Guest Post by Drew Clifton, RVT.com
RV Lifestyle and Technology Make Good Partners
GPS, DVD, MP3, iOS, MOV, HTML, 3G, WiFi, Skype – The list of relatively new techno terms that are highly relevant to today’s RV Lifestyle goes on and on, and that doesn’t even take into consideration the myriad innovations that have gone into actual vehicle manufacturing! It seems that it’s the little things that are making the biggest changes in road travel culture lately. Navigating around safely and staying in touch with the folks back home (and with the world at large) seems to be topping the tech wish list.
For starters, RV blogging has hit the big time. It seems like every few days I’m finding another dozen new RV blogs that I’ve never seen before. From self hosted to micro-blogging there are many options to keeping a “web log” of one’s travels. In truth, blogging really espouses multiple technologies, from digital photography to word processing to social networking and beyond.
The inherent mobile aspect to RV blogging has its own unique challenges. Like a vast host of roving freelance photojournalists, both full and part time RVers are connecting wirelessly and uploading content from laptops, tablets and smartphones.
Another recent innovation has been the rise of apps; whether found via Apple’s iOS, Google’s Android platform, or Research In Motion’s Blackberry App World. The versatility of new touch screen technology allows one device to perform many different tasks. Also, app user interfaces are typically easier to use than traditional computer software, making previously complicated tasks more simple and straightforward for non-technophiles.
Whatever the hardware, one type of application has certainly risen in popularity – namely, video chat. Skype has gone the distance and continues to be a leader in the field. Apple’s FaceTime is easy to use (as long as both parties are using iOS). New features like built in forward-facing cameras on mobile devices and tablets is making this method of communication possible without needing a traditional computer.
GPS technology has made driving navigation easier and safer. This can be used through a dedicated standalone device, as per Garmin products, or used as an app through a smartphone or tablet. There is something comforting about having a constantly updating map following you around everywhere you go, but some of the more cavalier adventurers out there might prefer keeping things a bit more unknown.
Even RV shopping has gone digital; buyers, sellers and traders alike can use services like online RV classifieds websites. It’s now common to be able to see literally dozens of images, and even videos of RVs for sale – certainly different from what you can get from a traditional print magazine. RVT also has a mobile optimized website, and even freely available apps for download, like their iPad App.
Obviously the volume and depth of this topic is way beyond the scope of just one article (not to mention the fact that it keeps changing!). There is plenty of information available to be read online about all of the technologies mentioned in this post (and more).
For a listing of RVing blogs, check out rvingblogs.com’s RVing Blog Directory and Frugal RV Travel’s The RV Travel Blog Page. Also, you’ll notice that most RV blogs have lengthy “blog rolls”, which are essentially a list of recommended blogs by the site owners. These are usually found on the left or right sidebar area of the blog.
This article comes from Drew Clifton at RVT.com.