Punkt. is a relatively small, vibrant and independent business, and we prefer to maintain close connections with our customers and with people and organisations within the design world. As part of this, we regularly run 'Punkt.Challenges'. These consist of style difficulties that form part of postgraduate design courses, and digital detox obstacles where self-confessed mobile phone addicts are invited to review their relationship with innovation.
Ten years ago, mobile phones were still very uncommon. Now, a life lived outside the structure of the mobile phone is uncommon. 10 years ago, many people had mobile phones, but they would typically just attract our attention if another human being had chosen to call us or send us a text. Now that the majority of people's lives are a lot more automated: the brand-new regular is to scurry around within a continuous onslaught of status updates, push notifications and an entire lot more.
Our Digital Detox Challenges have actually been running because 2016. The negative elements of smart devices weren't widely talked about at that point, however there has actually given that been a rise of interest in the subject. Participant reports are a crucial element of the Detox Challenges; by running the Challenges and releasing these reports we intend to keep the conversation of people's relationship with technology prominent and on-going - both in regards to tech dependency and the significance of premium design in the real (i.e. non-virtual) world.
The big difference this time round was that the term 'smartphone dependency' had plainly entered typical parlance - in 2016 it still sounded a bit over the top, but in 2018 individuals were beginning to sound truly fretted. You can check out the reports listed below, but here are some excerpts from a few of the numerous applications we got:
" The continuous scrolling."
" I attempted it with an old traditional phone, it was like going back to an ex - with all the old pros and cons. Who does that?"
" We use our phones a lot - why should not they be gorgeous along with practical?"
" I'm doing my own version now, however I had to choose a broke ass burner phone that's 10 years old ...".
" As a UI designer for digital products I've typically questioned a few of the success criteria utilized in my industry, particularly 'engagement' as a metric for success. Until that changes, regrettably it's very hard to eliminate against 100s of designers who are aiming to hook you into their products.  There is a specific paradox about this as I create for these products but wish to get away from them. I believe it's a chance for me as a designer to value how important our attention is, and attempt to take that lesson back into my market, hopefully to influence a change in technique to technology.".
" I have actually begun getting rid of all my social networks profiles and have actually immediately observed the favorable impact it's had on me. I am a lot calmer now, and I want to keep it that method, by likewise removing my smart device for excellent.".
Life is too brief to keep our heads down.
Innovation has actually dramatically altered over the last century, from being an useful tool in our lives to keeping us as hooked in as much as it can and for the longest period of time. This Challenge changes that in its whole, pushing us into recognizing what is going on. I've constantly enjoyed using the most recent things, but considering that Punkt. has been around, I wanted to alter that, and with the Digital Detox Challenge, that's precisely what occurred. When you go from a constantly ringing mobile phone to a phone like this, you realize how much you can compromise all these applications that keep you hooked all day long: you don't require them.
In a way, you do become sort of separated socially from your friends-- let's state if they "Snapchat" you or whatnot-- however you begin to recognize that it's for the much better, and the Punkt. MP01 accomplishes simply that. It teaches you simplicity and teaches you that you do not need whatever on your phone. Simply the fundamentals.
If you seem like you are hooked on your phone, like many people I have fulfilled, it could be a great time to offer this phone a try. A lot of my own member of the family experience this feeling and I feel like passing this difficulty on to others so they can master it. This Challenge has actually become so essential in 2018 because-- as I stated-- Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, and so on are here to keep us hooked in for the longest time. Don't believe me? Download QualityTime for your Android and you will recognize that you do not even take note of exactly what's going on around you. If you feel an itch, it may be a great time to obtain that had a look at, and an excellent way to set about it is with the Punkt. MP01.
The more time we invest taking a look at screens, the less important daytime ends up being-- and sometimes, yes, more of an obstacle. Whether you're checking your messages while strolling to work, enjoying your smart device with your friends (who are each delighting in theirs), or seeing a movie, daytime is an inconvenience.
We started heading in this manner since we wanted to. Nowadays-- to a large extent-- we simply do it due to the fact that we do it. And since others want us to do it.
Is this really how you desire to spend your time in the world?
* * *.
In 2016, Google staff member Tristan Harris left his task to discovered a new non-profit organisation called Time Well Spent, which looked for to expand the debate on exactly what innovation is doing to us and led to the creation of the Center for Humane Technology. Ever since, the subject has exploded into the mainstream and it has actually become clear that it is refraining from doing advantages to our general sense of wellness.
The web page of the Center's site features a striking montage image. A generic graphic of a smartphone is combined with a photograph of a lady. However she is not provided as being on the screen. She is in truth looking out from the phone, leaning with her arms folded on the bottom edge of the screen as though it were a windowsill. She appears pleased, taking pleasure in the view. And she is bathed in sunshine.
Possibly it makes good sense to utilize these brighter nights for something besides looking at pixels? And when bedtime approaches, matching sundown with a digital sunset: whatever turned off, leaving just a land-line with a number known just to family and close buddies, and a devoted alarm clock.
Joining those who have actually dropped their smart devices completely, combining a basic phone with a laptop or tablet (much much better for typing on). Nowadays these concepts may sound practically extreme, but as far as biology is worried, they're what your brain wants. The medical side-effects of tech over-use.
Because of the apparent decrease in traffic accidents, Daylight Saving Time is stated to increase life span of a nation's people. Ditto prohibiting phone usage while driving, naturally (with a much clearer causal link). Phones threaten in other ways, too: scrollers walking into traffic, selfie trophy-hunters taking one danger too many, etc. Over-use of tech shrinks our lives in another way as well-- incrementally and undoubtedly. It offers us a narrower presence in which we are less focussed, less rested and hence less awake. Over-use eats our lives, and it's becoming the norm.
Time for a rethink?
Do you discover that any place you go, you constantly end up in the same place: in front of your smart device? Utilizing it, or letting it use you, to stay 'connected'? Gotten in touch with what individuals are up to back home. Gotten in touch with the current news reports. Gotten in touch with work. Gotten in touch with games, YouTube videos, Wikipedia. Gotten in touch with pictures from the last vacation you took, and the one before that. What sort of 'connection' is that, really? This circumstance is something that's sneaked up on us, and maybe it's time to start making some decisions ...
A vacation is a possibility to switch off, to experience new things. If we do not likewise change off our gadgets, if we continue to outsource our awareness to image sensing units and memory cards, if we're still connected to exactly what we were doing before we left and what we'll be doing when we get back, it's as if we're paying a kind of vacation tax. Part of the experience is subtracted-- and not to help the local economy, but to assist line the pockets of shareholders of social media companies.
Picture a traditional travelogue like Jack Kerouac's On the Road, minus this tax. There would not be much left. As well as if we're searching for something a bit less intense for our fortnight away, the see it here concept still uses. Whether it's a case of pings on the beach, or livestreaming from the Louvre, something's gotten however something's lost. And on the topic of getting lost, yes, without a smartphone it might occur. And perhaps you'll end up someplace that ends up being the emphasize of your trip. Perhaps you'll find some interesting restaurant that isn't really on tripadvisor.com. You might wind up talking to some residents. Nothing ventured, absolutely nothing acquired. This ties in with the growing sluggish travelmovement, and the recovering of overland travel as a mainstream and sensible alternative to flying, shown by the underground success of The Man in Seat Sixty-One. It's all about existing.
If we do decide to have a holiday that doesn't revolve around processing huge information, there are a few options. We can go to the other extreme, and leave home without any sort of phone or tablet. (That never utilized to be an extreme, but we reside in extreme times.) And we have alternatives like changing our device's settings to 'minimum', leaving it in the hotel safe throughout the day, etc
. Or we can take a different phone. One that just does calls and texts. And then immerse ourselves in a different culture, have some experiences, or simply delight in a bit of solitude.
The physical act of switching phones goes deep. It's a bit like flying the nest. And it's starting to acquire in appeal: whether a cheap, old-tech model or something more trendy and up-to-date, opting to in some cases utilize a simple phone is something that everyone can associate with nowadays. They might refrain from doing it themselves, but they certainly know why some people do.
There are practical benefits, too. Just having to charge your phone occasionally is popular with everyone but if you're going somewhere without mains electrical power, your greedy smart device will be no usage at all. Likewise, with a basic phone you do not have to keep checking that your digital factotum hasn't cunningly discovered some way of running up monster-sized data roaming charges-- it can still happen. It's the 'really being there' that truly counts. Sure, taking a trip without a smartphone will mean a couple of mix-ups, a minimized ability to strategy, to understand beforehand what's going to happen. However travelling sans algorithms is where the action is. And the screens on easy phones are often much harder than the large areas of glass discovered on their more complicated cousins. Changing a broken smart device screen is a trouble at the very best of times; increase that by 10 if you're abroad.
But it's the 'in fact being there' that actually counts. Sure, travelling without a smart device will imply a couple of mix-ups, a decreased ability to plan, to understand in advance exactly what's going to happen. However taking a trip sans algorithms is where the action is.