It’s Called A Press Event, Let’s Keep It That Way

The “Lying on the Beach” podcast is now on “Stitcher” and “Spotify.” “Tune In,” “Google,” and “Apple” are coming soon.

Photo by Eliot Hess

More and more journalists are talking about not attending certain press parties and conferences because the focus is no longer on them. The rooms are now filled with way too many “here today, gone tomorrow,” social media influencers. They are the ones getting “first class” accessibility to the new products and scoops. Watch out corporate America and event planners. If you keep treating editorial writers and broadcasters like second class citizens, you will find yourselves without high profile coverage. TV personality Steve Greenberg and PR Agent Lois Whitman-Hess discuss the dilemma.

Click here to listen.

Or ….

Apple Wants To Monitor Diabetes 

Just in case you didn’t catch the news, Apple 🍎 wants to turn the iPhone into a sensor that will “noninvasively and continuously monitor blood sugar levels to better treat diabetes.” 

I heard this report tonight on NBC TV News with Lester Holt. I  couldn’t believe my ears, so I googled it. Sure enough, there were a number of stories from different news outlets that said Apple was secretly working on a feature that can track glucose levels accurately without piercing the skin. It’s reportedly an optical sensor that shines a light through the skin to measure indications of glucose. 

This is great news for the 29 million Americans who have diabetes. Apple is not sure when the monitor will be available. It has been in development for five years and still needs more work. 




The Apple Is Ripe 

I wanted you to know about two big tech stories this week. 

It definitely looks like a spaceship has landed in Cupertino, CA. After many years of being under construction, Apple’s new headquarters is opening in April on 175-acres. Twelve thousand employees will eventually work there. CNET has the whole story. Click here

UPS Tests Drone Deliveries 

Many of us, over the years, have questioned the use of dones to deliver our packages from various retail sources. While it still may seem implausible, you have to watch this video which shows how UPS tested a residential delivery service this week on a farm just outside of Tampa, Florida. The part I found fascinating is how the roof opened on a UPS truck, a package got inserted in the drone and how it took off and returned to the vehicle that moved to a new location. Pretty fascinating. Check it out on Tech Crunch.

News Tips

Let me know if there is a mysterious van roaming the streets where you live. Folks in San Francisco and New York have spotted a van sporting all kinds of instruments a number of times.

Look for vans with mounted cameras and LiDAR sensors, remote-sensing technology involving lasers. If you see one, take a photo immediately and email it to me. I will offer it to the highest bidder among photo editors at newspapers and magazines around the nation.

The speculation from USA Today is that Apple is developing a self-driving car and/or a new type of search engine. Apple won’t comment on rumors.

GoPro Becomes A Channel On Roku Player

The wonderment of innovation. Not in my wildest dreams did I ever think GoPro would become a content provider to the likes of Roku.

I’m not sure if Roku approached GoPro or the other way around. All I know is that GoPro’s videos will now be seen by more than 10 million people thanks to Roku.

For more than a decade, GoPro has generated enough compelling content to launch its own channel on Virgin America, Xbox and LG. Now Roku wants in as well. This is a win-win for all because GoPro’s videos are true human interests stories.


6 plus 128 GB

IMG_0755.JPGThe center of the universe, Fifth Avenue at 59th St. NYC.

I bought the iPhone 6 plus, 128 GB, in slate gray. It wasn’t a tough choice for me because I lost my iPad two months ago and this is going to be the replacement. I am counting on the additional length to be just right for reading newspapers, magazines, and books.

I’m actually quite excited because I have been squinting for too long. I’m not going to get the new iPhone for a few weeks because we ordered it from our local Verizon store. Eliot woke up at 3am on Saturday morning to buy the unit for me but the Apple site was down even though they said that was when they would be open for business. He tried getting into the site for an hour and then was just too exhausted to stay up any little longer.

He ordered the iPhone 6 Plus later at lunchtime. Tonight we had dinner with our friends on Central Park South. In the walk back home, we stopped by the Apple store. People were already lined up waiting to be the first to own the new iPhones. Who are these people and why do they have the time to sit and wait?

11:00pm and the Apple store was packed. I needed a new cord so we ventured inside. It’s still a wonderment to me.






So that’s a wrap.

Apple Picking

The fashion industry is about to have a major impact on the tech industry. As pointed out by, the lifestyle and entertainment site, Apple has hired a number of high level executives in recent years to get the company ready for the next phase in their product lineup.

No one is sure what Apple’s next big move, is but check out the talent below for a clue.

Image Business of Finance

Paul Deneve
Former CEO of Yves Saint Laurent
Now works on special projects with Tim Cook, Apple CEO.
Hired July, 2013

Image Deep Apple

Enrique Atienza
Former CEO, Levi’s
Now Apple Director of Sales, West Coast
Hired April, 2013


Image HighSnobiety

Ben Shaffer
Former Innovation Kitchen Studio Designer at Nike
Now Apple Product Designer of Wearable Technology
Hired September, 2013

Image Business of Fashion

Angela Ahrendts
Former CEO Burberry
Now Apple Senior VP of Retail and Online
Hired October, 2013

Image 2 Ocean Vibe

Patrick Pruniaux
Former VP of Sales at Tag Heuer
Now Involvement with Apple iWatch
Hired: July, 2014

Image Titter

Musa Tariq
Former Director of Social Media at Nike
Now Apple Digital Marketing Director, Retail Chain.

Transparent Text Messaging


Photo by

Before anyone introduces transparent text messaging, I would like to see a study that says it’s safe, especially for those of us who are getting on in years. The idea of people crossing a street thinking that it’s okay to text at the same time because they can partially see what’s in front of them, is insane. If your two eyes are not focused on exactly what’s in front of you, then you’re a danger to both you and me.

I am not sure what Apple is thinking but industry sources recently revealed that the company filed a patent to introduce a transparent text message feature for either the iPhone 6 or a future update to iOS 7.

PC Advisor is one of a few publications that covered this new development. As far as they know, Apple will have a live feed feature of whatever the rear camera is focused on and captures. That supposedly should be enough so people can walk and text or even drive and text.

The transparency is viewed on your screen. You can see what’s in front of you on the screen behind the text so that it is almost like seeing through your mobile phone. You will be able to read and respond to your messages.

What a horrible thought. The entire concept, in my opinion, is irrational and impractical. You just can’t do both at once.

Apple’s Digital Playground


Every time I hear that a child under 10 years of age is going to visit us, I spend hours thinking about entertaining things to do. Years ago, we went to a playground, the Children’s Museum, a musical for kids, or a sporting event. Those days are completely over for me since I visited a few Apple stores recently.

Apple is becoming the new digital playground for children. It has reconfigured the layout of its stores to accommodate children from three to pre-teen, depending on the size of the store. Apple has designated work tables for different age groups. I got a tremendous amount of pleasure watching these kids totally absorbed in the programs they were working on, which only proves that if you give someone something that he or she is interested in, that person can stayed focused for a very long time. This has nothing to do with a high IQ or better education.

While some grandparents feel technology is killing the social structure for the younger set, I believe the opposite. Bring two people together with a common denominator and a love fest will develop on its own. I have had bonding conversations with people 40 years younger than I am because we both liked the same app.

Most of you do not realize that Apple has free workshops for children comprising hardware and software instruction, youth programs, and one-on-one coaching. Did you know about The Apple Camp for kids ages 8 to 12? It teaches the ins and outs of iMovie and how to make your own films. The free three-day session, held at the Apple Store, leads up to an Apple Camp Film Festival where campers debut their masterpieces. I wish I were young again.

Apple also launched a Kids App Store. It’s not a separate mobile application. It’s a brand new section within the Apple App Store itself featuring a “Kids” category where apps are broken down by age range.

This section of the store separates apps into three age ranges: five and under, between six and eight, and between nine and eleven.

It’s wonderful being a youngster today. I hope they take advantage of everything being offered to them.





Scoop Interview with First New iPhone Customer

Today marks one week and one day since the line started in front of the Apple store on Fifth Avenue in Manhattan. Enthusiasts from near and far wanted to be the first on line to buy the two new iPhone models being offered. That means there are human beings walking around this Earth who have the freedom to stop whatever they are doing on a day-to-day basis to stand in line for 15 days just so they can say they bought the first units sold at that particular location.

“You got that right,” said Brian from Brooklyn, who was actually napping when a group of us strolled by him this past Wednesday night around 11:30 pm. I thought he was sound asleep, but as we approached he quickly got himself assembled for a DigiDame interview.

Brian was very upfront. Part of this whole experience was to get interviewed. Sorry Brian, this interview is only for DigiDame. We are no Huff Post. He didn’t care. “I’m just getting warmed up,” he announced. I asked him every question a mother would want to know. He answered everything as if I were a close friend. As he spoke, I was once again reminded that most young people today are willing to share openly and don’t have the inhibitions of many of us older folks. “Take me like I am,” is his philosophy, even though he was polite as heck. When I asked what his mother thought about his escapade, he gleefully answered, “I am buying two iPhones, one for me and one for her.”

What a smart young man. Brian’s interview is above. Click here for more details on the wait.




Say Hello to the Apple of the East


I am so lucky to be writing DigiDame because it forces me to focus on tech subjects that I think you, my 50-plus crowd, would like to know more about. Sometimes I get stories on the job, contacts, research, and even from industry discussion groups.

I learned about the “so called” Steve Jobs of China from a techie girl friend who just returned from a whirlwind Asian tour. She actually met the young, billionaire entrepreneur who consistently wears black turtlenecks and jeans and behaves a lot like the Apple founder. The Chinese media is already calling Lei Jun and his company, Xiaomi, the “Apple of the East.”

We all heard of Chinese knockoffs but this is too much. All kidding aside, Lei Jun is nothing to snicker at. His company is selling millions of mobile phones (some say they look just like iPhones) and the Chinese market is counting on him to put that country on the map in the innovation category.

The reason Xiaomi (pronounced SHAO-mee) is being taken so seriously is because it did actually sell $2 billion in handsets last year. The potential is huge. China is the world’s largest mobile phone market.

Just like Jobs, Lei is highly regarded as a successful startup expert. He has a software company called Kingsoft that he took public in 2007 and walked away with $300 million. He also invests in other successful software and Internet companies, takes them public, and accumulates more and more wealth. His first success was a biggie, Amazon paid $75 million to acquire his e-commerce company in 2004.

Forbes calls Lei one of China’s wealthiest entrepreneurs, worth $1.7 billion. It’s going to be interesting to see if Lei becomes as popular and beloved as Jobs on a worldwide basis. Can it happen twice in one lifetime?