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Comment: Why not punish the CEO of the hacked organization (Score 1) 216

by jbrohan (#47170495) Attached to: Life Sentences For Serious Cyberattacks Proposed In Britain
There is a long tradition in UK of using horrific sentences to dissuade crime. Surely it is better to improve security by throwing a few CEOs or other well-paid company officers in Jail if they let their systems get hacked. "We should spend the money on MY BONUS not on the BORING computers"

Comment: Do something that's interesting. (Score 1) 306

by jbrohan (#46514461) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Can an Old Programmer Learn New Tricks?
I'm very old, IBM 360 anyone! It's much better if the subject matter is interesting. I've worked on all sorts of problems from accounting (ugh) to robotics (Yea) in many countries in the world. Currently I'm working on a way to use computers to help seniors and their carers live better lives. The carers are busy and there are more seniors than ever before. It's called Stay-in-Touch.ca and runs on an Android tablet or a dongle. I have a specific need (apart from meeting a super salesman) to port some functionality to send pictures to grandma from an iPhone, from facebook, twitter and so on. We can do it from Android, of course. Work on your own and sell the apps. I provide the API. There is an infinity of projects in this vein. (Apparently this old programmer can't figure out new lines in slashdot!)

Comment: Common problem for the Elderly.. please test this! (Score 1) 81

by jbrohan (#45821545) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Effective, Reasonably Priced Conferencing Speech-to-Text?
www.Stay-in-Touch.ca includes a "Hard-of-Hearing" function. It is text or speech-to-text at your end which comes through as text to "Grandma" She picks up the phone and speaks. Then you reply. Runs on an Android Tablet for Grandma and a web-Page for you! I'd love you to test this.

Comment: How about one that works without him touching it? (Score 1) 370

by jbrohan (#45632123) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Easy Wi-Fi-Enabled Tablet For My Dad?
Stay-in-Touch.ca is an app designed for getting older people started on using tablets. You can send him pictures of your life and they just come in a gallery. Videos and text messages too, Skype with no touch? When he has gotten some notion of what the wonderful world of teh web is all about, then he can use the other apps too of course. If you keep looking at Android tv dongles and can't think of what to do with one...try this app!

Comment: I am actually 70 (Score 1) 625

by jbrohan (#44592735) Attached to: Aging Is a Disease; Treat It Like One
I am the luckiest man still alive. I have a family whose members do interesting things. There are young ones growing up some well, others not doing so good. However long I live I expect and hope it will stay like this. I am not a burden yet (except occasionally) and at whatever point I die there will still be developments I would like to see how they turn out. Others will need my house, my space to live. On the other hand if I go to a shopping center and see the seniors walking slowly around not having nearly as much fun as the frazzled mother with two toddlers. I heard of a senior the other day who was an expert at Solitaire. I do not want to be like that.

Comment: Try Stay-in-Touch.ca (Score 0) 165

by jbrohan (#44280811) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Video Streaming For the Elderly?
This is pretty exactly our target demographic. We have a goal of zero user interface for the senior. At the moment the system plays a gallery of pictures of family events and runs youtubes, as well as a "phone your hard-of-hearing grannie" . We are aiming to be able to set up channels and have the son choose for his father / grandfather what he would like to watch. A new TED lecture at 3:00pm eery day for example. Not for everyone, but for people whose elders do not want to learn a new complicated computer system it's just the thing. The goal is to offer significant functionality without ANY user interface. Runs on Android Dongles ($50) attached to an LCD screen or modern tv. Of course if the elder is willing to learn to use a mouse it's more fun to control your own entertainement, but at the extreme end it's aimed at keeping him in hi own home longer. check out www.stay-in-touch.ca contribute your ideas!

Comment: Nevil Shute worried about this problem in 1940's (Score 2, Interesting) 213

Nevil Shute worked on the problem of making sure that aircraft were properly repaired. When the engine cowling is closed who knows if the work was done properly? His solution is a new religion of aircraft mechanics. Ordinary people pray 5 times a day, but we are special people responsible for keeping aircraft safe, we need to pray 50 times a day, each time we start a task, and each time we finish a task. The book he wrote "Round the Bend" by Nevil Shute is widely available in the bookshelves of elderly engineers. The problem is still alive and dangerous today and we approach this with code walk-throughs and such like.

Comment: Just what Grandma needs (Score 1) 213

by jbrohan (#43102949) Attached to: ISP Trying Free (But Limited) Home Broadband Plan
The elderly often live isolated and confusing lives and would profit from Skype Google Calendar and other specialized apps. It's not the cost of the Tablet or computer, but the repeating monthly charges that is the stopper. We make an app which can operate without any button pushes on the part of Grandma. It shows family pictures, medication reminders and has a way of keeping in touch by telephone, all without any input from Grandma. Several other features require that Grandma is able and willing to press a button, playing videos of the new baby for example, but we are working on that button press. Skype needs a click to receive a call, and another to end it. Well done FreedomPop (and Mom too)
Android

+ - Computers for the elderly...No Touching interface-> 1

Submitted by
jbrohan
jbrohan writes "Computers are the realm of the young and speedy. Can they be adapted to provide services to the elderly, the deaf, the demented and the lame? We all have a grandma or two, what can we put on an Android tablet to bind her more strongly to the family and to compensate to some degree for the effects of age and illness? http://www.stay-in-touch.ca/ is an attempt to do this. It allows a "don't touch the screen" user interface because touching the "wrong" button ends up in unexpected places.
What could we do better? What about Mental illness...what do these people need that computers can provide? It can of course be very specialized and even a very small service. There is a crowdfunding to check if the stove has been left on http://www.medstartr.com/projects/75-cook-safe for example."

Link to Original Source

Comment: Keep it on the user's computer, not in the cloud (Score 1) 120

by jbrohan (#41298093) Attached to: Ask Slashdot: Best Practices For Collecting and Storing User Information?
Obviously not the solution for everybody. We write apps for Android Tablets (for old people actually). All the data like Name, email, pictures, and messages are stored in the Android tablet and kept on the Cloud only until they are downloaded. They are encrypted, even the pictures, while waiting on the Cloud database. In the registration part of the app the user does type in his email, but we do not keep it. How to contact the user? We put a record in a table which is checked periodically by an active user's android and they can get the message. Payment is tricky since the PayPal record contains the email of the payer and teh AndroidId of the user's tablet, It's just a matter of throwing away data that does not belong to me!

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