A new kind of technology studio, with a focus on iOS App Development for older folks, by older folks
One of our original aims here at a A&L was to share information, ideas, and inspiration with adult children and their aging parents. After all, my Mom and I are stumbling our way through getting older, why not share what we are learning?
But, we also had another original goal: to provide helpful tools to folks and their aging parents. At first, we didn’t really know what direction that would take. Maybe we could help people get their finances in order? This is a critically important process my Mom and I are going through right now, so that sounded great. We started our “How to Invest…” article series and created a 4-Week Emergency Fund Challenge support tool. These are both great and very valuable, but we had to ask ourselves: What comes next?
As many of you know, my Mom was just here visiting, so we had time to muse on this, and other, questions. Do we keep focusing on informative articles? Do we shift to more personal, experience-driven narratives? But what about our second goal, to develop useful tools? After many cups of tea and numerous vegan chocolate chip cookies (we are serious enough about our health to eat more plant-based, but not so serious that we would forego chocolate chip cookies…), here’s what we’ve settled on:
We will officially be developing mobile-based tools for caregivers and/or seniors, namely Apple iOS applications for iPhones and iPads (and possibly Apple Watches and Apple TV). Think of it as the super nerdy wing of A&L. Why make apps?, you ask.
- First and most obviously, they can be extremely useful and/or really fun! If you are reading this, you’ve probably used at least 3 awesome apps just today.
- Second, we would like to see the number and variety of apps designed for older folks increase. A quick cruise around Apple’s App Store and you’ll quickly see the whiz-bling-bang of marketing to young people, and that’s fine. But, I’d like to see more “calm technology” principals applied to more apps, and more apps in general created with older folks in mind.
- Finally, we having something to prove. We have noticed (as have others) that the tech field is skewed toward younger (and paler, and maler) participants. And note that this does not just apply to Baby Boomers (like my Mom), but Gen Xers (like me)! If you’re in your mid-30s or older, you’re “over the hill” in this field! This is crazy. Are older folks somehow unable to learn and create tech? Of course not (see especially Masako Wakamiya!), so we’re going to do it, right here at A&L.
And we’re going to take you along for the ride in a new segment we’re calling “Tech Thursday”!
Tech Thursday posts will be a behind-the-scenes look at learning iOS App Development as an “older person,” aka someone 40+. Because my Mom is just now adopting email, Skype, Google Docs, and similar tech, I’ll be the one mainly taking this iOS app learning journey. (But I am optimistic that once she feels comfortable, she may want to learn iOS App Dev, too!)
Full disclosure: Related to my day job, I have a passing familiarity with scripting, which is like writing out, in computer code, a sequence of tasks to be accomplished. I occasionally, years ago, did some scripting in Python, a common computer programming language, because it interfaced with the map making program I use. (I’m an archaeologist, so we naturally work with geospatial/map information all the time.)
The bottom line is that scripting sequences of tasks is far simpler and quite different from iOS App Dev, so I’ll be starting from near-scratch. This essentially means that if you have zero computer coding background, you would start where I am starting – the very beginning.
Regular Articles Will Continue
Don’t worry, our regular articles will continue. (We have to finish our “How to Invest…” series, don’t forget.) To make all this possible, my Mom and I will start to split things up a little. My Mom will take over writing the majority of our usual articles, which we typically post on Mondays. I will take responsibility for learning the bulk of the iOS development and writing the Tech Thursday posts.
–Good luck, we’re all gonna need it!
Feature Image Credit: Pexels