When pain helps others.

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Photo by Omid Bonyadian on Unsplash

Condolences are often appreciated in act alone, but sometimes they have the potential to mean the world to someone at the moment when received at the right time and place. I came across a post about a friend who had recently been part of a podcast interview about his experience with loss and grief. While I had known bits and pieces from accounts over the years, a story was new to me. In his brief post on Instagram sharing with friends, he could sum up an individual experience with someone offering condolences that had significant meaning.


What to consider.

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Photo by Daria Nepriakhina on Unsplash

College students historically fall within an average age bracket of eighteen to twenty-one years old. (1) Thus, in the year 2020, they were all born between 1999 and 2002, and in 2010 were around ten years old. Now take into account that the iPhone first hit the market in 2007 and that Facebook launched on February 4, 2004. (2)(3) Facebook started accepting non-college email addresses to register in September 2005. Everyone with an active email address in September 2006, with a minimum age to become a user set at thirteen years old. …


A look at tech and communicating with the deceased

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Photo by Beth Macdonald on Unsplash

With a goal to create individual personalities using artificial intelligence (AI), Microsoft recently had a patent approved that could use your digital remains (Social Media, Texts, Emails, and other personal data) in combination with generated images and holograms to allow anyone to speak with the deceased. The tech company received permission and is moving forward with a program to create a chatbot capable of mimicking the personality of specific people after initially filing for the license in 2017.

It has been a reoccurring idea over the past decade, with many iterations of the deceased communicating to the masses.

As part…


Today, you need to think about more than just your body.

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Photo by Ashwin Vaswani on Unsplash

It can be difficult to visualize all the material that composes our digital remains, and it can be even more daunting to control its reach.

What happens to your online presence when you die?

How long will the information that you have put online throughout your life exist?

Who will see or have access to this information after you die?

When we begin to take a slightly deeper look at what will happen with our online information in the future, it becomes apparent that it needs to be addressed…


Who can get access?

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Photo by Sarah Gualtieri on Unsplash

A phone that is locked by a password requires the passcode to gain access by the family. If you do not have the access code, the chances of accessing the deceased’s phone become substantially more complicated, in some cases requiring court actions to access.

Some phones grant access via fingerprint, but a detail usually overlooked is that this requires a thermal trace or warm finger in most smartphones. While there have been cases where a phone has been unlocked by using the deceased person’s fingerprints, this fails more often than not.

Once embalming occurs, the chances…


Author — Economist — Real Life Six Feet Under Character?

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As a kid, going to the grocery store or leaving large community events like a play or church was the longest, most excruciating part of my life. It was at these times that people would stop a funeral director (my dad) and talk. These are not just everyday conversations about the weather; more often than not, they are immediate deep dives into personal grief. These are the moments that go unacknowledged, the moments of active listening, and being there for the people who had lost someone in the past, with…


Simply knowing this term may help.

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Photo by Darius Bashar on Unsplash

“I was walking down the street and caught a whiff of perfume, and all of a sudden I was choked up and on the edge of tears. Out of nowhere, I was overwhelmed in an instant.”

Anyone at a funeral could be going through one of the hardest days they might go through in their lives psychologically. The same goes for anyone you pass walking down a busy street. …


Eternity is no longer silent.

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https://twitter.com/KimKardashian/status/1321955644736303104

What does Kanye West’s recent birthday gift signal about the future of holograms? Will the use of holograms blur the lines with those we have lost, allowing communication to continue past the point we are contributors?

As part of a recent birthday gift, Kanye West presented a hologram or Robert Kardashian Sr. (February 22, 1944-September 30, 2003) to Kim Kardashian West.

“For my birthday, Kanye got me the most thoughtful gift of a lifetime. A special surprise from heaven. A hologram of my dad. It is so lifelike! We watched it over and over, filled…


Your words will help.

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Photo by Nik Shuliahin on Unsplash

We often hear many similar responses from those around us when they discover that we have lost someone close to us. These responses are rooted in a mix of the proper sentiment and a loss for what to say. In these events, many of us defer to words heard many times before in a similar scenario. These are often accepted for what they are, words of condolence, and exactly what you should say if they feel appropriate.

However, the person receiving these words of condolence may not be ready to hear these words for what they…


You are not alone.

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Photo by Jake Davies on Unsplash

We often hear many similar responses from those around us when they discover that we have lost someone close to us. These responses are rooted in a mix of the proper sentiment and a loss for what to say. In these events, many of us defer to words heard many times before in a similar scenario. These are often accepted for what they are, words of condolence, and exactly what you should say if they feel appropriate.

However, the person receiving these words of condolence may not be ready to hear these words for what they are, meaningful, heartfelt condolences…

J.H. Harrington

Author of ‘Digital Remains’ available now. Proven Industry Expert. Sharing thoughts and ideas on the world we live in from birth to death and beyond.

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