Technology Articles

Cutting National Healthcare Costs Through Broader Mental Wellness Access

Thursday, May 8th, 2014

Cutting National Healthcare Costs Through Broader Mental Wellness AccessIn 2010, over 6.4 million emergency room visits involved treatment for mental health conditions or substance abuse. That number is up 28 percent from just four years earlier. Though many of these cases may be due to serious illnesses or related injuries, too many are preventable with ongoing mental wellness management.

These visits cost America’s already overburdened emergency rooms millions each year. In 2003, mental health visits cost hospitals $20.3 billion. By some estimates, that number will nearly double to a whopping $38.5 billion in 2014.

Stop the Drama: 3 Reasons Facebook Is Ruining Your Life

Wednesday, April 23rd, 2014

characteristics-good-online-support-communities-support-groupsFacebook is, after all, the villain in our lives.

A recent article detailing Facebook’s role in the demise of women’s self-esteem came as no surprise. Facebook is after all, the villain in our lives. It is a virtual bulletin board of our possessions, a bragging battle ground and an undercover detective’s most prized tool.

Is Facebook the root of the dramatics in your own life? Here are four different kinds of drama’s that can spark from Facebook — have you been a witness to any of these?

 

The Pathological Potential of the Prep Pad

Saturday, April 19th, 2014

The Pathological Potential of the Prep PadNew York Times health columnist Catherine Saint Louis recently covered the many upsides of a spanking new food analyzing device called the Prep Pad. In addition to weighing just how much food you’re about to consume, this unassuming 9-inch-by-6.25 gadget syncs easily with an iPad (generation 3 or higher) to tabulate the grams of carbohydrates, protein, and fat whatever edible hits its scale has to offer — along with the total number of calories these macronutirients add up to.

Exciting as this may be for well-meaning dieters and family food planners trying their best to be “healthy,” I can (un?)comfortably say I’m already concerned.

5 Ways to Cope With Heartbleed Bug Anxiety

Friday, April 11th, 2014

5 Ways to Cope With Heartbleed Bug AnxietyBy now you have probably heard about the Heartbleed Bug that has the Internet community shorting out its circuits. With headlines, tweets and posts with titles like “Why Heartbleed Is the Ultimate Web Nightmare” its a wonder any of us got any sleep last night. That Heartbleed logo alone is enough to kick up my flight/fight response!

So what can we do to get a grip, calm our bodies down and take action to do what we can to address the problem?

Narcissism and Millennials in the Digital Age

Friday, March 28th, 2014

Narcissism and Generation Y in the Digital AgeAccording to dictionary.com, narcissism is defined as “an inordinate fascination with oneself; excessive self-love; vanity; self-centeredness, smugness, egocentrism.”

As a 20-something myself, I observe how individuals frequently throw this infamous word around, specifically referencing Generation Y, otherwise known as Millennials: “Look at how they tweet and talk about themselves — such a narcissistic generation!”

And while indulging in Twitter/Facebook updates and Instagram photos could be superfluous, I find that it’s a reflection of the digital age. Social media outlets have now become another prominent platform for communication and instant disclosure.

Why People Mock & Hate New Technology Like Google Glass

Saturday, March 22nd, 2014

Why People Mock & Hate New Technology Like Google GlassGoogle Glass, if you haven’t heard of it or seen it, is a miniature computer that’s integrated with a pair of non-prescription lenses with a small heads-up display attached. It can take pictures and look up things on Google or Facebook. It has both a limited feature-set and battery life, despite being available for 2 years (at $1500).

Google Glass, in its current incarnation, is similar to the first versions of smartphones that came out 5 or 6 years ago. The only difference is that it resides on the side of a person’s head instead of inside their purse or pocket.

So why is this seemingly-inconsequential, limited piece of technology the focus of so much hatred and mocking?

8 Characteristics to Look For in a Good Online Support Community

Tuesday, March 18th, 2014

8 Characteristics to Look For in a Good Online Support CommunityA good online support community or support group can help you with virtually any health or mental health concern. A good one can give you information about your concern, help you understand your treatment options from a personal perspective, share the latest treatment research and breakthroughs, and most importantly, provide emotional support from others who are going through or have gone through something similar.

However, a bad support community can leave you with a sour taste in your mouth. In the worst case scenario, you could be hurt by a community that wasn’t designed to foster your growth. Or one day when go to visit the community, you might find yourself trying to visit a forum that no longer exists.

I believe in the power of good online support communities to help virtually anyone with a health or mental health concern — as long as you’re opened and willing to engage with others. Best of all — virtually all of them are free and cost nothing to join.

Are Moods & Emotions ‘Contagious’ on Facebook?

Sunday, March 16th, 2014

Are Moods & Emotions 'Contagious' on Facebook?Some news outlets are blaring that a new study recently published demonstrates moods are “contagious” on online social networks, like Facebook. Parroting the tone and talking points from the news release on the study, it appears nobody bothered to read the actual study before doing their reporting on it.

However, it doesn’t take an empirical study to understand that our moods impact one another. If you’re depressed and you live with your family, your depressed mood is going to affect your family. If you’re manic and hang out with your friends, chances are some of that manic energy is going to rub off on them.

We would expect that same thing to occur online, wouldn’t we?

How to Make Your Life Happier Through Social Media

Saturday, March 15th, 2014

How to Make Your Life Happier Through Social MediaLike many things, social media can be used for good or evil. It’s not inherently bad, but there are many side effects from overuse that hurt us.

However, we can not only learn to avoid them — we can even use social media to make us happier!

Social media is a powerful procrastination tool, but many studies have shown that it can be bad for your overall well-being. A direct link has been made between too much time spent on Facebook and depression; it may even cause physical problems for those who struggle with their weight.

How Social Media Affects Our Self-Perception

Friday, March 14th, 2014

How Social Media Affects Our Self-PerceptionNot long ago, a friend of mine deleted her Instagram account. I couldn’t understand why one would ever do such a thing, so I asked and her response caught me off-guard.

She deleted her Instagram because she felt herself becoming depressed by it. The pressure of taking the right picture, with the right filter, wearing the right outfit, at the right place, with the right people was too much pressure.

We are conditioned to project only our best, albeit unrealistic, selves on our social media profiles as a modern way of virtually keeping up with the Joneses.

7 Tips for Authentic Engagement in an Online Support Community

Tuesday, March 11th, 2014

7 Tips for Authentic Engagement with an Online Support Community

Online support communities offer patients, people, caregivers, family members, and even professionals the opportunity to engage with one another in an environment designed to encourage discussion. Not only do people engage in emotional support and discussions, but they also exchange valuable information about their own research, experiences, and techniques that work for them.

Support communities are so much more than a simple social group with a shared purpose. They serve as a lifeline to a person in crisis or need, and the newly-diagnosed who is scared their life may never be the same.

So how do you authentically engage in such communities?

Why Ray Kurzweil is Wrong: Computers Won’t Be Smarter Than Us Anytime Soon

Saturday, March 8th, 2014

Why Ray Kurzweil is Wrong: Computers Won't Be Smarter Than Us Anytime Soon“When Kurzweil first started talking about the “singularity”, a conceit he borrowed from the science-fiction writer Vernor Vinge, he was dismissed as a fantasist. He has been saying for years that he believes that the Turing test – the moment at which a computer will exhibit intelligent behavior equivalent to, or indistinguishable from, that of a human – will be passed in 2029.”

Sorry, but Ray Kurzweil is wrong. It’s easy to understand why computers are nowhere near close to surpassing humans… And here’s why.

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