I got tired of lugging my laptop to meetings, so I got a Blackberry before I went to NOC2008 in San Diego. Of course, when I got there, everyone I saw had an iPhone or a BB, so I’m not exactly on the cutting edge here, but I’m still impressed. I had no idea you could do almost everything on a mobile device, which brings me to the point — take the quantum leap and make everything you do mobile. Here’s what I mean:
- Redesign your blog. I realized that I had to scroll down the left column of my blog on my BB before I got to the middle column where my posts are. I’m rethinking my blog design and hope to find a more mobile-friendly design. But, I actually posted to the blog from my mobile.
- Redesign your website. Same problems as above, only more so. Mobile delivery is how most people will get their content soon (Asia already does this), so your site needs to display well on mobile devices.
- Blog on Twitter. I hadn’t realized the value of Twitter until I got a BB. Very convenient, to the point, and fast. Look for more bloggers to go this way (okay, I know they’re already going this way — check Ed Stetzer, for example.) Twitter also posts to Facebook — two birds with one stone.
- Chunk-up your content. Shorter is better on mobiles, I’ve discovered. Chunk-up content into bite-sized pieces. Forget the 3,000 word posts.
- Checkout the apps stores for mobile devices. Lots of good apps including searchable Bibles, ebooks, weather, news updates, and tons more. You’re no longer tethered to the lappy or the desktop.
Okay, some of you are way ahead of me on this. How are you using your smartphones in ministry? What apps have you downloaded and how do you use them? Is anyone out there all mobile all the time?
Two articles from PSFK, plus one from Kevin Kelly illustrate that how the way we relate to one another is changing, especially the younger you are.
- NY City high school students who get good grades will receive a cell phone and free ringtones or minutes, even though cell phones are banned in school. They can’t use them there, but it proves the power of the cell phone among teens as a primary communication device.
- Heard of Warcraft, the huge online game played by about a zillion kids? Now there’s Datecraft, which gives a whole new meaning to “playing games.” Here’s what the article from PSFK says — “However, the site really illustrates how the web is changing 1:1 relationships across the board. In 2005, 12% of American newlyweds met online thanks to the slew of dating sites out there. But recent polls show that the Internet can also be a love substitute = potential social dysfunction. So it’s encouraging that gamers are reaching out past their keyboards to make real-life social connections.”
- Kevin Kelly of Wired magazine really has the zinger though. Kelly says that we are headed toward a global machine — OneMachine — of which the current internet is only a component. We’ll all be plugged into this OneMachine for everything. Kelly says —
The next stage in human technological evolution is a single thinking/web/computer that is planetary in dimensions. This planetary computer will be the largest, most complex and most dependable machine we have ever built. It will also be the platform that most business and culture will run on. The web is the initial OS of this new global machine, and all the many gadgets we possess are the windows into its core. Future gizmos will be future gateways into the same One Machine. Designing products and services for this new machine require a unique mind-set.
Kelly goes on to describe the immensity of the One Machine and predicts that sometime between 2020 and 2040, the One Machine will exceed the computational power of all humans combined — over 6-billion human brains. Imagine that on your DSL connection. Computers will become gateways to the One Machine where all computing will be done online. Google is already headed there with Google Docs, gmail, google maps, contacts, and about 30 other apps they have designed. All accessible from anywhere on earth from any computer. And the Google gPhone will be able to access all of it, anytime, anywhere, on any system, with any handset. Begin to see the ramifications?
But lost in the hoopla about the gPhone was the Google announcement that they are developing Open Social which will allow any website to create its own Facebook application. So, your church could develop it’s own social network. And those in the network would not be restricted to geographic proximity — they could live anywhere. And, theoretically, your church Facebook could be linked to other churches of similar flavor, or other ministries, or sold to advertising companies to generate revenue for the church, or have ads pop-up when individuals log on to their church account. Some pretty wild and scary applications could result.
This is where we are heading. This also makes the conversations we have at church about worship styles or other issues pale by comparison. What do you see implied in this new way we will relate to one another for the future of the church?