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My Lifestyle transition from 'Big Iron' to 'Mobile Man'

By Steve Withers, in , posted: 18-Jun-2011 11:44

I worked on the Big Iron (mainframes) in the 1980s as a mainframe operator and systems programmer. I moved to PCs and servers in the 90s. In the Naughties I became a citizen of Laptop Nation. Each step enabled me to be more free and more mobile and to access more "stuff": multimedia, Internet.....anything digital. 

Now? I'm Mobile Man. If the device can't transmit, I don't want it. Dead weight. Why would I want a camera that can't instantly send edited images to wherever? Or a PC I can't just put in my shirt pocket? 

I gave away my laptop over a year ago to my uni-engaged daughter. My main computer, camera (still & video), stereo (nice old word), comms device of all types (email, txt, FB, Twitter, phone), is my (multi-tasking, access any data anywhere, any time) Android smart phone. 

The last bastions of PC required-ness are the touch-type keyboard for lots of words in a short space of time; playing big games on a big screen; and video editing....and even then it's a close-run thing on all counts. 

The SlideIt "swipe" soft keyboard I got from the Android Market for lunch money allows me to quickly type a lot of words very accurately by just swiping my finger around the screen. I'm writing longer and longer things this way.  

My phone has an HDMI out port, so if I had an HDMI TV ( I don't - my bad), I could already be playing phone games on a huge screen.  

For video editing. "Vid-trim Pro" lets me do basic selection of the chunks of video I want. Usually thats all I need anyway. The PC still does the heavy lifting. 

But on all counts....I can see the day very soon when a large screen phone or phone / tablet / netbook device will do it all. 

When I get my hands on one of those, I'll be Liberated Super Mobile Man. If you get on that bus first, save me a seat. I won't be long.

My ambition now is to travel overseas with what I'm standing up in, a spare shirt / undies / socks, my wallet, passport  Light as a feather. Won't even need carry-on. 

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Steve Withers
New Zealand