Punkt. is a fairly small, vibrant and independent company, and we want to maintain close connections with our clients and with individuals and organisations within the design world. As part of this, we frequently run 'Punkt.Challenges'. These include design obstacles that form part of postgraduate design courses, and digital detox obstacles where self-confessed mobile phone addicts are welcomed to revisit their relationship with technology.
Ten years earlier, smart devices were still very uncommon. Now, a life lived outside the structure of the mobile phone is uncommon. 10 years ago, a lot of individuals had cellphones, however they would normally only attract our attention if another human had actually decided to call us or send us a text. Now that many people's lives are so much more automated: the new normal is to scamper around within a ceaseless onslaught of status updates, push notices and a great deal more.
Our Digital Detox Challenges have been running because 2016. The negative aspects of smart devices weren't commonly discussed at that point, but there has actually given that been a rise of interest in the subject. Individual reports are a crucial element of the Detox Challenges; by running the Challenges and releasing these reports we aim to keep the conversation of individuals's relationship with technology popular and on-going - both in regards to tech addiction and the importance of high-quality style in the genuine (i.e. non-virtual) world.
The huge difference this time round was that the term 'smartphone dependency' had clearly gotten in common parlance - in 2016 it still sounded a bit over the top, but in 2018 individuals were starting to sound truly worried. You can check out the reports below, but here are some excerpts from a few of the lots of applications we received:
" The continuous scrolling."
" I attempted it with an old classic phone, it resembled returning to an ex - with all the old pros and cons. Who does that?"
" We use our phones a lot - why shouldn't they be gorgeous in addition to 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 items I've often questioned some of the success criteria utilized in my market, particularly 'engagement' as a metric for success. Till that modifications, unfortunately it's very challenging to combat against 100s of designers who are attempting to hook you into their items.  There is a specific paradox about this as I develop for these products but want to escape them. I think 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 approach to innovation.".
" I have actually begun eliminating all my social media profiles and have immediately seen the favorable impact it's had on me. I am so much calmer now, and I 'd like to keep it that way, by likewise removing my mobile phone for great.".
Life is too short to keep our heads down.
Innovation has actually considerably altered over the last century, from being a handy tool in our lives to keeping us as connected in as much as it can and for the longest duration of time. This Challenge changes that in its totality, pressing us into realizing what is going on. I've constantly liked using the latest things, but since Punkt. has actually been around, I wanted to alter that, and with the Digital Detox Challenge, that's precisely what happened. When you go from a continuously 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 apart socially from your buddies-- let's state if they "Snapchat" you or whatnot-- but you begin to understand that it's for the much better, and the Punkt. MP01 achieves just that. It teaches you simpleness and teaches you that you don't require whatever on your phone. Just the basics.
If you feel like you are hooked on your phone, like many people I have actually met, it might be a great time to provide this phone a shot. A number of my own household members experience this feeling and I seem like passing this difficulty on to others so they can master it. This Challenge has actually ended up being so important in 2018 because-- as I stated-- Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, etc. are here to keep us hooked in for the longest time. Don't think me? Download QualityTime for your Android and you will recognize that you do not even pay attention to exactly what's going on around you. If you feel an itch, it may be a great time to get that had a look at, and a great way to set about it is with the Punkt. MP01.
The more time we invest looking at screens, the less important daytime becomes-- and in some cases, yes, more of a hindrance. Whether you're inspecting your messages while strolling to work, enjoying your smartphone with your friends (who are each enjoying theirs), or watching a film, daylight is a trouble.
We began heading by doing this because we wished to. Nowadays-- to a large degree-- we merely do it because we do it. And since others want us to do it.
Is this truly how you want to invest your time in the world?
* * *.
In 2016, Google worker Tristan Harris left his job to discovered a brand-new non-profit organisation called Time Well Spent, which sought to expand the debate on exactly what innovation is doing to us and resulted in the development of the Center for Humane Technology. Given that then, the subject has actually blown up into the mainstream and it has ended up being clear that it is not doing great things to our basic sense of wellness.
The house page of the Center's site features a striking montage image. A generic graphic of a smart device is combined with a photo of a female. She is not provided as being on the screen. She remains 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 seems happy, taking pleasure in the view. And she is bathed in sunshine.
Perhaps it makes sense to use these brighter nights for something besides taking a look at pixels? And when bedtime techniques, matching sundown with a digital sunset: everything switched off, leaving simply a land-line with a number understood just to family and friends, and a devoted alarm clock.
Joining those who have ditched their smart devices completely, integrating a basic phone with a laptop computer or tablet (much better for typing on). Nowadays these ideas might sound nearly extreme, but as far as biology is worried, they're what your brain desires. The medical side-effects of tech over-use.
Due to the fact that of the apparent decrease in traffic mishaps, Daylight Saving Time is stated to increase life span of a nation's people. Ditto banning phone usage while driving, naturally (with a much clearer causal link). Phones are hazardous in other methods, too: scrollers walking into traffic, selfie trophy-hunters taking one danger too many, and so on. But over-use of tech shrinks our lives in another way also-- incrementally and inevitably. It provides us a narrower existence where we are less focussed, less rested and hence less awake. Over-use eats our lives, and it's becoming the standard.
Time for a rethink?
Do you discover that anywhere you go, you constantly wind up in the exact same location: in front of your smartphone? Utilizing it, or letting it utilize you, to stay 'connected'? Connected with what individuals depend on back home. Connected with the current news reports. Gotten in touch with work. Linked with video games, YouTube videos, Wikipedia. Gotten in this content touch with photos from the last holiday you took, and the one prior to that. What sort of 'connection' is that, really? This scenario is something that's sneaked up on us, and possibly it's time to begin making some choices ...
A holiday is a chance to switch off, to experience brand-new things. But if we do not also turn off our devices, if we continue to outsource our awareness to image sensors and sd card, 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 type of holiday tax. Part of the experience is deducted-- and not to assist the regional economy, however to help line the pockets of shareholders of social media companies.
Think of a classic travelogue like Jack Kerouac's On the Road, minus this tax. There would not be much left. As well as if we're looking for something a bit less intense for our fortnight away, the principle still applies. Whether it's a case of pings on the beach, or livestreaming from the Louvre, something's acquired but something's lost. And on the topic of getting lost, yes, without a smartphone it might take place. And maybe you'll wind up someplace that turns out to be the highlight of your journey. Perhaps you'll find some appealing dining establishment that isn't on tripadvisor.com. You may end up speaking to some locals. Absolutely nothing ventured, absolutely nothing gained. This ties in with the growing slow travelmovement, and the reclaiming of overland travel as a mainstream and realistic option to flying, shown by the underground success of The Man in Seat Sixty-One. It's everything about being there.
If we do choose to have a holiday that does not revolve around processing big data, there are a couple of alternatives. We can go to the other extreme, and leave house without any sort of phone or tablet. (That never ever used to be a severe, however we reside in severe times.) And we have options like changing our gadget's settings to 'minimum', leaving it in the hotel safe throughout the day, and so on
. Or we can take a various phone. One that just does calls and texts. And then immerse ourselves in a various culture, have some adventures, or just take pleasure in a little bit of solitude.
The physical act of switching phones goes deep. It's a bit like flying the nest. And it's beginning to gain in popularity: whether a low-cost, old-tech model or something more trendy and current, deciding to sometimes use a basic phone is something that everybody can associate with nowadays. They may refrain from doing it themselves, but they definitely know why some individuals do.
There are useful advantages, too. Just having to charge your phone occasionally is popular with everyone but if you're going somewhere without mains electricity, your greedy smartphone will be no usage at all. Likewise, with an easy phone you do not need to keep examining that your digital factotum hasn't cunningly discovered some method of running up monster-sized information roaming charges-- it can still occur. However it's the 'really being there' that actually counts. Sure, taking a trip without a smartphone will indicate a couple of mix-ups, a decreased capability to plan, to know beforehand exactly what's going to occur. Travelling sans algorithms is where the action is. And the screens on easy phones are often much harder than the big areas of glass discovered on their more complicated cousins. Replacing a damaged mobile phone screen is a trouble at the best of times; multiply that by ten if you're abroad.
It's the 'really being there' that truly counts. Sure, taking a trip without a mobile phone will indicate a few mix-ups, a lowered capability to plan, to know beforehand what's going to happen. However travelling sans algorithms is where the action is.