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Thread March 5, 2016 editorial: comments

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1 March 5, 2016 editorial: comments

Smartphone Junkie

I’m starting to think my iPhone has become an extension of my body. It’s in my pocket all day and on my bedside all night. I haven’t counted how many times over the course of an average day I look at its screen, but it’s got to be over 100. It functions as my alarm clock; my book reader; my calendar; my video, music, audiobook and podcast player; my metronome, my tuner, my GPS, my decibel meter, my game platform, and occasionally, even my phone. 

It’s also the ultimate argument stopper. Let’s say I’m at a party and my friends are squabbling over something obscure, say, how many years ago the Pleistocene Epoch ended. I just pull out my trusty 6S, and within seconds I’ve Googled my way to a Wikipedia entry, and say, “11,700 years!” If this question had come up in the pre-smartphone era, we probably would never have resolved it — unless someone at the party was a paleontologist, or the host had an encyclopedia handy. Remember those?

Assuming that my phone is not bombarding me with harmful electro-magnetic radiation, is it really so bad that I’m addicted to it? How do I know I’m an addict? When I misplace my phone, I’m a basket case until I find it again. Perhaps it’s not such a good thing to be so dependent on a piece of technology, but it sure is fun.

If 20 years ago, somebody told me that I’d be carrying around a pocket-sized device that could do so many different things, I would have thought it was something from science-fiction. And while smartphones are not quite to the level of the matter transporter on Star Trek, it’s hard to argue that they aren’t pretty damn cool.

Another piece of technology that’s pretty damn cool (and which I would also have considered something from science fiction is you told me about it 15 years ago) is Waves NX, which we reviewed this week. Called a “Virtual Mix Room” plug-in, it uses psychoacoustics to create a 3D mixing environment in your headphones that’s spacious and free of acoustic anomalies. What’s more, it can also create a virtual surround sound mixing environment — also in your stereo headphones. It’s way cool, and surprisingly inexpensive. If you haven’t read the review, check it out. I also produced a video that explains the plug-in’s features in detail.

2
I recently strung a series of words together that I would never have imagined possible until fairly recently. I stated to someone: "I fell asleep watching my phone last night." I paused after saying it to reflect on how weird it sounded even to me!
3
The technology is amazing. Anytime anywhere, I've in my pocket thousands of HD tracks. The only missing thing is the time for. Internet, phone calls, e-mails, social networks prevent me to be receptive for a real listening.

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4
Quote:
I stated to someone: "I fell asleep watching my phone last night." I paused after saying it to reflect on how weird it sounded even to me!

There's no doubt that our phones are becoming intwined in our lives in ways we might not have expected.
5
Quote:
The technology is amazing. Anytime anywhere, I've in my pocket thousands of HD tracks. The only missing thing is the time for. Internet, phone calls, e-mails, social networks prevent me to be receptive for a real listening.

You're right. With all their capabilities, the danger of our smartphones is how much they can distract us from what we really want to get done. Then again, one has a similar problem on a computer: It's the access to the Internet and all its time-wasting possibilities.
6
The other day my phone died at the airport from Paris to Nice. I could not reach my girlfriend to tell her. My flight ticket was on the phone (thankfully I could re-print it), I could not take an uber nor check the exact address on Google maps... Etc etc etc. We are so used to it we hardly live without it!
7
Poor you!

I'm delighted to say that I threw my first smart (stupid) phone away in a fit of frustration and kept going for several more years with my trusty Nokia 6310i.
My second one often gets forgotten and lies neglected most of the time wherever I last put it down.
Not that I'm anti technology, I started my career in IT operating a 2nd generation computer (RCA301) back in '66, and went on to become a programmer and, to cut a long (techie) story short, ended my career writing and delivering courses on sat comms (the stuff journalists use remotely) worldwide.
When the contract has run out on this one it's due for the bin and I'll buy something much simpler.

Just to add a little sanity to the thread.
John.
8
All I can say is that after those very annoying beepers, cellphones have been a godsend. Now, beam me up, Scotty!

[ Post last edited on 03/06/2016 at 06:00:05 ]

9
Quote:
I could not take an uber nor check the exact address on Google maps... Etc etc etc. We are so used to it we hardly live without it!

Yes, phones are great until they die or you lose or forget them. Then you're in trouble. Still, on the whole, I feel I'm much better off with my phone than without it.

10
Quote:
Just to add a little sanity to the thread.
John.

Hi John. Thanks for the dose of sanity. We need it! :-D I can't say I could ever go back to a flip phone, but I admire you for having the courage of your convictions. ;)