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Kindle & iPod Yes; iPad, iPhone & Laptop No
April 10, 2012 - 9:00pm

What electronics do you travel with? Do you bring different digital devices to conferences vs. vacations? How has your device strategy changed as our screens have proliferated, and the era of constant connectivity has emerged?

The question travel electronics has been much on my mind as I prepare for a 12 day family pilgrimage / vacation to South Korea.   

I've decided that I will only bring my Kindle and my iPod (an older Nano). Dedicated book devices.

For this vacation I've loaded up my Kindle with e-books and my iPod with Audible audiobooks. Amazon makes it scary easy to spend money on books. Book discovery is pleasurable and social, gratification (through download) is almost instant.  

Anyone who does not think that the growth of the e-reader ecosystem will accelerate book buying is nuts.  

It is not that an iPhone, or an iPad, or even the laptop is too big and heavy. All of these devices could travel happily in my backpack. The decision to forgo these devices is based on a desire (a need) to unplug and disconnect.  

For the next 12 days I want to have no e-mail and no web connection. 

If a screen with e-mail is available then I will read e-mail. 

If a screen with the web is available then I will check social media and news sites.  

The combination of mobile connectivity tools and our brain's craving for constant communication and connectivity may (just may) increase our productivity. The observation that work extends into all realms and hours of our lives is not a new one.

Do you have any idea how many times a day you check your iPhone or Android for new messages? Is it the first thing you do when you wake up, the last thing at night?  

Knowing that the only possible way to go offline is to not bring any device that will allow me to get online is an admission of weakness. I've come to accept that my willpower is unequal to our new digital, wireless, and connected world.   

When was the last time you totally disconnected (with no cheating) for more than 5 days? No e-mail, no social networks, no blogs, no web?   

When was the last time you left your connected screens behind?

See you all in 12 days.


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