The Keeping-Track Edition Monday, November 22, 2021

For Seniors Using Tech To Age In Place, Surveillance Can Be The Price Of Independence, by Heather Kelly, Washington Post

On the surface the benefits of home and health monitoring technology seem obvious. A flow of information about the older person can put a caretaker at ease and help keep track of physical or cognitive decline. It is a way to extend the amount of time they are able live in their own homes before moving to someplace like a retirement or nursing home.

But the devices, many of which grew out of security and surveillance systems, can take privacy and control away from a population that is less likely to know how to manage the technology themselves. The idea of using tech to help people as they age is not a problem, say experts, but how it’s designed, used and communicated can be. Done wrong or without consent, it is one-way surveillance that can lead to neglect. Done right, it can help aging people be more independent.

How To Keep Work Notifications From Taking Over Your Life, by David Nield, Wired

At best you're going to find your leisure and relaxation time interrupted by distracting pings; at worst, they're going to pull you into completing a task or following up on a job that can wait until tomorrow (or after the weekend.) If you're not getting notifications, you don't know what you're missing—in the best possible way. Here's how to set it up.


New FaceTime Features: Links, Grids, And A Web App, by Josh Centers, TidBITS

Previously, FaceTime worked just like a traditional phone call, which was intuitive but made FaceTime calls difficult to schedule and manage. After Zoom exploded in popularity during the early days of the pandemic, it became obvious that the capability to create a link to an upcoming video conference was indispensable. It took Apple long enough, but the company has finally copied that feature.

The Ultimate Guide To Picking The Right Apple Watch As A Gift, by Jake Peterson, Lifehacker

If you’re buying a gift for someone with an iPhone, it’s likely they have an Apple Watch on their list (if they don’t own one already). Apple Watch is the most popular smartwatch in the world; the only problem is, there are quite a few of them to choose from. Between the Series 3, Series 7, SE, and others, how do you know which one you should buy as a gift this holiday season?

Apple Offering Up To $200 Gift Card With Select Products Starting On Black Friday Through Cyber Monday, by Sami Fathi, MacRumors

Apple will be offering customers up to a $200 Apple Store gift card alongside purchases of eligible products as part of its annual four-day shopping event that begins on Black Friday, November 26, until Cyber Monday on November 29.

This App Makes Time-saving Keyboard Shortcuts Even More Powerful, by Craig Lloyd—Zapier, Fast Company

At its most basic, Keyboard Maestro is a tool for creating all sorts of shortcuts and macros for automating stuff on your Mac. Open a website, copy files into a specific folder, or launch an application, all with keyboard shortcuts or other triggers. You can have stuff automatically happen when you quit a certain application, when a file is moved into a particular folder, or even when you draw a certain gesture with your mouse or trackpad. And that’s really just scratching the surface.

Popular Travel App Tripsy Gets A Big Update For The Obsessive Planner, by Oliver Haslam, iMore

Tripsy now offers three different ways to create trips — including trips that don't yet have a date.


The Future Of Digital Assistants Is Queer, by Salomé Gómez-Upegui, Wired

“Q was designed to start a conversation around why we gender technology when technology has no gender to begin with,” says Ryan Sherman, one of Q’s co-creators. To design the voice, a team of linguists, sound engineers, and creatives collaborated with nonbinary individuals and sampled different voices to land on a sound range they felt had the potential to disrupt the status quo and represent nonbinary people in the world of AI.

Bottom of the Page

I'm glad that Apple is working with health-related products. I'm surprised that Apple is working on a self-driving car, rather than a self-driving wheelchair.



Thanks for reading.