Working while you swim
I have recently restarted swimming. It’s a great way to keep fit and it really helps ease my aching muscles and joints, but it’s really boring! I recently found the solution though. I purchased a waterproof MP3 player, that looks like this:
and it works by bone conduction of sound. When the device is placed on any bones of the skull (i.e. the cheek bones or the mastoid tip) it leads to vibration of the fluid in the inner ear. Thus I can enjoy clarity of sound with the SwiMP3 device that was never before possible. Jon mentions it in his blog as well.
At first I thought I would use it mainly for music, but then I discovered the IT Conversations web site, which is chock full of really interesting downloadable talks, many of which are so relevant to my job that I can make a valid claim to be doing research while I am swimming!
I found a slight glitch in that there is no way to bookmark the point you get upto in a talk and restart at that point the next day, so for longer mp3’s I have had to split them into 20 – 30 minute segments, and after trying quite a few splitters I finally chose Cool MP3 Splitter mainly because it’s the only one that worked without admin priv on Windows 2003 Server, and it was really simple and cheap and fast.
All in all a great contribution to work life balance, and a great talking point as well!! Oh one final tip, I find foam ear plugs much better than the fancy molded versions that are supplied and if you buy them off the web in bulk they are really cheap, great of your wife snores as well!
After a good swim, I often sit by the pool (there’s a great chill out area) watching the kids play while I continue working on my Tablet PC, which is great at night when they put the lights down (too dark to read otherwise) and of course I can continue listening to talks on the tablet as well while I read cached web pages or do document reviews!