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December 2006
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Instant Preview

Everyone from my mother to Steven Colbert calls us, my generation, the instant gratification generation.  Which is something I've been thinking a fair amount about over the past several days (an eternity in my generation's world).

Just an example of what that means, and how I'm using technology to embody it.  Today was a holiday for my clients, so I worked from home (in Chicago), and flew to the client site end of the day so I'm here (Des Moines) for the open of business tomorrow.  I utilized my most recent toy (a Fujitsu 1610, with extended batter, and MoGo mouse) throughout the day to stay in sync with my company's e-mail, and the client's e-mail (via Microsoft Domino Connector for Outlook).  Since e-mail traffic was light I was able to catch up on several outstanding items from my holiday break, all from the comfort of my couch, my computer, and my preferred e-mail client.

As my evening flight approached, I received e-mails from colleges about flight cancellations, and naturally I was monitoring flight status on UAL's website.  As I noticed my flight being delayed, I called the Elite line and double booked myself on a flight in the morning in case of cancellation (there are some benefits to flying all the time).  Later I reserved a taxi to the airport, based on the time estimated it would take me to get to there, on a Monday, at that time, from my location, based on real historical data on the IL DOT website, since this isn't my regular commute I didn't know what time I needed to leave until I did a little of Google research, enabling me to spend an extra 25-45 minutes at home rather than the oh so comfortable confines of Terminal 1 at O'Hare International Airport.

A couple of hours later in my cab on the way to the airport (a 30 minute commute, with no traffic), I whipped out my Fujitsu and connected to the internet, via my EVDO cell phone, via bluetooth. I was able to catch up on a couple of blogs, respond to a couple of e-mails, and become annoyed that I couldn't find real-time data about the wait time in the security line at the airport.  I was able to find historical data, but no real-time information, if someone has it, by all means point me in that direction.

Last night I watched the first 2 hours of the 4 hour premiere of the sixth season of 24 on FOX.  Imagine my horror, when I realized that I was to be flying tonight during the second half of the 4 hour premiere.  Fortunately I've been able to utilize my BeyondTV software, combined with Orb (I did have to uninstall ver 2.0, and revert to 1.0, as I keep receiving errors from ver. 2.0), to record the show, and place/time shift it to my laptop via free wifi here in the hotel once I finally arrived.  I'm typing this post during commercials.  No the broadcast tonight on my laptop via wifi, via the (wifi) broadband connection to my PC at home, isn't SD, let alone HD, and yes I was annoyed by the hick-ups in the streaming of the audio/video, but the important bit is that I was able to get my Jack Bauer fix when I was available for it, not at Fox's whim, even with the 1.5 hour delay in Chicago, due to the snow (you'd think the second busiest airport in the world would be able to handle a bit of snow a bit better, but that's another story).

PS - I'm working on a post about the "Instant Gratification Generation," so check back for that

PPS - I didn't see that coming, in the last 3 minutes of this week's 24, it's going to be a great season!