I’m sitting in bed, wirelessly of course, checking email, IMing with my kids (they tolerate this, barely and only in bursts), and trying to figure out how to use Skype. Is this a personal best, or the technology equivalent of getting a tattoo?
Skype was just bought by ebay, but here’s something from a New York Times article of a couple months ago:
“Let’s start with Skype. This is the system that allows anyone with a computer and a broadband connection to call mobile or land-line telephones almost anywhere on earth for pennies per minute. When two people are at computers running Skype, they can talk to each other (using a headset or microphone) as long as they want, with sound quality far better than that of telephones, absolutely free. Skype conference calls can include up to five participants – I have used this feature to talk simultaneously, from Washington, with people in England, New Zealand and California, at no cost to any of us. Working out the time zones was the real challenge.
“Skype resembles Google, the gold standard of modern computing, in several ways. Its adoption rate has been phenomenal. When I wrote about it last September, it had been downloaded a total of 21 million times. Now the total is 100 million, and at any given moment more than two million Skype conversations are under way. Like Google, Skype keeps introducing new features – for instance, “SkypeIn,” released two days ago, which allows users to create a local phone number and have all calls to that number forwarded to the user’s Skype connection, wherever in the world that might happen to be. As with Google, once you get used to Skype, it’s hard to imagine doing without.”