General workplace

Which is Better, Text Messaging or Instant Messenger?

This is a question the crossed my mind while I was talking to a friend online about plans we have on Wednesday to go out to dinner. I decided that my answer to this question that I’m posing (“Which is Better, Text Messaging or Instant Messenger?”) depends on the situation.

When I’m at work, I like using my instant messenger because I like typing on a keyboard (I can type 65-70 words per minute), and I also can focus on work and other projects while having a conversation through the IM window. This allows me to communicate with co-workers or friends without decreasing my work efficiency and content output.

However, when I’m at home or on the go, I definitely like text messaging better. Like I’ve mentioned before, I have a Palm Pre, so the full QWERTY keyboard allows me to still type fast. Also, unlike using an instant messenger, most of the time, my contacts don’t expect an instant answer, allowing me to respond to their question or comment when it is necessary for me. Texting is also usually quick to the point and gets things done, whereas at work, I usually use IM for chatting or long conversations about projects.

What does everyone else think? Do you prefer texting over using an instant messenger?


How to Use IM While Traveling

For many businessmen and women, it can be hard to break away from their work and/or home computers while they are traveling, either for work or for personal reasons. However, it is possible to still use IM, even though you are not at your current computer.

Some hosted instant messaging programs allow you to take your IM program any where you want on a jump/flash drive, sometimes called a USB drive. The program is downloaded onto this mobile storage drive as a .ZIP file, and can be used on any computer. This is a great idea when you will have a computer available to you (such as in the hotel lobby or a relative’s computer), but want to use your same instant messaging program.

Another great method of using an instant messenger program while you are on the go is through your cell phone. I know there are some drawbacks — taking longer to type, battery life, etc., but if the person you are trying to reach is only available through IM, then it may be your best bet. My new Palm Pre had AIM and GoogleTalk already integrated into the phone, and I know that other phones have the ability to connect to AIM as well.

Good Luck!