As one of many middle-aged men who wrestle with sleep apnea, I was flat out impressed to see the Iphone app that my friend Jim Knudsen, a fellow suffer, shared with me.
The $99 app allows him to monitor his sleep patterns every night by wearing a headband with sensors connected by a Bluetooth device to his Iphone. In stark contrast to the normal procedure of spending the night in a sleep lab, he can see his sleep pattern each morning and compare it with past nights.
The app equips him to experiment in what allows him to sleep more deeply and try it immediately.
He's dropped caffeine for a week and monitored the results. He now limits caffeine to morning hours because he found that too much would still be in his system and result in less sound sleep.
After experimenting, he changed his evening routine to one cocktail instead of two.
Without the daily feedback, making these measurable and important changes would be a months-long process using the sleep labs.
Instead, he can tweak it week-to-week and see the results. It's paying off because his demand for the breathing machine that most of us wear nightly has been cut in half. He can for see the day when he will have adjusted his eating and drinking habits enough that he will not need the machine.
Now that's an app that empowers its users.
Incidentally, Golf Digest tech columnist David Owen featured the Zeo Sleep Manager Mobile in his June piece.
THE CITY OF PLEASANTON now is accepting applications for what likely will prove to be a truly thankless jobguiding the city staff, planning commission and city council in developing a master plan for the 1,000 undeveloped acres east of Valley Avenue between Stanley Boulevard and Mohr Avenue.
It's the final large block of land without a specific plan for its use. It includes the current transfer station and lots of former gravel mining land.
Developing the plan is important because it presumably will include El Charro Road connecting to Stanley Boulevard from Interstate 580 as well as the approved Stoneridge Drive extension and presumably the Busch Road extension to El Charro.
That will improve traffic circulation on that side of town significantly. There likely will be a mixture of uses.
The challenge for citizen participants will be one to two meetings a month for a year or more plus plenty of reading to prepare for meetings.
The one task force that the city has moved expeditiously was the court-ordered process to zone additional sites for higher density work force housing after the city lost a law suit. The legal ruling included a hard deadline for action.
With no legal action driving this, good luck on seeing a speedy process.
Just ask members of the Kottinger Place Task Force how it's going. It was formed in February of 2004 and still is meeting.