Working Online or Offline I now work about 20 percent of my travel time with an internet connection in my room, and 80 percent of the time with no connection.
The quality of my life seems better with no connection.
--------------------------------- Acapulco - 8 Miles North of the City Pie de la Cuesta - Playa Luces Laguna de Coyuca - Barra de Coyuca Monday, March 24, 2008 Andy of HoboTraveler.com --- ----------------------------------
More or less, I can turn on the TV, oops, I mean the Internet and watch it all do, or I can read a book.
There are five major competitions for my mind when I travel.
1. Television in the room, in the past I used to watch BBC or CNN, I have almost completely stop this, as is totally non-productive time, I can watch five minute and know the whole day, or better yet read the newspaper. When I have TV in my room, I suspect I watch about two movies per day.
2. Books, I find Television movies trumps the books, I will probably not read a book when the television is around. When no television I can read about two books per week.
3. Walking around looking at the world, this continues to happen for about two weeks in one location, and then I slowly become bored with walking around. However when I am not bored with a location I will normally walk about two hours per day. If public transportation is too good and too cheap it can often stop me from walking, I see that people here in Mexico that have a car do not even know the street they are living on, cars trump walking and really cause isolation.
4. Socializing with people in the past was better, I would say ten years ago I socialized more with people as they were more accessible. A beach is a better place to find people to talk than in a tourist area or tourist zone, unless you want to hang around in bars. However, with the use of internet, chatting, cell phones the talking only 10 percent of what it was ten years ago. I am finding it increasingly difficult to find anyone to talk with other than the locals. The tourist and travelers are becoming increasingly difficult an inaccessible as they just talk with their friends at home, or are with their girlfriend, or boyfriend, wife, husband or other ambiguous sexual associations. They now just pick up the cell phone and call home to fulfill their inherent need for conversation.
5. Working on computer, this is more or less working; however, there is tons of time used on the computer for writing emails. I presently do not have a SMTP connection at the internet café, therefore I must reply to everyone online, this makes writing emails onerous.
I do not try to control temptations; I allow my day to be controlled by temptations. I accept that I have almost no ability to resist temptation; therefore, I need to choose conditions that optimize some temptations and minimize others.
I am presently on the beach near Acapulco, reading books are optimized, and surfing on the internet is minimized to about one hour per day. Watching television is at a zero, there are no televisions in this area, socializing is also at a minimized setting as there is almost nobody on the beach, nobody that speaks English, the people who speak Spanish that I encounter are normally only vendors and I do not have much in common with them for a conversation.
Walking around has been a big source of entertainment, however, at my two week juncture here, I have walked North, South, West and East, I will need to take a bus to find better walking locations.
When a person is trying to relocate their office to the tropics, and live by cyber office, or have a mobile office, the primary problem seems to be time zones. I work primarily with a person in India, therefore I can chat with him at 9:30 am Acapulco time and I it is about 9:30 at night for him, and this is good and bad according to how people work.
For the USA people, I am at around the noontime for Boston, New York and about 10 am in the morning for the Western part of the USA.
I suspect there are large groups of executives thinking about trying to re-locate to some Tropical place for the winter months. To have a location that is directly below their home, in the same time zone could be of great importance, whereby they can work and communicate with the USA on the same schedule.
In Bill Gates, book the Road Ahead, he discuses the asynchronous lifestyle, whereby a person can communicate with email or the internet and not need to be synchronized by time. I find synchronized conversations whether by chat or telephone call to be 10 times more productive than emails to somehow get others to follow along and work on the same project the same. When I am in the same area, proximity I find that production is almost triple of chatting or telephone, and 30 times more productive than emails.
Asynchronous working requires every person working to need less than 10 minutes of guidance per day to remain productive. The value of synchronized conversations is that they allow for the random answering of questions that is slowing the work. One un-answered question can slow a project to a dead stop for days or weeks‘; therefore being available to answer a question is what is needed, not continuous conversations.
Call Centers in the Philippines work all night, not during the day so they can service the USA.
It appears for the person who wishes to relocate; they must truly understand what motivate their workers, if they have workers. There is also the problem of talking with vendors and clients. Clients tend to think of you as lazy if you are not in an office.
I am not lazy; however, I know I am completely engulfed in the stereotype of a Hobo or Backpacker cheap traveler. There is the idea that people who travel cheap are somehow stupid, and I think the people traveling cheap in turn think people working in offices reading these types of comments are incredibly stupid. Neither is stupid, just a different path, stereotypes are helpful, but go pass judgment using a stereotype and refusing to adapt is normal…
There is nothing great about a solitary lifestyle; this is the challenge of traveling to not be alone talking to the wall, or this computer.