Technology

Tech News

When I’m not busy with school or work or family or friends, I like to read. To be honest, most of what I read nowadays is in a digital format – I have an e-reader, I catch all my news online, I even read short stories from The New Yorker on their website. In particular, I really enjoy reading about technology and the latest and greatest happenings in the field. Since I go to school in Silicon Valley and I’m majoring in a tech field, you could say I have some experience figuring where to get my tech news from. And as fall approaches, with those cool nights that lend themselves to reading by the fireplace (or wrapped in a snuggie in my dorm room), I thought it would be interesting to share all some of my favorite online sources of tech news. This is my personal favorite list; please share where you get your tech news in the comments below! Or if you don’t read up on technology all the time, what are some of your other favorite news sources? I think it’s always interesting to hear about potentially new sources from people who have vetted them first, especially if they’re in subject areas I’m not familiar with!

Online Tech News

  • Gizmodo.com: One of my top two daily checks for the latest tech news. Gizmodo is branded as a design and technology blog, but it has a fair amount of other science and general geek news as well. The posts are short, sweet and to the point, but with enough humor and information to actually get something from them. I follow them on Facebook and often read their posts from my news feed.
  • Engadget.com: The second of my daily tech news sites. Engadget focuses more on actual tech gadgets/electronics than tech news as a whole; this is where I go to read the latest reviews on emerging technologies. Engadget is also multilingual, so there are several international versions of the site as well for foreigners. Engadget is always on top of the latest expos, conferences and tech company reveals. I also follow it on Facebook to get most of their new stories in my news feed.
  • NYTimes.com/pages/technology: You can’t beat the quality of the New York Times when looking for news, and the same holds for news in technology. I especially like reading the “Personal Technology” section, because I’m really interested in how people interact with technology and what the latest trends are on the market (and what that might mean for the future!). You can also find a number of opinion pieces (especially around diversity in the tech field), business technology, and interesting social good applications for tech. I often get a digest of the most popular articles each day with my IFTTT app.
  • PCMag.com, 9to5mac.com: These two sites are my go tos for any news regarding pcs or macs, respectively. PCMag also has more general news, but mostly pertaining to computers in general. 9to5mac is great for you Apple junkies out there, speculating about the latest iPhone, looking for the next best app or searching for a buying guide to your next piece of Apple hardware.
    Wired.com: Also a monthly magazine. I should really visit Wired more often – they have amazing articles about how technology affects us in a variety of channels – our culture, the economy, the government. And it’s not just about the latest hardware – there are pages devoted to design, entertainment, security and science.

So those are some of my top tech sources to scour daily/weekly/monthly. Where do you like to get your news? Share with us in the comments!

Traveling with Tech

Confession: I’m writing this post in the airport. And as I sat here in the terminal brainstorming what to write about, I couldn’t help but think about my upcoming travels and how I was integrating technology into my trip. So while I type this blog post on my phone, which is plugged into a charging station underneath my seat, I can see how much tech has become a part of my travel regimen. And I wonder how other people travel with tech – do you have a list of things that you bring onto the plane to keep you entertained? How about once you reach your destination? Is it just me that brings too much? I’m going to list the tech I’ve brought with me on my trip (I’m going to Disney World with family, for context) and you can comment if you think I’m ridiculous! Or if you agree with the amount of stuff I’ve brought 🙂

Travel tech:

  • iPhone 5S: I go no where without my phone. It’s my camera, my connection to other family members, my music player, and so much more. Pretty standard if you ask me. And since I’m not in charge of the DSLR, I can still snap quality photos without lugging too much.
  • Nook (eReader): I love reading, and planes are great for getting lost in a novel. I have access to my entire ebook library on my Nook, plus a backlit screen for reading on night flights. And it has a few apps too, like sudoku and chess in case I’m extra bored. Carrying a thin eReader in my carry on is much nice than an actual book.
  • Bose Headphones: Ever since I got a pair of noise canceling headphones for Christmas, I can’t travel on planes without them. It is so nice to tune out the sounds of a plane (or even some chatty neighbors), whether while reading or trying to sleep.
  • Nintendo 3DS: I think this piece of tech is specific to my age range, but I really like video games and the 3DS is the perfect portable game player. Mario and Pokemon will definitely keep me engaged on my cross country flight!

Those are my staple tech travel accessories that I generally bring on every flight. I thought about bringing my laptop, but this is an active vacation and I didn’t want to lug it around or let it sit in the hotel room. So that’s what I’m traveling with.  What do you travel with? Has there been one gadget that really impacted your travels? Share in the comments below!

E-Journaling

Getting to the end of summer, I’ve been scrambling trying to figure the best way to commemorate all my great memories from the past few months. An increase in pictures and videos taken on my phone recently caused me to get a warning that I was almost out of memory… on a 32GB iPhone. That’s a lot of media (about 2,500 files, to be exact). The point is I like capturing memories and emotions, which I often do through photography. However, I also keep a journal that I write in about once a week. Writing is sometimes the best way to get out your emotions, to capture what you feel onto a page. Every time I read what I have written, I remember exactly how I felt, and often where/when I wrote it. However, in the light of the digital era, and being a millennial, I decided to give e-journaling a go. I downloaded a few apps to my phone/computer to see if I could get any to stick. So far, only one has really stuck around long enough, but maybe one or some of these other suggestions will get you hooked!

Nathalia’s list of e-journaling apps and services:

  1. OneNote: Microsoft’s OneNote, part of the Office Suite, has been a longtime friend of mine for taking notes in school. It’s supposed to be like an electronic notebook, with tabs and sections for various topics. You can insert photos, make lists, and even draw in the virtual notebooks if you have a tablet pen. If you have a lot to write, and want to use your computer (although they do have a mobile version), then OneNote may be a great choice for your journaling needs. My only issue with it for a hardcore journaling app is that it’s almost too much functionality and power for capturing my light thoughts on most days.
  2. Momento: Momento is an iPhone app ($1.99) that pulls in content from your social media sites each day, allowing you to capture a snapshot of what your day was like based on news articles, friends’ tweets, or momentous Facebook occasions. You can also add your own snippets to recount your day as you personally experienced it. Great for those who want to have a lot of content in their journals without doing most of the writing themselves.
  3. Day One: An iPhone/Mac app ($1.99/$9.99) that brings beauty and simplicity to daily journaling. Day One records your location and weather each day, but has the most beautiful interface to make writing relaxing. Day One also supports keywords/tagging, which lets you search for posts easily. Calendar views and the ability to import photos are two strong features the app also has. If you want to sync your journal across multiple devices (including Apple Watch!), this may be the suite to go with.
  4. Grid: My favorite app that I’ve tried. Grid is an iPhone app that has a grid of questions for you to answer each day. It’s a great way to get in the habit of reflecting on certain questions each day to sort of build your own journal. Sample questions include: What did I get done today? What are three good things about today? What did I learn today? Did I spend enough time with my family? And so forth. There are a variety of prompts in different categories, or you can write your own. Each day can be seen in a timeline as well as swiped through left to right. There is also a pro version available without ads.

So those are my tried and tested e-journaling apps. I’ve stuck with Grid for a while because I love the prompts that I can quickly answer and reflect on before going to bed. If I don’t have anything major to write out in my hardcopy journal, Grid is a great way for me to keep track of my days, with moments big and small. Do you have any favorite e-journaling apps? Share in the comments below!