A new study from the University of Missouri found that people can suffer serious psychological and physiological effects when separated from their phones. Despite the fact that our collective cell phone obsession is the world’s favorite thing to talk about, very little research exists on what happens when our iPhones are taken away from us. Based on this study’s results, researchers are suggesting that people actually keep their phones on hand when doing a task that requires heavy focus like taking tests, sitting in meetings, and carrying out work assignments – if a person is too preoccupied stressing over not having their phone, they’re more likely to have worse cognitive performance on the task. Even weirder is this statement to Science Daily from study lead author Russell Clayton: “Additionally, the results from our study suggest that iPhones are capable of becoming an extension of our selves such that when separated, we experience a lessening of ‘self’ and a negative physiological state.” Unsettling, right?
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A new iPhone app called PHHHOTO (created by a company called, not surprisingly, HYPERHYPER) turns your photos into instant GIFs. As you can see, even Diplo is into using it for selfies. When you take a photo through the app, it takes multiple pictures in a row and instantaneously forms a GIF from your creation. I tried it with a picture of yours truly, and it was super cool, but I can’t figure out how to save the thing into my phone’s camera roll or if that’s even possible. The GIF also moves really fast and gives me a little bit of a headache. It seems like the idea is to create your own social network within the app instead of sharing the picture elsewhere — maybe PHHHOTO will become the Instagram of GIFs? As the company oh-so-poetically says, “In the world of PHHHOTO, waves crash, ice cream melts and suns rise — forever.” Well, that’s one way to look at it. [PHHHOTO]
The more time I spend staring at my iPhone when I don’t really need to, the more choppy and unfocused my thoughts are. When I’m staring at the thing too often, my mind is more likely to veer toward mopey thoughts, time moves faster, and a low-grade anxiety hums in the back of my mind. It’s not realistic for me to ditch it altogether (nor do I want to), but I’m constantly trying to build better boundaries between myself and my phone. When I choose a better option in the moments when I’m compelled to check the phone for no real reason, I feel less like the news cycle, or my emails, or whoever is waiting on me to text them back is dictating the pace of my life.
I think Louis C.K. describes it best when he says ”you need to build an ability to just be yourself and not be doing something” instead of whipping out your phone whenever fleeting thoughts of sadness or emptiness show up. It’s surprisingly tough! Most of us play with our phones all the time because it’s so much easier to find that distraction instead of getting real with ourselves about whatever we’re feeling that day. Here are some itty bitty tips that, while they may seem small, have helped me feel a bit more independent from my phone. Keep reading »
One of the biggest reasons I take pictures on the regular is a fear of forgetting, but as it turns out, all those pictures may be making my memories more likely to go fuzzy. There are so many small, delicious slices of life that I’m afraid will slip away forever or go undocumented somewhere in my head if I don’t snap a quick photo. I worry that I’ll lose perspective on the way I thought and felt during whole chunks of my past, though I suppose we’re all doomed to lose memories to some degree as we get older. What I should do about this is keep more of a written record of things, but instead I resort to the quicker method of taking photos. Thanks to smartphones with cameras and their all-too-easy to access apps like Instagram, Snapchat and Facebook, we’re all falling down a rabbit hole of constant capturing. You know when you go to a concert and everyone is holding their phone up to take a video instead of listening to the live music they paid for? Yeah, I’m pretty sure that wasn’t always normal. Keep reading »