SATELLITE -BASED INTERNET ANYWHERE

July 26, 2008

Direct satellite -based access to the Internet enables continuous and fast connections, at the Macha field lab, with the rest of the world. Costly but definitively worth it when it facilitates the work and life of many users. The entire campus can access the Internet through a wireless LAN network.

Advertisements

GLOBAL TELECOMMUNICATIONS

July 15, 2008

The rest of the trip down to Macha was on dirt road through some very rural areas. The cell phone towers were however there and provide excellent telecommunications throughout the region. This is a good example of how cellular telephony is transforming the developing world by providing paperless connectivity.

SMS: A CHEAP AND EASY WAY TO BE IN TOUCH

July 15, 2008

Arriving in Choma I had to send an SMS that the trip went well and I was on time. My second connection should be here any time.

MEDIA PLAYER MOVIE ON THE BUS

July 15, 2008

I watched a movie on the portable media player. It only has solid memory but can still hold some 8 hours of movies.

ACCESS TO MY eBOOK LIBRARY IN THE BUS

July 15, 2008

My eBook reader had still 75% of its battery charge left after a week since it was plugged in last time. I read a few chapters; it made the time pass by faster. With 24 eBooks on this device and another 40 on my laptop there was little chance that I would run out of literature.

BUS RIDE TO THE SOUTH

July 15, 2008

The bus ride to the south of Zambia was very interesting as we were getting deeper into the rural areas. With the pay-as-you-go wireless modem one could even run a paperless office from on of the many huts we passed by.

WORK FROM ANYWHERE WITH IT

July 15, 2008

I had arrived much too early at the bust station in Lusaka and had to find a productive way to spend the next 2 hours. There was a simple café with a heater and hot tea; a perfect setting to work on my next application.

WIRELESS CONNECTION IN ZAMBIA

July 15, 2008

During my cab ride to the flat in Lusaka, Zambia, I though the IT infrastructure would be rather poor and I was a bit concerned about Internet access, but I was wrong. Bill showed me his new pay-as-you-go wireless modem that enables access to the Internet through the Zambian cell phone company. With this service one can stay connected in a location-independent manner.

Paperless File Transfer Without Internet Access

July 15, 2008

After the meeting I ended up again at my favorite spot on South Beach but without Wi-Fi access. I needed to get a file from my mail server onto my laptop and this would normally have been impossible. So here is the trick:
1. Download the email attachment on your PDA-phone by synchronizing with the email server (you need the international roaming capabilities here).
2. save the file on your PDA-phone’s flash memory card (i.e. micro MMC).
3. Transfer the flash memory card to the laptop (it must have a slot for it) and save the file on your hard drive.
4. Continue enjoying paperless flexibilities and work.
This transfer between the PDA phone and laptop could alternatively have been done through wireless IR or Bluetooth connections. In the worst case scenario I could have worked on the MSW documents directly on the PDA phone but it is a bit tedious with the tiny display and keyboard.
Having a flash memory card slot on your PDA- or smartphone is a good thing for file transfer and storage of multimedia.

USE A TABLET PC FOR SEMINAR NOTE TAKING

July 15, 2008

I have used a tablet PC to keep notes from all meetings, seminars and other professional occasions in the past 3 years. The advantages are many and here are some of them:
1. Never lose your notes for years to come.
2. Always have your notes and all you other office documents available. It is particularly interesting to look at a speaker’s last presentation and compare it with the current….to better appreciate the progress that has been done on the project.
3. Have access to internet. You can read background information, retrieved from the internet, on the topic that is being addressed in the seminar. You can also do email messaging and instantly send the presentation notes to your team. If a webcam is available you can broadcast the presentation to your team, but make sure to obtain permission from the organizers first.
4. You can save dead time, when a presentation becomes unbearably boring, to get work and communications done since you have all your office documents available right in front of you.
5. You can instantly search the conference program with keywords and rapidly identify interesting sessions, abstracts and people.

There are many more advantages such as better graphics capabilities through multiple shape and color pens, the import of webcam snapshots of the presentation into the note journal, the backlit screen for writing in dark seminar rooms, the unlimited writing space…etc..
A tablet computer is a must for replacing paper-based note taking with the more efficient paperless format.