Posted in cell phones, digital devices, parents and technology

My iPhone was GONE, I Thought – But Then It Was Rescued!

arlington storm drainSometimes you think something is permanently lost, but with a bit of perseverance, it can be found again.

We parked our car near a restaurant and started to get out. I was holding my iPhone, but just as I opened the door something made me lose my balance a bit, and I dropped my cell. Usually this is not a problem, because I have a well-lined case that ensures my phone is not damaged when I drop it.

Unfortunately, this time when I looked down I saw my iPhone 4s hit the ground and — almost in slow motion — slide into the storm drain. I was stunned.

My husband tried to get me to explain what had happened, but it took a while, because for a few moments I stood there, speechless. Then I threw up my hands tearfully, assuming that after dinner at the restaurant we would head over to the Apple Store where I would purchase a new model that I was planning to buy anyway.

Wait a minute, my husband said.                                     Continue reading “My iPhone was GONE, I Thought – But Then It Was Rescued!”

Posted in cell phones, digital devices, gadget ownership, iPhones and iPads, parents and technology, tips and tricks

40 Really Cool Tips for iPhone Users

emojis
The emoji keyboard has several icon screens.

iPhones seem to have unlimited features to tweak. Since I have owned iPhones for more than four years, I tend to believe I am pretty expert about using them.

Then I read this Christian Science Monitor article, 40 iPhone Tips and Tricks Everyone Should Know, and discovered that I still have quite a few cool new things to learn. The February 2012 report, by Megan Riesz, Eoin O’Carroll, and Chris Gaylord, includes a few far-fetched suggestions that I will never do — in my case some the ideas for tweaking Siri — but it also includes several iPhone tweaks that I’ve already added as I was making my way through the 40 tips.

A Few of My Favorites

  1.   Create an “app “out of a website that you visit a lot.
  2.   Take better pics with HDR photography.
  3.  Install the “emojis” keyboard with lots of little pics and icons — especially nice for texting.
  4.  Take a screen shot on the iPhone.

 

Posted in 21st Century Learning, apps, assessing learning, digital learning, parents and technology

Wordfoto – Great Fun With Pictures and Word Lists

One of my sunflower pictures with words added for a presentation on professional development.

I have a new favorite app — Wordfoto. Interestingly it’s designed for an iPhone but does not yet have an iPad version.

With the Wordfoto application, I make a word list and then have some fun designing art. I select a picture as a background to highlight my words. I can use an image that comes with the app, I can use one of the pictures in my iPhone photo galleries, or I can take a new picture.

When I combine the picture and the word list — voila, a cool Wordfoto. The app comes with a variety of editing options, allowing users to play with the image, crop it, create styles, and fine tune the texture of the pictures. Wordfoto also comes with preset styles that introduce texture, color, and depth variations, making it easy for new users to get started.

Newly created images can be easily e-mailed, posted to Facebook, and more. Once e-mailed, the Wordfoto jpg images can be incorporated into other projects.

Potential uses? Spelling lists, messages and cards, vocabulary practice, event signs, and much more. The images will also be useful as illustrations for school reports, and I’m excited because I design occasional images for my blog posts.

Posted in cell phones, communicating with grandparents, family conversations, gadget ownership, online communication

Grandma’s iPhone

Over Easter weekend we’ll help my parents learn how to use Skype.

When it comes to her iPhone, few learning difficulties have popped up for my mom, age 84. I am delighted at the ease with which she has transferred from her old flip phone to this one — a 3G that I retired when I updated my iPhone.

How Mom is Using her iPhone

  • Her first lesson focused on typing in her contacts, and she caught on right away and also understands how to make a call using the contacts app.
  • The visual cues on the iPhone screen are terrific.
  • She loves being able to sit in a comfortable chair and play solitaire — no lessons required for this!
  • She enjoys using the speaker feature rather than holding the phone up to her ear.
  • She likes to use Safari anytime and anywhere when she wants to look something up, though like me, she is sometimes frustrated when the phone is slower because there is no wi-fi.
  • She is starting to use the map app.

Continue reading “Grandma’s iPhone”

Posted in cell phones, fraud, parents and technology, scams and fraud

Fraudulent Text Adds Service to My Cell Phone! Don’t be Scammed!

This text message arrived out of the blue on my iPhone the other day.

This text message arrived on my mobile phone.

I had not ordered LoveGenie Tips, nor did I want to receive these messages. Moreover, I did not want to reply either to ask for help or to tell them to stop, because I worried that a reply might allow them to harvest more information about me.

Continue reading “Fraudulent Text Adds Service to My Cell Phone! Don’t be Scammed!”

Posted in digital parenting, hearing loss, iPhones and iPads, parents and technology, technology and health problems

App Demonstrates How Hearing Can Be Impaired

Check out your hearing!

It’s a fact of life. We all spend lots of time attached to headphones.

Most of us know enough to take care with the volume, but are we really doing it? Moreover, what can we do to ensure that our kids are regulating the volume as they listen to music?  It doesn’t help that many pre-teens and adolescents don’t always listen to their parents.

Now a new app, Auto-Old My Music, may be able to communicate the dangers of extremely loud music better than we can. This app, available for iPhone and iPod, plays the music differently — it’s muffled and not particularly clear — just the way it might sound to a person who is hearing impaired.

Now that might successfully drive the point home.

The Auto-Old My Music app, designed by the Baptist Memorial Health Care in Memphis, Tennessee, is a response to research, Change in Prevalence of Hearing Loss in U.S. Adolescents, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA). Read the full article in PDF format.

Articles to Check Out

You can also read my 2010 post, Teens and Hearing Loss.

Posted in electronic communication, family conversations, interesting research, online research, parents and technology

The Global Economy, My New iPhone 4s, and Grandpa’s Voyage to America

If I had any doubt about the efficiency of the global economy, it was put to rest these past three days as I watched my new iPhone 4s traverse the world via Fed Ex, from Shenzhen, China to my front porch in northern Virginia, USA.

The iPhone began its journey on November 2nd, though allowing for time zones and the international date line, it was probably still November 1st where I live. Nevertheless, after it left China the package made intermediate stops in Hong Kong, Anchorage, Alaska, Memphis, Tennessee, and Dulles, VA, before being loaded onto the Fed Ex delivery truck in Alexandria, VA and arriving on my front porch in the early afternoon of November 4th. The package spent the most time standing still at the Fed Ex hub in Memphis, where packages accumulate all day and then fly out at night to destinations around the United States. Continue reading “The Global Economy, My New iPhone 4s, and Grandpa’s Voyage to America”