Apps

Why can't I change the font in Facebook?

Shane from Defiance, OH

Episode 1166

Shane is frustrated because he can't change the font on Facebook in his phone. Leo says that's facebook. An app doesn't have to honor the accessibility settings of the phone and Facebook has forgotten that a large segment of the population needs a larger font. But fortunately, the accessibility settings allows you to screen magnify. Facebook also has an alternative app called Paper that may have better settings.

Is there a home automation app for paralyzed people?

Paul from Daytona Beach, FL

Episode 1164

Paul has a friend who is paralyzed with ALS and has to use an eyetracker to do things. Is there anything that can be used in Windows to do every day tasks? Leo says that the chatroom recommends Insteon, it has an Home Automation Windows Phone app. But Leo recommends looking into a local non profit for adaptive living. They would be more adept at what's the current state of the art. Pluem. Home Seer.

If you'd like to help there's a GoFundMe page ... check out HelpAnnette.com.

What's the best app for tasks and calendars?

Patrick from Santa Monica, CA

Episode 1159

Patrick needs to get a new smartphone for his e-commerce business. He uses email with Roundcube. Leo says that Roundcube is IMAP and it'll work with any mail account. Leo recommends having GMail go get his Roundcube mail and then use Google Calendar, Tasks, and other services with it. Leo says he should avoid Outlook. It's old and the UI is terrible. Google Apps is the best option across the board. It's very low cost and works everywhere.

For task apps, Leo recommends a few options:

Is there an app that helps me with snoring?

Ed from Valencia, CA

Episode 1157

Ed has a problem with snoring and wants to know if there's an app that can help him. Leo says if he has an Android phone, Sleep as Android will actually monitor his sleep patterns and record his snoring. This can help him discover whether or not he's snoring. There's also a grid that will show him how much he is snoring and when. It'll even record him talking in his sleep.

Dick DeBartolo, The Giz Wiz

Episode 1153

Dick DeBartolo

Dickie D is back with the Pet Cube. It's a device that allows you to play with your dog over the Internet. It allows owners to watch, talk, and play with their pet from their smartphone thanks to a built in wide-angle (138º) camera along with real time HD video. You can also talk to your pet as the camera has a built-in microphone and speaker. And you can control a laser pointer so you can move it around via remote and play with them through the Petcube mobile app on your smartphone. It's available for Android and iOS. You can also take pictures with it. $199.00.

Do I need to be concerned about privacy when using apps?

Episode 1153

Paul from Houston, TX
Encryption

KNFB Reader reads printed text, but it uses a server-based back end and Paul is concerned about privacy. Leo says that end-to-end encryption fixes that, but the recipient needs to have the encryption as well, making it very inconvenient. But they could work it into the back end on any app. What we do in general is in public though, and there are benefits to that.

"Be My Eyes" is a service that connects blind people with volunteers who can help

Episode 1153

Julian from Los Angeles, CA
Walking stick

Julian says that there's a new service called Be My Eyes, which pairs blind people with volunteers who can literally be their eyes. Sighted people can respond to blind people using the smartphone app, and so far, there's over 30,000 volunteers -- 100 times as many blind people who are using it. Leo says that's extremely cool. And it's free, which is amazing.

Caller Paul says that KNFB Reader reads printed text. It's written by Ray Kurzweil.