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The Apps to Use to Work Like You’re in Your Home Office

The New Work
August 1st, 2009 No Comments »

With the cloud, what can your netbook do?

With the cloud, what can your netbook do?

To meteorologists and remote workers alike, The Cloud is a beautiful thing.

One makes his living off cloud formations. The other has discovered a mobility, flexibility and an untethered experience working in the cloud. These include teleworkers, telecommuters, road warriors and others released from place-based work.

For those not clear, the “cloud” — according to Wikipedia — “is a style of computing in which dynamically scalable and often virtualized resources are provided as a service over the Internet. Users need not have knowledge of, expertise in, or control over the technology infrastructure in the cloud that supports them.” In other words, all your applications — and even your documents, if you want — are stored and hosted via a computer with an Internet connection and a Web browser.

So with a laptop or netbook, and our Mifi broadband Internet personal hotspot, I have worked - literally - from anywhere. Or as techies call it, Out There. In the interest of full disclosure, I’ve also used some apps that I’ve downloaded to my laptop. But they’re free, and more useful and utility-driven than those that come for free with Windows.

Among the applications I’ve used most have been: Read More »

Remote Home Office & Telework Tools: A Road Warrior Pre-Departure Check

Pre-Trip Planning, The New Work, The Road Warrior
July 5th, 2009 No Comments »

Jeff @ work at the dinette home office

Jeff @ work at the dinette home office

Cloud computing, Location Independence, the Anywhere Office…

Whatever it’s known by, remote work done beyond the traditional and home office liberates millions of workers every year. Already, countless teleworkers are untethered to work. And more agile remote work strategies and policies ould free even more to explore boundless opportunities – if they knew and used the tools needed to explore this New Way to Work.

Home Office Highway explores those tools and strategies. Over the next month, we’ll write about trip preparation and lessons learned, the tools we’ll use and the applications we’ll log on to from the road.

Travel with us as we reveal how the right technology, client expectations, and family ground rules can help you work wisely from the road. So hit the highway in your RV, a minivan or the family sedan, or set up shop in a beachfront cottage or timeshare.

For many businesses, the ability to work remotely creates a key disaster recovery / business continuity solution.

Remember: “Work is not a place. It’s a thing.” It’s a big country out there. Don’t let a thing like work get in the way of exploring up close and personal.

Hey Road Warrior: How Industrious Is Your Cottage Home Office?

Product Review, The New Work, The Road Warrior, technology
April 18th, 2009 No Comments »

Your industrious cottage can make remote work workable.

Your industrious cottage can make remote work workable by Nancy Doniger for the New York Times.

The New York Times had a piece on the tools needed to make a second home or vacation getaway an industrious place. I lent a few insights.

For home office workers (entrepreneurs or teleworkers alike), top tips included:

- Wireless broadband. Internet is central to any effective home office or remote workplace.

- A computer. Netbooks and small laptops allow people to take their work anywhere — without dragging a luggable in tow.

- Cloud with Web-apps. “The cloud is the concept of working in an untethered environment, so all your documents are out there,” writer Billie Cohen quoted me as saying. Click here to learn more…

Cool Tools Power Up the Home Office / Road Warrior Experience

Pre-Trip Planning, Product Review, The New Work, The Road Warrior, technology
April 13th, 2009 No Comments »

The people at CoolTools recently reviewed several cool apps — ideal for the home officer-turned-road warrior.

boxwave-versachargerAccording to writer Arthur Heafer, the Versacharger is a combo 110V AC and 12V DC USB converter to charge phones, PDAs, and various other electronics. Purchase additional USB connectors and “tips” as you go for specific gadgets. Some GPS units also can be charged with appropriate voltage transducers.

Heafer has used this charger over a year, mostly when traveling. It greatly reduces the amount of cables, chargers, wall wart and the like carried around. Heafer keeps all my devices (GPS, Palm T/X, cell phone) and charger in a small cloth, drawstring bag, along with a Ziploc bag for all the various tips (Add’l Tip: He uses a gold marking pen to write which tip goes with which device). Read More »

Wired Magazine Dissects the Mobile Home Office

Pre-Trip Planning, The New Work, The Road Warrior
April 8th, 2009 No Comments »

Wired Magazine takes a look at the Nomadic Geek's lifestyle -- when the desk is exchanged for the driver seat of an RV.

Wired Magazine takes a look at the Nomadic Geek's lifestyle -- when the desk is exchanged for the driver seat of an RV or the dinette of an Airstream.

The good folks at Wired took a novel look at mobile home officing.

Where Home Office Highway hit the road in a C-Class RV, Wired’s take on “Nomadic Geeks” was to “Take Your Job and Shove It — Into an Airstream.”

Cell phones and swiping bandwidth. Biofuel and satellite reception. Very cool — and kinda high-tech.

One guy even said to do this full time you’d have to lower your fee in exchange for spotty availability (hey, we gotta explore the woods and hike the trails a little bit, no?).

“Yesterday’s freeloading hippie is today’s wireless world traveler,” they wrote. They “talked to some nomadic geeks to find out how to trade in your mortgage for flexible hours and an ever-changing, million-dollar view.”

Home Office Highway does the same — sans the million-dollar view and permanent vocation-meets-vacation lifestyle. Temp as our trip may be, the lessons learned and technology used make being a nomad a life-changing experience everytime you hit the road, Jack.

A Home Office Cloud in Your Car…

Product Review, The New Work, The Road Warrior
August 12th, 2008 No Comments »

Home Office Highway was about using portable tools like a broadband access wireless Internet card and a laptop to tap into the “cloud” that computing is becoming.

But what if the cloud followed you around like (not to pick a lousy metaphor here) the cloud that surrounded Pig Pen in Peanuts. Toyota and Apple have partnered to ponder a solution that will bring ultimate portability.

Trend watcher and domainer Owen Frager at Frager Factor put it this way: “The vehicle is designed for a buyer group whose unique combination of lifestyle activities and vehicle needs requires a compact pickup offering good fuel economy, advanced functionality, maneuverability and unique styling in a durable package suitable for an active lifestyle … But here’s the juicy part. According to sources close to the review, the car will also launch the in-dashboard ME.COM cloud-access panel from Apple … the ME control panel would become the hub of all activity and provide secure access to any passenger’s server-based applications, data, mail, calendar and credentials and download to a hand-held device…” Read More »

Waxing Philosophical on the Home Office Highway

Commentary, The New Work
August 1st, 2008 No Comments »

OK, so I can get a bit philosophical when discussing Henry David Thoreau and the implications of travel, home office and family life. Listen as I chat with Rich Roffman and Wanda Myles of The Rich Roffman Show.

Closing Out This Home Office Voyage. See You on the Highway…

The New Work
July 27th, 2008 No Comments »

Maxing a Mini Space in a Home Office RV

Telework & Virtual Officing, The New Work
July 22nd, 2008 No Comments »

When I first saw the RV we’d be driving for Home Office Highway, I wondered how I’d make the most of what was by all accounts a miniature space.

Some concepts and practices fell right into place — like using the Mobile Office Workmate or keeping clutter to a minimum. And some were learned, and depended upon the tools we had on hand.

Check out this video to see two examples of how I used off-the-shelf devices to maximize available space.

I Dare You: Find a Better Wireless Shopping Experience…

Telework & Virtual Officing, The New Work
July 21st, 2008 No Comments »

Verizon Evolution…Home Office Highway and the virtual office is all about technology. Sure, cooking burgers on a grill doesn’t take much in the way of high-tech gizmos — unless you bought your spatula at Hammacher-Schlemmer.

But this blog has been written on a laptop connected to the Internet by a USB device that delivers broadband Rev-A through-put from almost any location — an RV park, at the base of Stone Mountain in Georgia, or as we drive along I-95 toward Massachusetts. Whether you’re an entrepreneur or you telework / telecommute, tech is your toolbox.

If you’re a tech marketer, the secret of successfully putting high-tech gadgetry in the hands of consumers (especially if you don’t have an IT staff behind you) is making it accessible to folks in a non-threatening, high-touch venue. The chance to play with the latest handset, or demo some new device, or ask “Like Duh!” questions without getting some “You Silly Consumer” look in response is the answer.

Call it the “Evolution.”

Read More »


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