Why Phoning Your Children Just Isn’t Enough

The medium is the message, Marshall McLuhan famously noted. And in a touch screen world, our relationships with our adult children improve with the more communications media we use. While millennials enjoy chatting on the phone or Skype, they also want parents to “lurk” on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and other social media so we can follow (not intrusively, though) their lives. That’s the finding of a study by University of Kansas doctoral student Jennifer Schon. “We found that young adults …

‘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 …

Technology’s Brave New World: Crossing the Digital Divide

Charlotte Whittaker – AARP Kentucky Volunteer It’s a Brave New World and I want to be a part of it – online. Growing up in rural west Kentucky, I never imagined having the world at my fingertips. But, my tablet and my smartphone both fit in my purse and they are my ticket to the Web and everything I want to know. I was thrilled when invited to join AARP Live on RFD-TV and talk about how I’m using technology …

On Grandparents Day, Let’s Get Connected Through Technology!

Many of us still fondly remember talking on the old-fashioned rotary dial phone with the curly cord. At one time, just about every home had one. But when it comes to the new forms of communications and technology, there is a digital divide between old and young that needs swift action. And AARP is seeking to close the gap with online training in digital technology especially suited for people who are age 50-plus. With Grandparents Day on Sunday, Sept. 7, …

Loving Long-Distance Grandparents Celebrate Grandparents Day

My grandparents were a big part of my life, even though they lived an eight-hour drive away. My parents have lived even farther away from most of their grandchildren. According to AARP’s 2012 grandparent study, we are not alone: 43 percent of grandparents have to travel 200-plus miles to see the grandchildren who live farthest from them. It was a challenge, but we spent most of our vacations with my grandparents. They also wrote us letters, and we talked regularly …

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: …