Stories by Mike Elgan

Adventures in 'extreme telecommuting'

Thanks to advances in mobile computing, telecommunications and the Internet, it's possible for some lucky professionals to enjoy what has become known as the "extreme telecommuting" lifestyle.

Dispatch from the war over cell phones

When is it OK to talk in public? To have an audible ring tone? To reply to a text message? Rational people disagree -- strongly. As the war between these two tribes grinds on, new battlefields are opened.

Which religion has the best mobile phone?

Religious devotees around the world enjoy expressing their faith with customized religious mobile phones, which may play religious ringtones, carry scripture or provide guidance, content filtering and other services specific to each religion. These p...

What's a blogger, anyway?

Bloggers are digital-era sweatshop workers, according to a story last week in the New York Times. "They work long hours, often to exhaustion. Many are paid by the piece - not garments, but blog posts. This is the digital-era sweatshop ... Some are st...

The ultimate hotel room finder

A Google Maps mashup called the Map Channels Hotels Directory shows you all hotels with availability listed in order of price. Just punch in the city, the check-in date and the number of nights you'll be staying, and it will lay out all your options....

Why not give users what they want?

Flashy new technology always gets attention. But after the chatter fades, users are often left with frustration over products' failure to do basic, common-sense functions.

Sweet new service backs up while it syncs

A company called Sharpcast last week rolled out a new service that syncs your data across PCs, Macs and phones. That sounds simple enough, but the service, called SugarSync, and it's believed to be the first of its kind.

Why iPhone will change the (PC) world, part II

More than a year ago, I wrote a column called "Why the iPhone will change the (PC) world." In that piece I described how the user interface of future operating systems -- the next-generation Windows, OS X and Linux UIs -- will have iPhone-like elemen...

The new two-laptop minimum

Ten years ago, every frequent-flying, executive-platinum mobile professional required a desktop PC back at the office and a laptop for the road. "Ultra-portables" or extreme mini computers were an expensive and optional luxury for serious enthusiasts...

Making the phone-PC connection

It seems these days that every Tom, Dick and Harry -- or, more accurately, every Dell, Acer and Apple -- wants to get into the mobile phone/handset business.

Was Windows XP Microsoft's last good OS?

Everybody's talking today about "Drivergate" - internal Microsoft e-mails that show senior Microsoft executives personally struggling to use hardware products sporting the "Windows Vista Capable" sticker. The e-mails also show that Microsoft lowered ...

Wi-Fi wants to be free

Public Wi-Fi hot spots have been popular for about eight years. During that time, companies providing the service have been groping about, trying to figure out how to monetize it. The dominant model to date has been to simply charge for it. Pay us US...

Who wants a custom mobile phone?

Two different companies this week announced two different visions for customizable mobile phones. Are we entering a new era, where mobile phones are used and sold like laptops -- where you snap on extra functionality on the fly or have them built to ...

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PCW Evaluation Team

Tom Sellers

MSI P65

This smart laptop was enjoyable to use and great to work on – creating content was super simple.

Lolita Wang

MSI GT76

It really doesn’t get more “gaming laptop” than this.

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

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