Saturday, September 17, 2005

A day in the life of a blogger & podcaster

My good friend and techADDICTION co-host, James Kendrick, has previously written some great "day in the life" posts. James focused those posts on his primary mobile computing device to show how useful the unit is. I loved these posts as they were so effective in showing the benefits to the Toshiba e805 and Sony U-70 that James highlighted. I decided to do something similar, but take a different perspective. Rather than focus on a single device, my focus is to share a single day's worth of activities with several devices and technologies and bring perspective on the effort put in to weblogging and podcasting. It's more time consuming than people think but mobile technology makes it all happen. Here we go!

7:30 am: The SPOT Watch is beeping. I woke up with just 6 hours of sleep. I was up until 1:30 am working on some RSS issues for a website. Luckily I was comfortable until the wee hours of the morning because I was on my couch using my Toshiba M205 Tablet PC via the 802.11g WiFi network in the house. Time for a shower and some coffee.

Continue with me on my day after the "Read More!" jump.

8:15 am: My son and I jump into our Highlander Hybrid vehicle to attend his soccer game. Barbara and Sydney head to swim lessons, so we're going separate ways. On the way, Tyler likes to watch the navigation map and asks if we can use the nav system on the way home so he can hear the car talk to him. We stop at WaWa to get me a cup of coffee that I pay with by swiping my debit card at the register. No cash for me; it's a digital world!

9:00 am: Tyler is playing soccer while I'm on the sidelines with the Tablet PC. I fire up my EVDO card so I can get my mobile broadband connection from Verizon Wireless. I check some statistics on websites and respond to a few e-mails while watching the game. I also check some RSS feeds in Onfolio to get some blog ideas for later today. Meanwhile, Tyler's mom decides she wants to buy a laptop, so we do some shopping at No purchase yet, but we narrow down some choices.

9:20 am: I do my lead blogger duties over at HD Beat and activate a previously written post.

9:55 am: I fire up another web browser window in the Firefox Beta 1 of v 1.5 and get ready to buy some concert tickets for Keith Urban. These go on sale in 5 minutes.

10:04 am: I've got two good seats for the show and the printable tickets are already in my e-mail.

10:15 am: We're back in the Hybrid where I choose "Home" as our destination. I have it saved in memory so I don't have to type it again and again. The pleasant sounding woman starts talking and I follow her directions. Tyler thinks the nav system should show us all of the other Hybrids on the map so we can wave to them when they pass us. He'll be addicted to RSS feeds within a year, I predict.

10:45 am: The Hybrid is dirty so we re-route the nav system to the nearest car wash and do another cashless transaction.

11: 15 am: It's an early lunch for me. No real tech involved, but as I read through the weekend paper retail ads over lunch, I start to think about how many of these retailers have RSS feeds? I can have the ads delivered to me and even use Onfolio to filter for specific products only. What a time saver. Looking through the ads on televisions gets me thinking of an HD Beat post.

11:50 am: Lunch is done so before I start "work" on my day off, I check stats for various websites I contribute to. I also look for updated stats based on the RSS work I did last night (or was it early this morning?) to make sure everything tests out OK.

12:30 pm: I jump on the couch with the Tablet PC and pound out a good post for HD Beat on how the HDTV market could bring back the TV repair industry.

12:45 pm: Oh no! I forgot that I took digital pics of the touchscreen in the Highlander Hybrid for that blog. Heh, I actually took the pics while driving yesterday! Time to write up a post and insert the pics.

1:00 pm: I run upstairs to the desktop to check our techADDICTION Skypeline. I pick 3 VMs and e-mail them to James, which will send a copy to my Tablet as well. I grab the VMs on the Tablet and insert them into OneNote, which I use to gather thoughts for the podcast.

1:45 pm: I've got my thoughts down in OneNote and send them to James. Time for a microphone check in Skype, which we use for the techADDICTION show. The Plantronics DSP-400 USB mic is working well.

2:20 pm: James and I start to record techADDICTION #22 over Skype with MixCast. James has already imported the Skype VM clips and our show music.

3:20 pm: While we're doing techADDICTION, I get an e-mail from another HD Beat writer, R.J. He tells me he has a post ready to go, so I paste it in Word for a spell check. Looks good, so I publish the post while finishing up the podcast. What would I do with out my Tablet PC and wireless network?

3:40 pm: techADDICTION is done, but the work doesn't stop. James takes off to do the post-production work and I hit the web to research some other things for our podcast. I fire iTunes up to listen to some music over the Plantronics while I'm working.

4:00 pm: It's nice outside, so rather than be cooped up, I set up the Tablet in a shady spot. The WiFi doesn't quite reach, so it's back to EVDO connectivity. No reboot needed, just a dial out using Verizon's included software for EVDO. I switch from iTunes to so I can listen to the MRN broadcast of the Craftsman Truck race while I work. Sweet!

4:45 pm: My podcast follow-up research is complete. Time for a 15 minute break, which for me is relaxing and reading an eBook on my Dell Axim X50v. I try to find the time to read one book a week and usually succeed because I take the Axim everywhere; even to the rest room. When I don't have a good book, I catch up on some digital magazines with Zinio Reader on my Tablet. Ooh! This month's PocketPC Mag just came in on Zinio, cool!

4:50 pm: My reading break has to get cut short. I just got an RSS notification that Acer has a new LCD HDTV on the way with wireless media streaming built in. Gotta write it up for HD Beat!

5:05 pm: The Acer post is up. 15 minutes: not bad. Back to my book. Oh wait: college football in HDTV. Time to sit in front of the widescreen for a while!

7:15 pm: I see that techADDICTION 22 is in the queue to go "live". I always like to preview the show notes that James does and they look great as usual.

7:30 pm: While I'm scanning my latest RSS feeds on technology and HDTV, I fire up iTunes and sure enough, techADDICTION 22 is on the way! We just finished recording the show four hours ago and already it's out there for the world. Awesome.

7:40 pm: A quick check of HD Beat stats as well as personal blog stats and now it's time for a late dinner. Time to hibernate the Tablet for a quick start up later.

8:10 pm: Dinner is over and cleaned up; time to wake up the Tab and check e-mail. There's one from R.J. informing me he's got a post on Microsoft IPTV. A few quick grammar fixes and I activate his post. I'm doing the editing as I listen to rest of today's podcast. Sounds good.

8:25 pm: It's time to call it a day. Some final browsing of sites that I found while reading RSS tech feeds and I'm done by 8:30.

That's it. Just another simple day off for a blogger and podcaster. I say "day off" because it's Saturday. If you want a really crazy day, just pick a weekday when I try to cram all of this (and more) while taking kids to school, working my day job and trying to spend some time with Barbara. Not as easy as it sounds, but somehow, we in the blogosphere make it happen every day.

It wouldn't be possible without the many technologies that help us work efficiently and without the support of significant others that never seem to get enough of our attention. I hope you enjoyed this "day in the life" post; please be sure to let me know what you think.

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