May 2012

Enough boomer brilliance – let’s move on

Reaching the end of my boomer ‘ain’t we cool’ rope.  Rant on. Got one of those ’10 baby boomers inventions that rocked our world’ e-mails today from a party who will remain nameless, but wanted to be credited should I publish it.  It felt familiar. Why, it was remarkably similar to a 2010 Reuters reprint of an article: Baby boomer inventions that changed the world which itself was an excerpt from a book by Patrick Kiger. No clue how many articles pre-date that one that noted the Jarvik heart, WWW, the Apple II, DNA, blah, blah, blah.  The self-aggrandizement (and marketing promotional opportunity) of boomers and those who wish to make a buck off of them – it's enough to make one gag.  And, as they say, I ARE one, and yeah, my business supposedly targets that demographic. >>> Read more . . .

Ten new technologies for aging in place

Rounding up from a series of press releases, encounters and other notifications accumulated over the past few months, from the very small firm to the very large, from the very new to the very new release, here are some new technologies and/or services that may be new to you, for use by or in support of older adults.  All material is from the vendor published information: >>> Read more . . .

Tech support comes of age

Facebook friends are fine, but devices rule. Yesterday’s Facebook hullabaloo should be placed in a larger context – not only do they not make a physical product, but your Friends beam at you through a gazillion different and ever-more-mobile devices.  Forget Facebook for a second, because it might be just today’s pet rock front end. Let’s mull over those gazillion different devices. Just who will support you, regardless of your age and how tech smart you think you are, as they multiply in your environment like weeds? Who helps you with making these devices work properly with other tablets, computers, and cloud and installed software? The Genius at the bar is a bit vendor-specific, don’t you think? And the IT folks that you know are busy battling enterprise-wide viruses, and there you are at home and on the phone, with your relatives of all ages as they peer helplessly at glowing screens, plaintively intoning that old refrain, “But it worked yesterday!” >>> Read more . . .

The skills of life expectancy -- working past 65

Perhaps we need a new set of work and life expectations.  Doesn't it strike you as interesting that the so-called 'retirement' age (that is when you can receive full Social Security benefits) has been 65 for a long time? It has bumped up just recently -- but then so has average life expectancy. According to data compiled by the Social Security Administration:  "A man reaching age 65 today can expect to live, on average, until age 83. A woman turning age 65 today can expect to live, on average, until age 85. And those are just averages. About one out of every four 65-year-olds today will live past age 90, and one out of 10 will live past age 95." The oldest age that SSA considers for initial full eligibility is 67 -- for those born in 1960 or later. Meanwhile, the average anticipated retirement age in the US is, what a surprise, age 67.   >>> Read more . . .

You can’t always get the email you want

Biting the hand that reads you.  Your inbox, I bet, is filled with stuff you don’t want, some of which gets trapped into your spam filters and can be made to disappear with a poof. But what if the sender’s software thinks it is smarter than you are at knowing what that is?  Lately this has happened more than once and I think it is a bit creepy. Today’s example is LinkedIn, which has monitoring tools to see if you’ve opened the e-mail it has sent you. If you don’t open the e-mail often enough, LinkedIn helpfully offers you the opportunity to reduce the frequency of those digests -- summary of posts from my membership in forty LinkedIn Groups.  “Would I like to switch from daily to weekly?” Ya know, if it was really that irritating, maybe I would have switched the settings myself. So I switched the setting back to daily – but LinkedIn will no doubt try to outsmart me. >>> Read more . . .

Born this Way: The 50+ Folks are Digital Immigrants & Innocents

 Back in 2001, Marc Prensky coined the terms digital native and digital immigrants in this seminal paper. He said, "Today's average college grads have spent less than 5,000 hours of their lives reading, but over 10,000 hours playing video games (not to mention 20,000 hours watching TV).  Computer games, email, the Internet, cell phones and instant messaging are integral parts of their lives." Today’s young adults are "native speakers" of the digital language of computers, video games and the Internet. Digital natives have always been around technology and devices. They are accustomed to trying new tech, having things not work right, and talking to their digital native friends to group troubleshoot and learn what works best.  >>> Read more . . .