Technology can do wonderful things for broadcast journalists. With near-universal 3G coverage and extensive superfast wifi the old issues of getting material back to the newsroom are gone. One click and the audio or pictures ping up on an editor's workstation - and those shiny, shiny smartphones can do audio, HD quality video, texts, email and Twitter all in the palm of your hand.They can point you to the nearest Starbucks even if they can't (yet) make a brew. And it's even possible to make the occasional phone call on them.
My trainee journos at Leeds Trinity are well clued up on the possibilities, and over this week they'll be putting theory into practice, producing multimedia web pages as they follow top industry speakers taking part in our annual Journalism Week. If it moves or squeaks within a hundred metres of the Mary Hallaway Lecture Theatre it'll be on the web within seconds. Just watch the hashtag #ltjw go global.
There is, however, something in all this that worries me.
When I address a Journalism Week audience I sometimes fail to make eye contact with anyone, as the whole theatre is engrossed in the process of live reporting. There's a danger that understanding what I, or an invited guest, has to say becomes secondary to the dumb process of capturing the now.
If I were to assert, in a firm and level tone, that 'the future of news lies in cauliflowers' I'm confident a proportion of my audience would Tweet, live blog, Vine and Audioboo that statement uncritically.
The role of the journalist in observing and, crucially, interpreting and contextualising events is diminished when their role is reduced to that of a multi-function USB input device. That's what we are in danger of doing if we fetishise the tools of the trade to the point where they become more important than the story.
Today's iPhone is tomorrow's Sinclair ZX Spectrum. By 2030, if we're not all walking around like style clones of Brains from Thunderbirds, viewing the world through Google Glass, we may have living rooms like the holodeck on the Starship Enterprise, allowing Dame Kay Burley to lead us immersively through news stories as we pick our way around the virtual debris of that year's Independence Square. The iPhone will be as up-to-date and relevant as this - my cool news editor's mobile from 1993 (with an '0836' number).
For the sake of the audiences we serve, let's not take our eyes off the story to serve the machines. We're journalists. We're better than that - when the technology serves us, not the other way around.
(For a much more balanced appraisal of the value of iPhones in newsgathering take a look at Glen Mulcahy's blog, which I found most informative)