The Station Wagon podcast: Seattle - Snoqualmie - Olympia: Episode 28: Giving up Killing Time with Screen Time

Thursday, February 9, 2017

Episode 28: Giving up Killing Time with Screen Time

We explored the history and science of screen-time and then tried giving it up for two weeks.What's that mean? We gave up using our cellphones and other mobile devices to fill those unanticipated boring times we all have day-to-day. Some say this exercise is supposed to help a person be more mindful of their surroundings and contribute to relationship building. Spoiler -- Marc loves his cell phone.
"If you leave your cell phone at home, you feel impacted by not having it. It's an important part of your daily function and what you can do in a day." - Aimee Mullins

We couldn't agree more (at least Marc couldn't). 



Etch A Sketch invented. The Etch A Sketch toy was invented in the late 1950s by André Cassagnes,an electrician with Lincrusta Co, who named the toy L'Ecran Magique (The Magic Screen).(ref)

Ushering in the era of mobile screen distraction.
Parents took on responsibility for boredom. It changed from a character trait, “don’t be boring”, to a “state” that was someone else’s responsibility, namely parents. (ref)
Isaac Asimov predicted that the human race would be Incurably bored. “"Mankind will suffer badly from the disease of boredom, a disease spreading more widely each year and growing in intensity. This will have serious mental, emotional and sociological consequences, and I dare say that psychiatry will be far and away the most important medical specialty in 2014. The lucky few who can be involved in creative work of any sort will be the true elite of mankind, for they alone will do more than serve a machine."
IBM introduces the first “smart phone” called “Simon”. “The Simon included a calendar, address book, fax modem, calculator, notepad, an email app, and simple games. It also had a completely touchscreen-based interface.”

Mark Bertin, M.D. wrote a nice summary of ways to use a smartphone mindfully. For example, Practice Mindfulness, Support Healthy Habits, Change Tech Habits to name a few.

No Phone
Appeared on Shark Tank.

What's Included:
  • One NoPhone
  • One Instruction Manual (how not to use it)
  • More of your attention
  • Real friends
What's Not Included:
  • Texting Your Ex-Boyfriend or Ex-Girlfriend
  • Location Tracking
  • Browsing History
  • Data Overages
  • Dead Batteries
  • Phone
The NoPhone has no warranty and is not intended to be used for anything.

“Available in 'Selfie' and 'Zero' editions as well as its 'classic' version, the NoPhone was designed to serve as a surrogate object for smartphone users whose inability to part from their devices interferes with their participation in real life. Specifically, the phone-shaped object allows users to "always have a rectangle of smooth, cold plastic to clutch without forgoing any potential engagement with [their] direct environment" while avoiding the "unsettling feeling of flesh on flesh when closing your hand," according to the company.”

Pause, the innovative new invention designed to encourage phone-free time routines to improve the quality of time spent at home and in the workplace, launches today.”

Pause is a stylish designer box that creates phone-free quality time when it matters most! When you put your phones inside Pause it blocks all wi-fi signals, all incoming calls, and all text messages as well as any other cell phone distractions.

Study links mobile device addiction to depression and anxiety. “The study was published in the journal Computers in Human Behavior.” “University of Illinois psychology professor Alejandro Lleras found that mobile device addiction is associated with depression and anxiety.”“Having access to a phone seemed to allow that group to resist or to be less sensitive to the stress manipulation,” Lleras said. This benefit was both small and short-lived, but suggests the phone might serve as a comfort item in stressful or anxiety-inducing situations, he said.
“However, for the participants who did become stressed after the stressor was presented, it did not matter whether they had a mobile phone at hand or not: The stress response was the same in all conditions,” Panova said. “These results together suggest that mobile technology may be utilized as a ‘security blanket’ in the face of stress, but may not actually be an effective stress alleviator.”



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