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: …

George Takei in Boston: Smartphone Physicals and Gene Therapy

Smartphones can do just about anything these days, from shooting movies to following our every move – from connecting to smoke detectors to counting our steps and calories. On a recent visit to AARP’s Health Innovation@50+ start-up business showcase in Boston, tech explorer George Takei found a number of new phone attachments and apps aimed at making formerly complicated health tests cheaper and more readily available, adding up to a “smartphone physical.” These include: An electrocardiogram in a smartphone case …

Web Series ‘My Mom on Movies’ Highlights Dynamic Mother-Son Duo

Most adult children will tell you they think their mothers are superstars, but Pat Seftel really is one – thanks to her film director son, Josh. The two collaborate on a Web series, My Mom on Movies, in which Pat shares her observations about everything from movie stars (she loves Bradley Cooper) to books (she embarrassed herself talking about 50 Shades of Grey) and politics (she says Anthony Weiner is in “deep doo-doo”). It all started when Josh’s father died, …

Helping 50+ Americans Master Personal Technology

At the bustling convention center in downtown Boston, a lot of people seem eager to learn as much as they can about personal technology. In one area of the cavernous hall, a speaker tells a rapt audience about the various apps that can be used for entertainment, from listening to music and watching TV shows to buying movie tickets and making dinner reservations. In another part of the pavilion, a teacher instructs the crowd seated at long tables about the basics …

Why Is Facebook Messing With How We Text?

If you’re on Facebook, you probably text with friends who are also logged in, as you go about scanning the news and pictures in your feed. On a desktop computer or iPad, nothing much about messaging will change for you in the coming weeks. But on mobile, Facebook has a plan you should know about. Messaging is being removed from the main Facebook Mobile app on Apple iPhone and Android phones, and will be handled by a standalone application called …