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14 August 2009

The Downsides to Mobile Life: Part 3- Health

As with seemingly anything, living constantly online with an MID (mobile Internet device) has effects on one's health, and generally negative effects for that matter. From the skin to the mind, online life takes a toll. Much of the problems that arise are due to choices of the user, such as where and when they are 'connected'.

Unlike some "theoretical problems" however, all the effects I have listed have been documented problems. What's more, the desirable effects of being social and in contact with friends often don't apply in the online world in the same way that they do with actual real-world face-to-face communications. It seems that being constantly online with an MID is more detrimental to one's health than it is beneficial.

  • Being connected produces stress, especially in the area of work communications. Stress, as most know, is not good for one's health, but we won't get into that here.
  • Small screens produce eyestrain. Actually, most co...
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07 August 2009

The Downsides to Mobile Life: Part 2- Unescapable

Many workplaces now give out pagers and phones and similar to their employees, the idea being able to stay in touch with them while they're outside of work (defeats the purpose of being out of work, doesn't it?). Now it's not possible to leave the dreaded work world, it goes wherever you go (the 'dead zone' seems to be becoming a person's best friend!)

Staying connected via MIDs (mobile Internet devices) is very easy and makes life unavoidable. There's no escaping the workplace, friends, family, or seemingly anything anymore as soon as one gains a mobile portal. Staying connected can be good, but it has its downsides:

  • Everything goes with you...that is, EVERYTHING
  • You're on call 24/7 for, well, everything. Work is able to get in touch with you no matter where you go and for any reason. You know that forest you like to hike through? That could become your office someday.
  • You can't escape who and what you may want to escape. There's go...
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30 July 2009

The Downsides to Mobile Life: Part 1- Security

Mobile technology doesn't only exist, it's become life for an increasing number of people. Texting allows the online world to be extended beyond the computer, so one is always connected to friends and online. However, there are some downsides to this type of lifestyle that come in many forms and factor in a lot of different places. First and foremost is security.

In theory, mobile technology is more convenient and more secure than things that are connected to the Internet via a direct route, because they are much more difficult to infect with viruses and to hack (though be aware there are viruses for mobile phones and other devices out there). Each online account would be tied to a phone, and that's carried on one's person.

In practice, however, things don't work quite like that, due to the simple fact of human nature.

  • Mobile devices are small (and getting smaller) and so are fairly easy to misplace. Online accounts tied to such a device ar...
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19 July 2009

Google Voice: Turn-ons and Hang-ups

Among the latest buzz on the Internet is Google Voice, Google's newest service that's still in the labs- Google Labs, to be exact. (http://google.com/voice for more information). As of right now, the service is still invite-only and invites can be requested from Google. I recieved my invite recently and attached my cell phone to the service and am very satisfied as it comes with a lot of features that, in the opinion of a few friends of mine, should be features of cell phones by default (and to be honest I'm in agreement with them). I should add, however, that Google Voice does NOT replace a phone company as all it does is call-routing so don't run out and cancel your current phone service.

The biggest turn-ons are some really great features with the service:

  • Ring scheduling. This feature allows a user to set rules of what times a specific phone is NOT allowed to ring (and if ...

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