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Villa Natura Technology




Communications is our priority. Big monitors, cameras, desktops and tablets programmed by our Tech team which teach our Seniors to use apps and computers... we even help them to create messages, send e-mails and pictures, and schedule video conferences so they can keep in touch with their love ones any time they want... we create an arcade of fun !!!

Finally... software, programs, applications and equipment to share information, ideas and stay connected with family, friends, care providers and physicians. We are the Retirement Community with most advance technology, resources and educational programs for the benefit of our Seniors. "I have seen and talked to my father more now, than in any given time in the past"... this is the experience of families and friends that truly enjoy all the technology and resources available for our Seniors at Villa Natura. Because we don't just provide hardware for them... we program advance applications, we teach our Seniors on how to operate the equipment and the use of different programs, we keep them updated with the latest technology... we even help them to create messages, send e-mails and pictures, and schedule video conferences so they can keep in touch with their love ones any time they want.

In today's world, people of all ages are using the internet, cell phones, endless applications, videos and other technologies to communicate in new and exciting ways. In a matter of seconds you can send a message to your son, receive a photo from your granddaughter or email an invitation to a family gathering. While younger people are typically the "experts" on these new resources, our Seniors also utilize the tools provided through internet, social media and wireless devices to communicate and receive information. These tools are an effective way to connect with family, friends and community resources. At Villa Natura, we offer classes and all kind of resources to help you get started with these new tools, or learn more advance procedures.

Facebook, skype, blogs, u-tube, instant messaging, tweeter, are just some of the tools our Seniors practice and talk with their teachers and classmates all the time.

There are some issues with memory loss, when the person can't recall how to perform a task and they need a reminder, or someone to walk them through the process each time. We have staff dedicated to write up numbered instructions for all kind of tasks, or guide our Seniors to perform different tasks, even to help them checking e-mails.

Sometimes the problem is when they click on something on the desktop that they shouldn't, and then enter some other window, they have no idea how to get back to mail. Or if they have a difficult time remembering instructions and tasks. Too much information, whether visual or verbal, confuses them even more. In addition, sometimes their eyesight is not great, nor is their touch sensitivity. This is the reason we provide bare-bones laptops, tablets and notebooks that would allow them a friendly usage, to send/receive and look up information online with minimum aggravations.

We believe that 'Automation' is the key... rather than writing lists of instructions for our Seniors, we use simple automation software to record and save a series of actions and create a macro button we put on their desktop, or assign to a hot key. There are plenty of options, but we have implemented open source AutoHotKey or the more advance AutoIt software. There are different kind of alternatives for those with short-term memory like SlickRun, which uses "magic words"... eg. you can just type MAIL to run your email program of choice.

Eldy, SimplicITy and Splashtop are software programs designed specially for the elderly. Eldy software for example, provides a greatly simplified, alternative desktop designed for older people who are unfamiliar with PCs. It was developed in Italy, and runs different laptops, some tablets and TV sets. SimplicITy service started with a variant of this software, though it now uses Envelope, which looks more friendly to use, we have notice great improvements in our Seniors using these applications. There are several email options, such as PawPaw, which was set up for grandparents.

To learn more about basic rules and resources employed in our community, check the following:

1. Tips about privacy and safety:
Never respond to text messages from ? someone you do not know. You may also receive SPAM via text message. Delete these messages. Never text while driving. ? Be cautious about sending your personal? information via text messages.

To access your email account you will need to create a password. Be sure to change your password often. Remember to write it down and keep it in a safe place. Do not share your password. ? Log out of your email account when you are done.

Only open attachments or click on links from people you know. Do not open or reply to SPAM. ? Do not email your Social Security number, bank account number or other private information. Make sure your computer software and ? updates are current. Find additional email safety tips at www.wiredsafety.org and www.emailsafety.net.

2. Facebook
Is a social networking service and website with hundreds of millions of active users worldwide. On Facebook you can create a personal profile page to connect with family members, add other users as "friends" and exchange messages. Additionally, you can join common interest groups organized by various characteristics.

How: To create a profile page you must have an email address. Sign-on to www.facebook.com and fill in your information to create the page. You then have the option to add photos and additional information about yourself.

3. Skype
Allows you to make voice calls over the internet. You can make free calls to other Skype users. There is a fee for calls from Skype to telephones and cell phones. Skype is particularly popular for people making inexpensive/free international calls. You need a microphone and speakers/headset for your computer to use Skype (you can also place video calls if both users have web cameras). www.skype.com.

4. Blogs
Stands for "web logs." often used like a public diary, a blog is a website or part of a website. Blogs are usually maintained by an individual and offer the opportunity for followers to comment. Various websites offer free, easy-to-use blogs, such as: www.blogger.com, www.wordpress.com, www.livejournal.com.

5. You-Tube
Is a video-sharing website where you can view, upload and share videos. YouTube enables you to upload videos and share them with friends and other users. www.youtube.com.

6. Instant Messaging (IM)
Is a form of real- time, text-based communication that enables you to chat with another computer user. Both people must be on a computer at the same time to use IM. Many email providers have IM/chat features, such as: www.gmail.com, www.msn.com, www.aol.com.

7. Twitter
Is a social networking website that enables you to post short, up-to-the-minute updates (known as Tweets) and follow others' Tweets, which are text posts of 140 characters or less. Tweets are publicly visible. www.twitter.com.

Tablets and Chromebooks, are one of our main sources because they are fairly simple to use, hard to mess up, and relatively easy to move around. Using Windows in our desktops we can access friendly-user softwares for emails such as Windows Live Mail or OperaMail, which can upload and download all email automatically. Sometimes simpler email program such as EasyEmail which has a lockable sidebar for Seniors, is a better option.

At Villa Natura, latest technology is our priority... if you are looking for hours of entertainments, keep an active memory, sharpening learning capabilities and time well invested... we have answers for you.