Experiences blogging from a phone

I often find myself in situations where I have to post on the blog and am handicapped by either not having my computer with me or not having an internet connection. So the fallback option is always to use my phone and try to post.

I only have a 2g connection, so my experience of using wordpress on phone is limited by many factors. The wordpress admin site from which I make my posts takes forever to load on a phone. Much experimentation later, assisted in no small part by serendipity, I discovered that I could use the wordpress mobile site instead… m.wordpress.com and voila! the site is suddenly easier on the bandwidth, eye, and wallet.

The second limitation is that typing with the ancient phone I normally use (a Nokia E72, yes, I know, I must be the last one now) makes pulling teeth seem like a picnic in the park on a warm sunny day by comparison. It takes me 4 times the effort to type a post using its keyboard compared to using a computer (yes, I timed it). Part of the inefficiency is explained, perhaps, by the fact that I consider myself a fairly rapid touch typist, and on a small cell phone keyboard, touch typing is essentially touching with the thumb. The 4x slowdown is explained by the 4x reduction in fingers I can use.

Today I decided to try out a new phone and a technology that I have been curious about for ages but only recently got my fingers on… a Galaxy Nexus and Swype, respectively. It takes aim he getting used to, the number of fingers hasn’t increased, and the word predictions are sometimes an amusing distraction in themselves (for example, the word Number in this last sentence was mangled into the rather frightful sounding bum binder!), but this is something that I could have fun with…

Another thing I did was to download the WordPress app and use that instead of the regular webpage that I would have used with my Nokia phone. My hope was that this would help me overcome the severe styling limitations of using the mobile site, such as being unable to insert pictures into my posts. (The sharp detectives among you will possibly be able to use this nugget of information to deduce which of my posts so far have been posted from my phone.) But no longer… my cunning use of the app means that I can inflict my gratuitous use of completely irrelevant images in even the most hastily typed posts.

The final problem is that of multitasking. The way I write many of my posts is that I start with a germ of an idea which I expand only as I start writing…so much googling and Wikipediaing is done in the process of writing. This is still impossibly difficult for me to do even with a very smart smart phone.

No matter, though… the fact that I have completed this post (though today’s sense of achievement is more one of successful use of technology than any great intellectual achievement) is in itself testament to the fact that there is hardly anything you can do with a computer today that you cannot with a phone, and it’s only going to get better.

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