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When my wife and I moved to Connecticut, we left both our families behind in Massachusetts. Now, Massachusetts isn't that far from Connecticut, but as anybody with a 3 year old can tell you, an hour and forty minutes each way with a little kid strapped down in the back seat can be an eternity.

So, since regular visits were pretty much out of the question, my wife and I were concerned about how to keep our children in touch with their grandparents. Now, the telephone is nice and all, and it serves it's purpose, but I think we can all agree that it is a low tech solution to a fairly simple problem and I didn't fritter away my college days getting an engineering degree just to apply simple solutions to simple problems. No, I needed something more...

After giving the matter a lot of thought, I found just the solution I was looking for - Intel Proshare cameras all around. I made one trip with the kids up to see both sets of grandparents, set the cameras up and we were in business.

I drove back home, eager to give the technology a try. Just think - free calls through the Internet, AND the kids get to actually see Grandma and Grandpa. What could be better than that?

I got home and immediately called my wife's parents. I figured we should start with them since they're a bit older and moved slower than my parents, giving the cameras a better chance to achieve high resolution. We sat my daughter in front of the camera, called grammy, and viola! there she was... It was a nice conversation, even if the sound was a little out of synch with the video. We repeated the process with my mother with the same results. All in all, a good night. The new technology was successfully installed and I looked forward to many nights of my kids getting to talk face to face with their grandparents.

My wife and I plopped the kids into bed and went back into the office to write out our bills. Suddenly, the video phone rang....The name of the person calling came up as "DaveB". Well, I worked with a couple of Dave Bs. Maybe one of them found me. Cool...on-line for less than an hour and already I was in closer touch with my small community of friends...

I clicked answer...

It didn't look like any Dave I knew. Well, I can't really say that for sure, because all I saw were a pair of men's legs. Specifically, it was a pair of men's legs wearing women's nylons, so chances were that it wasn't one of the Daves I knew. God, how I prayed it wasn't one of the Daves I knew.

The DaveB in question backed away from the camera revealing that he wasn't alone in the room. His girlfriend was in the room with him. She didn't even have the decency to wear nylons. She was wearing something else. I'll leave it to the imagination of the reader to guess what that was. If what I thought was going to happen actually happened, it was not going to be pretty. It happened...

My wife, sitting quietly next to me summed it up best with a quiet "oh my." I echoed the sentiment exactly. I fumbled with the mouse trying to click the window closed.

My wife and I looked at each other. Well, so much for technology. We quietly packed the camera back into it's box and put it away. No point in giving my 3 year old the opportunity to meet DaveB first hand.

So I guess it's back to the simple solution. Next time I'll just tape a picture of my mother to the computer screen and let my kids talk to her on the phone.

Steve
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