I’m going to try and be better this year about my Tech Thursday posts. So I thought I would start with what continues to be a hot topic in the tech world, Bring Your Own Device.
Today you see and hear commercials from many different companies about working anywhere, and video calls. You can be there without being there, is what many companies are using in their messages. They are showing the ability to be on the road all the time, and talk to your family over video. My question is, why are companies sending the message of putting the family second, why not show customer meetings over video while playing with your kids. To me this is the benefit of a company having a BYOD program and remote access into the workplace. There are multiple case studies and surveys out there showing higher levels of job satisfaction and higher levels of productivity.
BYOD, It’s why we have a 128GB iPads, Ultrabooks, 4G Hotspots, Virtual Desktops, and more laptops than full desktops. But where does support start and stop on these devices? Who owns the data on this device? These are the biggest challenges and struggles that IT Admins are dealing with today. It becomes a situation of security issues, if Employee X has been downloading torrents at home, and then keeps running them at work, not only could hinder the network speed, but it could also release a wealth of worms into the corporate network, infecting hundreds of systems. But what employee really wants the IT staff to load a 2GB security profile onto their personal device that will let the IT team track, lock, and wipe that personal device. Its a matter of managed freedom for lack of a better term.
Businesses are in the tough position of keeping employees happy and productive, while keeping company owned data – within the company. Also the company has to figure out how these devices are going to access the local network, and local files. There are some companies out there planning wireless upgrades and planning for 6-8 devices per person. And if an access point can handle efficiently 40 devices, you can see where this number would just keep increasing, just to get the devices connected to the internet/network. And even if a company says they are not implementing BYOD, I have just one question, How many of us have our work email coming into a personal device? If you are at home, can you access your email from a webpage, then you can have it on your phone/tablet/whatever.
My suggestion to Businesses and IT staff, Don’t just say no, your employees will find their way to the googles and figure out how to do it themselves.
To employees and end users, Don’t be stupid. If you are putting work information on your personal device, to me, you should be on the hook if that information goes missing or gets into the wrong hands.
I wanted to break a little from my recent Tech Thursday posts, and go in a slightly different direction for this post. As we are on the eve of “The New iPad” launch, you kind of have to wonder, is there actually such a thing as too much technology? I’m a geek, so NO. When I think about my typical day, I am on 6 or more different devices throughout the day. I have my iPhone, my work Android phone, my iPad, my work laptop, my home MBP, or my home media server. This doesn’t even take into account all the other devices that are connect in my living room, dvd, Wii, etc.
The geek-heart wrenching thought of what would I do without one of these devices, is like asking an athlete not to wear their lucky socks. It just cannot happen, you feel lost. I’m a technology ho, while I am a huge Apple fan, I will use Windows, or an Android device. I am testing Mountain Lion and Windows 8. But I don’t know what I would do if I didn’t have one of my devices available, actually I do, make one of my other devices fill that void. I have my files synced between 3 different systems, plus my iPad and iPhone. I can get to any of my systems from anywhere, I can get the files I need on; Windows XP, 7, 8, OSX Lion, Mountain Lion, iOS, not just get to the files, but work with them, edit them, print them…..
There are so many devices out there today, walking into the Apple Store to me, is like walking into a Utopia. While I know that the system I’m messing around with there is not that different from the one I’m writing this post with, its newer, lighter, bigger….. It’s the constant worry that I don’t have the newest “it,” this device will start my program in 3.1 seconds where my current system takes 3.3 seconds for the same thing, I need it.
We all have our vices, call us Technology Hoarders, if you want, but Geeks/Nerds/Technophiles, we get made fun of until you need us to fix something.
So to answer my title question, To me there cannot be a thing called too much technology, it is how we develop, how we make our daily lives better. That being said technology cannot and should not take the place of real life. Make time for family and friends, with out the technology, and keep it in moderation.