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Text Shouts Outs

In the spirit of Discovery Channel’s Cash Cab, use your device to text out questions to your friends when you need a quick answer.  (Although there are a number of web sites that also specialize in this type of knowledge acquisition, I find that my friends know me the best and are the most reliable.  I use my mobile Rolodex for this, ie my device.)  Unlike Cash Cab, you don’t need to be in a taxi to send out a call out and you, by all means, should not be behind a wheel.

On the real Cash Cab, unsuspecting taxi riders climb into a quiz cab and are barraged by questions.   Right answers earn money.  Three strikes and they tossed out.  In real life, we are barraged by a myriad of topics we know nothing about but are important, at least at the moment.  Your mobo friends are your lifeline.


You have a unique question that you know will not be found online.  For example, your friends insist that you’ve never been to the top of any mountains in Colorado. Insist as you do, there is no convincing these people.


Using your mobile device, text out your question or request to friends and acquaintances.  This is considered important mobo tradecraft.  Ask them to text back an answer post haste.


Many questions that you encounter during the course of conversations are simply not answerable online.  That may pertain to esoteric or personal topics.  In these cases, use a textual call out.

  1. Frame the question so that it can be texted easily.
  2. Identify friends (or better yet, groups of friends) that have the best chance of answering the question.
  3. If this is an open question posed by your conversation-mates and you have been challenged to come up with the answer, then bring out your device and begin entering the question.
  4. Send out the question (the Shout Out) to your friends and wait for the answer.  Make polite small talk as you wait.
  5. Re-send the question if there is no response.
  6. When you get an answer, acknowledge the responder.

This technique works best when there is a good fit between the question and the responder.  In the case of the mountains in Colorado, you will find that pictures of you atop Pikes’ Peak settled the argument quite easily.

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