A group of fun gal gadget bloggers and I proposed a room of our own session for BlogHer 09 called "Gadgets For Bloggers". The room of our own sessions are open for anyone to propose, but only a short list will be chosen. We are all passionate about gadgets – and hope to share info at the session. So – for those BlogHers out there, I am asking for your voting help..
To vote, you login to the BlogHer website – then vote by selecting "I would attend this session". Click HERE to comment that you would attend. Only those logged in can vote.
For a view of the other proposals, Click here. We are on page 5 of the list of proposals.
Here is a link to the high level details and a list of who will be doing the session with me:
PROPOSAL FOR BLOGHER 09 ROOM OF OUR OWN: GADGETS FOR BLOGGING
Get the scoop on the latest technologies to vlog, blog, liveblog, photos, wireless, mobile technologies and more.
CONTEST is CLOSED. Due to the large number of those that entered, the winner will be announced on Thursday April 30 by 11pm.
I had the opportunity to take the The Matrix Pro smartphone by Pantech for a test run as part of a promotion that culminates with a giveaway. The Matrix Pro website is: Pantechmatrixpro.com, the key features are listed on that site. A review of the Pantech Matrix Pro can be found at ChipChick, as well as some of the other websites doing this promotion (see below). I decided to find out more about the AT&T Pantech Matrix Pro in a different way – by giving it to my 10 year old tween for test drive. I have a smartphone already, so I thought it was a great opportunity for my son to test one out. Details of my tween test drive are listed below the contest info.
This contest is open from April 23 until April 28 at 5pm pst. On April 28 at 5pm, I will close the contest. All those that commented to this post will be entered to Random.org to find a winner (ONE person will be chosen randomly). The Winner will be announced on April 28 after 9pm pst. ENTER THIS CONTEST BY COMMENTING on the post below.
AN EXTRA ENTRY IN RANDOM.ORG WILL BE ENTERED FOR THOSE THAT TWITTER @matrixpro AND @Techmama in one tweet sharing why you want this phone. Please add your Twitter ID to your comment so I know that you also tweeted for the second entry into Random.org. Only ONE EXTRA entry for twitter will be counted so that each person can have a two entry limit into Random.org.
Service credit (via gift card): In the amount of US $100. The gift card good is good for anything sold through any AT&T store (online or real-world), or can be used for the cost of a service plan.
Individuals who’ve won at another site are ineligible to win at another
Winners are limited by geography to US residents only
TechMamas.com is not responsible for any lost packages or incorrect shipping addresses. The prize is not redeemable in cash and must be accepted as awarded. Approximate value of prizes may vary.
The random winner will be choosen by Techmamas.com, all decisions are final.
MY TEST DRIVE: Disclosure: I did not
get compensation for this promotion, a phone was supplied to me in
advance of the promotion for review purposes. The information shared
about on this post is just a customer opinion.
Just as background, my son has been earning points like crazy to buy a cellphone because he said "Mom… Everyone has cellphones… Then you can reach me at any time..I need to be able to text with my friends". Yes – that is coming from a fourth grader.
that just having a cell phone was a big thrill for him, I focused on
which functionality he used on the AT&T Pantech Matrix Pro. Here
are some details (in his words, dictated to his mom):
TWO WAY SLIDER: The phone can slide in two different ways. The keyboard
is easy to use for texting and the numeric pad is quick for dialing
phone numbers. I use the trackwheel to scroll, move around or play
2. KEYPAD: The keypad is good for texting. I set my friends up in the contact section then it is easy to text them.
VOICE COMMANDS: To use the voice commands, you just hold the "rec"
button – and a list of commands is given. I tested the voice commands
by saying "play music" – and it played a song.
this by my son using a voice command to call me. I am in his contacts
as "Beth" so he said "Call Beth". The first time he did not speak
clearly but the second time he did – and it called my cellphone!)
ACCESS: By going to the start menu – then "MediaNet" I can access a
browser to access the Internet. You can type on the numeric or keypad
to type the URL, but I use the keypad. The first MediaNet screen has a
Yahoo Search Bar and I just enter the name of the website and it
returns options to me. An example is – when I type "YouTube" and it
returns the URL for YouTube – which I then select. I just watched the
Numa Numa video today by typing in "Numa Numa" into the YouTube page
(and "watch video"). It loads, I use the trackwheel for volume and
controls. The video loads quickly and plays. Depending on where I am,
it sometimes stops playing for a quick second (I told him that was called buffering – a challenge on many mobile gadgets when watching videos).
I used the phone to read your website Techmamas.com.
GAMING – There are some games preloaded on the phone, and some you have
to buy. I enjoy playing Bubble breaker that comes standard with the
phone. I could buy PACman, Tetris or others.
son set up the phone from the moment he opened the box, to accessing
the internet, to texting or making calls. The phone was easy to use.
The keys were a good size for him to use for typing. He was satisfied
with the sound and video quality – even playing music videos for his
brothers in the car to keep them busy.
TechMama and TechMamas is a trademark of Beth Blecherman
Beth Blecherman is the Chief Technologist of Cool Mom Tech, the intersection between tech, parenting and style. She left her position as a Senior Manager at Deloitte for Family Management then decided to blog as a career 2.0. Her personal blog is TechMamas.com (@TechMama ), a platform,to discuss technology, social media and her obsession with consumer electronics.In 2006 she joined on as one of the Co-Founders to Silicon Valley Moms Group (a mom blog network that covered over 11 regions). In 2010 Silicon Valley Moms Group was sold to Technorati.
Her favorite conference is CES and she is proud to be on theBoard of Advisors (and speak at) for MommyTechSummit at CES.
Beth consults with companies that have products for the family tech audience. One of her current clients is Nukotoys. There most current product is a trading game for the iPod/iPad called Monsterology (more to come!).
On TV: Beth appeared on Channel 7′s Live show for a tech segment discussing tech solutions for traveling with kids:
Beth Blecherman is a techie turned blogger mom turned authority on “Technology For Moms & Family” trends speaker, gadget expert and social media consultant. She is more then a mom blogger who discusses technology, she is a tech blogger that happens to be a mom (and is proud of the fact!).
In 2006 she joined on as one of the Co-Founders to Silicon Valley Moms Group (a mom blog network that covered over 11 regions). In 2010 Silicon Valley Moms Group was sold to Technorati.
Beth Blecherman (TechMama) has been covered in Wall Street Journal, Laptop Magazine,MSNBC, Parents.com, BBC, PBS, Forbes.com, Advertising Age and written articles for Real Simple and Scholastastic.com. She started her career in application development, system auditing, and then Senior Manager, Computer Process Integrity, for Deloitte. After senior management she decided to take on family management and started blogging as her career 2.0.
Beth founded TechMamas.com, a tech blog with a parenting slant, as a platform to discuss technology and gadgets for families. She also consults with companies on blogger outreach, outreach to “digital moms” and social media strategies as well as TRENDS for technologies and families. She is active in twitter as TechMama and regularly speaks at conferences on parenting, social media and technology.Beth is lucky to have a fabulous hubby who she will call “TechDad” and three amazing tech boys.
OTHER CURRENT PROJECTS
COOL MOM TECH: Beth Blecherman’s newest pursuit is Chief Technologist of Cool Mom Tech, the intersection of tech and style, of parenting, practicality and fabulosity, brought to you by the same moms behind the influential shopping and design site, Cool Mom Picks.
SILICON VALLEY MOMS GROUP: She was a Co-Founder and Chief Technology Mom of the Silicon Valley Moms Group, collaborative mom blogs in cities across the country. Silicon Valley Moms Group was sold to Technorati.
YAHOO: Motherboard panel, participant in Yahoo! Video Network project with Silicon Valley Moms Group. Our first video was on the Economy and the holidays.
Yesterday I read in the New York Times blog about the"Conficker Worm", a virus that is set to run on April 1st (no joke). They recommend making sure everyone has updated virus files, runs a full system scan and makes sure back-ups are up to date before April 1st. Those steps are good to do anyway to make sure your computers are as secure as possible, even though new threats happen regularly. Windows users should also make sure they have run the "windows update" and "security updates".
It is unfortunate , but new viruses pop up all the time (so this is not "new"). The only way to try to protect yourself is by installing internet security software, running auto scans, updates and doing regular backups. I also suggest having any personal financial information on a different computer then that used by the family – where lots of web surfing takes place. The more web surfing that takes place on a computer means that there will be a greater risk for computer virus infection.
While at SXSW, I received a demo of the Dell Studio One 19 Desktop. What I like about this line is that there is a multi-touch option (comes with a keyboard as well) that would make it a good choice for a kitchen or family room PC. Because the system is an all-in-one it also is a spacesaver. The system I saw also has Cozi.com Family Calendering system loaded. The starting price of $699 is friendly on the budget. Listed below are some specifications from the Dell press release.
A fun surprise after the "Moms Who Tech" SXSW09 session was when Peter Price from the BBC walked up and said they wanted some interviews. I also gave him my co-leader Shireen Mitchell's information, she was delayed by a late plane but would be coming in later that afternoon. I was glad to see the BBC covering the Moms Who Tech topic and would be interested to hear from moms in England on how they use technology. Or as they say "mums".
I lived in Maidenhead, England for six months while working for Syntex (now Roche) as a systems project manager in 1994 – before I was married. I was sent to England to design the application security for the SAP system that was being installed. I really enjoyed living in England, especially going to London. I even somehow figured out the strategy for driving through roundabouts (at first it was quite scary). While there I spent time watching and listening to the BBC and became a fan. I enjoyed many of their radio shows but one of my favorite T.V. shows was "Absoulutely Fabulous", now also in the US.
CLICK HERE to listen to the 3/17/09 SXSW Digital Planet interview interview with me (Beth Blecherman) and a few of the attendee's. If you are one of the attendee's that was interviewed, please comment with your thoughts (you did great!). The Moms Who Tech interview is during minutes 15-20. Gareth Mitchell is the presenter and Michelle Martin & Peter Price produced the show.
We were thrilled that Rachel Silverman from the Wall Street Journal blog "The Juggle" attended the SXSW "Moms Who Tech" session that I lead this week. She wrote about it in her Wall Street Journal blog "The Juggle". I have followed "The Juggle" for some time, and enjoy reading their posts (and interesting comments) on work life balance.
***MOMS WHO TECH follow-up session was at Convention Center Level 3 – Room 4 (panelist area) withShireen Mitchell.
We just finished the Moms Who Tech core conversation at SXSW, we have an amazing set of attendees who sparked a very interesting discussion. Sarah Granger was kind enough to take notes – which I will post soon. I will also be posting the names and websites of the “Moms Who Tech” in attendance. For those wanting to follow or join in the conversation, we will be using the Twitter hash tag #Momswhotech. Unfortunately, my co-leader Shireen Mitchell’s plane was late so I will be twittering using my id (TechMama) when she arrives and timing on gathering for a follow-up discussion for those interested (sometime today – hopefully at 3pm). We were thrilled to have Tiffany Galligan, Experience Director Razorfish in attendance to discuss the Cafe Mom/Razorfish “Digital Mom” study.
Here were some overall questions framing the discussion:
How do moms use tech for communication, information gathering and family management? How is tech a part of their lives as mothers? In careers, school, children’s education?
Why are increasing numbers of moms engaging in social media and using technology?
How are moms using technology to politicize & become activists?
When asked why I decided to put this together, I shared that moms:
Have digital responsibility for themselves and families
Are savvy communicators and community builders who are taking their communication online
Multitaskers that will use the available technology to make their and their families lives easier
Moms buy technology for their households and are savvy at gathering information (offline and online). Get their information from other moms (and are therefore primary purchasing influencers).
Kid’s school and social lives are now online (including HOMEWORK), so technology in family households is a MUST!
Here is the first run of “Moms Who Tech” at the session, will add more as I get the names. If I did not get your name, email me at techmamas(at)gmail(dot)com. If you were a business trying to reach out to moms please also email me your info and I will post about that separately (and thanks for coming!):
are power users of technology and social networking. This discussion
examines the gadgets and social media that they use to manage their
careers, families and friendships.
Laptop Magazine published in their August 2008 issue: "manufacturers can’t discount
the $90 billion women spend on gadgets, or the fact that they influence
61 percent of all consumer-electronics purchases, an increase of 4
percent since 2004."
Pass the word! I will post more details soon. For those coming to not-to-be-missed SXSW 2009, add "Moms Who Tech" to your SXSW schedule.
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Beth Blecherman left her position as a Senior Manager at Deloitte for Family Management then decided to blog as a career 2.0. Her personal blog is TechMamas.com (@TechMama ), a platform to discuss technology, social media and her obsession with consumer electronics.
She is the Chief Technologist of Cool Mom Tech, the intersection between tech, parenting and style.
Beth Blecherman (a.k.a TechMama) has been choosen as one of the Nielson Power Mom 50 influencers, TIME.com 140 Best Twitter Feeds, Working Mother.com List of Most Powerful Moms in Social Media , PCMag twitter top 100 and Forbes Top 100 Website for Women.