Podblogging: Because I Can? … Well, Maybe Not

I was sitting quietly in the local Starbucks, jacking into T-Mobile Hot Spot from my brand new T-Mobile Dash Windows Mobile instrument.  It took me the bus ride from my favorite Barnes & Noble Starbucks to my local one to figure out how I was unable to log on to Windows Live though.  I was eager to try logging in again and doing my first blog post from a phone.  I was able to get through the Windows Live ID Logon the second time.

I specifically wanted to see what this blog looked like when accessed via mobile.windows.live.  It takes a lot of navigation, but the post texts show up all right.   There are tiny versions of the pictures, too.  So it is a nice feature.  I haven’t tried looking at any of my web pages yet.  I’m apprehensive about that.

Well, this is not the post I made on the phone.  Somewhere around clicking the Publish button the post disappeared, never to be seen again.  My thumbs were too tired to figure out how to correct it.  So I didn’t frustrate myself with a do-over. 

The Dash has a tiny QWERTY keyboard.  It was amazing to learn that even my thumbs know their way around QWERTY, but it is a painful process just the same.  I have been watching my fingers, because the keys are easy to miss, so the automatic word-completion suggestions are often wasted on me (and I have to take my thumbs out of QWERTY position to select one).  I will practice more and see what improves.

I compose my web pages and blog articles for reading from full-up PC displays.  It is way over my head to figure out how to target my sites to mobile devices.  If I was going to the trouble to make all that work, I think the time would be more valuable invested in accessibility.

Now that I think about it, maybe making web pages and blog posts amenable to mobile access is a way to approach having the material be accessible.  OK, I’ll look at that then. 

Meanwhile, I’m grateful that mobile.live.com and the MSN counterpart (even better, actually) do present fairly nicely.  CNN has some work to do, but MSNBC has it figured out.  I just installed Yahoo! Go also, and there is a special MSN install, but I am yet to explore those too.

I’ll try another post from the phone, some day, but for now I am happy to be home and keyboarding away in Windows Live Writer.

I figured I’d attempt to upload pictures and also blog posts from the new phone because now I can.  This is the first phone I’ve owned that could take advantage of those features of my wireless service.

Last week at ODC2008 I lost my Nokia Communicator.  It was on T-Mobile wireless but unsupported for their Internet access and other goodies (ring tones, MP3s, photos, videos, and all the other silliness).  Fortunately, the phone was off and I lock my SIM cards as well as the keyboard.  There has been no attempt to use the account and I have kept my number.    I also had no unfulfilled subscriber commitment, so I could do a phone upgrade at no penalty. 

I have set up my new Dash with the same precautions.  I also don’t keep anything on the phone that I am worried about losing.  My contact list is synchronized with my Outlook and there are no secrets there.  And yes, I signed up for the insurance too.  The deductible is more than I paid for the phone after discounting, but much less than buying a full-price replacement.  When I complete my two-year commitment I can cancel the insurance because the upgrade price will be less than the deductible anyhow.

I have resisted three whole days without adding the data plan.  The T-Mobile Total Internet plan, which is what I apparently need, also bundles T-Mobile Hot Spot.  I already have about 18-months of free T-Mobile Hot Spot left to use as a promotion for buying my two Give 1 Get 1 One Laptop Per Child computers.  It irks me that I can’t buy a data plan that doesn’t bundle Hot Spot (and I don’t need access to an Exchange server either).  I am throwing in the towel though.  I do want the GPRS/EDGE capability that some features require.  As much as I like hanging out in libraries and coffee shops, it is even nicer to be able to access the Internet wherever I happen to be sitting at the moment, even at home.  I can’t resist.  I think of it like buying a couple of premium channels on cable TV, but cheaper.

This may be the beginning of something terrible …

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