Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Welcome to December!

Today's image - a cascade at Ricketts Glen State Park, PA.

Not a lot going on today. I am still deciding how to configure my phone & internet capabilities with the trailer. I already have a MacBookPro as my main portable machine & a iPhone (a 8 GB 3G). The computer is up-to-date, however the phone is a couple of generations behind.

Since I'll be traveling quite a bit in the Southwest, I'd prefer Verizon since they seem to have better coverage in that area. Of course, the problem is that AT&T is the only carrier of iPhones, and, despite the raves of Android users, I still prefer the iPhone. Then again, there are rumors that towards the end of the year Verizon will be offering the iPhone. Since my contract with AT&T is long gone, I have no problem switching. Then again, I am on the unlimited data plan with my current phone. If I upgrade to a new iPhone from AT&T, I can keep the old unlimited data plan. Then again, if I want to tether through AT&T, I have to give up my unlimited plan & start a new 2 year contract with one of their new plans.

Then again, do I want to tie up my phone to tether to the laptop? I could go with a Verizon USB data card plugged into a Cradlepoint router & provide WiFi to both the phone & laptop. I don't use the phone as a phone all that much; Skype would cover most of the needs for contacting family & friends...

I might even go with a system that adds an inside phone antenna that retransmits the signal collected by the outside antenna, but if I want to include the ability to cover Verizon's emerging 4G coverage which will use the 700Mhz frequencies, I'll have to wait for antennas & amplifiers that cover them. Most current equipment does not deal with the new Long Term Evolution (LTE) frequencies. Since much of the data I'll be posting to my main website will be images, the faster upload (as well as download) speeds of the 4G network would be appreciated. Then again, it will be awhile before the 4G towers cover the areas I expect to be traveling.

I fully expect to use a combination of cell connections & free WiFi - I have been keeping track of my normal data usage, and despite the fact that many people state 5GB per month is more than enough, I find over the last couple of months I am averaging well over 7GB. I'm sure the photographs I am uploading as well as the many photo websites I visit are the cause, but I suspect I'll do the same while traveling.

So many decisions & then agains! I can put them off for awhile, but since the Escape trailer builders start putting together the options & equipment for the new trailer about 3 months before the delivery date (April 20th) I'm going to have to decide soon.

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