Tag Archives: technology

Ooh, You’re So Smart!

I’m a Johnny-come-lately (or, rather, a Janie-come-lately) to the Smartphone environment.  I used to have Blackberry envy, wishing I could do all the cool things those devices could do.  But alas, I only had a low-end Motorola phone and a voice plan that I’d had since last century (1994). I used it mainly for emergency and change-of-plans communications with the home front.

In 2000 or 2001 I was bequeathed a Handspring Visor by my husband. He didn’t want to use it much, and I jumped at the chance to make it my own.  I couldn’t bring a Smartphone into the office, but I was permitted to bring the Visor – as long as the “beam” function was turned off.  I was happy to have phone numbers and a calendar that I could carry around with me.  At the time, it felt like I was in meetings constantly and this would ensure that 1) I’d actually make it to the meeting and 2) if there were follow-on meetings I’d have a calendar to consult.

And I did have a couple “applications” that I downloaded: Poker (for killing time while waiting for appointments, etc.) and the late, great Avant Go (an offline content browser for PDA’s and Smartphones).

That was it.  I was a two-device gal: a “dumb” phone and a PDA (with highly asynchronous access to online content).

I never used a hammer, though.

That situation lasted until sometime in 2007 or so when my trusty Visor gave up the ghost. It was a dead.  It had expired. It was deceased. It was an EX-PDA.

What to do?  Well, I’d heard Palm was coming out with a Smartphone and I wanted to wait until that came out.  So I down-graded to a very cheap (er, affordable), basic Palm PDA just so that I could keep my calendar and phone book.

Plus, I knew that Palm was coming out with a new Smartphone & I wanted to wait to get one.  As product launch kept getting delayed, I made a cursory look at Blackberry Storm, Curve & other (non iPhone) devices.  But I was still waiting.  Still waiting.

Finally, the Palm Pre debuted on June 8, 2009 and a week later I was in my local Sprint store getting my shiny new Palm Pre configured. I’m really loving this phone.  I can do so much with it that it’s hard to believe I ever lived without it.

GPS. Sprint navigation permits pre (no pun intended)-adding street addresses using an online form.  I use this when doing research for trips.  And it’s “saved our bacon” on those times when we were so hopelessly lost that we didn’t think we’d ever find our way home.

Apps. Yeah, I know, I know.  The Pre doesn’t have a gajillion apps like the iPhone does.  But seriously; how many apps does a person need?  I’ve always thought that the apps race was pointless. I haven’t gone app crazy. There are so many things that come with the Pre that I don’t need to. But, yes, I have a couple of Twitter clients, Facebook for Palm, a feed reader, a translation app, and a sprinkling of games.

Synergy. I’ll say it again:  Synergy. All my data (contacts, Facebook, and more) is synchronized.  Love it love it love it.  And it’s all in “the cloud,” so I know it’s backed up.

webOS. The Pre’s webOS operating system is built on a Linux kernel with proprietary components developed by Palm.  But the Linux kernel gives it at least some open source cred. (The SDK and PDK are out there.  Development is really taking off.)

So, now this “Janie-come-lately” is really connected to the grid.  I may address the down side of this in a future post; but for now, I’m grooving on my Smartphone.

There are rumblings that HP/Palm is developing a tablet in Q1 of 2011.  It will use webOS (& maybe Synergy) and will have the Pre apps available (I hope).  The question is, do I become a two-device gal again?

Hope you enjoyed this little tale of my journey to the 21st Century.