Last week on Techno Thursday I mentioned my new air card and I was anticipating putting it into action over the weekend. A month ago I would not even have had a clue what an air card is and actually the official name of this device is “Sierra Wireless AT&T USBConnect Shockwave LaptopConnect Device” – right. I think I like the shortened version “air card” better and basically it allows you to connect to the internet without wires (wireless) while you are on the go.
You simply plug the device into the USB port on your laptop. Initially you do have to install a disk which is the software onto your computer. You follow the prompts just like installing any other software. Then each time you fire up the computer a box will appear which is the Communication Manager Connection.
… Time for the Test … As we headed out on our 5 hour trip I flipped the switch and here I was sitting passenger seat in the car and on the internet …… I felt so “with it”! During the trip I would connect and disconnect just to see how things were going – the real test would be when we arrived at our destination which is in a rather remote location….in the country, away from city life and cell towers. The air card works much like a cell phone picking up the signal and using minutes as data is transferred. We purchased the lesser plan with lesser MBs until we are sure it picks up in our location. I kept a watchful eye on the Usage information trying to get a feel for this whole new mobile experience.
When we arrived at our destination, the Mac was placed in a prominent position near a window and I clicked her on. Well … it worked, but seemed like a lifetime to actually get the information on the screen. Remember your first dial-up? Running to do 12 other tasks, waiting for connection and finally hearing that all to familiar voice boldly saying “You have mail”.
This was where I was.
Trying not to let frustration take over and trying to reason to myself that I did have connection (so what if it took an hour to check email).
The next day we took a trip to town and I brought the laptop and as I sat in the parking lot of the grocery store everything was running along at a rapid pace. I even connected to McDonald’s free wireless service and didn’t have to use the air card. Was I convinced yet? What other options did I have? Was the air card the answer?
When we returned home, I walked around the house searching for a better location to catch that signal and I found one!! Right at the kitchen table …… so I sat all night long and tapped on the keyboard doing senseless surfing, but staying connected.
As we headed home after our little weekend trip, I thought to myself …
The real question is — Should I cross that line and bring the world of the internet into my remote country home or do I keep the calm and peaceful surroundings safe …… and peaceful.