For several weeks I have had the intention to publish a post about my experiences with mobile Internet (will come soon :-). In addition I wanted to contribute with some reflections on the issue as a comment to For Immediate Release (FiR). Even more so after Neville Hobson, who together with Shel Holz produce FiR, this Tuesday blogged  Experiencing 3 mobile broadband. I planned to record my comment on Wednesday evening so it could make it into Thursdays episode. But I did not find the time.

Yesterday (Thursday) I spent together with a group of bank managers (Swedbank and independent savings banks, Sparbanker). During the morning we had a wonderful session with the fascinating speaker/consultant Fredrik Härén. When Fredrik entered the stage I used my Nokia N95 8Gb to produce a short livestream video clip (in Swedish) via bambuser. Bumbuser is a Swedish startup, similar to Qik, but with a different approach when it comes to the streaming technology.

One of Fredrik’s topics is creativiy, perhaps that gave me The Idea. I thought…what if I would record my FiR comment as a part of the afternoon session with the bankers. Thought and done, I immediately used my HTC Touch Cruise to the send the following tweet to Neville (jangles at Twitter, note time stamps are BST, i.e. GMT+1, relative to when I copied the messages):

@jangles I plan to do a live (with audience) FiR audio comment about mobile broadband in about 5h 08:51 AM April 10, 2008

Remember, I did all this (livestreaming, twittering, and more) while listening to Fredrik’s presentation and his interactions with us in Swedbank’s meeting room downtown Stockholm. One (1) minute later, presumably still at home in Wokington, Neville replied:

@weconverse that’s great, Richard. Look forward to hearing your recording! 08:52 AM April 10, 2008 from twhirl in reply to weconverse

image Around five hours later I arrived at the point in my own presentation where we took a look at podcasting. I demonstrated the FiR website and played a short clip with listener comments from Monday’s episode. Unfortunately I had left my Edirol R09 mp3-recorder at home. But besides accepting text comments and e-mail with mp3 file attachements, FiR also uses Mobatalk (pka MyChingo). The Mobatalk service appears as a widget on any web site that allows visitors to make live recordings through their web browser. In front of the group I hit the "Record" button and started to talk, keeping an eye on the level meter. Maybe three minutes later the folks in the room pointed out that the recorder had stopped. We all realized that Mobatalk had a two minute limit.

OK, I like to do experiments and test the limits of my (and the audiences’ :-) capacity. But this was kind of too much. Besides doing it all live, time pressed, speaking English, and a very sketchy outline of what my comment should include, the darn widget stopped me. While thinking "poor Neville who has to edit togheter two comments", "how much of what I said was recorded", and "what is most important to say during two minutes", I hit record again. When done I clicked "stop", "send message", and told the group that perhaps it would be part of the next episode. Then we continued our meeting, which included great thoughts and cases from Anders Lundkvist (Springtime) and Henrik Torstensson (Stardoll).

Those of you that have worked as consultants for banks know that it sometimes is impossible to be connected to the Internet from inside their offices. In this case I had a WiFi connection for my laptop, but no mobile coverage. Therefore it took some time before I read Nevilles:

@weconverse got your 2 Mobatalk recordings, Richard, thanks. Will be in today’s FIR. Recording later today. about 20 hours ago

Eager to see how things unfolded, I kept an eye on the streams through my twitter account the same evening. Here are the FiR production related tweets from Neville (he made many more):

About to record FIR 335. Boy, will this be late today. about 16 hours ago

Phew. Just finished recording FIR 335. Need another r&c now. about 15 hours ago 

Well into audio editing FIR 335. Break now for bite, back in 45 or so. about 14 hours ago

Some of the editing is a bit dodgy, I reckon, but FIR 335 is almost there. Final mix including a pretty cool podsafe music track. about 12 hours ago

RSS subscribers – FIR 335 coming your way via RSS feed. Show notes and direct d/l links soon. Plus one FIR Cut. about 11 hours ago

FIR 335 posted. about 10 hours ago

I went to bed before Neville published the result, he is amazing (and overslept this morning :-). In any case, you can enjoy the result in FiR 335. My comment appears 35m20s into the episode. But listen to the whole thing – it is as always packed with valuable stuff.

Thank you Neville!!!

[Update 2008-04-12] Check who spotted the above out:

Mobasoft @weconverse Just read your blog post. I’m glad that MyChingo (aka Mobatalk) was able to help you. Paid members get 30 minutes, not 2 ;-) 04:06 PM April 11, 2008 from web