The Rule of 3′s

Often times when I talk with a client or friend they ask me this simple but rather complex question:

“Should I get a new computer.”

My response is generally, “If you want to, but the one I’m working on will continue to work the same way it has if you don’t want to.” (unless there is actually hardware failure, then I’ll explain the cost/benefits of a new machine.

But I do have a general guideline when it comes to technology… Plan to replace it after 3 years.

The reason is quite simple: Technology changes extremely fast, and your better off buying “trailing leading edge technology” today and replacing in 3 years, than you would be buying “bleeding edge technology” and replacing every 5 years. The one exception to this might if your constantly making small upgrades to it (which most people don’t).

I am fairly certain this is true with pretty much all technologies that are still in heavy R&D. For example: my cell phone. I got a Iphone 3G right around the time I got married. I love the little sucker. It ran all the apps I wanted. It made most of my calls successfully. It allowed me to get my email pretty much anywhere.

Then Amber convinced me that she needed a new phone and a new plan. So I moved here onto my AT&T plan this weekend, and we both got the new iPhone 4s.

And it’s crazy how much a difference it has made in my usage.

The camera is fast enough opening and taking pictures (and good enough quality), that I have a feeling I’ll pull it out 10 times more than I ever used my 3G as a camera. I may even leave my SLR at home.

The apps opened and worked so much faster, that I found myself pulling out my phone rather than walking to get my ipad or laptop to check something.

And Siri… well, that’s just the icing on the cake.

With Amber jumping onto my plan, I needed to add text messaging as well… And interestingly enough, thanks to Siri, you may finally see me jumping on the text messaging bandwagon… In fact, I had my first “text” conversation with my wife yesterday, and I was surprised at how well it worked.

In any case, I should have known when my 3G got to be 3 years old, and it stopped taking the new iOS updates, that it was time for a upgrade…

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