I started bringing mine because it is an easy way to journal as I hate, totally hate writing with pen or pencil. The other reason is that having a computer along is a convenient, organized way to handle the hundreds, thousands?, of digital pictures we tend to take. My theory of photography is that if I take 1000 pictures there are bound to be a handful of good ones, maybe 2 or 3 exceptional ones. I download, file and label as we go thus avoiding confusion as to where we were and what the picture is several weeks later when sorting them out.
2001 was really before high speed internet access and dial up was the way. Good providers were ones you paid for, such as AOL. Gaining access in countries or cities away from home base was problematic, expensive and required some advance investigation. But, it still was a 21st century way to keep up with things at home and conveniently communicate across time zones.
As the years passed, access became easier and high speed began to be available in more and more places—particularly in the
This year we have been surprised by the growth in not only high speed access but wireless since a year ago. In
Now, in 2008, bringing a computer is for more than journaling and downloading photography. We use it for banking, bill payment, monitoring ATM withdrawals and charges and keeping track of balances. This is so much easier than the convoluted way of doing these things in the past—making sure we had people at home taking care of matters, etc. Again, I know that many people are apprehensive about using the net for these purposes, but, we are OK with it. We only use our own computer and have many safe guards on it.
Another bonus with the computer is SKYPE—calling via the computer for pennies. Of course, again, high speed access is a must. But, it is a good way to keep in touch with home. Actually, you don’t even need to travel with computer anymore to use SKYPE. With a VOIP phone you can call anywhere wherever there is high speed access.
As with all things, there are downsides to this electronic age when traveling. Now we have one entire carry-on filled with nothing but electronics —computer, external drive, quality earphones, IPOD, portable speaker, cameras, current inverter for the plane and car, DVD player, Nintendo DS, GPS, battery charger and, of course, all the cords and adapters required by each of these. It drives Ken crazy as he is not the techie in the family but……….he enjoys the benefits of having a person who is.
Hopefully, there will be no more must have electronics. I have read that there is a move afoot to synchronize chargers so that one size fits all. That would be nice.One last thought in this rather boring entry, it's a good idea to bring a short ethernet cable with you for places that have high speed but not wireless. Occasionally I have found this useful.