Is Going Mobile-Only A Myth in Practice

I don’t like the title, but it fits what’s going through my head right now. I’ve just finished reading a neat post on how a person used the Nokia Booklet 3G on the Mobile World Congress event, and how pleasing it was for him and what hit me was how much I defer to a laptop because of screen or application constraints (such as when I’m editing the links in this post).

Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m typing this on my mobile right now (another shout out to Danais’ MoPress widget), but what I’m really seeing is that what I was getting from my N95 (previous mobile), I’m not getting as easily from the N97. And that mainly is the ability to not just be mobile, but perform at high rates while mobile.

One off the stickies actually has to do with the file formats that documents have. For example, I need the flexibility of HTML, but the usability of doc (or similar). That’s just not happening on mobile – and not because the devices are incapable, the UI and UX to do this is more work than what many companies have. Therefore, I’ve got to default to a lappy for my poems, for writing HTML code for my upcoming presentation, etc. All these things I should be able to do easily from my mobile, even when connected to projectors or TVs, but cant because there are gaps.

And yes, I’ve had the talk with myself about just going ahead, purchasing a netbook/laptop, and letting that be the end of it. But, I don’t like the costs. And I mean things like system admin, operating systems, and applications. The mobile devices that I like best are those which are open source, those items which can have a targeted use and then just be productive. Symbian is getting there, Maemo – er, MeeGo – is there. But, still not enough to be as compelling a solution as what I need (from time to time). Besides the software, I need to just be able to work smoothly – the tech is here, let’s go.

I should be better at this. I’ve been highly mobile for nearly 4 years now in this fashion. I’ve pretty much gotten down my mobile use to the necessary elements, and have done a lot in terms of thinking about the fluff versus the needs of what I need to do. And yet, I’m in a world where others don’t (won’t or can’t) match up with that thinking or activity. That is not their fault, I am trying to break out of a/the shell, and frankly speaking, its painful when I get these moments where it doesn’t work as I think it should.

Ideally, I’d love to be working through applications designed like this one. Where the web tech is truly used to enrich the overall ability of the person. I’d leverage the fact that I have all the needed location and status information, and use that with the communication tech here to enrich other non-computer-oriented workflows. That, plus a battery that lasts a day with my kind of usage would be great.

Instead, for all of the mobile-only that I’ve been, I’m not far enough. Heck, I cannot even read the PDF documents that I’ve been wanting to because the PDF reader (Acrobat Reader LE) hasn’t seen updates in forever, is slow, and there are no alternatives. I wish that companies (and users) actually took Google’s approach of “mobile first” to heart and then made something great… not now, but a few years ago.

My wants aren’t realistic for now. I’ve got to wait until my dreams slow down to what is attainable. And in the meantime, I pester my mind and abilities on how to continue to be productive in various contexts, while also exploring new possibilities – usually in mobile, sometimes in applied-semantic-contextual-relationships. For me, this is where mobile-only conflicts with life, and where I’m hoping a mobile dream doesn’t go away come morning.

Mobile Quickies

Just some quick notes (via mobile):