DaedTech Digest: How to Make Money While Vagabonding?

2 months 1 week ago

This is an interesting premise for the week’s digest post.  I say this because I think it arose from somebody misunderstanding why and how I have money. There is a small population segment that slow travels and makes a living blogging about the same.  But we are not part of that segment, weekly digests about […]

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Erik Dietrich

Employment Teaches You How Not to be a Free Agent: You Have Stuff to Unlearn

2 months 1 week ago

Recently, I was doing something that occupies a surprising amount of my time these days: using LinkedIn for lead gen.  This involves researching companies, connecting with people, and, occasionally, consuming LinkedIn. It was in that latter capacity that I stumbled across this post, from Jonathan Stark.  I nearly spit out my coffee. It’s funny, right?  […]

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Erik Dietrich

Imagining new ways to learn Morse code’s dots and dashes

2 months 1 week ago

We first met Emmett at Adaptive Design Association, an organization near Google’s NYC office that builds custom adaptations for children with disabilities. Communicating for him is difficult—he uses a clear plastic word board and looks at specific squares to try and get across what he wants to say. We thought we might be able to help.

At the time, we were working on a special Morse Code layout for Gboard. With its simple dot and dash encoding, Morse is a good fit for assistive tech like switch access and sip-and-puff devices. Emmett was hoping to learn Morse as a more robust form of communication, and we wanted to make a small game to help him learn the new alphabet.

Our first attempt was a small connect-the-dots spelling toy that drew Emmett's favorite cartoon character and only took a few days to build. After watching Emmett get set up with his switches and start excitedly conquering pieces of the little Morse toy, we knew we wanted to do more. We partnered with Adaptive Design on a 48 hour hackathon, where independent designers and game developers worked with Emmett and another 4 kids to prototype games that made Morse code fun to learn.

Here's more on how we partnered with Adaptive Design to create the prototype games.

The kids played the role of creative directors, using their imagination to set the vision for their own games. Each game reflected their interests and personalities. Hannah’s passion for music led to a game where you play notes by typing them in Morse. Matthew combined his interest in soccer and spy thrillers to make a game where you shoot soccer balls at targets by typing their corresponding Morse letters. Emmett made a maze you solve writing different letters. Ben, who likes trains, made a game where YouTube videos are shown on a train once the correct letters are typed in Morse Code. And Olivia’s love for talent shows led to a game called “Alphabet’s Got Talent.”

We’re posting the code for each independent team's games on the Experiments with Google website, where you can also find open-source examples that will help you get started with your own Morse-based apps. If you’re a developer, we hope these resources will inspire you to get involved with the community and make a difference by building your own accessibility projects.

DaedTech Digest: Deciding How Long We Should Stay

2 months 2 weeks ago

It’s been a few weeks now since the last DaedTech digest.  In that one, I chronicled the last little bit of our trip to Vermont. We haven’t gone anywhere since then.  Not really, I mean.  We’ve been back and forth to Illinois a few times, visiting family and taking care of logistics.  But that hardly […]

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Erik Dietrich

Fighting the “loneliness epidemic” at work: Dan Schawbel on creating real connections in the Age of Isolation

2 months 3 weeks ago

In this interview, author and consultant Dan Schawbel talks about the real threat of workplace isolation, the way technology increasingly keeps us apart, and how leaders of the future can shift their approach from managing workers to managing people.

The post Fighting the “loneliness epidemic” at work: Dan Schawbel on creating real connections in the Age of Isolation appeared first on RescueTime Blog.

Jory MacKay

Happy Thanksgiving, 2018!

2 months 3 weeks ago

Hello there, DaedTech readers!  In what has sort of been an annual Thanksgiving tradition (I do it some years), I’d like to wish you all a Happy Thanksgiving!  As in this past years, please enjoy this drawing by my wife and business partner, Amanda.  And please enjoy your holiday. For those outside the US, Thanksgiving is […]

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Erik Dietrich

Friendsgiving? More like #trendsgiving

2 months 4 weeks ago

Across America, people celebrate next week’s day of thanks with their own unique traditions, and many come to Search for help to pull off Turkey Day like a pro. (In fact, you can simply search “Thanksgiving” and find video tips from expert chefs on how to master mashed potatoes or ideas to elevate a pumpkin pie!)

But there’s a cornucopia of searches you can do, and we took a look at some of the top and trending ideas that people are gobbling up to hone their side dish skills and perfect their pie game.

Pardon me, but how do you plan to prep your turkey?

There are many ways to toast a turkey, but here are the preferred cooking methods across the U.S. this year. While the Eastern Seaboard and some of the Southwest is fond of frying, smoked birds are booming in nearly half the country. Hawaii joins New England in sticking to the classic roasted turkey.

Top turkey cooking methods in each state

Party fowl

As people gear up for one of the year’s biggest get-togethers for family and friends, questions arise about how to make sure that their fowl doesn’t flop and, this year, how to ensure that the bird they select is safe to eat. Here are some top turkey searches trending right now:

Let’s dish on sides

For many, Thanksgiving meals are more about the sweet and salty sides and the gravy train that goes along with them. But making a dinner that satisfies the dietary needs of all of your guests can be a challenge—and many of you are coming to search for ideas to tailor your menus accordingly. Here are a few insights around these diet-specific dish trends:

  • “Keto Thanksgiving” searches are hitting an all time high in 2018, with “keto Thanksgiving sides” up 70% YoY.

  • Vegan Thanksgiving” has the highest interest among diet-specific searches, more than double the search interest of “keto Thanksgiving” and “vegetarian Thanksgiving” searches.

  • “Gluten free Thanksgiving” is also on the rise, with searches for “gluten free thanksgiving sides” (+300% YoY), desserts (+100% YoY) and stuffing (+90% YoY) all trending up since last year.

Pie, in charts

Everyone has their own festive favorite when it comes to Thanksgiving Day dessert. Here’s a slice of the top pies people are searching for:


Many of these pie preferences can be regional, too. Here are the places where the top pies are poppin’ on Search.

No matter how you celebrate and give thanks, you can find all the ideas you need on Search, get to your friends and family quickly and safely with help from Google Maps, and get to gobbling up that grub.

May we GIF you a suggestion? Emojis and more on Gboard

3 months ago

We communicate in pictures more than ever before. Emoji, stickers, or GIFs often get your point across better than just words. Can you imagine celebrating a birthday without the cake emoji, or *life* without the Carlton GIF? Conversations would be so much more boring—and more misunderstood—without them.


For those of us who just can’t even without the perfect GIF ( … or emoji, or sticker), never fear, Gboard is here! On Gboard, you can search for stickers, emoji and GIFs, all at once. It also has a sticker store, regularly updated with stickers for people all over the world.


But with thousands of emoji and stickers, and an endless number of GIFs, it can sometimes take awhile to find the perfect way to say “I love you,” “hooray,” or anything else you’re trying to communicate.


Starting today for all Android users, Gboard will use AI to suggest GIFs, emoji and stickers to you related to your conversation. This makes it faster and easier to share your #feelings and your glowing personality with whoever you’re chatting with. Keep your eyes peeled for the “GIF” icon to appear in the top left corner of Gboard. Tap it, and you’ll see a selection of GIFs, emoji and stickers that Gboard thinks you might want to share.

So if you’re typing “Awesome!” Gboard will suggest this sticker:

Or if you type “I’m sleepy”, you’ll get this emoji:

To make sure these suggestions are private to you and take place as fast as possible, this feature is processed entirely on your device. You can read more about the benefits of on-device AI here.


This feature is initially available globally in English only. Over time, we’ll expand Gboard suggestions to more languages, and more types of content to help you do and say more right from your conversation. In the meantime, we’ll leave you with this:

DaedTech Digest: The Long Road Home

3 months ago

In late September, I started a little digest series with this post about packing for a slow travel stint.  From there, we got settled, hiked, battled US border patrol, rolled with the punches, and packed to go.  So I should probably book-end things with our glorious return home. What’s a Return from Slow Travel Like? So […]

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Erik Dietrich