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Couples Who Share Social Media Accounts? Um, That's Just Weird

2013-08-06 17:02:32 alesandra-dubin

A new trend shows that more couples are merging social media accounts — and reporting they’re happier for it

There’s a new trend in social media, and it’s not a fresh platform or a new app. Apparently, more and more couples are sharing social media accounts.

Were talking an Instagram feed filled with his and hers images — perhaps a set of hairy toes at the beach, followed by awesome nail art on feminine fingers. 

A recent study from Social Psychological and Personality Science cited in Mashable shows that this is very much a thing — and furthermore, that couples who post more about their relationships on Facebook say they feel happier and more secure with their partners. 

Maybe so. But is it going too far? I mean, couldn’t you just post things on each other’s walls and call it a day? Is it worth all the irritated eye-rolling amid friends. Most likely, someone (besides maybe your grandmother) would think, “Puke! Codependent much?” before “Wow, I’m so envious of how bonded they are.”

Indeed, relationship therapist Suzana Flores told Mashable, “There is a role for healthy autonomy in every relationship. When couples have a joint account, it doesn’t really reflect that.”

Then again, social media causes so much havoc when couples have separate acounts that it makes you wonder if this shared thing is a good idea. Flores estimates seven out of ten clients mention being upset over something involoving social media and their partners, and she hears complaints about Facebook at least twice a day. According to Divorce-Online, a UK legal services firm cited in Mashable, Facebook was named in one-third of divorce filings in 2011.

All of that kind of brings new meaning to the phrase “it’s complicated,” no?

Let’s hear from you: Would you share your social media account with your partner?

Alesandra Dubin is a Los Angeles-based writer and the founder of home and travel blog Homebody in Motion. Follow her on FacebookGoogle+ and Twitter.

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A Galaxy Tablet for Older People

2013-07-31 17:27:48 nyt-gt-elderly

When not in use, the Claris Companion tablet functions as a digital picture frame.

Elderly people are often intimidated, or more likely annoyed, by much of modern technology, even though it can help them stay in touch with friends, family and caregivers.

The best gadget for an older person may be a tablet, because it is easier to handle than a laptop. The Claris Companion, a new tablet, takes that idea a step further, because it is monitored and configured by a caregiver or family member who decides how many features the tablet will have, putting on only those that are needed. The settings can be changed remotely from the caregiver’s computer at any time.

When not in use, the tablet functions as a digital picture frame, showing a slide show of photos. The images are loaded by the person who configures the tablet. A hitch is that photos need to be loaded one at a time; the company says an upgrade is coming soon.

Below the pictures are large buttons for the tablet’s features, like a “call me” button that sends an e-mail to a designated person, one to read and write e-mail, one for an exercise routine and one for an events calendar.

The device can also be programmed to beep with reminders to take medicine, and to have a daily check-in which fires off an automated e-mail to family.

At the heart of the Claris Companion is a Samsung Galaxy Tab 2, but it is hidden in an wooden case of engineered bamboo to make it easier to handle (it also makes it look as if it belongs to a cartoon hillbilly). It sits on a hefty wooden charger stand.

There are two models and several pricing plans. They begin at $550 for at Wi-Fi only model, with a monthly subscription fee of $40. By the end of July, a 4G model that works over the mobile phone network will be $650 and $50 a month for unlimited service, Claris said.

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5 Rules Social-Media Sites Should Add for Totally Annoying Users

2013-07-24 05:05:06 teresa-roca

Social media is a great outlet for people to speak their mind, to share trending videos, and to stay in touch with friends and relatives. That is, until annoying social-media users log on.

It is easy to spot these users that we hate to — but have to — follow. They are usually found at the top of newsfeeds, tweeting non-stop or behind an extremely boring status.

To make Facebook and Twitter as enjoyable as they should be, here are five features that these social media sites should seriously consider implementing before users start signing off for good.

1. Annoying User: The Serial Status-Maker

We understand that serial status-makers may want to keep their followers up to date with their day, but people don’t care if they just took a shower or if they are about to go to the gym — really.

New Rule: If serial status-makers post 15 statuses or tweets in one day, they will be prohibited from making any more. For how long, you ask? Well, each post over 10 will equal one hour of a time-out. So thirteen posts would equal three hours. It sounds harsh, but so is boring everyone.

2. Annoying User: The Extreme Liker

We understand if a status relates so perfectly to their life or if they love Beyonce so much that they just have to “like” her fan page, but do they really need to “like” every status, picture or page that crosses their screen?

New Rule: If they “like” 25 posts in one day, their thoughtfully picked-out profile picture will automatically become a thumb’s down sign for 24 hours.

3. Annoying User: The Obsessive Significant Other

We get that they love their significant other, but is it necessary to write, “I love my boyfriend<3” or “My wife is better than yours” every hour of the day? Trust us, we’re not jealous, just annoyed.

New Rule: If they mention their significant other through statuses more than five times a day (and that includes uploading photos!) then their relationship status automatically becomes “single” for 24 hours. 

4. Annoying User: The #Hashtagger

It’s simple. The purpose of a hashtag is so people can follow the latest trends on sites like Twitter and Instagram. Guess what happens when you click on a hashtag on Facebook? Nothing!

New Rule: Every photo a hashtagger accidentally uploaded then quickly deleted and every picture that was untagged to avoid embarrassment will randomly link to each hashtag created. You did it to yourself, Facebook hashtagger. 

5. Annoying User: The Personal Sharer

We’re so glad that personal sharers have plans to go to Starbucks at 3:15 p.m. but things like this are what private messages are for.

Rule: If personal sharers write a time and place on someone’s wall, an event will be created and sent to all of their friends. And don’t worry about the money — the iced chai lattes are on them.

Teresa Roca is an iVillage contributing writer. Follow her on Google+.

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Vintage Apple Computer Disappoints at Auction

2013-07-09 20:29:00 technology

Source: Christie’s

Christie’s is auctioning off an original Apple-1 computer owned by Ted Perry as part of its First Bytes: Iconic Technology from the Twentieth Century, an online auction of vintage tech products.

The Apple-1 personal computer carried a retail price of $666.66 in 1976, when it was built by Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs.

Today, Christie’s auctioned off an early Apple-1 signed by Wozniak for $387,750. It was sold through an online auction and is now the highest-priced item ever to be sold through Christie’s new online-only platform. Bidding came from 96 countries.

The price marks a huge increase from its 1976 sale price—about $2,800 in today’s dollars—and shows how rare, highly prized vintage electronics are quickly joining art, wine and cars as a new class of collectibles.

Still, the Apple-1 sale marked a slight disappointment from earlier sale prices—and from Christie’s own top estimate. The Apple-1 was estimated to fetch between $300,000 and $500,000. And two previous sales of Apple-1 computers both fetched more than $600,000.

(Read More: Buying a Picasso on Amazon? Not So Crazy Anymore)

An Apple-1 sold in May went for $671,400, while another sold in November 2012 went for $640,000.

It’s unclear why the latest sale price was so much lower. The broader auction markets—for art, wine and cars— have remained fairly strong in recent months, despite the recent wobbles in the stock market and slowing growth in China, Latin America and other wealth-producing countries.

(Read More: Art Buyers Unfazed by Falling Stocks—for Now)

There’s also the possibility that the public’s craving for all things Apple is waning, along with Apple’s stock price and cool-factor. Or perhaps this particular Apple-1 had different provenance or condition compared to the other two.

Either way, the Apple-1 is still considered the Ferrari of vintage, collectible computers.

—By CNBC’s Robert Frank. Follow him on Twitter @robtfrank.

The price of an Apple-1 computer sold at auction marks a huge increase from its 1976 sale price—about $2,800 in today’s dollars—and shows how rare, highly prized vintage electronics are quickly joining art, wine and cars as a new class of collectibles.

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Apple, Amazon Pull the Plug on 'App Store' Battle

2013-07-09 19:34:00 technology

Noah Berger | Bloomberg | Getty Images

Apple and Amazon.com have ended their lawsuit over who has the right to use the “app store” name, clearing the way for both companies to use it.

U.S. District Judge Phyllis Hamilton in Oakland, Calif., on Tuesday ordered that the case be dismissed at the companies’ request. This came after Apple issued to Amazon a covenant not to sue, eliminating the need for a related Amazon counterclaim.

“We no longer see a need to pursue our case,” Apple spokeswoman Kristin Huguet said. “With more than 900,000 apps and 50 billion downloads, customers know where they can purchase their favorite apps.”

Martin Glick, a lawyer for Amazon, said in an interview, “This was a decision by Apple to unilaterally abandon the case, and leave Amazon free to use ‘appstore.”‘

In its March 2011 trademark lawsuit, Apple had accused Amazon of misusing the “app store” name to solicit developers for a mobile software download service.

Amazon countered that the term had become so generic that its use could not be characterized as false advertising.

“We’re gratified that the court has conclusively dismissed this case,” Amazon spokeswoman Mary Osako said. “We look forward to continuing our focus on delivering the best possible appstore experience to customers and developers.”

The case is Apple Inc. v. Amazon.com Inc. et al, U.S. District Court, Northern District of California, No. 11-01327.

—By Reuters.

Apple and Amazon.com have ended their lawsuit over who has the right to use the “app store” name, clearing the way for both companies to use it.

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