Why Steve Jobs Didn’t Let His Kids Use iPads!

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Steve Jobs was the father of two teenage girls and a son when he passed away in 2011. These kids grew up with a visionary father who co-founded one of the best-known tech companies. Jobs led the world into the digital age with gadgets that transformed the way we listen to music, watch movies, communicate, live our lives.

You would imagine that his children’s rooms would have been filled with iPods, iPhones and iPads.

That’s not the case. In an article in the Sunday New York Times, reporter Nick Bilton says he once asked Jobs “So, your kids must love the iPad?” Jobs response: “They haven’t used it. We limit how much technology our kids use at home.”

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The Times article examines the growing trend among the California Silicon Valley tech set to limit children’s technology use. Many of the people behind the social media platforms, gadgets and games that are consuming our kids’ time and minds aren’t actually allowing their own children to waste an entire Saturday afternoon playing Minecraft on the iPad.

A quote in The Times from Chris Anderson, father of five and chief executive of 3D Robotics, pretty much defines why Anderson and his colleagues are limiting technology at home. “My kids accuse me and my wife of being fascists and overly concerned about tech, and they say that none of their friends have the same rules,” says Anderson, formerly the editor of Wired. “That’s because we have seen the dangers of technology firsthand. I’ve seen it in myself, I don’t want to see that happen to my kids.”

Some of these Silicon Valley engineers and execs are even going to the extreme of sending their kids to computer-free schools. A Times story from 2011 reported that engineers and execs from Apple, eBay, Google, Hewlett-Packard and Yahoo are sending their kids to a Waldorf elementary school in Los Altos, Calif., where you won’t find a single computer or screen of any sort. Also, kids are discouraged from watching television or logging on at home.

Alan Eagle, who works in executive communications at Google and has a degree in computer science from Dartmouth, has a fifth grader who attends the school and he told the Times that she “doesn’t know how to use Google.”

The thinking is that technology interferes with creativity and young minds learn best through movement, hands-on tasks, and human-to-human interaction. Students at this school are gaining math, patterning, and problem-solving skills by knitting socks. They aren’t exposed to fractions through a computer program. Instead they learn about halves and quarters by cutting up food.

Are you surprised by any of this? Bilton certainly was when he had that conversation with Jobs in 2010. Bilton spoke with the Apple boss many times and says learning that Jobs was a low-tech parent was the most shocking bit of information that he ever heard. Shocking for me too…and now I wonder is tech good or bad at such a young age…my grand daughter is already an iPad expert.

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My American business hero died today…Steve Jobs

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Steve Jobs the innovative co-founder of Apple who transformed personal use of technology as well as entire industries with products such as the iPod, iPad, iPhone, Macintosh computer and the iTunes music store, died today.

The iconic American CEO, whose impact many have compared to auto magnate Henry Ford and Walt Disney— whom Jobs openly admired — abruptly stepped down from his position as CEO of Apple in August because of health concerns. He had been suffering from pancreatic cancer.

Google Chairman Eric Schmidt, a former Apple board member, called Jobs the best CEO of the past 50 years — perhaps 100 years. I would agree…he has become almost a cult hero among all of us in the tech community.

A seminal business and technology leader, Jobs’ success flowed from a relentless focus on making products that were easy and intuitive for the average consumer to use. His products were characterized by groundbreaking design and style that, along with their technological usefulness, made them objects of intense desire by consumers around the world.

He was known as a demanding, mercurial boss and an almost mystical figure in technology circles as well as American popular culture. Author and business consultant Jim Collins once called Jobs the “Beethoven of business.” He was one of the figures who made Silicon Valley the capital of technological innovation and related venture capital fortunes.
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He revolutionized the computing business with Mac, he revolutionized the music business with iTunes and he turned the telephony business on its ear with the iPhone. He reinvented several businesses too, Pixar gave animation a whole new life. A fact that I just learned today as a retailer, Apple Stores are the most profitable per square foot retail spaces in the world.

And finally as a marketer…my former ad agency network produced the advertising for Apple and without a doubt created some of the most outstanding commercials in the industry for the Apple Brand. Who does remember the famous 1984 Super Bowl commercial or the iconic “think Different” campaign.
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Jobs’ work at Apple and other projects made him a fortune estimated by Forbes magazine in 2011 at $8.3 billion. He was No.110 on Forbes’ list of billionaires worldwide and No.34 in the United States, as of the magazine’s March 2011 estimates.

It will surely be missed and everyone has to wonder who will lead Apple not just in the Boardroom but in the “kitchen” where the ideas are created.

Twitter Cofounder Shakes Up the Credit Card Biz

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Jack Dorsey specializes in simple ideas with outsize impact. Twitter, which he cofounded in 2007, began as a way for users to broadcast quick status updates to friends. Now it’s a 200-million-member communications platform, where Dorsey serves as executive chair.
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His new company began with similarly modest aims: give anyone the ability to accept credit card payments through a tiny reader that plugs into their iPads and smartphones. Called Square, it has signed up hundreds of thousands of merchants and processed $66 million in transactions in the first quarter of 2011 alone. The startup is also building a vast database of financial information that its customers can tap into. It tracks each sale conducted through its credit card readers, allowing the company to calculate everything from the busiest sales day of the week (Saturday) to the average price of a cappuccino ($3.09 as of April 18).

The power of that kind of data analysis helps explain why Square was able to close a second round of funding in January: $27.5 million from Sequoia Capital, Khosla Ventures, and others, which valued the young company at $240 million. Then Visa invested an undisclosed sum in April.

Here is an App we don’t need…Vuvuzela 2010!

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Sometimes, there can’t be too much of a bad thing — which would seem to explain the unfortunate creation of the Vuvuzela 2010 app for iPhone and iPad, which celebrates and perpetuates the blood-curdling wail of the ubiquitous horn used by South African soccer fans during World Cup matches.

Just like the actual horns, which came under marked criticism during this year’s matches, use of this app around others will likely be met with outrage, threats of violence, incremental loss of critical brain function and banishment from all match viewings, all of which are well-deserved.

MTV Mobile App

TV has rolled out an interactive MTV News application providing users access to this year’s MTV Movie awards, as well as up-to-date pop culture news.

The application is available for free on the iPhone and iPod touch.In addition, the iPad version will be available soon.

“MTV is creating addictive digital experiences for viewers by creating and curating content with MTV’s distinct voice to super serve our audience’s passion,” said Mike Scogin, vice president of wireless at MTV, New York.

“The strategy behind the MTV News app is about making our content as accessible as possible and reaching our audience on the platforms they are spending their time,” he said. “Mobile is where our audience is, and where our advertisers want to be. MTV’s hyper-connected audience is ages 12 – 35.”


Users can browse by several topics, including TV, music, movies, celebrity and gaming news articles, video and photo content.
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MTV fans can get behind-the-scenes mobile access to major events, beginning with the 2010 MTV Movie Awards, which airs on June 6.

Leading up to the show, the application updates exclusive content, starting with a live video stream of the red carpet construction. Users can also watch the live footage of the red carpet arrivals, backstage happenings and the after-party. In addition, users can watch video clips of the best moments “

The MTV News app will be promoted on MTV.com, the MTV Movie Awards homepage, social media outreach through Twitter and Facebook and through

Trouble Sleeping? Maybe It’s Your Laptop…or Xanga?

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More than ever, consumer electronics — particularly laptops, smartphones and Apple’s new iPad — are shining bright light into our eyes until just moments before we doze off. In fact it is 1:30 AM and I am on Xanga writing this blog.

Now there’s growing concern that these glowing gadgets may actually fool our brains into thinking it’s daytime. Exposure can disturb sleep patterns and exacerbate insomnia, some sleep researchers said in interviews.

“Potentially, yes, if you’re using [the iPad or a laptop] close to bedtime … that light can be sufficiently stimulating to the brain to make it more awake and delay your ability to sleep,” said Phyllis Zee, a neuroscience professor at Northwestern University and director of the school’s Center for Sleep & Circadian Biology.

“And I think more importantly, it could also be sufficient to affect your circadian rhythm. This is the clock in your brain that determines when you sleep and when you wake up.”

Such concerns are not entirely new: One sleep researcher said Thomas Edison created these problems when he invented the light bulb. But they’ve been revived by the popularity of Apple’s new slate computer, the iPad, which many consumers say is good for reading at night in bed, when the brain thinks the environment should be dark.

Unlike paper books or e-book readers like the Amazon Kindle, which does not emit its own light, the iPad’s screen shines light directly into the reader’s eyes from a relatively close distance.

That makes the iPad and laptops more likely to disrupt sleep patterns than, say, a television sitting across the bedroom or a lamp that illuminates a paper book, both of which shoot far less light straight into the eye.

My mom always said don’t sit so close to the TV…I guess she was right.

Apple Unveils iPad

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Apple CEO Steve Jobs unveiled the iPad, a tablet-style computer that resembles the iPhone, but with a larger screen and other features for work and play.

“It’s so much more intimate than a laptop and so much more capable than a smart phone,” Jobs said. I would love to get one of these.

I had heard speculation that this would be available at Verizon but it was announced that AT&T will offer an unlimited data plan for $30 a month, and will not require the usual longer-term service contract, he added.

Jobs demonstrated how the iPad is used for surfing the Web with Apple’s Safari browser. He typed an e-mail using an on-screen keyboard and flipped through photo albums by flicking his finger across the screen, using gestures common to the iPhone.

The iPad also has a custom version of iWorks, productivity software that includes applications for documents, spreadsheets and presentations.

As part of today’s announcement, Apple came out with an online bookstore called the iBookstore, along with Penguin, Harper Collins, Simon & Schuster, Macmillan and Hachette as partners. It will compete head-on with the Amazon Kindle device and bookstore. The Kindle lacks the color screen and rich-media capabilities of the iPad and its mobile operating system.

The iPad will also run all iPhone apps, and Apple is making a software development kit for the new device available to developers this week.