Skip to main content

Family Tech: Apps make travelling easier - April 8, 2016

My wife was selected more than a year ago as a Fulbright Distinguished Teacher. She is in Israel for four months to study how they educate young children with autism and share her knowledge of the subject. The week of spring break, my adult son and I flew over to visit her.

Of course I used technology to make the trip easier and also learned a lot about technology in Israel. What I learned is useful for domestic trips as well. Lessons learned from our whirlwind trip will be inspiration for the next few columns.

I created a folder on the front page of my phone for apps I needed on the trip. The first one was TripIt.

Tripit is a “freemium” service, meaning it is free but with a paid level giving you more features that track your itinerary for you. Once you setup a TripIt account, you simply forward any emails you get from airlines, hotels, rental car companies, etc. and Tripit maintains your itinerary for you. You can track it in its smartphone app. It makes it easy to remember your flight times, gates and other information.

I also added the app from the airline we would be flying. These seem to be constantly improving. We flew on United and its app kept us up-to-date on flight changes and even held our boarding passes for us.

Once in Israel, my wife introduced us to the Moovit app. It turns out that some of the best travel apps are created by Israeli startups. Many of us probably already use Waze, a driving direction app that also allows other drivers to share information about the road, where there are accidents, police and obstacles. Waze is now owned by Google, but it was created by an Israeli team and their offices are still in Tel Aviv. We passed the Google, Microsoft and Intel offices north of Tel Aviv on one of our tours.

Read the rest at www.FamilyTechOnline.com

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Using Automagic to get around a bug in Android Auto

I recently purchased a Google Pixel XL 32g phone. It is by far the best phone I've owned.

It is great company on my daily commute. The Android Auto app warns me of traffic, plays my podcasts for me, and lets me dictate text messages.  I've combined it with ReadItToMe so that my incoming text messages are read aloud.

I noticed on my first afternoon commute though the Do Not Disturb icon was turned on on my Android watch. At the next traffic light I discovered that Do Not Disturb was on on the phone as well.

A Google search at home found I was not alone in noticing/suffering this.  The Android Product Forum had mention of it.

People first reported this back in November 2016, so hopefully a fix will be coming.

Meanwhile, I worked out a workaround using AutoMagic.

The flow below detects the launch of Android Auto and then turns off Do Not Disturb by setting the Ringer on, and turning the audio volume up. I have tested it briefly here at home, but not yet on a commute.



Update: 3/10/…

Recording your own notes with Google Voice

Note :   April 2016:  Frankly I don't know if this works anymore.  It is 7 years old.

I stopped using this when Google Now became useful on my phone, and I could dictate reminders using it.



I found a way a while ago to use Google Voice to record a personal note, transcribe it, and email it to me. A recent Lifehacker post "Five Things We'd Like to See in Google Voice" lists that need as their #5 request, so I realized what I'd figured out is not common knowledge.

In GV's Contacts, create a Group "Special Transcription"

To avoid listening to my standard voice mail when I call, I recorded a short voice mail greeting for this group simply saying "Record note now"

I added a contact with my own cell phone number as the only number, and made it the sole member of this group.

In GV's phone settings, I edited the settings for my cell phone. In the section "Direct access to voicemail when calling your Google number from this phone?" I se…

Your First Day with Evernote

I've written many times before about Evernote.  I love this program.  It is my brain's memory on steroids.  I have over 6000 notes in it now.  And I keep finding ever more uses for it.

While originally written in 2009, this post has been frequently updated.


New January 2012:  If you like what I write about Evernote, check out my 136 page e-book,
 "Get Productive Fast with Evernote".  Just $10.

Sunday October 11, 2009 I wrote about Evernote in my print column, Family Tech. If you are wondering what is Evernote, and why would I want to use it, start with the column.

I promised in that column this post to help new users get efficient fast with Evernote.

I thought I'd write a quick plan for someone's first day with Evernote. This is really meant for after you've installed the client to your computer, so this picks up after you've gone to  Evernote's Get Started Page and created an account and downloaded and installed a client for your primary computer.