Beta
×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

'I've Fallen and I Can't Get Up!' v2.0

timothy posted more than 4 years ago | from the when-skype-isn't-enough dept.

Medicine 155

theodp writes "Remember those old Lifecall commercials? Well, you've come a long way, Grandma! The NY Times reports on a raft of new technology that's making it possible for adult children to remotely monitor to a stunningly precise degree the daily movements and habits of their aging parents. The purpose is to provide enough supervision to allow elderly people to stay in their homes rather than move to an assisted-living facility or nursing home. Systems like GrandCare, BeClose, QuietCare, and MedMinder allow families to keep tabs on Mom and Dad's whereabouts, and make sure they take their meds. Perhaps Zynga can make a game out of all this — GeriatricVille?"

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

great (3, Insightful)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098138)

Now social services in England will have another excuse not to help people who need human attendance. "This equipment works just as well!" No, some GPS/accelerometer/camera/button is no substitute for the supervision, companionship and observational skill of humans.

Lick my nuts (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33098154)

Just like timothy to accept a submission like this. This is *precisely* why I looked up his username [slashdot.org] and found four moddable posts and modded him down on them all. Die in a fire, timothy. Like anal rapage?

Re:Lick my nuts (2, Funny)

Nikker (749551) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099030)

You just caught your kids on one of those websites didn't you?

Re:great (4, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098188)

Now social services in England will have another excuse not to help people who need human attendance.

The alternative is an archaic system of elder care called "families". I understand it was practiced in some parts of the world back in the 20th century.

Apparently, here in the brave new world of the 21st century, every relative has to work in order to pay off the credit cards and cell phone bill, so there's insufficient personnel to staff these "families".

Re:great (4, Insightful)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098264)

The alternative is an archaic system of elder care called "families".

Right, where to begin...

(1) Yes, families do have the option to look after older members to a certain degree, and it's sad that parents in some societies are encouraged to separate themselves from their children and vice versa;

(2) But not everyone has children. Recall also that children are a huge unearnt burden to the state, while older people have already paid their national insurance / social security / whatever contributions and are just getting the care they paid for. We are all better off because we do not breed out of concern about our frailties;

(3) There are certain classes of illnesses better tackled by a staff of trained physical and mental health shift workers. For example, someone who is senile but mobile can be a great danger to themselves. They will keep you up all night. When do you propose to sleep?

There are lots of poor alternatives to a good system of social welfare, and assuming that everyone has a loving able family of infinite resources produces one of them.

Re:great (3, Insightful)

SlideGuitar (445691) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098416)

>(1) Yes, families do have the option to look after older members to a certain degree, and it's sad that parents in some societies are encouraged to separate themselves from their children and vice versa;

(2) But not everyone has children. Recall also that children are a huge unearnt burden to the state, while older people have already paid their national insurance / social security / whatever contributions and are just getting the care they paid for. We are all better off because we do not breed out of concern about our frailties; >

My preteen children year old are on firm warning... they can move out of state, but we parents are coming after them and moving into their attics/basements/spare rooms. There is no escape. And we live what we talk, taking care of our mother/mother-in-law next door.

Are we better off if people do not breed for the purposes of old age insurance? I doubt it. We are better off if people do not breed excessively out of fear that disease will utterly deprive them of offspring for old age, but it is probably more sustainable to "entrain" children in the care of parents out of a sense of duty, than it is to free them to maximize their income and then tax that income to pay "someone else" to provide elder care.

We might ask "would it not be more efficient for a lawyer or engineer to earn $200 K and pay someone else $50 K to watch an elder?" but that is probably a rare case. The cost of quality care is the cost of middle class income anyway, roughly, so why should this family service be exogenized into the market as opposed to remaining endogenous to the family?

Well there is ONE very good reason and that is that women are the vastly predominant providers of elder care services. Marketizing those services enables women to have public careers as opposed to be locked into the family care giver role... mother to children, nurse to elders... for their entire life. Families are only "free" if you ignore the lost opportunities they tend to cause for women.

Re:great (1)

NewbieProgrammerMan (558327) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099040)

We might ask "would it not be more efficient for a lawyer or engineer to earn $200 K and pay someone else $50 K to watch an elder?" but that is probably a rare case.

On the slim hope that someone actually wants to suggest this, please make sure you also include the names of any cities where they pay engineers $200k, because I want to move there.

I'll just warn you (2, Interesting)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099248)

You'd better be nice to your kids, and foster a good relationship. You might think such a thing in mandatory on their part but let me assure you it is not. When they turn 18 (and at any time after) they can sever any and all ties with you. You have no legal claim to force them to care for you. If they want to leave you to fend for yourself, they can.

I warn this, because I've known more than a couple students that have come through (I work at a university) who's parents seem to assume they should have to pay their own way, take care of themselves, etc, etc, yet still think the kid owes them. The attitude of such students is often as not "Fuck you." They don't have a particularly good relationship with their parents and being told to go out on their own makes it less so. Heck one of my coworkers (who is 40) says 3000 miles is about the right distance to be away from his parents.

So just something to consider. If you want your kids to be your caregivers, help them out, treat them well, make sure you give them whatever you can. That doesn't guarantee they'll help you, but it gives you a lot better chance. Either way though, I'd save some money and have a backup plan. Their option to tell you to get bent always exists.

Re:I'll just warn you (1)

SlideGuitar (445691) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099364)

I was kidding about the firm warning... it's a joke we make, but a joke with a serious point. If our kids move out of state, we plan to follow (some day) and of course we do everything we can to make sure they'll want us, or choose to remain local.

Re:I'll just warn you (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099468)

Just making sure. Like I said, I've met more than a couple students who's parents had a sort of "You owe us for giving you life," attitude and the response is often "No I don't."

Personally I wish my parents lived near me, but that's not the way things are and not the way they are likely to be. Maybe some day.

Re:great (2, Insightful)

Velex (120469) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099382)

My preteen children year old are on firm warning... they can move out of state, but we parents are coming after them and moving into their attics/basements/spare rooms. There is no escape.

If my parents did that, I'd call the cops on them for trespassing just like they did for me. I had to resign a good internship because I wasn't certain where I was living for a few days.

In hindsight, sure, I was stupid to trust them without a written lease. I should have ditched them when I was 16 instead of waiting for them to upset my life with a 0-day move-out notice.

Re:great (1)

DerekLyons (302214) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099750)

My preteen children year old are on firm warning... they can move out of state, but we parents are coming after them and moving into their attics/basements/spare rooms. There is no escape. And we live what we talk, taking care of our mother/mother-in-law next door.

No you aren't living what you're talking - you're choosing to take care of your mother in law, you're forcing your children to take care of you. I'm damn glad I'm not your child because you're not only a liar - you're ignorant and stupid enough to not even recognize your lie.

Re:great (4, Insightful)

rbphilip (530254) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098770)

I don't have children, step-children or any other variation on extended family, so I'm on my own. Technology that allows me to continue to live on my own when/if I become frail would be welcome. I hope, if I become senile, that it happens gradually and/or with lucid phases so I can remove myself from the population and avoid becoming a vegetable.

Re:great (1)

GSV Eat Me Reality (1845852) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099052)

  Your speculations assume that people are rational. This is not a rational assumption.

  GSVEMR

Re:great (4, Insightful)

CohibaVancouver (864662) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098378)

Not sure how old you are, but as your parents age, you may find your parents value their independence and won't necessarily want their children around mollycoddling them. These gadgets, used judiciously, make for the best of both worlds - Your parents can continue to live independently in surroundings in which they're comfortable and to which they've grown accustomed, but they still can summon help if they need it. That doesn't mean you shouldn't come around with their grandkids or show up for Sunday dinner or mow dad's lawn or take mum out for brunch, it just means everyone can continue to have peace of mind.

Also as lifespans increase (2, Insightful)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099224)

This becomes more of a problem. If you are 60 years old, with some health problems of your own and still working for a few more years, do you really have time to look after your 85-90 year old parents? You can't very well be all day care, you still have to work, and you have commitments to your own health as well outside of that. Also the conditions of extremely advanced age can be much, much worse than younger, requiring nearly continuous attention of some kind.

The people who look back to the "family did everything" days forget that lifespans were much shorter. Generally you died of something else before your age got the better of you. So your family wasn't saddled with care for all that long. You health might deteriorate and necessitate care for awhile, but it wasn't the situation like you sometimes see now where someone lives for 5-10 years nearly completely unable to care for themselves.

There's also the simple issue of those that don't have kids. If we want population growth to stabilize you've got two choices:

1) Rigidly enforce a two child per family model, require everyone to have no more or less children.

2) Accept that some people will choose to have no children, just as some will choose to have many.

What does the 80 year old person, who's done their work and paid in their money but has no kids, do?

Re:Also as lifespans increase (1)

networkBoy (774728) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099742)

we are currently taking care of grandma. Built a cottage for her. Now my wife's dad is moving in with us for an undetermined length of time.
While it is the right thing for us to do for our family, it is neither ideal or a walk in the park.
We are hoping to find a house very local (within a block or two) for dad, so he can have his own space (and we can have ours), yet still be close enough to provide care.
-nB

The old days weren't that good (3, Insightful)

mangu (126918) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098438)

In the 20th century, which you remember so fondly, it was a woman's job to be a mother and housewife. It was she who stayed at home taking care of children and elders, while dad went to work.

Also, the gap between rich and poor was so wide that middle-class families earned enough to hire helpers from the lower classes. There was the cook, the housemaid(s), the gardener, to help take care of house and family.

Re:The old days weren't that good (1, Interesting)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098508)

It's been during the transitional phase that parents have had the chance to spend a decent amount of quality time with their kids. For traditionally the kids went from live-in nanny to boarding school. Today the parents must both work.

But I enjoyed that in-between where my mother could stay at home but not afford a live-in nanny. Though my grandmother did live with us, her role was more in house care. We also had a regular gardener and cleaner. I miss the gardener. He kept ducks and taught me about fish care. He had a son with learning difficulties and my family hired him too. And this is just enough backstory for a Radio 4 play.

Re:great (2, Informative)

westlake (615356) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098856)

The alternative is an archaic system of elder care called "families". I understand it was practiced in some parts of the world back in the 20th century.

Families were often much larger.

Three kids. Six kids.

Families were often much less mobile.

Five generations of our own family still live within the same township.

Jobs for women outside the household were still scarce.

Before World War Two it wasn't at all unusual for a middle class family of relatively modest income to employ full or part time help.

The alternatives to home care were few and often quite bleak.

Even today, there are only two nursing homes locally that I would willingly place anyone.

Re:great (4, Informative)

h4rr4r (612664) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098888)

You might also remember most were not middle class, most were poor. Those poor folks that made all this possible often had horrible lives, the middle class therefore had it's luxury on the backs of these other people.

Re:great (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33098950)

Perfect answer. GP might as well move to a third world country where middle class still have full or part time employees - is it worth it? If he wants to, I can exchange my passport with him.

Re:great (2, Interesting)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099124)

You might also remember most were not middle class, most were poor.

Sorry, I was referring to the US, not the UK.

We used to have a very large middle class here in the US, thanks to labor unions. It's not so much any more since Reagan, and the ruling corporations realized they couldn't have a middle class with choices if they were going to maximize quarterly profits.

Re:great (1, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33099012)

Before World War Two it wasn't at all unusual for a middle class family of relatively modest income to employ full or part time help

Before WW-II was the Great Depression. Unemployment was over 50%. I doubt that many had hired help during that time.

Re:great (2, Informative)

westlake (615356) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099508)

Before WW-II was the Great Depression. Unemployment was over 50%. I doubt that many had hired help during that time.

Unemployment was high - but at its peak, more like 20% than 50%. Great Depression in the United States [wikipedia.org] Race and sex could up those numbers dramatically, of course.

Not everyone goes bust in hard times - not everyone prospers in boom times.

If you had a middle class income in the Depression, domestic help was easy to find and cheap.

Re:great (1)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099086)

Before World War Two it wasn't at all unusual for a middle class family of relatively modest income to employ full or part time help.

The rich hated that.

What good is being rich if even the middle class can have domestic help?

Re:great (2, Insightful)

PopeRatzo (965947) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099118)

Families were often much larger.

Three kids. Six kids.

I come from three generations of two-kid families. Everyone has lived to at least 68 and most over 75. I was the first to go to college. None has gone to "retirement homes". It's to a large part a matter of choice and priority, and to a large part thanks to labor unions, which brought such social advances as health insurance and pensions, which unfortunately have been under constant attack from the ownership class here in the US.

Jobs for women outside the household were still scarce.

Jobs for women outside the home, except during the periods of some glorious war or other, were not as necessary to raise a family.

The alternatives to home care were few and often quite bleak.

They are still quite bleak compared to families. Even the nicest of them.

Re:great (3, Interesting)

couchslug (175151) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099322)

"The alternative is an archaic system of elder care called "families". I understand it was practiced in some parts of the world back in the 20th century"

Elder care is utterly consuming and exhausting. Been there, done that. It is not a one person job, but monitoring tech can help monitor other caregivers (I used cams for this) as well as the oldster in question. The extreme demands of elder care can exhaust even fit, dedicated, informed, and intelligent caregiving relatives.

Modern medical technology ensures years of madness, incontinence, and incontinent madness await most of us. We WILL be a burden on all who care for us (even love doesn't make it not a burden), and should know that long before we turn to shit. There is no heroism in merely living as long as possible, just giving in to fear. Hunter Thompson and Ernest Hemingway were wise to check out before what made them men was taken from them.

Warren Zevon chose differently, and left us this to think about:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qV6E0KYiMmM [youtube.com]

Re:great (1)

uvajed_ekil (914487) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099506)

Apparently, here in the brave new world of the 21st century, every relative has to work in order to pay off the credit cards and cell phone bill, so there's insufficient personnel to staff these "families".

Well, for a lot of us working is not about credit cards and cell phone bills. Some people lost their "good" jobs when the housing industry and the economy tanked, and are forced to work two really crappy ones (those of us that can even get them), just to make ends meet and not lose our modest homes. (And, for the record, giving up my home is not an option, as my mortgage payment is less than what I'd pay for a halfway decent apartment) I'd love to take care of my mom all day, but if I did, I'd have to move into her tiny house (because I'd lose my house, which she can't get around in because of all the stairs), and YOU'D be paying for me to eat and go to the doctor, because I would have no income. Now, if we had universal healthcare, reasonably priced education (I'll probably be paying for college forever), and any ability to recover after losing jobs and our credit ratings getting screwed (which, ironically, hurts when looking for a good job, which would allow us to fix things), then our families might have the ability to care for our elderly again.

Oh yeah, and if veeryone didn't live for 30-40 years after retiring, and modern medicine didn't keep people hanging on by a thread when they have no business being alive, unlike back in the goold ole days you speak of, this would all be lot more likely. Times change, we don't all have 12 kids, sit around the fire after dinner, reading our one book by the light of the candle we made, and die of disease by age 45. Families have changed, too.

Re:great (2, Interesting)

phantomlord (38815) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099716)

I'd love to take care of my mom all day, but if I did, I'd have to move into her tiny house (because I'd lose my house, which she can't get around in because of all the stairs), and YOU'D be paying for me to eat and go to the doctor, because I would have no income. Now, if we had universal healthcare, reasonably priced education (I'll probably be paying for college forever), and any ability to recover after losing jobs and our credit ratings getting screwed (which, ironically, hurts when looking for a good job, which would allow us to fix things), then our families might have the ability to care for our elderly again.

I DO take care of a disabled parent and have for 12 years, almost entirely by myself. I've been in the position of being unemployed for the last 4 years - you think it's hard getting a job right now, try getting a job that allows you to take a physically disabled parent to work with you since working is pointless unless you can make more, after taxes, than it costs to send the parent to adult daycare ($60+ per day (meaning you need to make at least $90, or about $12/hr just to break even or $20/hr to earn minimum wage after expenses)) or a home health aide ($24/hr through the agency that came for my dad when he first came home, which is even more expensive than the daycare option). I live with him in the same house I grew up in - his bedroom and the bathroom are on the first floor. We get by on his modest retirement income of about $25k per year, and yeah, that included paying a mortgage for 11 of the last 12 years (we paid off the house last year). His medical bills have become rather substantial since he's developed diabetes and various other complications after his brain aneurysm/stroke that rendered him immobile on his left side, and thus, largely non-ambulatory... but we get by.

As for me, I dropped my private health insurance 5 years ago. After 6 years, my premiums had gone from $200/month to nearly $500/month, largely because of new mandates required by the state insurance board. The likelihood of me needing expensive care at the age of 28 is pretty slim, not worth $6000 annually to me (and that wasn't the cadillac plan, I had high co-pays and whatnot). I'd love to buy catastrophic coverage, but my state won't let me and the federal government won't let me buy across state lines. Over the past 5 years, I've saved somewhere between $35-40k on premiums while my medical expenses amounted to $115, $515 or so if you want to include my glasses and contacts. I qualify for most of the welfare slate, including medical, but I refuse to take it because I believe that, on principle, it is theft for me to do so. I put up with some minor issues like tendonitis in my elbow and bone spurs in my feet, choosing to treat myself rather than go for surgery since it isn't necessary at this point (and I will pay for it when it is) and, in the case of my heels, because I can't be off my feet for weeks to heal post-surgery.

Most of his family shares the modern day American value of "me, me, me" and they do nothing to help. The vast majority of his family doesn't even call to check to see how he's doing. Why should they put themselves out in any manner to help a family member? While pretty shitty of them, it isn't their responsibility to care for him. Likewise, it is even less the responsibility of you or some other slashdotter, since you aren't even related to him. The government sees absolutely no value in him - he'll be a net loss for the rest of his life, thus, if they were in control, they have every reason to let him die early to save money. That goes likewise for the insurance companies if he wasn't on Medicare (hey, unlike me, he paid a lifetime of premiums). His family may like the idea of the someone taking care of him, so they don't have to feel guilty for not doing it, but that doesn't make government the moral choice. Too many people say "hey, I paid my taxes, so why should I have to give to charity on top of that?," which is the danger of government "promising" to take care of you through forced taxation of others.

Ultimately, it is nobody's responsibility to take care of him, including the government's (especially since the government has numerous incentives to make sure he isn't well taken care of.) While everyone else has failed him by showing they see little to no value in him, I DO find value in him, so I've chosen to make innumerable sacrifices to take care of him (abandoned my college education, never started a career, have no social life, those three combined mean I'll probably never have a family of my own, etc - I was 21 and he was 40 when it all happened). Nobody owes me anything for those sacrifices either... and the last thing I want, is some backhanded subsidy given to me by the government to assuage anyone else's guilt for making a choice contrary to my own.

In short, I've made my decisions and the responsibility of those decisions belong to me and me alone. Nobody owes me health care, money or anything else. If they want to help, they should help directly - watch my dad for a few hours so I can go out, throw in some cash for his medical bills, etc. Let it be their charity, their choice, because they feel him (and I) deserve it. I find it absolutely disgusting that they would expect EVERYONE ELSE to be forced to do their "charity" for them via government, so they don't have to bear any burden directly, while simultaneously telling themselves they don't deserve any guilt for watching a family member struggle because "they already gave at the office".

Back on topic, I've been looking for a cheap way to monitor him when I am away for an hour or two (he's mentally there, just physically incapable of getting around - bathroom, food, getting off the floor, etc - which is also why I need to be able to take him to work or come home on a moment's notice) beyond the simple "give him a phone so he can call my cell" method. I didn't dig deep, but most of these didn't have any prices listed. One that did, mentioned $3/day which amounts to about $1100/year, which, for someone on a limited income, is still pretty expensive. That leaves a webcam as my best option even though it isn't complete by any means (I have unlimited data on my cell phone for $8/month through my sister's employee account, which is a tenth of the cost of the solution here and provides more diverse uses).

Re:great (3, Funny)

davester666 (731373) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098272)

I for one have NO desire to know what 'movements' my parents have, nor when they may have them, nor which type of movement it is.

Re:great (2, Informative)

brasselv (1471265) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098290)

luddism [wikipedia.org] anyone?
just because a technology is available, it does not automatically make us more evil.

Along those same lines, you could argue that phone is inherently bad - as it is no substitute for comanionship. (phone is not bad: it is just an additional useful tool, to be used wisely)

Re:great (1)

FuckingNickName (1362625) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098324)

just because a technology is available, it does not automatically make us more evil.

Just because air is available, it doesn't automatically make us more alive. But it's in our nature to breathe, so it's gonna happen.

These sorts of "enabling" technologies are routinely abused by social services in England because it is in the nature of this government to take as much as possible and give as little as possible, where the "giving" is by mutual back-scratching with private vendors of unnecessary crap.

Re:great (1)

toadlife (301863) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099050)

Curious that you think the NHS (or any other public health system) would abuse this more than a private health insurance company would.

Re:great (1)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099414)

And just what exactly does the government have to give? Have you looked at the budgets lately? You speak as if "the government" is some sort of magical entity that has unlimited resources that appear out of thin air. Or are you volunteering to have your taxes raised? Again?

Re:great (1)

Beardo the Bearded (321478) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098946)

I wrote the code for the Project LIfesaver [projectlifesaver.org] transmitters. They help people who have wandered away from care. THe average response time is within 30 minutes. (The alternative is to be found later, usually after dying of exposure.)

It has saved thousands of lives.

Re:great (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33099574)

Yet.

I'm a programmer, you insensitive clod!

GeriatricVille (2, Funny)

shaunbr (563633) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098144)

Great, I can just see the Facebook updates now:

"My grandma just had a heart attack and fell in the bathroom in GeriatricVille. Can you help me out?"

Re:GeriatricVille (4, Funny)

nacturation (646836) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098260)

Actually I think PharmVille would be more appropriate to ensure they're taking their meds.

More likely v2.0 (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33098158)

Instead of new technology to prevent mom and dad from assisted-living, you just move back home and do it yourself. Will be cheaper in the long run. And despite many an annoyance you can get real close real fast. And you are only paying back for the times they had to wipe your ass, etc.

Re:More likely v2.0 (1)

mangu (126918) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098360)

Instead of new technology to prevent mom and dad from assisted-living, you just move back home and do it yourself

In case you don't know, there are people who have to work for a living and can't stay home all day taking care of their parents.

Re:More likely v2.0 (2, Insightful)

BiggerIsBetter (682164) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098550)

In case you don't know, there are people who have to work for a living and can't stay home all day taking care of their parents.

Also, in case you don't know, there are people who have to work for a living and can't stay home all day taking care of their children.

It's all about priorities. Not judging, just saying.

Re:More likely v2.0 (1)

toadlife (301863) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099130)

What you say it true, but you are judging. Have you ever taken care and overweight, barely mobile, extremely demented 78 year old grandmother who regularly shits herself and screams obscenities at you when you try to clean it up for her?

That's what my wife did, while attending graduate school and taking care of our three children. And when the stress got so bad that she came down with pneumonia and was in bed for a week, I got to take a nice, unplanned vacation and have a go at myself. And yes, we did end up getting a modicum of assistance from the state (IIRC, about ~$500 a month), though it didn't come close to paying the actual costs.

Also a big difference (1)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099288)

Is what there is to look forward to. Kids, unless severely disabled, only get better. As they age they get more independent and generally pretty fast. Once they are in school, a large part of the day is taken care of. Get some good after school activities, and you can take care of the rest (and said activities are often very fun and educational). That sort of thing can be pretty cheap, since a few adults can run a large group of children. By the time they are getting to the pre-teenage years, they are usually fine leave alone for a couple hours, as needed. Then of course, they are only a few years from leaving home to go to university or get a job. Their independence increases.

Not with an elderly person. It only gets worse as time goes on. However bad they are now, they are going to be at least that bad if not worse in a few months, until they die. There's nothing to look forward to, they won't get better.

There's also the problem of cooperation. Kids are usually fairly cooperative, especially if you take some time to learn effective parenting techniques. You can require them to assist in their own care in various ways (cleaning their room, doing some chores, etc) and can generally get them to do that. Not the case with an elderly person with dementia. They will fight, sometimes physically, yell, etc and not listen. You have no recourse because their mind is just losing connection with reality.

That's hard to deal with, in particular in a situation like the parent talks about where you have to care for kids too. After all, is it fair to the children to say "You cannot have the attention you want because grandma is too busy being crazy and demanding continual care"?

Re:More likely v2.0 (1)

PitaBred (632671) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099418)

Yes. I prioritize being able to afford decent housing for my children over spending all day with them sleeping in a cardboard box.

Re:More likely v2.0 (1)

jadavis (473492) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098436)

Considering that Social Security is a multi-trillion dollar program that exists mostly so that children can avoid living with their aging parents, these devices seem like a small price to pay by comparison.

Re:More likely v2.0 (1)

couchslug (175151) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099338)

"Instead of new technology to prevent mom and dad from assisted-living, you just move back home and do it yourself. Will be cheaper in the long run. And despite many an annoyance you can get real close real fast. And you are only paying back for the times they had to wipe your ass, etc."

It isn't annoyance, it's exhaustion. Let us know after you get to the stage where you help them through complete disability and death how "easier" and "cheaper" it was.

Global Parent System. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33098164)

Well as someone taking care of an Alzheimer parent I can see how all this will be beneficial. Being a caregiver is hard and we need all the help we can muster.

Nice... (1)

Dan East (318230) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098166)

"Grandpa, you'd better wipe really good because it sounds like you have the runs."

Re:Nice... (1)

couchslug (175151) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099348)

""Grandpa, you'd better wipe really good because it sounds like you have the runs."

Grandpa will likely get to where YOU do the wiping. One gets used to it...

In the movies... (3, Funny)

Anne_Nonymous (313852) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098170)

A octogenarian 007 would probably deal with this by attaching the device to a friendly dog, and going about his geriatric super-spy business.

Re:In the movies... (1)

martin-boundary (547041) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098204)

Or maybe a freak nuclear accident would turn all the people over 60 into zombies, which could be tracked as green beeping/moving points on the hero's GPS handheld device while he escapes through the sewer tunnels.

Re:In the movies... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33098670)

"I've never noticed this before, but Grandpa sure enjoys spending quality time around fire hydrants!"

Skynet (1)

Reginald2 (1859758) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098190)

There is absolutely nothing super creepy about this.

Honestly though, I don't know if the British have nursing homes better than us. Creepy as it is it may be a little better than what we've got.

Bathroom Activity Monitoring Based on Sound (3, Insightful)

Nick Fel (1320709) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098200)

Along these lines, I found a great research paper abandoned at the printer a few weeks back: http://www.yaroslavvb.com/papers/chen-bathroom.pdf [yaroslavvb.com]

Re:Bathroom Activity Monitoring Based on Sound (0, Offtopic)

DevConcepts (1194347) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098336)

I didn't write this but it is fitting....
~~~~~~~~~~~~
All in all, it hadn't been a good day. Bad traffic, a malfunctioning computer, incompetent coworkers and a sore back all made me a seething cauldron of rage. But more importantly for this story, it had been over forty-eight hours since I'd last taken a dump.

I'd tried to jumpstart the process, beginning my day with a bowl of bowel-cleansing fiber cereal, following it with six cups of coffee at work, and adding a bean-laden lunch at Taco Bell.

As I was returning home from work, my insides let me know with subtle rumbles and the emission of the occasional tiny fart that Big Things would be happening soon. Alas, I had to stop at the mall to pick up an order. I completed this task, and as I was walking past the stores on my way back to the car, I noticed a large sale sign proclaiming, "Everything Must Go!" This was prophetic, for my colon informed me with a sudden violent cramp and a wet, squeaky fart that everything was indeed about to go. I hurried to the mall bathroom. I surveyed the five stalls, which I have numbered 0 through 4 (I write a lot of software) for your convenience:

0.Occupied

1.Clean, but Bathroom Protocol forbids its use, as it's next to the occupied one.

2.Poo on seat.

3.Poo and toilet paper in bowl, unidentifiable liquid splattered on seat.

4.No toilet paper, no stall door, unidentifiable sticky object near base of toilet.

Clearly, it had to be Stall #1. I trudged back, entered, dropped trou and sat down. I'm normally a fairly Shameful Shitter. I wasn't happy about being next to the occupied stall, but Big Things were afoot.

I was just getting ready to bear down when all of a sudden the sweet sounds of Beethoven came from next door, followed by a fumbling, and then the sound of a voice answering the ringing phone. As usual for a cell phone conversation, the voice was exactly 8 dB louder than it needed to be. Out of Shameful habit, my sphincter slammed shut. The inane conversation went on and on. Mr. Shitter was blathering to Mrs. Shitter about the shitty day he had. I sat there, cramping and miserable, waiting for him to finish. As the loud conversation dragged on, I became angrier and angrier, thinking that I, too, had a crappy day, but I was too polite to yak about in public. My bowels let me know in no uncertain terms that if I didn't get crapping soon, my day would be getting even crappier.

Finally my anger reached a point that overcame Shamefulness. I no longer cared. I gripped the toilet paper holder in one hand, braced my other hand against the side of the stall, and pushed with all my might. I was rewarded with a fart of colossal magnitude -- a cross between the sound of someone ripping a very wet bed sheet in half and of plywood being torn off a wall. The sound gradually transitioned into a heavily modulated low-RPM tone, not unlike someone firing up a Harley. I managed to hit resonance frequency of the stall, and it shook gently.

-

Once my ass cheeks stopped flapping in the breeze, three things became apparent:
(1) The next-door conversation had ceased;

(2) my colon's continued seizing indicated that there was more to come; and

(3) the bathroom was now beset by a horrible, eldritch stench.

It was as if a gateway to Hell had been opened. The foul miasma quickly made its way under the stall and began choking my poop-mate.This initial "herald" fart had ended his conversation in mid-sentence.

"Oh my God," I heard him utter, following it with the suppressed sounds of choking, and then, "No, baby, that wasn't me (cough, gag), you could hear that (gag)??"

Next door I could hear fumbling with the paper dispenser as he desperately tried to finish his task. Little snatches of conversation made themselves heard over my anal symphony: "Gotta go... horrible...throw up... in my mouth.... not... make it... tell the kids... love them... oh God..." followed by more sounds of suppressed gagging and retching.

-

Alas, it is evidently difficulty to hold one's phone and wipe one's bum at the same time. Just as my high-pressure abuse of the toilet was winding down, I heard a plop and splash from next door, followed by a string of swear words and gags. My poop-mate had dropped his phone into the toilet.

After a considerable amount of paperwork, I got up and surveyed the damage. I felt bad for the janitor who'd be forced to deal with this, but I knew that flushing was not an option. No toilet in the world could handle that unholy mess. Flushing would only lead to a floor flooded with filth.

As I left, I glanced to the next-door stall. Nothing remained in the bowl. Had he flushed his phone, or had he plucked it out and left the bathroom with nasty unwashed hands? The world will never know.

I exited the bathroom, momentarily proud and Shameless, looking around for a face glaring at me. But I saw no one. I suspect that somehow my supernatural elimination has manged to transfer my Shamefulness to my anonymous poop-mate. I think it'll be a long time before he can bring himself to poop in public -- and I doubt he'll ever again answer his cell phone in the loo. And this, my friends, is why you should never talk on your phone in the bathroom.

Re:Bathroom Activity Monitoring Based on Sound (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33098410)

Unknown subject: *Pffffffffffffffbbbbbbbbbbtttttttttttt*

[Computer whirs briefly and then identifies unknown subject as grandma via sound recognition]

Bathroom monitor 9000: Good evening, Mrs. Smith. It sounds like someone had beans for dinner.

Has anyone ever done an analysis.... (1)

mark-t (151149) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098202)

... into what caused that particular line from the old commercial to become so infamous?

It actually was a very serious commercial, but nobody I knew at the time took it very seriously. In fact, that rather famous line was not infrequently mocked by people, quoted satirically, or parodied. I do not think this was done out of disrespect for the elderly, however.

So what was it that made that line become what today we would call a "meme"?

I wonder if KYM could do a meme show on something from that far back.... could be interesting.

Re:Has anyone ever done an analysis.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33098240)

In all likelihood the horrible quality of delivery of that line in the commercial. There is similar mocking of Alfred Brimly's diabetes ads, several of the burial coverage life insurance ads and Billy Mays' infomercials. This one probably is a bit better known just from over saturation and that the acting quality was just that bad. It is kind of the same phenomenon as when a movie is so bad that it is good.

Re:Has anyone ever done an analysis.... (1)

GringoChapin (1663533) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098448)

Wonder if this classic from Slant 6 and the Jumpstarts, which was played on the Dr. Demento show several times had something to do with it:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bPfH-umG_ms [youtube.com]

Re:Has anyone ever done an analysis.... (1)

Ol Biscuitbarrel (1859702) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098860)

I'm pretty sure it was used on MST3K - one of those movies with Gamera the flying turtle, perhaps. I'd sometimes snicker at some goofy line in a commercial and then see it promptly wind up on a Best Brains production - for instance, those awful infomercials with a near-to-breakdown Sally Struthers tearfully asking "Would you like to make more money? Sure, we all would!" It was also always a treat for them to quote lines I hadn't heard in 25 years, like "This is John Cameron Swayze for Timex!" Dunno how influential MST3k was in this regard when they were just fabricating the Internetz Tubez.

Re:Has anyone ever done an analysis.... (1)

maxume (22995) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099132)

I don't think you need to do any deep analysis, it was hilariously over-dramatic.

People like hilarity.

Re:Has anyone ever done an analysis.... (1)

R3d M3rcury (871886) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099236)

  1. The commercial is--perhaps unintentionally--humorous. The old person is a horrible actor. The spokesperson walks into the room and starts talking to the camera, giving it a somewhat Rod Serlingesque feel from "The Twilight Zone." Hey Buddy! Why don't you help the old lady before you start talking to us!? (Newer versions of the commercial use a different approach)
  2. It's something we laugh about because the young don't like to face the eventuality that they will ever need such a thing.

I'm sure it's a combination of the two.

Well that's easy to remember! (1, Funny)

Vahokif (1292866) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098210)

0118 999 881 999 919 725

3

Re:Well that's easy to remember! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33098426)

Actually, I think you may have forgotten it. It's 0118 999 881 999 119 725 3

You reap what you sow (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33098216)

You reap what you sow. It was these old peoples generation that though big government could do no wrong as long as it was waving the damn flag around fast enough. So now the shoe is on the other foot. Wait tell they here that their children are too busy cleaning up their environmental messes to visit. You want grand-kids?! Well that would be so much easier if we didn't have to work two and a half jobs just to make ends meet. Fuck boomers, they want some respect they can earn it, getting old living on easy street doesn't count.

This is a bug, not a feature (4, Interesting)

turing_m (1030530) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098354)

If I had alzheimers to the point where I was wandering off into the woods somewhere, unable to get home, I don't think I'd like to be "rescued" with a GPS device. My own grandfather (alzheimers) tried to commit suicide at least once by sitting in his car in his garage with the engine turned on. He was found and "rescued". He lived to a somewhat older age, with all the dignity of a crazy old man, not knowing who most of his relatives were, shitting his pants, etc. I hope my relatives don't keep me around against my will as a still technically living reminder of the person I once was.

As the usual proportion of baby boomers start to become demented, I hope we will see some more realism about what dementia is. There will be a lot of demented people and the associated problems will become commonly experienced. Car accidents for one. It's not going to be pretty.

Re:This is a bug, not a feature (1)

Nyder (754090) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098634)

If I had alzheimers to the point where I was wandering off into the woods somewhere, unable to get home, I don't think I'd like to be "rescued" with a GPS device. My own grandfather (alzheimers) tried to commit suicide at least once by sitting in his car in his garage with the engine turned on. He was found and "rescued". He lived to a somewhat older age, with all the dignity of a crazy old man, not knowing who most of his relatives were, shitting his pants, etc. I hope my relatives don't keep me around against my will as a still technically living reminder of the person I once was.

As the usual proportion of baby boomers start to become demented, I hope we will see some more realism about what dementia is. There will be a lot of demented people and the associated problems will become commonly experienced. Car accidents for one. It's not going to be pretty.

As long as it's on youtube, i'm cool with it.

Anyways, it's karma for those same baby boomers dropping the ball in the 80's, when they decided to become yuppies and leave their hippy ideas behind.

Re:This is a bug, not a feature (1)

westlake (615356) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098750)

If I had alzheimers to the point where I was wandering off into the woods somewhere, unable to get home, I don't think I'd like to be "rescued" with a GPS device.

What makes you think you would remember that you had Alzheimer's Disease?

It is arrogant and irresponsible to project your own motives and emotions into the mind of someone with a senile dementia.

My own grandfather (alzheimers) tried to commit suicide at least once by sitting in his car in his garage with the engine turned on

How can you be so certain that he was trying to commit suicide - rather than simply unable to do more than start the engine?

Unable even to remember that he had started the engine?

Re:This is a bug, not a feature (1)

toadlife (301863) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099146)

Have you ever taken care of someone who is severely demented?

Re:This is a bug, not a feature (1)

R3d M3rcury (871886) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099316)

I have and I agree with the GP.

I'd also add "not sure what that noise is."

It's amazing what this sort of thing does to the thought processes. My Dad passed away last year. Whenever I'd call home, I'd ask my Mom, "How's Dad doing?" "Oh, he has his good days and his bad days." To me, a "Good Day" was he was perfectly normal and a "Bad Day" was that he had problems remembering things. The reality was that a "Good Day" was that he remembered where the bathroom was and how to use the toilet before he shit himself.

Suicide? He was hardly able to contemplate eating. Forget such a complex emotion as ending ones own life.

Re:This is a bug, not a feature (3, Interesting)

couchslug (175151) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099362)

"It is arrogant and irresponsible to project your own motives and emotions into the mind of someone with a senile dementia."

Senile dementia is so mentally destructive that interfering with an apparent suicide attempt is extremely cruel. I watched both my parents eventually succumb, and if I'd walked in on either doing "suicide by car" I'd have walked out and shut the door. THAT would have been kindness.

May everyone who wants to prolong the life of the demented, become demented themselves. It takes a while, so you can know the bitter frustration of losing your faculties bit by bit by bit...

Re:This is a bug, not a feature (1)

rbphilip (530254) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098784)

I can't help but agree. It's our minds that make us human and if mine were going I'd want to have the opportunity to neatly kill myself.

Coming soon to a job or government near you! (2, Interesting)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098372)

The first three groups of people in any society who always give up their rights before anyone else:
  1. Children and the elderly, because they cannot speak for themselves;
  2. Prisoners, because they have forfeited their rights by harming the rest of us; and
  3. Military, because they voluntarily relinquish their rights in order to serve the rest of us.

You're kidding yourself if you think wearing one of these won't be mandatory to qualify for a life insurance policy in 10 years. Without life insurance, you can't get a job, without a job, you can't get a citizen number, without a citizen number, you can't buy food from state-owned stores (because food distribution is too important to be left in the hands of crazed free market advocates). Fill in the blanks with snippets from the dystopian sci-fi writer of your choice.

Re:Coming soon to a job or government near you! (4, Interesting)

Jedi Alec (258881) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098552)

Let me take a wild guess, you're sufficiently afraid of the medical establishment to have avoided contact with them for an extended amount of time?

Because that is one serious case of paranoia you got going on there...

Re:Coming soon to a job or government near you! (1)

couchslug (175151) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099378)

"Because that is one serious case of paranoia you got going on there..."

That's not a display of paranoia, it's a display of delectation at being among the enlightened. Fapping to dystopia has always been delicious.

Re:Coming soon to a job or government near you! (1)

Failed Physicist (1411173) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099402)

Actually, sounds like a serious case of education to me. Sounds like there's some sociology, economics, and political science in there. There's even a preexisting condition of history; some nasty shit.
Got bit by that bug a while ago, never got back on my feet. Seems like the aches are even worse lately.
Can't you tell in your bones when a storm is coming?

Re:Coming soon to a job or government near you! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33099604)

You guys are so much like religious doomsday cultists. Decade after decade passes without the event ever happening, and yet you still insist that it's happening right now.

Viagra problems now: (1)

Tablizer (95088) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098384)

"Help, I've got up and I can't come down!"

Re:Viagra problems now: (1)

game kid (805301) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099060)

"We're sending nude pictures of your wife immediately, Mr. Fletcher."

Helicopter children (3, Funny)

basketcase (114777) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098392)

So, some day the children of helicopter parents will get their revenge.
Assuming some of them at some point learn how to live.

Gee what happened to grandma living with her kids? (2, Insightful)

stevegee58 (1179505) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098420)

What a lonely thing it's become to grow old in our society.

Re:Gee what happened to grandma living with her ki (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33098604)

Went out the window when the kids were kicked out of the house at 18...

Re:Gee what happened to grandma living with her ki (1)

Revenger75 (1246176) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098774)

Won't somebody please think of the children?

GeriatricVille? (1)

countertrolling (1585477) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098428)

You're thinking of Jimmy Buffet...

Yes, but is mom going to be ok with it? (3, Insightful)

NotSoHeavyD3 (1400425) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098434)

I had an instance of this when I was taking care of mom in her last few months. (With ALS for what it's worth) I basically got a baby monitor and was going to set it up in her room so I could hear if she needed my help. Lets just say she wasn't particularly happy with the idea that I was using a product for infants to help her. (Especially because it was for infants. She really didn't like it because of that fact.) I did manage to find an easier to use walkie talkie with a simple button that you could push to ring me. She was ok with that. (I'm thinking she'd be pissed if I had a device that could keep complete track of her) Just saying, the psychology of it needs to be considered.

Re:Yes, but is mom going to be ok with it? (3, Interesting)

Penguinshit (591885) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098654)

I have ALS and requested the baby monitor system. I also use various IM clients on my optical tracking computer system to communicate with friends and family. The IM has saved my life more than once when the in-home monitor failed for whatever reason. I am on a ventilator so communication failures can turn lethal quickly.

Not everyone is practical (2, Insightful)

Sycraft-fu (314770) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099332)

People get things stuck in their heads like "I won't use a baby monitor because I'm not a baby," and won't budge on it, regardless of practical considerations. Goes double for people who's minds are going anyhow. It is a continual problem with regards to getting people to take medication for mental conditions. Their logic goes along the lines of "Only sick people take medicine, I don't want to be sick so I won't take any medicine." Then they slip back in to whatever their particular form of crazy is, of course.

Many people just lack the ability to be practical about some things. This gets even more problematic when it comes to things that deal with a loss of independence. That is something that many elderly people fear above all else. They do not want to feel like they are no longer independent. Doesn't matter how true it is, doesn't matter how manifestly clear it is, humans are great at denying things.

So I'm glad you are a practical person, who can and will use whatever technology you can get to make your life better, and to keep yourself safe. Unfortunately, not everyone is the same way.

Da Mothafukkas (0, Troll)

oldhack (1037484) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098474)

just wouldn't get off ma ... Ug! MY BACK!!!!!!1!!

Technology can solve many problems (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33098492)

There's even technology available to help your aging parent get exercise.

http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0108598/

Micro Jet Pack (2, Funny)

Simonetta (207550) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098586)

Hey all you jet pack affectionados!

How about making a micro miniature jet pack about the size of 20 oz beer can! Grandma can wear it on her shoulders. When she falls down, she just reaches over, pops the mini jet pack off her shoulder strap, point it at the ground, press the button, and hold on tight!

WHooosh! Upsee daisy again! No calls, no worries, no lying on the floor for days in your own mess. Just a convenient reload after each fall.

So how about it, guys? Let's do something for grand-ma! And maybe she'll let you sample some of her medicinal marijuana. Sure leaves all that trash dorm weed in the dirt!

Re:Micro Jet Pack (1)

91degrees (207121) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099740)

Oh, screw that. My gran's getting a full suit of mech-armour.

Expensive babysitting (1)

funkyjunkman (721687) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098606)

Did anyone note the monthly price on these gimmicks? It seems to me that this is just another fancy set of toys to extract the last remaining dollars from the elderly.

I can only speak for myself: (1)

kheldan (1460303) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098904)

I'm glad that I have no plans to live so long as to be a burden on anyone. Personally, I would feel like I was being treated like a felon under house arrest, being made to wear such a thing.

High cost $8,000 install , $75 /M (3, Interesting)

Joe The Dragon (967727) | more than 4 years ago | (#33098908)

High cost $8,000 install , $75 /M.

The creeping horror (4, Funny)

deadhammer (576762) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099212)

"Okay, so grandma's in the bedroom, but why is her breathing and heart rate up so much? Her body temperature's too high, it's almost like there's a second reading there... And why's the accelerometer going off rhythmically once or twice a secoOHGOD!!!!!"

My grandpa (1)

Reginald2 (1859758) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099278)

He died at a ripe old age, but after years of Alzheimer's which was most clearly evidenced as wild-assed paranoia. I somehow think strangers knowing where he was in his own house would have been a little much for him.

He was always convinced of secret conspiracies. I guess he was from that generation. I don't think I would have had the heart to make his nightmares come true. Hell, I'm reasonably rational and this would wig me out.

Huge market (1)

Dzimas (547818) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099302)

There's a huge market for non-intrusive devices that allow seniors to call for help when needed. It doesn't have to be fancy - a simple (and small) GSM phone that's configured to get help would be wonderful. However, the difficulty will be convincing people who have been extremely active throughout their lives that it's a good idea. My mother is a case in point. She's a very active senior who walked out to her car on very cold winter's evening and slipped on a sheet of ice on the sloping driveway. She hurt herself badly, couldn't get up and had no means to call for help. It took her the better part of half an hour to crawl into the front door where a neighbour spotted her and called an ambulance. A phone in her pocket could have saved the day, but she's from a generation who considers mobile phones optional - she only takes it with her when she's traveling and keeps it turned off to "preserve the battery."

Re:Huge market (1)

Dzimas (547818) | more than 4 years ago | (#33099308)

Just did a bit of googling and found the Jitterbug phone, which offers "familiar" features like a dial tone and operator assisted calling along with 15 quick dial numbers. It seems to be only in the US, though.

Great idea (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#33099608)

I have ALS and I think it's a great idea, the number of times I

I

what was I talking about again?

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?