Dealing with distraction

In an age of constant information and infinite distractions what can we do to pay more attention and engage, online and in real life?

TEDx video talk in the library – Thursday 15 November, 2 to 4 pm

Sociologist Zeynep Tufekci says ‘We’re building a building a dystopia just to make people click on ads’. Jaron Lanier has a solution to this in his talk ‘How we need to remake the internet’. ‘What exactly is attention and how do we reclaim it?’ asks neuroscientist Amishi Jha in ‘How to tame your wandering mind’ and maybe there’s a simple antidote to all of this as Kio Stark explores in ‘Why you should talk to strangers’.

Where and when

More information, booking your free ticket

  • Eventbrite site
  • Do it the easy way — just tell Rick you want to be there.

The 15 November TEDx videos

We’re building a building a dystopia just to make people click on ads

We’re building an artificial intelligence-powered dystopia, one click at a time, says techno-sociologist Zeynep Tufekci. In an eye-opening talk, she details how the same algorithms companies like Facebook, Google and Amazon use to get you to click on ads are also used to organize your access to political and social information. And the machines aren’t even the real threat. What we need to understand is how the powerful might use AI to control us — and what we can do in response.


How we need to remake the Internet

In the early days of digital culture, Jaron Lanier helped craft a vision for the internet as public commons where humanity could share its knowledge — but even then, this vision was haunted by the dark side of how it could turn out: with personal devices that control our lives, monitor our data and feed us stimuli. (Sound familiar?) In this visionary talk, Lanier reflects on a “globally tragic, astoundingly ridiculous mistake” companies like Google and Facebook made at the foundation of digital culture — and how we can undo it. “We cannot have a society in which, if two people wish to communicate, the only way that can happen is if it’s financed by a third person who wishes to manipulate them,” he says.


How to tame your wandering mind

Amishi Jha studies how we pay attention: the process by which our brain decides what’s important out of the constant stream of information it receives. Both external distractions (like stress) and internal ones (like mind-wandering) diminish our attention’s power, Jha says — but some simple techniques can boost it. “Pay attention to your attention,” Jha says.


Why you should talk to strangers

“When you talk to strangers, you’re making beautiful interruptions into the expected narrative of your daily life — and theirs,” says Kio Stark. In this delightful talk, Stark explores the overlooked benefits of pushing past our default discomfort when it comes to strangers and embracing those fleeting but profoundly beautiful moments of genuine connection.

A silver lining, ageing in the 21st century

Are attitudes to ageing keeping up with growing life expectancy?

TEDx video talk in the library – Thursday 8 November, 6 to 8 pm

We take a proper look at what it means to grow older today and how we can make ageing more fulfilling.

In her talk Ashton Applewhite states ‘Let’s end ageism’, Paul Tasner explains ‘How I became an entrepreneur at 66’, Laura Cartensen argues that ‘Older people are happier’, and Susan Pinker suggests that ‘The secret to living longer may be our social life’.

Local initiative Hello Hackney has been introducing seniors to technology as well as providing a social hub. Rick Crust joins us to explain how it works. Sarah Douglas and Hector Dyer from Liminal Space will introduce their research-based project about ageing ‘Unclaimed’ in collaboration with the Wellcome Trust.

Where and when

More information, booking your free ticket

  • Eventbrite site
  • Or you can do it the easy way — just tell Rick you want to be there.

The 8 November TEDx videos

Let’s end ageism

It’s not the passage of time that makes it so hard to get older. It’s ageism, a prejudice that pits us against our future selves — and each other. Ashton Applewhite urges us to dismantle the dread and mobilize against the last socially acceptable prejudice. “Aging is not a problem to be fixed or a disease to be cured,” she says. “It is a natural, powerful, lifelong process that unites us all.”


How I became an entrepreneur at 66

It’s never too late to reinvent yourself. Take it from Paul Tasner — after working continuously for other people for 40 years, he founded his own start-up at age 66, pairing his idea for a business with his experience and passion. And he’s not alone. As he shares in this short, funny and inspirational talk, seniors are increasingly indulging their entrepreneurial instincts — and seeing great success.


Older people are happier

In the 20th century we added an unprecedented number of years to our lifespans, but is the quality of life as good? Surprisingly, yes! Psychologist Laura Carstensen shows research that demonstrates that as people get older they become happier, more content, and have a more positive outlook on the world.


The secret to living longer may be our social life

The Italian island of Sardinia has more than six times as many centenarians as the mainland and ten times as many as North America. Why? According to psychologist Susan Pinker, it’s not a sunny disposition or a low-fat, gluten-free diet that keeps the islanders healthy — it’s their emphasis on close personal relationships and face-to-face interactions. Learn more about super longevity as Pinker explains what it takes to live to 100 and beyond.

Join us from where you are, next Saturday

An experiment in online gatherings and workshops

Saturday 20 Oct, 2 to 4 pm

An online drop-in?

This is something we have been thinking about for several years. We don’t like the fact that our inclusive drop-in sessions do not include some of the people who most need it – people who are housebound, always or occasionally, for any reason.

What can we do about that?

Can we create an online drop-in that is tied to the real drop-in, so that everybody feels that they belong, everybody feels more connected, and everybody gets help and support if they want it?

Online gatherings with video and sound are not new. Businesses have been doing it for at least 20 years. The technology already works well. It’s available to anyone who has an Internet connection (at home or anywhere else) and a device with a video camera and a microphone. That’s a lot of people. The challenge is learning how to make it work for everybody who visits the IT drop-in, and everybody who cannot.

Right now, it’s not obvious how we could include housebound IT beginners. That’s a goal we should work towards, from where we are now – a plausible starting point, which we think could be Hangouts Meet.

Piloting Hangouts Meet

Learners on our recent mini-course G Suite apps helped to test Hangouts Meet, which we can offer as a free resource for chat, information and learning. Of course, we couldn’t test it fully because we were all in the same room! But it seems to have everything we need: business-level privacy, designed for regular scheduled sessions at which everyone can get to know everyone else, good sound quality over wifi (reasonable video too), the ability to break out to smaller group chats, participants can create their own sessions if they want to, and even the possibility of running online workshops.

So the next step is to pilot it — schedule a date and time for an open online session in which nearly everybody will be somewhere else, probably at home. We hope you can find time next Saturday to join an experimental session. Details below …

Help us test an online drop-in

  • Sat 20 October, 2 to 4 pm (it’s a drop-in, so start and finish as you please).
  • It should work on most smartphones, tablets, laptops and desktop computers.
  • If you have an account at gmail.com, seniors.org.uk or bold.org.uk – sign in to that first.
  • Then follow this link: meet.google.com/efr-jqdz-coi

More information?

If you would like more information about this idea, please email helpteam@hellohackney.net

If you would like help with your equipment, or maybe even try a dummy run, please come to one of our four drop-in sessions this week.

Silver Sunday, 7 October

A special event for Hackney’s over 50’s

A message from the Speaker of Hackney …

Sunday 7th October, 1pm – 4pm,
Hackney Town Hall – Assembly Rooms


Sunday 7th October is Silver Sunday and events will be taking place across the UK to celebrate older people.

We are inviting Hackney’s over 50’s to join us for a sing-a-long event at Hackney Town Hall. There will be a performance by the Hackney Empire Community Choir and plenty of opportunity for everyone to join in and sing a mix of songs together.

The event is free to Hackney residents aged over 50 (tickets are available for carers of any age) and there will also be refreshments, goodie bags and a raffle.

To book tickets, contact Eda on 020 8356 3591 or email speaker@hackney.gov.uk

Workshops for Hackney carers

Two workshops in September

1. Bowel Cancer Awareness

Friday 21 September, 10:30 am to 12:30 pm
  • Join us to learn more about bowel cancer and how it develops.
  • 9 out of 10 people survive early stage bowel cancer if spotted early.
  • The session will be highly interactive and you are free to ask lots of questions.

Click for ALL the details about the Bowel Cancer workshop


2. Smokefree Hackney information workshop

Friday 28 September, 10:30 am to 12:30 pm
  • Are you thinking of quitting for Stoptober?
  • Would you like advice on how to support a family member or friend to stop smoking?

Click for ALL the details about the Smokefree workshop


Where and how

  • Both workshops will be at 1C Mentmore Terrace, E8 3DQ
  • If you would like to attend, please contact CCS admin on 020 8533 0951 or email ccsadmin@hackneycarers.org.uk to book a place

Did you come to this country on a boat?

Hello Hackney podcast,
Tuesday 21 August, 2 to 4 pm

Did you come on a boat (any boat)? What can you remember about the journey? We have heard some great stories about the actual ocean journey from the Caribbean, and the ports you might have visited on the way. Tell us what happened on the boat, what you did, where the boat went, about friendships formed, lives changed — whatever has stuck in your mind.

We are inviting people who can still remember anything about that trip to share their story at our next podcast session in St Mary’s Secret Garden, Hoxton. The presenter will be Newton Dunbar, who has his own extensive story repertoire.

Although the garden is large, seating for the podcast session is limited and we have space only for people with boat stories — but if you come with a boat story, we will find a place for you.

The session will start at 2 pm.

  • St Mary’s Secret Garden,
    50 Pearson Street, E2 8EL
  • On the corner of Pearson St and Appleby St (5 minute walk from Whitmore Community Centre)
  • Bus stops: Pearson St or Geffrye Museum
  • Train station: Hoxton
  • Map: https://goo.gl/maps/16sVqeJpNpw

If you would like more information first, please email to podcast@hellohackney.net

Meet Miss Alison Kakande, again

Hello Hackney podcast,
Friday 27 July, 2 to 4 pm

Fabulous Miss Alison Kakande returns for one more talk show. In her own words …

The majority of the people you encounter on a day to day basis, out and about, at work or on your commute, have a story. Some might wish to share it and some might decide to listen. Miss Kakande is tired of Hollywood endings, contrived storylines, and morality lessons, aren’t you?

Voices of… is a series of events and one to one conversations with the local community starting in the heart of Hackney. This all began as a talk show project in 2015. It has since evolved into Voices Of…

Voices Of… was born from the listening and sharing of the untold stories in their rawest form.”

But we are just as interested in what you have to say. That’s what the podcast is for – older people talking about what they know.

Please bring your voice to Whitmore Community Centre on Friday afternoon.


Update

Published at blog.hellohackney.net/2018/more-miss-kakande

Your old technology stories

An old-style hob kettleHello Hackney podcast,
Friday 20 July, 2 to 4 pm

Our VIP guest will be Belén Barros, who is interested in your stories about old and new technology.

She wants to hear about your radios, your washing machines, your vacuum cleaners, your cameras, your computers, your phones and any other gadgets you’ve ever had, bought or built.

So we could have a conversation about familiar technology that is considered obsolete even though it works, and replacement technology that requires adaptation to an unfamiliar and unsettling way of life (eg- smartphones instead of landline phones).

Or perhaps you could bring a gadget to make your point (I’m still using a kitchen blender that I bought more than 40 years ago; it looks odd, but it works perfectly).

Follow this Google search link for more ideas: old technology

Please bring your voice to Whitmore Community Centre on Friday afternoon.


Update

Published at blog.hellohackney.net/2018/old-technology

Meet Miss Alison Kakande, Voices Of …

Hello Hackney podcast,
Friday 29 June, 2 to 4 pm

Postponed from 8 June — our VIP guest will be Miss Alison Kakande — founder of Voices Of, and the organiser of the very impressive Trowbridge Silver Surfers (Trowbridge Estate). Miss Kakande has been active in Hackney for many years and is looking forward to meeting you.

This is how she describes Voices Of …

The majority of the people you encounter on a day to day basis, out and about, at work or on your commute, have a story. Some might wish to share it and some might decide to listen. Miss Kakande is tired of Hollywood endings, contrived storylines, and morality lessons, aren’t you?

The Voices of… is a series of events and one to one conversations with the local community starting in the heart of Hackney. This all began as a talk show project in 2015. It has since evolved into the Voices Of…

The Voices Of… was born from the listening and sharing of the untold stories in their rawest form.

And here’s a video of her saying it …

But we are just as interested in what you have to say. That’s what the podcast is for – older people talking about what they know.

Please bring your voice to Whitmore Community Centre on Friday afternoon.


Update

Published at blog.hellohackney.net/2018/meet-miss-kakande

Windrush Empire 70th anniversary

Hello Hackney podcast, Friday 22 June, 2 to 4 pm

The 22 June topic will be …

Today is the 70th anniversary of the first day that the Empire Windrush pulled into Tilbury Docks — tell us about your First Day.

Here’s Alford Gardner’s story ..

Please bring your voice to Whitmore Community Centre on Friday afternoon.


Update

We are editing this episode now.