Hearing Loss Solutions Need More Technology, Federal Support

With only a fraction of the estimated 30 million older Americans with age-related hearing loss using hearing devices, “the time is ripe for a technology solution that could be helped along by federal action,” said geriatrician Christine Cassel, M.D., last week in a report on hearing issues before a government advisory council. Cassel, a member of the President’s Council of Advisors on Science and Technology (PCAST), reported her committee’s findings on how technology could help those with mild to moderate age-related …

The Thing About the Internet of Things

We’ve been hearing a lot lately about the “Internet of Things” (IoT). Often, the discussion revolves around issues associated with data privacy and cybersecurity. So what is the IoT and what’s all the fuss about? IoT refers to the ever-expanding array of devices that can communicate to external networks. While we all realize our computers and smartphones are connecting to the outside world, more and more devices such as fitness trackers, cameras, cars and thermostats are doing so as well. …

‘Serial’: Still Time to Catch Up on This Audio Whodunit

Baltimore. 1999. A girl is murdered and her body buried in a shallow grave in a city park. Her former boyfriend is convicted of the crime based on the testimony of his classmate and friend. A reporter, plagued by questions, revisits the case. There are two things you should know about the story: 1. It really happened. 2. Serial, a weekly podcast – or audio series – based on the story might well mark a breakthrough for the 10-year-old medium that you listen …

AARP Debuts RealPad Tablet

AARP debuted its first-ever consumer product at the Ideas@50+ conference in San Diego last month. Called RealPad, it’s bigger than a smartphone yet smaller than a laptop computer. The tablet was designed with tech-shy people in mind, AARP says, making it easy for them to keep in touch with family and friends — including their grandkids, for whom the art of letter writing is often a lost cause. Helping people navigate the digital age is important to AARP, says CEO Jo Ann Jenkins: …

Why I’m Ditching My Smartphone With the Kids Around

Last week I took my 4-year-old granddaughter to the dress rehearsal for her dance recital. Instead of  enjoying the show, I pulled out my iPhone to record the performance and focused on the screen. But I recorded in slow-mo by mistake; no video! I missed her dancing both real time and digitally. A few days later, heading down 42nd Street in New York, I happened upon hundreds of people with smartphones stretched overhead trying to capture a rare occurrence known …

New Tech Tools Promise to Make Caregiving Easier

Make room in your life for technology, family caregivers. That was a recurring theme at the American Society on Aging (ASA) annual conference that ended this past Saturday. And it was seconded heartily at the Boomer Summit, a daylong event held during ASA for entrepreneurs, businesses and organizations that market to boomers and older adults. At the Boomer Summit, 85 out of the 300 companies there focused on caregivers. Thousands listened to ASA panels and presentations not only on technology …