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To all my new moms: kids cursing is pretty much a regular stage that all kids go through. One of my favorite movie moments of all time is from “A Christmas Story” when Peter Billingsley’s character Ralphie gets busted saying the “f dash, dash, dash word.” His father who regularly curses around the house turns to him and asks him where he heard that and he gives up the name of a friend. Later on as his mom tells the other boys’ mom what he supposedly taught Ralphie, you can hear him getting his butt whipped over the telephone. Classic, hilarious.
Times have changed. Most every parent I know will squarely place the blame on themselves, even if they try very hard not to slip up around their preschoolers. As it happened, my two older boys started it and ‘ended it’ in preschool, that is to say I gather that one of them never really stopped but he was savvy enough to know when and where to do it without getting caught. The toddler, preschooler form sounds like parroting entire phrases picked up from parents. Stuff like “oh shit!”, “stupid bitch!” and “shut up, asshole!” (What, that’s only in my house? Eh.)
The trick is to not make too big a deal out of it because it can be such an attention getter that they want to do it over and over for a reaction. A mild, “That’s enough Sean. If I continue to hear you use those bad words you’ll have to go to bed early.” Generally they get it pretty quickly and voila, they move on to the next stage where they stop cursing, but every time they catch you doing it, they say things like “Ooooh mommy, that’s a bad word! Stop using bad words in front of me, I’m a child.”
I thought I had pretty much escaped that whole thing with my youngest, he never got in trouble (read caught) cursing until he was six, which I thought was a little old to start. And even then, he didn’t get busted in the traditional way but it was more the fact that I’m one of the worlds’ nosiest moms and modern technology. I was relishing the fact that he and his god-sister & best friend were old enough to hang out in the backyard unsupervised when I noticed that it seemed kind of quiet. No basketball bouncing, no screaming, chasing etc., just a regular conversation. Weird. I snuck over to the window which was open about five inches, bent down and began listening to the conversation.
J.: “I curse. We could be out here cursing and no one could even hear us.” Of course as soon as I heard that, I whipped out my iPhone, turned on the camera to video, and eased it out the window. I didn’t get too much of a visual with the fire escape blocking it, but I caught classic first grade chit chat.
J.: “I can curse. I curse all the time. I can say ass.”
Khev: “Oooooooh! You’ll get in trouble! I can say ass too. ‘Ass’. See? I just said it. I can just say it.”
Ess: “So what. Anyone can say ‘ass’. Ass, ass, ass, ass. It’s not even that big of a deal: ass.”
The three of them proceed to chant ‘ass’ a few more times and then forget about it and moved on to something else. Meanwhile I’m laying on the kitchen floor laughing my ass off with the dog jumping around me wondering what the hell I’m doing. Still, I felt it needed to be addressed so later on that evening when Khev and I were alone, I told him, “I heard you guys in the backyard saying ‘ass’ this afternoon and I think you know better. Please no more cursing, ok?” What happened next was way more shocking and disappointing to me than his casual foray into bad language.
Khev: “No I didn’t!”
Me: “You did I heard you. The kitchen window was open and I was standing right next to it listening to you guys talk. I didn’t say anything at the time because I figured I would talk to you about it later.”
Khev: “I didn’t though. I swear I didn’t curse, it wasn’t me.” We went back and forth for a while and I grew increasing frustrated and pissed off until finally I told him I had it on my phone and if he didn’t just fess up, say sorry it won’t happen again, I was going to punish him for lying. He insisted he hadn’t said it so I played the video for him where each of them is clearly heard saying the word multiple times and not that quietly either. He was speechless.
And then I sent him to his room to lay on his bed for twenty minutes for lying, not cursing. He still occasionally lies, it wasn’t some magic cure all, but he certainly thinks it through better!
Cheryl is a student at The CUNY School of Professional Studies and the mother of three boys. A former office manager, she currently writes a blog about her adventures in parenting called UrbanMommys.com. In her spare time she likes to check out fun new places and things to do with children for her readers. Cheryl is also actively looking for a full time job that is both challenging and satisfying.
A major interruption with communication has caused Black Berry RIM users to scramble. Why do we rely on technology so much? Because technology has proven to be a useful, efficient and inexpensive tool that allows intra-company communication and communication with outside clients. The majority of U.S. companies offer blackberry devices to its employees as a means to stay in contact at all times.
But when technology doesn’t measure up, it can be detrimental and even costly. According to the The Roland Martin Report “Mike Lazaridis, founder of BlackBerry’s Canadian parent company, Research In Motion, appeared this morning in a YouTube video to say, “Since launching BlackBerry in 1999, it’s been my goal to provide reliable, real-time communications around the world. We did not deliver on that goal this week. Not even close.”
Now, I must admit I have relied (and still do) on my device to keep me in touch with work related emails and personal messages alike. That’s a good thing. Technology has been monumental in many new arenas of our society, but with anything, nothing is absolute.
Our society has evolved dramatically in more ways than not – one being, the ways in which we communicate. Twenty years ago, TXTNG was unheard of! There was a time (before my time) when a boy and girl liked each other, they would write love letters back and forth. That form of communicating as we know it is now outdated.
Businesses that rely on technological devices to increase productivity should use these mishaps as a learning curve to find ways to keep things moving, if this should happen again – hopefully it won’t. Otherwise, we’ll continue to experience these disruptions all over again.
RIM has provided a very useful service to many companies local and international.
I read an article in Thursday’s WSJ, by Will Connors, Ben Drummett and Christopher Lawton which said “hardware failure began in Europe, Mideast and Africa since Monday. The company was forced to “throttle” data traffic through its world-wide servers in order to deal with the backlog, triggering fresh disruptions in previously unaffected markets, including Japan, Singapore and – starting early Wednesday morning-North America.”
For many professionals, this is a must have.
“Service disruptions affected a wide array of U.S. federal agencies, including the Federal Reserve and the U.S. Treasury, as well as emergency services.”
During the email chaos yesterday afternoon, my boss hadn’t received one email since ten o’clock that morning. But he didn’t mind. Others that were affected, vented their frustrations on Twitter and Facebook instantly.
With dwindling sales of Blackberry devices, this serves as ammunition for customers to move to the iPhone and HTC smartphones.
Sources: Wall Street Journal, pages A1 & A2 (Thursday, October 13th)
Roland S. Martin’s blog: http://rolandmartinreports.com/blog/2011/10/blackberry-outage-rim-apologizes-says-service-returning/
Miranda A. Walker is currently in her freshman year in the B.A. in Communication & Culture program at CUNY School of Professional Studies. She works in the multi-media industry as an Executive Assistant at the New York Daily News. In her spare time, she enjoys spending time with her children and reading immensely. Her dream is to one day run her own company.
Have you heard your cellphone ring in the last couple of days? Do you have a “house phone”? Do you even use ringtones for calls anymore? I know I cannot answer yes to any of these questions. With the rise of smartphones over the last few years there has been a decline in actual telephone usage, not that we didn’t see that coming. But why have we become so dependent on them and so quickly as well? Having had a smart phone in one form or another for over four years now I don’t know if I could ever go back to a “normal” phone ever again, nor do I think those types of phones that we once knew will ever be back on the rise again. The new smartphones are great with all the helpful apps – whether it’s an iPhone, Blackberry or another type of device. But with the gain of all this new technology in our phones, have we lost the actual point of a phone to begin with- talking to people?
I have to admit, I am a lover of the Blackberry Messenger feature and texting people who are all over the world and country – but even my own mother would rather text me before she’d call me up. And we live in the same house! Don’t get me wrong I do occasionally get a phone call here or there but I feel as though we as a society have moved away from hearing someone’s voice. Even with the rise in emailing over the last few years I have been wondering if we will remember what people actually sound like versus just what we think they do. Personally I have always been one to be attached to my phone or computer as if it were the last day on earth, but this past week for one of my classes we had to keep a media diary for one day of how much time we spent using different products. Whether it was our cellphones, computers, checking emails, or talking on the phone. I was more than surprised by the results that I received by the end of the day. I spend about 10 hours combined on all of my devices – though not continuously. I cannot speak for anyone but myself but I think I need to do something that doesn’t involve technology. For starters I have been keeping up with actually reading books in print and not from a device and yesterday I decided that I was going to try a new recipe a friend have given me.
Do you think you spend too much time consumed by technology? What about actually calling someone up today? In the spirit of Valentine’s Day, surprise someone you love with a phone call and let them hear your voice!
Louise Marie Russo is currently an undergrad at The School of Professional Studies majoring in Communication and Culture. She enjoys traveling, cooking, baking, photography as well as volunteering. Her goal one day is to work with a non-profit organization advocating for the homeless population of New York City and one day publishing a book of photography.