Local newspaper has interesting article about bestselling author Tess Gerritsen (pic - de.wikipedia) - who lives in Maine. In addition to writing bestsellers, she has a blog on the publishing business, and interacts with frustrated and successful writers. One post includes letters from complaining readers -- finding language "filthy", bemoaning killing beloved pet/character, and character depictions insulting someone or some group. Her current problem - getting home Internet connection fixed. Drives into town to respond to email and update blog - and guess what she blogs about? The service.
Since I participate in many meetings, and travel, these thoughts on Internet access and electrical outlets:
1. Couldn't tell you what restaurants I've been to, but sure remember properties with free wireless.
2. Properties saying they're wireless should include "in the lobby but not meeting rooms and guest rooms" if that's what they mean.
3. If wireless only in lobby, request guest room as close to (above, next to) lobby as possible and could work.
4. Always check to see if a neighboring property's wireless can be accessed.
5. One airport that gets it - JFK. First time I took JetBlue and saw hundred electrical outlets and free wireless, clear they understand business travelers. What's the deal with so many airports having handful of electrical outlets in terminal? Maybe travel with power strip to get power option at some airports?
6. Travel with long cables if don't like to be chained to desk in hotel room. Heard it's possible to bring travel wireless router to create freedom from wires, but haven't tried.
7. Annoying when facilities charge "$100" (or other amount) to provide meeting room access to wireless. Rather have it buried in meeting room cost than charged for $0 cost item (if building has it, that is) - Essential now.
8. Unless absolutely no other reasonable choice, don't book groups where high-speed Internet can't work. Was invited to participate in retreat at facility with no-high speed Internet - so declined. Host said "we're in meetings all day, then group dinner, why would that be important". Hmmm - there's WHAT probability might need/want to work at night?
9. Bring Blackberry and laptop to site checks to see what happens. If problem, let attendees know.
10. Clearly phone plans for laptops ($30-60/month?) an option to high speed Internet hunt, and can bring 2-3 charged batteries (heavy) for no electrical outlet -- but would much rather have free wireless and available electrical outlets.