Getting Ready For Irma 

We evacuate to a hotel in Coral Gables tomorrow called The Colonnade. My niece Valerie, and her husband Alfredo, found the hotel. They are very resourceful and understand all of the requirements we will need. 

We have a hurricane preparedness meeting with the hotel staff tomorrow at 5pm.. I guess we are going to get a list of Do’s and Don’ts. This is going to be interesting. We are still praying that the storm blows off into the ocean. It’s possible, but not probable. I am told the roar of the storm is terrifying. If we are not directly in the eye of the storm, we will experience less of a sound.

Our neighbor, Sam Champion.



Counterfeit Vs. The Real Deal  

I don’t know why, but whenever I buy an expensive designer handbag, I get the feeling a few of my girlfriends think it’s a fake. That is probably because I don’t buy expensive clothes. 

I don’t bother to defend myself because what’s the point? However, I just learned about a new handheld gadget that can detect counterfeit goods. 

The device features a microscope camera that closely analyzes the print patterns, leather grain and paint work of luxury goods.

Entrupy is a New York company that designed the unit. Watch the video. Their accuracy rate is better than 98 percent for Louis Vuitton, Chanel and Gucci. That’s what they claim. 

The company has already done deals with pawnshops, wholesalers and online retailers who need to identify fakes.  The unit can be leased initially for $299 with a $99 monthly fee. It must be working. They already have 160 businesses signed up for the device which is able to inspect up to 30,000 handbags and wallets. 

I might get one too. The next time someone gives me a funny look about a new handbag that I just bought, I will encourage them do the Entrupy test. No more second guessing.

Smart Pillow Talk


You have a smart watch, a smart TV, and now possibly a smart pillow. Once you learn what the Zeeq smart pillow is capable of, you will be interested in knowing more about the overall quality of your rest. The Zeeq smart pillow tracks your sleep, stops your snoring, and streams music. 

A company press release said the pillow features snore detection and prevention, wireless music and audio via Bluetooth, sleep tracking and analysis, smart home integration with Amazon Echo and Alexa, sleep cycle alarm clock, music timer and lots more.

“The snore alarm feature uses microphones inside the pillow to detect your snoring and emit a gentle vibration when it reaches a preset decibel level so you stop snoring and adjust your sleep position without waking your partner.”

I’m anxious for someone to review the Zeeq. I would like to know if snoring can be cured this way.  Who is willing to try if I can get a review unit? 

An extra bonus is that the Zeeq app let’s you stream your favorite music, listen to audio books, listen to soothing sleep sounds or white noise. There are eight evenly-dispersed, super-thin speakers.  There is also an auto-shutoff function. 

A smart alarm activates your movement. You can then check your SleepScore on the Zeeq app. “Zeeq’s 3 axis accelerometer and audio sensors measure sleep movement and snoring to give you a helpful analysis of your nightly sleep quality.”
The retail price is $199.00

 

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Smile, You’re On Facial Recognition 

Image: CNET


If you don’t like the way you look in a photograph, you are not going to like what I am about to tell you. Your face is going to replace your credit card, and perhaps cash, in the next few years.

The world is going facial recognition. It’s already started in Hangzhou, China where a local KFC has a facial recognition payment system that lets diners pay with a smile. They may be required to insert their phone numbers as well for double security purposes.

When Eliot and I traveled through the Scandinavian countries a few weeks ago, we found out that they are a cashless society. We used credit cards for everything, even a bag of potato chips or gum. I have to say that it was a relief just to use a card for everything rather than dealing with the right amount of paper and coins.

We might like the freedom by simply stepping in front of a screen and smiling.

The software programs being used today are so accurate that even if there are multiple people in your photo, the facial recognition can pinpoint exactly who you are.

The Chinese program being used at the KFC in China is called the Alipay facial recognition payment system. It’s designed by Ant Financial Services Group, an Alibaba Group affiliate. 
Companies like Samsung, PayPal, MasterCard, Apple and NEC are also testing the technology. 

You can see how facial recognition works in a CNET story. 

Backup Camera For All Automobiles 

A friend of mine, John Shalam, built one of the most successful consumer electronics companies  in the United States. It was called Audiovox in 1965 when he started it in Hauppauge, Long Island. It was renamed Voxx in 2012. 

The company specializes in four areas: OEM and after-market automotive electronics, consumer electronics accessories, and consumer and commercial audio equipment.

VOXX Electronics just introduced a new product for cars which I feel is a must for all drivers. It’s a new wireless, Bluetooth backup camera that works with a smartphone. Called “LOOK-IT,” it will be available in select Best Buy stores and Crutchfield.
Many brand new cars feature a back up camera. The first time I saw it years ago I thought it was brilliant. The trouble is that the cars we bought (or leased) never offered this feature, 

I was so excited to learn that we could now buy a back up camera in the aftermarket. I first read about it in Amy Gilroy’s CE Outlook newsletter. She covers the auto industry.  

She said the “LOOK-IT includes an adjustable rear view camera that’s pre-mounted in a license plate frame. It communicates via Bluetooth 4.0 to a smartphone mounted in your car to create a do-it-yourself backup camera.

“LOOK-IT comes with a remote control that mounts on the steering wheel. Push it and it launches the camera view at any time, but the device also activates automatically in reverse and shows smart grid lines that can be calibrated.

“The new wireless camera has 4 years of battery life. It comes with a magnetic air vent mount for a smartphone. LOOK-IT was developed by Lightwave Technology, Montreal, Canada. VOXX is serving as the US distributor.”

The street price for LOOK-IT is $299.
I’m getting one for my Jeep. 

 

Cantor Fitzgerald Charity Day  


I am working on an assignment that I wanted to share with you. Perhaps you can help.

I’m looking for celebrities to participate in this year’s Cantor Fitzgerald Charity Day which, of course, takes place on Monday, September 11th, 2017 at the company’s New York office. 

Can you believe it’s been 16 years since that tragic day? 

Charity Day is significant at Cantor Fitzgerald as we all remember 658 friends and colleagues who lost their lives on 9/11. They are raising money for a number of different charities and I am helping them.  I am assisting with the Fisher Center for Alzheimer’s Research Foundation. I am a board member.

This is a clip from last year’s event. Click here.

They raised approximately $12 million globally in a single day last year across Cantor, BGC & GFI, all of which was donated to charity.  Since inception, Charity Day has raised approximately $137 million. 

This is an outstanding achievement, and we look forward to once again raising large amounts for charitable causes.

We are thrilled that this year’s participating charities are bringing some great celebrity ambassadors to visit Cantor Fitzgerald’s trading floors. 

Here are just some of the initial celebrities confirmed to participate in this year’s Charity Day:

 

Anna Sophia Robb         

Jenny McCarthy 

Padma Lakshmi

Bill Clinton 

Jim Leyritz 
Pamela Anderson

Brandy

Joe Namath 

Ray Mancini

Brian Dennehy 

John Franco 

Steve Buscemi

Constance Jablonski 

Larry Holmes 

Steve Schirripa

Darryl Strawberry 

Louis CK 

Tamara Tunie

Dikembe Mutombo  

Martin St. Louis 

Tony Danza

Gayle King 

Michael J. Fox 

Rosie Perez

Henrik Lundqvist 

Mike Breen 

Walt Frazier

To learn more about Charity Day and the Cantor Fitzgerald Relief Fund, please visit http://www.cantorrelief.org, or watch the 2016 Cantor Fitzgerald Charity Day video. 

Now I have to get to work to help make this another successful Charity Day.

If you know anyone, or have any ideas, please call me.

Thank you

Lois 
917 822 2591 

loisw@hwhpr.com

Facebook Reunited Me With Sweet 16 Friend  

I’m the one with my eyes closed. I was so cute. I didn’t think so at the time, but now 54 years later I see the cuteness. 

I received this photo via Facebook messenger this morning. It came from a gal I was friendly with for a few years in high school. Joanne Engel was the Annette Funicello of our high school. She was beautiful, a great figure and a fabulous singer. I expected her to be a major star.

Annette Funicello

Joanne and her husband today. It’s easy to lift someone else’s photo on Facebook.

I’m not sure what happened to her career, but yesterday I spotted her name on a list of Facebook friends that was associated with someone I know who is a talent agent. I sent her a message asking if she knew me. She instantly responded “yes,” and we set up a time to talk next week. Meanwhile, she emailed this photo to me that documented my presence at her Sweet 16. 

My talent agent friend found out that Joanne and I went to school together and she can’t believe we know each other. She knows the two of us from different walks of her life, so it’s difficult for her to comprehend the connection. 

It is pretty funny.  

I wish my eyes were open. I would have loved to frame this photo. I was hoping to recapture my thoughts way back then. That would be a treat. 

Robots Perform Funerals 

Japan is leading the way. SoftBank, a Japanese multinational telecommunications and Internet corporation, has programmed its Pepper robot to perform Japanese Buddhist funerals.

That can only mean it’s just a matter of time that robots will be saying prayers over dead bodies all over the world. Japan has been a tech leader for decades.

Pepper demonstrated its ability to perform Buddhist funeral rites at the recent Tokyo Int’l Funeral & Cemetery Show. 

SoftBank said Pepper and other robots can cut the cost of a funeral service by thousands of dollars.  

Robots performing funerals may sound like a turn off now to many of us, but I can honestly say  I am not fan of religious leaders talking about the dearly departed as if they were close friends. I hate that. Funerals are time to truly reflect. I don’t want phony presentations. 

Read more about this in Mashable.