Getting Grandma to Embrace Technology Doesn't Have to Be a Struggle

According to tech columnist Dan Tynan, embracing technology helps the elderly lead fuller lives. The best way to help seniors adopt new gadgets is to sell them on their relevant benefits.

According to Yahoo Tech Columnist Dan Tynan, nearly two-thirds of Americans over 80 don't use the internet and cell phones. He arguest that the savvier seniors can be, the better there 21st century lives are. While he acknowledges that new gadgets and unfamiliar lingo can make the elderly feel like outsiders, Tynan explains that there are many ways to get Grandma into the groove of utilizing technology.


His first bit of advice is to try and make tech relevant to your elderly loved ones. Allow their learning to be motivated by a goal such as joining Facebook to see photos of grandkids. Another way to make technology appeal to older adults is to demonstrate the pragmatics of certain devices. One businessman interviewed by Tynan explained that the elderly don't care about tech as status symbols (which is why you don't see many nonagenarians rockin' Beats by Dre). Gadgets for seniors should always work to make their everyday lives easier. They don't need bells and whistles to be sold on a device.

The most important thing to remember is that you have to patient. The elderly aren't wired for mindless tasks like double-clicking and don't often speak the vernacular. Young tech tutors may grow impatient at having to spend minutes at a time explaining tasks that take seconds to do. Tynan points to AARP workshops that can help teach seniors at their own pace.

Inevitably, the things that sell gadgets to the uninitiated are pragmatics and ease. If you can do anything to boost those elements (and explain why never to answer those Nigerian princes), your elderly loved ones will have a better time adapting to modern tech.

Read more at Yahoo

Photo credit: Andresr / Shutterstock

3D printing might save your life one day. It's transforming medicine and health care.

What can 3D printing do for medicine? The "sky is the limit," says Northwell Health researcher Dr. Todd Goldstein.

Northwell Health
Sponsored by Northwell Health
  • Medical professionals are currently using 3D printers to create prosthetics and patient-specific organ models that doctors can use to prepare for surgery.
  • Eventually, scientists hope to print patient-specific organs that can be transplanted safely into the human body.
  • Northwell Health, New York State's largest health care provider, is pioneering 3D printing in medicine in three key ways.
Keep reading Show less

Why Elon Musk doesn't like Jeff Bezos's space colonies

Elon Musk took issue with recent ideas for space exploration from Jeff Bezos.

Getty Images
Technology & Innovation
  • Elon Musk and Jeff Bezos have sparred over space exploration previously.
  • Musk wants to focus on Mars while Bezos has the moon and space colonies as goals.
  • In a recent tweet, Musk called out Bezos's plans for space colonies as unrealistic.
Keep reading Show less

10 new things we’ve learned about death

If you don't want to know anything about your death, consider this your spoiler warning.

Culture & Religion
  • For centuries cultures have personified death to give this terrifying mystery a familiar face.
  • Modern science has demystified death by divulging its biological processes, yet many questions remain.
  • Studying death is not meant to be a morbid reminder of a cruel fate, but a way to improve the lives of the living.
Keep reading Show less
Big Think Edge
  • Push Past Negative Self-Talk: Give Yourself the Proper Fuel to Attack the World, with David Goggins, Former NAVY SealIf you've ever spent 5 minutes trying to meditate, you know something most people don't realize: that our minds are filled, much of the time, with negative nonsense. Messaging from TV, from the news, from advertising, and from difficult daily interactions pulls us mentally in every direction, insisting that we focus on or worry about this or that. To start from a place of strength and stability, you need to quiet your mind and gain control. For former NAVY Seal David Goggins, this begins with recognizing all the negative self-messaging and committing to quieting the mind. It continues with replacing the negative thoughts with positive ones.