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Tag Archives: Essential Tremor

In the Nick of Time, Siri to the Rescue

Siri

Siri to the rescue!

Siri may be far from perfect, but she is proving to be a boon for me. To be fair, my last phone was an Android (an LG Optimus, actually) and it not only was capable of voice recognition, it also had Swype.

Why this matters to me has to do with the onset of a common malady it turns out ran in my family and is now affecting me quite a bit. I’m talking about essential tremor, which can manifest in several ways; for me it’s in my hands, which sometimes shake rather uncontrollably. This can make it both uncomfortable and time consuming when typing a reasonably lengthy message on a small, smartphone keyboard. Eating with a fork or spoon can be pretty interesting as well.

I used Swype quite a bit on my LG, but the shaking still made it a bit difficult to spell correctly . . . or even choose the correct word when I was presented with choices. The reason I got rid of the Optimus, however, has to do with it having far less memory than I wanted in order for the phone to be truly useful. That is, as a smartphone . . . far more than just a mere telephone.

Even with a mere 16Gb, my new iPhone 4S allows me to have all the apps I need to stay current with my social media friends and platforms. It also allows me to take lots of pics and even use some photo editing apps to mess with them if I like.

So, I find myself using Siri more and more to save time. I still have to make frequent corrections, but I’m learning to speak a little more deliberately as well. I fully expect the technology to continue developing, hopefully to the point where she will even recognize vocal inflection and add exclamation points and question marks when warranted.

Thank you, Siri. Thank you voice recognition developers. You have made my life a lot easier.

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Shake, Rattle, & Roll

Shaken, not stirred

The Mmmoon and Vvvenus!

Mmmoving Dddown the Rrroad

It’s incredibly disconcerting to raise a forkful of food to one’s mouth, only to have most of it fall off due to the shaking brought on by essential tremors. Not actually complaining. After all, I’ve had a pretty damn good life, and this is really more like a speed bump.

Still, I’m really beginning to understand – viscerally – the phrase “Growing old is not for the faint-of-heart”. Neither am I asking for sympathy. I’m merely sharing something that comes to mind almost every time I eat, shave, or hold a glass of liquid. I recall it happening to my mother; now it’s happening to me.

As I round the last turn and head into the home stretch, the changes are fascinating and, as a Baby Boomer (born in 1947), soon many of you will be following along. So get your whip ready. The race is getting interesting and it’s going to take all you can muster to finish respectably. Thanks for listening to me bitch and moan. http://amplify.com/u/a1j8xd


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