I use technology for three reasons:
1) To learn/teach something (Yes, I cheated and combined two reasons into one. Sue me.)
2) For fun
3) To make life easier
It is that third one – making life easier – that is the key for me. Show me a piece of tech that simplifies my life, and I’m sold. What I really love is when I am able to take a thought and bring it quickly to fruition through the application of technology. Yesterday was a perfect example.
For a variety of reasons (most of them falling in the “too busy” category), I was unable to participate in yesterday’s #CMEchat (If you don’t know what that is, go here.) I always make it a priority to participate in the chat and hate when I miss it. I especially hate when I miss is due to being “too busy” (after all, I am the guy who wrote this).
So, when I finally had a chance to get on Twitter, well after the conclusion of #CMEchat, I wanted to offer a lighthearted apology for not being able to participate. At the same time, I wanted to try out a new app (audioBoo) that Lawrence Sherman brought to my attention with this tweet from earlier in the day:
Step 1: Used my laptop to google the words “I’m sorry so sorry”. This was the first “apology” song that came to my head, but I couldn’t remember who sang it (C’mon, I’m not that old!) It’s Brenda Lee. Probably a more appropriate song than Nirvana’s “All Apologies”.
Step 2: Used my iPad to search for Brenda Lee’s “I’m Sorry” on Spotify. I already had Spotify open on the iPad, so it was quicker than starting it up on the laptop. Side note: LOVE Spotify! Love being able to listen to entire albums without the fear of “Ugh, I just spent 10 bucks on this dreck!” Suck on that, iTunes! (Ed. note: Real mature, Derek. Nice.)
Step 3: Downloaded audioBoo app on iPhone and setup an account.
Step 4: Played “I’m Sorry” on the iPad and recorded the audio with audioBoo on the iPhone.
Step 5: Used audioBoo on the iPhone to send out the following tweet:
Total elapsed time: About 5-7 minutes. Seriously.
I realize this is sort of a silly example, but I really was quite pleased at how easy it was to make my idea a reality. Two years ago that same task takes me at least half an hour, maybe longer (a lot longer, really, since I wasn’t even on Twitter two years ago.)
Is there a moral to this little story, besides the fact that little geeky things make me happy? Maybe one thought to consider is whether we are nearing a sea change in how we utilize technology in CME and the inherent costs involved. Do we need an entire camera crew to make a webcast? Would the quality of video shot by one person with an iPhone be so inferior that it would hamper the educational value? Instead of flying in a KOL from another country, what if we “Skyped” him/her in to the conference live?
In addition…audioBoo is pretty cool and really easy to use. I’m intrigued by the possibilities. How about this: the faculty at your symposia aren’t able to answer all the questions submitted via question cards or Twitter or whatever means you’re using. So after the meeting, you pull aside a presenter, grab your iPhone and use audioBoo to record answers to the lingering questions. You can then tweet out the questions, using the conference hashtag, with the audio answers attached.