Grania Willis, equestrian correspondent at the Irish Times, has sent email messages and digital images capturing her bid to become the first Irish woman to climb the north side of Mount Everest. Using a PDA device enabled with Extended Systems' OneBridge Mobile Groupware solution, Grania has been sending Irish Times readers regular updates of her ascent of the world's highest mountain, one of the most extreme and hostile locations ever to be linked by electronic communications.
Grania launched her challenge to become the first Irish woman to climb Everest via the mountain's technically demanding north side in aid of two organisations in the front line against cancer, The Friends of St. Luke's Hospital and the Irish Hospice Foundation, in March.
The expedition is sponsored by HP Ireland and Sord Data Systems, Extended Systems' Irish reseller partner, who provided the necessary technology equipment to allow her to send the articles and images published in the Irish Times twice weekly during the expedition.
Grania is supplied with an HP iPAQ hx4700, connecting to the Internet via a mobile satellite uplink to the Thuraya satellite positioned 22,000 miles above the Earth. The iPAQ hx4700 synchronises with Extended Systems' OneBridge email synchronisation server located in Sord's premises and gives Grania access to communication via email. She has also been given an HP R707 5 megapixel Digital Camera to capture events as they happen.