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Bring your own laptop

Bring your own laptop

This is an idea I can get behind: Corporate support for personal technology, like laptops. I wrote a modest proposal to this effect in 2005, and I still prefer to use my own laptop at work. For one thing, I don't always like the vanilla technology an employer provides. For another, I don't like it when somebody else knows the ins and outs of my equipment better than I do.

Am I insane? Maybe not. As I read on Dan Farber's blog, Gartner predicts that a bring-your-own-laptop policy will be in place at 10 percent of companies by 2008. See also Don Marti's blog (via BoingBoing), which says, "Basically treat the employee's laptop as you would treat the employee's pants: require it, pay the employee enough to buy it, and provide the infrastructure that works with it, but that's all."

Many people, of course, don't want to buy and manage their own technology, so I'd say this should be an optional plan (for laptops, not pants). Allow employees to use either a company-provided laptop or to take advantage of a technology stipend from their employer--but not both. I'd take the stipend, of course. What would you do?