Delete Google voice searches

 

Most people are used to clearing their browser history and other text based searches. They may not have realised you also need to clear voice searches. Google uses the histories to target you with sites and ads which they think you will be interested in. it’s about trying to tailor your device use to your needs. That can be helpful. Voice data takes up a lot of room . You may also not want ti there so the video shows you how to clear it.

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iPhone 8

The Apple Event of the iPhone 8 launch is going live on the Apple site on September 12th if you are interested.  It marks 10 years of iPhone releases and is the first event in the Steve Jobs Theatre. It is also will come with an iPhone which has changed quite a bit. The home key is gone. The gesturing is bigger and more important. Facial recognition is going to play a bigger role.  The graphics are OLED as opposed to LED. There has been a lot of anticipation about his phone because it is different. OLED means even better graphics for video. There is still no headphone socket and so bluetooth earphones/buds will be the option. It is about getting us to have good quality and top of the range phones without all the bits and pieces which hamper us. That has always motivated Apple. Bluetooth has issues as far as I am concerned. Until there  is really clear evidence that it is safe, I won’t be using it. They said the same when microwave ovens came out, time has passed and we are now more comfortable with microwave ovens. Electric Sense explains all the things related to radio and bluetooth waves quite clearly . Once we understand that, we can look at the issues and research with a better perspective. I am waiting to see what happens with the iPhone 8. Until now phones have been inclusive. I can’t always use a touch screen properly. I need physical keys. I had to use a number of phones before I could find one with a touch keyboard which I could use properly. Even so, I would be better with a psychical keyboard and they used to have phones like that. Not any more. The home key is fundamental to using the phone. If that , now, is just on the screen I can see myself having to press several times before I can action the phone. Until now those who needed that physical touch capability had it. If you change the sensitivity of the keys on the phone then all sorts of weird things happen. Haptic feedback certainly helps in my case and there is room for that to be improved. Meanwhile, the world is happy to be excited about this new iPhone release in the next couple of days. It will change things again. Znet has a good run down on what to expect.

Sitting or standing?

sitting or standing Image: The Ergonomic Times

There is sa lot of good research going on to do with whether we should be sitting or standing when we use technology for long hours and what sorts of sitting positions and chairs we should be using. The advice from The Ergonomic Times concurs with what my physio told me. Change positions every 20 minutes. My optometrist has also been very helpful in terms of advice with how to sit and view computers and tablets. I use a book seat for my iPad. It makes it more stable and it is at a better angle for viewing which saves wear and tear on my neck and eyes. Justin Young is trying to work out what the problems will be when people use gesturing control and so his time is spent researching the ergonomics of that so we have the right advice about the right set up so we don’t have carpal tunnel syndrome , excessive fatigue and have the right sorts of chairs. He makes the point that some organisations won’t be able to provide ergonomically satisfactory work stations for people. Why not? Maybe that’s a challenge we need to confront and come up with affordable options for everyone.

There is a big, long term study which has just come out of Canada which looks at the impact of everyone standing for long hours. Peter Smith led the study and it has some interesting information which we really need to pay attention to:

“Hilary Poirier, a customer service agent at WestJet in Halifax, spends most of the workday on her feet.

“We don’t really sit down very frequently at all because we’re always out on the floor,” she said. Though she said she has “the best job ever,” all the standing puts a toll on her body: feet, back, hips, legs, everything.

The results came as a surprise to her.

“For something like heart issues I wasn’t imagining that because usually you’re on your feet you’re being healthy,” she said.”

We probably have been getting the message it would be better to stand. Not so. We need options. We need to be able to sit and we need to be able to change and stand. Any place which is requiring us to only do one or the other isn’t helping our health.

Life without the internet

If you are feeling swamped, overwhelmed and dictated to by the internet, then yes, leave it. Take a break. Get away from it . Live your life. Paul Miller gives some interesting insights because his job relies on the internet but he hasn’t really known a life without the internet and social media. The difficulty with the internet is that is has become very dictatorial and proscriptive and Paul Miller has discovered insight into that by not being tied to the internet. After my 3 lengthy outages from my internet and home phone this year I found that I did have more time, I was doing things differently and I was able to become more involved with real life. I was never bored. I have other interests and other ways of connecting with people. I was still using my phone and computer apps for things…those which were not dependent on an internet connection. It was hard to do some business activities because so many of them rely on an internet connection. I know really intelligent, vibrant, creative people who have very little to do with the internet and don’t want to participate in what they see as very low level engagement and thought. The internet is there for us to use. It is amazingly helpful and does facilitate so many ideas and collaborations which could not or would not otherwise occur. How you use it and why you use it is your decision and I think this video looks at how we can sometimes let the internet run our lives and personalities. Worth viewing and then worth doing an internet use audit.

The impact of smartphones

We have been talking about it for a while now: The impact of smartphones on our society and the next generation. The rise in car accidents which could be totally avoided. The zombie walk. The mobile phone twits who bang on anywhere and everywhere and allow their phones to ring whenever they want. We have observed the impact and we have reacted but we don’t seem to have resolved much. We love a narrative. We’ll all create a story about the impact of phones and the media will push a narrative which will have a far reach. We actually need to think this out properly and for ourselves. What is the right age for a child to have a smart phone? What are the impacts of smartphones on children? Should a teacher have smartphones in class? A teacher could have 30 students, thirty phones and then 30 devices. The phones could be giving access to parents which means another layer of social management in a classroom. Not sure any other job expects anyone to manage that many devices and that level of interpersonal communication complexity. The teacher then has emails and communication coming in from other staff, administration, professional organisations and parents on their laptop. Smartphones mean we can communicate very quickly with others when we feel like it.

The professional standards by aitsl for teachers require that teachers

4.5 Use ICT safely, responsibly and ethically –
Demonstrate an understanding of the relevant issues and the strategies available to support the safe, responsible and ethical use of ICT in learning and teaching.

What about others, though, who are also responsible for young people using smartphones? It’s not the phones which are the problem . There seem to be a lot of young people who don’t have a broad range of interests and who, for all of their connectivity , are disconnected socially. The Atlantic has published an article Has the smartphone destroyed a generation? which is a very interesting look at the impact of smartphones on the current generation. Jean M. Twenge has a book coming out : iGen: Why Today’s Super-Connected Kids Are Growing Up Less Rebellious, More Tolerant, Less Happy—and Completely Unprepared for Adulthood—and What That Means for the Rest of Us. . The article is based on that book and well worth the long read because it is written by someone who has been investigating this.

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