Love, .com

The web gets a bad rap for relationships (you know all those ways to cheat on the DL made easier via technology). But, a new study shows that technology just may be a positive influence on committed relationships.

online.jpgMore than 20 percent of cellphone or Internet users "have felt closer to their partner because of their digital exchanges." And even some couples (less than 9 percent) said they settled arguments online or via text they couldn't solve in person.


In addition to tech communication, new apps are providing a kind of drive-thru counseling service. The newest apps of that kind include Couple Counseling & Chatting, Embre and Romantimatic.

While experts say couples with deeply entrenched issues shouldn't rely on such apps, they can be helpful to some couples. And from the numbers it looks like couples agree that some apps will help their relationship.

"Since its release on Feb. 12, Couple Counseling & Chatting, which is available on Android systems and in the Apple app store, has had more than 17,000 downloads ... about 70 percent of them by men."





Heads up, mom

We've all read the open letters to those evil moms "playing" on their cell phones to the detriment of their children. And now a new study (albeit a small one of some 50 parents in a fast food setting) shows how digital distraction impacts children.

bored_kid.jpgThe study showed parents distracted by technology were more likely to react more harshly to their child's behavior and there is some concern about the lack of eye-to-eye contact that inevitably accompanies phone distraction. Per the article, "this is partly how bonds are formed. Very young children learn about their world largely through face-to-face interactions, vocalizations and touching with parents. They also develop language skills this way."

However, no one has yet produced a comprehensive study of the distraction by digital devices on children. But, some experts say that many cultures grow up without that constant face-to-face communication without becoming sociopaths.





They're ba-ack

Diseases we considered once gone are rearing their ugly pocked faces. New York is abuzz with the largest measles outbreak in decades and some experts are pointing toward a decrease in vaccines stemming from anti-vaccination beliefs.

"The CDC warned in December that once-eliminated measles had come back in elevated numbers about 175 cases in 2013, compared to the typical 60 each year."




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