The beginning of a new year is ripe for resolutions: We make goal lists for our bodies, our lives, our hopes, our dreams… why not our tech? Before the new year, each member of the iMore staff sat down and came up with their top resolution when it came to their technology, and we're happy to share it with you here today. We hope it aids you in your own resolution-making!
I'm pretty sure I've made this resolution at least twice over the years, but this time, I mean it: I want to focus more making my social networks a positive place to feel connected with fellow humans. As much as I love Twitter, 2016 was a great example of just how nasty and depressing the world could feel when tapped in through a never-ending stream of frustration.
I spent two weeks off Twitter and Facebook when I went on vacation this year, with Instagram as my sole social conduit, and I was amazed at how much less stressful my life felt. (Also, I spent a lot of the time I'd normally be reading my feeds hanging out with friends and learning French — surprisingly productive!)
I don't think I could — or I particularly want — to quit Twitter, but in 2017, I'm focusing more on making my social feeds a place where I'm social, chatting with friends and sharing funny things. For my news, I've instead subscribed to several reputable news organizations; I now get an email digest in my inbox every day, which I can read at my leisure as opposed to getting bombarded on Twitter. It's a good compromise: Stay informed, but without poisoning my social sphere.
I have a dirty little secret; I'm a disorganized mess. Forgetting important appointments, losing people's contact info, and double-booking myself are instances that occur far too often in my life, which can easily be prevented by simply using technology I handle every single day.
In 2017, I want to become an organizing machine. Every engagement I have — social, personal, or business — I want to be synced across all my calendars. Whether I'm shopping for groceries or packing for a trip, all my lists need to be digitized. Anytime I realize I need a reminder, I want my first thought to be "Hey, Siri." 2017 has to be the year I start using my technology to help make everyday tasks a little easier.
In 2017, I resolve to turn my house into a smart home. I am a renter, but that doesn't mean my house has to be dumb. There are lots of non-permanent smart devices that I can connect to that can make my house more useful.
I've already invested in a few Hue smart bulbs, but that's just the beginning. Before the year is over, I hope to have a smart plug on every wall and maybe even a few permanent additions (with permission from my landlord, of course). My goal: to make it so I don't have to lift a finger to do anything around the house.
I want my 2017 to be the Year of Photos. Whether it's using the great telephoto lens on my iPhone 7 Plus (why not use it if it's there, right?) or my trusty DSLR, I want to really commit to capturing the fun and meaningful moments of my life for posterity.
Going further than that, I've also resolved to actually print many of these photos out. I've realized over the last couple of year how important a physical photo can be, and while iCloud Photo Library is great for keeping absolutely everything, the images that are really special, or funny, or poignant, I want something more tactile.
Cella Lao Rousseau
For my New Year's tech-olution, I would love to start shooting more photography and video with my iPhone! I'm so used to pulling out the DSLR for a smoke shoot or headshots, but with the iPhone 7 Plus, it's literally so simple to capture stunning shots, Boomerangs, slo-mo videos, and so much more.
I also want to start a lens collection and start comparing more and more iPhoneography tools, because they're honestly just going to get better! I just want to shoot the world!
Er, that sounded a lot more violent than I intended… But you get what I mean.
My initial reaction was to disengage. I'll be honest, social and mainstream media have been so destructive over the last year, I've been tempted to withdraw. I even stopped reading my Twitter timeline for over a month. But that only hurts me, I realized. So, my resolution is to be resolute. To keep engaged. To read opinions I disagree with and learn things I don't know. Yes, fake news is disgusting and media has largely abdicated its responsibility to its audience, but the only way to push back is to PUSH BACK.
So, my Twitter feed is getting opened again. My news feed is getting read — even and especially the stuff I disagree with — and I'm hoping against hope there's enough people who care about their children, and about the millennia of advancements in science and technology, not to let it all burn. Or flood. Or whatever it is things do now.
That and go for a full year of Activity Ring perfection. Because, bring it!
When 2017 rolls around, I'll be looking for ways to better involve my pets in my love of technology. Anyone who knows me knows I love my dogs more than most things in this world, so it's time I introduce them to the modern, tech-laden future!
That means I'll be looking for gadgets and gizmos specifically made for pets and asking my professional Canine Testing Team (Henri and Mizzy) to put 'em through their paces. If you're a pet lover, get excited and stay tuned in 2017 for all things pet tech — we can't wait to get our paws (and hands) on the latest, greatest kibbles, bytes, and bits!
Be sure to visit chihuahua.coffee on the regular! I'll be posting photos and videos of the Canine Testing Team.
This year, I resolve to stick with one phone for more than a month and embrace its ecosystem. I've started using my iPhone 7 and Apple Watch together and have found that I actually enjoy what I once dismissed as "useless".
I also resolve to give everything a fair shake before passing judgement. In 2016, I got really hyped about a lot of devices that just fell flat and didn't even consider certain devices that I ended up loving. All things with a grain of salt from now on.
Tell us your tech resolutions!
Want more fitness tech in your life? A different operating system? Let us know in the comments.