Software

Technology that has stolen my heart


I don't mind saying that, speaking only from the perspective of an end-user, I am deeply in love with e-mail. In fact, I even wrote a blog once wishing e-mail a happy birthday.

Sure, e-mail and I have had our ups and downs. It has, more often than not, exposed me to stupid product advertisements that I otherwise would never have known about (Who knew there were so many rich Nigerians looking for bank accounts to put their money in?). And the way others use e-mail has driven me around the bend on more than one occasion. (Yeah, I'm happy that Joe Schmo got promoted too, but I don't feel the need to copy the entire company in my congratulations mail.) And, unlike the Gens X and Y, I didn't grow up having e-mail so I never take it for granted.

All in all, it's been a sweet ride. And while I will never falter in my devotion to electronic mail, I have to say that I've had to make room in my heart for something else: the Remote Desktop.

Where do I start? I can sit at my home computer and with a few clicks have secure access to all of my work applications, files, and network resources as if I were sitting in front of my workstation. Now that's just beautiful if you tend to be a workaholic. And it's especially nice if your company offers you the luxury of working from home now and then.

OK, I'm starting to get mushy now. So tell me, speaking from the end-user's point of view, what technology has made your life better or easier?

About

Toni Bowers is Managing Editor of TechRepublic and is the award-winning blogger of the Career Management blog. She has edited newsletters, books, and web sites pertaining to software, IT career, and IT management issues.

7 comments
derek
derek

As an IT person it is refreshing to find products that just plain do what they say. Sad that a product that works as advertised is noteworthy.

Joe_R
Joe_R

The Internet is not only a major source of news and information for me, but it's now my technical library, teacher, and (as a one-person support department) a vital technical coworker. I can't imagine going back to the days of searching through those thousand-page manuals looking for an answer to a technical question.

Ed Woychowsky
Ed Woychowsky

The Web. The Internet took work, with the Web just click and go.

Tig2
Tig2

The best new(ish) technology in my life is Google. But it is a double edged sword that can get me in big trouble and may lead to a definite additional weight on my backside. The joy of Google is that I can research my little heart out on any topic I think may entertain or advise me. Want more information about anything? Google it and you are instantly treated to all the information avenues that you could hope for. The problem is that I really enjoy research and I have ADHD. On more than one occasion, I have set out to learn about Advanced Mayan Basket Weaving and ended up learning about Ancient Religious Splinter Sects. Not good if I have a paper, blog, or story due that requires me to know more about Basket Weaving. So I have learned to love Google. I have also learned to avoid the temptation of tantalizing other information that is not what I went to Google to find. Now I keep a handy list of things that intrigued me while searching for something unrelated. Unfortunately, I never quite get around to researching it. But if I ever need to know more about the mating habits of the duckbilled platypus, I will know right where to go!

LocoLobo
LocoLobo

maybe the Splinters affected basketweaving. Years ago I researched King Authur. At the time I thought King Authur was the first English king of England! Imagine my surprise. But to understand King Authur you want to understand the dark ages, which leads to the Romans, then Ancient Greece, etc. (No, I don't understand any of it) Your point is taken though, homework is homework. And Google is so much better than the "Good Old Days" searching through all that printed material to find one paragraph on what you are really interested in.

toni.bowers_b
toni.bowers_b

Google is an amazing thing. It's fairly disconcerting, though, to type in some totally obscure keyword only to find there are 723 sites devoted to that topic. But, darnit, if you need to find out in a hurry how many lymph nodes the average house cat has, then google is the tool for you.