Tag Archives: mobile

Freelancing in 2012

Joe Wallace Vinyl Collector and authorby Joe Wallace

About 20 days ago, long before 11:59 PM on December 31, a lot of freelancing blogs made predictions about the freelance landscape in 2012.

And the same as every year, a lot of predictions basically read, “more people will start freelancing, more people will quit freelancing, and more companies will hire more freelancers than ever before.”

You don’t have to be Nostradamus, really, to issue predictions like these.

I ignored all that sort of thing this year in favor of looking at the freelance landscape from a completely different perspective, thanks to a blog post by Dave Allen at the Portland-based brand agency North.

Allen was talking about an experiment he started in early January to work with all-mobile tools, namely the iPad2 and the iPhone.

He writes, “Since January 2nd I have been attempting to live without my MacBook Pro to work exclusively on my iPad2. I can honestly say that for 90% of the time the iPad is the perfect tool for my daily work activities. As an added bonus it’s many pounds lighter than the MBP and the battery lasts hours longer. Yet, as to be expected, there are some shortcomings that are holding me back from becoming a 100% mobile user.”

If you want a prediction about the state of freelancing in 2012, you need look no further than mobile–for some of us, it really is going to be the future of the business in terms of the portable office, working from the road, and making the most of every given second when needed.

I was on the fence about the iPad2 as a freelancing tool until reading Dave Allen’s post, and while he points to a few shortcomings, I personally believe–and here’s my prediction for 2012–that these issues can and will be addressed by some savvy developers who know the need to do business on these lightweight, flexible, and highly desirable platforms.

Freelancers, writers and editors in particular, are often stuck in the previous decade when it comes to technology. But the business is evolving as fast as the new toys hit the market. Are you keeping up? Treading water? I’m trying to get out of the wading pool and into the deep end with this stuff…it seems like the best way to survive.

Joe Wallace is an author, professional blogger, and vinyl collector. He blogs about rare and strange vinyl records at Turntabling.net, sells vinyl records at horror and sci fi conventions across the USA and is currently photographing more than 100 record albums for his forthcoming book WTF Records: The Turntabling Guide To Weird And Wonderful Vinyl. He is very busy but does consider freelance writing and editing gigs on a per-project basis. Contact him at jwallace (at) turntabling (dot) net.

Jumping On The Mobile Bandwagon?

Joe Wallace freelance social media.jpgby Joe Wallace

I had an interesting conversation yesterday with Dave Allen of North in Portland, an agency that specializes in brand engagement across the spectrum of traditional and digital media.

One of the highlights of the conversation was a discussion of companies who come looking for help with their image campaigns. “What’s your website about?” these hopefuls are asked. “Well, we’re like BIG ESTABLISHED SERVICE NAME”.

So what are you offering that Big Established Service is getting wrong? “Um, well, nothing. We’re just like Big Established Service Name. Except it’s US.”

By now you’re getting the picture. Why reinvent the wheel? It’s one thing to offer a different-tasting cheeseburger. It’s another to offer the same widget with only a different picture where the logo goes. Continue reading Jumping On The Mobile Bandwagon?

Mobile Freelancing with the iPhone

iphone 4
by Joe Wallace

I’m writing this post using my Mac bluetooth keyboard synched to my iPhone. I wrote about this a few days ago, all aflutter about the possibilities of finally getting down to serious writing using nothing but the iPhone 4 and a bluetooth keyboard.

And this is the result. A typo or two to correct, a bit of a muddle with the screen size when composing the text, but otherwise this post has been fairly annoyance-free.

It’s wonderfully liberating to be able to post quickly using only the iPhone but retaining full keyboard flexibility…at least as flexible as the smallish silver Mac bluetooth keyboard can be. My fingers are still getting used to the smaller form factor with these keys, but that should improve.

That said, WordPress does not play nice with the iPhone4 when it comes to uploading images. I have had lots of problems trying get images on the iPhone to WordPress and at this time I haven’t found a solution except to use what is already in my WP galleries.

I fully realize that early adopters of bluetooth in this way are sneering at my Joe-Come-Lately bluetooth freedom with the iPhone, but I am so pleased with this new relationship I have with my mobile phone that i might never go back to using a laptop again.

OK, I’m full of it on that front…but it IS a tempting notion…however silly.

Being First Vs. Being Best

North Dot Com iPad photo enhanced copy

Dave Allen from North recently posted a fair bit of dissatisfaction with news media publishers who haven’t quite gone the extra mile with their mobile apps.

At FZ, we often debate whether we should purchase iPads and other gadgets to keep up with the flurry of mobile development. It’s the consensus here that it’s a bad idea to be an early adopter with the iPad, and that next-gen versions will probably leave bandwagoneers feeling more than a little annoyed. Apparently that goes for some mobile apps, as well. Read Dave Allen’s post to see what we mean.

That concept is a little more vindicated every time we read things like Allen’s post. It’s also a great lesson for freelancers; it doesn’t pay to get there first with a new product, gizmo, news story or, well, anything at all if all you’re going to wind up doing is limping back to the drawing board to fix the woefully inadequate whatsit you’ve foisted on the world.

Slow and steady wins the race more often than not.

Continue reading Being First Vs. Being Best