate), you no longer need a computer. No more having to keep your computer on at all times. You can use any phone, stationary or portable and simply plug it into your new phone jack in the MagicJack PLUS which can be plugged into the wall now. The MagicJack Plus device is than plugged into your router. If you want to reduce your telephone costs, you can now “port” over your existing home phone number to MagicJack Plus and take your home phone number wherever you go.
If you have any questions regarding MagicJack or any other technology issues, give me a call at 917 921-4518 or e-mail me at email@example.com. Feel free to click here to receive my NEW white paper, “TIPS ON BECOMING A TRUE MOBILE WARRIOR”