This is how mobile phones and tablets are hurting your kids

Ask anyone about the benefits of technology and it probably won’t take them long to rhyme off a list of examples: it helps broaden your knowledge, connect with friends, both new and old, and allows you to see things you’ve never seen before. But what about the drawbacks? Here’s a major one: increased screen time is hard on your eyes.

In fact, more and more young people are wearing glasses to correct their nearsightedness. This trend has prompted optical health experts to determine if the use of electronic devices such as computers, tablets and smart phones is leading to a deterioration in sight that is reaching epidemic proportions.

Let’s take the example of Pauline — although she could just as easily be a David or a Jason. She is 10 years old and a studious child, doing well in school. Like any young person her age, she loves to use her tablet computer to study or have fun. She’s on it two hours a day, plus weekends.

Pauline may be in for a change, however. She has recently been diagnosed with nearsightedness and her optometrist has strongly recommended that she — and her parents — limit her use of electronic devices and spend more time playing outside.

Pauline isn’t happy. She thinks it’s not fair.

But her case raises the question: what is the link between the use of electronic devices and the appearance of myopia?

Forty per cent of North Americans are affected by myopia. The number of cases doubled between 1972 and 2004 and continues to grow at a rate that qualifies the phenomenon as an epidemic.

In Europe, myopia is prevalent among 42.2 per cent of adults aged 25 to 29 years, almost twice that of adults aged 55 to 59 years.

This suggests there is a real public health issue facing us — and not just the common problem of an error in the refraction of the eye which shows up as blurred vision when looking into the distance.

In fact, high amounts of myopia significantly increases the risk of major ocular health disorders such as retinal tearing (21 times greater), glaucoma (40 times) or cataracts (six times).

An eye that becomes short-sighted becomes longer. The stretching is proportional to the increase in myopia. The more the eye stretches, the more the retina, which lines the inside of the eye, becomes thinner. Symptoms such as cracks, abnormal development of subretinal blood vessels and bleeding may appear.

Ultimately, the very nearsighted patient has a more than 50 per cent risk of spending the rest of his or her life legally blind — in other words living with vision reduced by 60 per cent. This means that the length of their eye exceeds 28 mm (the normal length is 23 mm) or that the myopia levels exceeds six diopters. (Diopters is a unit of measurement used to calculate eyesight — the further away from zero indicates a worsening in vision.) It is important to intervene before this happens to avoid these levels.

(In Canada, legal blindness is defined by a visual acuity of less than 20/200 in the best eye with the help of glasses or contact lenses. A legally blind person therefore sees, at best, 20 times worse than a person with normal acuity.)

There are many causes of onset myopia. Genetics plays an important role but epigenetics — the environment in which the child evolves — is a more important factor.

And what has changed in our environment to explain the recent myopia epidemic? The impact of technology, which has seen a boom in recent years, is being closely examined.

For example, a rapid increase in visual problems has been noted since the introduction of the smartphone in 2007. While the device itself does not emit harmful radiation, it requires the user to read its screen at a distance of 20 cm rather than the normal distance of 45 cm to 50 cm. It has been suggested that this close distance boosts the risk of developing myopia by eight times, especially if both parents are myopic.

Ambient lighting also plays a role because the use of fluorescents, such as in classrooms, also promotes myopia. When a tablet is used in such an environment, the effect is multiplied tenfold.

Unlike books printed on paper, tablet and computer screens are optically associated with so-called chromatic aberrations. The shortest wavelengths (blue light) are perceived in front of the others by the eye, which generates a myopia stimulus. There is a dose and response effect here, suggesting that prolonged use leads to more negative effects.

Today’s young people don’t play outside as much as their predecessors and are heavy users of electronics. However, exposure to daylight has a protective effect against myopia. These beneficial effects are decreased, but not negligible, during less sunny months or when myopia is already present.

The purpose of myopia treatment is to reduce the rate of progression of the dioptric, but above all to slow down the elongation of the eye. If, obviously, we cannot play with genetics, it is imperative to influence epigenetics and therefore the environment in which the child evolves.

Therefore, using any electronic media before the age of two should be avoided, even if it’s only for a few minutes. A limit of one hour per day should be the rule for those between two and five years of age and the emphasis should be put on educational sites or applications that promote interactions between the parent and child.

While school requests should be taken into consideration, the use of electronic media should continue to be limited as the child gets older. A maximum of one hour, besides school work, must be observed for good eye health. A two-minute break after every 30 minutes of device use will also lessen harmful effects and exposure to a device should be avoided at least one hour before sleep.

Children should also get a minimum of 45 minutes of daylight per day. They can get this by walking to school or participating in such activities as regular outdoor sports.

The next step is to ensure the co-ordination of both eyes, from far away but especially close up. An optometrist will need to perform an orthopic check-up and correct, by exercise or optical means, any anomaly that may have been detected.

Finally, optical correction must be chosen with the goal of slowing down the progression. In rare cases, glasses with anti-myopia lenses may be prescribed. They provide a deceleration rate of about 30 per cent . Specialized contact lenses are often preferred and offer control ranging from 50 per cent to 80 per cent. The contact lens treatment is available from the age of seven, and will be periodically reassessed according to the child’s changing needs.

In short, myopia is not just a commonplace vision defect. It is a significant risk factor for serious eye disease. We must therefore do everything possible to slow its progress and protect our children’s vision — and that means also reviewing their relationship with electronic devices.

  • Daily Mail

Drop That Phone! Here Is How Technology Is Miserably Making You And Your Children Fall Apart

Most families don’t see it, but in this 21st-century technology is slowly creating a rift between families.

The idea of being alone for most adults is surfing the internet with their devices, and for those who have families, this hardly goes down well with their spouses and children.

Reconnecting with family after a hectic day of work helps reduce technology addiction. Therapist Jessica Miller of Your Tango, writes this in regards to technology;

“In today’s world, you give so much of yourself to others that, by the time you get home, you just want to crash and numb yourself on the internet. But have you ever wondered what your children see when you choose an electronic device over play time?

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There’s a new advertisement campaign that depicts the brutal truth that most parents don’t want to face. The creators of the ad placed a giant phone between the parent and child to represent the barrier that the child experiences.

My initial reaction when I saw this was, “Oh, this breaks my heart!” As parents, we want our kids and partners to feel like we’re always there for them.

We would never intentionally put a barrier between our families and ourselves. Obviously, this ad holds a lot of truth, and, as parents, we need to pause and look at the relationship that we have with our phones.”

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Do You Have An Addiction To Your Phone?
It’s not the phone (or the content) that we’re addicted to — it’s the distraction. Since we accepted this non-stop pace in our society, we feel awkward when we slow down. We freak out when we have time to chill.

We have no clue how to relax anymore, and when we venture into the unfamiliar state of slowing down, we feel so uncomfortable that we reach for whatever’s closest to help us escape.

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How Can We Stop Being So Susceptible To Distraction Addictions?
1. You can choose to connect, rather than distract.
2. You can put the iPhone down and connect with your kid.
3. You can shut off your phone when you crawl into bed and cuddle up next to your partner.
4. You can look up when you’re running errands and make eye contact with fellow community members.
5. The Berlin wall wasn’t taken down in a day and neither will your habit. It takes 21 days for your brain to wire in a new habit. That means that you must have patience and persistence.

You’ll slide back into old patterns (we all do). When this happens, simply ask your loved ones to remind you of this ad. Then all you need to do is refocus and reconnect with what really matters with your loved ones standing before you.

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Pulse Ng

If You Own A Mobile Phone, You Could Suffer From Phantom Vibration Syndrome

Owning a mobile phone is now a necessity among people of all age groups. Some can’t imagine a day without their phones and with this “addiction” comes the Phantom vibration syndrome which affects 90% of cellphone owners.

PVS is described as the feeling of mistakenly thinking one’s phone is vibrating in their pocket, when in fact it’s not.

Dr Robert Rosenberger, philosopher and assistant professor at Georgia Institute of Technology, said the phenomenon was caused by “learned bodily habits.”

Research, published in the Computers in Human Behaviour journal, suggests that by a person leaving a phone in their pocket it becomes “part of their body” in the same way that wearing glasses can, as it is easy to forget they are there.

In an interview with the BBC, he said: “One recent study of undergraduates reports that 90 per cent of them say that they’ve experienced these phantom vibrations.”

Dr Rosenberger said people were “just so anxious these days, because of all of our different technologies”, which include emails and text messages, “having us on edge.”

“We are more inclined to be jumpy and feel something in our pocket as a phantom vibration,” he adds.

New Gadget Set To Play Music Inside The Vagina Of Pregnant Women

Women are often encouraged to play music to their unborn children, as it has been shown to calm them down. However many just place the headsets on their tummy and play the music.
That’s about to change as a new device called Babypod will allow the unborn child to listen to music clearly through the mother’s vagina.
The device designed by the Institut Marquez, a leading international centre in gynaecology, obstetrics and assisted Reproduction in Barcelona, is made to fit inside the vagina where it will fill your womb with the music of your choice.

Tests were done in 2014 on hundreds of pregnant women, comparing unborn babies listening to music in the womb both abdominally (played into the belly from the outside) and internally, through the vagina.
The tests showed that babies who had music played from outside of the womb didn’t generate a response to the music played.

Those who listened to the music after it had been played through the vagina were said to have opened their mouths and stuck out their tongues. This response continued to increase as the pregnancies progressed.
The study also showed that babies were participating in more movement when the music started, only stopping when the music itself has stopped.

This suggests their reaction was in direct response to the music being played internally. The device works with the mothers smart phone, Simply connect The Babypod to your smartphone and insert it (pod) into your vagina.

To clean the device, you just wash it with mild soap and water after each use.
-Metro

If You Do This, Then You Are Annoying On Facebook

We all have friends on Facebook who annoy us so much, but there is no way to tell them because after all it’s their profile and they can do as they wish. If you notice people don’t like your photos or comment on your status, here’s why:

1. You invite people to play games.

2. You share pictures that say ‘share if you love your children/sister/brother’ etc.

3. You share inspirational quotes .

4. You write posts that are obviously aimed at someone who has hurt you and you say things like ‘funny how one minute you mean something to someone and the next minute they just disappear’.

5. You over exclaim!!!!!

6. You Write Your Statuses Like This or SoMeTiMeS LiKe ThIs.

7. You change your profile picture every day.

8. You post too many pictures of your baby .

9. You post countdowns to your wedding day that nobody really cares about.

10. You write statuses like ‘want to wish my gorgeous boyfriend a happy birthday. Don’t know where I’d be without you babe. I love you so much. Can’t wait for our day together’. Like, isn’t he right next to you? Just say it out loud. 

11. You invite people to ‘events’ which are online shopping events where you try to sell rubbish overpriced ‘wonder products’.

12. You share ‘1 like = 1 prayer’ statuses thinking Facebook will actually donate a pound for each one. 

13. You add people to mass messages.

14. You upload at least two selfies a week. 

15. You upload pictures of yourself with inspirational quote captions.

16. You post pictures and statuses that we all know are for the sole purpose of making your ex jealous. 

17. You share bullsh*t like ‘Let’s Make Britain Ours Again!’ with union flags all over it.

18. You post statuses talking about how all you need is your BFF and you’re ‘for ever single’ until obviously one of you gets a boyfriend.

19. You post a status that doesn’t make any sense and put ‘personal joke’ and tag your friend. If it’s a personal joke why are you broadcasting it on a public forum. Idiot

-Metro

The iPhone Turns 8 years Old

Eight years ago the iPhone was born On June 29, 2007 the first batch was sold for $599 equivalent to sh. 59,000.

The first iPhone was 8GB it had no app store, no ability to send photos in texts, no video capability, no Siri.

The camera was two megapixels and you could only use the phone with a 2G connection.

Here is a video of the introduction of the first ever iPhone:

New Technology Helps People Self- Diagnose STD’s

Forget the shameful doctors visits one has when they are infected with STD/STI’s new app has been created created for tablets and smart phones, that will help you self-diagnose and self-treat STDs from home.

The app will be released next Tuesday, June 23rd but only California residents will be able to use the app as it is intended. They will be able to go into the app and order test kits for two different STDs; gonorrhea and Chlamydia.

The test kits are then sent to their home in discreet packaging complete with instructions. It is a urine sample kit which is then sent back to Planned Parenthood once the sample is collected Once analyzed  the results are sent to the patient through the app.

Should they test positive for Chlamydia they are given the option to have a prescription for antibiotics sent to their local pharmacy. They can take the medication and clear up the infection without ever having to see a doctor.

If they test positive for gonorrhea however they must go into either their regular doctor’s office or a Planned Parenthood clinic for an antibiotic injection. They are able to schedule an appointment right from the app.

This type of technology could lead to more people being able to get help for their STDs since the process is extremely discreet and they do not have to come face to face with another person or answer any embarrassing questions asked by their doctor.

Other technologies are being tested by Planned Parenthood in other states as well. In Washington and Minnesota patients can have a video conference with a nurse and they can get the STD testing kits. The consultations with the nurse practitioners can be either for birth control or other medications. This gives patients a wide variety of convenient options for being treated.

-BHW

Google Apologises After White House Listed On Racist Search Results

A few days ago if you searched for the word “N**** house” on google maps it would take you straight to the White House among the top search results.

The White House happens to be the official residence of President Barack Obama, the first black President of the USA.

Upon notification, google flagged it and fixed the issue within hours.

But users have pointed out that hundreds of other derogatory terms entered into the search bar can see users directed to specific points on the map.

In a new blog post, the search company said it was “deeply upset” by the problem and was working to overhaul how some of its search algorithms work.

It said: “This week, we heard about a failure in our system – loud and clear.

“Certain offensive search terms were triggering unexpected maps results, typically because people had used the offensive term in online discussions of the place.

“This surfaced inappropriate results that users likely weren’t looking for.

“Like many of you, we were deeply upset by this issue, and we are fixing it now. We apologise this has taken some time to resolve.”

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-Skynews

New phone case to power phones using air

Don’t we all feel a bit irritated when our phones run out of charge especially when we are busy or waiting for an important call? Well a new phone case has been developed that will use air to charge phones, but don’t be excited just yet especially if you don’t own an iPhone because you will not be able to use it.

Nikona Labs, who are producing the new case, have said that it can harvest 90 percent of the energy wasted by iPhones when connecting to WiFi/ Bluetooth and acquiring a network signal.

It’s set to go on Kickstarter later this month, where iPhone users can pre-order the device for $99 equivalent to sh 9,300.

According to their website, Nikola Technology efficiently converts RF signals like Wi-Fi, Bluetooth, and LTE into DC power using its proprietary energy harvesting circuit.

The result is usable energy that can provide power to mobile devices wirelessly.

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Photo/Metro

Tattoos affecting Apple watch users

Early adopters of the new Apple Watch have found that the device malfunctions when worn by people with wrist tattoos.

The issue was first pointed out on social media site Reddit by a tattooed user who complained that his watch would regularly lose connection, and report inaccurate heart rate results.

Scores of other users then reported similar issues.

Apple Watch requests a security PIN immediately after detecting that it has left an owner’s wrist, meaning that those affected are forced to repeatedly enter their code.

Darker tattoos appear to cause more problems for the device than light inkings.

The problem should have been foreseeable – Apple has already explained that it measures heart rate by analysing light absorption through the skin.

The Reddit user who first flagged up the problem wrote: “So I thought my shiny new watch had a bad wrist detector sensor.

He said that the watch would lock up every time the screen went dark and prompted for a password.  He then decided to try holding it against his hand and it worked.

The watch stayed unlocked the whole time but once put back on the tattooed arm it automatically locked.

The wrist detection feature can be turned off, but it stops Apple Pay from working.

Apple has not yet commented officially on that issue.

-Skynews

Microsoft set to make high-end Windows 10 phone

Microsoft is working on two new high-end Lumia phones for Windows 10.

A flagship device, codenamed Cityman, is currently being developed, alongside a high-end handset codenamed Talkman.  According to The Verge, Microsoft is taking a similar approach to Apple with two devices that have bigger displays, but similar specifications.

Cityman is designed to be the flagship phone for Windows 10, and will reportedly include a 5.7-inch QHD display, Qualcomm octa-core processor, 3GB of RAM, and a 20-megapixel camera at the rear.

Microsoft is planning to use a removable rear cover for access to the battery and microSD slots, despite the presence of 32GB of internal storage. Cityman will support the new Continuum for phones feature to transform a phone into a PC, and Microsoft is planning to bundle some additional hardware with the phone to enable this.

Microsoft’s second Talkman Lumia will be slightly smaller and will reportedly feature a 5.2-inch QHD display, a Qualcomm hexa-core processor, 3GB of RAM, and a 20-megapixel camera. While most of the specifications are the same as Cityman, the processor appears to be the big change. Both handsets are also expected to include a triple-LED flash to support different tones for photos, alongside a 5-megapixel front-facing camera.

Both of Microsoft’s new Lumia devices are expected to ship with Windows 10 later this year.

Robot police men set to hit the streets in 2017

The Dubai police force aim to have fully functioning robo-cops on the beat by 2017.

Colonel Khalid Nasser Alrazooq told a security conference in Dubai, ‘The robots will interact directly with people and tourists.

They will include an interactive screen and microphone connected to the Dubai Police call centers.

People will be able to ask questions and make complaints, but they will also have fun interacting with the robots.’

But they’ll rapidly get more intelligent, the police chief says.

He hopes to have fully AI-driven models on the streets within four to five years.

‘These will be fully intelligent robots that can interact with people, with no human intervention at all. This is still under research and development, but we are planning on it,’ he said.

Just for reference, here is Robocop’s prediction of ‘the future of law enforcement’.

-Metro

Facebook set to make changes

The social media site is introducing steps to make it more dynamic so it can defeat rival networks.

A Facebook spokesperson told Mashable: ‘We are testing an updated notifications tab that adds additional, relevant content about everything that might be helpful to know on a particular day.’

Not only will you be told whose birthday it is, but notifications will also allow you to see which friends are nearby and what restaurants in your locality are open for business.

Here is the list of eight sections the your notifications will now include:

1. Birthdays

2. Life Events – A list of events from your friends that were published today, happened today or happened recently.

3. Events – The usual suspects: house warming parties, friends’ pub gigs and charity firewalking.

4. Nearby Places – Restaurants and bars in your area. This will only work if location services is turned on.

5. Trending Topics – Much like Twitter trends but for Facebook.

6. News Shared Locally – Viral stories making the rounds in your area.

7. Today in the Past – Showing status updates and photos from you’re not-too-distant past. Cue cringe.

8. Nearby Friends – This only works if you have enabled the feature on your mobile.

New battery set to charge in One minute

Scientists have created a new battery capable of fully charging in just ONE MINUTE.

The new aluminium battery, created by scientists at Stanford University, is cheaper to produce than the lithium batteries currently found in mobile phones and laptops, and offers ‘unprecedented charging times’.

Explaining the development in scientific journal Nature, the scientists also said that the new battery is less prone to catching fire than traditional lithium-ion batteries.

Professor Honjie Dai, who helped develop the battery, said the rechargeable aluminium battery does not catch fire even if you drill through it.

He added on to say that it may replace existing storage devices, such as alkaline batteries, which are bad for the environment and lithium-ion batteries, which occasionally burst into flames.

The new prototype reportedly lasts 7,500 charges before its performance is impaired while lithium batteries are known for withstanding 1,000 charges before they lose their capacity.

 

-Metro

Facebook to be sued over privacy policies

Facebook is being sued in Austria over alleged privacy violations and claimed participation in the US National Security Agency’s (NSA) PRISM programme.

An Austrian law graduate called Max Schrems is leading the class action lawsuit on behalf of around 25,000 Facebook users based in Europe and beyond.

Germany, regarded as one of Europe’s more privacy-conscious countries, has the highest number of people backing the case with more than 5,000 users and more than 1,000 people from the UK and Ireland.

The hearing is set to begin in Vienna, where Mr Schrems will say Facebook took a “Wild West” approach to data protection.

They want Facebook to stop mass surveillance, to (have) a proper privacy policy that people can understand, but also to stop collecting data of people that are not even Facebook users.

“There is a wide number of issues in the lawsuit and we hope to kind of win all of them and to get a landmark case against US data-gathering companies.”

The case has been brought against the social network’s European headquarters in Dublin.

All accounts outside the US and Canada are registered there – around 80% of the site’s 1.3 billion users.

Mr Schrems is seeking compensation of around £360 per user.

In June 2013 Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg denied that Facebook had taken part in the NSA’s spying programme to share user information with the US government.

Mandela phone app for tourists in S.Africa

A phone app tracing the footsteps of Nelson Mandela was launched Wednesday in South Africa to encourage tourists to explore his life story, 25 years after his release from prison.

Users can use the tool to plan their travels around major sites associated with the liberation icon, including Robben Island, the prison off Cape Town where he spent 18 years of his 27-year jail term, and Qunu, his childhood home and burial place.

The GPS-enabled app, which is named ‘Madiba’s Journey’ after Madela’s clan name, was designed by South African Tourism and the Nelson Mandela Foundation.

“This app makes ‘walking in the footsteps of Madiba’ much easier than before and greatly enriches visitors’ experiences of the attractions associated with one of the greatest men of our time,” said Minister of Tourism Derek Hanekom.

The revered anti-apartheid leader became South Africa’s first black president after the end of whites-only rule in 1994.

He died on December 5, 2013, at the age of 95.

Mandela was released from prison in 1990 and led negotiations that paved the way for the country’s first democratic elections. He was president between 1994 and 1999.

Photo Credits : AFP

Here is how to track you partner for free (Video)

If you suspect that your spouse is cheating or just  want to know where they hang out just check their phone.

If your partner has an android phone and uses gmail, it is possible to tell where they have been in the past 24 hours or even a month.

However to be able to access this information you will need their google password.

Once you log in go to maps.google.com, then maps.google.com/locationhistory .

This will show the  venues/stops that have been made within the past 24 hours to 30 days depending on what you want to know.

Remember that this information is only available  if you have a gmail account and if your location services are tuned on.

Location history will then be  automatically  tuned on.

You may also use maps to check the name of a venue you went to but might have forgotten the name.

Microsoft’s windows 10 to have facial recognition features

Microsoft’s new Windows 10 set to include facial recognition features, will be released in a few months.

No precise date has been given for the launch of the operating system, which will power PCs, smartphones and also devices like bank machines and medical equipment.

Microsoft executive vice president Terry Myerson said that Windows 10 will be available this summer in 190 countries and 111 languages.

A new version of Windows for small footprint IoT (Internet of Things) devices will be available for free when Windows 10 launches.

Windows 10 will offer versions of Windows for a diverse set of IoT devices, ranging from powerful devices like ATMs and ultrasound machines, to resource constrained devices like gateways.

Microsoft is working with fast-growing Chinese smartphone maker Xiaomi to test Windows 10 on its devices.

The US tech giant also announced partnerships with Chinese-based Tencent and Lenovo to help customers in China upgrade to Windows 10.

The new software will allow users to sign in to a device without a password by using biometrics, including facial recognition.