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| DearWebby is actually Helmut Morscher, the CEO of Webby, inc.
Originally the "Tech Support Pits" were reports of the funniest tech support incidents, but over the years the
column gradually shifted to answering tech support questions put forward by the readers of the Dear
Webby Humor Letter.
This collection of computer and web advice was started partly because readers demanded an archive, and partly
because some questions were asked again and again. Each page has a different day's Tech Support Pits column.
Tech Support Pits column from Dear Webby's Humor Letter of
05/03/04: Mobile office
Tech Support Pits:
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You seem to be able to work while travelling. I have been
trying to convince my husband that it can be done just as
easy as working from home, at least for the time necessary
for a trip to the USA.
What kinds of preparations would you recommend?
You need one electrical outlet adapter for each cord that
you might plug in. Get the small flat plugs that have two
flat blades like screwdrivers in the front and the round
holes for plugging in your cords. They are cheap, compact
and reliable. You don't need any transformers for laptops,
printers, or cameras. You can get those adapters from
iGO.com for $5 if your electrical store doesn't carry them:
They also have a "Road Warrior" kit for each country, but
I found that an unnecessary luxury.
Once you get here, get a few long phone cords and a few
lightweight extension cords. That's it for the electrical stuff.
Sign up with earthlink.net to get local access just about
anywhere in North America and 1-800 access in the few
villages for which they don't have local access numbers.
Measure your carry-on luggage or suitcase and get a sheet
of plexiglass cut to just fit. You will need that to convert the
night tables or dresser drawers into a laptop desk. Exactly
like in European hotels,the tables and chairs in hotels and
motels here are designed for short legged and long backed
people to efficiently shovel rice with chopsticks from a bowl
at shoulder level into a hungry and impatient mouth. Using
a laptop at that level is painfully awkward.
When you jam the plexiglass into a partially opened drawer
of a night stand or dresser, you instantly have a laptop table
at the perfect hight for hotel and motel chairs.
Because I find laptop keyboards too slow for my style of
typing,I also carry my regular keyboard and a wireless
Before you start travelling print out the local access
numbers for each state or province that you might possibly
visit, so that you don't have to use the 1-800 access to
look up the local numbers.
Whenever I do the on-line booking for the next hotel or
motel, I also prepare a DUN (connection) for that town,
and before shutting down I make that DUN the default.
That way, when I plug in and turn on the laptop in the next
town, it will connect and MailWasher will start working
on the mail while I unpack the rest of the stuff.
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