I’ve written previously about the negative effects of technology on our lives – but there is good in there, too.
This was highlighted by the ‘Tech4Good’ awards for which Anna Bawden was a judge and about which she wrote recently in theguardian.com.
Amongst these are apps helping people to:
- communicate and navigate – taking account of particular impairments such as deafness, blindness and partial sight
- call emergency services if in distress or danger and unable to speak – particularly useful in instances of breathing difficulties, allergies or domestic abuse
- manage neurological and physical physiotherapy
- identify and express feelings
- support mental health recovery
Some of these are helping to save lives and in my own work around suicide prevention I regularly promote the #StayAlive app developed by Grassroots which has, itself, helped save lives and also won awards.
It’s free to download from Google Play and the Apple App Store:
“… a pocket suicide prevention resource for the UK, packed full of useful information and tools to help you stay safe in crisis.
You can use it if you are having thoughts of suicide or if you are concerned about someone else who may be considering suicide.”
But there’s a health warning, too – a recent article at BBCearth warns of the potential effects of LED and blue light – reminding us that using apps to monitor our thoughts and feelings, say, just before bedtime might disrupt our body clocks and sleep patterns.
So it’s worth bearing this in mind and maybe resorting to good old-fashioned pen and paper by the bedside for those late night/last-minute notes – which we can transfer to electronic form the following day.
I find this useful, too, for when I wake up in the night with a great idea or remembering something I have previously forgotten – I can scribble it down (usually with the aid of a very dimmed light) so I don’t forget it it – and then turn over and go back to sleep…