Feliz Año Nuevo a todos. Last year I wrote a post about disappearing technology. In this post I would like to expand on this theme with some more observations.
- I don’t use any CD’s anymore – My data backups are totally in the cloud
- Last year I purchased approximately 20 DVD’s. This year it will be half as much since most of my movie watching is Netflix, HBO, Amazon Prime.
- Last year I had 5 remotes for TV and streaming video box watching and now I have none because of the Harmony Hub
- Last year I used my iPad every day and now I sold it and primarily use my Google Nexus Smartphone
- Finally I used to use my smartphone and computer for all my searches and now 50% of the searches and all of my music playing are accomplished using Echo, my smart speaker and the Alexa App.
What is disappearing in your life?
Last year, I posted my favorite apps Of course smartphone technology changes everyday. Here are some more favorites.
- Instagram – I enjoy seeing great photos from friends and great photographers. One of my favs. is “jaw dropping_dropping_shots
- Prisma – superb artsy photo editing
- Feedly – all my RSS feeds in one place
- Capital One – best user interface to control your CO account- and now it works with the Amazon Echo
- Merlin – Interesting facts and trivia from around the world
- Google Translate – Invaluable
- Yahoo News Digest – Delivered twice daily. Great graphics and easily digestible news info
- Alexa – Controls my Amazon devices (Echo, Dot, Fire TV)
- Kayak – Easily make airline and hotel reservations
- Pocket – Last year’s favorite but easily my most used app for saving and reading web site information
Just about every photo I snap on my smartphone I also edit on Prisma These shots quickly become art photos. Below is my current favorite followed by a short youtube video.
Very early this morning a truck or a bus cut our low lying electrical cable from the street to the house. pulling out the pole and disconnecting our alarm box for the electrical fence. I had to make numerous phone calls to the alarm company, police, electric company and as it turns out to the landlord because the electric company would not connect the electricity until we had a new pole. Add to the confusion my wife was pet sitting and I was supposed to meet her at noon
Cut to the chase my phone after 25 phone calls my phone battery was at 15 % at noon. Needless to say without electricity I could not charge my smartphone battery. To the rescue came my Aukey quick charger and within 30 minutes I was at full power. A $20 gadget is priceless during an emergency.
Prisma runs on both IOS and Android and for the last 4 days I have spent about 30 hours messing with the app. Do not even think of downloading the app if you have an important deadline due. But, if you have some free time and want to be creative then run, don’t walk to Prisma and download the app.
I created a youtube video below to show the transformation from original to the prisma effect. Enjoy.
Alexa is Amazon’s answer to Siri the voice command assistant for your digitally connected devices. I have Alexa running on my Nexus Smartphone and recently they added the capability to my Amazon Fire TV. So now I can use my remote or smartphone and say the following to the TV and have the answers, video, music etc. displayed on my big screen HDTV. You can also use Alexa on iPads and iPhones.
- Play a song in my Amazon Library
- Launch a movie from Netflix
- What’s on my calendar or to do list
- Play a favorite music or news station from any radio station in the world
- Read the next chapter from my Kindle book
- What’s my flash briefing from NPR News
- Re-order physical products you previously purchased on the Amazon website.
- Ask Alexa to find and read information from Wikipedia
- Tell me a joke – What do you call a Grizzly with no teeth (Ans. a gummy bear)
- Alexa Skills -turn on skills that allow your device to tell you about upcoming concerts in your city or play math games with you.