Punkt. is a fairly small, dynamic and independent company, and we like 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.
10 years back, smartphones were still really uncommon. Now, a life lived outside the framework of the smart device is unusual. Ten years earlier, the majority of people had cellphones, however they would normally only attract our attention if another person had decided to call us or send us a text. Now that many people's lives are so much more automated: the brand-new typical is to scurry around within a continuous onslaught of status updates, push alerts and a great deal more.
Our Digital Detox Challenges have actually been running since 2016. The unfavorable aspects of smart devices weren't commonly gone over at that point, but there has actually because been a rise of interest in the topic. 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 popular and on-going - both in regards to tech addiction and the significance of high-quality design in the genuine (i.e. non-virtual) world.
The huge difference this time round was that the term 'mobile phone dependency' had actually clearly gone into typical parlance - in 2016 it still sounded a bit over the top, however in 2018 individuals were beginning to sound really stressed. You can check out the reports below, but here are some excerpts from a few of the numerous applications we got:
" The constant scrolling."
" I tried it with an old traditional phone, it resembled returning to an ex - with all the old pros and cons. Who does that?"
" We utilize our phones a lot - why should not they be gorgeous along with practical?"
" I'm doing my own variation now, but I had to go for a broke ass burner phone that's 10 years old ...".
" As a UI designer for digital products I've frequently questioned a few of the success requirements utilized in my market, particularly 'engagement' as a metric for success. Till that modifications, unfortunately it's very challenging to combat versus 100s of designers who are aiming to hook you in to their items.  There is a specific paradox about this as I create for these items however desire to get away from them. But I think it's an opportunity for me as a designer to value how important our attention is, and aim to take that lesson back into my market, ideally to affect a change in method to technology.".
" I have actually begun getting rid of all my social networks profiles and have immediately discovered the positive result it's had on me. I am a lot calmer now, and I wish to keep it that way, by also eliminating my mobile phone for good.".
Life is too brief to keep our heads down.
Innovation has significantly altered over the last century, from being an useful tool in our lives to keeping us as connected in as much as it can and for the longest time period. This Challenge changes that in its whole, pushing us into realizing exactly what is going on. I've always enjoyed utilizing the newest things, however considering that Punkt. has been around, I desired to change that, and with the Digital Detox Challenge, that's precisely what occurred. When you go from a constantly ringing smartphone to a phone like this, you understand just how much you can sacrifice all these applications that keep you hooked all day: you don't require them.
In a manner, you do end up being type of separated socially from your good friends-- let's state if they "Snapchat" you or whatnot-- however you begin to recognize that it's for the better, and the Punkt. MP01 accomplishes simply that. It teaches you simplicity and teaches you that you do not require everything on your phone. Simply the essentials.
If you feel like you are hooked on your phone, like the majority of people I have actually fulfilled, it could be an excellent time to give this phone a try. A lot of my own relative experience this sensation and I feel like passing this obstacle on to others so they can get the hang of it. This Challenge has actually ended up being so crucial in 2018 because-- as I said-- Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, etc. are here to keep us hooked in for the longest time. Do not think me? Download QualityTime for your Android and you will realize that you do not even pay attention to what's going on around you. If you feel an itch, it may be a great time to get that took a look at, and an excellent way to tackle it is with the Punkt. MP01.
The more time we spend taking a look at screens, the lesser daytime ends up being-- and sometimes, yes, more of a hindrance. Whether you're inspecting your messages while strolling to work, enjoying your smart device with your friends (who are each delighting in theirs), or enjoying a film, daytime is a hassle.
We started heading in this manner because we wished to. Nowadays-- to a large extent-- we merely do it due to the fact that we do it. And because others want us to do it.
Is this really how you want to spend your time on Earth?
* * *.
In 2016, Google employee Tristan Harris left his job to found a new non-profit organisation called Time Well Spent, which sought to broaden the dispute on exactly what innovation is doing to us and caused the production of the Center for Humane Technology. Given that then, the topic has actually taken off into the mainstream and it has actually become clear that it is not doing advantages to our general sense of well-being.
The house page of the Center's site includes a striking montage image. A generic graphic of a smart device is integrated with a photo of a lady. But she is not provided as being on the screen. She remains in reality 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, delighting in the view. And she is bathed in sunlight.
Maybe it makes good sense to utilize these brighter evenings for something other than taking a look at pixels? When bedtime approaches, matching sundown with a digital sundown: whatever switched off, leaving simply a land-line with a number understood only to family and buddies, and a devoted alarm clock.
Signing up with those who have dumped their mobile phones completely, integrating a standard phone with a laptop computer or tablet (much better for typing on). Nowadays these ideas may sound nearly extreme, but as far as biology is worried, they're what your brain desires. The medical side-effects of tech over-use.
Because of the obvious reduction in traffic mishaps, Daylight Saving Time is stated to increase life span of a nation's citizens. Ditto prohibiting phone use while driving, naturally (with a much clearer causal link). Phones threaten in other methods, too: scrollers strolling into traffic, selfie trophy-hunters taking one threat too numerous, and so on. Over-use of tech diminishes our lives in another way as well-- incrementally and undoubtedly. It gives us a narrower existence where we are less focussed, less rested and thus less awake. Over-use consumes our lives, and it's becoming the norm.
Time for a rethink?
Do you discover that wherever you go, you always wind up in the same place: in front of your smart device? Using it, or letting it use you, to remain 'linked'? Connected with exactly what individuals are up to back home. Linked with the current news reports. Linked with work. Gotten in touch with games, YouTube videos, Wikipedia. Gotten in touch with pictures from the last vacation you took, and the one prior to that. What kind of 'connection' is that, actually? This situation is something that's crept up on us, and perhaps it's time to begin making some choices ...
A holiday is a chance to turn off, to experience brand-new things. However if we do not likewise change off our gadgets, if we continue to outsource our consciousness to image sensors and memory cards, if we're still attached to exactly what we were doing prior to we left and what we'll be doing when we get back, it's as if we're paying a sort of vacation tax. Part of the experience is deducted-- and not to assist the local economy, but to assist line the pockets of shareholders of social media business.
Imagine a classic travelogue like Jack Kerouac's On the Road, minus this tax. There wouldn't be much left. And even if we're looking for something a bit less extreme for our fortnight away, the 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 subject of getting lost, yes, without a mobile phone it could occur. And maybe you'll end up someplace that ends up being the emphasize of your trip. Perhaps you'll discover some appealing dining establishment that isn't really on tripadvisor.com. You may end up speaking to some locals. Nothing ventured, absolutely nothing acquired. This ties in with the growing slow travelmovement, and the reclaiming of overland travel as a mainstream and reasonable alternative to flying, shown by the underground success of The Man in Seat Sixty-One. It's everything about existing.
If we do choose to have a vacation that doesn't focus on processing big data, there are a couple of options. We can go to the other severe, and leave home with no type of phone or tablet. (That never utilized to be an extreme, however 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 various phone. One that only does calls and texts. Then immerse ourselves in a various culture, have some adventures, or just enjoy a little solitude.
The physical act of swapping phones goes deep. It's a bit like flying the nest. And it's beginning digital detox to gain in appeal: whether a cheap, old-tech design or something more stylish and updated, deciding to often use an easy phone is something that everyone can connect to nowadays. They may refrain from doing it themselves, but they definitely know why some people do.
There are useful benefits, too. Only needing to charge your phone occasionally is popular with everybody however if you're going somewhere without mains electricity, your greedy smart device will be no use at all. With a basic phone you don't require to keep examining that your digital factotum hasn't cunningly discovered some way of running up monster-sized information roaming charges-- it can still take place. It's the 'in fact being there' that really counts. Sure, travelling without a smart device will mean a few mix-ups, a minimized capability to strategy, to understand in advance what's going to occur. However taking a trip sans algorithms is where the action is. And the screens on simple phones are frequently much harder than the big locations of glass discovered on their more complex cousins. Changing a damaged smart device screen is a hassle at the very best of times; multiply that by ten if you're abroad.
However it's the 'actually being there' that truly counts. Sure, taking a trip without a mobile phone will indicate a couple of mix-ups, a lowered capability to strategy, to understand ahead of time what's going to occur. Travelling sans algorithms is where the action is.