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ByePhone

I use my phone too much. I look at it too often. I am amazed at what it does and I’m grateful for a lot of things it allows me to do. However, I find myself opening, refreshing, closing, opening, refreshing and closing it a lot. There are never-ending stories to check, memes to lol at and tags to review.

And the worrying thing is that it’s getting worse.

A few weeks ago in an attempt to grab even more of my attention, Facebook tried to encourage me to message my friend for a third day in a row “to keep my streak going”.

How about I message them the next time I need to speak to them?

How about I message them the next time I need to speak to them?

These kinds of attention-grabbing-features are appearing because:

  1. Our attention = Ca$h: Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Google, Snapchat etc. make their money from showing you ads. The more you look at their apps, the more money they can make. They want you to open their apps as often as possible so they are designing new ways (like the Facebook example above) to keep you coming back.
  2. Its technically possible: Apple, Google and other manufacturers have built phones (hardware) and operating systems (software) that allow app developers to push information to you, to interrupt you, know your location and know your activity.

The advertising-based business models of your favorite apps combined with your smartphone means an all-out war to steal your time and attention.

Taking a break

It feels like this is going to get worse before it gets better. A lot of apps are addicted to the advertising dollar and that won’t be changing in the short term.

The Facebook example above prompted a discussion with my friend Tim and together we’ve decided to take a break from our smartphones. It’s an experiment, partly for fun, partly a protest, and partly a serious inquiry into our own relationships with focus, productivity, mental health and the devices we use each day. It’s an opportunity for reflection and consideration.

Starting next Monday 22nd January, we’re going to spend a week (maybe longer) without our feature-full $1000 smartphones and switch back to the featureless phones we grew up with.

I shared this idea along with a list of things I think I’m going to miss on Twitter a month ago. Since then a few people have decided to join us as we say goodbye to our smartphones. You’re welcome to do the same.

If you’d like to come along for the ride, grab yourself an old phone and sim-card, give your new number to your most important friend and family and put your smartphone in your draw. We’ll be sharing our experiences (from our computers) with the hashtag #byephone.

For some reason, I’m kind of nervous about not having access to music, maps, weather and on-demand cars. But I also know that is stupid and that feeling nervous about losing that stuff is probably a sign that something needs to change.

Bloomberg: Taxi Medallion Prices Are Plummeting, Endangering Loans

Article: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2017-01-30/taxi-medallion-prices-are-plummeting-endangering-loans

Future of mobility report by McKinsey & Bloomberg

(.pdf)

https://www.bbhub.io/bnef/sites/4/2016/10/BNEF_McKinsey_The-Future-of-Mobility_11-10-16.pdf

Article: “Driverless cars to alter legal profession” (in Aus)

http://www.lawyersweekly.com.au/news/19793-driverless-cars-to-alter-legal-profession

Sam Altman runs in front of driverless car

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Tractor Links Mon 13th April

  1. Milkshake Marketing Video
  2. Udemy – Mastering jobs to be done interviews
  3. Stop Making Users Explore
  4. What UI really is…
  5. Replacing User Story with Job Story
  6. Jobs to be done for my phone
  7. How to know what your customers really want
  8. Interview script
  9. $300m Button

Prototyping Tools

  1. Flinto
  2. Proto.io
  3. Framer.js
  4. Balsamiq
  5. Invision

IDEO on Autonomous Cars

Screen Shot 2015-04-03 at 4.37.03 pm

 
IDEO have built a nice site called automobility.ideo.com where they explore ideas and concepts about the future of, among other things, driverless cars.

There are some really interesting stats on the site and some nice mock-ups of how cars may look.

One stat that caught my eye was this: “Each autonomous shared vehicle could replace 11 conventional cars”.

That is the first time I’ve seen anyone put a figure on it and that’s a pretty significant figure.

If you’re interested in the topic, the site is well worth a look.

 

 

Diverless cars – “15 years away”

Above: Jen-Hsun Huang of Nvidia and Elon Musk of Tesla at GPUTech 2015. Image Credit: Dean Takahashi

“We’ll take autonomous cars for granted in short time.” – Musk

 

Venture Beat shared some insights from Elon Musk on autonomous cars at a recent conference in the U.S.

Every time I hear of a road fatality or of someone who writes off their car in a crash,  it’s hard not to be frustrated because it seems to be very clear now that this will not be a problem future generations will have to deal with.

 

As far as safety goes, Musk said, “The evidence is already overwhelming” that self-driving cars can be better at things like alerting us to brake lights ahead than human reflexes are.

 

Read the full article here