6 posts categorized "my two cents"

December 31, 2011

My Tech New Year's Resolutions Part 3: New Rules & Tech Faux Pas

image from i1137.photobucket.comLooking forward to 2012, I can't help but think about the new tech rules and laugh at some common tech faux pas.

The Bloggess started me off with a tweet last night about someone sitting on the plane next to her who was boldly demonstrating Tech Faux Pas #1: In public places, respect others by managing your electronic volume. Take some time to understand how to use earpphones and volume controls.

While this may sound fuddy duddy, just put yourself in the Bloggess' place:

image from i1137.photobucket.com

 I went on the USS Nimitz trip with the Bloggess - I know she is not someone to be messed with.

Tech Faux Pas #2 - Your ears want a break: Dear people, give us ears a break and manage the noise level when listenting to technology. Please remember that us "ears" need to be taken care of as well (starting as kids). You're not a starfish. Hearing does not grow back. Mess us ears up now, and you'll wind up being one of those people sitting in the movie theater turning to your friend and asking, "WHAT DID THEY SAY?"

Tech Faux Pas #3 - Note to tech companies - please stop with all the patent fighting for things that are common functionality:

Continue reading "My Tech New Year's Resolutions Part 3: New Rules & Tech Faux Pas" »

May 06, 2011

Top Questions To Ask Mom Before Buying Tech

Mother's Day is just around the corner and tech is top of mind for many moms. In the past I spent countless hours putting together  gift guides. But this year I decided to keep the momentum going with my well known use of Twitter microblogging at @TechMama. Starting today and this weekend I will be tweeting out articles about Mothers Day tech. So please follow me @TechMama to find out what gadgets are being recommended for moms. One of my favorite sites for this type of "cool tech for moms" is CoolMomTech.  Of course, I could not post without giving my own tips - but they may just be different then most. In fact, my tips will be the top questions to ask mom before buying her tech.

Anyone buying tech for their moms has to step back and think about what tech "infrastructure and requirements" their mom (or wife) has. How does that special mom use technology in her life? Just because an iPad2 is the hottest gadget being discussed for mother's day - does not mean that it is the right gift for mom.

WHAT? Did I actually just say that the iPad2 may not be the right gift for mom? YES... I did...

Continue reading "Top Questions To Ask Mom Before Buying Tech" »

January 30, 2010

More on the Apple iPad Debate, Why Moms Should Demand Open Web Standards

It is finally a beautiful sunny day so why I am online right now? It is that geeky side of me that has been glued to the online tech sites since the release of the Apple iPad. But not because of the iPad. I posted about the Apple iPad features which I think are a great fit for those using Apple gadgets and software already. My son has a Apple MACBook and iPod so the iPad would make a great addition, allowing him to enjoy the media he has on his iTunes, start finally reading eBooks, web browsing on the go and subscribing to online newspapers to read the news.

But what I have not seen discussed much by family bloggers is the Apple iPad's lack of flash support. I posted with my thoughts on the Apple iPad features including the lack of Adobe Flash support. To get some feedback I also tweeted ( TechMama ) about it - hearing that others were also confused. JessWeiss replied back to me with "I find the omission odd, anti-web-ish myself ". From a mom's perspective, the lack of Adobe Flash support on the Apple iPad means that there will be online content my son would not be able to access - including some of his favorite YouTube videos, CNN videos that he is now watching for news, online gaming sites and more.

I am Not so upset about him not being able to access some of the sites that the Wired Gadget Lab post pointed out. But kids can access inappropriate sites in many ways, Flash or no Flash. Internet Safety education and controls will still be an important step before any child uses any device with Internet access.

This all leads to the answer of why I am sneaking some time online while my kids are busy playing on this sunny weekend afternoon. The lack of Adobe Flash support on the Apple iPad has brought on a very interesting discussion about open web standards by the top tech minds, summarized nicely on TechMeme. For me, this is better then celebrity gossip and may even top my obsession with celebrity red carpet dresses..

Ok, I am a real geek..

Talk about geeks - Robert Scoble wrote a post today titled "Can Flash Be Saved?" on his blog Scobleizer that summed up the debate: "Adobe’s best hope is to get Android to support Flash and Adobe’s best hope is that developers ignore the iPad and ignore the iPhone, or, at least, build better experiences on the Android and Google Chrome platforms that include Flash". Click HERE to ready the whole post on Scobleizer, it provides a developer perspective to the current debate. He is a dad that seems to be spending his sunny weekend day the same way I am.

As a mom who is a PC user that also supports a household with numerous Apple products, I just wish everyone would stop going off in their corners and using applications with different web standards. I am tired of broken links.

I am giving tech companies a time out; You are leaving your customers confused and backing them into cyber walls. Please just adopt some open web standards already! Let gadgets communicate with  applications across the web. I will be happy and thrilled to pay for content over the web - as long as I can just get some open standards already.

Continue reading "More on the Apple iPad Debate, Why Moms Should Demand Open Web Standards" »

January 28, 2010

Apple iPad: Discussion of Features and The Name

My first step in coverage of the Apple iPad was to understand the features not only as a techie but as a mom that appreciates mobile gadgets. Yesterday I posted a write-up with all the information I could find about the Apple iPad features. Looking at the Apple iPad features I listed yesterday, there were many that make the iPad a valuable tool, including it's user friendly design and interface, attractive build and access to a large number of applications from the iPhone (140,000 as of today), entertainment media and eBook libraries. These are all features that moms and families look for on a mobile gadget.  Today I wanted to look more into the Apple iPad features and reflect on the much discussed name "iPad".

The features:

While writing the post about the features I did wonder if the Apple iPad had a webcam as some had speculated before the official announcement. Mashable wrote a post that summarized what features are missing, including a camera and no USB port. The Mashable article also summarized that the Apple iPad seemed to be centered on "media consumption, not creation". Another missing feature in my opinion is the video webcam, which would of allowed use of Skype via the WiFi functionality, live video and video recording. Video recording is a popular feature many use on mobile gadgets, especially after seeing the video's being made on the iPhone 3GS.

Walt Mossberg in his first impressions also mentioned the applications and build as a plus, but had questions about the comfort of using the virtual keyboard. Because I have not had any hands on exposure to the Apple iPad yet, I can't add any personal experience about the keyboard.  David Pogue posted in the New York Times with his first impressions of the iPad and I agree that the iPad is like a giant iPod Touch. I also agree that reading eBooks or newspapers and watching TV shows or Movies (from iTunes) are a "natural" for the iPad. The iPad as an eReader for books and newspaper is a strong feature.

The next question I had was if the Apple iPad supports Flash. From what I have found, it currently does not support Adobe Flash. One of the posts on TechMeme that discussed this was from Anthony Ha of VentureBeat titled "No Flash on Apple’s iPad".

The Adobe Flash Platform blog posted with the following details: "without Flash support, iPad users will not be able to access the full range of web content, including over 70% of games and 75% of video on the web".  The Adobe Flash platform blog also posted that Flash Developers are working on iPad applications, which will be an advantage for the iPad moving forward. Here is that post: Adobe Flash Platform Blog -   Building iPad Applications with Flash:

"We announced the Packager for iPhone at MAX 2009 which will allow Flash developers to create native iPhone applications and will be available in the upcoming version of Flash Pro CS5. This technology enables developers to create applications for the iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad (though applications will not initially take direct advantage of iPad’s new screen resolution). It is our intent to make it possible for Flash developers to build applications that can take advantage of the increased screen size and resolution of the iPad."

**UPDATE Apple iPad - Adobe Flash info 1/29: The 9To5MAC Blog posted "The iPad has Adobe's Flash on Apple's video" and Mashable posted "Adobe Calls Out Apple for Lack of Flash on iPad".

I have also been actively asking for input on Twitter to see what other's think about Adobe Flash not being supported on the Apple iPad. Others also view that as "anti-webish".  I do think that it is important to pay for content. I will be HAPPY to pay for magazines and eBooks - that is important to support authors and journalists. But I also feel that new gadgets should also allow users to view free content as well through sites such as YouTube (that requires Adobe Flash to view).  That balance is something that will be of much debate moving forward**

I also found a few other posts on TechMeme that added information about the iPad features:

Continue reading "Apple iPad: Discussion of Features and The Name" »

January 20, 2010

My Kids Are Awake With Access to Tech, But Pretend Play Is Still King

Kids-technologyThis morning I opened up the New York Times and read the article by Tamar Lewin called "If Your Kids Are Awake, They're Probably Online". Later I saw the New York Times article had made it to Techmeme.

While reading the article I took a moment to look at what my kids were doing. Were my kids using any technology this morning?

So I decided to review the morning's activities: After my 10 year old and twin 6 year old boyBoys-pillow-fights ate breakfast, they went into our living room (affectionately called the "bouncy room" because sofa pillows are used for forts and jumping) for some pretend play before school. They had rolled up paper for swords and were pretending to fend off the "bad guys". A few nerf guns sneaked their way in, but had no bullets so they ended up being a prop as well. When it is was time to leave, my boys put on their little yellow rain boots and rain jackets and went to school.

All of this "pretend play" happened in our house that is full of technology. We have multiple laptops including my 10 year old that has his own laptop, iPod and Nintendo DSi. My twin 6 year olds have Leapfrog moblie gaming units and their older brother's hand me down Nintendo DS's. The TV in our family room may be 10 years old, but it still works great. We have Direct TV DVR's and a Nintendo Wii. We have multiple Nintendo racing, sports and Mario Bros Wii games with lots of accessories and just recently purchased the Tony Hawk Thride game and accessory board. My 10 year old has a simple cell phone that is "Pay as you Go" with no data plan but ample calling and texting. His friends have the Sony Playstation and they enjoy playing Lego Star Wars. We only have one TV in our family room, but multiple computer screens in our house.

The New York Times article "If Your Kids Are Awake, They're Probably Online" brought up some very interesting discussion points about how much time kids are spending on technology each day:

Continue reading "My Kids Are Awake With Access to Tech, But Pretend Play Is Still King" »

November 27, 2008

Thankful for Being A Mom Blogger Who Techs

I had one of those defining moments yesterday at a pre-Thanksgiving celebration. I was talking to a man who is a muckity-muck (Executive) at a top technology company. Armed with a long list of tech and gadget blogs I read every day, I asked "what blogs do you read?".

His answer, made me stop and think. Here is a summary of our discussion:

Tech Muckity-Muck Executive Guy: I read the Silicon Valley Moms Blog and another mom blog along with tech blogs.

TechMama: What, you read Silicon Valley Moms Blog and another moms blog?

Tech Muckity-Muck Executive Guy: Yes, I really enjoy reading mom blogs. The moms are "real" and (as a father myself) I relate to their experiences.

TechMama (who is also Chief Technology Mom and one of the Co-Founders of the Silicon Valley Moms Group blogs): Blush, Blush... Well - that is great.

...quiet moment, Techmama trying to hide her surprise that Tech Muckity-Muck Guys read mom blogs...decided to change the subject...

TechMama: So tell me what at your favorite technology gadgets, I am in the middle of writing my technology guide...

So today, on Thanksgiving I am sharing being thankful to be a mom blogger and a tech blogger, and have access to the amazing communities related to both areas. I decided to share more of my personal opinions on TechMamas instead of only going all tech newsy and gadgety. In my effort to build my creds as a tech blogger I somehow stopped sharing my personal opinions. Today I decided I can do both.

So is born the category "my two cents".

Happy Thanksgiving, especially to Tech Muckity-Muck Guys who read mom blogs. Or as my mom blogger buddy Jessica from the LA Moms Blog says "I am a Mother - not a mom blogger".

UPDATE: I don't want to forget the amazing Dad Bloggers, I just got a Thanksgiving email from one (Gunfigher: A Modern Warrior's Life) today so I decided to add them to my thankful list. Of course my favorite Dad Blogger is hubby Neil Blecherman.

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