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Is Interpersonal Communication in Decline?

Chances are you have seen it, and even perhaps recently: several people sitting at a table looking at their phones and not talking to each other. A couple decades ago, a scene like that would probably only be imaginable in a science fiction movie. However, it is depressingly familiar now.

If you like people watching, it is a lot less interesting these days because half the people who go by are just looking at their phones. It is like we are turning into an army of zombified clones.

Ironically, cellphones were supposed to make communication easier. They have succeeded in that respect to some degree; when was the last time you had to run around looking for a payphone? However, when smartphones came along and made it possible to browse the Internet, your phone’s purpose suddenly took on a whole new dimension.

It is no longer just a phone, but a small computer that you carry with you at all times. Smart phones became the centre of entertainment for many people and led to a new form of addiction. How many times a day do you look at your smart phone? You might be rather horrified to hear the number.

One result that is clear is that interpersonal communication is in decline. People spend so much time now looking at screens, the old tradition of “let us get together for coffee sometime” has morphed into “let us get together at the coffee shop, sit at the same table, but say virtually nothing to each other.”

Some people now communicate only by texting, even when they and the recipient are in the same home. That has further led to a significant decline in the quality of conversation because people get sick of typing words that have more than four or five characters. It is a sad state of affairs that is likely to continue getting worse.

Technology for Seniors

Many people consider technology to be something that seniors have trouble grasping. While the elderly do have lower technology adoption rates than other groups, that number is on the rise. While you may not be as likely to see your grandmother checking out Facebook on her smartphone, there is still technology out there that is actually quite valuable for seniors to adopt.

Hearing Aids

These have been around for decades, but technological improvements have made them smaller and more accurate, with longer lasting batteries.

Tablets and iPads

“Use it or lose it” is an old saying that applies to a lot of things, including your mind. Seniors who do not make regular use of their cognitive functions are at greater risk of problems in this area. Even just a few games or puzzles on a tablet or iPad provides a convenient way for the elderly to easily exercise their mental muscles.

Skype

Seniors often feel isolated. While the telephone helped to alleviate that, long distance rates can be quite high. Online services like Skype help to keep people in touch, plus the video component allows everyone to see one another, increasing the value of a call.

GPS

We can tend to lose our way as we age, a problem that becomes more pronounced in cases of  Alzheimer’s disease. If your elderly loved one is getting lost, a GPS can be a great way to keep them on track.

Wireless Internet

This is pretty much a must for anyone with a smartphone, tablet, or iPad. Having a wireless set-up in the home helps to keep users from going over their data rates and incurring costly penalties.

Health Tracking Software

If a senior has trouble forgetting when to take their medications, you can install programs on their computer or laptop that provides reminders.

How Many People Even Need TVs Anymore?

I recently posted about the new line of 4K TVs and their advantages. Chances are if you have seen one in stores, you would probably like to have it. They look great and the low prices/increasingly large screen sizes make it more inviting than ever to have movie night at home.

However, then I thought about how so many young people do not own TVs anymore. I guess it makes sense: so many people have dropped cable and rely on streaming for their entertainment. Many of them watch these video files on their computers, laptops, or even their phones. CNN reported last year that the average American spends about ten hours a day looking at screens of various types. Yikes!

Call me old-fashioned (or just call me old), but I like to see things on a big screen. It’s easier to appreciate the detail and craftsmanship on display in movies. Also, as my eyesight will get increasingly worse with age, bigger will also just be better.

However, young people are forward thinking when it comes to technology. They like the convenience and portability of laptops and smartphones, and the ability to watch things on the go. If that means, a six inch screen, then so be it.

Of course, you don’t necessarily have to have cable or a disc player to justify owning a 4K or even 1080p set. More and more companies are offering 4K streams of content. If your internet strength is sufficient, that can mean a very nice looking and sounding presentation.

Will TVs go the way of landlines? Doubtful. People enjoy their large screens and the increasing ability to simulate the movie going experience at home with vivid imagery and great sound.  However, when push comes to shove and people are forced to make decisions on their home equipment, small and portable will likely win out over large and flashy.

Is It Time to Buy a 4K TV?

Technology seems to change on a monthly basis. It was not so long ago that we were being sold the glories of 1080p HD. But now the new industry buzzword is 4K. This new super HD format makes old cathode ray tube TVs seem like cave paintings. 4Ks resolution is 3840 pixels × 2160 lines. That’s a lot of information and that means incredibly vivid imagery that seems to supply image depth without the inconvenience of 3D.

A couple years back, 4K sets were super expensive. Technology is always costly for early adopters, but 4K prices have been coming steadily down and are now comparable with the cost of a quality 1080p set.

If your 1080p set continues to serve you well, there is no immediate reason for you to upgrade. Chances are prices will continue to fall and you could end up with a real bargain in a year or so. However, if you are in the market for a new TV, then you should absolutely consider a 4K.

Some streaming services already offer content in 4K and Canadian cable companies are catching up in that regard. Of course, with that huge data stream, you had better make sure there are no problems with your internet connection. If you like movies, this can be a great way to see them. But if you want the full benefit of 4K, you will need to invest in a 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray player. No matter how good a data stream looks, it will suffer from some degree of digital compression. Ultra HD Blu-rays have some compression as well, but not nearly as much. If you are really keen to have the best image available under current technology, a 4K TV and this format are the way to go.

In short: if you need a new set, definitely go for 4K!

Are the Cameras in Smartphones Good Enough for You?

It’s getting more and more difficult to remember the days when you had to load film into a camera, take it out, schlep it over to a place that develops film, wait a few days, and then have to pay for the prints. Hell, for some of us, it’s even getting hard to remember what it was like to own a camera. Thanks to smartphones, we have mini photographic and video studios with us at all times. But is the picture quality from a smartphone good enough for your purposes?

The short answer appears to be, yes, they are good enough for the average person. The convenience of smartphones has caused camera sales to plummet, though there are enough hardy hobbyists out there to make their continued manufacture more than worthwhile.

However, for the average person, the smartphone camera meets their needs and the overall quality of these cameras continues to improve. They also make it incredibly easy to instantly share those pictures.

Another huge plus is image editing features. While not offering you as many options as Photoshop, the image editing features in most phones will more than suffice for basic changes and fixes. Image come out too dark? The brightness and contrast features will likely give you something usable.

Smartphones are also incredibly easy to carry around with you, often even more so than a compact camera. Most people would prefer not to carry around two things when one is good enough.

One drawback with smartphones is the lack of lens selection. You can always “pinch” the image and make it larger, but that usually means a noticeable decrease in quality. A proper camera’s zoom lens will do a much better job of enlarging distant detail without reducing it in quality.

Regular cameras will also give you greater resolution, but cameraphones are getting better and better in that regard, too!

Drones Built For Everyone

The most common technology used in different purposes are drones. The drones have each uniqueness in terms of the models. There are drones for air, land and water. Drones for air usually used to capture scenery above the land which is called aerial shot. Drones for land are particularly used for searching dangerous place such as buildings that announced to have an exploding device for example. Lastly, the drones for water is typically used for inspections of the body of water, structures underwater and more. All drones built in with camera that used to view the real time events going on in the surroundings. It helps the pilot to access and inspect the place without getting involve physically.

drone

Drones use for air and land reached already its highest pick during the days when the drones were being produced in the market. People buying and curious on how it works which really get each individual interest to purchase unit for themselves. Drones for underwater been known and use only this year. As people found it useful and beneficial in many ways such as an underwater drone for both work and entertainment purposes. On the subject of entertainment, people use the underwater drones to explore the body of water without getting wet and be harm by huge carnivores’ creatures. In terms of work related, underwater drones used for inspections of the structures built below like pipes and tanks, studying the ecosystem of the creatures and surroundings and many more.

The underwater drones can be use in different industries. One of the industry underwater drones used is Agriculture. For monitoring and inspections, only drones can do the job quickly and easily. It makes the job easy, more effective and it’s a portable system.