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Art Wittmann
Art Wittmann
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BlackBerry Tips from the Field

Ok, I'm done obessing over the iPhone. Five months is a long to drool over a phone. And like other, ahem, mature technologists - I'll probably wait for the second generation (yeah, right). As I mentioned previously, I got some...

Ok, I'm done obessing over the iPhone. Five months is a long to drool over a phone. And like other, ahem, mature technologists - I'll probably wait for the second generation (yeah, right). As I mentioned previously, I got some great responses to my original BlackBerry column. One came from Paul L., of Greenwich CT. With his kind permission, I've listed his tips here. The only part of Paul's advice I can't get my arms around has to do with the holster. Can't bring myself to clip that thing to my belt. Maybe I'll stick the holster in my briefcase, but the phone goes in my pocket. 1) If you get a lot of Spam, you better fix that first. Nothing more aggravating than Spam on a BB. It will interrupt you constantly. I get none, as we use Postini for filtering, and I can't speak highly enough of that service.

2) Learn the difference between "in holster" and "out of holster" alerts. The majority of BB's will recognize when they are in the holster. I set mine to silent when out of holster. In this way, in a meeting, I can slip it part way out, and won't be interrupted. At our company, it is a major violation of etiquette to get buzzed or beeped in a meeting.

3) Use the out of holster at home. Then you can check it when you feel like it, and not feel tethered to it and feel the urge to go read it every time it beeps.

4) Learn to set a different alert for high priority messages. On the BB, these are called "level 1 messages". When on vacation, you can set your BB to ONLY receive level 1 messages. Tell your important contacts to use high priority to reach you.

5) Learn the filters. When I go on vacation, I set the filters to only get email from a few close friends and anything high priority. Vacation is vacation, and I know I have ruined my mood more than once getting an aggravating email that really could have waited.

Art Wittmann is a former editor for InformationWeek. View Full Bio
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