The Bird Whisperer | Sierra Club. This Vietnam Vet has found purpose in erscuing birds, and he shows us what a little caring can do. I am on my way home to my feathered friends myself, and look forward to seeing them.
Mobile Security | Lookout, Inc. .I know that I said no tech Saturday. But, sometimes tech can be a lifesaver. Usually, it is human error that causes most tech problems anyway. This is a cautionary tale about mobile phone security. Lookout Premium ($29 a year) is my favorite. In addition to scanning files for viruses oh the fly, it has a robust lost phone app. While I was in Las Vegas this week, we had dinner out. Absentmindedly, I left my phone on the table when we left. I was, in my defense, concentrating on helping SWMBO with shopping bags fillled with her purchases. As soon as we got back to our room, I realized I didn't have the phone. I panicked briefly, until SWMBO reiminded me that I had insisted she insall Lookout on her phone. I went to the site and immediately located the phone 3 miles away. I locked the phone down, and put a message on it with SWMBO's phone number. We got in a cab, and went to the GPS location. I immediately recognized it as the restaurant. As we arrived, SWMBO got a call from the restaurant, which saw the number on my phone. Phone returned and all was well in the universe. As an aside, if I had been unable to locate the phone, I could have sent a screeching alarm to the thief, and wiped the phone completely. So, install Loookout Premium on your phone right now. You may be glad you did.
Okay, one tech post today. I have to wait for SWMBO to wake up anyway. Trying to explain to her that it is worth rising at 6:30 A.M. to see a Canyon sunrise from Mather Point is like trying to explain God. So, I will risk life and limb to get her out of bed in sub freezing temperatures so that she can see it for herself. Sometimes, you have to be cruel to be kind. In the meantime, I am checking my email, reviewing pleadings in active cases that have been efiled by opposing counsel, responding to email from clients, and, generally, doing the same things I would be doing at home. Ain't technology wonderful? This image was taken by Brian Lumley. I hope I get something decent this morning:
It is tough to imagine that, a few hours drive from Las Vegas, nature provides a better show than any technology. Escaping from the madness of Vegas and CES 2015, we are going to spend a relaxing day walking the South Rim of the Grand Canyon, one of God's wonders to behold. The only thing technology can do here is to document the event. Luckily, Verizon has a tower right in the middle of Grand Canyon Village. Here are some views from yesterday. No tech for today; except as a tool to remember. My favorite image so far is the daring photographer. I almost called out to him; but, I remember a time long ago, in my serious photography days, when I almost slipped off the edge of the Canyon in just such a situation. Scary. As my friend, J. Agnew said yesterday: "He is at least 18 inches away from stupid!"
Personal Robot by Robotbase %u2014 Kickstarter.While this is a KickStarter Project, there was a large presence at CES 2015 of Telepresence technology. In the classroom, in the retail store, in a business, and in your home, expect to see AI robots wheeling around using current sensor and Internet tech to monitor, report and assist you in your daily activities. Think SmartPhone, SmartWatch and Google Glass on steroids, and ambulatory. Check out the company's video for a taste of what's to come. The artificial intelligence computers of the future won't be wearable, they will be members of the family.
For #TBT, I give you things I didn't see at CES. I did see these back in the Eighties at Comdex. I did get a few 4 Gigabyte USB sticks with Press information on them. They are tiny little things, about the size of half a fingernail. At $3,400 apiece, you would need 400 of these to equal one 4 Gig USB stick. About a million dollars per stick.
Smart Wheel, Smart Light, Smart App | FlyKly Street Okay Bill Holmes, this one is for you. FlyKly makes a smart wheel add on that monitors your cycling activity and reports to your smart phone. Bring your bike into the new century and get the benefits of both pedal and electric power. Only 1,100.
CES 2015: Inching Toward a Smarter Home. For most of us, home security is a function of interest and budget. There is a huge amount of smart home automation on display here, and, for the budget conscious do it yourselfer, Lowes' IRIS system is an inexpensive way to control a home or office remotely. Everything from connected wall outlets (turn off the teenager's access to Xbox from anywhere) to leak detectors that notify you of water on the floor, to automated appliances and watering systems are available. If you don't need professional monitoring, you can have all the bells and whistles of glass breakage sensors, door and window sensors, and the full complex of home security automation. And, you can control the whole show from your iPad, iPhone or Android phone or tablet. It's a brave new world.