Are you leveraging available technology?

Are you paying attention to today’s Sci-Fi?

Why do I ask this question?

Because today’s Sci-Fi foretells tomorrow’s reality. And, we’d better be ready 🙂

Just consider the following communication technologies which were considered OUTLANDISH when they were originally portrayed many years ago in the movies and on TV.

  1. Star Trek’s flip-phones which became reality in the late 90’s when Motorola introduced the Startec mobile phone.
  2. The Jetsons’ video calls which became mainstream in the last several years through online conference applications such as: FaceTime, Skype, Webex, etc.
  3. Dick Tracy’s watch that he placed phone calls from, which became reality this year with the introduction of the Apple Watch.

A more important question would be: Are you leveraging these technologies to streamline your life?

Many years ago I recall sitting at my desk lamenting over several different productivity devices I had been carrying around, which served to streamline my life. The devices included my:

  • Pager so I could be alerted when there was a customer impacting event that my team and I had to be aware of and respond to on a 24×7 basis.
  • Cell phone so I could take and make calls from anywhere, vs. being unnecessarily tethered to ANY location.
  • PDA (Personal Digital Assistant) so I had immediate access to my calendar, to do list, contacts and other key information that I may need at any point in time.
  • Voice recorder so I could record key thoughts and epiphanies while I was on my commute or when I awoke at night.

I sat there looking at these devices and said: “One day these will all be consolidated into a single device.”

Fast forward several years and BLAMMO everything those devices can do AND SO MUCH MORE is now possible on the iPhone.

I know, I know, I’ve heard the common objections to acquiring a smartphone:

  1. I don’t want to be THAT connected and reachable on a 24×7 basis.
  2. I can’t, or don’t want to, afford a smartphone.

To the first objection I’d respond with this question: Are you not aware of the absolutely amazing feature known as the off button 🙂 ? That is, we decide if and/or when to use this powerful communications device.

In addition, there are a number of simple settings that we can use to tune this powerful device to create the preferred experience.

Bottom-line: We are in control of our smartphone. It is NOT in control of us – unless we allow it…

To the second objection I’d respond with this question: Can you REALLY afford to be without ALL of the following at your fingertips, on a 24×7 basis?

  • Your calendar, to do list, key notes and ALL your contacts (people you know and how to reach them)
  • Up-to-the-minute financial status including all your bank and investment accounts
  • Information relative to your job (key statistics, alerts and/or general content you are tracking)
  • The weather for nearly every location on the planet
  • A GPS and map of the world (and sky, by the way)
  • Access to WAY more than the equivalent of ALL the encyclopedias on the planet, in every language they may be published in
  • A dictionary and thesaurus
  • The book(s) you are reading
  • Your music
  • A camera and ALL the pictures you’ve taken
  • A calculator
  • A world clock which provides the local time anywhere on the planet
  • A language translator (which will take typed and verbal input)
  • The ability to view availability and pricing as well as place orders for products and services from retailers like Home Depot, Walmart and Best Buy to name just a few.
  • Training and education programs for everything from a new language to golf
  • Oh yeah, a telephone, email and text messaging system
  • Plus so much more – most of which is 100% FREE

For those among us with no smartphone experience, the above “short list” is hopefully enough to encourage the immediate acquisition of one.

I’d suggest that in today’s fast-paced world you CANNOT afford to be without the above. You simply won’t be participating in the global community and therefore have just placed a glass ceiling over your career and personal life.

Consider one of my favorite guidelines: I’d rather have it and not need it, than need it and not have it.

Said another way: BE PREPARED!

Realize this…If we aren’t taking full advantage of, or experienced with using, today’s technology it is only going to become increasingly difficult to keep up. And, for those of us with children, this is a very bad example. Why is this? Because technology and society continue to advance RAPIDLY – together!

Here is a very current example: and, a warning if you are traveling to New Hampshire. As of July 1st a Hands Free Law is in effect prohibiting the use of cell phones while driving, UNLESS you are “hands free.” Being hands free, while using a cell phone, requires that you leverage the technology known as Bluetooth (a wireless connection of cellular phones, computers, and other electronic devices). With Bluetooth technology we can connect our smartphone to a wireless earpiece or our automobile enabling its use without needing to occupy our hand to hold it to our ear.

The good news is that this technology now comes standard in many vehicles. And, if you aren’t up to acquiring a new car to abide by this law you can get a Bluetooth headset at Walmart, Best Buy or other retailers.

I realize that MANY people reading this already use Bluetooth technology.

However, there are some among us that are intimidated by technology. Note: you will, you MUST be assimilated (at least in NH) or you cannot legally use your cell phone while driving. Now, that would be a total bummer (I mean waste of good driving time 🙂 ).

In closing, get on board or get left behind.

All the best!

One thought on “Are you leveraging available technology?

  1. beaverfood says:

    Some things I frequently use on my iPhone are: tide tables, physically locating my sons on the map (around the world), listening to the local police scanner, bar code scanner (to research items found in the store), to locate items at Home Depot (aisle & bin), and see how many they have in inventory, access to my personal cookbook (while in the supermarket), and so much more. Jumping into the iPhone was the best jump forward I’ve ever made.

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