The BlackBerry As Cartoon Thought Bubble

At business meetings, I use my BlackBerry to take notes from time to time. This frequently elicits disapproving looks, and after reading this article in today's New York Times, I think I can begin to understand why.

"'You’ll have half the participants BlackBerrying each other as a submeeting, with a running commentary on the primary meeting,' Mr. Reines said. 'BlackBerrys have become like cartoon thought bubbles.'

"Some professionals admitted that they occasionally sent mocking commentary about the proceedings, but most insisted that they used smartphones for legitimate reasons: responding to deadline requests, plumbing the Web for data to illuminate an issue under discussion or simply taking notes."

I'm probably not going to stop taking notes on my BlackBerry in business meetings, because it is more efficient for me to do so, and I think it's only a matter of time before it is no longer seen as a distraction.

Obama's BlackBerry

From today's New York Times:

"Of all the fights facing Mr. Obama as he prepares for the White House, one of the most maddening for him is the prospect of losing the BlackBerry that has been attached to his belt for years.

"It is, he has vigorously argued, an essential link to keeping him apprised of events outside his ever-tightening cocoon."

I love my BlackBerry too, and would miss it. But I'm guessing that many people interpret this as missing the ability to read emails, or to text friends on-demand.

But those are not the primary reasons.

I would hate to lose access to my personal calendar and contacts, and to all of the instant connections I have to media, sports, and other things I'm interested in, through the various BB apps I've installed.

That's the stuff I'd really miss. And I think he will miss them, too.