What does a 21st century swami traveling to the other side of the planet actually need in order to stay in touch with his brothers and projects at home, remain productive on a dozen airplane flights (plus a few long-distance train rides) and manage travel logistics and appointments in eight countries over twenty-seven days? That is the subject of this experiment. Email is probably at the top of the list. The monastery has its own Gmail domain, so that’s in the cloud, accessible on any device, large or small. Real-time communications such as text, FaceTime, Skype and Google Hangouts, for those coordination meetings with the monks at home and collaborators around the globe? They all work on any device. Our detailed trip itinerary is a Google Doc so that several people can all have access to it and edit it. Check. Project management and to-do lists are in OmniFocus. There’s an app for that; check. Travel booking details from just about any web-based travel service and on-the-go research tools like TripAdvisor and Yelp all work better on small, location-aware devices than enormous full-scale computers, even the ones that can sit in your lap. How about translation and expense-tracking tools? Check. And navigation with Google Maps (sorry, Apple Maps) is quite handy on a GPS-happy iPhone or iPad. Reading a book or watching an informative TED talk on the plane? iPad, of course. But thumb-typing an entire story such as this? That’s where this cool rig comes into play: a wireless keyboard in a case that unwraps to become an iPad stand, such as for typing this blog post in the Lisbon airport before boarding a flight to Madrid.
20 Responses to “Swamis Perform an iDevice-Only Travel Experiment, Episode 2”
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