Posts Tagged 'handheld'

BrainYno: the Ultimate Solution to Information Overload?

Posted on June 5th, 2013 · Posted in Individual Solutions

The holy grail of Information Overload solutions Interruptions are a major component of Information Overload (indeed, they cause more harm than the rightly reviled second component, email overload, as I’d shown here). However, we’ve known for years that not all interruptions are created equal: the damage depends on the context. An unrelated phone call while you’re taking an exam certainly does more harm than one when you’re slouching in front of the TV. Microsoft Research had developed a wonderful application some years ago called Priorities, which looks at every aspect of a knowledge worker’s attentional context to determine whether to.. Read more

Will Gen Z Employees be Pre-wired for Collaboration in the Workplace?

Posted on September 10th, 2012 · Posted in Analysis and Opinion, Uncategorized

Improving Collaboration in global teams is on most managers’ hot issues list. It has just occurred to me that for once, time may be on our side in solving this issue… The rise of the new multi-generational workplace  has brought much attention to the behaviors, expectations and perceptions of Gen Y employees, and HR people who have the bandwidth to look farther out are busy deciphering Gen Z, which will hit the workplace in a few years. Now, we all know that these young people communicate with their peers through social media and mobile devices, a fact that puts them.. Read more


Posted on August 2nd, 2012 · Posted in Analysis and Opinion

I was at an event where graduating college students were presenting their projects. One student was showing a software system that allows you to use a Smartphone – with its motion sensors – as a 3D controller for a video game. On one slide he compared his tool to a Wii setup, and under “Cost” he pointed out that a Wii system costs a couple hundred bucks and the software he was presenting would cost under $5. I couldn’t resist pointing out that for his system you needed to also have a smartphone, which would cost more than the Wii;.. Read more

Wrong solution?!

Posted on April 4th, 2012 · Posted in Analysis and Opinion

I was talking to a young manager in a hi-tech company and she shared an interesting insight. She had recently been equipped by her company with a Smartphone, and it had decreased her stress level at home significantly, she happily stated. Why so? Because, she explained, she was no longer afraid to miss out on anything – she could check her email during the evening as often as she wanted in order to see if anything urgent had come up. This is very interesting: before the arrival of the always-connected device, she couldn’t be connected – nor be on call.. Read more

Hooray! Graffiti for Android!

Posted on March 12th, 2012 · Posted in Off-topic

Love my new Samsung Galaxy S2 – but typing on its touch keyboard is hardly my idea of fun. And the handwriting recognition that came on it reminds me of  the notorious Apple Newton. Oh, how I missed the Graffiti system on my old Palm Pilot! Graffiti was a stylus-based handwriting system that improved the recognition by replacing some of the harder-to-recognize letter forms with simplified versions, while keeping most characters to a single stroke.  You needed a bit of practice to master it, but this was a minor and worthwhile investment, because the system had excellence performance even on.. Read more

We have a generation gap to bridge!

Posted on January 30th, 2012 · Posted in Analysis and Opinion

I’ve reported a number of cases where managers (most famously, Barack Obama)  implement an interrupt-free environment by mandating a “no cellphones” policy in meetings. While I wholeheartedly applaud this behavior, I must in all fairness report a dissenting viewpoint. I was talking to a Gen Y worker whose company  had launched such a ban, and he told me that he thought it was not a good idea at all, because his millennial generation needed the cellphones to work, he said! To his mind, having a coworker without a cellphone in ringing mode meant they were inaccessible, and hence unavailable to.. Read more

Volkswagen shields its employees from its own Blackberries

Posted on December 24th, 2011 · Posted in Organizational Solutions

The proliferation of Blackberries and similar Smartphones has contributed significantly to the erosion of the Work/Life barrier, and has caused knowledge Workers to assume – erroneously, perhaps, but with conviction – that they must be on call 24×7. I’ve seen it happen repeatedly among my clients: people send and receive emails at all hours, and make a habit of checking their Blackberry every few minutes. Convincing these people to stop this addictive behavior is hopeless: I’ve run an experiment along these lines a few years back with a group of engineers and despite all exhortations to the contrary their behaviors.. Read more

A sorely needed cellphone feature

Posted on September 21st, 2011 · Posted in Individual Solutions

A lecture attendee reacted to my data about the scary extent of disruption caused by endlessly ringing cellphones by saying: “I keep my cellphone turned on only in case my child calls – I wish it would only ring for him!” Now, here is a feature that is painfully needed, and obviously useful: Allow the user to specify which callers the phone will ring for, and which it will not, when you put it into a “Silent” mode. Or use “vibrate” as part of the equation: Ring for calls from an emergency-prone dependent, vibrate for close family and coworkers, let.. Read more

The iPad is mightier than the pen

Posted on June 7th, 2011 · Posted in Off-topic

It has been remarked that younger people tend not to wear watches, because their ubiquitous cellphones and other computing devices make them superfluous (interestingly, this brings back the action of having to fish something out of your pocket to read the time -  a throwback to the Victorian pocket watch, without the chain!). But I’ve just been informed of another victim to portable computing, and it goes back much earlier than the watch. I was talking to a friend who is also a consultant and he told me that in his workshops the attendees often sit with iPads and other.. Read more

Respect and Telephony

Posted on May 30th, 2011 · Posted in Analysis and Opinion

A manager at a small company told me over coffee of a job interview she gave a young candidate, in the middle of which he received a cellphone call from his wife (who wanted, with the wrong timing, to wish him luck in the coming interview). I was curious how this had affected her attitude to the candidate. After all, on one hand, it is nice that he’d answer his wife – he proved to be a considerate spouse. Yet on the other hand he had interrupted the interview and did not have the courtesy to either shut the phone.. Read more