May 2009


Written by Lori Thiessen

For a cafe commuter, the communication devices that you use need to support your business activities. Period.

In a curious way, though, communication devices are also wardrobe accessories and image makers or breakers because you carry them around with you and you are seen with devices in public.

Choosing between a Blackberry or an iPhone becomes more than just decision about which device will give  you the communication connection that you need. It becomes a decision between practicality and pizazz.

Now I’m not speaking from experience on this comparison. I must admit that I just bought my first cellphone last September.  I had a cellphone before  which a friend had given  me, but she warned me that “it was so old and unfashionable that you should avoid using it in public.” Basically, I’m just one step beyond using two tin cans and a piece of string.

My co-author, Gregg,  bought an iPhone mostly because it is incredibly cool and sexy. The bonus was that it could support his business activities as well.  All of us in the office were ooh-ing and awe-ing over the way you could move things (words, pictures) around with a simple touch of a finger.  It was hard to resist the urge to run right out and get an iPhone for yourself after that.

After all, who doesn’t want to be seen as cool and sexy?

Frankly, I think it would take a lot more than just a communication device to make me look cool and sexy.  It’s a depressing thought being upstaged by my cellphone. But I digress.

Even though I’m not very familiar with either of these devices, fortunately, there are scads of bright sparks out there who do. And here’s some of the conclusions they’ve drawn.

The short answer is: Blackberry beats iPhone.  For now, at least.

Here are some of the reasons:

  • proprietary network
  • push messaging is instant
  • can do several things at once without having a lag or interruption from other apps
  • excellent security
  • ability to integrate businesses’ in-house apps
  • available on several major wireless carriers
  • a real keyboard, not a virtual one, so typing lengthy messages is easier

Check out http://itbusiness.ca for the complete low-down (or down-low) comparison between these two.

Which will win? Well, if the tale of the tortoise and the hare is anything to go by, my money’s on the Blackberry; maybe not flashy but plenty functional and built to go the distance.

Q: Which communication device do you use and why?

Thanks for dropping by and I’ll save your seat until next time!

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Written by Lori Thiessen

I don’t know about you but acronyms are the bane of my existence. The tech world and web world, in particular, are bad for this penchant toward letters instead of words. It’s a rather elitist and exclusionary tactic, in my view, though I know the general claim is that acronyms save time. And if you Twitter regularly, it saves symbol space.

So I’ve compiled a list of acronyms that I had to figure out. I hope some of you might find this helpful.

VPN – Virtual Private Network. It is a way to secure your connection (and information) over the internet by encryption at the lower levels protocols.

RTFM – Read the F****ng Manual. An unhelpful remark by a tech guru when you have a tech question.  Often, the manual is  no help because it is poorly written.

There are now variations on this theme:

UTSL – Use the Source, Luke.

STFW – Search the F****ng Web

Continuing on with some other acronyms that had my noggin muscle aching.

J.A.C.K – Just Another Contract Killer. Could be an anonymous signature or an opinion of someone.

FWIW – For What Its Worth. A prefatory phrase when one offers one’s opinion or advice.

IMHO – In My Humble Opinion. See definition of FWIW

IMNSHO – In My Not So Humble Opinion. See definition of FWIW.

For help with solving the  millions and millions of  puzzling acronyms out there, try Acronym Geek.com.

TFDBAISYSUNT! (Thanks for dropping by and I’ll save your seat until next time!) Tee Hee!