Monday, December 1, 2003

A day in the life of a woman and her mobile devices


By Denise Watkins

I own a variety of electronic and mobile devices. People -- Luddites in my opinion -- often ask, "Do you really need all of those things?"

I really don't carry all that much gear. On a daily, Monday through Friday basis, I carry a Sony CLIE SJ33. Between the time I started this article and final editing, the SJ33 has been discontinued. Typical Sony; it often seems to me that in the time that you buy a CLIE and get it home to charge up, Sony will most likely have a new model and discontinue yours.

My CLIE's various accoutrements include a Memory Stick camera and a folding headset. I also carry three 128MB Memory Sticks, one of which stays in the CLIE unless exchanged for a Memory Stick with MP3 files. The CLIE itself lives inside a Proporta aluminum case and sits inside a Levenger case designed for a PDA and phone. As I hate Velcro on my handheld, I put Velcro on the outside of the case and attach it to the inside of the Levenger case.

Also in my bag: A Motorola A720 phone and a BD Latitude Glucose Monitor. I also carry a Compaq iPaq 3950 with an expansion sleeve and Sprint wireless PC card housed in green leather Vaja case.

On the weekends I usually only carry only the CLIE and the phone. However during the week these devices are an essential part of my day and so I present...a day in the life of a woman and her mobile devices.


The alarm goes off on my Sony CLIE. Yes, I take it to bed with me. Or rather I take it into the bedroom with me. Actually more often than not I am reading a book before bedtime and it could just as easily be electronic, audio (in MP3 format) or print. I take a blood sugar reading--I'm a Type II diabetic--and reach for my CLIE. The first thing that happens after I clear the alarm is the daily Dilbert cartoon appears on the screen.

After looking at the cartoon, I tap the MegaLauncher tab that has health related programs on it and open GlucoPilot and log my blood sugar. I have 65 third-party programs loaded internally and on a Memory Stick. Quick access and organization is a necessity and I get that from MegaLauncher, shown in Figure A.


My MegaLauncher screen helps me get to my programs quickly.

Hey Sony, I have an idea. Instead of a video recorder to record TV on Memory Stick, partner with a medical devices company and give us a Memory Stick-based glucose meter. The same could be suggested to Palm; either an SD meter or a device that attached to the HotSync connector would be helpful.

Health officials say, unfortunately, Type II diabetes is increasing, so there is a market for such a device. I know someone who recently bought a Handspring Visor with the FreeStyle Tracker Diabetes Management System. It's an older technology Handspring Springboard module, but he loves the convenience of being able to pare down devices.