June Update

Well, that about sums it up for now … WAIT, I didn’t write anything – how could I be summing it up ?? Oh, I get it: my content editor thought she’d play a little trick on me and delete the forgoing content and skip straight to the end point. NOT!

It’s June. The landscape (water) bill is going up like the temperature :-(. We’ve been recommended to switch all sprinkler heads to drippers. I can calculate significant savings on water (monetarily AND ecologically) however, I need to factor in the cost of the upgrade: components and labor. It’ll save immediately on monthly water charges. It might take years to realize ROI once previously mentioned expenses are factored into the equation. Need to let this marinate awhile…

NEW TECH UPDATE: Amazon introduced a new device: an Echo Show 5. (Disclaimer: I do NOT own Amazon stock; I do NOT receive ANY form of compensation from Amazon [or other manufacturers or developers I discuss]. It’s all my opinion. Pure, non-sponsored, opinion. At the point I am offered advertising opportunities, we’ll talk about it!)

Back to Amazon Echo 5. Usually, when a product is given a number, it signifies a version. Not in this case. The “5” in Echo Show 5 refers to it’s screen size! The original Echo Show, and newest version, have 10 inch screens and cost a bit more. The “5” has a smaller screen however the many of the other specifications resemble the original “Show”. It seems there is growing demand for smart displays and Amazon, among others, is offering to fill the gap!

Who else, you ask? Well, it just so happens I have a list! Amazon, JBL, Lenovo, Facebook, Google, LG and, noticably absent from this Smart Screen list is … Apple. However, if you’re a purest, you COULD place an iPhone or iPad on a stand, talk to Siri and have a close encounter with a smart screen. Here’s a site with some reviews.

O.K., that’s enough for now. If you are inclined, drop by my podcast site and have a listen! BoomerLife (dot) Live

Be good. Do good. Stay happy, healthy and enjoy your BoomerLife! More soon!

May Update

Hmmm, since May is nearly gone, perhaps I should have titled this post “June Update” … oh well, it IS May and this is my latest Update, so May Update it is!

BoomerLife (dot) Live, my podcast, is gaining traction (albeit on a slippery slope). I have listeners “reminding” me that the interval between my last post and an update has been, ummmmm, too long. (I appreciate that feedback! It tells me that there ARE people listening! Thank you!!)

For those of you new here, BoomerLife.Live (this site) and BoomerLife (dot) Live, my podcast, offer useful information about technology specifically designed, developed or proven useful, for us Baby Boomers/Senior Citizens. Both this site and my podcast are based upon seminars I conduct (meetings I convene) with groups of my peers to explore the digital world around us. I call one of those meetings “TechTalk” and the other “Computers Made Easy” – combined, they convene five times each month.

TechTalk topics run the gamut of today’s technology: apps to laptops, tablets to smartphones, WiFi and mesh WiFi, keyboarding to voice input and so very much more! While Computers Made Easy attempts to stay close to topic: using a computer! (Some of the participants have computer “exposure” and less everyday experience.) My goal is to help them get comfortable using their device(s) in order to help them become more involved with today’s technology. It’s fun for me and extremely rewarding! When someone tells a story about a “new” experience they had using their computer (or other tech device), I feel a sense of pride!

My work with these groups is pro bono. One of the benefits of retirement: the time and ability to teach a subject about I am passionate!

There was a time I referred to the meeting as “Digital Literacy Group” – They weren’t very fond of that identification. It was tooooooo technical and nobody really wants to learn digital literacy. “How about some plain ol’ tech talk to bring us up to speed on what’s new?!”

That worked: TechTalk it became! If you want a brief sample, visit my podcast: BoomerLife (dot) Live and have a listen!

Stay healthy! Have fun! Enjoy your BoomerLife – Live!

More soon!

March Update

Happy St. Paddy’s Day! (You gotta’ know that, with a surname of “O’Keeffe”, I’d begin this blog post on March 17th with an Irish Greeting. You’re welcome!)

Have you listened to any of my podcasts yet? They’re geared for us baby boomers and topics focus upon technology. Specifically, the technology that can (and does) affect our daily lives. Critics rave: “interesting”, “informative”, “creative”, “succinct” (that means brief – episodes range from six to 15 minutes in duration). I’m posting new episodes weekly and soon, I’ll be publishing transcripts here (with links to the tech I discussed during the podcast – as requested by listeners!).

Let me think … what is “newsy” for March … hmm … California (where my wife and I live, is officially out of drought status. That’s to say it’s been raining for the past month and a half and we love it!! Weather folks refer to the systems we’ve experienced as “Pineapple Express” and ‘Atmospheric Rivers”. I simply refer to the as wet. Great news insofar as we’ve been dry for several years. Rain: good!

Oh, did I tell you bout my podcasts? (yeah, I’m pretty proud of getting them started). The link here is one method to find them, Also, I’m in Apple’s podcasts and on Google’s, too. Just look-up “Boomerlife.live”.

My most recent podcast was about apps and apps and apps … Did you know that we (‘boomers and seniors), ONLY utilize (roughly) 10% of the capability of our smart devices (smartphones and tablets). ONLY 10%!!! That’s wasting all of “horsepower”. During the podcast, I list numerous app categories and sub-categories in hopes of motivating listeners to add to their apps and increase that usage percentage to 11% or 12% or more! I’ve added some links to the end of this blog (the top 100 Apple apps and a the top 100 Google (Android) apps. Hope they help you find more useful, enjoyable, empowering, fun apps.

Lastly, I listed some “speed test” apps or websites so you can test the speed of your device.

Apps Categories and links to sources for apps:

The 6 Main Types of Mobile Apps

1. Lifestyle Mobile Apps

  •  Fitness
  • Dating
  • Food
  • Music
  • Travel
  • Spotify
  • Tripadvisor
  • Uber

2. Social Media Mobile Apps

  • Facebook
  • Instagram
  • Pinterest
  • Snapchat

3. Utility Mobile Apps

  • Reminders
  • Calculator
  • Flashlight
  • Weather

4. Games/Entertainment Mobile Apps

  • Angry Birds
  • Clash of Clans
  • Subway Surfer


5. Productivity Mobile Apps

  • Docs
  • Sheets
  • Wallet/Pay
  • Evernote
  • Wunderlist

6. News/Information Outlets Mobile Apps

  • Buzzfeed
  • Smartnews
  • Google News & Weather
  • Feedly
  • Flipboard
  • Yahoo News Digest
  • Reddit
  • Linkedin Pulse

100 Top Apps (iOS)


Popular SmartWatch apps:

100 Top (Android) Apps


WiFi speed tests: a list of test services: goo.gl/i292em

PodCast #7 Links:

During Episode #7 of my podcast BoomerLife.Live I mentioned a number of SmartWatch developers (in order to provide listeners with a broader range of choices … er, more exposure to the W I D E array of SmartWatches available. Below is a list of those SmartWatches and links to their respective websites. Enjoy!

Apple Watch 4: www.apple.com

Asus WI503Q-SL-BG Zenwatch: https://goo.gl/XJLvZr

FitBit Versa: https://goo.gl/Qctw7X

Fitbit Ionic: https://goo.gl/VwJDp1

Misfit Vapor 2: https://goo.gl/qKy8Dd

Fossil Men’s Gen 4 Explorist https://goo.gl/qKy8Dd

Fossil Q Venture HR: https://goo.gl/qKy8Dd

Kate Spade Scallop: https://goo.gl/R4ayJi

Michael Kors Access Sofie: https://goo.gl/poebm9

Garmin Vivoactive 3 https://goo.gl/6LDKHe

Garmin Vivomive HR: https://goo.gl/6LDKHe

Garmin Forerunner 645 Music: https://goo.gl/6LDKHe

Garmin Fenix 5 https://goo.gl/6LDKHe

Garmin Approach S20 Golf watch https://goo.gl/6LDKHe

Google Pixel Watch https://goo.gl/B1FeBp

Huawei Watch GT: https://goo.gl/CoFKSp

Huawei Watch 2 LTE: https://goo.gl/CoFKSp

LG W270.AUSATN https://goo.gl/Y4hj8T

LG Sport: https://goo.gl/Y4hj8T

Motorola Moro 360 Sport: https://goo.gl/sydLB2

PowerWatch 2: https://goo.gl/3wqe7W

Samsung Galaxy Watch Active: https://goo.gl/yk9JtG

Samsung Galaxy Sport https://goo.gl/yk9JtG

Skagen Falster 2 Wear https://www.skagen.com/en-us/wearable-technology/smartwatches

Skagen Holst hybrid https://www.skagen.com/en-us/wearable-technology/smartwatches

Tag Heuer Smartwatch https://www.tagheuer.com/en-us/watches/smartwatch

TicWatch Pro: https://goo.gl/gHJXmN

TicWatch S2: https://goo.gl/gHJXmN

TicWatch C2: https://goo.gl/gHJXmN

Withings Move ECG https://goo.gl/F8xFCA

Withings Move (absent the ECG) https://goo.gl/F8xFCA https://goo.gl/tScg2d

Withings Activite Steel https://goo.gl/tScg2d

Withings Activite Pop https://goo.gl/tScg2d

January (2019) Update

Happy New Year! (a little late, sorry!)

So, another year has blown by and we’re all a year older. At our age(s). being a year older is a GOOD thing! (the alternative sucks ;-/). What also are good things are the technology advances and new product introductions the new year brings. This year we’ll see more connected “stuff” and more ways to use connected “stuff”. We’ll see more health and wellness “tech” that we wear to monitor ourselves enabling us to get medical attention as soon as our “wear-able” warns us that something’s not right. (And pat’s us on the back when we do something that’s good for us!)

Continue reading “January (2019) Update”

December Update

Christmas is a couple weeks away and the holy-days are becoming lost among the holidays. (Try to keep a bit of each, OK?)

Be kind to someone (in addition to yourself). Drive a bit slower (yes, I’m talking to myself on that one), and don’t eat too much! Common stories suggest that people gain five to seven pounds over the holidays (from Thanksgiving to New Year’s) however, research* indicates that all we really gain is 3/4 of a pound!! Eat away!

Continue reading “December Update”

November Update

Tomorrow is December 1st. Wow! Whoever said that as we age, the days get shorter, wasn’t kidding! This past year has flown by so fast I experienced whip lash while standing still (sigh).

Holiday decorations are going up in the ‘hood. Some businesses had Christmas decorations on display prior to Halloween: HALLOWEEN! PRIOR TO FREAKING HALLOWEEN! (I’m talking to you Safeway.) And, in a few short weeks, it’ll be a new year: 2019.

Speaking of Christmas, … Continue reading “November Update”

Ocvember Update

I can’t believe tomorrow is November (already). The signs are everywhere: the holidays are coming. (Cheeses, the local grocery [chain] put out Christmas displays during the first week of October – that’s JUST WRONG… wasn’t the “thing” to wait, at least, until AFTER Halloween?

I am stuck in tradition. Like putting up Christmas decorations AFTER Thanksgiving. Traditions: like using turning signals while driving… Continue reading “Ocvember Update”

July Update

“Currently, in Brentwood (Northern CA), it’s 101° and sunny! ” That’s my Google Assistant talking. I’m sitting in my home office surrounded by three Amazon Echo™s, two Oontz Angle 3™ wireless speakers (GREAT sound, ridiculously low price), and a small, white Maltese named Danny. It occurred to me that I haven’t written for a couple months and that’s NOT OK!

So, what am I going to espouse today? More tech for Seniors? Sure! How about VFI (voice first interface). I have seen the future and it’s here NOW! (Well, I haven’t just seen it – I’ve talked to it and it’s talking back to me!) Amazon Echo (Alexa) now has a “chat” mode that is initiated by saying “Alexa, let’s chat.” Amazon is sponsoring a University competition to create “chat” for Alexa and, even at this early stage, it’s fascinating and engaging.

Alexa will acknowledge your request to chat and then get a chat bot for you. The chat bot asks what you’d like to chat about and then begins casual conversation about any number of topics. It’s very real, give and take, conversation. Gone are the one-off interactions of a few months ago when Alexa couldn’t string together two requests, one after the other and only responded to the request at the moment. Now, she’s chatting!

Give her a try: “Alexa, let’s chat” nad be prepared to be blown away!

Next up: Virtual Reality (VR), Augmented Reality (AR) and the differences between them!

April Update

It’s been busy these last four months … (and, if you buy that, I’ve a bridge to sell you!)

Truth is: I find it more challenging than I expected to keep my pages “fresh” … and, I realize that’s my bad. During normal days, I fill my time searching for “new” technology. Specifically, new tech that might have an impact on the lives of my peers: Baby Boomers.

I have discovered, much to my dismay, a number of my cohort are digitally illiterate. They can use their devices – to some extent – however, they are woefully unaware of some of the most fundamental operations necessary to keep the device running. Case in point: a neighbor showed me his tablet that had “stopped” working. No matter what he “tapped”, the device was unresponsive. Looking closely, I noticed DOZENS of app running in the background. So many, in fact, that the device had simply “locked up” and had no available memory. Unfortunately, it did NOT provide any, on screen, notification of the problem, hence he had no way of knowing that what was needed was closing some (all?) of the open apps. Once he did this, the device was working normally and he was a happy camper!

It’s scenarios like that I enjoy most: Being able to help someone understand the technology just enough to be able to troubleshoot everyday “challenges” using the device!

Another example of a similar situation with an iPhone. An app would NOT “open” and the user was quite upset. He knew how to open apps and use them and he was NOT instructed how to “close” them (double tap on the home button to display all open apps, then swipe up to close them). Once he learned this little (necessary) function, he was able to keep his device working and his enjoyment more complete!

So, this type information is what I gather and disperse during the normal weekday: this is the type information I’ll begin sharing here! Perhaps that’ll keep me focused and you informed and “on the saddle” of your digital horse!

What a GREAT time to be alive! Enjoy the tech and learn a little more about it every day!!