Have a lovely worliday

How to annoy your wife and please your boss in one easy step (or, my name is Mike, and I’m a geek).

It’s a scenario familiar to many – you’ve booked the flight, the hotel and now the time has come to take the first sip of the cosmopolitan cocktail that’s been in the back of your mind for several months whilst wiggling your toes in the lustrous sand……. when the work phones goes off.  Ignore or not to ignore?

The concept of a ‘worliday’ has been around for a while, but with the technology that’s available today you can genuinely create an office environment right on the beach.

When I was on holiday last week I was often checking and replying to emails on my phone.  I’ll not lie – it irked the wife somewhat!

Unfortunately being the geek that I am, I took things to the extreme…….

It all started with an innocent beep from my phone. I had an email from my line manager asking if I’d completed a report for a customer, nothing urgent, it could wait until I got back from holiday. But I knew I had a copy of that report sitting on my laptop at home ready to go. So, flexing my techie muscles, I set to work.

First off I set up my phone to act as a wireless hotspot, since there was no wifi in the area for me to use on my Android tablet. Then I connected my tablet to the wifi and setup a vpn connection to my home network (told you I was a geek).

Once this was up and connected, I used a so called “magic packet” to remotely boot my laptop up. When the laptop was up and running, I used remote desktop to log in and email the document off to the right people.

Convoluted? Maybe, but it just shows how powerful and useful mobile devices have become.  

I was able to send a large document from a remote location using only an Android phone and tablet (Samsung Galaxy S3 and a Google Nexus 7).

I got to thinking, what tasks that I do daily could be carried out from anywhere with 3G or wifi using a phone or a tablet? Let’s assume Windows based phones or tablets only, to keep it simple.

  • Receive emails, respond and schedule appointments.
  • Use the tablet to view info in CRM and update support cases.
  • Teleconference using Microsoft Lync on the tablet or phone.
  • Read and update MS Office documents in SharePoint library on either device.
  • Browse the Internet for information.
  • Remote control other machines to implement fixes or changes.
  • Use the Foursquare app on Windows Phone to find a decent restaurant…….

Microsoft Australia recently held a ‘Freaky Friday’ which began with the Managing Director sending out a group-wide notice proclaiming, “Don’t bother coming in.”

I’m sure that caused a bit of a fright upon first hearing those words, but it was simply an exercise to show clients that it’s entirely possible to carry out all your business duties without physically being in the office.

For me, pretty much everything I do on a daily basis could be carried out on a phone or tablet as long as there is a decent data connection.

So Steve, any chance you’ll lend me that HP Elitepad and send me off to Barbados to setup a TSG branch out there? I hear the 3G connection on the beach is pretty good……