Serving the scholastic field hockey and lacrosse community since 1998

Archive for January 3, 2019

Jan. 3, 2019 — The rabbit hole

A few months ago, I was in the market for what is called in the industry a “pico projector,” or a small box with a bright light inside of it that could be connected to a tablet or smartphone in order to do visual presentations.

As part of my professional development as a public speaker, I was an early adopter of PowerPoint, having done a slide deck two decades ago in order to sell potential advertisers and sponsors on the benefits of a women’s sports website.

Nowadays, with video and presentation apps, I was in the market for an inexpensive projector that I could carry with me to meetings so that I could simply point and start if there was a blank wall somewhere in the room.

The projector came, and I immediately noticed a problem. The projector had ports which would have worked well with computers from about five or 10 years ago, but did not have a digital input capability that I could discern.

I looked at a couple of solutions involving a lightning cable and a UV cable, as well as a cable which looked like it had the requisite ports. I asked an expert about it.

“That won’t work,” he said. “You need a digital adapter because there’s no way for the phone to talk to the projector with these inputs.”

Hmmf, I thought. Would have been nice to know before buying the projector.

Technology, these days, is an enormous rabbit hole, one which gives particular problems to people who have bought a number of older devices.

It took three days for my brother to figure out how to get full use out of a smart speaker because it required him to not only connect via the Wi-Fi connection in his home, but through Bluetooth on a phone which is older than the one I have.

Eventually, having that speaker is going to require him to subscribe to a music streaming service different from the one to which he is accustomed.

Me? I don’t need a smart speaker. I have enough trouble trying to get Siri to understand me …