Punkt. is a fairly little, vibrant and independent business, and we like to preserve close connections with our customers and with people and organisations within the design world. As part of this, we routinely run 'Punkt.Challenges'. These consist of design challenges that form part of postgraduate style courses, and digital detox challenges where self-confessed smartphone addicts are invited to review their relationship with innovation.
10 years ago, smart devices were still really uncommon. Now, a life lived outside the structure of the smartphone is uncommon. 10 years ago, the majority of people had mobile phones, but they would typically only attract our attention if another human being had actually decided to call us or send us a text. Now that a lot of individuals's lives are a lot more automated: the brand-new typical is to scoot around within a nonstop onslaught of status updates, push notices and a whole lot more.
Our Digital Detox Challenges have been running since 2016. The unfavorable aspects of smart devices weren't widely discussed at that point, but there has given that been a rise of interest in the topic. Individual reports are a crucial element of the Detox Challenges; by running the Challenges and publishing these reports we aim to keep the conversation of people's relationship with innovation popular and on-going - both in regards to tech dependency and the value of top quality design in the real (i.e. non-virtual) world.
The huge difference this time round was that the term 'smart device addiction' had actually clearly gotten in typical parlance - in 2016 it still sounded a bit over the top, but in 2018 people were starting to sound genuinely stressed. You can check out the reports listed below, but here are some excerpts from a few of the many applications we got:
" The constant scrolling."
" I tried it with an old traditional phone, it was like 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 in addition to practical?"
" I'm doing my own version 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 often questioned a few of the success requirements used in my industry, particularly 'engagement' as a metric for success. Till that modifications, regrettably it's really challenging to eliminate versus 100s of designers who are attempting to hook you in to their products.  There is a specific paradox about this as I develop for these items but want to get away from them. I believe it's a chance for me as a designer to appreciate how valuable our attention is, and attempt to take that lesson back into my market, ideally to affect a modification in technique to innovation.".
" I have begun eliminating all my social networks profiles and have right away discovered the positive impact it's had on me. I am a lot calmer now, and I wish to keep it that way, by likewise eliminating my smart device for great.".
Life is too short to keep our heads down.
Innovation has dramatically changed over the last century, from being a valuable tool in our lives to keeping us as connected in as much as it can and for the longest amount of time. This Challenge modifications that in its whole, pushing us into recognizing what is going on. I've constantly liked utilizing the most recent things, but given that Punkt. has actually been around, I wanted to alter that, and with the Digital Detox Challenge, that's exactly what took place. When you go from a continuously buzzing smart device to a phone like this, you recognize what does it cost? you can compromise all these applications that keep you hooked all day long: you do not require them.
In a way, you do end up being kind of apart socially from your buddies-- let's state if they "Snapchat" you or whatnot-- but you begin to realize that it's for the much better, and the Punkt. MP01 accomplishes simply that. It teaches you simplicity and teaches you that you don't require everything on your phone. Simply the fundamentals.
If you seem like you are hooked on your phone, like the majority of people I have met, it might be a great time to provide this phone a shot. Many of my own relative experience this sensation and I feel like passing this difficulty on to others so they can master it. This Challenge has become so essential 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 understand that you do not even take note of exactly what's going on around you. If you feel an itch, it may be a good time to get that had a look at, and a great way to go about it is with the Punkt. MP01.
The more time we spend taking a look at screens, the less crucial daylight becomes-- and in some cases, yes, more of a hindrance. Whether you're checking your messages while walking to work, enjoying your mobile phone with your buddies (who are each enjoying theirs), or viewing a film, daylight is an inconvenience.
We began heading by doing this due to the fact that we wished to. Nowadays-- to a large extent-- we simply do it because we do it. And because others want us to do it.
Is this really how you wish 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 expand the debate on what innovation is doing to us and caused the production of the Center for Humane Technology. Since then, the subject has actually taken off into the mainstream and it has actually become clear that it is not doing good ideas to our general sense of wellness.
The web page of the Center's site features a striking montage image. A generic graphic of a mobile phone is combined with a photograph of a woman. But she is not provided as being on the screen. She remains in fact 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 delighted, taking pleasure in the view. And she is bathed in sunshine.
Perhaps it makes sense to utilize these brighter nights for something aside from looking at pixels? When bedtime techniques, matching sundown with a digital sundown: whatever turned off, leaving just a land-line with a number known just to family and friends, and a dedicated alarm clock.
Joining those who have actually dropped their smartphones entirely, integrating a standard 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 concerned, they're exactly what your brain wants. The medical side-effects of tech over-use.
Because of the evident reduction in traffic accidents, Daylight Saving Time is stated to increase life span of a country's people. Ditto banning 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 lots of, and so on. However over-use of tech shrinks our lives in another method as well-- incrementally and inevitably. It gives us a narrower presence where we are less focussed, less rested and hence less awake. Over-use consumes our lives, and it's becoming the norm.
Time for a rethink?
Do you find that anywhere you go, you always wind up in the same place: in front of your mobile phone? Utilizing it, or letting it utilize you, to remain 'connected'? Gotten in touch with exactly what individuals depend on back home. Gotten in touch with the most recent report. Linked with work. Gotten in touch with video games, YouTube videos, Wikipedia. Connected with photos from the last vacation you took, and the one prior to that. What type of 'connection' is that, truly? This circumstance is something that's crept up on us, and perhaps it's time to begin making some decisions ...
A vacation is an opportunity to turn off, to experience new things. If we don't 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 prior to we left and exactly what we'll be doing when we get back, it's as if we're paying a kind of holiday tax. Part of the experience is subtracted-- and not to help the regional economy, however to assist line the pockets of investors of social media business.
Think of a timeless travelogue like Jack Kerouac's On the Road, minus this tax. There would not be much. As well as if we're searching for something a bit less extreme 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 however something's lost. And on the subject of getting lost, yes, without a smart device it could take place. And maybe you'll wind up somewhere that ends up being the highlight of your trip. Perhaps you'll find some intriguing restaurant that isn't really on tripadvisor.com. You might wind up talking to some locals. Absolutely nothing ventured, absolutely nothing got. This connect the growing slow travelmovement, and the recovering of overland travel as a mainstream and realistic option to flying, demonstrated by the underground success of The Man in Seat Sixty-One. It's all about existing.
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 severe, and leave house without any kind of phone or tablet. (That never ever used to be an extreme, however we reside in extreme times.) And we have options like changing our device's settings to 'minimum', leaving it in the hotel safe throughout the day, and so on
. Or we can take a different phone. One that just does calls and texts. And then immerse ourselves in a different culture, have some adventures, or just delight in a bit of solitude.
The physical act of swapping phones goes deep. It's a bit like flying the nest. And it's beginning to acquire in appeal: whether an inexpensive, old-tech design or something more trendy and current, deciding to sometimes use a simple 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. Just needing to charge your phone occasionally is popular with everyone but if you're going somewhere without mains electrical power, your greedy smartphone will be no use at all. With a basic phone you don't need to keep inspecting that your digital factotum hasn't cunningly discovered some method of running up monster-sized information roaming charges-- it can still happen. It's the 'in fact being there' that truly counts. Sure, taking a trip without a mobile phone will imply a couple of mix-ups, a minimized ability to strategy, to understand ahead of time what's going to take place. Taking a trip sans algorithms is where the action is. And the screens on easy phones are often much tougher than the big locations digital detox phone of glass discovered on their more complicated cousins. Changing a broken smart device screen is a trouble at the very best of times; multiply that by 10 if you're abroad.
But it's the 'really existing' that truly counts. Sure, travelling without a smartphone will mean a couple of mix-ups, a lowered capability to strategy, to understand ahead of time exactly what's going to take place. Taking a trip sans algorithms is where the action is.