Grade 4 Science Fair from 7300 Miles Away


When a family operates from two different parts of the world, technology to the rescue:

My fourth grader is working on his science fair, due next week. This evening Boston time (7pm) he is working on his experiment. I am walking to walk in Shanghai financial district 8am. We hate a brief Facetime chat while I was eating breakfast. During my walking commute, my iPhone beeped. My son WeChat'ed me a question. We WeChat'ed back and forth a few times, and he is off continuing working on the experiment.

Think of all the technology involved:

  • real time video conferencing using Facetime
  • (relatively) High speed internet in a Shanghai apartment
  • High speed Fios internet connection in the US
  • 3G data network on my iPhone in Shanghai
  • Social network chatting app WeChat developed in China

We mostly take this for granted now. But this is "star Trek'esque" stuff when I was a kid.