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App Design Competition for Middle and High School Students

Know a geeky student — or just one with a good idea for an app — or even a classroom full of them? The Verizon Foundation, with the Technology Student Association, is launching the second annual Innovative App Challenge. The mobile app design competition aims to engage students in science, technology, engineering and math (STEM) subjects and empower them to create…

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Powering the Homework Table

  I love homework season. I know homework has it fans and opponents. And I’m not choosing sides there from an education point of view. I just love it that my two teens have to sit down in the homework room I set up for them and do productive(ish) work. Sure, I almost always wish the homework was more meaningful….

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Tell Your Story to Moo

I get all my business cards from Moo.com. In fact, I love it when I run out of cards so I can go make some more. The cards, that you can add your own photos, and the process of designing them all combine to make it a fun way to tell your own story on a bit of paper that’s easy…

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Foursquare and Back-to-School Shopping

I am about to take my kids shopping for school. I am super excited — giddy really — that they are headed back to school. But I’m not happy about the shopping part. I’ve seen estimates that say parents spend (I’m rounding) $450 to $650 on this shopping spree. So. That’s a drag. But the folks at Foursquare sent me…

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A Back-to-School Tablet Purse

OGIO Brooklyn Purse in Tide, $44.95 My daughter – 14 – is starting high school in a couple of weeks. She is terrified. I know she’ll be fine. But it’s a big deal for her, starting a big, new school. I have already set her up with a Nexus 7  Android tablet (a great choice; only $229) tablet so she…

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Am I a Dork in these Jabra Revo Wireless Headphones? I Don’t Care.

I once considered over-ear headphones dorky. I couldn’t understand people who wore them around the city as if they had just fled jobs as air-traffic controllers and forgotten to take them off. Then, despite my fashion-slave prejudices and because my son always looks so happy in his Beats by Dr. Dre, I tried a good pair. It was like dimming…

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Printing from a Smart Phone is Easy

It’s one of the rules of modern life that the printer will run out of ink only when the thing you are printing is urgent and you don’t have time to get more ink. This just happened to me. As I was printing forms I needed to take to my daughter’s doctor’s appointment, my office printer coughed out its last…

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Too many Tablets?

Maybe more people than I thought can relate to my gadget-reviewers existence, where there are always several tablets or smart phones in easy reach.

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Did You Leave Your Phone in a Hot Car?

I know you love your dog and would never leave her in a hot car. But maybe you haven’t admitted that you love your phone? Okay, fine. But denial, is no excuse for cruelty. Smart phones are getting more durable all the time but heat is still bad for them. And a hot car could kill your phone or your dog….

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Netflix for Families

I like Netflix better than most other things for my kids TV watching needs. It lets them watch on the device they have, lets me keep an eye on what they watch, and sometimes — when I see one of them has watched a movie I like — it sparks good dinner conversation. I shut off cable in favor of…

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