February Top 10 – Technologies We Love

abimaster | February 15, 2012

Today, we salute 10 technologies we swoon over and can’t live without. Simply said, we heart you and couldn’t live without you!

 

1. Smart phones

At A. Bright Idea, we truly appreciate the iPhone and Android abilities to stay connected, the endless social media capabilities (for FourSquare mayoral battles) and the organization and support, including the new Siri application for iPhone and Google connections with Droid.

 

2. Bluetooth headphones

For work and workout junkies, Bluetooth now allows our smart phones to connect in our cars and our headphones to listen to Pandora while you run or take phone calls, not to mention your car and headphones will now read you text messages when they come in. It’s multitasking at its best!

 

3.  Tablet

With a tablet you can watch a movie, read a book, check social media, browse photos, write a report, play games and more. Better yet, this technology fits into any small space and can entertain children and adults alike for hours.

 

5. WiFi

No excuses anymore now that everywhere provides free WiFi. No matter your location, you can check email, social media or browse the web with ease.

 

6. Augmented reality

Imagine holding your phone up to a photo and a video automatically starts playing or a doctor practicing a surgery as if it were real life through a computer-generated sensory program. With this technology we can now experience a real-world environment virtually.

 

7. 3D at your fingertips

Like a 3D movie at the theater in your living room, televisions with 3D technology make watching movies and gaming a real experience. Harnessing 3D technology for other applications, like websites and animations, makes it hard to miss the message!

 

8. Video conferencing

Staying connected face-to-face has never been so easy, and coast-to-coast creative meetings have never been so productive, thanks to iChat, FaceTime, GoTo Meetings and Skype!

 

9. Search Engines

You know you’re getting the best when Google, Yahoo and Bing are fighting to come out on top with the latest, greatest and fastest in search engine technology, not to mention the new competitors released each month. This is especially important considering the how often we use search daily. Imagine finding information without it! We also rely on search technology for optimizing website content so you generate better results for your site.

 

10. Peer-to-Peer Gaming

Even with a busy schedule, peer-to-peer gaming such as Words with Friends or Hanging with Friends allows a little entertainment at anytime. Looks like this technology is replacing the traditional “game night” but with the same old-fashioned competiti

AutoCorrect – not always correct.

The AutoCorrect feature, originally developed by Microsoft, gained additional popularity when introduced by Apple for the iPhone in 2007. It’s designed to automatically detect and correct typos, misspelled words and incorrect capitalization. Considered a feature of smartphones now, the AutoCorrect function has been known to produce strange (and sometimes inappropriate) results leaving it to users to “correct the auto-correct” changes made.

With the intention of making our lives easier and communicating faster, faster communications are not necessarily better, especially when a machine is doing the interpreting. In an article on CNN.com, AutoCorrect was the source of panic when a retired couple decided to go on a month-long trek through Nepal, keeping their daughter and son-in-law up to date by checking in at local Internet cafés. The first message their daughter received read: “Help. Visa bad. Can you send money to water? Autopsy not working.”

Needless to say their daughter panicked and a 16-hour effort ensued to clarify the situation. What the couple meant was that they couldn’t use their VISA credit card to pay the water bill and AutoCorrect had changed the intended word “auto pay” to “autopsy.”

With more and more communications being conducted via text-based sources, technology has offered tools to make these interactions happen better, faster and more accurate – but nothing’s perfect. According to CNN, the United Nations International Telecommunication Union cited that approximately 200,000 text messages were sent every second in 2010, and more than 107 trillion emails are sent every year, which no doubt produced countless instances of miscommunication – many of which were human error, but also a good many prompted by technology.

According to a social strategist at Mashable.com, these kinds of mistakes are a natural part of learning a new communication technology. When you think about it, it’s true. We still encounter people not understanding the appropriate use of “Reply All” in email, which was highlighted in this 2011 Bridgestone Super Bowl commercial, and when Facebook first launched there were plenty of misdirected posts on users walls that were intended for a private message string. Now we are on to the horror stories of bad texts and emails due to AutoCorrect.

Reply All advertisement for Superbowl XLV

Because we reach more and more people via text-based communications and because they’re permanent (in writing) there’s more reason to ensure our language, words and phrases are accurate when communicating.

AutoCorrect has been the topic of several humor websites that allow users to upload images of funny text messages based on the inaccuracies of the spell check and AutoCorrect on the iPhone, iPod Touch, via email, Android and other smartphones. Taking a peek as some of these interactions may give you a chuckle, but it should also remind you to slow down the pace for a minute – or be ready, and hope the recipient of your message has a good sense of humor.

http://damnyouautocorrect.com/

http://www.autocorrectfail.org/

http://www.didijustsendthat.com/

My love and hate of modern technology

abimaster | October 18, 2010
David Wells, Junior Marketing Specialist

I recently returned from a 10 day whirlwind trip to Europe with visits to Dublin, London, Paris and Rome. Although I could write about a million different topics or events, including the crazy drivers and insane amount of mopeds, people knowing how to speak more languages than I could wish for, how everything is just plain older, how Europeans travel way more than Americans, how Europeans work way less than Americans, or how I probably looked like an idiot sprinting through Kings Cross Station in London to catch my train to Paris. Instead, I really want to write about my love and hate of modern technology.

I am a photographer by nature. I love taking pictures, and I take pictures of anything and everything. I started taking pictures many years ago using film cameras, and have used all kinds of cameras since then. I’m pretty savvy when it comes to technology, especially cameras, so figuring out how to use each one is never a hard task. I’m the person my friends come to when they are having trouble with their camera or want to know how to shoot a picture on a certain setting, or which setting would work best. In the days of film and disposable cameras, you thought about each and every shot you took and spaced out your clicks because you had a definite limitation to the number of pictures you could take. I didn’t really have such a limitation on my 10-day trip, but probably could have used one.

Ten days. How many pictures do you think I took? If you guessed in your head, you’re probably wrong, and you probably underestimated.

I took more than 2,600 pictures on my Canon SLR. That does not include the pictures and videos on my Kodak waterproof camera or the images I deleted on the fly if I knew I didn’t like the shot. This amount of pictures used over nine gigabytes of memory. I know… I have a problem.

I encountered lots of interesting things to take pictures of in these incredible cities, but, it was still too many pictures.

Modern technology is great because you can sort of take an unlimited amount of pictures and don’t need to worry how many pictures of the same thing you take (ahem, Eiffel tower), because you can just choose your favorite one later and delete the rest.

Thankfully, with all the advancements in computers, cameras and the internet, I can take this amount of pictures, not worry about the cost of prints, and share over the internet via multiple social media outlets including Facebook, Twitter, Flickr, blogs like this and more.

While I still appreciate an actual printed photograph, accessing all of your old pictures is becoming a lot easier with a few clicks of a mouse without digging through boxes, piles or albums of photographs.

Now we get to why I hate modern technology. It takes an incredible amount of time to download, sort and edit all of these photos! And, who wants to look at that many pictures anyway? Even I got sick of going through them and I was the one on the trip! I’m still working on narrowing this number down to a manageable amount so I can share with my family and friends, and by that time, no one will care about my trip anymore.