High-Tech Wonders: Technology That Improves Life

 High-Tech Wonders: Technology That Improves Life

Just as Velcro is finished in shoes, many new technologies are finding it in our daily lives.

It’s easy to dismiss technology, but consider that 100 years ago, only 35 percent of homes in the United States had phones. Cellphones, which are now visible in the hands of almost everyone, are quite as unique as they were just 30 years ago, with an estimated 11 million in use in the United States at the time. As another example of how fast technology is advancing, Neil Armstrong stepped on the moon just 66 years after the Wright brothers ’historic flight to Kitty Hawk, North Carolina.

    3-D printer
Can’t find the part you need? Use a 3-D printer to do this in minutes. (Courtesy of Formlabs)

The proliferation of the internet and more focused efforts have facilitated the creation of life -enhancing technology, although sometimes it takes an idea to become real. Even if 3-D printers existed as a concept in 1945, with a methodology developed in the 1970s, it was not until 1987 that the first commercial unit was created by 3D Systems Corporation. Originally commonly found in aerospace applications and later adopted for use by dentists and doctors, 3-D printers such as Formlabs Form 3+ are now available for everyday use in hobbyist who creates jewelry or manufactures hard -to -find parts for antique cars or furniture. . As long as a drawing of the desired object can be made, it can be, using a computer linked to a 3-D printer, full of software that is easily available online.

pet cube
If the puppy is home alone, a PetCube Bites 2 allows you to talk to him and give him medications. (Courtesy of Petcube)

As mentioned earlier, the internet has greatly increased the speed of development and introduction of new technology, much of which is dripping into everyday applications. With approximately 70 percent of U.S. households owning pets, most of them dogs, it only takes a few hours to find a way to interact with them remotely. With Petcube Bites 2, you can talk to your dog while you’re away from home. A high-definition 1080p camera provides real-time video, while two-way audio lets you talk to them and hear their happy barks. To get their tail wagging, they may provide foods as snacks or rewards for good manners. You can even check in quietly, using a wide-angle camera capable of night vision.

Google Nest Doorbell
With the Google video doorbell, you can see who’s at the front door when you’re at home or several miles away. (Courtesy of Google)

And, of course, the internet also allows us to see who is at our front door, even if we are on the other side of the planet. In addition to confirming when deliveries are made, a two-way system like Google’s video doorbell allows you to see and talk to anyone at your front door. Easy to install, this high-tech version of a door peephole can be hard-wired or powered by batteries; this system has practical and security aspects.

On a related note, most of us leave the house just to think, if we are a few blocks or several miles away, if we have locked the door. While it’s likely that the door is already locked, the troubling suspicion may prompt a trip home or a call from a friend to check it out for you. Yale Smart Lock allows you to use a smartphone app to check the status of the door remotely and lock it if you forget it. The system also allows you to be given remote access to family or trusted neighbors or friends to check on pets or if they cannot enter the house.

Fuji Instamax Mini Printer
Wouldn’t it be great if you could print all the photos on your phone? With an Instax Mini Link printer, you can. (Courtesy of Fujifilm Instax)

Sometimes technology comes back and changes itself. The first Polaroid camera was sold in 1948, over time becoming an iconic item due to its ability to take a snapshot of space. In 1943, Edwin Land, a pioneer in the science of polarizing lenses and sunglasses, was inspired when his 3-year-old daughter asked why he couldn’t see the holiday photos right away. The result is the Land Camera, which emits a photo that can be seen in 60 seconds. The popularity of these cameras disappeared in the 1980s, but now Fujifilm has come up with a way to instantly take photos taken by smartphones in the form of Instax Mini Link printers. Now you can again take a photo or video and immediately print a color photo.

Apple AirTag 2
Apple AirTag makes lost keys a thing of the past. It also allows you to keep track of luggage, wallets, portable electronics, and even pets. (Courtesy of Apple)
Young, Woman, Lost, She, Home, Keys, Standing, In, The, Apartment
AirTag allows you to use an iPhone to instantly find any tagged item. (Srdjan Randjelovic/Shutterstock)

Technology also provides a solution to the very common question: “Where did I leave my keys?” The Apple AirTag can be attached to keychains so finding it is a simple matter of checking your iPhone. These little items can also be used for tracking laptops, camera bags, bicycles, and more. No app is required to activate it, in a process as simple as activating Bluetooth. You can attach it to luggage, pet collars, and anything else that can be left on. The only difficulty is that you need another phone to use it to find the phone you have always mistaken.

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