Are Mobile Devices Healthy?

It’s easy to see that mobile technology has vastly changed the way we all connect over the last few decades. Today, we can connect with nearly anyone across the globe in just a few moments, and we have easy access to more information than we could read in a whole lifetime. As our world becomes more and more interconnected through mobile devices, many people have questioned the effects of this interconnectedness on our mental and physical health as well as the health of our relationships. On one side, people praise mobile technology for making everyday tasks much simpler and faster, and making it easier to stay connected to loved ones. On the other side, many people wonder if the pervasiveness of mobile tech is making us more anxious and disconnected than ever.

This debate is multifaceted and complicated, so to help you sort through your own relationship with mobile devices, we’ve rounded up a selection of books offering different perspectives on mobile devices, how we use them, and how they’re affecting us.

Hamlet’s Blackberry by William Powers

At a time when we’re all trying to make sense of our relentlessly connected lives, this book presents a bold new approach to the digital age. Part intellectual journey, part memoir, Hamlet’s BlackBerry sets out to solve what William Powers calls the conundrum of connectedness. Our computers and mobile devices do wonderful things for us. But they also impose an enormous burden, making it harder for us to focus, do our best work, build strong relationships, and find the depth and fulfillment we crave. Hamlet’s BlackBerry argues that we need a new way of thinking, an everyday philosophy for life with screens. To find it, Powers reaches into the past, uncovering a rich trove of ideas that have helped people manage and enjoy their connected lives for thousands of years. New technologies have always brought the mix of excitement and stress that we feel today. Drawing on some of history’s most brilliant thinkers, from Plato to Shakespeare to Thoreau, he shows that digital connectedness serves us best when it’s balanced by its opposite, disconnectedness.

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Tech Talk Thursday: Love your heart – Wearable technology for heart monitoring

It’s time to have a real heart to heart about health…specifically cardiovascular health. Heart disease is the number one cause of death in the United States, and February is a great time to start some serious conversation about that since it’s National Heart Month. Today, we’d like to center the discussion around some of the technology that’s out there to help combat that statistic.

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Tech Talk Thursday: Age Appropriate Technology for Children

In this digital age we live in it is nearly impossible to raise a child without exposing them to technology at a very early age. Even before they are born they’ve come in contact with more sophisticated devices than most of us did in our first decade of existence (those 3-D and 4-D ultrasounds are wild, #amiright #justme). Knowing the rate of your child’s development and what technology to use to foster their growing mind can be a daunting challenge. I’ve attempted to wade through the amalgam of information out there about technology and children and siphoned out a few things that seemed important.

Much like television, the AAP (American Academy of Pediatrics) believes technology use should be limited for young developing minds.  I personally believe in a “everything in moderation” approach. That said, it’s also important to realize that as a parent, it’s solely up to you and what you believe is best for your child. As no child is the same, nor is any parent, you shouldn’t feel pressured to let a magazine or journal tell you how to raise your child –  instead, feel free to look to these mediums for inspiration and light guidance.

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Tech Talk Thursday: Apps & Gadgets Bonus Edition!

This Monday the library hosted its annual Winter HSL Info Expo. As always, our Apps & Gadgets segment was a crowd pleaser. Because there are so many great apps and fun gadgets out there, it’s hard to cram them all in to a 15 or 20-minute presentation. Inevitably some of these don’t make it to the final Info Expo. But because we know how much everyone loves Apps & Gadgets, for this month’s Tech Talk Thursday, we’re bringing you four bonus apps and gadgets for your perusing pleasure!

Read on  for more apps & gadgets for your holiday shopping lists

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Tech Talk Thursday: Say Hello to the New iPhone(s)!

By now you’ve probably heard about the new phones Apple has announced this year, the Apple iPhone 8, the iPhone 8 Plus,  and the Apple iPhone X.  The iPhone 8 and 8 Plus have just been released, while the iPhone X  is available for pre-order. If you’re in the market for a new phone, you may be wondering about the differences between the devices and if it’s better to buy one over the other. Today, we’ll break down the options with an overview of some key similarities and differences in Apple’s latest iOS mobile devices.

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Tech Talk Thursday: TREK Talk – Real Trek-nology from Star Trek

For a futuristic show that aired in 1966, Star Trek was ironically ahead of its time. Along with being one of the most popular and long running Sci-Fi TV series, multi-million dollar movie franchises, and widely versed references in popular culture, Star Trek seems to have had the ability to predict the future. Arguably, there is technology in existence today that made its appearance in Star Trek’s mythology long before it became reality. Some devices are popular today, while other things are still being worked on. But undeniably, Star Trek definitely had a premeditative pulse on the tech community.

Here’s a look at the technology Star Trek predicted that is now here, and some soon to come. You might ask: Did Star Trek creators see into the future, or are we just using the past as inspiration?

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Tech Talk Thursday: Your Black Friday 2016 Gadget Guide

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November is here, and that means that Thanksgiving is only three weekends away. Which means that Christmas and Hanukkah and the other winter-time holidays are only about seven weeks away. Crazy, right?! To be honest, I started listening to Christmas music two days ago.

If you’re anything like us, you may be hoping to get some of your holiday shopping done on or around Black Friday – after all, it pays (well, saves) to be a savvy shopper, especially when it comes to newer technology releases. At this stage, precise Black Friday 2016 deals have yet to be confirmed; however, that doesn’t mean we don’t have a good idea of the sort of tech-y goodies you’ll be able to snap up on the cheap, so we’ve rounded up a list of the top technology products to look out for this holiday season. Be sure to make any tech-savvy family member or friend happy by keeping an eye out for these products, which are shaping up to be the most popular steals of the shopping season!

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