April is Financial Literacy Month, so we’re going to chat a bit about how to be productive around managing our finances, then on to the productivity and technology news of the week. This week’s featured story covers Google’s new AI document scanning app, Stack.
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In this Cast | Managing Money Productively
Headlines & Show Notes | Managing Money Productively
Resources we mention, including links to them, will be provided here. Please listen to the episode for context.
- Don’t Ditch the Laptop Just Yet: Replication Finds No Immediate Advantage to Writing Notes by Hand – Association for Psychological Science – APS
New Tools of the Week
FEATURED STORY OF THE WEEK
- Google’s Area 120 incubator releases a powerful AI document scanner for Android
- Paper Doll Models the Spring 2021 Organizing Products
- Tim Cook invokes Steve Jobs in company-wide memo celebrating Apple’s 45th anniversary – 9to5Mac
- FDIC Money Smart
Raw Text Transcript |
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Raymond Sidney-Smith 0:03
Hello personal productivity enthusiasts and community Welcome to Anything But Idle the productivity news podcast. Today’s show is brought to you by co working space by personal productivity club. I’m Ray Sidney-Smith.
Augusto Pinaud 0:16
And I’m Augusto Pinaud
Raymond Sidney-Smith 0:18
And we’re your hosts for Anything But Idle. This is Episode 52 managing money productively. And we’re recording this on April 5 2021. April is Financial Literacy Month. So happy Financial Literacy Month, I’m happy post Easter, Happy Easter, I guess because it is an octave. So your your during the festival, so those of you who are celebrating Easter, Happy Easter to you all, we’re gonna chat a bit about how to be productive around managing our finances. And then we’ll move on to the productivity and technology news of the week. And this week, we’re going to feature our story. The featured story of the week is going to be about Google’s new AI document scanning app called stack. I’m looking forward to that discussion. And so of course, each week, we review and discuss the productivity and technology news headlines of the week. But first, we usually have a conversation about a topic. And today, as I said, we’re gonna be talking about managing money productively, and talking about money can be a difficult subject, bound up in power dynamics and emotions. But I think it’s important that we all manage our finances, with the appropriate attention, it needs to be productive. And that means really, how does money fit into our personal productivity systems? And so Okay, so what are some important principles that you approach money, and time with?
Augusto Pinaud 1:37
You know, it is, it is interesting, because managing money was not something that maybe like productivity, I’m thinking about it, that was something that was teach, at least on my household, when when I was growing up, there were both things that I pick, I pick productivity before I pick how to learn about money and got myself into trouble because of that early on. And it was a painful process for me to learn, you know, I didn’t grow up in a place where the word budget or money or income or expenses, you know, or credit were, were really words that, that you share, you know, even to the point that it was took me a while, you know, early on to understand the difference between having money or having credit, okay, for me having credit at the beginning, it was like having money that got me into trouble at some point in my life. But I’m, but as I grow up into that, I learned I wasn’t the only one, okay, who never had those, those concepts. And even that my parents finances were not as poorly managed as mine were. Okay, it was simply a taboo topic. So it is a topic that is on my interest, because it was plain painful for me to get out of the hole I dig myself into, for lack of a better knowledge.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 3:15
Yeah, I think I came into the world with a weird kind of perspective, which, you know, coming from a middle, you know, lower middle income family for Brooklyn, we were acutely aware of finances, but it wasn’t something that was necessarily taught in the household. And I was always a reader and got interested in wealth management and kind of what that whole financial management world looked like, and really dived into the literature. And so I was very lucky to have dived into that material. And I originally was interested because you heard so much about the fact that time is money, time is money, that mantra is constantly pushed to people. And I wanted to decouple that component from the other to really understand money as a construct. You know, money is an abstraction for value. And time is something of value. And so when we talk about time being money, it’s only only in the sense that time is something of value, and money is an abstraction of that value. So how do we actually utilize those pieces, and what I learned is that I can use money to, in essence, increase the amount of leisure time that I had, and that was really the only component that really touched for me the overlap between time and money. Now I see it a lot more nuanced. And I see it from the perspective that when I think about money, I think about it from the perspective of what is the what is the vehicle of money for my productivity. That is when I look at my system across the whole gamut of things that I can do. Money is a tool, it’s like a hammer or a screwdriver. I don’t have any emotion associated with it. And I’ve worked very hard to distance myself from that emotion from money. So I just try to think about money from a completely non emotional perspective. And what allows me to do is to separate the thing that, you know, if somebody, somebody owes you five bucks, someone, you know, like, you get that sense that people get emotional about it. And I don’t, I just don’t think about it from that perspective anymore. Let’s take it up a notch from $5 to $500. If somebody owed you $500, you would probably feel something emotional about it. And I’ve worked very hard to to couple myself from that component of what does it mean for someone to really owe me the abstraction of value of $500. And over time, what I’ve learned is that it means very little to me, money doesn’t mean anything to me. And so many ways, I know that it’s a tool, it’s a tool that I can use to be able to make things happen. And so I have to manage it from the same way in which I manage time, I need to be able to have systems in place that allowed me to productively use my time, and productively use my money. And that’s actually been a really, like, it’s been kind of a game changer for me, and not to be cliche about it, but it really has over the past 25 odd years, I’ve been able to think about money, not from the perspective of, you know, how do I get more of it, but how do I make money work for me in a way that is purpose driven, mission driven for me, and, and it’s just been very kind of seamless from that perspective, I will note a couple of resources, and I’m sure you have these as well. So I was a big Suzy Orman fan, you know, and and watched a lot of her materials and, you know, attended a lot of her events and was very, you know, kind of excited about learning from her. But I came across a Regina liens book several years ago. Now, I don’t know it probably when the book first came out, this book was published in 2010. So it’s at least 20 1011 years ago now. And it’s called a one year to an organized financial life. And she wrote the book with Russell wild. And you may know Regina leads as the center Zen organizer. And she wrote one year to an organized life, which I also have here somewhere on the on the shelf, but one year to a financial, organized financial life, it takes you through 52 weeks of things you can do in order to be like get organized around your finances. And just like simple things, like you know, dealing with your banking, you know, dealing with your state planning, dealing with your home finances, like it just gives you a very clear method for being able to work through those various pieces. And so I can’t recommend it enough to people who want to do it. Actually, in Productivity Book Group we ran at least for part of the year once we ran a weekly program, I’m willing to do it again if anybody is interested. And that since I was sending a weekly email to everybody to challenge them to do the things in each of the 52 weeks. And so if anybody is interested in doing that, we could probably do that again. And Julie, best rate hybrid, Julie Hi, Frank, Frank box with us as well. Julie’s noting people first, then money, then things from Suzy Orman, and absolutely, I’m a big fan of Susie’s, and good good on her. And so yeah, so so I really am a big fan of one year to organize financial life. And I am just a big fan of automating things like for example, I’m not a financial advisor, and I’m not giving financial advice. So, so don’t take it as that. But for me, I’ve just decided that I want all of my everything that needs to be paid, I want to be done as automated as possible, including savings. So my expenses are all automated through my bank so that all the base level expenses are just done automatically. And that allows me to save time in having to make the base level payments. And then I can go back. And when I go to reconcile, I can clean up any errors because there’s going to be errors, but I’m going to spend a lot less time fixing the errors that I am in trying to make the initial payments to begin with. And I don’t want to be late. So I just automated all of that. And I also automate my savings. So I have my account set up so that it in essence breaks apart all of my income and immediately moves them into different accounts. And that’s just done automatically every month by the bank. It’s built into the system. And so my savings automatically gets moved where it needs to. I don’t have to think about it. So from a productivity perspective, just think about how the technology today really the banking and financial technology today can really speed up the the the the the requisite kind of functions of making sure that you are doing what you’re supposed to be doing without having to worry about those things. So I get money put into my account and I know that’s money that I can use and the rest of it gets shuffled away so that I don’t even think about using it because it’s just put away right it’s just automatically shuffled away. Okay, so any any final thoughts, any other thoughts?
Augusto Pinaud 9:49
But I remember the first time I hear that that you just said, you know of creating multiple accounts that sound so unnatural Okay, not that I was, you know, I was broke, okay, but it sounds so natural to me, my brokenness, I’m on different accounts. And my experience was was a different book, but he but he came in the same way, give me I’m teaching, okay, you need to, you know, at the beginning, I couldn’t handle a budget, so I, but I was able to handle envelopes, okay, this is what I need for rent is what I will need for budget for food and, and that, of course, over the years, you know, mature and grow to two different things. And, but but I think it’s, it’s, it’s really, really key if you are not in a position where your numbers, you know, can handle on you are just ranking credit and, and you are credit rich, but cash poor, you know, it is important to look into help and look into this book, I am not a financial adviser, I’m not giving financial advice in here. But I can tell you from my experience from having that, you know, paycheck to paycheck in trouble to talk to more trouble, okay, that it’s possible to get out of that hole, you know, and there is a saying says, when you notice you’re in a hole, the first thing you should try, is to stop digging. So if that was useful for me, and I hope is useful for some of the people who is listening to us today.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 11:22
Fantastic. Well, I hope everybody got a little bit of a few nuggets of of interesting financial productivity advice. And hopefully, it just reminds you to look at your finances from a productivity lens. And this is, of course, Financial Literacy Month. So it’s is that opportunity to do so I will offer one additional thing, which is that the FDIC, the Federal Deposit Insurance Corporation has a program called Money Smart. And I have been actually volunteer teaching that program for the better part of Gosh, I don’t know, maybe 15, maybe more years than that. And I haven’t done in the past several years. But in essence, it provides an instructor led curriculum, but it also actually has a self service online program. And I think you could actually order DVDs or CDs, you know, kind of physical material from them as well. And the program itself is free. And it allows you to learn about financial education, right. It’s a financial education program. And there’s an adult version, there’s children children’s version, there’s a podcast. So it is a an audio program that you can download for yourself. They call it a podcast network, but it’s really not a podcast network, they don’t know what they’re talking about. But they do know what they’re talking about regarding financial literacy. And so it talks about the basics of banking, checking accounts, how to set up a savings plan, how to how to borrow money, and it’s a really good program for folks who who want baseline, a baseline understanding of that. So if you just type in FDIC, Money Smart, you’ll be able to find it, I’ll probably do it in the show notes as well. But it’s also a program that if you have any young people in your life, like one of the most important things you can do is teach them how to set up a budget and live by a budget. You know, if you live within your means, and don’t live beyond your means, you can really have a fulfilling life. And I just, I can’t not want to give that to young people. And so I’ve been very, I was very pleased to have found it, you know, I guess probably almost 20 years ago, maybe 15 years ago, and and then I started teaching it at the library where I lived. And since I’ve moved recently, I haven’t actually done that. But I, I will now has reminded me to capture that for looking into it as to whether or not they teach that around here. But either way, the MoneySmart program, FDIC really great program for being able to teach those basics of literacy to not just children but also to adults. And so with that, let’s close out this segment on managing money productively and move into our stories of the week. So let’s get into it a gousto. What is our first headline this week in our big tech and small tech news? You are muted. First time of the show,
Augusto Pinaud 14:01
right? This is awesome. Starting this early. This is an episode that seems to be a blast from the past. And I will get more into this and make me go back to the hard days of Finance. But also, the first news is Google Mobile, Google meat global tiling, and it’s now Google meat is going to let you call there are more than 100 countries and remind remind me when I start doing sales and trying to make calls to Latin America, and I’m trying to use not the phone so the company can be somehow profitable. We do these conversations and how difficult it was 20 years ago to make this long distance cold over the web and voice over IP was just beginning and really how easy it is now and how good the quality is and how exciting it is. That to think that the price mostly has gone to zero You know, it’s, it’s pretty much free. And I know it is, again, it’s a blast from the past for me, but it is exciting to think that all that that we talked in the school about globalization, you know, being able to be local, you know, I, I can blast from the past I remember when code name, Ira code didn’t matter anymore because you could call anywhere in the country for free. And now Well, it’s the first step of being able to do that, you know, globally. So that’s really, really exciting.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 15:33
Yeah, so the free calling is within us and Canada, as I understand it, you you need to have a Google Google workspace account. And then otherwise, global dialing is loafie, you’ll be able to set up a global dialing subscription. And in essence, when you call, it just basically, it’s on monthly fee, it’s just basically charge on a per minute rate. So it’s really low cost calling, not free calling. And the idea here is that Google meat is replicating that which Google Voice had set up in on the consumer side, I couldn’t actually see in the details whether or not Google meat on the consumer side allows for a global dialing subscription, I couldn’t see in the details that but as the Google Small Business advisor for productivity, I can tell you that on the Google workspace side, you can you can purchase a global dialing subscription. And then say like, if you wanted to call Italy today, you would just pay a permanent charge for calling Italy something that, like I said, you can right now do in Google Voice. they’ve expanded that functionality to Google meet now. And this is great, because you have really low cost, permanent dialing to those places. And I have clients who are overseas, this is helpful to be able to make the call from my computer or wherever I might be without having to worry about finding my phone and calling potentially, you know, oversold cell data, when they may not be as strong as calling over my, you know, internet connected machine. So it’s up there. All right, our next story continuing on our Google News.
Augusto Pinaud 17:06
Well, now you can set up Google meet breakout rooms, into Google calendars, you know, you have been able to do this in zoom for a really long time. But Google meat has been short on the breakout rooms. And now you can do that and create the breakout rooms directly into the calendar so people will know where to go that will allow the house to separate you know, individuals in a smaller room, same thing that zoom has been doing for a long time. Finally, Google meet, it’s allowing us to, to do that. So yeah, so you’re
Raymond Sidney-Smith 17:38
able to do this, you’re able to do this both during the live Google meet meeting, you can do it beforehand, inside of Google Calendar, when you create the Google meet, you can set up the breakout rooms within the Google Calendar environment. Also note that when you are using the breakout rooms, you can have up to 100 breakout rooms, zoom, you can have up to 50 in Google meet, you can have up to 100. So they they doubled it on zoom. And I’m hoping that zoom calls them on their 50 and raises them another 100 150 breakout rooms. But I just think it’s wonderful that we have the capability of being able to have breakout rooms. And this really, you know, there’s so many environments where this is a powerful feature. I’m glad to see Google may bring it and I hope that we see this come to, you know, the big M as well in their features in teams. So but you know, not that I know that they have any plans for that. But I’m hoping that that Microsoft Teams gets it. I’m glad to see Microsoft, Google that is bring this to the fore with 100 breakout rooms, that’s really phenomenal, to be able to have 100 breakout rooms. So because you know, if you have 100, you say you have 200 people in the room, and you wanted to pair them up in in groups of two. Now you can do that you can take 200 people and pair them up in an instant one to one. I mean, that’s a really, really powerful feature. Right now, if you have 100 people in zoom, you can pair them up one to one. But, you know, if you have more than 100 people, you’re really you’re really short on on that functionality. So I’m just excited about it. Already. gousto what’s next up in our news?
Augusto Pinaud 19:11
Well, let’s go back to the past Casio unveiled their first g shock smartwatch with wearos the price tag is a little off, it’s a $700 but but at the end of the day again, as I said at the beginning, you know it’s about you know that Hey, remember my G shock? Okay, remember, you know, that one as well as my Casio calculator that we were to watch that I had, you know, in the past, it was exciting to see more. Whereas you know, it’s I still believe when I said I still I’m in the same spot when people ask me, Well, what made your Apple watch so incredible. There is really not one thing that my Apple Watch do that I will make it for recommend it to anybody. Go on what buy one is, but it does so many little things true today. That it really it’s part of my toolbox and I will replace mine if something happened immediately. Yes. It’s exciting to see this.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 20:15
Yeah, so this is the GS w h 1000. And it’s kind of a rugged ruggedized warehouse watch. This is a first for the Casio folks bringing, not just the warehouse because that’s that’s been done before. But this is a dual layer display. So you have an LCD screen with maps, notifications and a whole bunch of sensors built into it as a heart rate sensor. I couldn’t even it’s got a GPS optical heart rate sensor, a compass, altitude, barometric pressure, it can go up to 200 meters underwater. And it’s got a day and a half’s worth of battery life a little bit, you know, a little bit short on battery life, but you know, it’s doing a lot and coming in and around $700 us or 600 pounds in the UK, it seems like it’ll be available mid May. And really the only thing that I was kind of annoyed by is that you have a $700 price point I’m actually in the market for a new warehouse watch. And I have just been a man I really like the galaxy live watch. And and and so the the sleekness of it just has the same feel as say the Apple Watch. Not that I’m trying to get a standard based on the Apple Watch. But I like the I like the sleekness of the watch. I’m wearing really an original Huawei Watch that I absolutely adore. But it’s just it’s getting long in the tooth, it’s ready to be replaced. And I’m not particularly interested in having a rugged, you know, this GS w h 1000 is not particularly my flavor, but I might get it if it had LTE and it’s missing LTE. And this would really be a breakout watch for me. And I would be almost willing to go with something that was a little less, you know, metallic and like, this is more elegant, you know, everyday business were for me, versus having something that was a little bit more sporty, if it actually had LTE built into it. So I’m gonna pass on this one. But um, you know, I hope that they kind of figure it out, maybe they’ll open up an LTE version in the future. But it would have been really nice for it to have built its own built in functions. I mean, this is for adventure. You know, folks, people who are willing to spend money on an adventure watch, and go out there and do that kind of thing. So Alright, we’ve got some more.
Augusto Pinaud 22:31
That’s a really interesting coming DLT. But yeah, it’s true for that price. lt will have been a nice thing to have.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 22:38
Yeah, yeah. All right, we’ve got some more Google News. Let’s, let’s make our way through the rest of our Google News. What’s next?
Augusto Pinaud 22:44
Well, the next one, you’re going to need to explain more to people because this there are two articles, one from Tom guide, one. From the from the verge, Google Assistant is getting a killer upgrade that gives you the second brain and he’s basically more memory symmetric memory feature that will help you to remember more stuff. So I don’t use Google Assistant, I don’t understand how this is going to change that world so much. So I’m going to let you go through this article for me.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 23:17
Yeah, so So understand that this is really all tentative. This these are this is a leak that they got a hold of they are their Google is reportedly working on this new feature set called memory. And in essence, it’s combining a little bit of a task management tool, a little bit of notes, a little bit of a read later functionality, and a little bit of a collection board, akin to say Flipboard, or Pinterest or some other kind of board structure that allows you to be able to lay things out. In essence right now, memory has a lot of these features. If you ask the google assistant to basically remember something, it could do that I can say, hey, g big G, I can say, you know, remind me that my brother’s birthday. And I can say his name is on Tuesday, April 5, April 5, and then it will just remember that and anytime I ask him that question, it will be able to parrot that back to me, what memory is going to do is to add a new layer on top of that is to provide a little bit more smarts to the whole functionality, so that it can start to take some of that layer and actually connect it to the other things in the system. So for example, right now, I can already have it save information. But now I can have it tie it to other things like tasks, or keeping that note for later, you know, later use and other things like that. So they’re just trying to push forward that section, what will happen is in the Google Assistant app, you now have a new tab called memory. And now you’d be able to click on that memory tab at the bottom of your assistant app. And you’d be able to then open it up and see all of that content in there you’ll be able to search on it and that kind of thing. So they’re just trying To build on what is already in existence, and giving us a visual layer to be able to access and access that information, akin to how we see Google reminders right now from the Google Assistant, if I want to be able to see all the reminders that I asked google assistant to remember, for me, I can go ahead and see that inside the Google Assistant app, I can also do that for shopping lists, because you can ask the assistant to be able to remember those things. It’s just surfacing those pieces and putting it in a visual order. I don’t think this is going to replace any of the things that we typically think of as being, say, tasks, it’s not going to replace your task management. In terms of notes, it’s not going to replace your note taking tool, it’s not going to replace your relator application like pocket or instapaper, or those kinds of things. And it’s not going to replace your it’s not gonna replace Pinterest, it’s like it’s doing all of the things just good enough for being able to capture by voice in a in a in a pinch, I don’t think this is really going to be anything that that is going to be a game changer for anyone to get rid of any other applications.
Augusto Pinaud 26:05
Yeah, well, we will see. So our next, our next news, continuing Google is how to remove them remove the Google Chrome reading list on Mac and Windows, you know, is chrome 89. Chrome introduced to read later feature that instapaper or pocket has been doing a third party for a really long time, but there is users complaining that he’s taking his pace out of the bar. So the article shows you how to remove it. You know, I I use instapaper. And I’ve been using instapaper. I don’t know sweating. Okay, probably since it came out. And I don’t know if I will abandon instapaper, mostly for the fear of Lucy Nero are going into the adventure of yours of yours of yours of articles that are there. And I love the fact that I can go and search and find them again. But but this is really interesting to see Google taking a first shot into having this into competing with us this to you know, aftermarket things.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 27:10
Yeah. So Apple has had a reading later functionality. I believe opera has had it for a long time as well. I’m not sure about Firefox, but perhaps Firefox has had it, I haven’t actually looked. And so you know, this whole concept of having a read later, or reading later list is not new. And you know, this kind of goes to my point about the memory component within Google Assistant in the sense that, you know, Google is just kind of throwing things at the wall here. And here, we have the reading later being added into Chrome, we’ll see whether or not that ties in with this memory feature in the future with Google Assistant. So you know, we’ll see what happens. But either way, all they’re doing is showing you how to go into Chrome colon forward slash forward slash flags, and then searching for read later, and you’ll be able to find it, turn off the flag, and it’ll disappear from view, you could do that with almost every feature in Google Chrome, if you just go to grow Chrome, colon forward slash forward slash flags, you’ll be able to find a whole bunch of features that are embedded in the back end of the Google Chrome settings. And you can just turn them on or off as as you need to. And then some of them include experimental features and that kind of thing. So be careful stability, and so on, so forth. But you know, the, the idea is, is that you’re capable of turning these features on and off from the manual flags area. All right, we are at the end of our Google News, our final piece of Google News, which is pretty I think, a pretty big piece of news here. You’re muted.
Augusto Pinaud 28:43
I was not T Mobile I was practiced I will say is that was a warm up, not at not at note, um, you know, it’s different. Totally. Whatever you
Raymond Sidney-Smith 28:52
want to say to yourself, whatever you want to say, sir.
Augusto Pinaud 28:55
It was it was just about T Mobile switches to Google messages as their default experience. So t mobile and Google are finally you know, playing together to make messaging a more enjoyable experience for their mobile experience giving them basically, Google messages.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 29:17
This is, so so this is this is a long time coming. And I’m actually fairly angry with the telecommunications carriers here. They fought tooth and nail with Google against them, really taking over RCS and just providing a protocol for us to be able to have, in essence, seamless communication, the way in which Apple messages has always really existed. And now here we are with finally T Mobile, breaking and buying into the platform and truly making good on their word that you know, just like at&t and Verizon and others said a couple of years ago when Google finally put out RCS and said, Hey, guys, you guys seem not to be getting it together. So how about we do it and make This works for everyone I’ve had RCS on on Google for quite some time because I, you know, kind of baling wire and duct taped my RCS to turn it on very early on when Google brought it out. But it’s been real difficult for me to communicate with other people in a secure messaging system, being able to SMS or at least message over Wi Fi, and having that kind of seamless, you know, experience where I can see you know, someone’s typing a message back and those kinds of things. And now to be able to have carriers come on board, a big carrier, like T Mobile, come on board, I think is a really, really great, you know, step in the right direction, I hope the rest of the carriers get on board now, so that we can have the same seamless communication experience on Android that everyone on Apple already has. And this just gives us parity and actually gives us greater security. And that’s the that’s the most important thing I care about is just as having the greater sense of security with regard to using Google messages and RCS so happy to see it happen. I’m a little disappointed that it’s taken this long, but but it’s good that it’s that it’s coming. And yes, Julie’s noting here that a goose does not muted, he’s in an enforced meditative thoughtfulness.
Augusto Pinaud 31:14
Thank you, Julie.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 31:15
Julie’s just being nice to you. And as, as is her way, as is her way to be nice, I’m just calling it like I am. Alright. So
Augusto Pinaud 31:26
last, last episode, we talked about the rocket book, talking or coming with a new product, and the access is officially announced. So rocket book came with their smart, reusable and customizable notebook. I know you have been at roadbook no rocket book for many, many years. And this product really remind me of the circle of 11 your I mean, was more technology, you can clean the pages and all this but really what remind me was the circle, you know, that you can put the different pages and organize it and all that. So what was your impression of this? And the idea that they come obviously, you know, as been so far as success as a campaign, okay, they are more than meet their goals and But what have you thought about it, when when you see it, what was your your first impression,
Raymond Sidney-Smith 32:23
I’m actually really pleased and impressed with the idea of it. I’m, I’m a little curious about the pages and how the pages will work in the system. And the fact that your your original like in a normal rocket book notebook in the in the everlast version is now called core smart. whatever they’re calling the now, rocket book is owned by staples, by the way, they seem to be running independently, but they are owned by staples now. And the typical rocket book notebooks are spiral bound. And this is solving for some of those problems of being able to utilize a notebook that you want to be able to swap out the innards. And so this access cover is basically a smart cover that allows you to be able to close up your notebook and very quickly pop in and out the different types of pages that you might want to be using. I’m I was really impressed. My first impression from it is that I’m really impressed by its feature set, I’m impressed by the variety of things, and the kind of professional look of the notebook. That was one of my big problems with the original rocket books that I’ve purchased. You know, I have eight and a half by 11 ones. And I have the six by eight ones, or the 6.6 by 8.8 ones. And I’ve a little you know, flip flip ones little, you know, the journalist style little flip notebooks, and they’re kind of flimsy. I mean, they’re thin, they fit everywhere, you can put it in your pocket and go, that’s really nice. But it doesn’t feel substantial, it doesn’t feel like something I want to bring to a meeting and sit down with a client. This seems like something that I would really like to sit down open up, it’d be really nice to have, you know, in view with the client and be able to write with my next big problem is solving for the friction pens, those friction pens are just kind of blah, I would like to have a nicer pen to be able to write with. And so I’m looking to hopefully see some some third party folks who can take the friction ink cartridges and put them into a nicer shell. You know, I don’t need a Montblanc. But I need something that’s going to be a little nicer and more substantial to be able to sit down and write with those pins so that I can enjoy the feel of all of my other fountain pens, I like to write with fountain pens. And now I do use rocket books. So I use the friction pens, but I’d like to really see this with a nicer pen set so that I can sit down and actually have a nice pen nice access notebook and to be able to take notes and they’re giving you different types of papers. So they have the dot grid paper and they have some lined paper lined paper and some other options that they’re providing. Hear so all told, I’m going to get one? There’s no question about that. I’m fairly impressed with the with the feature set. And I hope that over time they do iterate on this model so that you get a little bit more of a refined, it’s not to be high end, but it’s just to be feel a little bit more premium than the standard friction pants, I’d really like to see better pens on the whole with regard to this whole product. So that’s the axis, I’m really excited that they have released it, they made their goal and there’ll be shipping, hopefully, very soon.
Augusto Pinaud 35:36
On our last news coming also from Google is Google is making really big upgrades into Google Maps. And one of those things was the indoor augmented reality directions. You know, I’m, I’m lost everywhere I go. As soon as we get into the building, you know, where is this? Where is this store? I’m about shopper. Okay, I don’t like to the walls. I don’t, not, I didn’t like them before the pandemic, I like them even less. Now, I like to go where I need to go and get out of there as fast as possible. If this same, doesn’t do a jet. But if the next feature come of how can you get super faster to that place in the shortest route, I will be even more happy to the upgrade. But I think it’s awesome that now Google had work into many places inside of the building. And now they can tell you another example they were showing on the article was you are in the airport terminal and the map application will be able to tell you are in the second level need to go to the one. So you can actually get to the place you are trying to to search. So I don’t know I Google Maps is really, you know, every time seems that seems like Apple Maps is starting to get closer to an idea of maybe catching up, you know, Google Maps do the next big leap. And well, Apple Maps now it’s behind once again.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 37:10
Well, just so that everybody’s aware, these are a whole bunch of features that will be that we’ll be releasing in Google Maps over the course of the next probably six to nine months, we’re not talking about overnight. And AR in more directions are just one of those features. And I think this is going to be phenomenal. It’s only available currently in certain cities. And it gives you the ability to in these are in malls and in other types of indoor environments, like train stations, airports and malls. So right now, they’re coming in the coming months, right? So Chicago, Long Island, Los Angeles, New York, San Francisco, San Jose and Seattle are where they are currently, they’ll come to Tokyo and Zurich soon, and then more cities as they make their way out. But this indoor AR function allows you to be able to do what you could do on the surface. Now with connectivity. Now below surface or indoors in environments, which is just a natural progression of this kind of stuff. Of course, it requires Google probably to go inside and do some fancy scanning of the environment. And that’s just going to take time. And so they’re they’re they’re doing that, they’re also going to be providing better options for being able to pick your modes of transportation and some of the preferences as it relates to environmental impact of those things. So like, if a particular location has lower fuel consumption, and it’s about the same amount of time, then it will default to the lower fuel consumption route versus the the other route that is determined in the system. And this can also include environments that don’t allow certain places to go based on the fuel efficiency of your car. So like for Say, say you have like a truck, and the truck isn’t allowed in a particular zone, it will route you around that area, so that you are capable of not, you know, being in non compliance of that particular law, it’s giving you better options for being able to navigate through areas where you want to, you know, in terms of like, say I want to bike versus walk versus take the train, it’ll give me an easier way to select among those. And then last but not least are two other features, which I think are really great. One is Google plans to provide a weather feature where it gives you weather layered along with air quality in particular areas. They’re starting off with Australia, India and the US. And that’s just really great. I’m, I’m an air quality hound. I like to actually pay attention to the air quality every day. And we have a we have one of those air things at the house as well where we pay attention to the air quality in the house. And so just paying attention to those things is really nice. And so having Google give us that capability in the application, I think is really great. And then last but not least is the ghost grocery pickup tool. And so currently in Portland and hopefully they’ll you know, scale this out to others. stores and otherwise around the country. And the world is in essence, notifying your location and eta with the store so that as you’re traveling to pick up a grocery order, they’ll know that you are arriving to be able to pick up your grocery order, which is pretty slick. It’s nice to be able to have that kind of combination of your, you know, you’re going to pick up your groceries and you want to make sure that they have it ready for you when you arrive. So I’m really pleased to see that. And we had just one other piece of news before we hit our midway point, a gousto.
Augusto Pinaud 40:35
Brother is no more news. That’s the that’s the beginning. That’s all our news for the for
Raymond Sidney-Smith 40:41
the Samsung cloud article,
Augusto Pinaud 40:43
I jumped out.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 40:44
Okay. So just very quickly, everybody, Samsung cloud is shutting down. And oddly, it’s connected to OneDrive. So if you have, if you have Samsung cloud, for whatever reason on one of your devices, they are giving you a free 15 gigabytes of of migration data. Normally, when you get a OneDrive account, you get five gigabytes. But the Samsung cloud has made some arrangement with Microsoft OneDrive to give you 15 gigabytes instead, if you’re migrating from Samsung cloud, as it shuts down to Microsoft One Drive. This is very strange to me, I would have figured that Samsung would have made this negotiation with Google and made that to Google Drive. But for some reason, they made the arrangement with OneDrive, so you’ll need to migrate out to OneDrive. And that includes all of your data that is in Samsung cloud that includes photos and videos, any other kinds of data that you might have been holding within the system. And so with that, that brings us to our halfway point. And so when we come back from the from the break, we are going to talk about some more heavy articles, we’ve got some discussion ahead around procrastination, some discussion around whether or not typing versus writing is better for learning and remembering, and all kinds of other fun things. So we will see you after the break.
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Raymond Sidney-Smith 42:59
Welcome back everybody, to Anything But Idle. I’m Ray Sidney-Smith and I’m here with Augusto Pinaud. And before the break, we were covering the news of the week and so we are going to continue our news of the week. We have a few more stories this week. What’s our next story this week Augusto
Augusto Pinaud 43:15
so our next our next two stories and articles are one article that it comes from oops the British psych Psychological Society to take lectures notes on a laptop may not be as bad after all the second one it says don’t ditch it comes from the psycho the Association of psychological science and don’t ditch the laptop just jet replication finds no immediate advantage to writing notes by hand right also things are exciting one because my handwriting is awful has always been awful okay and will never improve. Okay, I had the story one while I was doing my master degree I did a test and the teacher came and you know basically left lift that they might test I said Who is this because I could not read the main okay and he the next test he bring me a laptop that I could work on type answers because he was not willing to try to translate my beautiful calligraphy and I blame that by the way on the poem on the graffiti I that’s how I learned to write really fast so that was what I wrote if you knew graffiti that was a really clear okay text otherwise no but I have not been able to do or unable to do I’m writing notes. Since I have memory I I use first Casio data. I don’t remember how they were very direct that about I think there were call that they had a little keyboard and then I was pretty fast and then I went from there to the To the palms, to the graffiti on the palm. So my notes for most of my adult life has been typed. So I don’t have the ability to write anything, whatever is handwritten will be useless in the next five minutes. So, it’s really exciting for me to see that, regardless of what has been said, over the years, so far, scientists have not find really a strong correlation between those two things. You know, it’s not necessarily that it’s better if you handwrite the notes versus tied the notes and me for one is celebrating about this.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 45:39
Yeah. So in 2014, there was a research paper, you know, that was published based on some experiments, and it was called, is the pen mightier than the keyboard, and it got a lot of notoriety NPR, covered it, many other outlets covered it, and basically tried to put this definitive tone around the idea that if you were a student, and in an academic environment, and you were taking notes, by typing your notes, you were somehow disadvantaged over students who are taking notes by hand, I was absolutely bunk, then, and I was utterly against it. And and now I feel a bit vindicated, I suppose, in the sense that we’re still it’s just inconclusive, this most recent 2019 study has come out and shown that they really can’t replicate the results of the first study. And this goes back to my kind of point on this, which is that we need more research. And we need to really understand a couple of nuanced perspectives here. One is that children who are growing up today in a digital first in a mobile first world, right, a mobile, digital first world, they are learning and their little brains are sponges, they’re learning how to interact with technology very differently than say, my older brain is used to dealing with things. So the The fact of the matter is, is that interest, and focus are the things that allow us to be able to absorb information, well and better. It is not the technology, I could take, you know, cuneiform, tablet and, and chisel and a hammer, and go at at a at a tablet. And if I’m interested and focused on the subject, I will be able to do more and better in terms of recall, in terms of digesting and understanding that information. It has nothing to do with the technology, from my perspective until the science bears it out. And so I am just, I’m just pleased to see that we have finally this kind of, you know, push back against this weird notion that somehow digital technology is the is the cause of people not learning as well, it has nothing to do with that it has very much to do with how we deal with the information being presented to us. And that means that educators need to be more interesting. And they need to be able to provide an environment where students can focus. And that also means that in a workplace environment, and in a non academic environment, we need to also do those same things for ourselves. If we want to be able to digest information, that means turning off notifications when we’re in a meeting, so that we’re able to properly focus, you have to be truly interested in the topic of the meeting. So that you’re if you’re going to a lecture at a conference, or if you’re in a meeting with colleagues and you’re just interested in the topic, well, it’s very likely that you’re going to mind wander, and therefore not digest as much information in that meeting. Because otherwise, if you are lacking the biological preparedness, that is you’re sleepy, you’re malnourished, you don’t have enough, you know, didn’t have enough food, you know, in your in your system. If you have any number of other emotional and mental health challenges at that moment, you’re going to be distracted from the content in front of you. This has very little to do, whether it’s pen and paper or whether there’s a keyboard in front of you. And I’m looking forward to more research. And that’s what these two articles are really helping to bear out in terms of the research that we need to be paying attention to. So off my soapbox and onto our next story.
Augusto Pinaud 49:08
New York Times has an article says remote work is here to stay and Manhattan may never be the same. And this is something we have, you know, discuss over and over is what’s going to happen. You know there’s people moving from San Jose California there is people live in places like New York there are companies you know not considering considering coming back but in a reduced capacity where they have now studied Okay, what we do is this massive offices when we are going to come two or three days a week. The reality is that all these remote has advantages and disadvantages and there are many corporations looking how they can get more advantages on their side and then Disadvantages, and that will bring to a change to what we know and what we were experiencing in 2019. And not Manhattan, not Los Angeles, no any city, not San Francisco, there is no city that is going to be exempt. For this, it may take years to go back to what we understood was a place like Manhattan three years ago, two years ago. But the reality is that what is coming even as we people start coming back to the office, or the people who are coming back to the offices that are happening, the reality is is not going to be as it was, there is a lot of people who have this cover working from home is not terrible. And they can be productive. And they don’t need to do all this commute and commute time and all this. So the changes, the changes with the good and the bad are coming for all these big cities.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 51:05
Yeah, I think I think the article quoted the JP Morgan, co President and Chief Operating Officer, and his name is Daniel Pinto. And his his quotation really sums up the whole notion in just really great terms. He says, quote, going back to the office with 100% of the people 100% of the time, I think there is zero chance of that. He goes on to say, as for everyone working from home all the time, there’s also zero chance of that close quote. And that’s kind of the point is that we have had an accelerant, which has been the covid 19 pandemic that has forced a lot of us to work from home, I think we’re gonna see a pendulum swing of companies bringing people back into the office in a hybrid environment, of course, the 2021, maybe part of 2022. And then after that the chips have to fall where they where they fall, people are going to more people are going to want more ability to work from anywhere, and companies are going to want to control their employees in particular ways. And it’ll all have to kind of struggle, it’s a struggle, right? It’s a it’s a, it’s a reconciliation that we’ll need to come to, but I think we’re gonna see more and more people work remotely, it’s not going to be everybody, and certainly not all the time. And we’ll just see, we’ll have to see where the, you know, this all plays out. But I think we have seen an accelerant and an acceleration in the amount of remote work that’s happening. And, you know, I’ve talked about this on the show before, you know, I’m likely going to stay remote working in some capacity going forward, I don’t see a need to go back to an office. And so this is a this is just a point that those of us who are in a privileged position to be able to do that, we’re going to take that advantage, and we’re going to be able to, we’re going to do it. So it’s important for us to all take that into account, especially as it relates to how it’s impacting the real estate market in areas in which we live. Because that’s going to of course, impact overall economic development across the board. Alright, next up with gusto. You are still muted.
Augusto Pinaud 53:14
It’s been established, thanks to Julie that I’m in force in a minute. It’s an article about, you know, we need to talk about our toxic obsession with productivity. And, um, the article wasn’t terrible, but I didn’t it didn’t it rub me in so many parts on the bad way. You know, it begins saying at the beginning of the pandemic, I text this friend, and he shared Well, I’m watching TV with my daughter. And then later on, we tried to talk about the obsession and why that is not terrible. But the problem is you open the article talking negatively about working from home and that already for me rub it in the wrong way. Because if anything has shown us the last year is that people is able to be productive to produce and to be responsible. Regardless, if at 3pm they watch half an hour of in this particular case, frozen.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 54:15
Okay, frozen to frozen to frozen.
Augusto Pinaud 54:19
Okay, so that that for me, kind of ruined that. The good points of the article half were ruined on that because they’re coming from this perspective of criticizing this executive because he makes that decision. And I think that’s wrong, you know, that as the office and traveling has certain advantages for productivity, okay, not everybody who is on a business trip is fooling around, okay, actually, the reality is most of the people who’s traveling or working those days, a lot more than eight hours, they work all day, come back to the hotel, eat. Okay, and sit back to try to Catch up for the next day. So when you are working at home and you decide to take that break at 3pm, sorry, that’s no different than go to the coffee shop downstairs and and get a Starbucks. It’s the same 20 minutes. So that’s I’m going to get, as you said, out of my soapbox. And that’s all that I’m going to say about this article, and I’m going to let you continue.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 55:23
Yeah, no, I didn’t take it the same way you did in the sense that I feel like this person is coming from a very progressive tone in the executive director, nonprofit realm, and was trying to make the the perspective that there is somehow an obsession with productivity. And I don’t, I don’t know what the toxic obsession with productivity that he’s talking about, because you and I spend a lot of time inside of the inside of the space in which we talk about having a healthy relationship with the world around us. And so we don’t particularly have that, you know, feeling, I don’t necessarily hear that from the people in which I interact with. And that just means that we’re inside of a bubble. And I’m completely open about that reality, you know, I must be in a bubble. Because if he’s experiencing that, and seeing that out there, and certainly in the nonprofit world, which is what he’s talking about, that’s, that’s unfortunate. And I want more people who are nonprofit realm to watch and listen to us. Because we’re not in that, in that perspective. I don’t want people doing productivity activities for its own sake, it should be in purpose of their mission and vision and values. And so that part doesn’t really particularly bother me, the the items that he provides, kind of explanation on he gives kind of six different areas in which he kind of makes commentary on society and, and, you know, people at large and the trauma that we’re all going through, because of COVID-19, I really don’t have any more to say on that. But what he provides are some potential solutions. He he starts out with saying, I’m not the best person to talk about this, but here are a few thoughts. He says that leaders need to be thoughtful about the messages they’re sending. I agree with them on that. He says take time to talk as a team about the what he calls the toxic obsession with productivity, I’m not quite sure what that really means and how productive that would really be other than to say, let’s set standards and boundaries for how we actually engage with each other. But then he goes on to say use boundary markers, basically how we set up boundaries, so that we don’t have meetings, for example, at 10pm for someone in one person’s timezone, and at 5am. For someone else in there, and another person’s timezone we have to be conscientious about making sure that happens, talks a little bit about the nonprofit world regarding funders, and I don’t know that world well enough to be able to say, you know, anything about making, you know, nonprofits fill out meaningless forms, but he clearly thinks that they are doing that. He says, we should explore new ways of doing things, I agree with him, we have to, we have to adapt to a distributed workforce, and get better at understanding that the world is changing, because of globalization, and digitalization of all of our goods and services deliveries. So as time moves forward, there will be less jobs and with less jobs, that means we need to figure out what a liberal life looks like. It also means what do humans do when they don’t have to do as much. So that’s really important. And then he brings up an issue about unions, which I think is outside the purview of our discussion, just generally on the show. So he gives some, I think, good topics there. If you’re in the nonprofit realm, I think it’s really worth checking out. I don’t, again, I don’t know enough to be able to say that I that there is a toxic obsession with with productivity in the nonprofit space. If there is one, I fully believe that they should read, they can, they can reckon, cyl that issue, because they don’t need to have that in the nonprofit space. I know that I come into contact with nonprofit organizations in my own work, because in the economic development world, you know, nonprofits come to us for guidance. But most often than not, I’m talking to them about how they should be really running themselves as businesses, more like businesses and less like, you know, kind of like, help us because we’re a charity, and they should be running more like how do we actually generate appropriate operations. I don’t mean mean their business. They don’t mean business models, like businesses, they need operations like businesses, and that really helps them to be able to stabilize their productivity internally. So you know, interesting article, I don’t think I had very much more to to kind of give to it other than what he gave in those few pointers there. Alright, the next one is another hairy topic, which is how to give feedback to your manager. What do you learn from the article to do so?
Augusto Pinaud 59:58
You know, I mean, always as quick We’ll I don’t know, I, okay, it’s I laugh, and then I say, Well, you know, getting ready, you know, make sure that you have a strong trust foundation. And over in my career, I get in trouble for giving me feedback to my managers. Yes, I did. But it was never about the person, it was always about the business. So even on those cases in which I got in trouble, it was always at some point understood that he was not criticizing the human being, he was criticizing the actions of the business. And I think when you are able to come not into the person, but into the, into the business and to give her you know, objective to be and be careful, be respectful, you know, at the end of the day, you know, that’s your, that’s your boss, okay? It’s not about being disrespectful in any way, shape, or form. But it’s also about being analytic being trying to understand and know, I have always told, or at least when I was younger, I think I still did that. But, you know, explain from where your perspective is coming, and that you’re trying to understand you’re trying to grow, even when you give feedback to that person from that perspective, most people, it’s open to hear what you have, even if they think you have no clue what you’re talking about, and you don’t understand from where they are coming. It’s always, if you come at this, from a positive perspective, trying to understand why decisions are made the way they made, you know, most of the time at that time, or sometimes, hey, you know, bosses manage information that they are not available yet. Okay, do you need to wait to find, but I have found over the years that most people is open to that feedback if you come from a positive objective for the company perspective. So that said, I understand a lot of people is terrified of that, that has never been my issue.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 1:02:08
I found I found the examples that they gave helpful for folks who need to see what a constructive versus unconstructive set of feedback looks like, and has someone who has to give consistent feedback to people, hopefully constructively on a regular basis, I have hopefully learned how to do that effectively. And so I don’t have a, I don’t have a boss, because I guess I am the boss. So I don’t have to give feedback to those people above me, but I do have to give feedback to clients on a regular basis. And that does require being respectful and constructive and sometimes giving tough feedback, you know, because they’re asking me to tell them what’s wrong with their business, and how to make it better. And, and so all of these examples are really good for giving feedback to anyone, whether they are, you know, lateral in the organization or hierarchically above or below you. So I think that it’s important for us to be able to give that and I just felt like the examples were really good. Okay, next up, we have an article about the most common cause of procrastination and how to stop it. I thought this was an interesting article. What did you think about this from Steven guys?
Augusto Pinaud 1:03:22
Let’s see this article. instead. I really enjoy more, you know, I did the power of urgency, the importance and urgency You know, there’s such a, you know, that, that what I call the Eisenhower matrix, that you always correct me as a covey matrix, and you’re with all the other names, but
Raymond Sidney-Smith 1:03:48
Merrill covey matrix, that is the Merrill covering matrix,
Augusto Pinaud 1:03:51
that will be the Eisenhower matrix. But at the end of the day, when much early in in my productivity career, you know, worried was maybe a lot more procrastination. And that was one of those things that allow me to understand really that concept of procrastination you know, where where where is this you know, that I’m going to do now it’s really urgent important not urgent, not urgent or important. That was basically where my procrastination reading a book okay? You know, that’s always your I need to understand that was not urgent or important, okay, though, that’s where I was putting that at the beginning. But in the reality is, when you understand these things, and you understand, you know, how to work with time and you know, in a past episode, we talked about that. punishing yourself for getting at the end of the day and not having time, you know, that’s one of the times you know, To, to always have time for you or try to. So the more time you have for you in that schedule, the less you tend to procrastinate because the procrastinations many times, as he’s explained come from, you know, I need time I’m craving that time. And the other part is understand, you know what it is, you know, I was big into taking the less urgent activities, but activities that I can do enjoy the more until I discover, okay, I need to have into my schedule a really good balance of those activities, even if they are less urgent, so that way, I have the tank the fuel to take into the more important maybe less pleasurable task, it was an article that I enjoyed very much.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 1:05:51
Yeah, I think I think he used the heat, he summed it up really well at the end, which is that you need to create some level of time pressures in order to be able to have effective over overcoming of things like procrastination. I don’t necessarily know that I agree with the entire premise here that he’s talking about. But the reality is, is that if you have a challenge, regarding productivity, we know that game design principles actually elevate our ability to be able to make those things happen. We’re trying to create both momentum, and also then pushing through, you know, to to completion. And so momentum is about getting started. And then pushing through is about getting to the finish line. And we have both of those pieces to really worry about, of course, we can use time boundedness to be able to elevate us in those categories. And this just comes down to a little bit of game design, where we’re capable of creating challenge and getting to quote unquote, next level, then we have the ability to manipulate our motivations toward things, our momentum toward things. So use those levers. And one way to do that is through time, you know, if you set a timer and say, I’m going to do something that I know I can do in 30 minutes in 25, it creates a sense of pressure that elevates your anxiety in a healthful way. that then gets you to be able to jump into gear humans are humans thrive on challenge. And I know this seems counterintuitive, but we have to consistently remind ourselves that it’s challenged that that motivates us. And so therefore, how do we create momentum, regarding challenge, as opposed to trying to make things easy, we want to make things easy for purposes of momentum to get started sometimes, but we also actually want to create enough friction so that we were able to make forward movement. And so we need to use those levers in a right amount to be able to really move forward and through something like procrastination. So I, I appreciate the perspective on it, because it was an interesting article to read. But I just feel like we need to constantly remind ourselves that procrastination is just a helpful part of existence. It’s only when it becomes debilitating when it starts to hold you back from reaching goals that it actually becomes a problem. some level of procrastination is natural and healthy for us all. We just need to figure out what things are creating momentum. And that which is not allowing us to get to completion, we need that level of momentum and completion on a regular basis. And otherwise, we’re going to be fine. Okay. Last but not least in our stories, something that I’m not going to be able to be very useful about but hopefully you will be Augusto
Augusto Pinaud 1:08:40
Greene time has come to an article from life hack how much screen time should kids have. And while this is difficult, because I, I limit to my kids, I have two kids and we limit the screen time really not for screen time for what for activities. So gaming, okay, it’s limit, there is only X amount of hours of, you know, that they can play a day and after that they need to get, you know, permission. But my kids have Kindles. They’re not the tablets that the actual ereader and that is to do and the reason they have those devices and that’s a screen at the end of the day, is because I want them to read and my kids both read enough that’s the only device they’re allowed to take into their bed into the room. And if you ask me, you know, if those Kindles fail, I will replace them immediately because for me that habit of reading and consistently reading you know, as expensive as it sound, it’s worth it. Every penny of it, you know and you particularly where you and I have been meetings where my daughter comes and say I finished the book and I’m looking at her like, I bought it yesterday. But at the end of the day, if I need to buy a book a day, because she’s reading it, that’s an incredible investment. So I think there is a distinction in that is needed to put in there. What are the kids do it second? You know, we need to understand that the kids look at the technology they born with the technology is different than ours, I understand that. But that’s normal for them. It’s where they do a lot of things is their communication. It’s how, you know, my kids, their grandparents all leave far. Okay. But they have a relationship to the grandparents because of the technology. Okay, even with the obstacles of the age. So I think when we talk about how much that is screen time is or should be or should not be, I think we need to be a lot more specific. About what, okay, I said, my household communication, FaceTime, and Google meats and all those are unlimited. Reading our unlimited research are unlimited. My daughter draw on her iPad that is unlimited. She wants to draw all day and all night, be my guest. Okay, that said, are they things that we try to limit? Yeah, we limit games, for example, we limit certain games. The I think that’s useful. From there to, you know, limit, hey, I love that my kid loves to do math on his iPad. Okay. And we moved to, to New Jersey, at the beginning of the pandemic, okay, we move February 2020. And the school that he goes out, okay, all done in the iPad. Okay. And he enjoyed so much that he came to school, you know, basically six months late, okay. And by the end of the school year, he was the first student on first grade for math. Okay, hey, all that is the screen time. Okay, do I think I should limit that? No. Okay. I mean, he wants to do more, I’m happy to pay for the license of that software. So I think those articles need to be a lot more specifics on what are those scrim things? Do I think watching TV on or Netflix or Disney plus on games? unlimited is good? No, but it was not good as when we were kids and watch the TV. Okay, it is the same thing. Okay, it dumb the brain. But there are many activities that can be done on screens that are good for the kids. And those in my humble opinion should not be limited in any way, shape, or form.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 1:13:00
Yeah, I thought this article did a really great job of kind of explaining the various types of screentime active and passive screentime and giving parents just kind of some guardrails for being able to look out for what they should be doing. You know, kids at different ages have various, you know, developmental needs. And you need to be able to do that. And as someone who studied child developmental psychology, I have a unique interest in making sure that young minds are developed properly. And so just be mindful of the fact that as your child’s mind develops over the course of the years, those first few years are more important than the next years, then the next year is then the next years. And so just making sure that you’re following good guidance from your pediatrician. And then taking some common sense, you know, Agusta, you’re just using good common sense here with regard to how your children should be approaching, you know, screentime. And of course, common sense is uncommon. And so he’s looking for, you have to use that Uncommon Sense to be able to really think thoughtfully about what and how children are dealing with new technologies, these are new technologies to us, and the children are learning and adapting to technology that is obviously new to our brains. It’ll take potentially hundreds of 1000s of years for us to really develop to become in real synchronicity with regard to the digital technology that we’re dealing with. And, you know, we’re basically going to be butting heads with the fact that this technology is dealing with us in rapid form that we’re not really used to. So that has to be taken into context. All right. We are now at the end of our headlines, which of course brings us to the new tools of the week, each week, but gousto and I come across many productivity tools and services in pursuit of all of the news and productivity and technology news that we call the interwebs for and so in this segment, new tools of the week, we each bring you a tool we think you might like it may be a new tool. But it just may be a new tool to you, maybe it’s not, but it’s something that we like. And so we’re sharing them with you. And so, this week, we have two tools. And since this is Financial Literacy Month, we decided to pick tools that were in that financial literacy or money management space. And so my first, my tool this week is a tool called chatter. And I actually learned about this tool because the gentleman who produces it, Gavin, is also the producer of pistachio, which is actually an Evernote connected tool that you can use Evernote to publish a blog, or a website. And so pistachio is Gavin’s project. And he has also been working on this tool called cheddar. And what cheddar does is it takes a Google Sheet, and you connect Google Sheet to your bank. And what it does then is it downloads those transactions into your Google Sheets workbook as a as a budget, so you’re capable of seeing the various transactions, you can set up a budget, you can set up categories. And it’s just a really clean, simple, easy tool that allows you to be able to synchronize a budget using Google Sheets and your bank. As simple as that as easy as that. If you just want the data in a Google Sheets workbook in order to be able to slice and dice that data. chatter may be something that you might like. And so that’s my tool, the week a gousto. What is your tool this week,
Augusto Pinaud 1:16:23
you need a budget, why an A B? As I said, I struggle for many years on my youth with all this and having an app that can teach you how to work budgets and what to do with the excess of money on the budget, when you spend less of that and how to manage that and move it from one place to the other was a life changer. That app didn’t exist when I learned it. I’m glad that this didn’t happen when I you know, I’m glad of that because that would get me in a different kind of trouble. But but it was really important for me to learn. And this app really goes from teach you how to do that, how to create that budget, why did you need it and how to manage and be flexible into that budget. So it is an interesting approach and a good application. There are other apps like like that. But I think teaching you how to manage budget, it was was a great thing for for a lot of people. So that’s a reason, I recommend that app.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 1:17:30
Absolutely. And I hear lots of people speak very highly of wine app, or you need a budget you’re going to go to you need a budget calm. And they have those four fundamental rules of wine AB. And so just a great application. So if you’re looking for a budget methodology, why NAB might be for you. Alright, with that, that brings us to our feature story this week. So what’s our featured story this week?
Augusto Pinaud 1:17:57
Google’s lounge, a scanner app. Right now, as far as I know, is only for Android. So I have not been able to play with it. But but they released really a powerful artificial intelligence app or scanner that you can use. So again, I haven’t been able to more than read about it and really hope that it comes to somehow to to iOS, but it seems to be really, really powerful. And really interesting.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 1:18:32
Yeah, so So this comes from area 120. Which is Google’s Think of it as like area 51. For is it. But is that the name of it area? 51. Somebody correct me? Yeah, so so like that whole concept. It’s basically the very specialized unit within Google that, you know, kind of, you know, tries these different innovative approaches. And so I have stack installed on my system. And in essence, what it does is when you open up the phone, it’s when you install the application and you know, register your account, it then immediately scans your phone for any paper documents. So it’s looking for bills, receipts, or otherwise, that are actually on the phone already. And then what once it goes ahead and does all of that it’s all private and secure. It’s all within, you know, your phone and within the Google ecosystem. It basically pulls those items together. And then it gives you these stacks. What stacks are, are basically the grouping together of those documents. And using OCR, optical character recognition within it, and some artificial intelligence on top of that machine learning on top of that, it’s capable of looking at those documents and helping to sort and organize them for you in the system. And so as you can see here, I think I can bring this up to the screen here, you should be able to see, you see that we have a set of stacks here, and it can go ahead and organize those items for you inside of the system. And of course you can search for documents in the system as well. This is incredibly awesome. If you have lots of documents that you’re trying to manage, and you’re just scanning them or taking photographs of them with your phone, on a daily basis. And so I think this is a really, really powerful tool, I have this sneaking suspicion that this is going to end up inside of Google Keep or inside of Google Drive. If you didn’t know this already, Google Drive itself has a scanning application built into it. So if you’re using Google Drive on iOS, or Android, there is a scanning functionality built directly into Google Drive. And so you’re capable of already doing some scanning here, I think stack may just get bundled into it and giving us some more capabilities. On top of that, I don’t know, I’m just that’s conjecture. But the idea behind stack, though, is pretty powerful. And what I’d like to see is it integrated a little bit more tightly with other Google products, and giving me more capabilities of seeing that data and potentially drawing that data in. So we talked about chatter, just now synchronizing our banking information with the with Google Sheets workbook? Well, it’d be really cool if I could scan that document, in stack. And for that whole set of of documents inside that stack, to be able to then get pulled into a Google Sheets workbook, so that I’d be able to see that data and slice and dice it within Google Sheets. So we have some real power here. And it just goes to a greater component here that I think goes to an AI are kind of aware of, and want to make sure that everybody else is, which is that moving forward, artificial intelligence is going to start doing some things that may seem like almost like magic, I suppose. Right? It’s gonna start collecting data about us. And we need to be able to want to do that securely and privately, but also start to take advantage of it for productivity purposes. If I can scan all of my documents and have them auto sort for me, I don’t no longer have to file those things myself, man, that would be a great day. And so I think that the more we use technology in these ways, and Google’s area, you know, 120, doing this with stack, I think proves a point, which is that we are capable of utilizing technology in ways that will inevitably take burden off of our hands in ways that we maybe didn’t think they could before. And that is why analyzing the data on our systems, and then giving us information back. And this is really one of the first applications that I’m seeing do it on such a sophisticated level. And we could take hundreds of documents that are on your phone right now, and just automatically sort them into categories with very high accuracy. That I think is very, very powerful. Because so any thoughts on stack,
Augusto Pinaud 1:22:34
I really hope it comes to iOS, I have an old app that I have used for many, many years on my iPhone scanner. And I really would love for what I read through upgraded to stack. Yeah,
Raymond Sidney-Smith 1:22:48
I think I think if they, you know, again, my my thought here is that it’s it’s very unlikely for them to move so so that we’re aware, this area 120 projects is actually using the dock AI technology, which is an enterprise scanning functionality. So the likelihood of this experimental project making its way to consumer release in in like its own app that people will use. I don’t know if it’s going to go to that effect. I think we can see this technology first being utilized within Google workspace. And this is just kind of a use case, like a proof of concept for for enterprise to be able to see that Google could do this Google Cloud, which is over Google workspace can do this, and and then to bring those features to Google Drive for, you know, basically shared drives. And so I see that as being really the reason why this has been brought out. I think there’s a strong consumer need and a strong consumer argument for it. Let’s see, if Google decides to bring that to the consumer market. As I said, if it’s going to come anywhere, it’s going to probably get baked into Google Keep or Google Drive. And since those already have scanning functionalities, I don’t think we’re going to see this brought to its own application. In after the experiment is over, we may see it actually get brought into Google camera. Maybe they’ll they’ll bake it into Google camera like they did Google lens. Google lens is the scanning technology. So you can take google google lens from within Google Calendar and aim it you can download the application on iOS also. So Google lens for iOS, you can aim that camera at almost anything in the world. And it will if you focus in on it, it will in essence, search Google for that image. It can also scan QR codes, 2d, which are you know, the 2d barcodes You can also scan 1d barcodes. And so you have lots of options in terms of using Google lens for searching the world. And maybe they’ll just add it to Google camera. So maybe that’s a maybe that’s a future for it as well but not to not to burst your bubble Augusto but I don’t think this is coming to an iOS device near you anytime soon. But I could be wrong. That being the case, that brings us to the end of our stories this week, we have a couple of announcements. You want to run through those for us? Oh, of course, the
Augusto Pinaud 1:25:09
first announcement is a really interesting article or review of the spring, the paper goal models, the spring 2021 organizing products by Julia bear Street. And,
Augusto Pinaud 1:25:29
You know, I read through it, I am not a big paper planner person. But I’m going to say that after I read that, there is a certain product announcement letter that was ordered from Amazon, and according to Amazon’s delivering tomorrow, but it wasn’t, it was great to read that to read about the dry erase board. So either of the products in there, obviously for me was this met folder what what is coming up, so maybe I don’t need to carry the whole bag, and it will fit my iPad according to my measures. The next thing that we have on the announcement is last week was the 45th anniversary on April Fool’s Day of Apple Computer. That made me think about I’ve been only using them for 10 years or so. But that’s all that I’m going to admit. Anyways, Tim Cook sent a company wide memo and he was you know, publicly released later talking about this and talking about the 45th anniversary of apple and where Apple is going. And it is a really interesting thing to to read. So if you have the time, go to the link and enjoy.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 1:26:45
Wonderful. We’ll put those links, of course in the show notes tomorrow. And so with that, we’ve covered the productivity and technology news this week, Augusta, we’ve done it again. As always, thank you to Augusto Pinaud, for joining me here every week on Anything But Idle. Thanks again.
Augusto Pinaud 1:27:04
My pleasure. All right, everybody.
Raymond Sidney-Smith 1:27:07
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