Developers Should Help With The Digital Diet

In the last few years I’ve developed apps for the iPhone. As a developer, you want your app to succeed, you want users to download it, use it daily, then make it viral. It’s super easy to connect your app to Facebook these days, and by that you can increase engagement of the users – you. You can also add push notifications, which means you are allowed to nag your user, whenever you want to, not thinking about where he is now, or what he’s doing.

Developers should take responsibility

Developers should take responsibility

I remember me and the other guys in our startup sitting around the table, thinking how to make people use our app more and more. But at the same time, our team was super fair and we didn’t want to spam users, just like we don’t like it when apps are spamming us. This kind of behaviour means being responsible. Not just thinking about number of daily downloads, and how many times a day the user plays with our app; we were thinking about ourselves when we thought of “users”.

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The Fear Of Missing Out – FOMO

You know that feeling, when you are working, studying, or stuck at your parents house, and you feel that you are missing out? That party you can’t go to, that friends gathering you passed because you wanted to watch TV, that friend of yours which is in the beach right now having fun…

Since I remember myself as a kid, I had the Fear Of Missing Out. I remember a specific Friday night when my parents insisted on taking me with them to their friends, and I missed that friends party. I was only ten, but I remember that day as if it was yesterday. I cried, and had a strong belief that after this missing out I will have no friends anymore… I thought about how much fun they have without me… how the girl I loved is in this very moment falling in love with another kid from my class. He got blue eyes, mine are just boring brown…

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Ten Smartphones in my Bed… What a Nightmare!

“After our last talk about the Digital Diet,  I dreamt that I sleep with ten smartphones around me in bed… they were so heavy I couldn’t move them around or even pick them up…

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[still in the dream] I woke up, and then we had a discussion about the conspiration theory of how Apple, Google and Facebook intend to turn my pillow into a huge advertisement space, and that I will never be able to sleep again anymore!”

Tal Halevi, Tel-Aviv, Israel

How I lost proportions having NoMoPhobia…

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Ciudad del este is located at the borders of Argentina, Brazil and Paraguay, having a huge “tax-free” zone. While traveling in South America, I got there and had a full day to waste. I started creating a list of things I’d like to buy, comparing the prices between the different stores – all with the help of my precious iPhone. Then, while adding a new item to the list, I dropped my iPhone on the floor, and its screen cracked.
So I panicked.

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Phantom Ringing Syndrome

Two weeks ago I wrote about the fear of being without your phone, AKA “NoMoPhobia”.

Now, I always thought that I’m the only crazy person in the room, when I used to hear my phone ringing, vibrate or the sounds of various notifications – but it wasn’t! I’m hearing the familiar noise, pick up my phone, and nothing. It was all in my imagination.

Did my smart-shoe just ring?!

Did my smart-shoe just ring?!

I just found out I’m not the only crazy around. This sensation and false belief that the phone rang while in fact it isn’t doing so, is called “Phantom Ringing Syndrome”. It usually happens when you are concentrated on something, like watching TV, taking a shower or using a noisy device.

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Brands are Getting It

Have a short break from your connected life…

Check out this amazing campaign by Kit Kat. Their ongoing tagline is “Have a break, have a Kit Kat”. So since we have zero breaks these days – because we are constantly connected, Kit Kat came up with this brilliant project. They placed “No-Wifi” zones on social places in Amsterdam. In these zones you can’t be plugged in to the network, so voila – you must really listen to your friends, and watch the street go by.

Here’s the nice video they done for promoting the campaign:

Awareness is Half the Way to Rehab

The WORD is out. People around me are chatting about the Organic Connectivity, and about the concepts of Organic Apps vs Junk Apps.

Some of them even started using their phones less and less, and they tell me they enjoy longer conversations with their friends, and better mornings. That is exactly what happened with my friend Shiran.

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Shiran, get off yer phone already!

Shiran is a super popular girl. She has 2,500 friends on Facebook, and I wouldn’t be surprised if she’s actually in contact with most of them. She’s writing a successful blog about fashion, and works for a PR company. Being social is the essence of her life and career, and that is why she’s an easy pray for the Junk Apps, for the “Likes” on Facebook and Instagram…  Shiran is also super intelligent, not one that is easily tricked. But she – like all of us – got hooked by the Smartphone.

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My Digital Diet

frrr…. frrr… frrrr…

My alarm clock is running. It must be 8AM already. I grab my phone with two fingers, using a third one to turn it off with an elegant swipe gesture. My left eye is closed, my right is half open. My mind starts figuring out what appears on the screen. Notifications.

בוקר טוב גם לכן, נוטיפיקציות שלי

Right on, let’s start the work. What should we check first – the whatsapp messages? there are eight from The Friends group, they probably went for a drink whilst i fell asleep. Three more msgs from the girl I’m dating, well that could wait a bit. Facebook messages? could be from someone from the office, or from some old friend. Four new likes in Instagram for a picture I uploaded last night? Well that’s REALLY not important, but my ego wants it checked. And two more emails – wait a sec, it could be an urgent matter from the office, but oh, maybe it’s just spam… Next to all those icons, I see my To Do List icon, reminding me of today’s tasks.

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What is NoMoPhobia

From Urban Dictionary:

No-mo-pho-bia (\,nô-mə-`fô-bç-ə\) noun : an exaggerated, inexplicable, and illogical fear being without a mobile device, power source, or service area.
Origin: Dubbed by British experts who claim that state that fifty-three percent of mobile users, with forty-eight percent women and 58 percent of men questioned in their study admitted to experience feelings of anxiety when they run out of a battery or credit, lose their phone, or have no network coverage.

For me, the iPh…

For me, the iPhone had become a toxic compulsion. It had completed its invasion and occupation of my interstitial time — all those minutes riding the train, waiting in line, that used to be such fertile territory for daydreaming and storymaking.

Robin Sloan, Writer, California.

From an interview given to The Millions.

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A New Book Describes Internet Addiction in Greece

As described in Phantis, Greek Internet addicts are spending an average of 42 hours per week on the Internet, according to a new book in Greek by a seasoned police officer heading a cybercrime subdivision of the Athens police. According to data in the book addicted people have used the Internet for six years on average before being diagnosed, while the majority are addicted to Internet games specifically (97%). Internet addicts log on mostly at home (79%), at Internet cafes (67%) and at school (17%).

In 72% of cases, psychiatrically-diagnosed symptoms follow addiction.