Know The Facts Before You FaceApp Your Face

The world is talking about FaceApp. I really wanted to avoid the topic, but too many friends questioned me about why the app was receiving so much negative publicity.

FaceApp is an app that shows you what you look like when you’re much older. Millions of folks on Facebook are showing everyone what they will look like decades from now.

FaceApp was created by a St. Petersburg, Russia company. The owners are asking you to send them your portrait photos from your device to its servers.

The Washington Post points out that FaceApp “retains rights to use your photos in perpetuity, and performs artificial intelligence black magic on them.”

That makes people nervous after the 2016 Presidential election. FaceApp has denied all privacy claims against them. They claim they delete “most images” from its servers within 48 hours of uploading. No one can confirm that.

FaceApp founder Yaroslav Goncharov said “the user data is not transferred to Russia.” Like almost everyone else, FaceApp uses Amazon’s cloud.

The Washington Post created a quick video to give you all the pointers you need to know. It’s posted above.

The Wojcicki Family

I wanted to devote one blog post to the Wojcicki family. I have been fascinated with them for years.

The parents are Stanley Wojcicki (a Polish American emeritus professor and former chair of the physics department at Stanford University); Esther Wojcicki (an American journalist, educator, and vice chair of the Creative Commons advisory council. She is also the founder of the Palo Alto High School Media Arts Program in Palo Alto); daughter Anne (Founder of 23andMe); daughter Susan Wojcicki, CEO of YouTube; and daughter Janet Wojcicki, an anthropologist and Associate Professor at UCSF.

Good genes in that family.

Yesterday, I told you about Anne Wojcicki and her company, 23andMe. Forbes did a recent story on Anne which I included below. She was married to Google co-founder Sergey Brin from 2007 until separating in 2013. They divorced in 2015. They had two children together and now as a single woman she is pregnant with her third.

Anne was quoted in Forbes saying, “Whether you’re in a relationship or not should not dictate whether or not you have the ability to have children. I’m very stubborn. When there’s something I want to do, I get it done. I really wanted a third child. So like, guess what? I executed.”

I have included the Forbes story in photos below because the link was not working. Try the link or enlarge the photos. It’s a fascinating read.

Read in Forbes:

This Is The World We Are Now Living In

Journalists Rely On Food Banks, Part-Time Jobs To Make Ends Meet 

Media Post, an online advertising publication, sadly reported today that newsroom job cuts recently reached the highest levels since the last recession 10 years ago.

The journalism business is so bad that many writers say they are now depending on local food banks to feed their families. Many have second jobs to supplement their incomes.

Pew Research Center reported that newspapers “shed almost one-quarter of their employees from 2008 to 2017, and that was before the loss of 3,000 jobs announced so far this year. The closure of 1,800 newspapers in the past 15 years has meant that half of U.S. counties are lucky if they have one newspaper.”

It’s amazing to me that one of the most important professions in the world is slowly shrinking to nothing.

Click below to read more about this topic.


Our Podcast, “Lying On The Beach”

In one of the most unusual documentaries ever made, Alec Baldwin portrays John DeLorean, while real footage, from the automaker’s life, is interspersed between scenes. It’s a wild ride. TV personality Steve Greenberg, and PR consultant Lois Whitman—Hess, waste no time dishing on what they think is fact, or fiction.  You decide.

To hear our podcast, click here.

Antique Gadgets

On our recent trip to Germany, we toured with a wonderful couple from Massachusetts, who happen to be antique dealers. Paula and Chris DeSimone we’re intrigued that we were with Steve Greenberg, the Today Show’s Innovation Insider.

They immediately told him about the antique gadgets they have encountered over the years. They thought it would be wonderful to show the world what innovation looked like 100 years ago. Steve can’t use these historical gadgets on The Today Show because they feature emerging new technologies. I, however, volunteered showcasing them in my blog because I knew you would enjoying seeing them.

All of these items were found and photographed at Upton House Antiques, 275 King Street, Littleton, Ma., owned and operated by Eileen M. Poland.

Thank you Paula and Chris. You are just terrific. We must meet again soon.

NIDDY NODDY:   Sells for approx.  $48     Circa 1820

A niddy noddy is a simple homemade yarn winder. The DeSimone’s said they were unable to discover the genesis of the rather unusual name. However, they did find some evidence that the name comes from the word “nod”.  While in use the implement sways back and forth like a head “nodding.”

HOG SCRAPPER:  Sells for approx. $10-$15     Late 19th early 20th centuries. It was used to scrape the stiff hairs off of a pig’s hide. The worker would grip the handle and scrape with the cup-like end.

NUTMEG  GRATER  Sells for approx. $45-$50      c1890;l

Thr nutmeg is placed in the hopper and is held there by the plunger.  The user grips the wooden handle and moves the grate back and forth until the entire piece is ground.

CANDLE SNUFFER:   Sells for approx. $25      18th and 19th centuries

Used to extinguish candles throughout the house.  The scissor-like section was used to trim wicks and the sharp point on the end was used to “dig” the wick out of melted wax.

HEARTH TOASTER:   Sells for approx. $100-$120   early 1800’s

Used to make toast in the fireplace.  The bread, no doubt homemade, would be placed in the available slot.

BOOT JACK:   Sells for approx. $35-$40  

Used to remove boots when one didn’t have someone to assist.  The wearer would place the heel of one booted foot in the “vee” shaped cutout and would step on the other end with  his other foot.  He would then  pull back with his leg thus removing the boot

APPLE CORER:  Sells for approx. $45-$50     c1885

Obviously, used to peel apples and remove the core

BUTTER STAMP:   Sells for approx. $20-$25    circa 1890. Many butter makers, when done, would place the very moldable butter into a form.  Thus giving it a shape.  They would then imprint a design on the top of the butter.  Of course, as soon oas the butter was used the design would disappear.  Butter stamps are highly collectible.  Actually, most of the items listed here are collected.


FashionWare Does Asia



Photo by Eliot Hess —Happy 4th of July from South Beach. Love, Lois and Eliot










FashionWare Does Asia

I copy and pasted from LinkedIn. Robin is a good friend and one of the most productive leaders in the tech business.

June 24, 2019 

Robin Raskin

Each year at CES Asia we bring a bevy of high tech wearables and dazzle the audience with a fashion show like none other. Not just any wordless runway show, this fashion show educates the audience about how wearables are changing life. Each one of our models represents the state of the art high tech accessories and outfits. So whether you want to look fashionable at the gym, in the yoga studio, at the beach, or on the runway, our models represent in situ settings.


The combined efforts of Google and Levi resulted in the Jacquard Jacket. While it’s a bit of a flawed design from a practical sense (doesn’t tolerate cleaning, can be clumsy to use) it’s a great experiment in woven computing. The jacket designed for messengers and messenger wannabees lets you tuck your phone away and use the cuff of your jacket to signal commands. The cuff is a woven mesh of interactive filament creating electronic circuitry. A small snap like device communicates with via Bluetooth with your phone. By tapping and swiping your cuff you’re able to get directions, pick up messages and play music for example.

Always on the move, the urban dweller model is also committed to personal health. Hence he’s wearing the Withings ECG Watch. This new version is the first medically accurate smartwatch that serves as an ECG reader and can even measure arterial fibrillation.


These Nandi X Wearable yoga pants can improve your yoga poses by providing feedback about your position. The stunning pants intergrate small sensors that provide haptic (body vibrations) feedback. Using a Bluetooth connection to the Nandi X app you’ll see a visual representation of your stance and get the same feedback a yoga instructor would provide.


The yoga mat, by the way, is self-rolling. At the end of your session you simply flip it over and it knows to roll.


Shoe wear has gone high tech as well. This show from Evone contains a fall detector. Instead, the shoe is a GSM that provides autonomous communications (in most countries) and a GPS providing location and position. The shoes also have other sensors: a gyroscope, accelerometer, pressure sensors and a vibration point. If the shoe detects any abnormal activity it sends an alert… first to the wearer to make sure it’s not a false positive and then to the wearer’s network of friends and helpers if it’s a real emergency.

On her wrist, the model wears a bracelet designed to keep her safe. It’s an SOS bracelet, a CES Innovation Award winner designed by App Elles, company committed to preventing violence against women. The bracelet uses an innovative streaming protocol that includes live audio streaming (should you find yourself in a situation, instant replay features and GPS tracking in real time. If you can’t afford the bracket you can use the app to alert friends and family about your location.

Hip Meets Tech

Who says tech clothing can’t have a little attitude? We bought the sequined jacket on a shopping spree but underneath it, you can flash a little bling with the Lumen Body suit. It’s form-fitting and studded with LEDs. The shirt connects vis standard USB cable.

A hipster needs her wallet kept safe from hackers. This one’s a phone from PundiX. PundiX has built an entire ecosystem to make saving, paying with, and tracking your crypto investments as easy (and safe) as any other form of currency. The X-Wallet and the X-Pass POS system provide secure wallet functionality and support most of the crypto out there today.

On her wrist, the hipster’s smartphone of choice is from Fossil. It comes in gorgeous colors, is swim-proof, provides notifications, is customizable, displays social media, tracks activity and runs apps. And it’s demure. What more could a woman want?

Outdoor Tech

This is not your everyday shirt. It lets you keep warm when you’re in the cold thanks to its built-in temperature control. Developed through a partnership between Odio, MAS, Climb8 and I-Thermic, the shirt has a knit, intelligent heating layer. It was designed for skiers who are constantly facing changing temperatures as they ascend and descend the mountain.


The sunglasses are more than ordinary too. Opticshokz Xtrainertz are sunglasses that use bone conduction, Instead of covering your ears with a headset, the sound is transported through your facial bones. Great for skiing and outdoor sports, bone conduction lets you hear the noise of the world and of your music at the same time.

Smarty Pants


Xenoma’s haptic shirt has been available for a while. This year they introduced pants with a magnetometer-free motion capturing device. Just like the movie stars who record animation with motion capture, you’ll be able to use the pants with their built-in sensors and circuits to record your movements. Added bonus? They’re so flexible you can even wash them in conventional laundry machines. Using “e-skin” motion capture, pants are great for rehab situations or sports situations where you want to work on your flexion or range of movement.

Tech Elegance

This stunning laser dress demonstrates how we can extend the role of fabrics. The dress sends high powered red beams that form patterns around any room and on the model’s face. The dress was designed by Michael Starost and

One her finger the model wears the MetGem EDA Ring, also designed by and MetaGem. In addition to its elegant look, the ring can keep you in touch with friends or loved ones should you find yourself in a dangerous situation. It uses Bluetooth to communicate with the MetaGe app sending an SMS with the wearer’s geolocation.

The Sunbather

How can a bathing suit go high-tech? For one, it can notify you’re getting too much sun. Working with an app that creates a personal profile for your skin tone, this bathing suit from the Spinali Connected Clothing Collection uses its built-in “cream alert” to tell you when to reapply. It also has a charming Valentine feature alerting your loved one when you need a little help with reapplying your lotion.

Fashion in Motion Dress

This dress is a collaboration between Anina’s

360 Fashon.Net and RFactory. It’s based a novel LED ribbon design. When the dress detects strong movements, like walking down a runway or dancing the lights become more vivid. When you in quiet conversation or not moving much the lights simmer down. Dressed up for the evening and nowhere to put your charger? Try the ReChargeable Wallet. You can power up your phone, or your dress for that matter, with a press of your finger.



So, what happens when you mix new technology with fashion? You get new materials, new functionality and new ways of creating beauty.

About Robin

Robin Raskin is founder of Living in Digital Times (LIDT), a team of technophiles who bring together top experts and the latest innovations to look at the intersection of lifestyle and technology. LIDT produces a number of notable conferences and expos at CES (the Consumer Electronics Show) and at conferences and events worldwide. The company’s trademark events include: The Last Gadget Standing, Digital Health Summit, FashionWare, Fitness Tech Summit, Kids@Play Summit, The Digital Money Forum and others.


In a previous lifetime, Raskin honed her tech chops at a variety of technology publications. She was editor of PC Magazine and began FamilyPC and YahooTech!. Author of 6 books, magazine publisher, blogger, TV and radio personality, Raskin has been at the forefront of an ever-changing topic: what it means to be digital. She lives in NYC and the Hudson Valley, with her husband, her three drop in now and then children, and closets full of obsolete technology.

Goal: To make sure that everyone reaps the benefits of a high tech lifestyle while avoiding the pitfalls.

Motto: I don’t change jobs… I just collect them.

Specialties: A recovering journalist, Robin’s been writing about technology ever since her husband told her Unix vi would be easier to use than a typewriter. (He lied.) These days she’s sort of the Titantic of Technology- rescuing boomers, parents and kids from getting lost in a digital world. (Hopefully with better results.)

Media-platform agnostic, she’s written 6 books, a ton of magazine pieces, and what seems like a billion blogs. Frequent public speaker and TV/Radio guest.

Your Personal A/C

I want to be the one who promotes the new, innovative line of personal air conditioners that were just introduced because they solve a big problem for me. I’m always cold, and my girlfriends are always hot. They want the a/c as low as they can get it, and I want the temperature in a room to be at least 72 degrees.

We all now have a solution. It’s called CoolAir, a portable personal cooler fan. It’s designed for individual use.

It’s sufficiently compact so they can be moved around.

According to the website, “CoolAir cools, purifies and humidifies the air around you, creating a personal space that suits you. It has a mood light setting, with seven different color options to set the tone for your day or night.” Click on the link below to see how well these new units work.

A Nuremberg Bookstore

I love independent bookstores. I always have. I like to stand in the middle of them pretending that I can magically absorb every bit of information that’s between the covers of each book.

I was drawn into this Nuremberg bookstore because I remembered the days when these establishments were a good part of my social life. It was a frequent destination, especially on weekends. It was fun to walk around to see who was writing what and spot new trends and topics.

Independent bookstores are more popular in Germany. This Nuremberg one celebrates the life of local artist Albrecht Dürer. Born in 1471, Dürer is still being revered all over the city. His rabbit paintings have made the furry little animal a city mascot.

A portrait of Dürer.

You know who this is.

Rabbits everywhere.

This is where Dürer was born and lived..

No Language Needed

We were walking down a quaint street in Nuremberg a few weeks ago, when I saw a woman lean out of her window to water her plants. I don’t see that too often so I took a picture of her. She spotted me and acknowledged my curiosity. Without saying a word she voluntarily posed. We smiled at each other to just appreciate that moment of time. Peace and happiness.

Reality of Angel Investing – Gotham Gal

Joanne Wilson, a famous angel investor, who also just happens to write a blog called “The Gotham Gal,” recently told us about an investor who wanted his money back.

“The note had come due awhile ago and he was expecting his cash back with the interest. Spoiler Alert…that is never going to happen.

“I have often espoused that importance of legal documents from the get go of building a business. I am not a fan of the SAFE documents or notes in general because they are nothing but a piece of paper with zero work done and lessons to learn. Going through the education of understanding a document and the responsibility of taking cash from others is worth every cent especially from the get-go. Notes and SAFE documents cost very little to produce so I get it for a first round but that is the one and only time to have them. 

“Founders take capital with the hope that the money they raise will give them the ability to grow their businesses, their hopes and dreams, their ideas. Investors participate because they too believe that there is an opportunity to support a founder financially that benefits their pocketbook but also benefits their desire to help others build. 

“Many early stage angels should not be putting cash out there unless they understand that the chances of every seeing that capital again is low. I have seen investors write to a founder (what this particular investor did) and ask for money back with interest. The business is still alive but struggling so where does he believe the cash is? Then I have seen investors see how the company is growing and they expect a return when it is time to put money back into the company not take it out. I have told founders just to tell those investors to read their documents because they are not getting their cash back now unless some secondary buyer wants to buy them out.

“Certainly when the company gets into their Series C and onward there is opportunity to sell for the first set of investors, as there should be. Secondary markets should be bigger than they are. But if you are investing with the hope that you will get your capital back in a few years or a note with interest regardless of the companies standing, then you should NOT be investing in early stage businesses. Remember whatever you put in has a bigger potential of not coming out.”

Click here to see Joanne’s column.