My wife and I recently spoke with our son, Jonathan, stationed on the island of Santiago in Cape Verde. He’s in his first year as a Peace Corps Volunteer teaching English as a 2nd language to middle and young high school students. We routinely hear from him via his blog and speak with him by phone on roughly a weekly basis. Jonathan lives 300 nautical miles off the coast of West Africa. We live in Northern Virginia about 30 miles south of Washington, DC.
Jonathan called us using a MAGIC JACK phone then we switched to a free Skype call. These technologies enabled us to share news and to see each other in near-real-time. Call me “Old School” but what amazed me about this call was how these internet-based technologies are available to oh-so-many folks for a very reasonable price. All you need is a computer with a decent internet connection. And if you’re using a MAGIC JACK phone, this hardware is reasonably prices too.
Very soon we’re going to experiment with adding other participants to future calls. Today, teleconferencing isn’t just for large corporations nor do you need deep pockets to afford paying for such connections. If you’ve not yet experimented with such tools, resolve in the New Year to do so. Yes, it’s a small world after all.